Compassion

Compassion

Date
Author
Sudarshana devi dasi

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Mathajis,

Please accept my humble pranams. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Gurudev.

In Srimad Bhagavat Gita, while explaining about Karma Yoga to Arjuna, Lord Krishna specifies in verse 5.18 

vidyaa-vinaya-sampanne
braahmane gavi hastini
shuni caiva sva-paake ca

panditaaha sama-darshinah

"The humble sages, by virtue of true knowledge, see with equal vision a learned and gentle brahmana, a cow, an elephant, a dog and a dog-eater [outcaste]."

The following is  a nice pastime illustrating the deep compassion of Srila Prabhupada who has showed to us by his personal example what sama-darshinah means. This is an extract from  the book 'The 1008 Ways to Remember Srila Prabhupada"  by Govinda dasi mathaji .

In the late afternoon in New Jersey, Srila Prabhupada would often sit downstairs in the garden beside our bungalow.  On one particular afternoon, Srila Prabhupada was comfortably seated in a chair, and I was sitting on the ground beside him. He was softly chanting japa, enjoying the fresh ocean air, mixed with the fragrance of roses and other flowers. Occasionally he would say something but mostly he would chant softly. Suddenly beside my sitting place I saw a large brown slug in all its slimy ugliness. Somewhat repulsed I leaned away from the creature.Srila Prabhupada looked at me quizzically and I said: 'Ugh, look at this', pointing to the slimy, sliding creature. Srila Prabhupada leaned forward and looked at the slug, his face grew full of love and compassion, and he said to me: 'Chant to the poor creature', and so I sat there, chanting Hare Krsna to the slimy, yet benedicted slug for some time until he slithered away. He had incredible compassion even for the most abominable creature. Srila Prabhupada, I can never forget the sound of your voice when you gave me that instruction. In it, your whole mission was encapsulated. 'Chant to the poor creature'. Your face looked pained, full of compassion for the poor jiva in that slimy body. You did not see the ugly slug that I saw. You saw the soul covered in suffering, forgetful of Krsna. From that moment my heart opened for all creatures and I glimpsed the depth of your divine compassion. Thank you, Srila Prabhupada for sharing that
compassion with me."

The magnanimous Lord has created all living entities and whatever be their outward appearance, each entity is a spirit soul. We see in day to day life, that people respect those who are rich, beautiful or possess some kind of opulence and one is discarded as soon as their material possession fades away. Here Srila Prabhupada has showed that we should not only be compassionate with people but also treat all living entities equal. We should therefore not consider any living entity as abominable - just by observing the outward appearance, but should compassionately spread the message of Lord to all. 

I pray at the Lotus feet of His Divine Grace that I should always remember His compassionate nature and practise atleast one percent of the same. 

Thank you very much,
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada,
Sudarshana devi dasi.