Pleasing Krishna - Part 19

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva.

This is in continuation of the previous offering titled, "Pleasing Krishna" wherein we were meditating on the pastime of the appearance of Lord Vishnu in the sacrificial arena of Prthu Maharaj. In the previous offering we saw  how we should take inspiration from other devotees who serve Krishna nicely and always be eager to serve Him. Now we shall see further.

Our only Hope is Dīna-vatsala
Prthu Maharaj was concerned that he should not offend Mother Lakshmi as he was also aspiring to do the same service like Her. In Srimad Bhagavatam verse 4.20.28, he very nicely prays to Lord Vishnu

jagaj-jananyāṁ jagad-īśa vaiśasaṁ
syād eva yat-karmaṇi naḥ samīhitam
karoṣi phalgv apy uru dīna-vatsalaḥ
sva eva dhiṣṇye ’bhiratasya kiṁ tayā

My dear Lord of the universe, the goddess of fortune, Lakṣmī, is the mother of the universe, and yet I think that she may be angry with me because of my intruding upon her service and acting on that very platform to which she is so much attached. Yet I am hopeful that even though there is some misunderstanding, You will take my part, for You are very much inclined to the poor, and You always magnify even insignificant service unto You. Therefore even though she becomes angry, I think that there is no harm for You, because You are so self-sufficient that You can do without her.

This is very beautiful prayer showing us the transcendental loving exchange between the Lord and His devotees. Prthu Maharaj is addressing Mother Lakshmi as jagat-jananimother of the universe (Lakṣmī). Generally janani or mother is very merciful even in this material world. And Mother Lakshmi - being  jagat-jananyām is definitely embodiment of mercy and also will be very pleased when all Her children are engaging in service of Supreme Lord and would definitely not consider Prthu Maharaj's service as intruding Hers.

His Divine Grace in his sweet purport to the above verse,very nicely lists the innumerable services done by Mother Lakshmi, apart from massaging the Lord's lotus feet. Mother Lakṣmījī, the goddess of fortune, is well known for always massaging the lotus feet of Lord Nārāyaṇa. She is an ideal wife because she takes care of Lord Nārāyaṇa in every detail. She takes care not only of His lotus feet but of the household affairs of the Lord as well. She cooks nice foods for Him, fans Him while He eats, smoothes sandalwood pulp on His face and sets His bed and sitting places in the right order. In this way she is always engaged in the service of the Lord, and there is hardly any opportunity for any other devotee to intrude upon His daily activities. Pṛthu Mahārāja was therefore almost certain that his intrusion into the service of the goddess of fortune would irritate her and cause her to become angry with him. But why should mother Lakṣmī, the mother of the universe, be angry with an insignificant devotee like Pṛthu Mahārāja? All this was not very likely. Yet Pṛthu Mahārāja, just for his personal protection, appealed to the Lord to take his part

Appealing to Jagadisha - the Lord of the Universe, Prthu Maharaj says - 'karoṣi phalgv apy uru dīna-vatsalaḥ' 

karoṣi — You consider; phalgu — insignificant service; api — even; uru — very great; dīna-vatsalaḥ — favorably inclined to the poor

Prthu Maharaj says, "Lord, because You are dīna-vatsalaḥ, You consider even insignificant service done unto You." There are innumerable instances wherein how Lord accepts the service of individuals with varying capacities in a very equal manner. In Ramayana we find how Lord Ram accepted the service done by Hanumanji and other vanaras and that of the squirrel, in building the sedhu bandhan across the ocean to be the same. Hanumanji and other vanaras could throw boulders. Whereas squirrel could sprinkle only few particles of sand. Yet both their services were equally accepted by the Lord. 

Also when Lord Krishna visited King Bahulashva and the brahmana Shrutadeva in Mithila at the same time, both of them welcomed the Lord according to their capacity. There was royal reception at the king's palace with all opulent cushion chairs,  nice flower garlands, sandalwood pulp, incense, new garments, ornaments, lamps, cows and bulls. On the other hand the poor brahmana Shrutadeva could welcome the Lord and His associates only mattresses, wooden planks, straw carpets, fruits, incense, scented water, scented clay, tulasī leaves, kuśa straw and lotus flowers - according to his individual capacity.  And all merciful Lord accepted both of them.

So the important lesson we can learn from Prthu Maharaj is that we need not become overwhelmed by the wonderful service performed by other devotees and end up envying others or feeling inferior about our ownselves. Our Lord is Dīna vatsala, Bhakta vatsala and bhāva grāhi Janardana. So all we need to do is simply serve Him honestly to the best of our ability.

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