Surrender unto His Lotus Feet - Part 33

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, "Surrender unto His Lotus Feet" wherein we were meditating on Srimad Bhagavatam verse 2.6.7 and about elephant king Gajendra surrendering to Lord's lotus feet when being attacked by crocodile in the lake. In the last offering we saw the verse 8.3.28 wherein Gajendra offers obeisances to Lord Who gives shelter to those who are surrendered unto Him, Who has unlimited potency, Who is not attainable by those who are not able to control the senses. Now we shall see further.

In SB 8.3.29 Gajendra prays,

nāyaṁ veda svam ātmānaṁ
yac-chaktyāhaṁ-dhiyā hatam
taṁ duratyaya-māhātmyaṁ
bhagavantam ito ’smy aham

I offer my respectful obeisances unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, by whose illusory energy the jīva, who is part and parcel of God, forgets his real identity because of the bodily concept of life. I take shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, whose glories are difficult to understand.

In this prayer Gajendra speaks about the illusory energy of the Lord under whose influence we forget our relation with Krishna and identify ourselves with the body and bodily relations. It is indeed declared by Krishna in Bhagavad Gita 15.15

sarvasya cāhaṁ hṛdi sanniviṣṭo
mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca

I am seated in everyone’s heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness.

But Krishna has mercifully given us minute independence to desire whether we want to forget Him or remember Him and likewise rewards all possible opportunity for the same. People with demoniac mentality do not want to accept Krishna or abide by His instructions. If one choses to go against Lord's will then Krishna allows such persons to be born again and again in different lower specises of lives. "Attaining repeated birth amongst the species of demoniac life, O son of Kuntī, such persons can never approach Me. Gradually they sink down to the most abominable type of existence." 

Whereas when we are under the shelter of Supreme Lord and His devotees, then even in the most trying situations, Krishna helps us to remember Him. In this regard, we are reminded of an article by a Western devotee narrating her near-death experience. She had mentioned in that article that although she had been practising Krishna consciousness for almost 23 years, she could realise by her experience that to remember Krishna at the time of death is not so easy. When she was admitted in hospital in Bengal, her health condition was worsening day by day. She was losing her consciousness and was in so much pain. She knew that she has to remember something and call out something. But the pain was so intense that she could not remember. Doctors had declared to her that she was on verge of death. But when this news reached her devotees friends who were in her country, they started chanting praying for her there.

Mataji could realise that Holy names chanted by the devotees 1000s of miles away from the hospital did have a great impact.  Seeing her moaning, some Muslim nurse who had entered her room to attend to her, told her, "Why don't you just chant Hare Krishna instead of crying?" The moment she heard that, she was reminded of Holy Names and then she started chanting. As she started chanting, she began to feel peaceful. And slowly over a period of time, she improved in health and later went to thank the nurse and gift her some prasadam and Prabhupada's book. The nurse refused to accept anything, but when this devotee asked her how she asked her to chant Krishna's names. she could not say what inspired her to say so. 

So we can see how Krishna as Paramatma kindly helps us to remember Him. Indeed as Gajendra says, taṁ duratyaya-māhātmyaṁ - the glories of the Lord, the glories of His Holy Names are all very difficult to undertstand. When He decides to protect, no one can kill, and when He decides to kill, no one can protect - rākhe krsna māre ke, māre krsna rākhe ke. To such glorious Lord Gajendra offers His respectful obeisances.

Krishna willing we shall meditate further on this topic in the subsequent offering.

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