Surrender unto His Lotus Feet - Part 34

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

This is in conclusion 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 8.3.29 wherein Gajendra takes shelter of the Lord Whose glories are difficult to understand and by whose illusory energy we forget our real identity. Now we shall see further.

Sukadev Goswami says in Srimad Bhagavatam verse 8.3.32

so ’ntaḥ-sarasy urubalena gṛhīta ārto
dṛṣṭvā garutmati hariṁ kha upātta-cakram
utkṣipya sāmbuja-karaṁ giramāha kṛcchrān
nārāyaṇākhila-guro bhagavan namas te

Gajendra had been forcefully captured by the crocodile in the water and was feeling acute pain, but when he saw that Nārāyaṇa, wielding His disc, was coming in the sky on the back of Garuḍa, he immediately took a lotus flower in his trunk, and with great difficulty due to his painful condition, he uttered the following words: “O my Lord, Nārāyaṇa, master of the universe, O Supreme Personality of Godhead, I offer my respectful obeisances unto You.”

In this prayer Gajendra addresses Lord Hari as, "Narayana, akhila-guro — O universal Lord; Bhagavan — O Supreme Personality of Godhead;"  Since He is not the Lord for just the human-beings or demigods alone, but Lord for everyone in the universe,  after hearing the fervent prayers of Gajendra, Lord rushed on Garuda with great speed with His disc and other weapons.

Herein again we can see the glorious devotional mood of Gajendra - In that excruciating painful situation also Gajendra welcomed the Lord to the best of his ability. Lord says in Bhagavad Gita verse 9.26, "If one offers Me with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, a fruit or water, I will accept it."  With such a loving gesture Gajendra offers his obeisances to the Lord. When lying on the bed of arrows, Bhishmadev also welcomed the Lord and the devotees to the best of his ability. We can see how these devotees are teaching us that bhakti is unconditional and as per time, place and circumstance one can still do the service to the best of their ability. For the Lord being bhāva grāhi janardana looks accepts the devotional mood of the devotees. He values the sincere endeavours and attempts for service, even if one is not able to execute the service perfectly.

Lord then dragged Gajendra along with the crocodile out of the water and thereafter killed the crocodile and rescued Gajendra. Srila Prabhupada very nicely writes in the purport of verse 8.3.32 - "A devotee does not consider a dangerous position to be dangerous, for in such a dangerous position he can fervently pray to the Lord in great ecstasy. Thus a devotee regards danger as a good opportunity. tat te ’nukampāṁ susamīkṣamāṇaḥ. When a devotee is in great danger, he sees that danger to be the great mercy of the Lord because it is an opportunity to think of the Lord very sincerely and with undiverted attention."

We can see this quality in many devotees in the pages of Srimad Bhagavatam, Devotees like Prahlad Maharaj, Kunti, Bhishma never complain to the Lord for the miseries which they undergo in life. But they take it as opportunity to glorify Krishna.

His Divine Grace further mentions - "When a devotee lives in this way, his salvation — his going back home, back to Godhead — is guaranteed. We can see this to be true from the example of Gajendra, who anxiously prayed to the Lord and thus received an immediate chance to return home, back to Godhead."

Gajendra by his prayers of surrender could get the mercy of the Lord, Who came in person to take him back home, back to Godhead.

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