Marriage - A Sacred Sacrifice

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept our humble pranams. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev.

Few days back, while travelling in bus, we saw one of passengers reading an article in newspaper which had the title -"Divorce is not a dirty word!". We can just see how much degraded the society has become these days - that people are boldly proclaiming such insane words as good words. Due to the bad influence of cinema, youngsters consider marriage as mere time-pass or fun event. They fail to realize the importance of marital relationship. They neither remember the efforts of their parents who have taken so much pain to raise them up, nor care for the precarious position of their kids after they are separated.

Just like birth, death and every single instance in life, marriages also takes place by the will and sanction of Supreme Lord and it is very important that couple see each other as Krishna's gift in their life. In reality there is every possibility to have lots of misunderstandings. But the secret of successful relationship lies in taking shelter of words of elders, Guru and Krishna. Srimad Bhagavatam - being non-different from Lord provides solution to every problem in this world. While explaining the life of Devahuti and Kardama Muni to Vidura, Maitreya muni says in Canto 3, Chapter 23, verses 4 and 5 as follows..

sa vai devarṣi-varyas tāṁ mānavīṁ samanuvratām
daivād garīyasaḥ patyur āśāsānāṁ mahāśiṣaḥ

kālena bhūyasā kṣāmāṁ karśitāṁ vrata-caryayā
prema-gadgadayā vācā pīḍitaḥ kṛpayābravīt

The daughter of Manu, who was fully devoted to her husband, looked upon him as greater even than providence. Thus she expected great blessings from him. Having served him for a long time, she grew weak and emaciated due to her religious observances. Seeing her condition, Kardama, the foremost of celestial sages, was overcome with compassion and spoke to her in a voice choked with great love.

In his most unparalled purport Srila Prabhupada very clearly instructs the qualities that women need to possess for a peaceful married life. He says - "The wife is expected to be of the same category as the husband. She must be prepared to follow the principles of the husband, and then there will be happy life. If the husband is a devotee and the wife is materialistic, there cannot be any peace in the home. The wife must see the tendencies of the husband and must be prepared to follow him. From Mahabharata we learn that when Gandhari understood that her would-be husband, Dhrtarashtra, was blind, she immediately began to practice blindness herself. Thus she covered her eyes and played the part of a blind woman. She decided that since her husband was blind, she must also act like a blind woman, otherwise she would be proud of her eyes, and her husband would be seen as inferior. The word samanuvrata indicates that it is the duty of a wife to adopt the special circumstances in which the husband is situated. "

We might immediately think, what if my husband is not as good like Kardama Muni. Reading our minds, His Divine grace further clarifies in the purport -  "Of course, if the husband is as great as Kardama Muni, then a very good result accrues from following him. But even if the husband is not a great devotee like Kardama Muni, it is the wife's duty to adapt herself according to his mentality. That makes married life very happy."

Maharaj says that husband is the spiritual master for a wife. So if a wife is blessed with such a husband then she should follow him sincerely and help him in all ways in rendering devotional service to Lord. What to do in case, where the wife is Krishna conscious and the husband is against it? We have seen many matajis, who by their sincere bhakti and mercy of Krishna were able to inspire their husband also in serving the Lord. But in situations wherein the husband is totally against the process of bhakti - Maharaj has advised -"If the husband is unfavorable to devotional service, there is no need to be discouraged or dis-heartened. Manasik bhajan (remembering, chanting Krishna's name within the mind) is enough. Krishna living within our hearts would definitely accept and appreciate such maanasik bhajan and would definitely reciprocate their attempts in serving Him and arrange everything nicely in due course of time." 

As Chanakya Pandit says in his Nidhi shaastra - "santoṣa triṣu kartavyaḥ sva-dhāre bhojane dhane" -  if we are satisfied with whatever kind of spouse Krishna has blessed with and have eagerness to serve Him, then both the present and future generation will be saved from the evil effects of divorce.

Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev,
Kalacakra Krsna das and Sudarshana devi dasi.