The Value of Gold

16th Apr 2006
Sudarshana devi dasi

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

Every day during Mangala arati, we sing, "saḿsāra-dāvānala-līḍha-loka" - This world is like a dense forest on fire and the mercy of spiritual master is like the cool showers which put off the fire. In Srimad Bhagavatam 5.14.7, Jada Bharatha very nicely explains to Maharaj Rahugana about the dangers of forest fire of material life and what is the main ingredient that adds fuel to this fire.

kvacic cāśeṣa-doṣa-niṣadanaṁ purīṣa-viśeṣaṁ tad-varṇa-guṇa-nirmita-matiḥ suvarṇam upāditsaty agni-kāma-kātara ivolmuka-piśācam.

Sometimes the living entity is interested in the yellow stool known as gold and runs after it. That gold is the source of material opulence and envy, and it can enable one to afford illicit sex, gambling, meat-eating and intoxication. Those whose minds are overcome by the mode of passion are attracted by the color of gold, just as a man suffering from cold in the forest runs after a phosphorescent light in a marshy land, considering it to be fire.

After going through this verse, whatever attachment we might have for gold is sure to go away. Too much of anything is harmful to us. This holds good for acquisition of gold also. In our day to day lives we hear about so much thefts. When we wear too many gold jewels, we are very easily inviting trouble on our own (by openly provoking robbers to steal) and once gold is robbed, we start mourning for the same. Whether at home or during travel it is always best to have as miminum gold as possible - so that neither do we need to be anxious about safe-guarding it nor lament about the same when losing it.

In the purport Srila Prabhupada very nicely reminds us how Kali personified requested Parikshit Maharaj to give him shelter. When Pariskhit Maharaj told that Kali could stay - wherever there is meat-eating, illicit-sex, gambling and intoxication, Kali asked him where he could find all these four things together. Parikshit Maharaj replied that Kali could stay in gold. Srila Prabhupada has very nicely emphasised that, "Gold encompasses the four principles of sin, and therefore, according to spiritual life, gold should be avoided as far as possible."

There is a saying that, "All that glitters is not gold". But the reality is all the gold in this world cannot bring the glitter or glow in face - when compared to the bubbling bright face we would possess while engaged in Harinam. By accumulating gold in the house, our heart would be filled with greed and so the Supreme Lord would neither like to stay in our heart, nor in our home. So instead of welcoming Kali, let us chant Krishna's name lovingly and sincerely and welcome Him in our heart and homes. 

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