Battlefield

2nd Feb 2003
Sutirtha Krsna das

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

Krishna gave this instruction to Arjuna on a battlefield, and We are also in the midst of a battle. At Kurukshetra, there was a war between the Pandavas and the Kauravas, and we are at war with the tendencies of the mind, which is restless by nature. Just as the instruction to absorb the mind in Krishna was difficult for Arjuna at that time, so it is also difficult for us now.

The Pandavas' army consisted of seven akshauhinis or military phalanxes, and the Kauravas' army consisted of eleven akshauhinis. We also have an army of eleven akshauhinis opposing us, and we are alone. Krishna was the driver of Arjuna's chariot, but our driver is deformed and bad intelligence.

Arjuna had a chariot given to him by Agni that could not be burnt or destroyed, but what kind of chariot do we have? Only the material body, which is subject to disease and death. Arjuna had the Gandiva bow to fight with, but we have no such weapon for fighting. Who was sitting on the flag of Arjuna's chariot? Hanuman. We have no help; such is our position of weakness.

Arjuna had all kinds of help, but when he heard Krishna's instruction, his mind became disturbed at once, and he said, "Oh Lord, I am unable to absorb my mind in thinking of You alone.". If Arjuna's mind was disturbed, what is our situation? Our mind is the charioteer that drives the chariot of our body, and the soul is its passenger. What is the nature of the mind? It is restless and gives us no help at all. If we follow its direction, we will fall down or stray from the path. In the beginning of Bhagavad-gita, Arjuna folded his hands and said. "I am now surrendered unto You in every way. I will do as You instruct me." (Bhagavad-gita 2.7) Opposite Arjuna are Bhishma, Drona, Karna, Duryodhana, and Duhsasana. So many great warriors (Maharathis) are assembled together to fight against him." We also have six warriors opposing us, namely the urges of speech, the tongue, the stomach, the genitals, the uncontrolled mind, and anger. We cannot conquer even one of these warriors. Personalities as exalted as Visvamitra was also affected by one of these warriors, the sexual urge.

Besides these warriors, we have to contend with countless sinful desires and other unwanted impurities in the heart. Therefore Krishna said, "Mad-bhaktah: you become My devotee." Arjuna deliberated and said, "It is easy to say that one will become a devotee, but it is very, very difficult to actually do it. "One thing is especially necessary in order to become a devotee. Srila Rupa Goswami has instructed us, "Devotional service should be devoid of all desires other than the aspiration to bring happiness to Sri Krishna, and should not be covered by knowledge and activity for material gain." One must not have any type of material desire. If we are to attain bhakti, the service of Sri Krishna or of a real devotee, we cannot have any other desire in the heart. What to speak of the desire itself, there cannot be even a scent of it.

Krsna says, "Pay attention to this, and become like this, and then you will understand bhakti; otherwise it will be very difficult." We are told that we must not have any tendency towards material activity or accumulating knowledge. The fact of the matter is that no man can live without activity. Food, Clothing, and Shelter are basic necessities of human beings. We have to act at least to acquire these basic necessities.

In the midst of these activities, we are trying to attach ourself to Krishna & detach ourself from the material world. All these are possible only by the process of

man-manā bhava mad-bhakto mad-yājī māṁ namaskuru
mām evaiṣyasi satyaṁ te pratijāne priyo ’si me

Hare Krishna!
Your humble servant,
Sutirtha Krsna das
Abu Dhabi.