Good Intentions!

16th Jun 2017
Vaijayantimala devi dasi

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

In the material world, we find it very difficult to maintain good relationships and the main reason for it is our judgmental attitude. We start judging the people for all their words and actions, even though we are not in a position of authority to do that. We not only judge people but also hold those concocted opinions in our hearts for a long time. Thus we are unable to have any genuine and honest relationship with anyone. When we hear about the qualities of a devotee performing devotional service in various modes, instead of understanding and analyzing ourselves, we immediately within our minds try to judge how other devotees are performing devotional service and in which modes. This really kills our devotional service. So always we should try to see the good intentions behind the activities of others instead of concocting and judging. Today I came across a short inspiring story in this regard.

A crab was once running on sea shore and was admiring its beautiful footprints.  Suddenly a huge wave splashed and washed away the footprints.  

The crab said to the wave: I considered you as one of my best friends, then what made you do this?

The wave replied: A fisherman was following your footprints, thats why I cleared it off... 

On hearing this, the crab understood the good intention behind the apparently bad action.

This quality of looking only into the good intentions behind the actions is the sterling quality of our beloved Lord as exhibited in the pastime of Vamanadeva. In Srimad Bhagavatam verse 8.23.2, Bali Maharaj prays to Lord Vamanadev as follows:

śrī-balir uvāca
aho praṇāmāya kṛtaḥ samudyamaḥ
prapanna-bhaktārtha-vidhau samāhitaḥ
yal loka-pālais tvad-anugraho ’marair
alabdha-pūrvo ’pasade ’sure ’rpitaḥ

Bali Maharaja said: What a wonderful effect there is in even attempting to offer respectful obeisances to You! I merely endeavored to offer You obeisances, but nonetheless the attempt was as successful as those of pure devotees. The causeless mercy You have shown to me, a fallen demon, was never achieved even by the demigods or the leaders of the various planets.

In the purport to the above verse, Srila Prabhupada says, "When Vamanadeva appeared before Bali Maharaja, Bali Maharaja immediately wanted to offer Him respectful obeisances, but he was unable to do so because of the presence of Sukracarya and other demoniac associates. The Lord is so merciful, however, that although Bali Maharaja did not actually offer obeisances but only endeavored to do so within his mind, the Supreme Personality of Godhead blessed him with more mercy than even the demigods could ever expect."

The Lord did not find fault with the external action of not offering obeisances but looked into the heart and the good intention of Bali Maharaj and rewarded him for that. In the pastime of Dhruva Maharaj also we find that Dhruva Maharaj engaged in devotional service in the beginning with material aspirations and later when he had darshan of the Lord, He was completely purified and he became repentant that he had material desires. He is described in Srimad Bhagavatam 4.9.18 as sat-saṅkalpena dhīmatā - "one who had only good intentions in his heart." That is why the Lord encouraged him not to be worried that he childishly had material desires and at the same time had the pure aspiration to be a great devotee. Ultimately because of Dhruva's good intentions, the Lord bestowed on him the facility of material enjoyment and at the same time love of Godhead.

Thus by our saadhana bhakti of following the instructions of our spiritual master, we should purify ourselves as to cultivate only good intentions within our heart and also be able to see the good intentions of others in all their actions and words.

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