Smoke Signal

24th Nov 2004
Sudarshana devi dasi

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

In Srimad Bhagavatam verse 1.8.29, Srimati Kunti Maharani offers the following prayer to the Lord:

na veda kaścid bhagavaṁś cikīrṣitaṁ
tavehamānasya nṛṇāṁ viḍambanam
na yasya kaścid dayito ’sti karhicid
dveṣyaś ca yasmin viṣamā matir nṛṇām

O Lord, no one can understand Your transcendental pastimes, which appear to be human and are so misleading. You have no specific object of favor, nor do You have any object of envy. People only imagine that You are partial. 

Every small incident that takes place in every living entity's (right from human beings  to smallest living creatures like ant) life is happening as per plan of Supreme Lord. When we meditate on the above sentence for a while we might be able to realise how much inconceivable is the Lord's potency. When a distressful event occurs one may not be able to understand the cause of distress and might start wondering whether the Lord is partial. 

In his purport to the above verse Srila Prabhupada explains us that, "The Lord's mercy upon the fallen souls is equally distributed. He has no one as the specific object of hostility. The very conception of the Personality of Godhead as a human being is misleading. His pastimes appear to be exactly like a human being's, but actually they are transcendental and without any tinge of material contamination. He is undoubtedly known as partial to His pure devotees, but in fact He is never partial, as much as the sun is never partial to anyone. By utilizing the sun rays, sometimes even the stones become valuable, whereas a blind man cannot see the sun, although there are enough sun rays before him. Darkness and light are two opposite conceptions, but this does not mean that the sun is partial in distributing its rays. The sun rays are open to everyone, but the capacities of the receptacles differ."

I came across a following story which illustrates the inconceivable nature of the all- merciful Supreme Lord. 

“The only survivor of a shipwreck was washed up on a small, uninhabited island. He prayed feverishly for God to rescue him, and every day he scanned the horizon for help, but none seemed forthcoming. Exhausted, he eventually managed to build a little hut out of driftwood to protect himself from the elements, and to store his few possessions. But then one day, after searching for food, he arrived home to find his little hut in flames, the smoke rolling up to the sky. The worst had happened - everything was lost. He was stunned with grief and anger. "God, how could you do this to me?" he cried. He felt that God was partial and had put him alone in such a troublesome place .Early the next day, however, he was awakened by the sound of a ship that was approaching the island. It had come to rescue him. 

"How did you know I was here?" asked the weary man of his rescuers.

"We saw your smoke signal," they replied.” 

It's easy to get discouraged sometimes when things appear to be going badly. But we shouldn't lose heart, because the Supreme Lord is controlling our lives, even in the midst of pain and suffering. So next time your little hut is burning to the ground, it just may be a smoke signal that summons the grace of God. For all the negative things we have to say to ourselves, Lord has a positive answer for it - Since we do not have the capacity to understand the inconceivable nature of the Lord we might not be able to realise the significance at that instance.  

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