God Helps Those who Help Themselves

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

Srila Prabhupada gives a wonderful example on the importance of 'determination' and the principle of "God helps those who help themselves" in the purport to BG 6.24: sa niścayena yoktavyo yogo ’nirviṇṇa-cetasā. One should engage oneself in the practice of yoga with determination and faith and not be deviated from the path.

"As for determination, one should follow the example of the sparrow who lost her eggs in the waves of the ocean. A sparrow laid her eggs on the shore of the ocean, but the big ocean carried away the eggs on its waves. The sparrow became very upset and asked the ocean to return her eggs. The ocean did not even consider her appeal. So the sparrow decided to dry up the ocean. She began to pick out the water in her small beak, and everyone laughed at her for her impossible determination. The news of her activity spread, and at last Garuda, the gigantic bird carrier of Lord Vishnu, heard it. He became compassionate toward his small sister bird, and so he came to see the sparrow. Garuda was very pleased by the determination of the small sparrow, and he promised to help. Thus Garuda at once asked the ocean to return her eggs lest he himself take up the work of the sparrow. The ocean was frightened at this, and returned the eggs. Thus the sparrow became happy by the grace of Garuda.

Similarly, the practice of yoga, especially bhakti-yoga in Krsna consciousness, may appear to be a very difficult job. But if anyone follows the principles with great determination, the Lord will surely help, for God helps those who help themselves."

For those of us in grhastha life, this purport seems especially relevant as we are often burdened with so many material responsibilities and confronted with so much maya everyday that keeping our determination to chant Krsna-nama and follow the regulative principles seems as impossible as trying to drain the ocean. But by remaining firm in our determination, both Sri Krishna and our Gurudeva will naturally become pleased with us and will show their unlimited compassion towards us by helping us to keep our vows to chant and follow the principles and ultimately, to become successful in bhakti-yoga.

Your servant,
Erica Wolski

Moderator's Note: Erica Mataji is a very enthusiastic devotee living in the state of California in US. She is a qualified "Water Engineer" and does research on Purification of water and other related subject matters. She is sincerely practicing Krishna Consciousness along with her husband and is always eager to render service to the Vaishnavas in one way or other.