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Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Surrender to God

From the Bhagwad Gita 2.7 on "Surrender"

This ultimate surrender is what separates us from total enlightenment and bliss and our current state. As many advaita gurus point out, we are one thought away from enlightenment or Moksha, give up the ego - and in the next thought, you are your pure satchinanda, enlightenment, your pure self sans the make believe body.

karpanya-dosapahata-svabhavah, prcchami tvam dharma sammudha cetah

yac chreyah syan niscitam bruhi tan me, sisyas te ham sadhi mam tvam prapannam
Literal translation - Now I am confused about my duty and having lost all my composure because of this weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me.

(Further explanataion from a lecture based on Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura's Sri Bhajana Rahasya) Tridandisvami Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja)

There are six symptoms of saranagati (the process of surrender):

1 Anukulyasya sankalpah: Accepting whatever is favorable to Bhagavan. But we do not accept favorable things all the time. We do things that are not right. Definitely, this is our fault.

2 Pratikulyasya varjanam: Rejecting whatever is unfavorable. We do not reject whatever is unfavorable to Bhagavan. We still do thinks we know that are not perceived positively by God. When surrender will be pure, then bhakti will come, God realization will come, and detachment to unfavorable things will come. Scriptural statements cannot be false.

raksisyatiti visvaso Firm Faith: Whatever external or internal problems (e.g., lust, anger, greed, attachment, etc) we might have,only the Lord can give us emancipation from them all. This faith is lacking in us. That is our mistake or fault.

goptrtve varanam Seeing the Lord as our sole Protector: I have accepted the Supreme Lord as the maintainer in the complete sense. My bodily needs, mental needs, and spiritual needs are being satisfied by the Supreme Lord only and no one else. I have accepted the Supreme Lord as the only maintainer.

karpanye, meekness Humbleness: 'I am wretched, insignificant, and materially destitute. Everything happens as the will of God, but we do not accept this fact. We are proud of our birth, wealth, and education. Therefore, we are lacking humbleness.

6 Atmanivedana /
atma-niksepa: Self-surrender. We should think, "I do not belong to this world. I belong to the Supreme Lord." But we are lacking in this consciousness. I am committing mistakes in saranagati. This is my fault.

Very strongly accept what is favorable for bhakti and strongly reject what is unfavorable. Krsna Bhagavan has created all these worlds and He is powerful enough to save anyone and to do anything. If you have taken His shelter and are surrendered, then give up everything "on the head of Sri Krsna" and don't be worried. If He can create millions of universes and He is supporting even a fish in the sea and a bird in the midst of mountains where there is no one to maintain them, why won't He support you? Be like Sri Prahlada Maharaja. Have belief that Lord Krsna will support you, and you will see that He is true to the words He has spoken in the Bhagavad-gita: "For those who are ananya-bhaktas, those who don't know anyone other than Me, I take the responsibility for all the paraphernalia of their lives on My head and shoulders. I carry that paraphernalia Myself, and I support and nourish those devotees." He will surely keep His promise, but we have no strong faith in this and that is why we suffer. You will suffer if you are not surrendered.

By nature's own way the complete system of material activities is a source of perplexity for everyone. In every step there is perplexity, and therefore it behooves one to approach a bona fide spiritual master who can give one proper guidance for executing the purpose of life. All Vedic literatures advise us to approach a bona fide spiritual master to get free from the perplexities of life which happen without our desire. They are like a forest fire that somehow blazes without being set by anyone. Similarly, the world situation is such that perplexities of life automatically appear, without our wanting such confusion. No one wants fire, and yet it takes place, and we become perplexed. The Vedic wisdom therefore advises that in order to solve the perplexities of life and to understand the science of the solution, one must approach a spiritual master who is in the disciplic succession. A person with a bona fide spiritual master is supposed to know everything. One should not, therefore, remain in material perplexities but should approach a spiritual master. This is the purport of this verse.

Who is the man in material perplexities? It is he who does not understand the problems of life. In the Garga Upanisad the perplexed man is described as follows:

yo va etad aksaram gargy aviditvasmal lokat praiti sa krpanah.

"He is a miserly man who does not solve the problems of life as a human and who thus quits this world like the cats and dogs, without understanding the science of self-realization."

This human form of life is a most valuable asset for the living entity who can utilize it for solving the problems of life; therefore, one who does not utilize this opportunity properly is a miser. On the other hand, there is the brahmana, or he who is intelligent enough to utilize this body to solve all the problems of life.

The krpanas, or miserly persons, waste their time in being overly affectionate for family, society, country, etc., in the material conception of life. One is often attached to family life, namely to wife, children and other members, on the basis of "skin disease." The krpana thinks that he is able to protect his family members from death; or the krpana thinks that his family or society can save him from the verge of death. Such family attachment can be found even in the lower animals who take care of children also. Being intelligent, Arjuna could understand that his affection for family members and his wish to protect them from death were the causes of his perplexities. Although he could understand that his duty to fight was awaiting him, still, on account of miserly weakness, he could not discharge the duties. He is therefore asking Lord Krsna, the supreme spiritual master, to make a definite solution. He offers himself to Krsna as a disciple. He wants to stop friendly talks. Talks between the master and the disciple are serious, and now Arjuna wants to talk very seriously before the recognized spiritual master. ........

Further explanation from http://www.harekrishnablog.blogspot.com/ quoted verbatim below
Then Arjuna decided to accept Krsna as his guru. He... Sisyas te 'ham: "I become your disciple." To become disciple means no more argument. When we talk friendly there is argument, counterargument. But when there is order from guru there is no more argument. Therefore Arjuna says that karpanya-dosopahata-svabhavah: "Actually my behavior should be exactly like a ksatriya, to fight for the just cause, but in this case I am denying. Therefore I am krpana." Krpana means one who does not properly use his position. One man is very rich, but he does not use his money, simply sees the money. He is called krpana. Similarly, Arjuna is powerful, he can fight, he is a ksatriya, but he is denying his ability. Therefore he is thinking that "I have become krpana, miser. Although I have got strength, I am denying to fight." "Although I have got money, I do not spend." These are called krpana. So karpanya-dosopahata: "Now I am infected with karpanya-dosa." Karpanya-dosopahata-svabhavah.

So when we become puzzled with these material affairs, what to do -- to do or not to do, this is the example -- at that time we must approach a guru. That is the instruction here, we see. Prcchami tvam dharma-sammudha-cetah. When we are bewildered, we do not distinguish what is religious and what is not religious, do not use our position properly. That is karpanya-dosopahata-svabhavah [Bg. 2.7]. At that time there is need of guru. That is the Vedic instruction. Tad-vijnanartham sa gurum evabhigacchet srotriyam brahma-nistham [MU 1.2.12]. This is the duty. This is civilization, that we are meeting with so many problems of life. That is natural. In this material world the material world is problems of life. Padam padam yad vipadam. Material world means in every step there is danger. That is material world.

So therefore we should take guide from guru, from the teacher, from the spiritual master how to make progress, because this... That will be explained later on, that the goal of our life, at least in this human form of life, in the Aryan civilization, the goal of life is to understand our constitutional position, "What I am. What I am." If we do not understand "What I am," then I am equal to the cats and dogs. The dogs, cats, they do not know. They think that they are the body. That will be explained. So in such condition of life, when we are puzzled... Actually we are puzzled every moment. Therefore it is necessary one should approach to a proper guru. Now Arjuna is approaching Krsna, the first-class guru. First-class guru. Guru means the Supreme Lord. He is guru of everyone, parama-guru. So anyone who represents Krsna, he is also guru.


  1. Hi there !

    Very happy to visit your blog !

    Best regards !


  2. alas though the world has advanced its so difficult to find first class guru's in this world, we all are engripped by the maya of the world. If Krishna was to be born now, I wonder if we would even notice.

  3. This is worded beautifully! I re-read this post when I'm having a bad day. Thank you for posting this.


Welcome to the spirituality blog

This blog is an offshoot of a website that I had conceived as a result of the spiritual grace and resultant inspiration during Shivaratri Y2K (http://www.jyotirlinga.com) on the joy of Shiva Bhakti and my quest for spiritual progress. Not finding the time (yep, bad excuse!), this blog suits me fine in quickly adding content... my spiritual forays and thoughts - helps log them too. My spiritual journey started with Hinduism and it's simple stories/ teachings as far back as when I was a 2nd grader, with Lord Shiva and has now found convergence with Advaitism / Duality. The Advaitism gurus like Bhagwan Ramana Maharishi, Nisargadatta Maharaj; they have provided that spiritual boost of energy in many lagging moments and have tremendously influenced me ... little baby steps at a time... that will hopefully all lead upto a final crescendo. The merits of satsangh are many!

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