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July 14, 1999   VNN4295  Comment on this storyNext StoriesAbout the AuthorNext StoriesOther Stories by this Author

Coloring The Heart


EDITORIAL, Jul 14 (VNN) — (Sanga wfd@efn.org)

"When the soul becomes like crystal - sphatika-mani - clear like a lake and clean of all impurities, then in touch with Krsna it takes on a special color, an emotion."

A discussion on Srimad Bhagavatam, 10.13.4, by Swami B.V. Tripurari.

tathagha-vadanan matyo
rak–itva vatsa-palakan
sarit-pulinam aneya
bhagavan idam abravet

"Then, after saving the boys and calves from the mouth of Aghasura, who was death personified, Lord Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, brought them all to the bank of the river and spoke the following words."

This is the beginning of Sukadeva Goswami continuing the narration of the pastimes of the killing of Aghasura. Maharaja Pariksit wanted to know how the pastimes of killing Aghasura happened at the end of the kaumara lila, since they were not explained at all until one year later at the beginning of the pauganda lila. Maharaja Pariksit said that he suspected that it must have something to do with the potencies of Lord Krsna. As we heard at the beginning of the previous chapter, all these pastimes started with Krsna's adventurous spirit of pauganda, which arise even in his kaumara lila.

Officially, he is in the kaumara lila, but substantially he is in the pauganda lila, being mature for his age.

In his adventurous spirit relative to the pauganda lila, he decided on waking up before the cowherd boys to bugle them awake with his buffalo horn and take them on a picnic breakfast in the forest. You can imagine how the cowherds responded to this. They dream all night about cowherding with Krsna. Usually they wake him up because he sleeps late, having been out all night. Hearing Krsna blowing his horn and his special plans for a picnic breakfast, they are ecstatic.

And what happened? As we heard, the pastime of killing Aghasura got in the way of their lila. They were sporting and frolicking, forgetting about taking their breakfast, and Aghasura came in the midst of their path. They had just moved to a new area of the Vrindavana forest that they weren't familiar with, so they were curious what this thing lying in the forest was. It looked fun, but dangerous also. Was it a snake or an imitation snake? What could it be?

Now the time for breakfast is past, so they sit down and eat all the gourmet items prepared by their mothers. Krsna has selected a beautiful place for taking their lunch. You can imagine how hungry they were by this time. Krsna used to eat a huge feast of kachoris, samosas, rice, sweets, and all kinds of fried things, cooked by Radharani. So Krsna selected a beautiful lake along the Yamuna. It was full of lotuses, flowers of all sorts, and it was lined with trees, which were enhanced by being in connection with the water. He thought it was just as cool, soothing, and refreshing as the still and peaceful mind of a self-realized soul.

Krsna is attracted by this kind of peaceful mind that is cleared of all material thoughts and desires. If Krsna comes to this kind of mind, in the form of the holy name, there will be some positive attachment. Attachment and aversion, raga desha, is discouraged in the Bhagavad-gita. But when a devotee speaks of raga, attachment, it has a different meaning. We become attached to something out of our insufficiency, but attraction to Krsna arises not out of material deficiency but the fullness that comes from overcoming material attachment.

There is a fullness in emptiness, which is like coming from negative one to zero. Gaudiya Vaisnavism seeks to take us to positive numbers. When we become full due to being emptied out of all material desires, we can get some positive color. The Sanskrit root from which raga comes, is "to color." The heart becomes colored, just as when you take a crystal prism and put a red flower next to it, it will become red. Similarly, when the soul becomes like crystal, sphatika-mani, clear like a lake and clean of all impurities, then in touch of Krsna it takes a special color, an emotion.

Therefore, Krsna likes this stillness of the mind. When our mind is busy with all types of materialistic thoughts, there is no room for Krsna to enter. Once I began to speak to a man about Srimad-Bhagavatam and he said, "This book is mumbo jumbo. I'm an educated man, a lawyer, and I have a library full of books, and I have seen this book and it makes no sense." Then this verse came to my mind:

matir na krsne paratah svato va
mitho bipadyeta grhavratanam

He had taken a vow to enjoy the senses, and there is no room for Krsna to come in his head. Although he was an educated man, he thought Srimad-Bhagavatam made no sense. He couldn't understand. Unless the mind is cleared of materialistic thoughts, Krsna won't be attracted to enter and reveal himself. So we have to make our minds like the stillness of the lake along the bankes of the Yamuna.

Many thanks to the generous support of our Sanga reading community. Their donations and pledges make this work possible. Those wishing to participate, send your offering, payable to 'Sanga', c/o Audarya Ashram, 325 River Road, Eugene, OR 97404, USA.

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