Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha

(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, 11.05.2017 am, Sofia)

(continues from the previous Friday)

So, Shrila Prabhupada says in the beginning that “Because Maharaja Rahugana was still doubtful about his enlightenment, he asked Jada Bharata to repeat his instructions and clarify ideas he could not understand.”

“King Rahugana said: O most exalted personality, you are not different from the Supreme Personality of Godhead. By the influence of your true self, all kinds of contradiction in the shastras have been removed. In the dress of a friend of a brahmana, you are hiding your transcendental blissful position. I offer my respectful obeisances unto you.

O best of the brahmanas, my body is filled with dirty things, and my vision have been bitten by the serpent of pride. Due to my material conceptions, I am diseased. Your nectarean instructions are the proper medicine for one suffering from such a fever, and they are cooling waters for one scorched by the heat.”[1]

So, here the condition of a diseased person is described. My dear brothers and sisters, we all suffer the material disease. Our whole system is filled with not very clean things. What to speak of the mind. So much junk-food is there. We are all bitten by pride and by the false concepts of illusion. That is like a serpent and this serpent comes with another serpent – this is called Time, that devours the entire Universe. The upper lip is the future, the lower lip is the past and it is just eating up everything. Beware the snakes! Plus you have another snake inside your body – the kundalini-shakti, and everybody likes to wake up the kundalini powers. Beware, we have to be very careful about these snakes. We’d better worship another snake, a servant snake, who provides a sofa for God Supreme, Lord Vishnu. Ananta, Ananta Shesha – the unlimited, never-ending, all-encompassive.

This concept of the unlimited is very symbolic. You know when something is described in pictures, this is very symbolic and tells a philosophy. Because we are very tiny, right. And one of the greatest and highest concepts that a human can ever imagine is the unlimited. We can hardly imagine how it’s possible that something is unlimited. We have no conception for that. Mathematics sometimes say a word about unlimited or never-ending sequences of numbers, correct – that when you come to the greatest number, you can always add one more. So, there is no end to that unlimited concept of vast, and huge, and never-ending sequences. This is one of the ultimate concepts that we might have – unlimited and eternal. And this concept is symbolized in our cosmology and in our iconography by this serpent of eternity. And what is he doing? He lies under God. It’s so simple to understand – eternity is a lower conception and the personal God is a higher conception. Eternity, or the concept of the unlimited, serves the Supreme Lord – it’s so simple to understand! So, we’d better serve this concept, because in this way we become the servant of a servant.

And what is Lord Vishnu doing on this sofa of a snake? He lies in divine slumber there. There are many yoga teachers and practitioners here – yoga-nidra is a divine slumber. Yoga-nidra is not falling asleep. Yoga-nidra is a creative dream, a creative state of consciousness – when you are connected. This is the goal of yoga-nidra – to achieve that divine connection, divine touch which will impregnate your consciousness with beautiful divine thoughts and feelings.

And when Lord Vishnu is described like this, many helpers, demigods and different beings are around – some are at the head and some are at the feet. If we calculate how to come closer to God, we might think that it’s better to be closer to His head, right. He is so clever, maybe some of His energy will be reflected on us. But Lakshmi Devi is at His lotus feet. She is not approaching the head, She is always at the lotus feet of Lord Vishnu, even in His slumber. And you might think: ‘Oh, it’s such a low position – to grab the feet of someone. Even if it is God, this is a very low position.’ But in Hungary we have a proverb ‘To catch the feet of God’ – this is the greatest fortune. Do you have something similar? How is it?

Answer: “To catch God for His trench coat.”

Swami Tirtha: Yes, something similar. So, if you have your slumber – slumber means not a real deep sleep, but sometimes you open up your eyes, other times you fall back and you relax. But you know if you open up your eyes, what comes in the first glance? You see your own feet, right, and those who are close to your feet. So, we need to be servants of the servants. Because our Supreme Lord always has an eye on His servants. Therefore we have this beautiful expression ‘to surrender at the lotus feet of the Lord’. Because whenever He opens His eyes, the first glance goes to the feet. And those who are around the feet of God, they achieve a vision, a darshan. So, this is one way to find the remedy for the material disease.

(to be continued)

[1] Shrimad Bhagavatam 5.12.1-2

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