Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha

(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, 06.05.2017 morning, Rila)

(continues from the previous Friday)

 “Destiny fixed the time for Maharaja Bharata’s enjoyment of material opulence at one thousand times ten thousand years.” Destiny. If you calculate your lifetime, how many minutes of enjoinment of material opulence have you had? But even that period was finished: “When that period was finished he retired from family life and divided the wealth he had received from his forefathers among his sons. He left his paternal home, the reservoir of all opulence, and started for Pulaha-ashrama, which is situated in Haridwar. The shalagrama-shilas are obtainable there. At Pulaha-ashrama, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Hari, out of His transcendental affection for His devotee, becomes visible to His devotee, satisfying His devotee’s desires. In Pulaha-ashrama is the Gandaki River, which is the best of all rivers. The shalagrama-shilas, the marble pebbles, purify all those places. On each and every marble pebble, up and down, circles like navels are visible.”[1]

This is something interesting – God coming as a stone. Sometimes you think that you can make an image and in this way you can create your God. But it’s not enough. This is called idol worship – if it is according to your desire, your artistic experience. But when He wants to come, He can reveal Himself in any form. There are very special natural forms respected as direct representatives of God Supreme. Like for example if you go to the upper Ganges and you search out the pebbles on the shore, they say that practically any type of little stone you find, if there is a white circle going around, it is just like directly Krishna. Or this shalagrama is a very powerful representation of Lord Vishnu, this is His stone, always connected with His chakra. So this navel that is mentioned here, it’s practically a chakra. And also Shiva appears in stone lingam form. So it looks like everybody wants to show – to call your attention: “Hey, I am here.”

“In the gardens of Pulaha-ashrama, Maharaja Bharata lived alone and collected a variety of flowers, twigs and tulasi leaves. He also collected the water of the Gandaki River, as well as various roots, fruits and bulbs. With these he offered food to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vasudeva, and, worshiping Him, he remained satisfied. In this way his heart was completely uncontaminated, and he did not have the least desire for material enjoyment. All material desires vanished. In this steady position, he felt full satisfaction and was situated in devotional service.”[2]

So, this is like a fixed achievement of spiritual practices. Focused attention, and the result is full satisfaction. The goals and the means have exchanged their position today. People consider satisfaction a goal. Sorry, this is a result of something else. So, the means is to worship and the result is satisfaction. It’s not that the goal is satisfaction, because in this way you will never reach.

“That most exalted devotee, Maharaja Bharata, in this way engaged constantly in the devotional service of the Lord. Naturally his love for Vasudeva, Krishna, increased more and more and melted his heart. Consequently he gradually lost all attachment for regulative duties). The hairs of his body stood on end, and all the ecstatic bodily symptoms were manifest. Tears flowed from his eyes, so much so that he could not see anything. Thus he constantly meditated on the reddish lotus feet of the Lord. At that time, his heart, which was like a lake, was filled with the water of ecstatic love. When his mind was immersed in that lake, he even forgot the regulative service to the Lord. Maharaja Bharata appeared very beautiful. He had a wealth of curly hair on his head, which was wet from bathing three times daily. He dressed in a deerskin. He worshiped Lord Narayana, whose body was composed of golden effulgence and who resided within the sun. Maharaja Bharata worshiped Lord Narayana by chanting the hymns given in the Rig Veda, and he recited the following verse as the sun rose. “The Supreme Personality of Godhead is situated in pure goodness. He illuminates the entire universe and bestows all benedictions upon His devotees. The Lord has created this universe from His own spiritual potency. According to His desire, the Lord entered this universe as the Supersoul, and by virtue of His different potencies He is maintaining all living entities desiring material enjoyment. Let me offer my respectful obeisances unto the Lord, who is the giver of intelligence.”[3]

So, remember that the sun is the loving, caring eye of the Supreme over us. And just like the rising sun illuminates the whole universe, in the same way the divine dedication with the rays of consciousness illuminates the whole body. Here we have received some instructions concerning the joy and happiness of life. Even a very prolonged enjoinment will finish, but the inner satisfaction of the heart comes from the loving worship of the Supreme.

[1] Shrimad Bhagavatam 5.7.8-10

[2] Shrimad Bhagavatam 5.7.11

[3] Shrimad Bhagavatam 5.7.12-14

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