Tasting The Magic Of Giving

Posted on September 1, 2013 by admin-vasanti

[Śrīla Gurudeva cites this instance to show that we can change people’s hearts and bring them to Kṛṣṇa consciousness by engaging their energy ‒ with or without their knowledge ‒ in the service of Hari, Guru, and Vaiṣṇavas, without being disheartened by their present conditioning:]

There is not only one world ‒ there are millions upon millions of worlds. Within all these worlds, the eternal spirit soul wanders through the various species of life, sometimes taking the form of a man, sometimes a tree, and sometimes a creeper or an animal. In the course of his wandering, if he is fortunate he receives the association of pure devotees.

How does that good fortune occur? If one has performed any activities related to Kṛṣṇa and His associates, or related to anyone or anything connected with Kṛṣṇa, such as Tulasī, His temples, or His land (Vṛndāvana-dhāma, Navadvīpa-dhāma, or Purī-dhāma), that person becomes fortunate.

Here is an example of how one develops such fortune: There once was a Vaiṣṇava saint who used to go door-to-door throughout
Vṛndāvana, in Vraja-maṇḍala, begging for some capātīs, rice, or any other foodstuffs. He used to call out, “Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare, Hare Rāma Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma Hare Hare,” and sometimes “Rādhe Śyāma, Rādhe Śyāma!” or “Rādhe Rādhe, Rādhe Rādhe!” He was fully absorbed in “Rādhe, Rādhe, Rādhe!”

One day he approached the door of an old lady who was in a very angry mood. She didn’t want to hear “Rādhe, Rādhe” or “Hare Kṛṣṇa,” and she rebuked him, saying, “Don’t ever come to my door in the future, otherwise I will break this stick on your back! Always remember this! Don’t come to my door!” The Vaiṣṇava returned the next day at the same time, calling out again and again, “Rādhe Śyāma!” “Rādhe, Rādhe!” and “Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare, Hare Rāma Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma Hare Hare.”

Furious, that lady again rebuked him. He therefore left the place, but he returned again on the third day. The lady thought, “Why he’s coming, I don’t know. He must be coming just because he wants to eat something!”

In the midst of cleaning her room with cow-dung mixed with water, she reprimanded the Vaiṣṇava, “Oh! You came again?!” She picked up the moldy ‘worn-and-torn’ cloth full with the cow-dung and water, and threw it at him. He gladly accepted the cloth and took it to the Yamunā River, where he washed off the clay and rinsed it until it became clean and smooth. Then, after it dried, he tore it into small pieces and dipped those pieces into the ghee that someone else had donated to him. He made many small ghee wicks from this
ghee-soaked cloth, which he used to offer arāti (a worship ceremony) to his Deity.

Then, on the fourth day, he went again to that lady’s house and called out very loudly, “Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare, Hare Rāma Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma Hare Hare.” Now completely changed, that lady said, “O Bābā (respectable sādhu), wait a minute, I am coming.” She gave him some capātīs and he gladly accepted them.

This is an example of sukṛti (a spiritual pious activity, performed knowingly or unknowingly, which creates spiritual impressions on the heart of the performer and gradually qualifies him to do bhakti). She had ‘given something’ to that saint, and he had utilized that in the service of Kṛṣṇa ‒ and thus she came nearer to bhakti.

New York City, New York: May 25, 1998