Devotion

Srila Prabhupada  says:

Rama and Krishna are names of God, and Hare is the energy of God. So when we chant the maha-mantra, we address God together with His energy. This energy is of two kinds, the spiritual and the material. At present we are in the clutches of the material energy. Therefore we pray to Krishna that He may kindly deliver us from the service of the material energy and accept us into the service of the spiritual energy. That is our whole philosophy. Hare Krishna means, “O energy of God, O God [Krishna], please engage me in Your service.” It is our nature to render service. Somehow or other we have come to the service of material things, but when this service is transformed into the service of the spiritual energy, then our life is perfect.

 

HARE KRISHNA MAHAMANTRA

Hare Krishna
Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna
Hare Hare
Hare Rama
Hare Rama
Rama Rama
Hare Hare

Kaleidoscope

Summer is nearly over, at least for the children. In two days, school begins again and we will be on the ‘downhill’ to the end of this year. It seems each year flies by more quickly than the last, and this year has been no different.

Trin will begin high school this year, Rane will begin middle school, and Zack and Eva will begin the last two years our family will have children at Lakeview Elementary. I thought I would feel an immense sadness when this particular school year began, but I have found myself excited for the children as they grow, take on new challenges, and become more and more themselves.

I have had many discussions recently with Trin, about growth and change, and how even as we grow and change, and the world does, too, there is an underlying stability and order to everything. Most of these discussions have come on the heels of Trin’s encounters with Sunday School and the misunderstanding her teacher there holds of Hinduism.

Our discussion yesterday was about God. I told Trinidad that there is one God, the same God, for Christians, Muslims, Jews, and Hindus, and that what differs is our perception of God; our perception of God determines our relationship with God, our interpretation of the world, and the ways we think and behave. God does not change, no matter what we think or believe.

Underneath our perception, underneath our interpretation, God remains the same – and this is true of everything we experience. Whatever is going on in the world or in our lives, our expectation or perception does not change the underlying reality.

Set in Stone

We drove to the Hindu temple in OKC again this past Saturday, this time to take a basket of fruit…one of the priests was so kind to take the basket to offer to God. How blessed an experience, and one I will never forget; I am so grateful to have found such a beautiful, peaceful, warm, welcoming place to worship.

As we were leaving the temple, my husband pointed out that there are carvings of Vishnu on the temple; he pointed this out because I have been so moved by our recent experience with a snake in our home (related in post: On Second Thought). What began as an unnerving experience turned into a transformative experience, and the impetus for our visit to the temple this week.

Aum Namah Sivaya

Desire

another rainy morning waiting for the school bus

It is the nature of desire never to be fulfilled, but he who utterly gives it up is eternally fulfilled at that very moment. (Kural 370)

The desire to please others, the desire to have my husband and children love me, the desire to have my family pick up their own clutter (and do the dishes and put their laundry away), the desire to make good grades, the desire to skate (and be awesome at that, to boot)….

Kural 367

Desisting from all desire-driven deeds, a renouncer finds liberation approaching, just as he desired.

Kural 368

He who has no desires has no sorrow. But where desire exists, endless sorrows ensue.

Kural 369

When desire, sorrow’s sorrow, dies away, undying bliss prevails here on Earth.

It seems so counter-intuitive, so against basic human nature, not to desire…I have to wonder, what about the desire to help others, the desire to work toward the end of the suffering of others?

There have been many, many butterflies around my home this past week; I have enjoyed taking photos of them, day after day, being completely in-the-moment all those hours. The housework didn’t matter, my schoolwork didn’t matter, only the butterflies going about their butterfly business.

And then, one evening when Trin and I were walking toward my truck, we saw a butterfly caught in the front bumper. I hoped it was only stuck and needed help to be free, but it was injured and unable to fly. We took the butterfly with us to go get Eva from her friend’s house, and cared for him until he died that night. At one point, my husband said, “he’s suffering. Don’t you think you should end his suffering?” I was doing the dishes, with the butterfly on the counter beside the sink, and I replied, “I don’t think it’s my place to end his suffering.” Maybe it was, maybe it wasn’t, but I sure couldn’t see myself killing the butterfly even if it was suffering. I wouldn’t do it to a human, and I couldn’t do it to a butterfly.

“Everything in the world is as it should be – in a perfect state of evolution…When looking at it through the instinctive-intellectual mind, we don’t see this perfection…We have to go in and in and in and reach an expanded state of awareness and gain that mountaintop consciousness where we perceive that there is not injustice in the world. There is not one wrong thing. All is in perfect order and rhythm in Siva’s cosmic dance”. (Lesson 36: The Purity of Awareness, in Merging with Siva)

Yes, I can see where renouncing desire can bring fulfillment, the peace of being completely in the moment and letting God lead the way and take care of the details.