After a gap of about five years, this blog is back with a new name — Aspirations for God.
In the process of migrating this blog from the previous web address, some of your comments may have been lost. Your comments are valuable to this blog; feel free to post new ones.
In the most popular traditional story about Holi, we should note that Prahlada, the child devotee, was not only saved from an aunt who hated him, but he was also saved from the boon of Brahma, the writer of the divine plan. What Brahma says or thinks becomes the blueprint that unfolds to create all the events in the universe. Had Prahlada left everything for destiny to work out, he would not have been saved; the divine plan, entirely based on flawless karmic calculations, was on Holika’s side. But Prahlada made the right choice — the only choice that could have saved him. He took the refuge (sharanagati) of Vishnu and found the divine plan overridden by Vishnu’s grace. For us, Holika represents very powerful circumstances, filled with anger, hatred, restriction, and conspiracies. Prahlada represents a being who is apparently weak but is solely dependent on the Supreme Soul. Of course, Vishnu ensures that circumstances are turned into ashes and the being dependent on him is saved.
In the other story related to why Holi is celebrated, Shiva turned Kamadeva, the god of desires, into ashes. Following the elimination of desires from the world, Shiva, in his divine play, continued to focus on his blissful self, and Devi Parvati started her meditation on Shiva for thousands of years. For ordinary beings, the festival indicates that whenever an individual being starts remembering Pavati-Shiva, they accept the being in their protection and begin his or her spiritual journey by closing the three gates to hell — kama (lust/desires), krodha (anger), and lobha (greed) —for the being. With time, renunciation and pure love win over the being’s instincts.
We can waste the occasion of Holi by extravagant shopping, partying, gossips, drinking, making fun of others, or watching scrawled TV programs. Alternatively, we can give the festival some spiritual meaning by eliminating at least a single selfish desire. Your comments are valuable for me. During my transfer of blog from the old url, some of the comments were lost. Feel free to add them to the blog.
While both Bhakti Saints and ordinary people may believe that Rama takes
care of every being in his creation, the question about money becomes
irrelevant for the saints, who would never aspire for finances and have only
learned to think about Rama, leaving all worries about their future to him. In
contrast, we may find it difficult to leave our liking for money or may be
bound by circumstances to work for money.
Because spiritual principles do not change for the spiritually less evolved, we
are expected by nature to bring in certain qualities from the lives of saints,
if possible, into our own lives. One such quality is — patience — which, in the
context of monetary returns, teaches us that a lag generally exists between our
hard work and our returns.
Rama does take care of his devotees’ security and needs, as also promised by
him, in his form as Krishna, in the Bhagavada Gita. But we must
remember that Rama works according to his own calendar, not that of the living
beings. And what we gain at the end of the day may be unrelated to the
intensity of our craving.
Moreover, Sita-Rama may, at times, deliberately delay results for their
devotees or not fulfill their wishes at all. If a devotee child asks Sita Devi
for mango ice cream, she may give him vanilla ice cream. If the child asks for
vanilla, she may give him mango. And if the kid acts smart, desires mango, but
asks for vanilla, she’ll most probably give him vanilla. The actual choice of
flavor becomes only available to the saints who don’t want ice cream but are
contended with the fact that the Mother if providing them with food. Sita-Rama,
being the perfect parents, do not make the parenting mistakes that human beings
make. While nurturing the universe according to their own plan and by inserting
difficult lessons at times, they create ways for the liberation of every soul.
Posted in Uncategorized