Narada Bhakti Sutras

Monday, March 19, 2007

Chapter 3 Sutra 6 and 7


Prostrations to all.

Sutra 6 –
mahat sangasthu durlabho agamyo amoghascha

Word meaning
Mahat sangah tu – But association with Mahatmas
Durlabhah – is very difficult,
Agamyo – Mahatmas are beyond apprehension
Ch – and
Amoghah – (sanga with them) is infallible (will surely give effect).

Sutra Meaning
But association with Mahatmas is very difficult to attain; Mahatmas are beyond apprehension; yet sanga with them is sure to lead us to paraa bhakthi.

In the previous sutra, Narada said that bhakthi is very easily achieved through association with Mahatmas as well as through a little grace of the Lord. When we have grace of the Lord with us, the Lord appears to us in the form of the Guru or Mahatma. The Guru thus is an embodiment of the Lord or the Lord in human flesh. The Guru then directs us towards the ultimate reality that everything is but the Lord alone. Externally the Guru leads us to the contemplation that everything is the Lord and internally leads us to realize the Lord in our hearts (which is our very nature of Self or Consciousness).

There can be doubt regarding Narada’s statement that sanga with Mahatmas can very easily lead us to paraa bhakthi; the doubt is that if it is so, why aren’t everyone realizing as we find Mahatmas always around us? We find AMMA, Sri Sri Ravishankar, Sai Baba among other Mahatmas who are amidst us; but still many people don’t seek them and whoever seek them are not realizing it either. Why is this so?

Narada is answering this doubt in this sutra. Though Mahatmas are many and everybody has a chance of being associated with them, association with Mahatmas is very difficult and not that easy as we think to be. If we go through the “Autobiography of the Yogi”, we will clearly find as to how much Paramahamsa Yogananda had to struggle and wait to reach his Guru though the Guru of Yuktheshwar Giri was ever there. Though we have many Mahatmas amidst us, we fear to seek them. This fear is either due to lack of faith or due to society. Initial seekers are aware of the society of which they are part of. When in early days we used to go to AMMA and follow her, our relatives used to mock at my father telling that “you are a brahmin but following a fisherwoman”. This is but a simple example – though we may not be harmed and attacked by people still we fear such a situation arising. It is because of this fear that majority of people don’t seek Mahatmas. Moreover if we seek the Mahatma secretly it is not real seeking; a real seeker who believes in the Mahatma will not be worried about the outcome of people knowing about his devotion. If any person hides his Guru’s name and hides his seeking any Mahatma, such a person is but a fearing fool. Such seekers will never realize the ultimate reality of Lord because of always fearing about what others might say.

Thus though everybody has an opportunity to seek Mahatmas, there are only few brave people who seek these Mahatmas beyond all distinctions and limitations. Therefore Narada says here that though Mahatmas are always available, getting association with them is difficult (not because of fate but because of our own fear – Paramahamsa Yogananda had destiny to meet his Guru at a certain age only but he didn’t leave his effort – he was constantly searching for his Guru without considering as to what his fellowmates might think – it was this unlimited seeking of his Guru that lead him to his Guru).

Not only that association with Mahatmas is difficult, it is tough to judge them as well. We always try to judge people by their action. Though it is essential that we judge the Mahatmas as per scriptures lest we fall into a wrong Guru who would not only lead us to the Lord but will lead us into destruction, still we can never judge a Mahatma fully. The Mahatma’s state is that state wherein there is nothing but the ultimate reality of Lord alone exists; such a state is beyond the apprehension of the ignorant seeker. Even as a person who hasn’t been to the Moon cannot apprehend such a state, similarly the state of realization which the Mahatmas are in cannot be judged by us who are ignorant and yet to realize the ultimate reality of Lord.

Therefore we should always be cautious enough not to judge the Mahatma once we ascertain them to be Mahatmas as per the scriptures. It will not at all affect the Mahatma but will affect our progress in the spiritual path.

If it is difficult to get association with Mahatmas and it is tough to apprehend their state, why should we seek them?
Narada answers this beautifully by telling that association with Mahatmas is sure to lead us to ultimate devotion. Knowledge of the scriptures or nava vidha bhakthi may or may not lead us to the Lord because of the attitude and effort involved in it, but association with Mahatmas is sure to lead us to the ultimate reality of Lord. Therefore it is but essential that we have to seek Mahatmas wherever they are instead of not having belief in them or fearing the society.

We will see the next sutra in the next day.

Sutra 7 –
labhyathe api tat kripayaa eva

Word meaning
Labyathe api – surely (association with Mahatmas) is achieved
Tat kripayaa eva – through grace of the Lord alone.

Sutra Meaning
Surely (association with Mahatmas) is achieved through grace of the Lord alone.

Why so?
We will continue the next sutra in the next day.

Prostrations to all.


Let a moment not pass by without remembering God


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