Aniruddhan ani at EE.WASHINGTON.EDU
Fri Sep 14 11:35:19 CDT 2001


>Is there any relevance or benefit in observing rituals such as Shraadh, or
>performing Yagnas in this age of Kali? I have heard from some followers of
>Bhakti Yoga that the age for which these were prescribed was a different
>and the only way to salvation in the Kali Yuga is Bhakti. They say that
>there are so many things to be done if one follows the way of the Vedas (?
>I'm not sure if that's the right way to put it) that he is bound to get
>lost. If he undertakes Bhakti, everything is taken care of by the Lord.

I am presently reading "Dialogues with the Guru" compiled by Sri R.
Krishnaswami Aiyar (later became Sri Jnanananda Bharati Swaminah), on
talks with His Holiness Sri Chandrashekhara Bharati Swaminah, one of the
previous Sankaracharyas of the Sringeri Math. The book on the whole is
very very informative.

Chapter XI of the book is called 'True Devotion' and starts off with 'The
Scope of Bhajana'. There Swamigal says (paraphrased):

Only karma if followed properly is true bhakti. When the Lord has
commanded us to follow our karmas through the sruti and smriti, how can we
do otherwise (bhajana etc) and then claim that is bhakti? "The primary
test of devotion in any sphere of life is obedience, unquestioning and
loving obedience, not inquisitive or grumbling obedience". Bhajana should
be practiced only in our leisure time and can never be a substitute for
karma. Karma should be the primary way of devotion to the Lord for those
on whom Karma has been enjoined.

Sruti smRti purANAnAm Alayam karuNAlayam
namAmi bhagavatpAdaM Sam.karam lokaSam.karam


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