[Advaita-l] Shree Krishna karnaamrutam-10
kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Wed Aug 31 07:22:16 CDT 2016
Sri Krishna Karnamrutam -10
We are now coming to the conclusion of these series. Here we present one sloka that is often quoted as part of Laasa KreeDa; it also explains meditation process of a sincere seeker.
anganaa manganaa mantare maadhavaH
maadhavam maadhavam chaantareNaanganaa|
itta maakalpite manDale madhyagaH
sanjagou veNunaa devakee nandanaH|| II-35
anganaam anganaam antare madhavaH – Between every Gopi and Gopi there is Maadhava; Maadhavam Maadhavam cha antareNa anganaa – Between Maadhava and Maadhava there is a Gopi; ittam aakalpite ; the raasa leela thus formed in this way; manDale madhyagaH - In the middle or center of this circle; devakee nandanaH - son of Devakee, Lord Krishna; veNunaa sanjagou- playing beautifully with the flute.
This is the description of raasa leela occurring on a full-moon light with Krishna as the center of attraction. On one side, he is surrounded by all the Gopies, who are devoted to the Lord Krishna and each one experiencing Krishna as her own. They are all dancing in a circle with Krishna in between each Gopi, thus each Gopi has one Krishna. Yet, Krishna remains at the center of the circle, unattached to any Gopi, playing his flute with divine music. This is the pictorial scene.
As with every Krishna leela, not only one enjoys the beauty of the Lord’s play to inculcate Bhakti, but slowly shifts one’s mind to see the absolute truth indicated by the leela. Hence these leelas are not only enjoyed by a devotee in terms of stories, but used by Vedantic students to contemplate on the implied meaning of the leelas. Krishna is a jagat guru or Universal Teacher – teaching in every possible way to various types of students whose mental frames are different. No doctor prescribes the same medicine to all his patients, without knowing their symptoms. The teaching that one extracts from these leelas depends on the mental state of a devotee, recognizing Krishna’s statement in Geeta that says- of all the devotees, jnaani is the supreme.
One simple description of the sloka is that it describes the process of meditation. Here, each Gopi stands for a thought. In the japa yoga, we take the name of the Lord. For example; Om! Maadhavaaya namaH! As the above sloka indicates that Maadhava here denotes KrishNa. One meaning being, He is the husband of maa or Lakshmi. Lakshmi stands for PrakRiti – the whole universe with all its attributes, which Krishna calls it as my aparaa prakRiti in Ch. 7 of Geeta. He, as paraa prakRiti, supports this entire universe; dhaaryate jagat, as dhava or as husband or bhartha, a supporter. hreeschate lakshmeescha patnyou….. – says purshasuuktam – His ID is, he is the husband of Lakshmi, who stands for auspiciousness. Without his ID, Lord Narayana cannot be recognized! Hence He makes sure that He carries her all the time, on his chest as part of Koustubha mani. As Gurudev uses to say, if you go after Narayana, Lakshmi automatically comes as He carries her all the time. However, if you go after Lakshmi alone, without Narayana, she will blast you; as it happened to many Rakshasaas who went after wealth or glory without Narayana. Similarly, if we go after only the so-called material success which is part of Lakshee, we get succumbed by it as greediness pretty soon takes over. In the meditation, in the naama-jaapa, each thought is repeated and is dedicated to the Lord, who is also a supporter of the thought too. Thus every thought is holding on to the Lord - anganaam anganaam antare maadhava . During the japa-yoga when we chant the name of the Lord, there is a silence in between the thoughts. Thought – silence- thought. Each thought is dedicated to the Lord and the silence where there is no thought – only Lord resides there. Initially, the attention is on the thought, anganaam anganaam, and slowly paying more attention to the absence of the thought, where Lord alone is there; maadhavam maadhavam. Initially, there is more attention on Gopi than on Krishna – hence the emphasis is on Gopi in the first line of sloka, angana. As the meditator paying more and more attention to the Lord, who is supporting the thought, the attention shifts to maadhavam maadhavam antare anganaa – between Krishna and Krishna there is a Gopi. Even though the scene has not really changed, because of the maturity of the meditator, his attention is now fully shifted to the consciousness that illumines as well as pervades each thought. Meditation is not the absence of thoughts but paying more and more attention of the mind to that light of consciousness that is reflected by each thought. This happens slowly by abhyaasa or practice, and by vairagya, by giving up the importance given to each Gopi or thought.
As one matures in the meditation, mind paying attention to the Lord becomes natural and spontaneous. He is a jnaani. For him, Krishna or pure consciousness is unattached to any Gopi or thought. While all the Gopies or thoughts are dancing around as one transacts in the realm of objects, with the world of thoughts as going around in circle. The inner attention of the mind is only on Krishna, who is the center of the whole universe of thoughts and the associated objects, unconcerned about the dance going on as the witnessing consciousness. The world is only rotating around with central pivot as Krishna or pure existence-consciousness or sat-chit-ananda, Brahman. The divine music is now continuously heard as one shifts his attention to the Maadhava, one who supports this entire universe of names and forms. The one who sees Me everywhere and everything in Me, he is never away from Me nor I am from him – yo maam pasyati sarvatra, sarvancha mayi pasyati| tasyaaham na praNasyaami sa chame na praNasyati||. Thus the sloka provides progression of a seeker in meditation. This is the essence of raasa leela.
For those who are contemplative, we can extract some more meaning in terms of the meditation process from the whole scene provided. Raasa leela is going on a full-moon night. Full moon is a bright luminous object in the sky, but all that luminosity is not really due to moon, but only due to the reflection of the all-pervading sun light. Hence by reflection process it becomes a luminous body illumining other objects on the earth including this raasa leela– but that light of illumination does not belong to the moon but to the Sun only. From the Sun’s point, he is there as just self-shining, self-existing entity in all his glory, and not doing anything, including the illumination of any object in the sky. He is by himself as for as he is concerned, but yet objects are attracted to the Sun. They circle around the Sun and also get illuminated by the Sun. In the process they become luminous objects and illumine other objects too to a limited extent. Sun, in principle, is not accountable or responsible for the luminosity of the objects by reflecting his light. The luminosity of the reflecting medium depends not on the Sun, but on the reflecting capacity of the medium. The reflected Sun light from the moon can get further reflected by the objects on a full-moon night. In that full-moon night we can see objects as they reflect the moon-light falling on them. Thus the perception of an object during the full-moon night involves, Sun light falling on the moon, getting reflected by the moon, which is further reflected by the objects on the earth for us to see. Meditation involves, in essence, looking at the objects in the full-moon night and recognizing that we are really seeing the Sun-light, during the perception of the world. Meditation involves rejecting the attributive content of object as it is not the object (neti, neti) but that because of which the object is visible. Moon and objects are required for us to recognize the all-pervading sunlight that is getting reflected first by the moon and then the objects. Otherwise sunlight which is there cannot be recognized. Similarly the all-pervading light of consciousness cannot be recognized or realized without the mind and the object-thoughts. If mind is not absent one goes to sleep. By training or yoga, one may be able to eliminate all the thoughts and yet be vigilant without thoughts – That by itself does not give knowledge. Knowledge that I am all-pervading light of consciousness is gained by the study of Vedanta.
Raasa leela in the full night involves meditation on the all-pervading light of consciousness that is reflecting via the mind each thought since I know each thought that dances in my mind. Hence anganaam anganaam antare maadhava – every thought is associated with maadhava for its support and illumination and as the meditation matures attention of the seeker slowly gets established on the reflecting consciousness associated with each thought – this becomes akhandaakaara vRitti – as I am that light of consciousness because of which I am conscious of every thought that rises in the mind.
As one gets soaked in this knowledge, complete shift in mental attention takes place, on the ever present consciousness that I am, and that I have nothing to do with any thought. Thoughts will be dancing to my music but I am unaffected by them – na cha aham teShu avasthitaH – I am unaffected by whatever thought that arises in Me. In that case only divine music will come out of that mahatma, who has firmly established that I am pure consciousness and full in myself. To abide in this knowledge could be a life-long process for many of us due to lingering vaasanaas. The seekers, who have completely surrendered themselves become instruments in His hand like a flute; and the life that breaths through them will only produce beautiful divine music.
Let us meditate on that Krishna, who is expressing himself in us as the very life principle as He plays his diving music, and let us surrender completely to become His instruments, where He can bring out divine music from the flute consisting of body-mind-intellects or BMIs. The divine music can only come when the flute does not play its own music, but surrenders itself completely to the flute-player. Let His divine music come out though these BMIs by surrendering completely to His will.
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