Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Gurudev.
We are continuing the topic on "Lessons from Bali Maharaj". The realization of Bali Maharaj on being arrested by the Lord is nicely expressed in seven transcendental gem of verses spoken by him in 8 Canto Chapter 22 – Verses 4 through 11. We have discussed verses 4 to 10 in the previous three offerings on this subject. Now let us see the next verse.
athaaham apy aatma-ripos tavaantikam daivena neetah prasabham tyaajita-shrih idam krtaantaantika-varti jeevitam yayaadhruvam stabdha-matir na budhyate
"Only by providence have I been forcibly brought under Your lotus feet and deprived of all my opulence. Because of the illusion created by temporary opulence, people in general, who live under material conditions, facing accidental death at every moment, do not understand that this life is temporary. Only by providence have I been saved from that condition."
This verse is exemplary expression of Bali Maharaj’s humility. He says that he has been saved by the Lord by providence and not because of his own endeavour for devotional service. Bali Maharaja appreciated how the Lord had saved him from such a bewildered life of ignorance. He therefore said that his intelligence had been stunned. stabdha-matir na budhyate – He could not understand how the Supreme Personality of Godhead favors His devotees by forcibly stopping their materialistic activities. Material opulence is temporary because we are facing accidental death at every moment. Saved from illusion created by temporary opulence of the material world.
We are all brought by providence to take shelter of the holy names of the Lord by our Gurudev or otherwise we don’t have any interest in this devotional service and therefore we should realize the material opulence we are possessing is temporary. We are facing accidental death every moment. Devotional service and the lotus feet of the Lord is the saving grace for us in this material world and this has to be really realized by us. Being a conditioned soul, we want variety in our activities. If we don’t remember the value of devotional service and our final moments, then we may commit the offence of considering bhakti also as a kind of entertainment and loose the focus. Srila Prabhupada writes in very nicely in his purport to verse SB 2.2.3 – "Since every second of human life is important, an enlightened man should be very careful to utilize time very cautiously."
These verses, translation and purports should enlighten us within our hearts so that we do not loose this providential mercy extended by our Gurudev, Srila Prabhupada and Krishna. Regarding providence I would like to share my own realization, that 14 years ago when I decided to come to Abudhabi, my sole aim was to make more money and become happy in this material world. By the will of providence and sheer mercy of the Lord, Gurudev has entered on his own will to put us in the path of eternity. I am ever grateful to HG Svayam Sphurati prabhuji and his wife HG Radhacharan mathaji for their persistence and insistence on our engaging in devotional service in Abudhabi and also for their guidance in making us take shelter of our beloved Gurudev. Otherwise we were rotting in Abudhabi from one mall to another mall, not knowing what to do in weekends. Lord is unlimitedly merciful in sending these wonderful souls and above all enabling us to take shelter at the lotus feet of such a great Mahabhagavata.
I pray intensely at the lotus feet of our most lovable Gurudev, Srila Prabhupada and the Supreme Lord Krishna to give me such a whipping that I realize these things in my life and put into practice without delay so that there is a meaning for this providential mercy showered on me by the Lord.