Chanting – The Only Worthy Thing

Please accept my humble obeisance. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Gurudev.

The competitive spirit is so high these days that it keeps us immersed into whirlpools of anxiety. Even 40 to 50 years ago, life was much more peaceful. But today we find that starting from admitting child into kinder-garden school, there is so much of hassles. Getting into school/college or getting job in a good company, getting married to suitable life-partner, getting children, wealth etc are not the goals of this life. The human life should not be spoilt only for these purposes. Being born in this world, it is important to do our material duties in whatever ashram we are, but while rendering those duties we should not forget the ultimate goal of our life and our constitutional position as servant of all Supreme Lord Krishna. It is important to remember that as His servants we have to render our duties to the best of our ability and accept whatever He gives us.

There is a higher purpose behind our human existence and there is a really worthy thing to be achieved. As Prahlad Maharaj says in Srimad Bhagavatam 7.5.31, the ultimate goal of life is Vishnu and we don’t realise this truth. I am reminded of HG Devakinandan prabhuji’s statement in one of his class "One wife is enough, one child is enough, one material existence enough. One trouble is enough. This conclusion we have to come for any material endeavours. The irony is that we realize a bit of it and after the event we forget about the whole thing. Then devotional service eludes by a long way." Srila Prabhupada writes that all suffering will come to an end the moment the love for Krishna and devotional service increases and it is the only solution to all our miseries. Therefore Srimad Bhagavatam gives the only worthy thing to be done in our life instead of getting frustrated in our material life.

antah sarasy uru-balena pade griheeto
graahena yutha-patir ambuja-hasta aartah
aahedam aadi purushaakhila-loka-naatha
teertha-shravah shravana-mangala-naamadheya

"The leader of the elephants, whose leg was attacked in a river by a crocodile of superior strength, was much aggrieved. Taking a lotus flower in his trunk, he addressed the Lord, saying, "O original enjoyer, Lord of the universe! O deliverer, as famous as a place of pilgrimage! All are purified simply by hearing Your holy name, which is worthy to be chanted."

Gajendra even though it was an elephant it came to the right conclusion, but in spite of crocodile of material energy drowning us completely in the ocean of material existence, we always look for alternative arrangement other than Krishna. This is the difficulty. We don’t put Krishna as the centre, but we proclaim ourselves as devotees of Krishna, but heart of hearts we know that we are praying to Krishna only as supplementary aid. Gajendra understood the power of the Holy name which he has chanted as King Indradyumna in the previous life and therefore was able to understand the value and worth of the Holy name. So he realized the potency of the Holy name and makes a wonderful conclusion that why he is taking shelter of the Lord in this trying circumstances. Due to this unflinching faith, Lord reciprocated very quickly. Let us see why the Lord responded to him very quickly whereas it is not the case for us.

  1. You are the original enjoyer – (Aadhi purusha). Gajendra was conscious of this fact.
  2. Since He is the original enjoyer then He should be the Lord of the Universe (Akhila loka naatha). Gajendra has accepted the Supremacy of the Lord and has the conviction the Lord is the first protector.
  3. Since He is the enjoyer and Lord of the Universe then He is naturally famous.(teertha shravah). Gajendra wants to be delivered from material existence and therefore wants to be purified of his material contamination.
  4. Since He is the Lord of the Universe, is famous as place of pilgrimage, naturally His holy names can purify everybody. (shravana mangala) – Gajendra had firm conviction by chanting the holy name and prayers to the Lord will purify his contaminated form of existence.
  5. Since the holy name will purify everybody then automatically it is worth chanting. Naama dheya – Gajendra concludes that under this dire circumstances, the only worthy thing to do is to chant the holy names of the Lord.

In spite of knowing so many things, still we are not convinced that Holy name is the one and only worthy thing in our life. This due to our rebellious mind and uncontrolled senses and desires. So the reciprocation is not so much for us. We can very clearly see the ocean of difference between Gajendra and us.

So the conclusion to this verse is very nice . For that we will try to do the following things to the best of our capacity and pray for His mercy.

  1. We don’t have the luxury of 1000 celestial years like Gajendra. Let us not waste time frivolously.
  2. We have to develop the consciousness that the Lord is the original enjoyer and we have our quota allocated and be satisfied with it.
  3. In order to develop the consciousness we have to accept the supremacy of the Lord in all circumstances and seek His protection first. In order to know the Supremacy, we have to have knowledge about Him from the pages of Srimad Bhagavad Gita and Srimad Bhagavatam.
  4. We should develop at least a taste for deliverance from this mirage world of existence. We should try to convince our mind that there is an existence which is completely spiritual and eternal. This may happen by the mercy of Guru and Krishna. This realisation is difficult, but we should try in this process.
  5. Chanting the holy name will purify my existence . This is the daunting conviction we should cultivate everyday. This can be done if we do nityam bhagavata sevaya by hearing from great souls like Srila Prabhupada and Guru Maharaj
  6. Chanting is the beginning and final thing in Devotional service and it is the worthiest of all the things in Devotional service. Chanting is the most potent form of Devotional service and due to its being daily routine, it become monotonous. We should hit our rebellious mind that chanting is worthiest thing to do and that Lord alone can deliver us from material existence. So we should give top priority to chanting over other devotional service. We should not take it for granted and should especially chant with attention.
  7. Above all be conscious that we are in the jaws of material energy to be swallowed and this situation is more precarious than Gajendra’s. Crocodile of material existence is really more powerful than crocodile which is holding the feet of Gajendra. (urubalna grhitah). So let us sincerely chant

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare.

I sincerely pray for the causeless mercy of our beloved Gurudev, Srila Prabhupada that I should hammer my rebellious mind constantly to start accepting that Chanting is the only worthy in this life and nothing else.

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