Sept 18 2012 AM Dhama Upasana: Seeing God Everywhere: All are God
yo māṁ paśyati sarvatra
sarvaṁ ca mayi paśyati
tasyāhaṁ na praṇaśyāmi
sa ca me na praṇaśyati
For one who sees Me everywhere and sees everything in Me, I am never lost, nor is he ever lost to Me.
Here the words ‘never lost’ means that Kṛṣṇa can be always present before the eyes, and realized. How is this possible? That is by the topmost devotee as it is said in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 11.2.45-47, where the categories of devotees are described, first class, second class, and the third class devotee.
sarva-bhūteṣu yaḥ paśyed
bhūtāni bhagavaty ātmany
Śrī Havir said: The most advanced devotee sees within everything the soul of all souls, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Śrī Kṛṣṇa. Consequently he sees systematically everything in relation to the Supreme Lord and understands that everything that exists is eternally situated within the Lord.
bāliśeṣu dviṣatsu ca
yaḥ karoti sa madhyamaḥ
An intermediate or second-class devotee, called madhyama-adhikārī, offers his love to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is a sincere friend to all the devotees of the Lord, shows mercy to ignorant people who are innocent and disregards those who are envious of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
arcāyām eva haraye
pūjāṁ yaḥ śraddhayehate
na tad-bhakteṣu cānyeṣu
sa bhaktaḥ prākṛtaḥ smṛtaḥ
A devotee who faithfully engages in the worship of the Deity in the temple but does not behave properly toward other devotees or people in general is called a prākṛta-bhakta, a materialistic devotee, and is considered to be in the lowest position.
One who sees God in all living entities is a first class devotee. One devotee from Maharastra, Namadeva, saw God in a ghost and even in a dog.
A second-class devotee sees that there is God and these are the devotees under God. The third class identifies with the deity alone. Then the persons who are not in these categories of devotion are atheists, who hate God and His dependents.
So considering these four persons as different, the first class devotee behaves towards them in different ways, he loves God, he has friendship with devotees, and he has compassion upon the atheists. He neglects those who hate the devotees. These four categories of devotees and demons(as explained in the Bg.) have existed since the creation of the universe.
During the destruction of the universe, the two demons Madhu and Kaiṭabha appeared. At that time, God was sleeping and they challenged the Lord, “Oh Lord Viṣṇu come fight with us.” Lord Viṣṇu saw two very powerful demons prepared for battle. The three of them then fought continuously for 10 years. If one were exhausted then the second demon would come. In this way this war continued.
Then Lord Viṣṇu glorified goddess Durga who appeared there and directed the intelligence of these demons. They then spoke to Viṣṇu, “We are so much pleased by your bravery, beg a boon from us.” Lord Viṣṇu said, “Do you want to give a boon to Me?” The demons said, “Yes, goddess Durga has ordered us to do so.” The Lord replied, “I want your death.” Goddess Durga had advised them so they made an agreement, “Goddess Durga has instructed us and we will obey, then you should kill us where there is no sky, no water, and no earth.” They made many conditions.
Lord Viṣṇu said, “Alright” and their heads were placed on His thigh because on the thigh there is no water, no sky, no earth, there is nothing. In this way Lord Viṣṇu killed Madhu and Kaiṭabha.
Now there have always been demons and demigods, demoniac and divine powers are always present. Lord Kṛṣṇa has also said this in the Gita. It is not that we are doing bhajan and the demoniac powers will be finished, there will always be a competition for supremacy.
A devotee who behaves differently to these four classes is a second-class devotee. The third class devotee, in the beginning stage is called a ‘prakrita’ devotee, and sees God only in the idol(deity) form and not anywhere else. He does not see God everywhere.
So everyone cannot be a first class devotee. Such a mahatma, who sees God everywhere, is extremely rare. Lord Kṛṣṇa has said this in the Bg 7.19:
bahūnāṁ janmanām ante
jñānavān māṁ prapadyate
vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti
After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare.
After many births have passed in the performance of bhajan, the confirmation of real shelter is to see that all are in relation to God. God is present everywhere, everything is God. That is why when there is the emotion that God is everywhere, that devotee is truly absorbed in God. Without having the emotion that God is present everywhere, one’s realization is incomplete.
yo māṁ paśyati sarvatra
sarvaṁ ca mayi paśyati
This is a state of absorption, a similarity with God, He is everywhere, present in everyone, and such devotees only see God as all pervading. Even his lust, anger, and greed become devotional. Even if he fights, his killing is devotion. Whatever he does is devotion because he is absorbed in God.
This is very difficult to obtain and when somebody approaches such a level of consciousness, the worship of Braja is attained. To become a worshipper of Braja is extremely difficult.
Last night at midnight I got up and thought, “What should I do?” Because at this a time a book on Braja is being composed which will describe how to worship Braja. This is a very difficult subject; in which way the dhama, Braja should be worshipped.
In the morning many pictures were brought before me and people said that the first chapter should not be about Braja yatra, but the worship of Braja. What is the form of dhāma upāsanā, the worship of Braja? Why God manifested the Braja on the earth? Why did He allow His holy name to appear? Why does God descend on this earth?
God descended out of His compassion and mercy so that all living entities can achieve Him. Out of His mercy God descends.
God makes His name, His glory, His dhāma appear. It is not that He is greedy for His fame. God Himself spreads His name. Why does He do this? He reveals His name because there have been many wild lower caste races that eat raw flesh like lions and tigers, these tribals even eat men raw. They are extremely sinful. Even if they chant the name only once, they are liberated from all kinds of sins. They become purified. So out of His mercy God descends on the earth and displays His glories, His pastimes.
We people have no faith in these things. God descends and expands His glory, His name, and performs His pastimes, which are all transcendental.
janma karma ca me divyam
evaṁ yo vetti tattvataḥ
tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma
naiti mām eti so ’rjuna
One who knows the transcendental nature of My appearance and activities does not, upon leaving the body, take his birth again in this material world, but attains My eternal abode, O Arjuna.
God performs His pastimes. In the five chapters of rasa lila in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam and in 10.33.36 it is said;
mānuṣaṁ deham āsthitaḥ
bhajate tādṛśīḥ krīḍa
yāḥ śrutvā tat-paro bhavet
When the Lord assumes a humanlike body to show mercy to His devotees, He engages in such pastimes as will attract those who hear about them to become dedicated to Him.
God descends on earth to bestow His Mercy upon human beings. He performs His pastimes. Which kind of mercy? From time immemorial we are accustomed to names and pastimes. Just as the habit of each person is different, so God also renders such actions, He also performs such sweet activities, which we can know and sing about. That is called lila or pastime.
God became a human being. Why? Because we humans can perform His bhajan, just as one learns how to clearly concentrate, then through practice there is single-mindedness. God descends so that the human beings can be one pointed. This is why this idol, this deity worship started, creating a heartfelt emotion that ‘This is God’. The people of other religions, Muslims and Christians, consider idol worship as wrong, they are opposed to deity worship because the idol does not speak, it is inanimate, however, this form is for our mental concentration and meditation.
As we practice and focus on this one point, this habit will enable us to be fixed up in any situation. In the same way, as God sleeps, eats, and drinks, a sādhaka has to ‘live’ with a ‘conscious mind’ seeing the idol everywhere, then naturally he will see God universally. He does not look for the idol, but he perceives the emotion of the deity, that Supreme presence that is situated in our heart, then that emotion extends everywhere. When a human walks with that emotion, then gradually there is divine vision within this world.
Just as in the beginning one concentrates, then in due course of time the Supreme becomes all-pervasive, wherever he looks; he is able to perceive the Supreme. By chanting the nama, the mind contemplates His pastimes. The mind is absorbed in His transcendental qualities, the nama, rupa, guna, and surrounding devotees. This is a concentration on the dhama or Braja.
What is the dhāma? This is Vṛndāvana, this is Barṣāṇā, when we grasp this; this is God. People outside of the dhāma don’t truly see God, great devotees of Braja have said this.
The gopis did not go to Dvārakā or Mathurā to meet Kṛṣṇa, because they would have to leave Braja dhama, they were faithful in this way. People have this logic, “Why do you have to live in Vṛndāvana? Is God not present everywhere? Is God not present in America, England or Australia?”
God is present everywhere, but in the beginning for our meditation; there is dhama, nama, and rupa. There is only one form of Kṛṣṇa as Mira Bai says, “My Kṛṣṇa has a peacock feather on the head.” The mind is absorbed in a definite form and dhama, and to live in Vṛndāvana exposes the mind to the name, form, qualities, and pastimes, this is the beginning stage. After this concentration is broadened, then we see God and His expansions everywhere.
So God made His dhāma appear in this world. There can be difficulties in the names of God, nama aparādhas, offenses to the holy names. If you think any other sādhana is equal to the holy name, then that is an offense, in the same way there are also offenses to the dhama.
In the beginning, for a sādhaka there can be offense to the dhāma. If you go to dhāma, you may see that there are thieves or robbers there. If you go to the Śrīji temple you will find beggars, you can also see crimes in Braja. In such a state of mind there is offense to the dhama, so how can we have faith? These difficulties may come in the beginning. We can have faith if we see that all Braja is God.
A person from the outside comes to Braja, so instead of faith, he sees faults, but after overcoming these things, when there is stable emotion, everything is God. To have this ability to distinguish, this is the worship of the dhama. What is the worship of dhama? People do not know this? While seeing the varieties, there is one emotion that everything is Kṛṣṇa, this is the worship of dhama.
It is written in the Rādhā-rasa-sudhā-nidhi that in the dhāma then you can see many cruel persons and sinners, who are not worthy of talking about or looking at. In truth, despite external appearances, one can actually perceive that they are Kṛṣṇa, they are Rādhā, this is real worship of Braja. Some may say that this is very difficult, it cannot be done; then you cannot become a worshipper of Braja.
As Lord Kṛṣṇa said in the Bg 6.9;
sādhuṣv api ca pāpeṣu
A person is considered still further advanced when he regards honest well-wishers, affectionate benefactors, the neutral, mediators, the envious, friends and enemies, the pious and the sinners all with an equal mind.
This is a gentleman, one who equally regards those who are in friendship, those who are enemies, who are neutral, who are objects of hatred, and who are sadhus. Lord Kṛṣṇa has given nine varieties, and one who has an equal disposition towards these nine persons, then that person is a devotee. In order to become a first class devotee one must give up all these discriminations and with equal intelligence see all in relation to God.
As Gosvāmī Tulsi dasji has said in the Rāmacarita mānasa, there some very wild races, who are extremely sinful, Muslims and Kiratas, who eat flesh, and are purified by chanting only one name of God. Therefore we should have this trust that even if one is a very great sinner, by only chanting the name of God he is purified.
One who is extremely sinful and who chants the name of God, then he is a devotee. For a person who becomes a first class worshipper of the dhama, Braja, these discriminations disappear; he sees that everyone is God. Everything is God, we should understand this worship of dhāma, worship of Braja, even though there are judgments and distinctions to see only God, this is the supreme state.
Lord Kṛṣṇa explains that there are three kinds of states of existence in Bg. 6.7-8-9;
For one who has conquered the mind, the Supersoul is already reached, for he has attained tranquillity. To such a man happiness and distress, heat and cold, honor and dishonor are all the same.
yukta ity ucyate yogī
A person is said to be established in self-realization and is called a yogī [or mystic] when he is fully satisfied by virtue of acquired knowledge and realization. Such a person is situated in transcendence and is self-controlled. He sees everything—whether it be pebbles, stones or gold—as the same.
In the sixth chapter the Lord describes the importance of equality amidst circumstances. When one is equipoised in all circumstances, heat and cold, pleasure or sorrow, insult or respect, then one can achieve God. If you are not equal and your mind is wavering, then you will not realize God.
This is the equality of circumstances. Secondly, the equality of objects, whether, mud stone, or gold, when these three things are seen equally, then this is the equality amidst objects and matter. Thirdly, there is the equality of persons:
suhṛn-mitrāry-udāsīna-madhyastha-dveṣya bandhuṣu sādhuṣv api ca pāpeṣu
“This is a sinner, oh this is a sadhu”, this discrimination should end, all are God. That’s why these angles of worship are not easy, but very difficult, and the worship of Braja is supreme, because the animate and inaminate aspects of Braja are all God. This is worship of Braja. If you have such emotion to dhama, Braja, then very soon you will achieve God.
God made His dhama, Braja, which appears in this world in the same way as the chanting of His holy names. Sage Vālmīki, chanted the opposite of the name of God, even despite this, he achieved God. In the same way there is the proper worship of Braja.
If you come to Braja, you will see very bad persons in the dhāma, but even while seeing them if your emotions are balanced, then very soon you will achieve God. If you develop firm faith from birth in Him then you will achieve Him. Why people live in dhāma, Braja, many people ask this? “Why do you live in Barṣāṇā, why don’t you go outside Braja?”
Lord Rāmā answers in the Ramayana, “By the chanting of the names of God, God becomes dear and in the same way while living in the dhāma, we become dear to God.” That’s why the dhāma also descends, that’s why the holy name appears. The mahatmas say:
harer nāma harer nāma
harer nāmaiva kevalam
kalau nāsty eva nāsty eva
nāsty eva gatir anyathā
In this age of quarrel and hypocrisy, the only means of deliverance is the chanting of the Holy Names of the Lord. There is no other way. There is no other way. There is no other way.
This is not a matter of logic, but a matter of faith and interest, you cannot just see through the eyes, you have to walk on the path of listening through the ears. If somebody says that everything is God, there is no need of any logic, only by hearing can we realize. That’s why worship of the dhama is easy and at the same time extremely difficult to perform. The worship of the name is easy and also difficult. If there is an offense to the name then the name will not give its proper result.
Similarly, in the dhāma, if there is offense then you will not achieve God.
rādhā-kuṇḍa kṛṣṇa-kunda giri-govardhan madhur bhandur vamsi bhaje ei to vṛndāvana
Caitanya Mahāprabhu has said this, if someone comes to Braja with the proper emotion then he will achieve God. But to find such a person, a worshipper of the dhāma, and become one, is difficult. Also to worship the name is not easy. When you are free from offense to the nama then you will get the proper result of the nama. Only by living in the dhāma is God achieved. Lord Rāmā has said this in the Rāmāyaṇa.
This dhāma upon earth, when you live in Braja, it will send you to Vaikuntha or Goloka dhāma. Where as you see this Mathurā, Braja upon earth, will promote you to the transcendental abode of God, but there has to be faith, and freedom from offense. There should be no offense to the nama and a constant exposure to satsaṅga. As one is protected from offense to the name by proper satsaṅga, one also escapes the offense to the dhāma. That’s why it is so important in learning ‘how’ one lives in Braja.
If you live in Braja, and you have bought some house, this is wrong, this is cheating. How one should live in dhāma, in Braja. The composer of Vrindavan Shatak, Prabhodananda Sarasvatī says don’t do anything in the dhāma and don’t speak with anyone. Forget all, where you were born, where is my family, only remember Rādhā Kṛṣṇa, don’t live in a crowd of many people where there is attachment and hatred. In this way live in Vṛndāvana or Braja. People live in dhāma, in Braja, and as they meet many people, they maintain inappropriate behavior. Even for a single second, one ninth of one second is called ‘nimesh’, even for such a moment, don’t forget God. This is proper living in the dhāma. Even while coming to the Braja, we engage in undermining activity as a result of attachment and hatred.
As there was a great devotee, Prema Nidhi, whose story is desribed in the Bhaktamal, and is also recorded in the stories belonging to the Vallabha sampradāya. In any satsaṅga, women would come to him and at that time the Muslim rule was there, people, who were Hindhus, would complain to the Muslim king.
Then the King called Prema Nidhiji and asked, “In your satsanga, do women come?” He said, “Yes”, the king said “Why don’t you stop them?” Prema Nidhi replied, “I don’t stop them because they have come for satsaṅga, to stop them or to see a fault in that is an offense. If a girl has come and we see her with a lustful eye then this is an offense, if we are angry with her then that is also and an offense. If we hate her then that is an offense because all are devotees of God. How can we stop them from coming to satsaṅga?”
The Muslim king said, “This person should be arrested.” He was sent to prison. At night when the king slept, God came in a dream in the form of the Prophet Mohamed and kicked him on his chest, saying, “I am thirsty give me water.” The Muslim king brought many golden pots with water. Prophet Mohamed said, “I will not drink water from your hands, the devotee who can offer me water has been sent to prison by you, he is Prema Nidhi.”
Then running in the middle of the night, the king approached Prema Nidhi and apologized to him. “Please forgive me” and he said, “Please take land, some property from me.” Prema Nidhi said, “No I can not accept anything. If I do not accept then in this way I will please God.”
In the name of devotion to earn money is an offense. In the name of devotion to fulfill materialistic desires is an offense. There are ten offenses to the name. Even in one name there can be a miracle in the world, but there is no miracle anywhere because we are filled with offenses to the name.
There are ten offenses to the holy name, which are commited by people who give religious discourses. We become prejudiced, we disobey, and with sampradāyik discrimination, these religious ācāryas, commit offenses to the name. A person from one temple has a reservation towards another temple; this is an offense to the name. One person has a judgment towards another sampradāya. We make offense to the name and we encourage others to do the same. These are very complex affairs.
There is one book is being prepared at Man Mandir, its name is ‘Rasili Braja Yatra’, Nectarous Journey to Braja. People said the first chapter should explain the worship of Braja dhāma. This is very difficult because in our heart there are so many discrepancies and discriminations within the sampradāyas. Even today in our Yamuna movement if a person of one sampradāya comes then another member from another sampradāya goes away because a judgmental heart.
There is some mercy of the Yamunaji that for the first time upon the Vaiṣṇavas stage, Iskcon has now come. After Prabhupadaji disappeared so much discrimination was there where one person of one temple would hate one from another. All were left in separation and those who would give lectures on offenses to the holy name, would encourage offenses by their example. One GBC was not pleased with another, and would criticize.
In the same way, Iskcon devotees are Kṛṣṇa bhaktas and the Vallabha sampradāya are also Kṛṣṇa bhaktas. Even the people of the Vallabha sampradāya could not come openly with us because they had no friendship with other Kṛṣṇa devotees. But this time there is such mercy of Yamunaji that Iskcon and the Vallabha sampradāya have come together in the field and maybe on the Yamuna stage such an organization can be made of Kṛṣṇa devotees where all the discriminations will end, all offenses to the name will end, all offenses to the dhāma would end. It is my imagination that though it may appear to be difficult, by God’s Mercy it can also be done. (applause).