15 Apr The way to peace of mind

In today’s world with our fast paced lives amidst stress and anxiety, if there is one thing we all long for, it is peace of mind.  For most of us peace of mind has become a cherished ideal that seems far-fetched.  We dissipate a large...

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08 Apr Make your heart a temple of God

If we wish to reach the goal of life, which is God-realization, we must work towards the purification of our heart.  We must strive to make our heart into a temple of God in which we bring Radha Krishna and our Gurudev alone.  However, we...

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22 Mar Our Relationship with God

Earlier in our series of articles, we introduced the definition of the real 'I' and the absolute identity of the Self. Building higher on this foundation of the self, let us understand what is the relationship of the soul and its creator, God. The Vedas say that it is the only thing that needs to be understood, and that is, “You are mine and I am Yours.” There is no need to acquire any more knowledge. This is all we need to know, and yet it has taken us countless lifetimes to accept that God is ours and we are His. If we had understood this or if we ever manage to understand this in the future, then there will be nothing further to be known or attained. This means, we must accept in our heart and mind that Shyamsundar is ours. Even in the world, we accept people as ours in order to fulfill our selfish desires. A deep attachment develops simply by accepting one another. You know how far such attachments can go. We read love-stories of Romeo and Juliet, Laila-Majnu and Sheeri-Farhad. Their intense love was the consequence of mental acceptance of their relationship. It was not as if Laila and Majnu were born with deep love for one another. Their love developed over time. And it developed because they accepted a deep relationship with one another.
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18 Feb Who Am I? – Part 2

Continuing our short series on 'Who Am I', let us now understand the characteristics of the soul.  Scriptures talk about two types of characteristics; Svaroop and tatastha (marginal) characteristics. Svaroop means the natural characteristic of the soul.  The soul is conscious; it is a power...

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06 Feb Who Am I?

The entire world seeks to answer two questions. The first one is, "What do we all want?" and the second, "How will we attain it?" All the knowledge in the world, right from the worldly to the Vedic, attempt to answer these two questions. "What do we want and how do we attain it?" How surprising it is that in countless lives, we have not been able to answer them. The day we find the answer, our relationship with this material world will come to an end. With that, our wandering in the 8.4 million life-forms, the five sorrows - joy and suffering, love and hatred, fear of death, ignorance, ego (pride) and the five sheaths of maya will also come to an end. Let us take up the first question. What is it that we want? It is a very simple question and can only be answered when we understand who we are. We use the pronouns I, we, you. What is this 'I' that we refer to? Once we understand the true 'I', we will automatically understand what 'I' want.
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26 Oct Jo Piya Ruchi Maha Ruchi Rakhe – 13 (Selfless Love)

Part 13: True love is selfless

All our life we have not learnt to love, because we follow the principle of take, take and take. But if we wish to enter the realm of God we will have to reverse our principle to give, give and give. 

In life we are born with many relations like our parents, brothers, sisters etc and there are other relations that we form as time passes.  No matter how closely we feel related to these people, the truth is that all these relations will cease to exist one day.  Our scriptures inform us that we have had countless such material relations in our past lives as well, and every time it has been the same story; we spend some time together and then we all part ways to form relations in our subsequent lives.   Yet, apart from all these transitory relations, there is one relation which alone is eternal. And that is our relation with the Supreme Lord of the Universe who is seated in our hearts and accompanies us in every life form.  When we realize the truth that God alone is our relative and he is the soul of our soul, we discover the uniquely intimate and divine bond we share with him. Merciful God has given us the freedom to develop any relation with him as we like, we can look upon him as our child, as our friend, king or beloved. Shree Kripaluji Maharaj in his keertan ‘jo piya ruchi mahaṁ ruchi rākhē’ tells us to worship God in madhur bhav or in other words as our soul-beloved.  There is however one correction required even in this bhav, and so Maharajji states:

jo nija sukha ura nahiṁ rākhē

He says; don’t love God for the sake of your own happiness. Love Him for the sake of His happiness!

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09 Oct Jo Piya Ruchi Maha Ruchi Rakhe – 12 (Soul Beloved)

Part-12

In this world all our relations are temporary, but there is one unique relation we have with God and that alone is eternal.  Devotees realize the intimacy of this relation and thus see God as their soul-beloved.

In the third stanza of the keertan “jo piya ruchi mahaṁ ruchi rākhē”, Jagadguru Shri Kripaluji Maharaj states:

jo madhura bhāva apnāvē rē

yāmēṁ chārihuṁ bhāva samāvē rē

jo nija sukha ura nahiṁ rākhē, prēma rasa soī chākhē rē 

One who loves Shree Krishna in the conjugal sentiment as the Divine Beloved, in which the other four sentiments are naturally included, such a person, who abandons his or her personal happiness for the sake of the Beloved’s Happiness, tastes the bliss of Divine Love.

Let us here discuss the relationship with God.  Our relationship with God is unique, because it is the only relationship that is permanent, our all other relations in this world are temporary. On the cremation ground, the pandit who performs the funeral rites gives a twig to each of the family members of the deceased, and asks them to break it. The family members snap the twig into two. The pandit tells them, “Just as this twig was so delicate and broke so easily, that was the nature of your relationship with the deceased person.” But we don’t realize it – that one day, this is all going to end.
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01 Oct Jo Piya Ruchi Maha Ruchi Rakhe – 11

Part 11:

In continuation to his instructions, Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj states another gem of Divine wisdom for the benefit of spiritual aspirants. He states:

"nahiṁ r̥iddhi siddhi ura rākhē"

“Such a devotee shall attain Divine Love who desires neither material opulence nor mystic powers.” We are all acquainted with riddhi, it refers to the material wealth and opulence. Everyone in this world wishes to possess riddhi, so much, that one is never quite satiated.  There is yet one another thing in this keertan that Shree Maharajji draws our attention to.  He talks about siddhis which refers to mystic powers. The mystic abilities are of two kinds: fraudulent and genuine.
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02 Sep Jo Piya Ruchi Maha Ruchi Rakhe – 9 (Heaven and Hell)

Part 9: Heaven And Hell are Equal

A devotee who genuinely aspires to attain God’s Divine Love sees no difference between Heaven and Hell.  Celestial abodes may have far superior material comforts yet they are under the influence of material nature, and take the soul away from God.

Shree Kripaluji Maharaj in his keertan “jo piya ruchi mahaṁ ruchi rākhē”, summarized the essence of attaining Divine Love of God, which is the highest form of bliss one can ever achieve in this whole universe.  Line after line, he gently explains the things we need to do or be wary of in order to purify our heart and receive the grace of God.  Thus He goes further and states:

jo swarga naraka sama jānē rē

That person who considers celestial heaven to be equal to hell will get Divine Love.

Often, people question if earth is the only planet where life exists.  But it is interesting to ponder that, if life existed only on our planet, what purpose would innumerable stars in the sky serve?  If God has created such an immense universe, it is very likely that there is life on other planets as well.
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