How do we meditate upon God?
Date: 25th April 2021
These are the next lines of the series “Sadhana Karu Pyare”
ध्यान बिनु सब साधना है, प्राण बिनु तनु प्यारे।
मन को जो भाये बना लो, रूप वैसा प्यारे।
सामने हरि को बिठा कर, साधना करु प्यारे।
dhyān binu sab sādhanā hai, prāṇ binu tanu pyāre
mana ko jo bhāye banā lo, roop vaisā pyāre
sāmane hari ko biṭhā kar, sādhanā karu pyāre
How do we meditate upon God? We have two options. Devotees are of two types – one who loves God in His formless aspect and the other who loves God in His personal form. If we love God in His formless aspect, the affinity and closeness with God is lost because you would never be able see your Beloved, massage His lotus feet, fan Him, nor be able to serve Him. You would only try to concentrate on some source of light. It is not possible to experience the sweet Divine nectar, which one can get from His personal form. Even the devotees of the formless aspect very naturally take the support of a personal form of God in their meditation.
Without the support of a form, it is not possible to concentrate or fix the mind. If we remember the beautiful form of Shree Krishna, His pastimes and His Divine abode as described in the scriptures, it will be advantageous to us. This way, we can take the support of His name, form, pastimes, virtues and abode.
A believer in the formless aspect of God can ask, “If you imagine the personal form of God (in your mind), He is not the true God. The true God is Divine and our mind is material. With this mind, how can we meditate upon God?” A worshipper of the personal form of God answers, “People who believe in His formless aspect, concentrate on a source of light, which is also material by nature. It is not the true light of Divine God. The human mind cannot reach the Divine light by itself.”
गो गोचर जहँ लगि मन जाई।
सो सब माया जानेहु भाई॥
go gochar jahaṅ lagī man jāī,
so sab māyā jānehu bhāī
Wherever and whatever the mind thinks, it is related to this material world and God is beyond the realm of matter.
राम सरूप तुम्हार बचन अगोचर बुद्धिपर।
rām svaroop tumhār vachan agochar buddhi par
God is beyond human intellect. It does not matter if we worship Him in his personal form or His formless aspect, the human mind cannot meditate on the true God. Then how can we attain our goal? God says, “Do not to worry – I am causelessly merciful, whatever grace I have bestowed upon you, utilize it with care, then I will bestow more”. God says, “Create Divine feelings in your material mind (Roop-dhyan). Just do that and I will provide the Divine energy to your mind. With My Divine energy, your material mind will become Divine.
In meditation (Roop-dhyan), feelings are the most important. Meditate on any form of God you like. For example, some people like Shree Krishna as a child, while others like Him in His adult form. We can find different deities of Jaganathji and Ganeshji, but it is not that only one particular form of the deity will help us reach God and rest cannot help us reach Him. God always notes the sentiments and feeling that we have in our heart.
Even if you meditate upon the black and round Shaligram with the true sentiments that it is God, He will give you its Divine fruit. Shree Kripaluji Maharaj says that it is very difficult to meditate in this material world but there is nothing to worry. Shree Maharajji says, “Try to imagine your father’s face. You will not be able to imagine the exact face, because you have never watched him so closely. Now, if you cannot imagine the exact face, it means you are not able to picturize your father; it is some other image. But God is causelessly merciful. He accepts any face you can imagine with your material mind. He says, “Just create Divine feelings and sentiments. Try to develop your love for Me. The rest is left to Guru and God. It is their duty to grace you with a Divine mind and bestow Their Divine vision.” Hence, Shree Kripaluji Maharaj tells us to first “picturize” God in front us and then meditate upon Him. Using our material mind, we must imagine God to be in front of us, and only then start to meditate on His form, virtues, pastimes and abodes.
परम व्याकुलता बढ़ायो, हरि दरस की प्यारे |
parama vyākulatā baṛhāo, hari darasa kī pyāre
What is the next step after meditating on God? We have now seated God in front of us, what next? We must now build a yearning to see Him. When will I be able to hear His sweet voice? When will I smell the fragrance that surrounds Him? When can I embrace Him? When will I be able to relish his leftover food? Let your five senses become eager to attain God. All the five senses are inclined towards the materialist world, maya. Now, if we divert these five senses toward God, it is called bhakti. After diverting your mind, increase the longing to meet God by a thousand times. The intensity of the longing should reach such a level as described by Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu:
युगायितं निमेषेण चक्षुषा प्रावृषायितम्।
शून्यायितं जगत्सर्व्वं गोविन्दविरहेण मे ॥७॥
yugāyitaṁ nimeṣheṇa chakṣhuṣhā prāvṛṣhāyitam
śhūnyāyitaṁ jagat sarvaṁ govinda-viraheṇa me
Who can teach the worship of Shree Krishna better than Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhuji, who is another form of Shree Radhaji? He taught us how to increase the longing to meet God. He stayed at Gambhira, a place in Jagannath Puri for 18 years. For 6 years, he performed parikramas in Puri, and undertook long padyatras to Vrindavan and South India, and freely met people. But in his last 12 years, Mahaprabhuji lived alone, relishing the sentiment of separation from Shree Krishna. He says in his Shikshastak, “O Govind! I have become so anxious for Your darshan that without You, each moment seems like an eon. In separation, my heart melts for You, and tears flow from my eyes. This whole world is appearing void without You.”
Using this as an inspiration, we must increase our longing to meet God. This is the only way to purify our heart. The gyani tell the bhakt, “You need to leave your desires, but you are not able to do so”. But the devotee says that you do not have to leave your desires. Instead, divert them towards God. If we abandon the desire to attain God, then our love for God will also come to an end. The desire to attain God is not harmful. It is praiseworthy and should be enhanced manifold. Shree Kripaluji Maharaj says, “Divert anger, greed and desire towards God and increase its intensity. The more you increase the intensity of these feelings towards God, the more your heart is purified.”
What is the criteria to judge if we are progressing in our devotion? The answer is that, we must note our love and longing to meet God. More the longing, the closer you are to your goal.
There was a Sufi saint called Farid. When people asked him how to reach God, he used to take them to the river and ask them to take a bath. He then used to jump into the water along with the other person. Faridji would then forcefully immerse the other person’s head into the water for about half a minute. The person would struggle, but he would not release him. He would only let him go after a minute. When the person came out of the water, he would be highly relieved to breathe fresh air. Faridji would ask, “What happened?” The person would answer, “If you had kept me in the water for another moment, I would have suffocated and died.” Faridji would say, “This is the answer to your question.”
“You will be able see God when you feel that, without God’s vision, your life airs will leave your body.” God and Guru are waiting for you to reach this stage.
Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj has said:
दर्दे दिल इतना पसंद आया उसे, कि मैंने जब की आह उसने वाह की
darde dil itanā pasand āyā use, ki maiṅne jab ki āh usane vāh ki
This means, “My Divine Beloved liked the pain of separation so much, that when I exclaimed “Aah!” (in separation) he appreciated, “Waah!” in satisfaction.” Our heart and mind gets purified by this pain of separation from God. In the last line of our daily prayer, we say:
हे जीवन धन! अब तो तुम्हारे प्रेम के बिना यह जीवन मृत्यु से भी अधिक भयानक है
he jīvandhan! Ab to tumhāre prem ke binā yaha jīvan mṛityu se bhī adhik bhayānak hai
This means: “O My soul Beloved! Without Your love, this life has become more horrifying than death.”
Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj says that he knows we will not be able to develop such deep sentiments in the beginning. But at least we can do roop dhyan meditation. With sincerity, we should increase our longing for God and make it our goal.
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Many Many Thanks to you Swamiji Radhey Radhey !!