Sunday, December 9, 2012

At Every Moment

In an age where the expectation is instant, whether it be in attaining gratification, results or service, it's no wonder that the path of Bhakti may seem difficult for some. And when I say some, I mean me!

This type of inculcation by modern society results in the mind becoming weak and susceptible to the notion that surrender to Krsna is next to impossible. Why? Because surrender is an active process that requires strength, faith in Krsna and most of all the realization that it is not a one time deal. Surrender to Krsna is something we must practice at every moment.

I remember when I first heard this. It instantly sat right with me. But then as time went on and the actual work needed to get started, I wasn't so keen anymore. Surrendering at every moment starts with becoming more conscious of Krsna. Specifically it means being able to see the Krsna conscious perspective of a situation and learning to let go of what "I think is right" and seeing through the eyes of sastra (i.e. seeing through the lens of what Krsna and his authorized representatives have told us).

Surrender is also difficult because it involves our free will, which is something some of us are not very good at utilizing. Normally we use our free will to protect the ego and defend our actions. Surrendering at every moment means we now have to choose between what's best according to Krsna, guru, sadhu and sastra and choosing to act according to what our mind thinks is best (which is normally the easy and "instant" way out).

Old habits are hard to overcome. After lifetimes of choosing "my" way, is it any surprise that we now grapple with utilizing our free will properly? But as I often have to tell my mind, it's not an excuse to give up. Like anything, this struggle can only help us become stronger if in conjunction we are practicing a strong regimen of chanting, serving the devotees and eating food offered with love to Krsna.

It's like lifting weights. I remember when I first started a year ago; it was embarrassing how weak I was! But when I made a commitment to go regularly, eat better and rest properly, I was surprised to see that I was making progress. In fact, the time soon came where I felt the need to increase the weight since it was getting easy.

I'm no expert on surrender, in fact I'm probably in the pre-school class, but it only makes sense that the proper diet and lifestyle change would need to be accompanied in the "Surrender program".

We always need a challenge, whether we realize it or not. So what better way to challenge oneself than increase the frequency by which we surrender to Krsna! Krsna says He helps those who help themselves, so what are we waiting for? Let's go grab that help!

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