While preparing for a class that I gave this morning here at the Krishna Balaram Mandir, I remembered an incident some years back. I was attending a festival in Germany and wanted to see H.H. Sacinandana Maharaja, who had been a spiritual guide and a kind of Siksa Guru since the very beginning of my Krishna Consciousness journey. Maharaja gave Darshan to some devotees and when I entered the room, Maharaja stopped speaking and looked at me with a big smile, calling out “Oh, Krishna Premarupa, when will you finally fall in love…”
I was puzzled, I did not know what to say, something like “But Maharaja, I am a brahmacari…” went through my mind. Then Maharaja continued his sentence, revealing his true intention “Falling in love with Krishna! Oh, when will you fall in love with Krishna?!”
What a question! When will you fall in love with Krishna? After all, that’s what Krishna Consciousness is all about, falling in love with God, Krishna. Bhakti Yoga means to reconnect with the Lord. How? With love and devotion. That’s all Krishna is looking for. Krishna does not need our worship, our cooking, our service, or our preaching. Of course, that all can be part of expressing our devotion, but at the end of the day it’s all about how much love we have developed for Krishna. It’s all about our intention. Is that what we are doing really giving pleasure to Krishna?
“The desire to gratify one’s own senses is kama (lust), but the desire to please the senses of Lord Krishna is prema (love).” 1 This is the definition of pure love. In other words, love means to give, to be selfless and the object of love is Krishna. Trying to attain this is like being a dwarf and trying to touch the moon. How shall we ever attain it?
But there is one hope! Caitanya Mahaprabhu was worshiped by Srila Rupa Goswami as maha-vadanya, the most munificent personality, because He was freely distributing the greatest treasure of love of Godhead to everyone, without discrimination. In Caitanya-mangala we find a beautiful description of the teachings of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu about Prema-Dhana, the wealth of Pure Love of God, to his mother Sacidevi just before taking Sannyasa:
“Who is really one’s husband? Who is one’s wife? One may be a male or a female, but the lotus feet of Krishna is the only true relationship. Krishna is the only father, mother and friend. Only He is the doer, the only wealth, He is everything. Establish your relationship with Krishna and do bhajan at His lotus feet. Do not lament that I am leaving you. An ordinary son will bring some silver and gold for the maintenance of his old father, mother and family. I am going to bring the wealth of prayojana siddhi, the ultimate goal. Krishna-prema-dhana – Krishna prema is the real treasure. Thereby you will get the lotus feet of Krishna which are the real source of all fortune.” Sakala janme pita, mata sabhe paya – in every life one gets a father and mother. Krishna-guru nahi mile bujhiha hiyaya – Rarely, however, does one obtain guru and Krishna!” 2
Prema pumartho mahan: to achieve love of Godhead is the highest perfection of life. How does one develop this love? Nitya-siddha Krishna-prema ‘sadhya’ kabhu naya – “Pure love for Krishna is eternally established in the hearts of the living entities. It is not something to be gained from another source. When the heart is purified by hearing and chanting, this love naturally awakens.” 3
This is why Srila Prabhupada opened centers around the world so that we can hear and chant in the association of devotees. When will you fall in love with Krishna? Hard to say, still a long way to go. The dwarf still tries to touch the moon. However, by the mercy of the devotees of the Lord, I have developed some faith in the process of hearing and chanting the Lord’s glories. This process works, it is only a matter of time. We just need to really engage ourselves in this process. If we continue to hear and chant attentively and daily with sincerity and our hearts free of duplicity then love of God will be awakened, sooner or later, there is no doubt about it.
1 – Caitanya Caritamrita Adi Lila 4.165
2 – Caitanya Mangala, by Lochan Das Thakur, Madhya Kandha Chapter 11.183-204
3 – Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya Lila 22.107