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Re: Clarification on Mahavishvasa and prapatti

From: Mohan Sagar (msagar_at_uswest.net)
Date: Wed Apr 04 2001 - 17:54:50 PDT

Dear bhAgavatha,

MahaviswAsam, or unswerving faith in Sriman Narayana, is indeed a
very important quality that is required for prapatti and serves
afterwards to be the hallmark of a prapannan.  However, the
question of how one cultivates it is a complex one to answer.
After what has probably been eons of our being completely
apathetic to the Lord, suddenly developing this level of faith
for Him would seem virtually impossible.  Impossible, that is,
for us, who are bound by the limitations that are the result of
our own self-interested actions.  Sriman Narayana, on the other
hand, is One who is solely interested in our welfare and is
committed to protecting and redeeming from the complexities of
our earthbound existence.  Consequently, it is He who should be
ultimately relied upon to bring to us the level of faith that is
required.

Our AchAryas speak of how the Lord utilizes His anantakalyAna
guNas to charm the souls back to Himself.  The AchAryas playfully
describe how guNa in Sanskrit can sometimes be translated as
"rope,"  which the Lord uses to "snare" the souls who are
compared to wild deer who run every which way their confused
desire to avoid Him.  They describe three different types of
souls, who despite all efforts to do otherwise, ultimately find
themselves back at His Lotus Feet.

The first of these are those who are already in Love with Him so
much that they feel undeserving of someone so Wonderful.  These
rare souls are the AzhwArs, whose wonderful and complex interplay
of longing for the Lord and feeling undeserving of His Grace are
described by themselves in the divya prabhandam.  To them, the
Lord shows Himself to be the True Ruler of Their Hearts and
Lives, indicating to them that they live for His Pleasure, and it
is His Pleasure to save them.

The second class of souls we know more about.  These are the ones
who are actually averse to Him.  They include such infamous
characters as Ravana, Hiranyan, and others.  To them, the Lord
reveals His gAmbhIryam, His Majesty and Magnificence tempered
with His Sense of Honor and Mercy.   The example is used of the
great unrelenting battle that took place between Ravana and Sri
Ramar.  At one point Ravana drops His bow out of sheer exhaustion
of fighting the One of such conviction and gallantry.   While his
"nemesis" could easily have finished him off, He too stops out of
His Mercy, and encourages Ravana to rest and return the next day
with a fresh chariot and horses.   One can only imagine the awe
that Ravana must have felt for Rama at that moment, awestruck at
His skill as the Great Warrior and His graciousness as the Noble
Gentleman.

The third class of devotees are probably the rest of us, who go
through countless births remaining more or less apathetic to the
Divine.  We go through the joys and struggles of life, hardly
aware that a Great Loving Friend is there with us all the time,
unconditionally.  To us, the Lord presents Himself in what many
extol as His most accessible form, the archAvAtharan.   No matter
how hard we try to hide from Him, the Lord is there ready to
charm us with His Most Beautiful Form.  If we refuse to bring Him
into our home, he somehow manages to bring us to the home of a
devotee so that we can see Him there.  If we refuse to go to a
temple, the Lord majestically comes out of the temple in an
utsavam so that we can see Him in all His Opulence.  Over time,
we find ourselves slowly giving in to the Beauty of His Form and
the joyful expressions on the faces of His devotees.  This most
accessible form of the Divine soon captures our hearts and leads
us on the journey in the right direction, to an AchAryan who
restores us back to our True Nature as His Eternal Servants.

Ours, then, is to marvel at His abilities to ensnare with His
Countless Wonderful Qualities, and in doing so, cultivate the
naturally resulting seed of faith that will allow Him to redeem
us.

I hope this helps.

Ramanuja Dasan
Mohan




----- Original Message -----
From: Anantha krishna <takrishna@yahoo.com>
To: <bhakti-list@yahoogroups.com>
Cc: <malolan_net@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Wednesday, March 28, 2001 6:17 AM
Subject: Clarification on Mahavishvasa and prapatti


> Dear Bhagavatas
>
> My pranams to everyone
>
> It is said that during the time of prapatti one has to
> have Mahavishvasa on the same. Could anyone please
> tell me how one can obtain this Mahavishvasa.
>
> Thanks for your answer.
>
> Ramanuja dasan
> Krishna
>
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