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Re: a ? on vaishnavism

From: Mohan Sagar (mohan_r_sagar_at_yahoo.com)
Date: Mon Jun 11 2001 - 06:20:32 PDT

Sri T V Venkatesh has given a very nice summary of key points within the Vedas
that prove without a doubt the supremacy of Sriman Narayana.  I would like to
add a few thoughts to this discussion  by attempting to answer Sri Sampath's
second question:


>
>
> why
> > cant
> > the followers of vaishnavism worsip other gods?

The answer to this question is really best understood more from the emotional
experience that one slowly cultivates through proper teaching that leads one to
the feeling of  True Joy of serving and worshipping Sriman Narayana
exclusively.  Such a sincere level of devotion is really the result of a simple
changing of the heart, an experience of faith that serves as the conduit for
the Lord's Grace to take us to a greater transformation.  Devotees in this
forum can probably share dozens of examples of what bringsabout this heartfelt
change.  I would like to offer three:

The Vedas teach us that Sriman Narayana is the very soul of the Universe, and
all things animate and inanimate are His adjectival nodes.  It follows then
that the very Beauty of all that we see, the Wonder of all that we experience,
has at its essence the Supreme Being.  What we see is only a fraction of this
Universe, and still we revel in its mystery.  One can only imagine then what He
must be like.

Another way of cultivating devotion is to recall His Accessibility.  He is
described in the Vedas as the Great Mystery of Mysteries, a Light that pales a
myriad of suns.  The entire Universe depends on His smallest Compassionate
Glance for its very existence.   And, yet, in our purAnas we see Him serving
rishis, fighting wrondoers,  caring for simple village folk, and going through
immense pain and sacrifice, all for the sake of making Himself accessible to
His devotees.  Just thinking about this Great God of gods allowing Himself to
be tied to a mortar by His mother Yashoda, or serving as a humble servant to a
Arjuna, gives us only a hint of  how much love and compassion He has for each
and every one of us.  No other deity that I know of takes this much effort just
to be with us.  How then can we avoid our natural instinctions to feel love for
the One who Loves us so much.

The third and perhaps easiest form of developing such a devotion, and this one
is my personal favorite, is to observe our AchAryas.  Here we are in the
beginning of the 21st century, when technology and material comforts are
readily available to anyone.  And yet, for some reason that is greater than
themselves, our AchAryas, despite their education and erudition, are living
simple, solemn lives of devotion and service in an effort to bring this Supreme
God to all people.  Some are at very late stages of earthly life, and yet they
are continuing to travel on long and sometimes arduous journeys.  Some come
from very educated backgrounds and could have used their knowledge to make
themselves very successful.   And, yet they give up everything, name, fame,
wealth, family, all  for our benefit, to serve as simple instruments to
Ramanuja's Vision.  If such a person tells us to worship Sriman Narayana
exclusively, how we can help but do otherwise.

adiyEn rAmAnuja dAsan
Mohan




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