Day 11: Exploring Bhakti

The great sage Narada advises us not to depend on arguments to understand the Divine. An argument may go in any direction. In the spiritual journey depending on limited logic, we cannot fathom the infinite Divinity. He encourages us to drop fear, desire, greed and wait patiently for the divine love to blossom. Love manifests itself as benevolent actions. So Narada motivates us to utilize every moment to engage ourselves in devotional service. In devotional service, one is singing God’s glory through action. The Maharishi inspires us to carry an unshakable faith in the beloved’s love. Whatever action one is doing, it is to be dedicated to the Divine.

Great Narada prescribes the rules of devotion: Practice faith, nonviolence, compassion, truth, cleanliness — inner and outer purity.

Faith keeps one at ease. Low pranic energy leads to loss of faith. Healthy body and mind instills faith.

Violence spurs from weakness. It rattles one’s nervous system. Non-violence requires heroism. Mahavir, whose name means “great hero”, is the champion of non-violence.

Compassion evokes subtle emotions. Emotions make us human. Every human being experiences various types of emotions. The trees feel emotions and even water harbors emotions. A strong connection with Divine is felt through the subtle emotions.

Lies makes the mind uncomfortable. Dirt makes one cringe and cannot feel comfortable. Ease of mind and body are essential to experience bliss.

While through yoga our goal is to go towards Emptiness, Bhakti evokes emotions. In this path all kinds of feelings manifest itself but are always directed to the Divine.

Out of the three dimensions of reaching the Divine — knowledge, action and devotion, wise Narada says devotion is the highest. Without passion one cannot gain the knowledge. Amazement that is invoked through deeper understanding leads to love. Complete knowledge is bliss. Passion and bliss are flavors of devotion. The fruit of knowledge is devotion. Likewise, without devotion no action is perfect. The fruit of action is bliss. Beginning and end of knowledge or action is devotion. Hence, devotion is the highest dimension. Only through devotion, we will wake up and recognize that the divine love is within us.

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