What is our relationship with Shri Krishna? Part 1
What is our sambandh or relationship with Shree Krishna? Sambandh has ‘sam’ as the prefix and ‘bandh’ as the root word. That is samyak bandhan, all around, complete or 100% relationship. That is the meaning of sambandh. It’s just like your mother, father, brother, brother-in-law or son-in-law, whom you call your relations or relatives. Can the word ‘sambandhi’ or ‘relative’ apply to a worldly mother, father, son, wife or husband or can it apply to Shri Krishna? Think carefully on this and decide to whom it truly applies.
Our greatest relationship in the world is with our parents; number 1 – being our mother and number 2 – our father. After that, come our brothers and sisters. The wife comes much later. Where does she belong, who are her parents? You married her by walking seven times in a circle and started calling her ‘wife.’ That is just a joke.
All the relationships that exist in this world are called so because they serve our self-interest. That is the first thing to know. Then how long will these relationships remain with us? That is also uncertain. No sooner do we come out of our mother’s womb, then our mother dies. Does that happen in the world? Yes, many times! The poor newborn doesn’t even understand the meaning of the motherly relationship and his mother is gone. Ten days later the father also dies. Thus the relationship with these people is so uncertain that it’s not guaranteed for even one moment.
Let us assume that your father, mother, brothers, and sisters were to stay alive and nobody in your family died for a hundred years. If they remained favorable to you and fulfilled your self-interest, then they would be allied to be your true relatives. Otherwise, even brothers for some selfish reasons can even shoot and kill each other. So firstly, their lives are temporary and uncertain. Even if they live as long as you do, then what? After that, the father dies according to his actions, the mother according to hers, and the brother according to his. They all have separate destinies after death. So that relationship is broken.
Even while it existed, the relationship was based only on self-interest. How much hope did the mother have when her son was a child? “My son will be dutiful; he will serve me well and will exceed Shravan Kumar (a very obedient son in history). Later the same son insults her. Such wretched, demonic sons may even slap their parents! But the unfortunate parents continue to love such sons. Which is even a greater surprise! They accept him as their relative. Thus, no one in this world can ever be our true relative.
Today, we have our current father. After our life ends, we will make another. Then a donkey becomes our father, then a dog and then a cat. In whichever species we are born, someone will become our father. We have had uncountable fathers, mothers, wives, husbands, sons, daughters, brothers, and sisters, all of these. The Vedas describe the relationship with them as one of travelers set forth on a journey.
In the train, there are many travelers. They are all going to different places. Sitting idly, one asks, “Where are you going?” What do you do? Oh, I see!” They nod at each other’s words whether right or wrong, “Yes, Yes!” One’s station arrives, so he says, “Kunda Harnamganj has come. I’m going for sadhana here.” The other says, “Oh, sir, this isn’t fair. How can you get off here? Come to Allahabad with me!” “No, sir. How can I go to Allahabad? I have to be here today. “Why don’t you come with me to Mangarh and do sadhana?” ”I don’t have faith in Allahabad. You go.” The other person replies, “Likewise, I don’t have faith in Allahabad. You go.” Everyone gets off at their station and all the loving conversations come to an end.
This is the state of affairs with everyone whom we call relatives, mother, father, son, wife, and husband. In the Mahabharata, Dhritrashtra was left alive, whereas all his sons died. He alone survived. He asked God, “What sins did I commit?” In the world if one has just two or four children, at least one of them remains till one’s old age. All don’t die. Dhritrashtra had one hundred sons, yet all of them died!
God replied, ‘According to Hindu theory, sins accumulate for uncountable lifetimes. You have had uncountable lives. Do you remember your actions from all of them? Dhritrashtra had recollection of only his past four lives. God said, “If you subtract four out of the uncountable, what’s left? It still remains uncountable. Even if you subtract uncountable from uncountable, uncountable remains. It’s that kind of math.
A unique phenomenon is occurring continuously in a cyclic motion – Your body and its excretions become fertilizer before and after death. Then we use that fertilizer for crops like wheat, etc. So the grains are produced, and we eat them. The grain converts into digestive juices, then into blood, flesh, fat, bones, bone marrow, and then semen. Then a baby’s body is formed with the combination of semen and mother’s egg. When deceased, the body again merges into the earth. We consume (what earth produces) and it produces semen again, This sequence continues into a cycle. This is the state of the body. How can this poor body be our relation?
Furthermore, our body has many problems. Today there is pain on one part of the body, tomorrow another. We have to go to the doctor to take care of that. We have to constantly serve the body. What good can it do for us? Hence, we have no true relationship in this world. The most important point is that those from whom we wish our well-being themselves don’t know what well-being is! How can they be of any help to us?
Bhagwan Ram once gave a lecture in Ayodhya, and many people came to listen. Ramayan verse – “Leaving all pious and impious actions, all celestial gods, people, munis, and kings worship me.” Bhagwan Ram said, “I’m your only relation. Your physical mother, father, wife, husband aren’t. The fact is that they aren’t your well-wishers but are bent upon obliterating your self-interest.”
If anyone in your house starts to move towards God, then they all say, “Oh, look! What’s happening to him? He keeps chanting ‘Radhey Radhey!’ “But didn’t you send him to Mangarh for sadhana?” “Yes, I did. But I didn’t expect him to chant, ‘Radhey, Radhey’ day and night! He may choose to chant a little in his mind.” His sister, brother, father, and others are all after him, but he doesn’t listen to them. Then they finally decide, “Let’s go to his Guruji and straighten him out.”
“What can the poor Guruji do? What did the Guruji do? He only told him a few things from the scriptures and Vedas. Accepting them depends upon the listener. If it was in Guruji’s hands, then wouldn’t he have taken the whole world to Golok?” So what kind of well-wishers are our relations? They are in fact sometimes acting as your enemies. That’s what Tulsidasji had said to Meera – “Renounce the person as an enemy, who may be very dear to you if he has no love for God.”
None of our relations in this world know where our welfare lies, so how can they benefit us? How can a blind man show the path to another blind man? It’s such a simple fact. Our relationship with God is from eternity and will exist forever. We are a fraction of Him. The Vedas say, “We are a part of Him and are his sons also. and only He is our everything.” It says “only” not ‘also.’
The first and most important thing we need to know is that we are souls and not the body. When you accept this, then the relationship with your mother, father, brother, sister, wife, or the world would have no value for you because we are not the body; these people are related to our bodies.
For example – you have your own son and there is your sister’s son, brother’s son, and neighbor’s son. If their son becomes wayward, you say that it’s their son who has gone astray. “Let him go astray. What does it matter to me? My son is alright.” My son! Just like believing that you’re a body, you love your son. If you believe yourself to be the soul, then all worries and tension regarding the bodily relations will end because we are not the body. So all our relationships are with God but we don’t realize that. We don’t have the knowledge.
(Credits: Narad Bhakti Sutra)
(To be continued in Part 2)
*A brief introduction of Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj*
(Known by His devotees as Shri Maharajji)
The original title of Jagadguruttam (‘Greatest Spiritual Teacher of the World’) was bestowed upon Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj on January 14, 1957 by ‘Kashi Vidvat Parishad’ (a council of 500 greatest scholars saints of India). He composed divine texts like ‘Prem Ras Madira’, ‘Prem Ras Siddhant’, and ‘Radha Govind Geet’ to lead us on the right path of devotion. He also gave priceless monuments as gifts to the world which include - Bhakti Mandir located in Bhakti Dham, Mangarh, Prem Mandir located in Vrindavan Dham, and Kirti Mandir located in Barsana Dham. Shri Maharajji also built hospitals for the impoverished, the Jagadguru Kripalu Chikitsalaya in Vrindavan, Jagadguru Kripalu Chikitsalaya in Barsana, and another one in Pratapgarh. All three help millions of underprivileged to gain free access to medical care. His Kindergarten, School, and College for impoverished girls Jagadguru Kripalu Parishat Education is located in Kunda and provides completely free education.