Monday, April 6, 2015

Bhakti & grammar


Sringeri Jagadguru narrates story of how Bhakti is more important than Grammar

A Rough Translation:

Everyone can get Bhagavad Kripa (God's grace) irrespective of who they are or how they live or whatever be their qualifications. Whether one is a pandit (educated) or not does not matter.

There is no relation between pAndityam (education) and Bhagavad Kripai (God's grace). Once a pandit used to worship Bhagavan (God) as "Vishnave Namaha." "Vishnave Namaha" was the grammatically correct way of worshipping. Another person who did not know grammar worshipped God as "Vishnaya Namaha." According to grammar, "Vishnaya Namaha" was wrong. But he did not know grammar and continued to worship as "Vishnaya Namaha." Meanwhile, the pandit correctly worshipped as "Vishnave Namaha"

Later, both of them attained Bhagavad sannidhyam. But the pandit was not happy that the other person also got Bhagavad sannidhyam. He thought that while it was correct for him to have come there, it was not correct for the other person to have come there, since that person was worshipping the wrong way. The pandit went to Bhagavan and said that while Bhagavan had given him His sthana because he was worshipping correctly, why did He give His sthana to the other person who was worshipping incorrectly? Was that just?

Bhagavan replied:

"Murkho vadati vishnaya
vidwan vadati vishnave
ubhayo sadirsham punyam
bhaavagraahi janaardanah"

"Whether you said Vishnave or he said Vishnaya, I did not consider the grammar into account. I only saw the Bhakti in both of your hearts and hence gave both of you My sthana."

This is what Bhagavan sees.We should worship God with Bhakti and nothing else is more important. This is what God said in Bhagavad Gita too:

patraṁ puṣpaṁ phalaṁ toyaṁ 
yo me bhaktyā prayacchati 
tad ahaṁ bhakty-upahṛtam 
aśnāmi prayatātmanaḥ

When you go for God's puja, God does not see how much milk or naivedyam or flower you bring. God only sees people who have come with Bhakti bhava. A person who gives lot of milk or flowers without any Bhakti does not get God's grace. But with Bhakti, even if you submit a Bilva leaf, God becomes satisfied. That is why God said:

patram puspam phalam toyam 
yo me bhaktya prayacchati

Whatever you submit with Bhakti, God receives. And whatever you give without Bhakti, God does not take.
Hence Bhakti is very important.

bhaktyā mām abhijānāti 
yāvān yaś cāsmi tattvataḥ
(Bhagavad Gita)

Hence, for generations and generations the Bhagavad Bhakti that had guided us in our lives, that Bhakti is very essential to guide us properly in our lives.