Krishna is concrete, close-by and caring

Krishna is concrete, close-by and caring

“Always remember Krishna? That’s impossible.” This may be our understandable reaction on hearing the Bhagavad-gita’s central devotional recommendation.

Thinking about Krishna constantly will naturally seem impossible as long as he appears to be a vague, far-away or callous conception. But Gita wisdom prefaces this recommendation with a vivid revelation of Krishna.

Krishna is not vague, but concrete: Krishna may seem like a vague notion as long as we are uninformed about scripture. Scriptural revelation helps us gain a vivid conception of him as an all-attractive person with the opulences of beauty, fame, strength, wisdom, wealth and renunciation. This conception becomes even more clear and real by devotional realization coming from the practice of bhakti-yoga.

Krishna constantly makes behind-the-screen arrangements to help us come closer to him.

Krishna is not far-away, but close-by: We may think, “Isn’t Krishna somewhere up there, far-away in his kingdom?” Yes, he is situated in his distant, transcendent abode, but he is also immanent in this world. The Gita (15.15) indicates that he is closer than the closest, being situated constantly in our own heart.

Krishna is not callous, but caring: We may think, “Isn’t Krishna enjoying loving exchanges forever with his eternally liberated associates?” Yes, he is. But his omnipotence makes it possible for him to also be concerned about us. It is due to his concern for us that he constantly manifests as the Supersoul in our heart and that he repeatedly manifests as his many avataras. As the Supersoul, he constantly makes behind-the-screen arrangements to help us come closer to him while going through life’s inevitable ups and downs. When scripture sometimes refer to him as detached, that refers to his impartiality, not his indifference.

When we make such understanding of Krishna the foundation of our endeavors to remember him, then gradually remembrance of him becomes habitual, natural and perennial.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 15 Text 15

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  1. There is a difference between objective description and subjective perception. Objectively the features of the Lord are described in shastra so we are able to have an image of Him. Artistic expressions of Krishna might have some differences but in general they are all recognizably portraying the same Lord Sri Krishna. However in contemplation we might ask ourselves if seeing Krishna is a self-manipulated (scriptural) projection. After all a concept is a frozen frame, an abstraction of an organic film. The lively film cannot stagnate in the notion of its fragment. This is revealed when Krishna asks us to surrender unto Him by adding: ‘Do not fear.’ Why would we fear when we surrender unto the all-loving Lord? That is because we have to let go of the concept-Lord and make place for the Lord Himself. We have to unlearn what we have learned and leave the security of our concepts behind. Thus the (authorized) objective description of the Lord yields for the subjective perception of Lord Sri Krishna when we open up to reveal Himself in our hearts.

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  2. Another great article. Thank you for helping me to become more aware of Krishna.

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  3. he constantly makes behind-the-screen arrangements to help us come closer to him while going through life’s inevitable ups and downs….. Well said !!

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