See Krishna’s mercy not just in devotional flights but also in philosophical insights
“How can I perceive Krishna’s mercy?” We as devotee-seekers may get this question because we know how important his mercy is for our spiritual growth.
Based on our experiences in bhakti, we may perceive Krishna’s mercy in the devotionally intense moments that we sometimes relish. During kirtans, darshans, pilgrimages or interactions with advanced devotees, we sometimes feel devotionally transported, as if we have risen to a blissful arena far above routine life’s anxiety or inanity. Because such experiences are so profoundly different from our usual experiences, we may feel, “Wow! This is indeed Krishna’s mercy.”
Such flights of ecstasy are, however, not the only manifestation of his mercy. And, more importantly, ecstasy will manifest regularly in our heart only after we become sufficiently pure. Till then, we will periodically go through phases of devotional tastelessness. Lest we misinfer from such phases that Krishna has stopped being merciful, we need to expand our conception of mercy.
Krishna’s mercy manifests not only as our devotional flights to higher spiritual experience, but also as our philosophical insights about our current experience. For example, when we don’t feel good while doing devotional activities, such insights will convince us that those activities still work – they purify us, though we may not perceive the purification due to the mind’s fickleness and bhakti’s subtlety. Essentially, philosophical insight will empower us to consistently practice bhakti, irrespective of our circumstantial feelings. The Bhagavad-gita (10.11) indicates that Krishna’s mercy manifests as inner knowledge that counters misconceptions.
As compared to devotional flights that come and go unpredictably, philosophical insights come much more predictably whenever we apply ourselves to serious scriptural study. By cherishing these insights, we can practice bhakti consistently, thereby purifying our heart and propelling ourselves on the ultimate devotional flight to Krishna’s world of immortal love.
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