Bhaja Govindam- Verse 14 with story and essence

shankara-1

Jatilo Mundi Luncitakesah

Kasayambarabahukrtavesah

Pasyannapi Ca Na Pasyati Mudho

Hyudaranimittam Bahukrtavesah

One ascetic with matted locks, one with shaven head, one with hairs pulled out one by one, another parading in his ochre robes – these are fools who, though seeing, do not see.  Indeed, these different disguises or apparels are only for their belly’s sake. O foolish mind; seek Govinda!

Story based on Verse 14

Once upon a time a Sadhu used to live in a village which was highly populated. Since he was a Sadhu, he was given great respect and many used to come to him to seek blessings and gain spiritual knowledge. As a result of this the sadhu was not able to perform his daily spiritual practices and sadhana. Sometimes he used to get frustrated and angry. He thought if he went away from the village to some far off mountains then he could do his japa-tapas without any disturbance and he would never get angry again.

sadhu

The Sadhu then proceeded to this far-off mountain which was surrounded by fruit laden trees and a river with sweet water flowing by. He built his hut there and started doing his tapas undisturbed.

Once he got very thirsty and went down the hill to get water in a small container. While getting water, the container slipped and rolled down the hill. He went down again, collected water and got back. This time he, by mistake, hit a stone and stumbled. The container again rolled down. This time the Sadhu got angry and threw his container away.

He suddenly realized — when he was in village he used to think that the people were the cause for his anger, but now there was no one. Even now he could not control his anger. He concluded that his anger was not because of others and it was because of his own nature. It dawned upon him that he was dressed in ochre robes renouncing his family etc for pursuing his spiritual quest where he had to drop his inner enemies like anger, ego, etc and develop the quality of love, patience. People considered him as a respected saint; but alas he could not even control his anger. What was the use of the external appearance when he was not able to practise the noble virtues of patience and control of anger.

Resolving to put into practice those values; he went back to the village and continued his tapas and never got angry again.

Essence

Master says that the monks by matted locks, or shaven head; these are outer changes and they do not change the core of one’s inner being. One should work on the core of one’s inner being by seeking the Lord and seeking the truth.  True change is the inner change. Even though the outer change can impact the inner change, the inner change impacts the outer change more. Inner beauty is reflected in the face of the person living those virtues; outer make up lasts only for a while. Hence self observation is very important. Self observation with purity of mind and seeing within will help one in the path of spiritual journey.

Essence adapted from Bhaja Govindam by Swami Sukhbodananda

 

 

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