“Although I am unborn and My transcendental body never deteriorates, and although I am the Lord of all sentient beings, I still appear in every millennium in My original transcendental form.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 4.6)
Friend1: The yada yada hi dharmasya verse from the Bhagavad-gita is very significant.
Friend2: For sure.
Friend1: Whenever and wherever. This implies that God keeps an eye on what goes on in the material world. Though time and karma combine to produce the just results at the appropriate time, there are special occasions that warrant a visit from the Divine Himself.
Friend2: Yes. When He sees fit to appear, He does. Krishna does everything at His own will.
Friend1: I’m sure you’ve come across this question. When people read that verse, they immediately assess the situation in the world at present. They most likely notice that irreligion, adharma, is rampant. They know that the saintly class of people requires protection. They wonder why doesn’t Krishna appear right now, to save the day.
Friend2: Reading the descriptions of His past descents, the avataras, is like connecting with Him directly. Even easier is chanting the holy names: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.
Friend1: That’s fine. I understand that. Krishna is around already, everywhere. The very existence of life is proof of His presence. I will further refine the question. I know that God the person appears occasionally.
Friend2: In the personal form. The foolish mistake Him for an ordinary being. They fail to realize that His form is changeless and supreme.
Friend1: Got it. Why only occasionally, though? He says in every millennium, sambhavami yuge yuge.
Friend2: And you think that is too long a time, that the gap is wider than it needs to be?
Friend1: You nailed it. Appear more often, please. Occasionally isn’t cutting it [smiling]!
Friend2: Here’s the thing. To you and me, thousands of years is a long time. To the Supreme Lord occasionally can mean even a billion years. He looks at time on the grandest scale, which we should as well. He says that the person who really knows time understands the length of Brahma’s day and night. Brahma is the creator, the first living entity of the material world. He lives for an inconceivably long time. His day is billions of years. Imagine that.
Friend1: By comparison, a day to us is nothing. Twenty-four hours.
Friend2: Exactly. For Brahma, billions of years is like twenty-four hours for us. Imagine, then, what Krishna considers billions of years to be. Due to being conditioned by material nature, we are tricked into thinking that the present manifestation of time will stay forever. Things are bad now, but they could be worse. They will inevitably change. We assign top priority to this lifetime, which we should, but there were many previous existences. There will be lifetimes in the future, too. Properly understanding time is one component of knowing God. The fact that He appears occasionally is great mercy, and He makes sure that those moments don’t get forgotten or lost. That is why there are books like the Puranas, Mahabharata and Ramayana. Hearing from those works is like Krishna appearing immediately. You and I have the ability to change occasionally to constantly.
In shastra described as occasionally,
Through bhakti changing to constantly.
By works like Ramayana reading,
That message man desperately needing.
Living for upwards of one hundred a year,
But consider countless lifetimes in rear.
For Krishna billions compared to the same,
But can arrive immediately through name.