“All of them-as they surrender unto Me-I reward accordingly. Everyone follows My path in all respects, O son of Pritha.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 4.11)
Shri Krishna reveals the truth in the Bhagavad-gita. Regardless of the mindset, whether they know Him perfectly or not, every person follows Him. In that regard even ignorance is a kind of theism. There is no such thing as complete disassociation from the Almighty.
As each person surrenders, they are rewarded accordingly. Evidence is there in the spiritual land of Vrindavana. After liberation things do not come to a complete stop. Nirvana is cessation of material suffering, but on the other side is variety and nuance, to an endless factor.
There are the foster parents, mother Yashoda and King Nanda. They receive the blessing of child Krishna in their home through a series of connected events. The neighboring town has a wicked ruler named Kamsa. He wants to see Krishna dead, even before the birth, which is really an appearance. Though only an infant a few hours old, Shri Krishna instructs the birth-father Vasudeva to transport Him to the nearby town of Gokula.
There Krishna delights the mothers. Yashoda gets to dedicate her life to taking care of Him in the mood of parental affection. She thinks that if she does not feed Krishna He will perish. Krishna is God, so this outpouring of affection is quite remarkable.
The other mothers in the community take just as much delight. Krishna is known to break into their homes and steal butter. They outwardly complain, but inside they really like it. There is the opportunity to again see His adorable face, which they can’t get enough of.
The male friends go out to the fields every day with Krishna, and they take care of the calves. Gokula is a farm community, and thousands of cows are protected and well taken care of. An abundance of milk products results.
The female friends rendezvous with Krishna under the brightest moon of the year, Sharada Purnima. They dance together with Krishna, in what is a brazen violation of dharma, or religiosity. There is no sin incurred, since Krishna protects. He gives to the pure devotees what they desire.
Kamsa later finds out where Krishna went and he decides to send bad guys to rid the world of this enemy. These are not your ordinary hired assassins. They are expert in black magic, and so they can change their shapes and do amazing things. One would think such abilities aren’t necessary in taking out an infant, but the asuras have no reservations about applying such force.
They, too, are rewarded in their interaction with God. They get to see Him at the time of death, specifically their own. The powers of a witch, the strength of a whirlwind, the speed of a bull, the mouth of a snake – nothing works. Krishna thwarts every attack. Though the mood isn’t devotion, there is consciousness all the same. These bad characters had God on the mind while quitting the body; they couldn’t help it, as they were looking right at Him. One who thinks of Krishna at such a time earns liberation.
The suras are the opposite in mentality; they acknowledge God and hopefully serve Him. Some of the most powerful demigods came to Vrindavana, but in an antagonistic mood. This is further proof that at any time the mentality can switch. There is always free will, which means the potential to exercise the option to ignore God is never fully eliminated.
Lord Brahma is the creator. He is so close to Krishna, and yet he tried to fool the Supreme Lord in Vrindavana. He arrived and stole Krishna’s cows and male cowherd friends. He regretted the action later on, after being defeated.
Something similar occurred with Indra, the king of heaven. He sent torrents of rain to wipe away the people, punishment for skipping a worship ceremony in his honor. Krishna saved the day and Indra felt contrite afterwards.
Everyone following in all respects,
Sometimes with outcomes not to expect.
Like asuras by Kamsa sent,
With killing intention went.
But at time of death upon Him gazing,
Defeated despite powers amazing.
Parents, friends and demigods too,
Time with Krishna, He of bluish hue.
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