Five Basic Principles To Live By

[Krishna's lotus feet]“O son of Kunti, all that you do, all that you eat, all that you offer and give away, as well as all austerities that you may perform, should be done as an offering unto Me.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 9.27)

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यत् करोषि यद् अश्नासि
यज् जुहोषि ददासि यत्
यत् तपस्यसि कौन्तेय
तत् कुरुष्व मद्-अर्पणम्

yat karoṣi yad aśnāsi
yaj juhoṣi dadāsi yat
yat tapasyasi kaunteya
tat kuruṣva mad-arpaṇam

1. Live simply

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada recommends the principle of simple living, high thinking. At the foundation is the idea that the consciousness is the pathway towards happiness. The consciousness in transcendence is the summit of an existence.

The more complicated life becomes, the more attachments there will be. It is like a person trying to walk down the street, but being weighed down by objects. Being pulled in this direction and that, there is no time for peace. Without question, the daily responsibilities are the top priority. Forget enjoying in any kind of extended period. Just to sleep through the night, uninterrupted, is a luxury.

A simpler way of living eases the burden on the consciousness. There is a better opportunity to contemplate higher matters, such as the meaning to our existence. Why are we placed on this earth? Why do we have to interact with others when destiny dictates that every relationship ends at the time of death? Is there a higher power and what is our relationship to it?

2. Love generously

Bhagavad-gita explains how the learned person, pandita, applies an equal vision to a variety of living beings. The outside creates distinctions. The external appearance allows for appropriate, corresponding behavior.

For instance, if I see a tiger, I will likely not walk up to it in a friendly manner and begin a conversation about last night’s football game. I know that I can probably offer up small treats to the dog roaming about. The cow will allow me to pet it. It graciously provides excess milk for human consumption.

ब्राह्मणे गवि हस्तिनि
शुनि चैव श्व-पाके च
पण्डिताः सम-दर्शिनः

brāhmaṇe gavi hastini
śuni caiva śva-pāke ca
paṇḍitāḥ sama-darśinaḥ

“The humble sage, by virtue of true knowledge, sees with equal vision a learned and gentle brahmana, a cow, an elephant, a dog and a dog-eater [outcaste].” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 5.18)

Even the lowest among men deserves love and compassion. They are equal in the spiritual sense. Every living being is spirit soul on the inside. We are all related in the eternal link to the Supreme Father, who provides the seed necessary for existence in this world.

सर्व-योनिषु कौन्तेय
मूर्तयः सम्भवन्ति याः
तासां ब्रह्म महद् योनिर्
अहं बीज-प्रदः पिता

sarva-yoniṣu kaunteya
mūrtayaḥ sambhavanti yāḥ
tāsāṁ brahma mahad yonir
ahaṁ bīja-pradaḥ pitā

“It should be understood that all species of life, O son of Kunti, are made possible by birth in this material nature, and that I am the seed-giving father.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 14.4)

3. Care deeply

The Vaishnava feels pain upon witnessing the distress of others. This is a saintly quality, and it is not surprising to see after intimate connection with God the person. We are His children, after all. The suffering has started since before anyone can remember, continuously triggered through the cycle of birth and death.

To lift others out of this despair is the greatest welfare work. There can be no higher gift to bestow on another than pure love of God. This is like a wish-fulfilling tree that provides infinitely into the future, in a variety of ways, applying to diverse situations and circumstances.

4. Speak kindly

The highest transcendentalist is known as paramahamsa. This Sanskrit word refers to a swan who is expert at extracting the spiritual essence from a mixture. A drop of mud on the carpet can be difficult to clean. Once the dirt has mixed into the fibers, there is little resemblance to the original state.

A person completely absorbed in love of the Divine can find a way to praise any person. While the rest of the world views a specific person as unworthy of any good association, the paramahamsa at least sees the Supersoul inside, which is an indication of Divinity.

Therefore, it is not difficult for such a person to speak kindly of others, in the course of general conversation. Even their chastising words can be considered beneficial and soothing, for the ultimate purpose is a correction leading to the proper path.

5. Leave the rest to God

This is the concluding remark of Bhagavad-gita. There is too much to try to control in a material existence. A vast network of reactions connected by activity in karma, manipulated through the passage of time, applying on the prakriti level. How can any single person get a handle on everything that is going on?

सर्व-धर्मान् परित्यज्य
माम् एकं शरणं व्रज
अहं त्वां सर्व-पापेभ्यो
मोक्षयिष्यामि मा शुचः

sarva-dharmān parityajya
mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja
ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo
mokṣayiṣyāmi mā śucaḥ

“Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me. I shall deliver you from all sinful reaction. Do not fear.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 18.66)

[Krishna and Arjuna]All the varieties of dharma merge into a single state, in the original source, through full surrender. At the end of the day, He is in charge. It is His world and He will decide when everything will merge back into Him. In the meantime, we will try for surrender and experience the associated bliss in sharanagati.

In Closing:

With such time to waste,
Of illusion’s bliss to chase.

Where too much to control,
Incomprehensible to unfold.

Better on Supreme placing,
Than personally facing.

Through surrender bound,
Liberation found.

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1 reply

  1. Radhe Radhe ❤️ oshriRadhekrishnaBole ❤️ Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
    Jay Jay Shree Siya Ram

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