“Every living entity is wandering within this universe in different species and on different planetary systems according to his fruitive activities. Out of many millions of living entities, one may be fortunate enough to receive the seed of bhakti-lata, the creeper of devotional service. By the grace of the spiritual master and Krishna, one nourishes the bhakti-lata by regularly sprinkling it with the water of shravana-kirtana, hearing and chanting.” (Shrila Prabhupada, Chaitanya Charitamrita, Madhya 19.155 Purport)
In this hypothetical situation, you are a student about to complete your primary course of study. The educational institution holds an annual job fair, where vendors and companies from a variety of industries come and set up booths.
It is a good way to get a taste of what is out there, to see what interests you, if you haven’t already settled upon a career path.
1. Investment banking
“We focus on the capital markets, primarily. You will learn the ins and outs of the financial world, which is ever-changing. Nothing ever stays for long. It is a fast-paced environment. If you like excitement and adventure, and you are not afraid to take risks every now and then, you will love working for us.”
“We sell insurance. What kind, exactly? All kinds. Property, casualty, life, you name it. Our business is more complex than you would think. We also do reinsurance. We cede the risk to other businesses and sometimes we accept risk from others. It is a fascinating line of work that I am sure you will enjoy learning.”
3. Riding lawn mower
“In certain parts of the country, people tend to own large properties. It is too expensive for them to hire outside help, so they maintain everything themselves. A key aspect of the annual care is cutting the grass.
“We help in that process with our riding mowers. It is more than just building the vehicle. There is the maintenance. There are the warranties to consider. We have an elaborate network of servicing partners. The idea is to invest in a long-term relationship with the customer. We want them to trust us to solve their problems. We want to meet their needs.”
“Yes, we produce gold. We not only have it in store, but we have a machine that can make it. Yes, you will become very wealthy with this. But it takes some time to learn the art. Not everyone is expected to succeed, but you can understand the potential. Gold is always valuable, whether economies are running hot or cold. People think we are bluffing, but trust us. You will not regret the decision.”
5. Devotional service
In this hypothetical situation, there is also a booth selling the idea of devotional service. This is bhakti-yoga, which is also known by terms such as sanatana-dharma, bhagavata-dharma, and karma-yoga.
The job requirements are not so strict. You can simply chant the holy names: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. Follow some basic rules and regulations, study shastra, and associate with like-minded individuals.
How much money will you make? What is the precise earning potential? Actually, you might lose everything. As one of the names for God in the personal analysis is Hari, He might take away everything near and dear to you. Those long-held attachments will be snatched away, despite your vehement protests.
Will your health improve? Maybe or maybe not. After all, the body has the ultimate destiny of destruction. No one escapes this experience alive. The machine will eventually break down.
हृद्-देशे ऽर्जुन तिष्ठति
hṛd-deśe ‘rjuna tiṣṭhati
“The Supreme Lord is situated in everyone’s heart, O Arjuna, and is directing the wanderings of all living entities, who are seated as on a machine, made of the material energy.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 18.61)
Devotional service is about the individual inside. The person selling devotion expects nothing in return. They are doing this out of the love they have for every living being, which starts at the root, who is the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is known to give this seed of the creeper of devotional service, bhakti lata bija. Followed under proper guidance, devotional service is like giving a person the entire world. You will be able to find peace and tranquility in any situation. You will feel as if you are travelling to every corner of the globe, without having to move an inch.
You will appreciate the service of the parents, the support of friends, the wise instruction of teachers, and the strong admonishment from the significant other. Even the derisive words from enemies will be appreciated.
The secret is that everything ties back to the original person, who is all-attractive. No other job can provide such a benefit. This occupation is without beginning and without end, and a person can reenter the field at any time. The person selling me on this has given the most valuable commodity in life; one that I should hold on to with attention and care.
Holding on with attention and care,
Since of true value aware.
That gift to me giving,
For eternal happiness living.
Guru’s not like any other booth,
Appeal of the Absolute Truth.
Occupation in the constitutional way,
With lasting impression to stay.
Categories: the five