“Meditating on Shri Rama, who has Janaki to His left and Lakshmana to His right, brings all auspiciousness and is your wish-fulfilling tree, O Tulsi.” (Dohavali, 1)
राम बाम दिसि जानकी लखन दाहिनी ओर|
ध्यान सकल कल्यानमय सुरतरु तुलसी तोर ||
rāma bāma disi jānakī lakhana dāhinī ora|
dhyāna sakala kalyānamaya surataru tulasī tora ||
1. Did you take advantage of the sun today?
“Umm, I guess so. I never thought of it as taking advantage. But yeah, the sun was out. I was kind of happy about it in the morning, when I saw the sunlight creeping through the window. It has been kind of cold here lately.
“I will probably play outside later on. You could say that is due to the sun. I never thought about a relationship with it before. The sun is sort of there. It’s a fixture in nature. I guess you could say that we rely upon it.”
2. Did you drink water today?
“Umm, yeah. I think so. Yeah, in fact, I definitely did. Not sure why you are asking. We buy those large packs of bottled water from the shopping club. That is more convenient than filling up a pitcher or constantly changing filters.
“They say you have to drink water constantly, throughout the day, in order to stay hydrated. I am not entirely sure I agree, but what do I know? I keep some bottles in the trunk of the car, also. In case we get stranded somewhere, you can never be too safe.”
3. Did you eat something today?
“That is a strange question to ask. It’s not like I am on one of those crazy fasts. Of course I ate something. More than one time, in fact. You need food in order to survive. Did you hit your head on something? Are you not feeling well? Maybe you need to eat something. Get it? I asked the same question that you asked me, except in a funny way.”
4. Did you enjoy protection today?
“What kind of protection? The house protects from the elements. The heating and cooling systems are vital to maintaining room temperature within the house. There is a guard at the front-gate of the housing community. A guard is there every moment of every day.
“Alright, maybe I see what you are saying. There is so much protection around that it is easy to forget. We can only live our lives in peace because others are sacrificing. Some of us are not so lucky. And yes, that protection is required all the time; not just for one or two days.”
5. Did you sleep today?
“I did. I slept pretty well last night. I think that is vital for maintaining good health. So many problems would be avoided if people fell asleep at the right time and avoided overeating right before. Also, if they cut back or totally eliminate stimulants throughout the day, sleep will eventually get much better.”
When a child sees their parents worshiping the Supreme Personality of Godhead within the home, they may be a little tired from the repetition:
“You are worshiping again? Didn’t you do this yesterday? Why do we have to do this every single day? Haven’t we done enough for God? Shouldn’t He be happy with us, by now?”
In response, the parents can ask any of the hypothetical questions from above. The idea is that each of those activities has a connection to the Supreme Lord. If we utilize His gifts on a daily basis, then why not worship every day?
At the very least, we are giving thanks. We appreciate everything we have available. Through the illusion of cause-and-effect, it is easy to mistakenly believe that fate is entirely in our hands, that we can shape destiny only through human effort. That is not the case.
गुणैः कर्माणि सर्वशः
कर्ताहम् इति मन्यते
guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ
kartāham iti manyate
“The bewildered spirit soul, under the influence of the three modes of material nature, thinks himself to be the doer of activities, which are in actuality carried out by nature.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 3.27)
Superior to appreciation is exhilaration, excitement, and auspiciousness. Goswami Tulsidas describes how meditating on Sita, Rama, and Lakshmana is everything he needs. He worships in this way all the time. The living entity is sanatana, or without beginning and without end.
The worship can take place in the same way. That is why the closest equivalent to the concept of religion in Vedic culture is sanatana-dharma. Worship without beginning and without end. Worship because of complete auspiciousness.
Everything in them found,
From them gifts abound.
Every day to take,
Like sun the day to make.
Why not thanks then in return?
Never by myself to earn.
Helpless in grander scheme of life,
Depending on Rama, brother, and wife.
Categories: the five