Accepting The Favorable Winds

[Shri Ishopanishad]“The Vedic scriptures and the acharyas, or saintly teachers, are compared to expert boatmen, and the facilities of the human body are compared to favorable breezes that help the boat ply smoothly to its desired destination.” (Shrila Prabhupada, Shri Ishopanishad, 3 Purport)

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Imagine the situation of being stranded on a deserted island. You have experience with civilized life. You were not born into these circumstances. You come from somewhere else, but it has been so long that you can barely remember what that was like.

You found yourself in this place through an accident. That is how life works, after all. No one really has control. There is such an illusion established from repeated outcomes, over a series of days, that there is an expectation that things will remain the same.

They will not. There will be change. It might come gradually or all at once. It might be welcomed or it might be dreaded. It might be painful at first and pleasant in the end. Or it might be wonderful in the beginning and regrettable after some time.

Adding to the torture are the otherwise auspicious circumstances. You have a boat readily available. It is likely constructed well enough to withstand a lengthy journey. There are no motors. No electronic devices. No extended communication mechanism.

It should not matter, though. The breezes are favorable. There is enough wind to carry the boat in any direction that a person chooses. All signs point to a safe departure and a successful transition to the desired destination.

The one thing lacking is someone to take control of the boat. You have no idea, in fact. You are quite certain that if you started the journey, you would end up lost at sea. That is too much of a risk to take, at the moment. If only someone were there to help, to fill the gap.

This hypothetical situation is one way to describe the position of the living entity within the human birth. There are favorable winds in the sense that the consciousness has the potential to reach a higher level.

We see that many animals have full capability as soon as they take birth. They are more advanced than human infants, in many ways. This is the way of nature. There is intelligence in the background, which no outside force could configure or insert.

सर्वस्य चाहं हृदि सन्निविष्टो
मत्तः स्मृतिर् ज्ञानम् अपोहनं च
वेदैश् च सर्वैर् अहम् एव वेद्यो
वेदान्त-कृद् वेद-विद् एव चाहम्

sarvasya cāhaṁ hṛdi sanniviṣṭo
mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca
vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyo
vedānta-kṛd veda-vid eva cāham

“I am seated in everyone’s heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness. By all the Vedas am I to be known; indeed I am the compiler of Vedanta, and I am the knower of the Vedas.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 15.15)

While the human infant is entirely helpless for several years into the new life experience, the potential is much greater than in other species. The same individual who was once in diapers and could not stand or walk one day leads a project to build new technology, the likes of which the world has never seen.

[smartphone]The human mind can find ways to soar in the sky, enter deep within the earth, and even predict the weather. These are amazing facilities, which no one created. The potential is there as soon as birth takes place.

The body can be compared to the boat and the birth itself the presence of favorable winds. However, without the expert to guide the boat, there is no hope. In the absence of spiritual connection, the time within the favorable circumstances gets squandered away.

A person may try on their own. They go in this direction and that. They might find temporary success. They become rich. They gain attention and notoriety. They are adored and honored throughout the world. They enjoy with many well-wishers nearby. They are never alone.

This is like being stranded on the ocean, thinking that the boat is headed in the proper direction, when it is not. Time will eventually run out. The dwindling moments are evident through the shift known as old age. The final blow of time is death, which is forced removal from the human experience.

[Shri Ishopanishad]The association with the spiritual master and the tradition they follow, the Vedas, is like accepting the favorable winds for reaching the proper destination. Since it is like returning to a familiar place, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada refers to the journey as going back home, back to Godhead.

In Closing:

Like returning to familiar place,
Which time could not erase.

Back after significant time,
Only by their favor to find.

Who that boat properly steering,
For vast ocean clearing.

Back to home the guru taking,
My eternal life of their making.

Categories: spiritual master

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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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