The Namasankirtan was led by Anusha Hari followed by Dhyana Slokas recital. Kunti Stuti (18-30) was recited by Dhanrajji.
Shyamalaji from Dallas, spoke about the significance of Jnana ,Bhakti and Vairagya.
The devotees are classified into 3 groups:
Kanishta Bhakti: Its is the beginning of bhakti, when one gets to participate in satsangs, sadhu sang and renders nama sankirtan
Madhyama Bhakti: The determination happens to attain the lotus feet of God gets strong and there establishes a strong relationship with the God.
Uttama Bhakti: This is the superior state where the devotee knows and discriminates from Maya and totally surrenders himself to Divine Will. He possesses the Jnana to differentiate and discriminate and Vairagya (dispassion) to get rid of Maya.
We read in the Puranas, an episode called Gajendra Moksha.
In there, it is said that the king of elephants was once caught by a crocodile in the pond. The elephant king tried to free himself and unable to do so, finally surrendered to the Almighty calling out: ‘AAdi Moolame” and Lord Sri Hari, bearing the disc and the conch, alighting the Garudaazhwaar came to rescue the elephant. On seeing the God, the Gajendra took a lotus from the pond and offering to the Lord, said “Narayana akhila Guro bhagavan namaste! ”
Lets looks at this story from the view of our life;
The Gajendra represents we, humans. The crocodile represents the issues that we face in life – the ‘Samsara Sagaram’. –depicted by the pond.
We, human beings in the samsara sagaram are caught up with so many issues ,need a way to come out of it. Its the God who will pull us out with our Bhakti, Jnana and Vairagya.
In Srimad Bhagavatam ,the great King Parikshit’s determination led him to hear Srimad Bhagavatam from Sage Sukha. The devas requested Bhagavatham in exchange for the Devamrut and Sri Shukha simply said, ” Kva kaachah kva manir mahaan” – how can a precious gem be compared to a worhtless glass piece?
With the advent of Kali Yuga, Sage Narada, came down touring the Earth and he was forlorn. The Sanath Kumars(Sanaka, Sanatana, Sanandana and Sanathkumara) saw sage Naradha and asked him the reason for his sadness. Sage Naradha explained why he seemed worried.
“ When I was touring the Earth, I reached Brindavan and saw Bhakti Devi along with her two sons Jnana and Vairagya. Bhakthi Devi said :” all of us were healthy, but because of Kali, we lost all our strength and luster. When we all came to Brindavan I regained my strengh but my sons are very weak and old too.’
Sage Narada immediately asked her to worship on Lord Hari as nothing pleases the Lord as Bhakti. Then Sage Narada performed parayana of the Vedas, the Upanishads and the Gita in the ears of Jnana and Vairagya. When they hear them they would get up, but would fall down again. Sage Narada heard the ‘Asarira vaak’ that a righteous deed has to be done. He was in search of that the same.
On hearing this, the Sanakaadis explained to Narada that Bhagavatam was indeed the essence of all Vedas . They performed this Jnana Yagna on the banks of River Ganges in a place called “Anandham”, the first Adhikari being Sanakaadi rishis and Sage Narada. Bhakthi Devi along with her sons came there . All the 6 shastras,great Saints,Puranas assembled there to hear this Bhagavata Sapthaham.
The following points aslo came out of the discussions:
- The above stories covers the first three chapters of Bhagavata Mahatmyam (which is found in Padma Purana). The first chapter is Bhakti narrating her story, the second chapter being the one where Narada speaks about the glory of Bhakti and Sanatkumaras advice Bhagavata Saptaham as the means, the third being the one where the first Saptaham is read and Jnana and Vairagya are ressurected.
- When Bhakti Devi narrates her story, she says that she was born in Dravida Desa. It is a matter of pride that we all hail from such a land in which Bhakti was born!
- Sri Sri Swamiji says that Bhakti was indeed born in the Dravida Desa and the proof for this is in the 11th canto of Sriamd Bhagavatam
kalau kalau bhavishyanti naaraayana paraayanah
tAmraparni nadi yatra kritamaala payasvini…”
And to corroborate this, the Azhwars who established Bhakti, were born, soon after the Kali Yuga was born. Nammazhwar was born in the banks of Tamraparani.
The session wrapped with learning of the first sloka from Bhishma Stuti and the significance of Kunti, Dhruva, Prahlada and Gajendra Stutis.
Radhe ! Radhe!