Faith

Efficacy of surrender

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Discussions on the essence and efficacy of the principle of surrender highlight the bhakti bhava as totally selfless and a result of the experience of the Lord’s boundless compassion. This exemplifies a higher level of bhakti and is known as prapatti in spiritual parlance. How to cultivate this spirit of supreme devotion to the Absolute Lord and understand the undying jivatma-Paramatma bond is the underlying theme in Andal’s hymns, pointed out Sri P. T. Seshadri in a discourse. First of all, the knowledge that it is through the grace of the Lord that one is blessed with this wisdom is enough to guide every thought, word and deed of the devotee henceforth. The prapanna is therefore devoted to God for His own sake, propitiates Him always with this bhava and knows it is the Lord’s Sankalpa that has brought about this self effacing bhava in him.

The oft-quoted Charama Sloka of the Gita captures these features of the highest form of bhakti that the Lord’s compassion evokes. The larger significance in this promise for all seekers is that despite all his efforts to seek God, whatever may be the purpose, it is ultimately the Lord’s grace that prevails. Draupadi tries her best to save her modesty and when she realises she cannot try any further, she resigns to the will of the Lord who comes to her rescue. The import of the sloka is that when the Lord is propitiated, He stands as the embodiment of all dharma, and as the sole means to accomplish all ends, including the attainment of moksha.

Then what about the other means, karma, jnana and bhakti that the Lord enunciates? For a prapanna, they automatically become the Lord’s command and hence his way of life. There is no sense of doership and no claim for any other reward except performing them in a selfless way.

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2020 10:07:18 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/efficacy-of-surrender/article25852772.ece

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