Faith

Service to God

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The relationship between the jivatma and the Paramatma and other such esoteric knowledge contained in the sastras find the simplest of expressions in the Tiruppavai hymns to reach out to even the commonest of the common. The Vaishnava tradition lays great emphasis on service to God and holds this as the greatest wealth and privilege for the jivatma, pointed out Sri Rajahamsam Swamy in a discourse.

Lakshmana is called Lakshmi Sampanna, meaning he is endowed with the abundant wealth — rendering selfless service to God. Andal inculcates this Sesha-Seshi bhava which helps bhakti to take root in the devotee and also nurtures it. She points out that God is the sole master of all and all others in His creation as His subjects. So every jivatma is bound to serve Him. Andal associates herself with the Gopis of Brindavan who are fortunate to be in the company of Krishna. In her eyes, the Gopis are great bhagavatas, who reflect the characteristics of true devotees. The Lord too regards His devotees as very dear to Him. From verses six to fifteen, the maidens who are all steeped in Krishna bhakti gather to wake up those who are still asleep. Acharyas consider the fifteenth verse, ‘Elle Ilankiliye,’ as reflecting the very essence of Tiruppavai. What emerges from the dialogue that ensues between the girl who is woken up and those outside, is that ideally like-minded devotees should congregate to seek the Lord and also seek in particular this boon of service to Him.

Since the highest attainment for the jivatma is to be selected to serve God, there is urgency and sincerity in the plea. Should not one make use of the available opportunity, one’s present lifetime, to seek God? In this process, the devotee automatically imbibes the highest values of humility, devotional fervour, high regard for co-devotees, etc.

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Printable version | Jan 21, 2020 6:34:35 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/service-to-god/article30496372.ece

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