Faith

True grace

When Parikshit listens to the story of how Vritrasura is killed by Indra, he voices a doubt about whether God is openly partial to the devas. This narrative goes into the roots of bhakti to show how one who is able to be truly devoted to God and love Him for His sake alone in the most selfless manner is the recipient of God’s highest grace, pointed out Sri Damodhara Dikshitar in a discourse. Unlike other worldly attainments that a jivatma cannot carry over to his next birth, bhakti is his greatest asset as it attains depth and sincerity through successive births. That is why some have love for God right from birth, though they may not be born in a spiritual family. Some others may seek the company of the pious.

Vritrasura has gained jnana and vairagya from his previous births and is clear about what he seeks from God, which is true devotion. Vritrasura is an exceptional bhakta and prays to God to grace him in such a way that he always remains in the company of His bhaktas and serves them as well. In the battle between Indra and Vritrasura, Indra is keen on victory but Vritrasura is focused on bhakti. It is only the jivatma who is bound by prakriti and the gunas and hence entertains hatred and dislike. But the Lord is above all these and is yet present as the antaratma in every being endowed with individual traits.

When a variety of crops is raised on earth, is it the seed or the earth that is the reason for the distinctive taste and quality of each of them? It is without doubt the seed, though the earth is also absolutely necessary for its growth. Likewise God is the protector, the friend, mother or father, depending on the bhava with which a jivatma approaches Him. The jivatma’s bhakti is the strongest bond with God.

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Printable version | Jun 2, 2020 5:25:56 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/true-grace/article29693486.ece

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