MISCELLANEOUS

Sure way to liberation

CHENNAI: Chanting the Divine name is prescribed in the spiritual tradition as not only the easiest method to realise God that can be practised by one and all but also the antidote to all sins. One may doubt how such a simple practice can lead to liberation, which is said to be difficult for even the sages to attain. It is to remove such reservations that the Bhagavata Purana describes at length the efficacy of the Divine name through the lives of devotees who realised God by following this practice.

In her discourse, Kumari Subadhra said Ajamila’s redemption because he uttered the Divine name unintentionally during his last moments was a testimony to the efficacy of this practice. Though born in a pious family, Ajamila was led astray by dint of his Vasanas (latent tendencies) that he sank to depths of depravity, and he had no feeling of remorse about his immoral ways. When the messengers of the god of death, Yama, came to claim him, he called out to his youngest child Narayana out of attachment for him. The Lord in His abode heeded it and immediately despatched His attendants to save him from the clutches of Yama’s messengers.

The exchange between them is an aside on Dharma. When Yama’s messengers explained why Ajamila, who had fallen from Dharma, deserved punishment for his sins, the Lord’s attendants intervened and said that though he had sinned he had been absolved of his transgressions because he had uttered the Lord’s name, Narayana. Though it was unintentional it had the desired effect and hence they should not take his soul to Yama’s abode. Its efficacy is akin to reducing a mountain of cotton to ashes in no time by lighting it with a matchstick.

Chanting the Divine name during the last moments of life is thus prescribed by the scriptures as a sure way to liberation as the Karma of the bonded soul gets totally destroyed, and there is no possibility of accruing fresh Karma afterwards. That it gives result even when uttered accidentally is due to the benevolence of the Supreme Being who takes it upon Himself to redeem the errant soul from damnation on the slightest pretext. Ajamila who witnessed this exchange was transformed.

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