Monday, December 31, 2012
Verse 1.9: There are many other heroes who are prepared to lay down their lives for my sake. All of them are well equipped with different kinds of weapons, and all are experienced in military science.
It's December 31, 2012....another year has gone by and yet another one is about to be ushered in. My thoughts today revolve around reflections on the past, aspirations for the future, hopes, dreams...you get the idea. :)
As I opened up the Gita today to read the verse of the day, I laughed to myself. The verse was very much in line with my thoughts. Try it out if you haven't - open a page in the Gita at random with a question or thought in your head and you'll find the answer or connection on the page in front of you. It's mystical how the Gita reciprocates.
Most commonly associated with New Year's is the question, "Any resolutions for this year?" Let's look at that word - resolution. Resolution simply put means conviction. And what do we hear of in today's verse? We read of how "...who are prepared to lay own their lives for my sake." If that's not resolution, I don't know what is!
It got me thinking, "Do I have that type of faith and conviction? Because if I do, it should show in my actions. What kind of a life am I leading if there is no purpose to it other than just trying to "get by"?
It may be a practical experience you've had that New Year's resolutions are a one day, one week or one month affair. We don't often keep it up. The value of a vow or commitment doesn't carry much weight in this world of ours. Nowadays it's rare that someone will even take you seriously when you "promise" to do something.
I think that's why bhakti sometimes frightens me. It's not just a process or concept - it's a way of life. For the full effects of bhakti to unfurl, it takes a staunch commitment. It's all encompassing and something that is done at every moment. If you're like me, sometimes the greatness of something can actually be overwhelming. Who am I, someone so weak and fickle minded, to even dream of practicing such a great path?
That's the beauty of bhakti. There's a roadmap for wherever you are on the bhakti map. Whether a novice, an intermediate, someone who's tripped up and resting on the sidelines, there's always a side route that will bring you back on the main road. Even more cherishable is the fact that that journey is unique and special to each and everyone of us.
So today, on Monday December 31, 2012, my resolution is to daily practice gratitude for being given this gift of bhakti. Gratitude is an essential ingredient as it serves to remind us of the mercy that is constantly surrounding us. One spiritual mentor of mine once told me, "Auspiciousness is surrounding you, all you need to do is take notice."
I think it's time I started noticing.
Wishing you all a wonderful and safe 2013! May it be bhakti infused!