04.10: Loving Krishna is a challenge that only the best are privileged to have
Loving anyone is a challenge. The poets frequently sing about the thrill of falling in love at first sight, but they rarely sing about the thrill of living in love after many sights. That’s because the thrill of love is agonizingly short-lived. At best, this thrill gradually fizzles out when our object of love repeatedly fails to live up to our expectations. At worst, this thrill transmogrifies into a chill when our object of love abruptly leaves us.
The Bhagavad-gita (4.10) indicates three ways in which most people fail to meet the challenge to love:
- Raga (Attachment): They search for a worldly object of love and, despite repeated frustration, never realize that the whole arena of worldly love is flawed intrinsically and incurably.
- Bhaya (Aversion due to fear): Those who get a bit of this realization become fearful about directing their love toward any object and try to entirely extinguish their longing for love.
- Krodha (Anger due to indecision): Those who can’t decide what to do with their longing for love – express it or repress it – lead lives of angry indecision.
Only a rare few evolve enough intellectually and emotionally to realize that the way to fulfill their longing for love is to direct and focus it on Krishna. When we learn the art of loving Krishna, we discover, to our delight, that Krishna, in his beauty and glory, exceeds our highest expectations, that his remembrance progressively brings fresher and deeper joy.
Till we evolve enough to taste this joy, life as a seeker is surely a challenge. But reminding ourselves that loving Krishna is a challenge that only the best are privileged to have spurs us to relish the challenge gracefully and gratefully .