Krishna Janamashtami is a day to celebrate the advent of Krishna on to the earth. it’s a day to actually rejoice for the advent of spiritual consciousness on earth, in a very complete and at the same time all embracing form. Not the austere yogi sitting in the mountains and meditating but a person playing, walking around, running around.
Krishna is sometimes called Chit Chor and Makhan Chor. All these things have great significance because you really cannot classify spiritual progress into any category and say that logically you can go from step 1 to step 2, step 3. it’s an abandonment of everything. So all rules are broken down and one is moving towards the goal, throwing everything to the winds.
Because otherwise normally it is immoral to steal but here is God stealing butter. Navanita is a word used for butter in Sanskrit. So he is called Navanita Chor, one who steals the butter.
How is the butter derived ; by churning the milk. First , the churning is essential, without churning nothing can come out. So when you churn, naturally there is a lot of noise and then something comes out and the thing that comes out ultimately from the churning is butter which floats on it, it won’t sink in the water.
So that kind of churning is essential for the sadhak, the mind. You can use bhajans, kirtan, meditation, japa, all as a part of the churning process. The world does all kinds of churning for you whether you do it or not – sometimes painful churning, sometimes happy churning. After all that churning what comes out is the butter, and what happens when the butter comes out? Krishna takes it and runs away. So where are you? Nowhere! So it is better to begin by saying that I am nowhere anyway, so let him have it! What he gives, let him have it!
If you really think like this, even for five minutes, you find that for five minutes you are transported into a joyous life with nothing to bother. And if you live like this throughout your life then all your worries are gone. There is no problem.
Krishna also means all pervading. It also means the core of consciousness from the root ‘Krish‘. It also means ‘Kri‘ – that which means to create – action, movement, kriya. In fact, according to the Gnostics, the word Christ is derived from ‘Krish‘. Christ means the consciousness of divinity descended on to earth. Therefore when Christ was criticized for preaching on a Sabbath day, on a Saturday which is according to the Jewish rules and customs illegal, he said “Law was made for man and not man for the law“.
So sometimes breaking the rules is important in this matter. Because if you stick to the rules you stick to what the whole public is doing in general . Only one person has the guts to break some rules, that means to swim against the stream. Everybody is swimming with the stream following all the rules. If you turn around and swim against the stream it is very difficult because it is very powerful. Very few people will even attempt it. So that is where the message of Krishna comes through .
Wherever you see Krishna in any picture usually he has a flute in his hand, playing the beautiful music because music is to do with the heart, it penetrates. It is not to do with your strictly ‘one plus one two’ mind , it is to do with ‘two plus two sixteen’, which means it is not falling under the normal so-called rational mind. The Upanishads‘ function is only to show us the limitations of so-called linear thinking – I’m here and I’ve to go there but we are talking of something which is everywhere , so where is the question of moving from one place to another.
From that point of view it sounds totally illogical, right? so this what is represented by Krishna. It also means that music or singing , songs come from the heart and they penetrate through all barriers, caste, creed, religion.
Music is one thing which does not have a language. And as you listen to music and if you allow yourself to listen, you go deeper and deeper and deeper , you begin to hear the inner music which is being played all the time. But it cannot be played if you fill your flute with muck and make it solid. You have to take out the mud. You can’t blow through a solid flute. If you have a clean flute and hand it over then Krishna will play. Yogically speaking our flute is in the back of the spine. It’s all full of muck. Kriya is a way to clean it up. You cannot do anything more, you can only clean it up. He will sing only when he wants to. You have to wait.
Krishna plays his flute, attracting everybody towards him , and stealing away your heart along with the butter. Chitchor, one who steals your heart.
I hope all of us allow that butter to be stolen and keep our hearts open, listen to the music of the flute that comes from Krishna and enjoy the music. And lead a life of surrender to the Supreme Being.
All the leelas mentioned in Srimad Bhagavtam, that were performed should not be misunderstood. People generally don’t read the Bhagwat from Chapter 1. They immediately go to Canto 10 and read only about the Ras leela. All the leelas with gopikas were done when Krishna is 8 years old, read it carefully, the gopikas are quite grown up. So it’s not what normally one thinks, it is something different, it’s a thing of the heart.
And since it also represents love, love is an all inclusive panacea for all ills. If you really understand what it means – utter selflessness and not love for your sake but love for the sake of love. That’s very rare.
If you really want to get the message of Krishna on Janamashtami you should remember that there are three things to be read which are available to us – one is the Mahabharat in which the Bhagwad Gita is included, then the Bhagawat. In fact it is a good idea to start reading the Bhagawat first , and then go on to the Bhagavad Gita and the Mahabharat. Because the Bhagwat, in very simple ways, explains the whole thing in the form of stories which are so attractive to the heart not so much to the brain.
So think about all these things and if you want more information read the Bhagawat, read the Bhagavad Gita, the Mahabharat and enjoy your lives. In Bhagwad Gita you can get everything – how to work, how to meditate, how to have devotion, how to lead your day to day life etc.
Final message of Krishna is don’t run away from the battle, stay there. Don’t run away from the battle. You cannot run anywhere. So stay here and fight it out but do it with love and affection and understanding. See Krishna in everybody.
Hari Om Tat Sat!
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