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Thread: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

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    A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Namaste,

    It appears I may have inadvertently offended other greater devotees of Sri Mahalakshmi in all my excitement last week.

    After what seemed like 2 small-scale 'visions' (kindly excuse my calling them so) last week after praying to mother Lakshmi, (which I reported here and in facebook), one of my good friends who is also a Lakshmi devotee has stopped making her lovely posts on mother (in facebook).

    I know I did not declare my experiences in a vein to discourage anyone from their devotion - definitely I did not write in the spirit to prove my devotion or apparent boons or experiences I received... I predominantly wrote with the opposite in mind - to encourage everyone to choose the path I chose, to experience the same or similar good results or even better!

    I call myself a good devotee, but nevertheless I am still a seeker of god for boons... I know there exist better devotees than me in normal day-to-day life who seek god not for boons but because they love her (him). I still have to progress much, much further to get there.

    The point I tried to make is 'If I can get such experiences from my efforts, it should be possible for all to get blessed similarly'.

    I cannot deny the small amount of feeling of accomplishment and pride that also comes along with such declarations, but I am not able to get rid of that.

    So now, what will I do to encourage the other devotee to come out of her shell? I feel very bad for sharing my experiences thus, I know she has been a devotee of mother Mahalakshmi far longer than I have been. Also I see an element of genuine love in her for mother, that is more superior to what I feel for mother.

    So did I commit a mistake in my declarations and how do I rectify it?

    Thank you,

    Viraja
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Namaste again,

    I would so love to tell the other devotee, how I have struggled all my life in spite of my regular prayers...

    I would love to tell her how I waited all this while to tap into divine blessings... how ordinary I have been all my life, how many times I have tried to start a spiritually disciplined and structured mode of worship and failed, how this one time at last, things seemed to work for me...

    I would love to tell her at age 45, at last, I seem to have made it after repeated attempts to get divine blessings from age 25...

    But I know not how to tell all this to the other devotee because I don't know her that well and I don't want to make a fool of myself by making a public post of all my personal (and spiritual) failures in facebook....
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Namaste Viraj ji,
    I would like to share my views on your thread, tho I am not a experienced member..
    First of all are you sure that she discouraged by your post? There may be chances that your post may not the reason of her not posting about mother..
    If your sure then

    Do you think making other post will help her?
    You said she worship mother because she love her and not for boons, in this case she is not discouraged but maybe angry on mother.. when you love someone wholeheartly and he/she doesn't appear and suddenly you saw that she is giving visions to others then it hurts, so she is not angry on you but on mother maybe, but the second side of coin is that this is common in first stages of devotion, to be angry on God is also one of early stage of devotion.. now if her love is true then she will come back in her path.

    Now you shared your experience in the spirit of helping others not to show off your spiritual benefits or accomplishment so you should not worry..
    How to take your message is the part of individual and your not responsible for that..


    Reading same message some people may think wow, your great, some will be jealous, some will think your fool God doesn't exist... So you can't do anything about that.. If you post other message you can't predict what she will take that message as (either encourage or discourage)

    So coming on the point I think you should not feel any guilt as your intention was good,
    What your friend felt is her path, is her exam you can't do anything but if you want to help her then pray wholeheartly to ma Laxmi, ask her what should I do now and you will get answer in few minutes or few days but you will get.. follow your instinct and just Love mother and all her children's (we)
    Pranam
    Aasato ma sat gamay
    tamaso ma jotirgamay
    mrityorma amrutamgamay
    (Bring me from asat to sat, bring me from darkness (ignorance) to light (knowledge), bring me from death to immortality)
    Om Namah Shivay
    Om Vishnave Namah

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Dear Soul of Light,

    Whoa! It is a great reply from you - having great clarity and wonderfully laid out thoughts and logic! What you say makes perfect sense to me and I feel a good sense of relief after reading this. Thank you very much!

    Kind regards,

    Viraja
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Viraja View Post
    So did I commit a mistake in my declarations and how do I rectify it?

    Thank you,

    Viraja
    Namaste...

    My opinion?

    No you didn't make a mistake; there's nothing for you to rectify.

    Knowing you, you wrote from your heart, not from a sense of superiority, of your experiences and feelings. If the other person was (or persons were) offended, they allowed themselves to be offended. There may be a green-eyed monster running about and prodding the other person(s), methinks.
    śivasya hridayam viṣṇur viṣṇoscha hridayam śivaḥ

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Viraja View Post
    Dear Soul of Light,

    Whoa! It is a great reply from you - having great clarity and wonderfully laid out thoughts and logic! What you say makes perfect sense to me and I feel a good sense of relief after reading this. Thank you very much!

    Kind regards,

    Viraja
    Your Most welcome.. and I also felt sense of relief after reading your post that I was able to told you something to solve the problem
    Pranam
    Aasato ma sat gamay
    tamaso ma jotirgamay
    mrityorma amrutamgamay
    (Bring me from asat to sat, bring me from darkness (ignorance) to light (knowledge), bring me from death to immortality)
    Om Namah Shivay
    Om Vishnave Namah

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Thanks for the reply, Jai.

    I believe the other person may not be jealous of me, but rather like what Soul of Light said, upset she hasn't had an experience like mine... and this is my wildest guess.

    While I can only speculate on what's going on in her mind, I have decided and made up my mind to have courage and tolerance and write about my woes and how I have been striving from age 25 (that is 20 years!) to get Sri Lakshmi's blessings in my life... Really, I even fasted the whole day and did Vaibhava Lakshmi Puja for 6 Fridays before (10 years ago) but even at that time I did not experience any such thing.

    I hope that such a post will make her see sometimes, people have to initially suffer for a certain period of time, before even their spiritual practices can be rewarded.

    Thanks again for the reply.
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~
    namasté & hello


    Here’s my view on this matter ...

    Having visions, all well and good. Even śeṣa-patañjali says¹ these types of things can be considered ~accomplishments~ to the one not yet absorbed in samādhi. As I said all well and good. Yet I ask the reader to consider the following.
    I am guided by the words of rāmaṇa mahaṛṣi as too the same words flowed from my teachers mouth. We are all looking for that spiritual experience, that divine taste. Everyday life is not divorced from the eternal state. So long as daily life is imagined to be different from spiritual life then these difficulties (things that occur to us and seen as oppressive, negative, or bleak) arise. If spiritual life is correctly understood, active life will be found to be no different from it.


    And what of God and the Lord and having a glimpse of Him or Her know and then? Consider the story of naṁdev-ji. It is said he could see, talk, and play with śrī viṭhobā¹ .

    On one occasion there was a gathering of saints. One happened to be jñānadeva ( known too as jñāneśvara ). Jñānadeva asked gora kumbhar ( a saint and a potter) to use his proficiency that he applied in testing the soundness of his baked pots on the assembled saints that where there in the village i.e. were they too properly baked ( code for residing in the wholeness of Being, Self, pure awareness) ?

    Kumbhar-ji took a stick and gently touched each saint on the head ( jokingly ) to test their there completion ( fully baked status). When he came to naṁdev-ji he took exception and protested in a huff; all the other saints had a good laugh, yet naṁdev-ji did not see it as such a joke and play.
    He quickly took his leave and and sought out śrī viṭhobā at the temple.

    Naṁdev-ji told śrī viṭhobā of the happenings. Śrī viṭhobā gently replied that the saints knew what was best. This unexpected reply upset naṁdev-ji.
    He (naṁdev-ji) said you are the Lord , I converse and play with you. Can there be any more for a man to gain? Śrī viṭhobā still persisted and said the saints knew best. Naṁdev-ji responded ‘ tell me anything that is more real than you’. Śrī viṭhobā responded and said we have been so familiar with each other that my advice will not yield the desired effect on you; seek then the beggar-saint in the forest and he knows the truth.

    Accordingly, naṁdev-ji when to this saint; he found him in a hut, naked, dirty, and lying on the ground with his feet no less perched upon a liṅgam. He was quite unimpressed with the saintliness of the man. The man greeted naṁdev-ji with a smile and said ‘ did śrī viṭhobā send you here ?’. This came as a surprise to naṁdev-ji as it increased his opinion of this man’s saintliness. He said to him, ‘you are said to be a saint but why then to you place your feet upon this liṅgam’ ( this is considered very poor form to do this) ? The saint responded ‘ I am too old and weak to do the right thing, please lift my feet and put them where this is no liṅgam’. Yet everywhere naṁdev-ji put the saint’s feet a liṅgam would appear under them time after time after time. Naṁdev-ji could not solve the problem so he took the saint’s feet and rested them upon his own body and he too turned into a liṅgam. It was then that naṁdev-ji understood the truth; that there is no place that the Supreme does not reside. Upon this awakening, he took his leave and returned to the village.

    Naṁdev-ji was quiet for many days. Even śrī viṭhobā had to come and seek him out as he did not visit the temple once since his return. Śrī viṭhobā asked why he has not come to the temple to visit him. Naṁdev-ji responded and said, is there a place where He is not? I am surrounded by you on all sides, at all times, at all places.

    I am in hopes that one understands the offer found in the story.



    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ


    terms

    • patañjali’s yogadarśana 3.37

    ते समाधावुपसर्गा व्युत्थाने सिद्धयः॥३७॥
    te samādhāvupasargā vyutthāne siddhayaḥ||37
    these abilities/powers (te) are hindrances (upasargāḥ) to samādhi (samādhau), (but) accomplishments (siddhayaḥ) in vyutthāna to the mind which fluctuates(vyutthāne)||37

    • śrī viṭhobā is praised in Maharashtra and Karnataka; considered a form of viṣṇu; his name viṭhobā is sometimes written as viṭṭhala, which infers accepts (la) ignorance (viṭṭha ) – this is tukaram-ji’s point of view on his name etymology. It means He accepts the ignorant ... most to all of us.
    Last edited by yajvan; 08 December 2016 at 06:57 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Namaste Yajvan ji,

    What a great narration! Thank you for posting this story from sant Namdev ji's life.

    I do realize god exists everywhere and within everyone. I do not disrespect or discount other's spiritual potential. In fact, I think many of them that I have met with in daily life are greater to me in some aspects of personality that resonates with the full-blown devotee - such as being humble, not having too much lust for wealth and all good things in life, etc.

    But I only claim when extraordinary things happen to me, in a vein to satisfy my bothersome pangs of pride (I guess). It is all too uncontrollable for me to quieten the joy, although the so-called 'visions' are only very miniscule fraction-of-a-second events.

    Also part of me wants to motivate others in same boat as me to experience similar bliss.

    Thank you so very much for the tale again. I will try to maintain a more humbler profile in future.

    Thank you.
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~
    namasté & hello


    Here’s my view on this matter ...

    Having visions, all well and good. Even śeṣa-patañjali says¹ these types of things can be considered ~accomplishments~ to the one not yet absorbed in samādhi. As I said all well and good. Yet I ask the reader to consider the following.
    I am guided by the words of rāmaṇa mahaṛṣi as too the same words flowed from my teachers mouth. We are all looking for that spiritual experience, that divine taste. Everyday life is not divorced from the eternal state. So long as daily life is imagined to be different from spiritual life then these difficulties (things that occur to us and seen as oppressive, negative, or bleak) arise. If spiritual life is correctly understood, active life will be found to be no different from it.


    And what of God and the Lord and having a glimpse of Him or Her know and then? Consider the story of naṁdev-ji. It is said he could see, talk, and play with śrī viṭhobā¹ .

    On one occasion there was a gathering of saints. One happened to be jñānadeva ( known too as jñāneśvara ). Jñānadeva asked gora kumbhar ( a saint and a potter) to use his proficiency that he applied in testing the soundness of his baked pots on the assembled saints that where there in the village i.e. were they too properly baked ( code for residing in the wholeness of Being, Self, pure awareness) ?

    Kumbhar-ji took a stick and gently touched each saint on the head ( jokingly ) to test their there completion ( fully baked status). When he came to naṁdev-ji he took exception and protested in a huff; all the other saints had a good laugh, yet naṁdev-ji did not see it as such a joke and play.
    He quickly took his leave and and sought out śrī viṭhobā at the temple.

    Naṁdev-ji told śrī viṭhobā of the happenings. Śrī viṭhobā gently replied that the saints knew what was best. This unexpected reply upset naṁdev-ji.
    He (naṁdev-ji) said you are the Lord , I converse and play with you. Can there be any more for a man to gain? Śrī viṭhobā still persisted and said the saints knew best. Naṁdev-ji responded ‘ tell me anything that is more real than you’. Śrī viṭhobā responded and said we have been so familiar with each other that my advice will not yield the desired effect on you; seek then the beggar-saint in the forest and he knows the truth.

    Accordingly, naṁdev-ji when to this saint; he found him in a hut, naked, dirty, and lying on the ground with his feet no less perched upon a liṅgam. He was quite unimpressed with the saintliness of the man. The man greeted naṁdev-ji with a smile and said ‘ did śrī viṭhobā send you here ?’. This came as a surprise to naṁdev-ji as it increased his opinion of this man’s saintliness. He said to him, ‘you are said to be a saint but why then to you place your feet upon this liṅgam’ ( this is considered very poor form to do this) ? The saint responded ‘ I am too old and weak to do the right thing, please lift my feet and put them where this is no liṅgam’. Yet everywhere naṁdev-ji put the saint’s feet a liṅgam would appear under them time after time after time. Naṁdev-ji could not solve the problem so he took the saint’s feet and rested them upon his own body and he too turned into a liṅgam. It was then that naṁdev-ji understood the truth; that there is no place that the Supreme does not reside. Upon this awakening, he took his leave and returned to the village.

    Naṁdev-ji was quiet for many days. Even śrī viṭhobā had to come and seek him out as he did not visit the temple once since his return. Śrī viṭhobā asked why he has not come to the temple to visit him. Naṁdev-ji responded and said, is there a place where He is not? I am surrounded by you on all sides, at all times, at all places.

    I am in hopes that one understands the offer found in the story.



    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ


    terms

    • patañjali’s yogadarśana 3.37

    ते समाधावुपसर्गा व्युत्थाने सिद्धयः॥३७॥
    te samādhāvupasargā vyutthāne siddhayaḥ||37
    these abilities/powers (te) are hindrances (upasargāḥ) to samādhi (samādhau), (but) accomplishments (siddhayaḥ) in vyutthāna to the mind which fluctuates(vyutthāne)||37

    • śrī viṭhobā is praised in Maharashtra and Karnataka; considered a form of viṣṇu; his name viṭhobā is sometimes written as viṭṭhala, which infers accepts (la) ignorance (viṭṭha ) – this is tukaram-ji’s point of view on his name etymology. It means He accepts the ignorant ... most to all of us.
    Namaste!
    Thanx for the tale Yajvan ji.. you always have excellent knowledge

    Pranam
    Aasato ma sat gamay
    tamaso ma jotirgamay
    mrityorma amrutamgamay
    (Bring me from asat to sat, bring me from darkness (ignorance) to light (knowledge), bring me from death to immortality)
    Om Namah Shivay
    Om Vishnave Namah

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