Emotions often act as roadblocks to perception of reality ..

Bhakti-yoga transforms roadblocks to reality into roadways

“Cool down; otherwise you won’t be able to think clearly.” Common statements like these indicate that emotions often act as roadblocks to perception of reality; they obstruct, even pervert, our vision and comprehension.

That’s why Gita wisdom indicates that we need to silence all material emotions to perceive better that which lies beyond matter – spiritual reality. This silencing is akin to the stilling of the water in a pond so that we can see what lies at the bottom of the pond. The Bhagavad-gita (06.07) assures that those who go beyond the ken of material emotions reach the Supersoul.

Yet the same Gita (11.54) later asserts that only those with devotion can understand Krishna. As devotion is essentially an emotion, why is emotion now deemed the roadway to cognition?

Because Krishna is not an object to be analyzed but a person to be loved.

To understand why this changes the means for perception, consider a beautiful artwork, say a rose replica, lying at the bottom of the pond. Relishing artwork requires not emotion-less analysis, but emotion-based aesthetics.

Gita wisdom reveals that the Absolute Truth is not just a neutral observer (Paramatma) to be perceived by dispassionate analysis. He is also a reciprocal lover (Bhagavan) whose beauty and sweetness can be relished only through the spiritual emotion of devotion.

Significantly, spiritual emotions and material emotions are not two entirely different things – they are two different expressions of the same force of attraction originating from the heart. Bhakti offers us a time-honored process to redirect our emotions from matter to spirit. By remembering and serving Krishna with whatever little devotion we feel for him, and by regulating our interaction with those worldly things that hyper-activate our material emotions, we can gradually relish the supreme sweetness of the supreme manifestation of the Supreme.  

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 11 Text 54

“My dear Arjuna, only by undivided devotional service can I be understood as I am, standing before you, and can thus be seen directly. Only in this way can you enter into the mysteries of My understanding.”


What is the cause of earthquakes?

Unfortunate events like earthquakes are karmic reactions to our own past misdeeds; God merely sanctions the law of karma to deliver the appropriate reactions for our actions. He has nothing against anyone, as the Bhagavad-Gita (9.29) states. He is neutral, as was mentioned in the previously quoted Gita verse (9.9) and allows nature to take its own course, just as an impartial judge allows the law to take its own course. When a person touches a live wire and gets a shock, we can’t hold the electricity board responsible, even though it supplied the electricity that led to the shock. That person was responsible for touching the live wire.


Similarly, when we do misdeeds and get reactions, we can’t hold the universal government responsible, though it supplied the energy that led to the earthquake. We are responsible for engaging in misdeeds. The principle underlying the shock and the quake is the same: we sow, we reap. The difference is in the time lag between the sowing and the reaping: instantaneous in the shock, delayed in the quake. That difference is because different actions bring reactions after different time durations, just as different seeds fructify after different time durations. For example, grains harvest after two or three months, some fruit seeds produce fruits after twenty years and some seeds after hundred years.


Similarly, we can observe that actions produce reactions after different time durations. A person who eats several ice creams at night may wake with a running nose – the reaction comes after several hours. A child who eats too many chocolates may find her teeth spoilt by teenage – the reaction comes after several years. A person who starts smoking in teenage may get lung cancer by late middle-age – the reaction comes after several decades. Just as the action-reaction time lag may range from near-zero to several decades, it can extend to before this life and even beyond this life, because it is the same person – the same soul – continuing from one life to the next. Why may a reaction be so delayed as to come in the next life?  Because some reactions may require certain circumstances for fructification. To understand this, here’s an incident associated with the Mahabharata.


After the bloody Kurukshetra war, Dhritarashtra asked Krishna, “I had hundred sons and all of them were killed in the war. Why? Krishna replied, “Fifty lifetimes ago, you were a hunter. While hunting, you tried to shoot a male bird, but it flew away. In anger, you ruthlessly slaughtered the hundred baby birds that were there in the nest. The father-bird had to watch in helpless agony. Because you caused that father-bird the pain of seeing the death of his hundreds sons, you too had to bear the pain of your hundred sons dying.


Dhritarashtra thought about it and then asked, “But why did I have to wait for fifty lifetimes?” Krishna answered, “You were accumulating punya (pious credits) during the last fifty lifetimes to get a hundred sons because that requires a lot of punya. Then you got the reaction for the papa (sin) that you have done fifty lifetimes ago.”


The Bhagavad-Gita (4.17) informs us gahana karmano gatih, that the way in which action and reaction works is very complex. Taxing our brain to find the specific karmic seed that caused the present reversal is futile. The Bhagavad-Gita (4.17) emphasizes that the intricate workings of karma are too complex for the human mind to comprehend. This incomprehensibility can arise from several reasons like several karmic seeds fructifying together as one event or one karmic seed fructifying as a series of events Therefore, some reaction may come in this lifetime, some in the next and some in a distant future lifetime.





Konark Sun Temple also Konârak) is a 13th century Sun Temple (also known as the Black Pagoda),[1] at Konark, in Odisha, India. It was supposedly built by king Narasimhadeva I of Eastern Ganga Dynasty around 1250.[2] It has been built in the shape of a gigantic chariot with elaborately carved stone wheels, pillars and walls. A major part of the structure is now in ruins. The temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.[3] It is also featured on NDTV’s list of Seven Wonders of India and Times of India’s list of Seven Wonders of India.

“Teacher and Guru”

I know that a Teacher is different from a Guru, but never knew that they are different in so many ways.
I know “All Gurus are Teachers; but all teachers are not Gurus”.
If you get not only a Guru but also a “Satguru”, you are the most blessed one.





A teacher takes responsibility of your growth

A Guru makes you responsible for your growth.


A teacher gives you things you do not have and require

A Guru takes away things you have and do not require.


A teacher answers your questions

A Guru questions your answer


A teacher helps you get out of the maze

A Guru destroys your maze


A teacher requires obedience and discipline from the pupil

A Guru requires trust and humility from the pupil


A teacher clothes you and prepares you for the outer journey

A Guru strips you naked and prepares you for the inner journey


A teacher is a guide on the path

A Guru is the pointer to the way


A teacher sends you on the road to success

A Guru sends you on the road to freedom


When the course is over you are thankful to the teacher

When the discourse is over you are grateful to the Guru


A teacher explains the world and its nature to you

A Guru explains yourself and your nature to you


A teacher makes you understand how to move about in the world

A Guru shows you where you stand in relation to the world


A teacher gives you knowledge and boosts your ego

A Guru takes away your knowledge and punctures your ego


A teacher instructs you

A Guru constructs you


A teacher sharpens your mind

A Guru opens your mind


A teacher shows you the way to prosperity

A Guru shows the way to serenity


A teacher reaches your mind

A Guru touches your soul


A teacher gives you knowledge

A Guru makes you wise


A teacher gives you maturity

A Guru returns you to innocence


A teacher instructs you on how to solve problems

A Guru shows you how to resolve issues


A teacher is a systematic thinker

A Guru is a lateral thinker


A teacher will punish you with a stick

A guru will punish you with compassion


A teacher is a pupil what a father is to son

A Guru is to pupil what mother is to her child


One can always find a teacher

But Guru has to find and accept you


A teacher leads you by the hand

A Guru leads you by example


When a teacher finishes with you, you graduate

When a Guru finishes with you, you celebrate




When priests tell people about future sufferings and make them do rituals, aren’t they acting like hooligans when threaten people to extort money?

 Not necessarily. They could be acting like doctors who alert patients about how they will become sick in future if they don’t take treatment now. Their statements could be warnings, not threats. To understand the difference, we need to ask: who is causing the suffering? In the case of extortion threats, the hooligans are themselves the cause; they will inflict sufferings on those who don’t

give money. In the case of sicknesses, the doctors are the helpers in preventing the sufferings caued by something else like germs. Similarly, the Vedic scriptures inform us that various sufferings come upon us due to the law of karma.

This law is basically an expansion of the law of cause and effect that we intuitively accept in our daily life. All of us carry past karmic infections that will cause us to suffer in due course of time. An educated eye is needed to see how certain symptoms are precursors to future problems. The difference between seeing the symptoms of physical diseases and the signs of karmic consequences is just the difference in the kind of education needed. Certain religious ceremonies help us atone for what we have done in the past.

At the same time, not all religious rituals are necessary, just as not all medical prescriptions are necessary. Some doctors may give unnecessary prescriptions to inflate their earning and so may some priests. Just as we need to educate ourselves and choose our doctors carefully, so too with priests.Image