Vanity thought #311. Jaipur

Yesterday I caught a movie about a group of elderly Englishmen who chose to retire in India. Despite this very encouraging premise the plot turned into a disaster. These people, on their last legs, went to India in search of their boyhood crash, a new sexual partner and a new job.

Imagine what opportunities they had there to learn something about the purpose of their lives. They’ve got bits of Indian wisdom here and there and one of them actually went to a couple of temples but both these westerners and their Indian hosts were mercilessly squandering the opportunities of the human form of life in one of the most glorious places in the whole country – Jaipur.

When I heard that they were going there I was so excited, not for them, for myself. I’ve never been there and the chance to see the deities worshiped by the Goswamis of Vrindavana tickled my soul. It was a very brief moment, however, because I soon realized that even if I went there I would only have seen a few idols decorated in nice dresses and flowers.

At first I imagined going to Jaipur and seeing Krishna but then I realized I wasn’t going to see Him at all. He wasn’t going to show Himself to me and has no interest in seeing me either.

Finally, the things I’ve been preaching to myself for a while are starting to get hold now.

We are not the subjects and Krishna is not the object for our senses. It’s the other way around, He is there to see us and so unless invited we have no real business going to Jaipur to “see” Him. I got that plus the understanding that seeing the deity is not the same as having Krishna reveal His form in our hearts.

No doubt a trip to Jaipur would have been supremely beneficial, first as one of the best methods of sadhana bhakti and second as the opportunity to get noticed by the Lord but we still can’t force Krishna to bestow His mercy on us simply by going to places like Jaipur, Vrindavan or Mayapur. We go there but we don’t get there, we just lick the jar of honey from the outside.

Granted, it’s probably the closest we get to the honey in this lifetime and this is not a small feat for one lifetime already but still it’s no cigar.

Krishna and all the places of His residence are eternally present in His Holy Name. We don’t need to travel thousands of miles to see what is already so close, we can’t force the Holy Name to disclose its glories by mere traveling, especially if all we are going to see there is the same old eating, sleeping, mating and defending.

Having said that, if the Lord arranges for us to go and visit Him there we should absolutely get up and go without any reservations. Hmm, okay, we can make reservations but it’s not what I mean.

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