Sunday, July 29, 2007

A Purport for Rumi

Out beyond ideas of
wrong-doing and right-doing
there is a field
I'll meet you there
when the soul lies down in that
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase,
each other
doesn't make any sense.

The other evening I attended a sanga amongst devotees of Ananda Mayi. As we sang together and I looked around, I felt utterly humbled. Here are devotees of the Lord, maybe wearing a different dress and singing different songs. The persons I encountered were - as Srila Prabhupad put it - ladies and gentlemen.

Although their philosophy may teach "all is one" - which is diametrically opposed to the teachings that I follow - I felt myself rise above judgment. How? Simply, I did not feel judged.

I felt a deep appreciation for their devotion to God and their teacher, Ananda Mayi. And my favorite moment in the evening was when the visiting Swami, Nirvananda Swami, sang the maha-mantra and in the interlude he sang, "And Krishna comes and plays flute.... on the banks... of my heart."

I closed my eyes. Krishna does not belong to ISKCON, Gaudiya Math, or to Ananda Mayi. Who am I to say that Krishna "prefers" anyone? But one day, maybe my heart shall be clean and simple enough that He does come and play His flute on the banks of my heart.


Knowledge is Truth & Truth is Love said...

I am really inspired by ur blog. I really enjoyed it.

love and best wishes in the name of God ...


Michael said...

dear soul,

I am curious, why do you say that the teaching "all is one" is diametrically opposed to the teaching you follow?

when you quote Rumi who talks about the field that is beyond right and wrong, beyond all ideas, he is talking about the field of spirit which is absolutely one, which is the one God that pervades everything. that is oneness.

Bhakti lata said...

good question, michael... but when the teaching is 'all is one', it means that there is only one God. Just as the sun has many different names, but there is only one sun. So Rumi is encouraging us to get beyond or small-minded ideas of who is God and who is a devotee of God, and to connect with that. Why get caught up in the externals that are different when there is so much to appreciate that we have in common?

But NO, we are NOT all one. If we were all God, we wouldn't be here, under illusion. And if we were all one, we then wouldn't be able to have a loving relationship with God OR anyone else! A relationship means TWO (or more) people/souls. A relationship is how love develops. And what is our existence without love??

Thanks for the question.

Michael said...

You note that we are not God, and that we are here under illusion.

Let's look at that. The most respected mystics say our illusion is precisely the idea that "we" are all separate, and that "God" is something separate from us, from this life. The deepest realization of truth is this oneness. This realization reveals that love is the basis of reality, and that when we relate to others, we are actually relating to our Self. When we are under the illusion that we are truly separate from each other and from God, then we may say "I love you" or "I love God" and this is filled with longing and you make it romantic. But the truth is that if you realize oneness, then that longing fulfills its purpose. The point isn't to go on loving God and others from a distance. The point is to realize the oneness and live that love. Devotion is beautiful but it leads to realization. Thank you for considering this.

Bhakti lata said...

I respect your belief, Michael, but I do not agree with you. Love is a relationship, not a state of being. And without love, the world and our hearts are empty. I don't really know what else to say, other than to read the Bhagavad-Gita As It Is by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupad.

I wish you well.

Michael said...

Well, I thank you for your book reference, but I could just as well name many books by sages to read on this matter. It is possible that any student misunderstands the teaching, including myself.

You say that love is a relationship, not a state of being. Why do you divide the two? The nature of the relationship is determined by the state of being, or awareness, that our heart or consciousness has reached. If I am in a hateful state of being, then I am hateful in relationships. If I am aware of spiritual truth, then I know what love is, and this transforms my relationships. I will not go further with this. Blessings, Mike

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