Can anyone in this world measure by seeing a person or the way they pray or the way they look, the way they recite all stotras how much faith/devotion or faith they have in God? I don’t think so.
We have seen great devotees who were turned down just because of their cast or color or religion, right? Remember Kanaka Dasa? Remember the story of Shabari? Our most beloved kid Prahalada? Almighty Lord didn’t see if they were Brahmins, or a man or a woman or a kid. He saw their devotion and just blessed them all.
We learn so many things from our Parents, right? The faith/devotion/bhakthi I have towards our Beloved Rayaru is all due to what I saw as a kid from my Parents. I don’t even remember when I started fasting Thursday evenings. As a kid, I always thought of Rayaru as my Great Great Grandfather. As I grew up, Rayaru was my Guru, my Friend, everything to me. However, there was an incident which took place during which my entire Faith/Devotion/Bhakthi was tested.
I will not go into specifics, and do not want to hurt anyone. Read on….
2009 was the year, as many of you who follow me from a long time, you all know I suffered with severe foot pain. It had been almost 5 years, and no medical intervention helped me. We spent thousands of dollars and did all sorts of tests, from MRI, Bone Scan, Nerve Conduction Study to all other tests. Nothing helped.
I traveled to India, and was told that one of these Swamiji was able to cure many things and would be able to help. So, we traveled to this place. After the initial set of questions, this Swamiji asked what the problem was. He was told the problem and that I was a great devotee of Rayaru. He looked at my face and said “All of us have 100% Faith/Devotion/Bhakthi in Rayaru. However, you have 40% Faith/Devotion/Bhakthi and 60% doubt on Rayaru. If we all travel to Mantralaya and ask for a wish to be granted, it will be fulfilled immediately. However, since you have 60% doubt on Rayaru, you will have to travel 10 times for your wishes to be fulfilled.”As soon as I heard these sentences, my jaw dropped, eyes filled with tears. This Swamiji kept saying many other things, nothing went into my head. My head was reeling. Tears were rolling down my eyes.
We came back to Bangalore. The whole journey back, I cried. How could Rayaru let this happen? Why did he give this Swamiji the mind to speak so badly to me? I went on and on and on, and for days kept crying. We finally visited Mantralaya, and when I saw our Beloved Rayaru completely broke down. That night was when Mantralaya completely submerged in water. Read the post here:
Once I came back here to USA, I had nightmares of the day. I used to wake up crying asking why this had happened to me. My foot pain was the same. So, one Thursday, I sat in my pooja room, and prayed to Rayaru. “Gurugale, this is it. I have been doing everything possible in this world to cure my foot pain. I will continue praying until March which is your birthday, if you don’t cure my foot during that period, I am never ever going to pray to you and will believe what the Swamiji said about 40% Faith/Devotion/Bhakthi and 60% doubt on you. Please please help me”. I burst into tears. I kept praying until his birthday, a year after that, two years, three, four and now it is 2015 and the foot pain never came back.
I know how much I am devoted to my beloved Rayaru, the change in my nature, my attitude, my behavior everything I owe to Rayaru. If I think anything bad, do something bad, speak a bad word, have negative thoughts, I immediately think what would Rayaru think of me. Does he like this behavior of mine? Does he approve of what I am thinking? I immediately change my thoughts. This has helped me change many things in my life.
Even now, I have nightmares of this incident. 2009 was when I vowed I would never ever judge anyone about their Faith/Devotion/Bhakthi. You never know who God is going to bless. You never know where the ultimate devotee is? You never know if he is a Madhwa, or a Smartha, some other caste, a Man or a woman or a child?
Never ever judge a person and assume he/she is a great devotee because they are performing all the rituals. Never ever judge a person and assume he/she is a great devotee because they are able to recite all and every stotras. Never ever judge a person and assume he/she is a great devotee because they know all the scriptures.
Never ever judge a person and assume he/she is less of a devotee because they do not pray. Never ever judge a person and assume he/she is less of a devotee because they are not from our caste. Never ever judge a person and assume he/she is less of a devotee because they do not follow our rituals.
There are many people who constantly tell me” Meera, can you please pray for my Son/Daughter/in-laws, Rayaru listens to you”. I am humbled by these words and at the same time tell them” If you yourself pray to him sincerely why will he not listen to your prayers. And I say one or two small lyrics in praise of our Beloved Rayaru”.
Moral of today’s post ” We as human beings do not have the ability to measure Faith/Devotion/Bhakthi one has.”