Yagna on ‘Narada Bhakti Sutras’ – Part 1 Nov 2016

Talks on “Narada Bhakti Sutras”- Part 1 – by Swami Abhedananda

(Gyan Yagna conducted from 1st Nov till 6th Nov, 2016)

Key Points from the Discourses

Day 1

The monthly yagna on ‘Narada Bhakti Sutra’ by Swami Abhedananda got off to a wonderful start with Swamiji’s compassionate description on how we get attracted by the world’s false illusion of joy. Only on repeated disappointments we turn to the Lord, the true source of happiness. Below, we bring to you a synopsis of the first day’s discourse:

Bhakti – the most urgent need of our life:

  1. The biggest irony of our life is that we don’t seek what we need the most and the things we don’t really need, they appear to be most important. We feel that money and the people around are the source of our happiness and hence our life revolves around them. We miss to understand that if this body is given to us by God, He shall provide food and shelter too. During our challenging times it was not the people, but someone else, who came to our rescue. Often, those whom we presumed to be near and dear, went far from us but the Lord alone stayed close.
  2. It takes lots of births to realize that without Lord’s will nothing ever happens. With this understanding, dawns the realization that Bhakti of Lord is our biggest need!
  3. The text that we are going to study is ‘Narada Bhakti Sutra’. It beautifully describes various aspects of devotion – what is the meaning and characteristics of devotion, how one can develop devotion, what is the method of loving the Lord and what is the nature of devotees.
  4. The text contains very simple sutras. ‘Sutras’ mean that which gives a clue. There are around 84 such clues given in this text which are sweet to hear, easy to understand and yet very useful to develop the rightful importance of the Lord in our life.

Day 1The First Sutra: “Athato Bhaktim Vyakhyasyamah”:

  1. The word ‘Ath’ in the first Sutra has three important descriptions:
    • 1st Meaning – ‘Ath’ primarily means to start something
    • 2nd Meaning – The word ‘Ath’ is like the Omkar which is considered to be ‘auspicious. When a work is started, we don’t know what problems we may encounter or how successful the work would be. Therefore, Ath word brings auspiciousness to the work.
    • 3rd Meaning – Third meaning of ‘Ath’ is, ‘Anantaram’ i.e. ‘After this’ which implies that when an individual has lived his life and gone through various experiences, then only he realizes all the aspects described in the text.
  2. We have to go through certain experiences to realize that the world is a source of disappointment, especially when we rely too much on it. It is only after few lessons in life that we realize, ‘I shouldn’t have gotten so much involved with a particular person, I shouldn’t have expected so much.’ One should not be disheartened from any bad experiences. Bhakti starts when we start seeing the big gain of coming closer to the Lord due to our big losses. When Bhagwan snatches something from our lives, He brings Himself in our hearts.
  3. The system in which we live is such that the situations tell us that there is some other doer and performer in our lives and we must only remain as actors. We should not try to become a director. If we fail to inquire, who is managing our lives and who is the doer behind everything, then our life becomes a failure. Many things happen in life which attempt to increase our maturity. And therefore if the age is not making a person a devotee, it is the misfortune of the person. When a person ages, he should have more devotion and quietness. So, the word Ath means ‘now-onwards’, i.e. ‘After such experiences I will now describe the Bhakti.’

What is Bhakti?

  1. 1st meaning – ‘Bhajanam naam Bhakti’. Bhajanam here means to listen to Lord’s leelas and glories; and get joyous just by His remembrance. Like cows eat the fodder and masticate later; they keep the food inside their stomach and bring it out whenever they want and munch on it, similarly the devotees also think of the Lord and keep contemplating on Lord’s form and leelas, time and again.
    The more one does bhajan, the more the mind gets cleansed. Just as a mother can’t see her child dirty, similarly when we go to the Lord again and again, He cannot see the dirt of anger, desires, jealousy etc. on us and He cleanses us of it!
  2. 2nd meaning – ‘Bhanjanam naam Bhakti’. Bhakti is that which kills our raag (attachment), dwesh (hatred), and all other negativities. In Shrimad Bhagawatam it is said that – as food does three things, it nourishes, it takes away the hunger, and it gives taste; similarly when Bhakti is there, it nourishes our soul, it gives joy and it takes away emptiness of our life. This is the ‘Bhanjanam’ aspect of Bhakti.
  3. 3rd meaning – ‘Bhaago naam Bhakti’, which means Bhakti separates us from the world and brings us closer to God. Unfortunately we don’t think that we belong to the Lord and hence we keep going to the world which only gives us sorrows. Bhakti is that which takes away the worldliness and brings us closer to the Lord.
  4. The need is for us to make the Lord big in our lives; have Him win! If the Lord wants to give you love, accept it; if the Lord wants to give you insult, then accept that too with the same ease. Swami Akhandanandaji used to say – “In your life when something happens as you had wanted then you won’t know whether it was Lord’s will or not, but if something happens as you didn’t want, then surely it was Lord’s will”.
  5. The second Sutra describes that the Bhakti is of the nature of ‘Absolute Love’. When Bhakti is there, we want the glory of the Lord alone. A lover is like the river which rushes from the mountain with only one agenda and that is to reach the ocean and forget itself. Those who want to merge with God, they alone are able to love God. Loving means dissolving oneself.

Day 2

On the second day of the monthly yagna, as Swami Abhedanandaji expounded on the Sutras 3 to 5 of Narad Bhakti Sutra, he gave out some very beautiful messages as below:


  • In our lives we need assurances, we need someone to understand us, we need someone who can correct us when we are wrong, we need someone who can help us when we are falling down and when successful we need someone to tell us to not have pride. God is the only one who can satisfy all these emotions and demands.
  • We need to discover in our lives that God supports us; He talks to us, He loves, guides and even reprimands us when we are wrong. This experience of the Lord being in touch with us is called Bhakti. This feeling of being possessed by the Lord is Bhakti. The feeling that someone very big is behind us and nothing can happen to us, is Bhakti. More you experience this, more you will feel that you don’t need to get attached to anybody in this world. All these are mentioned in Narad Bhakti Sutra in various ways.
  • ‘My-ness’ towards the Lord:
    Anywhere we put myness, there is a joy. Bigger is the thing, more joy it gives. When myness is for the Lord, greatest will be the joy experienced. Myness for the Lord comes when Bhagwan does something in our lives which nobody has done and we realize it.

Day 2Sutra No. 3:
In the third Sutra, Bhakti is mentioned as ‘Amrit Swaroopa’ that means, Bhakti is of the nature of immortality. It is said so because the fruit of Bhakti is immortal. We start taking the Lord’s name only once a while and the fruit of it is so big that we take His name our whole life. When we do little japa or puja there are big effects, we get something very big internally. Little actions give very big fruit in spiritual life.

Sutra No. 4:

  • ‘Sidhhir bhavati’ –
    • Here the word Siddha means – A Bhakta has an extraordinary life full of miracles. His life does not involve too much struggle. A devotee is not a poor person, who has no power, or who keeps crying; Bhagwan does miracles in his life.
    • Another meaning of ‘Sidhhir bhavati’ is – ‘Sidhhi’ implies ‘cooked rice’. Uncooked rice is hard but cooked rice becomes soft. So ‘Sidhhir bhavti’ means that after attaining Bhakti, a person becomes very soft, very lovable, he becomes Sidhha. Just as anything that is put in the water for a long time becomes soft, similarly anybody who has got a lot of love, he becomes soft.
  • ‘Amrito bhavati’ – Having got that devotion, a devotee becomes like nectar. He, as if, holds a magnet inside, and everyone wants to talk to him, love him, be with him. Bharatji was one such devotee whose face used to be full of devotion for Lord Ram and people used to adore him. A devotee is not just an ordinary person with no charm. He has Lord in him; he has a very big attraction in him.
  • ‘Tripto bhavati’ – This means that a devotee is very fulfilled. Fulfillment or Tripti doesn’t come from money, power or possessions; it comes when you get something after which you don’t need anything else. For example, when you listen to satsang and you like it very much then there is nothing else you would want after that. That is called Tripti. Even a little of spiritual life makes a person very contended.

Sutra No. 5:

  • ‘Yat praapya na kinchit vanchhati’ – Having attained that bhakti, a person doesn’t desire anything else. If someone has bhakti and he has the Lord with him, what else would he desire after that? ‘Want’ is an expression that the person is dissatisfied with his present situation. We desire things because we don’t have that bhakti. Only thing that a devotee wants is – lot of thirst for the Lord, lot of love for the Lord.
  • ‘Yat praapya na shochati’ – There is no ‘shok’ (grievance) in a devotee’s heart. To grieve in front of the Lord is to insult the Lord. In front of the Lord and the Guru, there is a natural joy. To Grief is a sign that something else is more important in our life than the Lord. Never be sad over what is lost; God will give you something more. If you have to grieve over something, only grieve on the fact that you couldn’t make the Lord as happy as you could.
  • ‘Yat praapya na dweshti’ – A devotee doesn’t hate anybody. Everywhere he sees the Lord and Lord’s people. Even if somebody has done bad, keep on blessing him and say mentally, ‘May good happen to him. May no one suffer. I have no hatred for anybody.’ These thoughts please the Lord.
  • ‘Yat praapya na ramate’ – A devotee doesn’t revel in small pity joys of the world. One who is the son of the king, why will he want anything cheap and filthy? One whose taste is high, who thinks about devotion, dispassion, Truth etc., he won’t be ever falling for small lowly joys.

The joy of singing the Lord’s name, the joy of listening to satsang, the joy of serving the Guru is something that cannot be matched with anything in this world!

Day 3

Swami Abhedananda continued to give insightful and heart warming explanations on one of the finest text’s on Bhakti, the ‘Narada Bhakti Sutra’. We bring to you a few valuable excerpts from the third day of the yagna:

  • Becoming a devotee of the Lord should not be an option in our life, it should be our urgent need. The inner peace and security provided by the Lord can only keep our mind quiet.
  • We often mistakenly think that Bhakti is just some sort of a ritual, done in the morning or evening hours. But Bhakti is not a ritual, it is the constant feeling that the Almighty – the Lord of the cosmos, has taken avatar for me! He didn’t take avatar only for Arjun and Shabri, He comes to uplift people like me too. Bhakti means – in our hearts there is an ocean of faith which affirms that everybody may leave but the Lord won’t leave me. Bhakti is a mental surety that whatsoever may happen, the Lord will still hold me. Let us go and see in this text, how we can increase such Bhaav for the Lord.

Day 3Sutra No. 6:

  • “Yaj Jnatva Matto Bhavati”: Knowing the Bhakti, the devotee gets instantly intoxicated. It is said about Sutikhshanji in the Ramayan that when he started going to meet the Lord, he didn’t know where he was going. Similarly, when Akroorji was going from Mathura to Vrindavan he also forgot the way, same was the case with Bharatji when he was going to meet Bhagwan Ram in Chitrakoot. This is ‘Matto Bhavati’.
  • “Stabdho Bhavati”: means, the state of stupefaction. When Bhagwan Krishna had taken the Govardhan on His left hand for 7 days and 7 nights, and when everything was over, everybody ran towards Bhagwan but Yashodaji kept gazing at Him. She had ‘Stabdhi’ bhaav, she couldn’t move. Bhagwan Himself ran towards her. She wanted to ask Him, “how did you lift such a big mountain!?” but she was not able to talk. That is called “Stabdhi bhavati”.
  • “Atma Ramo bhavati”: means, a Bhakta revels in the Self. What else do we need when we have Bhagwan! The joy of going inside is much more than the joy of going outside. No worldly joys of visiting hotels, adventure parks, tourist attractions can even come close to the joy of reading Ramayan and Bhagwat as experienced by the one who cherishes it. Somebody once expressed his desire to leave the house to Udiya Baba, to which Udiya Baba said, “so much of joy is there in this path that house will be left on its own, you need not do anything to leave it.” This is ‘Atma Ramo Bhavati’.

Sutra No. 7:
On the path of Bhakti, Kamna (desires) cannot travel with you! Any relationship gets strained if too much of desire is involved. Bhakti means, “I am not coming to fulfil my desires but to give joy, love and all my emotions”. In fact, no role can be played well if the person has a lot of desires to get something. Anybody who expects a lot and seeks too much attention, soon becomes a big liability. The joy of not-wanting and being selfless is much more than the joy of wanting and being selfish. The moment we start desiring, we lose our inner joy and happiness.

Sutra No. 8:

  • There should be only one thought in a devotee’s mind – “Oh Lord! What shall I give You, what shall I do for You? How can I make You happy?” One must realize that the Lord also gets happy, He also gets angry and excited, He also laughs and frowns at times. If you worship God’s idol everyday for a long period of time, you can see His expressions changing!
  • Whatever we may offer to the Lord (flower, water, milk etc.), it is His alone. But still the Lord likes it when we offer. Whole attempt of the devotee should be to make the Lord happy. That is called samarpanam (surrender).
  • In this sutra, the word ‘Nyaasah’ means surrender of both laukik (worldly) work and vaidik (spiritual) work. Even when you drink a glass of water, think that may it please the Lord. A devotee’s only desire is that the God should be close to him. He can tolerate any physical distance but mentally he cannot be away from the Lord. He cannot see the Lord displeased with him.

Sutra No. 9:

  • In the ninth sutra, the word ‘Ananyata’ is mentioned by Naradji. ‘Ananyata’ means ‘I am Yours and You are mine!’ We take a lot of pride in saying ‘this is my son, my house, my wife etc’, but we don’t realize that real love is with the Lord alone!
  • Our mind is not meant to love two. We cannot belong to multiple people. This sutra means that – ‘Oh Lord! In my life there is no one better than You, no one more beautiful than You, more important than You.’ The soul of love is not “You”, it is “You alone!”
  • The sense of belonging to the Lord comes when we have got a lot from the Lord and when we know that He has been always there for us. We don’t see it but the Lord has given us a lot. To see His love requires special eyes; mortal eyes cannot see His omnipresent benevolence and His love. Those who have love, they see God in various ways.

Sutra No. 10:

  • The word ‘Anyashrayanaam’ here implies not having support from anywhere else other than the Lord. We all have to depend on someone, but if we take support of any worldly person, we are sure to get disappointed sooner or later. That is the rule of the world.
  • When we seek support from the world, God’s support is not there. God gives His love when He knows that without Him, the devotee will be completely lost and distressed. There comes a time in our life when we don’t take support of money, power, family, possessions; and we feel that there is no one for us, this is the best moment of a devotee’s life. The bhaav of Ananyata comes in us and the same moment the Lord rushes towards us!

Day 4

Nectarine devotional satsang by Swami Abhedananda continues at Chinmaya Mission Durban in the monthly gyan yagna. On the fourth day of the yagna, Swamiji beautifully elucidated the glory of Lord’s devotion and its importance in our life. Below is a synopsis of the discourse:

Day 4Developing Ananyata for the Lord:

  • Everybody’s life revolves around those he is attached to. Our thoughts, sentiments, emotions, all oscillate around those dear to us. But most of the time these thoughts and sentiments become problematic for us. They often become the source of our anxiety and disturbance; not because the people do something but because it is the nature of the worldly love itself that it must exist and end in pain.
  • There is a science behind how we develop attachment towards someone. It is not that attachment comes only by living with someone but it comes when somebody is available for us and gives us conducive responses. More someone is available and gives conducive responses, more it is likely that we develop attachment towards him. We all have a lot of attachment and a lot of mamta for someone or some object, but if all our mamta is for the God then it is called Ananyata.
  • To become a devotee there is a big role of the Lord. God becomes available in a devotee’s life in the form of a Guru or Saint. Due to this a devotee doesn’t feel that the Lord was absent in his life and this constant feeling gives birth to Ananyata in him. Thus slowly the conviction grows that “I don’t need anybody else, everything is my Lord only”. When a devotee has such a state of mind, what a quietness and surety will be there in him!

Sutra No. 11:

  • We all work and all our work is to make someone happy. Either we are trying to make ourselves happy, or our children happy, or our parents happy, or our vasna and ahankaar happy. But this world is such that nobody can be happy for a long time. One thing we have to understand very well, that our life becomes quiet and beautiful only if the Lord is happy with us.
  • The Lord also gets happy or unhappy. This fact can be known through our own Antahakaran, some of our actions make us happy because the one who is sitting inside is happy while some actions makes us sad because the one who is sitting inside is unhappy. If you have a selfless day then you will be happy whereas if you were angry or had spoken a lie then you will be unhappy internally. This discovery alone makes a person a devotee as he then strives to make the Lord happy. The attachment to the Lord’s happiness is the secret of devotion in life.
  • If somebody opposes the happiness of the Lord, one must be indifferent towards them, this is mentioned in the second part, “tad vridhishu udaseenta”. It is worth being close to the one who takes us closer to the Lord and not associate with those who take us away.

Sutra No. 12 & 13:

  • It is said in these sutras that even if you have to do a lot of social work, household work, family work etc., you must let the devotion keep flowing in your life. When you have responsibility towards everybody, don’t you have any responsibility towards God? All duties should end in Lord alone.
  • Do karma-kand but let the devotion within also be firm and established. The sign that devotion is firm is that we don’t get affected by anything, and the reason for not getting affected is that the one whom we love, the God, is always with us.
  • When one has made the Lord happy, then why should he worry about any other duty? Your first priority should be – Is the Lord happy with me or not? All other things are secondary.

Sutra No. 14:

  • It is written in this sutra that before you interact or do some work in the world, be sure that you are ready and your mind is trained. An immature person creates problems for himself and for others everywhere he goes. World is not an easy place to deal with; every situation demands a lot of depth and maturity from us, and it teaches us a lot of lessons if we make mistakes. World demands that you should have a lot of faith in God; it demands that you shouldn’t have anger or attachment.
  • In the process of making butter, in the beginning, milk gets easily dissolved in water, but when the same milk is mixed with curd and is made to sit overnight the milk turns into curd. When the curd is churned then butter comes out; but that butter doesn’t mix in the water. In a similar manner, if an ordinary person goes in the world, he gets lost in the worries and gets attached at multiple places. But when he takes the curd of satsang and puts it in his mind and goes into solitude for a few days or few years, he is able to bring out the butter of devotion. With this when he goes in the world, he doesn’t get lost anymore!
  • The great saint Ramkrishna Paramhansaji used to give an example – a mud-pot is freshly made and when it is still soft if it is taken to fetch water, then the moment it is put in the well, all the mud dissolves. But if the pot is firm then it doesn’t dissolve, it brings out water and serves everyone. Ordinarily when we go in the world, we get worried because the moment we interact we either start getting attached or start hating someone or get too much influenced by others.

Sutra No. 15:

  • This sutra talks about how to develop devotion. First thing one should do is perform regular Puja (worship) of the Lord. Bhaav (emotion) always wants action. If you don’t give anything to the Lord, how can you get attached with Him? Seeing our desire to give, the Lord gets happy, His heart melts. Lord gets happy when we go to Him and say, ‘Oh Lord! Please be happy with the little flower, little water and little food that I am offering.’
  • No day should pass without doing Lord’s Puja. It is a very big strength. So powerful is the Puja that if you are really doing it sincerely, a time comes when while doing Puja you feel that the Lord Himself has come to take your Puja. You are offering Agarbatti, Naivedya etc. and the Lord is standing in front of you and taking your offerings. If you perform Puja with bhaav, then Bhagwan manifests in some or the other form.
  • When the Puja goes more advanced, a time comes when you start offering the Agarbatti and Naivedya etc., and someone pushes the Agarbatti and the Naivedya towards you. The Pujari becomes Bhagwan and Bhagwan becomes Pujari!

Day 5

On the penultimate day of the monthly gyan yagna on ‘Narada Bhakti Sutra’, Swami Abhedanada drenched the hearts of the listeners by touching upon various aspects of the sacred bond of Bhakti between the Lord and his devotee. We bring a few excerpts from the discourse as under:

Day 5Ananyata:

  • In this text Naradji has emphasized on Ananyata. Ananyata means single pointedness in love. We all have a lot of love, we have all loved our family members, house, clothes, food, shelter, friends, relatives, caste, country etc. There is tremendous capacity to give joy in us and this capacity to give joy is called love of a person. When a person desires to give all his joy to His Lord alone then, that is Ananyata.
  • Ananyata gives very big fruits and the biggest fruit of Ananyata is that God becomes possessive about us. It is written in Ramayan that, like the eyelids protect the eyes similarly Bhagwan Ram used to protect Sitaji and Lakshmanji, because He knew that other than Him, there is no one who belonged to them. The Lord takes charge of our lives. When the Lord becomes possessive about us, we don’t have to bother about anything, and there is carefreeness and quietness that comes in our lives.
  • The second thing that Anayata gives is, Tapasya (austerity) comes in our lives. The secret of Parvatiji’s tapasya was Her Ananyata towards Shivji. To renounce is a very difficult thing but Ananyata makes a person renounce. When love and Ananyata is less, then one finds it difficult to renounce things. The secret of Lakshmanji’s renunciation was that He had only one love, and that was for the Lord.
  • Ananyata is the very praan of Bhakti. From Ananyata comes austerity, from Ananayata comes renunciation and the person shines forth like gold. Ananyata makes a person dependable. More is our Ananyata, more beautiful becomes our mind.

Sutra No. 16:

  • Puja:
    • Puja is a very effective way to create a relationship with the Lord. When one completes his Puja, his mind becomes stronger and he gets more assurance from God. Puja has the potential to please the Lord and increase our faith. One faces the world with his faith only, even in horrible situations one feels he will be fine.
    • Our life has lots of uncertainties lurking here and there, we don’t know which bad news we will get, but Puja is the one which gives constant assurance.
  • Anurag:
    • Raag means love. The Love from the Lord is Raag and after experiencing the Lord’s love when we start loving the Lord that is called Anuraag. Anu means after.
    • Bhagwan does more Puja of us than what we do for Him. He offered us food even in the mother’s womb. God gives more than what we give.

Sutra No. 17 – The glory of listening :

  • One type of Sadhna is listening to Katha. Katha means Satsang etc. One may chant Ramayan, do japa and may do some Puja, but unless our convictions change, our problems will not be sorted. It is Katha through which our ahamta (I-ness), mamta (My-ness) and notions change.
  • Without katha we cannot know what is Bhagwan Ram’s nature, what is Bhagwan Krishna’s glory. It is the katha alone that tells us what does surrender to the Lord mean, how we should serve the Lord. Chanting Ramayan is one thing but hearing alone brings a change in life. Therefore all saints hear a lot of katha of Bhagwan. If anybody has become a saint, it is only by listening.
  • It is said in Ramayan that Bhagwan Ram’s compassion was so much that when He shot Bali and the arrow was in Bali’s heart causing a lot of pain and bleeding, Bhagwan Ram ran to him, sat near him and took Bali’s head on His lap and caressed him. Bhagwan Ram even asked Bali if he wanted his pran (life) to be held. At the end, Bali left his pran in Bhagwan Ram’s lap. How will we know this unless we listen to Ramji’s katha?

Sutra No. 18:
It is implied in this sutra that a spiritual person should not be a dull person. ‘Atmarati’ means ‘inner joy’ as well as ‘absolute knowledge’. There should be inner joy dwelling inside, which is a devotee’s sign.

Sutra No. 19 & 20:

  • Naradji talks here about Ananyata that everything should be offered to the God. Pujya Gurudev used to say very frequently – You can give to someone without loving, but you can’t love without giving!
  • That God who has given us so much, what do we give to Him, what do we offer to Him? Let the Lord become bhokta and you become the bhogya. Whatever action you do, be it driving, cooking, dressing-up, walking, talking etc., think that you are doing it for the Lord. By thinking so you will feel that He has taken your service.

Sutra No. 21:
This sutra says that the cowherd women of Vraja (Gopis) are an example of pure bhakti. Gopis had the greatest longing and thirst for Lord Krishna. They used to see Him go every morning for grazing the cows and wait very impatiently for Him to return. They used to mentally offer everything that they did; they offered milk, butter and curd to Him and the Lord used to take from them. All day long they used to be completely lost in the thoughts of the Lord.


Day 6

In the conclusive talk of this month’s gyan yagna on ‘Narada Bhakti Sutra’, Swami Abhedanandaji beautifully explained the real meaning of the most clichéd yet misconstrued concept of ‘Love’ – what it really is and how does one become worthy of Lord’s love. Below is the synopsis of the discourse:
Knowing what ‘Love’ really is:
We all have one very basic nature – of loving. We want to love and get loved. Though such a big natural need, little is clearly understood by us about what love really is. There are four things that we must know about love:

Day 6

  1. Source of Strength:
    • What is our center of love becomes the cause of our strength or weakness depending on whether the object of love is small or big. If the object of love is small then the same love becomes the cause of our worry.
    • Weakness is experienced less for the body and more in the mind. Bodily weakness can be removed by taking some supplements but the mental weakness goes only by loving the higher. A person who loves his ahankaar (ego) is a weak person; a person who loves one particular person only is a weak person; a person who only loves his money is also a weak person; because there is always a fear associated with such small love.
    • Smaller is the object of love more susceptible it is to disappearing. Bigger is the love, lesser we have to be afraid of it disappearing. Bigger is the love, more is the fearlessness associated with the Love.
  2. Source of Joy:
    Our love can be the source of our joy or sorrow. Due to the expectations involved in the smaller love one has to suffer a lot. Smaller is the love more short-lived is the joy experienced. Small love gives joy but it takes a big cost for it.
  3. Source of humility:
    Smaller is the love, more is the humiliation associated with the love. We have heard a lot of abuses or shouting only because of our small love. Bigger is the love there is no humiliation but humility associated with it. Since humility is there in the higher lover, we swallow our pride.
  4. Source of Security:
    Bigger is the love, more is the security, even if we forget that bigger love, the Lord will not forget us.
    Loving the Higher thus gives us all the four things, i.e. strength, humility, joy and security.

Is it not wise to Love the Lord?
Because of our small love we have repeatedly experienced insecurity, we have humiliation, we have fear, we have short-lived love, we have been hurt and we have suffered so much. We have more of emotional problems than intellectual or financial or health problems. Narad Bhakti Sutra shows how to love such that it does not become a problem for us.
We have to accept that Lord alone is the most lovable. Love increases when we see the love of the lover. When we see somebody’s love we get prompted to love the other person. The disciples love the teacher, it is because they see the love of their teacher.
Secondly, when we see anybody’s glory we start loving them. More we know the glory of God, more we will start loving Him. When we know that somebody has supported us in the time of need, how can we not love him?

Sutra 22 & 23:
In the Gopika’s devotion there was no blot of the “Gopikas forgetting Bhagwan Krishna.” It is not that Gopikas didn’t understand that Krishna was the Lord Himself. It was they who said, “You are not the one who is simply the son of Yashoda, You are the Antaryami of all hearts.” Naradji says in the 23rd Sutra that if one doesn’t know the glory of Lord, he will love the Lord like an ordinary lover.

Sutra No. 24:

  • In this sutra it is said here that if a person loves God as an ordinary lover, he cannot identify with God’s joy. The secret of love is – My joy is in the joy of God! Devotees have the capacity to give up all their joys for God’s joy. This is the soul of love. If in trying to give joy to God if the devotee has to go through pains then he goes through it joyfully. This was the secret of Sudama’s happiness. This was the secret of Sitaji’s love for Lord Ram, and Gopis & Yashodaji’s love for Lord Krishna.
  • A selfish person cannot love because the moment his joy is obstructed, he stops loving. When you can’t tolerate the pain from the beloved and you are ready to give joy to him at any cost, then only a person shines in love. More a person goes through pain for the Lord, more he shines. And lesser he goes through pains, more his heart gets rusted.

Sutra No. 25 & 26:

  • It is said here that Bhakti is better than Karma and Gyan because the efforts involved are less. We must realise that Karma also becomes Karma-Yog because of Bhakti and we can get Gyaan only when Bhagwan gives Bhakti.
  • To connect with the Lord is very easy. He doesn’t see our past records. If somebody calls God’s name, God does come to him. The ease of Bhakti is the quick response of the God. One who responds at any time in all ways is Lord only. The superiority of devotion is that God will never disappoint you. Mentally call the Lord, shout for Him. As He responded to Draupadi, He can respond to us too provided we have that faith.

Sutra No. 27:

  • Naradji says in this sutra that Lord doesn’t like Abhimaan. Abhimaan means that a person lives in his imaginary world that ‘I am bigger & better.’ The sign of Abhimaan is that the person gets angry very easily and quickly if someone makes him feel small; though he himself might be a critic of others.
  • What is dear to Lord is ‘deen bhaav’ i.e., the emotion of being a servant of the Lord, being very small in front of Him. The meaning of becoming small is – my desire is small, my hatred is small, God’s wish is supreme for me and I can drop all my wishes for Him. When a person has deenta, he accepts his mistakes spontaneously and doesn’t justify himself.
  • The secret of getting big is becoming small in front of the Lord. Becoming a small dust speck at the feet of the Lord and Guru is the biggest achievement of one’s life!