Fate and Fortune

Hare Krishna! AGTSP!


Please accept my humble obeisances.

In the Bhagawad Gita, Lord Krishna says to Kunti "Bhagyam Falati Sarvadaam, Na Vidhya Na Cha Paurusham" which I understand as "fate and fortune will happen, neither your deeds or capabilities can change that". This was quoted by Lord in response to Kunti's question when she asked that her sons are much more capable than Duryodhana, then why Duryodhan was ruling Hastinapur.

I seek your spiritual guidance to the following questions:

1) I wonder why the Kauravas enjoyed the glory and prosperity of Hastinapur inspite of following adharma. On the other side, Pandavas followed dharma but when they got Hastinapur after the great war, it was a ruined city.

2) We often meet people following adharma but are enjoying material benefits, while those following dharma are surrounded by obstacles related to family/career/health and are fully or partially deprived of material benefits. 

3) Does it mean its all written in our fate/destiny and not in our hands to elevate our success based on our capabilities?

I request you to elaborate and enlighten on the above questions.

Haribol.

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Replies

  • E-Counselor

    Hare Krsna Prabhuji,

    PAMHO.

    Krsna Dasa prabhuji has replied very nicely to your queries. I am still replying in my own words.

    1) Pandavas were not ordinary souls - they were devotees who had taken birth on earth as part of the lord's entourage to fulfill His mission. Therefore, they had to face extra ordinary situations all their life and because of their faith on the  lord, they were saved from all those situations.

    Normally it happens that when one suffers, he either goes towards the lord in full surrender or moves away from the lord completely saying - how can there be God if I have to suffer so much (thats why we are called marginal energy). There are countless examples of devotees who have undergone insurmountable trials and tribulations and have kept faith. In the material world also we say - Alls well that ends well. Therefore, the end is always good for someone who is on the right path - that faith we must keep. All the stories of devotees struggles teach us this only.

    2) Normally, it is said that the grass is greener on the other side. We always feel our struggles are more than others or that others are enjoying more than we are. Even if we suppose they are enjoying more than normal human beings, this is shortlived. They are simply spending from their credit card and will perish once the credit balance is over.

    3) What we enjoy or suffer in this life is all the results of our karma in past lives. There are two ways to ensure that we get over suffering - a) to improve our karma in this birth so that our sufferings in future births is reduced, b) to take to the path of devotion where the lord removes the effect of our past karma, we get purified in the process and we can go back to the lord - getting above this karma cycle completely.

    Actually that is the only choice we have - whether to choose maya or Krsna.

    I hope I have been able to answer your questions somewhat. Please feel free to ask if you have any further doubts.

    Haribol,

    YOur servant,

    Radha Rasamayi DD

     

    • Hare Krsna Radha mataji, Krsna dasa prabhuji, Walter prabhuji,

      Please accept my humble obeisances.

      Thank you for succinctly answering the questions and clarifying the doubts.

      Can we therefore summarize and kindly advise:

      - Good people get tested in life by Krsna regularly but He never leaves their hand in difficult times, whereas bad people get everything they want and never get tested but Krsna leaves their hand in difficult times. Thus, good people may go through trials, but don’t suffer permanently.

      - The people who suffer the most are the ones who experience life the most.

      - Deeds and capabilities can not change our fate or fortune but devotional service to Krsna can change.

      I'd like to quote this from Mahabharata 'Karmanye Vadhikaraste, Ma phaleshou kada chana. Ma Karma Phala Hetur Bhurmatey Sangostva Akarmani'.

      Haribol!

      • E-Counselor

        Hare Krsna Prabhuji,

        PAMHO.

        Just a small clarification here - Krsna never leaves anyone's hand - good or bad person. Paramatma doesnt leave a sinful soul - He just observes the actions and is with the soul throughout all yonis and times - good or bad. Good people turn to God in their tough times, therefore they are protected. Bad people do not turn to God, therefore their own actions catch up with them and they have to suffer the consequences of what they had themselves chosen to do.

        The people who suffer the most are the ones who get maximum chance to learn the lesson of life, the purpose of life. THis is not to say that one who doesnt suffer as much doesnt get a chance to learn the purpose of life - taht is the past sukriti of that person.

        Haribol,

        Your servant,

        Radha Rasamayi DD

  • I feel that the consciousness of Kali yoga has much yo do with our own abilities for both success and achievement. Because with an environment full of the subtle energies of jealous passons & stubborn ignorance, what ever is good and deserved is intercepted. By these interceptor(s). & there is no hiding place. No karma no safe abode from it (hate) this planet is'the worst case scenario. Live! No arms of no mother for her sister brother no one is sincere just see for example does the name Hare Hari or Haray or Harsh produce any (D) sound (no) therefore even as we speak the Most Holy of all Holy Names we are being robed of the genuine tats of Shi Hare Why because Probupod's children have followed so closely on His heals that yhey/we are teaching & practising this wholly new & unrecognizable Pip. O well perhaps the ancient rules &/Laws of the sacred Vadas that proclamed every sound & syllable of Sacred Mantras should be presented with it's proper pronunciation. Will be superceded in this instance since it was Probupod's slang & it is innocently being replicated by His followers? It could happen?-; The Head GOD Has Many Names, Vishnu has many names Hare Has' many other names. I'm just straying to stick to the rules as put forward by the ancient basic tradition of ... A
    Karma. I don't need to use the D-sound if I. Don't want to! It's Kali Miah to me till further notice. I want the tats of the pure Love of Hare. So I. Will continue to pronounce it as properly as I. Am able HariBhola
    • Hare krishna Walter prabhu,

      I agree this material world is a dukhalaya and it has an impact on our consciousness. So, I am keen to educate myself on the questions of karma, dharma and destiny.

      Haribol

      • Hare Krishna!

        KRISHNA DASA Prabhuji very nice explaination made by you.

        Hari Bol!!!!!!!

        • Volunteer

          Thank you very much for your kind words Bhuwan prabhu.

          Please join in the discussion with your comments also.

          Hare krsna.

  • Volunteer

    Hare krsna prabhu,

    My obeisances to all devotees, guru and gauranga.

     

    Any person enjoying the material benefits in entitled to it by their past good deeds. Let them enjoy. Now what they do while enjoying those material benefits will determine their future births and reactions. If they have sukrithi for spiritual progress then they will enjoy material benefit and also attain higher spiritual realisation and subsequent elevation.

     

    Similarly, a person going through hardships in this life should understand that its due to their own past karmas. What is destined (as per your karma) will come to you whether you accept it or not. Some people come into one’s life just to act like an instrument and be responsible for those very reactions. We often hold people responsible for our karmas. It becomes a cycle.

     

    The only thing that can change fate/destiny is devotional service. How? Krsna says:

     

    TEXT 66

    sarva-dharman parityajya

    mam ekam saranam vraja

    aham tvam sarva-papebhyo

    moksayisyami ma sucah

     

    TRANSLATION

    Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me. I shall deliver you from all sinful reaction. Do not fear.

     

    Whether one has done pious or impious action, in order to overcome taking repeated births, one has to take up devotional service and be done with this material life. Krsna say He will deliver us. What more assurance does one require? Krsna says this material world is temporary and full of miseries and He is also providing a solution to get out of this. Krsna says come to Me and to reach me you have to take up devotional service. This is how we use our limited independence to change our fate/destiny. We accept Krsna’s words and seek him whole-heartedly.

     

    Ofcourse, the right to change our destiny is in OUR hands. Krsna did not fight the war for Arjuna. Krsna just moved the screensaver and showed Arjuna the reality. Arjuna surrendered to Krsna but still used his fighting skills/capabilities to win the battle. We too should surrender to Krsna and use our skills (which again are given by Krsna) to win over our battle of life. Our capabilities are also given by krsna. Hence we beg for Krsna’s mercy to be determined in devotional service too.

     

    Chant and be happy.

    Srila prabhupada ki jai..

    Hare krsna

    • Hare krishna prabhu,

      Well received your response to questions 2 and 3.

      I seek to have your enlightenment on question 1 that is despite the Pandavas having Krishna's blessing, why they had to face continuous hardships while the Kauravas enjoyed the glories?

      If karma is the primary factor acting on us, then it means everything is pre-destined and our surrender to the Lord 'can have' impact on our lives but not at the sake of neglecting past karmas. 

      The lines of the Lord to Kunti say that 'fate and fortune will happen, neither your deeds or capabilities can change that'. So, how does this translate to our current lives?

      I seek forgiveness from prabhujis and matajis if my question offends anyone, but I am just trying to inquire and further my knowledge.

      Haribol. 

      • Volunteer

        Hare Krsna,

        My obeisances to all devotees, guru and gauranga.

         

        Sorry for the late response.

         

        I seek to have your enlightenment on question 1 that is despite the Pandavas having Krishna's blessing, why they had to face continuous hardships while the Kauravas enjoyed the glories?

         

        The reason I dint answer this question is I too have very limited knowledge about this. I have different versions of explanations to the same but I don’t know which is correct. I will write it here though.

         

        Interpretation 1: As we all know, mother earth seeked Brahma’s help to lessen the burden on her because most of the rulers were demoniac in mentality and exploited their power. All these rulers lived comfortably exploiting others. We see this in our current society too. So, adharma is getting rampant and people following adharma are enjoying life, mainly by exploiting the less privileged. Brahma went to Lord Vishnu who promised to help and asked demigods to take birth in suitable clans to help him get rid of the burden. So, most of the characters can be taken as playing their part in achieving the ONE real objective of getting rid of impious/exploiting people and restoring dharma back. So, pandavas suffering or not suffering would just be an act in the bigger scheme of things. Its also said that the suffering of great devotees is actually for their glorification. For advanced devotees, Krishna lets them go through sufferings, so as to demonstrate to us how we should go through sufferings and maintain our faith. Had Prabhupada not gone through the sufferings for spreading KC, then KC wouldn’t be what it is today.

         

        Interpretation 2: If you read Mahabharatha (I havnt read all parvas, yet), there is an explanation on each character and how they got their bodies. Five pandavas are five previous Indras who were cursed by Lord Shiva (I don’t know the full story) because each one got carried away with the power that came with being King of demigods. So, pandavas taking birth had to suffer for the mistakes they did in their positions.

         

        If karma is the primary factor acting on us, then it means everything is pre-destined and our surrender to the Lord 'can have' impact on our lives but not at the sake of neglecting past karmas. 

        The lines of the Lord to Kunti say that 'fate and fortune will happen, neither your deeds or capabilities can change that'. So, how does this translate to our current lives?

        Yes, everything will be pre-destined if we just work on the material plane. Our deeds or capabilities cannot change as it only alters the script based on our pious or impious activities. The climax is only when we take up devotional service to krsna. That is when we can re-write our destiny through Krsna’s mercy. This is what krsna says, if you just keep doing fruitive activity, then you have to enjoy or suffer the fruits. There is no end to it other than to take repeated births. Most of us are happy to do this as long as we feel we are enjoying life (the way we want). But krsna says, this is not happiness. We actually don’t understand the impact of devotional service in negating karma.

        ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo
        mokṣayiṣyāmi mā śucaḥ

        Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me. I shall deliver you from all sinful reactions. Do not fear.

        We are acting aimlessly in our lives and krsna says make Me as your aim and you will return to me, don’t fear or worry about your karmas or sins. A simple yet so profound message.

        This might not answer your question fully, but that is my limited knowledge prabhu. If I come across more information, I will surely update you. 

        Chant and be happy.

         

        Srila prabhupada ki jai..

         

        Hare krsna

        p.s: excuse my grammar and spelling mistakes.

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