By Sacinandana Swami
We have to wake up to the fact that our life is not in order. Yes, you might be liked by devotees. You might be a lecturer and other neophyte devotees may applaud you. Or mister guru! You may think you have so many disciples and thus you are successful in your life. Whoever we are, in whatever position or station of life we are, unless we wake up to the fact that “I really need Krsna”, we are emotionally invested in the wrong things. Our emotions should be with the real need, or as Srila Prabhupada put it “the Govinda necessity”. Then we address the root cause of all our problems. Unless we address this necessity, we live in a pious dream, not in the reality of Krsna consciousness. Lord Caitanya expressed and taught these ideas: “O son of Maharaja Nanda, I’m your servant, but somehow I got lost; I fell into this ocean of birth and death. You and I have a fixed relationship, I’m dust at your lotus feet; I belong there. But now I’m drowning in this material ocean, please pick me up.” This is how Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu teaches the living beings to enter into devotional mood that will bring us to Krsna in the quickest, most realistic and best way. Mahaprabhu would not have come to teach longing for Krsna out of separation, if it would be impractical. He is the Lord. Also, don’t think feelings of separation are painful and therefore they won’t bring you any benefit. It is one of the two ways of bhakti, it is a way of being connected with Krsna.
Before I genuinely feel separation from Krsna, I regret that I’m not really in Krsna consciousness. This regret is a precursor to the necessary feeling of dainya – humility. In Srimad-Bhagavatam Ajamila thus prays: “Shame on me! I have destroyed my brahminical culture.” This repentance comes very quickly when you ask yourself the question: “When do I choose my own satisfaction over Krsna’s pleasure?” You will see, it is very often and you will feel, “Oh, I’m a such a beginner.” As long as you don’t go from there into a self-centered depression this is very good. When you feel shame, regret or repentance for your lack of Krsna consciousness, your false ego is gone. Now you can turn to Krsna as a sincere servant, now you are ready.