In Hunting Ground, with Predators!!
Once in an episode of Animal Planet, it was shown, a pride of lions trying to hunt down a buffalo. The entire herd was fighting with all their strength to save him from the lions. All of a sudden, the buffalo got confused and ran away from the herd, straight into the pride. It was an easy victory for the lions and suicide for the buffalo. The herd stood at a distance, helplessly looking at their member dying in front of their eyes.
Welcome to the harsh reality of “The Hunting Ground”!!
When I saw this episode, I realized, even I am amidst a terrible Hunting Ground, where Maya & Kali Yuga – the two deadly predators, are jointly working along with their agents, just like a pack of lions, to hunt me down. I should be cautious not to be committing the same mistake as the Buffalo. But how to save me?
It has been predicted in Srimad Bhagavatam about Kali Yuga, that:
Religion, truthfulness, cleanliness, tolerance, mercy, duration of life, physical strength and memory will all diminish day by day because of the powerful influence of the age of Kali. [SB – 12.2.1]
Uncultured men will accept charity on behalf of the Lord and will earn their livelihood by making a show of austerity and wearing a mendicant’s dress. Those who know nothing about religion will mount a high seat and presume to speak on religious principles. [SB 12.3.38]
Cities will be dominated by thieves, the Vedas will be contaminated by speculative interpretations of atheists, political leaders will virtually consume the citizens, and the so-called priests and intellectuals will be devotees of their bellies and genitals. [SB 12.3.32]
With each passing moment, Kali Yuga is gaining its strength, due to this His influence is increasing on us, which is why people are getting diverted from Religion, creating an irreligious & Godless society and since society is becoming atheists, Kali Yuga is gaining its strength. It is a cycle.
Hence it is not very surprising to find so many scientists, leaders, politicians, intellectuals, movies, books and websites flooding around us which questions the existence of God, at times (directly or indirectly) supporting or promoting irreligious activities (like cow slaughter) and thus pulling people away from God Consciousness. People who have no knowledge about scriptures are coming forefront (live on media or TV Channels or becoming “babas” or opening so-called Religious Institutes) with their speculative interpretations and preaching Vedic knowledge in their own whimsical way. That is why there are so many versions of Bhagavad Gita in bookstores, but hardly any of these are actually addressing the core message. So many religious institutes teach Bhagavad Gita, but they fail to conclude Krishna is The Supreme Personality of Godhead. Definitely, their motive is not to uplift the Godless society but to fill their own bank account.
There are some occasions when we meet the devotees of Lord or Vaishnava. For example, during the month of Geeta Jayanti – in Geeta Marathon, devotees distribute Bhagavad Gita in streets, malls, parking lots, railway stations, parks everywhere. It is then we actually understand the philosophical depth of the following verse spoken by Lord Krishna, in Bhagavad Gita – 7.3:
Out of many thousands among men, one may endeavor for perfection, and of those who have achieved perfection, hardly one knows Me in truth.
Because instead of embracing the moment, many times we mock at devotees, blaspheme and insult them or even chase them away assuming them to be a salesman. What we do not understand is, a Vaishnava is “para dukha dukhi” [one who suffers seeing the suffering of others].
I then realized that I am actually the suicidal buffalo and, these devotees, out of their causeless mercy, enters the hunting ground, trying to fight for me, against the claws of Maya & Kali Yuga. If I chase the devotees off, thinking myself to be intellectually enlightened by modern science, I will then prove myself to be as smart as the buffalo, who “isolated” himself from his guardian herd by his “ignorance” and ran straight into the hungry jaws.
However, despite all of its dark nature, there is one good quality in this age of Kali Yuga:
Although Kali-yuga is an ocean of faults, there is still one good quality about this age: simply by chanting the names of Krishna, one can become free from material bondage and be promoted to the transcendental kingdom. [SB – 12.3.51]
However, it is really a pitiable condition. By the causeless mercy of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (who is none different from Supreme Personality of Godhead – Sri Krishna) & endless sacrifice of His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada & other Vaisnava Acharyas, Hari Naam is distributed freely to each one of us, across globe, yet we (especially Indians) are not eager to grab it.
Along with the chanting, I also realized that I need to follow the strategy owned by animals – I need to be in a pack. When animals are in a group, predators find it difficult to hunt them down. I can save myself from the predators – Maya & Kaliyuga, only if I am in the association of Vaisnavas, otherwise it will be extremely difficult for me to be safe.
Therefore let us all take advantage of this special spiritual gift given during the dark times of Kali Yuga to quickly raise ourselves spiritually by chanting of God’s, Sri Krishna’s, holy names and keep an association of devotees always, otherwise, we would be an easy prey to Maya and Kali Yuga set out for hunting.