“Krishna's age, His beauty, His bugle, His flute, His conchshell and His pleasing attitude all provoke love in friendship for Him. His exceptional joking abilities, exhibited sometimes by His pretending to be a royal prince, or even the Supreme Personality of Godhead, also give impetus to devotees developing love for Krishna in friendship.” (The Nectar of Devotion, Ch 42)
“This is my bro. He’s got my back. Whenever I’m in trouble, he’s there for me. We have so much fun hanging out. There’s nothing like sitting back, relaxing, drinking a few, and watching the game with my good friends. I cherish their association. And I am a better person for knowing them. They bring out the best in me. They push me when I need to be pushed. They console me when I’m sad. They are courageous enough to tell me when I’m wrong. They are such wonderful people, and I’m so happy they are in my life.”
Friends are made through common interests and experiences, but most importantly through attraction in qualities. If you value kindness, you will like someone who is kind themselves. If you value honesty, you will be drawn to those who are so honest that it is sometimes to their detriment. If you value intelligence, you will want to be around others who are at the top of their field, who are able to compete with you on an intellectual level. Friends are equals after all, so in this sense they must be equivalent in an area that matters to you.
In the Supreme Lord you will find the best qualities. He is not an old man who angrily punishes those who defy His will. He is not an empty space, a void that is bereft of qualities. In His original feature, He is all-attractive. He is the reservoir of pleasure, and He gives transcendental pleasure to others. His direct energy expansion, which isn’t so deviated to the point that it forgets Him, is so attracted by His qualities that it stays immersed in them. In such a connection, the energy itself is full of all good qualities, thus forming a perfect match for God.
The Vedas give us the names “Krishna” and “Rama” for God. There are thousands of other names given as well, but these are considered the two best. Krishna says that God is all-attractive and Rama speaks to His transcendental pleasure. By definition we are attracted to Krishna. This is because all objects emanate from Him. Since every person is attracted to something, they are automatically attracted to the source of that something, namely Krishna.
Does this mean that everyone is religious? Does this mean that everyone is friends with God? What about atheists?
While the origin of all attractive objects is one, His objects of attraction are multi-faceted. When there is the attitude that denies God, the attraction is solely focused on the external energy. Think of dull matter, something that is lifeless. Instead of loving me, you love my house. Instead of valuing my association, you really like the car that I drive. In such instances, you still acknowledge that I exist, but that acknowledgment has little meaning.
In atheism, the individual pretends that God doesn’t exist so that they can worship inanimate matter. Even worship of the opposite sex follows this route, as the attraction is only based on physical attributes. Once those attributes diminish, as is bound to happen through the influence of time, the worship is shifted elsewhere, towards matter that is more attractive.
We say that the individual only pretends that God doesn’t exist. This is because at the time of death they must acknowledge the higher power. They also live within the limits created by nature. Nobody wants to die, but everybody has to. No one wants to be forced to sleep, and yet everyone has to. Thus there is acknowledgement of a higher power already, though in ignorance one pretends that the creation came into being through a random collision of chemicals.
The external energy isn’t nearly as attractive as the internal. That’s why there is the distinction made between external and internal. The same dichotomy exists at the individual level. What’s inside of the book is way more important than the cover. The spirit soul inside the body is the core functional unit. Whatever is on the outside is only dependent on the inside. Once the inside resident leaves, the outside starts to rot and decay immediately.
The internal energy is the object of worship for the servants of God, who are acknowledged believers. They do more than make a profession of faith. They don’t submit to the Lord out of fear of eternal damnation, either. They worship Him because they love Him. They are supremely attracted by His personal features. Shri Krishna is the best friend anyone could have. He once saved a distressed princess from the humiliation of being stripped naked in an assembly of kings. He saved a doubting warrior from the infamy of fleeing the battlefield of the greatest war in history. He protected the residents of a small farm community from a devastating flood. He freed a husband and wife couple who were wrongfully being held in jail by a wicked king.
Krishna is considered the original form of Godhead, but through His internal energy He expands into many other forms, which are all just as worshipable as His original. As Shri Rama He defends the honor of King Dasharatha of Ayodhya. He helps His friends Sugriva and Vibhishana become kings. He gives tasks to an able and eager Hanuman so that he’ll gain eternal fame. He sends Narada Muni to give the holy name of Rama to a pious soul who unfortunately turned to a life of thievery. That name then transformed the thief into a wonderful poet.
The good qualities in God’s devotees are also too many to count. One can spend an entire lifetime glorifying, studying, worshiping, honoring, discussing, and remembering Shri Hanuman and still not reach a point of exhaustion. He is the only friend one could ever need. He always thinks of God in His form of Rama, so his friendship is as good as having Rama with you.
If someone is really our friend, we are so happy when good things happen to them. We also take great pleasure in speaking of their good qualities. With the Supreme Lord, we can remember all of His triumphs on a daily basis. We can also continuously glorify Him. The ability to do both shows that God is indeed our best friend. His qualities are all-attractive, and one who never forgets them will never have to be alone.
A person whom a common interest does take,
Appealing to us, ideal friend to make.
In Supreme Lord all good qualities found,
Beauty and kindness, of strength unbound.
Endless sari to Draupadi a gift,
For Vrindavana Govardhana to lift.
To Sugriva and Vibhishana kingdoms gave,
Sent Narada muni for dacoit to save.
All potency in His names does reside,
Chant them always, keep Him by your side.