“My dear friends, the cows are also charmed as soon as they hear the transcendental sound of the flute of Krishna. It sounds to them like the pouring of nectar, and they immediately spread their long ears just to catch the liquid nectar of the flute.” (A gopi speaking to her friends, Krishna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vol 1, Ch 21)Download this episode (right click and save)
Money, fame, power, family, home, car, travel - can these things bring happiness? The attempt is made, for sure. After all, what else are we supposed to do with our time? Why not travel the world and broaden our horizons? Why not seek money so that we can purchase things that we need and like? Why not spend time with our family members, people who love us no matter what?
In the Bhagavad-gita, Shri Krishna says that there is no question of happiness without peace. A person can be extremely wealthy but be bogged down by thoughts of securing more money. They can also be consumed with greed. A person can have their entire family living near them, but always be upset due to disagreements.
Peace is the real way to freedom. It can be found without moving. Travel isn’t required to be steady in mind. Following suggestions of wise men from ages past, there is a way to get peace and maintain it going forward.
1. Concentrate on Krishna’s lotus feet
This is actually the recommended way to meditate. In Sanskrit the word is dhyana. Instead of focusing on the temporary, keep your mind fixed on the origin of everything. He has two aspects: impersonal and personal. Impersonal is the sum total of everything. It’s difficult to concentrate on a collective. There is nuance and variety to that collective, but it is always changing nonetheless. Since it is temporary, there is misery as well. Misery does not bring peace.
The personal represents a person. He is transcendental, which means that His bodily features are not ordinary. You could meditate on a tree, but that won’t bring lasting benefits. On the other hand, you could meditate on the feet of the personal aspect of the Divine and find peace right away. To aid in your meditation, just remember that those feet are like lotus flowers. They are soft and they happily traverse the sacred land of Vrindavana, which is the spiritual world.
2. Concentrate on Krishna’s pitambara
Though He is the origin of everything, the Divine engages in delightful play in the spiritual world. Since He is all-attractive, one of His names is Krishna. Krishna has parents in Vrindavana. This is a contradiction that logic and reasoning will never be able to explain. When someone asks, “What is Krishna doing in the spiritual world,” the answer is always the same: enjoying.
When He enjoys in the fields, He wears a certain outfit. Mother Yashoda dresses Him at home prior to leaving. She places a beautiful, yellow garment around His waist known as a pitambara. Meditating on this garment that is right above the lotus feet brings great peace. It brings to mind the motherly affection that Yashoda feels for Krishna.
3. Concentrate on Krishna’s flower garland
When listening to Krishna-katha, or discourses about the Supreme Lord, in a formal setting, it is proper etiquette to place a flower garland around the speaker’s neck. It is a sign of respect, and through feeling welcome the speaker continues on in a happy mood. They know that the audience is receptive, eager to hear more about the all-attractive one.
That garland is also found on the transcendental body of Krishna. It is an ideal object of meditation, since it is so beautiful. There is sound to the image as well. Bees are always buzzing about Krishna, attracted to His nectar-like body. Wherever the Supreme Lord travels in Vrindavana, the atmosphere is always pleasant. By transporting the mind to that sacred place through meditation, the same peaceful setting is brought to the present surroundings.
4. Concentrate on Krishna’s flute
Krishna plays the role of a cowherd in Vrindavana. Due to His affection for the cows, He is known as Gopala and Govinda. As part of His play, He goes out to the pasturing ground every day with His friends. Sometimes the cows scatter about and separate. When that happens, Krishna goes on top of a hill and starts playing His flute. Suddenly everyone stops. They are delighted by the sound, and they soon return to Krishna.
The mind can concentrate on that flute and the joy it brings to everyone. The sound made by Krishna’s playing is unlike anything ever heard before. A taste of that sound is available through the pure chanting of the holy names, “Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.”
5. Concentrate on Krishna’s cows
From the flute example, we get an idea of how much cows in Vrindavana love Krishna. According to Vedic culture, the cow is the ideal pet to keep. Protecting and maintaining a cow is a very pious activity. It is shubha, or auspicious, and one of the reasons is because the cow is so dear to Krishna.
A person can meditate on how the cows naturally love Krishna so much that they pour milk just upon seeing Him. Because of this the ground in Vrindavana is always soft. The scene of Gopala and friends with His most beloved animals is a great picture on which the mind can reflect. It is the ideal image of peace, a setting to which a person can be transported without ever having to move.
Peace can find right now if choose,
To the mind, without having to move.
Take all-attractive one and feet lotus-like,
And pitambara dressing mother taking delight.
Garland of flowers buzzing with bees,
And attention of cows flute to seize.
In material world many distractions to find,
Be Krishna conscious and bring peace to mind.