Dhanurdhara Swami November 14th, 2001
Japa Thoughts IV
A symptom of honesty is uniformity between what one is and what one portrays. An honest devotee faces his actual standing in devotion. It is thus paramount to
the cultivation of bhakti as it nourishes humility, the foundation of bhakti. Better to not chant ones rounds and admit it, than to not chant ones rounds and pretend to be chanting. The candor will foster modesty, a disposition helpful to chanting. It will also make it easier to fix at least some standard by which to proceed. Real integrity is to meet ones vows, but pretending will certainly doom progress.
Moral: Don?t bluff. Be who you are and then go forward in devotional service with sincerity.
I’m doing a lot of chanting, but without parikrama it appears more difficult to sustain the intensity of one’s focus. Parikrama naturally seems to maintain the force of one’s devotional practices. I miss it a lot, but can’t go yet. Still sore.
Occasionally in the evening, after my duties are finished, I catch a few minutes of the BBC news on my shortwave radio. Today I am sad to hear about another disaster in New York as a plane crashes in Queens. They interview the local residents. I appreciate one fireman’s realistic response to the reporter when asked how he’s personally handling such crisis after crisis:
“It’s unfortunate, but we are getting expert at disaster.”
The response is very matter of fact, and I see also a universal message. Material life is disaster after disaster and then we die?the ultimate disaster. We must become expert at disaster, ultimately dealing with inevitable death. We should all become expert at disaster by coming to the stage of pure chanting and thus transcending all dualities of the material world. Are we getting “expert at disaster”?