Monday Morning Greetings 2018 #5 – Blank Page Blues

January 29th, 2018

I am sitting here trying to write the next Monday Morning Greetings. My page is blank. No matter how hard I try nothing comes. I admit defeat. Today I will simply fill the page with that admission. The problem is clear. Intense travel last month has thrown off my regulation. My sādhana has suffered. And without that it seems impossible for me to come up with something substantial every week. It is the early morning now, my allotted time for writing, but I realize it is more important to leave this task and begin chanting. Hopefully with a stronger practice, I will have something more to offer tomorrow.
Yesterday I was able to lock in, more or less, to my regular sādhana. Inspiration came. It is always like that. In fact, this process of garnering inspiration to write is in itself the topic I feel inspired to share. The ability to say anything of minimal merit in bhakti comes only by Krishna’s mercy in reciprocation for one’s fixed devotional service, especially the chanting of Hare Krishna. Without that, I have nothing to say. Immediately four references came to mind to support my thinking:
From the Gītā:
“To those who are constantly devoted to serving Me with love, I give the understanding by which they can come to Me.” (Bg. 10.10)
From Caitanya-caritāmṛta:
The devotees assembled in Puri were astounded by the beauty and depth of Śrī Rūpa Gosvāmī’s poetry. In fact, his poetical compositions were so profound that they even revealed the inner thoughts of Lord Caitanya. They began inquiring among themselves how such compositions were even possible. Śrī Caitanya revealed the answer later to Rāmānanda Rāya—that He had met Śrī Rūpa previously at Prayāga and was attracted and satisfied by his attitude of service. [1]
From Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta:
A pious professor came to Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta to resolve some deep intellectual quandary. Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta was busy when he came, so he asked the professor to help polish the brass in the deity room until he was free to speak to him. After an hour Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta called him and informed the professor that he was still busy, but if he could kindly return the next day surely he would answer his question. The professor agreed. When the professor came the next day, Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta was again busy and once more directed the professor to the deity room to polish the brass, but assured him that this time he would definitely meet him. True to his word an hour later he summoned the professor and informed him that he was ready to answer any inquiry. The professor, however, surprisingly replied that there was no need. He explained how suddenly in the morning while he was polishing brass he had an epiphany and the answer came. Of course, dialectic is a very important aspect of devotional service. What the story illustrates, however, is that grace invoked by service is also an essential aspect of enlightenment and revelation.
It took some time but my practices are coming back to standard. Many ideas are coming. Next week I just have to choose one of them. There is an interesting discussion on pratiṣṭhā prayāsā, over endeavor for fame, which Sanātana Gosvāmī at the conclusion of the Hari-bhakti-vilāsa writes is the greatest obstacle to bhakti. Perhaps I will write about that. I also am inspired to describe the spiritual world according to Śrī Rūpa’s revelation about the nāṭaka śāstra, the scripture pertaining to the composition of drama. Some time I would also like to write a provocative piece entitled “The Poison of Post-modernism”. For now I will just finish editing this. By the mercy of the holy name I no longer have the Blank Page Blues.

[1] Cc, Antya-līlā 1.197

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