|June 02, 2002 |
Des Plaines Mandira
Mirabai was born in 1498 AD in Rajasthan, several thousand years after Krishna Bhagwan. However, in supreme worship of God, she abandoned the riches of a kingdom and her royal lineage. Her family opposed her decision and attempted to poison her, but because of her devotion, it did not have an effect on her. Because of this pure singular devotion, she was able to make Krishna Bhagwan pragata (manifest) within her. When she had reached this stage, for those who saw her with the feeling of seeing Krishna Bhagwan, God became pratyaksha (visible).
Narsinh Mehta was born in 1414 AD in Junagadh, and was also a supreme devotee of Krishna Bhagwan. He did not care for society or respect and devoted his life to offering worship to God. In the town of Junagadh, he used to visit lower caste devotees to sing devotional songs. This disregard for prevailing social customs caused many to belittle him, including his own brother's wife. She once gave him extremely hot water for a bath. Though he did not complain, Krishna Bhagwan showered rain to cool the water and protect him. For him too, God was pragata.
Similarly, Tulsidas, born in 1532 AD, made Rama Bhagwan pragata. A devotee once asked Tulsidas whether he had ever seen Rama Bhagwan? When Tulsidas replied that he had, the devotee asked whether he would be able to see Rama Bhagwan also. Tulsidas hinted that wherever you see a man who regards all women as equal to his mother, and all gold equal to ash, there you will find Rama Bhagwan. The Sanskrit shloka is "para stree maata samaana, para dhana paththara samaana." The devotee realized that Tulsidas himself possessed such understanding and qualities. When the devotee sincerely saw divinity in Tulsidas, he got the vision of Rama Bhagwan in Tulsidas and thus God became pratyaksha for the devotee.
Similarly, the Swaminarayan satsanga is considered pragata because a divine lineage is continuous. And when a devotee sees Swaminarayan Bhagwan in gunaateeta saints and fellow devotees, God becomes pratyaksha for the devotee.