November 04, 2001
Des Plaines Mandira

In Vachanamrut Vadtal 20, Swaminarayan Bhagwan gives the example of Janak Raja: "Janak Videhi followed the path of pravruttee (involved in worldly activities) and yet he was undisturbed. For example, when a female recluse named Sulbha came into Janak's court, Janak Raja told Sulbha, 'Though you are trying to seduce my mind, by the grace of my guru Panchshikh Rishi, I have mastered the doctrines of both Sankhya and Yoga. So even if half of my body is anointed with sandalwood paste and the other half is slashed with a sword, both would be the same to me. Even if my town of Mithila were to burn down, still nothing of mine would be burned.'" Swaminarayan Bhagwan also notes that Janak Raja is the guru of Shukji. Swaminarayan Bhagwan explains, "One's senses may be directed outwards and one may be on the path of pravruttee, but if in one's heart one has a firm understanding like that of Janak Raja, then he will in no way become disturbed by lust, anger, etc."

In Vachanamrut Gadhada First 38, Swaminarayan Bhagwan explains, "Householder devotees should behave like Janak Raja, who said, 'Although my city of Mithila is burning, nothing of mine is burning' (Mahabharat Shanti Parva, Moksha Dharma, 18/40). A householder devotee with this type of understanding, even though he may possess a house, is a true devotee."

Once, a brahmin who wondered why Janak Raja was praised so highly visited Mithila. When he met Janak Raja, the king told the brahmin to travel around entire Mithila with his guardsmen. He gave a pot of oil to the brahmin to place on his head and instructed the guardsmen to cut off the brahmin's head if even a single drop fell! The brahmin traveled around the city constantly paying attention only to the pot of oil. When the brahmin returned, Janak Raja asked him what sights he had enjoyed in Mithila? The brahmin replied that he had noticed nothing - his focus had not ventured anywhere besides the pot of oil. Janak Raja explained that he ruled the kingdom in a similar fashion: "I live as if there is a sword on top of my throne, held only by a single hair. If I waver in my focus on God, I will be destroyed."



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