Become a role model for friends and family

Source: The Times of India

The COVID 19 pandemic has invariably affected the lives of people around the world. Just as we thought there was some respite, an alarming spike in the number of cases and fatalities over the previous few weeks is threatening lives of millions. Experts warn us that the spiraling surge will have devastating consequences. While our health care workers and the government are doing their best to contain the crisis, our bounden duty is to join hands with them.

The scriptures remind us that our prime duty is to devote all our efforts in the service of society and make its welfare the sole reason for our existence (parārthaikānta-sambhavaḥ). There are numerous examples of saintly personalities who have made great sacrifices for the larger good, even at the cost of personal inconveniences. There is a famous example of the great sage Dadhichi who offered his own body for this purpose without hesitation. In today’s times, we have witnessed many such examples of selflessness by our healthcare professionals and COVID warriors who have dedicated their lives in the line of duty.

As ordinary citizens, we are only expected to act responsibly and take care of ourselves to mitigate the situation. We can contribute substantially by strictly following the advice of the scientific community. If possible, we can also support underserved communities by participating in relief activities. 

Lord Sri Krishna says in the Bhagavad gita that whatever action is performed by leaders, common people follow in their footsteps. yad yad acarati srestas tad tad evetaro janah.  And whatever standards they set by their exemplary acts, the rest of the world pursues. Each of us needs to take responsibility and become role models for our family, friends and neighbourhoods in the way we respond to this crisis.

I urge all the citizens of our wonderful city, vasudeva kutumbakam help break the transmission chain by following COVID appropriate behaviour such as wearing masks, sanitisation and social distancing. It is my sincere hope that we will work together and win this decisive battle.

I offer my fervent prayers to Lord Krishna for the good health, peace of mind and happiness of humanity. Mā kashchit duḥkha bhāgbhavet (let there be no suffering or sorrow anywhere)! 

Nature has its own way of teaching important spiritual lessons to humanity by through such crisis. Everything has a reason. This pandemic should make us think of fundamental questions of what is larger universal design and purpose of life itself which we forget to ask during normal times. Athatho brahma jijnasa. Asking relevant life questions is the first symptom of spiritual intelligence. What is birth?  what is death?  who are we? Did we come into this body from another life? Do we go into another body after death? What the laws that determine what kind of family I will be born again? Why someone is born rich and some born poor? Why some are born into animal species? Why good times comes unasked for and so also bad times?  Krishna’s says that the soul who realizes the harsh reality of birth, death old age and disease of the body ( janma mrtyu jara vyadi dukha dosanu darshanam) is said to be situated in spiritual knowledge, for he begins to enquire into deeper truths of existence beyond this temporary body.

Madhu Pandit Dasa

President,

ISKCON Bangalore




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