On the auspicious day of Vaikuntha Ekadashi, we throng to the temples to grab an opportunity to pass through the Vaikuntha Dwara. But, after passing through Vaikuntha Dwara at the northern entrance, if someone closes the door, how will you feel? Will you be gratified? For you will be in the Vaikuntha, with the Lord himself. No! Instead, you will scream out your lungs, ‘Help! I want to go back home.’ Why? Because, we think Vaikuntha is some alien space, and this world we are living in, which is full of miseries, is our real home.
Srila Prabhupada explains it beautifully, “Some of the living entities are relatively happy in better conditions of life, whereas others are in distressed conditions of life. But factually, none of them is actually happy in material conditional life. No one can be happy in prison life, although one may be a first-class prisoner or a third-class prisoner. The intelligent person should not try to be promoted from third-class prison life to first-class prison life but should try to be released from the prison altogether. One may be promoted to the first-class prisoner, but the same first-class prisoner is again degraded to a third-class prisoner in the next term. One should try to be free from prison life and go back home, back to Godhead. That is the real goal for all types of living entities.”
Time to chase the real Goal
It is the high time for us to develop the Vaikuntha consciousness, making sure Vaikuntha doesn’t remain an alien space for us and when the opportunity falls upon us instead of screaming we will be smiling and gratifying the Lord. As soon as the Vaikuntha consciousness ‘Vaikuntha is our real home and not this material world’ fully develops within us, the miseries within us will significantly diminish.
As Purandara Dasa says it exquisitely in his song, “Allide nammane, Illi bande summane”
Translation – ‘There is my home and here I have come simply!’
The easiest way to achieve the Goal
There are various ways out there to achieve this real Goal of our life, i.e., Vaikuntha Consciousness. But, in other ways, it requires so much knowledge, so much nose pressing, and so many things, which we all should avoid. Why should we choose the hard path? If we have the option to take the easiest path, i.e., by becoming a Bhakta, Devotee.
The first is to always think of Krishna. Man-manā bhava mad-bhaktaḥ (Bhagavad Gita 9.34). Simply by thinking of Krishna, one becomes Bhakta immediately. When you chant Hare Krishna, you think of Krishna, so chant Hare Krishna mahamantra.
The second is to worship Krishna. mad-yājī: “You worship Me,” and the third is māṁ namaskuru, “offer obeisance.”
If we think of Krishna and if we offer obeisance and if we worship Him, these three things will make us a Bhakta. This is Krishna consciousness movement that ISKCON is teaching: chant Hare Krishna, offer obeisance unto Deity and worship.
As soon as we attain Krishna consciousness, we get immediately enlightened with Vaikuntha consciousness, and one who attains it, has no more botheration of this material world, instead, he will prepare himself for the spiritual abode of Vaikuntha.
Soothing advice by Srila Prabhupada
Krishna says that “You surrender unto Me, I give you protection.” He’s not a liar. He’s not inefficient. He’s strong. He’s sufficiently opulent. He can do that. So believe in Krishna’s word and surrender unto Him, and don’t spoil this human form of life. Death is sure. Before death, we must prepare to go back to home, back to Godhead. Thank you very much.”