He guides without coercing, hides without abandoning, watches without interfering and loves without controlling.
Before I entered ito my teeens, one of my pedominant passions, which I can recollect, was for riding bicycles. I come from a middle middle class, more or less traditional rural family and the major impediment for the fulfilling of this desire was the loving concern of my parents "Will it be good for you?", "Will it distract you from your studies?", "See that you don't hurt yourself" etc.
Finally, when it was decided that we would buy a bicycle from the nearest town, 15 Kilometers away, I was thrilled at teh prospects of having the first major ride of my life through state and national highways while getting the new cycle home. Again, what came in the way was "loving concern' of parents. But I was asamant "I shall ride alone and I dismiss any external aid. I want adventure."
It was fun riding alone on the shinig asphalt roads being overtaken by a speedig automobile every few minutes. But the journey soon seemed unending when the highway took an upward slope. My feet seemed to resist any more cycling motion. They preferred to walk instead and I complied. Deep within, I wished that my father was on my side. Just at that moment, a stranger who had been cycling all along, and whom I hadn't noticed earlier, came forward and offered to help. I was pleasantly surprised to know that it was arranged by my father that he follow me from a distance. My father had foreseen my precarious situation.
THE LORD IN THE HEART
Year later, I came in touch with the teaching of Bhagavad gita. The Gita says that the Lord in his form of Paramatma is situated in our hearts witnessing our activities. Skeptics often ask, 'Why are we not conscious of his presence?" "Why are we not conscious of his watchful cyc?" "Why are we not aware of his pleasure and displeasure with everything we do?"
The Lord makes himself invisible to our consciousness so that we can exercise our free will. Without free will, there cannot be love. I was adamantly defying the will of my father and subsequently out of love for me, he made his 'watchful eye' invisible in the first phase of my journey. Similarly, if again and again we defy the direction and will of the Lord within our hearts, the lord simply in order to facilitate our free will, makes himself invisible. Those engaged in irreligious activities do not want the Lord to watch them, so the Lord hides himself.
I wanted ny father to leave me alone during the journey, but he did so, but still he never abandoned me because he loved me. Similarly, each Paramatma is personal, intimate. He never gives up on us. Even if we blaspheme the Lord or His devotees, and do the most amount of displeasure to the Lord, still he is always there in our hearts to give us shelter. There is no one closer than Him spiritual, physically, at every level. To whatevr extent we abandon Him, He always remains the closest person to the soul. Out of unlimited living entities that are envious of him, He never leaves even for a moment, even a single one, only out of love.
In my foolishness, I did not know what was good for me and so I disobeyed my father. To love Krsna, to serve him to willingly spontaneously surrender to will of the Lord is our constitutional nature. It is the essence of our existence. In that position, we experience unlimited hapiness. When we forget our constitutional position, we come under the grip of the laws of Karma are so designed by the Lord that we ultimately have to make the right choice of turning to him and then he gives us the highest ectasy. He knows what is best for us.
When I looked for sheter. I was pleasantly surprised to see that my father was 'waiting for me'. Even if we are sent to hell, even if we are in the species some bacteria, our loving father, the Supreme Lord, is always there waiting for us to turn to him. When we actually turn to him and to the degree we take shelter of the Paramatma within the heart, the Lord makes his presence visible. As we progress spuritually, we get more and more experience of his 'watchful eye'.
The man was arranged by my father to help me out. Similarly the supreme Lord has made so many arrangements to deliver us. He is speaking through guru, sadhu, and sastra.
All we have to do is cooperate with Him.
Gopinatha Candra Dasa had done B.tech in civil Engineering from IIT Mumbai. Currently he serves full time at ISKCON Mumbai and teaches Krsna consciousness to students in various colleges.