Wednesday, November 27, 2013

A story about gratitude, by Bhakta Tom

If I am making any progress in Krishna Consciousness, it is only baby steps. Nevertheless, I would like to share a lesson I learned recently, about gratitude to the Lord and His devotees, in the form of a story.

There was a king who ruled the world, but he had an envious son. Though the boy was still young, he packed his things and said:

“Father, I reject you. I feel that I will be a better king to rule the world. I will leave and build a kingdom of my own to rival yours.”

“I am very sad to hear that”, said the father. “What you seek is not possible. Also, the world outside will be difficult for you to handle. Therefore your decision is foolish, yet I cannot force you to stay.”

Then he said “At least take this with you”, and handed a credit card to his beloved son.

So the son went out and tried to buy himself power with money from his rival, which is absurd in itself. Meanwhile, his father, concerned as he was, kept checking the withdrawals and provided more if the son used the money wisely, less if not. In this way the father hoped, quite vainly, that his son would come to his senses.

Billions of years passed, and the son forgot everything about his father. He now believed having created himself, and saw the credit card as his own power and birthright, while being puzzled over the tides and ebbs on the account. The father however still kept looking after his son, anxious to see him return.

Somehow or other the son eventually found the palace again, with the gates open. His siblings recognized him and spoke with great affection about their common father. The son raced with anticipation to the palace door, rang the bell and spoke into the doorphone:

“Hey Mr. King, they said you’re my daddy! I’m low on cash, can I borrow some from you? Nice palace by the way, can I come and stay with you? I heard you look awesome, can I come in and see you?”

As you surely understand, the father let his unwashed rascal of a son stay out in the cold a while to reflect on his attitude. And the rascal in this story is me. Do not repeat my mistake to take the temple for granted. If the temple looks cheap, it does not mean the Lord is in need of anything. It looks cheap on purpose, so that rascals like us will feel welcome.

Bhakta Tom

No comments:

Post a Comment