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Tuesday, May 11, 2004

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When God intervenes

CHENNAI, MAY 11. All human beings have the ability to discriminate between right and wrong; when not coloured by self-serving purposes, this trait transforms into an innate yearning for the higher life. The quest for spiritual uplift is what sets a person apart and puts him on the fast track of true achievement. The puranas exemplify the truths enshrined in the Vedas and make them simpler for the ordinary people to know and to practise them.

They illustrate the great strength and benefit that can be derived from faith in God. While the preceptors have played a stellar role in guiding people in the right path to ultimately overcome the cycle of births and deaths and achieve a permanent state of bliss, there are times when God intervenes directly to establish the ascendancy of right over wrong and to save those who have unwavering faith in Him.

The incarnations of Lord Vishnu when seen in this light are a result of His infinite love for human beings and His willingness to establish the inviolate fact of Dharma.

It is important for all aspirants to remember this, especially when faced with life's challenges, when trivial matters such as career advancement or monetary or emotional gains make passive spectators of human beings when a wrong is sought to be proved as right. It is precisely during such moments that a person should recall the lessons of the epics and the puranas.

In a lecture on the occasion of Nrisimha Jayanthi (May 3), Sri Thothadri Lakshman said the ways of the Supreme are not discernible nor His reasons for action or inaction. Faith reposed in Him is never in vain and He shall rush to the aid of His devotees at the moment of trial. His manifestation as Nrisimha exemplifies this like none other.

The Nrisimha avatar (man-lion) form represents the best of creation — it embodies man, the best of higher creatures and lion, the best of lower creatures.

His emergence from a pillar when struck by a mace signifies how He is the indweller of moving and non-moving matter and His omnipotence is established by his easy vanquishing of the most powerful of mortals. In this very act God has explicitly demonstrated that whatever is dependent on God is different from God and the difference is eternal.

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