AND THE BIG MYSTERY
Jai: If God comes
sometimes on earth, is He the same as
we are, or is He different from us?
is a very good question, Jai. It has
been answered both ways. For example,
look at my chain and my ring and this
gold coin. They are all made of gold,
so you can see them as gold. And you
can see everything else made of gold
as gold. They are different forms of
gold. But you can also think of them
as separate things --- a chain, a ring,
or a coin. The chain, the ring, and
the coin are nothing but different shapes
and forms of gold. In the same way,
we can look at the Lord and His creation
as nothing but an expansion of the Lord
Himself. This viewpoint is known as
non-dualistic (or Advaita) philosophy.
The other viewpoint sees God as one
reality and creation as a different
reality but dependent on God. This dualistic
(or Dvaita) philosophy considers objects
made of gold (such as a chain and a
ring and a coin) different from gold.
Jai: Is that what
people mean when they say God is everywhere
and in everything?
Jai, God is the Sun, the Moon, and the
wind; fire, trees, earth, and stones,
in the same way as everything made of
gold is gold. That’s why Hindus
see and worship God in the stone and
the tree as if these are God Himself
in that form.
Jai: If everything
comes from the Lord, then will everything
become the Lord again, as everything
made of gold can be melted into just
Jai, the cycle of creation and destruction
keeps on going. It’s like turning
my chain and ring and coin into gold
again and then using the gold to make
new jewelry and coins. (Gita 9.07-08)
The entire creation appears and disappears
again and again.
Jai: If Lord is us,
and we all come from the Lord, then
why doesn’t everyone love and
who understand this truth worship God.
They know the Lord is our Lord, and
we are from Him, for Him, and we depend
on Him, so they love and worship Him.
But the ignorant do not understand or
believe in universal God.
Jai: If I pray to
God everyday and love Him and offer
Him flowers or fruit, will He be pleased
and help me in my studies?
Krishna said in the Gita that He takes
care of all the needs of His devotees
who worship Him with strong faith and
loving devotion. (Gita 9.22)
Jai: Does that mean
that God loves only those who pray and
loves all of us the same, but if we
remember Him and pray to Him, we come
closer to God. So we all should think
of God, worship Him, meditate, and bow
down to Him with faith, love, and devotion.
Jai: I would like
to be close to the Lord Krishna, Grandma.
How can I have more faith in Him and
love Him more?
think of all the nice things God does
for us. He gives us so many different
foods we enjoy. He gave us the Sun for
heat and light. Look at the beautiful
sky with the Moon, the stars and clouds
in the night. This is all His beautiful
creation, so think how beautiful the
creator Himself must be! Worshiping
God is saying thank you for His kindness.
Praying is asking for what we need from
God. Meditating is connecting with the
Supreme power to get help and guidance.
Jai: If there is
only one God who gives us everything,
why do you have so many deities in your
prayer (Pooja) room, Grandma? Why don’t
you just worship the one Lord Krishna?
Krishna said: “Those who worship
other deities, also worship Me through
those deities.” (Gita 9.23) We
can worship any deity we feel close
to. That favorite deity is called IshtaDeva,
our own personal god (or the guardian
angel) who becomes our personal guide
Jai: Why do we offer
fruits and flowers to God?
Lord Krishna said in the Gita that anyone
who offers Him a leaf, a flower, a fruit,
water, or anything with love and devotion,
He not only accepts it, but eats the
offerings! (Gita 9.26) That’s
why we always offer our food to God
with a prayer before we eat it. Food
offered to God is called Prasada or
Prasadam. Anybody can reach God who
worships Him with faith, love and devotion.
This path of devotion is open to all
Here is a story about the power
10. A Boy Who Fed
A noble man used to worship
his family’s deity everyday with
food offerings. One day he had to go
out of his village for the day. He said
to his son, Raman: Give the offering
to the deity today. See that God is
The boy offered food to the deity
in the shrine, but the image would neither
eat nor drink nor talk. Raman waited
a long time, but still the image did
not move. But he totally believed that
God would come down from His throne
in heaven, sit on the floor and eat.
Again and again he prayed
to the deity, saying: “O Lord,
please come down and eat the food. It
is already very late. Father will get
angry if I did not feed you.”
The deity did not say a word.
The boy wept and cried: “O Lord,
my father asked me to feed you. Why
won’t you come down? Why won’t
you eat from my hands?”
The boy wept for some time with a
longing soul. At last the deity came
down smilingly from the altar in human
form and sat before the meal and ate
After feeding the deity, the boy came
out of the prayer room. His relatives
said: “The worship is over. Now
bring the Prasadam for us.”
T he boy said: “God has eaten
everything, He did not leave anything
for you today.”
They entered the prayer room and were
speechless with wonder to see that the
deity had really eaten every bit of
The moral of the story is that God
does eat if you offer food with full
faith, love, and devotion. Most of us
don’t have the faith Raman had.
We don’t know how to feed Him!
It is said that we must have faith in
God like a child or we shall not enter
the supreme abode, the house of God.
Jai: Grandma, what
if a person is a sinful thief or robber.
Can that person also love God?
Yes, Jai. Lord Krishna has said in the
Gita: If even the most sinful person
decides to worship Me with loving devotion,
such a person soon becomes a saint because
he or she has made the right decision.
Here is a story about such
11. The Great Highway
We have two very popular epics or
historical tales. The first one is the
Holy Ramayana. The other one is Mahabharata.
The Bhagavad-Gita is a part
of the Mahabharata. It was written about
3,100 years B.C.E. Originally, the Holy
Ramayana may have been written about
1.75 million years ago, according to
latest findings of NASA. The original
writer of Ramayana was a sage named
Valmiki. After Valmiki, many other saints
have written Ramayana, the story of
Lord Rama that all children should read.
The legend is that Valmiki
was given the power by sage Narada to
write the entire episode before the
event actually happened.
In the early part of his life, Valmiki
was a great highway robber. He made
a living by robbing travelers. One day,
the great celestial saint Narada was
passing by when Valmiki attacked him
and tried to rob him. Narada asked Valmiki
why he was doing that. Valmiki said
that this is how he supported his family.
The sage told Valmiki: “When
you rob a person, you commit sin. Do
your family members want to share that
The robber replied: “Why not?
I am sure they do.”
The sage said: “All right, go
home and ask everyone if they will share
your sins along with the money you are
The robber agreed. He tied the sage
against a tree and went home and asked
each member of his family, saying: “I
bring you money and plenty of food by
robbing people. A sage told me that
it is sinful to rob people. Will you
share my sins?”
No one in his family was willing to
share his sin. They all said: “It
is your duty to support us. We can’t
share your sin.”
Valmiki realized his mistakes and
asked the sage what to do to atone for
his sins. The sage gave Valmiki the
most powerful and the simplest “Rama”
mantra to chant and taught him how to
worship and meditate. The highway robber
gave up his sinful activity and soon
became a great sage and writer by the
grace of guru Narada, the power of mantra,
and his sincere spiritual practice.
Here is another story, Jai, that you
should always remember. It illustrates
the verses of the Gita that say Lord
Krishna takes care of all of us. (Gita
12. The Footprints
One night, a man had a dream. He dreamed
he was walking along the beach with
the Lord. Across the sky he saw scenes
from his life. For each scene, he noticed
two sets of footprints in the sand;
one belonging to him, and the other
to the Lord.
When the last scene of his life came
before him, he looked back at the footprints
in the sand. He noticed that many times
along the path of his life there was
only one set of footprints. He also
noticed that it happened at the very
lowest and saddest times in his life.
This really bothered him, and he questioned
the Lord about it.
“Lord, You said that there is
no one hateful or dear to You, but You
are always with those who worship You
with love and devotion. (Gita 9.29)
I have noticed that during the most
troublesome times in my life, there
is only one set of footprints. I don’t
understand why, when I needed You most,
You left me alone.”
The Lord replied, “My dear child,
you are my own soul. I love you, and
I would never leave you, even if you
leave Me sometimes. During your time
of trial and suffering, when you see
only one set of footprints, that was
because then I carried you. When you
have trouble, it is caused by your own
Karma. That is when you are tested and
can grow stronger.”
The Lord Krishna said in the
Gita: “I personally take care
of the needs of devotees who always
remember and love Me.” (Gita 9.22)
Chapter 9 summary:
The dualistic philosophy sees God as
one reality and creation as a different
reality dependent on Him. Non-dual philosophy
sees God and His creation as One. God
loves all of us the same, but He takes
personal interest in His devotees because
such a person is closer to Him. It is
like one gets more heat if one sits
close to the fire. There is no unforgivable
sin or sinner. The fire of sincere repentance
burns all sins.