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March 24, 2019

Bhakti

BHAKTI

        Bhakti means knowingly or unknowingly we have affection towards a idol, Guru, a symbol or a nature, Which in turn uplifts our life. Though physically we don't see God, we believe, we trust and we pray for him.
      By engaging our self in devotional practices, our heart melts and it flows in the direction of God. In simple way we always want to be near God, read about God, feel about God, think about God, that itself is Bhakti.
      There is a saying "PREM MAY PURNIMA NAHI".  bhakti will never have full moon, means it will never end with limited circle, it will grow grow grow grow grow as heart oozes with devotion to GURU OR GOD.

Ramana Maharishi, says bhakti is a "surrender to the divine with one's heart". It can be practiced in any one of the four ways

1.Atma Bhakti -Devotion to the one's atma (Supreme Self)
2.Ishvara Bhakti -Devotion to a formless being (God)
3.Ishta Devata Bhakti - Devotion to a personal god or goddess
4.Guru Bhakti - Devotion and surrenderness(Sharanagati) to Guru.

The two texts which highlights about bhakti are
1.Sandhilya Bhakti Sutra
2.Narada Bhakti Sutra

When God is understood and realized through the process of bhakti the person becomes realized and enters the state of self-realisation.


Sage Narada lucidly describes bhakti as:

“Sa tvasmin parampremarupa” –bhakti is of the nature of perfect love for the God devoid of any personal desires or external motives and conditions.

“Amrita swarupa cha” – Bhakti is like nectar, when one drinks, leads to the experience of ultimate bliss, which is not subject to change (Sat Chit Ananda).

“Yat praapta na kinchit vanchhati, na shochati na dveshti, narmate, notsahi bhavati”- Once bhakti is attained, one has no other desires in life as he is freed from the pairs of opposites like pleasure and pain, likes and dislikes, hence he craves for nothing else and has no other purpose to fulfil other than serving the God and His devotees.

According to Bhagavatha Purana, Bhakti is in nine forms.
Nine forms of devotion are:

1.Shravanam – Hearing the names and glories of the God and Guru

2.Keertanam – Chanting  God and Guru Grace

3.Smaranam – Remembering God and Guru

4.Paada sevanam – Serving the  God and Guru's feet

5.Archanam – Worshiping God and Guru

6.Vandanam – Offering obeisance unto the God and Guru

7.Daasyam – Serving the  God and Guru as His servant

8.Sakhyam – Developing friendship with God and Guru.

9.Aatma Nivedanam – Total surrender of oneself to the God and Guru.
{I have written both God and Guru because "Guru pratyaksha daivam". Guru can't be seen seperately from God.}

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