Who is Lord Krishna? Explained by the Great Yoga Guru Paramhansa Yogananda
This is an excerpt from the book of the self-realized yoga master Paramhansa Yogananda called “The Science of Religion”. Later rewritten by one of his most advanced and close disciples Swami Kriyananda as “God is for Everyone” In this case he explains various misconception included the one about Krishna and how devotees take the explanations of their gurus very literally and go too far and not really grasp the whole truth.
I recommend this book to any sincere truth seeker
Excerpt starts here:
“The great masters have never opposed one another’s teachings. Truth, after all, is both universal and eternal. It never changes. Scientific discoveries, accepted by many as finalities, lose their “finality” every few years, as new facts come to light. The masters, by contrast, have realized the eternal, forever unchanging truth. That is what they declare in every age and every religion. Their mission is to correct people’s misunderstandings of the truth. Because human beings are habitually restless, they feel attracted to complexity and shun divine simplicity. They embellish with ego-gratifying variations the pristine melodies of the soul.
Another illustration may help: If the goal is to go to the equator, those living in the Northern Hemisphere will be instructed to go south. Those, on the other hand, who live in the Southern Hemisphere will be told to go north. Those traveling southward, having been so instructed, will probably- considering usual human behavior – continue in that direction after they’ve reached the equator. When they encounter others in the Southern Hemisphere, moving northward, they cry, “No! No! you’re supposed to go south!” Thus arise sectarian differences, which are the curse of religion everywhere.
Chaitanya, centuries after Ramanuja, emphasized the importance of devotion. He was already famous as a brilliant scholar when a dramatic vision of Krishna changed his life. After that transformation, he began urging people to abandon philosophical speculation as dry and profitless-he himself was expert at such speculation-and to immerse themselves in the love of God. It is, he said, useless to try to define God: the very attempt merely leads the mind into a wasteland of intellectual theories.
Man needs nothing except God’s love. Chaitanya taught people to worship the Lord by chanting to Him devotedly in the form of Krishna. His teaching by no means contradicted the non-dualism of Swami Shankaracharya, even if it seemed to. Rather, he urged people to accept, and be true to, their own actual state of consciousness. “Harer nam, Harer nam, Harer nam keaalyam!- the Lord’s name, the Lord’s name, the Lord’s name is man’s only path to salvation!” This was his famous declaration. Many of his followers Vaishnavas, they are called – took his teaching literally and insisted that Krishna himself is the Lord. The truth, of course, is quite the opposite; this was their special error. Krishna, the man, could not possibly be God. God, rather, is Krishna; God is all His manifestations. The wave is not the ocean. On the contrary: the ocean has become all of its waves. It is a fallacy to claim that any one wave can be the whole ocean! Christians have made this same mistake regarding Jesus Christ.
One of the basic functions of religion is to provide solutions to the moral and spiritual dilemmas of mankind. Unfortunately, what institutional religion has too often done is fan the flames; sometimes, it has even ignited them! Buddhists’ insistence that only the Buddha can grant release from the wheel of rebirth is not welcomed kindly by people who seek their salvation through Jesus Christ, or through Krishna. Hindus squabble endlessly over the distinctions of dwaita, advaita, vishishta-advaita, vaishnavism, and the worship of God as the Divine Mother. Moslems claim that Mohammed is the prophet of Allah. Christians insist that Jesus Christ is the “only way.”
Christians also condemn the “pantheistic” teachings of Hinduism as animistic, and believe, erroneously, that Hindu deities are the “idols” against which Moses inveighed so sternly. What Moses was warning against, in fact, were the “idols” of material desire. The Hindu deities have always represented not materialistic goals, but spiritual principles.
Joy to You