Some bhaktas are pure in nature (sattvic), some are passionate (rajas), while others are obstinate (tamas). Bhaktas of every disposition are accepted by Shri Krishna. Once every virtue is directed towards Him then every emotion can be useful in His worship. The bhakta’s dispositions are but various devotional fuels that propel her to God. Since it is too difficult of a journey out, Hari descends into the world of matter and plays with the soul according to her nature.
THE PUSHTI SOLUTION FOR GOD-REALIZATION
“In this world, the Emperor is the most important man. If you want to meet him, you must please many people below him and even then he may not meet you if it is not his wish. If you make lots of plans, the royal meeting may occur, but only after surmounting many difficulties. If he wishes to meet you, however, then you can be before him in a moment. In a similar way, the soul who desires to find God ponders over how to find Him for a long time. Still God remains illusive. It is then that the Blessed Lord resolves, ‘I want to meet this soul.’ Then there is no delay in the reunion.” (Shri Harirayaji)
Concerning practice, Shri Vallabhacharya is concise: “The attainment of Shri Krishna can never be dependant upon any formula. Shri Krishna, whose mood is always perfect, is attained through the precise emulation of those who have already attained Him.”
The practice of devotion to Krishna is transforming. Like gutter water that spills into Ganga becomes Ganga, similarly in the Path of Grace, once all things are offered, they become like Krishna; free of bondage. In the devotional process, everything leads to the Blessed Lord.
First there arises the subtle and blessed understanding that Shri Krishna is Brahman and deserves ultimate adoration. Then, a desire for a specific relationship with Him arises, followed by practice. When Shri Krishna responds, the fruit is attained.
BOUND BY ONLY LOVE
On the subject of practice, Shri Vallabhacharya is concise, "The attainment of Shri Krishna can never be dependent upon any formula. Shri Krishna, who is perfect bhava, is attained through the precise emulation of those who have already attained Him." And so, as the Gopis of Vrindavan are the ones who attained Krishna, they are the grace-filled gurus of the Path. If God could be captured by a particular formula, that prisoner could not be God.
After Krishna stole the butter, His mother, Yashoda, could only tie Him up when He allowed her. Although Brahman cannot be confined, Shri Krishna allows Himself to be bound by the devotees' cords of love.
The primordial nature is Shri Krishna. He is the Supreme Being. Etymologically krish means “being” and na means “bliss”. Krishna is the All-Attractive One and He tells Arjuna in the Gita, “O Arjuna, nothing is superior to Me….I am even greater than that impersonal form of Brahman.”
Shri Vallabhacharya says, “The Supreme Brahman is Krishna alone.” Krishna is devoid of mundane limbs, hands and feet. “He runs quickly and grabs without hands and feet…. His hands, feet, face, stomach etc. all embody bliss. (Svetasvatara Upanisada).
Shri Krishna is the Supreme Person and eternally manifests all divine qualities. Krishna is also ras (pure nectar) and can respond to the loving devotion of His bhaktas.
Krishna is a dancer, a player, an actor, a husband, a cowherder, a friend, a Lover as well as a Flute Player. He is an expert in abhinaya, that is, in exhibiting the meaning of what He depicts. He is so good that anyone who has contact with Him or His lila-drama has an unforgettable experience. Love, attachment and obsession are the results.
Krishna and His worship is Pure Divine Drama (lila). He plays and directs at the same time, all for an awakening in those whose time has come. His bhaktas have various constitutions yet share the common virtue of Krishna Attachment. Their hearts are fired by His melody and contain the rush of Shri Krishna’s ras. It is all consummated in Vrindavan, where Krishna plays His flute.
It is Shri Krishna’s sheer confidence that allows Him to establish overwhelming attachment to Himself in whoever He chooses. In Vrindavan everything is a combination of Him. Even trees and animals fall under His spell and become enlightened. In Vrindavan everything manifests for the blissful purpose of lila. Krishna sounds His flute to awaken the woods.
Krishna is proficient in appearing and appealing to the bhakta all according to her individual temperament. Shri Krishna comes here and manifests sacred creation. Lila makes Krishna comprehensible.
The Path of Grace inspires us to worship Shri Krishna as depicted in the Shrimad Bhagavatam. There, Shri Krishna's multi-dimensional aspect is clearly demonstrated. When Shri Krishna walked into Kamsa's wrestling stadium, His parents looked upon Him as their son while the women in the stands saw Him as Love incarnate. The yogis attending observed Him as the absolute, unblemished Brahman, while the cowherd lads saw Krishna as their friend. The wrestlers merely saw Him as a mighty foe while King Kamsa viewed the divine cowlad as death personified. Through each view, they all became liberated. Mahaprabhuji describes Krishna's lila-presence:
CHILD KRISHNA – ADOLESCENT KRISHNA
Many see Shri Krishna as merely a child and do not know His other lilas. He appears to them as totally naïve. His mother Yashoda, his father Nanda Baba, Rohini and the other elders see Krishna as only a child. They do not have access to His other lilas. Meanwhile, His other intimate Braja associates have access to all of His lilas. They are very clever. When they are before Yashoda, they act like they know nothing. Actually they know Shri Krishna’s loving side very well. They become shy whenever they see His form, lovely as a million Loves. As a child, Krishna removes Shri Radha’s annoyance in love. It is all so amazing. Shri Krishna gives the experience of all lilas simultaneously. Shri Gusainji has written in his Cradle Song,
As Infant Krishna swings in the cradle.
He eliminates Radha’s annoyance in love.
While Shri Yashoda swings her infant Krishna in the cradle, at that time He appears to Shri Radha as a young man. Krishna is truly a divine Child and perfectly contains all contradictions. (Gopeshvarji; Shiksha Patra 2)
SHRI KRISHNA, THE BHAKTA’S FAMILY MEMBER
Shri Vallabhacharya stressed that devotional practice should be done in the home, which is why the Path of Grace has remained almost entirely a householder lineage. It is the devotee's duty to honor Shri Krishna as the Lord of Gokul, the Supreme Brahman and also as a member of one's household. One must always serve Him with bhava, the unconditional loving attitude. Devotion is perfected by offering one's body, wealth and mind-heart to the Blessed Lord. In this state of dedication, true renunciation develops.