Monday, October 04, 2010

The Savior of the Downfallen

 Do not complain that, the rosebush has thorns;
But rejoice that, the thorn bush bares roses.
- Arabian Proverb

Hate the sin but never the sinner, because the sinner has always a chance of all his sins to be washed off. When we bathe, our dirty body becomes clean. When we wash our clothes, they become free from dirt. When we use the vacuum-cleaner, the carpet becomes as good as new. When we use the exhaust-fan the air in the room becomes fresh. So when we repent for sins committed by us, our minds and hearts become pure and God Who resides in our hearts as Antaryami (Self-Regulator) showers His grace.

The innocent blood of women constantly drips from the history of mankind which has spared no pain in inflicting wounds of cruelty, defamation and exploitation accompanied by degradation on women. Yet women have survived and come to their own through the grace of innumerable men of God.

Mary Magdalene was a great sinner who washed the feet of Jesus, with her tears of atonement and wiped the feet with her long hair. She anointed the feet of Jesus with costly perfumes and kissed the feet.

Jesus said : 'Thy sins are forgiven' and 'Lo!' she became free from all her sins and infirmities and the seven devils left her soul.

If Jesus, the son of God can wash off the sins of a sinner, there should be no doubt about such miraculous power of Bhagwan Shree Swaminarayan Who is God Supreme Himself!

Once Bhagwan Shree Swaminarayan decided to perform a non-violent Vishnuyag sacrifice on an unprecedented grand scale at Jetalpur in Gujarat, as enormous supply of wheat was promised by the devotees of Kuaka, a small village nearby.

About 100,000 Brahmins, apart from an equal number of devotees were to dine here daily for 18 days. For this purpose hundreds of tons of wheat flour was required, Cartloads after cartloads of wheat-bags started arriving at Jetalpur and so did women of Jetalpur and adjoining villages.

Shri Hari used to sit on the top of a cartload and delivered the wheat-bags Himself. Once while Shree Hari was thus distributing wheat-bags a damsel wearing the most valuable dress and ornaments arrived among the women who all spat on the ground, with scorn and said among them-selves : 'How dares this harlot come among us! What has this unholy woman to do with such a holy sacrifice! Even her shadow would pollute us.'

But this proved to be a blessing to the so called unholy woman. She straightway went to Bhagwan Shree Swaminarayan and said: 'My Lord, I will grind as much wheat as I can. Give me a whole wheat-bag.'

Shree Hari said: "But you look so tender! How can you carry such a heavy wheat-bag! Besides, how will you be able to grind such a big lot overnight?"

'That all depends on Your favour, my Lord' she said. A woman from the crowd shouted: 'Maharaj! she mints money and grinds men; not wheat. She is a sinner, a harlot, the dung-hill of the town! The wheat-flour ground by her will defile the food and sacrifice. Please, don't give her wheat. Drive her away!'

But Bhagwan Shree Swaminarayan said: "I have come not to break but to build, to create but not to destroy. Greater the sinner, greater is the need of My grace to him or to her."

With great difficulty the harlot carried the wheat-bag on her head. She went on grinding for the whole day and for the whole night. She had big boils on her hands and the boils burst. Still she went on grinding till her palms and fingers bled!

Click on the image to get the full view. 

With bandages on both the hands, she carried the wheat-bag on her head and came to Shree Hari. She mentally washed the feet of Shree Hari, with her tears. Her bandages on the hand were red with the oozing blood. Tears soaked the eyes of the saints and devotees gathered in the assembly.

Shree Hari said: "Dear child, with every turn of the grinding wheel, I have unwound the sins from the reel of your life. From today you are not a sinner but a holy woman. Take this as your new birth and lead a holy life."

The Assembly said: "Oh! Lord, only You can do this!'

The woman said: 'My Lord, I have only one prayer to you. Before You leave Jetalpur, please come to my house.'

Shree Hari agreed. When the great sacrifice was over, Shree Hari went to her home and graced her by His visit.

And from that day she became a saintly woman devoting all her time in worship, prayers to Shreeji Maharaj and service to mankind!

Design & Concept : Jnan Baug, Vadtal 

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