Merciful Narasimhadeva

One time, I also felt surrendered unto You at least for a few minutes. That was during the big flood in 1987. While offering You puja, standing waist-deep in water, a big, frightening snake swam in the temple, passing behind You. It stopped about five feet in front of me, finding its exit blocked. After examining me for some long moments, it dipped down, out of sight, in the muddy Ganga water. Feeling myself in imminent danger, I noticed the hair on my arms standing on end, with no weapon to defend myself, nor the ability to run away, I felt very insecure. In such a helpless condition, I turned to You, oh Lord, and I knew that my fate was completely in Your hands. “You are the Super soul in everyone’s heart. If You want that snake to bite me, it will bite–if You don’t, it won’t. Let me continue my service; the result is dependent on You.” Then, I became peaceful again, feeling the safety of Your shelter.

I finished the morning puja, but I couldn’t stop thinking about the incident. It reminded me of the description by Lord Kapila of the babies in the womb. In their helpless and painful condition, they get the darshan of Paramatma, the Lord in the heart. If they are pious, they pray that if He relieves them from their suffering condition, they would–after being relieved from the womb–exclusively worship Him. But as soon as they’re out and in good shape, they forget everything. Still, I have great hope that one day I’ll be able to serve You nicely for Your pleasure. By the way, as long as the temple room was filled with water from the flood, the snake would come every day, circumambulate the Deity once, and then go out. Who knows who that snake actually was?

By H.G Pankajanghri Das —

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