How to be Fearless
I consider that for those suffering from the agonies of the worldly life, arising from the identification of the Self with the unreal objects (body), constant worship of the feet of Achyuta, is the way to fearlessness. For one attaining the identity with the universal Soul, fear ceases forever.
Points for Introspection:
Life in this world is full of anxiety and fear. Right from the morning, one is gripped by stress, tension and anxiety regarding various matters – significant or insignificant. The mind thus, is never peaceful. One finds that everything in life is laden with fear, fear of losing whatever we like and fear of facing whatever we dislike.
Gripped by fear and anxiety, one suffers from lack of strength, clarity, hope and confidence. However much one may be wealthy or prosperous, beautiful and strong, scholarly and reputed, he can never escape fear and anxiety in life. As a result, even if one has everything favourable in life, he still is tormented and afflicted.
Wherefrom is fear generated? And how to remove fear and anxiety from our lives? By practising what, will we be able to attain the abode of fearlessness?
This śloka says that for those who are suffering from afflictions in life arising from anxiety and fear, the only sure way to attain fearlessness lies in worshipping always the holy lotus feet of Achyuta (meaning “permanent”, another name of Sri Hari).
Man mistakenly identifies the real, eternal, imperishable Soul with the perishable, unreal body. The Soul is always changeless and never suffers or enjoys. But, unfortunately by virtue of wrong identification, we undergo suffering when our body, mind, etc. suffer. As a result, we are gripped by fear.
This śloka says that fear is from all that is changeful, unreal and perishable. To have fearlessness, we must hold on to Achyuta, the imperishable, the changeless, and not to the perishables. We must whole-heartedly worship His holy lotus feet, the abode of fearlessness.
Fear arises when there is something different from oneself. If there is nothing other than oneself, wherefrom will fear arise? When a devotee worships the holy lotus feet of Achyuta, he, finally identifies himself with the one universal Soul – the changeless, motionless, eternal, imperishable and real. Identifying oneself with the विश्वात्मा (viśvātmā, the universal Soul) one experiences the “universal Oneness”. In the absence of a second, the seeker becomes fearless for ever.
This śloka from Bhaagavatam announces with great authority that for man to attain fearlessness, he must worship always and one-pointedly the holy lotus feet of Sri Hari, the all-pervading unchanging Lord.
When we chant this śloka repeatedly, mentally severing our clinging to the unreal and perishable objects, and taking refuge at His lotus feet instead, we feel absolutely secure in the Divine lap, protected by the Divine embrace. The mind gets completely absorbed in Him.
Whenever one undergoes fear or anxiety on any account, chanting of this śloka will help.
मन्ये (manye) = I consider; अकुतश्चिद्भयम् (akutaścid-bhayam) = having no fear from any quarter, fearlessness; अच्युतस्य (acyutasya) = of Achyuta; पादाम्बुजोपासनम् (pādāmbuja-upāsanam) = worship of the lotus feet; अत्र (atra) = here, in this world; नित्यम् (nityam) = always; उद्विग्नबुद्धेः (udvigna-buddheḥ) = whose intelligence is agitated; असत्-आत्म-भावात् (asat-ātma-bhāvāt) = identification with the non-Self; विश्वात्मना (viśvātmanā) = by the identity with the Universal Soul; यत्र (yatra) = where; निवर्तते (nivartate) = ceases; भीः (bhīḥ) = fear
अत्र नित्यं अच्युतस्य पादाम्बुजोपासनं अकुतश्चिद्भयं मन्ये । असदात्मभावात् उद्विग्नबुद्धेः विश्वात्मना यत्र भीः निवर्तते ।
atra nityaṁ acyutasya pādāmbujopāsanaṁ akutaścid-bhayaṁ manye. asat-ātma-bhāvāt udvigna-buddheḥ viśvātmanā yatra bhīḥ nivartate.
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