Nrisimhadeva, Every Day, Everywhere

Karnamrita Das

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Put on a fierce face photo P1030704_zps3846127d.jpg
Shri Nrisimhadeva's appearance is one of my favorite holy days. His lila is so illuminating and important. Though I wanted to prepare this offering by the actual day, it wasn't meant to be--occurrences and other duties diverted me--and yet, that is also part of the teaching: to see everything in relationship to God and to keep a humble service mood throughout. Whether pulling weeds and planting, or having one's car battery die--everything is instructive. In this case, reminding me to keep my devotional creeper free of "weeds", and that I must recharge my batteries with spiritual practice. May the fire of spiritual life burn brightly in our hearts and souls!

Unusual life events
intersect with special days
strange creatures prepare us
emerging from the ground
shedding their skins to fly
teaching us to transform
if we want to dwell in the sky
realizing our true self
keeping our purpose in mind
always vibrating the primal sound
the great chant for deliverance
17 year cicada’s ballad serenades
Lord Nrisimhadeva’s appearance.

 photo 5a547ece-4c6b-4f37-af56-ab0dc952bcb2_zps61329517.jpg
Eerie sounds like alien starships
reminding us of the extraordinary
half man, half lion incarnation
unusual juxtaposition of emotions
ghastly, fierce, violent anger
loving, gentle, kind protection
devotee’s champion, celebration
ungodly’s enemy, lamentation
who will discern God’s presence?
in splattered blood, intestine garland
Nrisimhadeva’s thousands of claws
ripping and killing unlimited solders
His roar shakes the Universe.

The Deva’s tremble, Laxmi hesitates
their prayers are ignored
only Prahlad approaches, fearless
his purity and humility charm
pacifying and changing His mood
from all-powerful, inconceivable God
to loving father protecting His son
coming to save His devoted servant
showcasing his saintly qualities
teaching us the road to bhakti
rising to the spiritual platform
beyond dualities of enemy or friend
the power of loving remembrance.
Prahlad pacifies the Lord photo P1030713_zps99a22b1b.jpg
O dear Lord Nrisimhadeva
your appearance gives us bliss
demonstrating your heart and intelligence
by inventing ways to protect your devotees
showing no interest in official prayers
attracted to simple, loving devotion
we celebrate your power and love
helping us rise above adversity
changing our darkness to light
teaching us through Prahlad
to be fearless and joyous
through material disinterest, devotion
embracing the Spirit beyond duality.

O dear Lord Narahari
you are present every day
for you are everywhere
though ordinarily hidden
we see through the scriptures
knowing you underlie all things
holding the Universe and us together
manifesting myriad circles, cycles
of seasons, yugas, cicadas
in pillars, bedrooms, and foundations
teaching through the ugly and beautiful
ripping out our “anartha”-like intestines
letting our Pradlad-like natures shine.

The background sounds are the cicadas, and then His Grace Vaiyasaki Prabhu chanting Nrisimhadeva prayers, from his album, Kirtan Ras. The first picture is one of our Shilas, a Nrisimha Shila (sacred stone, or Shalagram-shila) with the appropriate face for the day (usually he has a smile!). Then the strange looking creature is a cicada beginning to emerge from his shell, and below, the emerged winged cicada next to his former self--like us, the soul, emerging from our confining, earth bound body.

Shedding our old skin photo P1030678_zpsbd1c699b.jpg
Lord Nrisimha protects devotees of Krishna photo Nrisihmamantra_zps2cba9f98.jpgNrisimhadeva Maha mantra photo Nrisimhamahamantra_zps0146d22e.jpg