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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Compiled and Imp Scriptures > Shikshashtaka with Commentaties > 3. Humble Consciousness > Sloka Three-One who thinks himself lower than the grass...


Shri Shikshashtaka

Shloka Three

trinad api su-nicena
taror iva sahishnuna
amanina mana-dena
kirtaniyah sada harih


trinat api-than downtrodden grass; su-nicena-being lower; taroh-than a tree; iva-like; sahishnuna-with tolerance; amanina-without being puffed up by false pride; mana-dena-giving respect to all; kirtaniyah-to be chanted; sada-always; harih-the holy name of the Lord.

Explanatory Translation by Swami Gaurangapada


One can continously chant the Holy Names of Lord Shri Hari and achieve pure love for the Lord only if one possesses the following four qualities (ornaments) of genuine humility deep within one's heart:


(1) Trinad api sunichena: One who chants the Holy Names should feel oneself more low and insignificant than a blade of straw. By nature, the straw always remains on the ground at the feet of everyone, waiting to be trampled. When someone tramples over a blade of straw, the straw never raises its head to protest in any way. The straw also renders an important service to the cows who eat it and produce milk which in turn is offered to the Lord. But the straw never claims itself to be significant in any way. Similarly a devotee chanting the Holy Names should always be totally free from false ego just like the straw and always feel oneself as a humble servant of the servants of the Lord. The trinad api sunichena mood is not attained by deceitfully feigning external showbottle humility but it is the deep realization within one's heart when the transcendental mellows of the Holy Name begin to appear within the heart of a devotee.


(2) Taror iva sahishnuna: The devotee chanting the Holy Names should be forebearing, tolerant and long-suffering just like a tree. When someone comes to cut down the tree, it silently tolerates the attack without any complaints. Even though the wood-cutter is just about to kill the tree, instead of thinking him to be its enemy, the tree forgives him and desires to charitably serve the wood-cutter by giving it's body to him and offering him it's wood, bark, sweet and succulent fruits, flowers, sap and cooling shade without expecting anything in return. The tree patiently stands alone bearing the scorching heat, blistering cold and lashing rains, and unconditionally provides the shelter and protection of its soothing shade from all hardships, to those who pass by irrespective of who they are. Also the tree never demands supply of water even when it is drying up and on the verge of death. The essence of the tree's whole existence is to willingly tolerate everything for the sake of benefitting and maintaining others. This should be the consciousness of a devotee chanting the Holy Names. Only the devotee who manifests these forebearing qualities of a tree will unfailingly succeed in the incessant chanting of the Holy Names of the Lord.

(3) Amanina: The devotee should strongly abhor, despise and totally reject the subtle vicious desire to expect any kind of respect, honor, adoration or recognition inspite of having every reasons to be proud. One should neither aspire for nor accept any kind of worship or eulogizing from others in one's thoughts, words and deeds. One should totally reject the subtle designations of mundane ego and false prestige in order to have a spotless heart which is conducive to chant the pure Holy Names without any interruption.


(4) Manadena: Understanding that every soul in every species of life is an eternal servant of Lord Krishna, a devotee chanting the Holy Names, should offer respects and honor to all souls by sweet and sincere words, auspicious behavior and also understanding that the Lord dwells within their hearts, the devotee should offer obeisances with utmost humility to all souls, except for those who are critical or envious of the Lord and His devotees who should be avoided. The devotee should never bear any feeling of malice or vengeance towards any living entity in creation. A devotee should try not to give any kind of trouble to other living entities during the course of one's life and should forsake one's own happiness in trying to make other souls happy in devotional service to the Lord. The devotee should understand that the miseries in his or her life are caused by his or her own past misdeeds and not hold any other living entity or the Lord responsible for it and should infact thank the Lord for the suffering and accept it for his or her purification and advancement with genuine gratefulness to the Lord and all living entities.


Ornamented with these above four divine qualities: (1) Being more humble than a straw, (2) Being tolerant just like a tree, (3) Devoid of the desire to accept respect and honor and avoiding it at all costs at all times, and (4) Giving respect and honor to all souls in all ways; a devotee becomes qualified to offenslessly chant the pure Holy Names of Lord Krishna constantly with great attachment, realization and love.