Significance of the Flute in the hands of Lord Krishna....
There is a beautiful story about the flute of Krishna. You know Krishna always holds a flute in his hand, but there is a great story behind it.
Everyday Krishna would go in the garden and say to all the plants, “I love you”. The plants were very happy and responded back and said “Krishna, we love You, too”.
One day Krishna rushed quickly into the garden very alarmed. He went to the bamboo plant and the bamboo plant asked, “Krishna, what´s wrong with you?” Krishna said “I have something to ask you, but it is very difficult”. The bamboo said “Tell me: if I can, I will give it to you”. So Krishna said “I need your life. I need to cut you”. The bamboo thought for a while and then said “You don´t have any other choice. You don’t have any other way?” Krishna said, “No, no other way”. And it said “OK, I surrender to you”.
So Krishna cut the bamboo, made holes in it, and each time, while he was doing that, the bamboo was crying with pain, because he was paining the bamboo so much. Krishna made a beautiful flute out of it. And this flute was with Krishna all the time. 24 hours a day, it was with Krishna. Even the Gopis were jealous of the flute.
They said, “Look, Krishna is our Lord, but yet we get to spend only some time with him. He wakes up with you, He sleeps with you, all the time you are with him”.
So one day they asked the bamboo, “Tell us the secret of it. What secret do you have, that the Lord treasures you so much?”
And the bamboo said “The secret is that I´m empty inside. And the Lord does whatever he wants with me, whenever he wants with me and however he wants with me”.
So this is complete surrender: where God can do whatever He wants with you, whenever He wants, as He wants. And for that you don’t need to be scared, you know, you have just to give yourself. And who is yourself in reality? It’s just Him!
Krishna’s flute is the symbol of freedom or pranava. He has preached prema, love, through his flute. He has created this world out of the sound of Omkara that emanates from his flute.
Once the gopis asked Murali, Krishna’s flute: “O Murali, tell us the truth. What merits does our Lord see in you that he holds you so lovingly and tenderly day and night that you might drink deep the nectar of his lovely lips and installs you as the most beloved queen among us all? Where lies the charm, the beauty, the grace and attractiveness in you? Will you not reveal that secret to us, the constant beggars of Krishna’s love? Though black and born of a wild bamboo family, you have bewitched our lord. When he plays upon you, the peacock madly dances to your tunes, and other birds stand dumb on the summit of the hills. Even the most dreadful cobra is humbled and becomes spellbound. We the gopis lose our normal consciousness and hurriedly wear our nose rings in the ears and earrings in the nose to meet him. The cows give up their grazing and the calves their sucking and stand like statues with ears erect and rapt attention. Ah! How alluring is the melody of your music! It seems you are not a flute, but a magic wand. Your music is like spiritual bliss materialized. It attracts and holds the jivas and their roaming vrittis in supreme and solemn peace of Brahman. Lulled by your melodies, they are lost in the supreme self devoid of all personality. It is as if anahata nada, the inner unceasing sound of yogis, is externalized. So tell us your secret.”
Murali replied: “My dear friends, I know neither magic nor any arts of attraction. I do not possess any merits also. Dead ignorant of them all, I am simply a forest reed, all hollow within and bereft of any beauty. Krishna, my lord, lover and bearer, calls this attitude of mine the greatest virtue and is extremely pleased with it. He over and over whispers into my ear-hole this excellent teaching: ‘Empty yourself and I will fill you.’ I have realized its truth, and I obey it to the very letter. This is magic, if magic you will call it. This is my strength. It is he who sings through me and enchants you all. My dear friends, if you too empty yourselves of all the arrogant airs of your beauty, excellence, family pride and possessions, he will fill every nerve and atom of your body with his love and life. Does the pervading air not fill a jar when it is emptied of other stuff? He will not leave you even for a moment, and will sing through you the sweet melodies of harmony and peace to the whole world.
As I understand, every creature here is his flute, the instrument of expressing his divine voice. You too are his Murali. He sings sweet melodies through your tongue, beauties through your eyes and fragrance through your nose. Every heart is madhuban, the seat of all his lilas, the rendezvous of all the gopis, the centre of all the vrittis. There the only Purusha is Krishna. All others have to make a passive surrender to him.”
This body is the flute of Krishna in the microcosm. If you can destroy your egoism and have total self-surrender, unreserved atma-nivedan to the Lord, he will play on the body flute and bring out melodious tunes. You will become merged in his will. He will work unhampered through your instruments – body, mind and senses. You can rest very peacefully, then without care, worry or anxiety. You can watch the play of the universe as a sakshi, witness. Then your sadhana will go forward by leaps and bounds because the divine will and grace will work through you. In fact, you need not do any sadhana at all, only practice self-surrender from the very core of your heart, with all your being. Learn the lesson from the flute and follow its ways. If you have offered yourself at the feet of Krishna, you have already reached the goal, you have already attained the realm of peace, the kingdom of immortality. You have found the joy that never fades, a life that never dies. You have reached the other shore of fearlessness, which is beyond darkness, despair, doubt, grief, sorrow, pain and delusion.
Purify your mind. Destroy your negative tendencies and egoism. Hear once more the flute of the flute-bearer of Vrindavan, his immortal song of Bhagavad Gita and allow him to play in this body flute of yours.
All the sounds are his voice. Let his will be done. Be completely resigned to him, so that he may shine through your eyes, speak through your tongue and smell through your nostrils. Merge your little self into the Supreme Self. Give up all ideas of agency. Do not say, “I am the doer and enjoyer.” Say once more along with me, “O Lord, I am your flute, blow me as you will; a puppet in your hands, simply to act as you will.” Call him fervently with single-minded devotion. Sing this song of welcome and he will surely appear before you:
Hey Krishna aajaa bansi bajaa jaa.
Hey Krishna aajaa geeta sunaajaa.
Hey Krishna aajaa maakhan khaajaa.
Hey Krishna ajaa lilaa dikhaajaa.
O Krishna, come and play your flute.
O Krishna, come and sing your song.
O Krishna, come and taste the butter.
O Krishna, come and play before us.
.................Jai Shri Krishna ....................