Devotee: This question is from Guru Gauranga prabhu. In relationships reciprocation is important. First point: how does a surrendered devotee recognize the Lord’s reciprocation? It is direct or indirect? It is through the other devotees or can it be direct from the Lord?
BCS: Yeah, see, the reciprocation can be both, but initially, when the direct communication or the direct perception is not established, yeah, then it will be indirect. Like, for example, we can see the reciprocation when the rains come. What do we see? There is a scarcity like in Ujjain now there is scarcity of water. Everyone is saying, “Where is water? Where is water?” So when the rain comes, how does he see that? He sees that it is the mercy of the Lord, “The Lord is offering His mercy upon me. I needed water. He gave me water.” Similarly, when we are eating the food we can see the mercy of the Lord that, “He has sent me the food and that’s why I can eat it.” Krishna baro doyamoy, koribare jihva jay, sva-prasad-anna dilo bhai. [Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura, Gitavali (Prasada Sevaya Song one)] Krishna is very merciful and in order to maintain me He has given me this food. Or we can go even further, we can see that I am breathing. I need oxygen and we can see that without oxygen we cannot live, we cannot survive. But we are taking oxygen and giving out carbon dioxide and we may get into anxiety that, “Oh, what will happen if the oxygen is exhausted? I won’t have any oxygen to breath.” But then we think, “Well, Krishna has taken care of it. Krishna has created these trees and plants and Krishna has made the arrangement for the trees and plants to convert carbon dioxide to oxygen. So this is how the Lord is being merciful to us. So this is how we can see His mercy indirectly, at every step. I am sitting here but look at my condition actually. The earth is moving at a tremendous speed and I am sitting here peacefully. Nothing is happening to me. Why? Actually, what should have happened? In that condition what should have happened? Long before I should have been somewhere else, thrown out in the space, but I am sitting here comfortably, without any difficulty. Why? Because the Lord has made the arrangement that this movement of the earth is not going to affect me through His gravitational energy. So these are the indirect ways of perceiving the Lord’s mercy.
But then of course when you become more advanced then you begin to see how the Lord is reciprocating from the heart. Sometimes we are in difficulty, the Lord says from the heart, “Don’t worry, I’ll take care of you. Don’t worry. There is nothing to be in anxiety.”
And then we become even more advanced and we go back to Godhead. There we see the direct reciprocation. Krishna says, “Let’s see what you have in your plate. Oh! It looks so nice! Please give it to Me?” And Krishna takes that from me, and then I say, or you say rather that, “Oh, Krishna, what is that in Your plate?” Krishna: “Want to have it? Come take it.” Krishna gives it to you from His plate. So this is how Krishna directly reciprocates. Krishna sees you and says, “Oh, My friend! I am so happy to see you!” And Krishna embraces you. This is how Krishna directly reciprocates.
So there will be different levels of reciprocation or perception of reciprocation according to our spiritual advancement.
SRIMAD BHAGAVATAM CANTO 3, CHAPTER 9, BRAMHA´S PRAYERS FOR CREATIVE ENERGY, TEXT 23, WAS GIVEN BY HIS HOLINESS BHAKTI CHARU SWAMI IN ISKCON UJJAIN, INDIA, ON 10 FEBRUARY 2009.