Learning from a Mosquito

0 Posted by - January 17, 2013 - Radhanath Swami

Malaria is a horrible disease. You get high fever; you are practically dying; you have chills; sometimes you freeze and sometimes you burn; you cannot stand up, you cannot walk. The doctors come and put pills in your mouth and you vomit it out. It is a very learning experience. I have also suffered from malaria. So now, if someone asks me, “Which mosquito bit you? On what date? Where were you? And what part of the body?”. There is no way for me to know that.

But I know the principle. If I have malaria that means I was bitten by a mosquito. I don’t know when, I don’t know why, I don’t know who, but I know I got bitten by a mosquito. Otherwise, I would not have malaria. We all accept it with our college trained intelligence.

Similarly, if you are suffering, you know the principle. “I am getting suffering because I have caused suffering to someone. I am suffering because I defied my real duties in life as servant of God. I may not know exactly what I did when, or how or to whom, but I know the principle.”

And do you know what I did after I got malaria? I decided that I was going to use a mosquito net from then on.  And I also took the medicine. Similarly when we are suffering, we may not be able to understand exactly why and how it happened, but we know we have done something. So we should take the medicine and avoid doing those things that will cause it again. That’s how we deal with the laws of karma.

Whenever we engage in sinful activity we are going to suffer. It may be today, it may be next year or it may be next life time. But it’s going to come. The principles of karma are to be understood properly if we want to progress, but the details of karma are often times inconceivable and incomprehensible.

–Radhanath Swami