Lately I have been contemplating my life more carefully, and sometimes it feels like Krishna has different plans for me entirely. I have been very social lately; I have forged new friendships and cultivated those relationships. Unfortunately, I have noticed a pattern that remains constant throughout. Whenever I attempt to forge closer relationships, the Lord, ever the expert arranger, shatters my expectations and hope.
I know that Srila Rupa Goswamipad says in Sri Upadeshamrita that we should cultivate loving relationships, reciprocate affection, and confide in other Vaishnavas. However, I have experienced that typically, they are the ones that break my heart and hurt me the most. I can only liken it to fine-tuning an instrument, or adjusting a signal or radio frequency. Usually, you can hear a slight dissonance when your instrument is out of tune. You attempt to fine-tune your instrument, or focus the signal, and usually, after a few attempts, you can have a clear, focused, and strong sound or signal.
When I first met devotees, I thought they were amazing individuals; they were impressive personalities: charming, loving, and wise. Some of them even struck me as perfected souls, enlightened representatives of the Lord sent to show compassion and love.I saw flickering images of their personality and character. As I tried to focus or strengthen relationships with with them, however, I have only received heartache and pain. I notice that they are flawed, hurtful, and selfish individuals just like ordinary materialistic men.
Perhaps I simply picked up the wrong frequency, but I fear that I set my expectations too high. I misconstrued the flickers and glimpses. I saw glimpses of a life, persona, or character that were just a farce. Just as an actor in a drama plays a romanticized and idealized hero based on fantasy and loft, they were fictional roles. The closer I move in, I feel, the more distorted, depraved, and grotesque the image. The more I am frightened, repulsed, and appalled. The more I retreat, or feel pushed away. Am I simply picking up interference? Adjusting the wrong frequency?
One realization is comforting, although it does not alleviate my emotional anguish. I know He is the only constant, loyal, and loving friend. Everything and everyone else crumbles beneath His lotus feet. Everything erodes, dissolves, and dissipates-- only Krishna remains.