Bhaja Govindam 26: It is impossible to reach God if filled with feelings of hatred (Verse 25)

Śatrau mitre putre bandhau mā kuru yatna vigraha sandhau |

Sarvasminnapi paśyātmānaṃ sarvatrot-sṛja bhedāṅñānam || 25 ||

Meaning – Do not waste your energy in developing enmity with your enemy, friend, son or any other relative. If you are eager to understand the Supreme Essence, then at the earliest, try to develop feelings of equal-mindedness towards one and all.

As discussed earlier, the message contained in Bhaja Govindam is applicable to everyone, be it a learned pundit or an ordinary person who is entangled in worldly bondages. Those who are entangled in these bondages have to necessarily abide by the rules of communal living.

In this world there are many elders who wrongly interpret the teachings of Gurus. Just because the previous stanza preached about discarding the feelings of love and hate towards family members, can a person neglect his family and instead develop love towards the neighbouring family? It will result in lot of problems. Yet, there are many in this world who practice this. This stanza contains a message for such people. It states- ‘My dear, you are living in this world and therefore you should be bound by its rules. Learn to treat your enemy, friend, son and relative with feelings of equality. Do not develop feelings of hatred and enmity towards anyone’.

This hymn emphasizes that it is impossible to reach God when the person is enveloped with feelings of hatred/ enmity towards another being. Isn’t this the essence contained in the story of Maharishis Vishwamitra and Vashishta? Vishwamitra was blessed with the divine vision of Lord Brahma yet was unable to give up feelings of enmity towards Sage Vashishta. For this reason he could not become a Brahmarishi (he who has attained the highest divine knowledge). When Lord Brahma appeared before him for the second time, he asked the Lord, “Have I become eligible to be blessed with the title of ‘Brahmarishi’?” To this the Lord replied, “If Vashishta agrees, then it is possible.” Vishwamitra now approached Vashistha and enquired, “Have I become eligible to be called a Brahmarishi?” Vashishta replied, “The very moment you gave up enmity towards me, you became a Brahmarishi”.

Vishwamitra had undertaken limitless sadhana and penance; yet he had forgotten this most important principle. Vashishta now reminded him of it. Among the crores of living species in this creation, the human being is unique. This is because only the human being is blessed with the ability to obtain the vision of the Lord. This is possible only if the person gives up feelings of love, hate, jealousy and enmity.

This same principle is explained in the Srimad Bhagvatam in this manner- Even after creating innumerable species such as mosquito, fly, ant, animals and birds, Lord Brahma was not content. He then created the human being and after endowing him with the abilities needed for obtaining the vision of the Supreme, Brahma felt peace and joy.

With this we understand that the end goal of a human birth is to obtain the vision of the supreme. We should put in the required efforts in that direction. Simultaneously along with the penance needed to reach this goal, feelings of jealousy, anger etc. should necessarily be given up. Isn’t the story of Vishwamitra a fine example of this?

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