Associating with Family


Question

I have had the impression from some devotees that family & friends, the beauty of nature, inspiring music, etc. are a hindrance to being a devotee. I have a wonderful family including six grand children, who are very loving and spending time with them gives me great pleasure and increases my capacity to love. I see my family and friends as gifts from Krishna and would have a hard time if someone told me I could not longer associate with my family and friends to be a good devotee (if I were to be initiated). Your thoughts?

Answer

H.D. Goswami Profile Picture

Family, friends, nature, etc. are not a hindrance to Krishna consciousness. Our mundane attachment to these things is the hindrance. I often say that the problem with family is not that we love them, but that we don’t love them enough. If we truly love another soul, then we want only the best for that soul. The best is Krishna.

Similarly, rather than think, ‘These people are MY family, MY friends,’ we should see them as eternal parts of Krishna. Somehow Krishna has brought us into a close relationship with these souls. Like all other things in this world, we should see and care for family and friends as eternal souls, rather than extensions of my bodily false ego.

So it all depends on consciousness.