North Texas Hindu Mandir
THE NINE STEPS OF DEVOTION
1. SRAVANAM - developing a desire to listen to the glory and grandeur of God and His creation, and of the leelas of the various awe-inspiring manifestations of Divinity.
2. KEERTANAM - lovingly singing about the Lord in praise of His magnificence and manifold exploits.
3. SMARANAM - remembrance of the Lord, dwelling on the Lord in the mind, reveling in the contemplation of His beauty, majesty and compassion.
4. PAADSEVANAM - worship of the Lord by concentrating on or honoring His feet or Paadukaa (sanctified sandals).
5. ARCHANAM - complete propitiation of the Lord and regular ritualistic worship, through which the aspirant derives inner satisfaction and inspiration.
6. VANDANAM - wherever he turns, the aspirant begins to see the favorite Form of God which he likes to worship, in all beings and objects. Thus he develops an attitude of Vandanam or reverence towards nature and all life.
7. DAASYAM - the devotee sees himself as the servant of God and his fellowman with no sense of inferiority. The supreme Daasya Bhakta was Hanunman.
8. SAAKHYAM - the seeker considers himself to be the confidant and comrade, the companion and friend; God is his Sakhaa or friend, as Lord Krishna was to Arjuna.
9. AATMANIVEDANAM - yielding fully to the will of the Lord, with no trace of ego left. Completely filled with devotion to God, the seeker gains the knowledge of his true self.
This excerpt was taken from the book Jyotir Vigyaan - The Light of True Knowledge, written by Pdt. Munelal Maharaj and Smt. Naveeta Maharaj. This excerpt is reproduced with the written permission of Pundit Munelal Maharaj. Copyright @ 1999 Pdt. Munelal Maharaj.