patram puspam phalam toyam
yo me bhaktya prayacchati
tad aham bhakty-upahrtam
asnami prayatatmanah

If one offers Me with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, a fruit or water, I will accept it. (Verse 9.26, Bhagavad-Gita As It Is)

The simplicity of bhakti is explained in this verse.  Expensive things are not always precious, and precious things are not always expensive.  The Lord accepts simple offerings such as a leaf, flower, fruit or drops of water.  These things are plentiful and easily attained in nature and can be offered by any person, regardless of their social status.  The magnitude of the offering does not matter however, it should be made with cheerfulness, devotion and enthusiasm.  Krishna is looking at the devotee’s heart and love towards Him.  In verses 9.20 and 9.21, it is explained that one can go to the heavenly planets by following elaborate rules and rituals but the benefits are temporary as they come back and cannot escape the cycle of repeated birth and death. However, connecting to God with pure love and devotion can ultimately take us to the eternal destination.  The word devotion (bhakty) occurs in the verse twice emphasizing its importance. 

There are many examples of devotees who were totally dedicated to Lord Krishna and served Him with love and devotion.  Sudama, the childhood friend of Lord Krishna, offered Him a small amount of beaten rice when he went to meet Him.  Because he was poor, that was all that he could afford.  The mood with which one serves God is important. Krishna praised the offering, ate it with great relish and accepted it as the best gift He received.  Sages such as Sanat-Kumara simply tasted the tulasi leaves lying on the feet of the Lord and in this way, became great devotees.  Similarly, Queen Kunti is well known for her unalloyed devotion for the Lord.  She prayed to Lord Krishna – “O Lord of Madhu, as the Ganges flows to the sea without hindrance, let my attraction be constantly drawn unto You without being diverted to anyone else.” (Shrimad Bhagavatam 1.8.42). 

Lord Krishna factually has all that He needs.  But He gives us a chance to come to Him and express our devotion.  He is attracted by the attitude of a devotee who offers Him unmotivated love and simple surrender.  It does not matter how wealthy or scholarly a person is, devotion is all that matters. Krishna gets joy from the complete surrender of the devotee. 

Bhagavad gita 9. 26 2

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