Efficacy of Vishnu Sahasranamam.
Though there are sahasranamams for many deities Vishnu Sahasranamam is the harbinger of all. It is the oldest one and countless people hv recited and reciting as part of their daily prayers and it has the stamp of approval by none other than Sri Krishna . It has all the potentials of being called a Maha Mantra and those reciting the same every day with absolute devotion will enjoy so many benefits by the Grace of the Lord.
There is a story in this respect.Adi Sankara after writing bashyams for Brahma Sutras,Upanishads Bhagavat Gita etc wanted to do a bashyam on Lalitha Sahasranamam euologising Devi. So he asked one of his disciples to bring the book on Lalitha Sahasranamam. When the disciple brought the book Sankara opened the same but to his amazement it was Vishnu Sahasranama book. He scolded him and asked him to go again to bring the LS. He brought another book and to his astonshment that was also VS. Sankara asked his disciple when he wanted to bring LS why he is bringing again and again VS.For that the disciple
answered 'Master,what can I do? . A girl wearing lovely ornaments and clothes commanded me to give the VS to you. You must know my predicament". Sankara with great admiration went into the room for the girl but he could not see anybody. He understood thru his vision that it is nothing but the Devi Herself asking him to do bhashyam for VS first. He with tears prayed 'Mother Goddess you want me to do bhashyam for your brotherís namas first. How merciful you are. I will obey your command'. So stating he started to do the bhashyam for VS first.Such is the famous thing about Vishnu Sahasranamam.
In Baja Govindam Sankara says :
Keyam Gita Nama Sahasram Itheyyam Sripathyroopa bhajasram
Bhaja Govindam Bhaja Govindam Bhaja Govindam Moodamathey II
(In this stanza he compels to recite Bhagavat Gita and Vishnu Sahasranama daily.)
..By reciting the Vishnu Sahasranamam daily cure of many illness, power, tejas, prosperity and all good effects will accrue to the devotee if recited sincerely and earnestly. This is the experience of ever so many persons.
In 1930s and 40s when medical science had not any improvement reciting Vishnu Sahasranamam cured the illness of cholera, typhoid and other illness as people used to perish like flies due to lack of the advanced medicines that are available today which can cure any illness. So the people of those days had to depend mainly on the mercy of God and prayers. So too during World War II when the Japanese were about to attack Madras the whole population of the city was about to be vacated because of orders from the then British Government but at that time Sri Ramana Maharishy advised to recite Vishnu Sahasranama parayana by eight persons and no harm will happen. Amazingly the Japanese planes which came near to the city of Madras turned their direction and moved towards Calcutta for inexplicable reasons. This is a fact which is corroborated in certain books. In North India there is a practice of reciting the Vishnu
Sahasranamam fully for 5 times daily so that the cure of many evil effects of untimely death,escape from accidents etc will happen. By reciting the VS, 5 times a day for 45 days( a mandala) or half mandala will remove all problems is the general belief and many people have been benefited from that.
Sankara,Bhatta, Ragavendra have written elaborate bashyams on the Vishnu Sahasranamam . In effect the recitation of Vishnu Sahasranama daily by all will act as a panacea to all the ills that are plaguing the humanity and will bring harmony and peace everywhere. Of course, it can be asked by reciting this by Hindus only how the whole world will become a place of peace and harmony. The recitation is something like a group prayer and naturally nobody can expect immediate results. But in course the effect will come automatically as prayers are meant for not only one's own uplift but for the whole humanity itself. That is why we say Loko Samastha Sukhino Bavanthu. It is said by an ancient lady saint that if there is a very good human being in this world just for him/her rains will fall everywhere. The sages of yore have written so many things for the welfare of whole humanity and not for the particular people of a particular country. So arguing on this can only lead one to narrow mindedness.
By reciting the Vishnu Sahasranamam daily the chanter , hearer and all will be benefited. In this world there are ever so many things that are happening for which there can't be any explanation as the humanity is still at its infant stage only and can't understand the intricacies of Nature. Scientists with all their latest knowledge could not solve all the problems of the world nor could they understand the mysteries of the Universe. No scientist can predict the origin of lightning and other things of nature except by saying it is the result of positive and negative cloud effects. They also admit that of all the computers the human brain is
the Super computer which can store such vast knowledge that no other computers produced by them can do. So arguments for arguments sake will lead us nowhere as our evolutionary progress has not developed to such an extent. So we must repose faith in the wisdom of the ancestors. When we fall sick we go to a doctor and he prescribes certain medicines and when we take the same we get cured of our illness. We don't question the contents of the medicine or doubt whether we will be cured or not. Why?. Only on the faith of the prescription given by the doctor. The doctor himself has not produced the medicines but some pharmaceutical companies have done research and given the medicines.
The doctor based on the faith in the companies prescribe the medicines. So everywhere faith is the important criterion. So too the same yardstick can be applied here and Vishnu Sahasranamam , if recited with faith will confer the benefits and the test is only recital over a period and faith. The taste of pudding is in eating and not by simply saying. Just like that. So let us believe in the wisdom of millions of devotees who still make it a habit of reciting the Vishnu Sahasranamam and the benefits will come automatically.
Hare Krishna,

Ganapathy Raman

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