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Anguished Yearning for the Lord's Presence
Besides his weakened physical condition, he was also suffering from extreme anguish because he felt that he wasn't singing properly and therefore the Lord did not respond. He was sure that it was because of his own shortcomings in his songs that the Lord did not come to partake of his food. And so with great determination and devotion he continued to practice his singing, thinking that in the end he would surely win the grace of the Lord.
In his weakened condition he reached the forest. He was feeling extremely exhausted but he was determined not to eat unless his offering was accepted by the Lord. Now his prayerful song poured out of him in a most melodious and sacred way. The boy just kept on singing and singing all the time, imploring the Lord to come down and accept the food and drink that he was offering with so much yearning. When there was perfect harmony in the feeling, in the tune and in the content of the song, the Lord descended. How did he appear before that cowherd boy? He came as a boy of the same age, wearing the simple ochre cloth of a saddhu, a mendicant holy man.
The young cowherd asked the boy he saw standing before him, "Please, dear friend, may I know who you are? Are you a traveler passing through this forest?" The holy boy answered, "I am the Lord. I am Narayana. You prayed to see me and so I have come to give you a vision of myself." Remembering that the Lord liked the sweet sound of music, the cowherd boy continued his questioning in the form of a most melodious song, "But you don't conform to the description given of the Lord, who is dark complexioned, who wears a white mark on his forehead and who rides a white eagle. The preacher said that is how we can know the Lord. But it doesn't seem to be true. O, dear one, if you are really the blessed Lord, please resolve my doubt and let me see you in your true form."