“M” or Mahendra Nath Gupta
“M” is the author of The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. His subsequent conversations with admirers and visitos were recorded and published in a series called M, the Apostle and Evangelist
The life of the Hindu is continual worship. Night or day, whenever there is leisure, japa. Like the tick-tick of the clock, it should be continuous. If one postpones it till one has finished one’s other works, it will never be possible. There is no end to work, it comes, one after the other. This will continue. I shall bathe when the sea is calm—just as this is not possible, similiarly it is not possible to worship after one has finished all other work.
Therefore, one should find time to worship in between one’s work. You have put rice on the over, well, now repeat His name. If you have a little more time, enter the shrine and perform japa there. You are going somewhere, well, you should take to japa on the way. To practise in this way, to repeat His name in between your worldly duties, is the best and in doing so, you will succeed. Why did Sri Ramakrishna say this? He is the world-preceptor, you see. He taught it for the good of humanity. Our worldly duties leave us but little time, so in whatever circumstances you are, in every condition repeat His name. How to renounce work or shorten it, the skill of it has also been shown by Him. These are not the words of some man. They have been taught by Him who is the avatara, who is the guru, the friend, for our good.
Karma-kanda or vedic activity, is it so easy? It takes away the whoel time. That is why it is said: “Whatever karma you do, offer Me its fruit. Remember that you are doing it all for Me, that will do. Instead of a bondage, this very work will give you freedom.”
Again, how nicely has Sri Ramakrishna said about shortening work! For example, those who have not already married should not go in for it. Where is the time after marriage? Earning for the family and a host of worries. And those who have married are taught to live with their wives like brother and sister after begetting a child or two. In other words, with a host of children, where is the time? Bringing them up, teaching them education, and then marrying away the daughters—what a bother! That is why he taught how to shorten work from the beginning. Those who listen to him and act upon his advice will reap its fruit.
“Whatever you do, whether you take food, whether you perform homa, or give in charity or take to austerities, offer them all to Me.” This is the advice of Sri Krishna in the Gita. Thus, every activity should be performed with this idea that everything is for Him. In between all works, whenever there is leisure, it should be spent in japa.”