There is a beautiful episode in Ramcharitara Manas when Lord Ram visit Guru Matang Rishi’s ashram and meet his devotee ‘Sabri’ while he was in Vanvaas in search of Sita. Sabri asked Lord Ram to preach her importance of devotion and what are the different ways of attaining God. Then to accomplish her request, Lord Ram gave her nine types of devotion that ca lead to one’s accomplishment.
1. प्रथम भगति संतन्ह कर संगा।– First kind of devotion is to be in the company of good people. One should make friendship with good and honest people don’t be in a company of bad people.
2. दुसरि रति मम कथा प्रसंगा॥– Person can also attain enlightenment by discussing and revising various stories of various incarnation of Lord Vishnu.
3. गुरु पद पंकज सेवा तीसरि भगति अमान।– Devotion in the guru feet is the best way of devotion. One should always be ready in service of Guru that is spiritual teacher or great devotee of God.
4. चौथि भगति मम गुन गन करइ कपट तजि गान॥– Fourth kind of devotion is to always speak about God’s greatness wherever you go, leaving all false ego and habit of dishonesty.
5. मंत्र जाप मम दृढ़ बिस्वासा। पंचम भजन सो बेद प्रकासा॥– Devotees who is always engrossed in chanting Mantras i.e name of God (e.g. Hare Krishna Hare Ram) with full faith and no sign of doubt in his existence will certainly attain his ultimate goal.
6. छठ दम सील बिरति बहु करमा। निरत निरंतर सज्जन धरमा॥– One with complete devotion should take renunciation from bad habits and always maintain good character e.g. celibacy, obedient son/daughter, self-control, honesty, true and faithful relationships, helping needy people.
7. सातवँ सम मोहि मय जग देखा। मोतें संत अधिक करि लेखा॥– Seventh kind of devotion is to see me (Lord Ram) in everything like people, animal, tree, universe, etc. and give saintly or innocent people respect like me (Lord Ram) or even more respect than me.
8. आठवँ जथालाभ संतोषा। सपनेहुं नहिं देखइ परदोषा॥– Eight kind of devotion to be satisfied with what you have and don’t be jealous of others achievement and even in dreams don’t find faults in others.
9. नवम सरल सब सन छलहीना। मम भरोस हिय हरष न दीना॥– The last kind of devotion specifies, be very simple, always be honest to others don’t cheat anybody and whatever circumstances comes in your life don’t lose your faith in me (Lord Ram) and never worry keeping in mind Lord Ram is always there with you.