Saturday, June 3, 2017

Home Sri Gurvastakam Print Category: 2000 Saturday, 02 December 2000 Last Updated: Saturday, 13 February 2016 Views: 13955 Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja For Srila Gurudeva's Disappearance Day Meditation Center, Germany December 2, 2000 (am) Guruvastakam 500 Symptoms of Sri Guru First of all, I offer my heartly dandavat pranamas unto the lotus feet of my Guru Maharaja, nitya-lila€pravista om visnupada Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja and also my dandavat pranamas unto the lotus feet of my siksa-guru, nitya-lila€ pravista om visnupada Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja. I know that I'm neither qualified nor intelligent, but by the causeless mercy of my siksa and diksa gurus, you have all come from around the world to be with me here. I'm especially very happy that many of you from the various parts of the European countries have assembled here to hear harikatha in the line of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Srila Rupa Gosvami, our guru-parampara, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada, my Guru Maharaja and also nitya-lila€pravista om visnupada Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja. Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja, my siksa-guru, had especially inspired me to come, and he engaged me in his service so that I can preach. Otherwise I could not have done so. If anyone is coming to me, it means that he has inspired you and you are coming, by reading his books, by hearing his glories and by his preaching here and there. I have come only to remind you of his glories, and that we should know that he is eternal. His presence is everywhere. Today I want to give an explanation of Sri Guru – what are the symptoms of a bona fide guru – and to show you examples that have been given in the epics [Vedic scriptures]. You can apply this to your own guru. Our Sri Guru is akanda-guru-tattva, Sri Baladeva Prabhu or Sri Nityananda Prabhu, so all teachings should be applied to him and to others who are following this: samsara-davanala-lidha-loka tranaya karunya-ghanaghanatvam praptasya kalyana gunarnavasya vande guroh sri caranaravindam (Sri Guruvastakam 1) ["Just as a raincloud extinguishes a blazing forest fire by showering its rain upon it, Sri Guru, by his rain of divine mercy, delivers the people burning in the fire of material existence, suffering the three fold miseries—€adhyatmika, adhibautika, adhidaivika. I offer prayers unto the lotus feet of Sri Guru who manifests when Krsna's mercy becomes very thick and who is an ocean of auspicious qualities."] Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura has written this Sri Gurvastakam. He has taken the view of Srila Rupa Gosvami and Srila Narottama dasa Thakura, and he has explained all these things. He has written these verses for his gurudeva, but these are actually meant for akanda-guru-tattva, the principle of undivided guru. Srila Narattoma dasa Thakura came from the disciplic succession of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in the line of Gadadhara Pandita. First came Srila Svarupa Damodara, then Srila Raya Ramananda, then came Srila Rupa-Sanatana Gosvamis; and from Srila Rupa-Sanatana Gosvamis, came Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami. After that, in this line, came Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami and Srila Narottama dasa Thakura. There was one disciple of Srila Narottma dasa Thakura named Sri Ganga-Narayana Cakravati Mahasaya. He lived in Balucara Gambhila within the district of Mursidabada. He had no sons and only one daughter, whose name was Visnupriya. Srila Narottama dasa Thakura had another disciple named Ramakrsna Bhattacarya from the brahmana community of Varendra, a rural community of West Bengal. The youngest son of Ramakrsna Bhattacarya was named Krsna-carana. Sri Ganga-Narayana Cakravati accepted Krsna-carana as an adopted son. The disciple of Sri Krsna-carana was Sri Radha-ramana Cakravarti, who was the spiritual master of Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura was so humble that he never allowed anyone to call him 'Gosvami' – Cakravati Thakura was like a family name. "Samsara-davanala-lidha-loka tranaya karunya-ghanaghanatvam." We have forgotten Krsna. First of all, we must understand that we are parts and parcels of Krsna. We are eternal servants of Krsna. But somehow, by chance, we have exercised our independence and intelligence or free will in such a way that we are now in jail. We have forgotten that we are eternal servants of Krsna, and who is Krsna. Now you are recognizing that, "She's my sister, she's my daughter, and he's my husband, my wife, and all this." But everything transcendental we have forgotten. We are so much attached to this world. Maya, illusion, is pulling us very far away from Krsna to this world, into a burning fire. This world is a burning fire from which we cannot escape. She has bound us with iron chains, and what are these chains? They are attachments to this world, to this body, to our relatives and others. We cannot move here and there. We have been thrown into the fire, a hot blazing fire. "Samsara davanala." What is samsara? It is like a forest fire. We once saw in America, in Alachua, a very big fire. It could not be controlled. Even the government could not control it. The fire in the ocean of material existence is worse than a forest fire. We are burning in that, and now we are senseless [unconscious]. If a man is senseless and doctors are cutting here and there, he cannot realize that the doctors are operating. If you are senseless in a fire, you cannot realize that you are in a fire. And that is the pitiful condition, very pitiful. All in this world, except transcendental persons such as guru, are burning in this fire. That is why Krsna sent His associates, very high class of associates. Who are these associates? Gurudeva krpa 300Sri Krsna's causeless mercy has taken the shape of guru, real guru. And this guru, by coming into this world, showers his mercy. In this way, Krsna's mercy is showered everywhere so that the forest fire or ocean fire is subdued; otherwise it will not be subdued. Thereafter, some sense may come to that person who has received the guru's mercy. And the guru, out of pity, will go everywhere to shower his mercy, just like Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja. He went everywhere, out of his own accord – even though nobody called him. As for me, devotees are calling me and giving me so many invitations, so much money also – air fare, air tickets and everything, and managing everything for me, but who managed for Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja? Who invited him and who gave him money? He wanted money, but who gave him? Perhaps he got some by begging. And still he came. Why did he come? 'Samsara-davanala-lidha-loka tranaya karunya.' It is only out of karunya, causeless mercy. Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja went everywhere, all around the world. He knew that he might die at anytime or anywhere, especially during his journey to America in a cargo ship where he suffered two heart attacks, but he never cared about himself, and he came out of India. This is guru-tattva. If a guru is not like this, very merciful to us who are burning in the ocean fire or this forest fire, he cannot be a real guru. He may be kanistha [a neophyte devotee] or madhyama [and intermediate devotee], a somewhat low guru who cannot realize all these things. Our guru-parampara, disciplic succession of gurus, all the acaryas, spiritual masters, have realized this. Sri Vyasadeva wrote all the epics, he divided the Vedas into four, and then he wrote Vedanta-sutra. He was not satisfied, and then he wrote all the Puranas, but still he was not satisfied. Ordinary women, so-called brahmanas, and those who had no qualification to enter into Vedic literature could not understand the very deep meaning of all the truths in scripture. Therefore he wrote Mahabharata, so that anyone can read and be very enthused. They can [mentally] take up swords and fight like Bhima, Arjuna, Duryodhana and all others like them. And in that Mahabharata he gave a jewel. What was that jewel? The Bhagavad-gita, where Krsna states: sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja aham tvam sarva-papebhyo moksayisyami ma€sucah (Bg. 18.66) ["Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me. I shall deliver you from all sinful reactions. Do not fear."] Vyasadeva wrote this to show that we are not the doer, and that only Krsna will protect and save us from our past sinful reactions. Still, he was not satisfied, and he was trying to figure out the reason why he felt this way. And at once, Krsna's mercy in the shape of Narada Muni came. This is 'karunya-ghanaghanatvam.' Narada Muni came, and what did he do? He asked Sri Vyasadeva, "Why are you not satisfied? I thought you were satisfied, but I can see that you are not. What have you done? Can you tell me?" Sri Vyasadeva replied, "O Gurudeva I don't know. I have written so many things, and I am practicing all these things, but still I'm not satisfied. I'm taking your shelter. You are an ocean of causeless mercy, so please shower your mercy. I don't understand anything. Why am I unsatisfied?" Narada Muni smiled and said, "Oh, you have given everything, but you are not satisfied. I know why. You have not told what is the reality. You have not written anywhere that 'krsnas tu bhagavan svayam – Krsna is the original Supreme Personality of Godhead.' The gopis, mother Yasoda and others control Krsna. And most of all, He is controlled especially by Srimati Radhika. Have you written this?" "Oh, I don't know all these things." "You know that Krsna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. You have written it, but not directly. You must write down all these things, and you should realize all these things. "Have you written that mother Yasoda runs faster than Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead?" "Oh, I don't know all these things." "Then what have you written, and how can you be satisfied? Have you written that mother Yasoda twisted Krsna's ears? Has anyone twisted the Supreme Personality of Godhead's ears before? Has Kausalya, Aditi or anyone else done this?" "Never." "Have you written that mother Yasoda bound Krsna with a rope and it could not be untied by any of His sakhis and friends? Even Sridama, Subala, Madhumangala and others could not untie the rope. Then Nanda Baba came, and with vatsalya-rasa, parental love, the knot was opened by him. Have you written this?" "No." "Then what you have written? Have you written that Krsna performed the rasa dance with the gopis? Have you written this? And in that rasa dance, the gopis became tired and Krsna asked, 'Oh, are you tired?' Then He took His pitambara, yellow shawl, and wiped their faces [of the perspiration]. And He tightened their ankle bell that had fallen down. He was ready to massage their feet also. Then Krsna said: na paraye 'ham niravadya-samyujam sva-sadhu-krtyam vibudhayusapi vah ya€mabhajan durjara-geha-srnkhalah samvrscya tad vah pratiyatu sadhuna€ (Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.32.22) ["I am not able to repay My debt for your spotless service, even within a lifetime of Brahma. Your connection with Me is beyond reproach. You have worshiped Me, cutting off all domestic ties, which are difficult to break. Therefore please let your own glorious deeds be your compensation."] "So have you written all these things?" "Never." Then Narada Muni said, "You should realize all these things." Sri Vyasadeva said, "How I can realize all of it?" "Oh, by the mercy of Krsna." And then he gave his mercy. bhakti-yogena manasi samyak pranihite 'male apasyat purusam purnam mayam ca tad-apasrayam (Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.7.4) ["Thus he fixed his mind, perfectly engaging it by linking it in devotional service (bhakti-yoga) without any tinge of materialism, and thus he saw the Absolute Personality of Godhead along with His external energy, which was under full control."] Taking Shelter of Bhakti-devi "You should take shelter of Bhakti-devi. Who is Bhakti-devi? She is Srimati Radhika. Srimati Radhika is the incarnation of bhakti to the highest degree. Her mood is called bhakti. Her behavior, Her activities and everything is bhakti, mahabhava, mohana and madana. Understand? We know only sadhana-bhakti, devotional practice, but there is sadhya-bhakti, the goal. We have no idea what the goal is. Srimati Radhika is the embodiment of that sadhya-bhakti." "Have you seen this?" "Never." "Then you should take shelter of bhakti-yoga." Then Narada Muni gave some outlines on how to do bhakti, which Sri Vyasadeva did. By doing so, what did he see? He saw Krsna with His power, all the sakhis, girlfriends, all the pastimes, and how Krsna came out of the womb of mother Yasoda. He saw all His sakhis – Lalita, Visakha and others with Srimati Radhika. He saw all of Krsna's sweet pastimes. Finally, Sri Vyasadeva became very happy and manifested Srimad-Bhagavatam. Srimad-Bhagavatam is eternal, and yet it manifested here from his pen. So, this is 'samsara-davanala-lidha-loka tranaya karunya-ghanaghanatvam.' And then Sri Vyasadeva became perfect. He saw that his son, Sukadeva Gosvami, was a nirvisesa-vadi, an impersonalist, and he wanted to always be in samadhi, trance of brahma – "Aham brahmasmi, aham brahmasmi, I am spirit." He became very worried, and he wanted to save him. He sent so many messages to catch the 'parrot' who was actually Sukadeva Gosvami, and somehow he came, automatically, by hearing these two slokas of Srimad-Bhagavatam: barhapidam nata-vara-vapuh karnayoh karnikaram bibhrad vasah kanaka-kapisam vaijayantam ca malam randhran venor adhara-sudhayaparayan gopa vrndair vrndaranyam sva-pada-ramanam pravisad gita-kirtih (Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.21.5) ["Wearing a peacock-feather ornament upon His head, blue karnikara flowers on His ears, a yellow garment as brilliant as gold, and the Vaijayanti garland, Lord Krsna exhibited His transcendental form as the greatest of dancers as He entered the forest of Vrndavana, beautifying it with the marks of His footprints. He filled the holes of His flute with the nectar of His lips, and the cowherd boys sang His glories."] And the other sloka was: aho baki yam stana-kala-kutam jighamsayapayayad apy asadhvi lebhe gatim dhatry-ucitam tato 'nyam kam va€dayalum saranam vrajema (Srimad-Bhagavatam 3.2.23) ["Alas, how shall I take shelter of one more merciful than He who granted the position of mother to a she-demon (Putana) although she was unfaithful and she prepared deadly poison to be sucked from her breast?"] These slokas attracted Sukadeva Gosvami At once, he came to Sri Vyasadeva and fell flat at his lotus feet. For whom Sri Vyasadeva had been calling, "O putra, putra, putra – Oh, my dear son, me dear son, my dear son," now he is coming automatically. Sri Vyasadeva was not calling directly, rather he was calling by the slokas (verses). And he told him, "You should read Srimad-Bhagavatam with me here." In this way, Vyasadeva taught his son Sukadeva Srimad-Bhagavatam. Srila Sukadeva Gosvami became perfect by hearing Srimad-Bhagavatam from Sri Vyasadeva. Then, out of pity, to save Pariksit Maharaja, Sukadeva Gosvami went to him, even though no one had invited him. This is guru-tattva. Kali-yuga gurus are not like that. They can repent, but after some time they will fall down. First they will wear wooden sandals and be very renounced, not wearing any clothes, going about in their naked bodies. But after some time, they will fall down with their so many seva-dasis, lady servants, and all others. So these are not gurus. They will fall down. Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja did not come to make disciples like these. We should understand that his mercy distributed itself throughout the world. Although he was old, he was still going everywhere. You can see the mercy of Sri Vyasadeva, Srila Sukadeva Gosvami, and you can see the mercy of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu – how He traveled throughout India here and there. You can also see how merciful Srila Narottama dasa Thakura was. There are so many stories. You know Srila Prabhupada Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura and Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura; how merciful they were. This is 'samsara-davanala-lidha-loka tranaya karunya-ghanaghanatvam.' Only to save these burning persons are they traveling here and there. 'Kalyana-gunarnavi.' Karunya-ghanaghanatvam praptasya kalyana gunarnavasya.' If one is really guru, he will have all the qualities that Sri Nityananda Prabhu and Baladeva Prabhu have. There is no chance, not even in his dreams, that he will fall down. Never. He will have all these qualities – very merciful, very humble, very sweet behavior, having all kinds of knowledge. The abode of all transcendental qualities will be there. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura is offering his obeisances to that very guru, and to Srila Narottama dasa Thakura, and to the entire guru-parampara. He has told that we should take this as a symptom of a bona fide guru. Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja used to play on mrdanga, drums, and he used to weep when he was singing "Sri Sad-Gosvami Astakam," "Gauranga-bolite habe pulaka sarira", and so many other songs. "Gaura pahun na bahjiya." He has all the qualities that have been mentioned here. We should try to accept such a bona fide guru like this; otherwise we will be cheated and we will repent again and again. Those who have taken initiation from Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja are lucky. We, the disciples of Srila Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Maharaja, are very lucky, very lucky. What are the qualities that a guru needs? mahaprabhoh kirtana-nitya-gita€ vaditra-madyan-manaso rasena romanca-kampasru-taranga-bhajo vande guroh sri-caranaravindam (Sri Gurvastakam 2) ["Sri Guru is inspired by Mahaprabhu's sankirtana and is always dancing, singing, and playing musical instruments. Because he is tasting Mahaprabhu's prema rasa in his heart, like a madman, he sometimes he exhibits ecstatic symptoms—his hairs stand on end, he shivers, and waves of tears flow from his eyes. I offer prayers unto Sri Guru's lotus feet."] Very Expert in Everything gdtaste1A guru must have all these qualities. "Mahaprabhu kirtana nitya-gita." You know that he used to sing very sweet and very powerful kirtanas, playing on mrdanga. Have you seen him dancing? I have seen him, so much. I am lucky to have seen him. I have never seen a dancer like my Guru Maharaja. I have heard that Srila Narottama dasa Thakura and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu also used to dance so much. I have heard and I have read in sastra but I have never seen. But I have seen my Guru Maharaja, holding his danda [staff of the renounced order], at the age of 50, and dancing. And Mohini-mohana prabhu, and Satyavigraha prabhu were very good mrdanga players. In the whole of Bengal, they were the most qualified for playing mrdanga. On the sound of 'tik tik dan,' they used to jump here and there. My Guru Maharaja was also a very good singer. He used to play on the mrdanga also. "Kirtana nitya gita" – he was very expert not only in doing kirtana, but he was also expert in composing and writing. Did you know that Srila Narottama dasa Thakura was expert in all arts? He discovered new tunes on the mrdanga and kirtana. Srinivasa Arcarya has done mano-harasayi. Srila Syamananda Prabhu gave tunes such as raneti; so many different tunes, raga and raginis. All gurus should be like this. If your guru is not like this, then he is not complete guru; something is lacking. And unmada, mad with ecstasy, when dancing during kirtana – they used to be absorbed in doing all these things. Then romanca, hairs standing on end; kampa, trembling; asru, melting heart; and then tears flowing from their eyes. If you are not seeing all these things in your guru, then either you are wrong or he is wrong. If we can have a guru like this, we are very fortunate. I have seen my Guru Maharaja when he was remembering his Guru Maharaja, he could not even utter 'Prabhupada.' There would be tears in his eyes, his heart melting and voice choking. Then he used to tell me, "Oh, you should speak something." I have seen all these things. I am so lucky to see the symptoms in so many of Prabhupada's disciples. Perhaps you have not seen the tears and all these other symptoms in the eyes of Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja. I am lucky to have seen his dancing also. I'm doing pranama [offering obeisances] unto the lotus feet of our guru-parampara, my Guru Maharaja and siksa-guru. A so-called guru cannot do all this. If a guru somewhat tries to copy or imitate, but his heart is not melting, then he is not a real guru. If even for one day, for one moment, his heart has melted, then he can never fall. In his whole life, he can never fall down. sri-vigraharadhana-nitya-nana€ srngara-tan-mandira-marjanadau yuktasya bhaktamsca niyunjato 'pi vande guroh sri-caranaravindam (Sri Guruvastakam 3) ["Always worshiping Sri Vigraha and absorbed in srngara rasa, Sri Guru daily dresses Them with beautiful clothes and ornaments designed to enhance Their meetings. He cleans the temple and performs other services for Them. He also engages his disciples in these services. I offer prayers unto the lotus feet of Sri Guru."] Sri Guru is Always Absorbed 'arati11Sri-vigraharadhana-nitya-nana.' He is doing aradhana, devotional service, of sri vigraha. There are two types of vigraha. Krsna is Himself vigraha, transcendental vigraha. And His vigraha, the Deity, in this world which has been manifested as Radha-Govinda, Radha-Gopinatha, Radha-Madana-mohana, Radha-Syamasundara, Radha-ramana and Radha-Damodara – these are vigraha. Nitya vigraha is Krsna Himself. When guru is in an internal mood, he's serving Radha and Krsna, doing aradhana – but in what way? 'Sri-vigraharadhana-nitya-nana, srngara tan mandira-marjanadau.' He is doing kirtana; this is also aradhana. There are so many various types of worshiping, aradhana. He is doing all these things. If anyone is doing arati and worship of the Deities, it is not sufficient. It should be with romanca (hairs standing on end), kampa (trembling), and asru (tears). He is doing this always. Srngara – there are so many kinds of ornaments and clothes of Sri Radha-Krsna and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Don't apply the same thing that has been given to Sri Radha-Krsna Conjugal to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Don't decorate Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu with peacock feathers and flute. Don't give Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu the ornaments and the cloth of Srimati Radhika just because Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has taken the beauty and the shape of Srimati Radhika, the mood of Srimati Radhika. We should not give Him Her clothes. Don't do all these things. Try to remember this. So what our guru-parampara acaryas have given; we should try to do that; not anything else. Don't do concoctions. 'Yuktasya bhaktams.' They engage their disciples, all the bhaktas – in what? They will say, "Oh, you should dance, you should do this, you should write these things, you should sing all the songs, write and speak bhakti-grantha (Vedic scritures], worship sri vigraha, the Deities, and other services." 'Niyunjato 'pi vande.' Sri Guru is not only doing this himself, but engaging thousands and thousands of devotees in these things. Yet, they are actually doing it. But when a guru falls down, you can know the heart of that disciple. You can also know that his guru has left his guru and he has also left bhakti, his chanting and everything. Then what will be the disciple's condition? He will weep and weep. I think that if you are sincere, then Krsna will be also sincere by giving you a sincere guru. But if you are not sincere, then you may be cheated. catur-vidha-sri-bhagavat-prasada- svadv-anna-trptan hari-bhakta-sanghan krtvaiva trptim bhajatah sadaiva vande guroh sri-caranaravindam (3) ["Sri Guru is always satisfied to see Sri Krsna's devotees relishing four kinds of foodstuffs that have been offered, namely, those which are chewed, sucked, licked, and drunk. Thus the devotees become satisfied by tasting mahaprasada. (That is, by accepting prasada in the mood of service, material life is destroyed and the bliss of divine love is awakened in the heart.) I offer prayers unto the lotus feet of Sri Guru."] Sri Guru Serving Others First Who takes and tastes the four kinds of mahaprasadam? Sri Guru is first giving to all others, and then taking the remnants. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu distributed mahaprasadam to all associates with His own hands. He Himself did not take mahaprasadam first. Srila Svarupa Damodara said to Him, "O Prabhu, if You are not sitting and taking mahaprasadam, then nobody can take." (Caitanya-caritamrta Madhya-lila, 11.202-208). Then He became bound, and thus, the others distributed the mahaprasadam. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Sri Nityananda Prabhu always wanted others to have very sweet and delicious preparations. For themselves, they only wanted laphra (boiled mixed vegetables); not very tasty preparations. They used to take like Srila Rupa-Sanatana Gosvamis. They never even took salt, what to tell of other things. A guru should be like this. Sometimes Srimati Radhika Herself would come to cook for Rupa and Sanatana. Srila Sanatana Gosvami was repenting, but Srila Rupa Gosvami was not repenting. So many mysterious things are there. How? maha-prasade govinde nama-brahmani vaisnave svalpa-punya-vatam rajan visvaso naiva jayate (Mahabharata) ["O King, despite a little amount of pious activities, one's faith in Lord Govinda will never be born unless one takes shelter of foodstuffs offered to Him, the Holy Name and the Vaisnavas"] I am reminding all of you that you should not take prasadam; don't eat, instead you should serve. You should not chant nama, you should serve nama. You should not hear harikatha, you should serve harikatha. A bona fide guru will be like this. First he will satisfy all the Vaisnavas, and by their remnants, somehow he will maintain his life – just like Srila Rupa-Sanatana Gosvamis and others like them. I am doing vandana, prayers, to a guru like this. sri-radhika-madhavayor apara- madhurya-lila-guna-rupa-namnam prati-ksanasvadana-lolupasya vande guroh sri-caranaravindam (5) ["At every moment Sri Guru is experiencing intense greed in his heart to taste the unlimited sweetness of the holy names, forms, qualities, and pastimes of Sri Sri Radha-Madhava in Vrndavana. I offer my prayers unto the lotus feet of Sri Guru."] Sri Guru Always Relishing Sri Radha-Krsna's Sweet Pastimes ''Sri-radhika-madhavayor-apara-madhurya-lila-guna-rupa-namnam,' Srimati Radhika and Madhava have so many very sweet, tasteful pastimes. Their names have so much madhurya. For example 'Hare' comes from 'Hara.' What is 'Hara'? Srimati Radhika's beautiful qualities are serving Krsna by Her prema-mayi-seva, Her loving service. She can take the heart of Krsna and control Him. All these are sweet pastimes of Krsna. Apara means unlimited. Unlimited names such as Radha-Damodara, Radha-Madhava, Radha-Syamasundara, Radha-Ramana, Radha-Giridhari. Sri Guru is always tasting, always relishing all these things. We are not relishing. Why? We have no realization of all these things. You are not qualified, but Sri Guru has come to make you qualified like him. What is Sri Guru doing? Internally, he is always relishing all the pastimes of Krsna, and that is why for this world he has become senseless. When you see anyone like Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in the stage of being senseless, what is He is doing? Or Srila Rupa Gosvami, Srila Sanatana Gosvami, and Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami – what are they doing? They have realized their constitutional forms as Rupa-manjari, or other manjari forms, and what are they doing? They are relishing so many sweet pastimes of Krsna internally. 'Lolupasya.' What is the meaning of 'lolup'? A bona fide Sri Guru is always lolup. Lolup is bad for worldly things, but for transcendental things, it is the opposite – it is a very, very attractive thing, and it is a very, very sweet thing. We worldly persons are so much lubdhah, greedy in sense gratification especially in the three W's: wine, women and wealth. But a qualified guru will always have lolya (greed) for the pastimes of Krsna; dancing and relishing all these things. A bona fide guru should be so much qualified in these things, otherwise he is not actually guru. Rather, he may be an abhasa, a shadow or semblance, of guru-tattva. You should try to go very deep. Srila Visvanatha Cakravati Thakura has taken the unlimited ocean of bhakti-rasa, and he has given it in a nutshell. When we realize this, then an ocean of rasa may come [into our hearts]. Try to read like this, on a much bigger scale. If you are humble and sincere, then all the rasa can come. When you read, offer pranama to whoever has written the book, think that he's there, and then pray that you may understand. In this way, very shortly it will come, and then you can realize all the truths within. My heartly blessings to all. I'm praying to Krsna that your coming here will be successful. I want to speak to each and every one of you. I want to speak with all those who have come. I know that you have come with very great hope. I want to speak personally with you. Gradually I will speak with all of you, so that you can try to realize my classes. Prev Next Unconventional Teachers Tour Reports Memorial LibraryArt of Spiritual Life image image image image About Purebhakti We publish in written and audio form the transcendental sound vibrations that have eminated from self realized Spiritual Masters in the line of Sri Krsna and in recent times, His manifestation as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu (1482 AD). logoteal2 Inside Purebhakti Bhagavat Patrika Discourses Rays of the Harmonist Vaisnava Calendar Contact Us Site Contacts Contacts by Location Traveling Teachers Jaya Sri Krishna Top .

Sunday, October 13, 2013

śrī śrī guru gaurāṅga jayataḥ! Rays of The Harmonist On-Line Edition Year-4, Issue 8 Posted: 17 September 2011 Dedicated to nitya-līlā praviṣṭa oṁ viṣṇupāda Śrī Śrīmad Bhakti Prajñāna Keśava Gosvāmī Mahārāja Inspired by and under the guidance of nitya-līlā praviṣṭa oṁ viṣṇupāda Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktivedānta Nārāyaṇa Gosvāmī Mahārāja Accepting Disciples – Becoming a Disciple by Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Prabhupāda prabhupad4 Question 1: Who will attain perfection (siddhī)? Answer: Only those who follow the path of descending knowledge will attain perfection. Logical arguments are never permanently established, whereas the process of hearing from a bona fide source has been established since the beginning of time as the authentic process for achieving perfection. Only those who are engaged in hari-kīrtana twenty-four hours a day are able to attain perfection (siddhī). _____________________ * The process of acquiring knowledge by hearing from a bona fide guru in the succession of authentic spiritual masters is known as avarohapantha, or the descending path. Question 2: Is it proper to consider many different people equal to your spiritual master? Answer: No. A disciple should never disobey the spiritual master nor should he ever deride his transcendental message (śrauta-vāṇī), which has descended through the succession of authentic spiritual masters. He should not dishonour the spiritual master by considering many teachers to be as worshipful as him. My śrī gurudeva is an endless reservoir of mercy. One drop of that mercy is capable of drowning me in the infinite ocean of transcendental ecstasy. Apart from this – that is, apart from receiving shelter at the lotus feet of the Supreme Absolute Truth Vrajendra-nandana Śrī Kṛṣṇa, who is one without a second – there is no other genuine welfare for the living entity. Śrīla Gurudeva used to tell me with great compassion, “You should give up your pride in your scholarly knowledge, in your purity, in your nobility and the like, and come to me. You do not have to go anywhere else. Whatever house, palace or mansion you must have; whatever intelligence, genius or talent you need; and whatever self-restraint or worldly renunciation you require, you will get; just come to me. Let me have the house, the palace, the scholarly qualifications – you should not chase after these things with such intelligence. You should never think that attaining such things is the purpose of life as other, common people do. Question 3: What are the activities of saintly personalities? Answer: The duty of saintly personalities (sādhus) is to completely destroy the demoniac mentality of the living entities, which has developed over many lifetimes. Sādhu means one who stands at the sacrificial altar ready to execute the sensuous, goat-like inclinations of the conditioned human beings with the sharp blade of his words. The sādhu never flatters anyone. If the sādhu is given to adulation and flattery, he is not our well-wisher; rather he is our enemy. Vaiṣṇavas have no inclination to stay in bad company (asat-saṅga). Nevertheless, simply to bestow welfare, they approach those who are implicated in bad association, and through the weapon of their words make them abandon their demoniac propensities, thus bringing them into good association (sat-saṅga). Question 4: What is śrī vigraha? Answer: Śrī vigraha is the deity incarnation of the Supreme Lord (arca-avatāra). He is not a sculpture; rather He is Śrī Vrajendra-nandana Himself. One should perceive the deity and not a statue. Unlike the conditioned soul who inhabits a temporary body, the body and soul of the deity are non-different. The form of śrī vigraha is sat-cit-ānanda – full of eternity, knowledge and bliss – and of all the incarnations of the Supreme Lord, He is the most merciful. Question 5: What is the topmost form of worship? Answer: Among all goals (sādhya) and their respective means of attainment (sādhana), service to Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the darling son of Śrī Nanda Mahārāja, in the mood of conjugal love (mādhurya-rasa) is both the topmost goal and the topmost means to attain it. The very pinnacle of all forms of worship is to serve Him. It is not that the damsels of Vraja accepted Him as their most beloved because they were enchanted by His opulence, for the damsels of Vraja are not even slightly attracted to that feature of Him. Rather, they have spontaneous love for Him. Their only desire is for Śrī Kṛṣṇa to be happy, and it is solely that immense, selfless desire that caused them to accept Śrī Kṛṣṇa as their most beloved. Question 6: What is the easiest way to achieve a tranquil mind? Answer: The mind can only be restrained by performing śrī kṛṣṇa nāma-kīrtana. When one follows the path of karma, jñāna, yoga and so forth, the mind may temporarily become stable, but it inevitably returns to a reactionary state; thus one falls again into an ocean of transience and agitation. Question 7: Is it correct to accept disciples? Have you not accepted disciples? Answer: We should not accept disciples; rather, we must become a disciple. That is, we must constantly remain engaged in serving śrī guru and Śrī Kṛṣṇa. The Vaiṣṇavas (devotees of Viṣṇu, or Śrī Kṛṣṇa) see śrī guru in every object. If we become proud and see ourselves as a Vaiṣṇava, then it will no longer be possible for us to serve śrī guru and the Vaiṣṇavas. “I never do anything of my own volition, and I never will. I only do what Śrī Bhagavān wishes me to do.” Only one who thinks this way, free from the false pride of being the doer and constantly engaged in serving the Supreme Lord, can lead the living entities to their true well-being by awakening in them the inclination to serve Śrī Kṛṣṇa. Hypocritically making a show by declaring “I am not the doer” is not enough. In fact, it is imperative to truly realize that in every situation, I am being impelled to act by the Supreme Lord. I have not accepted anyone as my disciple. All those whom you consider to be my disciples are actually my guruvarga. Question 8: How can we enter in the realm of bhajana? Answer: To associate with someone means to accept something from them. I only accept what I have received from my śrī gurudeva; I do not accept anything from anyone else. I do not engage in any activity outside of the instructions of Śrī Gurudeva, just to fulfil the intentions of others. We should not accept anything from someone for our own use. Whatever someone may offer us with love and devotion to be used in the service of śrī guru and Śrī Kṛṣṇa, we should accept respectfully and use it exclusively to serve the Supreme Lord. This alone grants us welfare. We will only gain entry into the realm of bhajana when we become aware of this secret: we should never look upon any object with the desire to enjoy it ourselves; rather, we should use every object to serve the Supreme Lord. Question 9: Who is the true object of all service (sevya)? Answer: Śrī Kṛṣṇa is the sole object of everyone’s service. He alone is the master of everything and everyone. He is the sole friend of everyone, the only son of every parent, and the only beloved of every girl. When Śrī Kṛṣṇa becomes manifest to someone as their worshipful master in order to accept their service, they automatically give up their service to everyone else. Śrī Kṛṣṇa is the cause of all causes. He is the source of all-pervasive spirit (brahma), of the Supersoul within all beings and within every atom (Paramātmā), and He is the source of all forms of Godhead (viṣṇu-tattva). Translated by the Rays of The Harmonist team from Śrīla Prabhupādera Upadeśāmṛta Questions re-numbered for this on-line presentation _____________________ Śrīla Prabhupadera Upadeśāmṛta is a compilation of Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Prabhupāda’s instructions in question-and-answer form. cc-by-sa Rays of The Harmonist On-line, Year 4, Issue 8 “Accepting Disciples – Becoming a Disciple” by Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Prabhupāda , is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License to ensure that it is always freely available. You may redistribute this article if you include this license and attribute it to Rays of The Harmonist. Please ask for permission before using the Rays of The Harmonist banner-logo.
Who Can Be a Real Guru? by Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Trivikrama Gosvami Maharaja (Portrait of Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Trivikrama Gosvami Maharaja) Excerpts from a lecture by Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Trivikrama Gosvami Maharaja Sri Devananda Gaudiya Matha, Navadvipa 8 March 1998 A Conditioned Soul is Never Equivalent to Guru A person perceives the significance (gurutva) of a substance according to his qualification. Our endeavour to acquire objects with our senses often meets with failure, and we give up trying. Our senses are especially incapable of attaining that which is beyond this material nature. For this reason the scriptures state: aprakrta vastu nahe prakrta-gocara veda-puranete ei kahe nirantara Sri Caitanya-caritamrta (Madhya-lila 9.194) The Vedas and Puranas assess spiritual substance as being perpetually beyond the comprehension of mundane senses. There is a difference of heaven and hell between my narration of the glories of the spiritual master and the narration of one who is really tattva-jna, well-versed in the conclusions of the scriptures. A soul who is conditioned carries egotistical pride in being a disciple; therefore, his descriptions of his gurudeva’s glories lack the potency of one who is a true disciple. My chanting of the holy names of the Lord does not have the same quality as the chanting of a truly qualified person, and the hari-katha spoken by an unqualified person such as me is vastly different from the hari-katha narrated by one who is actually qualified. With his lotus lips the spiritual master initiates a person by uttering the maha-mantra into his ear: hare krsna hare krsna krsna krsna hare hare, hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare. A disciple who is still conditioned is never as potent as his spiritual master in uttering the maha-mantra, because he lacks the qualification of his guru. How Many of Us Are Real Disciples? All of us have accepted a spiritual master, but in doing so, have we acquired the spiritual master’s qualities? Among a guru’s thousands of disciples, how many actually realize his significance? This calls for serious contemplation. Not all disciples of a spiritual master share the same qualification. There is great variation. To formally accept initiation from the spiritual master and to take initiation from him in the true sense are quite different. The disciple receives the diksa-mantras from sri guru, and when he becomes qualified, he too can become a spiritual master. There is no fault in his doing so. But if the disciple himself accepts disciples before he is qualified, he is not acting in accordance with his level of realization. This is the verdict of the scriptures. It is important to always consider a person’s qualification. Sastra tells us that ordinary sound vibration (sabda-samanya) and transcendental sound vibration (sabda-brahma) are completely different. “I am just giving the same diksa-mantras that my gurudeva gave me, and therefore, the effect will be the same.” But this is not so at all. If one accepts formal diksa and does not endeavour to advance, he cannot become a real disciple. Only that disciple who possesses the qualities of a guru as described in sastra can become guru. vaco vegam manasah krodha-vegam jihva-vegam udaropastha-vegam etan vegan yo visaheta dhirah sarvam apimam prthivim sa sisyat Sri Upadesamrta (1) A wise and self composed person who can subdue the impetus to speak, the agitation of the mind, the onset of anger, the vehemence of the tongue, the urge of the belly and the agitation of the genitals can instruct the entire world. In other words, all may become disciples of such a self-controlled person. Such a genuine guru can make the whole world his disciple. He is a gosvami; his senses are under his control. One who is a godasa is subordinate to his senses. Godasa means ‘a slave to one’s senses’ and gosvami means ‘a master of one’s senses’. Their meanings are opposite. Now, when I sincerely analyse my own qualities, the daring concept of becoming a guru is eliminated. If I contemplate becoming guru because I am tempted by the fame and worship that this position easily awards, I will never be able to perform the true function of a guru. A Guru Practices What He Preaches Who is a Vaisnava? kanaka-kamini paratistha-baghini chadiyache yare sei ta’ vaisnava Dusta Mana! Tumi kisera Vaisnava (11) [Desires for] money, women and fame are like tigresses. Those who have relinquished them are indeed Vaisnavas. Vaisnavas alone are pure and detached devotees who can conquer material existence. With this qualification, a genuine guru can make disciples throughout the world. Simply chanting the maha-mantra - hare krsna hare krsna krsna krsna hare hare, hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare, does not indicate a person’s gurutva, qualification to be guru. apani acari dharma jivere sikhaya apani na kaile dharma sikhana na jaya One must teach dharma to the jivas by personally practising it. If one does not practise, he should not teach others. acinoti yah sastrartham acare sthapayaty api svayam acarate yasmad acaryas tena kirttitah Vayu Purana An acarya is one who fully understands the conclusions of the revealed scriptures and whose behaviour reflects his deep realization. He is a living example, for he teaches the meaning of the scriptures by both words and deeds. The above slokas were spoken to emphasize that one who assumes the position of guru and gives instruction to others must himself be following that instruction. If he does not, his preaching will never be effective. If a person takes intoxication and then tells others not to do so, his instruction will carry no potency. The scriptures do not sanction a person becoming guru if his behaviour is improper. They explain that he must have realization of sabda-brahma (transcendental sound vibration), he must be endowed with realization of para-brahma (the Lord’s transcendental form) and have full realization of transcendental subjects, such a krsna-tattva. If he has no such realization, he cannot impart transcendental knowledge to his disciple by speaking mere words. To give diksa means to bestow transcendental knowledge. divyam jnanam yato dadyat kuryat papasya sanksayam tasmad-dikseti sa prokta desikais tattva-kovidaih Hari-bhakti-vilasa (2.3–4) One who is fully conversant with tattva, philosophical truth, knows that the process of diksa can awaken a person’s transcendental knowledge and annihilate the reactions of his sins. Qualification is Crucial One cannot become a guru just by memorizing the verses of scriptures, such as the Vedas, and then concocting an explanation for them. nayam atma pravacanena labhyo na medhaya na bahudha srutena yam evaisa vrnute lena labhyas tasyaisa atma vivrnute tanum svam Katha Upanisad (1.2.23) Eloquent discourses, outstanding intelligence or extensive and astute hearing will not enable one to attain the Supreme Personality. The Supreme Lord selects who He wants to attain Him. Those persons alone are successful and receive His darsana. We need to deliberate on how much of this transcendental knowledge we have absorbed. Many devotees may take shelter of the same spiritual master. Among them, some have been illuminated by transcendental knowledge, while others are still covered by ignorance. It is inappropriate to blame sri guru for this. Such a difference is based on the different qualifications and endeavours of his disciples. A teacher may give the same lesson to all students, but one student tops the class with excellent marks, while another fails miserably, and yet another barely passes. The teacher has taught them equally well, but their results vary according to their ability. In the same way, one cannot become a spiritual master simply by being a disciple, unless one has the necessary qualification. Sri Guru is Endowed with Realizations The Upanisads say “apani apadau – the supreme entity (brahma) has no hands or legs”. This simply tells us that He does not possess material hands or legs. In fact, the verse apani apadau has been spoken to establish His transcendental nature and make sure we abandon our material conception of Him. It does not mean He actually possesses no hands or legs. He is described as having a form of eternality, cognizance and bliss (sac-cid-ananda). What is the meaning of a form composed of sac-cid-ananda? We have heard this from the lips of the previous Vaisnava acaryas and we are repeating that, but in actuality we have no realization of whether that form is soft, or hard like wood or iron. Only those who have experienced His form can become a guru. One who claims to be guru without such realization is a false guru and his attempts at being a guru will fail. “Come! Come! Embrace Lord Jagannatha!” Saying this, the priests may forcibly make a person embrace the Lord. “Oh!” the person cries, “I am embracing Lord Jagannatha!” But what was it like? Did you feel Him burning [in separation] like fire? No, because you do not have experience of Him. Or someone may say, “I touched the deity of Krsna. How cold it was. Since the deity is made of stone, touching Him is like touching ice!” When someone is devoid of transcendental realization, how can he give transcendental realization to others? I myself do not have that transcendental knowledge, but I proclaim, “Come! Come! I shall bestow transcendental knowledge upon you!” Yet how is this possible? Measuring Our Progress bhaktih paresanubhavo viraktir anyatra caisa trika eka-kalah prapadyamanasya yathasnatah syus tustih pustih ksud-apayo ’nu-ghasam Srimad-Bhagavatam (11.2.42) With each morsel of food that a hungry person eats, he simultaneously experiences satisfaction, nourishment and relief from hunger. Similarly, a surrendered devotee, who is engaged in the performance of bhakti, simultaneously realizes his worshipful deity, strengthens his relationship with that deity and becomes detached from this temporary world of material relationships. This is the barometer of progress for a person claiming to be performing bhakti. Has he left material enjoyment? Has he become naturally renounced? Is he still fascinated by material objects pertaining to taste, smell, touch and hearing, or to money, women and so forth, and thus desires to enjoy them? Do we perceive these objects in the same way as one who is tattva-jna and use them accordingly? The following example will clarify this. I may address a lady as “Krsna dasi”, but merely calling her Krsna dasi does not mean I actually perceive her as such. Am I instead nurturing the desire to make her my own servant (dasi)? How can anyone with such desires in the heart become a guru? When transcendental bhakti arises in the heart, one will have realization of the Lord. When a person performs bhakti and develops a relationship with the Lord, he feels attachment to Him and considers Him to be his dearly beloved. He feels related to the Lord in the mood of servitude, friendship, parenthood or amorous affection. It is then that he realizes the tattva of the Lord. If someone were to tell me that they had seen Lord Krsna lying lifeless on the ground, I would not cry or feel upset, nor would I undergo any internal transformation. But if someone were to tell me that my wife had been hit by a bus and he had seen her lying dead. I would immediately begin to lament and weep. We would not be so affected if Krsna left us, and yet we claim to be devotees. When the gopis heard from Narada Muni that Krsna’s severe pain could only be relieved by a devotee’s foot-dust, they immediately gathered up a full bag of foot-dust and said, “Take it right now! Even if we have to go to hell forever, we do not mind.” Have we developed such a relationship with Krsna, or such a service attitude to Him? We keep an account of the money we give to gurudeva and consider ourselves great servants! Does a person keep any account of the money he gives to his wife? Can you show us that account? “Oh, so am I not a guru-sevaka? Do you know not how much I have served him?” We have a barometer for gauging bhakti. A bona fide guru is completely detached from anything material and he is fully acquainted with the tattva-vastu. Presented by the Rays of The Harmonist team CC-BY-SA Published in English for the first time in Rays of The Harmonist – “Jewels from the Ocean of Separation”, No.15 (Karttika 2005) cc-by-sa Rays of The Harmonist On-line; Year-5, Special On-line Edition, "Who Can Be a Real Guru?", by Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Trivikrama Gosvami Maharaja is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License to ensure that it is always freely available. You may redistribute this article if you include this license and attribute it to Rays of The Harmonist. Please ask for permission before using the Rays of The Harmonist banner-logo.

The True meaning of Sri Vyasa - Puja

The True Meaning of Sri Vyasa-puja by Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja Spoken on the eve of Sri Guru-purnima and the Disappearance day of Srila Sanatana Gosvami in Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha, Mathura, 16 July 2008 Translated into English for the first time (Portrait of Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja) Srila Vyasadeva, who is the incarnation of Lord Narayana, was born on the full moon day of the month of Asadha. In India, everyone worships their spiritual master on this day, which is celebrated with great honour and reverence as Sri Vyasa-puja, or Sri Guru-puja. It is essential, however, that we understand the true significance of Sri Vyasa-puja. Merely placing a garland on the neck of Sri Guru or offering at his feet a few flowers and fruits, some money, sweets, or cloth does not mean that real worship of the guru has been performed. The real Vyasa-puja is to surrender oneself completely at the lotus feet of Srila Gurudeva and to fulfil his desires. This means that one should completely offer oneís independence at the lotus feet of Sri Guru in a mood of surrender: ìO Srila Gurudeva, I am offering everything that belongs to me at your lotus feet.î At the time of His initiation from Sri Isvarapuri-pada, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said: ei ami deha samarpilama tomare krsnapadapadmera amrtarasa pana amare karao tumi ñ ei cahi dana Sri Caitanya-bhagavata (Adi-khanda 17.54ñ55) O Gurudeva, I have surrendered My body and everything that is Mine at your lotus feet. I shall follow your every instruction. My only wish is to receive your merciful benediction by which you kindly make Me drink the transcendental nectar of Sri Krsnaís lotus feet. If a person can selflessly surrender in this way, it does not matter whether or not he worships his gurudeva with flowers and so forth, for such worship is just a symbolic act meant to instruct the common people. Real guru-puja cannot be performed until the mood of selfless surrender at the lotus feet of Sri Guru appears in oneís heart. Srila Sanatana Gosvami relinquished not only his home but also his post as prime minister, his abundant opulence, his servants and so on, specifically so he could fulfil the desire of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He approached Sriman Mahaprabhu empty-handed, and feeling, ìNow I am Yours,î he completely surrendered himself to Him. This alone is real Vyasa-puja. What is truly the most desired goal in the world? It is service unto the lotus feet of the divine couple, Sri Sri Radha-Krsna. Serving their lotus feet is undoubtedly our only purpose in life. Although it is extremely rare to achieve this, if one secures the shelter of the lotus feet of a genuine guru, this otherwise almost unattainable goal can be attained. In other words, if we surrender unto the lotus feet of the bona fide guru and practise serving the divine couple according to his teachings, instructions etc, we can attain the transcendental loving service of Sri Sri Radha-Krsna, very soon. Although Sri Krsna Himself is the origin of bhakti, Sri Guru is His incarnation, or manifestation. Therefore, unless a person sincerely and selflessly serves Sri Guru he will not attain bhakti even if he makes millions of endeavours and even if Bhagavan Himself bestows mercy upon him. It should be understood that Sri Guru is non-different from Bhagavan: yasya deve para bhaktir yatha deve tatha gurau tasyaite kathita hy arthah prakasante mahatmanah Svetasvatara Upanisad (6.23) The true import of the scriptures (srutis) is revealed in the hearts of those great souls who have equally the same unflinching bhakti for their guru and the Supreme Lord. The people of Bharatvarsa (India) are indebted to Srila Vyasadeva. Srila Vyasadeva first divided the Vedas and thereafter compiled their essence in Vedanta-sutra. After that he manifested the Puranas and the Mahabharata, yet his heart still remained dissatisfied. Later, in Sri Bhagavat Purana (Srimad-Bhagavatam), by the mercy of Sri Narada Muni, he described the pastimes of Sri Krsna and narrated them to Sri Sukadeva Gosvami. Srila Sukadeva Gosvamiís worship of Srila Vyasadeva, his father and spiritual master, was the first Vyasa-puja. Sri Sukadeva Gosvami was later worshipped by Srila Suta Gosvami. This was the second Vyasa-puja. In this way, the tradition of Vyasa-puja began. Therefore, Vyasa-puja, or guru-puja, has been practised since ancient times. Worship of the guru is performed even before the worship, or puja, of Sri Krsna. Our great fortune is that we are coming in that very parampara, or succession of bona fide gurus, that is comprised of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself, Sri Svarupa Damodara, Sri Ramananda Raya, Srila Rupa Gosvami, Srila Sanatana Gosvami, Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami, Srila Narottama Thakura, Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, Srila Jagannatha Dasa Babaji Maharaja, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, Srila Prabhupada and my gurudeva (Srila Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja) and his god-brothers. Only in this succession of bona fide gurus is the conception of service to Sri Sri Radha Krsna, especially as a maidservant of Srimati Radhika, acknowledged as the topmost goal. The son of Saci-devi, Gaurahari Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who is none other than Sri Krsna but with the mood and complexion of Sri Radha, appeared in this world to bestow this most auspicious gift. Sriman Mahaprabhu Himself did not preach this doctrine but inspired it in the heart of Srila Rupa Gosvami and manifested it in this world through him. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhuís gift ñ service to the divine couple, Sri Sri Radha-Krsna, in pursuance of the moods of Sri Rupa Manjari ñ is solely what He came to give. Although we are so fortunate to be in this parampara, to truly imbibe the concepts of Srila Rupa Gosvami requires sincere and honest effort. Many people who come forward to perform sadhana-bhajana, to lead a life of devotional service, become trapped by the illusory potency of the Lord and become attached to maya in her feature as a woman. In this way they entrench their life in misery. We should be ever alert to this. The Gaudiya Matha is not an establishment intended to facilitate this. What is the purpose of the Gaudiya Matha? It is to sincerely and purely follow the teachings of Srila Rupa Gosvami. The Gaudiya Mathaís very existence is based on one objective alone: to follow the instructions of Sriman Mahaprabhu and Sri Rupa Gosvami by becoming acquainted with their teachings and performing bhajana accordingly. One who leads such a life by remaining under the shelter of a genuine guru actually performs Vyasa-puja. Such conduct alone signifies fitting worship of Srila Rupa Gosvami and our entire guru-parampara. If one wishes to perform sadhana-bhajana by following such rules and regulations then one may stay in the matha, but there is no place in the matha for those nurturing worldly (asat) propensities. You all should clearly understand that the matha is not a place for arranging and celebrating marriages. If one wants to practise bhajana in its purest form, then one should reside in the matha and serve Sri Guru and the Vaisnavas, even though one may receive chastisement from them. Sri Naradaís curse upon Nalakuvara and Manigriva proved to be extremely beneficial for them. In the same manner, the chastisement of Sri Guru and Vaisnavas is also highly auspicious. If a person tolerates their chastisement and continues to reside in the matha, then he alone can truly understand their mercy. This Asadhi-purnima also celebrates the disappearance day of Srila Sanatana Gosvami. For us, Srila Sanatana Gosvami is like an incarnation of Sri Vyasadeva because he has written a commentary on Srimad-Bhagavatam and has manifested the great gem-like scripture, Sri Brhad-bhagavatamrta. Sri Brhad-bhagavatamrta alone is the main foundation of all the scriptures written by Srila Rupa Gosvami, Srila Raghunatha Dasa Gosvami and so on. In other words, all the other books of our Gosvamis manifested from this one book alone. That is why Srila Sanatana Gosvami is even the guru of Srila Rupa Gosvami. On the other hand, Srila Sanatana Gosvami has accepted Srila Rupa Gosvami as his guru. Such are the considerations of guru-tattva. If someone feels proud, thinking, ìI have become guru,î then he is not a guru at all. A guru never makes disciples; rather, he transforms others into guru*. One who is a real guru does not even try to become a guru. _____________________ *The Sanskrit word guru (spiritual master) literally conveys ìweighty with significanceî. bharata-bhumite haila manusya-janma yara janma sarthaka karií kara para-upakara Sri Caitanya-caritamrta (Adi-lila 9.41) One who has taken his birth as a human being in the holy land of India (Bharata-varsa) should make his life successful and work for the benefit of all other people. In other words, he should himself perform the sadhana of suddha-bhakti by accepting the shelter of the lotus feet of Sri Guru and inspire others to do the same. This alone is the highest form of benevolence. All of the sadhakas, or practitioners of bhakti, coming in the line of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu should first become acquainted with the teachings of Srila Rupa Gosvami and the principles of guru-parampara, and then they should preach to others. It is necessary to both practise and preach. And for this end, the effort of all brahmacaris and sannyasis will need to be at least a thousand times greater than the effort a householder makes to maintain his home. Throughout the day, not even a single moment can be spent making any other endeavour. One will have to engage his mind full time in the service of Sri Krsna. It is necessary that one understand Srila Rupa Gosvamiís special contribution to our sampradaya and why Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu appeared in this world. In essence, it was to specify our lifeís highest and most prominent goal: to become a particle of dust at the lotus feet of Srila Rupa Gosvami, to become a maidservant of Srimati Radhika under the guidance of Srila Rupa Manjari. This is the sole cherished aspiration for all our previous guruvarga. May you all be blessed with this conception in your heart and may your life thus become successful. All those who have left their homes to perform devotional service or those who are performing it at home should perform Vyasa-puja after having become acquainted with these teachings and principles. In this way, one should try to please Srila Rupa Gosvami and Srila Gurudeva, and under their guidance try to please Sri Krsna, or Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who is the original Vyasa. This alone is the true meaning of Vyasa-puja. Gaura premanande! Translated by the Rays of The Harmonist team cc-by-sa Rays of The Harmonist On-line, Year 1, Special On-line Edition by Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja , is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License to ensure that it is always freely available. You may redistribute this article if you include this license and attribute it to Rays of The Harmonist. Please ask for permission before using the Rays of The Harmonist banner-logo.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Harmonist-Entering Nitya lila

Sripad Sajjan Maharaja in South Africa

The devotees of Bhaktivedanta International a Hare Krsna Society,invites you and your family and friends to attend lectures on the science of Lord Sri Krsna to be delivered by Sripad Sajjan Maharaja a senior disciple of Om 108 Sri Sri Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada and a sanyassa and siksha disciple of Om 108 Sri Sri Bhaktivedanta Narayan Gosvami Maharaja.

The first programme will be in Pietermaritzburg on the 17th November 2011 at the Newholmes primary school cnr`s Newholmes and Deccan roads Northdale starting at 19h00.

The second programme will be at the same venue on the 18th November 2011 at 19h00.

The third programme will be in Reservoir Hills on Saturday morning 19th November 2011 at 494 Annet Drive,Reservoir Hills strting at 08h00 -09h00 in the morning.All are welcome.

Then in the evening at 17h00 of the 19th November 2011 Maharaja will be in Stanger D 17h00 37 park drive Darnall.Cnr willow and Park drive. 19th November 2011.

20th November 2011 Sripad Sajjan Maharaja will be in Reservoir Hills Nama Hatta,the hosts Bhaktivedanta International Durban commencing at 11h00,Harinam at 10h30.All welcome