Day 177 – Hearts Skipping to the Forest – Govinda-lilamrta

Day 177 – Hearts Skipping to the Forest – Govinda-lilamrta

Day 177: Gaurābda 532, Mādhava Māsa – Daśamī 30 Jan 2019 – Wednesday

Bhakti Bullets

Bhakti Bullets

We have heard that God is love and love is God. Without love and affection we cannot exist. We
should know something. If God is love and love is God, then who is God, really? Love? A sentiment
of the mind? A calculation of the mind only? Or the possessor? Or any person? Or only like a mood
in which men have created Him by their minds? Or is there really no God? We should know the real
truth. What is the meaning of God?
G-O-D:
G—the Generator of the whole world
O—the Operator—managing everything
D—the Destroyer

Spoken by Srila Gurudeva, January 30, 2001 Perth

Prema Flame

Prema Flame

Rasa Varsa

Hearts Skipping to the Forest – Govinda-lilamrta

Kavirāja Gosvāmī now describes the midmorning pastimes.

Kṛṣṇa has left Nanda-bhavana with the sakhās and cows, and they are on their way to the forest, while playing many instruments.

While walking in the dhāma, if you think of materialistic people and their mundane activities, then those very people will steal your energy. If you think of Vraja-bhumi and the glories of the Vrajavāsīs, then their power and mercy will come to you. You will acquire spiritual energy from svarūpa-śakti.

Śrīla Gurudeva would perform parikramā of Vṛndāvana, Govardhana, Varsānā, Navadvīpa-dhāma and Kṣetra-maṇḍala with the accompaniment of saṅkīrtana and also the presence of Mahāprabhu and the guru-varga. Because of this, none of the pilgrims or brahmacārīs became weak.

Śrīla Gurudeva said, “By performing parikramā and having darśana of the prominent pastime places of Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa, Mahāprabhu, and the Vaiṣṇavas, great strength will come. Love and affection will awaken in the heart and one will have spiritual energy. One will never be weak, hopeless or tired.”

If one remains with his body and uncontrolled mind while performing parikramā, thinking of worldly people and impermanent things and talking and joking about useless subject matters, then all his strength will be lost. Why is this? You are in Vraja-maṇḍala, Kṛṣṇa’s Līlā-bhūmi, but there you bring only useless things. What is coming from your mouth? Where is your consciousness? You are not in Līlā-bhūmi. You came to Vraja-dhāma, but your nature, mind, culture, behavior and etiquette keep you far away from the dhāma. You are not following the proper principles therefore you offend the dhāma. This is called dhāma-aparādha. If you perform dhāma-aparādha, then the dhāma itself will send you out, saying, “Why did you come here? Why aren’t you glorifying Radha-krsna?”

When someone comes to the dhāma with a negligent or disrespectful mood, then after one or two days he will lose taste for parikramā or any kind of dhāma-sevā. As a result of this, he will become hopeless and weak.

If anyone has a little love, however, if he stays in the dhāma under the guidance of Śrī Guru and the Vaiṣṇavas, serves them, offers them gifts and hears their hari-kathā, then he will receive blessings. The eyes of Śrī Guru and the Vaiṣṇavas will surely fall favorably on that person who comes to the dhāma with a service attitude. They will think, “Oh, he is working so hard,” And their hearts will melt.

Guru and Vaiṣṇavas appreciate any love we can offer to God, His dhāma, and His devotees. If they see this love in us, then they will reciprocate with their own love. The flow of their love will transfer from their hearts to ours.

Once I asked Śrīla Gurudeva, “Every day you are going on parikramā and conducting big feasts. Do you never become tired or weak?”

“No,” Śrīla Gurudeva said. “Why would I? This is service for the
Guru-varga. They are always with me, therefore I am never weak or hopeless.”

While Kṛṣṇa and His friends enter the forest, they play flutes, buffalo horns, mṛdaṅgas, shenais and all kinds of musical instruments.

The sakhās chant, Jaya kanhaiya-lal kī!” And “Kṛṣṇa kanhaiyā, dāū ji ke bhaiyā.” Other times they sing, “Jaya govinda, jaya gopāla!”

The sakhās loudly sing the names of Kṛṣṇa, as well as many other different songs. This pleases Kṛṣṇa very much and is a nice offering to Vraja-bhumi.

What benefit will come by staying silent like a dumb man or tree trunk? Why did God give you a voice? Why don’t you sing? Are you some silent sage?

Mahāprabhu said, “In kali-yuga, without saṅkīrtana, the anarthas within will not be cleansed and Kṛṣṇa will not manifest in the heart. Let the singing of Kṛṣṇa’s names fill your ears, or else they will be filled with useless or polluting vibrations. To protect yourself from contaminated sound, perform kṛṣṇa-kīrtana and this will protect you.

If one loudly chants kṛṣṇa-kīrtana, then all bad tendencies and moods that lurk in the heart will vanish. When the senses come in contact with kṛṣṇa-kīrtana, they become surcharged with purity and energy.

The cows cannot sing, but they moo in time with the kīrtana. Animals can also do kīrtana. If you blow a conch shell near a dog there is a good chance that he will howl along with the sound. In Purī we see this. When the pujārīs or temple sevakas play the gongs during ārati, many dogs gather around and howl until the ārati is finished.

Similarly, the calves and cows moo and dance with the sakhās as they do kīrtana. The cows lift up the tails and listen to the singing with their long ears. Often, being deeply attracted by the kīrtana as well as Kṛṣṇa’s presence, they look back, and stop moving forward all together.

The flow of Yamunā wishes to back up in order to stay near Kṛṣṇa. This results in whirlpools that cause the lotuses to be washed up on the bank as offerings. The sakhās collect these lotuses one by one and give them to Kṛṣṇa. Sometimes they collect them and make garlands for Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma or the lotus stems are given for Kṛṣṇa and Baladeva to eat.

Flowers and ripe fruits fall from the trees for the service of Kṛṣṇa. Lush green grass covers the forest floor, also waiting for their service to be accepted by Kṛṣṇa. In the forest, as Kṛṣṇa walks step-by-step on the grass, the cows graze behind Him. If Kṛṣṇa does not touch the grass with His feet, the cows will not eat it. They will accept nothing but Kṛṣṇa’s prasāda. Kṛṣṇa knows this and therefore daily walks through the groves of Vraja. If He did not do this, the cows would not eat or drink.

Kṛṣṇa washes His feet and bathes in the water of the Yamunā, and the cows drink that water. Now, we are independent and feel we do not need prasādam or caraṇāmṛta. We feel we do not need the dust of Vraja and we do not offer obeisance. We do not serve with our bodies, nor perform kīrtana. But we do not realize that our body will be stolen by many enemies. Some come in the form of girlfriends or boyfriends, some like mothers and fathers and so-called relatives. They will make us their slave.
We will allow this to happen. We will be slave of these enemies, but do not want to be the servant of the Vrajavāsīs. As long as this mentality is present, eternal relationship with Vraja-bhumi cannot be had.

If one only takes Kṛṣṇa’s prasāda, he will never become sick. Sanātana Gosvāmī used to daily go from Vṛndāvana to Mathurā, and from there, to Govardhana by foot every day. He would not only go to these places, but perform parikramā of them. After Govardhana parikramā, he would return to Vṛndāvana. But he was never sick or tired.

If this body is used in the service of God, Śrī Guru and the dhāma, then so much spiritual power will come. However, if one simply uses the body for serving mundane people, then he will simply be robbed of his energy. This will lead to no benefit at all. This is only karma.

ātmendriya-prīti-vāñchā—tāre bali ‘kāma’
kṛṣṇendriya-prīti-icchā dhare ‘prema’ nāma

“The desire to gratify one’s own senses is kāma [lust], but the desire to please the senses of Lord Kṛṣṇa is prema [love].”

As Kṛṣṇa and His blissful group of friends and cows leave His home and head to the forest, He looks back and sees His mother, father and the other Vrajavāsīs following Him.

Kṛṣṇa stops and says, “Mother, father, please do not come out in this heat. Your youth is behind you. Do not worry, I will come back in the afternoon. If you don’t stay behind mother, how will you prepare for the evening meal? I’m coming soon. I will walk for a while with the cows, they will graze, drink and bathe and then we will quickly return. Don’t worry. Go back home.”

When Kṛṣṇa stops, so do all the cows and boys.

Nanda and Yaśodā say, “Please don’t go.”

Yaśodā Mātā weeps profusely. All the mothers and fathers weep at the thought of being separated for Kṛṣṇa for so long.

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Day 176 – Krsna dances with the Gopis – 15 June 1996

Day 176 – Krsna dances with the Gopis – 15 June 1996

Day 176: Gaurābda 532, Mādhava Māsa – Navamī 29 Jan 2019 – Tuesday

Bhakti Bullets

Bhakti Bullets

Rādhikā’s love is so high that even Kṛṣṇa cannot understand it. Kṛṣṇa can see Rādhikā, but He cannot understand Her bhāva. This bhakti is in the heart of Rādhikā but where is the last fraction of bhakti? That is called śraddhā. It is the last fraction. Uttamā-bhakti, prema-bhakti, and the topmost is madanākhya-mahā-bhāva—but the last fraction is śraddhā. What is that śraddhā? If I am doing kṛṣṇa- bhakti then all of my desires are fulfilled. Keep this barometer in your heart: do I have śraddhā or not?

Spoken by Srila Gurudeva, January 29, 2003 San Francisco

Prema Flame

Prema Flame

Rasa Varsa

Krsna dances with the Gopis – 15 June 1996

Hari-katha by Paramadhyatama Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja, spoken on 15 June 1996, in Houston, published by Bhaktabandhav.com

[The following transcription has been translated from Srila Gurudeva’s discourse in Hindi.]

Sukadeva Gosvami was speaking the Bhagavatam to Pariksit Maharaja who was destined to die after seven days. Therefore, Sukadeva Gosvami started speaking the Bhagavatam to Pariksit Maharaja. The Bhagavatam is filled with tattva-jnana and upon aural reception of this immaculate literature, transcendental wealth and peace will be obtained. Previously, I spoke on the childhood of Krsna. Although Krsna is Parabrahma, He plays like an ordinary child in Vraja. But, He is not an ordinary child. Bhagavan’s pastimes are of two kinds—aisvarya lila and madhurya lila. The pastimes, which a human being cannot do i.e. those pastimes that are manifested by Bhagavan in His Godly feature, are called aisvarya-mayi lila. And, those pastimes that are characterized by unequalled opulence as well but have the opulence covered and thus, the pastimes manifested are of a human-like form, are called madhurya-mayi lila.

The pastimes that Krsna performs in Dvaraka and Mathura are filled with opulence. Krsna displays His Bhagavatta, His Godhood in these pastimes. Although opulence is prominent even in the pastimes of Vrndavana, there is so much sweetness that these pastimes seem human-like. Krsna killed Putana; He lifted Giriraja-Govardhana; He killed Aghasura; yet, He always remained a child and did not assume a huge form. Although He lifted the greatest of mountains, Giriraja-Govardhana; at that time He was a five year old child. Smiling, He lifted Giriraja on the little finger of His left hand. Why did He lift Giriraja on the finger of His left hand? He did so because Srimati Radhika is on the left side of Krsna. Factually, it was Srimati Radhika who lifted Giriraja-Govardhana and not Krsna. Whatever we do is by the help of sakti. Sight, prowess, knowledge, and everything else are aspects of sakti, potency. Krsna only desires and His sakti performs all the activities. He desired to lift Giriraja-Govardhana and His sakti lifted the mountain. The little finger of the left hand is on the extreme left. Hence, being always on the left side of Krsna, Srimati Radhika accomplished this task of lifting Giriraja-Govardhana.

Krsna was a child. Smiling, He lifted Giriraja-Govardhana. But, no one offered prayers to Krsna saying, “Oh You are God.” When Arjuna saw the universal form in Krsna, he offered prayers to Krsna with folded hands.

He said, “Oh Bhagavan Krsna, I called You, ‘Friend,’ but it was wrong on my part.”

But here, Krsna lifted the huge mountain, Giriraja-Govardhana in front of everyone; still, no one offered prayers to Him. Why? The elderly gopas and gopis thought, “Nanda Baba has worshiped Narayana perfectly. As a fruit of his worship, Lord Narayana has entered the body of Krsna and lifted Giriraja-Govardhana. Or else how can this little boy lift this huge mountain?”

What did the sakhas do? When Krsna lifted the mountain, all the sakhas held Giriraja by their sticks. They said, “Krsna is not lifting Giriraja. We are lifting Giriraja by our sticks.”

And what did the kisori-gopis do? Fixing their sight on Giriraja-Govardhana, they thought, “If Giriraja falls, then we will burn him to ashes. You should stay perched on Krsna’s finger.” Therefore, the gopis thought, “We lifted Giriraja-Govardhana by the power of our glance.”

No one thought, “Krsna has lifted Giriraja-Govardhana.”

Indra caused heavy rainfall for seven days. He released many thunderbolts; but there was no effect. At the end, he bowed down and fell at the feet of Krsna. Krsna had convinced the Vrajavasis to stop the worship of Indra and instead, He told them to worship Giriraja-Govardhana. Govardhana is Krsna’s svarupa. He nourishes the cows, calves, and everyone. What does Indra do? He thinks, “I give rainfall and I am worshipable for everyone.” No, this is not true. No demigod performs his actions independently. Being empowered by Krsna, all the demigods perform their duties. If a demigod gives a boon to anyone, then this is only by Krsna’s sakti.

Sankaraji chants, “Rama Rama,” and gives everything to this world.

Durgaji chants, “Krsna Krsna,” and gives everything to this world as well.

Their sakti is not independent. We don’t have any strength to do anything on our own. We cannot even move a finger on our own. If this is not true, then why can’t a person move his finger when he is dying? Therefore, you should understand that everyone’s strength comes from Krsna. Don’t be falsely proud. Don’t think, “I am so wealthy. I am so respected. I am so strong.” Don’t think like this. There was an Indian wrestler called Gaman. He defeated the strongest wrestler of Russia and became the best wrestler in the world. But, when he was dying, he could not lift a glass of water on his own. Whose strength is this? Where does one’s strength go? Hence, no demigod is independent. It is said in the Gita that those who worship the demigods go to the abode of the demigods. But they return from there. Thus, they continue to experience happiness and distress.

Krsna says, “Those who worship Me, attain entrance into My abode. They never fall from there.

yad gatva na nivartante
tad dhama paramam mama

—Bhagavad Gita 15.6

[Those who reach My abode never return to this material world.]

Therefore, you should respect the demigods. Understand that they are empowered by Krsna.

sarva-dharman parityajya
mam ekam saranam vraja

—Bhagavad Gita 18.66

[“Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me.”]

You should respect even a fly.

Krsna says, “Creation, maintenance, and destruction of the material world is carried out by the plenary portions of My expansions. All the potencies have their root in Me.”

mam eva ye prapadyante
mayam etam taranti te

—Bhagavad Gita 7.14

“Those who worship Me easily cross over this material world of maya.”

“Mam-eva means only Me.” Who is saying this? Krsna is. So, Krsna had the Vrajavasis stop the worship of Indra. One day, a demon named Aghasura entered Vraja. He was in the form of a massive python. His body was many miles long. The upper portion of his mouth pierced the clouds and the lower portion stretched out for many miles. He was ready to swallow Krsna. The sakhas and the cows had already entered his mouth. Aghasura did not close his mouth because he was waiting for Krsna to enter his mouth.

Krsna thought, “My sakhas and the cows have entered the mouth of this python.” So, He also immediately entered the mouth of the python. Krsna then placed Himself in the middle of Aghasura’s throat. He became like a burning piece of coal in the demon’s throat. Thus, Aghasura died. Despite meditating on Him for many years, the yogis cannot have Krsna enter their hearts. But today, Krsna and His associates entered the mouth of Aghasura. This is such great mercy. Therefore, no foul smell came from his lifeless body. Why did this happen? What austerities did Aghasura do? Putana was his sister. Assuming the form of a mother, Putana went to kill Krsna. Aghasura was her brother; so why can’t he have a similar destination as well? Krsna gave him a similar destination as well because his sister had assumed the form of a mother. Just by assuming the form of a mother, Putana was given parama-gati. And if she had really come in the form of a mother, then who knows what benediction awaited her? Hence, Krsna gave all the demons an auspicious destination.

After some time Krsna became an adolescent. One day, it was dusk and the moon was shining in the eastern direction. It seemed that the moon considered the eastern horizon as his beloved. It seemed that his rays were decorating the face of his beloved Purva-disa i.e. the eastern horizon. At that time, Krsna remembered the gopis. He took His Vamsi and played a very sweet melody. Each of the gopis thought that Krsna was only calling her. Listening to this inconceivable sweet song of the flute, all the gopis ran to where this sound came from. The gopis left all their household chores behind and ran to Krsna. One gopi was sweeping the floor; another gopi was making rotis; another gopi was decorating herself—but they left everything behind on listening to the flute song and ran from their houses. The rotis were left unattended and the gopi who was decorating herself only put collyrium on one eye and left the other eye as it is. One gopi did not clothe herself properly; yet, she also ran to Krsna when she heard the flute song. On listening to the flute song, one gopi wore her necklace around her waist and another gopi wore her waist belt around her neck. In this way, they left everything behind. Another gopi was serving her husband; but she also ran to Krsna. Becoming bewildered, all the gopis ran to Krsna.

ajagmur anyonyam alaksitodyamah

—Srimad Bhagavatam 10.29.4

Each of the gopis stopped whatever they were doing and being alone, ran to where Krsna was. There was not just one gopi; there were millions of gopis. Even Yasoda Maiya had not heard this sweet melody of the Vamsi; neither did Nanda Baba ever listen to this melody. The sakhas also did not listen to this melody. Only those gopis who were deeply attached to Krsna, could hear this flute song. When the gopis reached the spot where Krsna was, He told them, “O most fortunate gopis, it is very nice that all of you have come here. Welcome everyone. Please say what I can do for you?”

The gopis only stood silently. Krsna saw that the decoration of the gopis was very wonderful to behold. One gopi had only put collyrium on one eye and not on the other. The necklace was around the waist and the waist belt was around the neck. Another gopi had worn her clothes upside down. Krsna smiled and said, “Welcome everyone. If someone takes one step towards Me; then I take millions of steps forward for that person.” This is Krsna’s promise.

In the Gita, Krsna has said:

ye yatha mam prapadyante
tams tathaiva bhajamy aham

—Bhagavad Gita 4.11

[As all surrender unto Me, I reward them accordingly.]

If someone does even a little bhajan of Krsna, then Krsna comes ten times forward to help that person. And if someone goes one step back from Krsna, then He also goes ten steps behind. So, Krsna told the gopis, “Welcome. But now it is the dead of night.” But on that night it was Purnima; the full moon was shining in the sky.

Krsna told the gopis, “It is very dark now. Also, there are dangerous animals in the forest. You have left your crying children, husbands, parents, and in-laws behind. This is not right.”

“Then why did You call us?” the gopis asked.

Krsna did not answer. The gopis asked the same question again. Krsna told the gopis, “Do not delay, O chaste ladies; return to your husbands at once. The duty of a virtuous woman is to serve her husband under all circumstances, regardless of whether his character is good or bad. He may be rich or poor, beautiful and highly qualified, or lame and ugly, but still she must serve him. It is her religious duty (dharma) to do so. You came to see the forest. With her sparkling water, the Yamuna is very beautiful to behold. Many lotuses are blooming on her surface. The cuckoos are cooing. The peacocks are dancing and the deer are prancing. The moon rays are lighting up the entire forest. You came to see this sight and now that you have seen the setting of the forest, you should return to your homes.”

The gopis thought, “Is Krsna being serious? Or is He playing a game? He is a cheater. His words carry many meanings. He is always teasing us. Why is He speaking like this?”

The gopis remained silent for some time. Krsna asked them, “You haven’t returned to your homes yet? You should return to your homes.”

One gopi said, “We will return; but our feet don’t turn the other way around. Our feet only want to stay here. And even if we force ourselves to return; what is the use? Because we have left our minds here. Give our minds back and we will happily return. We don’t have our minds with us now. So, unless You return our minds to us—we will not return.”

Another gopi said, “Who can be a more able guru than You in this world? You have given us such beautiful knowledge. You have told us to always serve our husbands. You enlightened us with transcendental knowledge. The Vedas and sastras say, ‘If Guru and Bhagavan are present before you, then whom should you offer pranama first? You should offer pranama to the Guru first.’ So, You have given us the transcendental knowledge that serving our husbands is the topmost dharma. You told us that a woman should serve her husband regardless of whether he is blind, lame, or dumb. Therefore, we should serve the guru first because You have enlightened us with such transcendental knowledge. Hence, we offer ourselves to Your lotus feet. We will serve You first and then, we will serve our husbands. Isn’t this all right? If what we have said is wrong, then why did You instruct us like this?”

Smiling, Krsna listened to what the gopis had to say. He was also very grave.

Another gopi said, “We heard that You gave the knowledge of the Gita to Suryadeva millions of years ago. In one of those instructions You said:

ye yatha mam prapadyante
tams tathaiva bhajamy aham

—Bhagavad Gita 4.11

[As all surrender unto Me, I reward them accordingly.]

You said, ‘I will reciprocate with one according to the bhajan he does.’ So, we have come to You. We are worshiping You like a guru. If You don’t accept our worship, then You will be guilty of adharma and not us. Because of not accepting our worship, sin will contaminate You. You have also said that a person should abandon all dharmas and surrender to You. So, we are only doing what You have said. We have left all our dharmas and come to You. If You don’t accept our service, then You will be the biggest liar.”

In this way, the gopis refuted all the arguments of Krsna. A gopi said, “Why are we at fault for abandoning our dharma? We see that in this Vrndavana, all the living entities have become enchanted by Your beautiful form and flute song. The stationary beings start moving and the non-stationary beings become stationary. The Yamuna has become still and the trees welcome You by their blooming flowers. The deer run away on seeing the humans; but they come near You now. The cows have become inanimate and are only drinking Your flute song by their upraised ears. They don’t swallow the grass and neither does the grass fall from their mouths. The calves are also in a similar condition. They don’t drink the milk completely and neither does the milk fall from their mouths. The non-moving entities have become moving and the moving entities have become non-moving.

“So, we are women—our nature is very simple and soft. We become bewildered by beauty. So, why have You come before us in this beautiful form of Yours? Why did you make us listen to this sweet flute song of Yours? If we have committed adharma by leaving our husbands, then You are at fault for this and not us. You will be guilty of sin and not us.”

Krsna could not answer any of the questions the gopis put forward. Earlier, Krsna had make the yajna-patnis return home. He told them, “You should return to your homes and serve your husbands.” But, He could not make the gopis return home. Thus, the rasa-lila started. One Krsna danced between each of the sixteen thousand gopis. So, He assumed sixteen thousand forms. Krsna sang in the fifth note.

He sang, “Sa-re-ga-ma-pa.”

But the gopis sang in the seventh note. They sang so beautifully that Krsna said, “Sadhu! Sadhu!” Krsna could not contest with the gopis. Parabrahma Himself lost; He could not dance and sing like the gopis. Among the sixteen thousand gopis, there were sixteen thousand forms of Krsna. What Krsna did was unprecedented. Up until today, no avatar of Krsna has done what He did. Krsna fulfilled the desires of anyone who came to Him. When Rama abandoned Sita in the forest, she went to the asrama of Valmiki. This was part of Rama’s final pastime. Laksmana left Sita in the forest and she became unconscious.

She thought, “Rama has abandoned me? What fault have I done? Someone may have forcibly touched me, but my mind never touched him. But, He has left me? All right; according to His desire, I will not go to the palace.”

Sita was pregnant when she was sent to Valmiki’s asrama. So, she gave birth to two sons in Valmiki’s asrama whose names were Lava and Kusa. She took care of her sons and they gradually grew. Valmiki taught the children and considering Sita to be his daughter, he gave her a place in the asrama where the elderly ladies resided doing bhajan. After some days, Ramacandra desired to do a rajasuya-yajna. He called Vasista and asked, “Guruji, I desire to do a yajna.”

Vasista replied, “You are not qualified to do a yajna.”

“Why?”

“You sent Your wife to the forest. A single man cannot do a yajna. There is no alternative.”

Rama said, “Guruji, please arrange for one alternative.”

Vasista said, “What alternate solution can I arrange for? Then marry another lady.”

“I cannot marry anyone else. Sita is My only wife.”

“Then You cannot do the yajna. This is clear.”

“Guruji, I pray at your lotus feet that You make Me do the yajna.”

Vasista asked, “Why can You not marry again? Your father had 360 queens. So, marry someone else.”

“I cannot do this.”

“Okay. Make a golden deity of Sitaji. This deity will sit on Your left and then, you can do the yajna.”

“I accept this proposal,” Rama gladly said.

A beautiful golden deity of Sitaji was made. The deity looked exactly like Sitaji. But where was Sita? She was in the forest. Wedlock was established between Rama and the golden deity of Sita and the yajna started. During the yajna, it was decided that everyone would rest during the afternoon and the yajna would start from the next morning from eight and end at twelve in the afternoon. Some people would take prasadam and listen to hari-katha from two to four in the afternoon. At that time, the two disciples of Valmiki, Lava and Kusa appeared. No one knew that they were the sons of Rama. They entered the assembly where Kausalya, Kaikeyi, Bharata, Satrughna, Rama, Laksmana, and millions of monkeys and bears were present. On the order of their guru, the two boys recited Valmiki Ramayana. When they described the stay of Rama, Laksmana, and Sita in the forest, everyone bitterly wept. When they went to the forest, Maharaja Dasaratha left his body. Ayodhya seemed like a widow. When they spoke these pastimes, everyone in the assembly became astonished and cried.

When the boys ended their recital, Rama said, “Laksmana, ask these boys about their identities. Ask them who their parents are. Give them a golden plate full of jewels. They have brought great joy to the assembly.”

Laksmana asked the two boys, “Children, tell me the name of your father. What is the name of your mother?”

Lava said, “O Mahatma, You all the Vedas and sastras. The name of the parents of the brahmacaris shouldn’t be asked. Rather, the name of their guru should be asked. We are brahmacaris, so ask the name of our guru. What will happen by asking the name of our parents? Listen to some knowledge.”

Laksmana became shy and thought, “These boys are right.”

The boys said, “The name of our guruji is Valmiki.”

But, the boys didn’t give their identities. Everyone in the assembly thought, “If Rama had sons, then they would look exactly like these boys. These boys exactly look like Rama. Rama is big and they are small; this is the only difference.”

Everyone wondered, “Perhaps these children are the sons of Rama. Sita must be nearby.”

Listening to these boys speak, tears welled in the eyes of Kausalya, Rama, and everyone else. But they could not find out whose children these boys were. Ramacandra called Valmiki and said, “Is Sita in your asrama? I want to meet Sita. Please tell Sita to come.”

Valmiki went and told Sita, “O daughter, Rama is calling you.”

Before Valmiki spoke to Sita, Lava and Kusa had already returned to the asrama. Sita wondered, “Why are my sons late today?” Sita would walk back and forth while waiting for Lava and Kusa. When the two boys returned, Sita put them on her lap and asked, “Why are you both late today?”

The children replied, “Mother, today we went to attend a yajna of a King. On the order of guruji, we recited the Ramayana to the King and His subjects. When we spoke, everyone in the assembly bitterly wept. We could not understand why they wept. We noticed that in the assembly there was a golden deity. This golden deity looked exactly like you. The only difference is that you speak while the deity doesn’t.”

When Sita heard her two sons speak, tears gushed from the eyes of Sita. “Why are you crying mother?” asked Lava and Kusa. They wiped the tears of their mother from the ends of their cloth. But their mother continued to cry even more. How could she tell them that Rama is her husband and that He had left her? She could not tell this to her sons. At that time, Sita thought, “King Rama has left His Queen Sita, but Rama has never left His beloved, Sita. If He had left me, then He would not have had a golden deity of me made for the yajna.”

The pastimes of Rama are heart rending. Those who listen to these pastimes will bitterly weep. And if anyone cries by listening to Krsna’s pastimes, then his eyes will never be dry for the rest of his life. The pastimes of Krsna are wonderful. Rama left Sita, but Krsna can never leave anyone. The gopis defeated all of Krsna’s arguments. The love the gopis have for Krsna is unparalleled. Therefore, when you chant Krsna’s name, then you should also chant His beloved, Radha’s name along with His. Rukmini and Satyabhama were married to Krsna; yet, their names are not chanted as much. The love of Srimati Radhika and the gopis was fathomless. If you want to love Krsna, then you should do so like them. When the rasa-lila started, Krsna was dancing with all the gopis. After some time, the gopis developed a feeling of pride i.e. saubhagya-mada. If a husband follows all the orders of his wife and only loves her, then the wife becomes proud. A lady who has controlled her husband and who makes him follow all her orders is most happy. But, a woman whose husband doesn’t listen to her and who loves other ladies will be very sad. She may douse herself with kerosene oil and set herself on fire. This is greatly anguishing for ladies. They will tolerate everything; but they cannot tolerate the neglect of their husband. They have given everything to their husbands; so the husband’s neglect is intolerable for them. In the West, divorce is normal. Husband and wives divorce each other when they please. But it is never like this in the Vedic culture. If a man proclaims a lady to be his wife even within his mind, then she would become his wife for his entire life.

During the rasa-lila all the gopis became proud. Each of the gopis thought, “Krsna is only dancing with me and no one else. Putting His hands over mine, He is only dancing with me.”

But, only Srimati Radhika saw how Krsna was dancing with all the gopis. She also saw how Krsna was dancing with Her. She thought, “Krsna is a great cheater. Dancing along with Me, He is dancing with everyone else as well. He tells each of the gopis, ‘You are My most beloved.’ Am I not His beloved as well? Where has His love gone? He treats everyone equally. All the gopis think, ‘Krsna is only dancing with me.’ This is very strange.”

Every soul thinks, “Krsna is only pleased with me.” It is like this even with a Sad-Guru. Every disciple thinks, “Guruji only loves me the most.” This is the specialty of a bona fide Guru. This is not meant for Kali Yuga gurus. So, Krsna loves everyone. Due to saubhagya-mada, each of the gopis thought, “Krsna is only dancing with me and not with anyone else. He is not even dancing with Radhaji.”

Radhaji went into maan and thought, “Krsna is dancing with everyone else as well. He considers all the gopis and Me to be one.”

tad saubhag-madam viksamanam ca kesava

Now rasa-lila would stop. Radhaji was in maan; so Krsna wanted to please and serve Her. He wanted to make the pride of the gopis go away. He wanted to proclaim that He loves Radhaji the most. With this intention, Krsna disappeared from the rasa-lila. When He disappeared, all the gopis thought anxiously, “Where is Krsna? Where is Krsna?” Thus, the rasa-lila stopped. Searching for Krsna, all the gopis became mad in separation.

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Day 175 – Taster of Love – Govinda-lilamrta

Day 175 – Taster of Love – Govinda-lilamrta

Day 175: Gaurābda 532, Mādhava Māsa – Astamī 28 Jan 2019 – Monday

Bhakti Bullets

Bhakti Bullets

This human life is a gift from the Supreme Personality of Godhead to realize who we are. This world is like a prison. If anyone is in prison and if he wants to be happy—he is foolish. Jail has not been created to allow us to be happy. We are like refugees. We will have to give up this place. Our eternal abode is in Goloka Vṛndāvana. We are not inhabitants of this place. Those who want to be happy in this world are foolish.

Spoken by Srila Gurudeva, January 28, 2002 Auckland

Prema Flame

Prema Flame

Rasa Varsa

Taster of Love – Govinda-lilamrta

One time at breakfast, though Kṛṣṇa was given many delicious items cooked by Śrīmatī Rādhārānī and served by the hand of Rohiṇī Mātā, He appeared to be neutral and was not speaking to anyone.

Yaśodā Mātā saw that Kṛṣṇa had only eaten half of what was on His plate and she thought, “Kṛṣṇa has no taste to eat. Maybe He is unwell. Why does He not eat properly?”

Worried, she went to Kṛṣṇa and asked Him, “Why don’t You eat nicely? If You don’t eat anything, then I will also fast. Please take something more. Rādhārānī came from so far to cook for You. Why don’t You eat? I will not be able to live if You do not eat.”

“My son is very skinny and does not eat anything,” Vrajeśvarī said to Rohiṇī Mātā in great anxiety. “What can I do?”

Rohiṇī Mātā then took Kṛṣṇa on her lap and lovingly stroked His back, saying, “Please Kṛṣṇa, take something more. Take a laḍḍu.” She kissed His cheek and said, “Please take something. Your mother is very unhappy. Please have some more.”

Śrīmatī Rādhārānī expertly prepares a huge variety of food preparations for the pleasure of Kṛṣṇa. Everything She does is very clean and nice. If Kṛṣṇa does not accept Her service, Śrīmatī becomes very upset.

Sometimes Yaśodā Mātā notices that Kṛṣṇa seems sad and quiet while He eats, and sits there hardly touching what is on His plate. When Kṛṣṇa seems to be in a mood like this,  He is actually trying very hard to hold in symptoms of ecstatic emotion that threaten to manifest uncontrollably when He eats Śrīmatī’s cooking. Externally, it seems that His sad or troubled.

In one such instance, Yaśodā Mātā addresses her son as follows:

“Kṛṣṇa, Rādhā has come from Yāvaṭa to cook for You. She didn’t sleep the whole night. She was making many arrangements for this meal. She has done so much for Your sake, but if You don’t take anything, She will be very unhappy. She will stop coming to Nanda-bhavana. Can’t You appreciate the hard work of others? Please eat nicely.”

Kṛṣṇa said, “Yes mother, I will eat. Don’t worry. I just have one small request.”

“What is that? Yaśodā Mātā asked.

“There are many fresh fruits that grow in the groves of Vraja and are waiting for service. Many Vrajavāsīs have come from their homes with fruits from their houses and food items they have personally prepared. I am feeling sad to not see these preparations. Hearing the glories of Vraja, even the demigods come here with many presentations. If we don’t accept these offerings, then they will be very unhappy and so will we.”

Any person, be he small, big, rich or poor, if he offers Kṛṣṇa something with love, He will accept it. Kṛṣṇa relished Sudāmā’s meager offering of chipped rice. He does not neglect anyone, but has love for all souls. For those who do not get the chance to personally bring their loveful offerings to Kṛṣṇa, He comes to them and steals it.

Yaśodā Mātā’s heart melted. “From tomorrow,” she said. “We will look to see if anyone is waiting with something to offer Kṛṣṇa. They will bring those gifts and serve them to Kṛṣṇa.”

The loving devotee will always make offering of affection to his Lord. When a sadhaka chants gopāla-mantra, he is offering something with love to Gopāla. Chanting a dry mantra is insufficient. You have to offer something and then it will be an action of love.

With love, if anyone offers a fruit, flower, root, or water, Kṛṣṇa says, “I will take that.”

patraṁ puṣpaṁ phalaṁ toyaṁ
yo me bhaktyā prayacchati
tad ahaṁ bhakty-upahṛtam
aśnāmi prayatātmanaḥ
Śrīmad Bhāgavad-gītā

“If my bhakta offers Me a leaf, a flower, fruit or water with love and devotion, I will surely accept that gift.”

Kṛṣṇa cannot be happy if He doesn’t accept offerings of His devotees.

Citraka, Patraka, Raktaka, Bhadra, Bhadrasena have the service of greeting those who come with gifts for Krsna and arranging that their offerings of love reach Him. There are many elder gopīs that bring butter, pomegranates, cherries and many other things. Kṛṣṇa is eager to accept everyone’s love.

When Mahāprabhu was in the Gambhīrā, the bhaktas in Navadvīpa would collect throughout the whole year, many preparations to give Mahāprabhu. They carried these for a month while walking from Navadvīpa to Purī. An arrival, they gave it all to Govinda Prabhu to offer to Mahāprabhu. Every day, Govinda Prabhu asked, “O Lord, people bring You many offerings with so much love, but You don’t accept them. How many times must I lie when they ask me if You have eaten them or not?”

Mahāprabhu said, “Anything that comes should be given to Jagannātha, I don’t need anything.”

Govinda Prabhu said, “They didn’t bring these things for Jagannātha, they brought it for You.”

“No, give it to Jagannātha.”

“If You won’t accept these offerings, I will tell the devotees not to bring anything again.”

Mahāprabhu said, “No, give whatever they bring to Jagannātha.

“I will offer everything to Jagannātha by mind.”

“No give it directly to Him.”

“You are Jagannātha.”

After almost a month there were multiple many roomfuls of this prasādam, but Mahāprabhu would not accept anything. He was setting an example of a renunciant, and only ate a little bit. Govinda Prabhu was also very stubborn and would ask Mahāprabhu again and again to accept the prasāda of the Navadvipa devotees.

One day Mahāprabhu suddenly said, “Alright, how many things do you have? Bring everything.”

Govinda Prabhu immediately began to serve the prasāda to Mahāprabhu. The Lord ate with great relish, until all the rooms that were filled were now empty.

Mahāprabhu asked, “Govinda, do you have anything more?”

“I have something still.”

“Give it to Me.”

“No I won’t give You more.”

“Why not, you said that you do not wish to be a liar.”

“What is left is some dry items and some pickles. I will give You a small amount of these things every day. I won’t give everything to You at once.”

When the devotee takes dīkṣā from Śrī Guru, it means he is receiving relationship, sambandha-jñāna. The knowledge that, “I am Kṛṣṇa’s, I am Gurudeva’s.” But one who gives nothing to Śrī Guru and Kṛṣṇa is not a real disciple. If one does not give anything by body, at least he should give something by mind. But even this is rare nowadays. Now if a disciple is asked, “Can’t you give one tulasī leaf to God?” he will say, “This is not possible for me.”

Such a person’s chanting of harināma and mantra is dry. It as if they simply run like a tape recorder saying, “Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare…” and “He Gopinātha, Hey Gopijana-vallabha,” but without any affection or mood of any kind.

Why do you call Gopijana-vallabha? Is He your servant? Can you not serve Him? This is not the proper process. If a mother has affection for her baby, she will tend to him without bathing and without having to be asked.

We have heard the story of Sanatana Gosvāmī and the brāhmaṇi who cooked daliā for Madana Mohana. She was stirring the daliā with the back end of the stick she was using to brush her teeth. Her two boys Madana and Sadana were crying, “Give me breakfast, give me breakfast,” She put it on their plates piping hot and the boys lips were burning as they tried to eat it very fast.

If you have no love how can you have relationship. How can you expect to enter aṣṭa-kālīya-līlā or asta-kaliya-smarana? The dry chanting of mantra does not work. Service is necessary. The gopīs have love, Yaśodā Mātā has love. Therefore they always serve. Crazy people are lazy and inactive. Karmīs, yogīs, bhogīs and jñānīs, who have no relation with svarūpa-śakti or līlā-śakti, have no affection, attachment, or attraction for God. They run here and there devoid of love.

The sadhaka, at least by mind, must serve in the way that Yaśodā Mātā and the gopīs serve Kṛṣṇa. If you cannot do this practically, then do it by mind.

Bhajana is very deep. You must have a do or die mentality. Who will do or die? Will the body do or die or the soul do or die? The soul never dies. And tomorrow or the day after the body will have to be discarded. Therefore, like candana, you should grind and paste the body on the stone slab of loving service. Then you will be fortunate. Your life will be successful. If you don’t do this, though you might have a big body like an elephant’s, many jackals and dogs will bite and have a huge festival of eating your body slowly.

Therefore, use this body for the sake of God. This is the first instruction. If one does not do this, he will never cross māyā nor enter the eternal world.

Caitanya Mahāprabhu said to Raghunātha das Gosvāmī—

eka kuṅjā jala āra tulasī-mañjarī
sāttvika-sevā ei—śuddha-bhāve kari

dui-dike dui-patra madhye komala mañjarī
ei-mata aṣṭa-mañjarī dibe śraddhā kari

Mahāprabhu said, “Give eight tulasī-mañjarīs to Girirāja, and bath him with a clay pot of water. Start this practice, then everything will run on nicely.”

Another time during breakfast, Yaśodā Mātā noticed that many peacocks, parrots, cuckoos and other animals were all waiting outside the window to offer something to Kṛṣṇa. They had all collected something from the forest. Some brought fresh dates, grapes, cherries and other fruits. There was a small rabbit that had come with small green leaves.

All the Vrajavāsīs hearts have love and they offer this to Kṛṣṇa.

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Day 174 – Krsna is the Controller – 12 July 1996, Vancouver

Day 174 – Krsna is the Controller – 12 July 1996, Vancouver

Day 174: Gaurābda 532, Mādhava Māsa – Saptamī 27 Jan 2019 – Sunday

Bhakti Bullets

Bhakti Bullets

For those who are wanting so many worldly things, for those who are niṣkāma, for those who want one-pointed bhakti of Kṛṣṇa—for all—there is one process: bhakti—to love Kṛṣṇa one-pointedly. Situate yourself in one of the rāsas and chant the holy names and hear pastimes of Kṛṣṇa.
You should know that now you are children—some are older and some are younger. For all—old age is chasing after. All combined effort cannot stop it and one day death will come—for sure. What to do? You cannot take a single farthing with you. What have you collected? You cannot take even a needle or thread, or even a single hair. What you have collected is useless.Spoken by Srila Gurudeva, January 27, 2001 Brisbane

Prema Flame

Prema Flame

Rasa Varsa

Krsna is the Controller – 12 July 1996, Vancouver

Hari-katha by Paramadhyatama Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja, spoken on 12 July 1996, in Vancouver, published by Bhaktabandhav.com

[The following transcription is a translation of Srila Gurudeva’s conversation with the devotees in Hindi]

Devotee: What will happen to these certain devotees who are committing so much Vaisnava-aparadha?

Srila Gurudeva: I am not considering any of their offenses.

Devotee: You are not taking these offenses into consideration, but Krsna is seeing everything.

Srila Gurudeva: I tell Krsna, “Prabhu, You should be merciful to them.” And, Krsna will surely be merciful to them.

Devotee: Maharaja, there is the example of Ambarisa Maharaja in the Bhagavatam. Ambarisa Maharaja did not consider any offense, yet Krsna chastised Durvasa Rsi.

Srila Gurudeva: It is like this.

Devotee: Then what is the fruit?

Srila Gurudeva: The fruit is that they will deviate from the bhakti line.

Devotee: But what if ISKCON breaks up?

Srila Gurudeva: If there are leaders like this, then the devotees will also follow them.

Devotee: But how will the devotees who are not involved be affected?

Srila Gurudeva: They will not be affected. They will transcend this. Those, who are in the lower class of devotion; but yet, who don’t disobey Gurudeva and criticize Vaisnavas, and who are not on the karma-marga and who want to go towards suddha-bhakti, will be unaffected.

Devotee: A question arises regarding guru-avajna.

Srila Gurudeva: Svamiji told his disciples, “Meet with Maharaja. Listen to his hari-katha and respect him.” But they did not listen to him. This is disobeying the guru.

Devotee: We got a phone call from our guru, telling us to not see you. So is it guru-avajna that we are seeing you?

Srila Gurudeva: This is not guru-avajna. It is not written anywhere in the sastras that “Don’t meet with Vaisnavas. Don’t serve them and don’t listen to their hari-katha.” This is not written anywhere.

Svamiji had himself told the assembled devotees that “Narayana Maharaja is my beloved associate. He will give me Samadhi and he will speak hari-katha to you all. He will help you all.”

So, they don’t believe in the words of their Gurudeva? Will a guru say, “Don’t meet with Suddha Vaisnavas?” If he says so then he is not even a devotee; what to speak of being a guru?

Devotee: So, if we disobey our guru and come to see you, then it is not guru-avajna?

Srila Gurudeva: It is not guru-avajna. When a guru tells his disciple to not see a Vaisnava, then he is committing an aparadha, an offense. It will not be guru-avajna. Therefore, Bali Maharaja left his guru. It was not an offense on his side to leave his guru.

Devotee: I spoke this example of Bali Maharaja.

Srila Gurudeva: This is stated in the Srimad Bhagavatam.

Devotee: So, it is not guru-avajna, Maharaja?

Srila Gurudeva: No, it is not guru-avajna. A guru speaks this way to his disciple because of his worldly selfishness. Therefore, it is not guru-avajna. Rather, Bhakti and Bhagavan will be satisfied with the disciple who goes to see a Vaisnava, and they will uplift him in his devotion. As for the guru who speaks as such, they will make him fall down.

If a guru tells his disciple, “Kill this Vaisnava,” then this person is not a guru and his disciple who wants to kill the Vaisnava is also not a Vaisnava. I have never heard from the sastras or from Guru-Vaisnavas that Vaisnavas should be disrespected. I have never heard like this. Instead, it is stated in the sastras that if a guru criticizes Vaisnavas, then he should be forsaken. If the guru doesn’t do Bhagavan’s bhajan, if he criticizes Vaisnavas, and if he doesn’t follow the injunctions of the scriptures; then it is appropriate to leave such a person.

Sripad Madhava Maharaja: In the Gaudiya Kantahara, many slokas are there, which are evidence.

Srila Gurudeva: But they don’t know these slokas.

One such sloka is:

guror apy avaliptasya karyakaryam ajanatah
utpatha-pratipannasya parityago vidhiyate

—Mahabharata Udyoga Parva 179.25

[A guru who is engrossed in sense gratification, who is a fool with no ability to discriminate between proper and improper behaviour, and who is following a different path, devoid of suddha-bhakti, is a false guru. One should immediately reject him.]

A guru who is on the wrong path, who doesn’t respect Guru-Vaisnavas, and who doesn’t follow the injunctions of the sastras, should be rejected. This is clear.

Devotee: If a guru falls, then the disciple should take re-initiation?

Srila Gurudeva: Then the disciple should wait until he finds a suddha-guru.

Devotee: Maharaja, I read one book of Krsna-Balarama Swami, where he said that a guru should be born in a brahmin family.

Srila Gurudeva: This is a lie. He is against bhakti. He sent that book to me, but I refused to accept it. I had it sent back to him and I told him, “You are acting against devotees. You are deviating from the line of bhakti. You have betrayed your guru and Vaisnavas.” My reply to him was very clear.

Devotee: I read a little of that book, and then I realized that it was totally wrong.

Srila Gurudeva: His conceptions are against our sampradaya.

Devotee: Wasn’t he in ISKCON before?

Srila Gurudeva: Yes. I knew him since his childhood. I know all the devotees of ISKCON; I know those who have fallen and I also know those who haven’t fallen. I know them better than they know themselves. Gopala Krsnaji is a very good person. But he is being pressurized to act in a certain way; or else he is not like this.

Devotee: But Maharaja, shouldn’t he not give in to this pressure?

Srila Gurudeva: He shouldn’t give in to the pressure. But, there is not so much strength. He comes to me and asks many questions. He listens and understands my hari-katha.

He told me, “I greatly fear Vaisnavas. I know you very well, but these people are making me act in such a way. What can I do?”

I said, “Shouldn’t you feel sad? If ISKCON becomes against bhakti, then you should reject ISKCON and silently do bhajan. There is nothing superior to bhajan. The leaders who are acting against me are so afraid of me.

Devotee: Maharaja, can you please explain the first nama-aparadha?

Srila Gurudeva: The first aparadha is satang-nindha. The first offense to the holy name is to criticize the sadhus who are engaged in chanting harinama and in doing bhajan. These Vaisnavas should not be criticized. A man doesn’t offend guru as easily. He will respect his guru who gave him harinama and diksa. Only a degraded person will criticize his guru; or else no one will offend their guru. They know the glories of Sri Guru. But a person thinks of a Vaisnava to be like him. Although the Vaisnava is on the same platform as one’s guru, or although he may be even more advanced than one’s guru; but still, people consider him to be an ordinary person and thus, they criticize him.

Hence it is said, “The first offense to the holy name is criticizing the Vaisnavas. You should be very careful to avoid this offense.” What to speak of criticizing a Vaisnava, you should not even criticize a person who is in samsara, who doesn’t chant, and who is of bad character. You should not criticize him, or else all his bad qualities will enter your heart. Therefore, don’t criticize the Vaisnavas, or else you will suffer in hell for millions of lives. And bhakti will not be had.

Devotee: Shouldn’t we tell a man if he is doing something wrong?

Srila Gurudeva: You should be silent. You should speak to him if he is acting against bhakti. Or else, you should be silent.

Devotee: You seem to make a difference between a Vaisnava and a Suddha Vaisnava?

Srila Gurudeva: It is very difficult to become a Suddha Vaisnava. Actually, it is not that difficult. I never criticize anyone. I have never criticized anyone. So, you should never criticize anyone. But, if a fault is seen in someone, then just be silent because his previous karma is like a fangless snake. This karma will not bite him.

api cet su-duracaro
bhajate mam ananya-bhak
sadhur eva sa mantavyah
samyag vyavasito hi sah

—Bhagavad Gita 9.30

[Even if one commits the most abominable action, if he is engaged in devotional service he is to be considered saintly because he is properly situated in his determination.]

Sripad Madhava Maharaja: A person’s present karma will end very soon when he is engaged in Bhagavan’s bhajan. A burnt rope looks like a real rope, but in reality, by the faintest of touches, it will crumble and fall to ashes. A snake that has its fangs removed cannot kill anyone by its poison.

Srila Gurudeva: Similarly, one who is engaged in Bhagavan’s one-pointed bhajan; who worships only Krsna and who chants and listens to hari-katha; yet if he commits an abominable action like theft or looking at a woman, or any other form of ill behavior—even so, this should not be considered. You should still consider that person a sadhu, because his actions will not bear fruit. All his inappropriate tendencies have been done away with because of practicing bhakti. All the reactions to his karma have been burnt.

Sripad Madhava Maharaja: When you stop a fan, it doesn’t stop immediately. It runs for some time and then stops. Similarly, even a sadhu does something inappropriate, he cannot be punished for that. Bhagavan will Himself correct that devotee. The devotee will automatically be rectified.

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Day 173 – CAN WE EVER BREAK THE ETIQUETTE OR RULES AND REGULATION OF SASTRA?

Day 173 – CAN WE EVER BREAK THE ETIQUETTE OR RULES AND REGULATION OF SASTRA?

Day 173: Gaurābda 532, Mādhava Māsa – Ṣaṣṭhī 26 Jan 2019 – Saturday

Bhakti Bullets

Bhakti Bullets

You should take all these things very seriously. You are fortunate that we have come from India to remind you of all these things. We should try to go deep. What you can do tomorrow—you should do today. And that which you can do today—do at this very moment. No one knows what may happen. There are about more than 400 plane crashes every year. We don’t know when an accident will happen. In this human life you should realize who you are.

Spoken by Srila Gurudeva, January 26, 2001 Brisbane

Prema Flame

Prema Flame

Rasa Varsa

CAN WE EVER BREAK THE ETIQUETTE OR RULES AND REGULATION OF SASTRA?

This sampradāya is called the lampaṭasampradāya. What are the rules, regulations, and etiquette of this sampradāya? The head of our sampradāya is rasajñacūḍāmaṇi and lampaṭacūḍāmaṇi. Kṛṣṇa Himself breaks the etiquette and rules and regulations of śāstra.

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (11.11.32) declares:

ājñāyaivaṁ guṇān doṣān

mayādiṣṭān api svakān

dharmān santyajya yaḥ sarvān

māṁ bhajeta sa tu sattamaḥ

Those who render service unto Me, having abandoned all types of dharma, and having understood the inherent positive and negative aspects of the prescribed duties instructed by Me in the Vedas, are counted among the best of sādhus.

Kṛṣṇa said, “I gave many orders in śāstra, and many rules and regulations to follow: this is good, this is bad, this is right, this is wrong, follow this and you will progress, neglect this and you will lose everything. However, if one transgresses and breaks all rules, neglecting everything, and comes running to Me, following My footsteps, worshiping Me, and making a relationship with Me in a way more dear and close than that of their own family members and own self, then how can I reject such a person? This is anurāga. With deep love they come running to make a relationship with Me. Without Me, they don’t know anything.

In the śāstra, it tells us to wake in the early morning and to bathe, dress, put on tilaka and do ācamana, and then serve Kṛṣṇa and remember His mantra. But then a long time is spent, and the anurāgis don’t like this. What does Kṛṣna like? Kṛṣṇa is in Mathurā, at the home of a caturvedi. One old widow lady is present. She had a son, who was very young, three and a half. His name was Sadana.

In the early morning he would cry to his mother, “I am very hungry.” Babies’ become very hungry. He cried for something to eat in the early morning, and his mother would cook something. She did not bathe or change into clean clothes, wash the cooking pots, or clean the kitchen. She put a pot on top of a few bricks and began a fire. This would occur daily. She would put water in a pot and cook porridge or khicari. How did she stir the pot? She stirred the pot with a tree branch, which she used as a spoon as well as a toothbrush. As she cooked, she brushed her teeth with one side of the branch, and with the other, she stirred the pot on the fire. When the khicari was cooked, she put it on a plate to cool and said to her boy, Sadana, “Now take your breakfast, I am going to bathe in the Yamunā.”

When she went to bathe, Sadana called Madana from the altar room, “Come, You are hungry. I am hungry. Let’s eat!” Then, without a sitting mat, an offering of flowers, puṣpāñjali, or Vedic mantras, Madana came and sat down to eat with Sadana from the same plate. The khicari was very hot, so they blew on it to cool it down. Sadana took a handful of khicari and said to Madana, “It’s so hot, how shall we eat it?” Then Sadana blew on the khicari in his hand till it was cooled and gave his hand in the mouth of Madana. Then Madana took some in His hand and blew on it, then gave it to Sadana. In this way, they ate together happily and then ran off to play without cleaning their hands, leaving the plate lying on the ground.

Sanātana Gosvāmī went on daily parikramā from Vṛndāvana to Mathurā, to Govardhana, and then back to Vṛndāvana. He took darśana of the bhaktas and accepted mādhukarī from the Vrajavāsīs in search of the anurāgī devotees. One day, as he passed through Mathurā, he saw these two boys eating. One ate a little faster than the other, and then they fought over who had gotten a bigger share. Afterwards, they did not wash their hands or mouth, and the remnant plate was left behind. They wore small clothes and began playing gulidaṇḍā. One took a big stick and struck a smaller stick on the ground, making it fly up into the air, and then they chased after it together trying to hit it.

Sanātana Gosvāmī said, “Prabhu, I am very lucky to see You in this attractive form! How are you? With no rules, no Vedic mantra, no ācamana, no bath—this Vrajavāsī cooked for You, and You greedily ate everything up. She was even brushing her teeth with the same stick with which she stirred the pot, and she did not even wash the plate before she gave the offering to You!”

Sanātana Gosvāmī watched this pastime and wept. He began to come every day to see the pastimes of Madana Mohana. One day he called the mother over, and said, “I know your son is very hungry, but you should first bathe and clean the area up before cooking.”

She said, “Yes, Bābā, I will try to follow your request.”The next day she went to bathe in the Yamunā and washed her cloth, then cleaned all the pots and room, but was late to cook—Madana and Sadana were very hungry and were crying. They came to the Bābā, “What did you tell my mother? She is not cooking for us. We are hungry and can’t tolerate it. You are an old man. Your digestive fire has stopped working, therefore you aren’t hungry. But what stupid advice did you give our mother? Now our stomachs are burning, and we are suffering so much!”

Each boy caught one side of the Bābā and began pulling on his cloth.

Sanātana Gosvāmī had written many rules and regulations in Hari-bhakti-vilāsa—this month these flowers, this month this bhoga, this month this seat, and so forth—he wrote so many rules and regulations. But that Sanātana Gosvāmī was very restless now, and was crying before those baby boys. Before, he had no fire of digestion, but now he was also hungry like Lord Hari. Why? Tasmin tusṭe jagat tuṣṭe. If the Lord is satisfied, the universe is satisfied. If you feed God, and He is satisfied, then the entire world is satisfied. If God is hungry, everyone is hungry. Sanātana Gosvāmī thought what to do. When the mother returned, he said, “These boys are very restless and hungry. How many sons do you have?”

“One, Sadana.”

“And this other boy?”

“Who, Madana?”

“Yes, where did He come from?”

“He is the neighbor’s boy.”

She did not know that the Madana-mohana she worshipped came and ate with her boy. Other pujārīs came and rang bells, offered candana, and gave a small plate with food to offer. This was their rule. They gave four or five chapatis and a small bowl of subji, and one small cup of milk—it was limited. Then how would His hunger be satisfied? He wanted to eat a lot. But pujārīs feed Him, using a measurement and scale, “This much is for God, the rest for us.”

Kṛṣṇa said, “This is not possible for Me. These are rules and regulations of śāstra.” Kṛṣṇa continued, “I am not a prisoner, that you give Me four chapattis and I eat like a cow in a pen. I don’t like this. I eat with My sakhā, friend. I eat in front of everyone, with everyone. I will eat from any plate or hand.”

Like the pastime of Dahi-ciḍā-mahotsava in Pānihāṭi—during the feast, Nityānanda Prabhu went to all the thousands of devotees and took handfuls from everyone’s plate, giving it to Mahāprabhu. Mahāprabhu ate from everyone’s pot. Who saw this? Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī, Rāghava Paṇḍita, Śivānanda Sena, and other advanced Vaiṣṇavas. They saw Nityānanda Prabhu taking a handful and giving it somewhere, and Mahāprabhu was accepting everything.

The bhaktas are not controlled by any rules and regulations. Their anurāga is very strong. They have too much anurāga and burn from its heat. This is not a small thing. God drinks and eats this love. Now Sanātana Gosvāmī was feeling bad and said, “Mother, continue cooking as you did before. Never stop cooking and offering like this.”

The next day Sanātana Gosvāmī came and the boys were not crying. Their mother had given a plate. They were sitting down eating and said, “Bābā, thank you. Now don’t come here anymore. Seeing our eating habits, you become disturbed. Therefore don’t come here anymore.” I offer something to God, but am also greedy for this. If the manager gives four rasagullas, and three come back from the offering, he will ask the pūjārī, “What happened to the rasagullā?” If the pūjārī doesn’t give any answer, then the manager will bind and beat him with a whip, saying, “Where did the rasagullā go?”

It is not the rule of anurāga to offer to yourself and not God—this is not bhajana and bhakti.

Raghunandana was the son of Mukunda Datta. Mukunda Datta worshipped a Deity of Gopīnātha. Raghunandana said, “Prabhu, you eat lots of laddus in Vraja-maṇḍala. My mother only gives you a little. I want her to cook a lot, and I will bring everything to you.”

Gopīnātha replied, “Yes, I will carry it here and lock the door, and we will both eat.”

“No, first you eat, and then I will eat; otherwise, my mother will beat me.”

“No, don’t worry. We will eat together. When your mother asks what happened, tell her Gopīnātha ate everything.”

In this way, both Raghunandana and Gopīnātha played together. Raghunandana had pure love for Gopīnātha, and therefore Gopīnātha engaged in loving pastimes with him.

There are millions of followers of rules and regulations. The followers of pure love, anurāga, are very rare in this world. It is very rare to find them.

There are therefore two sampradāyas—one is the lampaṭasampradāya, meaning, the anurāgasampradāya, and the other sampradāya is called vaidhī-mārga, maryādāmārgasampradāya. They follow all rules and regulations and etiquette. If there is some discrepancy in following the rules and regulations, like if the bhoga is meant to be offered at six o’clock, and is not, then a fight will ensue. Vaidhi-mārga means to follow the rules and regulations strictly. Sometimes people without a sufficient fund of knowledge establish some etiquette, or rule and regulation, and demand that it be followed by everyone.

But Kṛṣṇa is hungry in the early morning. If Kṛṣṇa wakes and asks for breastmilk, will Yaśodā Mātā say, “No, you have to wait till six a.m. Before that, I cannot offer You any of my milk.” In the evening, when Kṛṣṇa comes back from cow-grazing, will Yaśodā Mātā say, “Now I will only give You a little drink.” If He is hungry and asks for a laḍḍu, will she deny Him, saying, “No, I will not give a laḍḍu now; otherwise You won’t be able to eat at night.”

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