Day 167: Gaurābda 532, Nārāyaṇa Māsa – Dvādaśī 18 Jan 2019 – Friday

Bhakti Bullets

Bhakti Bullets

Don’t disregard anyone, even if they don’t have bhakti. You cannot associate with them—but don’t dishonor them. In your family, if someone is not doing bhajana, you should not make a problem for them. Don’t always disregard them. You should not tell hari-kathā to them, but your behavior should be very sweet.

Spoken by Srila Gurudeva, January 18, 1998 Murwillumbah

Prema Flame

Prema Flame

Rasa Varsa

Govinda Damodara Madhaveti – 11 June 1996

Hari-katha by Paramadhyatama Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja, spoken on 11 June 1996, in Houston, published by Bhaktabandhav.org

[Hari-katha of Nitya Lila Pravista Om Visnupada Astottara sata Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja who is referred to as Srila Gurudeva in the following transcription, which has been translated from Srila Gurudeva’s discourse in Hindi.]

[Sripad Visnu das introduces Srila Gurudeva to the audience after kirtan.]

Sripad Visnu das: Hare Krsna, welcome everyone to today’s evening program. Yesterday, I gave an introduction of Srila Gurudeva in Hindi. So, for the benefit of everyone today, I would like to speak a few words in Hindi and English. So, we are very fortunate to have His Divine Grace Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja among us. He is from Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Math in Mathura and from Sri Rupa Santana Gaudiya Math in Vrndavana. He has come in a very exalted Vaisnava parampara called the Gaudiya Vaisnava disciplic succession, which started from Krsna Himself and great incarnations like Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu appeared in this parampara. About ninety years ago, a great religious leader called Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura established the Gaudiya Math.

“Gaudiya,” means those, who are the followers of Gaura; Gaura is a name for Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. So, he established the society—the Gaudiya Math, to spread the message of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to the entire world. He has many illustrious disciples and one of them was Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Svami Prabhupada, who later on founded the ISKCON society. Srila Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja who is the spiritual master of Srila Narayana Maharaja and also the Sannyasa Guru of Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Prabhupada is another illustrious disciple of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura. Maharaja joined the Gaudiya Math at a very young age. In his early thirties, he accepted the renounced order of life—Sannyasa. Since then, he has been preaching widely all over India and for the first time now at the request of many, many of us, he has come to the West. He is considered an authority in Vaisnava scripture. He is very, very respected in the Vaisnava community. He has authored more than two dozen books, which are glorified for not only the depth of the philosophy, but for their very touching sentiments, which are based on the loving aspects and spontaneity of devotional life. He is well known for very deep, philosophical subject matters. He has the ability to explain them in very, very simple words.

Just a couple of days ago, someone commented that when Maharaja was explaining the pastimes of Vrndavana, he felt as if an expert artist was painting a very beautiful picture in front of his eyes. As I always say, “You cannot glorify a great Vaisnava in few words.” As Maharaja will speak, we will see for our own selves. Therefore, I request everyone to kindly hear attentively and take his instructions to your hearts. We don’t get these opportunities again and again. We also have Bhagavat katha at the Gandhi center from tomorrow until Saturday. You are all kindly invited. The katha will be in Hindi. Today’s lecture will also be in Hindi. I will translate the katha into English for those who cannot understand Hindi. But in the mornings, Maharaja is giving lectures in English. So if anyone is interested, they can contact us for information about Maharaja’s next lecture in English. Thank you once again for coming and joining us.

Hare Krsna.

[Srila Gurudeva begins his class in Hindi]

First of all, I offer my unlimited obeisances unto the lotus feet of my most worshipable spiritual master, Nitya Lila Pravista Om Visnupada Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja. Yesterday, I spoke on whether Bhagavan has a form or if He is formless. I also spoke on whether He has transcendental qualities or not. I want to explain this topic a little more and then, I will speak on the Bhagavat.

Once, we were travelling with Guruji from Mathura to Bengal. We were going to the birthplace of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. On the way, a district magistrate of the railways got onto the train. The railway magistrate was conducting his routine check. He started a conversation with my Gurudeva.

He asked my Gurudeva, “Krsna is God—what is the evidence for this?”

Guruji replied, “What is the name of your father?”

He said, “My father’s name is Paramananda.”

Guruji said, “What is the evidence that you are the son of this person named Paramananda? Do you have any evidence? Where is it written that you are the son of this gentleman? Where did you listen to this? Did you see yourself being conceived?”

“No.”

“Then how have you understood that you are the son of your father?”

“I believed the words of my mother.”

“Believing the words of your mother, you considered a certain man to be your father. On the basis of your mother’s authority, you say, ‘This man is my father and his name is Paramananda.’ Did you ever think, ‘What if my mother lied?’”

“No. I believe my mother.”

“In the same way, the Vedas, Upanisads, and the sastras are our mother. One’s mother may lie, but the Vedas can never lie. They are the most ancient evidence. They have not been written by any human-being. They have been written by God Himself.”

Bones are considered impure. But, the conch is made of a bone. Yet, it is pure; the Vedas say this. Why? If the scientists do an investigation of the conch, they will see that it is so pure, especially when there is water inside it. Stool is also considered impure. No one’s stool is considered to be pure. But, cow dung is considered to very pure. It can also be eaten. People drink cow urine and bathe themselves in it. Diseases go away by this. There are many benefits obtained from cow dung and cow urine. They have many medicinal properties. The Vedas state this and everyone follows what the Vedas have to say.

The Vedas and Upanisads also say that the Tulasi plant is a remedy for all forms of ailments. Gangaji’s water is also considered very pure. The water of the other rivers becomes contaminated; they may become filled with worms. But if you bring the water of the Ganga to America, then you will see that there will be no worms even if you keep the water with you for as long as a year. Who knows how divine this water is? The Vedas state this. Therefore, we have to believe in the statements of the Vedas. The Vedas can be trusted more than even one’s mother. The Vedas are not written by any mundane person. The knowledge contained in the Vedas is called Bhagavat-tattva-jnana. The truth stated by the Vedas and its branches; and the truth especially stated by the essence of the Vedas that is Srimad Bhagavatam, is the topmost truth. All of us follow the Gita. But the Srimad Bhagavatam is higher than the Gita. The Gita is the first book and the Srimad Bhagavatam is the book of graduation. It is the book of prema.

The dharma of the jivas is prema. We may be Hindus or Muslims; but these are temporary designations. Can you say if a tree is a Hindu, Muslim, or a Christian? Which religion does the tree belong to? The soul present in the tree is also a servant of God. Can you say if a cow is a Hindu or a Muslim? The cow also gives milk to the Muslims. The cows also give milk to the Hindus.

The Hindus address the cows as, “Mother.” But Muslims eat the cows. Regardless, the cows give milk to everyone. The cow is everyone’s mother. Can you say if the soul present in a cow is a Hindu, Muslim, or a Christian? I saw millions of cows in Holland. The main source of income for the country comes from the cows. Is the cow a Hindu, Muslim, or a Christian? The soul is present even in a tree and a plant. The soul is present even in the pig. Therefore, it is said that we are, “Sanatana.” We are Vaisnavas—we are the followers of Visnu. We are of Acyuta-gotra. Who is Acyuta? He is Krsna. Hence, it is said in the Srimad Bhagavatam:

ete camsa-kalah pumsah
krsnas tu bhagavan svayam

—Srimad Bhagavatam 1.3.28

[All of the above-mentioned incarnations are either plenary portions or portions of the plenary portions of the Lord, but Lord Sri Krsna is the original Personality of Godhead.]

Bhagavan is not two; God is not two; Allah, Khuda is not two. “God is one,” this is all right. But there are some considerations. There is someone who is the root, the fountainhead. Therefore, in the Srimad Bhagavatam, Krsna is described as:

ete camsa-kalah pumsah
krsnas tu bhagavan svayam

Rama is Bhagavan. Narayana is Bhagavan. Kalki, Varaha, and the other expansions are also Bhagavan. God is Bhagavan; Allah is Bhagavan; Brahma is Bhagavan; Jagannatha is Bhagavan. This is all right. But, there are some considerations. Although the moon is one, the phases of the moon are not the full moon itself. There is one moon; but on different days, different phases of the moon are seen. The quarterly phase of the moon on Caturti will not be called as the full moon on Purnima. But the moon is one and not two. Similarly, Krsna, Rama, Narayana, God, and Khuda are one. But still, there is some difference. Only Krsna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Who has said this? The Vedas, Upanisads, and the Bhagavatam have said so. In the Gita, Krsna has Himself said:

sarva-dharman parityajya
mam ekam saranam vraja

—Bhagavad Gita 18.66

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

This is stated in the Bhagavat and in the Gita.

mattah parataram nanyat
kincid asti dhananjaya

—Bhagavad Gita 7.7

[“O conqueror of wealth, there is no truth superior to Me.”]

The Gita proclaims the supremacy of Krsna. Krsna says, “There is no para-tattva higher than Mine.”

We are all within Him; we are His part and parcels. We are His servants. The souls who have forgotten Him become entangled in this cycle of birth and death. But if someone remembers Him by any way, then he will leave this miserable world and enter the spiritual world, where there is ever-increasing ecstasy. There is no birth and death there. Only Krsna is our brother; only Krsna is our father; only He is the Lord of our hearts. Only He is our everything. When you go there, you will have this realization. We think we are the body, but to think like this is wrong. There is a history in the Srimad Bhagavatam that explains this. All of you must have heard the name of Vyasaji. Who wrote the Gita? Have you heard of the Gita and Ramayana? Indians must know what these scriptures are. The Christians know what the Bible is. The Muslims know what the Koran is. It is the duty of all of you to teach these scriptures to your children. This is not some sectarian conception.

Vyasadevaji is considered as Bhagavan’s avatar. Vyasadeva has written all of the Vedic scriptures after duly deliberating on them. He divided one Veda into four—Rig Veda, Sama Veda, Atharva Veda, and Yajur Veda. To make people understand these Vedas, he wrote another book called the Vedanta-sutra. This book has around 500 aphorisms. One of these sutras is, “Athato brahma jijnasa.” Who is called Brahma? Vyasadeva gave the answer.

janmady asya yatha

—Srimad Bhagavatam 1.1.1

Brahma is He, who creates, sustains, and destroys all of creation. Brahma is He, who rescues us. This world has emanated from Him. He nourishes everyone and all of creation enters into Him at the time of annihilation. After compiling these scriptures, Vyasadeva wrote the Mahabharata. This book describes the war between the Pandavas and Kauravas. They would release such arrows that electricity would come from them. The weapons they used were far more powerful than atom bombs. They would release a certain arrow that would only release snakes. When these snakes would bite the opponents, then they would release an arrow that would release peacocks. These peacocks would eat the snakes. Some arrows would cause heavy rainfall. Some arrows would cause a firestorm. India’s culture was like this in previous times. But the knowledge of science is called asuric-vidya, demoniac knowledge. There is no prema here, so it is called asuric-vijnana. You should love everyone, even the animals.

So, Vyasaji wrote all the Vedic literatures. The Gita is included in the Mahabharata. He wrote all the scriptures. Everyone worshiped him as jagat-guru. One day, he was sitting on the banks of the Ganga near the Himalayas. We have also gone to the asrama where Vyasa resided. His residence is situated on the Ganga near Badrinarayana. So, Vyasadeva went there and thought, “My mind is not happy. I have written so many scriptures. Everyone in the world addresses me as their guru. I have preached so much dharma in this world. I have also written the Gita. In this world there is no scripture like the Gita. But still, I am not happy.”

Meanwhile, Narada Rsi came there. Narada Rsi is not a human being. When Brahmaji was absorbed in thought, Narada came from his throat. He was not born from the union of a man and woman; he was self-manifest. He is the guru of Vyasa, Valmiki, Prahlada Maharaja, Druva Maharaja, and many other personalities. So, he came there and asked Vyasa, “Dear son, are you happy in all respects? You have written the Mahabharata. You gave the knowledge of the Gita to everyone. You wrote eighteen Puranas and eighteen Sakha-puranas. You also wrote eighteen Upa-puranas. Thus, you wrote fifty four Puranas. You also divided one Veda into four. You wrote the Vedanta-sutra as well.”

Sankaracarya, Madhvacarya, Ramanujacarya, and many other highly realized souls have written commentaries on the Vedanta-sutra. A person who doesn’t know the Vedanta does not know anything. He cannot become an Acarya. The essence of the Vedas is given in the Vedanta-sutra.

Narada Rsi told Vyasadeva, “You wrote the Vedanta-sutra as well. But can you tell me why you are not happy?”

Vyasadeva replied, “I do not know this. A patient goes to the doctor for treatment. He cannot say what his ailment is.”

The first chief minister of West Bengal was D.C. Roy. This was just after India had received independence. He was the most renowned doctor of Bengal. He was the most renowned doctor of India. A patient and his brother went to this doctor for treatment. The patient’s brother told the doctor, “Please examine my younger brother and make him all right.”

The doctor replied, “Who is the diseased? Is it you or your brother?”

“My younger brother is diseased.”

“No you are diseased. You are going to die in two minutes.”

And indeed, the elder brother’s heart failed after two minutes and he died. So, a patient goes to the doctor because he cannot treat himself. Vyasadeva told Narada, “I cannot understand why I am not happy. Please tell me the cause of my sadness.”

Narada said, “All right. I will tell you why you are not happy. You have given intellectual knowledge; the knowledge of the mind. But you have not given the knowledge of pure love; the knowledge of the heart. You have given dry knowledge. This will not work. The heart needs love and you have not given this. You have not described the enchanting pastimes of Krsna. You have confused people. You have stated in some puranas that Sankaraji should be worshiped while in other puranas, you have stated that Brahmaji should be worshiped. You have also said that Ganesa should be worshiped. In other places, you have said that Durga should be worshiped. Sometimes you have said Rama is topmost and sometimes you have said Krsna is topmost. You have not duly decided on what should be written. You have not mentioned Krsna’s delightful pastimes. So, if you want the auspiciousness of everyone and if you also want to be happy, then you should describe the sweet pastimes of Krsna. You should write that Krsna is parama-tattva, the Supreme Truth.”

Vyasadeva replied, “I don’t know about the pastimes of Krsna? So how can I write?”

Reassuring Vyasadeva, Narada said, “Write about bhakti-yoga.”

What is bhakti? It is to surrender to Krsna. Avan-manasa-gocara; the eyes cannot see the atma and paramatma in all the living entities. The atma and paramatma are present in the cow, bull, trees, creepers, and in everyone. But we cannot realize. Why? Avan-manasa-gocara; this is incomprehensible for the mind. Therefore, Narada told Vyasadeva to pray to the Lord.

Vyasadeva then prayerfully told the Lord, “I have surrendered to You. I don’t know who You are.”

You should unconditionally surrender to Lord Krsna. Krsna will not be gotten at first. Therefore, you should surrender to a guru who is conversant with the knowledge of the Supreme Truth and who has realization. You should go to this guru who knows Krsna by the power of his bhajan. You should go to such a realized soul.

tad viddhi pranipatena
pariprasnena sevaya

—Bhagavad Gita 4.34

[Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Inquire from him submissively and render service unto him.]

There is only one way to know Krsna. Go to the person who knows Krsna. If you want to study engineering, you should go to an engineering college and not to a college where literature is studied. If you want to become a doctor, go to a medical college. You should go to that college, which teaches what you want to study. Or else you cannot obtain that knowledge.

So, Naradaji told Vyasadeva, “Firstly, you should surrender by bhakti-yoga. You should think, ‘I don’t know anything.’ Thus, a guru will instruct you when you sincerely serve. You should do what he tells you to do.”

Once, a person learnt a little on how to play the harmonium. He approached a teacher and said, “Please instruct me how to play the harmonium better.”

The teacher replied, “I will take a hundred dollars for a month.”

At the same time, another boy approached the teacher. The teacher asked him, “Why have you come?”

“I want to learn how to play the harmonium.”

“Do you know at least a little how to play the harmonium?”

“I don’t know anything.”

“Okay, I will teach you for ten dollars.”

Why? It is very difficult to teach those, who think, “I am very knowledgeable. I know many slokas from the Veda-sastras.” No one can teach a person, who is more than sixty years of age. They have already supposedly learnt everything. A dry piece of wood will not bend. If you try bending it, it will break. But a raw piece of wood will bend. Similarly, the hearts of children are very simple. There is nothing written on their hearts. They will learn anything they see. Therefore, those who are of less age and who have not learnt much, will easily understand this. But it is very difficult to teach those who know something. A person who is pretending to sleep cannot be awakened. A man who is really sleeping can be easily awakened.

Hence, Narada told Vyasa, “Take shelter of bhakti-yoga. Offer yourself to the lotus feet of Krsna. Meditate on Him. Then Krsna will Himself come and show all His pastimes to you.”

After Naradaji left, Vyasa established himself in bhakti-yoga.

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.]

Vyasa saw Srimati Radhika, Krsna, and all His saktis like Lalita, Visakha, and everyone. He also saw Nanda Baba and Yasoda. He saw all the pastimes of Vraja from the beginning. He had darsana just as you see a cinema on the television. He saw all the pastimes. He also saw that those who have forgotten Krsna, who don’t render service to Him, and who don’t remember Him have fallen into maya. They are entangled in the material world of birth, temporary happiness, sorrows, and death. We have been searching for happiness even before creation. If wealth would give us happiness, then why do the wealthy continue earning money? A wealthy man’s grandfather and father have died. And even though he is also becoming old, his greed to earn money doesn’t subside. So, if he has not obtained happiness, will you obtain it by trying to becoming wealthy? Remember that the entire wealth of the world cannot prolong the existence of a man for a single minute. You should also remember that nothing of this world will go with you after you leave your body.

Hence, Vyasaji saw that the conditioned souls have forgotten Bhagavan Krsna and are entangled in the cycle of birth and death. And those, who remember Krsna and chant His names like Ajamila and Valmiki did, will easily cross over this ocean of birth and death. So, Vyasa saw this. He saw how Krsna was born. He saw how Krsna started to grow. He saw how Krsna stole from the homes of the gopis. He did not steal just butter; He stole their hearts. He saw how Krsna danced at every step He took. Krsna’s gait is sweet; His words are sweet; His Vamsi is sweet; His form is sweet; His eyes are sweet; His glances are sweet; His pastimes are sweet; His mother is sweet; His sakti—the gopis are sweet; everything about Him is sweet. Thus, Vyasadeva had darsana of Krsna.

He saw the Lord and explained His pastimes and this compilation of His pastimes and the pastimes of His incarnations is called Srimad Bhagavatam. This is the final book of Vyasaji. He compiled this book after realizing it in his samadhi. What is samadhi? Samadhi is of many kinds. Presently, people practice hatha-yoga and think they are in samadhi. But hatha-yoga will not do. The principle of hatha-yoga is, “I will not see this material world.” But, Bhagavan has given you eyes, so why will you not see? He will try to control his mind. It may be possible to control the air, but it is not possible to control the mind. Can you sit still for a minute and control your mind? Thoughts from all directions will enter your mind. Your mind will not be controlled. If you have prema, bhakti for Krsna, then your mind will be controlled. Vyasadeva has stated in the Bhagavat regarding how to control the mind. The dharma of every being is to love Krsna. This is the constitutional nature of every being. Krsna is the only friend of everyone. He is everyone’s Prabhu. He is everyone’s prana-priyatama; the beloved of everyone. Today, you consider one lady to be your wife; but after you die, will she still be your wife? You consider one man to be your husband, but what is to be after you die? Relationships keep changing. A soul may be a lady today and become a man in his next life. The soul will take birth in his next life according to the thoughts that occupy his mind at the time of death.

Don’t think, “I will steal and lie; there will be no reaction.”

In this life or in your next life, you will have to undergo the reactions to your activities. What is the meaning of meat? Me-eat; the animal whose flesh a person eats, will in turn be eaten by that very animal itself. There will definitely be a reaction to your activities. So, don’t lie; don’t steal. Always speak the truth.

tamaso ma jyotir gamaya

Don’t become too attached to samsara. It is all right to remain in samsara and look after your children. Wealth is also needed. But you should think, “Everything belongs to Krsna. Nothing is mine. I am His servant. My wife is the maidservant of Krsna. My children are also His servants.” Always think like this. Have love and affection for everyone. Then you will be happy in life. So, regardless of a person being educated or not; knowledgeable or not; regardless of him belonging to any caste; nonetheless, he should serve Krsna. In India, there are so many Bengalis, Gujaratis, Tamilians, the Telugu populace, and others. All of them consider Krsna as their worshipable Lord.

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