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Devotion Comes From the Heart

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Speaking online to the devotees in the USA
5 August 2013


The main thing is that devotion comes from the heart, it is not necessary to show anything. Gurudev told once one very nice story, I am remembering it now. You may have heard this story before.

One fisherwoman was selling fish, and she used hand scales to measure the weight. Here in India we did not have computerised scales, now there is, but before they would use two bowls—in one of them they would put some weight (one kilo, two kilos) and in the other bowl the vegetable, fish, etc. You may have seen how they buy and sell fruit, vegetables at the market here in India. So, when the fisherwoman was weighing the fish, she used a Salagram sila as the weight for the scales.

Once, a brahman came to her shop to buy some fish, when she was using a Salagram sila as the weight, he said, "Hey, what are you doing?! You are making an offence! You think the Salagram sila is a stone and you are using it as a weight!" The brahman took that Salagram sila from her and brought it to his house.

After one-two days, the brahman saw a dream in which Salagram sila (Krishna) said to him, "Brahman! You have brought Me from her house, but I was playing and swinging there on the scales, I liked it there very much. Why did you bring Me from there?? Take Me back!" The brahman went again to that fisherwoman and gave the Salagram sila back.

What is the meaning of this story?

That brahman was using Salagram sila for his own purpose, he is showing he is a devotee, but he ate fish, meat, etc. The lady, on the other hand, sold the dish, but she did not eat it, and she used the Salagram sila for her business unknowingly, innocently, and she used the money she got from her business for the service to the Lord, whereas the brahman was using Krishna was his own purpose. That is why that Salagram sila did not want to stay with the brahman and went back to the fisherwoman.

You can use Krishna for Krishna's service, that is OK, but you must not use a Deity for your own purpose, like some Indian brahmans do. This is a difficult matter...

Question: Did the Salagram sila return just to play (swing on the scales) or for some other reason?

Salagram sila returned because the brahman could not serve properly. Krishna becomes a servant of His servants—Krishna did not take a big raj bhog from Duryodhan, instead He went to Vidur's house. This answer is not written in the scriptures, but you must understand this story. You can ask this question: what kind of devotion did the fisherwoman have? She sold fish, but internally, hidingly she had some devotion—she may kill fish and sell fish, and maybe she used the Salagram sila for her own purpose, but the Salagram sila was happier with her than with the brahman. Because the brahman did not have so much devotion, the Deity came back to the fisherwoman.

You cannot judge others' devotion by the external look. Just as in this story, you can look at that woman who sold fish and may think what kind of devotion she can have... Srila Sridhar Maharaj told another pastime in this regard. When Krishna came to Vidur's house, Vidur's wife was in the bathroom. As soon as she heard that Krishna had come, she got some kind of feelings and she forgot all about herself, she did not think about herself—without any clothes she ran from the bathroom and appeared in front of Krishna. When Krishna saw her, He thought, "What has happened?!" and immediately thew His uttariya to her.

What kind of feelings and thoughts did she have? Do you see? Such feelings can come sometimes—they come in the heart, you cannot understand such feelings. But such feelings do not come to us because we are Vaishnav-aparadhi, offenders of the Vaishnav, we are Nama-aparadhi, offenders of the Holy Name. "Krsna Name kare aparadher vichar: the Holy Name is always searching who is the offender of the Holy Name (aparadhi)." Those who are offenders do not change, such kind of feelings do not come to them...


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Proceed Smoothly
'Try to always serve Gurudev, always keep connection with Gurudev, and always remember him and his pastimes, then everything will go smooth.'


Krsna haite chatur-mukha
'Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is nondifferent from Sri Sri Radha-Krsna and is the very life of Sri Rupa's followers. Srila Svarup Damodar Goswami, Srila Rupa Goswami Prabhu, and Srila Sanatan Goswami Prabhu are most dear to Visvambhar.'
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We do not take things from outside without discrimination.