The Key to Guru's Heart

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
July/August 2014

 

We always pray to Gurudev,

সকলে সম্মান করিতে শকতি
দেহ' নাথ ! যথাযথ ।
তবে ত' গাইব হরিনাম সুখে
অপরাধ হবে হত ॥

sakale sammana karite sakati,
deha natha! yatha yatha
tabe ta' gaiba hari-nama sukhe,
aparadha habe hata

"O master! Give me the ability to befittingly honour everyone. Then I will sing the Lord's Name happily, and all my offences will be eradicated."

If I can acquire these kinds of qualities—humility, tolerance, and giving honour to others—then if I chant the Holy Name, offences will be removed from my heart. Otherwise not.

Many things are necessary... We are singing this Siksastaka song:

শ্রীকৃষ্ণকীর্ত্তনে যদি মানস তোহার ।
পরম যতনে তঁহি লভ অধিকার ॥

sri-krsna-kirtane yadi manasa tohara
parama jatane tanhi labha adhikara

If you want to sing Sri Krishna kirtan, you must be very careful, very affectionate, and do it with much love, then you will get the adhikar, the right, to sing Sri Krishna kirtan.

তৃণাধিক হীন দীন অকিঞ্চন ছার ।
আপনে মানবি সদা ছাড়ি অহঙ্কার ॥

trnadhika hina, dina, akinchana chhara
apane manabi sada chhadi' ahankara

You must think that you are a piece of small grass, even less than that. You must think you are worse, lower than a blade of grass, and you must leave your ego and give honour to others.

বৃক্ষসম ক্ষমাগুণ করবি সাধন ।
প্রতিহিংসা ত্যজি অন্যে করবি পালন ॥

vrksa-sama ksama-guna karabi sadhana
pratihimsa tyaji' anye karabi palana

Vrksa-sama ksama-guna karabi sadhana: When we are cutting a tree's brunch, the tree is not saying anything, the tree always forgives our offence, and that same tree gives us shelter from the sun. We must have that kind of mentality, that kind of quality.

Pratihimsa tyaji' anye karabi palana: 'Pratihimsa' means if somebody is beating you, you should not beat them, but should give love and affection. A scientist named Newton said that every action has equal and opposite reaction, but we do not want to give opposite reaction. It is not our duty to give it. Somebody may be jealous of you, no problem—you can give them some mercy, you can give them love and affection, but you must avoid giving opposite reaction. Somebody may give you boxing, but you should not give them boxing in return—not to do that, it is not good for the devotee's life.

Sometimes I tell this story...

A sadhu is sitting on the bank of the Ganges, chanting the Holy Name on his beads, and he sees a scorpion moving towards the Ganges. The sadhu sees that the scorpion is going to die if it falls into the water, so he puts his chanting beads aside and, continuing chanting with his mouth, he takes that scorpion and keeps it in a safe place, but that scorpion bites him—it does not understand that the sadhu is doing good for him.

When the sadhu is about to take his beads again that scorpion again goes towards the Ganges. The sadhu again keeps it in a safe place, and the scorpion again bites him, but he does not mind, "It does not know any better."

A man was passing that place and saw this. He asked the sadhu, "What is the benefit of saving it? What problem is it for you if it dies?"

...Gurudev told one thing. Sometimes in Gurudev's times also devotees fought with each other. I too have been beaten by other brahmacharis many times. Once Gurudev tested me: he asked me, "He is beating you, why are you not beating him back?" I replied to Gurudev with a poem that says that if a dog bites a man, the man cannot bite the dog, and Gurudev said, "It is also an offence. You think he is a dog, you treat him as a dog, but it is not a sadhu's character." A sadhu's character is tolerance; a sadhu's character is to excuse, to forgive the person. If a sadhu cannot forgive an offence, he is not a sadhu, not a Vaishnav.

So, the Vaishnav who was sitting on the bank of the Ganges replied to that man, "If that scorpion cannot change its character, why I should change my character?" A sadhu's nature is to save the jiva souls. "If he does not change his character, why should I change my character?"—that is the main thing.

You must understand what is necessary for a sadhu's character.

You must understand Srila Sridhar Maharaj's lectures. If somebody loses their service, if somebody loses their faith, it is not others' fault. "We cannot blame others. I am responsible for my own position." Param Guru Maharaj says this. If you lose your faith, if you lose your strength, your service, the problem is in you, not in the Guru. We must understand it.

জীবন-নির্ব্বাহে আনে উদ্বেগ না দিবে ।
পর-উপকারে নিজ সুখ পাসরিবে ॥

jivana-nirvahe ane udvega na dibe
para-upakare nija-sukha pasaribe

Do not make others angry for your own interest, own self, own happiness. Sometimes we are not happy with our service, we are not getting pleasure from our service, but we cannot harass and disrespect others because of that.

The other day, they did not give some dahl to the deer because there was much other food, but somebody became so unhappy and, unable to control themselves, began shouting because of a small matter. They could have come to me and told me—I would have told to make the dahl, and the matter would have been finished. But that person is doing an action against that other person and the other person is giving them reaction, so a problem comes, and the service is lost. Why should service be lost?

I came here many years ago, and I am alone. I have never seen my relatives in 25 years since I came here. Most of them have already died, and now there is a new generation, but I do not even know them—I did not see their birth, I did not see their wedding ceremony... And I have also been beaten here many times, but I tolerated. That is why I have got the result. Gurudev told that even a brother and a sister, coming from the same home, also fight. Even they fight, but we come from different parents; our parents are not same, our culture, education—everything is different.

Gurudev told that when we cook, there are so many utensils—a big subji pot, a big rice pot, a big water pot, etc.—and when you cook, they make some sound. We are also instruments here—we are Gurudev's instruments. Sometimes a clash happens and some sound comes, but should we lose or give up our service because of this? Of course not!

We must understand this. If we think that we lose our service and it is somebody's fault—that is an offence, seva-aparadh. If we do so many things and the Guru is not happy, that is not service, that is karma—some reaction will come and we will lose our service.

Jivana-nirvahe ane udvega na dibe: I should not make others angry. Para-upakare nija-sukha pasaribe: for others' benefit you must leave, you must give up your own happiness.

কৃষ্ণ-অধিষ্ঠান সর্ব্বজীবে জানি সদা ।
করবি সম্মান সবে আদরে সর্ব্বদা ॥

krsna-adhisthan sarva-jive jani' sada
karabi sammana sabe adare sarvada

You must think that Krishna exists within every jiva soul, and you must give respect to everybody, to every jiva soul just as when driving a car you try to avoid running over some street animals.

দৈন্য, দয়া, অন্যে মান, প্রতিষ্ঠা বর্জ্জন ।
চারিগুণে গুণী হই করহ কীর্ত্তন ॥

dainya, daya anye mana, pratistha-varjana
chari gune guni hai karaha kirtana

কৃষ্ণ-অধিষ্ঠান সর্ব্বজীবে জানি সদা ।
করবি সম্মান সবে আদরে সর্ব্বদা ॥

krsna-adhisthan sarva-jive jani' sada
karabi sammana sabe adare sarvada

You must be humble, give kindness and honour to others. Avoid pratistha—name and fame.

ভকতিবিনোদ কাঁদি বলে প্রভু পায় ।
হেন অধিকার কবে দিবে হে আমায় ॥

bhakativinoda kandi bole prabhu-paya
heno adhikara kabe dibe he amaya

Bhakti Vinod Thakur is saying, "Prabhu, when will you give me the adhikar, the right, to chant the Holy Name? When these qualities come to me, I will be able to chant the Holy Name!"

Jay Gurudev.

 

Tomorrow is also a special day for Lord Siva. So many Siva devotees will be present and give water and milk for Lord Siva. I sent some devotees to preach to them. Lord Siva also chants the Holy Name. If we worship Lord Siva properly, he can give Krishna bhakti.

All Vraja Gopis also worship the demigoddess Katyayani, Durga Devi, but what do they worship her for? They pray, "In our next life, we want to have Krishna as our husband." For that they worship Katyayani, and Krishna always fulfils their desire.

In Gaura-lila we can also see that. There was one girl, Kubja. She could not walk straight, her face did not look good, but that Kubja wanted Krishna to come to her house and stay with her for one night. Krishna told her that it was not possible in Dvapara-yuga, but He fulfilled her desire in Kali-yuga: Kashi Misra is an incarnation of Kubja. When Sriman Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was in His Pastimes of vipralambha—dvadasabda-bahni-garbha-vipralambha-silanam [for the last twelve years of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's manifest pastimes He was deeply absorbed in union and separation], He did that Lila in the house of Kashi Misra in Puri. So, whatever devotees think of, Krishna is always ready to fulfil their desire.

Devotees never think so much about themselves. Karma yogis, karmis always ask for themselves, for their own desire and interest, but devotees always think about Krishna's interest. Devotees do not think for their own enjoyment, this is called niskama bhakta. What did Prahlad Maharaj ask for? He said, "Prabhu, give me this kind of boon—please remove any asking desire from my heart."

নিজ সুখ লাগি' পাপে নাহি ডরি
দয়াহীন স্বার্থপর

nija sukha lagi' pape nahi dari,
daya-hina svartha-para

Bhakti Vinod Thakur wrote this very good song. Nija sukha lagi': for our own happiness we are not afraid to do sinful work. Daya-hina svartha-para: we are unkind, selfish, and svartha-para [our own interest is above all for us].

 

What is there to be afraid of? Those who have surrendered themselves to the lotus feet of their Guru, they are not afraid of death. We are soldiers of Gurudev, and soldiers are not afraid of death. Soldiers always think about their country, and Gurudev's soldiers think about their Guru. Is it correct or not? Why be afraid? Tell me. Why should I leave my service?

মারবি রাখবি—যো ইচ্ছা তোহার, marabi rakhabi, yo ichchha tohara: you can kill me, you can save me, that is your matter. I am paying my full obeisance to you. My eyes, hands, legs, heart—everything is down, on the ground, I cannot see anything. "Gurudev, I am giving you a sword, and you can separate my head from my body." What is there to be afraid of? Krishna's devotees are never afraid of anything.

Soldiers are not afraid, they go forward into the open fire! We are ready to die for our Guru. Some think, "No, I am afraid, I am not going to that country..." but it is not a surrendered soul; it is not a surrendered soul's character. Do you understand? I am telling this strongly: this is not a surrendered soul's character.

Those who love Gurudev, tolerate everything—any discomfort, any kind of opposition that can come through the service. When some problem comes, they still do their service—then Gurudev will love them too. If somebody thinks, "Oh, some problem has come, I will run away," this is not a surrendered soul's character.

Once Gurudev caught my hand and asked me, "So much problem will come for you for a few years—tell me, will you run away or will you stay? Promise me." I said, "I promise you, I will never run away."

Jaya Srila Guru Maharaj ki jay.

 

 

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The Wealth of Heart
'We must always keep the advice that our Guru gives us in our heart. It is necessary to do it otherwise we cannot proceed... Some obstacles can come—not only can come, they will definitely come—but we must proceed even with obstacles.'

 

Sri-krsna-chaitanya prabhu jive daya kari'
'Engaging only in activities that are favourable to devotion, rejecting everything unfavourable to devotion...'
শ্রীকৃষ্ণচৈতন্য প্রভু
জীবে দয়া করি'

You must always wear the neck beads. Tulasi protects us in our devotional activities.

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