Strongest Faith (2):
Gopal Bhatta Goswami

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
10 May 2015, Sri Nabadwip Dham, part 7

 

Srila Gopal Bhatta Goswami had twelve silas. A sila is a form of a Deity, like Govardhan sila, or Giriraj sila. One time, a rich man came from Delhi and asked Gopal Bhatta Goswami, "Please keep these ornaments for your Deities." Gopal Bhatta Goswami took it, but later he realised, "That man gave me these ornaments, but my Deities have no Deity form—my Deities have no hands, no legs... How will I put these things (ornaments, clothes, etc.) on Them?" Thinking and thinking about it, he put the Deities to sleep that night, and very sad, he went to rest too. In the morning, when he went for the mangal-arati, he opened the temple door and saw that one Deity was not there! He counted, "One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven— Where has one more gone? There were twelve silas!" Then, he noticed that there was something like a magnet on the back of the Deity and he understood that the twelfth sila had transformed Himself into Radha Raman.

That Deity is still there and every year when we do Vrindavan parikrama, we go there. They maintain the worship very strictly and perfectly in that temple—it is very cold in winter season, but even then you cannot even go inside wearing socks. They do puja in a very clean way there. You cannot take camera inside also... They follow so many rules and regulations when they do puja in Vrindavan.

Many Deities left Vrindavan because of the problems caused by mlechhas, Muslim people, but Radha Raman did not go. Radha Raman is a small Deity, so the pujari hid Him—all the large Deities were taken to Jaipur, Karauli, etc., but Radha Raman is still in Vrindavan.

If you serve the Deities properly, this is the result. It is called "sraddhaya sri-murtir sevan."

সাধুসঙ্গ, নামকীর্ত্তন, ভাগবতশ্রবণ ।
মথুরাবাস, শ্রীমূর্ত্তির শ্রদ্ধায় সেবন ॥

sadhu-sanga, nama-kirtana, bhagavata-sravana
mathura-vasa, sri-murtira sraddhaya sevana

"Associate with devotees, chant the Holy Name of the Lord, hear Srimad Bhagavatam, reside at Mathura and worship the Deity with faith."

(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 22.124)

There are five main practices, "Sadhu-sanga: good association. Nama sankirtan: chanting the Holy Name, bhajanam, sravanam, kirtanam. Bhagavat-sravan: hearing Krishna-katha, hearing Bhagavat-katha. Mathura-vasa: thinking about Mathura, thinking about Vrindavan, thinking about the holy dham. And sri-murtir sraddhaya sevan: you must serve the Deities with full faith.

Deity is not some idol, it is not made of wood, stone, or some other material. It is not a Deity—it is Lord Krishna Himself! "Vigraha Tumi nao, saksad Vrejendra-nandan: You are not simply a Deity, You are the Lord Himself, You are Vrajendra-nandan Himself!" You have eyes in your heart, and if you have such feeling towards the Deity in your heart and do your service with such deep faith, then you can easily see, can easily observe Krishna everywhere; you will hear Krishna-nama everywhere and nothing else besides Krishna-nama will enter your ears; you will see Krishna-nama, Krishna-prana, Krishna-guna everywhere. That is the main thing...

 

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Keep Your Heart Close to Your Guru
'To get mercy it is not necessary to be physically close to the Guru or come physically to the Guru. If your heart is with your Guru, if your heart is close to your Guru, that is sufficient. Always fulfil Gurudev's desire.'

 

Namo namah tulasi maharani
'Siva, Sukadev, Narad, Brahma, the other demigods, and the great learned sages all circumambulate you, O Tulasi.'
নমো নমঃ তুলসী মহারাণি

You do not have to always be sitting beside your Guru or be always near—you can also serve your Guru from far, and that is good for you too.

"HUMILITY, TOLERANCE, GIVING HONOUR TO OTHERS | HUMILITY, TOLERANCE, GIVING HONOUR TO OTHERS"