New Year Message (2):
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
I am telling this to all devotees. We sing in the kirtan, Chhaya vega dami', chhaya dosa sodhi', chhaya guna deha' dase" ("Subjugate the six urges, rectify the six defects, and bestow the six good qualities upon this servant."). We must read and know what the chhaya vega is, what the chhaya dosa is, what the chhaya guna is. We must read it and avoid the chhaya veg' and chhaya dos', we must accept the chhaya gun'. This is necessary for our spiritual life.
The main and most important thing is the association. Association can damage your spiritual life. Do you understand it? Avoid bad association, it can damage your faith, it can damage your spiritual life. Even if you think that some association is not good and you stay alone, that is good, no problem. But if you spend your time in bad association, that is damaging your spiritual life. This is the main message for our spiritual life.
I see there are so many very good devotees who served Gurudev in Gurudev's time, but now they are becoming crazy—they are leaving their service, they are getting ousted from their service. Why? Because of bad association. That is happening now. They leave their service, they forget their service, and they are attracted by the illusory environment, and the only cause for this is bad association. Through bad association you can lose your faith. We must avoid it. So, the next year is coming and we will be aware of this, we will not do bad association and we will not criticise others.
Krishna gives us a tongue. What is it for? We have nine doors (nava-dvara)—we have two eyes, two ears, two nostrils, one door for urine, one door for stool, and another door is the mouth. If you talk para-ninda (পরনিন্দ), para-charcha (পরচর্চা), if you criticise others, what is then the difference between your stool or urine door and your mouth? Krishna is very merciful, we have got a tongue and we must use it to glorify devotees, we must glorify and spread the Lord's message, we must speak Hari-katha. Do not criticise others, do not be envious. There are people in this world who say, "I am his disciple," "My Guru is very big, and he is a very small Guru," "I am a very big Guru"—do not do this.
What have we come to this world for? For good association. The association we got from Gurudev, his message—be humble, tolerant, and give honour to others—this is what is necessary for the devotees. Gurudev did not tell us to criticise others. You are doing a bad propaganda among others, and that is very bad for your spiritual life—if you show anger (krodha), if you use bad language towards others, you are killing yourself. You are doing bad for yourself. We must tolerate. Even Mahaprabhu chastised Jagadananda Prabhu for this—when Mahaprabhu was glorifying Sanatan Goswami, Jagadananda could not tolerate it, and Mahaprabhu chastised Jagadananda for this, you know that. We must tolerate so many things. We must practise and preach, but practising is actually more necessary. We say we are disciples of Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj, Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj, or Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupad, we say that we follow the line of Srila Prabhupad, we follow the line of Srila Rupa Goswami, but how much are we following that line? How much are we following that line? We should understand it.
“গোরার আমি, গোরার আমি” মুখে বলিলে নাহি চলে ।
"gorara ami, gorara ami" mukhe balile nahi chale
Just saying, "I am Gora's! I am Gora's!" does not do. Only when you follow Gora's practices and Gora's conception will you get the proper result.
(Sri Sri Prema-vivarta, 8.6)
We say we are devotees of Gauranga Mahaprabhu, but we are not following what Gauranga Mahaprabhu is teachings. We are not following
তৃণাদপি সুনীচেন তরোরিব সহিষ্ণুনা ।
trnad api sunichena taror api sahisnuna
"One who is humbler than a blade of grass, more tolerant than a tree, who gives honour to others without desiring it for himself, has the right to always chant the Holy Name of Krishna."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Antya-lila, 6.239)
তৃণাধিক হীন দীন অকিঞ্চন ছার ।
trnadhika hina, dina, akinchana chhara
"Give up your false ego, and always consider yourself lower than grass, poor, needy, and mean."
We must leave our ego.
বৃক্ষসম ক্ষমাগুণ করবি সাধন ।
vrksa-sama ksama-guna karabi sadhana
"Practise tolerance, forgiveness like that of a tree. Stop ill-treating others, nurture others."
Vriksa means a tree. "Vrksa-sama ksama-guna karabi sadhana"—practise this! When you cut branches of a tree, that same tree gives you shadow—when there is so much sun and you cannot tolerate it, you come under the tree. You must practise this kind of tolerance of a tree. No pratihimsa (envy). Somebody gives some bad message to you and you do the same in return; somebody uses bad language towards you and in return you do the same thing towards that person. It is not good. Do not do this. You must tolerate it, you must not ill-treat others or be envious of others—pratihimsa tyaji, you must avoid pratihimsa. Do you understand?
Practise in this way next year, next life, etc. and it will be good. You are devotees of Gurudev and you must follow Gurudev's instruction, do not forget it. Do not think you are a great devotee, you are a very great personality, do not think like this about yourself. You should think you are a servant of the servant of the servant of the Gurudev's servant—his devotee. You think you have become a big preacher, but how did you become a big preacher? You must understand that without Gurudev, without Gurudev's mercy, we cannot do anything, we have nothing. Even if you get one coin, you get it for Gurudev and you must use that one coin for the service of the Lord, for the service of Gurudev, do not use even one coin for yourself. This is how you should maintain your spiritual life—be it a family life, a brahmachari life, or a sannyas life. You must use everything in this way. My message is like this.
Everybody says "Gurudev's love and affection," but you must learn what is called love and affection. "If Gurudev chastises me, I think it is his love and affection for me," this is how you must think. Srila Sridhar Maharaj beat Gurudev (Gurudev told it to me himself), but when Srila Sridhar Maharaj beat Gurudev, it was Srila Sridhar Maharaj's love and affection for Gurudev. Gurudev also beat me, Gurudev also kicked me, and I think it is his love and affection for me. When Mahaprabhu chastised Jagadananda Pandit, Sanatan Goswami started crying(!), "This is Mahaprabhu's love and affection. I am not as fortunate as Jagadananda! Mahaprabhu is giving me bitter, but He is giving sweet to Jagadananda Pandit! Jagadananda is getting love and affection from Mahaprabhu, but I am not getting that!" So, if Gurudev chastises you, if Guru Maharaj chastises you, that is Gurudev's love and affection coming to you, that is mercy coming to you. You must understand that.
Jay Srila Guru Maharaj ki jay!
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