His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
I have seen Gurudev—he was never envious of anyone or anything. He always said that he feel happy if somebody was working well, if somebody was maintaining his spiritual life properly, if somebody's family was running properly and smoothly. Gurudev was never envious of others. Someone may have been envious of him, but he was never envious of others. I saw that.
I have seen that many of his godbrothers were envious of him and they did something wrong, but I saw that Gurudev was never like that. Also, Gurudev would never interfere with other sampradayas' or acharyas' missions. This is Gurudev's example.
Actually, Gurudev was very fortunate because he was always with Srila Guru Maharaj (Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj) and whenever Srila Sridhar Maharaj's godbrothers came to Srila Sridhar Maharaj, Gurudev could serve them. Srila Sridhar Maharaj told Gurudev that those Vaishnavs were his godbrothers and Gurudev happily understood it and happily served them as much as possible.
When Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj Prabhupad was returning to India, Param Guru Maharaj Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj thought, "Oh, Swami Maharaj is coming back from abroad, I want to give him some good nourishment. He can stay in my room." Srila Sridhar Maharaj tidied and prepared his room for Srila Swami Maharaj, but when Srila Swami Maharaj came, he did not want to stay there—he took Srila Sridhar Maharaj as his siksa-guru, so he was shy to stay with Srila Sridhar Maharaj in the same room. Instead, Swami Maharaj asked my Gurudev, "Govinda Maharaj, where is your room?" Gurudev took Srila Swami Maharaj to his room, "This here is my small room," and Swami Maharaj said, "Good. I will sleep here in your room." Gurudev agreed and said, "Yes, you can sleep here. You can sleep on my bed, and I will sleep on the floor. No problem." This is what happened. The relation between Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj and Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj was very good. So many things actually happened.
When Srila Swami Maharaj Prabhupad was going to inaugurate Chandradaya Mandir in Mayapur, he invited many exalted Vaishnavs, his godbrothers and all the Gaudiya Acharyas, but only Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj, Krishna Das Babaji Maharaj and Gurudev went there. Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj and Gurudev were a little surprised when they came—Gurudev asked, "Swami Maharaj, you are going to inaugurate the temple, but where is all the paraphernalia? Usually, so many things are necessary..." Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj replied, "What is the necessity? Srila Sridhar Maharaj has come to the festival to inaugurate the temple, this is sufficient—no paraphernalia, no yajna, nothing else is necessary. Srila Sridhar Maharaj has come and the inauguration has automatically happened." That day, Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj was a little tired or perhaps sick, so he asked Srila Govinda Maharaj to speak on his behalf. You know, Gurudev quoted one sloka in his speech and when the Vaishnavs heard it, they started clapping—they were very happy and Krishna Das Babaji Maharaj exclaimed, "Hari bol! Hari bol!" Such was Gurudev's lecture on the day Iskcon's Chandradaya Mandir started in Mayapur. Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj was very happy, all his disciples were very happy, Krishna Das Babaji Maharaj was extremely happy, and Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj was also very happy.
Such was the relationship between Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj and Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj.
So, when do we have time to criticise others? Gurudev always says an idle mind is devil's workshop, an active man has no time to waste on idle works. You must engage yourself in service all the time, twenty-four hours a day. That is the main thing. Do not use your mouth, your ears, your tongue to talk nonsense or listen to nonsense things.
I want to tell everybody:
দিন যায় মিছা কাজে নিশা নিদ্রাবশে ।
dina yaya michha kaje nisa nidra-base
My days are passed in useless work and nights are wasted on sleeping. It never occurs to me that there is death sitting next to me.
('Durlabha manava janma labhiya' by Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur)
Days are passing very quickly while we waste time on so many nonsense things, on sleeping, eating, enjoying. We do not realise that we can die all of a sudden, that we can die at any moment. We have got this human body by a great fortune, and we must use this body to serve others.
Do you want to take sannyas? But what is sannyas for? Sannyasis are the main soldiers, they must serve devotees—more and more. Look at Gurudev's example—Gurudev would cook, Gurudev would play the mridanga, he knew how to do everything. We must learn something from Gurudev.
Every time Gurudev was in Nabadwip, I would be thinking, "When will I get time to see him?" Gurudev gave me so much service and I was always busy downstairs, but I would always think, "What time does Gurudev wake up? He is resting now, what time will he wake up? When will I go to see Gurudev?" Sometimes, I would come to Gurudev four-five times a day, and every time I came to him, he would ask me something—"What is going on downstairs? What is happening?", etc. Every time I came back from Bamunpara, crops field or Hapaniya, he would always ask me, "What is the news?", "What is this?", "What is that?" He always wanted to know about his and his Guru Maharaj's mission. Gurudev's character was like that.
Then, I am telling everybody—you must understand this clearly and you must have full surrender, and surrender means not just saying it with your mouth—you must show what your surrender is. That is the main thing.
Jay Om Vishnupad Jagad-Guru Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami
Maharaj ki jay!
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