Look after the Seed
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Jay Om Vishnupad Jagad-Guru Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami
Maharaj ki jay!
—Jay Om Vishnupad Paramahamsa-kula-varenya Astottara-sata-sri Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Dev-Goswami Maharaj ki jay. Vishva-varenya Srila Guru Maharaj ki jay. Nitai Gaura premanande Hari bol.
By the mercy of Gurudev, past few days we have been busy with preaching in many places in Bengal, and after a few days we are going for several-day preaching again. We always preach all over Bengal at this time before Gaura Purnima, before Gurudev's Vyasa Puja and I mostly give Bengali class for the Indian people. I have not been able to get time to give a class in English, I am very sorry and sad about that. I know devotees are waiting to hear something, but they cannot understand Bengali. What can I do? There are so many Bengali devotees here who also want to hear something, that is why I speak to them in Bengali. I have been busy today with some collection for Gurudev's appearance day festival, and there is also another programme tomorrow, but anyhow I have got some time now to say something in English.
Actually, devotees are always enthusiastic to hear something about Gurudev, about Krishna-katha, about Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, about how we should maintain our spiritual life. These are the main things.
I tell in Bengali all the time that when you take initiation from Gurudev, from your Guru, this is the first time you leave your illusory family (Maya's family) and enter a spiritual family, join your original family. You join Krishna's samsar (family), but it is impossible to stay in this family unless you serve Lord Krishna, serve His devotees, serve Gurudev. That is why I always tell devotees the minimum rules and regulations, the very minimum that is necessary for devotional life.
Gurudev told you everything—he told you to chant the Holy Name properly. We also tell devotees to chant the Holy Name properly and engage yourself in the service of the Lord. We are passing all our time day by day becoming busy with our own maintenance, with our own enjoyment—we become very busy with this world, but in the meantime we must set some time aside for chanting of the Holy Name, for the service of the Lord, for the service of our Gurudev. These are the main things for our spiritual life.
When your heart becomes clean—when your land becomes fertile—in good association of good devotees, Gurudev puts a devotional seed in your heart, but you must look after that seed. The scriptures also tell about this, you can read in Chaitanya-charitamrita,
ব্রহ্মাণ্ড ভ্রমিতে কোন ভাগ্যবান্ জীব ।
brahmanda bhramite kona bhagyavan jiva
"Having travelled throughout the universe and got the mercy of Guru, Krishna, a fortunate soul receives a seed of the devotional creeper."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 19.151)
Gurudev gives a bhakti-lata-bij and we think this is sufficient for us, but this is a mistake, it is wrong. If we do not practise properly every day, we will not get any result. Nitya seva, eternal service is necessary. We are eternal servitors of the Lord, eternal servitors of Gurudev, so you must serve every day with sincerity and chastity. You must maintain your service every day through Nama-sankirtan, through Bhagavat-sravan. Listen to Hari-katha, get association. You must give time for these things, you must listen to Krishna-katha and Hari-katha. And you know that:
মালী হঞা করে সেই বীজ আরোপণ ।
mali hana kare sei bija aropana
"As a gardener, they must plant that seed and water it with practising: hearing and chanting."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 19.152)
Sravan (listening) and kirtan (chanting) is the water. Listen to Hari-katha and sing devotional songs from our song books. Chant the Holy Name and sing minimum five songs in the morning and five songs in the evening: Guru vandana, Vaishnav vandana, Pancha-tattva vandana, Nityananda vandana, and Mahaprabhu vandana. This is minimum. Set some time aside for singing these songs and you will get energy, you will get practice.
I have seen that many devotees in foreign countries and even here in India cannot sing a single song. Some devotees sing songs well, but I have seen also that many devotees do not even know what the mangala arati songs are, what the bhoga arati and noon arati songs are, what the evening arati songs are. We do not know even such simple things and cannot sing a single song because we do not practise every day, we do not give proper attention to that, that is why we cannot understand these things. Singing these songs gives energy.
Why do the books tell us that we must sing Namamisvaram sach-chid-ananda rupa, Radhe Jaya Jaya Madhava Dayite for one whole month during the kartik month (niyam seva month)? Why does it say we must sing all the Siksastakam songs every evening during the kartik month? It is necessary. I also tell everybody that if you sing five songs in the morning and five songs in the evening with the songbook for one month, you will be able to sing them from memory. I never had time to read the songbook to learn all the songs—when we sat in the nat mandir in the evening, senior devotees would sing some songs and we would follow them every day for one hour; after that we could easily remember everything and sing from memory, without any books.
Practise Krishna consciousness properly. You know that
সাধুসঙ্গ, নামকীর্ত্তন, ভাগবতশ্রবণ ।
sadhu-sanga, nama-kirtana, bhagavata-sravana
"One should 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)
These are the main practices. Among them, the best (srestha) is sravanam and kirtanam, Nama-sankirtan. We must practise it, then your devotional seed will be watered. Sing the songs every day, chant the Holy Name, listen to Hari-katha from the website, or wherever you see good Krishna-katha in the internet, then you can understand what is necessary for your spiritual life. These are the main things. We must practise...
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