Questions and Answers
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Question: How can I fight against the fear and doubt? How can I establish myself in the real faith in Guru?
If you follow Gurudev's instruction properly, then you will get real faith in your heart.
Question: How can a devotee overcome the stage of merely knowing the sastra and develop real devotion and real saranagati to Gurudev and Krishna?
Actually, it depends upon faith and the practitioner—there are many practitioners in this world, and how they practise depends upon each of them.
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 and veneration."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 22.124)
If you do these five every day, and day after day, then you will proceed and increase your devotion, and saranagati will come.
Question: At what point can one say that a devotee has activated real love and devotion to the Guru and Krishna?
Even Brahma says, "I cannot recognise who is a great Vaishnav." We have no quality to be able to recognise who is a Vaishnav, but if we serve properly, if we follow a Vaishnav's instruction properly, then we can see and understand that they have love for Krishna and the Guru. Also, if you have service mood to the Guru and Krishna, then you will also be able to understand that somebody has love and affection for the Guru and Krishna. Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur says that we do not have that kind of quality—we only have bad qualities; we always search others' fault, but we do not see our own fault. That is our problem.
Question: What activities would you like us as a temple, as a community to do with the children to ensure their spiritual progress?
Children should always learn from what their parents do. If some children's parents engage in bad activities, children will learn that, that is why you must always give a good example for your children. Also, they must learn now, from the beginning, to pay obeisance, to pay dandavat, to sing devotional songs. If they practise everything from the beginning, it will be good. This is our primary teaching. If the father and the mother fight, then the children will also learn that, that is why you must be careful—you must be real grihastha, real householders [sadachari grihastha—pious householder devotees], then your children will also be good.
Question: Here in Medellin, there is a temple of *** [an overall favourable, but separately-acting sannyasi] and some devotees from that temple come here to our Math. Sometimes they keep coming and after some time they want to surrender at your lotus feet. The question is what should we do with these devotees who come from another line? What should be our actions? How should we treat them?
Give them love and affection. If somebody comes from other mission, you will give them proper respect, then they will learn from you. You are Srila Sridhar Maharaj's line—Srila Sridhar Maharaj, after that Gurudev, and Gurudev gave this line to us, so if someone comes from there and wants to surrender here, we can easily accept them. Suppose you have some good food in your pond—if someone comes from another pond to take the food from your pond, you will accept it, what is the problem? If some fish comes to take food in our pond, we will accept them into our society. What is the problem?
Question: I am coming from the line of ***, and I want to ask you what I should do—should I ask for a new name or...?
No problem, Prabhu. It is not necessary to have any doubt. Actually, you want to stay in our line, you want to serve here, and I will happily accept you as our family member. My nature is give honour to others, that is why I have no problem—you can stay in our temple, you can serve here. I cannot give disrespect to *** Maharaj because I have seen him many times and when I saw him I hugged him, so I do not have any problem with him. There was a little problem between him and Gurudev, but I can digest that. So, you can stay in our line, read our books, follow our books, and continue your service with our devotees.
Question: There is a devotee who used to live in Venezuela, in the Parama Karuna temple, and now he has been here serving the temple in Medellin for the past three months. He is worried about the situation in Venezuela...
Do not worry. One day everything will be good and perfect in Caracas. We must wait and see—in everything, you must wait and see. We must have tolerance and patience. There are some devotees there, they are taking care of Caracas. He can go to Caracas from time to time and help them, and if he wants, he can also come to Medellin from time to time. No problem.
Question: This devotee is a disciple of *** and he has been doing a lot of service here in the temple in Medellin. He has been helping us a lot. He also wants to take shelter at your lotus feet.
They are all in my heart—they are not only in the shelter of my feet, but they are all in my heart. I have already given them shelter in my heart.
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