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His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
speaking online to devotees in São Paulo, Brazil
22 September 2019, Kolkata, part 4


We must understand what is unfavourable to our devotion because if we keep those unfavourable things in our hearts, it will gradually cause a big problem for us—it will bring bad things for us. Actually, we do not know what is good for us, what gives benefit to so, that is why we sometimes become mano-dharmi (মনোধর্ম্মী)—we do not know something, and when our mind sometimes tells us something, we follow it thinking that perhaps that will be good. We do not know what is guru-seva, what is service to the Lord. Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur gives one very good example about guru-bhakti and proper guru-seva.

One day, having taken prasadam, Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur told his disciple who served him as his private servitor and would bring him prasadam, "Please, give me some mukh-suddhi (মুখশুদ্ধি)." Mukh-suddhi is something like mouth-freshener—you take it after a meal to aid digestion. Nityananda Prabhu also took it from His servitor Vrindavan Das Thakur, the same thing. So, Srila Prabhupad's servitor brought him a hartaki (haritaki, myrobalan)—Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur took it and then gave it to him back saying, "Give it properly—take the skin out." When you take hartaki, you are supposed to take only the skin and throw the seeds away, but the servitor did not know it, so he thought, "Prabhupad told me to take the skin out, so I should give him the seeds." So, he threw the skin of hartaki away and gave the seeds to Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur. Srila Prabhupad was very sad. He said, "OK, I do not want to take it today."

The next day Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur again took prasadam and again asked his servitor to bring him mukh-suddhi, mouth freshener. This time the servitor gave him elaichi (cardamom). Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur again told him to take the skin out. Now, when you take elaichi, you are supposed to throw the skin out and you take the seeds, but the servitor thought since he had made that mistake the day before (when he had given the seeds instead of the skin) and Prabhupad did not take it, this time he would do it right. So, this time he did the opposite—he gave Srila Prabhupad the skin of the elaichi and threw the seeds away. Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur saw it and said, "OK, I will not take any mouth freshener today because you have again made a mistake."

This is an example of mano-dharmi—your mind tells you, "Oh, I did this last time and Gurudev did not like it, so I will do it this way today." But this is a different fruit and you must serve it in a different way. This is the example Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur gave. In our line also there are such devotees, there were such devotees in Gurudev's times also, I also have seen such things. Some devotees are mano-dharmi...

Yesterday also I spoke to one sannyasi. I had told him before to read books, to listen to my classes, etc., and yesterday he told me, "It is not necessary to hire painters, I can paint the temple myself." I told him, "It is not your job, Maharaj. You should do puja, you should give class." Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur also said, "Ei jagate amra kath-pathorer mistri hate asi ni (এই জগতে আমরা কাঠ পাথর মিস্ত্রি হতে আসি নি)—we have not come to this world to become labourers—masons, wood-workers, furniture men, carpenters or builders. We have come to this world to spread Krishna consciousness, to spread Mahaprabhu's advice, Mahaprabhu's upadesh, our guru-varga's upadesh. That is our service, and that is our main duty.

তব কথামৃতং তপ্তজীবনং
কবিভিরীড়িতং কল্মষাপহম্ ।
শ্রবণমঙ্গলং শ্রীমদাততং
ভুবি গৃণন্তি তে ভূরিদা জনাঃ ॥

tava kathamrtam tapta-jivanam
kavibhir iditam kalmasapaham
sravana-mangalam srimad-atatam
bhuvi grnanti te bhurida janah

"My Dear, bestowing the greatest fortune that is attained after so many births, exalted souls come to this world and live here by singing and spreading Your nectarean glories that are life and soul for those suffering in this material world being devoid of Your divine love; that are the gist of all poets' songs; that are the destroyer of all sins; that benefit anyone who hears them; and that possess universal attraction."

(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 14.13)

Who is a great donor? Those who give these things, who give this kind of Krishna-katha, who distribute it all over the world to the fallen souls like us—they are the great donors. Sriman Mahaprabhu also told that, He too explained these main things very nicely.



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Control the Root
'This is my advice, my prescription. If you follow this prescription, you will be successful in your spiritual life.'


Thakura vaisnava-gana
'O worshippable Vaisnavas, I offer you this prayer. I am very fallen and misbehaved. Destiny has immersed me in the fearsome ocean of material existence. Please grab me by the hair and pull me to the shore.'
ঠাকুর বৈষ্ণবগণ

Actually, we do not know what is service and what is karma. Sometimes we may do something that does not please our Guru because we do what our mind tells us to do.