Service to Guru: Abode of Benediction

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Bengali/English lecture on Sri Vyasa Puja Day
29 September 2019, Tarakeswar, part 8

 

You know, in the time of Param Guru Maharaj there was one servitor at the Math. Despite his rather young age, his service to his Guru was very special. He used to be the storekeeper of the Math. Usually, a storekeeper has a lot of responsibilities—he must arrange prasadam for the devotees, manage the stock, manage the cooks, etc. Param Guru Maharaj said that that devotee's service was unparalleled. His name is Ajita Krishna Brahmachari. You know, when he had no service, he did not even go to his room to rest. Actually, do you know where he slept? On a sack in the storeroom. He would say, "What will I do in the room? There is a bathroom near the storeroom, I can take wear a gumcha and have a shower there. What is the need to go to the room and back? Also, the temple is very close to the storeroom—it takes much less time to go to the mangal arati from the storeroom." Unfortunately, the Lord took him away at an early age. There was a guava tree in the temple and he fell from a branch of that tree. Some people fall from the fourth floor and do not die, but he died just by falling from a branch of a tree... Speaking of guru-seva, I am remembering him.

So, what is guru-seva? Guru-seva (service to one's Guru) means satisfying the Guru. What does guru-prasad mean? It is not eating some food remnants that the Guru had taken. Guru-prasad means getting the qualification to serve the Guru. Gurudev gives service—to work in the goshala, to cook, to do construction works, to paint the temple, to wash the dishes, etc.--and whatever the Guru tells you to do, that is the service to the Guru. Guru-seva means satisfying the Guru by doing what the Guru likes, and we must always try to see whether the Guru likes what we are doing or not.

Some think, "Because I am serving my Guru, I do not get time to read the scriptures," but guru-seva bestows unlimited knowledge upon the servitor. I also did not read so many books before, only now I am getting some time to read and write books. Guru Maharaj told me once in the early days, "You must read Chaitanya-charitamrita every evening in the temple. Chaitanya-charitamrita is the highest scripture." As I started reading it regularly, some understanding started coming also. I read Chaitanya-charitamrita following the order of Gurudev. Other than that, our guru-varga says, "If the Guru tells you to give a class on Bhagavatam, then only will it be reading of Bhagavatam."

You ask Gurudev for devotion and become frustrated, "Oh, so much time has passed and I have got no devotion," but the problem is that you must learn to listen also—some are sitting here, but they do not hear, their mind is elsewhere. Do not only say you want devotion, you must learn to listen.

Those who are fortunate can embrace these words in their hearts—if you do service and have no time or habit to read books, it is not a problem if you always think about your service, if you always think how to make your Guru happy, if you are always busy trying to make your Guru happy. In this way, you can attain perfection in this very life. These are the main things.

Those who fail to practise various types of devotional practices very quickly attain all perfection just by serving their Guru. There are also many gurus who are not able to engage their disciple in service—they arrange for devotional activities but they cannot give service.

 

 

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