Debunking Proximity Complex

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Kolkata-Worldwide, 12 July 2020, part 7


Question: How to avoid developing too much familiarity with the Guru? Sometimes, when a servitor is too close to the Guru, they become very familiar...

If they become too familiar with the Guru, they can make more offences. It is very difficult to avoid it, that is why Gurudev chooses his servitor. Sriman Mahaprabhu did not chose Sanatan Goswami, Raya Ramananda or Svarup Damodar as His private servitor, but He chose Govinda as His servitor. You can understand something from this. Gurudev does not choose just anybody as his private servitor. We sing in the "Sri Guru-charana-padma" song: "Vando muni sabadhana mate (বন্দোঁ মুঞি সাবধান মতে). I carefully offer my obeisance [to the lotus feet of Sri Guru]." We must be always careful. We always give honour to Gurudev very carefully.

Sripad ***: You did not stay always very close to Srila Govinda Maharaj, you were always far...

Gurudev always kept me far, this is the service he gave me. He did not ask me to stay close to him. One time, I saw Gurudev's legs had swollen and I touched his feet trying to massage them, but Gurudev stopped me saying, "This is not your service. I have given you another service, and that is what you should do."

Sripad ***: Some devotees say also that one should not have too much association with Gurudev.

They can associate with Gurudev as much as they want to, it is not a problem. So many mosquitoes also associate with the Guru. Gurudev said also, "Somebody becomes close to me, but then, when devotees come and give me pranami (donation), they are counting how much is there. Those who are dear to me count, 'How many dollars has Gurudev got and how much will I steal from there?'" Otherwise how is it possible that when Gurudev left and the servitors' room was broken open they found so many thousands of dollars in their room? Gurudev spoke the truth. Not only that—servitors would come and give obeisance to Gurudev, but then they watched and counted how many dollars Gurudev was getting from which devotee, they observed who was rich, who gave more donation, and behind Gurudev's back those servitors would ask those 'rich' devotees for money. This is what I was told after Gurudev's disappearance...

Sripad Deva Bandhu Prabhu [Srila Govinda Maharaj's close personal servitor and cook during the final years of his manifest pastimes]: Sripad ***, dandavat. Perhaps, I can say something in this regard as I had been there, very close to Gurudev during his daily activities for a few years. We could see that Srila Acharya Maharaj was actually the closest disciple, the closest servitor to Srila Gurudev. Srila Gurudev all the time followed Srila Acharya Maharaj's activities—he would always get reports from Srila Acharya Maharaj and he would always praise Srila Acharya Maharaj because Srila Acharya Maharaj was doing his own [Srila Govinda Maharaj's] service. So, when people say that Srila Acharya Maharaj was not so close to Srila Govinda Maharaj, we can respond in this way. Also, when Gurudev would be lying down most of the time, he would only rise and become interested when Srila Acharya Maharaj would come or a few of his other disciples and godbrothers like Srila Ashram Maharaj, Srila Janardan Maharaj, Srila Avadhut Maharaj. However, in the whole of Indian service, in the whole of his mission in India, Srila Gurudev repeatedly expressed how happy he was because Srila Acharya Maharaj was preaching everywhere, managing all the temples, doing all the construction, carrying on all the services for Srila Gurudev. Srila Gurudev always closely followed all of Srila Acharya Maharaj's activities . We have heard Srila Gurudev himself also praising Srila Acharya Maharaj in this regard, and how he was his closest friend, his dear servitor, his manager, his everything, and that he is an 'impossible man.' These things can be remembered...

Association means a heart-to-heart connection. It is not a bodily association. Try to understand it. Gurudev knows everything. If somebody wants to propagate for themselves, if somebody wants to expand their business, expand their guru business more and more, then they will say, "I was in close association with Gurudev!" That is their business what they do. I do not mind it. If they want to do it, they can do it, what will I say? I do not have any problem with that. If somebody preaches about Gurudev, I do not have any objection. I am a little person, I am a very fallen soul, so I only want to be a dog for my Guru, I want to be a proper disciple for Gurudev, and this is what I am still trying to do.

I always ask devotees to help me. You know that I am ousted from the main temple of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math (Kolerganj, Nabadwip), you know what is going on and who is there. One opposition group mixed with those who went against Gurudev and now they run together, and those who are foolish follow them. They must understand what is happening. There are those who Gurudev rejected and ousted from the temple, who left the temple, and they now mix with the opposition group of Srila Sridhar Maharaj. Srila Sridhar Maharaj said, "If anyone cannot follow my instruction, I drag them out from this Math!" So, now those whom Gurudev rejected mix with those whom Srila Sridhar Maharaj had dragged out—and now they become gurus, they become temple managers, they become all in all. Some of our devotees also mix with them for their own interest. This is their matter. I have sold my head, I have sold myself to Gurudev's lotus feet—my head is already sold to my Gurudev's lotus feet, so I cannot give my head to any other place. That is why I pray and cry out to devotees. Devotees are helping me, and I am making another temple, I am doing some construction for devotees' shelter, and so many are helping me—Srila Ashram Maharaj, Srila Janardan Maharaj, Srila Trivikram Maharaj, and many other senior devotees all over the world. Even if somebody can give only one dollar, they are giving one dollar to me, and I am very happy—I am thinking I am getting one thousand dollars from them. I am very happy with those who are giving and helping me. I am getting devotees' love and affection through my Gurudev—they love Gurudev, they have love and affection for Gurudev, and they follow what Gurudev wanted, and I am very happy with that, I do not want anything more than that. Gurudev has given me this service to serve you all—to serve all of Gurudev's disciples, Gurudev's friends, Gurudev's godbrothers—and I want to serve everybody, I pray to all devotees that they may engage me as their dog and allow me to serve them. This is my earnest request to all devotees.

Gurudev's association is not easy. Gurudev's association is a heart-to-heart association. It is not necessary to stay in close proximity. You may be living in Venezuela, you may be living in South America, South Africa, Mauritius or Singapore, but you have a connection with Gurudev. Otherwise, somebody may live nearby but their connection is with money, not with Gurudev. Sometimes, somebody stays close but they never love Gurudev, they only love Gurudev's money, Gurudev's temple, Gurudev's property—they always think about Gurudev's property. They think that the next guru will be the proprietor of all that, but the proprietor is not the guru, the proprietors are the Deities! They do not understand it and think that I am the proprietor now, so they still continue paying money to have me killed. I do not disturb them, I do not say anything to them—I do my preaching, I am making another temple, but they still want to kill me. What of it? If I die from their hands, it is not a problem—I will die for my Gurudev. I have already given my life for my Gurudev, and one day I must die, so if it is Gurudev's will that I will die from their hand, it is not a problem. I am not afraid of them. Those who could not even come to Gurudev to pay their dandavat in Gurudev's time (who were not allowed to enter Gurudev's veranda), are now becoming big devotees...

Anyhow, I am finishing for today. My dandavat to everybody. Please do not be angry—I cannot tell everybody's name and you may think, "Oh, Gurudev told their names, but Gurudev did not tell my name." Do not think like this. Everybody is in my heart, and I am in your heart—this is what ultimately matters. I have seen all your faces, I know all your faces, and I am very happy that you have joined. My dandavat, it has been very nice to see you all. Thank you so much. Gracias.

Jay Om Vishnupad Jagad Guru Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj ki jay
All the assembled devotees ki jay
Harinam sankirtan ki jay
Nitai Gaura premanande Hari Hari bol

Devotee: Jay Om Vishnupad Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj ki jay.



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A Loving Search for
the Lost Servant
'When will you come to Me? When will you come to serve Me?'—the Lord goes to the extremes waiting for us to come to Him, so why is it that we cannot come to Him at once?


Gurudev! krpa-bindu diya
'Give me the ability to befittingly honour everyone, then I will sing the Lord's Name happily, and all my offences will be eradicated.'
গুরুদেব! কৃপাবিন্দু দিয়া

You are devotees of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math, and Gurudev says that you are all in the ship of Chaitanya Saraswat Math, and everybody has to come under one umbrella.