Setting on the Right Track (1)
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Today is a very nice day: Jagannath Mishra's maha-mahotsav... Actually, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Himself, Krishna Himself came as an Acharya, as a Guru, to teach us...
If we do not serve the devotees of the Lord, we will not get mercy from the Lord: if we do not serve Nanda Maharaj, Yasoda Ma, if we do not serve Jagannath Mishra, Sachi Mata—if we do not remember them—how will we remember Chaitanya Mahaprabhu? How will we be able to think about Chaitanya Mahaprabhu without Jagannath Mishra or Sachi Mata? If you invite Jagannath Mishra or Sachi Mata, Nimai will come with them. Similarly, if you invite Mother Yasoda, Krishna will come too—it is not necessary to give a separate invitation to Krishna. This is the main point, and we must understand it.
We always search for fault in others, but we do not think that we have our own faults—our ego is our problem. Vaishnavs do not look for faults in the devotees or Guru: the scriptures say that those who criticise sadhus, Vaishnavs, or the Guru, cannot be a Guru.
"Those who have given up money, women, and fame, are the true Vaishnavs."
(Vaishnav Ke? 11)
What did we all join the festival for? How much pleasure have you got? That will depend upon your service, upon your devotion, and upon your faith.
We should realise it ourselves: how much can we proceed in our spiritual life and why did we come to Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math? Again and again we do Nabadwip Dham Parikrama, but how much can we use ourselves for the service to the Guru, Vaishnavs, and Bhagavan?
কৃষ্ণ যদি ছুটে ভক্তে ভুক্তি মুক্তি দিয়া ।
krsna yadi chhute bhakte bhukti mukti diya
"If you ask Me for anything except devotion, I can give you those things—bhukti, mukti, liberation, everything—but I will hide devotion from you. You will not get devotion."
Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Adi-lila, 8.18
If in lieu of devotion we ask for something else—we have some other material desires, we want some other things (a house, a car, money, etc.)—Krishna will give it to us, but He will hide devotion from us. Why did we take initiation? Why did we join the mission and take shelter in Gurudev and Vaishnavs then? It is all useless if we have come with some material desires and do not try to progress in our spiritual life.
That is why Param Guru Maharaj said: emotion and devotion. Devotion must come without emotion. How much can you surrender to your Guru? How much can you give to your Guru? How much can you dedicate yourself and serve your Guru, the Vaishnavs, Bhagavan, and your mission? It all depends on your practising life, on your Krishna consciousness life. How much do you think about yourself, about your pratistha, establishment, and enjoyment? Then you can realise whether you are increasing your devotional life or decreasing.
The question is not what you want—the question is what your Guru wants. We do not know what is good for us, we do not know what is beneficial for us—only the Guru, Vaishnavs can say it.
Parere udvega diyachhi ye kata, diyachhi jivere klesa: how much
anxiety we are giving to others!
We must realise everything, we must practise our own spiritual life properly, and pray to the feet of Guru, Vaishnavs sincerely, not pretending or showing off.
Everybody should think, "How can I protect Gurudev's mission, Gurudev's devotees? How can I fulfil Gurudev's desire?" Try to do what Gurudev wanted us to do—serve the mission, serve the devotees, serve the Deities—always try and try, and you will be successful.
This is your own place, your own home. Do not think you are a guest here—you think when you come to Gurudev you are a guest, but if you can think you are the host, I will be much happier.
বিষয়ে যে প্রীতি এবে আছয়ে আমার ।
visaye ye priti ebe achhaye amara
May I have the same affection and attraction to your feet that I now have for material things.
Gitavali, 4.5, Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur
You should have the same feelings for your Guru, for the Vaishnavs, and Bhagavan, as you have for your own self. We become sad, "I am a big Acharya, but nobody gives me respect—somebody did not give me a garland, somebody did not pay obeisance to me, etc." Actually, kanak's proprietor is Narayan and Laksmi Devi, kamini's proprietor is Krishna, and Gurudev is the owner of pratistha.
If I get even a five-rupee donation, it is for my Guru. If you want to go to hell—if you want to destroy your spiritual life—it is very easy. If you think you have some position and use it for your own purpose, it is a sure way to hell—you will be removed from Krishna consciousness. We sing, "যোগ্যতা বিচারে কিছু নাহি পাই, yogyata vichare kichhu nahi pai: when I examine myself for qualifications, I find none," and say, "I have become an Acharya due to my own activities and qualification," but in fact, "যোগ্যতা বিচারে কিছু নাহি পাই তোমার করুণা সার, yogyata vichare kichu nahi pai—tomara koruna-sara! Your mercy is all in all."
If you think about the Lord, about your Guru, then your Guru will give you everything:
কীর্ত্তন-প্রভাবে স্মরণ হইবে
kirtana-prabhave, smarana haibe,
Vaishnav Ke? 19
You can remember through kirtan: when you sing Sri guru charana-padma, if you remember Gurudev's face, Gurudev's activities, Gurudev's feelings and dealings with you, then you can understand something is happening inside you—you can understand that you have got some relation with your Guru.
I always feel indebted to everyone—you are all doing so much service... I am trying to use everyone for service—sometimes I chastise, sometimes even give a slap, but when I die, you will understand why I do it.
If you surrender 25%, you will get 25%; if you surrender 10%, you will get 10%.
What did Param Guru Maharaj, Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj, make this Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math for? So that we can practise—so that we can come here to hear about the Lord.
We proudly say that we are a disciple of this person, of that person, we are a disciple of Srila Sridhar Maharaj, of Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur, but Prabhupad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur himself would pay obeisance to his disciples with the words, "Daso 'smi. I am your servant." We do not understand this, but Gurudev is very merciful, he is engaged in a loving search for the lost servant:
দুর্দ্দৈবে সেবক যদি যায় অন্য-স্থানে ।
durdaive sevaka yadi yaya anya sthane
If by chance a servant falls down and goes somewhere else, glorious is that master who captures him and brings him back by the hair.
Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Antya-lila, 4.47
He takes us by our sikha and throws us to the lotus feet of Gurudev, Krishna, but we are like insects—he takes us out of stool, and we again go to the stool. Gurudev has given us so much service, but we do not do it. We have no desire to serve because we are attacked by a disease: kutinati (কুটিনাটী, insincerity, duplicity).
Prabhupad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur said that some think, "I have become a brahmachari, but in my old age who will look after me? Who will give me medicine?" and they keep aside some money for themselves. How foolish they are!...
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