Make the Best of Your Life
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Mahaprabhu taught us to be humble, tolerant and give honour to others,
তৃণাদপি সুনীচেন তরোরিব সহিষ্ণুনা ।
trnad api sunichena taror api sahisnuna
One who is humbler than a blade of grass, more forbearing than a tree, who gives due honour to others without desiring it for himself, is qualified to always chant the Holy Name of Krishna.
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Antya-lila, 6.239)
You must always engage in kirtan (kirtaniyah sada harih)—if you do not do kirtan of Krishna, you will not get any result.
How many days will we live in this world? We can die any time! What did we promise to the Lord? We have got eyes, we have got ears, but what is my duty? Service and duty are not the same.
You plant a coconut tree, but the coconut tree cannot eat coconut itself, so you think, "I have planted the coconut tree, and my wife, my children, my relatives will enjoy it," but you are not the owner of its life. Krishna is the only proprietor and He is the enjoyer—we cannot enjoy anything. We have to offer everything to the Lord, then we can take His prasadam. These are the main things.
You are now going back to your homes, and you will be doing Kali puja, Durga puja, Laksmi puja, Ganesh puja, Kartik puja—there are thousands of demigods, but can you please them all? If you worship Kali, Durga will be not satisfied, if you worship Siva, Parvati will be not satisfied, if you worship Ganesh, Kartik will be not satisfied—how many demigods can you satisfy? It is said in Srimad Bhagavad Gita (9.23) that you worship Durga, you worship Kali, but actually you worship Lord Krishna, but it is called avidhi, wrong way.
'শ্রদ্ধা' শব্দে—বিস্বাস কহে সুদৃঢ় নিশ্চয় ।
'sraddha'-sabde—visvasa kahe sudrdha nischaya
"Sraddha is firm, determined faith that by service to Krishna all actions are accomplished."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 22.62)
You cannot satisfy everyone, but we can serve and fulfil the desire of the Guru and Vaishnavs. Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur told:
"You can give benefit to the souls by serving them (by engaging them in service of the Lord)."
"Satisfying the whims of your mind is not bhajan. Following the Guru, the Vaishnavs and serving the Guru, the Vaishnavs and satisfying them is what is called bhajan."
Do not follow your mind. You must always have a great faith, the strongest faith. Always remember this.
Try to understand what you have got this human body for. Ahara-nidra-bhaya-maithunam cha (eating, sleeping, fearing, mating)? You think this life is for eating and sleeping, but a pig is actually happier than you are—if you bring it a plate of stool, it will be so happy, "Oh, it is so dear to me"; a dog sleeping in the street is more comfortable than you are in an A/C room, and if you call it into your A/C room, it will not even want to go there. Then you think why you got this life. You have passed 8 400 000 births and have finally got a human birth...
I do not know if I can give you any benefit or not, but Prabhupad Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur went to Kasim Bazaar and said, "I have not come here to waste your rice." Suppose you come to a doctor, and the doctor tells you that you have diabetes. He tells you, "Take this medicine and do not eat sweets." Some will say, "Doctor, I have money. I can pay you as much as you want, but I cannot give up sweets..." If the doctor loves you, he will say, "I do not want this kind of patient. If you eat sweets, then your money is wasted." In this world, you can get many gurus—karmi guru, jnani guru, yogi guru, kaulik guru, laukik guru, and so on. Just as there are doctors who will come to you every day and say that you can eat anything you want, there are also gurus in the this world who give pravrtti-marga upadesh (advise you on the path of sense enjoyment). They will tell you, "You can do anything you want—you can smoke, take drugs, etc.—just take initiation and give me some money." There are such gurus in this world, but it is rare to get a real spiritual master for the spiritual life.
দিন যায় মিছা কাজে নিশা নিদ্রাবশে ।
dina yaya michha kaje nisa nidra-base
My days are passed in useless work and nights are wasted on sleeping. It never occurs to me that there is death sitting next to me.
'Durlabha manava janma labhiya' by Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur
জীবন অনিত্য জানহ সার
jivana anitya janaha sara
"Understand the essence: life is temporary and filled with all sorts of adversity. Carefully taking shelter of the Name, engage in your work."
'Udila aruna' by Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur
When will we leave? One day we all have to leave, but we must consider what we have done, what we have got.
ভজিব বলিয়া এসে সংসার-ভিতরে ।
bhajibo boliya ese samsara-bhitare
"You came into this world saying, 'O Lord, I will serve You', but, having forgotten this promise, you have remained in ignorance."
('Jiva Jago Jiva Jago' by Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur)
We promised, "My Lord, I will serve you! You have given me eyes so that I can see You, you have given me legs so that I could do dham parikrama." Even if I die while doing that, it is not a problem—one day we all must die.
We become attached to our house and family and say, "It is my house, it is my child, it is my family," but are they mine, tell me? I may have made it, but can I keep it? This family is temporary (anitya-samsar), not eternal (nitya-samsar), and one day we must leave it. That is why you must understand these main things and worship the Lord, enter the family of Krishna: "Kariya Krsnera samsara chhadi' anachar (করিয়া কৃষ্ণের সংসার ছাড়ি' অনাচার), make your family Krishna's family and avoid what is unfavourable"—then you will get relief and benefit.
You can make your house Krishna's house,
যে দিন গৃহে ভজন দেখি ।
ye dina grhe bhajana dekhi
On the days when I see devotional service taking place in my home, I feel that Goloka has manifested there.
'Suddha-bhakata-charana-renu' by Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur
Worship Krishna and your house will become Vrindavan, then you will not have to come again in this mortal world. As you saw, so you reap: today you wear some clothes, but you cannot wear them tomorrow, you always have to change the dress. You are not this body, you are a soul, but you always keep changing the body—sometimes you are born as a human, sometimes as a dog, sometimes as a goat, and so on.
You must understand all these things and try to serve Hari, Guru, Vaishnavs.
I am inviting you all to come to the Math for the next festival on April 18, or at any other time. If anyone wants to stay here permanently, we have many branches in India—Vrindavan, Govardhan, Puri, Ekachakra, Ganga Sagar, Bakura, Kalna (lady's ashram), Siliguri, Bamunpara, Hapaniya, Nabadwip and others. Now we are also building temples in Tarakeshwar and Nrisingha Palli. If you want to stay at the Math, you have my invitation.
"I will stay in the Math and do service. I do not come to the Math to waste my Gurudev's rice," "I come to give to the Guru, not to take," "I do not bring money or some wealth with me, but I come to give my body, life, and heart (deha-prana-mana) for the service of my Guru"—this should be the mood. If you have this mood, then your initiation has value—if your initiation has some value, this mood must come. Seva-pravritti must always come. Our mood will be, "I will give something to my Guru, I will not take anything from my Guru." Always remember, always think about this.
Gurudev always gives us, always bestows his mercy upon us, but we must be a proper receiver. Gurudev always gives us with an open heart but we cannot take it. We must become a proper receiver to be able to accept it.
জীবে দয়া, নামে রুচি, বৈষ্ণব সেবা ।
jive daya name ruchi vaisnava seva
"Be merciful to the souls, chant the Holy Name happily, and serve the Vaishnavs. Sanatan, besides this, there is no other religion."
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