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Sri Guru: Exclusive Benefactor

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
20 September 2019, Kolkata, part 2


What does Gurudev do?

তদ্­বিদ্ধি প্রণিপাতেন পরিপ্রশ্নেন সেবয়া ।
উপদেক্ষ্যন্তি তে জ্ঞানং জ্ঞানিনস্তত্ত্বদর্শিনঃ ॥

tad viddhi pranipatena, pariprasnena sevaya
upadeksyanti te jnanam, jnaninas tattva-darsinah

"You will be able to attain knowledge by satisfying the divine master with submission, relevant inquiry, and sincere service. The enlightened souls who are learned in scriptural knowledge and endowed with direct realisation of the Supreme Absolute Truth will impart divine knowledge to you."

Krishna told Arjun, and Prahlad Maharaj also taught this to his school friends in Bhagavatam—"First you should surrender to the Guru, enquire honestly from him, and have service mood—then Gurudev can show you what is your duty." Surrender is first.

দৈন্য, দয়া, অন্যে মান, প্রতিষ্ঠা বর্জ্জন ।
চারিগুণে গুণী হই করহ কীর্ত্তন ॥

dainya, daya anye mana, pratistha-varjana
chari gune guni hai karaha kirtana

Humility, compassion, honouring others, and giving up prestige—become qualified with these four qualities and chant the Name.

(Sri Siksastakam Giti)

দৈন্য, আত্মনিবেদন, গোপ্তৃত্বে বরণ ।
'অবশ্য রক্ষিবে কৃষ্ণ'—বিশ্বাস পালন ॥
ভক্তি-অনুকূল মাত্র কার্য্যের স্বীকার ।
ভক্তি-প্রতিকূল ভব—বর্জ্জনাঙ্গীকার ॥

dainya, atma-nivedana, goptrtve varana
'avasya raksibe krsna'—visvasa palana
bhakti-anukula matra karyera svikara
bhakti-pratikula bhava—varjanangikara

"Humility, self-submission, taking the Lord as your guardian, keeping the faith that 'Krishna will certainly protect me', engaging only in activities that are favourable to devotion, rejecting everything unfavourable to devotion."

We are fallen souls, we are pancha-rogi hata (ruined by five diseases)—avidya (ignorance), asmita (false identification), raga (misdirected love), dvesa (aversion to anything that goes against one's enjoyment), and abhinivesa (being unable to give up unfavourable habits). However, you can cure these five diseases. When you have some material disease, you go to a doctor, the doctor gives you some medicine and if you take that medicine you get cured. If you do not take the medicine, how will you be cured? You must take proper medicine as ordered by your Guru, then you will be cured—those five diseases will be removed from your heart.

Gurudev is always in the presence of the Lord—he always serves the Lord, always thinks about the Lord, about his Guru and the service to his Guru, and he always engages others in the service to the Lord. Guru always serves himself and engages others also in the service of the Lord.

Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur told that there are two types of Gurus in this society—one type is gosthanandi guru and the other type is vivetyanandi guru. Those gurus who always stay alone and only chant on their beads, they do not give advice to others, do not do service, and do not engage others in service, are called bhajananandi (Gurudev told 'bhajananandi', and Srila Prabhupad told 'vivetyanandi'). Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur, Srila Prabhupad, Srila Gurudev, Guru Maharaj always did service and engaged others in service also.

One time, some big personlity came to see Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj. At that time, Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj was wearing a gumcha and making some boundary wall for the temple (in those days, they did not have manpower or money to make a concrete wall, so they would make some fence with branches). When that man came to the gate of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math, he asked, "Who is Sridhar Maharaj? I want to meet him." Srila Sridhar Maharaj replied, "Wait here please. You can meet with him, it is not a problem." Then, Srila Sridhar Maharaj went upstairs to his room, took off his gumcha and wore a proper dhoti and kurta. He sat in his chair and sent his servitor to call the man who had come to see him. When the man came upstairs, he was surprised, "I have just seen this man at the gate wearing a gumcha, cutting some branches and making a fence! This is Sridhar Maharaj?!"

Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur, Srila Prabhupad, Srila Gurudev, Guru Maharaj always taught how one can get proper benefit in their spiritual life. They are all uttam adhikari, but for the benefit of jiva souls—for our benefit—they came down to madhyam adhikari level and took disciples, taught disciples, chastised disciples, did service and engaged others in service, etc. They bestowed their mercy. At the same time, when somebody criticised them, they would ignore it.

When one has taken shelter of a Guru and worships their Guru (like we do), what does Gurudev do? He sends whatever worship the disciple offers to him to the Lord. If one is a proper spiritual master, he does not take anything for his own benefit—whatever worship comes to him, he never uses it for his own purpose.

জগতে প্রকট ভাই, তাহা বিনা গতি নাই
যদি চাও আপন কুশল

jagate prakata bhai, taha vina gati nai
yadi chao apana kusala

"Brother, it is obvious that there is no other path in this world other than this if you want your own benefit."



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Over Service Hurdles
'When we came here, we did not know anything about Krishna consciousness, but everything comes by the mercy of Gurudev. Tolerance and patience are necessary. When you stay in a temple many problems will come, but you must not leave your service.'


Sri Sri Damodarastakam
'O Lord, Your lotus face, which is encircled by locks of soft black hair tinged with red, is kissed again and again by Mother Yasoda, and Your lips are reddish like the bimba fruit. May this beautiful vision of Your lotus face be ever manifest in my heart. Thousands and thousands of other benedictions are of no use to me.'

If you keep these desires in your heart, that is not good. You must try to remove it as soon as the seed appears—kill it through chanting.