(5/7) Kali-Yuga Servants
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
I always chant this kirtan, and you also always chant it: "Ami sakti-buddhi-hina, ami ati dina, kore more atmasatha. O Gurudev, I have no strength, I have no intelligence, please hijack me!" "Please hijack me from this illusory world and give me the right to serve Sri Sri Radha Govinda." But do we really say that we want to be hijacked?
দীক্ষাকালে ভক্ত করে আত্মসমর্পণ ।
diksa-kale bhakta kare atma-samarpana
"Devotees submit their entire being when they take initiation. At this time, Krishna accepts them as His very own."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, 3.4.192)
When you take initiation, you pay your full obeisance to Gurudev and say that you surrender, but when Gurudev tells you to do something, when Gurudev tells you to go in a certain direction, you go in the opposite direction. We are unable to correct ourselves and make ourselves proper disciples.
I have told you many times that although it is very difficult to find a guru in this world, it is nonetheless possible, but you will not find a genuine disciple in this world. There are very few disciples in this world. One does not become a disciple by taking initiation. If you want to become a real disciple, you must place your Gurudev's words on your head and follow his order. When Gurudev tells you to do something, you must do it tolerating all austerities and pain.
What austerities are there? My God, gopis tolerated so much! Srila Sanatan Goswami, Srila Rupa Goswami, Srila Jiva Goswami, Srila Raghunath Das Goswami Prabhu served during twenty-two and a half hours a day. They spent only one and a half hour on going to the bathroom and taking some rest. They cooked, they worshipped Deities, massaged their Gurudev with oil, brought water for bathing from the Yamuna, cleaned the temple, composed scriptures. They did so much, but we must keep one person as a pujari, another person as a cook, another person as a manager, another person as sweeper, another person as a security guard, another person as somebody else, but even then they cannot serve. We have no zest for service!
When we do service, we do not think it is service—we do it as a duty. Just as when you go to the office, you work and always count the days until the payday, thinking, "When will the month end and I get my money?" We do not think about the Lord; we have no love for the Lord. We always think about our own happiness. We do not do service; instead, we dump work on our Gurudev, expecting him to do it, because we do not have the qualification to do service. This is our situation in this Age of Kali.
You give service to somebody, and they say, "Oh, this is his service!" You tell two devotees to massage your two legs, and each of them will massage only one leg, thinking, "Oh, the other leg is not mine! It is his!" This is our service mood. We say, "Oh, I have been staying at the temple for so long, but they are not giving me sannyas." This is ego. People want to become sannyasis to get fame and worship. One time, when Guru Maharaj gave sannyas to a quarrelsome person, he said, "I have given you sannyas, so from today, you are everyone's servant." To be a sannyasi does not mean sitting and accepting garlands and getting fame and worship from everyone. Sannyasis always do more service. Do you see me? I always go house to house—I go to people's houses and beg; I go house to house and preach about the Holy Name to everyone. I do not sit in one place. There are so many temples, but I cannot stay in any of them for more than one-two days. As you know, we have a new, third floor in this building here, so many rooms have been built it, but from the time the construction started, I did not get time to come here to supervise the works even seven times. All works were done by phone. I am overloaded with work, but this is all Gurudev's work, so I do not mind it.
Genuine disciples take burden from their Gurudev's shoulders and place it on their own shoulders. That is why I have taken Gurudev's burden too. When I came to the temple, I saw devotees who would come to Gurudev and ask, "Gurudev, how many kilograms rice should I cook today?", "How many people should I cook for today?" Gurudev had to instruct them about everything. To this day, I also have to tell everyone how much rice, how much dal and how much subji has to be cooked. This is the pressure I live with. Everyone only keeps saying, "Gurudev", "Gurudev", but it never crosses their minds, "How can I take some burden off Gurudev's shoulders?" We never think about it. We never think what service we can do to make it easier for Gurudev. We never do anything to make it easier for Gurudev or to make sure no trouble comes to him.
I remember one time, there was some problem downstairs (Gurudev had many godbrothers, and one of them had gone against Gurudev and did something wrong), and I went upstairs to tell Gurudev about it. Do you know what Gurudev replied to me? If you hear it, you will be taken aback. He said, "I have kept an Alsatian dog downstairs to guard me and accompany me during my morning walks, but when an enemy attacks me, this Alsatian dog jumps on my shoulder and cries, 'Save me! Save me! Save me!'" I understood what Gurudev wanted to say to me. He made me an Alsatian dog so that I could take all problems on my own shoulders, so why was it necessary for me to tell Gurudev about the problems that I was to solve myself? My duty is to bite—if somebody does something against Gurudev, my duty, as Gurudev's Alsatian dog, is to bite them.
বাঁধিয়া নিকটে আমারে পালিবে,
bandhiya nikate amare palibe
"Tie me up nearby and maintain me. I will remain at Your doorstep. I will not allow anyone who is against You to enter; I will keep them outside your camp."
(Saranagati, Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur)
"Gada" (গড়) is something like "a cantonment" (military quarters). For example, Pakistan has its cantonment, and India has its cantonment—the soldiers from Indian cantonment always make sure that their opponent stays out of their cantonment. So, if somebody encroaches from the opposition group, we will throw them out of our Master's cantonment.
This is what Gurudev taught me. I still remember his words. We must always think how we can make our Guru happy...
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