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Waning Values

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Kolkata-Worldwide, 28 June 2020, part 7


Question: How can I avoid feeling the desire to be independent from my Guru, Krishna, and the devotees?

We are not independent. We live under the guidance of our Guru. If you think about something yourself, you can ask others first—some senior devotee is there, you can ask them what you must do that. Why do you think of independence? Independence means svatantrata (স্বাতন্ত্রতা), and svatantrata is not good. You must live and serve under the guidance of your Guru and Vaishnavs, that is good. Stay under the guidance of Guru and Vaishnavs—that will be good for you.

Moreover, if you live in the temple and you need to go out, you must tell somebody in the temple, "I am going to some place, I am coming back in half an hour, two hours." That is what Gurudev told. You may be the manager of the temple, so you think it is not necessary to tell anybody ("I am the manager, why must I tell anybody that I am going out?")—but the security is there, you must tell the security that you are going out for an hour and you are coming back.

Also, Gurudev taught us that when you distribute prasadam at the prasadam time in the temple, you cannot distribute prasadam for yourself—somebody must give you prasadam, you must wait. You think, "Oh, I am the manger, why must I ask anybody? I will go and take it myself." No, this is not good. You must sit down, and somebody will give it to you. This is the proper way. I am talking now about the rules of the temple life.

Sometimes also, devotees think, "Oh, I have access to the kitchen, I do not like this food, I do not like this prasadam—I will cook for myself!" This is atmendriya-tarpan (আত্মেন্দ্রিয়-তর্পণ, sense-gratification). This is not devotion, it is called lust (kama, কাম). Even if you are the manager of the temple, if you think, "I will cook for myself, I do not like this prasadam," this is not good for the temple life. You must sacrifice so many things if you stay in the temple life. I have learned so many things like this when I came to this Mission.

Somebody was asking about Ajita Krishna Prabhu today. Gurudev said that Ajita Krishna Prabhu was a real mother because he would always think about those who had gone out (sometimes devotees would go out and come back at three-four o'clock in the afternoon)—he would always keep some prasadam for them. This is a real mother. Gurudev said that the storekeeper (bhandari, ভাণ্ডারী) or the Math-in-charge (temple manager, Math-raksak, মঠরক্ষক) will be the one who always thinks about everybody. If somebody has gone out to distribute books, to do collection, to buy something or to do some other job, and you know the person is coming back at three-four o'clock, you must think about them and keep some prasadam for them. You must be a real mother. This is what Gurudev always said. But this kind of love and affection is not there any more... There are about ten devotees staying in one temple, and sometimes we fight with each other about domestic things—we hit each other, we beat each other. Our tolerance is already gone. This is not a good situation.

Somebody gets ego, "Oh, I am the temple manager, I will control everybody! Everybody will listen to me, everybody will listen to my instruction." No. You can give others advice, you can give others your love and affection, then you will be the manager. A manager is a great servitor, a manager is a great proper servant. A temple manager in this Mission is a big servant, a big guardian. This must be always our mood. First practise properly yourself, then everybody will listen to you. Behave properly, have proper tolerance, deal with others properly, then everybody will give respect to you...



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His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj is speaking on the unparalleled gift, mercy, and purity of our Guru-varga..


Jaya jaya gurudever
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Gurudev's last word was, 'Do not see his fault, love him.'