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Learn, Practise, and Preach

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Nrisingha Palli, 29 November 2020, part 3

 

We can see that most devotees, both here in India and in foreign countries, are householders. I know that in many countries there are not any sannyasis or even brahmacharis, and I know how hard it is to keep brahmachari life and sannyasi life in the western countries—I understood it when I visited South America, Europe, Italy, London, etc. I saw how devotees lived and I saw that it is very difficult to keep a sannyasi life or a brahamchari life there. At the same time, I also see that there are some sannyasis and brahmacharis who try to keep their sannyasi life or brahmachari life.

Actually, the main thing is not who is a sannyasi and who is a brahmachari—we do not discriminate between brahmacharis, sannyasis, and householders; the main thing is practising and preaching. Sometimes, we see that householder devotees actually practise more. Sometimes, we see that a devotee, a brahmachari, lives in the temple, but when he goes for preaching to householder people, this brahmachari cannot wake up for mangal arati, but householder devotees wake up—householder devotees have an altar and they do mangal arati every morning, but our brahmacharis would be still in bed at that time. I have seen it many times when we go for preaching in Bengal. So, sometimes, householder devotees actually practise more and more. I see this both abroad and here in India also, I observe devotees and I see they are practising very nicely.

Householder devotees do not live independently—they live a family life, but they are an example for everyone—they practise properly, they wake up for mangal arati, do mangal arati, cook, offer bhog timely (give a bhog offering in the morning, another offering at noon, in the afternoon, in the evening), and so on. Householder devotees practise in this way as much as they can.

Gurudev also said, "My sons are not very reliable, but I know I have some daughters who I can fully rely on. I am very happy with my daughters—they cook for me properly, they try to help me, and they do so much service for me." Saying this, Gurudev told some particular names. So, I see that householder devotees in foreign countries show a very nice example, they practise properly. Yet in the meantime, what I want to say is that the younger generation must practise more because this next generation will take over the flag of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math and carry it in the future—they must continue practising what Srila Guru Maharaj and Gurudev told, they must know how they practised, what things they have given to us, and they must learn to preach this.

We must preach properly. We must reach everyone, door to door. Practising must be door to door! I like this kind of preaching that was inaugurated by Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur, Srila Prabhupad. Mahaprabhu said, "Preach village to village (prithivite achhe yata nagaradi gram)!" Srila Prabhupad said, "Go door to door!" and our Gurudev and Guru Maharaj said, "Reach to everyone, heart to heart."

Mahaprabhu told to spread the Holy Name to every village, to go village to village, and Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur, Srila Prabhupad told, "Go to every door, go door to door." Moreover, I have also heard from Gurudev the following. There are some sons who are what is called "bape khadano maye tarano (বাপে খেদানো মায়ে তাড়ানো)"—they do not get so much love and affection from their parents (sometimes the father drives the son away, sometimes the mother does not love her son and kicks him out), and they come to take shelter at the temple; they start practising and eventually become brahmacharis and sannyasis. (There are four types of people who come to the temple—arthah, artha-arthi, jijnasuh, jnani; those who are suffering, who seek happiness, the inquisitive, and the self-realised.) And Gurudev said, "I am making my party from such sons and turn them into brahmacharis and sannyasis. After that, I again send these brahmacharis and sannyasis back to householder people to preach to them and to tell them about the glories of the Holy Name, about the glories of Sri Guru, Vaishnavs, and Mahaprabhu." Gurudev and Param Guru Maharaj said that we must reach out to everybody's heart—we must go heart to heart and we must deliver the Holy Name of the Lord to every jiva soul's heart. Hridaye hridaye Bhagavaner Nam pauchhe dao (হৃদয়ে হৃদয়ে ভগবানের নাম পৌঁছে দাও): distribute the Holy Name to everybody's heart—not only to every village, not only to every door, but you must distribute the Holy Name to every jiva soul's heart. This is the main thing.

To do that, you must give much labour—you must sacrifice your life. It takes so much blood to make one brahmachari or to make one sannyasi—it is not so easy to even make one devotee, what to speak of a sannyasi or a brahmachari. It is necessary to give your blood to do that. In this age of Kali, people are too much attracted to material life. People are attracted and attached to beauty, to rupa, rasa, gandha, sabda, sparsa (the eye-pleasure, tongue-pleasure, nose-pleasure, ear-pleasure, skin-pleasure). There are so many elements that people are attracted to. You must come out of this! That is why I am saying that it is necessary to practise and preach properly. That is main thing for our spiritual life.

 

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