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Do Away With Gossiping

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Kolkata, 13 December 2020, part 1

 

Jay Om Vishnupad Jagad-guru Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj ki jay
Visva-varenya Srila Guru Maharaj ki jay

I was at a programme just now, that is why I am a few minutes late—I am very sorry about that. I offer my humble obeisance to you all.

I left Dum Dum Park today in the morning and came to this area for three-four days to preach. One of the devotees here passed away eleven days ago, and there was her sraddha ceremony today. We came to this village to conduct the Vaishnav-homa ceremony for her and do some preaching (I gave class at noon and now, in the evening, too). I have been coming to this area of Basirhat for more than twenty years, since Gurudev's times. It is not very far from Dum Dum Park (Kolkata)—perhaps, fifty-sixty kilometres.

I spoke to them today about chastity. It is necessary to be chaste to your guru. Chastity is the main thing. I explained to them the example of Ramachandra Puri and how he made offences against Vaishnavs. At first, he made a Vaishnav-aparadh, then his offence came to his guru, Madhavendra Puri, and then his offence came to Sriman Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the Lord Himself. So, first you make some offence against a Vaishnav (commit Vaishnav-aparadh), then it is guru-aparadh, and then your offence goes to the Lord.

We do service, we have so many good qualities, we worship the Lord and His devotees, but if we at the same time nurture some bad qualities inside us, this is the main obstacle in our life. We do not want to make any offences, we must be always careful about it. I have told you many times—an idle brain is the devil's workshop. If you have too much time on your hands, if you have no job, you become busy with only para-charcha, para-ninda—you like to criticise and say bad things about other devotees.

Even if what you are saying is true, you must still never speak bad about anybody. It is not necessary to say such things. If you search for others' holes, you may find some five holes in somebody, but maybe one thousand holes will come to you in return. This is how much problem will come to you and your practising life. So, be always careful. Do not discuss others' qualities, even if what you are saying is the truth.

Who am I? Why is it necessary to criticise anyone or say anything about others? We must understand these things and we must have more tolerance. It is necessary to have more tolerance.

I saw in Gurudev's time also. One day, I came to Gurudev, paid my dandavat to him, and Gurudev told me, "OK, sit down here." I sat down. I sat and sat, and Gurudev did not say anything. Half an hour passed, an hour passed, and Gurudev did not say anything. I waited, waited, waited, and I was thinking at that time that Gurudev was testing to see how much tolerance I had. I sat there for one hour, two hours, and Gurudev did not say anything. Anyhow, he told me to sit down, and I sat down.

I observed many things before, and now the time is different... I have told you many times that during his last days Gurudev told me, "You have brought so many people to me for initiation, and I have initiated so many people, but can you tell me how many people have actually become disciples?" It is very rare that a person would become a disciple.

So, what I want to say to everybody is that para-charcha and para-ninda (criticising and discussing others) is very bad. Because of this bad quality, you are getting so much trouble, so much austerity in your spiritual life, and you cannot progress in your spiritual life. If you have this tendency, you must control your urges ("chhaya vega dami"). Srila Rupa Goswami Prabhu also writes,

vacho vegam manasah krodha-vegam
jihva-vegam udaropastha-vegam
etan vegan yo visaheta dhirah
sarvam apimam prthivim sa sisyat

"A sober person who can tolerate (1) the urge to speak, (2) the mind's demands, (3) the actions of anger and the urges of the (4) tongue, (5) belly and (6) genitals is qualified to make disciples all over the world."

(Sri Upadesamrta, 1)

I wrote about Siksamrita of Srila Rupa Goswami Prabhu in Guidance 4 (Chapter 'Srila Rupa Goswami's Siksamrta, Nectar of Instructions'). You can find this chapter and read it today. It is very nice. I am going to read it to you now, please listen.

vacho vegam manasah krodha-vegam
jihva-vegam udaropastha-vegam
etan vegan yo visaheta dhirah
sarvam apimam prthivim sa sisyat

"A sober person who can tolerate (1) the urge to speak, (2) the mind's demands, (3) the actions of anger and the urges of the (4) tongue, (5) belly and (6) genitals is qualified to make disciples all over the world."

(Sri Upadesamrta, 1)

Srila Rupa Goswamipad said, "The urge to speak or to control one's speech is the biggest obstacle on the path of devotional practice." People say whatever comes to their mind; they say whatever they see; they gossip about whatever they have heard—this leads to destruction of devotion. Those who cannot control the urge of speech, the urge of anger, the urge of stomach and the urge of genitals, can never attain success, even if they practise Krishna consciousness. Listening about the Lord, speaking about the Lord, glorifying the Lord, worshipping and paying obeisance to the Lord—these practices bring a certain result. If you follow all these devotional programmes, then firmness, taste, attachment, feelings and love arise, but if you cannot control the urge of speech, the urge of anger, the urge of lust, the urge of stomach, not only will you not get any result—whatever you earn will be all destroyed. If you keep water in a pot that has holes, all water will fall down; in the same way, if you practise Krishna consciousness but have holes, everything you do will fall through those holes. If you have not overcome the six enemies, you have no self-control, then the result of your spiritual practice will fall through these holes. Prajalpa (idle talks, gossiping) is the main thorn on the path of devotion. Everything except Hari-katha is nonsense talk. If you cannot control your urge to speak and insult, criticise and gossip about others, you can never progress on the path of devotion. Those who discuss others' character, will get no spiritual benefit—they will not advance on the path of devotion.

kahare na kare ninda, 'krsna krsna' bale
ajeya chaitanya sei jinibeka hele

"Those who do not offend anyone and always chant the Holy Name of Lord Krishna conquer unconquerable Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu."

(Sri Chaitanya-bhagavata, 2.10.312)

If you criticise others, you will not be able to conquer Chaitanya. At the same time, it is easy to get Him. Sri Chaitanya does not give mercy to those who offend others and the universe. You say whatever comes to your mind; you say whatever you have heard; you say whatever you have seen—but you chant the Holy Name. You can chant twenty-five thousand Holy Names, fifty thousand Holy Names, or a hundred thousand Holy Names, but if you criticise somebody with this same tongue, you will not get any result. Criticising others destroys devotion and invites a total ruination of one's devotional life. When you eat rice, your stomach becomes full, your health stays good. In the same way, criticising others may be pleasing to the tongue. You like to hear about others' holes or to see others' holes, but you will never get spiritual benefit because of this. You will only keep going in circles—whatever you get by practising hearing, chanting, etc., will be spoilt. Seeing others' faults destroys everything. Great souls never criticise others, rather they praise Vaisnavs. Great souls never tell Vaisnavs' faults, even if they hear or see some fault, they never speak about it. Those who themselves suffer from lust, are hen-pecked, mix freely with women and extremely uncontrolled, are themselves in a big trouble; they see others' faults and speak out loud about them. Those who cannot see their own innumerable faults, see many holes in others. Camels eat thorns—their tongues bleed, but they do not stop eating. In the same way, people come to practise Krishna consciousness, but cannot stop criticising others, insulting others—they will never get any spiritual benefit. Practitioners must proceed on the path of devotion very carefully. If you cannot heed this warning and roam around criticising others, then you are chopping off your own leg. Hole-searchers and fault-finders happily walk around criticising others left and right. Many say, "We see that he is stealing prasadam. I am telling the truth, what fault is there in saying it?" The fault is in telling this truth—the fault of speech. Who ate it will get the result, but because you go around telling about his fault to everybody, you will be harmed even more. If such fault-finders take shelter of a bona fide guru and keep good association, they will not get the result—they will just go in circles, ending up in the middle of nowhere. They become cheated, deceived in their life. You must not see others' faults, you must not hear about others' faults—and even if you see or hear about somebody's faults, you must not speak about it. Somebody steals food from the storehouse. Are you the controller? "I saw him steal, I have told the truth, what is my fault?" The fault is in telling this truth—this is what leads to ruination and the downfall of the practitioner. Whatever good thing you do, no matter how much you chant the Holy Name with this tongue, you will get no benefit. You will only move forward down the path of inauspiciousness, trouble, and death. Those who do not heed this warning are very unfortunate.

If you take shelter of an ancestral guru or a false guru, then there is nobody who can save you from the hands of inauspiciousness. However, a bona fide guru gives a danger signal—he gives the right advice at the right time. If you listen to the advice or guidance of your guru, you will be benefitted. Those who do not listen to it, fall down. Suppose lust, anger arise in your mind and you become disturbed—no matter how much you practise devotional activities, you will be falling down. You can see how many good qualities one has, how much service one does, but if you criticise others, the result will be your falldown. If you speak about another person's hole, that fault will come to you and it will be a hundred times stronger. Be very careful. Never search for faults in others. Even if somebody does something bad, it is your fault that you see it or speak about it—it brings about ruination. If you do not actually rectify yourself having heard all this caution, you will suffer birth after birth. Many practitioners have good qualities but they cannot progress on the path of devotion. The impression of the actions of those who criticise and abuse others strikes Gurudev's heart heavily. Striking a great soul does not bring any benefit.

What is written here is very nice.

We must be always careful with this. Somebody can do something wrong, but you will not speak about it, even if it is the truth. We will not share such things with anybody, we will not discuss it with anybody (we will not say anything about such matters)—it is bad for your spiritual life. Even if it is the truth, do not go to consult about any such things with others. OK? It is very important.

 

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Listen to the audio or download (6.1 Mb, 15 min)

 


 

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