AFFECTIONATE GUIDANCE: CHAPTER TWENTY-SEVEN
Excerpts from Letters
Our material life's root is existing within misconception and through misconception we are now suffering in this material world, within the wave of death and birth.
Actually, everyone's spiritual form as 'atma' is very clean, and in that clean position his only duty is to serve in the transcendental service world to his dearmost Lord Krishna, and there the service duties exist in varieties of ways. By the grace of hladini-sakti and through his earnest, clean desire he gets a specific service as appropriate for his devotional mood. That service comes within five forms of relationship with his dearmost beloved Lord. That is the real and normal position and service duty. Through that dutiful mood, his eternal caste and creed automatically manifests within him. Actually all the healthy jiva-souls are existing within that transcendental devotional service plane, whereas the jiva-souls here are living within the society of misconception and need to take the opportunity to render some service to Guru-Gauranga.
Attachment to Krishna cannot grow automatically within us and no one who is bound within misconception can give it to us. Then, your activities must be for increasing your mood of devotion, and to do that you must follow the nine kinds of devotional processes (sravanam, kirttanam) and also try to engage your self and mind for the satisfaction of the Vaisnavas.
The nature of the mundane world is: taking birth, suffering in so many ways, death—birth, suffering, and death—repeatedly. It is only possible to leave this misconception by getting the good devotees' merciful connection and through that 'electricity' we will get our real, beneficial, exalted service life. This is the main thing, and all scriptures show this. What more can I say!
The Srimad-Bhagavatam said that we cannot be successful through our own endeavour, it is only possible through the sadhus' grace and the grace of Sri Gurudev. For that purpose and by the Lord's grace He appears in the form of Sadhu-Guru for uplifting the conditioned souls. For the Lord's connection we will connect with His agent in the form of sadhu and Guru.
Here all the duties, like the rivers' flow, must be directed to flow into the ocean of ecstasy to Krishna—this is the main thing.
Srila Rupa Goswami, in his Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, gave:
Try to detach yourself from mundane affairs and material necessities. Living within this mundane environment some necessities and requirements will come; take them in a harmonising way for the peace and maintenance of your body and mind. To become detached try to see everything in relation to Krishna and use everything for His service. Make the focus of all activities service to Sri Krishna—that is sadhana.
Again my blessings with well wishes to you and dandavat pranams and well wishes as appropriate to all the devotees in your association.
My dear Devotees,
Please accept my humble dandavat pranams in remembrance of my Divine Masters Srila Guru Maharaj and Srila Swami Maharaj. I received your phone call and faxes.
Fortunately I have got the opportunity with my friends like Sripad Sagar Maharaj to preach Krishna consciousness in Brazil, by the grace of the devotees there, especially Your Graces. I think you are all qualified, mature devotees in Krishna consciousness. When it is you who are recommending someone for initiation, how can I think that they don't know the rules and regulations? For me it is impossible to think that one who comes to receive initiation does not know about the four directives and the rules and regulations of Krishna consciousness. I am thinking that they must all know the primary rules and regulations. Srimad-Bhagavatam has stated that by following the directives one will be pious, otherwise if one is engaged in sinful activities, how can he get the connection with, and the practice of, Krishna consciousness? It is a very simple matter. Before eating it is necessary to wash our hands, wash the plate, take clean water, and then respectfully take Prasadam. Everywhere there is a natural process of rules and regulations. The four regulations are the basic foundation for everybody. These regulations are like learning the alphabet. Without learning the alphabet it is not possible to read any book.
Now, when the position you mention has come within our society, I must say it clearly that when anyone wants to practise Krishna consciousness he must formally or practically try to make himself a pious person. But piety must be disturbed if one will not follow the four regulative principles. What do we want? We don't want anything mundane, like wealth, women and fame. Our greatest enemy is fame, therefore Srila Saraswati Thakur said it was comparable with pig's stool. Perhaps for the time being they can't leave the habit, but why should my friends eat that pig stool twenty-four hours daily? If we have no sincerity in our practising life, we cannot get the mercy of Nityananda Prabhu. Anyway, with full affection and humility you must tell my friends that this is our healthy principle. On rare occasions, we may see a Paramahamsa Vaisnava breaking the rules, like Srila Vamsidas Babaji Maharaj; but that is not our ideal, and should never be imitated.
When we are forming a society or anything, that is only as eyewash to satisfy the mundane requirements. But what is the value of a nose without breath? Our life-force is the mood of devotion to Krishna, and that will increase with the association of, and service to, the devotee. No doubt there is a gradation, but that is because we are unqualified and we must follow according to junior and senior positions. On the whole, we must not forget that we are practitioners as students. The first requirement of practising Krishna consciousness is to serve and satisfy the Vaisnava. If we only sing Vaisnava Thakura doyara sagara e dase koruna kari day and night without following that, then the fruit will not come to our hand. When we cannot help ourselves, how can we help others? So it is my request to my friends that they try to follow this principal directive. The Scriptures have said, sadhu-sange Krishna-Nama, ei matra chai, samsara jinite ara kona vasttu nai. Service to Guru and Vaisnava without offence, and service to the Hare Krishna Mahamantra without offence are one and the same thing. So whatever we do, we must not be offenders to Harinama and the Vaisnavas. And we can get this qualification through humility, tolerance and giving honour to others. If we are sincere and sacrifice ourselves, we must follow these directives of Sriman Mahaprabhu. Mundane ego can destroy everything, so we must first try to leave our ego and fully surrender to Guru and Vaisnava.
It is my request to my faithful friends that what will be practically suitable for our preaching mission there, you try to do that happily together. It is my desire that everyone will come under one umbrella and happily give nourishment to each other, and serve the devotee, the Deity and our Mission. From far, what can I say more?
Really, religion of the jiva-souls is one. In Srimad- Bhagavatam Sri Krishna said: mayadau brahmane prokta, dharmo yasyam mad-atmakah. Sriman Mahaprabhu said more clearly: jivera svarupa haya, Krsnera 'nitya-dasa.' There is no doubt that all the demigods' or gods' power is coming from the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and He is Sri Krishna. After realisation in every way and all directions it is firmly concluded in all Scriptures and supremely in Srimad-Bhagavatam that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is Sri Krishna. Our only aim and object is Krishna-prema, divine love for Krishna, and this is also concluded in all the Scriptures. Now it is very clear by the causeless mercy of Sriman Mahaprabhu and later on by their Divine Graces, Om Visnupad Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj and Om Visnupad Srila A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj Prabhupad. We are very insignificant and no doubt extremely fallen souls. Before also it was so unfortunate, but now it is not. Actually the door of our fortune was opened for us by their Divine Graces' causeless mercy. We don't always get such a chance. In Srimad-Bhagavatam we can see this sloka:
nr-deham adyam su-labham sudurlabham
Sriman Mahaprabhu is the non-different form of the Divine Couple. He appears as a giver of the supreme goal of life and Himself has taken the form of a practitioner. He showed His divine preacher's form in a very sweet and simple way. Therefore we are relieved from all anxieties. Now our only duty is to perfectly follow under the guidance of His associates. The way is very simple, nacho gao bhakta-sange karak sankirttan, akantha kariya kara prasada bhaksana. The clue to the practitioner's success is contained within this verse. The only necessity is sambandha jnana, which means to know our divine relationship and natural duty in connection with the Lord—that is our svarupa sampad. Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur said: atmara ananda prasravana—the fountain of ecstasy for the jiva-soul. A very easy way to practise Krishna consciousness was given by Sriman Mahaprabhu and later by His divine associates in this age. We only need to have clear faith and avoid Vaisnava-aparadh. How sweet the way of practise: dance and sing with the devotees, chant the Hare Krishna Mahamantra and take Maha-Mahaprasad. And:
sarira abidya-jal, jodendriya tahe kal,
Through that you get your elixir of life, and it will easily spread to others through your sincere activities, and they will be extremely benefitted as you are.
Reading your whole letter I have also got much enthusiasm,
I have no doubt about Your Grace that if you will try sincerely you can do something for the greatest auspiciousness of all. To practise Krishna consciousness is a very nice process. Who will practise must be benefited and through his practising others also must be beneficiaries.
Our lifetime is very short and we do not always get such an opportunity. Then what one wants to do, do immediately, this is the advice of the Scriptures. So please realise all these things and do the needful.
Please accept my blessings in remembrance of my Divine Master. I am happy to receive your letter with news of the devotees and Srila Guru Maharaj's divine mission in Malaysia. I am always remembering you and all the devotees there, and I am praying to Srila Guru Maharaj that he look after you all.
After hearing carefully all your news, I am now giving answer to your questions one by one.
a) Srimad Bhagavad-gita manifest originally in Mahabharat on the Battlefield of Kuruksetra. Bhagavan Sri Krishna Himself gave us this ecstasy to the faithful, fortunate jiva-souls for their super-benefit of transcendental body strength and service. One sloka you will see in the Gita-Mahatmya invocation:
Very much attractively and simply explained, everything is in this Gita-Mahatmya sloka. You know the gist of the Vedas are the Upanisads, mentioned as a cow. Krishna is using Arjuna as the calf of that cow for making the milk flow, and the faithful, fortunate souls of good pious intelligence are drinking that milk.
Srimad Bhagavad-gita is giving in varieties of ways (karmma-yoga, jnana-yoga, hatha-yoga, bhakti-yoga and exclusive devotional method) the chance to take the opportunity of that rescuing process from the illusionary environment to Vaikuntha-loka upward to Goloka Vrindavan.
In the Vaisnaviya-tantra-sara in the section explained as 'Gita-Mahatmya' the glories of Sri Gita are explained to us in varieties of ways, but the Vaisnava Acharyyas like Visvanath Chakravarti, Baladeva Vidyabhusan, and especially Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur, they expressed the line of drinking that full-cream-milk as exclusive devotional method. Therefore Srila Prabhupad Saraswati Thakur following Bhaktivinod Thakur's line avoided focusing on other intentions as we can see in Bhakti-rasamrta- sindhu and Narada Pancharatra:
anyabhilasita sunyam, jnana-karmmady anavrtam
Therefore those who want the mundane benefit up to Satya-loka must be attracted to see that full Gita-Mahatmya and read Bhagavad-gita. They also will gradually get a super-position in the plane of dedication by the mercy of the residents of that plane. So we can say those who are very much eager and who have much hankering for exclusive devotion to Krishna will not try to take that opportunity explained in the Gita-Mahatmya of Vaisnaviya-tantra- sara.
Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur published the Gita with the commentary of Sridhar Swami, Visvanath Chakravarti and Baladeva Vidyabhusan, and following them in the Bengali language the commentary of Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur. There the full Gita-Mahatmya is not published.
But Srila Guru Maharaj seeing the present condition of the conditioned souls, very mercifully when he presented our edition he gave that Gita-Mahatmya for their general encouragement. So now we can say to everybody, "Go as you like!"
b) It is explained in Bengali by Krishna Das Kaviraj:
diksa-kale bhakta kare atma-samarpana
(Chaitanya-charitamrta: Antya-lila, 4.192-193)
I tried to explain it in English but my English is very poor and not sufficient for explaining everything. But the Bengali verse is perfect and you will see in Chaitanya-charitamrta the explanation of Srila Swami Maharaj Prabhupad.
The soul by nature is spiritual but is of the tatastha-sakti. He has the possibility of obtaining a fully serving spiritual form, and he has the possibility to be in material existence by becoming covered by material consciousness. The bound atma gets a subtle and physical body. Until he surrenders to Guru that divine soul is covered by matter and he is disconnected from the transcendental service world. But when receiving initiation, which means that when he fully surrenders to Krishna in the form of Guru, that surrendered position is explained by Srila Saraswati Thakur and Srila Swami Maharaj (in Antya-lila 4.192): With his willing, feeling and thinking consciousness he is surrendering to Krishna in his dedicated mood of sacrifice. Krishna is seeing his sincere attitude and immediately gives him in seed-form his own transcendental form as spiritual body, and gradually that will manifest (as 'sata pata vedannyaya' a needle passes almost, but not quite, instantaneously through a pile of leaves with some small difference of time from leaf to leaf).
When he gets the direct service-form to the Supreme Personality of Godhead—where are playing five kinds of ecstasy as rasa—as suitable by his own hankering service mood to Krishna he is getting his male or female form accordingly. But on the whole, when realising the position of the jiva-soul we must say it is coming as the power of Krishna—tatastha-sakti—and that means every potency's identification is as female. But it can be transformed in the mood of male such as dasya-rasa, sakhya-rasa and vatsalya-rasa. All of them are serving Krishna, and the mood of service is prakrti, but their action may be as a male by the mercy of Mul-Sankarsan.
If we translate those verses (Chaitanya-charitamrta: Antya-lila, 4.192-193) word by word we must say that this body is transformed to transcendental form. But Srila Saraswati Thakur gave some explanation in his Anubhasya in Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta, and Srila Swami Maharaj has seen it and given purport for our clarification in English. There you can see and then you must understand:
"At the time of initiation, a devotee gives up all his material conceptions. Therefore, being in touch with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he is situated on the transcendental platform. Thus having attained knowledge and the transcendental platform, he always engages in the service of the spiritual body of Krishna. When one is freed from material connections in this way, his body immediately becomes spiritual, and Krishna accepts his service. However, Krishna does not accept anything from a person with a material conception of life. When a devotee no longer has any desire for material sense gratification, in his spiritual identity he engages in the service of the Lord, for his dormant spiritual consciousness awakens. This awakening of spiritual consciousness makes his body spiritual, and thus he becomes fit to render service to the Lord. A karmi may consider the body of a devotee material, but factually it is not, for a devotee has no conception of material enjoyment. If one thinks that the body of a pure devotee is material, he is an offender, for that is Vaisnava-aparadh."
c) Astral travel is the travelling of the mental body out from the physical body. But when the jiva-soul travels from the material body, that takes place at the time of death.
d) Offering bhoga to Krishna we can sing the bhajan: 'Bhaja bhakata vatsala Sri Gaurahari.' Arati will then be held during which time the devotees may sing 'Yasomati- nandana' and 'Jaya Sachinandana.' This also is the tradition here in Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math.
In giving answer I am always feeling restricted by my lack of English. But you consider these points and I think you must understand my expression.
In the presence of Sriman Mahaprabhu, and after Sriman Mahaprabhu, in our sampradaya up to Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur, no one took saffron cloth or formal Vedic sannyas dress. But all of them, as well as our Guru-parampara and the Goswamis, were not only paramahamsas but more than that they are all extreme exclusive servitors in the line of Sri Rupa Goswami to Sri Sri Radha-Govinda. They follow the conception of:
naham vipro na cha nara-patir napi vaisyo na sudro
They followed this conception of Mahaprabhu with extreme humility.
Not only that, but Srila Krishna Das Kaviraj Goswami indicated that it is not necessary for the Vaisnavas to take saffron cloth.
rakta-vastra 'vaisnavera' parite na yuyaya
(Chaitanya-charitamrta: Antya-lila, 13.61)
And Mahaprabhu proudly declared about His devotees:
kantha-karangiya mora kangala bhakta-gana
(Chaitanya-charitamrta: Madhya-lila, 25.183)
Actually the indication of Mahaprabhu is that His followers will not be attached to any mundane relativities, but they will be exclusively attached to pure devotional life. Therefore in the time of the Sad-Goswamis (the Six Goswamis) and after the Sad-Goswamis, when Narottam Thakur, Srinivas Acharyya, Visvanath Chakravarti, etc. widely preached, up to that time Sriman Mahaprabhu's sampradaya was not so much polluted by sahajiyaism. Some pollution was always there in shadow-form no doubt, as sahajiyaism, but after Visvanath Chakravarti Thakur and Baladev Vidyabhusan, the real preaching conception of Sriman Mahaprabhu was hidden, and widely no one preached it, but they practised. Like the activity of Kali, the cloud of mayavad and sahajiyaism covered almost the whole of pure Vaisnavism. It is expressed by Srila Guru Maharaj in Sri Bhaktivinod-viraha Dasakam:
dharmmas-chharmma-gato 'jnataiva satata yogas cha bhogatmako
At that time anuraga-bhajan, exclusive devotional practices, became completely polluted by sahajiyaism. At that time Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur appeared as the divine grace of Sriman Mahaprabhu in the mundane world as a transcendental sampradaya purifier and re-establisher. Whole-heartedly with his full energy he tried to reestablish the pure Mahaprabhu's conception by his melted heart prayers.
He was paradukha dukhi, extremely sorrowful to see the pain of the conditioned souls. As much as possible by him he tried to remove and clean the obstacles from our vision of the spiritual sky. He prayed to Mahaprabhu, "Please send Your merciful glance in the form of a Vaisnava Acharyya." Through his divine prayer we have got Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur as an illustrious, exalted, unique sampradaya Acharyya of Sriman Mahaprabhu.
Srila Saraswati Thakur showed himself from his childhood as a great General in our Sampradaya. He declared totalitarian war against maya, especially mayavad and sahajiyaism. He showed us the position of real raga-marga. It is expressed in a few words, and you have seen that engraved on the front of the nat-mandir:
matala harijana kirttana-range
He caused Mahaprabhu's fire of maha-sankirttan yajna to again blaze by his divine activities. He used everything necessary, and he brought from the Ramanuja Sampradaya the tridanda-sannyas. It was hidden in Bengal, but mentioned in the Srimad-Bhagavatam, but it existed in the Ramanuja Sampradaya, and through that he re-established daiva-varnasram-dharmma and showed that the position of the devotees of Krishna is the supreme position, and that the position of a devotee of Krishna is so high and unquestionable. He preached everywhere in this mundane plane that what is existing in the form of religion of the jiva-souls is actually all bogus.
prthivite yata katha dharmma name chale
This was his preaching line.
He organised again the varnasram-dharmma, no doubt, but that was in the line of Srimad Bhagavad-gita. However, supremely he showed through his divine activity the religion of the jiva soul that is manifested by Vaisnava- dharmma. It is not dependent upon any mundane consideration or even the Vedic rulings.
tasmat tvam uddhavotsrjya,
The rulings given in the Vedas, the sruti and smrti— whatever you have heard before and will hear in the future, leave it all, fully surrender to Krishna, and serve Him whole-heartedly. Here is the point of Srila Saraswati Thakur: service to Krishna. Whatever is necessary for that service, we shall follow. Where there is no service we have no existence, but for the service of Krishna we can do anything and everything under proper guidance.
Srila Swami Maharaj Prabhupad and Srila Guru Maharaj were both in that line, and they also showed just how much, and what, we can do for the service of Krishna. Now the whole world through their divine service-preaching is chanting and dancing with the Hare Krishna Mahamantra. They proved what Mahaprabhu said:
prthivite achhe yata nagaradi-grama
They took all facilities from this mundane ground and they took all facilities from the Vedic Scriptures in order to establish Krishna consciousness in the heart of every jiva-soul without consideration of male or female—stri purusa nirvisese. That was Srila Prabhupad Saraswati Thakur's thesis, but you know that it is natural that the antithesis always disturbs the thesis, especially when the male/female conception comes to disturb the mind of the practitioners. For their protection we follow the system of brahmacharya, grhastha, etc., and if necessary we can utilise that theory for our preaching programme.
No doubt we are not sannyasis, brahmacharis or grhasthas, but for the preaching purpose and for the protection of the male and female practitioners we can utilise saffron as a guard for their preaching life because preaching is the highest within our practising process (sravan, kirttan).
tara madhye sarvva-srestha nama-sankirttana
Sravan and kirttan—but it is necessary to do this without offence to Sri Guru-Vaisnava.
It was the plan of Srila Guru Maharaj to make a ladies' party for preaching Krishna consciousness in the form of brahmacharinis. It was for this that in his Trust Board and in his Last Will and Testament he gave that preference to the ladies.
In a totalitarian war field, the General will not hesitate to take the facility of whatever is immediately necessary for the safety of the soldiers and for winning the battle. This was the teaching of Srila Guru Maharaj, Srila Saraswati Thakur and Srila Prabhupad A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj. We are the insignificant followers of them and we have no hesitation to take the facilities from anywhere and everywhere for the protection of our soldiers because nowhere is this prohibited.
Their saffron cloth does not mean sannyas, but it is the protection garment for our servitors from the lustful ill- feelings, like an asbestos suit to protect them from the blazing fire they face in the preaching field.
Finally I can say that our devotees have taken a vow until death, not sannyas, for their exclusive devotional preaching practising life. It was not done with the sannyas mantram, but it is more than that. If anyone will try to understand and honour this, he will be liberated from the illusory environment.
I trust this meets you continuing steadily your service life.
Concerning your Question: if we try to think or hear about the astakaliya-lila we will only increase our mood in the line of sahajiyaism and nothing else. From the first sloka of the Prema-bhakti-chandrika describing the waking of Radha-Govinda all our ideas will go in a mundane way. What our brain will think, that all will be mundane, but what is really within, that is not mundane—it is completely different. If you try to think of it you will only become bound within your misconception. For us to sing the songs or anything, it is all artificial, it is not necessary to think anything artificial about Krishna-lila.
We have heard many beautiful Pastimes of Krishna-lila, but astakaliya-lila is not even one percent of that. We are not feeling any enthusiasm for it. We will not think about it. What we have is so much more. Srila Visvanath Chakravarti Thakur, who is in the line of my Gurudevas, has composed it and for that we will honour it, but from far. We will pray to Srila Visvanath Chakravarti Thakur that one day it will reveal perfectly in our heart, this is our prayer and in this way we will honour that lila. Living within our mundane position it is not necessary for us to dissect the Pastimes of Krishna-lila and it is not necessary to think good or bad of it. Only chant the Mahamantra and the glories of Guru-Gauranga and it will reveal within your heart. It is not good to try to imagine anything about the astakaliya-lila—imagination is mundane. But if any qualified worshipable Vaisnava wants to hear from some person for his own bhajan purpose—such as in the case of Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur calling Sripad Jajavar Maharaj from Benares to Puri so His Divine Grace could hear the astakaliya-lila in the form of song—that will be service for that person to him.
Srila Gaura Kisor Das Babaji Maharaj gave a very good example: it is like entering into a labour room while having no child within the womb and acting out the actions of labour, producing the many sounds. The sound may be the same but it will not produce a child. First it is necessary to go stage by stage and when the labour pain will come then it is the real and proper time. Before that you will get nothing.
For the spiritual growth of the sincere practitioners it will be best for them to read our Math's publications. Through his own divine perception Srila Guru Maharaj presented the nectar from the Scriptures to us in a most generous, clear and practical way so that we would be able to gain the nourishment contained in them. If we try to understand everything on our own, we will only become confused and misguided.
In this age after the disappearance of Srila Saraswati Thakur we see that some groups are very interested for astakaliya-lila-smaran before attaining the proper position of their devotional lives. They actually do not know that it is very dangerous for them. The qualification is mentioned in Sri Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu by Sri Rupa Goswami:
adau sraddha tatah sadhu-sanga 'tha bhajana-kriya
Until getting a firm position in ruchi we remain unqualified.
Therefore we must say that before attaining anartha-nivrtti, strong nistha, and ruchi, if anyone will try to hear such lila of Krishna without a proper guardian, he must fall down into the garbage of sahajiyaism (imitation).
First the feeling must come through sadhana and sadhu-sanga as to who is Krishna. It is necessary to know about Krishna and Krishna-bhakti, and to proceed in the proper channel. That channel is sadhu-sanga. In this way the practitioner will be able to see what is garbage and what is good. He will then gain attachment to Krishna, and when that is strong he will fully leave all mundanity—that is called anartha-nivrtti. Otherwise if we hear Krishna-lila our anartha will increase, but our Krishna consciousness will not.
First, with sadhu-sanga we will practise through bhajana-kriya—the nine processes of devotional service— thus gradually our ruchi will become stronger and our anartha will go out. All will come through sadhu-sanga, the association of a qualified sadhu. There are also different gradations of sadhus. If we associate with the madhyama-adhikari, we will go there to that level. But if we will get the association of one who is an uttama-adhikari who comes down to the madhyama-adhikari level, we will go up very quickly. When attachment is very strong it is called 'rati;' at that stage to hear astakaliya-lila of Krishna will help him achieve his higher position. After ruchi everything will be beautiful. But before that if we hear astakaliya-lila we will go to the garbage of sahajiyaism. This is fact.
Anartha-nivrtti is like having passed the matriculation examinations where all subjects were studied, thereafter entering into the specialised stream of progress, such as into the arts or sciences. So, up until anartha-nivrtti one must practise all subjects, then specialise according to his sraddha and ruchi, otherwise our anartha will increase. Lust in Sanskrit is called 'manobhava,' in other words it is growing in the mind. When the mind is polluted the body will become polluted.
The main principle is attachment to Krishna. If that is real, he is qualified to hear from a qualified Guru—this is the general method of practising procedure.
Living with Sriman Mahaprabhu were so many great followers. He, as an Acharyya, preached Krishna consciousness and spread it all over the world. Especially the human section was so enlightened through His divine preaching, but after Mahaprabhu someone had to be the leader—the successor—and He clearly gave that charge to Srila Rupa Goswami.
In a similar way Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur Prabhupad gave the charge to Srila Guru Maharaj by having him sing the 'power transmitting' song Sri Rupa Manjari Pada in the presence of many of Srila Guru Maharaj's senior and junior Godbrothers. In this way Srila Saraswati Thakur gave some hint that Srila Guru Maharaj was to continue the line of Srila Rupa Goswami, and through this they all understood it. After the disappearance of Srila Saraswati Thakur most of those who required sannyas came to Srila Guru Maharaj to receive it. This is the example in this age.
In the time of Sriman Mahaprabhu there were many stalwart devotees, and many who were like the Gurus of Srila Rupa Goswami. Sri Ramananda Ray, Sri Swarup Damodar, etc., were in the highest position.
In Jagannath Puri Sriman Mahaprabhu presented Srila Rupa Goswami as a student successor in an assembly of His associates. There, many of Srila Rupa Goswami's seniors and juniors were present. Mahaprabhu previously had fully blessed him and told the others to also examine him. All were amazed with his qualification and thought it to be only possible through the blessings of Mahaprabhu. Sriman Mahaprabhu said, "Yes, I have given My full blessings to him, you also give him your blessings." In this way they could all understand that Mahaprabhu was arranging for Srila Rupa Goswami to take the charge of continuing His sampradaya. Later we can see that with his respectful guidance the Goswamis and others happily spent their unique, divine preaching life.
From one river many channels will come but they will not all be named the same. Many channels come from the Ganges but the Ganges river herself is flowing in one channel. Similarly, Mahaprabhu's line is flowing through the channel of Srila Rupa Goswami. Many were maybe more qualifed and senior to Rupa Goswami, but Mahaprabhu gave to him the charge of continuing His sampradaya. For that all the Goswamis avoided their own sampradayas identified by their names. Even though they had many disciples, they directed them all to the line of Sri Rupanuga. We can see this in Gaura-lila, but when its manifestation we can see in Krishna-lila, there also the internal service hankering of the whole group of manjaris is directed automatically to do the exclusive service of Sri Radha-Govinda, under the guidance of Sri Rupa Manjari.
Srila Guru Maharaj gave a very nice example. In a family both parents are superior to the son, and both are respected by him. The father is the proprietor over the whole family including the mother, but when the son comes to give his respects to them, first he goes to the mother and then to the father. When the father dies all the property does not go to the mother even though she is in a higher and more respected position, but all goes to the son. From this example we can understand something about the line of succession.
How much I can express I cannot say, in English, but these are the facts. I think it is best that we will be cautious with these high and deep matters and not try to enter into them very quickly without maturity.
"You try to understand the answers I have given, and with the guidance of our Math's books you proceed carefully in your noble desire to practise and distribute Sriman Mahaprabhu's teachings.
Section 1 — 'Siddhanta'
Section 3 — 'Our Devotional Line'
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