Spring-Summer 2000 World Tour
“You should know who your Prabhupāda is—you should know. Then you can glorify him—otherwise you cannot. He has also descended. He is an associate of Mahāprabhu, and he has descended to give that same mood and mission of Mahāprabhu. He has not only come to preach. He also did not come only to establish yuga-dharma. That is the work of Mahā-viṣṇu, not of Kṛṣṇa. It is not Kṛṣṇa’s function.
“Śrīla Svāmī Mahārāja was not an ordinary person whom you can know and realize. You have to come to his level, and then you can understand who he is and why he came to this world. He is not an ordinary historical person. If you don’t know who he is, how can you glorify him? So, you must know who Prabhupāda, your Gurudeva, was. He was not an ordinary devotee. He came to fulfill the desire of Caitanya Mahāprabhu; he preached the same mission as described by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī. He is a follower of Rūpa Gosvāmī, and he was very happy to say, ‘I am rūpānuga.’ You should know what is rūpānuga. Even Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī, the guru of Rūpa Gosvāmī, felt great happiness in thinking, ‘I am a follower of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī.
I should follow Rūpa. He is so high.’
“Śrīla Svāmī Mahārāja came only to preach this mission. As I said before, however, he saw that the land was barren, not fertile. There were so many weeds and thorn trees here and there. Although he had to cut all these things, he actually came to give something else—the same thing that Rūpa Gosvāmī came to give—śrī caitanya mano’bhīśṭam sthāpitaṁ yena bhūtale. Because he understood the innermost desire of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, he was able to establish His mission in this world. Hence, first know who he is, then you can glorify him. You should not think that he was only a preacher of harināma. You should not think that he only wrote so many books, and published and distributed them. This is not his full glory. What is his glory? He is a rūpānuga–vaiṣṇava—serving Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa Conjugal in the same way as Rūpa Mañjarī.
“Prabhupāda has written everywhere that we should know our aim and object. Although we don’t know it at present, we can know it by hearing. You can see this in the dialogue of Śrī Rāya Rāmānanda and Mahāprabhu; in the dialogue of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī and Mahāprabhu in Triveni and Prayāga; in the dialogue of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu and Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī in Kāśī, Vārāṇasī; and you can see in the dialogue between Śrī Svarūpa Dāmodara and Srivasa Pandit at the Ratha-yatra festival. These are very high topics. You should go deep and hear these topics from any realized person. Then you can know what is our aim and object”.
The audience was completely absorbed. Śrīla Gurudeva continued: “If you are following anyābhilāṣitā śūnyaṁ, real bhakti in the real process, if you are chanting and remembering and hearing hari-kathā through the proper channel and proper process, then at once you will realize Kṛṣṇa in that proportion. Also, detachment from worldly things and sense gratification must manifest. It is bound to come, and you will be satisfied. Three things will come: performing bhakti, realizing some taste, and detachment from worldly things.
“You have been chanting and remembering for so many years—some of you for thirty years—but these three things are not coming. We are not realizing anything and we have no taste. Your hearts are not melting by chanting and remembering, tears are not coming, and you are not satisfied. You are always speaking about problems, problems, and problems—and higher and higher waves of problems. You are not happy. Detachment from worldly desires is not coming. Why? Where is some loophole in your process. Otherwise there is some loophole in your guru with whom you are associating. It will be either of these two things. If your guru is all right, then there is some loophole in your practice. We should realize this. Why is detachment not coming? You want to make more money. You want to taste new, new wives, and new, new husbands and are daily rejecting the old ones and taking new ones.
“You must know your aim and object: that the mood of the gopīs is the highest. Something is there in the transcendental, constitutional position of those who are coming to the line of Mahāprabhu. Otherwise, you would not have come to this line—never. There is something there, and that is why He attracted You. You know that neither wood nor any other material can be attracted to a magnet. The magnet will attract iron—if it is free of rust. If you are pure or impure, if you have somehow come in the line of Mahāprabhu, then in your constitutional form there must be something of gopī-bhāva. Otherwise how could you have come? There are innumerable persons in this world—but you are coming. So, I think you have some qualities to know all these things. If you are hearing from any bona fide Vaiṣṇava and you are always in his guidance, then you must develop your Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
“So, I think that you should try. One day, very soon, you will become old. Death is very near. Your power and beauty and your curly hair will disappear. Your intelligence and money will not be able to save you from old age and death. In the days that are left therefore, try to achieve that goal and be happy in this life and forever. We know that our fathers and forefathers have died, still we want that old age should not come to us; and we think that we will not die. Therefore, try to follow this process of pure bhakti.”
In New Braja, Śrīla Gurudeva primarily spoke on Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s teachings to Śrī Rūpa Gosvāmī and Śrī Sanātana Gosvāmī, culminating in a powerful class resolving the controversy on the origin of the jīva. In Alachua, Florida, he continued Sanātana-śikṣā in the evenings, and each morning enlightened all present on the essence of Mahāprabhu’s Śrī Śikṣāṣṭakam. In the process of speaking at these places, he initiated about 300 devotees and inspired thousands.
Śrīla Gurudeva then traveled to Wales. Wherever Gurudeva went, he created a wave of excitement and joy. In Wales Srila Gurudeva gave a series of talks about Ratha-yatra. He revealed many deep truths regarding the history of Lord Jagannātha’s appearance in the kingdom of Mahārāja Indradyumna, as well as the esoteric līlā behind the annual festival. He explained Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s dancing before the ratha cart. He clarified that the Lord was in the mood of Śrīmatī Rādhikā, with Jagannātha-deva in the mood of Vrajendra-nandana Śyāmasundara Kṛṣṇa. This Kṛṣṇa, now circumstantially away from Vṛndāvana and living in the foreign land of Dvārakā, is feeling intense separation from the Vrajavāsīs, and especially from Rādhikā, and is finally meeting with Her and the gopīs at Kurukṣetra.
Before leaving for Holland on July 5, Śrīla Gurudeva held a special discussion. He gave strong instructions on how to balance one’s day: a balance of sādhana-bhajana and temple services, a balance of sādhana-bhajana and preaching activities, a balance of sādhana-bhajana and family responsibilities, and a balance of sādhana-bhajana and earning money. Gurudeva began by saying that those who are not demons but are not doing bhajana are like very ignorant donkeys, kicked by the hind legs of the she-donkeys and taking all the burden of the washerman.
In Holland, Śrīla Gurudeva said: “Persons favorable to devotion are of two kinds, and those who are not following the process, the rules of devotees and devotion, are greater in number. Real devotees are few, and even among that small number there are many divisions. Most are initiated by unqualified, false gurus, and even those with bona fide gurus are of many types. Some think, ‘My fire sacrifice has been performed and I have a sacred thread; therefore I am initiated.’ Such persons wear big tilaka, but there is no dīkṣā in the true sense, and they are continuing their unfavorable or sinful activites.
They are greater in number, and we may be also in this category. There is no thick relationship with Kṛṣṇa and no real knowledge of tattva—not of jīva-tattva, bhagavata-tattva, guru-tattva, māyā tattva, or prema-tattva. Even if they remember a mantra like ‘aiṁ guruve namaḥ,’ their minds are elsewhere. After ten minutes they think, ‘What am I doing?’ Srīla Gurudeva continued: “Worldly affairs come, our job or the like, and we are always very careful and cautious in these affairs. The mind is always there—in computers and here and there—and not in the guru-gayatri or the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahāmantra. A pure devotee comes and inspires them, but as soon as he leaves—nothing is in there. Such persons numbers are greater. Others cannot follow ‘tṛṇad api sunīcena’ or even Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī’s instructions in Upadeśāmṛta: ‘vāco vegan manasa krodha-vegaṁ.’ Some wear neck beads of only one strand, which do not even touch the neck. Even in the military there are some rules and etiquette, and the soldiers are punished if they do not follow them. If we cannot follow these things, how can we follow vraja-prema? Caitanya Mahāprabhu and His associates were all paramahaṁsas, but they all followed Vaiṣṇava etiquette. If we follow their rules and regulations, a taste will come. In school there is daily reading and requirements completing the tasks given by the teacher. First, vāco vegaṁ: control your tongue. The Rāmāyaṇa and Mahābhārata battles took place because Sītā and Draupadī did not control their tongues. Promise from today, ‘I will not quarrel with my wife or husband, children, Gurudeva, and other devotees.’ Without this you cannot control your anger. Don’t take rich foodstuffs. The fault of overeating is not only the fault of the tongue. All five senses are guilty, including the eyes. Looking brings attachment. Don’t try to be astrologers, and don’t read books other than bhakti books. There is no harm if you have not studied in school and colleges. By chanting, remembering, and serving Gurudeva you will be happy. Nothing else will make you happy.
“Don’t criticize all the Kaṁsas and Jarasandas. Spend your time in always glorifying Nanda, Yaśodā, the gopas, gopīs, Kṛṣṇa, and the devotees. Don’t care much for your life’s maintenance. A lower-class devotee can do so, but when you are mature, you have nothing to do in this regard. What you need will easily come. Don’t talk prajalpa. Chant one lākha of holy names daily. If this is not possible, then chant fifty-thousand names. If not, then thirty-two rounds. If not, then go to the ocean and at once jump in. You should certainly go to the Pacific or Atlantic Ocean. Chant, but if your bona fide guru has come to give a lecture, then go and hear. Then your chanting will become high-class. Be confident that by doing all this, surely kṛṣṇa-prema will come. First finish these things, then do anything to maintain your life. The holy name will arrange everything for you.
“Don’t associate with friends or family members if they are not devotees. They are all cheaters. If you are ugly, with two or three children, your husband will reject you and take a new wife. So, give up all your other jobs and come to śaraṇāgati—full surrender to Kṛṣṇa.”
Some of the hundreds of devotees present were meeting Śrīla Gurudeva for the first me, and some had been waiting since the year before, counting the seconds. Some, although meeting with him in one or two countries each year, for the past three, four, or five years, were just now realizing the magnitude of their fortune in getting the most rare and precious association of such a high-class pure Vaiṣṇava from Vraja. Many within the various categories of devotees were now in the process of changing all their priories in life and were preparing to leave their money and position to remain with Śrīla Gurudeva. Holland was the first place of Śrīla Gurudeva’s preaching in the West. He was now fond of calling it “Holyland.” It was in Holland that he first initiated disciples outside of India. By now he had thousands of disciples in the West, and thus far this year’s tour had already made another three hundred fortunate in this way.
On the morning of July 8, Śrīla Gurudeva explained the essence of Mahāprabhu’s appearance in a most interesting way. He said that Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Almighty, but if you go deep you will see so many things, as given to us by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī. Kṛṣṇa wanted to attract the fallen souls to Him, and He wanted to give the ocean of rasa, Śrīmatī Rādhikā’s mahābhāva, to the world—but He could not.
He could only give His own love, not love to Him, which only Rādhikā has in full. He would therefore have to steal Her beauty and mood. He could not steal it, however, because Rādhikā is always alert, and She is more clever and intelligent than Him. He could only have the wish, and so He had to beg Her. Her sakhīs were also present when He prayed, “I beg Your mercy, Your beauty, and Your mahābhāva.” Śrīmatī Rādhikā replied, “Yes, I’m donating for some time, but You will have to attend the class of My sakhīs (Viśākhā-devī in the form of Śrī Rāmānanda Rāya, and Lalitā in the form of Śrī Svarūpa Dāmodara) so that they can sprinkle that in You. And I will also be there (as Sri Gadadhara Pandita. Kṛṣṇa was thus able to come and give what no other incarnation or acarya gave before: mañjarī-bhāva, direct service to Śrīmatī Rādhikā as Her maidservant.
Srila Gurudeva ki Jaya! (Excerpted from the Bhaktabandhav book publication, “Sri Guru Darshan”. Available from [email protected] )