Shrila Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
January 18, 2000, am
[During the singing of the morning kirtans when we were halfway through 'Arunodaya kirtana' in the living room of our hosts in Murwillumbah, Shrila Gurudeva walked in after his morning walk. He than sat down and asked Krishna Bhajan brahmachari to read the kirtan and explain its meaning.]
[Krishna Bhajan dasa:] This is a song by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura.
udilo aruna puraba-bhage
dwija-mani gora amani jage
bhakata-samuha loiya sathe
In early morning Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu with his associates would rise…
[Gurudeva then asked him to explain the meaning of the third paragraph.]
[Krishna Bhajan dasa:] They would announce to the sleeping people 'Mukunda, Madhava, Yadava, Hari-chant the holy names of the Lord. You are spending your time uselessly sleeping and you are not taking advantage of this human form of life. So chant Holy names of Lord. Lord Gauranga is calling …..
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] Do you always do? Only singing will not do. You have to practice like that, what he is telling, that, in night always sleeping - you should try to practice it day and night.
[Krishna Bhajan dasa:]
udita tapana hoile asta,
dina gelo boli' boibe vyasta,
tabe keno ebe alasa hoi'
na bhaja hrdoya-raje
With every rising and setting of the sun a day is lost. So why are you wasting so much time being idle. Why not worship Lord Hari?
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] What is the purport?
[Krishna Bhajan dasa:] We should always try to remember that the gopis, by blinking of their eyelashes, they are missing darsana [of Krishna], so they curse Brahma…
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] What is the purport?
[Shastriji:] We are wasting our time. Unless we are utilizing our time chanting Hare Krishna mahamantra and take up devotional service, our lives are useless.
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] What is the deep meaning?
[Prema Prayojana dasa:] Everyday the sun is rising and setting; but the jivas are wasting their time. But for those advanced in Krishna consciousness, when bhava comes they cannot bear to waste one second…
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] He [Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura] is saying that your day is finished, or about to finish. Now you should know that this is the end of your day. Your day is finished and your sun has set and very soon you will die. You should all know that whether you are young or old.
[Krishna Bhajan dasa:]
jivana anitya janaha sara,
taha nana vidhe vipada bahara,
namasraya kori jatane tumi,
thakaha apana kaje
Shrila Prabhupada said, "How can we make rapid advancement? Consider every moment your last. One day it will end. Maharaja Yudisthira was asked "What is the most amazing thing in the world? Everyone is dying. Our relatives are dying but still we are not thinking seriously about the moment of death. So we should very seriously the shelter of the holy name and not make any plans and centre everything around that.
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] You should all think death is on your head. Any time death can take you. After this day, whether you will get a chance to do again or not. What species will you go, you cannot say. Always chant. Not busy in divorcing wives and husbands. "What to do, what to do?" 'Oh tell me gurudeva, should I divorce or not?' 'Should I marry?'. These are the two problems… What to do? I have not come to advise you this. I have come to tell all the things which is written. So you should all try to remember death is here. (pointing at his head) For others, Krishna will see. Don't worry about others. More….
[Krishna Bhajan dasa:]
krsna-nama-sudha koriya pana
nama bina kichu nahiko aro
To drink the nectar of Holy name is more merciful in the age of kali. We should understand that from the highest planet to the lowest, all are places of misery. So we should take the name, crying like a child to a mother.
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] Jurao pran - what is the meaning of this?
[Prema Prayojana dasa:] He (Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura) is feeling some separation "So you should give relief to my suffering by taking shelter of nama".
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] To make me (Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura) happy, you should all chant. I am thinking the whole world is sinking in the sea and if you chant: "Guru (should be) like this and disciples are strong in chanting and remembering otherwise… and I am seeing that after my leaving all will quarrel. When I come oh, some inspiration. I am very happy if you are chanting if you are chanting thinking all these things otherwise then my object will be unsuccessful. More:
[Krishna Bhajan dasa:] Jivera kalyana sadhana kama, jagate asi, e madhura nama,
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] Krishna is very worried. Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu became worried because the souls are not chanting and remembering. So He comes, descends with His all associates; Krishna also, and His other manifestations. Only because they are worried. But we are not worried. We are only worried for our worldly….
[Krishna Bhajan dasa:] Avidya-timira-tapana-rupe hrd-gagane viraje
When we chant the holy names then it is like the sun rising in our hearts, bestowing eagerness. Now we are absorbed in maya thinking we are these bodies.
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] So you should try to remember all this. When you chant any song, any kirtana, always try to hear it. Try to absorb. Otherwise no use. You should try to develop. There is a sloka in Shrimad Bhagvatam -
sada samudvigna-dhiyam asad-grahat
hitvatma-patam grham andha-kupam
vanam gato yad dharim asrayeta
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] You should try to realize.
[Gurudeva then asks Prema Prayojana Prabhu.]
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] What he has told?
[Prema Prayojana dasa:] In this verse Shri Prahlada Maharaja has been asked by his father, "Oh Prahlada what is the best thing you have learnt in school? And then Prahlada Maharaja spoke the essence or the best knowledge here. "Oh, My dear father. You who are the best among the demons. Those people who live in this world, have accepted that which is asat, which is temporary, to be the self and they are constantly, again and again, without any remedy faced with many, many miseries and many types of sufferings in this world in the form of repeated birth, death and old age which they cannot conquer. They can never become free from this. So my advice to them is that they should understand that the bodily conception of life 'grha andhakupam'-- here household life has been compared to a dark well; an andhakupa. If anyone is travelling, and there is a well which is old and dry and the grass is growing over the sides, one cannot see it and may fall in that well. Having fallen in that well they cannot get up. Surely they will die there. They must suffer so much and they will die there, even if they shout and their voice will go up to the sky. But no one will hear.
So the household life, grha andhakupam - having wife, children, all family members and being absorbed in this, this is being called a deep, dark well. If you fall in surely you will suffer and you will not be able to come out of this. It is very dangerous. Otherwise, grha here also means the body and bodily conception. For anyone who accepts the body to be the self, it is to be considered he will fall into a great dark well where there is no happiness; only suffering. So Prahalada maharaja is saying - hitvatma-patam grham andha-kupam means the path of the soul. How a soul can progress towards it's real well being? This andhakupam is like a block. It's like a check, which stops the soul from making progress towards the goal of life. Give up this tattvamapatam which is obstructing the path of life. At once you should go to the forest. Here forest means Vrindavana. It can also mean one should be alone, giving up the company of materialists, and take up the association of sadhus.
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] Also, that well is compared somewhere else in Shrimad Bhagvatam. Any person alone was going to the forest. When he reached the middle of the forest a ferocious tiger followed and he jumped. He saw that the tiger has come so he ran away. But there was a big well. It was old and all the bricks were gone and no water. There was branches which were on the top of the well and he lowered them and he wanted to go down, but he saw at once the tiger was roaring and ready to attack. And inside the well he saw that there were so many poisonous snakes. They were going like this (hiss, hiss). He saw "If I am going down at once they will bite me. If I am trying to go up the tiger will take me into his mouth so there's no chance of saving this life." In the meantime he saw the branches that he was (holding) on. Two rats came out of the well, one black and one white and they began to bite it and very soon they will cut it. And automatically he will have to go inside. So there was no chance to be saved. In the meantime he saw that in front of the well was a beehive, and from that drop by drop, golden coloured drops of honey were coming - one, two, three. And he wanted to taste it. He forgot that death was upper side, down, here, there, backwards. In a moment he is going to die but he wanted to taste it. And he did and drops fell on it. "How sweet!" And he forgot all the problems around him. This world is like that well. Who are the rats? Day and night. What is time passing his tongue? It has come by past samskar, the karma that you have done. And age (time passing is the branches) - the two rats cut it day and night. What is your age Shastriji?
[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] No, 39 years have been cut, they are gone - I don't know how many years you are but certainly your 39 years have gone. If I am 80 years of age, then it has gone. Very soon death is coming and what is the honey? There are so many problems, and yet your child will come in your lap and you will kiss it. And sometimes your wife, so beautiful, "I remember the days…" Wife is honey. Sometimes she will come and kick you with hind legs. Oh, then: "Save me! save me!". But when she will tell: "Oh my husband." It's like worldly wealth - green trees and sweet honey. It seems that this world is happy and sweet. You are so beautiful at sixteen. But if you have a spot (in the face) anyone will not come. If you take your skin, open the stomach? What's there? - Blood, urine. So this is the world, and you are entangled. If I say: "Come with me", then: "No. No, my wife can't live without me, she will die". And when you are here then your wife will be with another person and husband will want to give up and leave. There's a story. There was a king called Bhatri Hari. He was the father of Vikramaditya in India. He was very young, 25, beautiful and very qualified. He knew all the arts. He had so many jewels in his court - Kalidas - who made Indian astrology. Very powerful king. One day a prostitute came with a very high class necklace whose value was 9 lakh. Now crores and crores. She gave that necklace in the neck of king. And he took it. He was married. His wife was very beautiful so when he went from council he gave necklace to his wife and embraced her. But after sometime she was so much attracted to the commander in chief. He was so beautiful so she gave the necklace to the commander in chief. That commander-in-chief was very attached to a prostitute. He gave the necklace to the prostitute to please her. But that prostitute did not love the commander in chief. She loved the king.
One day the commander-in-chief came and king became very unhappy. The king took his sword, "Tell me, where did you get it (the necklace from)? [the king had received the necklace from the prostitute who had revealed her source to the king] If you not telling the truth this sword will go (through you)." He began to tremble and told "Your wife has given". Then he asked, "Where is she?" She was weeping. He said, "My sword will go on your head in a moment if you don't talk". No word. She was not satisfied with him. The commander-in-chief was not satisfied with the King's wife but was attached to the prostitute. The prostitute was not satisfied with commander-in-chief. She was attached to the king, like a circle. Then he decided not to be in this - and at once he made up his mind and left everything - and only he took kaupin - like us. One of his books is very famous - "Vairagya Satak". If anyone reads it he may be renounced. But persons like us daily we taste like ghee on a fire. What to do? Shastri is telling like this - Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakur, Rupa, Sanatana but we are thinking of the honey. We should not go in the association of Narayana Maharaja. We should be far away. We will taste this worldly honey. One day you will have to leave. Be careful.