Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
Chapter One of "The Soul of Book Distribution"
[Respected Harikatha Readers,
Please accept our humble obeisances. All glories to Shri Guru and Gauranga.
Shrila Shrila Gurudeva, Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja, has translated, written, and published so many authoritative, awe-inspiring, and soul-transformational literatures. The Soul of Book Distribution is another awe-inspiring book. It has excerpts from his lectures, letters, and darsans, regarding the propagating all His other books. To download the full book, ckick here: Soul_of_Book_distribution_1Ed_2012.pdf.
The following is Chapter One and some of Chapter Two of "The Soul of Book Distribution"]
Let The World Know
Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu ordered Shri Nityananda Prabhu to preach His mission. He said, "Go door to door with Shrila Haridasa Thakura, and beg some alms. You can tell the people, 'I request you to put something in My bag. Chant, one time, Krishna, Krishna.'"
Thus, on the Lord's order, Nityananda Prabhu began His preaching. He never went to wealthy persons, very beautiful persons, or highly learned persons. He went to common persons – even to those who were fallen. In India, the brahmanas and ksatriyas would not even drink water in containers that had been touched by such fallen persons, but Nityananda Prabhu preached among them. Regarding the debauches Jagai and Madhai, He considered, "They are very suitable persons to preach to." He went from village to village, and preached among the most fallen.
Shri Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja, my siksa-guru, also did this. He did not generally approach those who lived in palatial buildings, or kings or ministers, or very wealthy persons. He went initially to hippies. Those hippies were attracted to him, and he made them happy by transforming their lives. He started his mission by chanting under a tree in Tompkins Square Park: "Shri Krishna-Chaitanya, Prabhu Nityananda, Shri Advaita, Gadadhara, Shrivasadi, Gaura bhakta-vrnda. Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare."
He did not see who was singing with him and who was not, who was sitting with him and who was not. With only his karatalas to accompany him he would close his eyes, absorbed in relishing an internal mood as he sang in pathetic melodies . Sometimes the hippies would dance while taking wine and other intoxicants, and would say to him, "O my friend, take some wine."
Thus he preached, and so many souls came to take up Krishna consciousness and become happy; young, beautiful and energetic persons like Jadurani and Vrndavana-vilasini, and all became happy.
This was the beginning, and very soon he created many preaching centers and established book distribution. He also published numerous editions of his magazine, Back to Godhead, which became very popular throughout the world, and he translated so many books, which were also gradually distributed everywhere.
At that time there were young ladies in the bloom of youth, who used to go to airports, markets, and practically everywhere else. They knew no shyness for preaching, and that is why you now see devotees all over the world.
I also don't want to go to the very beautiful, wealthy or learned persons. I want that we go and preach to all the common people.
But I am not seeing that same enthusiasm and spirit that was present during your Prabhupada's time. You should have that same spirit, and then you can preach. Go door to door. Never be afraid and think, "Someone may beat me with a wine bottle." Don't fear. Nityananda Prabhu went to the debauchees Jagai and Madhai and said, "What are you doing? Please chant Hare Krishna just once."
They followed, "Oh, Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna."
I want the same energetic spirit. Preaching should be in that dynamic spirit, and the books should be distributed everywhere. Do not think, "I don't know anything, I'm so weak." Krishna will give you intelligence. I was also weak, like dry straw. But then I became strong to preach and serve my Gurudeva, nitya-lila pravisTa om visnupada asTottara-sata Shri Shrimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja. All qualifications are gradually coming and helping me, even though I am now in old age.
nayam atma pravacanena labhyo
na medhaya na bahudha srutena
yam evaisa vrnute tena labhyas
tasyaisa atma vivrnute tanum svam
(Katha Upanisad 1.2.23)
One cannot become self-realized simply by having an academic education, by presenting lectures in an erudite way (pravacanena labhyo), or by being an intelligent scientist who discovers many wonderful things. One cannot understand Krishna unless one is graced by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Only one who has surrendered to a pure devotee of Krishna and taken the dust of his lotus feet can understand Krishna.
Australia: January 20, 2000
Distribute my books. Read, take the essence of what you read, follow that, and distribute my mission. My mission is not different from that of Shrila Rupa Gosvami and Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Please help me to preach throughout the world, as Mahaprabhu's mission was preached at the time of Shrila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja. At that time his devotees would go to airports, railway stations, shop to shop, and door to door to fulfill his mission; and thus it spread all over the world. Again inspire all – and first inspire yourselves. Be strong, and propagate my mission throughout the world.
Germany: April 9, 2007
Unlocking The Treasure
[Shrila Gurudeva was usually surrounded by hundreds of devotees in the West and in India. However, in Hawaii, from mid-April to mid-May of 2002, he was externally almost alone, accompanied only by a few assistants, so that he could work on his translation of Shri Rupa Gosvami's Shri Ujjvala-nilamani and our acaryas' commentaries on that literature. He only gave one public discourse, the transcription of which is presented herein.]
Parama-pujyapada Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja inspired me to go to Western and Eastern countries to preach the same mission that he preached, and I am happy that by the combined mercy of Shrila Svami Maharaja and my diksa-guru, Shrila Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja, I am doing so.
Shrila Svami Maharaja preached everywhere by his books. The words we speak in class may disappear into the sky, but what is written as a document, in books like Shri Chaitanya-caritamrta, Shrimad-Bhagavatam, and the books of the Gosvamis, will remain forever and help for millions of years.
He used to come to this island to write, for it is very favorable here, and I have been totally absorbed in writing here for the last three weeks. I have not been giving classes during this time. Do you know why? I am concentrating on my translation work so that I can give 'document writings' to the world. *
I am writing about the very elevated moods of Shrila Rupa Gosvami; moods that were inspired in him by Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Himself. Mahaprabhu ordered him to write about the deep feelings of the gopis, as well as the process by which we can achieve similar feelings. Most of you are not qualified to hear or read about this, what to speak of follow, and yet we are writing. Otherwise, if we do not do so, these moods will be lost to the world. We must record this for future generations. The moods of the gopis have not been clearly written about even in the Shrimad-Bhagavatam, except in a hidden way, but Shrila Rupa Gosvami has given definitions of each of their moods in Shri Ujjvala-nilamani.
We see that in this world, those who are overwhelmed by lust, anger, and other bad qualities cannot advance in sadhana-bhajana, what to speak of entering the transcendental realm. If a person cannot remove all the anarthas delineated in the first sloka of Upadesamrta, like the urge to speak about mundane topics, the urge of the mundane mind, the urge of anger, the pushing of the greedy tongue, belly, and genitals, he cannot advance in bhakti.
On the other hand, we see that there is quarreling in Goloka Vrndavana. Shrimati Radhika has a somewhat jealous mood towards Candravali, and Candravali has the same mood towards Radhika. Why is this present in that sphere? Actually, the gopis are transcendental, Krishna is transcendental, their love and affection is transcendental, and their quarreling is also transcendental. Their quarreling is not worldly. Rather, it is an expression of love and affection, to increase the pleasure of Krishna.
If these moods were not present in their pure forms in the transcendental world, they could not exist in this world. Shrila Rupa Gosvami has written about all the gopis' moods for our benefit. He has explained why the gopis experience sulkiness and other moods that may seem material, and I am giving you a very slight taste of their moods in my translation and writing.
Jealous of Candravali, Shrimati Radhika told Lalita, Visakha and other sakhis, "Candravali does not know even the ABCs of love and affection. Since she has no real mana (transcendental loving anger due to jealousy), no sulky mood, how can she please Krishna? She will never be able to please Him."
The prema of Candravali is called grta-sneha. Grta means 'ghee;' which has the quality of being very soft and smooth, but not sweet. The prema of Radha is called madhu-sneha. Madhu means 'honey,' which is both soft and smooth, and also sweet. Even if Radhika abuses Krishna, or even if She is in mana, Her mood is very attractive and wonderful to Him. All become happy to see Her activities, and the love between Her and Krishna becomes more intense. Therefore, in all situations, Her madhu-sneha prema can be called soft and sweet.
Radhika continued, "Candravali is very soft in her dealings with Krishna. Even if she sees that Krishna has committed an offense to her lotus feet and is meeting with other gopis right in front of her, she will generally not become sulky. She may do so occasionally, but not often. Without this sulky anger, no one can serve Krishna or please Him. Candravali does not have a trace of love and affection, so I don't want to even hear her name. Never mention her name in My assembly."
Candravali likewise told her sakhis, "I don't want to hear the name of Radhika. I don't even want to hear the name of the star constellation called anuradha. Why not? Neither the experts on the subject of love nor the great sages and munis appreciate the mood of Radhika, nor do the yogis and rsis meditate on the mood of Radhika, nor do they appreciate Her name. Those rsis who always meditate upon Krishna's lotus feet never attract Radha to their hearts. Those who want to peacefully meditate on the lotus feet of Krishna become disturbed if they think about the moods of Shrimati Radhika. In fact, Her name alone makes them tremble and become disturbed. That very same Krishna fell at the feet of Radhika, and still She rejected Him by saying, 'I don't want You here. O black Krishna, get out of My kunja.' So don't utter Her name, and don't even utter the word anuradha."
Although Radhika and Candravali both speak in this way, Radhika's love and affection is superior. The highest truths of Radhika's madhu-sneha prema have been described, in minute detail, in Shrila Rupa Gosvami's Ujjvala-nilamani. They have not been disclosed in Shrimad-Bhagavatam, nor in the books of Shri Jayadeva Gosvami, nor by previous acaryas. Only Shrila Rupa Gosvami has revealed these intimate moods, in his Vidagdha-madhava, Lalita-madhava, and here in Ujjvala-nilamani.
Except for works like these, there are no other descriptions of these moods, and therefore my mind and activities are absorbed in writing here in Vrndavana dasa's house in Hawaii. The topics in Ujjvala-nilamani are exceptionally elevated subject matters, which you would never be able to imagine even in thousands of births. I am translating this most valuable literature for future generations, and those who are qualified will experience a new life by reading it. Although I have little formal education, I am so fortunate that by the mercy of my guru-parampara, this ability to translate and write commentaries is coming automatically.
Oahu, Hawaii: May 11, 2002
The World Will Be Amazed
Vicitra dasi: I am reading in your Brahma-samhita your description of the kunjas (secluded forest groves) in Vrndavana. That description is very beautiful.
Shrila Gurudeva: One day the entire world will be amazed at what I have given. Not now, but later they will realize what I am giving.
Vicitra dasi: Has anyone else described the kunjas as you have?
Shrila Gurudeva: Shrila Rupa Gosvami and all of our acaryas have done so. I am merely following in their footsteps.
Berlin, Germany: July 7, 2003
[*Endnote – A Note From the Editors: According to the ancient Vedic scriptures, a mahatma, a great soul, spends his entire internal twenty-four-hour day in the loving service of his masters, Shri Shri Radha-Krishna. This is not seen by us conditioned souls.
He is compared with an expert gardener. Unlike a layman in the field, an expert gardener can look at the seed of any tree or plant and understand its name and full potential of form, flowers, leaves and fruit. Similarly, when a pure devotee looks at anyone – not only his disciples, but anyone in any species of life, he sees through the numerous layers of material contamination. He sees the soul. He sees that soul's enchanting spiritual form, dress, qualities, and eternal devotional services. This activity of his is also not seen by us. Seeing those souls suffering due to forgetfulness of their real identity, such a pure devotee spends his days in compassion. His external activities, like manifesting transcendental literatures, can be seen by us.
He also knows exactly how to nourish that seed with water, sun and other care, in order for it to fully blossom.
In this regard, Shrila Gurudeva's disciples sometimes arranged for him to write in seclusion. They took him to various favorable environments like Jagannatha Puri, Hawaii, Philippines, Malaysia, and Mauritius, and this afforded him from a few weeks to a couple of months to write without needing to stop for classes, darsanas, and Harikatha programs. The following is a rough draft of his daily schedule during his last several years, when he was in his mid and late eighties, during those retreats.
He would wake in the early morning between 3.00 to 3.30 am, and then he would chant stava-stutis (prayers and hymns) such as Shri Nanda-NandasTakam, Shri Radha-Krpa-KaTaksa-Stava-Raja, Venu-gita, Gopi-gita, Brahmara-gita. Then he would chant his harinama japa, and then his morning ahnika (gayatri-mantra). He performed maìgala-arati, singing Jaya Jaya Radha-Krishna Yugala-milan, and then Tulasi parikrama while singing Jaya Radha Jaya Krishna Jaya Vrndavana.
Then, after watering the sacred Tulasi plant, he would take his morning walk and then give a short darsana – teaching verses to his entourage, sometimes talking with his host, and on rare occasions meeting with local devotees. After that he would then discuss with his assistants their writing services for the day, and this was followed by breakfast and a short rest until about 9:00-9:15 am. At that time one of his assistants – Shripada Madhava Maharaja, Brajanatha dasa, or Acyutananda dasa [and in previous years, Sundara-gopala dasa and Pundarika dasa] – would set up his work station of a small table, manuscript pages, books, pen, and armrest.
He mercifully engaged many devotees in his publication work, correcting the texts that they sent from India. His assistants managed his in-flow of work, keeping efficient communication with all devotees involved, printing hard copies for him to correct, and Acyutananda dasa would enter all his corrections into computer files and transcribe dictations. On occasion, when not much work arrived, he would spend some time reading Shrimad-Bhagavatam or Chaitanya-caritamrta. On the rare occasions when no work arrived, he would say things like, "I have no desire to stay in this world if I cannot write."
The atmosphere in his various residences was. Shripada Madhava Maharaja had the thankless task, on the doctors' orders, of urging him – and sometimes having to remind him again and again – to take a break every half hour. Sometimes he would respond to Maharaja's urging by saying that it seemed like no time had passed since the last break. And sometimes, if Maharaja was out for the morning on some other service engagement, Shrila Gurudeva would write unchecked for hours.
At around 11:30 am, he would take massage and bath, after which he would chant his noon ahnik and then honor Krishna-prasada. Then, after a short rest he would again call to have his work-station set up, and writing would continue in the same manner with a 5-10 minute break every 30 minutes.
He would often give a short darsana in the early evening, and then perform ahnik before 7 pm. He would then take massage, perform prasada-seva, and then do more japa. That would conclude His day when he was on his writing retreats.]
The Mood of a Preacher
Treating The Books As Our Siksa-Gurus
If my heart has accepted Shrila Rupa Gosvami as my siksa guru, and I am accepting all his teachings, no one can challenge this. My heart accepts this. If I am accepting as my siksa-guru Shrila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja, there are none to challenge. This is the relation between one heart and Gurudeva.
We should treat all the books of the Gosvamis as our siksa-gurus. We should offer pranama to the books, and then read them. If we do this, we will realize that all siddhanta is coming automatically in our heart. This is the process of reading – not reading, but serving the books.
Never try to 'eat' prasadam. Once someone asked me, "Will you eat anything?" I replied, "I have never eaten anything in my entire life." He then asked, "So, how are you alive?" I said, "I have served prasadam." Try to be like this. Don't 'chant' Hare Krishna; try to serve Hare Krishna. Don't 'eat' maha-prasada, always try to serve.
When you are reading these books, don't 'read.' Serve. Offer pranama, place the book on your forehead and heart, and pray, "O Prabhu, you are personally Krishnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami. Please be merciful to me." This is the process of reading.
When you are reading the dialogue between Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Raya Ramananda on the bank of the Godavari, you can think, "I am on the bank of Godavari. Raya Ramananda and Mahaprabhu are sitting here. I am also peacefully sitting with them, and hearing all their topics. O Mahaprabhu, O Raya Ramananda Prabhu, please be merciful to me. Please sprinkle your mercy upon me so that I can understand this high-class siddhanta." Without praying in this way, you will have doubts and you will not be able to realize anything.
Shrila Krishnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami never met personally with Shrila Rupa Gosvami, Shrila Sanatana Gosvami, Shrila Gopala Bhatta Gosvami, or Shrila Raghunatha Bhatta Gosvami. He only met with Shrila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami and Shrila Jiva Gosvami. How, then, can he write in Chaitanya-caritamrta that they are all his siksa-gurus? The answer is that everything Shrila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami had in his heart was from Shrila Rupa Gosvami, and then he explained his heart's realizations to Krishnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami. Krishnadasa Kaviraja received rasa-tattva from Raghunatha dasa Gosvami and all siddhanta from Shrila Jiva Gosvami.
From where did that siddhanta come? Shrila Gopala Bhatta Gosvami collected appropriate siddhanta from all the scriptures, such as Veda, Upanisads, and Vedanta. From that he made some notes, but the information was not organized. Shrila Jiva Gosvami put that information in order; thus everything is coming from them.
Shrila Sanatana Gosvami wrote many books, one of which is Brhad Bhagavatamrta. Shrila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami took the essence of all the topics therein and gave it to Shrila Krishnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami.
They realized all the knowledge they received, not like us who think, "Krishna is my siksa-guru, and Rupa Gosvami is siksa-guru, but I am not taking any essence from them and I don't follow them. To follow a guru actually, by heart, is the acceptance of siksa-guru. That is why Krishnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami is able to write [in Shri Chaitanya-caritamrta, Adi-lila 1.36-37]:
sri-rupa, sanatana, bhatta-raghunatha
sri-jiva, gopala-bhatta, dasa-raghunatha
My instructing spiritual masters are Shri Rupa Gosvami, Shri Sanatana Gosvami, Shri Bhatta Raghunatha, Shri Jiva Gosvami, Shri Gopala Bhatta Gosvami and Shrila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami.
ei chaya guru – siksa-guru ye amara
taì'-sabara pada-padme koti namaskara
These six are my instructing spiritual masters, and therefore I offer millions of respectful obeisances unto their lotus feet.
Los Angeles, California: June 4, 1998
With Humility and Affection
First of all I offer my millions of dandavat pranamas at the lotus feet of my spiritual guru, nitya-lila pravista om visnupada Shri Shrimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami. I offer the same millions of pranamas unto the lotus feet of my siksa guru, nitya-lila om visnupada Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja.
Today I am especially remembering my siksa guru, Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja and his first journey to America by boat. He passed through the Mediterranean Sea just south of here, on to the Atlantic Ocean, and finally he arrived in Boston.
On the order of his Gurudeva, he carried the message of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Shrila Rupa Gosvami to America. During his journey across the seas, he performed the human-like pastime of becoming so sick that he seemed to be on the verge of death. He had no medicine or doctor at that time, and he was completely dependent on Krishna. He showed us by this pastime that despite such great inconvenience, he was determined to go to America and preach.
I think that you have all come to Krishna consciousness only by his mercy. Because of his preaching, people all over the world are chanting and remembering the glories of Krishna, Jagannatha, Baladeva, and Subhadra, and they are hearing the message of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Without his efforts to travel and preach around the world, no one outside of India would know of these teachings.
The aim and object of the teaching of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Shrila Rupa Gosvami is to know that Krishna is love and love is Krishna. Radha and Krishna have combined to become Sacinandana Gaurahari (Chaitanya Mahaprabhu), who exhibits the highest form of mercy. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu traveled throughout India, from north to south and east to west, and He preached love and affection wherever He went. This was also the mission of Shri Shrimad A.C. Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja and our entire guru-parampara.
We want to associate with everyone on the platform of love and affection. Our aim should not be to control others. You cannot bring others to Krishna's service by manipulating or controlling them. If you cannot control your own mind, how can you control others?
Exhibiting His profuse love and affection, Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu caused the wild animals in the jungles of Jharikhanòa to chant together the Hare Krishna maha-mantra in ecstatic love. By His influence, the behavior of these wild animals towards each other was completely transformed. They lived together peacefully and even drank from the same places at the rivers, ponds and lakes. This was the mercy of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, who quickly spread divine love and affection throughout this planet and entire universe. The love that He came to experience and distribute is the special prema of Shrimati Radhika.
If you want to make your life successful, happy, and peaceful, then try to give all of your love and affection to Krishna, and like Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, show that love to all living beings. Don't try to control others by force or subtle manipulation. Try to give your whole being in their service. One who comes to others with love has nothing to take, but everything to give.
If your aim and object is to preach the pure love and affection of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, then try to give yourself to others; your whole life dedicated for others' welfare. They will reciprocate that love and give their life to serve Krishna. They will not do so if you try to control them. Avoid criticizing others; rather, correct your own faults and bad habits.
If you want to show love to others, then do not cause them any pain or suffering, or burden them for your personal happiness or maintenance. Your first concern is the happiness and satisfaction of others.
We want to be completely selfless in our dealings. We have the example of the tree that gives its bark, roots, fruits, leaves, wood, and shade; everything is offered to others with no expectation of remuneration. As human beings, why can't we be as selfless?
Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu has given us this verse:
trnad api sunicena
taror api suhisnuna
kirtaniyah sada harih
(Shri Siksastaka, Verse 3)
Thinking oneself to be even lower and more worthless than insignificant grass which has been trampled beneath everyone's feet, being more tolerant than a tree, being prideless, and offering respect to all others based upon their respective positions, one should continuously chant the holy name of Shri Hari.
Try to follow this instruction. I want my sannyasis and preachers to understand and follow this verse completely, and to teach others by their personal example. I don't want them to behave selfishly. They should try to give their hearts to others. I have to come to give my heart, not to take anything from you. Don't think that we need to ask anyone for money. If we are selflessly preaching the message of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, He will automatically send money from the sky like a rain shower. We need not worry at all about that.
Please listen very carefully to what I am saying here. Don't listen and then forget my words. Everyone should write down the instructions herein, and try to follow them.
I desire that you understand the object and mission of Shrila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja, Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, Shrila Rupa Gosvami, and our entire guru-parampara, and that you spread it broadly around the world. Begin where Shrila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja left off, and continue to preach more and more. Presently, we see that many senior Vaisnavas and sannyasis are falling down, derailed in their devotional service and giving up their sannyasa and chanting and remembering. I want our preachers to set a high example of behavior, and to preach the mission of their Gurudeva.
If you wish to be successful in preaching, then give up the desire to praise yourself. Don't think "I am very glorious and talented, I can preach everywhere." Instead, glorify your diksa-guru and siksa-guru everywhere. By doing so, you will be successful and glory will come into your pocket. I have realized this fact and you should also realize it. By glorifying your guru-parampara, everyone will be pleased and praise you. Go on with your preaching, taking care that you don't seek that praise. Remember that you are a servant of your diksa- and siksa-gurus. Do not be ambitious to create your own disciples; try to bring disciples to the lotus feet of your Gurudeva.
Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu never glorified Himself; rather Rupa Gosvami glorified Him. Rupa Gosvami never glorified himself, rather, Jiva Gosvami, Raghunatha dasa Gosvami, Narottama dasa Thakura, and Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura wrote about his glories. Shrila Narottama dasa Thakura has written:
sri-caitanya-mano-'bhistam staphitam yena bhutale
svayam rupah kada mahyam dadati sva-padantikam
When will Shrila Rupa Gosvami Prabhupada, who has established within this material world the mission to fulfill the desire of Lord Chaitanya, give me shelter under his lotus feet?
Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura never wrote anything about himself, but Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Prabhupada wrote so much about him and Shrila Gaurakisora dasa Babaji Maharaja. And who wrote about our Shrila Prabhupada, Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura? My Gurudeva and other disciples wrote extensively about him. And I wrote a very powerful and authoritative book about the life and teachings of my Gurudeva, Shri Shrimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami.
I have no desire to glorify myself, because I am worthless. I am nothing more than dried out grass. I can speak, however, about the mercy of my Gurudeva and my guru-parampara. I am not fit or qualified; whatever I have accomplished is their desire, and they are acting through me. I am like a pen that has no power to write on its own. Someone must use it. Whatever my Gurudeva, guru-parampara, and Shrila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja want to write, I am doing that. I have fully realized that I am insignificant, and that no credit should be given to me.
Without chanting, remembering, knowing yourself as soul, and knowing the Supersoul and the Supreme Lord Shri Krishna, you cannot be happy in any way. You may launch sputniks into space or travel to the moon or the sun, but even then you cannot be happy. Whatever you may accomplish in this material world cannot make you happy.
Odessa, Ukraine: September 22, 2002
A Mood To Inspire
I asked Giri Maharaja, "How can a person judge who is preaching well?" He could not reply, so I replied. It is any person – sannyasi, brahmacari, brahmacarini, or householder – who inspires many people to be devotees, and inspires them to take harinama and diksa.
Also, those who are distributing books and preaching in such a way that others will be inspired of their own accord to donate to my big projects, like book publishing, our new temple in Navadvipa, and preaching centers here and there. The preacher should inspire a person in such a way that the people themselves come forward to donate.
April 17, 2007: Malaysia Airport
Saving The Scorpion
Once, two saints went to the bank of a river, where they saw that a scorpion was drowning in the current. One of the saintly persons picked up that scorpion on his palm to save him, but the scorpion bit him and again fell into the stream. Again the saint lifted out the scorpion, and again the scorpion stung him; and still again the saint picked him up.
That saint's friend told him, "Why are you doing this? Let us go from here. Don't try to save him any more. Let him die." That saint replied, "If this scorpion is not giving up his nature to bite, why should I give up my nature to save him?" And again he went to save him.
I request that you become like this; if someone does something against you, don't take revenge. If any great suffering comes, tolerate it. Tolerance is a very high-class quality of devotees.
Murwillumbah, Australia: February 6, 2001