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Praying to Shri Guru

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unnamed.jpgMay 5, 2004: North Shore, Hawaii
Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja

[Shrila Prabhupada's senior disciples, Nrihari dasa and his good wife Bhavatarini dasi are very expert at singing devotional songs in Western melodies, in the English language and accompanied by guitars; and their songs enchant large audiences. They visited Shrila Narayana Maharaja at his residence in Oahu, Hawaii in early May. On Shrila Maharaja's request they sang several beautiful songs for in English, including the last verse of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's Shri Siksastakam. After the singing of Shri Siksastakam was completed Shrila Maharaja commented on it, and they were so kind as to share with us the following transcription of his conversation with them:]

[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] "Make Me Happy, Make Me Sad." What is the meaning of this song? This is the view of Shrimati Radhika. This is Her mood. "Make me happy, make me sad; break my heart, make me glad - I love you Krishna."

aslisya va pada-ratam pinastu mam
adarsanan marma-hatam karotu va
yatha tatha va vidadhatu lampato
mat-prana-nathas tu sa eva naparah

["Let Krishna tightly embrace this maidservant who has fallen at His lotus feet, or let Him trample Me or break My heart by never being visible to Me. He is a debauchee, after all, and can do whatever He likes, but He is still no one other than the worshipable Lord of My heart." (Shri Siksastakam, verse 8)]

This is the eighth sloka of Shri Siksastakam. You have translated the essence as, "Make me happy, make me sad . . ." So why have you then prayed to Shrila Prabhupada at the end of the song, "Let me serve you, Prabhupada, eternally"? You sang, "I didn't know that Krishna was God until I met you, Shrila Prabhupada. Let me serve you, Prabhupada, eternally," and then you added the refrain, "Make me happy, make me sad�" It seems that there is some improper mixing there. Who is praying? Are you praying? Or is Shrimati Radhika praying?

[Bhavatarini dasi:] At the end I am praying to Prabhupada.

[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] What is your prayer?

[Bhavatarini dasi:] "Prabhupada, whether you make me happy or sad, I love you."

[Shrila Narayana Maharaja:] No. This is wrong. The words or sentiments "I love you" for Gurudeva is not good. We may pray, "I want to serve you" - not "I love you." The prayer should not be like that. Perhaps you will have to correct it. This cannot be sung in the assembly of knowledgeable devotees. Make it for Krishna - as told by Shrimati Radhika. Then, in the last line you can pray, "Prabhupada, when I will realize this reality - the mood of Shrimati Radhika, which is more than mahabhava and which is known as madanakya-bhava. When I will realize all this? Please be merciful to me." You can pray in this way.

Transcriber: Janaki dasi
Editor: Shyamarani dasi
Typist: Anita dasi

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