Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaj
17 June 1996
Shrila Gurudeva: I have never lost a minute in chattering and in desiring for worldly things. They are of no use. Our lives should anyhow go on. Be very simple and don’t have any worldly desires. And we should go on. Worldly desires only serve to make the heart impure. So, if there are no worldly desires, then the heart will be pure. And try to always remember Krishna’s pastimes.
Devotee: Sometimes I am afraid that my husband [unclear]
Shrila Gurudeva: Your husband is not so bad. He is okay. He gave you permission to come to me and to take initiation. So, I think that he is okay and he will not disturb you. For maintaining your worldly life, you will have to do something because without that you cannot go smoothly in your life. So, this is also needed. But don’t hanker. You will have to do something for maintaining your life. But you should see that there will be no quarrels between the both of you.
You should read Svamiji’s books and read my books also. If you have anything to write, you can write to me. I will try to answer. I think that you are a very simple lady. You don’t have any desires. You are very calm and quiet.
Devotee: When I am sitting all the time, it is very difficult for my back. I find it hard to move around. So, I was thinking that maybe I should do yoga-bhakti.
Shrila Gurudeva: That is not yoga. It is exercise; so, no harm. I also do like this and like this. But if I was young, then I would always be dancing during kirtan. Then nothing will come. I cannot dance now; I cannot move so much. So, I have to go to morning walks and I also do some exercises.
Devotee: Are you telling me I shouldn’t do.
Shrila Gurudeva: No, you can do. Everyone can do. This is not yoga. Yoga means to think, “I am Brahma.” You should not think like this. One is always absorbed in that mood.
You can do simple exercises because we are not going out of the house. We are always cooking or sitting here and there. So, it is necessary to do something. If you are in Vrindavana, then you should do parikrama. But here there is no parikrama.
[Pointing to a devotee]
Oh he knows so many tricks. This is also a very good trick.
So, you can do. Vicitri can also do some exercises.
Devotee: I asked you the other day about taking grains cooked by non-devotees. I was always taught that this was very bad. So, then I heard that you said, “If we buy from shops then the karma.”
Shrila Gurudeva: But you should see that in the shop the sweets should be so pure. The sweet-sevaks should also be pure. They should not take ganja, bang, bidi, or cigarette. They should not take meat, eggs, and all other things like onion and garlic. If they are taking all these things, and you are buying sweets from them, then it is not pure. Try to take from a pure vegetarian shop. Giving them some rice.
Devotee: Because normally my husband is very strict. He never takes; so I also never take.
Shrila Gurudeva: You can continue; no harm. But, generally in India, the workers in the vegetarian shops have mala around their necks and don’t eat any prohibited food. So, we can take.
Devotee: I understand now.
Shrila Gurudeva: But if you can only cook and give to Krishna, then no harm.
Devotee: If Krishna likes certain food. But, say for example that you are at home [unclear] Therefore, is it okay to offer?
Shrila Gurudeva: Yes. You can offer anything like water, Tulasi leaves, or anything you have. If someone is very poor, then he can give anything. But, you should not offer food, which is not vegetarian. It should be vegetarian.
Devotee: And if you don’t have Tulasi leaves, then is it okay?
Shrila Gurudeva: But in case there are no Tulasi leaves, then what to do? You will have to offer; but try to manage for Tulasi leaves also. Anyhow, if you cannot get Tulasi leaves; then we should offer. Those, who have offered themselves—their everything is offered. Do you understand? We should try to offer ourselves. We should offer our heart, mind, body, and everything to Krishna. Then, everything is offered.
The gopis never offered anything. But somewhere we see that Nanda Baba has a Salagrama-sila and he used to offer. Otherwise, not all gopis used to offer. They have offered themselves. Like Vrnda; she has offered herself. So, I think that what she gives me has been offered to Krishna.
Have you seen my capattis in Mathura or Vrindavana? Navina makes them.
Shrila Gurudeva: You have not seen? The boys in Mathura make capatti. How many capattis can you make from the wheat-flour?
Devotee: Not more than two.
Shrila Gurudeva: Not more than two.
Devotee: Can you tell me something about Vrnda-kunda in Nandagrama? So how did it manifest?
Shrila Gurudeva: Vrnda used to live there. From there she used to come to Krishna and Shrimati Radhika. And, she would manage for Them to meet. She used to live in a forest there. Yogamaya and Nandimukhi also used to live there. They used to live near Nandagaon in a forest. They had a hut and from there, they used to come. Sometimes, Yogamaya and Nandimukhi would meet together and they would plan on how Radha-Krishna could meet. They would also plan on where They could meet. They would make all plans. There are lakhs and lakhs of pastimes there. Sometimes, Krishna comes, when He is worried for Shrimati Radhika. If any problem comes to Krishna, He runs to Vrnda hoping she will solve the problem. Without Vrnda, He cannot solve any problem.
[Break of audio]
Shrila Gurudeva: Will he agree that he will manage to give you so much money that you can travel with Maharaj everywhere?
Devotee: If Krishna’s mercy is there.
Shrila Gurudeva: Perhaps, he has a lot of money? How does he manage?
Devotee: We didn’t have anything. We only had books and incense. So, we went on a marathon and…
[Break of audio]
Shrila Gurudeva starts to speak after reciting the Jaya-dhvani prayers]
Shrila Gurudeva: Svamiji is here. He is so pleased. He wanted to bring me with him. But at that time, I was foolish. I could not do anything. But now, he is telling me that “Anyhow, you have come.” And, he is so much pleased.
What is the history of this temple? Has Svamiji come here?
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: This temple here was started by one disciple of Shrila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaj. At that time, the Indian community here cooperated to help start this temple. But it was never officially an ISKCON temple. And they have their board and they run the temple with their board that has about six members. Those board members will come tonight also.
Shrila Gurudeva: Are they Indians?
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: They are all Indians. And of course they are connected with ISKCON here because ISKCON devotees from Los Angeles come here. But they are not officially ISKCON; they are not listed in the centers.
Shrila Gurudeva: How far is the ISKCON temple from here?
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: A forty minute drive from here.
Shrila Gurudeva: Forty minutes. Towards the town?
Devotee: Towards the airport.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: Actually, when we came from the airport, we could have gone to the temple. The temple is only five minutes away from the airport.
Shrila Gurudeva: Tirthapada Prabhu is okay?
Tirthapada dasa: Jaya.
Shrila Gurudeva: Your health is also okay?
Tirthapada dasa: Yes.
Shrila Gurudeva: Everything is okay. But I am only worried that I am giving problems to you.
Devotee: We are not worried about them at all, Shrila Gurudeva.
Shrila Gurudeva: They should be pleased. They should be glad. I have come to help them. One day they will realize this.
Were you there when Svamiji was in Vrindavana and was going to leave this world?
Devotee: No, I wasn’t there.
Shrila Gurudeva: After Svamiji spoke to me, he ordered all the GBC leaders like Jayapataka, Tamala Krishna, Brahmananda, Bhavananda, and all others that “You should go and take Narayana Maharaj everywhere.” So many ISKCON leaders took me to Shri Mandir and everywhere in Vrindavana.
Svamiji told me, “You will have to give my samadhi with your own hands. You will have to help my disciples become mature.”
Shrila Gurudeva speaks to a devotee in Hindi]
Do you live in Vrindavana?
Shrila Gurudeva: Where?
Devotee: Near Govardhana.
Shrila Gurudeva: Which place near Govardhana?
Shrila Gurudeva: We always go to Gantholi.
Shrila Gurudeva resumes speaking in English]
Gantholi is also a very sacred place in Vrindavana. Sometimes, Krishna used to hide there. So, the gopis took one end of Krishna’s Pitambara and took one end of Shrimati Radhika’s veil and they tied the corners of their cloths in a knot in such a way that “Krishna would never fly away.”
Shrila Gurudeva: Shrinathaji stayed there for three days. He used to come to Gantholi from Govardhana hill. And to take His darsana, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu used to go with all His parikaras, associates. Also, Rupa-Sanatana, Gopala Bhatta Gosvami, and all others went there. When Chaitanya Mahaprabhu came with His associates to this place, Shrinathaji made an excuse.
The excuse was that the Mohammedans are coming and they will take Shrinathaji. So, the priests used to take Him to that village. So, Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu used to take the darsana of Shrinathaji there because Mahaprabhu has said, “I will not go on top of Govardhana. And anyone should not go because Govardhana is Krishna Himself. So, we should not climb on Govardhana to see Gopalajiu.”
So, Gopalajiu Himself used to come down to that village and all used to take His darsana. There is a village there called “Parso.” Parso means the day after tomorrow. Krishna promised to the gopis that “I will come tomorrow or the day after tomorrow.” So, the village is called, “Parso.”
You will find the pastimes of Krishna everywhere in Vraja. Each name of a place has a corresponding pastime associated with it. There is also a place called, “Kyon Nai.” It was named Kyon Nai because Krishna asked the sakhis, “Why has Shrimati Radhika not come?” (Kyon na ai?)
[Shrila Gurudeva speaks to a devotee]
Oh you have come now.
Shrila Gurudeva: Even if the ISKCON leaders are not welcoming you, I welcome you.
Shrila Gurudeva: And I am also happy to see you.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: We have been dreaming for a long time of this thing. So, our lives have become completely successful to see you here.
Shrila Gurudeva: Only my Gurudeva and Svamiji have brought me here. Otherwise, I never dreamt that I would come to these Western countries and meet so many devotees.
You have to make a program to the places where I will have to go like California, Canada, and other places.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: Everything is arranged.
Shrila Gurudeva: Tomorrow, we will see. Bhudhara Prabhu will also come. They have helped so much. This Prabhu, Vrajanatha Prabhu and his wife, and all have helped so much.
Bhudhara Prabhu, Anandini..
Vrajanatha dasa: Shridhama.
Shrila Gurudeva: How are you?
Shrila Gurudeva: Have you taken anything from morning?
Shrila Gurudeva: Were you there or are you coming now?
Devotee: I am coming now.
Devotee: Gurudeva, when I heard some people in ISKCON talking about you among each other, I got so angry.
Shrila Gurudeva: Why?
Devotee: And then, I see how sweet and beautiful you are. How can they talk like this about such a great personality? What can we do?
Shrila Gurudeva: You should not be angry.
Devotee 2: They have no eyes to see; no adhikara.
Shrila Gurudeva: They are helping me. I could not have done so much propaganda as they are doing for me.
I have no money to do all these things. Actually, they are doing everything.
Vrajanatha dasa: They are doing everything for free.
Shrila Gurudeva: They are doing everything for me and I am so much indebted to them.
They are so kind to me. As Kamsa was so kind to Krishna and towards all that he brought Krishna from Goloka Vrindavana. If there was no Kamsa, then no pastimes of Krishna would have manifested.
So, Narada said, “I am indebted to Kamsa.”
Vrajanatha das: Jayadvaita Swami said, “Shrila Narayana Maharaj is one of the persons who are most advanced in Krishna consciousness. This I know for sure.” That is what he mentioned. So, they are so much glorifying you.
Shrila Gurudeva: Are you living nearby or very far away?
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: No, the arrangements are being made. The leaders are coming this evening. I spoke to them yesterday evening. This evening they will come and everyone will be transported here and there.
Shrila Gurudeva: And yourself?
Devotee: Maybe I am hoping that I will stay here.
Shrila Gurudeva: Otherwise, you will be alone.
Devotee: Hopefully, a few of us will stay here.
Devotee: Tomorrow will be a rest day.
Shrila Gurudeva: Yes, there is no program. Only you can come and make a program. You should tell each other of how my preaching is going on so well in countries like Holland and England. My preaching is going on well in Houston also. It is so marvellous.
Devotee: Jaya Guru Maharaj.
Shrila Gurudeva: Svamiji has arranged everything and Krishna is arranging everything as well. Without his mercy, I could not have come here. He has made a platform for me. Actually, he has given the seeds some water and nourished them. The plants are now dry. So, Svamiji told me, “You should go there and give water to the plants.”
Are you okay? No problem at all?
Devotee: No problem at all.
Shrila Gurudeva: Do you know any of the devotees here? Or are they new to you?
Devotee: I know most of them Maharaj.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: Gurudeva, I can introduce you to a couple of devotees. This is Kesava Prabhu. He is also a disciple of Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaj. He is our Godbrother.
Shrila Gurudeva: Very good.
Kesava dasa: So nice to see you Maharaj.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: I have been connected with him as a friend for many years. And I have told him many things about you and he is so happy that you are here.
Kesava dasa: Thank you Maharaj for coming here. It is so good to see you.
Shrila Gurudeva: And who is this Prabhu?
Devotee: This is Raghava Pandita.
Shrila Gurudeva: Raghava Pandita?
Shrila Gurudeva: We have so much regard for Raghava Pandita.
Devotee 2: They have been to Mathura, Gurudeva.
Devotee: They came to Mathura.
Shrila Gurudeva: They were with me?
And this is his wife, Nagari didi.
Shrila Gurudeva: She has also met me?
Nagari dasi: Yes, I have met you.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: So, you are both from Holland?
Raghava Pandita dasa: Yes, we are originally from Holland.
Nagari dasi: We are disciples of Gaura Govinda Maharaj.
Devotee: Yes. And they are staying in Malaysia.
Shrila Gurudeva: They have come from Malaysia?
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: We have all come. Myself, Prana Kisora, Raghava Pandita Prabhu, Gokula Prabhu..
This is Gokula Prabhu. He is also a disciple of Gaura Govinda Maharaj.
Shrila Gurudeva: Very good.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: We were all together in Malaysia.
Devotee: They have come specifically to come on this tour.
Devotee 2: [Unclear]
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: He says you are satya-sankalpah.
Devotee: And, there are two ladies here in the far back. One of the two is Sarasvati. She has been born as a devotee in ISKCON. And this is the first time that she is seeing you. She is very much desiring to have your mercy.
Shrila Gurudeva: And who is she?
Devotee: And this is Vipi, she is together with Kesava Prabhu. And she has been connected with the Hare Krishna movement for many, many years. But she has not found any guru. But she wants to accept a guru.
Shrila Gurudeva: You have not seen me earlier?
Devotee: No, I was in ISKCON.
Shrila Gurudeva: This Prabhu is coming from India with me. He is so near and dear to me.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: He is near and dear to all of us.
Shrila Gurudeva: The mainland preaching was so good, so good. In Birmingham, there were 400 or 500 persons who listened to hari-katha and danced so happily. And everyone heard me so patiently everywhere.
Devotee: Gurudeva, when I was in Glastonbury right before kirtan, there was this lady who I was sitting with. She did not know anything about Krishna consciousness, but she said, “All of a sudden I saw this beautiful, glowing, golden man who is standing like this.” She never saw any pictures of Gaura-Nitai or Prabhupada before.
And she said, “There is this beautiful person who has just come here. And he is dancing in the kirtan.”
So, was Lord Chaitanya there? You have the eyes to see. Did you see?
Shrila Gurudeva: It maybe Chaitanya Mahaprabhu or Nityananda Prabhu Himself. They Themselves came to see. But where there is a good kirtan, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu comes; He descends. And, where there is a bona fide recitation of the Shrimad Bhagavatam, then Krishna and Shrimati Radhika come. Uddhava comes. Sukadeva Gosvami comes as well. Narada Gosvami and everyone come whether we can see or not.
When Narottama dasa Thakura used to sing and dance with so many devotees, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and all His associates used to come and dance as well. When his kirtan ended, Mahaprabhu and all His associates at once disappeared. Narottama Thakura would especially sing, “Gauranga bo’lita habe pulaka sarira.” When he would sing, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Nityananda Prabhu used to come and dance. Everyone was seeing this and realizing. And when the kirtan ended, They disappeared.
Devotee: Did only the devotees see or did everyone see?
Shrila Gurudeva: Everyone saw. General people as well because Yogamaya used to come and connect them. Where there is no Yogamaya, there is no connection. Now, if you go to Mayapura or Vrindavana, then there is no connection with Yogamaya. There is not such a powerful person who can attract Yogamaya and establish a connection. So, we cannot see. But Krishna and Mahaprabhu are there; They are always there. But if a personality like Narottama Thakura will come, then Yogamaya will come and connect.
Devotee: Bhaktivinoda Thakura used to worship Yogamaya.
Shrila Gurudeva: Everyone has worshiped Yogamaya. If Yogamaya wishes, then they will sprinkle some mercy, then we will be qualified.
Gaura Premanande! Hari Haribol!
Devotees: Jaya Shrila Gurudeva!
[Break of audio]
Devotee: I was actually born in East Africa and somehow, I could not go to India. The first time I went to India was in 1959. And then, I went to India the second time in 1992. After staying there for 42 years, I was told to leave the country. So, we came here and after some time, by Prabhupada’s mercy we went all over India for the first time. And then I went to Vrindavana. When I went to Vrindavana, one Mataji called Jagadambika came to my wife and I and she said, “Let me take you to the temple and if you are very fortunate, you will see one Maharaj.”
I didn’t know anything, so I said, “Okay. Let’s go.”
I have seen so many Maharajs here. I went there. There, I went to a room and Maharaj was taking rest there and all the people were sitting around. Even Satsvarupa das Gosvami was sitting near Maharaj’s feet and I was sitting near Maharaj’s feet also. That was the first time that I had darsana of Maharaj.
Gaura Premanande! Hari Haribol!
Shrila Gurudeva: How is your health? Okay?
Shrila Gurudeva: Svamiji desired that I accompany him when he went to the West the first time. He told me, “You should also come with me.”
I told my Guruji to tell Svamiji to take sannyasa. I told Svamiji, “You should take sannyasa. You are so qualified. So, you should take the renounced order.”
Guruji also came at that time. Svamiji then took sannyasa from Guruji. I helped Svamiji in some ways. I sent him his books, mrdangas, karatalas, and deities. I sent them from India.
Devotee: I gave him a copy of the Venu Gita where we have this section at the back of the book that has your biography. I gave him the book.
Shrila Gurudeva: Svamiji told me, “You should join me and come with me to the Western countries.”
I replied, “My Gurudeva has ordered me to serve here and he is not here. If I will go, then everything will be upset. So, I will try to come with you later.”
So, he wanted me and he wrote many letters to me. He wrote more than two hundred letters to me. He would write to me from wherever he was preaching. He would tell me, “Preaching is being done very nicely here.” He would tell me so many things. I gave all the letters to Satsvarupa Maharaj who was writing the biography at that time. I still have many letters left. So, by his mercy, Svamiji called me here.
He told me, “My words can never be false.”
A devotee is Satya-sankalpa; what he will say will surely bear fruit. Every desire of his will be fulfilled. So, he has called me here and by his mercy, I have come. Otherwise, I am a penniless person and now, I have become old. I never dreamt that I will have to go to the Western countries for preaching. But, he has dragged me here. Wherever I go, by Svamiji’s and Krishna’s mercy, there are always some people to help me. You were also ready to help me from the first.
Devotee: We have been ready from fifteen days.
Shrila Gurudeva: Wherever I go, I see that the management is being done nicely. So many devotees are helpful.
Svamiji had so much love and affection for me. He used to tell me, “You should sing ‘Gauranga bolite habe pulaka sarira, Jaya Radhe Jaya Krishna, Hari Haraye namah Krishna Yadavaya namaha, Shri Rupa Manjari pada, and all the other very beloved kirtans.’”
When I would sing, he used to play on the mrdanga. Sometimes, both of us would make capattis when Svamiji was in the Radha Damodara temple in Vrindavana. At that time, he was a penniless person. He didn’t have good clothes. He wore torn clothes. His books were worn and torn. But, he had a firm belief to preach in the Western countries because his Gurudeva had ordered him to.
Devotee: Maharaj, it is our greatest fortune that we are present among Vaisnavas. We came from Uganda. We were feeling quite unwanted because Idi Amin threw us out. We were wondering, “Where are we going to go? We were brought up here. We don’t know anyone in America.” And here we came and we probably would not have been exposed to Krishna consciousness at least soon enough. But now we are here, we got Prabhupada and of course, the association of you.
Shrila Gurudeva: Being among you, I feel I am in India.
This person is a priest in a temple in Gantoli where Radha-Krishna’s cloths were tied in a knot. His wife is from Gujarat. All of you are also there.
Devotee: It is like the saying, “Sitting at home, we are bathing in the Ganga.”
Shrila Gurudeva: This is Krishna’s causeless mercy. I feel that I am so fortunate because Krishna is managing everything. He managed for you to help me. You, Sita, and all of you are helping.
All glories to the devotees!
May Krishna’s and Shrimati Radhika’s mercy shower down on all of you. May the mercy of the Goddess of Varsana shower down on all of you.
[Break of audio]
If Shrimati Radhika loses, then we will become very upset. But Madhumangala will be very happy because he is in the group of Krishna. These are the pastimes of Vrindavana. Leaving Vrindavana, I don’t want to go anywhere. I think all of you are Vrajavasis. He is already a Vrajavasi; he is from Vraja. Except Vrindavana, Radha-Krishnaji don’t stay anywhere else.
Vrindavanam parityajya padam ekam na gacchati
Radha-Krishna never go even a step away from Vrindavana. Krishna doesn’t go to Dvaraka with His flute and peacock feather. If He goes there, He will have to change His name. He is known as Vasudeva there. He will say, “My father’s name is Vasudeva and My mother is Devaki.” He is a warrior there if He leaves Vrindavana. He has no relation with the gopis. The gopis cry for Krishna and continuously think, “Where is our Krishna?”
When Krishna comes to Dvaraka, He doesn’t carry the flute in His hands and there is no peacock feather on His crown. Shrimati Radhika will not be there on His left side. If He will say, “I am Vasudeva-Krishna. My father is Vasudeva,” then the gopis will offer Him pranama and go far away. They have nothing to do with Him.
The gopis tell Krishna, “If You don’t have the peacock feather and flute and if You are not giving Your identification that ‘Nanda Baba is My father and Yasoda Maiya is My mother and My Priyaji is Shrimati Radhika,’ then we have nothing to do with You. You can go away from here.”
All right, I have to go now.
Krishna is so merciful to me because He has provided so many helpers.
Devotee: It is the other way around Maharaj. Krishna is so merciful to us. He gave us your association.
[Break of audio]
Shrila Gurudeva: He is a very big astrologer. He has told me where I will go, how I will go, what I will preach, and what I will do.
[Break of audio]
Shrila Gurudeva: At the last moment, he was bound to do like this.
Devotee: So many things in ISKCON have become new concepts.
[Break of audio]
Shrila Gurudeva: Offering Tulasi Devi pranama, you should say:
bhaktya vihina aparadha-laksaih
ksiptas ca kamadi-taranga-madhye
krpamayi tvam saranam prapanna
vrnde numas te caranaravindam
Otherwise, you can say:
vrndayai tulasidevyai priyayai kesavasya ca
Krishna-bhakti-prade devi satyavatyai namo namah
This is enough.
[Break of audio]
Shrila Gurudeva: Shri Chaitanya Siksamrta, Siksastaka are little books but they are private. Those who don’t want will criticize.
[Break of audio]
Shrila Gurudeva: He at once gave, so I am indebted to him. Bhudara, do you want to be a disciple of Gargacarya? Do you want to take birth in Mathura to be the priest of Vasudeva-Devaki and to see the horoscope of Krishna? Gargacarya was a very good, renowned astrologer. We only want to take the footdust of Gargacarya and Sandilya Rsi; that’s all. He will give some counselling and he will teach astrology and other arts. And we will give some golden coins.
Come to Vraja where Nanda and Yasoda used to come with Krishna and they would place Krishna at the feet of Gargacarya. And they would seek some benedictions that “Our boy should be safe. He should have no sufferings and difficulties.”
He used to say, “You should give me ten thousand cows with their calves and I will perform the rituals.” And, he used to do.
Devotee: Is this Vatsalya-rasa?
Shrila Gurudeva: Vatsalya-rasa.
They are more, more superior to Gargacarya. But yet, they are taking the footdust of Gargacarya or any Brahmin in Vraja.
trnad api sunicena
Being the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna will take the footdust of all the Rsis, Maharsis, Brahmins, and all those who are superior by age. This is etiquette, maryada.
Gargacarya and Sandilya Rsi know that Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. But, they think, “If we will take the footdust of Krishna or if we offer Him prayers, then His pastimes will be disturbed. Krishna will be disturbed.”
So, they used to serve in this way. Thus, they would give benedictions to Krishna.
[Break of audio]
Shrila Gurudeva: The Indians and others have been told, “Don’t host Maharaj.” They want that any person cannot see; but yet, all can see.
The Hindu community told them, “We cannot follow your orders. You are not right. We have donated something to you. Although we have life membership, it is not that we have given our lives to you. According to Indian culture, Vedic culture, if anyone will want to come to our house, we will provide all facilities. We can give our heads for him also. Athiti-deva-bhavoh. We cannot follow you.”
I have been serving Svamiji from the time I met him. He was not in the renounced order then; I have been serving him from then. He is my Siksa-Guru. I have helped so much. I am helping ISKCON from the beginning. Why should I speak against them? I have nothing against them. I have nothing against even those who abuse me. I don’t speak anything against them. I know that due to my past impressions; why should I become involved? I have served my holy masters. I have heard that one should be, “trnad api sunicena.”
sadhu-sanga sadhu-sanga sarva-sastra-kaya
—Chaitanya Caritamrita Madhya 22.83
Why should I become involved? They can do anything. There was a very black, powerful scorpion that had so much poison. Two sadhu friends were coming to bathe in a river and the river had flooded its banks. One sadhu saw that a scorpion was in the river and he at once tried to save it. He took that scorpion in his hands. But, due to its nature, it stung the sadhu and jumped into the river. The sadhu again rescued the scorpion and the scorpion stung him again. This happened a few times. He tried saving the scorpion four or five times.
The friend of the sadhu asked him, “Why are you doing so? You are being stung by the scorpion repeatedly and you are still trying to save it.”
Then the sadhu began to smile. He told his friend, “If the scorpion is not leaving its nature, then why should I leave my nature?”
A Vaisnava will never fear. Like Haridasa Thakura, Mirabhai, and others. So, I have nothing to speak against ISKCON. What to speak of Svamiji who is my Siksa-Guru. Why are they speaking such lies?
Devotee: Everything they say is false.
Shrila Gurudeva: Everything.
Devotee: They are speaking incorrectly. They say, “Narayana Maharaj said this.” They change some words.
Shrila Gurudeva: Let them do what they want. I have come for ISKCON and for Svamiji’s service. I never wanted to come. But Krishna and Svamiji have arranged for me to come.
Devotee: We think that if the devotees are sincere, then they will see through all of this.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: We want to see the truth being spoken because they are not speaking the truth. So, we will speak the truth. We must defeat their lies.
Shrila Gurudeva: Bhudhara Prabhu, Sita Devi, and Shyamarani have given such good explanations. I have come only to speak on bhakti, I want to speak on what bhakti is and what our goal is. I have come to explain what Svamiji’s mission is; what Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s mission is. We have not come to quarrel and to answer all these silly questions. We will not have to destroy our time for all of this. If we are going and dogs are barking, we will not have to answer. Otherwise, we will waste our time.
So, we should come in his mission. We should understand what his mission is and we should try to help those who are new or old. Because he especially ordered me to help; all know. Those, who are not interested, will not come. But, we want to help all. This devotee has served me in so many ways. There is no harm in coming to me.
What he has written?
Vrajanatha dasa: Some questions from a Bhakta who came to us in Leicester. He is a nice boy.
Shrila Gurudeva: What is he saying?
Vrajanatha dasa: He is asking any questions to relieve his doubts.
Shrila Gurudeva: They write so many pages. This is very hard for me.
Vrajanatha dasa: We can ask any questions and we will send the answer.
Shrila Gurudeva: Yes. What are the questions? Who is he initiated by?
Vrajanatha dasa: No one.
Vrajanatha Prabhu reads the questions]
“Is there a difference between Sad-Guru and Shri-Guru?”
Shrila Gurudeva: No. Shri means Sat actually. There is no difference. But, there is much difference between an asat-guru and a Sad-Guru. There is far, far difference between them.
Vrajanatha Prabhu: He is asking this because he says, “Every bona fide guru can give you entry into Goloka Vrindavana,” this is what he has heard. And he also heard, “Only very special ones.”
Shrila Gurudeva: Not every bona fide guru. Those who are in Ramanujacarya’s sampradaya, who are devotees of Laksmi-Narayana are bona fide. But, they cannot give the way to Vrindavana; they cannot give. But they are Sad-Gurus. Hanumana is a Sad-Guru, but he cannot help us go to Vrindavana. So, we should follow the Sad-Guru in the line of Krishna, Shrimati Radhika, and especially in the line of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. And, especially the Sad-Guru, who is in the line of Shrila Rupa Gosvami. Then, we can go to Vrindavana; otherwise not.
Madhvacarya, Ramanujacarya, Vishnusvami, Vallabhacarya, and all are bona fide Gurus. But I think they will not give you this thing.
Vrajanatha dasa: He is asking, “Those devotees who can distribute prema-nama and who are speaking.”
Shrila Gurudeva: Also, it doesn’t depend on the disciple’s decision; when the disciple thinks, “Whether my guru is bona fide or not.” Because they all consider that “Our guru is bona fide.” If the guru has lust, anger, and every bad quality; but even then, the disciples think, “Our Gurudeva is bona fide.” So, it doesn’t depend on the disciples’ realization. It should be according to Sastra and Vaisnavas—both. If what the Vaisnavas say is in the line of the sastras and the Vaisnavas are actually following what they say, and we will see the symptoms, then this should be considered; otherwise not.
Vrajanatha dasa: He is asking, “When does the relationship begin with his Gurudeva—on diksa, or when he meets his…”
Shrila Gurudeva: It begins from when he first meets his Gurudeva. Whether he is hearing or not, when Gurudeva’s glance falls on that person, the activities begin until he goes to Vrindavana.
Vrajanatha dasa: He has heard that one should accept a guru according to one’s moods.
Shrila Gurudeva: No, no. This is wrong. Here, mood in Raganuga-bhakti and not in Vaiddhi-bhakti. There are no moods there. How will he think and realize whether a person is a bona fide guru or not? How will he determine? He should go in the company of Vaisnavas, Suddha-Vaisnavas, and hear continuously from them. And he should also read books. Then, he will choose any good guru. And after that, a Siksa-Guru may tell him all these things. Did any disciple of Svamiji know his mood? Did they know his mood of service to Krishna? This is called a mood. That mood is Sakhya, Vatsalya, and Madhurya—three moods. The mood of dasya cannot lead us to Vrindavana; never. Dasya-bhava is there, but there should be some mood of Sakhya. Otherwise, the mood cannot take us to Vrindavana. In Vraja, there is no suddha-dasya. Suddha-dasya is to Ramacandra and to Laksmi-Narayana.
So, how will they decide what the mood is? In Madhura-rasa, there are many kinds of moods. If they will know all these moods from sraddha, nista, ruci, asakti, bhava, prema, sneha, maan, pranaya, raga, anuraga, bhava, mahabhava, and after that; then, they can have some greed towards these moods. Otherwise, how can they know?
Vrajanatha dasa: He says that he has so many questions. He feels that he will only get real satisfaction by getting more of your association.
Shrila Gurudeva: He should associate with Suddha-Vaisnavas—with those, who have no anger, lust, and other impurities. These Vaisnavas have conquered all their senses. He should also associate with those, who have some mood, some greed for Vrindavana—Vraja-bhava.
Vrajanatha dasa: He says that he is going to India in September. He is asking if he can come and visit you.
Shrila Gurudeva: You can write to him that he should come when I will be in Vrindavana.
Vrajanatha dasa: He is thanking you for making the difficult journey to the West.
Shrila Gurudeva: You can go on reading.
Vrajanatha Prabhu reads the letter of the devotee]
“Thank you for making the difficult journey to the West to save us. Krishna is so kind. First, He sent Svami Maharaj and now, your good self. You are so kind.”
[Break of audio]
Shrila Gurudeva: If one is “Prabhupadanuga,” then what to think about “Rupanuga?”
We can be in the line of Rupanuga. Like, we say, “Gaura-Vinoda-vani.” “Gaura,” means Shrila Gaura Kisora das Babaji Maharaj, “Vinoda,” means Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura and “Vani,” means Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Vani. So, we are in this Rupanuga line. This line can be done. We are Rupanuga, but in the line of Vedanta Svami or any other Acarya. This is no harm.
But, the conception that “We are Prabhupadanuga,” is quite different. They want to cut off his connection with Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Rupa Gosvami, and all others. They are not intelligent.
Devotee: They don’t know these things.
Shrila Gurudeva: They are cutting his legs and their legs.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: This is aparadha against him.
Shrila Gurudeva: He has given the names of the disciplic order from Krishna to his Gurudeva.
Shripada Padmanabha Maharaj: Svami Maharaj would often say, “The only reason that I have been successful is because I have not changed anything.”
Shrila Gurudeva: Yes.
*Transcribed and edited by the Govardhana dasa.