The Nectar of Devotion , Vṛndāvana , 1972-11-12

Pradyumna: [reading:] "How Kṛṣṇa becomes attracted by the devotional service of His devotees is described by Nārada in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Seventh Canto, Tenth Chapter, thirty-seventh verse [SB 7.10.37]. There Nārada addresses King Yudhiṣṭhira while the King is appreciating the glories of the character of Prahlāda Mahārāja. A devotee always appreciates the activities of other devotees.

"Yudhiṣṭhira Mahārāja was appreciating the qualities of Prahlāda, and that is one symptom of a pure devotee. A pure devotee never thinks himself as great; he always thinks that other devotees are greater than himself. The king was thinking, 'Prahlāda Mahārāja is actually a devotee of the Lord, while I am nothing,' and while thinking this, he was addressed by Nārada as follows = 'My dear King Yudhiṣṭhira, in this world you, the Pāṇḍava brothers, are the only fortunate people.

"The Supreme Personality of Godhead has appeared on this planet and is presenting Himself to you as an ordinary human being. He is always with you in all circumstances. He is living with you and covering Himself from the eyes of others. Others cannot understand that He is the Supreme Lord, but He is still living with you as your cousin, as your friend and even as your messenger. Therefore you must know that nobody in this world is more fortunate than you.'

"In the Bhagavad-gītā, when Kṛṣṇa appeared in His universal form, Arjuna prayed, 'My dear Kṛṣṇa, I thought of You as my cousin-brother, and so I have shown disrespect to You in so many ways, calling You Kṛṣṇa, or friend, but You are so great that I could not understand.' So that was the position of the Pāṇḍavas; although Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the greatest among all greats, still He remained with those royal brothers, being attracted by their devotion, by their friendship and by their love.

"That is the proof of how great this process of devotional service is. It can attract even the Supreme Personality of Godhead. God is great, but devotional service is greater than God because it attracts Him. People who are not in devotional service can never understand what great value there is in rendering service to the Lord.

" 'The First Stages of Devotion.' The three categories of devotional service which Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī describes in Bhakti-Rasamrta-Sindhu are listed as devotional service in practice, devotional service in ecstasy and devotional service in pure love of Godhead. There are many subheadings in each of these categories. Generally it is understood that in the category of devotional service in practice there are two different qualities; devotional service in ecstasy has four qualities; and devotional service in pure love of Godhead has six qualities. These qualities will be explained by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī later on.

"In this connection, Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī suggests that the person..., that the person eligible for Kṛṣṇa consciousness, or devotional service, can be classified by his particular taste. He says that devotional service is a continual process from one's previous life. No one can take to devotional service unless he has had some previous connection with it.

"For example, suppose in this life I practice devotional service to some extent. Even though it is not one hundred percent perfectly performed, still, whatever I have done will not be lost. In my next life, from the very point where I stopped in this life I shall begin again. In this way there is always a continuity. But even if there is no continuity, if only by chance a person takes interest in a pure devotee's instruction, he can be accepted and advance in devotional service.

"Anyway, for persons who have a natural taste for understanding books like the Bhagavad-gītā and Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, devotional service is easier than for those who are simply accustomed to mental speculation and argumentative processes."

Prabhupāda: So Nārada Muni instructed to Vyāsadeva under the verse, tyaktvā sva-dharmaṁ caraṇāmbujaṁ harer [SB 1.5.17] = "Even one takes to devotional service, takes shelter of the lotus feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa some way or other...," kāmād lobhād bhayāt, as it is stated in the Śrīmad Bhāgavatam. Just like the gopīs, they took shelter of Kṛṣṇa superficially by lusty desire. But it was not lusty desire. It was pure love. But in the material world same thing will be considered as lusty desire. So where is the difference between love of God and lusty desire? Because ordinary men will consider that gopīs were attracted by Kṛṣṇa in lusty desire.

So Caitanya-caritāmṛta kar, Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī, he says that there is difference between material lusty desire and love of God. He has compared that love of God is just like gold, and lusty desire is just like iron. So the difference between lusty desire and love of God is = in the material world, which is going on as love, that is lusty desire. Because the party, both the party, are interested in individual sense gratification. But here, the gopīs, or any devotees, they want to satisfy the senses of Kṛṣṇa. That is the difference between material lusty desire and love of Godhead.

Ātmendriya-prīti-vāñchā tāra nāma kāma [Cc. Ādi 4.165]. When one desires one's own sense gratification... In the material world, suppose a boy loves a girl and a girl loves a boy. That is personal sense gratification. As soon as the personal sense gratification is not satisfied, immediately the so-called love is divorced. No more love. In the Kali-yuga, it is stated in the śāstra, dāmpatye ratim eva hi. In... Love between husband and wife will be disturbed as soon as there is no satisfaction of sex desires. Dāmpatye ratim eva hi. And in the Western countries we find---in our country also, it has already begun---there are so many divorce cases. Mostly the divorce cases take place when there is disturbance in sex, sex satisfaction. So that is lust.

But here, in the case of Kṛṣṇa and gopīs, that is different thing. The gopīs used to dress themself so that Kṛṣṇa will feel satisfied, satisfaction. For Kṛṣṇa's satisfaction. They used to dress for Kṛṣṇa's satisfaction. That is, of course, very difficult to understand. But we should learn from the śāstras. The gopīs had no sense gratification desire. They wanted to satisfy Kṛṣṇa.

kṛṣṇendriya-prīti-vāñchā tāra nāma prema
ātmendriya-prīti-vāñchā dhare, tāre nāma kāma

[Cc. Ādi 4.165]

So that is the difference. Love of Kṛṣṇa means to satisfy Kṛṣṇa, not satisfy sense gratification. We... The practical example is from Bhagavad-gītā, Arjuna. Arjuna, in the beginning, he wanted to satisfy his senses. He declined to fight with his grandfather, with his teacher, with his nephew and brother on the other side. He thought that upon their death he'll not be satisfied. That means sense..., his sense gratification. But at the end, when he understood Bhagavad-gītā, the essence of Bhagavad-gītā, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja [Bg. 18.66],... Our duty is to satisfy the senses of Kṛṣṇa. So then he, to satisfy Kṛṣṇa, he killed his kinsmen, his grandfather, his teacher. So that is required---satisfaction of Kṛṣṇa, not satisfaction of personal interest.

Go on reading.

Pradyumna: "To support this statement there are many authoritative assertions by the learned scholars of bygone ages. According to their general opinion, a person may become governed by certain convictions derived by his own arguments and decisions. Then another person, who may be a greater logician, will nullify these conclusions and establish another thesis. In this way, the path of argument will never be safe or conclusive. The Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam recommends therefore that one follow in the footsteps of the authorities.

"Here is the general..."

Prabhupāda: Mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ [Cc. Madhya 17.186]. You cannot come to the conclusion what is śraddhā and sādhana by simply argument. Tarko apratistha. By argument, we cannot establish. Śrutayo vibhinnā. The scriptures are many varieties. Śrutayor vibhinnā nāsau munir yasya mataṁ na bhinnam. And every philosopher must differ with another philosopher. Therefore, mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ: we have to follow the footprints of great authorities. They are also mentioned in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, great authorities:

svayambhūr nāradaḥ śambhuḥ
kapilaḥ kumāro manuḥ
prahlādo janako bhīṣmo
balir vaiyāsakir vayam

[SB 6.3.20]

Yamarāja said that "These are the eight authorities." Therefore we have got sampradāya: Brahmā-sampradāya, Rudra-sampradāya, then Lakṣmī-sampradāya, Śrī-sampradāya and Kumāra-sampradāya. The present ācāryas, they are Rāmānuja-sampradāya, Śrī-sampradāya, Madhva-sampradāya, Brahmā-sampradāya. In this way.

So we have to follow the footprints of the sampradāya. Just like we are Gauḍīya, Mādhva-Gauḍīya-sampradāya. We are following the footprints of Caitanya Mahāprabhu, as enunciated by the six Gosvāmīs,

śrī-rūpa sanātana bhaṭṭa-raghunātha
śrī-jīva gopāla-bhaṭṭa dāsa-raghunātha

So we have to follow the authorities. We cannot manufacture. There is no need of research work. Simply if we follow the chalked-out path given by the great authorities, that will help us.

Yes, go on.

Pradyumna: "Here is a general description of devotional service given by Śrī Rūpa Gosvāmī in his Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu. Previously it has been stated that devotional service can be divided into three categories---namely, devotional service in practice, devotional service in ecstasy and devotional service in pure love of God. Now Śrī Rūpa Gosvāmī proposes to describe devotional service in practice. Practice means employing our senses in some particular type of work. Therefore devotional service is practice means utilizing our different sensory organs in service to Kṛṣṇa. Some of the senses are meant for acquiring knowledge, and some are meant for executing the conclusions of our thinking, willing and feeling..., thinking, feeling and willing.

"So practice means employing both the mind and the senses in practical devotional service. This practice is not for developing something artificial. For example, a child learns or practices to walk. This walking is not unnatural. The walking capacity is there originally in the child, and simply by a little practice he walks very nicely. Similarly..."

Prabhupāda: Nitya-siddha kṛṣṇa-bhakti sādhya kabhu naya [Hari-bhakti-vilāsa]. Not that by practicing something external, not natural, we become accustomed. That is also sometimes there. But this devotional service, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, is not that type of practice. It is there already. Nitya-siddha kṛṣṇa-bhakti sādhya kabu naya. Not actually by artificial prac... It is there. Śravaṇādi-śuddha-citte karaye udaya [Cc. Madhya 22.107]. It is to be awakened. Exactly just like the..., the child, by nature he can walk, but still, if some help is offered to the child, he walks very nicely.

So this practice, vidhi-mārga, devotional service, is simply to awaken the dormant Kṛṣṇa consciousness within the human being. Just like it is happening in our preaching work in the Western countries. These European, American boys, they never heard the name of Kṛṣṇa four years ago, but they have taken to Kṛṣṇa consciousness seriously, because it was already dormant in them. It has been simply awakened. By chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, this pure vibration of transcendental sound has enlivened them, and they are awakened to Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

It is not that artificially they have taken. It is sure. Anyone can test how much they have advanced in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, how they are firmly convinced in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Because it has been awakened. The nature, which was dormant, that has been awakened by...

That is the propaganda work of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. He wanted that in every town and every village of the world, on the surface of the globe, His name, the preaching of saṅkīrtana movement inaugurated by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, should be preached. The purpose was the dormant Kṛṣṇa consciousness is there everywhere. That we are experiencing. Now in Africa also, who are supposed to be not very advanced in civilization, they're also very nicely taking part in this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. European, Americans, they are advanced, civilized people, but even in Africa we are having very good success. They are becoming Vaiṣṇavas.

So... And it is, in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam it is said, kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ [SB 2.4.18]. So these kirātas are the Africans. So they are also becoming interested, hūṇa, āndhra and others who are considered to be low born according to Vedic civilization. But still, the Vedic civilization does not prohibit anyone to come to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. By our karma we may be high born or low born. That does not matter. Ahaituky apratihatā. Kṛṣṇa consciousness cannot be checked by any material impediment. That is not possible. Ahaituky apratihatā. It is natural.

And Kṛṣṇa says, māṁ hi pārtha vyapāśritya ye 'pi syuḥ pāpa-yonayaḥ [Bg. 9.32]. He says that even though some people are considered to be pāpa-yoni, low born, it doesn't matter, but he can accept the shelter of the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. Prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. Prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanaḥ khasādayaḥ, ye 'nye ca pāpā [SB 2.4.18]. Still more low born than these people, śudhyanti, they can be purified if they actually take shelter of a pure devotee. They can be purified. That is the injunction of the śāstras, Śukadeva Gosvāmī. Śudhyanti. People may argue how such low-born people can be purified. That reply is = prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. It is the supreme power of Lord Viṣṇu. It is possible. Kṛṣṇa says.

Now, Kṛṣṇa says that everyone can be delivered simply by the process of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. So whose duty is to enlighten them to Kṛṣṇa consciousness? I was just talking with Gosvāmījī, Harichand Gosvāmījī. Whose duty it is to enliven people to Kṛṣṇa consciousness? It is the duty of guru. We came to this conclusion. And who is guru? Śrotriyaṁ brahma-niṣṭham [MU 1.2.12]. That means perfectly learned in Vedic literature and firmly convinced in Brahman realization. That means first-class brāhmaṇa.

So if the first-class brāhmaṇas do not take care of these pāpa-yoni, then who will deliver them? We are the... Some agitation is going on that this movement, Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, is killing Hindu religion. You see? Just see their poor fund of knowledge. It is the duty of the first-class brāhmaṇa to enlighten these pāpa-yoni. Otherwise, who will enlighten them? Guru will enlighten. And who is guru? Śrotriyaṁ brahma-niṣṭham. Brahmā-niṣṭham means he must be brāhmaṇa. So if the so-called brāhmaṇas, they do not take care of them, and if they remain brāhmaṇas, limited, within some limited area, do not go outside, then who will deliver them?

So these are not very sound arguments. It is very, what is called, crippled ideas. The brāhmaṇa means udāra. The opposite word of brāhmaṇa is kṛpaṇa, "who is very miser." A brāhmaṇa cannot be miser. Even a hundred years ago the brāhmaṇa would give chance to anyone to become brāhmaṇa. I have got so many instances. That is the duty of brāhmaṇa. Paṭhana pāṭhana. The brāhmaṇa should be learned, and a brāhmaṇa should make others learned, other brāhmaṇa, not that he simply satisfied that he's brāhmaṇa and nobody should become brāhmaṇa. No. He should make others brāhmaṇa.

Just like a big lawyer, he makes his assistants lawyer. A professor, learned professor, he makes others professor. Otherwise, it is called jñāna-khala, miser. The knowledge should be distributed. Any scientist discovery, they distribute it. Similarly, brāhmaṇa should be udāra. Not only he should personally know what is Brahman, but he should distribute the knowledge. Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu said,

bhārata-bhūmite manuṣya-janma haila yāra
janma sārthaka kari' kara paropakāra

[Cc. Ādi 9.41]

It is the duty of the brāhmaṇas. Paropakāra. And without being human being, how he can become a brāhmaṇa? Cats and dogs cannot become brāhmaṇa. The perfect human being means brāhmaṇa, the first-class, perfect being. That is brāhmaṇa. And brāhmaṇa's duty is for paropakāra. Paṭhana pāṭhana yajana yājana dāna pratigraha.

Ṣaṭ-karma-nipuṇo vipro mantra-tantra-viśāradaḥ, avaiṣṇava-gurur na sa syāt [Padma Purāṇa]. A... One who is Vaiṣṇava... Just like Caitanya Mahāprabhu. He becomes guru because He's udāra. Vaiṣṇava means para-duḥkha-duḥkhī.

vāñchā-kalpatarubhyaś ca
kṛpā-sindhubhya eva ca
patitānāṁ pāvanebhyo...

[I offer my respectful obeisances unto all the Vaiṣṇava devotees of the Lord. They can fulfill the desires of everyone, just like desire trees, and they are full of compassion for the fallen souls.]

Vaiṣṇava is patitānām pāvana. He can deliver all the fallen souls.

So we have become crippled. Therefore we are talking this, that "This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is killing our Hindu principles." No. It is really, actually Vedic principle that one should be learned, and he should distribute the knowledge for paropakāra. That is brahminism. Para-duḥkha-duḥkhī. Kṛpāmbudhir yas tam ahaṁ prapadye [Cc. Madhya 6.254]. Lokānāṁ hita-kāriṇau. These are the statements in the śāstra.

Nānā-śāstra-vicāraṇaika-nipuṇau sad-dharma-saṁsthāpakau lokānāṁ hita-kāriṇau. These Gosvāmīs, they compiled this... Rūpa Gosvāmī compiled this Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu not for the study a few selected person. Lokānāṁ hita-kāriṇau: for the benefit of the whole human society. And actually that is happening. We have translated this Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu in English, and we have got the greatest sale of this book. Everyone is picking up. It is a study book in the Temple University of United States. They like it.

So it is required. We have got so much treasure house of knowledge. They should be, each and every book should be..., at least, Vaiṣṇava literature, Bhāgavata literature, should be translated into English and distributed all over the world. That is lokānāṁ hita-kāriṇau, to benefit the whole human society. Not to remain crippled within a boundary. That is not brahminism, that is not Vaiṣṇavism.

Thank you very much. Hare Kṛṣṇa. [end]