Nama Om Vishnu paadaaya..
Hari Haraya Naama Krishna …
Coming from Mayapur dham is a nice experience, seeing the beautiful deities of Nitai Ga and all the other deities that are shown in the dioramas. Here in 2008 I had a stroke and then I was in the Hinduja Hospital and then I went to the Bhakti Vedanta Hospital. Suddenly they found that my liver had become more weak and I had a transplant. Now I am doing well but I have to be careful. So they said within India I can travel. Audio break. So I hope to continue that but today we are late. So just I thought anyway, I should appear on the internet, and I should also address all of you. When I saw Prabhupad here the last time, it was I think around this time in 1977, and I was put on the night duty to watch Prabhupada, and he woke up like 2 in the morning and said, scratch my back. I didn’t have finger nails. Somehow I scratched him but not too effective. But it was a great opportunity I had, of course I did not have finger nails, unfortunately. Apparently, the uric acid was going into his skin and that was causing him to itch. Anyway I had some opportunity to do some personal service. When he came to Mayapur, he called for me day or night, I was on 24-hour clock. Sometimes he would call me at 1 in the morning. The secretary would knock on my door and say that Prabhupada wants to speak with you, and I would go and wash my face and put on some cloth, and run down to see Prabhupada. Prabhupada would be translating on his dictaphone and he would stop and say oh, and he would tell whatever was on his mind. So I missed that, so coming here to Mumbai I had that opportunity. So I had sent an agenda topic to the Bureau secretary, how we could make a kind of revival movement in India, to get people to chant at least one round a day. I tried this sometimes recently, in some programs we had in the Gaura Mandal Bhumi safari. In Chagdaha, Adi Saptagram and Berhampur. I had asked people, to make a long story short, who was willing to chant at least one round per day, 108 Hare Krishna mantras, it would take about 7 or 8 minutes. So thousands of people raised their hands. I think that many people would take up this chanting if we make it easy for them. Lord Caitanya said bolo Krishna, bhajo Krishna, Koro Krishna shikha. So let us chant Krishna’s name, worship and serve Lord Krishna, read the teaching of Krishna, which is mainly Bhagavad Gita and Srimad Bhagavatam. It is very simple, straight forward and sublime. If people do this, they would realize very easily the purpose of life. Generally, we think the purpose of our life is to enjoy our senses, but senses they would be sometimes enjoyed and sometimes they would be the cause of our suffering. Like, right now we like the AC because it is hot outside but if it was winter and in Delhi or somewhere cold, we wouldn’t want the AC. So the senses. they give us happiness or distress. But serving Krishna always gives us happiness and the best service we can do in this world is helping others in their Krishna consciousness. So Prabhupada said Bombay is the most westernized city in India. So here in Mumbai, we need to reindianize or rejuvenate the Krishna consciousness. Actually even in the west people appreciate this simple living, high thinking and similarly in Mumbai, people can easily chant one round and they can start to taste the spiritual bliss which has no comparison with anything material. So we want people to be happy, we want them to be saved from the repetition of birth and death. So that is the real purpose of the Vedas that we develop our affection and love for Krishna. I know that it is late for many of you and you have a long way to go by bus. So if you have one or two questions or we will end.
Question: How to continue in devotional service in difficult situations?
Guru Maharaj: You see, the devas they prayed to Lord Caitanya, they only have two problems, one is attack by demons and the second one they said, we have so much material happiness, that we forget to worship You. So difficulties are blessings. They help us to remember Krishna. How can you serve Krishna if you have no difficulties? That is what the devas said, the problem is we don’t have any difficulties, so the question of how to make progress in devotional service in difficulties doesn’t make sense to me. If you were in hell and there were so many problems, then it is difficult. And in heaven it is soooo much bliss, so much happiness, sense gratification, then it is difficult. But here in Bhu loka, there is some happiness and some distress, some difficulty, like when I was in Karnataka their new year day is called Ugadi, they usually give a sweet, a laddoo, Ugadi laddoo. That laddoo is like any other laddoo except that it has some neem leaves in it. So when you take that laddoo, aaah, what is this bitter taste! So this is life, some happiness and some bitterness. You shouldn’t think that oh, by doing Bhakti yoga and there is some difficulty, how can I go on? We should think oh, Krishna, thank you for reminding me that this material world is not a place to stay, I want to serve You. Like in Shikshashtakam, 8th verse, Lord Caitanya said to Krishna, even if You handle me roughly, or if You don’t appear before Me, and make Me very sad, still you are My Master, eternally, no one else.
Question: How to avoid vaishnava aparadh?
Guru maharaj: How to avoid vaishnava aparadh? Lord Caitanya said that we should be humble, tolerant, we should offer all respect to others, and don’t expect any respect for ourselves. If we follow this, we will avoid most vaishnava aparadhs. See the good qualities in the vaishnavas. If some vaishnava sometimes does something that you don’t like,a or you don’t think that this is a proper vaishnava way to do, then you can think I won’t follow that. But the vaishnava, since he is dedicated in serving Krishna, he is a very special soul, even if sometimes he makes some mistake. There was one servant, I think he was a servant of Ramanujacarya. I could give many examples. One thing he did was, after he made the bed for the guru, put the sheets and pillows on, he would lay down on the bed for few seconds and go up. So some devotees said that don’t you know that if you lie on the bed of the guru you will go to hell? He said, let me go to hell. Since it is my duty to make the bed for my guru, I want to see if it is comfortable or not. But if the guru is comfortable and I have to go to hell, that is alright. So it turned out that the devotee was actually in the higher platform. That he put the comfort of his guru above his own safety. And he did many things like that, which was strange by ordinary vision but nobody asked him why he did that. But if you have a right to ask question, you shouldn’t say, what you are doing is wrong, why are doing this? you are doing a wrong thing! It is not our position to criticize a guru. But you can ask, that you have told us these things and sometimes I see that you are doing. So under which circumstance we can do? Something like that. If you ask a question, it is not an offense. But if you instruct the guru, you are his student, that is offensive. So you should learn what is offence to vaishnava and not do it. So thank you very much.
Transcribed by Jayaraseshwari devi dasi
19 April 2019