Murwillumbah, Australia: February 5, 2004
Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja
Perhaps you know that my siksa-guru, Om Visnupada Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja, inspired me in his last days by telling me to help his devotees. He said, "I have collected many disciples, but I could not complete their training; so you should complete it." A guru like Shri Nityananda Prabhu goes door to door and begs you to chant the Holy Name and become happy. Similarly, Shrila Svami Maharaja inspired me to go door to door, because not all of you can come to India. All of you should try to follow - and go door to door in Australia, England, America, Europe, Brazil, Africa and everywhere else. This is my duty - to follow my spiritual guru, siksa-guru.
I especially want to remind you of the aim and object of your life If you don't know the aim and object of your life, you can never be fulfilled. You should remember that we are fortunate to be in the line of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Shrila Rupa Gosvami, Shrila Prabhupada Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Thakura, Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, and my siksa-gurudeva and my diksa-guru, Shrila Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja.
You should know the aim and object, not only of your life, but also of your activities. You know why Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu came to this world. He came not only to preach the holy name - because this was the duty of the yuga-avatara. He especially came to preach the supreme aim and object of life - not only the lotus feet of Krishna, but service to the lotus feet of Shrimati Radhika, in the line of Rati Manjari and Rupa Manjari, Shrila Rupa Gosvami and Shrila Raghunatha Gosvami. In this life we should know what is service to Shrimati Radhika - having even more inclination towards Shrimati Radhika than towards Shri Krishna.
We should know the aim and object of our life and our devotion. It is Krishna-prema, not Krishna or Shrimati Radhika. The heart of Radhika is full of maha-bhava - up to madanakya-maha-bhava. She serves and controls Krishna. This prema is the object. This is the supreme object for all of our lives. Knowing this, what kind of devotional practice should we perform?
We will have to begin with sraddha, the smallest fraction of bhakti. Begin from sraddha, nistha, anartha-nirvrtti, ruci, asakti, and then come up to bhava.
Try to achieve suddha-sattva.
krd asau bhava ucyate
["When devotional service is executed on the transcendental platform of pure goodness, it is like a sun-ray of love for Krishna. At such a time, devotional service causes the heart to be softened by various tastes, and one is then situated in bhava (emotion)." (Shri Caitanaya-caritamrita: Madhya-lila 23.5)]
This is the heart of Shrimati Radhika, who is hladini-sakti. Try to have transcendental sraddha (faith), not laukiki or mortal sraddha. If that sraddha comes, then strong faith automatically comes in the words of Guru, Krishna and scripture. Try to give up your anarthas and offenses, otherwise you cannot have any real gain.
I have come to remind you of all these truths. Be inspired and do not be weak. Try to follow the line of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu - how He was strict. A deva-dasi, female singer, was singing Gita-govinda, and Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu ran after her. Govinda Prabhu "saved Him". He stopped Him, reminding Him that the deva-dasi was a lady, and Lord Chaitanya told him, "Had I touched her, what would I have done? I would have given up my life by jumping in the ocean." By this incident Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu taught us to be very careful, especially if we are sannyasis, in the renounced order. If any facility or glory is coming easily, we should not think, "All is coming - no harm". A lady may come and say, "Please marry me". What should a devotee do? Will Mahaprabhu allow this? If you want krsna-prema, and especially radha-prema, you will have to very strictly follow all the principles of Shrila Rupa Gosvami and Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.
Be softer than a lotus flower and stronger than a thunder-bolt - both at the same time. I have seen these qualities in my Guru. He was stronger than a thunder-bolt, and at the same time so soft. He often wept for his disciples If any devotee had a disease, he would stay up all night and day to help him. If you are not like this, how can you attain that perfection which is greater than Vaikuntha, Dvaraka, and Mathura? And even in Vraja, this perfection is greater than vatsalya and sakhya-rasa.
padabjayos tava vina vara-dasyam eva
nanyat kadapi samaye kila devi yace
sakhyaya te mama namo 'stu namo 'stu nityam
dasyaya te mama raso 'stu raso 'stu satyam
["O Goddess! I shall never pray to You for anything else but the excellent service of Your lotus feet. I offer my constant obeisances unto the idea of becoming Your friend, but I truly relish the idea of becoming Your maidservant." (Text 16, Vilap-kusumanjali)]
This is how Shrila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami instructed us, and how strong he was! I have come to remind you all to be like him, and not to be weak in any way, whether you are ladies or gentlemen. It is for both. The sloka that Bhaktisar Maharaja told is not only for ladies or only for men. It is for all those that want that supreme object:
smrtyoh kramena rasana-manasi niyojya
tisthan vraje tad-anuragi jananugami
kalam nayed akhilam ity upadesa-saram
["The essence of all advice is that one should utilize one's full time-twenty-four hours a day-in nicely chanting and remembering the Lord's divine name, transcendental form, qualities and eternal pastimes, thereby gradually engaging one's tongue and mind. In this way one should reside in Vraja [Goloka Vrndavana dhama] and serve Krishna under the guidance of devotees. One should follow in the footsteps of the Lord's beloved devotees, who are deeply attached to His devotional service." (Nectar of Instruction, text 8)]
I request you to make a schedule of classes from morning until evening every day of this festival. I will speak only in the evening.
Thank you. My heartly blessings to you all.
Transcriber: Vrinda dasi (from Australia)
Typist: Anita dasi
Editor: Shyamarani dasi