sri sri guru gauranga jayatah!
Year 10, Special On-line Edition
Posted: 7 December 2017
nitya-lila pravista om visnupada
Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja
Inspired by and under the guidance of
Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
Instructions on Nāma-bhajana
and Deity Worship
śrī śrī kṛṣṇa-caitanya-candro vijayatetamām
Śrīdhama Māyāpura, Nadīyā
21 October, 1915
Dear recipient of my affection,
May ample, special, auspicious blessings be bestowed upon you.
I received your letter dated 19 October and have noted the contents. I am extremely pleased to know that your enthusiasm for chanting the holy names of the Supreme Lord is increasing. When one is steadily and constantly engaged in chanting Śrī Nāma, anarthas are gradually vanquished. The transcendental form, qualities and pastimes (rūpa, guṇa and līlā) of the Supreme Lord are revealed, of their own accord, through Śrī Nāma alone. One should not endeavour artificially to meditate on the Lord’s rūpa, guṇa and līlā.
The holy name (nāma) and the person addressed by the holy name (nāmī, or Śrī Bhagavān), are non-different. This fact shall be realized in a more extraordinary manner when all of one’s anarthas are destroyed. Simply by chanting Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s name in an inoffensive manner, you will have realization that the holy name alone leads to all perfection.
For those who chant the holy names of the Supreme Lord [without offenses] the obstructions of gross and subtle body, which are the result of the false ego, are gradually dispelled and one’s [eternally] perfected form (siddha-rūpa) is manifested.
When one’s perfected form manifests, which happens solely through the constant chanting of the holy names, the transcendental aspect of Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s beautiful form (rūpa) becomes visible. It is Śrī Nāma alone that leads to the manifestation of the jīva’s transcendental form and attracts him to the transcendental form of Śrī Kṛṣṇa. It is Śrī Nāma alone that leads to the manifestation of the jīva’s own transcendental qualities (guṇa) and attracts him to the transcendental qualities of Śrī Kṛṣṇa. It is Śrī Nāma alone that leads to manifestation of the jīva’s own transcendental activities and attracts him to the transcendental pastimes of Śrī Kṛṣṇa.
The term nāma-sevā (service to the holy names of the Lord) includes all the activities that need to be performed by the person engaged in chanting.* How one can serve Śrī Nāma with one’s mind, body and words will manifest in one’s heart of its own accord. The person engaged in [inoffensive] chanting shall, by the mercy of Śrī Nāma, be able to realize, within his heart, the entirety of transcendental truth regarding the holy names. The intrinsic transcendental nature (svarūpa) of Śrī Nāma manifests by hearing, studying and practising the instructions of scriptures. I need not write further in this regard. By the constant chanting of Śrī Nāma, you will attain realization of all these matters.
* Maintaining one’s body by accepting māhā-prasāda, working for one’s livelihood and so forth.
From the mundane perspective, both pure and impure substances exist, but in service to the Supreme Lord impurity is to be abandoned. A pure substance has the quality of goodness (sattva-guṇa), whereas impurity is bound to the modes of passion (rajo-guṇa) and ignorance (tamo-guṇa). Situating oneself in sattva-guṇa, one must defeat rajo-guna and tamo-guṇa. In other words, solely by remaining situated in transcendental goodness (viśuddha-sattva) and knowing itto be transcendentally pure, one must engage in service to the Lord with transcendentally pure substances. An object produced of the qualities of passion or ignorance, denoting impurity of consciousness, cannot be offered to the Supreme Lord. Moreover, even if the object is pure, if it is not nirguṇa (or devoid of the material qualities of nature, including goodness), the Supreme Lord never accepts it. It all depends on the consciousness of the person making the offering.
At the same time [in regard to your question on deity worship], purity must be considered. When transcendental intelligence appears, the consideration of pure and impure becomes irrelevant and transcendental wisdom prevails.
Here, everything is fine. You may kindly inform me about your spiritual well-being more often, and make me happy. I am thankful to receive the news about Śrīmad Bhaktivilāsa Ṭhākura Mahaśya’s well-being and his bhajana. Please engage in reading Śrī Sajjana-toṣaṇī’.
With perpetual blessings
Akiñcana Śrī Siddhānta Sarasvatī
Translated from Prabhupādera Patrāvalī
by the Rays of The Harmonist team