Tulasi Devi

(Kuala Lumpur, Feb 12, 2000 )


[On Advaita Acarya's Avirbhava Tithi, because Advaita Acarya called for the appearance of Lord Caitanya by offering Tulasi and water, Srila Gurudeva spoke on the glories of Tulasi.]

Prema Prayojana Prabhu: We have heard how, seeing the terrible condition of the world, Sri Advaita Acarya's heart was melting, feeling compassion for all the jivas. So He wanted to call Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu into this world. While He was thinking of how to do it, then, a verse from Srimad Gautamiya tantra came into His mind.

tulasi-dala-matrena
jalasya culukena va
vikrinite svam atmanam
bhaktebhya bhakta-vatsalah

In this verse, the Supreme Lord is saying, 'If someone worships Me with only the leaves of Tulasi and water, then 'svam atmanam', he purchases Me, My very self. Svam atmanam - my atma. Who is the atma of Sri Krishna? Srimati Radhika.

Srila Narayana Maharaja: Why is she the atma of Sri Krishna?

Prema Prayojana Prabhu: Because she is the life and soul of Krishna.

Srila Narayana Maharaja: We should satisfy Krishna, He gives Himself - as a property.

Prema Prayojana Prabhu: He can be purchased by those jivas who serve Vrnda Devi, and He can give to them the service of Srimati Radhika. Our Srila Visvanatha Cakravati Thakura has written so beautifully:

tvad ajnaya pallava-puspa-bhrnga
mrgadibhir madhava-keli-kunjah
madhvadibhir bhanti vibhusyamana
vrnde! numaste caranaravindam

We should know that all the pastimes of Krishna in Vraja are arranged by Yogamaya, Paurnamasi. But she has one special department, and her manifestation for that department is Vrnda. Vrnda Devi is a very dear sakhi, and she is in charge of one special department of Krishna's lila-nikunja-lila - the very sweet, amorous and confidential pastimes of Radha and Krishna in the groves of Vrindavan.

Tvad ajnaya pallava-puspa bhrnga, "By the order of Vrnda Devi, Vrindavana looks beautiful, as if decorated with all the qualities of the spring season. By her order the flowers blossom and spread their fragrance everywhere, the wind blows, the bumble bees are maddened and intoxicated by the sweet honey of the lotus flowers, and they are buzzing here and there. The peacocks are dancing, and deer are also dancing here and there. So, by the grace of Vrnda Devi, on her order, Vrindavana becomes so beautiful and provides the most wonderful playground and setting for Radha and Krishna's lilas."

Srila Narayana Maharaja: Krishna always sees Himself indebted to Vrnda. She serves in such a way, with all paraphernalia, that Krishna always thinks that He cannot repay her. So if anyone gives Tulasi to Krishna, He becomes shy; and He thinks that, "He has purchased Me." You can also make an experiment and test whether it is right or wrong. You should give water to Tulasi and her leaves at the lotus feet of Krishna. And if you offer anything, you should put tulasi leaves on each preparation. Then He surely accept and be happy, and then He will try and please that devotee. He will say, "What do you want? What do you want?" So you should all try and worship Tulasi. Daily you should give water and offer a lamp. You should circumambulate four times and sing the tulasi arati.

Prema Prayojana Prabhu: Krishna is always eager to meet with Srimati Radhika. Srila Visvanatha Cakravati Thakura has written;

tvadiya-dutyena nikunja-yunor
atyutkayoh keli-vilasa-siddhih
tvat-saubhagam kena nirucyatam tad
vrnde! numaste caranaravindam

Who can enumerate the glories and good fortune of Vrnda Devi? It is by her acting as a messenger that Radha and Krishna are able to meet. Krishna is so indebted to her. Anyone, therefore, who worships Vrnda Devi, Krishna will think, "How can I repay them? You have purchased Me by your service to Vrnda Devi." So Advaita Acarya has established this siddhanta and this very wonderful rapid progress in bhakti to the service of Sri Radha and Krishna.

Srila Narayana Maharaja: If anyone wants to have love and service to Radha-Krishna conjugal, they must worship Tulasi, and very easily they can be benefited. If one doesn't have prema but he is offering Tulasi, will Krishna accept his offering or not? If Tulasi is given, it means everything has been given - and Krishna must accept.

Prema Prayojana Prabhu: If he is offering Tulasi and he has no guru, Krishna will still accept?

Syamarani dasi: Krishna will be pleased and send a guru

Srila Narayana Maharaja: If Tulasi is given then Krishna will have to accept - guru or no guru. You will have to reconcile it. Krishna will take the person's sraddha. So it will be beneficial; it will not go in vain. You will have to reconcile it. Whether there is a guru or no guru, if you are chanting the holy name, will there be effect or not? There will be so many results. You can go to Svarga; you can have a very elevated position in this world; you can go to Vaikuntha - so many things. If there is no sadhu sanga and you are chanting, what will be the result?

Prema Prayojana Prabhu: From that chanting sadhu sanga will come.

Srila Narayana Maharaja: Yes. It will be beneficial in so many ways. It will not go in vain. If you are offering anything along with Tulasi, even there is no guru, if there is sraddha, then because of that sraddha, Krishna will gradually bring that person in line. You cannot say that if one is offering Tulasi, but there is no prema, Krishna will not accept. Otherwise all sastra will be useless. If anyone is not chanting the holy name with love and affection, will there be any effect or not?

Radhanatha Prabhu: Yes, he will get sukriti.

Srila Narayana Maharaja: Not only sukriti.

Radhanatha Prabhu: With that sukriti he will get sadhu sanga.

Srila Narayana Maharaja: The birth of sukriti.

jayati jayati namananda-rupam murare-
viramita-nija-dharma-dhyana-pujadiyatnam
katham api sakrdattam muktidam praninam yat
paramamrtam ekam jivanam bhusanam me
(Sri Brhad-Bhagavatamrtam 1.9, Sanatan Gosvami)

"All glories, all glories to Krishna-Murari's name, the embodiment of divine bliss! It halts the cycle of birth and death and relieves one of all painful endeavors in practicing religion, meditation, charity, deity worship, and austerity. It awards liberation to one who utters it even once. Krishna-nama stands alone as the supreme nectar and sole treasure of my life."

These are related to Krishna: Tulasi, Yamuna, Ganges, Mahaprasadam, Nama and so on. Somehow it touches anyone - even persons like Jagai and Madai. So you cannot explain like that.

Gaura premanande!

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