Germany - Feb 23 2003
Tridandisvami Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja
[Almost four hundred devotees
gathered at the Youth Hostel in Olpe, near snow and ice-filled
Frankfurt, Germany, for the week of February 18-24, to attend
this year's hari-katha festival. The theme of Srila Narayana
Maharaja's nightly hari-katha classes was "What is the goal of life,
and how to attain it." Besides his formal classes, Srila Maharaja
held two special darsans for all the devotees present, in the
large fireside-heated hall just below the temple room. The
following is an excerpt from one of those darsanas, in which
several devotees posed their interesting questions:]
[Srila Narayana Maharaja (speaking to the Berlin temple
First you should preach from your
center in Berlin, so that all will be happy and inspired, and
then together you should make a committee with board members, and
with its help you should make the temple still better. At that time
we can bbring very beautiful Deities from India Radha-Krsna
and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. You should preach to others and they
should be inspired to serve. To create a center is easy, but to
maintain its activities is very hard. If you do this, I will be
happy; and if you need help, we will help you. I will send
(Now speaking to everyone:) I am
inviting you all to our Navadvipa parikrama, for the Navadvipa
Mahotsava the festival of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. We will be
performing parikrama of the nine islands. If you have no money
problems and your visa and passport are in order, then come;
otherwise wait for the one month Vraja-mandala parikrama. I am
inviting you all. If some of you come to parikrama, I will be
very happy, and if you cannot come, do not be weak. Always be strong
and see that Krsna, Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu and myself
are there with you. Never be weak. This is my message to you all.
[Devotee:] I want to thank you very much because
in the last month, since you gave me initiation, I have felt so
much more strength to chant harinama.
Narayana Maharaja:] Disciples should not give thanks to Gurudeva.
Do you understand? They are not qualified to give thanks to him.
They should be always begging mercy.
Can I have some more mercy so I can chant better please?
[Srila Narayana Maharaja:] In my classes I am giving my
everything to you all. I am giving this without any cost, but how
much you take and preserve is up to you. It depends on you. If
you are like a bird you can take a little water, if you are like
an elephant you can take more; and if you can still take more, then
[Devotee:] I have a girlfriend back
home and she is not so interested in Krsna Consciousness. How can
I cultivate her in Krsna Consciousness without being too
[Srila Narayana Maharaja:] I am not
interested in girlfriends and boyfriends. Keep me out of that.
I am only concerned with pure bhakti. If you want that, I can
give it, but from where can I give you girlfriends or boyfriends?
You should follow the instructions I am giving without cost. You
should read Jaiva Dharma, Manah-Siksa, and Sri Upadesamrta.
[New devotee:] What book should I read first?
[Srila Narayana Maharaja:] Jaiva Dharma and
[Devotee:] Our parampara acaryas
are nitya-siddha devotees. Are there any examples that a sadhaka
has become liberated and an acarya in our line?
[Srila Narayana Maharaja:] There are so many. Someone from that
side (Goloka Vrndavana), and not having experiences of this world,
cannot preach; they cannot help us. This is because they are absorbed
in the bhavas of their pastimes with Radha-Krsna, we cannot
understand their activities. Only those devotees who have
practiced bhakti-yoga can be acaryas. By practicing they have
gradually come to ruci, taste, then asakti, great attachment for
Krsna, then rati, and then prema, and now they are serving
Radha-Krsna and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. The devotees who are
madhyama-adhikari, who have passed through all the processes and
have become uttama-bhagavata, can preach more then those who came
from there (Goloka Vrndavana). They can help more because they
know everything about the sufferings of this world, and the
process to become free from these sufferings and attain pure
bhakti. A madhyama-adhikari can help more than the mahabhagavatas
can. The mahabhagavatas cannot help very much, because even if
they give their association, we would not be able to understand
their activities. In other words, if Srila Sukadeva Gosvami came
to you naked, what would you do? You would not be able to
appreciate Him. A madhyama-adhikari who is just about to reach the
stage of uttama-bhagavata is the best personality for our
[Sripad Aranya Maharaja:] But Srila
Narottama dasa Thakura preached everywhere and he has come from
[Srila Narayana Maharaja:] But he
was also taking initiation here in this world. He attained
realization from Srila Lokanath Gosvami and Srila Jiva Gosvami.
Uttama-mahabhagavatas will have to come as devotees in the stage of
madhyama-adhikari. In other words they will have to act like they
are coming from here; they will have to accept the role of
madhyama-adhikari, or else they cannot preach. This is very hard
to understand. Although such a self-realized soul is
pretending to be madhyama-adhikari, all disciples will think very
strongly, without any doubt, that "My Gurudeva has come from Goloka
Vrndavana and is an associate of Radha-Krsna and Sri Caitanya
Mahaprabhu and Nityananda Prabhu. He is like Krsna very merciful
and he is liberated." They must think like this. They should
think that his wooden sandals and all his paraphernalia are
[Devotee:] How can I serve you? I
asked yesterday, but the kirtana was so loud that I could not hear
[Srila Narayana Maharaja:] You can
serve me by engaging your body, mind, words, all your senses, and
even your mood. You can serve by all means by wealth, by
distributing and reading books, and also by having great affection
for others. In this way you can serve.
[Devotee:] There are many services to do now. I want to know in
which service I should completely fix my mind.
[Srila Narayana Maharaja:] Try to fix your mind in harinama
kirtana and japa. This is first. Pray to Nama Prabhu, who is not less
than Krsna and Srimati Radhika. In fact, Nama Prabhu is more
powerful even than Krsna. So pray to them: "Please make me
qualified to serve you in all respects." Then, serve with your
senses, mind, words and everything you possess.
If you concentrate your mind only on chanting and not eating, you
will die after two, three, or four days. So take some prasada,
because you will have to maintain your body. As long as your body is
there, you will have to maintain it. But dont be attached to
that. Try to be attached to the pure name. We do not have
darsana of Krsna, but He is present in the form of His name. Have
this strong mood, and then you will be able to perform all activities
like Ambarish Maharaja and Prahlada Maharaja.
sravanam kirtanam visnoh
arcanam vandanam dasyam
["Prahlada Maharaja said: Hearing and
chanting about the transcendental holy name, form, qualities,
paraphernalia and pastimes of Lord Visnu, remembering them,
serving the lotus feet of the Lord, offering the Lord respectful
worship with sixteen types of paraphernalia, offering prayers to
the Lord, becoming His servant, considering the Lord one's best
friend, and surrendering everything unto Him (in other words, serving
Him with the body, mind and words) these nine processes are
accepted as pure devotional service." (Srimad-Bhagavatam
Maintain the mood that: "I am servant of
all," not a temple commander or temple superintendent. One should
think, "My Gurudeva has told and inspired me to serve all, to
preach and to have love and affection for all." He should think,
"I am servant of all;" otherwise he cannot do anything. Every
preacher should think, "I am a servant of all." He should not
think he is the monarch of all, otherwise he will be lost in false
ego. Be very polite and humble. Everyone should behave gently and
sweetly with all others.
[Devotee:] I want to
know what we should think regarding your coming in our dreams, and
giving instruction and darsana there.
Narayana Maharaja:] I dont want to come in dreams. You should
come in your real position. Dreams will never do anything. I see
that all are pursuing dreams. Do not dream. If you drink
water, or eat in a dream, you are not really drinking water or
eating. I do not have much faith in the dreams of conditioned
souls. Dreams are only for realized souls.
[Devotee:] But how will I know what to do when I have such a
[Srila Narayana Maharaja:] If something is
good, you should follow it, and if it is bad then reject it.
[Devotee:] But what if we see you there?
[Srila Narayana Maharaja:] Why not come to real life?
Editorial advisors: Pujyapad Madhava Maharaja and Sripad
Editor: Syamarani dasi
typist: Vasanti dasi