(Mathura, India, November 28, 2000, pm)
[This is from the class Srila Maharaja gave the night before leaving for the western preaching tour. A pujari from Jaipura gave Srila Narayana Maharaja a garland from Sri Govindadeva, just prior to his class. Srila Maharaja held up the garland, which he was now wearing, and began his class]
Srila Narayana Maharaja: This mala has come from Govindadeva in Jaipur. He is the aradhyadeva of our whole Gaudiya sampradaya, the aradhyadeva of Srila Rupa Gosvami, and He was also manifested by Rupa Gosvami. He has sent His prasada mala. It has come from His own neck. He is very merciful to me. He has sent it to say, "You should be very bold. Do not fear. I'm sending you both this prasada and this mala. Your preaching will be successful everywhere." Certainly I am most fortunate that He has sent this. I did not tell anyone to bring it. I think that the inspiration has actually come from the heart of Govindadeva Himself.
I know that I am like a dry straw. I cannot do anything. But I know that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Radha-Krishna Yugala, and our guru-parampara desire that I should do something. That is why They have sprinkled Their mercy on me. I think that I am not doing anything. They are making me do everything. Sometimes I become overwhelmed, because they have so much causeless mercy on me. If you serve-and if you have the desire to serve, then Govinda, Gopinatha, Madana Mohana, Mahaprabhu and our guru-parampara will inspire you; otherwise not.
So I'm happy, and very fortunate, that by the causeless mercy of Govindadeva the pujari has brought this mala to me. I'm giving him my heartily blessings that he should be blessed by Radha-Krishna Conjugal, and Mahaprabhu, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Tomorrow morning I am leaving for Delhi, and on the day after that I will leave for Frankfurt, Germany. After speaking there for some days I am going to the capital of Brazil, and then to America and other places-from the North pole to the South pole. I want the blessings of the Vrajavasis, our guru-varga, our aradhyadeva, and also your good will.
[Srila Narayana Maharaja then asked Brajanatha Prabhu to speak on the mission of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Brajanatha Prabhu related how Mahaprabhu had come to give Vraja-prema, the prema of the Vrajavasis. He explained the history of the relationship of Srila Gurudeva and Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Prabhupada, and how, on Prabhupadas's request, he helped his followers after his disappearance.]
Srila Narayana Maharaja: If one determines that, "I will serve Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and I will preach His holy name everywhere in the whole world," then Krishna and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu will inspire His mercy in him to preach. In the beginning, Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja was not an experienced kirtaniya. Yet, later on, when he went to the western countries, singing kirtanas from the core of his heart, tears would come. "Vande rupa-sanatanau raghu-yugau sri-jiva-gopalakau." Every kirtana he sang was in this mood. "Gauranga bolite habe pulaka sarira," "Jaya Radha-Madhava Jaya Kunja Bihari." He sang these in a very pathetic tune (in a mood of separation), all over the world, and Krishna inspired him. And I'm also realizing these things. If you have the desire to serve Krishna, He will sprinkle His mercy."
[Srila Narayana Maharaja then spoke in Hindi and asked Ramacandra Prabhu to translate.]
Ramacandra Prabhu: As Gurudeva has explained, he is going tomorrow on the world tour around the globe, 'from the North pole to the South pole'. He has already been blessed by Sri Sri Radha and Govindadeva, and he is also receiving good wishes from all of the Vrajavasis. He is expressing his heart-his inner mood. He said that he wants that this preaching of our parampara, the teachings of Srila Rupa Gosvami, should go forward.
He said he wants the books that are not available in Hindi to be translated into the Hindi language, and he's trying for this. There is no Vaisnava translation of our acaryas' commentaries on Srimad Bhagavatam in Hindi. There are so many translations in Hindi, but none of them are in our Vaisnava line-with commentaries by our acaryas. Srila Svami Maharaja did a translation and commentary in English, but the Hindi translation of his English work has many errors. Besides that, the commentaries of the acaryas are extensive, and Srila Maharaja just translated small parts of them in his purports. So much remains. Also, I've given long classes on the commentaries of Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura in my Vilapa Kusmanjali classes, but still so much remains. Sri Caitanya Caritamrta has been translated with commentaries in English by Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja, but still he has left so many topics for others to translate. Gurudeva said that he wants those topics to be explained and presented before desire-less devotees.
Ujjvala Nilamani, by Srila Rupa Gosvami, is such a high class of scripture. It is his matchless gift. There are so many nice commentaries on this book by Srila Visvanatha Cakravartipada and others. Srila Gurudeva has enjoined that these granthas should come in Hindi, and then in English. Fifty percent of Madhurya Kadambini has already been translated with commentaries by him, and he wants to complete it-to make it available for distribution in the market. Sri Damodarastakam has the commentary of Srila Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja. In this, his heart expresses such beautiful thoughts. During every Vraja-mandala parikrama Srila Gurudeva explains this Damodarastakam, and every year new thoughts are revealed.
Gurudeva said that these translations will not take place automatically. One must have a keen desire to serve the Lord. When Krishna empowers a person and sprinkles His mercy, only then is this possible; otherwise it is not. Gurudeva gave an example from his own life. He said that he previously never knew Sanskrit. He wanted to serve, however, and therefore, as soon as he touched those granthas, so many of them have been translated with his commentaries. For example, he has translated Srimad Bhagavad-gita with the commentaries of Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura.
Srila Gurudeva said that he had the desire to serve, and therefore whenever he touched any activity it came out successful. He is giving his disciples so much liberty; so many disciples are allowed to learn Sanskrit. He said they should continue with this spiritual task. They should not give up their enthusiasm, because the task is everlasting.
One of the great Emperors of India, Ashoka, respected and adopted Buddhism, that is, Bauddhavada philosophy, which is an atheistic religion; and he spread it during the time he ruled the Empire. He persuaded and inspired so many young boys and girls who came forward and became mendicants, giving up their family lives and becoming biksu, (begging alms). They went to most of the Eastern part of the world, and thus Buddhism was spread all over China, Japan and so many other countries. The mode of conveyances during those days was not so easy. The preachers, therefore, used to go by ship, by carts and the like. If they can do so much, why cant we? This Gaudiya Vaisnava dharma is real. It is eternal.
Nowadays we still see that the Bauddhavada dharma and Jain dharma, which is atheistic philosophy, are becoming popular. We have a very tough fight in front of us, and we should be ready for this.
Gurudeva continued to say that people from all over the world are coming to hear his lectures, because of his firm determination and his firm faith. Even today, the recently elected chairman of the municipality came to receive blessings from him. Such persons are usually proud that, "Now I am chairman," but now this chairman has come to receive Gurudeva's blessings. Gurudeva told him; "If you want to be a popular and successful person, don't run after money." He said that when he personally meets with people he tells them, "I don't want money. So many people are ready to give me crores of rupees, but I have not come from a poor India. I have come from Bharata-rich and wealthy Bharata. What is Bharata? Bharata means a country that is absorbed in Unnata ujjvala-rasa, vraja-prema, the prema or love of the gopis. Actually, Bharata is neither a country nor any tract of land. It is a sanskrti-a culture. Bharata means absorption in Unnata ujjvala-rasa.
Srila Gurudeva said that this Rupanuga thought is such a high class of love. It is unparalleled, matchless, unique, and priceless. Who can pay its price? The entire world's wealth can never buy this wealth. We have to spread this message. Our scriptures say; 'tamaso ma jyotir gramayah.' What is jyoti? It means light. What is this light? It does not come from a tube light or sunlight. In our gayatri mantra we say, "bargo devasya." Devasya means Krishna and bargo means His potency. What is the potency of Krishna? Srimati Radharani. The love She has for Krishna-this is the light. This is the light that our Vedas are inspiring us to receive and to enter. But who knows this truth? Only those who become dedicated to receive it.
If we continue fighting with each other we will not get it. The important thing is that we should have no envy towards anyone. We should have no feelings of enmity in our hearts. Our hearts should be free from envy and jealousy and we should also have a service attitude: trnad api sunicena taror iva suhisnuna amanina manadena kirtaniyah sada harih. With this humble mood and this service attitude, krsna-nama will come automatically on our tongue. Harinama is not something to be chanted. It (He) is to be served. It is Krishna Himself. Nama cintamanih krsnas caitanya-rasa-vigrahah purnah suddho nitya-mukto 'bhinnatvan nama-naminohit.
Gurudeva then explained another verse: atah sri-krsna-namadi na bhaved grahyam indriyaih sevonmukhe hi jihvadau svayam eva sphuraty adah. Jihva means tongue. Krishna-nama descends automatically from the higher plane to our tongue. How? When we adopt the attitude of service and a very humble mood, we will realize that bhakti is becoming instilled in us and we are experiencing its symptoms. What are those symptoms? When we eat, we have symptoms that our stomachs are filled, we feel satisfied, and at the same time we feel healthy and powerful. Similarly, we will feel we are doing bhakti, we are becoming absorbed in it and enjoying it. At the same time we will have feelings of renunciation in our hearts. At that time we will realize that Krishna is taking care of everything for us, and we are no longer concerned for our existence and maintenance-because we are already being maintained by Krishna. Whatever we are receiving is due to our old karma. We will not care for these things. Then we will get muktipada. Mukti is also sitting at Krishna's feet. We will receive that high class of bhakti; pure bhakti or prema bhakti.
Srila Narayana Maharaja: Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has written his Bengali prarthana (prayers) for sadhakas (spiritual practitioners). All sadhakas should try to follow this prayer: "Fie on me. Fie on me. My heart is not melting. Bhakti, krsna-nama and hari-katha are like the sun, but my heart is like ice from Iceland. It is not melting. Ice can melt by the sun, but not my heart." Even though we are hearing the names of Krishna, Govinda and Gopinatha, and hearing so much hari-katha, our hearts are not melting. Why is this? It is due to aparadha, offenses. We have done so much aparadha, and we are still doing aparadha. Thus, "Oh, my heart has become so hard. That is why it is not melting." If any person is sincere and not doing aparadha, his heart will become melted.
madhuram madhuram etan mangalam mangalanam
sakali-nigama-valli sat-phalam cit-svarupam
sakrd api parigitam sraddhaya helaya va
bhrguvara! nara-matram tarayet krsnanama
"Krishna-nama is the sweetest of the sweet and the most auspicious of all that is auspicious. It is the flourishing creeper and eternal, fully ripened fruit of the Bhagavata, and the embodiment of knowledge. O Bhrgu Muni! Even if one chants the holy name once, with faith or indifference, he is immediately delivered across this ocean of birth and death!"
I know that any fortunate person's heart may melt, but only for a short moment. Therefore Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has written; "Fie on me, fie on me." Besides this, attachment for Guru and Vaisnavas is not coming. Why is it not coming? We want it, but it is not coming. Why?
Once, in Sri Vrindavana Dhama, there was a council of Vaisnavas. The speaker was explaining Srimad Bhagavatam in such a way that everyone was weeping. One person, however, was an exception. He wanted to weep, but his heart did not melt. He was very worried about this. He thought, "Oh, what will the others think-that I alone am not weeping?" The next day that man returned to the assembly with some chili powder in his pocket. When everyone there was weeping, that man took the chili from his pocket and put it in his eyes. At once water came from his eyes in torrents. One of the devotees was watching, and when the class finished he called that person and told him, "You are a real Vaisnava. I am very fortunate. I have seen in Srimad Bhagavatam, and everywhere in sastra, that those senses which are not favorable to Krishna's service should be punished. I have heard and read it, but until today I have never seen it. Now, on this day I have seen you punish your eyes with chili powder." He then embraced that man. At once the man's aparadha left, his heart melted, and tears actually came in his eyes.
We should see that if we are hearing and yet our hearts are not melting, that is, even tears may come but the heart does not melt, then we should understand and realize this fact -- that we are high-class aparadhis. We have done aparadha and still we are doing aparadha. We should stop and regret deeply that, "I am an aparadhi." You should pray, "O Name, fie on me. You should be merciful to me." Only then will you realize something, and at that time your heart will be actually melted. This is the process.
Today our parikrama is completed. My heartly blessings to you all. Whatever you have heard in my classes during Vraja Mandala parikrama in Kartika month-up to now-you should try to follow. Call out to Radha Kunda, Syama Kunda, Raya Ramananda, Svarupa Damodara, and all others. They are here. They will hear you if you are sincere. We should try to do all these things. This has all been told by Sri Rupa and Raghunatha, the Gosvamis, by all our Gurus, by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu,-and you should try to follow. You should not have any doubt-not a spot of doubt in Vaisnavas, the guru-parampara hari-katha or harinama. Never have a doubt. A doubt will come in like a needlepoint and out like an elephant. And then everything will be lost. So don't have any doubt.