Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
Dandavat pranama. All glories to Sri Sri Guru and Gauranga.
July 21st and 22nd, 2013 (see purebhakti.com/calendar) is the sacred day of Guru Purnima. Guru Purnima is the celebration of the birthday of Srila Vyasadeva, the literary incarnation of Krsna who manifested all the Vedic literatures, and Sri Guru is also his manifestation. In honor of this most auspicious day, we are sending Srila Gurudeva Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja's lecture given in England on June 27, 2001. In this lecture, Krsna is meeting with the gopis at Kuruksetra:]
If one wants to advance in bhakti, he should try to understand these topics. Simply thinking, "Not this, not this, not this, will not suffice." If positive understanding and moods are there, then you will be successful. Along with absorption in the positive there must also be negation of the negative, otherwise, you cannot advance. At the same time, absorption in negation will not help you very much.
The gopis told Krsna, "We cannot live without You. We cannot maintain our lives without You. It will be better if You to come to Vrndavana, and that Vrndavana is not different from our hearts. If You do not come, You will see that Vrndavana will be completely lifeless. Everyone and everything there will die."
suniya radhika-vani, vraja-prema mane ani,
bhave vyakulita deha-mana
vraja-lokera prema suni', apanake 'rni' mani,'
kare krsna tanre asvasana
(Caitanya-caritamrta, Madya-lila 13.148)
"After hearing Srimati Radharani's statements, Lord Krsna's love for the inhabitants of Vrndavana was evoked, and His body and mind became very much perturbed. After hearing of their love for Him, He immediately considered Himself to be always indebted to them. He began to pacify Srimati Radharani as follows:
prana-priye, suna, mora e-satya-vacana
toma-sabara smarane, jhuron muni ratri-dine,
mora duhkha na jane kona jana
(Caitanya-caritamrta, Madya-lila 13.149)
"My dearest Srimati Radharani, please hear Me. I am speaking the truth. I cry day and night simply upon remembering all you inhabitants of Vrndavana. No one knows how unhappy this makes Me."
Hearing the pathetic words of the gopis, and especially of Radhika, Krsna became restless and could not control Himself. He thought, "I cannot repay the Vrajavasis." He began to pacify all the gopis, and especially Radhika. He began to weep as He replied, "Prana-priye, suna, mora e satya vacana. My most beloved, I am telling you the truth with My pure heart. Toma-sabara smarane, jhuron muni ratri-dine, mora duhkha na jane kona jana. My body is there in Dvaraka, but My heart is with You in Vrndavana. I am always restless, day and night, and I am feeling so much separation. There are none in Mathura to whom I can reveal My heart. I sent Uddhava to Vraja to be admitted in the school of gopis so he could learn something about the meaning of prema. I thought that if he would become expert, upon his return I could describe to him the extent of My separation, and he will realize My heart. But I see that I cannot even share My heart with Uddhava, nor with Rukmini or Satyabhama. I continually lament."
vraja-vasi yata jana, mata, pita, sakha-gana,
sabe haya mora prana-sama
tanra madhye gopi-gana, saksat mora jivana,
tumi mora jivanera jivana
(Caitanya-caritamrta, Madya-lila 13.150)
Krsna continued, "All the Vrajavasis, including My father and mother and all My cowherd-boy friends, are all equal to My life. Mora jivanera jivana tanra madhye gopi-gana. Among them, all the gopis are like My saksad jivana, direct life air. And You, Srimati Radhika, are the life of My life".
toma-sabara prema-rase, amake karila vase,
ami tomara adhina kevala
toma-saba chadana, ama dura-dese lana,
rakhiyache durdaiva prabala
(Caitanya-caritamrta, Madya-lila 13.151)
"I am controlled by Your love and affection. Now I am only Yours. I am Your eternal servant. The creator of this world is very cruel-hearted. He has taken Me very far from You and I am helpless." We are all helpless in the matter of stopping our death. We are helpless in every way. Similarly, Krsna is saying, "Now I am helpless, and You are also helpless. That creator has forcibly taken Me very far away from You, and from My birth place in Gokula, Vrndavana. This is My misfortune."
priya priya-sanga-hina, priya priya-sanga vina,
nahi jiye,——e satya pramana
mora dasa sone yabe, tanra ei dasa habe,
ei bhaye dunhe rakhe prana
(Caitanya-caritamrta, Madya-lila 13.152)
"It is true that a dearly beloved cannot maintain her life without her lover." Krsna is not speaking about Western women here. He is referring only to Vedic culture. He speaks only about the gopis and Himself.
Western women are happy in thinking, "My husband should give me some money; that's all. And then there is no harm if he gives me up." At present, this attitude is also entering India. It is not in the village areas, but there it has entered places like Delhi, Bombay, Madras, and Calcutta. I request you to not be involved in these things. Be very careful. I think that you are sometimes helpless in protecting yourselves. You are bound to do something wrong. If you call out and request your Guru, the Vaisnavas, Krsna, Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu, and Svarupa Damodara, they can save you. This is the only way. Otherwise you cannot be saved.
It is true that without her beloved, a woman cannot maintain her life. And that beloved also cannot maintain his life without his priya, dear one. "Mora dasa sone yabe, tanra ei dasa habe, ei bhaye dunhe rakhe prana. When a woman is separated from her beloved, why does she not die? She remains alive by thinking, 'If I die, my beloved will weep bitterly, and he may also die. So I should not die. I don't want to give him any suffering.' Also, that beloved person thinks, 'If I die, then she may die out of separation. She will suffer so much.' For this reason, neither wants to die."
sei sati premavati, premavan sei pati,
viyoge ye vanche priya-hite
na gane apana-duhkha, vanche priyajana-sukha,
sei dui mile acirate
(C Caitanya-caritamrta, Madya-lila 13.153)
"Such a loving, chaste wife and loving husband desire all welfare for each other in separation and do not care for personal happiness. Desiring only each other's well-being, such a pair certainly meet again without delay".
This is an important point. The only chaste lady is she who has so much high class of love and affection for her beloved that even in separation she always thinks of his welfare. Rama told Sita, "I am giving You up for the rest of My life." He sent Her to the forest for the rest of her life, and in deep separation She wept bitterly. At that time She was pregnant, otherwise She may have died, and soon Her two sons Lava and Kush were born. Although She was greatly suffering on account of her husband, Sita always used to say, "I don't look at whether He has done wrong or right. I only want that wherever he is, He should be happy."
Although Rama was in His grand royal palace, He gave up His pillows, His bed, and every other convenience. He became renounced there, and He slept on a mat on the ground, just as Sita devi did. He did not eat any delicious foods, and He was only taking some fruits to maintain His life. Like Sita, He was very austere. He was always feeling Her separation, unable to survive without Her, and for that reason He performed fire sacrifices and He made statues of Her.
The chaste lady, who has love and affection for her beloved, always thinks of his welfare. Even if he does something wrong, she doesn't mind. The beloved also thinks this way about his wife or his most beloved. "Na gane apana-duhkha, vanche priyajana-sukha, sei dui mile acirate. They don't care for their own happiness or suffering. They always think of the happiness and suffering of their beloveds."
You should try to understand and follow the instruction given here. If you want to enter that transcendental realm, then begin these dealings with your Gurudeva. If Guru is a very high class of devotee, if he has love and affection for you, and if he is taking you more and more towards Krsna consciousness, then place your whole attention in him. Don't think about your own suffering and happiness. Rather you should think, "How can I please my Gurudeva?" If this mood is not present in a disciple, he is bound to give up the devotional line. It is stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (7.5.23):
sravanam kirtanam visnoh smaranam pada-sevanam
arcanam vandanam dasyam sakhyam atma-nivedanam
iti pumsarpita visnau bhaktis cen nava-laksana
kriyeta bhagavaty addha tan manye 'dhitam uttamam
"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. One who has dedicated his life to the service of Krsna through these nine methods should be understood to be the most learned person, for he has acquired complete knowledge."
You must first offer yourself unto the lotus feet of Krsna—but there are two Krsna's. The first is guru-bhagavan, and the second is Krsna-bhagavan. The first is asraya (the abode of service), and the second is visaya (the object of service). First come to asraya-bhagavan. He is perfect, if he has all the symptoms described in Srimad-Bhagavatam and the Upanisads. You should have strong faith in such a guru, and try to please him. He is so powerful. By his own power, this guru will transfer your sentiments to Radha-Krsna, and Mahaprabhu.
Pumsarpita. First surrender unto the lotus feet of gurudeva. Not only surrender, but always engage your heart and mind, and all your senses, to please him. You can please him if you are always chanting and remembering, glorifying bhakti, Krsna and Mahaprabhu, and preaching and practicing bhakti-yoga. Then he will be happy. Srila Narottama dasa Thakura has explained how Rupa Gosvami pleased his guru:
sri-caitanya-mano-'bhistam sthapitam yena bhu-tale
svayam rupah kada mahyam dadati sva-padantikam
"When will Srila Rupa Gosvami Prabhupada, who has established within the material world the mission to fulfill the desire of Lord Caitanya, give me shelter under his lotus feet?"
The author of this sloka has given the example of Srila Rupa Gosvami. There were so many devotees who have pleased their gurus, but here he has given the example of Srila Rupa Gosvami. Rupa Gosvami knew what Caitanya Mahaprabhu wanted, and for what reason He descended to this world. He wrote so many books, like Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, Ujjvala-nilamani, and others. He established the message of Caitanya Mahaprabhu, and the method to please Him.
Krsna continued, "Na gane apana-duhkha, vanche priyajana-sukha, sei dui mile acirate. If the lover and beloved are engaged in this way, they will be able to meet again. Krsna is herein consoling the gopis, assuring them that they will certainly meet again.
rakhite tomara jivana, sevi ami narayana,
tanra saktye asi niti-niti
toma-sane krida kari', niti yai yadu-puri,
taha tumi manaha mora sphurti
(Caitanya-caritamrta, Madya-lila 13.154)
"Speaking to Srimati Radhika, Krsna said, 'You are My most dear, and I know that in My absence You cannot live for a moment. Just to keep You living, I worship Lord Narayana. By His merciful potency, I come to Vrndavana every day to enjoy pastimes with You. I then return to Dvaraka-dhama. Thus You can always feel My presence there in Vrndavana.'"
We should try to realize Krsna's statements. Do you have madiya-bhava, this sense of 'mine-ness', to Gurudeva and the pure devotees? If not, then everything is minus. You will not be able to accomplish anything. You should think, Gurudeva is mine. I have left my father, mother, sister, and family for Krsna, and my Gurudeva can give me Krsna. Now he is my everything". Such attachment for Gurudeva will come by cultivation. If there is no attachment for Gurudeva and so much attachment for all others, there is something wrong. There are two conceptions. The first conception is, "I will serve all the devotees, to please my Gurudeva." The other conception is, "I will please all the devotees, to serve my Gurudeva." The motive should be, "I want to please my Gurudeva." It should not be to please all. Whatever we do should be to please Gurudeva—not to please all. You can never please all.
yasya prasadad bhagavat-prasado
yasyaprasadan na gatih kuto 'pi
dhyayan stuvams tasya yasas tri-sandhyam
vande guroh sri-caranaravindam
"By the mercy of the spiritual master one receives the benediction of Krsna. Without the grace of the spiritual master, one cannot make any advancement. Therefore, I should always remember and praise the spiritual master. At least three times a day I should offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of my spiritual master." (Sri Guruvastakam, verse 9)
If Gurudeva is pleased, all will be pleased. Even if others are not pleased, there is no harm. If Krsna is somewhat angry at me, no harm. Gurudeva will save me. If guru is unhappy, however, Krsna cannot save me. He will say, "You should go to your Gurudeva. When Durvasa Rsi tried to kill Ambarisa Maharaja, Krsna saved him and began to chase Durvasa Rsi with His sudarsana cakra. Durvasa ran all over the universe and finally reached Vaikuntha, to beg Bhagavan to protect him. However, Bhagavan told him, "You should go to Ambarisa. I cannot do anything to save you". We should know this fact.
tad viddhi pranipatena
upadeksyanti te jnanam
"Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Inquire from him submissively and render service unto him. The self-realized souls can impart knowledge unto you because they have seen the truth".