śrī śrī guru gaurāṅga jayataḥ!

Rays of The Harmonist On-Line Edition

Year 12, Issue 4
Posted: 23 May 2019

Dedicated to
nitya-līlā praviṣṭa oṁ viṣṇupāda

Śrī Śrīmad Bhakti Prajñāna Keśava Gosvāmī Mahārāja

Inspired by and under the guidance of

Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktivedānta Nārāyaṇa Gosvāmī Mahārāja

Pray Like This... 

by Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Prabhupāda


Some people attempt to acquire heroism through karma; some strive to fulfill other desires, others (jñānīs) strive for the culture of brahma; yet others (yogīs) strive to accomplish oneness with God. But we know that worship aimed at attaining dharma, artha, kāma or mokṣa is mere pretence; it is only connected with base selfishness. Such worship has nothing to do with liberated souls. It is the raving of conditioned, or fettered, souls. 

Śrī Caitanya instructed the people of India (1) to advise everyone they came across to worship Kṛṣṇa and (2) to become gurus at His command in order to deliver those in their locality. Anticipating their doubts that this would not be possible for them, since they themselves were not fully accomplished and, as such, not competent for the purpose His Lordship continued, saying that the waves of their desires for worldly enjoyment (viṣaya) would not hamper their mission (Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta Madhya-līlā 7.128–129). He told them to make endeavours for God, even from the positions they were occupying, irrespective of differences in place, time or person.  

Now, to carry out His commandment, the sole course is to cultivate what we have learned at the lotus feet of our Śrī Gurudeva. The only work for a worshipper of God is to see that his proficiency in worship increases more and more. Our prayer should ever be that our attachment to Kṛṣṇa increases more and more.  

We do not want power and pelf, nor the cessation of further births. Various types of men, goaded by other desires, worship various deities and pray for dharma, artha, kāma and mokṣa.  

But when we approach Śrī Mahādeva Śiva, we pray as Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī did: “O Śiva, with the moon on your head, you are in charge of protecting the land of Vṛndāvana, you are worshipable by Śrī Nārada, Sanandana, Sanātana, and others, and you are honoured by the gopas and gopīs. Please give me intense and motiveless love for the lotus feet of the playful, divine couple in Vraja – Śrī Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa.” 

When we come before Śrī Kātyāyanī-devī, we pray in the spirit of the damsels of Vraja (Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 10.22.7): “O Goddess Mahāmāyā, Yogamāyā Kātyāyanī, please make Kṛṣṇa, the son of Vraja’s chief, Nanda, my consort.”

We do not pray for our diseases to be healed, nor for emancipation upon the final dissolution of both the patient and the disease. We pray before the deity: “Please bless us that we may have attachment to Kṛṣṇa.” The people of this world, in the mood of being an object of enjoyment (viṣaya) and separate from Kṛṣṇa, pray that their enjoyment is ever enriched, but our Gurudeva has taught us that Kṛṣṇa is the only viṣaya.  

We are mendicants, no doubt, but we do not beg to be supplied with any of the objects of sensual enjoyment that are considered desirable in this world. The refrain of our alms, before all honest people, is that they may consider the grace of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu in wonder. 

In the mood of Śrī Prabodhānanda Sarasvatīpāda of Śrī Raṅgam, South India, we pray: “O sādhus (honest folk), with blades of grass between our teeth, we pray to you, supplicating you hundreds of times, to throw everything to a distance and simply have attachment to the feet of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu.”  

The special advice Śrī Caitanyadeva has given us about the easy way to get rid of desires, which are so natural to mankind, is nothing more than to take shelter with devotion. He has said (as recorded in Śrī Caitanya-candrodaya 8.24, by Śrī Kavi-karṇapūra, a contemporary associate devotee of the Lord): “Regularly beholding those who are sunk deep in worldly affairs and entangled in sex life – that is, remaining in the company of viṣayīs – is much more harmful, much more fit to be abandoned, than sipping poison for those who plan to serve God and who have therefore  abandoned every worldly attachment with a desire to cross the ocean of worldliness (saṁsāra).” 

Adapted from The Gauḍīya, Volume 8, Number 12
by the Rays of The Harmonist Team

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