sri sri guru gauranga jayatah!
Year 1, Issue 8, Amāvasyā
Posted: 30 August 2019
Dedicated to and Inspired by
nitya-lila pravista om visnupada
Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktivedānta Nārāyaṇa Gosvāmī Māhārāja
Regardless of Āśrama,
Is the Sole Objective
Śrī Śrī Guru-Gauraṅgau Jayataḥ
Śrī Keśavajī Gauḍīya Maṭha
22 October, 1991
Dear Viṣṇu dāsa,
My affectionate blessings. I became extremely pleased to receive your letter. Having received the flowers of your unalloyed faith with great love, I have offered them at the lotus feet of Śrī Śrī Guru-Gauraṅgau-Rādhā-Vinoda-vihārījī.
Recently, Svāmī Tamāla-kṛṣṇajī returned to Vṛndāvana from Houston. He comes every alternate day to Śrī Keśavajī Gauḍīya Maṭha to see me. Girirāja Svāmī, Satsvarūpa Svāmī, Dhanurdhara Svāmī, Bhurijana dāsa, Ayodhyāpati dāsa and others also come with him. They too inform me that the Houston temple is very beautiful. The [local] devotees go there to have darśana of Girirājajī [śilā].*
* The Girirāja at the ISKCON temple in Houston was given by Śrīla Gurudeva in 1989.
You have expressed your feelings very effectively in Hindi. I became happy to know that the devotees there [in Houston] think of me a lot, despite not having met me. If I get a chance to visit there, I will surely come.
A few days ago, on 19 October, 1991, the day of Ekādaśī, your parents, brother and sister – all four of them – came here [to Śrī Keśavajī Gauḍīya Maṭha, Mathurā]. They all received harināma and mantras and were very happy. I read your letter to them. They gave me the Rs. 500/- you sent for me. I am pleased to know that these days, you are reading Jaiva-dharma.
If there is a desire for sense enjoyment in the heart, it’s better to marry a suitable and devoted girl, remain in the gṛhastha āśrama and perform bhajana of Bhagavān. But if, through the medium of hari-kathā in the association of devotees, renunciation awakens in a person’s heart, he should perform bhajana while living in sādhu-saṅga.
Whether one is a householder (gṛhastha) or renounced (tyāgī), performing one-pointed bhajana is the sole objective. When someone is trapped in the mesh of household life, he has to face various types of responsibilities and problems, which may prove an obstacle for bhakti. Therefore, those who are qualified [for renunciation] do not get entangled in any kind of sense enjoyment. They prefer to remain akiñcana (without any possession). For the common sādhaka in the gṛhastha stage, a wife is like a protective boundary-wall, checking him from becoming unrestrained and thus increasingly engrossed in sense gratification. One should act considering all these points [regarding one’s adhikāra].
What else should I write? The rest is fine [here]. Keep writing to me from time to time.
I thus conclude.
Your ever well-wisher,
Śrī Bhaktivedānta Nārāyaṇa