śrī śrī guru gaurāṅga jayataḥ!
Year-1 & 14, Number 10
Posted: 16 November 2008 & 24 November 2021
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
Śrī Nāma-sevā in Śrī Dhāma
by Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Prabhupāda
Within this world, only those who attend to Śrī Bhagavān’s holy name (nāma), His abode (dhāma) and His desires (kāma) are truly worthy of adoration. No being can extricate himself from misunderstanding, which arises from māyā, without serving śrī nāma. The result of serving śrī nāma is that one will be freed from all forms of prejudice and will become settled in serving Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s desires (kāma). And the result of serving śrī dhāma is that one will be freed from the clutches of the tremendously dangerous conception that “I am the Lord; God has no eternal name, form, qualities, pastimes, majesty and so on.” Then, by serving Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s kāma (desires), one will save oneself from the serious danger of selfish, sensual gratification. Thus freed from transient lust (kāma), one will become firmly established in serving the transcendental Kāmadeva, Śrī Kṛṣṇa, as well as the Kāma-gāyatrī.
If by good fortune we are able to gain attachment to serving the desires (kāma) of Śrī Kṛṣṇa then we can reorient the various inferior desires for the material, sensual, bodily enjoyments that have arisen within us; and we can reorient the progress of our subtle body, or mind, if it has grown apathetic toward endeavours to serve Śrī Bhagavān. Then our desires and the path of our mind will follow a trend just contrary to its present one.
If we engage ourselves in the service of śrī dhāma then service to the desires (kāma) of Śrī Kṛṣṇa is available to us. The word dhāma can mean rays, prowess, influence, home, place, body, birth and so forth. According to truly learned savants of God, śrī dhāma should be accepted in its sense as that in which there is no malice, jealousy or evanescence, and that which is eternally self-manifested, spiritual and blissful. By adventing in śrī dhāma, Śrī Caitanyadeva has made the world conscious of its transcendence.
We had failed to realize the exaltation of śrī dhāma; we had no predilection for serving śrī dhāma and not so much faith in the worshipful deity form of Śrī Bhagavān. We remained absorbed in study, sure of our notion that we could vanquish everyone on earth through our expertise in dialectics, the splendour of our erudition, and the glory of our exemplary character. But then some holy saints, who were engaged in serving śrī dhāma, enlightened us. They told us that the very service to śrī dhāmathat we had been neglecting would in fact bring us the highest welfare.
He who seeks connection with śrī dhāma finds that his attachment to grāma (domestic life) soon expires. Then his service to śrī nāma, which is the means of attaining true blessedness, soon carries him to his true goal: service to Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s kāma.
The holy name (śrī nāma) of Śrī Vaikuṇṭha (the spiritual dimension) has descended to this earth, and it is in śrī dhāma that śrī nāma has been deposited. The performance of nāma-sevā does not bestow kṛṣṇa-kāma-sevā, service to Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s desires, which is the true and ultimate objective, upon one who disconnects oneself from śrī dhāma.
Adapted from The Gauḍīya, Volume 24, Number 12
CC-BY-SA Rays of The Harmonist No.19 (Gaur Purnima 2009)