Careful Approach

Śrīla Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj discusses the proper approach to divinity, and the genuine humility of the true Vaiṣṇavas.

Mādhavendra Purī expressed the śloka ayi dīna-dayārdra nātha, and Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu said,

 ei śloka kahiyāchena rādhā-ṭhākurāṇī
tāṅra kṛpāya sphuriyāche mādhavendra-vāṇī
(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta, 2.4.194)

This śloka was expressed by Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī in the mood of deep separation from Kṛṣṇa, and Mādhavendra Purī also tasted those deep feelings of separation. This is two persons, and here Chaitanya Mahāprabhu is also tasting that śloka. Ihā āsvādite āra nāhi chauṭha-jana, no fourth man can taste this śloka properly. If this is the comment of Śrīla Kavirāj Goswāmī, then where are you, and where am I? Everyone is unqualified. If divine grace will come then it may be possible to touch that śloka sometimes; otherwise, keep it in the museum! There is no other way. Be qualified and take it. This is the proper thinking.

Ṭhākurera chandana-sādhana ha-ila bandhana (Cc: 2.4.148): Mādhavendra Purī wanted to hide himself, but he could not hide because Gopāl had ordered him to bring chandan, sandlewood. He needed to collect the chandan and if he did not reveal himself as Mādhavendra Purī how would he be able to get that chandan? Therefore he unhappily exposed his own position and told the people of Gopāl’s order. It was proved by Gopīnāth, because Gopināth stole kṣīr for him. This made everyone very enthusiastic to help him and the king’s men arranged everything to send the chandan.

How can you stop the cheating? That is very difficult. Cheating business is going on in the society of Śrīla Saraswatī Ṭhākur in many places by many persons. They do not even know that they are cheating, which is worse. If they know it is cheating, then there is some hope for them. But they do not know they are cheating.

The difficulty is ego. Ego is a dangerous difficulty in society. This is existing within the sahajiyā sampradāy: they are thinking, “Yes, I am qualified”.  But Śrīla Raghunāth Dās Goswāmī said,

āśā-bharair amṛta-sindhu-mayaiḥ kathañchit
kālo mayāti-gamitaḥ kila sāmprataṁ hi 

Eighty years have passed, and still I have not got Your mercy. With so much hope I have passed eighty years but still I am ignored by You and I have not got Your mercy.” If Raghunāth Dās Goswāmī said this śloka, then how can we expect to get this type of fortune?

āśā-bharair amṛta-sindhu-mayaiḥ kathañchit
kālo mayāti-gamitaḥ kila sāmprataṁ hi
tvañ chet kṛpāṁ mayi vidhāsyasi naiva kiṁ me
prāṇair vrajena cha varoru bakāriṇāpi

Now I am going to die, and if You still do not bestow Your mercy, then what shall I do? Now I shall leave Kṛṣṇa, because without Your mercy Kṛṣṇa is useless for me.”

Raghunāth Dās Goswāmī showed this type of mentality in old age. In another śloka, he says, “Kām and krodha are attacking me.” In which way will kām, lust, attack Raghunāth Dās Goswāmī? We can say that he is describing this for us, but when he is writing it is not for us; he is not thinking, “I am writing for Govinda Mahārāj”. He is not thinking that, he is thinking, “I am writing for myself”. This is in the Manaḥ-śikṣā of Dās Goswāmī: “I am attacked by lust”. In which way are you attacked by lust? You left everything in young age: jahau yuvaiva mala-vad, Uttama-śloka-lālasaḥ. And now you are such an old man. You cannot digest one cup of buttermilk. But Raghunāth Dās Goswāmī has written this there. That type of writing is so glorious: gurau goṣṭhe goṣṭhālayiṣu sujane bhū-suragaṇe.

Śrīla Saraswatī Ṭhākur and Śrīla Guru Mahārāj were in the same place and same rank in their realisation. What I have got from his lotus feet I can only say a little bit about. And they are not cheating. If tears would come in their eyes they would think it is false. They are actually real tears for Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa, real tears for Kṛṣṇa, but they are checking them and saying that it is false. They are telling themselves, their own selves, that, “It is false, it is impossible, how will it come to me? I am unqualified.”

In his last days Śrīla Guru Maharaj was always saying, “Nitāi, Nitāi.” He is Śrīla Rūpa Goswāmī’s man. Everyone knows he is Rūpa Goswāmī’s man, so why was he telling, “Dayāl Nitāi, dayāl Nitāi”? He can say ‘Mahāprabhu’ at least, but he was not going up to that. He was living within the zone of Saṅkarṣaṇ and not going to Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa, even though he is actually living within those Pastimes. When Śrīla Saraswatī Ṭhākur gave charge to him, and when Śrīla Saraswatī Ṭhākur wanted to hear from him, then we must believe that he is living within that zone. And how strongly did Saraswatī Ṭhākur give opposition when the secretary ordered someone else to chant it! Saraswatī Ṭhākur stopped it, “No, no one here is qualified to sing this song; only Śrīdhar Mahārāj can do it. I want to hear from Śrīdhar Mahārāj.”

I do not want to make anyone hopeless, but I want to be perfect and I want to see that our society is perfect all around. I understand that this is not possible, but still, to hope is not bad. Today we may not get it but one day we will be enriched with pure devotion. This is because the seed of Kṛṣṇa consciousness is a very high standard seed. That is why we are giving this connection: today or tomorrow, they must get it. It has no limit in time, space, or anything like that. Very unqualified persons will also be enriched. That is possible. It is like lottery money. Rickshaw wallahs and others may win the lottery, and they are becoming rich.

This article is a continuation of the post Jay Mā Kali.


Spoken in Italy, September 2000, during His Divine Grace’s 16th World Tour.


gurau goṣṭhe goṣṭhālayiṣu sujane bhū-suragaṇe
sva-mantre śrī-nāmni vraja-nava-yuva-dvandva-śaraṇe
sadā dambhaṁ hitvā kuru ratim apūrvām atitarām
aye svāntar bhrātaś chaṭubhir abhiyāche dhṛta-padaḥ

(Manaḥ-śikṣā: 1)

Oh mind, I grasp your feet and beg you with sweet words: please cast away all hypocrisy and develop intense, unprecedented love for the spiritual master, Vrajabhūmi, the residents of Vraja, the pure Vaiṣṇavas, the brāhmaṇas, the gayatrī mantra, the Holy Name, and the transcendental shelter that is the fresh young couple of Vraja, Śrī Śrī Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa.”

asach-cheṣṭā-kaṣṭa-prada-vikaṭa-pāśālibhir iha
prakāmaṁ kāmādi-prakaṭa-pathapāti-vyatikaraiḥ
gale baddhvā hanye ’ham iti bakabhid-vartmapa-gaṇe
kuru tvaṁ phutkārān avati sa yathā tvaṁ mana itaḥ
(Manaḥ-śikṣā: 5)

I am being bound tightly around the neck by the fearsome highwaymen of lust, anger, and so forth with the painful, fearsome ropes of my wicked deeds; I am being killed!” Cry out in this way to the Vaiṣṇavas, the guardians on the path to Kṛṣṇa, the slayer of Baka, so that they save you from these foes, O mind!”

yo dustyajān dāra-sutān
suhṛd-rājyaṁ hṛdi-spṛśaḥ
jahau yuvaiva mala-vad
(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam, 5.14.43)

Being very eager to gain the association of Lord Kṛṣṇa, King Bharat, although in the prime of youth, gave up his very attractive wife, affectionate children, most beloved friends and opulent kingdom, exactly as one gives up stool after excreting it.”

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