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Gaudiya Vaishnava reflections

By Swami B.V. Madhava
Let me start by saying that nobody here should be bewildered by those who do not have faith in Sri Guru and who therefore are unfavorably disposed. It is material conditioning from countless lifetimes of living in passion and ignorance. Still, despite their disposition, to preach the name and glories of our Sri Guru to the devotees is our obligation. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Prabhupada instructs us to always depend on speaking the truth and conversely to reject speaking untruth which entangles one in the illusorily conception of life. We should never misappropriate the words and moods of the Acaryas. On the contrary, we must be strong and protect the Sampradaya.
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Thakur Prabhupada says that to find a difference in tattva between the siksa and diksa guru is an offence. Both siksa and diksa guru are manifestations  of Krsna.

krsna yadi krpa kare kona bhagyavane
guru-antaryami-rupe sikhaye apane

CC Madhya 22.47
Krsna is situated in everyone’s heart as Caitya-Guru, the spiritual master within. When He is kind to some fortunate conditioned soul, He personally gives one lessons to progress in devotional service, instructing the person as the Supersoul within and the spiritual master without.

siksa-guruke ta’ jani krsnera svarupa
antaryami, bhakta-srectha, –dui rupa

CC adi 1.47
One should know the instructing spiritual master to be the Personality of Krsna. Lord Krsna manifests Himself as the Supersoul and as the greatest devotee of the Lord.
Guru krsna-rupa hana sastrera pramane – guru-rupe krsna krpa karena bhakta-gane. Diksa guru is considered to be the rupa of Krsna and siksa guru to be his svarupa. Rupa in this verse means that the diksa guru is directly the svayam rupa of Krsna and in reference to siksa guru he is the svarupa; both are non-different in tattva.
We have heard recently that there are some who are minimizing and finding fault with our Gurumaharaja, Paramaradhya Pujyapada Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayan Maharaja, the crown jewel of Vaisnavas. These persons may have memorized some select slokas and developed an uncommon intellectual capacity, but that does not give them the right to be arrogant and denigrate saintly persons. The high ideals of our Vaisnava culture have to be integrated into our practical daily life. Humility is the distinctive nature of a Vaisnava and if one is proud or arrogant, that pride will just pull them down. Sri Guru is not interested whether he gets recognition from such persons. Whether they bow down to him or not does not make any difference to him. He is transcendentally situated. Sri Guru‘s expansive glories stand on their own. He is fixed in his bhajan of the Lord. He needs no recognition from outside his already established transcendental relationships which are based on spontaneous love. His life is a perfect example for all of us and his glories will be broadcast and relished throughout the world despite what the naysayers may say or imply.
Sri Bhagavan as antaryami knows the heart of everyone. Although paramatma is present in the heart he never interferes in the independence of the jiva to perform good or bad activities, he is only present as a witness. As mentioned the Supersoul manifests externally in the form of Guru.
Although the Supersoul exists in the body along with the jivatma, He does not become implicated in the qualities of the body (the modes of nature) like the baddha-jiva does.
The baddhajiva has aversion to Krsna since time immemorial. The aversions of conditioned souls are ingrained in their entire psyche. It does not go away easily. Like a shadow, it follows the conditioned souls wherever they go and influences everything they do. We should not be surprised at somebody’s aversion to Guru. They have this aversion to sadhusanga, to Vaisnavas. They have aversion to hari-katha and to service and to being a servant. They have aversion to being submissive. This conditioning has kept them here in this material world for millions of births.
This purusa-bhava is very, very hard to give up. The desire for prestige and power, which contaminates the heart is described by Srila Raghunath das Goswami in his Sri Manah-Siksa, The Teachings to The Mind. He calls such a desire for prestige, dhrsta svapaca-ramani pratisthasa – an audacious dog-eating outcaste woman. This root anartha, pratistha, unless checked, keeps one deeply rooted in the material illusory energy and firmly entrapped there despite one’s thoughtful oratory and polished presentation.
Our Gurumaharaja explains in his vritti purport of Sri Manah-siksa that, “although all other anarthas may be dispelled, the desire for pratistha is not easily removed. From this all kinds of deceit and hypocrisy arise and are gradually nourished. The desire for pratistha is called shameless, for although it is the root of all anarthas, it fails to acknowledge its own faults.”
Guru and Krsna will never keep a connection with a person who dishonors Vaisnavas.  People feel superior because of money and power. Being influenced by false ego and arrogance they put themselves above even their greatest well-wishers. They want control and don’t want a master who will guide their activities. Sri Guru’s sweetness is prominent and just as Srimati Radharani’s supreme opulence is hidden, Sri Guru’s opulence is hidden. Sri Guru is the most prominent Vaisnava but those who are spiritually blind fail to recognize it.
If someone has no master to control them, then they don’t have to be accountable to anyone.  There is no correction, no master to guide them and nobody to chastise them. They have only their friends, their peers who are all doing the same as them. When you’re just among friends, you want to enjoy. People really don’t advance much when they are just among their friends in the same group. Complacency develops. Who’s going to guide them? They will say that they are doing it for Guru and Krsna, but they are the ones wanting control of big, big projects, money and followers. Raghunath das Goswami, by his own example, taught us to carefully examine the motivation behind our actions. He was always ready to check his mind.

We should ask our self whether it is purely for the service of the Lord and His devotees or are we in it for name and fame, prestige and power?

We cannot refute all who are adverse to Sri Guru. Rupa Goswami and Sanatana Goswami did not want to debate with the scholar Dig Vijaiee, who conquered all directions, and just signed off as being defeated by him. In the same way, we should not waste our time with people who do not want to change. Sri Guru is the pure servant of Sri Krsna. His ability to transparently deliver the precise teachings of our sampradaya Acaryas is outstanding. We should read his lectures and books and try to understand the inner moods of the Acaryas as well as the solutions to our material sojourn. All tattva, all siddhanta is there. Sri Guru has come to deliver us by giving us the highest goal of our life, prema bhakti.

rahuganaitat tapasa na yati
na cejyaya nirvapanad grhad va
na cchandasa naiva jalagni-suryair
vina mahat-pada-rajo-’bhisekam

SB 5.12.12
My dear King Rahugana, unless one has the opportunity to smear his entire body with the dust of the lotus feet of great devotees, one cannot realize the Absolute Truth. One cannot realize the Absolute Truth simply by observing celibacy [brahmacaryas], strictly following the rules and regulations of householder life, leaving home as a vanaprastha, accepting sannyasa, or undergoing severe penances in winter by keeping oneself submerged in water or surrounding oneself in summer by fire and the scorching heat of the sun. There are many other processes to understand the Absolute Truth, but the Absolute Truth is only revealed to one who has attained the mercy of a great devotee.
The same point is made in Sri Prahlada caritra:

naisam matis tavad urukramanghrim
sprsaty anarthapagamo yad-arthah
mahiyasam pada-rajo-’bhisekam
niskincananam na vrnita yavat

SB 7.5.32
Unless they smear upon their bodies the dust of the lotus feet of a Vaisnava completely freed from material contamination, persons very much inclined toward materialistic life cannot be attached to the lotus feet of the Lord, who is glorified for His uncommon activities. Only by becoming Krsna conscious and taking shelter at the lotus feet of the Lord in this way can one be freed from material contamination.
There are countless examples like this.  Let us take proper shelter ourselves and not become bewildered by those who do not understand these truths and who have no faith in Sri Guru.
Tridandi biksu Bhaktivedanta Madhava


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