Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha


Question: Here, the first verse of the song[1] it ends: “Please, liberate me from all desires for personal honor”. I don’t know if it is correctly translated. Personal honor?

Tirtha Maharaj: Honor in that sense that we are all seeking appreciation. It’s a subtle satisfaction of our created identity: “If they treat me nice, I feel happy. If they don’t treat me nice, I don’t feel happy.” In that sense.

Question: And my question is: Why is it necessary to get relieved from these desires? We naturally come with desires and it’s natural that all of us are trying to satisfy the desires of the five senses and to receive through this pleasure and happiness. At first sight this seems contradictory, because when we descent here we get filled with all these desires, and then it is expected from us to get rid of all this desires here and now.

Tirtha Maharaj: Well, not here and now! It’s a slow process, but effective.

Comment: This is how I understand this and we even pray for mercy in this aspect.

Tirtha Maharaj: Yes! “If selfish desires are mistakes, then please help me to get rid of the mistakes!“ And satisfaction of the senses provideс a shadow of real satisfaction. But the spiritual, inner satisfaction is much more fulfilling. Everybody is running after satisfying the senses – and still nobody is happy. Everybody wants more, or different, or next one. So, the real satisfaction comes when you are not turning outside, but when you turn inside. We don’t reject the sense organs, but we try to use them in the service of God. We see the beauty of the altar, we listen to the bhajan. Although we know that sometimes the eye goes here and there, still we don’t plug out the eye, because sometimes it makes mistakes, but we try to focus, to bring them under yoga – yoga means control. And practically all the other senses can be engaged in the service of the Supreme, because through the senses we can perceive only the material sphere. If we go beyond the senses, then we can see what is beyond. Atah shri-krishna-namadi/ na bhaved grahyam indriyaih/ sevonmukhe hi jihvadau/ svayam eva aphuraty adah[2] – “Simply by the senses it is impossible to see the Supreme Lord, but if the service mood awakens in the heart, by this purification we shall be able to perceive.” So with the super-senses, the purified senses we can perceive a different world, a different satisfaction also. But this is a process.

Comment: This gets more and more understandable to me and I can accept it. But the life outside is exactly in the other direction. Unfortunately, that’s how it is in the moment manifested.

Tirtha Maharaj: But we are trying, we are working very hard to change that situation.

Question: So, can you explain why in the world the manifestation of the five senses the majority, and the other thing which you are trying to cultivate is not predominating? Why it’s like this?

Tirtha Maharaj: Well, it’s not like that. The majority is working for God. Because the Planet Earth is very insignificant, few billions of people here and there, cultivating illusion. In the Kurukshetra war it is said that six hundred forty million people died. And it is also said that when Krishna is tending the cows, He is practically tending billions of cows. Can you imagine that in a small little piece of land – billions of cows? You will say: “Oh, that’s a very nice story”. But God is a miracle-maker. He can do whatever He likes. And also His environment is like a different dimension. It’s not only a small village, but this is an epicenter of the whole creation.

So, the dimensions depend on the point of view that you take. Now it looks like a few devotees are sitting here, and like one and a half million people are running out there. But I tell you, this group here can save all those outside. If there is a full moon on the sky, what is the use of millions of nonsense stars? But actually the servants of God are more numerous in numbers then those who reject His service. Please, help me to explain this to others! Then next time we shell have to find a new ashram, because we shall not fit here into this room.

Otherwise, in the “Gita” Krishna says: “From many thousands, one will search for perfection”[3]. So, don’t be surprised that people practically leave an unconscious life. They are simply running under the influence of the senses, the instincts, material tradition, or they behave according to their training. If you just observe how they live, you will see that this is like a puppet theatre – they don’t have individual life, but they are driven by a certain forces. It doesn’t mean that if you can observe this, you are better. But it means that you are more fortunate. Because if you can see the hidden rules of the game, then the matrix of the material illusion is broken. And then you can penetrate the forest of the material life, and you will reach the supreme goal.

What we perceive with the senses is a very small segment of the whole existence. The majority, the bigger part is beyond the perception of the senses. I can tell you that this is the more important part also. So go on searching, and more and more we shall understand, and more and more we can give ourselves to the higher goal. And then you will be remunerated accordingly.

[1] „Kripa bindu diya” by Bhaktivinod Thakur

[2] Bkahti Rasamrita Sindhu 1.2.234

[3] Bhagavad Gita 7.3

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