January 2019
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Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha


(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, May 2012, Sofia)

(continues from the previous Monday) 

Prahlada said: “It is not possible to attain devotion to Krishna from those who are attached to material life. Those materialistic people are fully engaged in enjoying their senses without restriction. So they fall into the darkest hell and go on chewing the already chewed. Although these two gurus, Shanda and Amarka, have knowledge of the Vedas, they are unable to understand that Vishnu is the only object of the Vedas. Because they are full of material desires, they remain attracted by the sweet words of the flowery language of the karma-kanda section of the Vedas. Just as a blind man cannot show the right path to another blind man, they cannot teach me devotion to Vishnu because their eyes are densely covered by the three gunas. Unless one purifies himself with the dust of the lotus feet of a mahatma, who has no material desires, it is not possible to come in touch with the lotus feet of the Lord. If one is so fortunate to encounter such a rare soul like a mahatma, by sincerely engaging his heart and soul in service of the feet of Shri Krishna, all anarthas, the bad qualities and habits, will disappear.”[1]

So, who can give bhakti? One of the books of Shrila Prabhupad is Life comes from life. We can enhance on that: we can say that knowledge comes from consciousness and love comes from prema, divine love. Where does bhakti come from? If life comes from life and love comes from love, then bhakti comes from…? Correct, from bhakti. So who can give you bhakti? Only those who have it. Who doesn’t have it cannot give it to you. Therefore we should desperately search for one person who has it and then we should ask our share: “Please, be merciful! You take your prasad at the opulently-laid table of Krishna. Please, give me some morsels also.” This should be our desire. So try to obtain bhakti from those who have bhakti. What else can I say?

And how to recognize who has got bhakti? It’s not easy. Shrila Shridhara Maharaj says: “How to recognize if someone is intelligent? If you are also intelligent.” Then immediately you will understand ‘Yes, this person is intelligent’. But how to recognize who has got bhakti? Only those can recognize who’s got bhakti, who also have bhakti. But if I don’t have bhakti, how can I recognize who has bhakti? Ah, very complicated… Yet fortunately we have some well-wishers who will inform us: “Hey, here is the source.”

In order to find water you have to dig deep. In order to find divine knowledge you have to dig deeper. In order to find divine love you have to dig even deeper. And then you will not find it. ‘It’s not here! I’m digging, digging, I’m beyond knowledge, but it’s not here!” Then you come back to the surface from the big hole you’ve made. And when you come again to the surface you say: “Hey! It’s just here! Somebody is spreading it around.”

So this is our hope – to find the source and to find the persons who will help us.

(to be continued) 

[1] From B.B.Tirtha Maharaj’s book The holy life of Prahlada


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