October 2021
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Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha


(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, 20.08.2015, morning, Ludashto)
(continues from the previous Monday)
Question of Yashoda: What does perfect sadhana and the perfection of sadhana mean? 
Swami Tirtha: Let’s start with the sadhana of perfection, because this is the basis. The sadhana of perfection is a painful path. Because to reach perfection we have to get rid of all anarthas – all those attachments that we cherish. Anartha means ‘no value’. Siddha-artha means ‘the value of perfection’; anartha means ‘no value’. Anartha-nivritti means to get rid, to purify yourself of all anarthas – this is painful. 
Just remember all the demons – they were practicing the sadhana of perfection, right? Hiranyakashipu’s body was eaten by the ants! Can you imagine yourself to perform such a sadhana – that your body is eaten up by the ants? It’s a little painful.
Baladev: A little.
Swami Tirtha: Nevertheless, he was able to circulate his vital force in his skeleton. Quite a mystic power, ha? Do you want some mystic powers? I don’t think that this skeleton-prana is our goal, our siddha-artha. So we can say that even the sadhana of perfection might be misused in a demoniac way. 
Therefore let’s observe it from the opposite direction, the reversed order – what is the perfection of sadhana? The goal of sadhana, sadhana-artha, is to convert you into a sadhu, to make you a sadhu. And who is a sadhu according to Krishna? “Those who after many-many lifetimes realize that I am all, I am everything – vasudeva sarvam iti.” [1]
So we have to find the best method of sadhana, which will very quickly bring us to the other shore of the material ocean. “I quickly rescue them from the ocean of the material existence.”[2] And after Mahaprabhu practically all different schools agree on this point that the best method of perfection is chanting the holy names. Sometimes they recommend other practices like homa – make a fire sacrifice every day in your home; or go on a pilgrimage; or whatever. But everybody agrees that the most direct method is to sit down and chant. So this is a universal dharma-principle for this age especially. 
And finally here the perfection of sadhana is not painful. The sadhana of perfection is painful, but the perfection of sadhana is blissful. Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare. 
Question of Lokanath: How to chant properly, in a pure manner?
Swami Tirtha: We are so fortunate to belong to a tradition. Because Gurudev was asked the same question. And he gave a very shocking answer. He didn’t say: “Sit longer” or “Do it like this, chant in one shot all your 16 rounds”. He didn’t give any such technical advice. But he said: “Well, serve those who chant purely.” In this way you will receive that quality, receive that blessing in your life. By service you will get pure chanting. What a beautiful idea! Of course it doesn’t mean that you neglect your chanting. ‘Ah, it’s Gurudev’s business to give me the unconditional flow of divine nectar, so I don’t have to do anything here.’ You have to do your job. Prepare the soil of the garden of your hearts, so that when Mahaprabhu comes, He can scatter the good seeds on the field. Therefore our way to perfection is service mood. 
1. Bhagavad Gita 7.19
2. Bhagavad Gita 12.6-7


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