Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha


Tirtha Maharaj: Somebody had a question yesterday: “How to choose my religion?” Is it an important question? I think it is!

Yadunath: Do we choose religion?

Tirtha Maharaj: Well, neophytes think. If we exchange one formality to another formality, nothing has changed. This is when you start from your chamber and you end up in another chamber. But if we change one formality for a superior truth, that is worth change. Actually there is only one real religion and that is love of Godhead. No other. And there is only one divine method to help humanity, especially in this age, and this is mercy. God is merciful, He is not demanding, He is merciful these days.

Actually that was the question of some saints coming together 5000 years back in Naimisharanya. They were discussing: “Ah, there are so many different types of religion. Please, tell us what is the best religion?” And the lecturer said: sa vai pumsam paro dharmo/ yato bhaktir adhokshaje/ ahaituky apratihata/ yayatma suprasidati“The best religion for all humanity is by which people can achieve love of Godhead. And this method should be uninterrupted (permanent) and selfless. Then it will supremely fulfill and make the heart and soul happy.”[1] So, to answer this question: what is the best religion? By which you can achieve complete and perfect love of Godhead – this is the best religion. But be unconditional and permanent in your efforts. So, what is the translation of bhakti-yoga? “Love of Godhead.“ Oh, very interesting!

Question: Many people are interested in spirituality, but only reading books without wanting to apply it. Why it happens like this, maybe it’s not only laziness?

Tirtha Maharaj: Yes, stupidity also. Well, we live in a very special age, it’s called Kali-yuga and the characteristics of this age are that life is short, people are dull and lazy concerning the spiritual questions. Just imagine this situation: if you were God, what could you do with such an environment? “I try to explain – they don’t understand. I try to invite them – they don’t come. And their life is so short, that they can hardly learn anything! So, what to do?” He has only one chance: “I have to become more merciful to them. They are in such a fallen condition, that there is only one chance – I give them more grace.”

So, therefore in this Kali-yuga the religious processes are based on divine grace, divine mercy. Therefore Chaitanya Mahabrabhu came 500 years ago, because He was aware that people are lazy and little simple-minded, they don’t understand complicated things, therefore He gave very good advice, simple and good advice: ‘Study the Shrimad-Bhagavatam, listen to the lectures, read, chant the holy names of God and associate with saints.’ So He introduced the sankirtana movement. Sankirtan means: kirtan means to sing, glorify and san means together. So if people congregationally glorify God Supreme, it’s an easy process and everybody can join. Shrila Prabhuphad, the spiritual master of my guru, he said that “This process is very simple, you only have to sing, dance and eat”. Is it simple enough? Everybody can do that. Certain little regulations will come later, but these three practices are enough.

So, singing, dancing, eating… this is the practical goal for this evening. But we have to search our higher goals.


[1] Shrimad Bhagavatam 1.2.6

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