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Sharanagati

Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha




(From lecture of B.K.Tirtha Maharaj, 7 of September 2005, Ahtopol)
Usually we think that the greatest sin is killing a human being. This is the most heinous, criminal act that you can commit. But there is something else which is most heinous, greatest sin.
One very important point is that soul can never be killed. So on the basis of the eternity of the soul to kill somebody or to stop his or hers present life – this is not the greatest problem. Because he is an eternal soul, he will continue somehow. In this way you stop only one person, but all the others will go on. But if you kill the culture, then you kill all the people who are part of that culture. If you establish illicit connection with forbidden people, that means– to put it very simply – for example you betray your country. This is a very great sin because it effects the whole country. If you betray your master, the whole mission is effected. If you betray your family, everybody will suffer. So therefore if you betray, if you are not loyal to the culture, if you kill the culture, this is the greatest sin you can make, because in this way you effect EVERYBODY, you break the whole system that was given by God. You agree? This is greater than stopping only one person. This is a mass criminal activity.
So don’t kill the culture! To be disloyal – that is very, very dangerous activity. We can apply that on every level of our life existence. To be a secret agent or a betrayer of your country might be very exciting, they can make famous movies on this, but this is not very high moral. So try to protect the culture. Of course first of all we have to understand WHAT is this culture. Therefore the vaishnava culture or our spiritual culture should be examined by all who take part.
What are the three commandments of materialism? It’s only three, you don’t have to make a list of ten. We can say the cola, chips and gsm-coverage. But I think this is rather a new age commandments. The three basic principals of materialism are that man is an animal; the soul does not exists; and God is only an invention. Three commandments of materialism. And this I call the greatest sin! Because it kills the culture! It kills your faith, it kills your self-esteem.
Therefore we should examine the greatest principles of vaishnava culture. Alexander Dumas gave the basic principles of vaishnavism. “Everybody for one and one for everybody!” Everybody is working for one, Krishna! And one is working for everyone – the spiritual master is working for everybody.
So if we follow only this ONE principle, then we give a very simple version – no ten commandments, no three commandments – one, only one! “One for all and everybody for one.”  Then we can create the vaishnava culture. So in this French writer you can see the forerunner of the vaishnava practical philosophy. But there is another famous writer and thinker – Goethe – who also gave a conclusion. He said that the highest principle, the highest ideal in life is voluntary surrender. And how is that possible without love? Shrila Shridhara Maharaj says: “Die to live.” Self-sacrifice. So the highest principle is SELFLESS and VOLUNTARY dedication. And how is that possible without divine love? So in Goethe we can also see the forerunner of the vaishnava practical philosophy.
And then finally– after Dumas, after Goethe – you can read Bhakti shastras, where you can find it explicitly.


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