Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha



“One of the listeners, a young lady called Rasa-bhavini asked: “Sakhi, what is rati?”[1] This is an enigmatic question, because we do not know what is “sakhi”, what is “rasa-bhavini” and what is “rati”. So “bhavini” is one who has emotions, “bhava” means emotions – “bhavini” means the female person, who tastes such emotions. Rasa-bhavini is such a lady, who can taste the feelings of rasarasa is the connection to Krishna. And “sakhi” means girlfriend, girlfriend of ladies. We are visiting a mataji ashram, so they call each other “O sakhi, o friend of Krishna!” And “rati” is divine love, attachment, deep love to Krishna. “Hearing that question, Prema-bhavini replied: “Rati is the seedling form of prema.” Rasa-bhavini slightly smiled and again inquired: “Where does rati reside and unto whom should it be reposed?” Prema-bhavini was an experienced vaishnavi. She had many times already discussed all these topics and understood the conclusions. Hearing Rasa-bhavini’s question, her heart melted in ecstatic love and incessant tears began to flow from her eyes.”


Many times we ask how to make the devotees happy? Here is a very simple method: ask the right questions. And if you ask a nice question, the lecturer will be in ecstasy. Maybe you will not be able to hear the answer, because he faints or he cannot speak because of emotions, but his mood will be enhanced.


“She began to speak: “Sakhi, do not apply worldly consciousness in spiritual object matters. This is not the rati that you hear of in the debauches’ perverted sensual activities. The rati in the material body is burnt in the crematorium along with the body.” So material desire can be finished very easily, it finishes with the body. “It does not permanently remain with you. The rati, experienced in the dealings between men and women in this world, is very insignificant, because the pleasure of the body is finished when the body is finished. The living entity is spirit soul, he has an eternal body. In that eternal body every living entity is stri, or enjoyed, and Shri Krishna Chandra is the only purusha, or enjoyer.” “Stri” means women. Therefore we call the spirit soul “she” or “her”, because by nature it is a servant of Krishna. Krishna is the male aspect and everybody else is servant of His happiness. Krishna is purusha and everybody else is prakriti. “The demands of the material body should be reduced and those of the eternal body should be increased. As a woman’s rati, or affection, rushes severely towards a man, the transcendental rati of an eternal stri’s body rushes towards Shri Krishna. The heart’s lust for sense objects is called rati. But the spiritual body’s natural lust for Krishna is the living entity’s eternal rati. If this eternal rati is not manifest, then why do you give everything – honor and respect – to live in Vraja?! Rati is a natural propensity. It is causeless. On seeing the sense objects, it becomes agitated. As I said previously, rati is the seed of prema. This seed should be sprouted by the watering process of hearing and chanting.” As Prema-bhavini spoke, feelings of ecstasy arose in her. She became restless and fell while exclaiming: “Oh, Lord of my heart, where are You!?” Everyone became anxious and chanted harinam to her.”


You know, vaishnavas are very narrow-minded. Whatever happens, they always chant this harinam. If they are happy – Hare Krishna! If they are sad – again – Hare Krishna! If somebody is fainting in the ashram, they say “Hare Krishna!” They are very narrow-minded.


Actually once one godbrother of my spiritual master told that they had an ashram in South India. They were living in very simple conditions, so they had to wash the pots of the kitchen in the river. One day one devotee was bringing all the pots to the river, and a snake came and bit him. Somehow other devotees noticed that he was lying there almost unconscious already. Immediately they ran to him and started to chant into the ears: “Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare!” He regained consciousness! No poison! Stayed alive! Since that time the whole village started to visit the ashram. So sometimes if we really chant this harinam in difficult situations, it works! You can try.


So this Prema-bhavini, first when she got the question, she started to cry. When she finished the answer, she fainted!




[1] From “Prema-pradipa” by Bhaktivinoda Thakura

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