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Sharanagati

Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha




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(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, 07.01.2016 evening, Sofia) 

(continues from the previous Monday)

“In the Narada Pancharatra the regulative principles of devotional service are described. Any activities, sanctioned in the revealed scriptures and aiming at the satisfaction of the Supreme Lord are accepted by the saintly teachers as the regulative principles of devotional service. If somebody regularly executes such service to God under the direction of a bona fide spiritual master, then gradually he will come to the platform of pure love of Godhead.”[1]

Question of Paramananda: If I understand correctly, Shrila Prabhupad says that by serving the spiritual master, this can help one to develop his/her devotion. I’m trying to understand what does it mean that bhakti, devotion is ahaituki, causeless. Could you please give us some directions?

Swami Tirtha: This chapter discusses certain characteristics of vaidhi-bhakti. Therefore it is said: if somebody performs activities of devotional service on that platform, it might help him to come to the service in pure love of Godhead. Ahaituki is the twin of apratihata[2]. Ahaituki is ‘selfless’ and apratihata is ‘uninterrupted’. They are like brothers. Selfless and uninterrupted – these are the ultimate qualities of devotional service. If we can achieve these two qualities – to be permanently engaged in service and to have no secondary motivation – then what will be the result? Suprasidati – super happiness. This will supremely satisfy the soul in her hankering.

We might ask: which is more important – to be selfless or to be permanent in our service mood? But as they are very good brothers, we cannot separate them. Better we embrace both of these qualities. We have to try to be always connected and we have to be as selfless as possible.

You know, if you serve Krishna, He will help you to be selfless. He will take away everything from you, even the spiritual ambitions. And if you serve the Beauty of the Village, She will help you to be permanently engaged. So what can we say? Shri Shri Radha-Govinda ki jay!

Question of Haribhakti: I’d like to ask Gurudev, when we perform devotional service, can we serve directly Krishna, or as Shrila Shridhara Maharaj says, we should serve Radha first, because She is the connection to Krishna?

Swami Tirtha: Ah, first we should serve the vaishnavas! Radha and Krishna – They pay all attention to each other. Why should we disturb Them with our service? Trying to interrupt Their intimate talk in the afternoon or something…? Better we try to serve the vaishnavas, follow the instructions of our spiritual master. And later on it will come. Of course, it is not impossible to render service to the Divine Couple. We should always remember our ultimate identity: that I am a servant of the servant or the servant of God. Nevertheless we have to be very firmly convinced that by joining this lineage, through them we shall establish a living and direct contact with the Divine Couple. It looks like we are indirectly connected, because we serve the servants, but nevertheless this is like a direct connection. It’s a kind of achintya – direct and indirect. All these different conceptions will grow. As we purify ourselves, our vision will grow and we can be more precise in identifying our position and our service mood also. But if you serve Krishna and finally you reach Krishna, you will meet Radhika also. And if you serve Radhika, sooner or later you will meet Krishna also.

[1] Nectar of Devotion, Chapter 2

[2] Shrimad Bhagavatam 1.2.6

 



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