Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha

(continues from the previous issue) 

But your question[1] was a little different – how to overcome these permanent difficulties. There are two methods. One is the mystical and the other is the practical. The practical one is that you pray meanwhile; and the mystical one is that somehow you survive. But we cannot survive our life, we need to live our life. Life is such a mystery that should not be examined or thought of, but we should live our life.

Analysis or comparison is also a method. For example, once a devotee went to a hospital. There he saw some people with half heads and very serious bodily problems. And then he concluded: we have no problems! If you say that you have a problem, this is practically not true. Because still our life is not in extreme situations – in most of the cases. Or you can compare your situation to others’ lives. If you feel that you suffer a lot, just meditate on the suffering in the world, on the planet earth – how much suffering is there. Then you will see that your small little suffering is very insignificant.

Again, sticking to the instruction in these permanent difficulties will help. Actually this is gopi-bhaav. Because ladies have this capacity to survive long standing difficulties. Men are easy to fall, die one heroic death. But ladies are clever, they will survive. From this again we can see that gopi-bhaav or the feminine element is very important.

ButKrishnais just like the full moon – going with the nighttime traveler). Even in the death of the night the full moon is with you. So if you feel that life is very difficult, God is there.

And from a certain point of view a little difficulty is good. If there is something to achieve, you can collect your energies, mobilize your best forces. If there is no opposition, you cannot show your strength. Just remember those burlesque movies. You know, it is a gag – somebody is holding a door and from the other side somebody wants to enter. He tries to push harder and harder and then more and more people join and they try to push and it does not happen; meanwhile the guy on the other side opens the door and everybody is falling. In the same way if there is opposition, if there is a closed door you can come with your forces. But when you think that the door is closed but it is open and you come with all your force – you fall on the ground. Why? Because fools rush in where angels fear to thread.

Nevertheless a little opposition is good. We should seeKrishnaeven in the extreme situations, not only in sweet dreams about Goloka Vrindavana. As we heard: “directly or indirectly”. Direct is our dreams, our hopes about Goloka Vrindavana, the higher reality. Indirect is when you observe the situation of the world and yourself. Nothing is independent on Him, but He is ready to hide behind the curtains. Just like when you put this cover in front of the altar. Now you have a direct vision. But as your vision is not obstructed, you take a look and then your attention is off. But when it is hidden everybody is looking through the little holes to see what is happening. Just examine the kids: wherever the cover is there, the kid enters and immediately wants to run behind the paravan. We are also like small kids. We all want to see the secrets. At least to have a glimpse of this divine something happening there. The cover blocks your vision, still it gives you the urge to search better, closer. So difficulties are good.

Premananda: I suspect that the angels have also gathered their strengths a lot, although they are not rushing like fools. I suspect that they have this delicate mentality, and still they have gathered all their strength. Is that true and if so, how do they do it?

Tirtha Maharaj: They are following the instruction. But this is also a question of culture. Therefore sometimes we talk about etiquette – what should be done and what should be avoided. Because it is said: A man is his style. If you observe a person you can read who he is. We have to appreciate things, not grab it. Just to take it and enjoy it – this is very brutal. But if you appreciate, you cherish your ideals, your beloved ones, your practices – this is higher. So, please, be well educated in this science. Be like the angels. Do not enter forcefully. Wait for the invitation – then it is sweeter.

[1] The question of Premananda from the previous issue: “I mean the situation when a person suddenly becomes stick to a very hard situation that lasts for long, this is one kind of extreme which I think is harder to maintain your faith. And in fact from one point of view everyday life is such kind of extreme. So my question is if you could clarify a bit more about sticking to the instructions in these permanent situations. How to find strength and how to stick to the instructions when situation does not seem so extreme or it is permanent, but still the problem is there?”


Leave a Reply