September 2020
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Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha

meditation 1

(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, 04.01.2016 evening, Sofia)

(continued from the previous Monday)

Then it is said that pure devotion is all-auspicious. “Shrila Rupa Goswami has given a definition of auspiciousness. He says that actual auspiciousness means welfare activities for all the people of the world. At the present moment groups of people are engaged in welfare activities in terms of society, community or nation. There is even an attempt in the form of the United Nations for world-help activity. But due to the shortcomings of limited national activities, such a general mass of welfare program for the whole world is not practically possible. However this pure bhakti movement is so nice, that it can render the highest benefit to the entire human race. Everyone can be attracted by this movement and everyone can feel the results.”[1]

So, to propagate the spiritual culture is the highest benefit of any welfare activities. Why? Because it will bring us back to our original position – and this is to enjoy the embrace of the Supreme. The original position of the soul is the service attitude. Exchange. Not paid service, but selfless devotional service. In the best case – pure devotional service.

Then this will bring happiness. Pure devotional service will bring happiness. “Shrila Rupa Goswami has analyzed the different sources of happiness. He has divided happiness into three categories. First one: happiness derived from material enjoyment; the second one is happiness derived by identifying oneself with the Supreme Brahman; and finally happiness derived from pure devotional service. In the tantra-shastra Lord Shiva speaks to his wife Sati in this way: “My dear wife, a person who has surrendered himself at the lotus feet of Govinda and who has thus developed pure Krishna consciousness, can be very easily awarded all the perfections desired by the impersonalists and beyond this he can enjoy the happiness achieved by pure devotees.” Happiness derived from pure devotional service is the highest type, because it is eternal.”

Practically all other types of happiness are limited – either by time or by circumstances. There is a special type of liberation also, which is called ‘non-eternal liberation’. Very strange; we expect liberation to be eternal, right? But there is a non-eternal type of liberation – when you go and then you return. This is like a dance – one step ahead and two steps back. Like a horo[2]. This is called krama-mukti – liberation step-by-step. Little up, little back, little forward, little back… And also it is said, those who forget to worship personally, to serve God Supreme, even if they have reached a kind of perfection, they have to return. While even though you didn’t achieve perfection, yet if you don’t forget about the personal service, you can enjoy the full benefit.

Because you know, usually there is a distinction between the process in general and the achievements. For example some people perform some very austere spiritual activities – in order to achieve ultimate peace, when they don’t have to do anything. Now they are very active – in order to achieve non-activity. They torture themselves – to find your peace. But for the devotees there is no difference between today’s activities and the eternal spiritual activities. So beware! If your daily practice is self-torture, suffering and complaints – you will do this over there also in eternity. Because Krishna says: “I can satisfy My devotees in the way they like it.” So if this is your sadhana, if this is your daily practice, “I will give you perfection accordingly. You cry today – you can cry eternally!”

Therefore we should be very careful about our daily practice. Try to refine your meditation. It’s not a game. We have to be very qualified practitioners in order to achieve very qualified perfection. And we have absolutely no conception of the highest types of perfection waiting for us. Pure bhakti is the beginning of all auspiciousness. It will definitely bring happiness. And the happiness from pure devotional service is eternal.

(to be continued)

[1] Nectar of devotion, Chapter 1

[2] Bulgarian national dance in circle


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