July 2022


Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha

Usually everybody who meets the devotees will understand that it is very useful to ask for some service. Once I remember Gurudev was meeting some new bhaktas, some new friends. There was one very nice young man and they were discussing about the same city they both knew. Somehow Gurudev mentioned: “And you know that very nice old lady, working at the library? Maybe you can visit her.” The conversation was going on and on, and finally it was finished. Then our young boy was amazed and said: “Ah! What a fool I am! I forgot to ask for a specific service.” And I told him: “Did you not listen? He told you to visit this old lady at the library. This is direct specific service to you, for you!

So, sometimes guru just mentions something. And it depends on the catching capacity of the disciple whether he understands or not. Usually they do not understand. Even if you give instruction on paper, black on white; what to speak of giving a lecture and sitting on a lecture! Brahma had given two ears to everybody. Here in – this way out. This is the normal condition of the disciple. One side in, other side out. Change it! You must have thousands of ears to listen to the beautiful qualities of Krishna and to catch a few drops of instructions from the spiritual master.  And we must have millions of tongues to glorify the qualities of Krishna or to chant the holy names: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama, Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare. Maybe one of these millions tongues will sound the real name.

Kripadham: How can we learn to listen? And on what depends our hearing capacity, understanding capacity?

Tirtha Maharaj: If Krishna has taken away all your understanding, if Krishna has taken away your intellect, then spiritual understanding will come. When you lose your brain – then comes spiritual wisdom. Until we are moving on the level of intellect – no way out! We want to explain everything, we want to understand everything. We want to understand what is impossible to understand! This mind, intellect, brain is much trouble.

Comment: But we are created like this: in order to accept something, you have to understand it.

Tirtha Maharaj: All right! But I suggest: let us follow the advice of the highest intellect of this universe – and this is Lord Brahma, the Creator. In the beginning he was meditating, using his intellectual power – for how many years? Billions! Very long time! And finally he understood: “Hey! I cannot understand! Better I worship – because in this way I will understand.”

So until we think that we have to explain and understand – we do not understand. As soon as we start to establish a loving contact, He will come. Spiritual understanding is not a material science. It descends; it is not an ascending process. So we should cultivate our hearts, our identity to invite and to accept Krishna’s presence. This much about understanding.

Hearing is depending on speaking. If there is nobody to tell you anything, what can you hear? So, shravanam is running after kirtanam. Without kirtanam there is no shravanam. If somebody is not practicing kirtanam, what can you shravanam?

Kripadham: But how to practice kirtanam if you do not have shravanam?

Tirtha Maharaj: No, no, no! Let somebody else practice kirtanam. And be attentive, pay your attention to listen. The first impulse is coming from Krishna. He is playing His flute. Kirtanam is there. Sound is there. And what is the flute sound of Krishna? This is the Gayatri. The flute sound of Krishna is the Gayatri mantra. You only pay a listening ear to this vibration.

But maybe this was again a kind of high answer. Not so much practical. Sorry, I am an impractical person. But maybe if I understand the question like this: „How can I improve my listening capacity?” If you chant from the heart: “radha krishna prana mora jugala kishora jivane marane gati…” If you chant this, your hearing will be purified. May I have a karatal?

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