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Sharanagati

Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha




(from lecture of B.K.Tirtha Maharaj, 26 of May 2006)
From the nine main processes of Bhakti, chanting of the Name should be practices most. The first reason is that you should be selfish. Selfish in that sense that you should have the DESIRE to taste nectar. That kind of selfishness is acceptable. Because some very special divine sweetness is hidden in the Holly Names.
Then: you should be intelligent in chanting the Holly Name. It sounds better, ha, than selfish? Intelligent in that sense that by Holly Name you can achieve all perfection.
Once there was e debate in a devotional circle and Haridas Thakur was also present. And the question was: what is the benefit of chanting the Holly Name? Some people came with such ideas that by chanting you can stop your karma. Which is not a bad result, right – you become karma-free! But some people were not satisfied. So other opinion came: “No, no, no, that stopping the karma is nothing! It provides liberation.” That sounds even better! O! To achieve eternal perfection! Out of the labyrinth of material existence! To get out of this forest of birth and death! So many were agreeing: “Yes, yes, this is good result.” But then someone said: “But here is Haridas Thakur, let’s ask his opinion.” And he is the authority on the Holly Name.
So, the devotees have some special quality – they are authorities on some special field on devotional service. Authority not in “doctor False Ego” sense, but as a servant. Because by this service mood we can become great authorities in the specific field that is given to us, provided to us as an expression of our devotion.
So, Haridas Thakur is an authority in chanting the Holly Names. And they asked: “Are you satisfied with these answers of stopping the karma and achieving liberation?” He said: “O, that’s nothing. To achieve liberation – any kind of religion can provide that to you. By chanting the Holly Name you can come to the lotus feet of Krishna.” And it sounds very simple sentence. But think about the meaning of this sentence: that you can go beyond liberation.
So that was the conclusive answer of Haridas Thakur. That you can achieve Bhakti to the lotus feet of the Supreme Lord, selfless devotion. And all other – like stopping the karma and giving all the blessings and providing liberation – is all secondary effects of perfect chanting of the Holly Names. So if we consider the level of our chanting, we should examine that also. How much we can dedicate ourselves, how much this is a real deep cry for Krishna or just some formal ritual that we do because it should be done? Until you don’t cry Krishna doesn’t come. Chanting must be very intimate talk with Krishna.
So this means that you must be intelligent in your chanting because in this way you can understand: “O, I can go beyond liberation.” Is that enough to be intelligent in Bhakti Yoga? It’s not enough! We have to lose our brain – finally. First try to use your brain. Then you can lose your brain. How is that? This is a very systematic process, it is told that Bhakti is a scientific method to approach and understand God, and you should lose your brain? What is that?! How come!
In that sense that Bhakti finally is not a question of analysis. As Shrila Prabhupad used to say: “SIMPLY try to love Krishna!” Because he was also supporting that vision that trough love you can understand. Through Bhakti you can… not really understand Krishna, but through love you can invite Krishna to show Himself. Because our position is eternal subordinates. We don’t have the capacity to understand the complete whole. But the Absolute is able to manifest Himself, to show Himself to the limited.
This is the final stage of chanting where you can lose your brain. Not before! So the three levels: one is selfish in a good sense, you should have the desire to taste the nectar; second is to be intelligent in the chanting, to understand what is the ultimate result of the chanting; and finally just swim, float on the waves of the Mahamantram. On that platform whatever you do will become chanting, pure chanting. Of course this is ONLY reserved for the highly elevated pure souls. For example, it was told in the old times, when Shrila Shridhara Maharaj was talking about building a temple and the price of the cement – that was pure Krishna-katha to the ear. Because whatever he was telling – it was FULLY connected to Krishna. If you talk about money – it’s not so sweet. If you talk about your whatever – it’s not so sweet.
So we should qualify ourselves, enter deep. And you remember, what is the best way to improve your chanting? Pure chanting means – serve those, who chant purely. This is very practical aspect of Bhakti.


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