January 2021
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Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha

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(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, 7.09.2015 morning, Sofia)

(continues from the previous Friday) 

Then Ramananda Raya says to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu: “My Lord, I have one doubt within my heart and I hope You will kindly remove it by Your grace. At first I saw You appear like a sannyasi. But now I see You as Shyamasundar, the cowherd boy. Now I see You appearing like a golden doll and Your entire body appears covered by a golden luster. I see that You are holding a flute to Your mouth. And Your lotus eyes move very restlessly due to various ecstasies. I actually see You in this way and it’s so wonderful! My Lord, please tell me without duplicity what is the cause of this?”[1]

What happens here? Ramananda Raya is perplexed. Before he saw a sannyasi. All right, in India you are not perplexed to meet a sannyasi. Although Mahaprabhu was a very exceptional sannyasi. He was very tall. His feet were very big. In Jagannath Puri they preserve the sandals of Mahaprabhu. And just between you and me, recently I met a young man: the number of his feet size is fifty-two, or something like that. And the devotees were very much ready to see all the divine signs that ‘he is a great personality’. And he is! And Mahaprabhu was a very beautiful person. You don’t expect a sannyasi to be charming and beautiful, because he is a renunciate. ‘Poor guy, he was not successful in material activities, so finally totally frustrated he turned to renunciation’ – sometimes people have this understanding about sannyasis – that they failed materially and therefore they go spiritually. But this is not proper, especially for Mahaprabhu; He was a very, very charming personality. Therefore many were afraid if He would take sannyas. They said: “Oh, You are so nice! You are such a prosperous young man! Sannyas is not for you. Everybody will be hurt by the feeling that You take trouble and ascetic practices. How can we tolerate that You lack some comforts of life?” But nevertheless He was very determined to take sannyas, because people pay more attention to sannyasis. This was one of His purposes.

Here it happened in the same way: Ramananda Raya was happy to meet a sannyasi. But all of a sudden his vision changed. And he didn’t see this beautiful renunciate, but he started to see Krishna, the divine personality. “Now I see You as Shyamasundar, the cowherd boy. What’s the reason for that? But tell me without duplicity.” Does that mean that before they had some duplicity in their conversation? No. But Ramananda wanted to find the truth. What’s the secret here? “The Lord replied: “Those who are deeply absorbed in a loving relationship with Krishna, they are all first class devotees. As a result of their natural love for Krishna they realize the presence of their worshipable Lord Shri Krishna everywhere. Even while they look upon all the varieties of moving and non-moving objects. The objects of their observation do not appear before them as they are, but they appear differently in relationship with Krishna”.

This vision we have to acquire – to be able to see the connection of the things with the Supreme Lord.

(to be continued)

[1] In Search of the Ultimate Goal of Life, by Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada


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