September 2021
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Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha


(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, 08.10.2016 morning, Ludashto)

(continues from the previous Monday) 

Question of Yashoda: I’m always wondering how to recognize one’s own duty and not perform the duty of others? Because the illusion covers the real thing and one thinks: ‘Ah, this is my duty’ and goes forward, but finally reaches a wall and must turn in another direction.

Swami Tirtha: Well, on one hand this is very complicated, on the other hand this is very simple. I just met some devotees, they had their children born recently; actually on our visit one boy was born. And I said: “Ah, you are so fortunate, because for the next 20 years you don’t have to think what to do. Your duty is given.” So, I think this dharma, this duty, is very obvious. Something that nobody will perform instead of you – this is your duty. No one can substitute this role.

But sometimes even on the practical platform of daily life we interfere into each other’s interests and there are some clashes inside the family, inside the mission. Because sometimes we are very rude, very basic. If we become more refined, we don’t intrude in a negative way. And this is very subtle; very simple things might give trouble to others. For example I remember the younger devotees were very much upset with one of my god-sisters because they tried to arrange something and she came and re-arranged everything. It’s nothing serious, right? But still they took it very much to the heart: “Why she comes and over-rules our choice, our arrangement?” So sometimes this is a sensitive question, therefore we always need a higher vision. If considering Krishna’s desire we think it over, we accept that nothing is by chance. And if something needs to be corrected, we might also say we can wait until this correction will come.

But this is easy, this part is easy. Yet beyond all these daily duties, the main part, more important part is the ultimate duty. ‘Where is my spiritual prospect? What is my contribution to this beautiful process?’ – that is what we really have to search for. And because that is more subtle, that is more spiritual, it’s a little more difficult to understand and identify: ‘What is my service here, what is my dharma?’ therefore this type of meditation on some higher engagement or ultimate identity is very important.

Because you know, what is our chanting in the morning? This is not an antidote for karma, or some routine. But this is when you go out in the fields and pick flowers for Krishna; and then you come and offer. So if we always try to raise the level of our activities, of our meditation, of our services, then this is closer to the ideal that we are all searching for.

Nevertheless sometimes, as you said, we reach a wall and we have to return. Even in our best wishes, we want to offer something, still we are frustrated, it doesn’t happen. But Gurudev gave a clue here, he said: “At least three times you have to try. If it doesn’t happen, then that was the desire of Krishna.” Because once he gave an instruction to the devotees: “Let’s start a restaurant in Budapest.” So, they ran, started to organize the license and this and that – but it didn’t happen. And they told when they went to Gurudev: “Maybe this is not Krishna’s desire.” He said: “No, no, no. Just go second time, go third time.” And as it didn’t happen, he accepted: “All right. This is not approved. It’s not the time yet.”

In this way we can also try to find our ultimate duties and if we cannot accomplish in one way, try to do it in another way, use your intelligence to find ways. Because spiritual intelligence means that we achieve our goals. And our goal is a better service, our goal is coming closer to these ideals like control, knowledge, peace, etc. And then it’s easier to accomplish this self-realization.


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