Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha

(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, 23.06.2017 evening, Sofia)

(continues from the previous Monday)

Let’s quote finally who is the best disciple.

Krita-shrama is such a person who makes real serious efforts, shrama, for accomplishment of the divine knowledge. We have to make all the efforts possible. And krita here means the proper spiritual activities. So not simply activities, but dedicated activities for attaining the divine knowledge.

And a good disciple is able to learn. One expression here is tripathin. That means he is able to remember anything if it is repeated three times. I have met some devotees who have this photographic memory. Whatever they have heard, immediately they fully memorize. We had one devotee, he had this ability. It was not necessary to repeat three times; once! Immediately everything was perfectly stuck in his mind. And he made notes; although he had this type of memory, he made notes. Once I had seen his notebook. He had all the quotes, word-by-word, and practically all the quotes were marked with an asterisk and the footnotes were “close to the original”. It was word-by-word, but his opinion was “close to the original”.

So tripathin – he will remember everything if it is repeated three times. Harer-nama harer-nama harer-namaiva kevalam – three times it is mentioned, please remember that through the holy name we can achieve perfection!

And how many things we had repeated three times?! For example, you have repeated your efforts to enjoy the material life not only three, but thirty-three times. Please remember all the failures. Don’t rush to the same trap again and again, because then you are not tripathin, but thirty-three-pathin.

But now comes something very nice – this is bhala-darshin. Darshana is ‘a view, a vision’. And bhala is ‘forehead’. So a real disciple is bhala-darshin. Of course he is not looking into the mirror, observing his or her own forehead. But then whose forehead a real disciple is trying to read? A real disciple tries to read the forehead of the master. And as we know, our fate is written on our forehead. We only need to gain the ability to read that. So if we can read from the forehead of our master, then we are really darshin, really visionaries. But many times on the foreheads you see only the wrinkles.

Other expression is bhava-darshin – the reader of the feelings or the visionary of the feelings. Just remember Mahaprabhu’s devotees who were able to read the feeling, the mentality of their beloved Mahaprabhu, and quote the shastras accordingly. If Mahaprabhu was a little depressed due to separation, then they were quoting verses to enthuse Him, to make Him happy. And when Mahaprabhu was overdosed with prema-bhakti, then they started to quote verses to compose Him: “Don’t jump so high!”

But you see, bhava-darshin… Simply to be a visionary is enough. Tattva-darshin is a visionary of the truth. So to be a visionary – it’s enough, it’s a kind of perfection. But to be a bhava-darshin, to be able to read the spiritual mood of another person, of a superior person – this is our real perfection. This is our ambition. That is a hunger – to be able to read the minds and feelings of the great ones.

Everything is a question of rasa, don’t forget. So how can we read the rasa of a pure devotee if we are not on that platform? Our ideal heroes are always tasting the Radha-Govinda lila. This is what we have to read from their forehead. This is what we have to read from their hearts.

So if we want to improve our status as a disciple, here is some foodstuff for the mind. From a half-shlokin to become a bhava-reader.

This is our way to improve our consciousness of eternity. And then to be ready for any kind of service any time. Last but not least, we can add Gurudev’s expectation to a disciple: that we should be ready for any service at any time. And he didn’t like the but-acharyas.

So please, with all my humility I try to ask you and impress you to improve your devotional qualities, to have this eagerness! And to improve our devotional and disciplic qualities – what is the best way? I think the best way is to meditate over our divine masters. Because maybe then their quality will come to us.

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