[Srila Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja arrived in Cessnock, New South Wales, after a very successful tour of Fiji. He was welcomed by kirtan and gurupuja. Yugala Kishora prabhu, at whose house Srila Maharaja was staying, gave the first welcome speech. He related how it seems like a very short time since Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada had come to the West and created a revolution in the hearts and minds of so many individuals. He showed how Srila Prabhupada had so much potency that even those who could not personally meet him were impelled to give up material desires.]
[Yugala Kishora] This process is very powerful, and because he is a bona fide personality, anyone who received his instructions and was somewhat serious, would soon, very easily, pick up the true spirit. Srila Prabhupada was really a giant, even among those in the disciplic succession, even in the teaching mission of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu; and thus he was able to do such a wonderful, extraordinary thing.
According to Krsna’s plan, another giant in our disciplic succession, namely Srila Gurudeva, came. He is following in the footsteps of Srila Prabhupada. He came and did yet another extraordinary thing. He created another revolution, the magnanimity of which will not be understood for a very long time. It is not that ordinary persons can do it. So, those of us who are fortunate enough, are being inspired to go further, not only to hear the words, but to follow his instructions. When I first met Srila Gurudeva, I said to myself, “The first thing I will do is look at his disciples and … if they are fanatical, I will not be interested”.
I looked hard, and all I could see was very, very loving devotees who are practising the etiquettes of Krsna consciousness. I felt this was what I always wanted, and I am sure what others wanted, when we joined the original Hare Krsna movement. Then I was thinking, this is so very nice. How wonderful must this spiritual master be. And I was again reminded of this just a couple of weeks ago. All the devotees were lamenting when Prema Prayojana prabhu and Subala Sakha prabhu left. What to speak of when Srila Gurudeva leaves, the devotees already miss the association of his disciples so much. So I offer my humble respect to all the devotees, and to our most dear Srila Gurudeva. I hope you have a comfortable stay here. By Krsna’s mercy you have come.
[Srila Narayana Maharaja] Syamarani, the senior-most disciple of Srila Swami, will speak.
[Syamarani] I am very inspired by the words of Yugala Kishora prabhu. He gave some hint of what Srila Prabhupada came to give us. One of the things that Srila Prabhupada gave us are the songs of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura; and particularly today we see one of those songs coming to life from the page. He writes, “O my Lord Hari, Srila Rupa Goswami has now appeared in the form of the spiritual master. Srila Rupa Goswami himself, who is Sri Rupa Manjari, has appeared before us now in the form of the spiritual master and, siksa dile mora kane; he gave us the following instructions. Srila Rupa Goswami himself gave us these instructions in the form of the spiritual master. Jano mora katha. Please try to understand my words. Who should understand? Namera kangala. Do you know what is kangala? Beggars. There are many beggars in the streets, and they go like this: ‘Give me something, give me something.’ In this song it means those who are begging for the gift of the holy name; “O Gurudeva, I have no power to chant the holy name of Krsna. Give me just one more drop of your mercy, so that I can taste the great treasure of the holy name”.
Jano mora katha.Try to understand my words of instrustruction, O you who are begging for the gift of the holy name. Rati pabe nama gane; and then you will be able to taste the nectar essence of the holy name. And what are the words of instruction? Tan nama-rupa-caritadi sukirtananu-smrtyoh. The rest of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura’s song is about how Srila Rupa Goswami, in the form of the spiritual master, teaches us how to chant the holy names, by remembering the pastimes of each name. And which names to chant? Those names which are the fulfillment of our soul’s aspiration: gopi bhartur pada-kamalayor dasa dasanudasa.
When B equals C, if A equals B, then A also must equal C. The spiritual master is a manifestation of Sri Rupa Goswami. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, who wrote that song, is naturally also a manifestation of Srila Rupa Goswami. He is also guru. We know Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura to be a manifestation of Sri Gadadhara Pandita (gaura-sakti svarupa), so that means that Srila Gurudeva is also a manifestation of Gadadhara Pandita, although not in exactly the same way. He is a manifestation of Baladeva—a manifestation of Nityananda—who is akhanda guru tattva, the complete guru. Siksa guru–ke to jani krsnera svarupa. Sri Gurudeva is non different from the personality of Krsna Himself. He is non-different from the form of Krsna Himself, manifested to give us His divine instructions as a reality in our heart. So we are so fortunate to have Srila Rupa Goswami manifest on the vyasa asana before us.(This is not to be taken in an impersonal way. At the same time that they are one, they are also individual personalities.)
[Srila Narayana Maharaja] I want that Vraja-vallabha should speak. He is a very qualified and senior Vaisnava.
[Vrajavallabha] I am very unqualified. Ei baro koruna koro vaisnava gosani. We are really all here by the mercy of our spiritual master. All we have to do is empty ourselves from other things and simply make ourselves available. All these troubles, anarthas and unnecessary baggage we carry in our hearts—we just have to let them go and simply joyfully associate with vaisnavas and Gurudeva. Then so many transformations will take place. There is so much potential in the heart of all devotees, and by coming into contact with our spiritual master, so many glorious things will then take place. We don’t have to quarrel anymore with the reactions of our karma. We just accept them, and we concentrate and collect all our energies and concentrate with all our minds fully on bhakti.
[Srila Narayana Maharaja] I know that by the mercy of my diksa guru, nitya lila pravista om visnupada astottara sata Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Maharaja; and my siksa guru, my friend and so many relationships, Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja—only by their mercy I have come. Actually I am not coming. They are inspiring me to go everywhere and preach their mission. I know that I am a dry straw, with no qualification as they glorify me. I am not such a high class of devotee. I do not have so much bhakti .But I know that the mercy of my Gurudeva, and of my siksa guru Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja, is making me go here and there to preach their mission. I have read in Brhad Bhagavatamrta, that sadhu sanga is the root of all success and bhakti. If there is no good association, no one can attain love for Sri Sri Radha-Krsna, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Sri Nityanada prabhu.
In this world only very rare persons are anxious to have bhakti for Sri Sri Radha and Krsna, and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Very rare. But I know that Krsna is so much anxious and worried for us. He is searching for us, and He is calling us. He is so merciful that He told Srimati Radhika, “O, my bhakta, the brahmana is searching for me. You should help him”. She then sent Gopa Kumara: “Go at once to this martya-loka and bring him by any trick”. In the last chapters, Sri Sanatana Goswami has given a glorification of this high class of association. Perhaps you know all about the brahmana who went to Kamaksa devi in India because he wanted wealth. That is why he was worshipping Kamaksa devi, who is Durga devi. She was very merciful to him and never gave him any wealth. She used to give much wealth to others, but there was some exception for him. She gave him gopala-mantra in a dream. She told him who is the Deity of this mantra, how we should chant our mantra 3 times daily, and how we should offer ourselves and be saranagata to the lotus feet of that Deity. The brahmana thought it was only a dream, and nothing else; and so he overlooked it. After four or five days that devi, goddess, again came in a dream and said, “Oh, you are not following my orders. You must follow. Then you will be successful in your life, and you will have everything you desire. But don’t delay. From today you should follow with high regard and very strong faith”.
After some time that brahmana became detached from all worldly desires, and he forgot to ask any wealth from Devi. He left and came to Bengal at the Sagara (ocean), and from there he went to Gaya and Kasi, and from there he went to Vrndavana. There he was wondering, “What is sadhya and sadhana?” (the path of perfection and perfection itself). He was so worried about this. He heard someone weeping very loudly. He could not determine or differentiate whether the person was weeping, or singing in a melody. After some time he entered the kunja from where the sound was coming, and there he saw a beautiful gopa, who was like a sakha of Krsna. He was Gopa Kumara; and he was weeping “O Krsna! O Krsna!” His song was like the gopis when the wept for Krsna in rasa- lila:
tava kathamritam tapta jivanam/ kavibhir iditam kalmasapaham
sravana mangalam srimad atatam/ bhuvi grhnanti ye bhurida janah
“My Lord, the nectar of Your words and the descriptions of Your activities are the life and soul of those who are always aggrieved in this material world. These narrations are transmitted by exalted personalities, and they eradicate all sinful reactions. Whoever hears these narrations attains all good fortune. These narrations are broadcast all over the world and are filled with spiritual power. Those who spread the message of Godhead are certainly the most munificent welfare workers.”
They were weeping, but it was like a pathetic song. Krsna could not control Himself and He appeared at once. Similarly, Gopa Kumar was weeping like this. With folded hands, the brahmana approached Him. Gopa Kumar had been meditating, and his meditation was now broken. Gopa Kumara said, “You are a brahmana and you went to Prayaga, Jyotisapura, and you worshipped Kamaksha Devi for wealth. Then brahmin asked, “How did you know? Yes. I have done this.”
Gopa Kumar continued, “And she gave you gopala-mantra along with an outline of how to chant it.” “How do you know? “Yes. That happened”, he replied. He was thinking, “How did he know all these things? This is very strange.” “She also warned you not to delay in Kasi; otherwise you will become a pukka mayavadi. She said, “Go to Prayaga and take bath, but don’t delay there. Go directly to Vrndavana.”
A bona fide guru, before giving initiation, will speak and act in such a way that the diciple will be greatly influenced by his glory. He will think, ‘Oh he’s really my guru’. Sri Sanatana Goswami has written in Hari Bhakti Vilasa that the guru should test the disciple, and the disciple should also test the guru. Otherwise one blindly accepts a guru and later on that guru falls down, the disciple’s life will be ruined. Kanisthas adhikar who think that, ‘We are uttama or madhyama adhikari’, should be very careful about these things. At least they should test the quality and character of the diciples; otherwise those disciples will make them fall down. All this has been explained in the scriptures.
Tasmad guru prapadyetad jijnasu sreya uttamam. Those who are qualified, high class devotees are really gurus. You are fortunate. You have come in the line of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Srila Rupa Goswami , Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, and in the line of Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja. You are so much fortunate.It was his mercy that brought me here. Otherwise how could I have come?
The Mathura brahmana asked Gopa Kumara, “I want to know what is sadhana and what is sadhya. I don’t know anything. Devi gave me diksa of that mantra, but she never told me all these things”. Gopa Kumara then began to tell his own life history; and at last he said, “Krsna requested Srimati Radhika, ‘Somehow you should manage that this brahmana will come to Me. He is My very dear one’. Srimati Radhika replied, ‘That is why, in My form as Durga, I gave him initiation’. Who is that Durga? She is a manifestation of Srimati Radharani. There is not so much difference between them. We only say that Durga is Mahamaya, and Srimati Radhika is Yogamaya—or more than that. In one sense they are one. Not in all senses, but in one sense. So Krsna had requested Her, because He was anxious for His dear devotee, ‘Please arrange that this brahmana should very soon come to me. He is my sakha.”
Gopa Kumara continued, “And then She sent me: ‘O Swarupa, you should go and bring that brahmana boy’. I have therefore come just for you. I have told you my whole history, and I have told you about all the five kinds of love and affection. I have especially explained told the glorification of gopi prema, and how, in gopi prema, Radha prema is the highest, the supreme. I have told everything. You are also the sakha of Krsna.
The brahmana knew all these things, but yet he had achieved no bhava and no prema—nothing was coming. Then Gopa Kumara put his hand on the head of the brahmana. At once the brahmana began to weep loudly, he saw Krsna and Srimati Radhika there, and he realized all that his guru had told him. Very quickly he saw that, “I am going somewhere, flying in an aeroplane. He then saw that he reached Goloka Vrndavana, and there he met all.
Why did I tell this story? Who gave diksa to that brahmana? Devi, the manifestation of Srimati Radhika. Although she was his diksa guru, she could not help him very much. She only gave diksa, the gopala mantra. At first only harinama and gopala mantra was given in diksa—nothing else.
Now we are so fallen that the gurus, in the line of our Guru parampara—like Sri Gopala Guru Goswami, Sri Vakreswara Pandit, and Sri Dhyamcandra Goswami, discovered all these things from sastra. They then added brahma gayatri, guru mantra, guru gayatri, gaura mantra, gaura gayatri, and kama gayatri all. Now-a-days everything is given, because we are not like the devotees of the past.
Durga gave the diksa mantra, but she could not tell all the things that Gopa Kumara told. He was therefore siksa guru. Do you know who was superior? The siksa guru. Srimati Radhika had personally sent Gopa Kumara; and so you can realize what is the position of a siksa guru. And who is my siksa guru? Srila Swami Maharaja. My diksa guru was in the same category. My diksa guru gave sannyasa, the renounced order, and gave siksa also, to Srila Swami Maharaja. Both are very high-class .Both may be siksa gurus and diksa guru simultaniously. No harm. Both are qualified to be diksa guru and siksa guru at the same time. So you can see. how I am also lucky, how I am fortunate to have a diksa guru and siksa guru like them.
Really, I am very fortunate. I had so much association with Srila Prabhupada’s very highly learned associates. I have seen so many—almost all—of the high class of associates of Srila Prabhupada Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakura. And I have served them all. Because I used to live with my Gurudeva, I had the chance to serve them. I am especially so fortunate and lucky that I served Srila Swamiji also. That is why I am telling that he gave me service since1947, when there was no birth of ISKCON, no disciples; nothing. And at that time he only wanted to make a “League of Devotees.” You are aware of the League of Devotees? At first he did that; and from the beginning he was so merciful to me. As you know, he has written in his letters to me that, “Our relation is transcendental.” I don’t know the depth of what he has written. I will be lucky when I realize it. He wrote me that, “Our relation is same as my relation was to my Prabhupada. Your relation to me is the same”. I want to realize this. When I will realize it, my life will be successful.
You should also know that I have not come here, or anywhere in the world, to make disciples. I have come only to follow the orders of my diksa guru, and especially the order of my siksa guru Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja, as he ordered me with his last breath. After speaking with me he never talked with anyone. Soon after this conversation he gave up his external consciousness, and entered the service of his holy masters, Sri Sri Radha-Krsna conjugal.
He requested, “I am begging for forgiveness. You should forgive me. My godbrothers should forgive me. I have done something in my preaching that I should not have done. Please try to teach something—all siddhantas—to all my disciples.” He told me, in Bengali, in my ear, “O, I have brought so many monkeys. I could not teach them fully, so please help them.” I said, “I give my word. You are my siksa guru. I will try to help up to my last breath. I will help all your disciples”. So I have not come to make any disciples. I came only to take the foot-dust of Swamiji—wherever he went. All these places are very auspicious.
I also came to help the devotees who have been neglected. Only for this only to help them. Unfortunately, however those who began to associate with me were refused the shelter of others. That is why I was bound to give shelter to them. Otherwise, even today, I only want that I should help them all totally, so that they will not fall down. Lacking sadhu sanga, and the shelter of the siksa guru, all are bound to fall. A man cannot be on the same level, or same class always. And, if he has no taste, he must fall down.
So I am very happy. I have strong belief that you will never fall down. I know that you, are in the real sense, ISKCON—established by Brahma. In that line, Sri Narada Goswami is second, and third is… Devotees. Vyasadeva.
[Srila Narayana Maharaja] Only ‘Vyasa deva’. Krsna Dvaipayana Vedavyasa, who manifested Srimad Bhagavatam.
Then Madhavendra Puripada came, then Isvara Puripada, and then Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Sri Swarupa Damodara, Sri Raya Ramananda—they are really ISKCON devotees. You should not be a ‘frog in a well’. Never. You can be a frog, but of the ocean. Then you can realize the mercy of Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja. Otherwise you cannot. If you are a frog in a well you cannot realize his mercy. Coming from the well you cannot see the 7 oceans of the world where Swamiji went and manifested his mercy to all without any consideration of caste and creed. He told to those who came, “You should chant Hare Krsna—Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna Hare Hare—Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare.”
He said “Oh, from where have you come? Are you a disciple of Srila Bhaktiprajnana Kesava Goswami Maharaja?”
“Oh yes, I am his disciple.” And he embraced him. “O you are so dear to me.”
“O, from where have you come? From Srila Bhakti Raksaka Sridhar Maharaja?” “O yes, come on, come on.”
“From where you are coming?”
“I am coming from Australia.”
“Are you a hippie?”
“Oh Yes, yes.”
“O come on, come on.” And he embraced them.
Now however, there are so many walls here and there. “No one should enter.” Our Caitanya Mahaprabhu was so merciful. Boundlessly merciful. A dog came to him and He asked, “You are the dog of Sivananda Sena?” And he gave him some maha prasada coconut. He told the dog to chant Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, and that dog went directly to Goloka. So I want even a dog who is related to Swamiji to be my bosom friend. He is my bosom friend. We are all from the one family of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu—in Australia, America, England or Holland, or even in Muslim countries – no harm. Those who think, “We are of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu” and are chanting Hare Krsna—all are in our family, and we should try to give them honor: ‘krsneti yasya giri tam manasadriyeta,’ and if ‘diksasti cet pranatibhis ca bhajantam isam,’ then offer obeisances with the body, and if ‘susrusaya bhajana-vijnam ananyam anya-nindadi-sunya-hrdam ipsita-sanga-labdhya.’ If you find someone who is ‘nindati sunyam,’never criticizing anyone, is always and is always absorbed in chanting and remembering, then you should go and fall down at the lotus feet of that high-class rasika and bhavuka Vaisnava, and try to serve him with your whole life and soul. He is our prana bandhu, the bosom friend of our heart. Srila Rupa Goswami has never told that “He should only be a disciple of my gurudeva.” Has he written this. Never. So try to follow all these things in a correct way.
I am very happy that so many devotees have come here to Murwillumbah. I am very inspired. You are helping me in this preaching, in the line of Srila Swamiji. All of you are helping. I am not making disciples; I am making my friends. I am creating an environment so that I can tell some Hari–katha to them, and so that they can hear. And Srila Prabhupada Bhaktisiddhanta has said, “O you are my ‘vipada uddhara bandhu.’” What is the meaning? You are my friends who save me from great calamity.” Also you are saving me from great calamity. The guru never thinks that, “I’m making so many disciples”. These are all the wealth of Krsna.They all are very fragrant, very smooth and very sweet flowers and the guru takes them and offers them at the lotus feet of Srimati Radhika. Guru only does this. He never thinks that’ “All the disciples are my property.” He never thinks in that way. Otherwise, he is a kan-guru [Kangaroo]. A real Guru thinks that all the disciple are very sweet, fragrant small flowers of Radha and Krsna conjugal. If the guru gives this flower (the disciple) to the lotus feet of Radhika, She takes it and places it in a garland,and puts that garland around the neck of Krsna; as does Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Sri Nityananda prabhu. So we should try to break down all the walls. Then everyone can be offered together, and chant and remember together.