Acaryas Quotes Bhakti Quotes Who is a Vaisnava?

Who is a Vaisnava?

kanaka-kamini paratistha-baghini
chadiyache yare sei ta’ vaisnava
Dusta Mana! Tumi kisera Vaisnava (11)

Money, women and fame are like tigresses. Those who have relinquished them are indeed Vaisnavas. Vaisnavas alone are pure and detached devotees who can conquer material existence.

With this qualification, a genuine guru can make disciples throughout the world. Simply chanting the maha-mantra – hare krsna hare krsna krsna krsna hare hare, hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare, does not indicate a person’s gurutva, qualification to be guru.

apani acari dharma jivere sikhaya
apani na kaile dharma sikhana na jaya

One must teach dharma to the jivas by personally practising it. If one does not practise, he should not teach others.

acinoti yah sastrartham acare sthapayaty api
svayam acarate yasmad acaryas tena kirttitah
Vayu Purana

An acarya is one who fully understands the conclusions of the revealed scriptures and whose behaviour reflects his deep realization. He is a living example, for he teaches the meaning of the scriptures by both words and deeds.

The above slokas were spoken to emphasize that one who assumes the position of guru and gives instruction to others must himself be following that instruction. If he does not, his preaching will never be effective. If a person takes intoxication and then tells others not to do so, his instruction will carry no potency.

The scriptures do not sanction a person becoming guru if his behaviour is improper. They explain that he must have realization of sabda-brahma (transcendental sound vibration), he must be endowed with realization of para-brahma (the Lord’s transcendental form) and have full realization of transcendental subjects, such a krsna-tattva. If he has no such realization, he cannot impart transcendental knowledge to his disciple by speaking mere words. To give diksa means to bestow transcendental knowledge.

divyam jnanam yato dadyat
kuryat papasya sanksayam
tasmad-dikseti sa prokta
desikais tattva-kovidaih
Hari-bhakti-vilasa (2.3–4)

One who is fully conversant with tattva, philosophical truth, knows that the process of diksa can awaken a person’s transcendental knowledge and annihilate the reactions of his sins.

Sri Devananda Gaudiya Matha, Navadvipa
8 March 1998

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DID UDDHAVA UNDERSTAND THE GLORIES OF THE VRAJAVASIS?

Uddhava did not want to leave Kṛṣṇa for a minute, but he knew that as long as the Vrajavāsīs were all constantly thinking of Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa would feel no peace in Dvārakā. “Everyone in Vraja-bhūmi is always thinking of Kṛṣṇa, therefore Kṛṣṇa is restless in Mathurā and Dvārakā.” Uddhava thought thus. “I will go and advise them with so much knowledge and I will change them. I will ask them, ‘Why are you lamenting so much? Kṛṣṇa is Parabrahma, Parameśvara, the greatest yogī. Wherever you are, think about Kṛṣṇa, and then He will appear in your heart. Why do you think He is far away from you? He is the all-pervasive Paramātmā.” Uddhava thought he was very intelligent, with so much understanding of tattva-siddhānta, but this was useless in regard to the Vrajavāsīs. It is like collecting pieces of ordinary stone and rejecting priceless gems. Kṛṣṇa told Uddhava, “What knowledge you have collected is not natural; when you go to Vṛndāvana, there, everyone has natural love. They are not relatives of one another, but they are all near and dear to each other. Generally, people have relation and love for their family members, their children and spouses, but in Vraja, there is no need of blood relation for there to be a loving relation.” Everyone has natural love for Kṛṣṇa in Vraja. Their love is unparalleled and unconditional. You can not understand this with your material knowledge and conceptions. Why do all the birds and animals have love for Kṛṣṇa? Why does everyone in Vraja have spontaneous love for Kṛṣṇa? In Dvārakā, however, the peoples’ love is divided, amongst their own blood relatives. They are not one-pointed in their love for Kṛṣṇa, and they do not cry in separation from Kṛṣṇa. If they do not see Kṛṣṇa for some months, they do not feel so much suffering. They know, “He is busy now in Hastināpura. He will come back when He is finished there.” When Kṛṣṇa was shot by many arrows in the Mahābhārata war the Dvārakāvāsīs did not feel pain. They thought, “He is God and feels no pain; He cannot be harmed.” But the Vrajavāsīs could not tolerate this. If they saw that even one hair of Kṛṣṇa’s had fallen down, they would feel so much pain and suffering. Other devotees of Kṛṣṇa have knowledge of His opulence and glory, and this dims their affection for Him. When Uddhava went to Vraja-bhūmi he lost his knowledge and forgot Dvārakā. He then thought, “Vraja-bhūmi is supreme. The Vrajavāsīs have unparalleled love. They are Kṛṣṇa’s nearest and dearest, therefore Kṛṣṇa is always restless and suffering, remembering the Vrajavāsīs’ pure unconditional love. The Vrajavāsīs’ love can never be diminished or finished. It only increases when faced with obstacles.” In this world, if a boy has love for a girl, and she for him, and people, like their relatives, try to stop them from meeting, then they will find any way to meet, regardless of the obstacles. They will find a way to send messages to each other and to meet each other. The Vrajavāsīs’ love for Kṛṣṇa is millions of times greater than this. Their love is shoreless and fathomless. Uddhava could not find the limit of the Vrajavāsīs’ love. Caitanya Mahāprabhu prayed and sang to Jagannātha during the Ratha-yātrā festival. He said, “You sent Uddhava to Vraja-maṇḍala and he gave the Vrajavāsīs so much advice about brahma-jñāna, and You also gave similar advice to them at Kurukṣetra, but how could the Vrajavāsīs follow this? They were already far beyond this brahma-jñāna and could not follow it.” Uddhava told the gopīs, “Do yoga by always remembering Kṛṣṇa.” “We want to forget Kṛṣṇa,” the gopīs replied, “but find it impossible. When there is viyoga, separation, then one must endeavor for yoga, union. But we have no viyoga, because we already incessantly think of Kṛṣṇa; we cannot stop. So how can we follow your yoga? You have viyoga, therefore you advise others to practice yoga. But we have no viyoga from Kṛṣṇa. He is not far from us and we are not far from Him. We want to forget Him and try to forget how He is and what He is doing and who is there with Him, serving Him, if He is sleeping or not, eating or not, but we cannot stop thinking of Him for even a moment. We try to, but find it impossible. But you tell us, ‘Do yoga, forget everything else; only think of Him.’ We have already done this. Udho man na bhayo das-bīs, ek huto so gayo śyām saṅga, ko arādhe īś? You teach us to worship Syāma, but our mind is already captured by that Syāma. He has kept our mind and hearts with Him and we cannot bring them back. He will not return them. Therefore we are suffering and restless.” In the mood of Śrīmatī Rādhārānī, Mahāprabhu said to Jagannātha, “You are very clever. You know My heart.

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APPEARANCE OF SRIPADA NITYANANDA PRABHU

Today is the appearance day of Śrī Nityānanda Prabhu. He gives svarūpa sattā to the living entities, bringing them to eternal Vraja-dhāma. He performed all different plays in Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes. This is not any ordinary or mundane drama. Guru-pāda-padma gives knowledge of one’s svarūpa; relation with one’s svarūpa; liberation from one’s mundane body, and entrance into one’s soul body. We heard this morning how Nityānanda Prabhu appeared in this world. And we heard how He left Ekacakra and came to Vṛndāvana, after traveling on pilgrimage throughout India. There, He went to all the temples and searched everywhere for Kṛṣṇa. But He could not find Kṛṣṇa. He would ask the cowherd men He met, but they told Him, “Now Kṛṣṇa is not here.” He went to Govardhana and all around Vraja, and wept and rolled in the dust of Vraja, remembering Dvāpara-yuga and the pastimes of Kṛṣṇa. But He could not find Nanda, Yaśodā, Kṛṣṇa, and the Vrajavāsīs. He came to Mathurā and, seeing the palace of Kaṁsa, He was infuriated. He saw one piece of stone there covered with bloodstains. The stone had drunk the blood from the infants of Devakī that Kaṁsa had dashed upon it. Seeing this, Nityānanda Prabhu threw the stone in the Yamunā. But, as He went on His way, the stone floated along the river behind Him, all the way to Khar Daha. After sannyāsa, Nityānanda Prabhu went with Mahāprabhu to Advaita bhavana and then to Jagannātha Purī. Nityānanda Prabhu broke the daṇḍa of Mahāprabhu. One day Nityānanda Prabhu asked Mahāprabhu, “Prabhu, You have taken sannyāsa. The rule of sannyāsīs is to go house to house begging for one’s maintenance. But You never went to beg alms.” Mahāprabhu said, “Save My daṇḍa and kamaṇḍalu, I am going.” Mahāprabhu went and begged alms with His uttarīya. Seeing Mahāprabhu, people gave so much that Mahāprabhu could not carry it all. When Mahāprabhu came back, Nityānanda Prabhu was present there. Mahāprabhu asked, “Where is My daṇḍa?” “We carry Mahāprabhu in our own heart,” the devotees thought, “and Mahāprabhu carries you?” daṇḍa-bhaṅga-līlā ei—parama gambhīra sei bujhe, duṅhāra pade yāṅra bhakti dhīra Madhya, 5.158 [The pastime of the breaking of the staff is very deep. Only one whose devotion is fixed upon the lotus feet of the two Lords can understand it.] “Now You have been carried in the hand of Mahāprabhu for a long time,” Nityānanda Prabhu said to the daṇḍa. “After leaving everyone else, Mahāprabhu is now your servant, carrying you everywhere. I can’t tolerate this.” Nityānanda Prabhu broke Mahāprabhu’s daṇḍa in three pieces and threw it in the Bhargavi River. When Mahāprabhu returned, He saw His daṇḍa was not present. He asked, “Where is My daṇḍa?” For sannyāsīs, a daṇḍa is the svarūpa of Nārāyaṇa. “Where did My daṇḍa go?” Mahāprabhu asked. “I don’t know,” Nityānanda Prabhu said. “You always dance in ecstatic moods. Who knows where You threw it.” “No,” Mahāprabhu said, “I gave it to You.” “Oh,” Nityānanda Prabhu said. “No. You must have accidentally broken it while dancing. Anyhow, it was only a cheap piece of bamboo. Seeing it broken, I threw it in the Bhargavi.” Mahāprabhu said, “Alas! A daṇḍa is a sannyāsī’s only guardian. You broke My daṇḍa! Alas! Śrīpāda! What have You done? Now I have no more relation with anyone. Go first to Jagannātha Purī; otherwise I will go first. What is Your choice?” “You should go first.” Mahāprabhu went forward doing kīrtana and dancing in His own mood. He ran to Jagannātha Purī, to the temple of Jagannātha. Mahāprabhu ran to embrace Jagannātha, fainted, and was brought to the home of Sārvabhauma Paṇḍita. Nityānanda Prabhu later came to the temple of Jagannātha and ran to embrace Him. The priests said, “Before one madman came and fell senseless, now another one has come!” They caught Him in the temple, saying, “You cannot go inside the inner sanctum.” Nityānanda Prabhu desired to go inside the temple sanctum to embrace Jagannātha, Baladeva, and Subhadrā. Mahāprabhu was at the house of Sārvabhauma Paṇḍita. The priests informed Sārvabhauma Paṇḍita of the devotees who had come, and they were also brought to his house. Seeing Mahāprabhu senseless, the devotees started loud saṅkīrtana. Then Mahāprabhu awoke from His trance and began dancing ecstatically. Mahāprabhu later gave an order to Nityānanda Prabhu, “Go! Don’t stay here any longer with Me.” Was He angry with Nityānanda Prabhu? No. “Go help all the living entities,” Mahāprabhu said. “Bestow prema-bhakti upon the living entities. You have come here. I will be happy if You stay with Me. But if You go and help all living entities, this gives Me even more happiness.” Nityānanda Prabhu came back to Navadvīpa-dhāma with a huge saṅkīrtana party. Any place He passed through, the villagers would come with Nityānanda Prabhu and follow Him. They would not want to stay any longer in their homes. They realized their residential permit in their bodies and homes was temporary. They thought, “I will go with Nityānanda Prabhu. I will relish eternal bliss.” They forgot mundane happiness, jaḍa ānanda, and became absorbed in nitya ānanda, eternal bliss. They entered Nityānanda Prabhu’s saṅkīrtana party and danced hour to hour, day to day, sometimes playing and doing kīrtana in the water and sometimes jumping on the top of trees and doing kīrtana in their branches. Sometimes they did not eat for a month, only doing kīrtana, dancing back and forth through the countryside, not know which way they were going. Nityānanda Prabhu made the people mad in the bliss of chanting harināma, and they forgot everything by drinking kīrtana-rasa and bhakti-rasa. They had no need for any mundane food while with Nityānanda Prabhu. Was their strength and energy lost? Nityānanda Prabhu gave them svarūpa-siddhi. Dvādaśa Gopāla, the Cauṣaṭṭi-mahānta, Aṣṭa Kaviraja, and millions of devotees came with Nityānanda Prabhu, performing maha saṅkīrtana. The devotees did kīrtana day and night with Nityānanda Prabhu. saṅkīrtana-rase mete’ nāma bilāilo nāmera hāṭe ese preme jagat bhāsāilo [Deeply absorbed in saṅkīrtana-rasa, He distributed the holy name, and having come to the marketplace of the holy name, He caused the whole universe to swim in prema.] Nityānanda Prabhu performed saṅkīrtana throughout the land. Before Mahāprabhu had not given Him order, but now that Mahāprabhu had instructed Him, He began showering everyone with prema-bhakti through the medium of harināma-saṅkīrtana. He came to Adi Saptagrāma, where Raghava Paṇḍita, Śivānanda-sena, and other devotees were waiting for His arrival with the devotees. Nityānanda Prabhu is patita-pāvana. Where He will go and when—there is no guarantee. He goes to deliver the most fallen, and changes the hearts of all. He once went to the place of Rāmacandra Khān, the wealthy landlord. When Nityānanda Prabhu came with His saṅkīrtana party to that area, He sent some sevakas, telling them, “Go ask if we can stay and perform kīrtana at his house.” “You are Kṛṣṇa’s followers,” Rāmacandra Khān said. “Living in the cowshed is good for you. My temple is for Durgā-devī. You can’t enter my palace and do kīrtana there. You follow Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa likes the cows, forest, and jungle. So why are you madmen coming here? There is no place for you here.” If anyone disturbs the Saṅkīrtana Movement, or if anyone is not happy with saṅkīrtana, then Nityānanda Prabhu will be angry at that place. Otherwise, Nityānanda Prabhu never becomes angry or disturbed. Nityānanda Prabhu became angry and said, “Oh! There is no place here for the devotees and saṅkīrtana? Then this place is for mlecchas.” Nityānanda Prabhu left that place. Before, Rāmacandra Khān had offended Haridāsa Ṭhākura, sending a prostitute to try and make him fall down. A little later, the Mughal ruler from Delhi sent many soldiers there. They went and took everything from Rāmacandra Khān, killed his family, and razed his house. Nityānanda Prabhu went from that place to Panihati in another state. The son of Hiranya Govardhana, Raghunātha, came to meet with Nityānanda Prabhu. Nityānanda Prabhu was very happy. His sevakas said, “Raghunātha has come and offered You obeisance from a far distance.” Nityānanda Prabhu had His followers call forth Raghunātha, and then shouted, “Raghunātha, you are a big thief. You have hidden many things. Now I am giving you daṇḍa, punishment.” On one side, Nityānanda Prabhu broke the daṇḍa of Mahāprabhu, and on the other side, He gave daṇḍa to Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī. “You must give prasādam to all the devotees,” Nityānanda Prabhu said. “You have come here in the early morning. I am remembering pulina-bhojana in Vraja on the bank of the Yamunā. Now arrange everything.” Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī was very pleased. bhakta dravyera khadi khadi khai abhaktera dravyera bhoga kabhi nahi chai If anyone has love for God, the Lord will go there and steal from him by force. But the Lord will never accept anything from those who have no love for Him. Even if they make a show offering something, the Lord will never accept it. Now, Raghunātha is an eternal Vrajavāsī. He has great love. How did he follow the order of Nityānanda Prabhu? He arranged prasādam for millions of devotees there in a short span of time. Thousands and thousands of people were standing anywhere and everywhere, in the river water, and on trees. (to see more click on Title)

WHY DO KRSNA'S GLORIES STEAL THE STRENGTH OF THE SENSES?

If anyone hears Kṛṣṇa’s glories, these will make one’s life restless and one will feel a heat within. This heat is intolerable, for it is transcendental. One won’t be able to tolerate it when it becomes too hot, and will fall senseless. Kṛṣṇa’s glories go inside and produce great heat, stealing the strength of the senses and making one as if paralyzed. One will fall senseless, as if one has been shot by a poisonous arrow. The body will then be injured. Kṛṣṇa-kathā is ārdra-jalpitaṁ, very sweet at the time of drinking, but later it is very painful. One cannot tolerate or digest this. One may think, “I will keep this with me.” But it is not possible. One behaves as if crazy and mad, always talking, whether alone or with many people, being no longer shy or considerate of any worldly concerns. Then one prays: kāhāṅ mora prāṇa-nātha muralī-vadana kāhāṅ karoṅ kāhāṅ pāṅ vrajendra-nandana kāhāre kahiba, kebā jāne mora duḥkha vrajendra-nandana vinu phāṭe mora buka Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 2.16-17 Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu used to express His mind in this way: “Where is the Lord of My life, who is playing His flute? What shall I do now? Where should I go to find the son of Mahārāja Nanda? To whom should I speak? Who can understand My disappointment? Without the son of Nanda Mahārāja, My heart is broken.” mādhava, bahuta minati kori toya, dei tulasī ṭīlā, deho samarpinu, doyā jāni nā chāḍabi moya Śrī Vidyāpati O Mādhava, with this offering of a tulasī leaf and sesame seeds, I beseech You and pledge my body in Your service. I know Your compassion is such that You will not reject me. This rasa is sweet and full of nectar. Hearing topics of Kṛṣṇa, this position of restlessness will come. When the vraja-gopīs meet with Him and see His restless eyes, it is like they are arrested in His prison. Now they are prisoners without any chance of leaving. He steals everything. Gambhīra-vilāsa-mantharam—Kṛṣṇa came and embraced them, but they have no sense, they don’t know anything. Kṛṣṇa is surprised. He embraces, kisses, and massages them, but sees that they are not inside their bodies. Internally, they are meeting with Kṛṣṇa. When their external sense comes back, they want to walk, but can’t. While walking, they smile, and take the wrong path. They don’t know when or what they are singing, or for how long. Sometimes they dance, but for how long, there is no guarantee. They are very restless, moving here and there. One sakhī prays to another, “Friend, why is your condition like this? You are very restless. Sometimes you are senseless, sometimes you cry, sometimes you weep, sometimes you laugh, smile, dance, talk, walk, sit—you are always restless. Why is your condition like this? Who has made you like this?” (CLICK ON THE TITLE TO READ THE FULL ARTICLE)

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