sa vai pumsam paro dharmo
yato bhaktir adhoksaje
“The supreme occupation [dharma] for all humanity is that by which men can attain to loving devotional service unto the transcendent Lord. Such devotional service must be unmotivated and uninterrupted to completely satisfy the self.”
The explanation of the word parama-dharma can be understood by Srila Rupa Gosvami’s verse defining uttama bhakti. We should follow this parama-dharma of chanting, remembering and meditating on Lord Krsna. Hari-katha (The naration of the Pastimes of Lord Krsna) is very powerful. Krsna has invested all His power in His name and His hari-katha. In fact, hari-katha is Krsna Himself. In the form of harinama (Krsnas Holy Name) and hari-katha, Krsna comes in your heart. You should strongly believe this. He will purify you of the greater part of your anarthas very soon. Then naistiki-bhakti will come, and after that the knots in your heart (hrdaya granthi) will be gone.
ksiyante casya karmani
“Thus the knots of the heart and all misgivings are cut to pieces. The chain of fruitive actions, or karma, is terminated when one sees the self as master.”
kama-lobhadayas ca ye
ceta etair anaviddham
sthitam sattve prasidati
“As soon as irrevocable loving service is established in the heart, the effects of nature’s modes of passion and ignorance, such as lust, desire and hankering, disappear from the heart. Then the devotee is established in goodness, and he becomes completely happy.”
If you do not understand you can question me, and this question and answer period is called istagosthi. My door is always open, to hear any questions and to reply them.
Srimad-bhagavatam has described how Sri Vyasadeva engaged in this uttama-bhakti-yoga and was thus able to see the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
samyak pranihite ’male
apasyat purusam purnam
mayam ca tad-apasrayam
“Thus he fixed his mind, perfectly engaging it by linking it in devotional service [bhakti-yoga] without any tinge of materialism, and thus he saw the Absolute Personality of Godhead along with His external energy, which was under full control.”
He saw Lord Krsna with all His associates, such as Sridama, Dama, Sudama, Vasudama, Stoka-krsna, Nanda Baba and Mother Yasoda, as well as Lalita, Visakha, Citra and all other gopis. He saw all the pastimes Krsna performed with them. The previously mentioned verses are the essence of the entire Srimad-Bhagavatam. If we will follow bhakti, we will also be able to see Krsna with His pastimes, and associates – and all our doubts and questions will disappear.
anukulyena krsnanu-silanam bhaktir uttama
(Sri Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu 1.1.11)
“Uttama bhakti is the cultivation of activities that are meant exclusively for the benefit of Sri Krsna, in other words, the uninterrupted flow of service to Him, performed through all endeavors of the body, mind, and speech, and through the expression of various spiritual sentiments (bhavas). It is not covered by jnana (knowledge aimed at impersonal liberation) and karma (reward-seeking activity), yoga or austerities; and it is completely free from all desires other than the aspiration to bring happiness to Krsna.”
The word uttama-bhakti is in this verse, so there must also be some lower classes of bhakti – mixed with karma, jnana, yoga, severe austerity and so on – and historical examples of devotees in those stages have been given in Srimad-bhagavatam.
We should especially know that service to Krsna with mamata a sense of “mineness” towards Lord Krsna is uttama-bhakti, and the increase of mamata in service places a devotee in successively higher stages.
Volgograd, Russia: September 14, 2004