Why are people disrespecting Vaisnavas and offending them? What is anugatya-dharma? If you have taken shelter of Guru, however many people are Guru’s disciples, you will respect them. You will have the mood that you are the servant of all, like they are your masters. You will consider yourselves the servants of the servants of the servants, the very last one. Mahaprabhu often repeated this verse:
maj janmanah phalam idam madhu kaitabharai
mad prarthaniya mad anugraha esam eva
tvad brtya brtya paricaraka brtya brtya
brtyasya iti mam smara lokanatha
“My only prayer is that life after life, I may remain the servant of the servant of the servant of the servant.”
As long as Guru is there, disciples somewhat respect their godbrothers and godsisters, but as soon as our sad-guru has entered samadhi, they start disrespecting the godbrothers who have taken on the responsibility to continue Guru’s mission. They start criticizing other Vaisnavas, who have taken the responsibility to help others with love, care, and affection, as spiritual teachers. How will Guru be pleased by such action? If you please the Vaisnavas, then Guru will be pleased. But if you attack them, Guru will never be pleased. An offense to the son is an offense to the father. Harau ruste gurus trata, gurau ruste na kascana. If Hari is angered, Guru can save you. But if Guru is angered, no one can save you. Satam-ninda, criticizing the devotees who are spreading the glories of the holy name, is the first aparadha and the most dangerous. From Vaisnava-aparadha easily develops an offensive mentality to Guru, thus doubt develops, and faith in Krsna is gradually lost.
Even a senior godbrother and godsister, or uncle, will respect the junior, who has taken responsibility and is serving his Guru under anugatya.
Once, someone came to Srila Gurudeva and said, “I have taken shelter of you. I know only you. I don’t know any other. I am your servant alone.”
Gurudeva said, “Go! Go take shelter of the devotees. If you don’t serve and respect the devotees, I don’t know you.”
We saw ideal behavior between godbrothers in the pastimes of our beloved Srila Gurudeva, Srila Bhaktivedanta Vamana Gosvami Maharaja, and Srila Bhaktivedanta Trivikrama Gosvami Maharaja.
Everyone wants to respect and follow the Gurus, but find it very easy to criticize Vaisnavas. This is the nature of kanisthas. They cannot see the good qualities in others, especially their godbrothers and sisters. When you learn to respect the devotees, then Krsna will give you mercy. He will give you the chance and tendency to serve Guru and Vaisnavas. Vaisnava is first. Then Guru. Then Krsna. First is sadhu-sanga. First you offend Vaisnava. Then you will offend Guru. Then you will offend Krsna.
First, you must learn to respect sadhus, to respect Vaisnavas. You should think yourself to be the last servant of all the servants, and serve all the Vaisnavas with respect. This is Vaisnava-dharma. Then you can achieve the tendency, gradually, to lovingly serve Krsna. We should therefore follow the followers.
[CC-by-NDNC Bhakta Bandhav]