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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

r rmad

Gour Govinda Swami Mahrja

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

Contents
The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

The Perfect Brahmana


How to Give Respect to a Brahmana
Why Did Mahaprabhu Go to Gaya?
Mahaprabhu Manifested Jvara-Lila 
The Lord Is Known as Sevaka-Vatsala
Bound with the Rope of Love
The Dust from the Lotus Feet of His Premi-Bhakta
Advaita Acarya Offers Sraddha-Patra to Haridasa Thakura 
There Is No Discrimination in Krsna-Bhajana
The Quality of Forgiveness
Personalities Become Beautiful by Their Qualities
The Six Characteristics of Bhakti
Krsnas Virtues Are Transferred to His Devotee
By Developing Pure Bhakti All Good Qualities Arise
How Can You Develop Bhakti? 
The Result of Sadhu-Sanga
Namabhasa The Most Dangerous Stage
The Chief Symptom of a Sadhu

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Questions & Answers

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

r rmad

Gour Govinda Swami Mahrja


A lecture given on rmad-Bhgavatam 9.15.39-40
in Bhubaneswar on the 26th December, 1994.

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

vaya hi brhmas tta


kamayrhaat gat
yay loka-gurur deva
pramehyam agt padam
My dear son, we are all brhmaas and have become
worshipable for the people in general because of our quality
of forgiveness. It is because of this quality that Lord Brahm,
the supreme spiritual master of this universe, has achieved
his post.

kamay rocate lakmr


brhm saur yath prabh
kamim u bhagavs
tuyate harir vara
The duty of a brhmaa is to culture the quality of
forgiveness, which is illuminating like the sun. The Supreme
Personality of Godhead, Hari, is pleased with those who are
forgiving. (rmad-Bhgavatam 9.15.39-40)

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

Different personalities become beautiful by possessing


different qualities. Cakya Paita says that the cuckoo
bird, although very black, is beautiful because of its sweet
voice. Similarly, a woman becomes beautiful by her chastity
and faithfulness to her husband, and an ugly person becomes
beautiful when he becomes a learned scholar. In the same way,
brhmaas, katriyas, vaiyas and dras become beautiful by
their qualities. Brhmaas are beautiful when they are forgiving,
katriyas when they are heroic and never retreat from fighting,
vaiyas when they enrich cultural activities and protect cows,
and dras when they are faithful in the discharge of duties
pleasing to their masters. Thus everyone becomes beautiful by
his special qualities. And the special quality of the brhmaa,
as described here, is forgiveness. (rmad-Bhgavatam 9.15.40
purport by rla AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupda)

The Perfect Brahmana


The Bhad-rayaka Upaniad, verse 4.4.21 states, Tam eva
dhro vijya praj kurvta brhmaa a wise person who
knows the Supreme Lord, Parabrahma, through the process of
devotion, is a brhmaa. One who knows bhagavata svarpa
perfectly well, who has prema-bhakti, is a brhmaa. When a
brhmaa becomes a Vaiava then he is a perfect brhmaa. A
so-called brhmaa with no Vaiava qualities is not a perfect
brhmaa. In the same Upaniad, verse 3.8.10 it is stated:
yo v etad akara grgy aviditvsml lokt praiti sa kpana
He is a miserly man who does not solve the problems
of life as a human and who thus quits this world like the

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

cats and dogs, without understanding the science of selfrealization.

atha ya etad akara grgi viditvsml


lokt praiti sa brhmaa
O daughter of Gargcrya, he who leaves this world
without learning about the infallible Supreme is a kpaa,
or miser. O Grgi, one who is acquainted with that infallible
truth by which one transcends death is a brhmaa.

The opposite of a brhmaa is kpaa. Prabhupda quotes


the following verse in his purport to the second chapter of the
rmad Bhagavad-gt:
krpaya-doopahata-svabhva
pcchmi tv dharma-sammha-cet
yac chreya syn nicita brhi tan me
iyas te ha dhi m tv prapannam
Arjuna said, Now I am confused about my duty and
have lost all composure because of miserly weakness. In this
condition I am asking You to tell me for certain what is best
for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto
You. Please instruct me. (Bhagavad-gt 2.7)

In the purport to this verse Prabhupda quoted that verse


from the Bhad-rayaka Upaniad, Yo v etad akara grgy
aviditvsml lokt praiti sa kpaa He is a miserly man who
does not solve the problems of life as a human and who thus
quits this world like the cats and dogs, without understanding
the science of self-realization. Arjuna said, I am not
brhmaa, I am kpaa, krpaya-doopahata-svabhva, I am
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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

afflicted with the defects of a kpaa, krpaya-doa. In that


context Prabhupda quoted that verse from the Bhad-rayaka
Upaniad. One who leaves this planet without knowing acyutavastu, the infallible Lord Acyuta is kpaa. One who leaves this
planet knowing that infallible Lord is a brhmaa.
The Manu-smti (2.168) states,
yo nadhtya dvijo vedam anyatra kurute ramam
sa jvann eva dratvam u gacchati snvaya
The twice-born brhmaa, dvija, who after receiving
the sacred thread does not immerse himself in the study of
the Vedas, but busies himself with less important texts and
subject matters will very soon in this lifetime, along with his
family, acquire the lowly qualities of a dra.

The vetvatara Upaniad (6.27) states,


yasya deve par bhaktir
yath deve tath gurau
tasyaite kathit hy arth
prakante mahtmana
Only unto those great souls who have implicit faith in
both the Lord and the spiritual master are all the imports of
Vedic knowledge automatically revealed.

In the Fourth Canto of the rmad-Bhgavatam you find,


sarvatrskhalitdea
sapta-dvpaika-daa-dhk

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

anyatra brhmaa-kuld
anyatrcyuta-gotrata
Mahrja Pthu was an unrivaled king and possessed the
scepter for ruling all the seven islands on the surface of the
globe. No one could disobey his irrevocable orders but the
saintly persons, the brhmaas and the descendants of the
Supreme Personality of Godhead [the Vaiavas].
(rmad-Bhgavatam 4.21.12)

Pthu Mahrja was a very powerful emperor of the whole


universe, brahma. He was inflicting punishment upon
everyone except the brhmaas and Vaiavas. So-called
brhmaas belong to the cyuta-gotra, but a Vaiava belongs to
the acyuta-gotra. Gotra means lineage. So the brhmaas gotra
is cyuta-gotra, they belong to the fallible line, but Vaiavas
become a part of the acyuta-gotra, infallible line, because they are
a part of Kas family. This is the difference between so-called
brhmaas and Vaiavas. If you ask so-called brhmaas to
which gotra (dynasty) they belong they may reply with the name
of some i like Bhradvja-gotra, Vasiha-gotra, Gautamagotra or Kayapa-gotra. If the so-called brhmaa accepts
Vaiava dk then he becomes a Vaiava, and he becomes a
perfect brhmaa. A Vaiava is a perfect brhmaa. Therefore
it is said brhmadi brhmaa, one who knows brahmavastu is brhmaa. Then the question arises what is Brahman?
Mahprabhu defeated the philosophy of the Brahmavds
because they were stressing upon, Brahma, Brahma, Brahma.
Their goal is to get mukti, to merge into Brahma. Mahprabhu
explained what Brahma is,

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

brahma-abde kahe pra svaya bhagavn


svaya bhagavn ka,strera prama
The word Brahman indicates the complete Supreme
Personality of Godhead, who is r Ka. That is the verdict
of all Vedic literature.
(Caitanya-caritmta, Madhya-ll 6.147)

Brahma means vara, svayam-bhagavn. Who is svayambhagavn? All stra states that svayam-bhagavn is Ka. So
Brahma means Ka, Parambrahma. Mahprabhu said, You
dont know Ka, so how are you a brhmaa? Why are you
saying Brahma, Brahma? What is that Brahma? The stra
prama or stric injunctions state that Brahma means svayambhagavn, which is Ka. One who knows Ka knows Brahma,
and therefore he is a brhmaa. One who does not know Ka
is not a brhmaa. Therefore the all-pervading maintainer of the
whole universe, vivambara is cidnanda-maya viea brahma, is
Viu. As long as one has not acquired the knowledge of Brahma
he is not a real brhmaa. He only develops the abhimna that he
is a brhmaa. Brahmavds do not know Parabrahma Ka yet
they emphatically argue that they know Brahma and that they
are brhmaas. But as long as one does not know who Brahma,
Bhagavn Viu or Ka really is, his so-called brahma-jna
is destroyed by mah-kla, the all-devouring time factor. It
is destroyed by iva. That is the ultimate destination of the
impersonalist, nirviea-vd. So as long as nirviea-vda is not
completely destroyed or completely checked, brahma-jijs,
inquiring about Brahma will not begin. Once nirviea-vda is
destroyed then you will inquire about Brahma. Mahprabhu,
who is the supreme authority, has taught that.

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

brahma-abde kahe pra svaya bhagavn


svaya bhagavn ka,strera prama
(Caitanya-caritmta, Madhya-ll 6.147)
Brahma indicates vara, paramevara, the all-pervading,
controller of all and maintainer of all svayam-bhagavn Ka.
All Vedic literatures have said this. It is a stric injunction that
svayam-bhagavn is Ka. One who knows Ka is a perfect
brhmaa. This is the conclusion. One who does not know
Ka, how is he a brhmaa?

How to Give Respect to a Brahmana


Mahprabhu also taught, by His own example, how to give
respect to a brhmaa. When Mahprabhu was known as
Nimi Paita He was teaching Sanskrit grammar, rhetoric,
alakra, and nyya, logic. Surrounded by His iyas, students,
Mahprabhu journeyed to Gay to offer oblations to His
deceased father. On the way He manifested a ll, jvara-ll; He
fell ill with a high fever. The students became worried as to
how Mahprabhu, Nimi Paita will be cured. Shall we bring
some medicine? Mahprabhu said, There is no medicine. In
the same way as Ka said that when He manifested this same
ll. He also became sick, and was shivering with a high fever.
Nrada Muni came and saw Ka shivering, with a high fever.
Nrada Muni became worried and said, Shall I bring some
medicine for You? Ka said, None of those medicines will
cure Me. There is only one medicine. What is that? Please
bring some dust from the lotus feet of My dear devotee who
is willing to give. That is the medicine. If I smear it on My
body then I will be cured of this high fever. There is no other
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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

medicine. Mahprabhu manifested that same ll, jvara-ll. He


had a high fever and was shivering. His students said, What
medicine shall we bring? No, there is no medicine. Go to a
brhmaa and get some foot-washing water. I will drink it. That
is My medicine. This is mentioned in the Caitanya-bhgavata.

Why Did Mahaprabhu Go to Gaya?


While Nimi Paita was teaching as a professor in
Navadvpa, the followers of the karma-kya section of the
Vedas, known as the smrta-brhmaas, were very great in
number. They were criticizing Mahprabhu, and they were
criticizing the Vaiavas. No one was even uttering the word
bhakti. But Mahprabhu had come to establish bhakti. He
is bhakta-rpa. Assuming the mood of a bhakta He came to
teach bhakti. That was Mahprabhus mission. So Mahprabhu
thought, This is the proper time. I will now manifest Myself
and My mission, the purpose for My descent. So in order to
defeat and bewilder the smrta-brhmaas, Mahprabhu went
to Gay to offer oblations for His deceased father. There was no
need of going to Gay to offer oblations. A Vaiava never does
that. It is said that a Vaiava should not wear kua grass and
offering pia, pia-dna to the deceased forefathers. This is
the karma-kya vadhdi of the smrta-brhmaas. A Vaiava
will never do gay-raddh, go to Gay to offer oblations. That is
forbidden to Vaiavas. Then why did Mahprabhu do it? Why
did He go to Gay? Mahprabhu did not go to Gay merely to
offer oblations. He went only because at that time the smrtabrhmaas were in great number and very influential in the
society. The whole society was following them. Going to Gay
to offer pia was a principle in the society during that time.
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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

If Mahprabhu would not have done it, He would have been


criticized. Therefore Mahprabhu went to Gay, and He had
decided that it was simultaniously the proper time to manifest
Himself, establish bhakti, and to defeat the smrta-brhmaas
and bewilder them. Thereby He showed everyone, Yes, I am
following the principle. My father died so I am going to Gay.
But when He met vara Pur there He said, Gay-ytr saphala
mra My gay-ytr is successful because I met vara Pur,
My spiritual master here. It is not that He went there to offer
pia. That was only Mahprabhus abhinaya, He was just acting
the part in order to bewilder the smrta-brhmaas. And to show
who a real brhmaa is, He manifested jvara-ll. He became
sick with a high fever and called for the water that had washed
the feet of a brhmaa as the medicine to cure His fever. He
manifested that ll to teach the people that one who is a sevaka,
a devotee, a paramrthika* Vaiava is a perfect brhmaa. In
order to show how powerful the water that has washed the feet
of such a brhmaa is, Mahprabhu manifested that ll. And
That is why He said to His students, That is the medicine for
Me. This is all mentioned in the Caitanya-bhgavata.

Mahaprabhu Manifested Jvara-Lila


hena-mate navadvpe r-vaikuha-ntha
adhypaka-iromai-rpe kare vsa
In this way the Lord of Vaikuha resided at Navadvpa
as the crest jewel of teachers.

*Pramrthika that which relates to the supreme spiritual truth or ultimate reality; real, essential, true; that which relates to a higher object.

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

catur-dike paa baye gurutara


bhakti-yoga nma haila unite dukara
mithy-rase dekhi ati lokera dara
bhakta-saba dukha baa bhvena antara
As the number of atheists increased in Navadvpa, it
became difficult to even hear the mention of devotional
service. The devotees were all distressed to see that people
were simply attached to illusory pleasures.

prabhu se via hai chena adhyayane


bhakta-saba dukha pya,dekhena pane
Although the Lord was absorbed in studying and
teaching, He noted the devotees distress.

niravadhi vaiava-sabere dua-gae


nind kari bule, th unena pane
He heard how the miscreants were constantly
blaspheming the Vaiavas.

citte icch haila tma-praka karite


bhvilenage si giy gay haite
icch-maya r-gaurasundara bhagavn
gay-bhmi dekhite haila icch tna
The Lord thus desired to manifest Himself, but He thought
He should first visit Gay. The supremely independent Lord
Gaurasundara desired to see the holy place of Gay.

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

stra-vidhi-mata rddha karmdi kariy


ytr kari calil aneka iya laiy
After performing the rddha ceremony for His father
according to scriptural injunctions, the Lord departed for
Gay with many of His students.

jananra j lai mah-hara-mane


calilena mahprabhu gay-daraane
The Lord first took permission from mother ac and
then happily left to see Gay.

sarva-dea-grma kari puya-trtha-maya


r-caraa haila gay dekhite vijaya
As the Lord passed through the various towns and
villages on the way to Gay, they were all turned into holy
places by the touch of His lotus feet.

dharma-kath, vko-vkya, parihsa-rase


mandre il prabhu kateka divase
The Lord and His students conversed, joked, and
discussed various religious topics, and after a few days they
arrived at Mandra Hill.

dekhiy mandre madhusdana tathya


bhramilena sakala parvata svallya
The Lord first saw the Deity of Madhusdana at the top
of the hill, and then He wandered about the hill according to
His desire.

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

ei-mata kata patha site site


ra dina jvara prakilena dehete
While traveling like this, one day the Lord manifested a
fever.

prkta-lokera prya vaikuha-vara


loka-ik dekhite dharilena jvara
In order to instruct people, the Lord of Vaikuha
displayed a fever like an ordinary person.

madhya-pathe jvara prakilena vare


iya-gaa hailena cintita antare
When the Lord manifested His fever halfway to Gay,
the hearts of His students were filled with anxiety.

pathe rahi karilena bahu pratikra


tathpi n che jvara,hena icch tra
They tried to cure Him with various remedies, but by the
desire of the Lord His fever did not subside.

tabe prabhu vyavasthil auadha pane


sarva-dukha khae vipra-pdodaka-pne
Then the Lord prescribed His own medicine, If I drink
the water that has washed the feet of a brhmaa, My suffering
will be relieved.

vipra-pdodakera mahim bujhite


pna karilena prabhu pane skte
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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

The Lord then drank the water that had washed the feet
of brhmaas in order to reveal its glories.

vipra-pdodaka pna kariy vara


sei-kae sustha hail, ra nhi jvara
As soon as the Lord drank that water, His fever subsided
and He felt relief.

vare ye kare vipra-pdodaka pna


e tna svabhva,veda-pura prama
According to the Vedas and Puras, it is the nature of
the Supreme Lord to drink the water that has washed the feet
of a brhmaa. (Caitanya-bhgavata, di-Kaha 17.4-23)

ye thna dsya-pada bhve nirantara


thna avaya dsya karena vara
The Lord desires to be the servant of anyone who always
desires to be a servant of the Lord.

ataeva nma tna sevaka-vatsala


pane hriy byena bhtya-bala
The Lord is therefore known as sevaka-vatsala, or He
who is favorably inclined to His servants. He accepts defeat
in order to increase His devotees glories.

sarvatra rakaka-hena prabhura caraa


bala dekhi,ke-mate chibe bhakta-gaa?

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

The devotees have only the Lord as their protector,


therefore how can they give up His lotus feet?

hena-mate kari prabhu jvarera vina


punapun-trthe si hail praka
After being cured of His fever in this way, the Lord and
His students came to the bank of the holy Punpun River.

snna kari pit-deva kariy arcana


gayte pravia hail r-acnandana
After taking bath and offering oblations to His forefathers,
r acnandana entered Gay.
(Caitanya-bhgavata, di-Kaha 17.25-29)

Mahprabhu manifested jvara-ll to delude the smrtabrhmaas and to establish that a real brhmaa is a dear
devotee of the Lord, a Vaiava. The Supreme Lord is known
as bhakta-vatsala, very dear to His servitor, and sevaka-vatsala,
His servitor is very dear to Him. Ye thna dsya-pada bhve
nirantara thna avaya dsya karena vara, for one who thinks
of the lotus feet of the Lord constantly the Lord becomes his
servant. Ka seeks that opportunity to serve His dsa, His
bhakta, dear devotee.

The Lord Is Known as Sevaka-Vatsala


ataeva nma tna sevaka-vatsala
pane hriy byena bhtya-bala

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

The Lord is therefore known as sevaka-vatsala, or He


who is favourably inclined to His servants. He accepts defeat
in order to increase His devotees glories.
(Caitanya-bhgavata, di-Kaha 17.26)

Ka has manifested sevaka-vatsala bhva when Bhmadeva


was fighting on the battlefield of Kuruketra. Ka had promised
not to carry any weapon or to take part in fighting the battle,
but Bhmadeva vowedto break Kas promise and make
Ka take up a weapon. And he did it. Bhmadeva was fighting
with Arjuna, and Ka was the charioteer. As long as he held
a bow and arrow no one could defeat or kill him. Bhmadeva
had received a boon from his mother Gangadev. My dear son,
I give you one benediction, that unless you desire to die, you
will never die, icch-mtyu. So Arjuna could not conquer him.
Rather Arjunas chariot sank into the ground and could not be
moved. Arjuna was bewildered and did not know what to do. At
that moment Ka jumped down from the chariot, picked up
one of the wheels of the chariot and ran towards Bhmadeva.
Then Bhmadeva understood, What I vowed has come true.
Now I am completely pleased. No more fighting. He gave up
fighting because he had broken Kas promise. The Lord was
defeated. He accepted defeat in order to increase His devotees
glory, pane hriy byena bhtya-bala. His dear devotee
servitor then became victorious. Kas promise was broken. A
devotee can break His promise. Therefore a dear devotee, pure
devotee is greater than the Supreme Lord. No one is greater than
the Lord. Ka has said this in the Bhagavad-gt (7.7), Matta
paratara nnyat kicid asti dhanajaya, O Dhanajaya, O
Arjuna, no one is superior to Me. Ka is supreme. However,
in the Ninth Canto of the rmad-Bhgavatam He said to Durvs
Muni,
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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

aha bhakta-pardhno
hy asvatantra iva dvija
sdhubhir grasta-hdayo
bhaktair bhakta-jana-priya
He, who is supremely independent, said, I have no
independence. I am subordinate to My bhakta, to My dear
devotee, bhakta-pardhno. That is the special characteristic
of the Supreme Lord. He is not subordinate to anyone. Ekale
vara ka, ra saba bhtya, only the Supreme Personality of
Godhead, Ka is master and all others are servants*. Even
Brahm, iva, Surevara and Devarja Indra are all subordinate
to Him, haris tv eka tattva vidhi-iva-surea-praamito.

Bound with the Rope of Love


Only Ka is vara, paramevara. All are His servants. But
the Supreme Lord Ka has said, I am subordinate to My dear
devotee. Ka will make a promise but His dear devotee can
break it. That was proved in the fight with Bhmadeva. One
who constantly thinks of the service of Ka, the Supreme Lord
becomes his dsa, his servant. He is superior, He is asamordhvatattva no one is equal to Him or superior to Him. But kera
samat haite baa bhakta-pda if someone becomes His dear
devotee then Ka makes him greater than Him. The dear
devotees are completely surrendered to the lotus feet of Ka,
they are always engaged in His loving service. His prem-bhaktas
have bound Him up in their hearts with the rope of love. Ka
is their only object of love. In Hari-bhakti-sudhodaya (14.29) He
*Caitanya-caritmta, di-ll 5.142
Daa-mla verse 2
Caitanya-caritmta, di-ll 6.100

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has said, Sad mukto pi baddho smi bhaktena sneha-rajjubhi,


though I am eternally free and independent, still I become
bound up with the rope of love of My devotees.
He, who is eternally free, unbound, and independent, is now
in loving bondage. His dear devotee, prem-bhakta has bound
Him up with the rope of love in his heart. Ka cannot leave
his heart. Therefore when Bilvamagala hkura, who only
asked for a hairpin from that lady he had followed, came to
consciousness, he said, Oh, these nasty eyes have put me in
such danger. She asked him, What do you want from me?
He said, I dont want anything from you. Just give me your
hairpin, and with that hairpin he blinded himself. He was on
the way to Vndvana. Now he is blind, so how can he go?
Ka immediately appeared before him, O sdhu, you are
going to Vndvana? How can you go now you are blind? Very
well, catch hold of My stick, I will lead you to Vndvana. So
Ka led him to Vndvana. When they reached Vndvana
Ka said, You are here now in Vndvana. Then Ka
forcibly snatched away the stick from his hand. At that time
Bilvamagala hkura uttered this verse,
hastam utkipya ytosi balt ka kim adbhutam
hdayd yadi nirysi paurua gaaymi te*
O Ka, forcibly You snatch away the stick and it slipsfrom
my hand. But can you slip away from my heart? If You can slip
away from my heart then I can recognize that You are really
purua, that You have paurua.
*Rpa Gosvm has quoted this verse from r Ka-karmta (3.93) in his r
Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu.
Paurua means one who has achieved many wonderful things.

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Ka has said already na praye, I am defeated. I cannot


slip away from the heart of a pure devotee. My devotee has
bound Me up with the rope of love in his heart. This bondage
is so strong, so tight that even all-powerful Ka cannot break
it. Kera samat haite baa bhakta-pda*, if you become very
dear to Ka, who is bhakta-vatsala, He will give you a superior
position to Himself. Ka serves him. Ka is always seeking
an opportunity to serve His dear devotee.

The Dust from the Lotus Feet of His Premi-Bhakta


It is also said that Ka stealthily, unnoticeably follows
behind His dear devotee just to take some dust from the lotus
feet of His prem-bhakta. Why? In his commentary rdhara
Svm has said, in order to purify His creation Ka follows
unnoticeably behind His prem-bhakta to take some dust. rla
Jva Gosvm states in his Sandarbha that Ka cannot repay
the debt to His prem-bhakta. Ka has also said this to the
gops in the Tenth Canto of the rmad-Bhgavatam. O gops,
you have developed so much pure love for Me. You have given
up your family ties, family affection, husband, children, dear
ones, everything to come to Me in the dead of night to this
jungle. You love Me so much but I have nothing with which
to repay you. Therefore I am indebted to you. He is indebted
because the wealth required to pay back this debt is not in His
possession. Jva Gosvm commented that in order to pay back
His debt Ka follows unnoticeably behind His prem-bhakta
to get some dust. In order to pay back the debt and to purify
Himself, Ka takes that dust. Jva Gosvm commented in that
*Caitanya-caritmta, di-ll 6.100.

18

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

way, whereby he is also saying sevaka-vatsala, the same as is


mentioned in the verse I previously quoted:
ataeva nma tna sevaka-vatsala
pane hriy byena bhtya-bala
The Lord is therefore known as sevaka-vatsala, or He
who is favorably inclined to His servants. He accepts defeat
in order to increase His devotees glories.
(Caitanya-bhgavata, di-khaa 17.26)

Therefore His name is sevaka-vatsala, dear to His servitor,


bhakta-vatsala, He submits to His prem-bhaktas. He Himself
accepts defeat and makes His dear devotee victorious.
To give this teaching to the whole world Mahprabhu
drank the water that had washed the feet of a pure brhmaa,
acyuttm-brhmaa, who is an acyuta-gotra Vaiava. One
who knows acyuta-vastu is brhmaa. Previously I quoted this
verse from the Bhad-rayaka Upaniad (4.4.21), yo v etad
akara grgy aviditvsml lokt praiti sa kpana He is a
miserly man who does not solve the problems of life as a human
and who thus quits this world like the cats and dogs, without
understanding the science of self-realization. One who leaves
this planet knowing acyuta-vastu is brhmaa. One who leaves
this planet without knowing acyuta-vastu is kpaa. Yei katattva-vett, sei guru haya* regardless of what he is, he can
become a spiritual master if he knows the science of Ka. In
order to establish his glory Mahprabhu drank the foot-bathing
water. That is Mahprabhus ll. One who knows the infallible
Lord, acyuta-vastu, he is a brhmaa.
*Caitanya-caritmta, Madhya-ll 8.128.

19

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

Advaita Acarya Offers Sraddha-Patra


to Haridasa Thakura
Advaita crya Prabhu performed the rddha ceremony
of his father and invited Haridsa hkura, who was born in
a Mohammedan family, a mleccha yavana family, and offered
rddha-ptra to him. Haridsa hkura said, Why are you
doing this? You will be excommunicated from the brhmaa
community. You are a brhmaa, born in a brhmaa family,
living in brhmaa sana, a brhmaa community. If you do
this, knowing I am born in a yavana mleccha family you will be
excommunicated. Advaita crya Prabhus reply is mentioned
in the Caitanya-caritmta.
crya kahena,tumi n kariha bhaya
sei cariba, yei stra-mata haya
My dear Haridsa, do not be afraid. I shall behave strictly
according to the principles of the revealed scriptures.
(Caitanya-caritmta, Antya-ll 3.221)

tumi khile haya koi-brhmaa-bhojana


eta bali, rddha-ptra karil bhojana
Feeding you is equal to feeding ten million brhmaas,
Advaita crya said. Therefore, accept this rddha-ptra.
Thus Advaita crya made him eat.
(Caitanya-caritmta, Antya-ll 3.222)

Advaita crya said, Dont be afraid. I will act according


to the dictate of stra. If only you alone will eat then I will

20

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

get the result of feeding crores of brhmaas. This is because


he is a pure devotee. It is only external that he is born in a
Mohammedan family, and that is not so important.

There Is No Discrimination in Krsna-Bhajana


yei bhaje sei baa, abhaktahna, chra
ka-bhajane nhi jti-kuldi-vicra
Anyone who takes to devotional service is exalted,
whereas a nondevotee is always condemned and abominable.
Therefore in the discharge of devotional service to the Lord,
there is no consideration of the status of ones family.
(Caitanya-caritmta, Antya-ll 4.67)

There is no restriction or discrimination of caste or creedand


no consideration of status in ka-bhajana. One who engages in
bhajana becomes great. One who does not do bhajana, although
born in an aristocratic Brahmin family, is abhakta, a non-devotee.
He is most degraded, hna chra. There is no discrimination of
jti and kul, dynasty and cast in ka-bhajana. Anyone can
do bhajana, indiscriminately. By engaging in ka-bhajana one
becomes great, yei bhaje sei baa. Santana Gosvm has quoted
in Hari-bhakti-vilsa,
na me bhakta caturved
mad-bhakta vapaca priya
tasmai deya tato grhya
sa ca pjyo yath hy aham
(Hari-bhakti-vilsa 10.127)

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

Simply being a knower of the four Vedas does not make


someone My devotee. An outcaste who is My devotee is dear
to Me. One should exchange gifts and food, etc., with such a
devotee for he is verily as worshipable as I.

The Quality of Forgiveness


Therefore Advaita crya gave Haridsa hkura rddhaptra, although he was born in a Mohammedan family. He said,
If Haridsa hkura alone is fed, I will get the result of feeding
crores of brhmaas. So in order to establish the glories of a
perfect brhmaa, a dear Vaiava, Mahprabhu manifested that
jvara-ll, suffering a high fever, and to cure His fever He drank
the water that had washed the feet of a brhmaa. That is the
purpose. There is no other purpose. Therefore it is said that
brhmaas are beautiful when they are forgiving, kema. So this
special quality of a brhmaa, as described here, is forgiveness.
amo damas tapa auca
kntir rjavam eva ca
jna vijnam stikya
brahma-karma svabhva-jam
These are the natural qualities by which the brhmaas
work. Kntir means forgiveness, kama-raddh. Speaking
this verse Jamadagni said, My dear son, we are all brhmaas
and have become worshipable for the people in general because
of our quality of forgiveness. It is because of this quality that
Lord Brahm, the supreme spiritual master of this universe,
has achieved his post. The duty of a brhmaa is to culture the
quality of forgiveness, which is illuminating like the sun. The
22

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

Supreme Personality of Godhead, Hari, is pleased with those


who are forgiving. That is the special quality of a brhmaa.

Personalities Become Beautiful by Their Qualities


Prabhupda quoted Cakya Paitas saying that different
personalities become beautiful by possessing different qualities.
Cakya Paita said that the cuckoo bird although very black
is beautiful because of its sweet voice. Therefore it is said, satsdhv pati-vrat the real beauty of a woman is to be chaste
and faithful to her husband. It may be that her bodily features
are beautiful, but if these qualities of chastity and faithfulness
to her husband are lacking she is ugly. Similarly if her bodily
features are ugly yet she possesses the qualities of chastity and
faithfulness, then that is real beauty. rmad-Bhgavatam states,
g dugdha-dohm asat ca bhry
deha pardhnam asat-praj ca
vitta tv atrth-ktam aga vca
hn may rakati dukha-dukh
My dear Uddhava, that man is certainly most miserable
who takes care of a cow that gives no milk, an unchaste
wife, a body totally dependent on others, useless children or
wealth not utilized for the right purpose. Similarly, one who
studies Vedic knowledge devoid of My glories is also most
miserable. (rmad-Bhgavatam 11.11.19)

If you have a cow but she is barren and does not give milk,
then she will only give trouble and misery, nothing else. If you
have a wife, but if shes not chaste then she will only give you
23

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

misery and trouble, nothing else. In addition you have this body,
and if you are serving wicked rascals to maintain this body for
fleeting, temporary pleasure, then it will only give you misery
and trouble. If you have a son, but he is a disobedient rascal,
then he will only give you misery and trouble. He is asat-putra,
not a real son. If you have money, then it should be utilized in
the service of Ka vitta tv atrth-ktam. However if you
are not giving it to a perfect brhmaa, Vaiava as a donation,
but rather to a person who is not a proper recipient, then that
donation will give you trouble. These are all causes for your
trouble and suffering. Similarly, without Ka your Vedic
carc, your Vedic explanations, will only give you trouble and
misery. The Myvds say, There is no mention of Ka in the
Vedas. But Ka says, Vedai ca sarvair aham eva vedyo by
all the Vedas I am to be known. So-called vedavds proclaim,
We are vedavds, but they do not know Ka. They say,
There is no mention of the name of Ka in the Vedas. Where
is it? Where is it? Ka never manifests before such rascals.
Therefore this Bhgavata verse in the Eleventh Canto states that
those who are studying the Vedas and acquire Vedic knowledge
but do not know Ka, that their Vedic knowledge will put
them in trouble.
yasysti bhaktir bhagavaty akican
sarvair guais tatra samsate sur
harv abhaktasya kuto mahad-gu
manorathensati dhvato bahi
All the demigods and their exalted qualities, such as
religion, knowledge and renunciation, become manifest in
the body of one who has developed unalloyed devotion for
the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vsudeva. On the other

24

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

hand, a person devoid of devotional service and engaged in


material activities has no good qualities. Even if he is adept
at the practice of mystic yoga or the honest endeavor of
maintaining his family and relatives, he must be driven by
his own mental speculations and must engage in the service
of the Lords external energy. How can there be any good
qualities in such a man? (rmad-Bhgavatam 5.18.12)

Automatically all divine qualities will manifest in one who has


developed unalloyed devotion. Whereas the abhakta, one who
is not a devotee of Lord Hari, he may occupy a high position in
society but he is without good qualities and is only riding hither
and thither on a chariot concocted by his mind, nothing else.

The Six Characteristics of Bhakti


In the Bhakti-rasmta-sindhu (1.1.17) it is mentioned,
kleaghn ubhad mokalaghutkt sudurlabh
sdrnandavietm r-kkarin ca s
The six characteristics of bhakti are (1) it destroys all kleas,
(2) it bestows all auspiciousness, (3) it renders liberation
insignificant, (4) it is very rare, (5) it contains at its core an
especially intense blissfulness, (6) it is capable of attracting
Ka.
uddha-bhakti, pure devotion has six glorious characteristics.
The first is kleaghn. Kleaghn destroys all kleas, suffering. It
destroys the reaction to sinful activities. It destroys the ppavidy, the seed of sinful activity; ignorance.

25

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

In the Bhakti-rasmta-sindhu (1.1.27) Rpapda has


explained ubhad, all-auspiciousness.
ubhni pranam sarvajagatmanuraktat
sadgu sukhamitydnykhytani mansibhi
Scholars define ubha or true auspiciousness as possessing
love for all living entities and becoming the object of affection
of all living entities as well as possessing all good qualities,
happiness, and other similar auspicious achievements.

The word prana is very significant here. Prani means


love, prti, and also tpti, satisfaction. Those who are mans,
learned scholars, have said that ubhatva, all-auspiciousness
is when the whole world loves someone. Who is that? That is
sdhu, a pure devotee who has bound Ka the all-attractive
object of love. The whole world will develop love for him, and
the whole world will be attracted to him, anuraktat. All good
qualities are automatically manifest in the pure sdhu, who has
developed pure devotion, and he is always in transcendental
happiness, sukha. The paitas or scholars have said that this is
ubhatva, auspiciousness.
The Padma Pura states,
tatra jagat-prandidvaya-pradatvam yath pdme
yenrcito haristena tarpitni jagaty api
rajyati janta-vastatra jangam sthvar api
One who has worshipped Lord Hari, has also pleased the
whole world. Even all animate and inanimate entities also
become attached to him. (Bhakti-rasmta-sindhu 1.1.28)

26

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

yasysti bhaktir bhagavaty akican


sarvair guais tatra samsate sur
harv abhaktasya kuto mahad-gu
manorathensati dhvato bahi
All the demigods and their exalted qualities, such as
religion, knowledge and renunciation, become manifest in
the body of one who has developed unalloyed devotion for
the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vsudeva. On the other
hand, a person devoid of devotional service and engaged in
material activities has no good qualities. Even if he is adept
at the practice of mystic yoga or the honest endeavor of
maintaining his family and relatives, he must be driven by
his own mental speculations and must engage in the service
of the Lords external energy. How can there be any good
qualities in such a man? (rmad-Bhgavatam 5.18.12)

Krsnas Virtues Are Transferred to His Devotee


The Caitanya-caritmta also speaks about the qualities of a
sdhu. One who is a sdhu, pure devotee is purified externally
and internally, antar-uddhi and bahir-uddhi. These are the
qualities, but the chief quality is kaika-araa, complete
surrender at the lotus feet of Ka. The secondary qualities
automatically develop. This is described in the Eleventh Canto
of Bhgavata and in the Caitanya-caritmta.
kplu, akta-droha, satya-sra sama
nidoa, vadnya, mdu, uci akicana
sarvopakraka, nta, kaika-araa
akma, anha, sthira, vijita-a-gua

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

mita-bhuk, apramatta, mnada, amn


gambhra, karna, maitra, kavi, daka, maun
(Caitanya-caritmta, Madhya-ll 22.78-80)
All the great virtues manifest in a Vaiavas body, for it is
said that all of Kas virtues are transferred to His devotee.
These transcendental qualities are the characteristics of pure
Vaiavas and though they cannot be described fully, I shall try
to give some indication of them. Devotees are compassionate;
they never deliberately create enmity; they are truthful in
words and deeds and without prejudice; they are blameless,
magnanimous, mild, clean, and uninterested in material
possessions or ambition. Engaged in welfare work for everyone,
they are peaceful; they have taken complete shelter of Ka
and are not influenced by lust. They are harmless, steady, and
have overcome the six cardinal sins lust, anger, greed, envy,
illusion and jealousy. They eat only as much as required, and
are not inebriated. Devotees are respectful and without false
prestige; they are grave, compassionate, friendly, poetic, expert
and silent.
Kas dear devotee is very merciful, kplu; akta-droha, he
does not develop enmity towards anyone. He is truthful, satyasra. He sees Ka everywhere; therefore he has equal vision,
sama. He sees paramtm, the Supersoul. In the Gt (5.18)
Ka has said,
vidy-vinaya-sampanne brhmae gavi hastini
uni caiva va-pke ca pait sama-darina
The wise see equally a brhmaa endowed with learning
and culture, a cow, an elephant, and even a dog or a dogeater.

28

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

The humble sages have developed equal vision because


they see only the Supersoul everywhere. They are munificent,
internally and externally clean and free from all defects. They
always think they are the lowest of the low. They have no pride,
no arrogance. They benefit everyone because they see kasambandha, the one relationship with Ka. They see every jva
as Kas jva. Ka is the object of love. So he develops love
towards one and all. If you can love Ka then you can love
one and all. Otherwise there is no question of love at all. They
are free from dvandvd, duality, liking, disliking or hatred. You
may like someone and dislike someone else. Only one who sees
Ka as the object of love can love one and all so there is no
question of hatred or disliking; anta, he is peaceful; kaikaaraa, completely surrendered unto Ka; Akma, free from
all desire, for material enjoyment or desire for liberation; sthira,
fixed; vijita-a-gua, he has conquered his mind and senses;
mita-bhuk, he is not a glutton. He eats very little; apramatta, he
is very humble; mnada, he gives respect to one and all; amn,
never demands respect; gambhira, he is very grave; karua,
merciful; maitra, friendly; daka, expert; maun, silent. He
only speaks about Ka; kavi, one who knows Ka, knows
everything. That is kavi.

By Developing Pure Bhakti All Good Qualities Arise


Then a question arises, should one first develop these
qualities and then bhakti will develop? Or if bhakti develops will
these qualities then arise? First develop unalloyed devotion,
bhakti, then automatically these qualities will develop. In all
bhakti-stra the instruction is on how to develop bhakti. If you
develop pure bhakti, unalloyed devotion, automatically all good
qualities will develop.
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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

sarva mah-gua-gaa vaiava-arire


ka-bhakte kera gua sakali sacre
All the great virtues manifest in a Vaiavas body, for
it is said that all of Kas virtues are transferred to His
devotee. (Caitanya-caritmta, Madhya-ll 22.75)

The same sixty qualities that are in Ka manifest in the


aikntika-ka-bhakta, pure ka-bhakta, except the four
mdhuryas*. If you develop bhakti, automatically all qualities
will manifest.

How Can You Develop Bhakti?


Bhakti stu bhagavata-bhakta-sagena parijayate bhakti or
pure devotional service to the Supreme Lord is obtainable only
in the association of pure devotees. In a previous birth you may
have attained some bhakti-sukti, then in this birth you will
develop bhakti and automatically you will be attracted towards
sdhu-saga.

The Result of Sadhu-Sanga


kona bhgye kona jvera raddh yadi haya
tabe sei jva sdhu-saga ye karaya
*The four mdhuryas are: rpa-mdhurya, the sweetness of His supremely beautiful
form; veu-mdhurya, the sweetness of His flute playing; rati-mdhurya, the sweetness of His loving dealings; and ll-mdhurya, the sweetness of His wonderful pastimes. These four kinds of mdhurya are only available with Kiora-ka.

30

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

If, by good fortune, a living entity develops faith in


Ka, he begins to associate with devotees.
(Caitanya-caritmta, Madhya-ll 23.9)

There are so many people, but how many are coming for
sdhu-saga? It is a question of bhakti-sukti. When someone
has acquired bhakti-sukti he comes for sdhu-saga and
develops bhakti. The first thing is raddh; dau raddh tata
sdhu-sagotha bhajana-kriy* he develops strong faith in
sdhu-stra-guru, then guru-pdraya, he takes shelter of the
lotus feet of guru and engages in guru-bhajana. One must take
shelter of a sdhu-guru. He will teach you how to do bhajana.
You do not know how to do bhajana. Prior to taking shelter
at the lotus feet of sdhu, before engaging in bhajana gireche
nn anarthare bhai you are surrounded by many anarthas,
opposing the good qualities, asat-gua, sat-gua-virodhi. Then
when someone takes shelter at the lotus feet of sdhu-guru and
engages in bhajana, bhajana-kriy, acceptance of the regulative
principles, then anartha-nivtti, all your anarthas are destroyed.
That is the result of bhakti developed by the merciful association
of sdhu. This is the result of sdhu-saga.

Namabhasa The Most Dangerous Stage


When one develops pure bhakti, unalloyed devotion,
automatically all good qualities develop. As long as the anarthas
are not destroyed and all good qualities have not developed,
what is the position of that sdhaka? His level is bhajanbhsa
or nmbhsa, the most dangerous stage. All fall downs occur
*Bhakti-rasmta-sindhu 1.4.15.
Bhaktivinode hkura has said, O brother, you are surrounded by so many anarthas.

31

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

from the nmbhsa stage because there is a chance that he will


commit apardha or engage in asat-saga, and then fall down
because his anarthas are not destroyed.
If someone engages in uddha-bhajana, pure bhajana and
by the association of pure devotees chants the pure name,
automatically all good qualities develop. They simultaneously
develop. At this stage there are no anarthas and that sdhaka
will not develop taste in anything material. He develops nmeruci, taste for chanting the holy name and he relishes the nmapremmta, the nectar emanating from the holy name. This
is the only taste he develops. Thus on the part of a devotee
there is no need of making any separate effort to acquire good
qualities. The only effort should be to develop pure devotion.
Bhaktivinoda hkura has said, O my dear friends dont waste
your valuable time in acquiring all these good qualities. The
only endeavour should be how to develop pure devotion. For
that one should always be in the association of pure devotees.
Narottama Dsa hkura has also sung about that in Premabhakti-cadrika: sdhu-saga nukana mrjite hoy bhajana one
should always stay in the association of a sdhu. Sdhu means
prem-bhakta, a pure devotee who has developed ka-prema.
Then your bhajana will be nice. Your bhajana will be purifying,
mrjita, and cleansing. Ceto-darpaa mrjana, the more the
mirror is cleaned the clearer the reflection. Whose bhajana is
more and more purified? One who is always in sdhu-saga.
This is very important. One who is always in sdhu-saga, in the
association of a pure devotee or devotees and does bhajana his
heart becomes cleansed, as a mirror that is cleansed of all dirt
gives a perfect reflection. Bhaktivinoda hkura has said, O
my dear friends dont waste your valuable time in acquiring all
these good qualities. The only one requirement is to have pure
sdhu-saga. Take shelter at the lotus feet of a pure devotee and
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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

engage yourself in bhajana under his guidance then you can


develop pure devotion and automatically all good qualities will
develop. Thus you should not endeavor to develop all good
qualities and then do bhakti. No. The most important point
here is that as soon as one develops pure devotion then all good
qualities develop automatically.

The Chief Symptom of a Sadhu


The chief symptom of a sdhu, pure devotee is kaikaaranatva, complete surrender unto Ka, unconditional
surrender, not partial, artificial or conditional. The life of a
bhakta is useless in the absence of the chief symptom. You will
never develop pure devotion. If there is unconditional surrender
all secondary qualities automatically develop. Without kabhakti, pure bhakti, the other good qualities have no value at
all. This is what Bhaktivinode hkura has said. So one who is
a pure devotee, a completely surrendered soul, he has all good
qualities and he is all-beautiful. All beauty lies there. Ka is
all-beautiful, and he has Kna so he is also all-beautiful. This is
the conclusion. There lies all beauty, yes. Apparently he may be
ugly but he is a pure devotee. Therefore Ka has said,
api cet su-durcro
bhajate mm ananya-bhk
sdhur eva sa mantavya
samyag vyavasito hi sa
Even if one commits the most abominable action, if he is
engaged in devotional service he is to be considered saintly
because he is properly situated in his determination.
(Bhagavad-gt 9.30)

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

He may be blind, he may be crippled, he may be an uglylooking person but if he is a pure devotee, then he is allbeautiful because Ka is all-beautiful. He has Ka, so he is
all-beautiful. All beauty lies there. If you only see the external
beauty then you will be cheated. As a man seeing the external
beauty of a woman thinks, Oh, this girl looks very beautiful.
I will marry her, is cheated because she has no real beauty
if bhakti is not present. That verse I quoted said that if she is
an unchaste lady, not devoted to her husband, then she will
bring all trouble and suffering to you. Definitely, because you
are cheated; you are allured by her external beauty. You have
not seen if she has real beauty, that real beauty is ka-bhakti.
See the real beauty! Do not be allured by the external beauty!

Questions & Answers


Devotee: Mahrja, some Iskcon devotees say that sdhu-saga is of
three types: kaniha, madhyama and uttama, and that you can still use
the term sdhu-saga to describe them.
Gour Govinda Swami: As I said; prem-bhakta. My thinking is
something different. Premi-bhakta.
Devotee: Otherwise sdhu-saga does not apply? There is no alternate
benefit?
Gour Govinda Swami: What destination do we want to reach?
Devotee: Pardon?
Gour Govinda Swami: We have a destination, goal. How can you
have it? How can you get all-beautiful Ka? Our goal is to get allbeautiful Ka, ymasundara, so? Therefore you need a prem-bhakta
who has bound up ymasundara in his heart. Only he can attract
everyone. What is stated? Even Ka is attracted, r-kkari.
So we have these three dss: sdhana-ds, bhva-ds, prema-ds,

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

sdhana-bhakti, bhva-bhakti, prema-bhakti. So six glories are there:


kleaghn, ubhad. In sdhana-ds it may come. Then bhva-ds,
the next two, what are they?
Devotee: all-auspicious.
Gour Govinda Swami: all-auspicious, moka-laghutkt, mukti
becomes insignificant. Then prema-ds: sdrnanda-vietm rkkari, attracts Ka. All six glories are there, but in a kanith
only maybe two. Do you understand Prabhu?
Devotee: Yes.
Gour Govinda Swami: Our goal is Ka, all-beautiful Ka, so how
can one get it? Therefore we say prem-bhakta, yes, Ka becomes
attracted to him.
Devotee: So you are saying that one has to stay always in that
association.
Gour Govinda Swami: Yes, one who is very fortunate.
Devotee 2: So what if that prem-bhakta is not where you are staying?
What if that premi-bhakta happens to be in a different place from
where your prabhu-dt-dea may be? If we are not pure how to
associate with him?
Gour Govinda Swami: You should develop greed for it. Yes. How can
I get it? If you have intense, burning desire, intense desire in your
heart Ka will make all impossible possible, possible impossible,
yes. That desire Ka can fulfill.
Devotee 2: So you will get?
Gour Govinda Swami: He will get. Either he will come here or he will
go there. Yes, Ka can do it.
Devotee 2: What if that prem-bhakta gives some service, which may
be away from his physical association.
Gour Govinda Swami: Yes!
Devotee: But that devotee may not be pure enough to understand
how to associate in such a place away from that prem-bhakta.
Gour Govinda Swami: But if he is carrying out the order faithfully
and as it is, not twisting, he will go there, Oh, let me go to see
him. Yes. Even Ka comes, Let Me go to see him. Therefore it is
said, dont develop that desire to see Ka. You serve; render loving

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

service to Him. So Ka will run to give you darana, Let Me go and


see him. Yes. Do you understand me?
Devotee: Yes.
Devotee 3: Guru Mahrja, you were saying that a real brhmaa is
someone who knows Acyuta, the infallible Lord. So does that mean
that he has seen the Lord or he just knows about the Lord?
Gour Govinda Swami: He sees and knows everything. What are you
saying? Ka cannot and is not unmanifest to him. He is always
manifest to him. What Ka has said, one who is completely Ka
consciousness, what is that verse?
yo m payati sarvatra
sarva ca mayi payati
tasyha na praaymi
sa ca me na praayati
(Bhagavad-gt 6.30)
This is complete Ka-consciousness. One who sees Me everywhere,
wherever he looks. Oh! Ka is there. One who sees everything in
Him, is completely Ka conscious. He is not out of My sight, I am
not out of his sight. He sees Me, I see him.
In the Caitanya-caritmta it is written,
bhakta m preme bndhiyche hdaya-bhitare
yh netra pae th dekhaye mre
(Caitanya-caritmta, Madhya-ll 25.127)
Kavirja Gosvm explains this, that prem-bhakta, this is Kas
language, he has bound Me up in his heart with the rope of love.
Wherever he looks he sees Me. Who sees? His prem-bhakta sees the
all-beautiful ymasundara.
Devotee 3: So all these people that say, Im a brhmaa. Ive got a
Brahmin thread, that doesnt mean that they are a perfect brhmaa
then?

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

Gour Govinda Swami: That doesnt mean anything. Brahma-tattva


na jnti brahma-strena grbita, so-called brhmaas, Kali-yuga
brhmaas they dont know brahma-tattva. Oh, Im a brhmaa dont
you know? I have this brahmin thread. Ill curse you! He is so puffed
up on account of his brahma-stra, his brahminical thread only, but
he does not know brahma-tattva. He is not a brhmaa.
Devotee 3: In the Bhgavatam it says like that; that they will just wear
the thread for show.
Gour Govinda Swami: Yes.
Devotee 3: Two paisa thread.
Gour Govinda Swami: Only two paisa thread, yes, two paisa thread.
Yes.
Devotee 2: So Guru Mahrja, you were saying that verse, whoever
you meet tell them about Ka and that person is guru. So how can
we understand that?
Gour Govinda Swami: Because he sees Ka everywhere. That is
Mahprabhus version. Ka gave a restriction in Bhagavad-gt;
nbhaktya ntapaskya, dont say this to one who is not a bhakta, not
a devotee, who has no tapasya. Ka gave a restriction. But when He
came as Mahprabhu He wiped out restriction.
yre dekha, tre kaha ka-upadea
mra ajya guru haa tra ei dea
(Caitanya-caritmta, Madhya-ll 7.128)
He wiped out restriction. Tell whomever you meet, O my brother,
Ka has said this thing, please accept it.
Devotee 4: rla Gurudeva, when one is chanting nmbhsa then
that means anarthas are still present, right? So if one is chanting
nmbhsa how is it he can attain Vaikuha, liberation and enter
into Vaikuha if he still has anarthas?
Gour Govinda Swami: Yes, because nmbhsa gives you mukti.
Attaining Vaikuha means he got slokya-mukti. Ajmila got slokyamukti. He achieved the same planet as Nryaa. There are slokya,
sri, smipya, srpya, other than syujya. Syujya is the worst type.

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

Only slokya, sri, smipya, srpya are the four types of mukti*, but
a pure devotee kicks mukti, Get out! Get out! I dont want you. But
mukti stands in a line at the door with folded hands, mukti svaya
mukulitnjali sevatesmn: Bilvamagala hkura vkya. Mukti with
folded hands is standing at the doorstep of a pure devotee, in a queue,
I have come, I have come, I have come to serve you. He says, Oh get
out! Get out! No. I have come, I have come. Bhaktipde mukti ds.
Devotee 1: You were mentioning bhakti-sukti.
Gour Govinda Swami: Yes.
Devotee 1: What is the difference between bhakti-sukti and other
kinds of sukti?
Gour Govinda Swami: Karma-unmukhy sukti, jna-unmukhy sukti.
If you perform pious activities then you acquire karma-unmukhy sukti.
As a result in your next life you will be elevated to a heavenly planet,
youll get a demigods body and so much deva-bhoga, enjoyment.
That is karma-unmukhy sukti. Then jna-unmukhy sukti will give
you mukti. Karma-unmukhy sukti will give you bhukti. Bhukti means
material enjoyment. Jna-unmukhy sukti will give you mukti, but if
you have acquired some bhakti-unmukhy sukti then in your next life
youll be attracted to sdhu-saga, sukti tahaa sei bhakti-unmukhy,
tahra phale jva sdhu-saga kori. So he is attracted to sdhu-saga
and hearing from sdhu and develops bhakti to get Ka. That is
bhakti-unmukhy-sukti.
Devotee 1: What is it that you do to get that bhakti-sukti?
Gour Govinda Swami: Serve sdhu.
*There are five kinds of liberation: syujya, srpya, slokya, sri, and smpya.
Syujya-mukti means merging into Gods impersonal effulgence, the brahma-jyotir.
We have discussed this, and have concluded that the attempt to merge and lose
individuality is not desirable and is very risky. Srpya-mukti means attaining a
body exactly like Gods. Slokya-mukti means living on the same planet with God.
Sri-mukti means having the opulence of God. For instance, God is very powerful,
and we can become powerful like Him. That is called sri. Smpya-mukti means
always remaining with God as one of His associates. For instance, Arjuna is always
with Ka as His friend, and this is called smpya-mukti. We can attain any one of
these five types of liberation, but out of these five, syujya-mukti, merging into the
brahma-jyotir, is rejected by Vaiava philosophy. (The Path of Perfection, Chapter 10)

38

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

Devotee: So from sdhu-saga in a previous life then you have a desire


to serve sdhu in the future life?
Gour Govinda Swami: One who has acquired it from previous life
is very fortunate, but one who has not acquired it in a previous life
should acquire it in this life.
Devotee: So he has done some bhakti. Bhakti-sukti means done some
bhakti in a previous life?
Gour Govinda Swami: He has served sdhus. He has acquired that
sukti. So in this life he is automatically attracted towards sdhusaga. But one who has not acquired such sukti, should acquire it
now. Now acquire! Yes, the opportunity is available. Do it now! Yes.
Somebody says, No, I have no sukti. What shall I do? Do it now!
Do it now! Yes.
Devotee 5: The question is there, someone asked can one achieve
bhva if one still has anarthas?
Gour Govinda Swami: In bhva stage there is no gross form of
anarthas. It is subtle form. The anarthas are there in a subtle form.
Bhrata Mahrja had attained the bhva stage, but anarthas were still
there, so he became attached to a doe.
Devotee: So one can fall from the bhva stage?
Gour Govinda Swami: Yes, the anarthas are still in subtle form. Bharata
Mahrja had attained the bhva stage so in his next life, although in
a deers body, he could still remember his past life, because he had
attained such an elevated stage, bhva. He could remember even in a
deers body, Yes, I did this thing. So he was not an ordinary deer. He
did not remain in the company of other deer but stayed alone, aloof
from them and in the proximity of that rama on the bank of the
Ganges. And that life was a very short life. Even in that deers body
he could understand that death was coming so he entered into the
Ganges water, thought of Ka, the Supreme Lord and left his body.
He had attained the bhva stage but some subtle anartha was there,
therefore this happened. Unless one attains prema, anarthas are still
there in a subtle form, not in a gross form.
Devotee: So can one fall from Vaikuha?
Gour Govinda Swami: You see, no one falls from Vaikuha, but there

39

The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

is a prpacika Vaikuha, and that is where one may fall from. That is
mentioned in the Eighth Canto of the Bhgavatam and Jva Gosvm
has also discussed that in the Sandarbhas. From this prpacika
Vaikuha one may fall, and therefore it is sometimes said that one
falls from Vaikuha. Yes. From there one falls.
Devotee: Is that where people go who still have anarthas, they go to
that Vaikuntha?
Gour Govinda Swami: Yes, most people go to that Vaikuha.

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The Beauty of a Prem-Bhakta

ll the great virtues manifest in a Vaiavas body, for it


is said that all of Kas virtues are transferred to His devotee.
These transcendental qualities are the characteristics of pure
Vaiavas and though they cannot be described fully, I shall
try to give some indication of them. Devotees are compassionate; they never deliberately create enmity; they are truthful in
words and deeds and without prejudice; they are blameless,
magnanimous, mild, clean, and uninterested in material possessions or ambition. Engaged in welfare work for everyone,
they are peaceful; they have taken complete
shelter of Ka and are not influenced
by lust. They are harmless, steady, and
have overcome the six cardinal sins
lust, anger, greed, envy, illusion, and
jealousy. They eat only as much as
required, and are not inebriated.
Devotees are respectful and without
false prestige; they are grave, compassionate, friendly, poetic, expert,
and silent.

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