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The distinction between a pure devotee and a karma-mira devotee

is this: a pure devotee does not desire anything for material


enjoyment, whereas a mixed devotee becomes a devotee to
become a first-class enjoyer of this material world. One who is in
direct touch with the Supreme Personality of Godhead in devotional
service remains pure, uncontaminated by material desires
(anybhilit-nya jna-karmdy-anvtam [Bhakti-rasmta-
sindhu 1.1.11]).
By karma-mira-bhakti one is elevated to the celestial kingdom, by
jna-mira-bhakti one is able to merge in the Brahman effulgence,
and by yoga-mira-bhakti one is able to realize the omnipotency of
the Supreme Personality of Godhead. But pure bhakti does not
depend on karma, jna or yoga, for it simply consists of loving
affairs. The liberation of the bhakta, therefore, which is called not
just mukti but vimukti, surpasses the five other kinds of liberation-
syujya, srpya, slokya, sri and smpya. A pure devotee
always engages in pure service (nuklyena knulana
bhaktir uttam [Cc. Madhya 19.167]).

Anyone, therefore, who becomes a Vaiava accepted by the first-


class Vaiava, or uttama-adhikr Vaiava, is already considered
a brhmaa, regardless of his birth or past deeds. SB 1.2.2 pp

Thus Prahlda Mahrja can be accepted as an uttama-adhikr


devotee.
A pure devotee is completely free from the tendency to enjoy things
separately from the Lord's service. He does not see anything in the
universe as unfavorable, because he sees everything as the
expanded potency of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

In the madhyama stage the Vaiava sees the Lord as the cause of
all causes and the chief goal of everyone's loving propensity. He
sees the Vaiavas as his only friends within this morbid world and
is eager to bring innocent people within the shelter of Vaiava
society. Also, a madhyama-adhikr strictly avoids associating with
the self-proclaimed enemies of God. When such an intermediate
qualification becomes mature, the concept of supreme qualification
begins to present itself; that is, one comes to the stage of uttama-
adhikr.

rla Vivantha Cakravart hkura also points out in his


commentary, atra payed iti tath darana-yogyataiva vivakit, na
tu tath daranasya srva-klikat. "In this verse the word payet,
or 'one must see,' does not mean that at every moment one is
visualizing the form of Ka; rather, it means that one has reached
the exalted platform of devotional service on which he is fit to see or
is capable of seeing Ka's form." If only those who constantly see
the form of Ka are to be considered uttama-adhikrs, then
Nrada, Vysa and ukadeva cannot be considered topmost
devotees, since they do not always see the Lord everywhere. Of
course, Nrada, Vysa and ukadeva are considered to be on the
highest standard of pure devotional service, and therefore the real
qualification is tad-didkdhikya, or having an overwhelming desire
to see the Lord. Therefore the statement of Bhagavad-gt that a
devotee should see Ka everywhere (yo m payati sarvatra)
can be understood in terms of the example of a lusty man's thinking
that the world is full of beautiful women. Similarly, one should
become transcendentally so desirous of seeing the Lord that one
can perceive within the entire universe nothing but Ka and His
potency. Vsudeva sarvam iti [Bg. 7.19].

The devotee in the second stage, the madhyama-adhikr, is


completely aware of the stric conclusion and has firm faith in his
guru and the Lord. He, therefore, avoiding nondevotees, preaches to
the innocent. However, the mah-bhgavata or uttama-adhikr,
the devotee in the highest stage of devotional life, does not see
anyone as being against the Vaiava principles, for he regards
everyone as a Vaiava but himself. This is the essence of Caitanya
Mahprabhus instruction that one be more tolerant than a tree and
think oneself lower than the straw in the street (td api su-ncena
taror iva sahiun). However, even if a devotee is in the uttama-
bhgavata status he must come down to the second status of life,
madhyama-adhikr, to be a preacher, for a preacher should not
tolerate blasphemy against another Vaiava.

In the Caitanya-caritmta (Madhya 22.64) r Santana Gosvm


is taught:
raddhvn jana haya bhakti-adhikr
uttama, madhyama, kaniharaddh-anusr
One who is faithful is a proper candidate for devotional service. In
terms of ones degree of faith in devotional service, one is a first-
class, second-class or neophyte Vaiava.
stra-yukti nhi jne dha, raddhvn
madhyama-adhikr sei mah-bhgyavn
One who has attained the intermediate stage is not very advanced
in stric knowledge, but he has firm faith in the Lord. Such a person
is very fortunate to be situated on the intermediate platform. (Cc.
Madhya 22.67)

stra-yuktye sunipua, dha-raddh yra


uttama-adhikr sei traye sasra
SYNONYMS
stra-yuktyein argument and logic; su-nipuavery expert;
dha-raddhfirm faith and confidence in Ka; yrawhose;
uttama-adhikrthe topmost devotee; seihe; traye sasra
can deliver the whole world.
TRANSLATION
One who is expert in logic, argument and the revealed scriptures
and who has firm faith in Ka is classified as a topmost devotee.
He can deliver the whole world.
Madhya 22.66

The word uttamam refers to that which is above material


knowledge. Tama means "the darkness of this material world," and
ut means "transcendental." NOI vs5

Ut means "trans-," and tama means "darkness." So uttama means


"the knowledge which is beyond this material darkness." This
material world is called darkness, and when the knowledge
surpasses this material world, material knowledge, that is really
called uttama. Udgata-tama yasmt: "from which the darkness has
been separated."
BG lect, NY Nov.21.66

I t is mentioned in Nrishimha purana : Brahma engaged the four


Kumaras on the path of renunciation, and the other sages, Marici,
Atri etc, on the path of family life. Only Narada Muni was instructed
on the path of DS. This are the three paths which Brahma
propagated, but the real purpose of all three is to come to DS,
because there are people who are not qualified to understand DS
because of material desires. Everyone has the ability to perform DS,
but if one is too much renounce or too much attached is very
difficult to take up DS. Therefore sometime DS is mixed with karma
or jnana, called: karma misra bhakti and jnana misra bhakti, one
brunch of jnana is also yoga, called yoga misra bhakti.
This paths independently cannot give the fruit of their
activities, and secondly this mixture is so that when they becomes
purified they have the choice of taking up DS, like is mentioned in
BG Brahma bhuta prasannatma... when a person is situated on
this platform, this is a path coming from jnana marg, from here on if
he is in association of devotees, if he has samskara he attain DS to
Krsna. This is jnana misra bhakti, similarly there is karma misra: BG
Yat karosi yad asnasi... Whatever you do you offer, but on the
path of DS is not whatever you do, is you do what pleases the Lord:
...Krsna anusilanam Bhakti uttama.
Bhakti Sandarbha 1.58

This is only used as an instrument for performing DS to the Lord,


and this is the purport of the verse Brahma bhuta prasannatma...
Mad bhaktim labhate param means: only if he is desiring to be a
devotee, not that everyone will get devotion. Similarly someone
may develop the desire to be an associate of the Lord, this desire is
also considered not very pure, Lord Caitanya said: Na dhanam na
janam na sundarim... He said I want devotion, not I want to be Your
associate, a Gobi or anything else. He desired only DS. That is
actually the most pure desire, only desiring Bhakti and Bhakti
means service to the Lord. Then it is up to Krsna where He wants to
place us, He is the well-wisher of the devotees He knows what is
best for us, Still there may be some people who have a desire to
become His associate, which means to live with Him, therefore He
says those people will go to Vaikundha. Bhag. 3-15-25. End of
section # 84

The symptoms of bhakti just described are first seen in the


sdhana practices of the madhyama-adhikr-vaiava, and extend
up to the level of bhva and finally into the blossoming of prema.
Worship of the Deity form of the Lord with immature raddh is the
only characteristic of the kaniha practioner. Such a person does
not display the symptoms of uddha-bhakti, which are
anybhilit-nya, freedom from material aspiration; jna-
karmdy-anvtam, freedom from the inebriations of impersonalism
and fruitive desire; and nuklyena knu-lana, absorption in
the desire to serve Ka favourably with transcendental love. As
soon as the kaniha progresses to manifest these symptoms in his
heart, then he is considered to have become a madhyama-vaiava
and thus a genuine devotee. Prior to this, he is a prkta-bhakta,
also known as a bhakta-bhsa or vaiava-bhsa, a neophyte
shadow of a Vaiava. The word knu-lana refers to ka-
prema and is qualified by the word nuklyena, favourably. Thus,
this combination refers to practices that are conducive to the growth
of ka-prema. These are, as we have said, maitr, friendship with
ones fellow devotees; kp, mercy to the ignorant; and upek,
indifference to the inimical, which are also are the hallmarks of a
madhyama-adhikr Vaiava.
Now to the topic of second characteristic, the friendly attitude of
the madhyama-vaiava adopts towards his fellow surrendered
devotees of the Lordthose who are blessed by uddha-bhakti. The
kaniha-vaiava is not on the platform of uddha-bhaktithat is
to say, he does not serve and satisfy the pure devotees. Therefore,
maitr can only be properly extended by the madhyama-adhikr to
his fellow madhyama-vaiavas and the higher level uttama
vaiavas. Jaiva Dharma 8

The madhyama-ghastha is instructed to serve only these three,


who chant pure harinma; not the kaniha-vaiava, who chants
only the shadow form of harinma and is therefore not a suitable
object of service. Only the madhyama and uttama Vaiavas who
utter uddha-nma are fit to be served. Jaiva Dharma 8

It is essential for the madhyama-adhikr uddha-bhakta, to act


according to these four guidelines. Any slackness in this regard will
culminate in malpractice, increased lethargy, and apathy towards
executing spiritual discipline. In the end, the deviation will become
too overwhelming. Jaiva Dharma 8
sarva-bhteu ya payed
bhagavad-bhvam tmana
bhtni bhagavaty tmany
ea bhgavatottama
r Havir said, The uttama-adhikr devotee sees within
everything the Soul of all souls, the Supreme Personality of
Godhead, r Ka. Consequently he sees everything in relation to
the Supreme Lord and understands that everything that exists is
eternally situated within the Lord.
The uttama-adhikr is also known as an uttama-vaiava, the
most advanced and elevated Vaiava. He sees everything in terms
of prema and thus prema is the constant emotion that adorns the
character of an uttama-vaiava. At times, various differing bhvas
manifest in his personality but they are all transformations of
prema. Kindly observe the character of rla ukadeva Gosvm,
an uttama-bhgavata, topmost devotee. He referred to Kasa as
bhoja-pula, the most sinful of the Bhoja dynasty. Ostensibly, such
an expletive appears to be a display of anger towards Kasa but
actually the statement is stimulated by and is thus a manifestation
of ka-prema. When uddha-prema becomes the all-in-all, the
very life force of a devotee, he is to be known as a bhgavatottama.
Upon this platform of devotion, the four distinctions in attitude
prema, maitr, kp, and upekthat are the hallmarks of the
madhyama-vaiava cease and the bhgavatottama exudes only
ka-prema. He does not discriminate among a neophyte, an
intermediate, or an advanced Vaiava, or even between a
Vaiava and a non-Vaiava. This elevated position is very rarely
attained. Jaiva Dharma 8