Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Success in devotional service



Srila Prabhupad [Bhaktisiddhanta] has commented [that] there is no possibility for the conditioned soul to have a direct vision or personal audience with the Lord. Sri Krishna becomes the instructing guru internally as the Lord in the heart and appears externally in the form of the instructing spiritual master inducing the living entity to cultivate devotion to him. The Lord awards discrimination to the aspirant as the Chaitya-guru or Supersoul in the heart by which he becomes desirous of seeking the shelter of a bona fide spiritual master. Consequently, the Lord then taking the form of the external spiritual master, initiates and instructs the disciple in the right manner for his spiritual development.

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In the association of the instructing guru all scriptural knowledge will be gradually revealed while from the initiating guru mercy is in the form of the Holy Name. Those aspirants who are desirous of attaining the Lord's grace but neglect the spiritual master become completely frustrated in all their endeavours.

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For the disciple, devotional service with determination can be in the form of instructions which his guru has given him in the sense of chanting of the Name. An example of such clarity is:

"I will never leave at any cost the remembrance and servitorship of the Lord which constitute my practice, my goal and my life. This is my only desire and my only duty and I have no other works to fulfill. Even in my dreams I have no other desire. I will not be in the least affected, neither by the tides of happiness and distress nor the upheavals of material life. Continuing in this manner, I will never leave the path of devotional service even if my attachment to material life is very strong or has become slack, whether I am faced with thousands of obstacles or not, even if by my offences I have to go down to the hellish planets. Besides, I will never plead for knowledge or pious results of works although Brahma comes to me in person."

Such a devotee as above, even if he is in the household life, is lamenting that although he has chanted the Holy Name profusely and has understood the impermanence of ephemeral material pleasures, he is unable to give them up. Nonetheless, he does not forgo his resolute practices of Bhajan though unable to withdraw from sense enjoyment altogether, and just as the sun and darkness cannot remain in the same place, his determination will prevail and at one point all his contamination will be vanquished. Devotional service is powerful enough to slacken all the knots of the heart.
-- Srila Bhakti Promode Puri Goswami

1 comment:

  1. Being a householder it is enlivening to read Srila Bhakti Promodes words. Sometimes when bogged down in the mire of day to day life one feels very far from Krishna, but Krishna is always there, in the HolyName, in the Japa and in the Spiritual Master, in the Scriptures, the Prasad...In the heart. We just have to turn to Him. Regardless of ones situation one can chant and pray and have faith that oneday these contaminations and selfish interests will be extinguished, we really are very fortunate. Haribol!

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