Monday, October 20, 2014

Progress (Srila Sridhar Maharaj)

Excerpt from Follow the Angels 

Picture from the appearance day celebration of Srila Sridhar Maharaj 2014 
in Sri Caitanya Sarasvat Math, Vrindavan


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"If we make progress towards the east, the west will be left behind"

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Progress means elimination of old things and acceptance of the new. Progress means a living, new experience: bhaktih paresanubhavo viraktir anyatra ca – "Devotion, direct experience of the Supreme Lord, and detachment from other things. (Srimad Bhagavatam 11.2.42) 

When we are hungry we are weak. By every morsel eaten we feel satisfaction; the desire for eating diminishes. Weakness is removed and the discomfort of hunger is also removed through eating, morsel by morsel. With every step we shall have to feel whether we are making any progress. 

bhaktih paresanubhavo viraktir
anyatra caisa trika eka-kalah
prapadyamanasya yathasnatah syus
tustih pustih ksud-apayo 'nu-ghasam
– (Srimad Bhagavatam 11.2.42)
Devotion, direct experience of the Supreme Lord, and detachment from other things – these three occur simultaneously for one who has taken shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, in the same way that pleasure, nourishment and relief from hunger come simultaneously and increasingly, with each bite, for a person engaged in eating. 

We must have a conception of what is Reality and what is progress. We shall have to understand what is imagination or hallucination and what is Reality. Our intensity and attraction for the goal will increase step by step; it won't diminish. It will have to increase if we are following the proper line. We must have some conception of that new goal, and our energy towards the goal will increase. 

Progress can be measured by detecting this kind of transformation within. Paresanubhavo: somehow, a conception of the Supreme must grow clearer and clearer in us. What is He? Who is He? Viraktir anyatra: indifference to everything that is not related to Krsna must grow in us as well. We avoid what does not concern Krsna, and when it appears anyway, it produces some apathy or even irritation in us. The negative measure will be how much I am apathetic to everything that is not related to Krsna. 

tustih pustih ksud-apayo 'nu-ghasam

The inner hunger should be fulfilled as well. "Yes, I am feeling fulfillment." We should have the conviction that we are walking in the right direction. We should have inner sanction of our clear conscience. "Yes, yes, I am doing right." We will feel inner satisfaction.  

If we make progress towards the east, the west will be left behind and we shall see new things in our view. If these things are good, our encouragement will increase more and more; we shall make progress.

tustih pustih ksud-apayo 'nu-ghasam

Anu-ghasam, pustih: with every morsel we shall feel stronger. Tustih, satisfaction will come. Ksud-apayah, our hunger will gradually cease. These three things must be there; then we are in a real, progressive life.


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