Saturday 24 February 2018

'That will make our life perfect'

"Because the common man is unable to control the senses and the mind, it is his duty to seek the shelter of a great soul or a great devotee of the Lord and just try to please him. That will make his life perfect. A common man cannot rise to the topmost stage of spiritual perfection simply by following the rituals and religious principles. He has to take shelter of a bona fide spiritual master and work under his direction faithfully and sincerely; then he becomes perfect, without a doubt."

- Śrīla Prabhupāda, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 3.22.7 Purport

Saturday 17 February 2018


Los Angeles
28 June, 1972

The President
The White House
Washington, D.C. 20025”

My dear Mr. President:
Several thousand years ago a great pious emperor ruled over this planet. He was a descendant of the great Kuru dynasty and the grandson of Arjuna, the hero of the Bhagavad-gita and the personal associate of the Lord, Sri Krishna. The people lived under his domain in peace. He provided protection for the people and the cows, as well as all other living entities. He engaged many brahmanas, spiritual leaders, to educate his people and advise him in all matters. The people were just and God-conscious. They had a good understanding of the meaning and purpose of life and lived in happiness and prosperity. They respected their emperor and received kindness and benedictions from him.
You are a great president of a great nation. In this age of unrest and quarrel, your strength, as well as the strength of your nation, will be lasting if it is built upon the pillars of spiritual knowledge and Absolute Truth.

Saturday 10 February 2018

Śrīla Prabhupāda, our eternal Dīkṣā guru

“I am the Spiritual Master of this institution, and all the members of the Society, they’re supposed to be my disciples. They follow the rules and regulations which I ask them to follow, and they are initiated by me spiritually.” 
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Radio interview – San Francisco, March 12, 1968)

“Just like Krishna can be present simultaneously in millions of places, similarly the spiritual master also can be present wherever the disciple wants. A spiritual master is the principle, not the body. Just like a television can be seen in thousands of places by the principle of relay monitoring.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – May 28, 1968)

“Initiation is a formality. First of all you have to decide whether you will abide by the rules and regulations and become Krsna conscious. That is your consideration. You have to decide for yourself whether you are going to take this Krsna consciousness seriously. That is your decision. Initiation is a formality. If you are serious, that is real initiation. If you have understood this Krishna philosophy and if you have decided that you will take Krishna consciousness seriously and preach the philosophy to others, that is your initiation. My touch is simply a formality. It is your determination. That is initiation.” 
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Conversation – ‘The Search for the Divine’, Back to Godhead #49, 1972)

“One does not have to undergo initiation or execute the activities required before initiation. One simply has to vibrate the holy name with his lips. Thus even a man in the lowest class (caṇḍāla) can be delivered.” (Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya-līlā 15.108 (BBT Original 1975)

“The chanting Hare Krishna is our main business, that is real initiation. And as you are all following my instruction, in that matter, the initiator is already there.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Montreal, August 19, 1968)

“…you live in temple or without temple, if you follow the instruction, that is wanted. …Oh, initiation can take place anywhere.”
 (Śrīla Prabhupāda Morning Walk – May 20, 1975)

“Well, initiation or no initiation, first thing is knowledge…knowledge. Initiation is formality. Just like you go to a school for knowledge, and admission is formality. That is not very important thing.” (Śrīla Prabhupāda Interview – October 16, 1976)

“A disciple means who voluntarily agrees to be disciplined by the spiritual master. When one becomes disciple, he cannot disobey the order of the spiritual master. […] “I am now surrendered to You, and I agree voluntarily to accept Your ruling.” This is the relationship between the spiritual master and the disciple.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Lecture on Bhagavad-gītā 2.11 – Mexico, February 11, 1975)

Śrīla Prabhupāda: “I have selected you among eleven men as ‘rittvik‘or representative of the acharya, to give initiations, both first and second initiation, on my behalf.” (July 10th)

“…the process for initiation to be followed in the future.” (July 11th)
“…continue to become ritvik and act on my charge.” (July 19th)
“…continue to become ritvik and act on my behalf.” (July 31th)

Note: There is no need for actual physical contact (save and except contact with his instructions) or physical vision of the spiritual master in order for the imparting of transcendental knowledge to take place. This is not spiritual understanding. To stress the need for physical presence is a shallow, materialistic misconception of the real teachings of Srila Prabhupada, which constitute the essential principles of the parampara disciplic succession. Adhering to the prominent acharya Srila Prabhupada’s instructions with a service attitude (sevaya) and submissive inquiry (pariprasnena) is the bona fide method of linking to our Parampara today, with Srila Prabhupada being the current authorized link. This can be done by anyone, anywhere, provided they are sincere and submissive to his instructions.

“…disciplic succession does not always mean that one has to be initiated officially. Disciplic succession means to accept the disciplic conclusion.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter to Dinesh – Tittenhurst, October 31, 1969)

“Regarding parampara system: there is nothing to wonder for big gaps. Just like we belong to the Brahma Sampradaya, so we accept it from Krishna to Brahma, Brahma to Narada, Narada to Vyasadeva, Vyasadeva to Madhva, and between Vyasadeva and Madhva there is a big gap. But it is sometimes said that Vyasadeva is still living, and Madhva was fortunate enough to meet him directly. In a similar way, we find in the Bhagavad-gita that the Gita was taught to the sungod, some millions of years ago, but Krishna has mentioned only three names in this parampara system—namely, Vivasvan, Manu, and Iksvaku; and so these gaps do not hamper from understanding the parampara system.” (Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – San Francisco, 12 April, 1968)

One example~

27. Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākur (1626 – 1708)
28. Jagannātha Dāsa Bābājī (1776 – 1894)

“The service of the spiritual master is essential. If there is no chance to serve the spiritual master directly, a devotee should serve him by remembering his instructions. There is no difference between the spiritual master’s instructions and the spiritual master himself. In his absence, therefore, his words of direction should be the pride of the disciple.”
Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Ādi-līlā 1.35 Purport (BBT Original 1974)

“So although a physical body is not present, the vibration should be accepted as the presence of the spiritual master, vibration. What we have heard from the spiritual master, that is living.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Lecture – Los Angeles, January 13, 1969)

Q. How and when does the link between the eternal preceptor guru and the disciple begin?
A. Śrīla Prabhupāda: “The eternal bond between disciple and spiritual master begins form the first day he hears…” (Letter – September 4, 1972)

Paramahaṁsa: My question is: A pure devotee, when he comments Bhagavad-gītā, someone who never sees him physically, but he just comes in contact with his commentary, explanation, is this the same thing?
Prabhupāda: Yes. You can associate with Kṛṣṇa by reading Bhagavad-gītā. And these saintly persons, they have given their explanations, comments. So where is the difficulty?
(Morning Walk – Paris, June 11, 1974)

“The potency of transcendental sound is never minimized because the vibrator is apparently absent.”
(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 2.9.8 Purport (BBT Original 1972)

“Regarding your question about instruction, spiritual life is different from material life. The instruction given in my books is supposed to be personal instruction. When we read the Bhagavad-gītā As It Is, it is understood that we are receiving personal instructions of Kṛṣṇa. No physical barrier is there in the case of spiritual affairs.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Bombay, October 14, 1973)

“So we should associate by the vibration, and not by the physical presence. That is real association. Śabdād anavṛtti. By sound. Just like we are touching Kṛṣṇa immediately by sound. Sound vibration. So we should give more stress on the sound vibration, either of Kṛṣṇa or of the spiritual master. Then we’ll feel happy and no separation.“
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Lecture – Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 7.9.12 – Montreal, August 18, 1968)

“Regarding Sankirtana and book distribution, book distribution is also chanting. Anyone who reads the books that is also chanting and hearing. Why distinguish between chanting and book distribution? These books I have recorded and chanted, and they are transcribed. It is spoken kirtanas. So book distribution is also chanting. These are not ordinary books. It is recorded chanting. Anyone who reads, he is hearing. Book distribution must not be neglected.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter to Rupanuga dasa – Mayapur, October 19, 1974)

“My Guru Mahārāja, my spiritual master, used to say that you have to select a spiritual master not by seeing but by your ear, but by hearing. And you don’t select a spiritual master who has got a very good hair or beard or some very beautiful feature, “Oh, he is a very good, nice looking.” No. You must hear. Tad viddhi praṇipātena (Bg. 4.34). Śruti. The whole process is śruti. The Vedas are called śruti. The ear has to aural reception.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Lecture – Bhagavad-gītā As It Is 4.24-34 – New York, August 12, 1966)

“There are two ways of association-by vāṇī and by vapu. Vāṇī means words, and vapu means physical presence. Physical presence is sometimes appreciable and sometimes not, but vāṇī continues to exist eternally. Therefore we must take advantage of the vāṇī, not the physical presence.”
(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Antya-līlā 5 Conclusion (BBT Original 1975)

“Therefore we should take advantage of the vani, not the physical presence”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Bombay, November 4, 1975)

“I shall remain your personal guidance, physically present or not physically, as I am getting personal guidance from my Guru Mahārāja.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Room Conversation – Vṛndavana, July 14, 1977)

“Physical presence is immaterial; presence of the transcendental sound received from the spiritual master should be the guidance of life. That will make our spiritual life successful. If you feel very strongly about my absence you may place my pictures on my sitting places and this will be source of inspiration for you.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter to Brahmānanda and other students – San Francisco, January 19, 1967)

“But always remember that I am always with you. As you are always thinking of me I am always thinking of you also. Although physically we are not together, we are not separated spiritually. So we should be concerned only with this spiritual connection.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – London, November 13, 1969)

“There are two conceptions of presence—the physical conception and the vibrational conception. The physical conception is temporary, whereas the vibrational conception is eternal. When we enjoy or relish the vibration of Kṛṣṇa’s teachings in Bhagavad-gītā, or when we chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, we should know that by those vibrations He is immediately present. He is absolute, and because of this His vibration is just as important as His physical presence.

When we feel separation from Kṛṣṇa or the spiritual master, we should just try to remember their words of instructions, and we will no longer feel that separation. Such association with Kṛṣṇa and the spiritual master should be association by vibration, not physical presence. That is real association
We put so much stress on seeing, but when Kṛṣṇa was present on this earth, so many people saw Him and did not realize that He is God; so what is the advantage of seeing? By seeing Kṛṣṇa, we will not understand Him, but by listening carefully to His teachings, we can come to the platform of understanding. We can touch Kṛṣṇa immediately by sound vibration; therefore we should give more stress to the sound vibration of Kṛṣṇa and of the spiritual master—then we’ll feel happy and won’t feel separation.”
(Elevation to Kṛṣṇa Consciousness : Ch. 4 Knowing Kṛṣṇa as He Is (BBT Original 1973)

“It is sometimes misunderstood that if one has to associate with persons engaged in devotional service, he will not be able to solve the economic problem. To answer this argument, it is described here that one has to associate with liberated persons not directly, physically, but by understanding, through philosophy and logic, the problems of life.”
(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 3.31.48 Purport (BBT Original 1974)

“I’m always with you never mind if I am physically absent.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter to Jayānanada – Delhi, September 16, 1967)

Devotee: We’re always feeling your presence very strongly, Śrīla Prabhupāda, simply by your teachings and your instructions. We’re always meditating on your instructions.
Prabhupāda: Thank you. That is the real presence. Physical presence is not important.
(Room Conversation – Vṛndavana, October 6, 1977)

“You write that you have desire to avail of my association again, but why do you forget that you are always in association with me? When you are helping my missionary activities I am always thinking of you and you are always thinking of me. That is real association. Just like I always think of my Guru Maharaja every moment, although He is not physically present, and because I am trying to serve Him to my best capacity, I am sure He is helping me by His spiritual blessings. So there are two kinds of association: physical and preceptorial. Physical association is not so important as preceptorial association.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter to Govinda Dāsi – Los Angeles, August 17, 1969)

“As far as my blessing is concerned it does not require my physical presence. If you are chanting Hare Krishna there and following my instructions, reading the books, taking only Krsna prasadam etc., then there is no question of your not receiving the blessings of Lord Caitanya whose mission I am humbly trying to push on.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Melbourne, June 30, 1974)

“Anyone who has developed unflinching faith in the Lord and the Spiritual Master can understand the revealed scripture unfold before him.” So continue your present aptitude and you will be successful in your spiritual progress. I am sure that even if I am not physically present before you. Still you will be able to execute all spiritual duties in the matter of Krishna Consciousness; if you follow the above principles.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Delhi, September 29, 1967)

Devotee: So sometimes the spiritual master is far, far away. He may be in Los Angeles. Somebody is coming to Hamburg temple. He thinks, “How will the spiritual master be pleased?”

Prabhupāda: Just follow his order. Spiritual master is along with you by his words. Just like my spiritual master is not physically present, but I am associating with him by his words.
(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam Lecture – London, August 18, 1971)

“Just like I am working, so my Guru Mahārāja is there, Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī. Physically he may not be, but in every action he is there.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Room Conversation – Vṛndavana, May 27, 1977)

“I also do not feel separation from my Guru Maharaja. When I am engaged in His service His pictures give me sufficient strength. To serve the Spiritual Master’s word is more important than to serve him physically.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Los Angeles, July 19, 1970)

“So that is called prakaṭa, “physically present.” And there is another phase, which is called aprakaṭa, “not physically present.” But that does not mean Kṛṣṇa is dead or God is dead. That does not mean. Prakaṭa or aprakaṭa, physically present or not present, it doesn’t matter.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Lecture – Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.15.33 – Los Angeles, December 11, 1973)

“So, spiritually there is no question of separation, even physically we may be in far distant place.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Montreal, August 30, 1968)

“I went to your country for spreading this information of Krishna Consciousness & you are helping me in my mission although I am not physically present there but spiritually I am always with you.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Delhi, October 3, 1967)

“We are not separated actually. There are two—vani or vapu. So vapu is physical presence and vani is presence by the vibration, but they are all the same.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Los Angeles, June 22, 1970)

“So in the absence of physical presentation of the Spiritual Master the vaniseva is more important. My Spiritual Master, Sarasvati Gosvami Thakura, may appear to be physically not present, but still because I try to serve His instruction I never feel separated from Him.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Tokyo, August 22, 1970)

“Regarding your question about instruction, spiritual life is different from material life. The instruction given in my books is supposed to be personal instruction. When we read the Bhagavad-gītā As It Is, it is understood that we are receiving personal instructions of Kṛṣṇa. No physical barrier is there in the case of spiritual affairs.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Bombay, October 14, 1973)

“The disciple and spiritual master are never separated because the spiritual master always keeps company with the disciple as long as the disciple follows strictly the instructions of the spiritual master. This is called the association of vāṇī (words). Physical presence is called vapuḥ. As long as the spiritual master is physically present, the disciple should serve the physical body of the spiritual master, and when the spiritual master is no longer physically existing, the disciple should serve the instructions of the spiritual master.”
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 4.28.47 Purport (BBT Original 1974)

Devotee: Śrīla Prabhupāda, when you are not present with us, how is it possible to receive instructions, for example, on questions that may arise?
Prabhupāda: Well, the questions… Answers are there in my books.
Devotee: Other than that, for example, that we would ask you in…
Prabhupāda: Yes.
Devotee: Do you direct us also through the heart? Besides the Paramātmā?
Prabhupāda: If your heart is pure. Everything depends on purity.
(Morning Walk at Cheviot Hills Golf Course – Los Angeles, May 13, 1973)

“In my absence you read the books. What I talk, I have written in the books. That’s all.
… That’s all right. But still, you can associate with me by reading my books.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Morning Walk – Toronto, August 7, 1975)

“So utilize whatever time you find to make a thorough study of my books. Then all your questions will be answered.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Nellore, January 7, 1976)

“Every one of you must regularly read our books at least twice—in the morning and evening, and automatically all questions will be answered.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Los Angeles, January 24, 1970)

“To honor the spiritual master means to carry out his instructions word for word.”
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 3.24.12 Purport (BBT Original 1974)

A “LIVING” Spiritual Master ???
Madhudviṣa: Is there any way for a Christian to, without the help of a spiritual master, to reach the spiritual sky through believing in the words of Jesus Christ and trying to follow his teachings?
Prabhupāda: I don’t follow.
Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: Can a Christian in this age, without a spiritual master, but by reading the Bible and following Jesus’s words, reach the…
Prabhupāda: When you read Bible, you follow spiritual master. How can you say without? As soon as you read Bible, that means you are following the instruction of Lord Jesus Christ, that means you are following spiritual master. So where is the opportunity of being without spiritual master?
Madhudviṣa: I was referring to a living spiritual master.
Prabhupāda: Spiritual master is not the question of… Spiritual master is eternal. Spiritual master is eternal. So your question is without spiritual master. Without spiritual master you cannot be, at any stage of your life. You may accept this spiritual master or that spiritual master. That is a different thing. But you have to accept. As you say that “by reading Bible,” when you read Bible that means you are following the spiritual master represented by some priest or some clergyman in the line of Lord Jesus Christ.
(Lecture – Seattle, October 2, 1968)

Reporter (2): What will happen to the movement in the United States when you die?
Prabhupāda: I will never die.
Devotees: Jaya! Hari bol! (laughter)
Prabhupāda: I shall live for my books, and you will utilize.
Reporter (2): Are you training a successor?
Prabhupāda: Yes, my Guru Mahārāja is there. Where is my photo of Guru Mahārāja? I think… Here is.
(Press Conference – San Francisco, July 16, 1975)

Indian Lady: …Is that spiritual master still guiding after the death?
Prabhupāda: Yes, yes. Just like Kṛṣṇa is guiding us, similarly, spiritual master will guide.
(Lecture – London, September 3, 1971)

“I should be returning to Los Angeles the last week of November and I should be more than happy to see you there. Please always try to remember me by my teachings and we shall always be together. Just like I have written in the first publications of Srimad-Bhagavatam, “The spiritual Master lives forever by His divine instruction and the disciple lives with him.”, because I have always served my Guru Maharaja and followed His teachings I am now even never separated from Him. Sometimes Maya may come and try to interfere but we must not falter, we must always follow the chalked out path layed down by the great acharya’s and in the end you will see.”
Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter to Cidananda – Bhaktivedanta Manor, November 25, 1973

“So I cannot speak. I am feeling very weak. I was to go to other places like Chandigarh program, but I cancelled the program because the condition of my health is very deteriorating. So I preferred to come to Vṛndāvana. If death takes place, let it take here. So there is nothing to be said new. Whatever I have to speak, I have spoken in my books. Now you try to understand it and continue your endeavor. Whether I am present or not present, it doesn’t matter. As Kṛṣṇa is living eternally, similarly, living being also lives eternally. But kīrtir yasya sa jīvati: “One who has done service to the Lord lives forever.” So you have been taught to serve Kṛṣṇa, and with Kṛṣṇa we’ll live eternally. Our life is eternal. Na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre [Bg. 2.20]. A temporary disappearance of this body, it doesn’t matter. Body is meant for disappearance. Tathā dehāntara-prāptiḥ [Bg. 2.13]. So live forever by serving Kṛṣṇa. Thank you very much.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Arrival Speech – Vṛndavana, May 17, 1977)

“You have rightly said that the best way to associate with the spiritual master is to follow his instructions. There are two ways of associating, by vani and by vapu. Vani means words and vapu means physical presence. Physical presence is sometimes appreciable and sometimes not. Therefore we should take advantage of the vani, not the physical presence, because the vani continues to exist eternally. Bhagavad-gita for example is the vani of Lord Krishna. Although Krishna was personally present 5,000 years ago and is no longer present physically from the materialistic viewpoint, still Bhagavad-gita continues. So you have correctly concluded.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Bombay, November 4, 1975)

“…vāṇī and vapu, and vapu means the physical body, and vāṇī means the vibration. So we are not concerned about the physical body. Not concerned means… We are concerned, of course, because the spiritual master, those who are ācāryas, their body is not considered as materiel. Arcye śilā-dhīr guruṣu nara-matir. Just like the statue of Kṛṣṇa, to consider that “This is a stone…” Similarly, arcye śilā-dhīr guruṣu na… Guruṣu means those who are ācāryas, to accept their body as ordinary man’s body, this is denied in the śāstras.
So although a physical body is not present, the vibration should be accepted as the presence of the spiritual master, vibration. What we have heard from the spiritual master, that is living.“
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Lecture – Los Angeles, January 13, 1969)

“There is no difference between the spiritual master’s instructions and the spiritual master himself. In his absence, therefore, his words of direction should be the pride of the disciple.”
Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Ādi-līlā 1.35 Purport (BBT Original 1974)

“One desiring perfection or liberation should associate with a person who is already liberated. This is called sādhu-saṅga, associating with a perfect devotee.“
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 4.31.2 Purport (BBT Original 1974)

“Personal service to the spiritual master means to follow his instructions. My request is the same for everyone: that they follow strictly the regulative principles and chant at least sixteen rounds daily. And as much time as they are able should be devoted for preaching according to our books.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Mayapur, March 12, 1977)

“There are two conceptions: the physical conception and the vibration conception. So physical conception is temporary. The vibration conception is eternal. Just like we are enjoying or we are relishing the vibration of Kṛṣṇa’s teachings. So by vibration He is present. As soon as we chant Hare Kṛṣṇa or chant Bhagavad-gītā or Bhāgavata, so He is present immediately by His vibration. He’s absolute. Therefore try to remember His words of instruction; you’ll not feel separation. You’ll feel that He is with you. So we should associate by the vibration, and not by the physical presence. That is real association. Śabdād anavṛtti. By sound. Just like we are touching Kṛṣṇa immediately by sound. Sound vibration. So we should give more stress on the sound vibration, either of Kṛṣṇa or of the spiritual master. Then we’ll feel happy and no separation.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Lecture – Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 7.9.12 – Montreal, August 18, 1968)

Nārāyaṇa: So those disciples who don’t have opportunity to see you or speak with you…
Prabhupāda: That he was speaking, vāṇī and vapuḥ. Even if you don’t see his body, you take his word, vāṇī.
Nārāyaṇa: But how do they know they’re pleasing you, Śrīla Prabhupāda?
Prabhupāda: If you actually follow the words of guru, that means he is pleased. And if you do not follow, how he can be pleased?
Sudāmā: Not only that, but your mercy is spread everywhere, and if we take advantage, you told us once, then we will feel the result.
Prabhupāda: Yes.
Jayādvaita: And if we have faith in what the guru says, then automatically we’ll do that.
Prabhupāda: Yes. My Guru Mahārāja passed in 1936, and I started this movement in 1965, thirty years after. Then? I am getting the mercy of guru. This is vāṇī. Even the guru is not physically present, if you follow the vāṇī, then you are getting help.
Sudāmā: So there’s no question of ever separation as long as the disciple follows the instruction of guru…
(Morning Walk – San Francisco, July 21, 1975)

DIKSA THE PROCESS of revelation through Prabhupada’s books
“In my books the philosophy of Krishna Consciousness is explained fully so if there is anything which you do not understand, then you simply have to read again and again. By reading daily the knowledge will be revealed to you and by this process your spiritual life will develop.”
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Bombay, November 22, 1974)

Note: Our Śrīmad Bhāgavatam is unique because the verses of the Bhāgavatam are directly complemented with the purports of Śrīla Prabhupāda, who is the bonafide mahā-bhāgavata ; therefore, the book Bhāgavata and the person Bhāgavata are combined in Śrīla Prabhupāda’s Śrīmad Bhāgavatam. Therefore, there is no need for a third party, “the so called current Iskcon links” to (mis)interpret what Śrīla Prabhupāda really means to say.

“In other words, the spiritual master awakens the sleeping living entity to his original consciousness so that he can worship Lord Viṣṇu. This is the purpose of dīkṣā, or initiation. Initiation means receiving the pure knowledge of spiritual consciousness.”
Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya-līlā 9.61 Purport (BBT Original 1975)

“Dīkṣā actually means initiating a disciple with transcendental knowledge by which he becomes freed from all material contamination.”
Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya-līlā 4.111 Purport (BBT Original 1975)

“Dīkṣā is the process by which one can awaken his transcendental knowledge and vanquish all reactions caused by sinful activity. A person expert in the study of the revealed scriptures knows this process as dīkṣā.“
Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya-līlā 15.108 Purport (BBT Original 1975)

“The spiritual master by his words can penetrate into the heart of the suffering person and inject knowledge transcendental, which alone can extinguish the fire of material existence.”
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.7.22 Purport (BBT Original 1972)

“To take shelter of the Spiritual Master means to follow his instructions.“
(Śrīla Prabhupāda Letter – Tehran, March 14, 1975)

Note: Why should future generations of ISKCON have to settle for less-qualified (to say the least) so-called spiritual masters, when we have an uttama-adhikari, infallible, unalloyed devotee spiritual master, Srila Prabhupada, available today guiding through his instructions?

“The guru must be situated on the topmost platform of devotional service. There are three classes of devotees, and the guru must be accepted from the topmost class.”
Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya-līlā 24.330 Purport (BBT Original 1975)

“…a disciple should be careful to accept an uttama-adhikārī as a spiritual master.”
The Nectar of Instruction : Text Five (BBT Original 1975)

“There is no possibility that a first-class devotee will fall down, even though he may mix with non devotees to preach.”
Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya-līlā 22.71 Purport (BBT Original 1975)

“If one always follows the orders of the spiritual master, there is no question of falling down. As soon as a foolish disciple tries to overtake his spiritual master and becomes ambitious to occupy his post, he immediately falls down.”
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 5.12.14 Purport (BBT Original 1975)

“It is not that he is dead and gone. That is not spiritual understanding. Even ordinary living being, he does not die. Na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre [Bg. 2.20]. And what to speak of such exalted, authorized personality like Bhaktisiddhānta. […] There are two words, vāṇī and vapuḥ. Vānī means words, and vapuḥ means this physical body. So vāṇī is more important than the vapuḥ. Vapuḥ will be finished. This is material body. It will be finished. That is the nature. But if we keep to the vāṇī, to the words of spiritual master, then we remain very fixed up. […] If you don’t keep in touch with the original link, then it will be lost. And if you keep touch with the original link, then you are directly hearing Kṛṣṇa. Similarly, Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa’s representative, spiritual master, if you keep always intact, in link with the words and instruction of the superior authorities, then you are always fresh. This is spiritual understanding. […] So you are hearing this philosophy daily. Try to understand more and more. We have got so many books. And this is the mission of Caitanya Mahāprabhu and, by disciplic succession, Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura, then my spiritual master. Then we are trying our level best. Similarly, you will also try your level best on the same principle. Then it will go on. Same principle.”
(His Divine Grace Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Gosvāmī Prabhupāda’s Appearance Day, Lecture — Atlanta, March 2, 1975)

“These great souls (members of the disciplic succession) were not mere luminaries like comets appearing in the firmament for a while and disappearing as soon as their mission is done. They are like so many suns shining all along to give light and heat to succeeding generations. Long time yet to roll on when they will be succeeded by others of sublime mind, beauty and calibre.”

“He reasons ill who tells that Vaisnavas die
When thou art living still in sound!
The Vaisnavas die to live, and living try
To spread the holy name around!”
– Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Thākura –

Source and Credits:

Tuesday 6 February 2018

That is called destiny

So this is karma-cakra. We are getting some opportunity and making our next life. In this way it is called karma-cakra. Yas tv indra-gopam athavendram aho sva-karma-bandhānurūpa-phala-bhājanam ātanoti [Bs. 5.54]. Everyone is enjoying the result of his past karma. Who? Now, from, beginning from that King Indra, the heavenly king, very powerful, exalted position. That Indra, and there is an insect which is called indra-gopa. Yas tv indra... Indra-gopam mahā-indra. Beginning from this insect known as indra and up to that Indra, everyone is bound up by his karma-phala. That is called destiny. Everyone is bound up.
yas tv indra-gopam athavendram aho sva-karma-
bandhānurūpa-phala-bhājanam ātanoti
karmāṇi nirdahati kintu ca bhakti-bhājāṁ
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
 [Bs. 5.54]
Those who have taken, fully surrendered to Kṛṣṇa, bhakti-bhājām, karmāṇi nirdahati, their karma, nirdahati, means as far as possible the result is diminished or practically made nil. Even it is there, karma-phala, very slight. Just like the example is just like one is condemned to be murdered by somebody by cutting his head, but by Kṛṣṇa's grace he may be saved from cutting the head. Suppose there is some accident by knife in the hand. They are calculated like that. And generally, a devotee is completely relieved from all karma-phala. So ordinarily, we are indebted to so many persons, not only bāla, dvija, gopa, but ṛṣi, and the devatās. We have to take care of it. But if we become fully surrendered to Kṛṣṇa, sarvātmanā ye śaraṇaṁ śaraṇyaṁ gato mukundam. Not any other demigods. Mukundam. Mukundam means... Muk means liberation. So one who gives liberation. Gato mukundaṁ parihṛtya kartam. So one who takes full shelter of Mukunda, Kṛṣṇa, then He's freed from all this indebtedness to so many persons.

 Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.8.49 -- Māyāpura, October 29, 1974