Guru Mukha Padma Vaikya (IV)

Monday, 9 January 2012

Q. Maharaj if somebody is doing some wrong practices but still he is satisfied than can he be really satisfied?
Ans. There are different kinds of satisfaction, but the satisfaction should be according to the shastra. Some are seen to be satisfied though he is doing something wrong. Some are satisfied by drinking liquor. So this kind of satisfaction cannot be termed as real satisfaction. Whether he is mentally peaceful and how long it will last, that is the main issue. Satisfaction which is unending is real satisfaction. But another important point is, if he has full faith in his practices, than it may work. Actually realization is the most important. Whether I am realized or not is the main point.
Q. Maharaj I have heard that committing aparadha (offence) unknowingly is not considered an aparadha. Is it a fact? If so than if a person who eats meat unknowingly is also not at fault.
Ans. Unknowingly if anybody commits any mistakes than he may be excused, but I am killing an animal and the animal is not getting any pain this kind of ignorance is not pardonable. This is a universal factor. Universal factors such as eating relieve hunger, feeling pain if somebody hurts, these things are applicable for all living entities and hence known to all.
Q. But if mental satisfaction is the main issue than if I am satisfied than it is ok.
Ans. Peace of mind is important but without realization you will not get actual satisfaction. Temporary satisfaction is by and large available. As and when some needs are fulfilled we feel some satisfaction but after sometime another need grows. So unless we overcome our ignorance and realize everything properly we cannot come to that tranquil position.
Q. In my personal life I see people more sober and seem more compassionate than me although I am chanting and performing so many rules and regulations for so many years.
Ans. This can be possible. As I have said earlier that just chanting and observing rules and regulations is not enough. I am just going on chanting but never going near the real purpose, that is I am never measuring myself, though I have a scale i.e. self introspection and I can presume the result, still I never justify myself. As a routine I am just doing my japa and it becomes a kind of fascination and this fascination has become prominent nowadays. So such an important thing like chanting has been taken very lightly and as a result we cannot understand its importance. Every thing now is skin-deep, does not reaches the heart. So the main thing is realization, my realization. I have to observe whether my nature, my animalistic nature is modifying or not. This thing I have to constantly monitor throughout my life in the beginning and at the end of every act I perform so that day by day I can develop gradually.
Q. Can we change this nature? It is said that to change the nature is very hard.
Ans.  Of course we can our nature. Nature or habit which is created by me can also be changed. More I observe more I can rectify. But if I go on without keeping an eye on what I am doing why I am doing, than it will be just wastage of time.
Q. But there are certain some results of my previous Karmas (activities) which I must suffer.
Ans.  Results of previous Karmas are there but by satkarma (solemn rite) prarabdha karma (started/commenced activities) can be decayed. It is according to the shastra and is reasonable too, otherwise why people will perform virtuous acts. If there no diminution of my previous sinful acts than why should I perform pious activities. For example if I do not recover from illness than why should I take medical treatment? So this is not only a mental solace but a practical fact. Then another important factor is, although I am saying nature but as I am a human being my natural tendency is to perform satkarma only and I am not inclined towards asatkarma. But due to certain environment, certain circumstances, previous nature and various needs and grievances I might have turned towards asatkarma . And further there are some previous intuitions, previous belief that also guide us. Our Sanatan Dharma is so refined and it is not all established in sense enjoyment. Although sense enjoyment does not give us real peace of mind but at this present age, I suppose everything is gradually changing to worse. The position has come to such a point that only some rules are given to follow without acknowledging the actual fact. Some dos and don’ts and rest what ever you like. Always in search of some opportunity, some favor, no sacrifice or renunciation.  Just change of dress but from heart there is no sacrifice. Everything is external. And further there are clashes in-between religious groups there are so many differences of opinion and so nobody is able to come to a proper position.
Q. Some says it is due to kali yuga.
Ans. Kali yuga is ok. The force of Kali, the power of time is always there. Kala  prabala (time is very powerful). But that is not all in all. As there is an effect of kali yuga but still the sun, the moon are rising, the air is still blowing the trees are giving fruits and vegetables. These things have not changed so terribly. Therefore the effect of Kali yuga only upon human beings, that also cannot be accepted. In fact we are just giving an excuse in the name of Kali yuga but the real case is not this. Nature is my own and I have to change it. Taking everything very lightly, very easily has become the order of the day. Dharma is also taken in that way. I will perform dharma according to my own will. As per time place and circumstances shastras are being changed. Though I am not talking about rigidity but at least it should be reasonable, but here the reason is also not found. Why I am doing? This question is also not there. So I think and I advice others also as I advised you that unless this question, “why I will do” arises, unless I know the destination, (there is a proverb that destination is half the battle won), where I have to reach than, I cannot prepare myself to fight that war which I have to win. In that case we are just pushing ourselves.
Q. And faith is also not there.
Ans. Yes that is an important thing. See one practical topic; how can a country be saved, by good administration, and for good administration the king has to be sat. If the king is sat the citizens will also become sat. In a family, the leader has to be sat otherwise others will never become sat. One or two may be different but the majority will remain asat.
Q. Maharaj what is the meaning of the word sat.
Ans. Sat means, something we can feel in our practical life that which harm others and also harmful to me that is naturally not sat. In the Bhagavad Gita the definition of sat is nicely stated; Nasato vidyate bhavo nabhavo vidyate satah – ubhayor api drsto’ntas  tu anayos tattva-darsibhih. The seer of the Truth has concluded that satya is never absent, it is always there and mithya (false) is never there, always in need, its temporary. So sat bastu has its existence but asat does not have any existence. So whenever we are in the asat path we are lost.
Q. Maharaj we see that nowadays there is a trend to build temples among devotional communities. Is it ok?
Ans. It is boga spriha (desirous to enjoy). Sadhus should be tyagi, paribrajak (renounced, wanderer) and whenever they think of building big temples, to mix with lots of people they are misled.
Q. But they say that I am doing this for God. So is it bad?
Ans. Utterly bad. God does not want and never said to do all these things. These are not related to God.
Q. But because I have made temples people came to know about God and have come to devotional life etc.
Ans. There is no need to spread the messages of God in this way. Our previous acharyas had never done like that. How many temples have Mahaprabhu constructed? How many temples have Vyasdev, Sukdev constructed?  Look at the Mahajans how many temples have they built? Mahaprabhu did not even write a book. His life is itself a shastra. So we have to follow his footsteps.
Q. What is the problem, if I have money and I build temples?
Ans. No problem, but it is your intention. Whether you build temples or not. Here the intention of building temples is that through this temple I will preach, I will earn fame, I will have lots of followers, I will be powerful. So prabhutwam abibekitam. I will become Prabhu, people will call me prabhu, alongwith my name 108 or 1008 Sri will be inscribed, I will become a great speaker, great pundit, I will have thousands of followers etc. etc. But these things should not happen.
Q. But it is said that I am doing this as a service towards the Lord I am collecting to serve the Lord. Is it correct?
Ans. Not at all. These things are done on commission basis. I have stayed in different mathas and I have seen how they plan at night. Mahaprabhu’s plan was at all not like that. Mahaprabhu has said “go to every door and beg”, but this begging is not for food or money, he instructed “naam bhikha koro” (beg for the holy name) and this begging also has some reason behind which I personally believe that He instructed “you go to the house of my devotees and enquire about his condition, whether he is alright, whether he is properly performing bhakti or not, whether he is able to save his religion or not. But nowadays you tell me are these things being done anywhere? The people of India in general have a natural faith in sadhus that the sadhus are atleast doing what I could not do and have atleast sacrificed their family and hence they give them something whenever they comes. But I have seen these sadhus collecting in the name of temples which are utterly false. They are living a life just like a grihastha and collecting money to maintain their family. So these things are going on in the name of dharma.
Q. Then what is prakrita seva (real service)? People say if you do seva than you can realize God.
Ans. See there are three important aspects here. Three things are for three persons. Seva or service is for my own self, my self purification. Then seva is for the other living entities. My relation with the other living entities is through the medium of seva which is based upon equality and affection. And thirdly my relation with the Lord is prema-bhakti. My Karma (activity) is Seva and I have to go on doing seva. Now when can a person accomplish seva? I have come to serve the living entity to serve this world and through seva I can become  pure. Bhajan which is said means seva, (jane-jane seva) to serve humans, animals, insects all living entities. The purification obtained by seva cannot be achieved by any other devotional services. And when can you perform seva, when this tendency of seva will arise? When there is neither tendency towards sense enjoyment, nor desire to become prabhu than only you can perform seva otherwise not. So for my purification, my duty, my activity will be seva. My relation with this world is seva and my relation with God that Ultimate Power is prema-bhakti.
Q. So seva means something done with love.
Ans. Completely out of love, without any self interest, based on utmost self sacrifice is seva. There cannot be any motive behind seva. It should not be done for name, fame etc. Whenever there is any motive than it will become Karma (activity) or it will become kartavya (duty). Some people say that see I am giving food to my parents and doing them seva. But this is not actual seva. To look after parents is your kartavya or to serve food to the downtrodden to give them some clothing etc. it is your duty. Seva will be when we do something more than that, for ex. bathing your ailing father or mother or to properly arrange their bed or to pay obeisance and ask them if I can do anything for you etc. etc.
Q. There are some rules and regulations in case of charity also.
Ans. Yes regarding charity, there are some rules and regulations. Charity given to proper person, at proper place and proper time is the best. But there are some charities which are related to necessity. In case of need, for ex. if somebody is unable to give marriage to his daughter or if somebody requires money for his or her treatment than that charity is also in the mode of goodness. Daana Dharma Charity is a great religious act. It is said that charity immediately decays sins (papa khyay aar punya arjan) and attains virtue. In kaliyuga there is only satya (truthfulness) and daan (charity) and there is no other dharma. In kaliyuga  if somebody takes shelter to satya and daan than he is doing his dharma in a proper way. In kaliyuga only the sudras, whose duty is seva and naari (women class) whose duty is pati seva (serving her husband) can perform dharma other cannot. That is why it is said that in the kaliyuga whether you may say brahmanas or khatriyas but all are sudras. Because the duty of brahmanas is to perform yagna but due to lack of yagna bhumi (place to perform sacrifice) it will be impossible to carry out yagna, and the paraphernalia to perform yagna are also not pure. You may be a vegetarian but the rice and other food item which you consume and buy from the market are they pure? They are produced using various chemicals which are prepared from the bones of various animals etc. So ashrama. The word ashram means sram-ashram a place where we have to do manual labor, where rice will not be bought from the market. We have to cultivate our own food products, we have to grow flowers and offer it to the Lord. This is seva. Ultimately there is nothing above seva.
Q. It is said that we should not do even pious activity as it will increase our stay in this material world.
Ans. There is no need to do pious or impious activities. Seva is considered neither pious nor impious. Seva is the only way of purification, my self purification, my mental purification and seva will always remind me that I am sevak and not prabhu, prabhu is only one and that is He. Anything else you do a sense of doer ship will arise in your mind. Whether you give charity, do pious activities, perform yagna, build temples etc. in every activity ahankar will appear. But in case of seva, you have to humble, you have to bow down otherwise you cannot perform seva.
Q. If any guru gives wrong instructions to his disciples than what will be the consequence.
Ans. If a guru sees only his own self interest, his wealth, and if he could not exhibit the right path to his disciple than both guru and sisya: Once Sukracharya came back and alleged, Prahlad, you will be the reason for destruction of the asura dynasty, you are teaching your fellow classmates to worship Vishnu. Prahlad Maharaj  then asked that Gurudeb you are saying me like this but what have you taught the asuras? You taught them to worship Hiranyakashipu, you made them understand that Hiranyakashipu is God, but do you yourself consider him like that, do you worship him in your house? Hearing this Sukracharya became upset and said that no I am a brahmana and only worship Brahman. So, said Prahlad Maharaj, the person whom you yourself do not consider to be Bhagavan, you instruct others to worship him. So not I, but you are the cause for their miseries and destruction. Already they have taken birth as an asura and are in the mode of ignorance and you have further inserted more ignorance in them. If a student  follows a wrong path than only his life is spoiled, but if a teacher gives a wrong instruction than so many people, including all his followers are ruined, and you are that type of guru.
Q. Demonic nature as it is said, for example Kamsa, was Kamsa an impersonalist?
Ans. No, Kamsa and all others have come to take part in the pastimes of the Lord. These are all ahankar (false ego). Ahankar never destroys and comes again and again. From Ahankar this world is created. In this world all of us have this demonic nature. Everybody in his own level has a tendency to lord over. In my home I am the lord, I want that everybody should listen to me. Everybody has his own surface and inside his surface he is Bhagavan, he is prabhu etc. etc. In Bhagavatam we can see that a big story has been plotted surrounding Maharaj Parikshit. Maharaj Parikshit has been cursed, left his home and settled in the banks of river Ganga. But what is the logic behind this story? Why Maharaj Parikshit is being chosen, why so many rishi-munis assembled there and why Sukdev Muni also came there and recited Bhagavatam? Vedavyas has composed so many literatures but nowhere has he started his explanation in this way as he has done in Bhagavatam. Here he begins with a king who is cursed, who sacrifices his family and settles in the banks of Ganga. Surrounded by the society of rishi-munis one question is raised and from this question Bhagavatam starts. What is the question? The question is “What is the duty of a person who is about to die”?  Now if you observe the basic story line you will find; Maharaj Parikshit previously known as Vishnurat. So why Vishnurat became Parikshit, that is very nicely elaborated in the Bhagavatam. Parikshit means, we are all parikshit (examinee pariksha(exam), all jivas are parikshit. But what the jivas are examining, what we are examining from our birth? We are examining our sartha (self interest), whether, through this person my self interest will be fulfilled or not. If somebody fulfills than he is my friend, my relative and as soon as he does not than I have no relation with him. But Maharaj Parikshit is just the opposite. Maharaj Parikshit was examining, whether through this person my paramartha (greatest object, knowledge of Absolute Turth) will be attained or not. So the search is opposite, not sartha (self interest towards material objects) but paramartha. Because as regards to sartha Maharaj Parikshit was already the emperor of the entire universe and so his self interests are almost fulfilled. Another examination, which the Bhagavatam has stated is that, whether the Person whom I have visualized when I was in the womb of my mother, that Person who is of the size of a thumb that Puran Purush that Ultimate Reality, where I will, in whom I will find that Person. And so Maharaj Parikshit is searching for that Person. Maharaj Parikshit and I, both are examinees, both of us were cursed. Due to curse we have entered in the mother’s womb and when I will die that is also a curse. Curse means, general death is a curse. If your death is not pure, means not as per Bhagavatam, than it is a curse. Actually Bhagavad Gita teaches us the way to lead our life and guides us to the ultimate goal and Bhagavatam teaches how to make our death auspicious and gracious. In our life we make various plans and programmes. How I will construct my house, how my family will be, how my sons and daughters will be, what I will teach them, etc. etc. these are programs we make in our life. But regarding the ultimate reality with is called death; do we ever make any plan? Do we ever think that my death will be in this way? So Bhagavatam teaches that, how to face this ultimate reality. It teaches us that before the arrival of death you cut off all your relations all your attachment with this world. You make your death pure and auspicious. Death should not become a nightmare for you and you win it before it arrives. Win means, you win the fear of death. Today everybody is fearful of death but it is sure to come today or tomorrow. So fearing of death is unnecessary. As I have taken birth I have to die, that is unavoidable.
Q. But Maharaj thinking about death and discussing about death, I think makes it more fearful.
Ans. Thinking and discussing about death is a natural characteristic of a living entity. Eating, sleeping, mating and fearing are all natural tendencies of a living entity. All living beings are more or less affected by these four qualities. The animals because of their less intelligence are less affected. But in case of human it is opposite. They always think about sex, always wants to eat but will not eat like animals, will calculate how much and what to eat or how to store etc. etc. In this way their intelligence is always engaged. But our consciousness is not given for this purpose; it is given to achieve some higher objective.
Q. Do every one thinks about death?
Ans. Never thinking and always thinking about death both are incorrect. Never thinking about death is like animals, suddenly death comes and we are unable to understand anything.
Q. So what is the problem if it comes suddenly and we are unable to understand?
Ans. There is no problem. But why I have taken birth, I have some duties to perform, these things remain unknown to me. For example, I go to school everyday, I just go and come back, go and come back without any knowledge without any study. So what is my benefit? Similarly as I have taken birth I have some duties to perform and this feeling is most important as stated by all rishis and munis. Everyday when I rise up I should think what my duties are today. This is called thought of the day, than thought of the week, than month, year and at last thought of my life. Javat jivet javata what is my relation with Him why I have come here, what are my duties This is ideal human life. 
(The above conversation is translated from Bengali as I have heard from the lotus mouth of my Gurudeb Sri Kandarpa Gopal Goswami).