by purujit dasa
THE PROOF OF A SINCERE DISCIPLE
Coming back to the hypocritical cheater smoker doctor –he can be compared to a bogus guru. Bogus guru selects from the perfect knowledge whatever attracts his bogus disciples and whatever doesn’t he leaves behind. People in general are not fond of serving God only, therefore if someone comes up with a new teaching with the promise of spiritual life, which does not require any endeavor on the part of the follower, many thousands gather to get cheated.
Therefore the proof of our hearing submissively must also manifest practically. If we hear from the spiritual master about the devotional service but never engage in devotional service, we don’t really understand what the spiritual master says. It is just like playing a musical instrument. You can learn the theory and the notes, but unless you grab a guitar and play, your knowledge of guitar playing is not complete. The guru is ultimately engaging us in the service to the Complete Whole. We may inquire from the guru as much as we want and we may even have a theoretical understanding of the Complete Whole, but it is only by service the knowledge becomes revealed.
“One can understand the Supreme Personality as He is only by devotional service.”
Inquiries must be there. But inquiry, how inquiry? Not to challenge. Inquiry, not that "Oh, I shall see what kind of spiritual master he is. Let me challenge him and put some irrelevant questions and talk nonsensically, this way and that way." Oh, that will not make... Inquiry on the point. Paripraśna means inquiry on the point, and that inquiry should be sevā.
Sevā means service. Not that "Oh, I have inquired so many things from such and such person. Oh, I have not rendered any payment or any service, so I have gained." No. Without service, your inquiry will be futile.
Bhagavad-gītā 4.34 -- New York, August 14, 1966
Liberated means one who understands that he is not this material body—he is liberated. But that much knowledge is not sufficient. One must act according to that. Just like one is cured of the feverish condition. One was suffering some fever; now there is no fever. That's nice. But that is called convalescent stage. In the convalescent stage, if we do not take care nicely, again the fever may be relapse. That is marginal stage. We must come this side or that side. So even if we are liberated, if we are not engaged in the activities of liberation, then we are to be considered on the marginal stage. And marginal stage means we may fall down in this material condition. Āruhya kṛcchreṇa paraṁ padaṁ tataḥ patanty adho 'nādṛta-yuṣmad-aṅghrayaḥ [SB 10.2.32]. Āruhya kṛcchreṇa. Kṛcchreṇa means with great difficulty. The philosophers, they try to understand the Absolute Truth by mental speculation. But simply by mental speculation you cannot stay in that understanding. Or, in other words, by theoretical knowledge you cannot escape. It must be practiced. Practiced.
So in our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement we are putting the candidate into practice. Without practice, simply knowledge is no good. That is... Simply foolishly to become puffed up that "I am now liberated," no. That is not liberation. That is explained in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam elsewhere. Ye 'nye 'ravindākṣa vimukta-māninaḥ. Vimukta-māninaḥ. They're thinking that they have become liberated. Just like the Māyāvāda sannyāsīs, they address amongst themselves as "Nārāyaṇa." That means everyone has become Nārāyaṇa. The modern increase of incarnation of God means this Māyāvāda philosophy. Because in the Māyāvāda philosophy everyone thinks that he is God, Nārāyaṇa. "I have become Nārāyaṇa." Brahma-bhūta [SB 4.30.20]. "Now I have become Nārāyaṇa." No. You cannot become Nārāyaṇa. You can become Nārāyaṇa's dāsa, servant. That is your healthy state.
So if after liberation... Liberation means sufficient knowledge to understand that one is not this body. That is called liberation. So after liberation there is activity. That they do not know. They think after liberation there is no other activity. Some of them say that when the waterpot is full, there is no more sound. It is solid. But our philosophy is that when one is liberated, his actual life begins. What is that actual life? The actual life is to be engaged in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. That is actual life. Therefore in the Bhagavad-gītā it is said,
na śocati na kāṅkṣati
samaḥ sarveṣu bhūteṣu
mad-bhaktiṁ labhate parām
After being brahma-bhūtaḥ, not simply by knowing ahaṁ brahmāsmi. No. One must realize, assimilate, how he is Brahman. Brahman means the same thing as the Absolute Truth. So we, all living entities, being part and parcel of the Supreme Brahman, Kṛṣṇa, certainly we are Brahman. There is no doubt about it. But if one stops activities of Brahman realization, then he falls down.
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.2.3 -- London, August 24, 1971
Actually the purpose of Bhagavad-gītā is not understandable to those who are sensuous-even if one is not sensuous but is strictly following the disciplines enjoined in the Vedic scripture, if he is not a devotee, he also cannot understand Kṛṣṇa. Even when one poses himself as a devotee of Kṛṣṇa, but is not engaged in Kṛṣṇa conscious activities, he also cannot understand Kṛṣṇa.
Bg 18.67 purport
I never asked my Spiritual Master one question except one: "How shall I serve you?'
Letter to: Upendra — Calcutta 19 February, 1972
Krsna consciousness is not an artificial imposition on the soul, but it is the original spontaneous consciousness of every living entity. The knowledge is already there within our heart, it simply has to be revived. Therefore it is not dogmatic. The rules and regulations are simply meant to revive our original function as the eternal servants of the Complete Whole. Because we are parts and parcels of the Whole, by serving the Whole, we ourselves become pleased just like branches and leaves of a tree become nourished when we water the root. This is the whole purpose of hearing from the spiritual master –to revive our natural serving propensity towards Krsna.
In our conditioned life, we have forgotten our relationship with God, but by regulative principles, we can make alert the inert activities. Just like a rheumatic crippled man is gradually elevated by some bodily exercises. Similarly, the regulative principles are to make us habituated to our dormant service attitude, but when that is mature, it becomes spontaneous, and that is pure Krishna Consciousness.
Letter to: Rupanuga — Montreal 3 July, 1968
(to be continued...)