19830328 Srimad-Bhagavatam.3.25.23 Gaura Purnima @ Sri Mayapur Dhama, India
The following is a lecture given by His Holiness Jayapataka Swami on March 25th, 1983 in Sridhama, Mayapura. The class begins with a lecture from the Srimad-Bhagavatam 3d Canto, Chapter 25, Verse 23.
Jayapataka Swami: Translation by His Divine Grace, Srila Abhayacaranaravinda Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada: Engaged constantly in chanting and hearing about Me, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the sādhus do not suffer from material miseries because they are always filled with thoughts of My pastimes and activities.
Translation with repetition:
Engaged constantly in chanting and hearing
Devotees: Engaged constantly in chanting and hearing
Jayapataka Swami: about Me
Devotees: about Me
Jayapataka Swami: the Supreme Personality of Godhead
Devotees: the Supreme Personality of Godhead
Jayapataka Swami: the sādhus do not suffer
Devotees: the sādhus do not suffer
Jayapataka Swami: from material miseries
Devotees: from material miseries
Jayapataka Swami: because they are always filled
Devotees: because they are always filled
Jayapataka Swami: with thoughts of My pastimes
Devotees: with thoughts of My pastimes
Jayapataka Swami: and activities
Devotees: and activities
Jayapataka Swami: Purport by Srila Prabhupada:
There are multifarious miseries in material existence—those pertaining to the body and the mind, those imposed by other living entities and those imposed by natural disturbances. But a sādhu is not disturbed by such miserable conditions because his mind is always filled with Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and thus he does not like to talk about anything but the pastimes of the Lord. Vacāṁsi vaikuṇṭha-guṇānuvarṇane. He engaged his words only in glorification of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Sādhus are always interested in hearing about the activities of the Lord or His devotees. Since they are filled with Kṛṣṇa consciousness, they are forgetful of the material miseries. Ordinary conditioned souls, being forgetful of the activities of the Lord, are always full of anxieties and material tribulations. On the other hand, since the devotees always engage in the topics of the Lord, they are forgetful of the miseries of material existence.
Thus end the Purport by His Divine Grace, Srila Prabhupada.
Engaged constantly in chanting and hearing about Me, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the sādhus do not suffer from material miseries because they are always filled with thoughts of My pastimes and activities.
So here is the secret for eradicating all misery in life. There are so many miseries and there are so many cures but the miseries of life have never been completely cured by anyone in this material world. Just like in modern society they are inventing so many new medicines but nature is also coming up with so many new diseases that they cannot keep up. But here an altogether different category of transcending all the sufferings of material miseries is being given. It's very simple, not at all difficult to do; it's simply to fill the mind with thoughts of Krishna’s pastimes and activities with the activities and pastimes of Krishna’s pure devotees. Not very difficult yet when it comes to reading every day one hour, two hours, it's very difficult. Although it is not difficult still somehow or another it seems difficult to find the time. But if someone shows a Newsweek or a daily newspaper on the lap one can destroy one hour or half hour without the bat of an eyelash.
Although it is not very difficult to hear about Krishna we are not in the habit, we are not in the practice of spontaneously hearing about Krishna. When we hear about Krishna, we like it. At that moment we think "I’d rather not think about anything else, why can’t I not be always hearing this nectar?" But then some other time the devotees get into so many other discussions and their minds become disturbed. And from that disturbed mind then one can lose the taste, at least temporarily; of devotional service and all trouble begins. Therefore as the Bhagavat Himself advised us nityam bhagavata sevaya, that daily we should be drinking the nectar of the Bhagavat.
What is Bhagavat? Prabhupad describes that Bhagavad-gita means spoken by Krishna and Srimad-Bhagavatam means spoken about Krishna. So by hearing the glories of Krishna, by hearing the Lord's... glories of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, we can actually forget about all the sufferings. Our mind no longer is tuned in to all those sufferings of this material world. Rather it is tuned in directly to that eternal bliss coming from the spiritual world. So we simply have to decide where we want to tune in to? And when we see that we are getting static, we are tuned in to the wrong channel, and we see that our mind starts to become disturbed, starts to become in a impatient... impatient state, if we start to become impatient to again hear for more discussions about Krishna, impatient to hear more about devotional service, well, that's a very good sign. In fact that is the beginning of spiritual life.
dharmah svanusthitah pumsam
notpadayed yadi ratim
srama eva hi kevalam
When we start to become eager to hear about Krishna, eager to hear about how we can render devotional service, that means that our spiritual life is in a proper position. And if we are not eager, if we are not desirous, if that taste is not yet developed, that means that we are still in a most neophyte stage.
So this is a very good opportunity, this Mayapura-Vrndavana pilgrimage, to hear from so many advanced devotees of the Lord, dedicated servitors of Srila Prabhupada, about devotional service, about the pastimes of Krishna, so that we can develop that taste. Yesterday it was mentioned how in parikrama that although when we are walking to and from the places we are feeling heat, we are feeling difficulties but when we are hearing about the pastimes of Lord Caitanya, at that moment we forget all about our surroundings and when we come back we have a smile on our face because we have tasted some happiness from the transcendental realm. But when Lord Advaita was here in Navadvipa, He looked around and He saw that the people, they were not getting any juice; their juice was simply based upon sense gratification.
They were simply absorbed in religious principles for material elevation, for going to heavenly planet, or for getting some material reciprocation, "Give us this day our daily bread, give us money, give us wealth, give us good education." people were absorbed completely in material wishes and He saw that they are so unfortunate, they are missing out on the real nectar. And He started to think as a pure devotee, as a ghostyanandi that, although He was Mahavishnu, He was in that mood, the preaching mood, He was thinking how to bring these people to pure God consciousness, how to bring them to pure bhakti, devotional service.
Although Advaita Gosai in His humble state of mind, He came to the conclusion that "I am inadequate for the job. I cannot bring them to that stage, they are too far gone but somehow or another Lord Krishna, Lord Caitanya comes down, if Gauranga comes down, He can deliver everyone. He can give every last man, woman and child pure devotional service." So...
Advaita Gosai, you know how He was so much absorbed in this mood to deliver all the fallen souls. He couldn’t tolerate that they were simply religious, that they were doing their worship to God without any desire for actually serving Krishna and loving Krishna. What to speak of that today, people have absolutely forgotten about worshipping God in many places. His disturbance that they're actually not real devotees of God, they are businessmen in exchange with God trying to get something back from God, not really loving God, not tasting the real nectar. Therefore He started to do a great tapasya. He started to fast and He started to cry out "Gauranga! Gauranga! Gauranga!" He was praying for the advent of Lord Caitanya.
Simultaneously nearby, while He was praying in Śāntipura, nearby Haridas Thakur was praying in Phuliyā for the descent of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who alone can give His pure devotional service. So Advaita was fasting, He was crying, crying, crying, that these souls be delivered, crying for the coming of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu and loudly shouting Gauranga! Gauranga! Hu hu! Crying, shouting, fasting and then He took the Ganges water and He started to offer the Tulasi flowers and He had the salagrama and He was offering the Tulasi flowers. You see our American BBT has published in the Caitanya Caritamrita, while He was doing His puja, He is offering again and again worship to Lord Caitanya, praying, crying, until finally His loud shouting actually reached Caitanya Mahaprabhu and shook Him, that "I have to come." In fact, Advaita said that "If My name is Advaita, if I am non-different from the Supreme Lord, if I am Maha Vishnu, then on My call, He must come. Otherwise My name is not Advaita, and I am not who I am."
So because of His intense desire the Lord decided to come. Therefore every one of us is so much indebted to Advaita Gosai for His bringing down Caitanya Mahaprabhu. But you can imagine, even Advaita, He heard that the Lord was coming but Lord Caitanya, He didn’t reveal Himself. He didn’t reveal Himself that... initially that He was the Lord. In fact He used to go and sit at Advaita Gosain’s Bhagavatam class with His elder brother Visvarupa. Whether Advaita knew or not, but He didn't reveal it, neither did Lord Caitanya, Nimai Pandit reveal it. In fact as Nimai Pandit, Lord Caitanya was arguing and defeating so many people on the sastra. He wasn’t revealing who He was until after He came back from Gaya, after Jagannath Mishra left the world.
When He came back and He was completely in His devotional mood, He made all His students in His class, He made all of them chant Hare Krishna. He gave them the choice, "You can go to some other teacher or you can take up the harinama with Me, whatever you like." But all the students, they didn’t want to leave Lord Caitanya. They joined Him but they told Him, "We don’t know how to do sankirtana. You have been teaching us grammar, Sanskrit, everything, You never taught us how to do the chanting. You have to teach us what You want us to do." Then Lord Caitanya called some of the pure devotees from Navadvipa here, He called them and said, "Now you do kirtan, I want you to teach all My students." You know the toughest nuts to crack are college students. So Lord Caitanya was the college professor but He made His whole class surrender and then all students, they became great preachers.
Still nobody knew who Lord Caitanya was, they thought, "Well now He's become a great devotee." Until one day Lord Caitanya sat down on the bed of Krishna, right on the simhasana.
"What? Lord Caitanya is a devotee, why is He sitting on the Lord’s bed? Why is He sitting on the Lord's simhasana? Some offence or something, what’s going on?" Then Lord Caitanya, He started to manifest transcendental qualities; He called for the brother of Srivas, Ramai. He sent him to go get Advaita Gosai. "You bring Him here. You tell Him that that Lord whom He fasted for, who He cried out loudly for, whom He worshipped the Tulasi... who worshipped salagrama for, who He..." is that all four? Well there's the four things He did. He chanted, He cried. "And who He cried for chanted for, that that Lord is come, is here in Nadiya." So Ramai, he ran. He ran to Advaita’s house and as he got about halfways, or as he went quite a way, along the way running, he realized that he never asked anybody where Advaita’s house was! He had never been there before. Then he asked somebody... then suddenly he got little doubtful, "What is the house that Advaita stayed in first?"
"Right there. Go in."
So when he came into Advaita’s house, Advaita immediately before he could say anything chastised him. He was running about just very quickly in a nervous mood and he chastised. "How is it possible that God can incarnate in the Kali yuga? You expect me to believe that? And why would He pick Nadiya? You expect Me to believe this?" Ramai hadn't said a word. He was completely preempted.
Well he knew that Advaita Gosai was very eccentric, that He was extraordinary, had divine qualities, so he just sat down, a little... was bewildered and decided to wait. Then Advaita, He also sat down and did some puja, suddenly looked at him and said, "What do you want?" Then Ramai offered his obeisances and prayed that "My Lord, that Lord for Whom You are waiting for, whom You were crying for, whom You were calling for, that Lord who You were worshipping for, chanting for, that Lord, He has come! He sends You this message that He has come! Here in Nadiya district... Here in Nadiya dhama, Navadvipa.
Advaita Gosai, He became ecstatic, He started jumping up and down chanting "Haribol! Haribol! On My call, the Lord has come, He has come!" He was rejoicing. Like that we should also be rejoicing today on Gaura-purnima how Lord Caitanya has come to benedict us. How he has come to give out this rare jewel, this jewel which you cannot get by any amount of tapasya, austerity, by studying the scriptures, you can’t get it by worshipping the forefathers; you can’t get it by following regulative principles. Actually to get bhakti, to get pure love of Krishna, is only possible by the causeless mercy of Krishna and His devotee.
In fact even Krishna Himself, He was very tight when it came to giving pure devotion. But Lord Caitanya came and He's given it freely. namo mahā-vadānyāya kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāyate, giving it freely. How much we should be rejoicing! And how easily, simply by following Lord Caitanya’s instructions, by following His instructions so easily we can get this ecstatic symptoms of devotional service if we throw ourselves into following the footsteps of Lord Caitanya.
It says by worshipping Krishna it takes a long, long time before one can get pure devotional service. Before one can get Krishna-prema it takes so long, so many births. But Lord Caitanya is giving just immediately, very quickly, even in some cases at the same moment in His association people would get pure devotion, would get Krishna-prema. So easily He's making it available and His plan was that the whole world should get pure devotional service.
When we studied history, I think it's much more than a coincidence that Lord Caitanya appeared in 1486 and that in the year 1492 Columbus discovered the Americas. Why should we take it as a coincidence? And that 400 some years later, that Srila Prabhupad would sail to the America and from America, the land that was discovered during the presence of Lord Caitanya, this sankirtan movement took its first strong foothold outside of Bharata-varsa. Srila Prabhupad ki
Jayapataka Swami: Caitanya Mahaprabhu ki,
Jayapataka Swami: In fact in Lord Caitanya’s time there was Maharaja Prataparudra, there was the great king Krishna Devaraya in South India, there was also the Hussain Shah who gave the... a complete licence to Lord Caitanya to go anywhere in his Mohammedan kingdom and preach. So that means during those times Lord Caitanya had put certain great rulers who all were somehow fitting in His master plan to make the whole world Krishna conscious. And simultaneously so many things were going on around the world. I don’t know the other things going on otherwise there may be some more. But we can understand that now with this International Society for Krishna Consciousness is spreading all over the... it's spread all over the world.
Prabhupada first went to the Americas, then he went to Europe, to Australasia, to the... Hong Kong, to different places all around the world, Africa, Russia, that somehow or another this has all been the divine plan by Lord Caitanya, that here in India especially people are into all the karma-kanda, they're into getting liberation. You never meet an Indian who says that... hardly you can meet, who is not a devotee of Lord Caitanya. Of course there are those but apart from them, has anybody experienced that "My goal in life is to get pure devotional service even birth after birth." Very rare, if any. Off hand, I have never met and I have lived here for about fourteen years.
So this is the special movement of Lord Caitanya that actually the fifth goal of life the purusartha... param-purusartha, the Supreme destination, (inaudible) of life, the highest necessity, the highest goal is to have pure love for Krishna, higher than all the mystic powers, higher than all the impersonal realizations, higher than all... of course insignificant to any material thing... what to speak of material things. That's insignificant. So this is the... some divine plan we can see that in the West, where people have more or less forgotten about any type of religion and whatever religion they have is so basic that they can purely... when they hear about pure devotional service, they accept. They take it up and then they are preaching here in Asia, in India pure devotional service without any mix, without any adulteration of desire for liberation, desire for elevation. So we should preserve that purity that Prabhupada gave us just like a guarded treasure house, the purity of simply serving for the desire of satisfying Krishna.
Then we should take up... just like one devotee said, "Well, I may not go back to Godhead but at least I can try to go to the heavenly planets." One Indian devotee's there, he says that, "Well, I don't want to marry any of the women here because they are not so beautiful, but I know that they are very beautiful in America and the heavenly planets. So next life either I can be born in America or heavenly planets. Then I'll fulfill my desire." So you, (inaudible) You see, but the actual thing that Prabhupad has given us is what the Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam are discussing, ekeha kuru nandana – having a single pointed consciousness. Now we have to see that when we expand our different asrams, as the new grhasthas are coming, as the new programs are coming, that we don’t bring into our pure movement... Prabhupada told us that purity is the force, that we don’t bring into any karma-kanda compromises, any compromises with sense gratification, any compromises with liberation.
What is the symptom of someone who wants sense gratification? They are very conditional in their service. They will serve but they have to have so many conditions because their desire is that through their devotional service they want a better material condition. So in this lifetime, the devotional service also they put so many conditions. So we're therefore again and again we are advised ahaituki apratihata – to be unconditional, to accept whatever is favorable for devotional service, to reject whatever is an obstacle, whatever is unfavorable, to preserve the purity of our devotion.
What is the symptom of someone who wants liberation? They are very careful not to take any unnecessary risks. They are very careful that in their devotional service they don’t put themselves in some position where they may lose their sadhana or something even though the need is there. One has to go to some new place and preach, open up a new field, develop a new preaching. But someone who wants liberation will think "Why I have come for peace to this movement, I don’t want to go in such a difficult situation. I have come out of the material world which is so difficult, so filled with miseries, so I could get peace of mind, so I can get liberation. So why do I want to take so much jhanjhat, so much complications, so many difficulties, why will I accept, like going out on sankirtan, getting pinched or getting hit or getting yelled at or when my temple commander gets on my case to get up for mangala arti, I didn’t come to Krishna consciousness for this. I came for peace. I didn’t come to Krishna consciousness so when I eat with my left hand someone barks at me, 'Wrong hand!' I want peace. I didn’t come to Krishna consciousness that they sprinkle water on you when I am sleeping because I am late." You see, These are when you are coming out knowledge when you are coming out of some desire for liberation, peace, but that is another danger, it is just another demon to devour us.
What did Krishnadas Kaviraj praying in Caitanya Caritamrita? "I am giving up Vedic religion, I am giving up family duties, I am giving up all kinds of attachments, I am giving up even the desire for being materially happy, I am giving up the desire for mental peace, I'm giving up every... I simply want to absorb my mind in the service of Sri Sri Radha-Madhava, following in Their mercy, getting the mercy of Nitai Gaur. It is my only goal in life." So this is our special opportunity that Prabhupad has given us Krishna consciousness in its pure form.
He didn’t compromise to give a little jnana-misra bhakti, devotion with knowledge, devotion with speculative knowledge and devotion with karma, devotion with any material tinge; he gave it pure, simply engage in the sankirtan movement of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. That purity... it is the duty of the GBC to protect the devotee, to protect his life, to see what is it that we weed to change, because if we don’t have that focus on pure devotion, if your focusing on some kind of peace, focusing on some kind of material comfort, and there are some conditions which is our focus, then what happens is that we won’t be able to taste that pure nectar and our mind will be disturbed. It will be disturbed; it will be agitated by that very desire for peace. It will be agitated by the very desire for comfort. But by absorbing ourselves, as it's given here, by hearing about Krishna, in engaging in devotional service to Krishna we automatically become peaceful, we automatically are comfortable, no matter what condition we are in. That is the real happiness that every one of us is yearning for, every one of us is crying for. So that is the mercy of Advaita Gosai that He called Lord Caitanya down. And that is the mercy of Srila Prabhupad that he carried Lord Caitanya to us all over the world. He even carried it back to India in its pure form.
If you want to be happy, chant Hare Krishna for the pleasure of Krishna. It came up one time; they wanted to chant to rain or something. Prabhupad said, "No, no, we will chant without any conditions." But Prabhupad’s chanting was so powerful that any way it rained. But that is not our condition, we do not make any conditions to Krishna, He is svatantra, He is independent. And we have full faith that by satisfying Him, we will be satisfied. If He is satisfied mamaivāṁśo jīva-loke jīva-bhūtaḥ sanātanaḥ, we are His parts, we will be satisfied. There is no independent endeavor required.
So you know, the Krishna consciousness movement, the more that we can develop our taste for chanting, taste for hearing, naturally we'll be freed from miseries but how to do that? Sometimes we see that people are really nectar hounds. They want to get so many books and read and they want to try and get the nectar. But then we see that although they are hungry, that their hunger was in their mind, the hunger wasn't in their soul. And when they read so many pastimes of the Lord they couldn’t digest and as a result they had to vomit it out and they left the movement due to food poisoning. If you eat food and it doesn’t digest then it becomes poison. You have to have an appetite to actually hear the Lord’s pastimes, to understand them, that this through preaching, that is through preaching the message of Caitanya Mahaprabhu as Prabhupada has taught us, through this book distribution, through preaching harinama sankirtana, that is how we get the real appetite. To sit and hear for hours and hours on end here in Mayapur Navadvipa dhama. To be awake when our spiritual master gives a lecture in the Bhagavatam class. That appetite, that ability to digest... Prabhupada said if you have a strong appetite you can digest a stone. So we also need spiritual appetite, not just a mental desire to know more and then to show off to others or something but the actual appetite, that real eagerness and desire to taste the pastimes of Krishna nectar, to taste the devotional mood of the advance devotees, how they are expressing themselves in serving their spiritual master through their practical service and surrender.
That eagerness to experience that comes from our own devotional service, not through some exterior artificial endeavor. So by engaging in the sankirtan movement, by working together, with all the devotees around the world, to build Srila Prabhupada’s dream and Lord Nityananda’s predicted big Mayapur temple; by working together to push on book distribution, to expand the movement of Krishna consciousness, that will give us the realization and the real appetite, the real appreciation of Krishna’s pastimes which will end all the miseries of this material world.
There is no other short cut. There is no other way. When Ramananda Raya started giving all the ways, Lord Caitanya rejected varnasrama-dharma as being external, He rejected surrendering to Krishna as being external, He first of all only agreed that hearing from the lips of pure devotee the science of Krishna consciousness, that was the first thing He accepted, yes, this is completely transcendental. And from there it took off. Because Prabhupada would lis... would give us Krishna consciousness and then he is engaging us in giving his books out which are pure Krishna consciousness. Therefore by this purely authorized method given by Caitanya Mahaprabhu, we can actually experience Krishna-prema, through this sankirtana movement.
So, I am very unqualified to speak especially it's very embarrassing in front of so many advanced and senior Godbrothers and acaryas. Actually this lifetime is very short. It is going by so fast. Someone was mentioning how from one year to the next, I think Srila Vishnupada, it seems like ten thousand years go by. Of course that's because they are all so advanced that even though the 10,000 years are going by from one year to the next I could also appreciate but I was thinking at the same time that in these 10,000 years that I hardly did anything. The move is going on but I personally could hardly do much as much as I wanted to do or as much I should have done for Srila Prabhupada. Somehow the time is going by and it really seems that ISKCON is moving ahead in leaps and bounds. But personally that how much more I could have done or should have done in that day of Brahma that went by in this one year.
How many opportunities slipped through my fingers to preach to someone, to engage in some service, to be more serious? I can’t speak for others but if... for myself I can see that there are so many opportunities in my service that seemed to just escape me. Maybe someone else feels...
...as Vaishnavas would mention here, by hearing from them about Krishna consciousness we forget our miseries, that in this festival whenever I heard from the advanced Vaisnavas I could forget my miseries, but that they somehow or another blessed me and all the other devotees so that we can be engaged the whole year in pure Krishna consciousness so intently and so enthusiastically that we may maintain that concentration without any deviation, without a chance for maya.
Like that the same position may be there but they change in their attitude from sense gratification to devotional service. But those who are living in the temple, the temple's especially for brahminical culture. Srila Prabhupad told me... I am very much enthused about the congregational preaching, nama-ahatta because in Los Angeles on the morning walk Srila Prabhupada turned to me and out of the blue he said that, "Don’t think that all the people are going to live in our temple." He said, "There may be so many people who are... our temples are..." It's hard for me to get the... "Our temples are like... like the Christian churches, so many churches have congregations. That in our temple there are pure devotees who will be preaching the other people and they'll be worshipping in their home." But he indicated that the devotees in the temple were the pure devotees that the community (inaudible) preachers, those were the core to convert the whole rest of the society into devotees.
So there is definitely different standard of kanishta-adhikari, madhyam-adhikari, he just said in a brief way. So someone has already come up to rendering 24 hours a day devotional service to Krishna, they shouldn’t be bewildered by some idea of varnasrama or something else as a reason to reduce their service. Rather, someone who'd doing nothing, better to do something and like this, we should always take forward steps. Prabhupada said our purpose is to go step by step. We may not use the jumping process. Those were his exact words; we should go step by step and not jumping process, but that means we should not jump back into the fire of maya.
If we're already come up to a certain level of devotional service we should cling to maintain it. And for somebody who is not at all in devotional service, well, they can come up one step higher to do some material activity and give something to Krishna and then to... gradually increase their devotional activities, doing more regulative principles, chanting more, they gradually come up. But if a full time initiated brahmana or devotee feels that he has to go back again to that type of stage, obviously its a compromise... obviously it is a compromise.
So we should see the overall picture that everyone has the individual advancement, that we want to establish daiva varnasrama which is based on pure devotional service. There may be steps that people take but this Krishna consciousness movement is showing what is the ultimate step, what is the highest standard and we cannot compromise that. Rather, now bring up those in maya and darkness more and more into the light. There may be shades but then we cannot compromise what is the pure standard. Without the pure standard, there is no hope. That must be maintained. That is my personal realization in this from what I heard and learnt from Srila Prabhupada, I hope that was alright.
All the acaryas have questions today.
Panca-Dravida Swami: You mentioned in your class that Lord Caitanya, He was born in 1486, so now, 500 years later would be 1986. We're in 1983, but still we don't hear very much about that 500th anneversary of Lord Caitanya coming up. Maybe you could say something about that.
Jayapataka Swami: Panca-Dravida Maharaja wants me to say something about the 500th anniversary of Lord Caitanya. Because it is only three years from now. Actaully, the uh... a couple of years ago, I brought this up, but it was hard to get much enthusiasm, because here in India already they have already organized committees for the 500th year anniversary because in India, everything takes so long that they start five or six years in advance to get it together by that time. But actually in India, in ISKCON, everything's so fast that when I brought it up, everyone thought that, "Five years ahead of time? Who thinks five years ahead?" You know. "Oh, we'll worry about it a couple months before the festival, and maybe the year before." But, my idea was that the 500th year does not come often. We may not be here to see the next 500th year anniversary or the 1000th year, so, it should be done in a way that lasts more than one day.
That rather than just have the one day festival all over the world... that just like many big festivals in the world they have a whole year is an observation. The whole year is uh... is uh... with many celebrations but then, if we can get the whole year in celebration, if we can take it off from there. So, my intelligence is limited so I came up with a few ideas that... Well, as a preliminary... because in the West people don’t know about Lord Caitanya, we could form various committees, taking the people, just like we see in the movies, Harvey Cox, so many big names, in every country they have the theologists, they have the philosophers, they have their favorable educationists, or government people, that we make some type of committees to bring them in and start having informal seminars in different places just as a warm up to let people know a little bit about Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, and start to stir up a little bit of... you know, when you try to rev up a car, it's better if you warm up the engine first, rather than try to start from a cold start. So these are some ideas. I sent out some letters.
We're going to have a meeting in Vrndavan for the 500th... or maybe today for the 5.... or the GBC committee on this. But the biggest inspiration I just got was a few days ago when uh, Srila Ramesvara, Surabhi Maharaja, other were talking about making dioramas of Lord Caitanya. That if we could have in every major temple, if not every temple, of the world, a whole set of Caitanya Mahaprabhu pastimes and here in India also that we either rent a hall or we go out in the park and we set up and we have a big exhibition. I saw that the exhibition in the West at the L.A. ratha yatra or the Washington ratha yatra, people are very interested in seeing all the Rajasthani swords, the uh, ashtrays or whatever, hookahs used by the kings or whatever, they were interested in seeing these, they like to see the dioramas, the movies, that if we had a whole exhibition of Lord Caitanya pastimes, that this would be something that will be very attractive. And I know Srila Ramesvara discussed with me about making mass production. But it will take several years to come up. And then we could show through the whole year, we can have several exhibitions, celebrations of the 500th year anniversary of Lord Caitanya.
Here around India there is already discussion about following in the footsteps of Lord Caitanya to all the cities of Dvaraka, down South India and back up to Jagannatha Puri here to Mayapur. Like this we are still at the planning stage because my uh, defect is that I have enthusiasm, but I'm a little dependent on the reciprocation from my Godbrothers at this stage, that when they also show some enthusiasm, it gives me a lot of uh, encouragement. So actually three years is nothing, there is so much to be done, these are just a couple of ideas we came up with. We hadn't really got into a deep discussion but I feel that three years we should use... we should plan out every month, every week coming up to the 500th anniversary and then extending to the whole year, that in all the major cities, with big PR, with press releases starting from here maybe relay, maybe whatever. This has to be discussed what is the best way, we should make a literal explosion around the world, a reliving of Lord Caitanya exhibition, with so many big authorities also confirming to establish the faith in the people that this Krishna conscious movement is bona fide movement extending from the greatest benefactor of the whole human kind, Krishna Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself, people should realize that here is a unique contribution and that this contribution is the bona fide process for this particular day and age.
So actually if every temple takes up this little program of trying to organize the local people to form a observance committee for Lord Caitanya’s year beginning and then starting in the colleges for this year, having different seminars, different programs, (inaudible) is coming up. There is going to be some big festivals, we're going to give you some big programs and people should know about this great historical person Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who is changing the world. And then if our brains can think of various slogans and various uh, ways of attracting the people around the world to Lord Caitanya for this celebration, then we can use this as the send off, because it happens to coincide with Srila Prabhupad’s 90th anniversary. He was born in 1896. That means that 1986 is his 90th anniversary... birth anniversary. So we have to do something very special that year for Srila Prabhupada, who brought Lord Caitanya to the West and all over the world. So right now we are still on the drawing board, and since we haven't had our meeting yet, so I cannot say any detailed plan and programs. These are just some of the things that we've been discussing. But everybody should start to think about it. Start.. try to get it together.
I wrote many letters to the temple presidents committee on this topic, but I think they didn't even reply, frankly. So I can't even repeat back, what they thought of it. I gave 26 different ideas how to start now preparing for the 500th anniversary. All I can do is request everyone is to know that time goes so fast that we have to start thinking now to make it the biggest thing that happens. You wanna make it the biggest celebration and follow that over to the opening of our big temple. That enthusiasm should just carry us right over until our big temple is opened and then from there, sky's the limit. And for doing that we have to start to get ourselves into that mood of complete dedication to Lord Caitanya’s main temple and Lord Caitanya’s movement as Prabhupad has given us this blueprint. It can only happen with the total world coopera... cooperative spirit, even to serve in this 500th year anniversary, if we do it in a worldwide (inaudible), then... it has already been reported yesterday in the Ananda Bazar Patrika, the biggest newspaper in India, that discussion is being held and simultaneously in every city of the world on Gaura Purnima day to celebrate the 500th anniversary celebration and that now the world leaders have come to discuss this. So in India this is very impressive to the people. But I don’t want to make it just a one day thing, it should be at least one year if not the whole decade, and it's simply a matter of our enthusiasm.
We saw that Srila Gurudeva, Hanuman Goswami, his Vyasa puja goes on for three months, they're so enthusiastic. So why can't our 500th year anniversary go on for a decade or century?
Jayapataka Swami: Nitai Gaur Premanande Hari Haribol!
Devotees: Hari Haribol!
Jayapataka Swami: Thank you. Any other questions? We have to go for the initiation here.
Question: Guru Maharaja, (inaudible) It is not doubted by the Vaisnavas. Now, talking about the Western world, why is it that Lord Caitanya, He's such a great historical personality that nothing has been written about Him. And two, why is it that many people still doubt Lord Caitanya when you tell them that Lord Caitanya is Krishna, just say, "No. We don't know anything about Him." What proof, what is your (inaudible) from the scriptures that proves that Lord Caitanya is actually the Supreme Lord? Guru Maharaja, what you speak to that?
Jayapataka Swami: There are many proofs. Of course, the most famous that we quote is from the Bhagavatam:
yajanti hi su-medhasaḥ
So, Prabhupada has given us several proofs, and actually Bhaktivinoda Thakura did a little research on this, so did Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura and they've have come up with about uh, 50 slokas from the different puranas, upanisads from the Mahabharata describing that in the Kali yuga the Lord comes as yellow color, the avatara in Kali-yuga is known as Mahaprabhu, saying uh, that uh, the Lord comes, distributes the Harinama in the Kali-yuga. He comes as a sannyasi, as a channa-avatara, there are so many slokas, I did not memorize all of them. Mahaprabhu, ei yuga... So there are many, many proofs in the uh, Vedas that all indicate that Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself is the fulfillment of the prediction that Krishna would come as a sannyasi, as a hidden avatara, as a person giving out the sankirtana movement. There is no one else who has done that, there is no one else who fulfilled those qualifications. And Lord Caitanya when He was here, He actually did everything that was predicted and He did things which were extraordinary. Even Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, he accepted that Lord Caitanya was Krishna Himself.
So the people of the West, they don’t know because the movement just came there, what was it, seventeen years ago. And why they know in India is because the followers of Lord Caitanya several hundred years, it was predicted that the movement would become dormant. And that is exactly what happened. There was a very slim line of acharyas that were carrying out the instructions. Therefore Bhaktisiddhanta Thakur, he was preaching all over India, even his followers they did not work together and everything broke up. Now there are so many Gaudiya mathas and instead of Caitanya Mahaprabhu being understood, they have this Rama and this Krishna and so many others. Similarly to convince the people is not possible... to convince the people that the avatara of the sankirtana movement is bonafide unless the people who convincing, actually themselves, are in the mood of sankirtana.
Sankirtan means many doing kirtan together. Japa's one. Kirtana's a few. Sankirtan means everyone together. That means that they are all singing the same tune, they are singing the same mantra. They'er clapping and playing their instruments in time. The sankirtana means together. So this movement as long as it remains together , as long as everyone keeps a cooperative sankirtana mood, then people will be convinced and wherever you see in history that that mood of working cooperatively together was compromised, then they lose their potency for convincing people about Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Actually everybody is very easily convinced; it is just that they do not know anything. Because we're very few, we've only reached a few. So if you go on telling people, if you're convinced, and you tell people, in this same cooperative spirit, they will also be convinced. There is no doubt about it.
Jayapataka Swami: Hare Krishna!
Devotee: Acaryapada ki
Jayapataka Swami: It's going to take about 10-15 minutes to set up the cushion. So, everyone can uh, take this opportunity to wash yourself, face or whatever then assemble in a half hour... fifteen minutes from now.
Jayapataka Swami: Hare Krishna!
Devotee: Acaryapada ki
Transcribed by Jayaraseshwari devi dasi 11 May 2015
Revised by Jagannatha dasa Brahmacari