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Therefore, Krishna tells in the Gita (evam para)
That if you want to understand the Truth there is only one way that is accepting in unbroken disciplic successions of spiritual masters. Today we can find many great orators of all religions who can speak very wonderfully, use exiting analogies, speak very scholarly language, and attract sometimes tens and thousands and hundreds of people. But unfortunately, such persons although very entertained and even though they may be crying, crying tears for several lectures, unless that soul are truly and genuinely presenting the conclusions of great Mahajans, there is little or no purification. After all, if you go to a good cinema with good actors, you probably cry out for two hours also. So just the fact that someone can make you cry, does not mean they are purifying your heart. And also just the fact that somebody is speaking in an exciting way, making your handstand on end, you go to a good cinema the same thing will happen through.
Connect everything in Krishna’s service:
Actually our spiritual master Srila Prabhupada, sometimes he would speak very-very soberly, very grave and he would tell us, “That I want you to tell that I want you to hear what I am saying more than I want you to hear how I am saying.” In fact, Bhaktivedanta Saraswati Thakur, he knew that people had a very great tendency to become attached to the external form of the Kirtan and not to become substance of the Kirtan that is the Holy name. Sometimes people are so much attracted by the melody and by the sound of a person’s and sweetness of his voice and by the beautiful instrumentation that their mind is rolling in great pleasure hearing the melody and the instrumentation and they are thinking “Just see I am in ecstasy. I really have a Kirtan Ras.” But are they actually tasting the sweetness of the Holy name? Therefore, Bhakti Vedanta Saraswati Thakur often times, he would not allow any instrument except Kartals and Mridanga. And he would often choose people with simple voices not very classically good. Sometimes he would choose singers and people would walk out of the room. He said, “Very good. Now we understand who likes Holy name and who likes the real instrumentation.” Just like our Shukdev Goswami Maharaj, last Sunday he was singing, now anyone with any musical training knows that he has no musical talents what so ever as far as musical abilities. I am not speaking behind his back because I am telling this to his face also. But he does not mind because not trying to impress anyone with his musical abilities. If you have musical abilities use them in Krishna consciousness but not for any other purpose and to glorify his name. But when he sings the only way you can tolerate his Kirtan is you just get completely absorbed in holy name. Correct? Just like in Puna people were saying when he first started, the Kirtan we were thinking ‘Oh my god Mangala arti beginning after sees to a half hour of this!’ And then about half hour he didn’t stop. He kept going then everybody realised this is wonderful. We are just completely being taken to the spiritual world under vehicle of the Holy name. Nobody knew whether he was singing good or bad. No one cared. Everyone was just flowing in the name of Harinaam. That is the important thing. The essence of Kirtan is the name of Krishna and the essence of philosophy is that it is based on the authorative conclusions of the great souls. That means it kicks out Artha, Kama, Dharma, Moksha and deals only with devotional service.
Hearing from true mahajans:
This twelve Mahajans are not the Mahajans for type of a Dharma or medial co-religion. There are many Mahajans for that. Practically every of your neighbour is Mahajan for that. Your grandmother your grandfather your aunts everyone else has their opinion. Everyone is Mahajan. “I believe like this and I feel god is like this. Well! But I think god is this. But I believe you answer to this well! I feel that you answer to do this. Huh! And my opinion is as good as yours and your opinion is as good as mine so we just go on like this then we don’t have to serve under anybody. Wonderful!” but we find the real Mahajans they are teaching (0,07,07,0)
We are kicking out Artha, Kama, Dharma, Moksha economic development, religiosity, sense gratification and even liberation. They are teaching one thing: surrender, pure devotion to the supreme godhead that is all. And they have their disciplic successions and great teachers who are preserving the exact same teaching. And when we hear transcendental knowledge from such persons, such knowledge has impregnated with the seed of the Absolute Truth. The seed of pure Bhakti and when it is planted through their mouth into our ears, if we hear submissively with a receptive and unchallenging heart that seed enters into the field of our heart and takes its roots. And if we continue to hear and chant in the association of such great personalities or followers of such great personalities then we water that seed and it grows and grows and grows into its last produces the fruit of pure devotion. Pure Bhakti. Sudha Bhakti. That is the supreme goal of all religion. Yamraj explains in a previous verse to this
dharmaà tu säkñäd bhagavat-praëétaà
There is only one religion: Sanatan dharma. And Sanatan dharma has no other offer except God himself. No one else is powerful or great as you may be, whatever scholarly qualifications you may have, is qualified to create religion, to manufacture Dharma. God is the offer and exclusive offer of all religions. And those who simply repeat his words are his authorized representatives.
Following the footsteps of mahajans:
Our Guru maharaj A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, he was very humble. He is to tell us, “I am not a very great scholar. I am not a very good speaker. I am not a very eloquent speaker. I only have one qualification that I have submissively heard from my spiritual master and I repeat that he has spoken without adding anything or subtracting anything. That is my only qualification” most people when they want to find a guru their looking for someone who can do magic, someone who can touch you on your head and mesmerise you with flashing lights, someone who can produce gold or can read your mind or who can speak with so many clever examples. That keeps you at the edge of your seat. Or someone who can raise the dead or heal the sick. Or someone who can attract hundreds and thousands of persons. Most people this is what they are looking for. Srila Prabhupada use to tell us, “I am an ordinary man. I do not know any of these things. I have only on qualification that I am simply repeating what my spiritual master. And I am living accordingly.” He is simply presenting pure love. Who is it that is qualified? But we can see the truth and digesting it and understanding it. If we examine this twelve Mahajans, who are the original authorities we find something very wonderful each one of them is coming from a very-very unique special place. And has a very special role. Some people ask the question how can someone in Grihastha life with wife and children how can they practise Krishna consciousness? It’s just yesterday morning we received this question. It is easy for you Bramhacharis and Sanyasis, just because you have no other responsibility. All you have to do is do whatever your guru says and nobody else can tell you anything. “So it’s easy for you but we have to listen to our boss, we have to our wife, we have to listen to our children, we have to listen to tax collectors. We have to listen to so many people. How do we surrender to Krishna? You don’t have money, you don’t pay taxes, you don’t have children, you don’t have bosses, you don’t have anything.” You don’t have a bed to sleep on. You don’t have a car all you have to do is chant Hare Krishna preaching. You surrender to your guru. Satyavrat ki jay! (laughs) What else is there you have to do. So many Bramhacharis were trying to say join the club. But if we examine carefully of the twelve Mahajans, five of them are in the renounced order of life and seven of them are Grihastha. Did you know that?
The first mahajan:
Svayambhuva manu, he had a wife. In fact, his daughter was Devahuti. But because he was first class Grihastha, Srimad Bhagvatam explains he was in-charge of all mankind. He had two principled sons. One was his name is Priyavrat and his younger son is named Utanapada. He had a grandson named Dhruva maharaj. His daughters name was Devahuti. He had another grandson named Kapiladev. He was no ordinary man. Why was such great progeny coming from him? It describes in Srimad Bhagvatam that although he was such great king, 24 hours a day he was Krishna conscious. It prescribed although he was wealthy, what did he do with his wealth. Our Bramhacharis they sleep on the floor. But when they are woken up some other Bramhacharis was Hare Krishna Hare Krishna. Time for Mangala arti, Hare Krishna. So they wake up with the holy name. He was a king so obviously he is not sleeping on the floor and not Bramhacharis going Hare Krishna. But he had wonderful-wonderful pure devoted Brahmans surround his bed every morning and chant Vedic hymns and chant the glories of the lord each morning to wake him up. And when he would arise he would take the bath. He had a beautiful temple room at his home, his palace: he would worship the deity of the lord. He would chant the holy name of the lord. He would read and hear the scriptures from the Brahmans. He would hear the hymns every day, beautiful Kirtan and would distribute charity to the Brahmans, fully enriched in devotional consciousness. He would began his responsibilities to his family and to his state and in this way he was always amerced in the service of the lord and everything in harmony with the will of the god and with the will of the Guru. He would only take wonderful Krishna prashad from his temple. And when it was time for resting again there would be wonderful Kirtan and Bhajans. Then when he laid down to rest, the Brahmans would be gathered around him chanting the glories of the lord. 24 hours of day, he was amerced in the service of the lord and yet he had probably millions of time more responsibilities then anyone of us. And he was a family man. But because he was constantly endeavouring to keep his consciousness connected to Krishna at all times therefore he is a Mahajan. And we must follow in the footsteps of such Mahajans.
The great sage Narada:
The next personality is Narada. Narada had no other business but chanting the glories of the lord. We read in his previous birth that he was the son of a Shudra. But because he heard submissively form the great soul took the remnants of their footsteps: prashad, maha-maha prashad and rendered menial service to them. He washed their plates he served them prashad. He was not doing big-big service. He was not building wonderful temples or sponsoring gigantic world preaching tours for them. He was washing their plates, serving prashad. That is all he had the capacity to do. But because he did it sincerely he was given the role of Narada muni in his next life. And as Narada muni he is simply travelling here there and everywhere playing on his Veena.
Simply chanting the names of Radhika Raman on his Veena from place to place, very happy. But he was very controversial. There is a story in the 6th canto of Srimad Bhagvatam that how Daksha had many sons, thousand sons they were called Hariyatshvats. And he told them that you go to a particular lake.
Narada muni preaching the son’s of Daksha:
Daksha was a religious man but he was materialistically religious man. And Narada muni was a religious man but he was not materialistic at all. He only understood one thing to surrender. So Daksha said, “You must become purified, you must become very God conscious, you should come back and you should become Prajapati and get married and help me in my mission which is to procreate many-many people in this world.” So they went to this place and Narada muni happened to be there. And he preached to them. He said, “Ah! Your father wants you to go in deep dark well of family life. Be a procreator? You want my opinion you should chant Hare Krishna, be happy, and forget all this. Just surrender. Be a Bramhachari.” So all 1000 of them decided yes Narada muni is our Guru. Daksha became very angry. “What is this Narada muni spoiling all of them, interfering with my service?” So then, he had more sons. And these sons he said, “Now you also have to go through this lake to do your purification and don’t listen to this Narada muni if he comes and tries to distract your mind” so they went. There they met Narada muni and he said, “You see how happy your brothers are. Don’t you want to be like them?” Preached them nice Bhagvat philosophy and they surrendered.
Travelling the world:
Daksha became very angry. “You did not understand religious principles Narada muni. They first have to experience the pleasures of the worldly before they renounce them. Otherwise, this is all immature. You are breaking our religious principles in the name of being a sage you are nothing but a rogue and a cheater. Therefore, I curse you that you will never be able to have residence” Narada muni was very happy. Thank you very much. Haribol! Therefore, he is always travelling around. Srila Prabhupada said when he came to the west and made young American boys and girls Krishna conscious he said’ “Their parents gave the same curse to me therefore, I am always travelling, circled the world 11 times in 12 years in the age of 73 to 81. But I like to sit and transcribe the Vedic literatures. So I am asking my Sanyasi disciples to take this curse on my behalf and travel” See Srila Prabhupada was a true genuine follower of Narada muni. Narada muni was the Gurudev for Prahalad maharaj, Dhruva maharaj, Mrigari: the hunter, king Pracinabarhisat and so many others, such a unique sense of total renunciation. And wherever he went even Valmiki muni he would teach them all one thing: name of God. So to Valmiki muni, he taught him how to chant the name of Ram in a very tricky way and he attained perfection. To Dhruva maharaj, he taught him to chant Om namo bhagavate vasudevaya. To Mrigari, the hunter he taught him to chant
“Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishan Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare.”
In this way, so many great souls attain such high-high perfection of self-realization because the mantra was received from such a great personality as Narada muni. Narada muni of course, he was in a renounced order of life. He was a Sanyasi.
The austere Grihastha, Lord Shiva:
And Shambhu, lord Shiva, he is the husband of Parvati. The Rudra Sampradai is emanating from him.
vaiñëavänäà yathä çambhuù
It is explained that lord Shankar is greatest and supreme of all Vaishnavas of all devotees of the lord. He was the Guru of such great souls such as Markendeya Rishi. And we find although he was a Grihastha he was quiet different than Svayambhuva manu. Svayambhuva manu was a Grihastha but his particular occupation was he had to live in a luxurious palace. But he was 2 hours a day Krishna conscious. But lord Shiva you don’t see him in a luxurious palace. He was different type of Grihastha. He lived in mount Kailash, on a top, very cold. And he didn’t even wear clothes. He would just wear skin of tiger around his skin. He never accepted a house and slept under a tree. He never accepted clothes, never accepted a house he never accepted any type of facilities. In fact, he would cover his body with the ashes of dead bodies. He would decorate his body with snakes, not an ordinary householder. He was an Avadhuta in that sense. Yet his wife was the superintendent for the entire material nature, the expansion of Goddess of fortune herself Durga. And lord Shiva in this way taught that even with the most beautiful and wonderful wife, even with power of all directions he is Maheshvara means he is the great god that is in control of the entire material nature. Durga is the superintendent of the material nature and he is the master of Durga. So everything is having in his disposal for enjoyment and yet he enjoys nothing. He remains in total renunciation, total simplicity, and total poverty. And is always in Samadhi, experiencing the ultimate ecstasy of meditating on lord Narayan. What a wonderful example. We cannot imitate him but every householder should strive to follow in his footsteps. No matter who we are and how we are, we should live a very-very simple life, constantly immersed in the service of the lord.
Daksha cursing lord Shiva:
Another extremely elevate quality of Lord Shiva is he does not care what anyone says about him. He has his service. So many of our householders they are afraid of what their friends will say if they chant Hare Krishna. They are afraid if they wear the Kanthimala, the people at work will laugh at them. Or they are afraid what they get out to Hare Krishna temple and their family might suspect them. Or their friends might laugh at them. Lord Shiva was Grihastha too. His service was to deliver the ghost, the hobgoblins, and the demons. Even his own father-in-law was disgusted with him. You know the story. When lord Shiva came to the Daksha’s sacrifice, lord Shiva he was so much immersed into thinking of Krishna, the Daksha came and everyone stood up. Oh, Daksha you are great but lord Shiva who is millions of time greater he should have stood up out of etiquette because he was his father-in-law. That’s a superior position socially but he was too much immersed into chanting the name of god. So Daksha was very angry. “My daughter is born from my auspicious womb and somehow or the other I made her married to this crazy man.” It’s like we wear nice garlands of flowers and we think how nice you have given me nice garland of flowers. But lord Shiva would wear garlands of skulls. He wore garlands of skulls instead of pretty nice perfumes on his body nice after-shave like most Grihastha; he puts cream of ashes of dead bodies. Some people are afraid of what their wife will say if we cut off their moustache. But lord Shiva had matted, long-long matted hair. Never combed them once, there is no record that lord Shiva combed his hair. Daksha was relating all this things. Instead of nice clothes just a deerskin and rest of them was naked. And rather than nice rings and watches, he would wear snakes, venomous cobras around his body. Instead of associating with upright aristocratic people of society, he would associate with the most horrible crazy demons. But that was is service. His service to the lord was to help up to uplift those in the mode of ignorance.
Humility of lord Shiva:
And he didn’t care what anyone said about him. Daksha, his own father-in-law was blaspheming him like anything. Just going through a whole list of horrible qualities would totally anti-social for lord Shiva. And lord Shiva didn’t care he was just sitting there. “Hare Krishna. What do I care I am doing my service.” You please some of the people some of the time but can never please all the people all the time but pleasing Krishna is all that matters. So if you want to be a Grihastha and follow in the footsteps of Mahajans don’t wear snakes because they will probably bite you in seconds. But the principle you can follow. We don’t care the slightest what society cares about us we are only concerned whether we are pleasing Krishna, whether we are pleasing the spiritual master. And those good persons in the society will appreciate and those who persons who are basically materialistic let them say what they want to say. Lord Shiva, he is worshiped by all the great Acharyas because of his unflinching, undeviated devotion to the lord.
Four Kumaras, the perfect Bramhacharis:
Next in the line of the Mahajan is the Kumaras. The Kumaras were Bramhacharis. How they were Bramhacharis? Very unique. Bramhacharis should follow in their footsteps. Don’t try to imitate them or you will be really in trouble. They did not wear any clothes. The Kumaras, they were born from Lord Brahma. Lord Brahma wanted them to be Prajapatis. He told them, “I want you to grow up and I want you to get married and I want you to have children.” Kumaras thought growing up means we have to get children we will never grow up because we don’t want to deviate our attention for one moment from the lord is sweet of the supreme lord. They were so much repost by their idea of engaging in materialistic activity and they knew that the sex drive is very-very strong. Even yogis like Vishvamitra muni could not control this drive until he became purified in devotion to lord Ram. But as long as he was mystic yogi and impersonalist ultimately he succumbed to sex desire. So the Kumaras realized that the whole world is revolving around this one force of sexual energy. And children just don’t have to deal with it. When you come to a certain age then your whole life changes around this and this alone. So they decided let us never attain puberty. By their mystic power, they remained four years old throughout the entire span of creation. And they just roamed around like a naked children although they are actually millions of years old. They are really wise and powerful, very great devotees. The kumara Sampradai, they are founder Acharyas, the supreme Gurus. The great Nimbarkacharya, one of the greatest Vaishnavas he has such more influence more than he has anyone in Vrindavan. Lord Chaitanya, he had tremendous influence in Vrindavan. He is the humble servant of the four Kumaras.
Lord Kapila, a perfect son:
And lord Kapila he is also Bramhachari. Lord Kapiladev was born from Kardama muni and Devahuti. Lord Kapiladev, he was just a young boy, when his father Kardama muni left home. He took the Vanaprasht and Sanyas ashram of life and went to the forest. And Kapiladev although Bramhachari had to take care of his mother. How did he take care of his mother by enlightening her with transcendental knowledge. If you want to be a good son, follow in the footsteps of lord Kapiladev. How much he loved his mother and how much he loved how much he showed his mother the greatest love by engaging her in devotional service. He didn’t show his love for his mother by going through college, getting a job and maintaining her households job. That’s one way of showing love but it’s not much love. He showed the highest expression of love by giving her the greatest eternal treasure of transcendental wisdom. By enlightening her in the science of Krishna consciousness and along with her, he enlightened all the classes of man for all times to come with the Sankhya philosophy of the Bhagvatam.
The king Manu:
Manu. It is described in the Bhagvat Gita that he was one of the great-great authorities. Vivashvan instructed his son Ikshvaku, Ikshvaku to Manu and in this way the disciplic succession of the Supreme Truth Krishna explained, was established and carried on but in due course of time. Krishna says, “This line of disciplic succession was broken amongst great king and therefore, I come to re-establish it.” So although the Manu was a Grihastha and king, he was the spiritual master as well. He was carrying on and protecting great Parampara of kings at that time. This his great example and of course if we hear transcendental knowledge from our spiritual master whether we are Grihastha, Bramhacharis, Vanaprasthas or Sanyasi it is the duty of everyone of us to preserve the Parampara system. It is our first and foremost duty in life. And being preachers, whether you are doctor, lawyer, industrialist, politician doesn’t matter. We are all meant to be preachers. We are all meant to have assisted our spiritual master and Vaishnavas in protecting and continuing the great disciplic succession and transcendental knowledge.
Prahalad, one of the most famous and worshiped of all heroes of the Vedic scriptures. Prahalad was being persecuted by Hiranyakashipu. He was just a young child. He proved himself by his great faith in devotion to be able to overcome all obstacles. How is it possible? – Because of his humility and his adherence to the words of his spiritual master to always remember Krishna he was empowered by Krishna to overcome obstacles impossible by all others. But later on because Prahalad was the son of Hiranyakashipu who was the king, after Hiranyakashipu was whipped into pieces by lord Narahari he gave Prahalad the throne. And Prahalad married. He had a son named Virochana and he had a grandson named Bali maharaj. Prahalad was a king and a responsible one. But he was happen to be the king of Rakshasas. Even he was the pure devotee of the lord. Sometimes people say, “How can I do my business when there is so many worldly things I have to deal with and still remain Krishna conscious? How many people sometimes think like this? Sometimes I have to do dealings with worldly people how do I remain Krishna conscious in this situation?” these are Mahajan to everyone to follow. Prahalad’s duty was he had to be the king of the Rakshasas and yet he was the pure devotee of the lord. He was organising all their affairs, the Rakshasas. Can you imagine! Seems like a contradiction but for him there is no contradiction because he was perfectly Krishna conscious, because he was always chanting the mane of the lord, he was always remembering the lord and whatever he did, he was doing it in remembrance of the mission of his spiritual master: Narada muni.
Birth of maharaj Janak:
Janak, maharaj Janak: one of the greatest Mahajans. His birth is very interesting, as you know. What happened is there was a king by the name maharaj Nimi. And he was to perform a great sacrifice for the benefit of humanity. And his priest was Vashishtha. But Vashishtha told him that, “I have been invited for the sacrifice by Indra so you have to wait till after I come back” maharaj Nimi was thinking, “What is this? Indra is paying more money that is why he is going to him. I’ll perform the sacrifice with some other Brahman” so he was performing with other Brahmans and Indra came back I mean Vashishtha came back he was very mad. “You rascal king, so attached to your senses, so disrespectful you could not wait for me. I curse you to fall dead right now.” Maharaj Nimi was saying, “What kind of Brahman are you Vashishtha? I am not attached to these things. I am not attached to weather I am dead or alive. But who needs you. You are Brahman simply for money. I curse you to die right now.” So they both died right now. Vashishtha muni by his mystic powers, he took birth in a very wonderful way. Varun and Mitra were walking down the bank of the Ganges one day. And Urvasi a beautiful lady approached them and when they saw her they became so much stimulated by her beauty but somehow other they were great souls they controlled their senses. But they could not control their semen. It was collected in a pot and Vashishtha muni was grown out of that pot. Meanwhile maharaj Nimi, there was no great king. So all the Brahmans appealed to the demigods, “Please bring him back to life” and they brought him back to life. The demigods have great power. They should be given all respect. And then what happened is maharaj Nimi came back to life and said, “Why have you brought me to this material body again. I am going back to Krishna’s aboard. I don’t need this material body it’s simply a place of suffering. Yes I am a king I have beautiful family, beautiful kingdom, I have all the power of control over the world” most people on political office they gain power they become so intoxicated they never want to give it up to the fag in their life they want it to just keep their position. Maharaj Nimi was just the young man. He was given a new life. Here you are a king not of one little country but of the whole planet Earth. With all money, all power, first class ministers, he said, “It is all Maya it’s all illusion. This body is nothing but suffering from the highest planet to the lowest. I don’t want to come back I want to go back to Krishna.” so they said, “All right, you go back to Krishna” and they churned his body and all from his body came a very-very great qualified king. They named him Janak which means one who is churned out of another’s body. And that Janak, his son was also named Janak and his son was named Janak and his son was named Janak and one of those great Janak’s came in great line of kings was the greatest of all king Janak’s. The king of Mithila, the father of Sita and father-in-law of Lord Ram. And although he was the king he had such humility. We read in Ramayana, Vishvamitra muni came to Mithila, king Janak came off his throne, bowed his head at his lotus feet, and humbled himself in every way. Although he was Grihastha with several daughter, and great responsibilities king Janak was always the humble, humble, humblest, obedient servant of all the Sadhus. We must follow in his footsteps of such a great Mahajan.
Bhishmadev’s selfless attitude:
And there is Bhishma. Bhishma was the Bramhachari. You all know the story of the Bhishma how he was Bramhachari. He was supposed to be the king of the world but selflessly in respect for his father, he was willing to accept the lifelong vow. He was such a great powerful but he never accepted any respect for himself. Although he was running the whole kingdom of the Kurus for generations, he never accepted the throne and he never accepted any of the glory. He did the work accepted none of the credit. In Kaliyuga, people want the credit without doing the work. If they absolutely have to the work they do it so that they can do the credit but if they get the credit without doing anything, that’s Krishna’s mercy but Bhishma did all the work for everyone and he wouldn’t take any of the credit. He would give it to his nephews who didn’t do anything. It was time for them to get married and they were too useless to get their own, to get any worthy wives. So he went out and fought all the warriors, conquered the whole Svayamvar ceremony, stole the queens was victorious of all the princes and great king. And what did he get out of it. He just gave the beautiful queens to his nephews. They were just sitting home doing nothing. Giving them all the credit, such a great soul, he was totally selfless.
Bhishma: a striking example:
In the spirit of the devotion to Krishna, he took the side of the Kurus. Why did Bhishma take the side of Kurus, Duryodhana was the cheater, Shakuni was a low class gambler and Yudhistir was a Dharmaraj and Arjuna was Krishna’s best friend. Why would a Mahajan be against Krishna? Not only against him but also shooting arrows to his body This is a mystery. But actually, he did it because as I said this Bhishma was just so concerned with doing the service. He was not only willing to not accept any credit but was willing to take all blame. You see he was the most powerful and unconquerable warrior in the whole world. And Krishna wanted his example to the whole world that even the greatest person, the most powerful man, will be conquered if e is not on the side of Dharma. Now if you want to show an example you really have to make a striking example. Therefore, he took the most powerful, the most highest man in all the planet: Bhishma. And from within the heart he instructed Bhishma “You be on the side of the Kurus and you are going to loss and you are going to be discredited and you are going to die. But I want you to go through all this for me because I have a lesson to teach humanity through you’’ so to this date Bhishma is being blamed and misunderstood for taking the side of the Kurus. 99.9% of people in India misunderstand why in the world such a person like Bhishma take the side of Duryodhana. Now to us when we are wrongly misunderstood it’s like such a pain to our heart we just want to go out and just on a campaign to prove ourselves. Even if we are wrong, we are never willing to admit it what to speak if we are not wrong and they are saying we are wrong. You know what a blow that is to our ego. It is said for one who are honoured, dishonour is worse than death. Bhishma was so detached that in the service of the lord he was willing to be humiliated, misunderstood, and criticized for the rest of eternity. Practically, he didn’t mind. “If it helps to glorify Krishna I don’t mind what anyone says about me as long as Krishna is being glorified I am happy.” That was Bhishma’s mind and because of that at the time of his departure from his body, Krishna himself with tears of love stood before Bhishma and promoted him back to spiritual world.
Bali maharaj’s sacrifice:
Bali maharaj was also Grihastha. When Vamanadev, after Bali maharaj conquered the entire, Vamanadev came with his begging pot, “Give me three steps of land.” Bali maharaj said, “Three steps? I can give you planets I can give you universe. Why three steps?” Brahmans are not concerned with flattering wealthy man. They tell them the truth. Vamanadev said, “Bali, you are the owner of universe but I will tell you frankly you are in Maya. You are so proud that you can give the planets. What do I need your non-sense planet for? I am happy with nothing. You conquered the universe but you are still miserable. The real wealth is the wealth of God consciousness. Please I have that. You don’t. What I need is three steps.” Shukracharya said, “Don’t give him three steps. He is Vishnu. He will take everything.” Bali maharaj said him, “If it is Vishnu let him take everything. It all belongs to him.” If you want to be a Grihastha and want to follow in the footsteps of Mahajans you have to understand whatever you have it belongs to Krishna. And if he wants to take it then let him take it all. And if he wants to give it back let him give it all. It’s his. Nothing is mine. So he rejected Shukracharya. He rejected bad advice even from his own Guru. Of course, he wasn’t a bonafied Guru so you should reject a Guru. The Guru is telling you anything but surrender everything to Krishna he should be rejected. He is not a real Guru. That is the example of Bali maharaj don’t be attached to something less. So when Vamanadev with his first step he grew, such a big-big avatar that in his first step he covered all the lower and little planets. In his second step, he covered the second half of his universe. Pierced the outer covering in which the Ganges came in washed his lotus feet. There was no place left to put his third step. But Bali maharaj conquered Vishnu by his humility. Vamanadev said, “I have no-where else to put my third step. You promised me three steps.” Bali maharaj said, “My Lord, please place your foot on my head. I surrender to you.” And because although he was such a great soul, because he was willing to sacrifice everything and gratefully accept Vishnu’s feet on his head, he conquered Vishnu by his love.
Detachment of Shukdev Goswami:
Shukdev Goswami is one of the great Mahajans. He is the son of Vedvyas. He had attained Brahman realization from his very life in the embryo. When he was attracted, by beautiful narration of Krishna’s Lila he came out and he had no attraction at all for anything of the world. He left his own father and mother. Sometimes father and mother say, “Oh! My child should never leave me but for the sake of bramhacahrya” if your child is wrong then Shukdev Goswami is also wrong. You should be proud of your child if he does like this. Vyasdev, he was attached but ultimately he was proud. In fact, when Shukdev Goswami was speaking Srimad Bhagvatam, Vyasdev was one of the people in the audience. He was very proud although he broke his heart in the beginning. Shukdev Goswami simply left naked. His father, “Let me give you some clothes; let me give you some shelter; let me give you some training” Shukdev Goswami didn’t want anything, just walked into the forest. He was chasing after him. They came to a pond of young ladies. And those young ladies they saw Shukdev they just looked at him and when they saw Vyasdev they started putting on their clothes. Vyasdev said, “Why are you doing like this I am your grandfather. He is your aged why are you embarrassed.” The ladies said, “Because he is such a Bramhachari he doesn’t know the difference between male or a female. You may be the great incarnation of Godhead but because you are a Grihastha you have to discriminate therefore we are very ashamed before you”
Most elevated speaker:
And as Shukdev Goswami was walking he didn’t care for anybody what to speak of his parents or anything else. He was just going. Where he was going and where he was going only Krishna knew. And the town’s people thought he was a mad man. He was just walking crazy he didn’t look like he is a very great scholar he just looked like he was crazy. The common foolish people when they see a crazy man they make fun of them. They started ridiculing him; they started following him around, calling him foul names, throwing things at him. He didn’t care. He could had come out and just started what a great scholar he was. He didn’t want to impress anybody. He just walked. He just let everyone think him mad man. As long as Krishna knows that I am doing his will is all that matters. But when he came to that assembly of great saints in the presence of maharaj Parikshit on the bank of the Ganges. Everyone stood up and bowed down before him. Even Narada muni, Vyas, Vashishtha, Vishvamitra, Parsuram all the great celebrated personalities they unanimously agreed. He should be given Vyasasan he should speak. And the foolish people were following him around and they realize that he is a great saint. Instead of sitting down thinking let us sit and listen to him they made a mistake. They thought he is a great saint there is no fun anymore. We thought he is crazy but now we cannot make fun anymore so they left. This is the way people are, common people. They just are looking for entertainment. They are not looking for Truth. Then Shukdev Goswami narrated the Srimad Bhagvatam the cream of all Vedic literatures, ultimate teachings of transcendental knowledge, the Bhakti-Samita, the Paramhansa-Samita. And simply by glorifying the Lord he showed us that if we are always immersed in glorifying the Lord we can always remain in the transcendental position.
Yamraj, a softhearted Vaishnava:
And Yamraj. Yamraj is another of the great mahajans. He was also a Grihastha. And my God what a painful task he has. How many people want to see Yamraj? He is actually a pure devotee. He is actually gentle, equal to all, kind hearted. He is a Sadhu. Somehow or other he is being given this mission of punishing the wicked. And he has this Yamdutas as his associates who are very monstrous looking people who just torture you. And Yamraj has to send you according to your Karma to the torture you deserve. But at heart he just very soft hearted, gentle, pure Sadhu Vaishnav. But because Krishna want him to do it he does it. He is such a totally surrendered soul. Every like to be popular, right? And if you have good qualities you want people to know about your good qualities. Of everybody in the universe, there is probably nobody that no people don’t want to see Yamraj. Right? He has the most frank less task. In all of creation, no one has more frank less task than Yamraj. I mean there not many Sadhus that come down to see him. It’s all the most sinful people that come down to see him. And they don’t want to see him. They have to see him. If you have done this (kha) you must suffer. That’s Yamraj. Describes in the Bhagvatam that Yamraj although he is doing this he never complains. “Krishna if you want me to do like this I will do it” Sometimes when our spiritual master tells us to do something that isn’t our inclination or it is something we don’t like to do we think “Why is he asking me to do this. Why doesn’t he ask somebody else? I like to do other things. Its not my tendency, it is not my propensity, it’s not my inclination. He should let me done tell all my inclination in Krishna’s service. Mu guru should never tell me to do something I don’t like to do. After all surrender means to do what I like for him.” How many of us have that tendency? If you want to be a mahajans, you have to follow in the footsteps of Yamraj. Yamraj if he had his way he would simply be at Radha Gopinath temple at Kirtan all the daylong. Offering Aarti, associating with Satyavrat and just telling Shyamananda, Devamrita, and Tatva he would just be in ecstasy. Right? Because his Gurudev told him, “I want you to torture, punish, and judge all the sinful wicked people for the entire span of this creation.” “Yes, your way will be done.”
The curse became boon:
But Krishna knew that in heart he just wanted to preach Krishna consciousness and be a Sadhu. Who is going to preach in Yamaloka? The Yamdutas? They tried in this chapter but they are not very receptive. What type of karma it takes to be a yamduta, someone who takes pleasure in torturing people in the service of their guru? Of course, there are certain devotees like this. They like to torture people in the service of their guru so they can be good Yamdutas. So Yamraj get no good association, no good opportunities to preach, he is simply frank less task. But Krishna knew his heart so he wanted to give him a holiday. But when Krishna wants to give someone a holiday it’s not just an ordinary giving of paper saying you have leave for this many days. He makes it a whole pastime. There was a great sage named Mandaka muni. And Mandaka muni he was living in his hermitage. And one day some thieves, they performed a robbery. And they were running from the police. And they were thinking that the police would never come to the hermitage of Mandaka muni because they were respecting has a Sadhu so let us hide there. So they hid there and the police came there and found out robbers and they thought Mandaka muni was one of the robbers so they arrested him. They were brought before the king’s court and he was sentenced to death with the thieves. He thought what I have done. I am a Sadhu. I have just nothing. I am an innocent man. Sometimes innocent man gets convicted in courts. It’s not a new thing anymore. But there is always a very special purpose that Krishna has when this thing take place. So he was sentenced to death. And they put him up against the wall with the three thieves and they had this big long lancers. And the executioners would run at them and pierce to their body and killed them. Horrible, fearful death. Mandaka muni was standing there and this people, this big strong executioner with their lancers started running at him. He was just thinking “Ah, Hare Krishna” and just as they were running the king sent a messenger to stop them. But they did the investigation and found out that actually he is a great saint. So they said let him go. He is not the part of this conspiracy. So Mandaka muni was very angry. “Why was I dealt in this unfair way? Yamraj is fault. He is the one who delivers karma”. So he went to Yamraj he was a great mystic he went to Yamraj and said, “Yamraj I demand you tell me I didn’t do anything. Why did you do this to me? Why did you put me in such a horrible and fearful situation? Yamraj said, “It’s your karma. What is my karma. Where is my karma? He said when you were a little boy, tiny little boy you were playing with the little piece of straw and you throw it on ant and you pierced the body of that insect with that straw. Therefore as the karmic reaction, you had to suffer the fear of being pierced yourself.” And Mandaka muni said, “What this is nonsense. I was just a little boy. I didn’t know anything. How can you hold me so responsible? Because of your unfair judgement of me, I curse you to take birth on Earth as son of a Shudra.” And Yamraj said “Haribol!”
Yamraj becomes Vidura to preach:
And he was born as Vidura. And he got to have the personal association of Krishna, Udhishtir, Arjuna, Narada all the great souls. He got to preach like anything. He was obliged to help Dhitrashtra. But by Krishna’s arrangement even Duryodhana kicked him out of the palace. So than was the best part of his life. For years and years he just travelled to all the holy places. Went to Badrinath, went to Gangotri, Yamnotri, and Kedarnath, and went to Rameshvaram, Vrindavan and Hridvar, Kanchipuram, Tirupati. Went to all the holy places for years and years to chant the holy names, associated with the Sadhus, and was wonderful. Then he came back preached to Dhitrashtra, convinced him to give up his sense gratification and then he went back to Yamaloka. This is Yamraj. The great mahajans.
Essence to learn from mahajans:
Becoming Krishna consciousness does not mean changing your ashram. It does not mean renouncing necessarily the surroundings that we are within. It means simply following in the footsteps of this great 12 mahajans who have set by their life and the teachings the highest examples. And it means receiving knowledge, receiving direction, receiving the mercy of God through the bonafied disciplic succession of those great representatives of the mahajans. And if we receive knowledge of the Absolute Truth of pure devotional service form such a personality who is simply repeating from their life and words the message of Krishna as coming down through the great souls then the doors to Spiritual perfection are open before us.
This verse is explaining that the great mahajans and their representatives they teach uncontaminated, unmotivated, pure devotion, surrender and love to the Lord and nothing else. And if we are most fortunate we will associate with such personalities. Associate with the congregation of such persons who are truly trying for this and in this way by the mercy of the great souls, by the mercy of Krishna anyone of us can attain pure Krishna consciousness. Thank you very much.