Perhaps three or four months, I was thinking to discuss whatever devotees would like to discuss today. So anything particular, any questions?
It seems a question was asked on -many times the temple program run late in the evening, so it is not possible to get good rest and be there for the morning japa. How should we manage in these circumstances?
Rising early in the morning for japa
That is why the schedule is now that the japa begins at 5, so there is absolutely no excuse for anyone to ever miss japa in the morning, and be attentive and awake. Late means between 10 and 11. Absolute late is one should never have to ever take rest after 12. Then you still get of almost 5 hour rest but practically any program we are back before 11 that means almost 6 hours rest. So this is no longer a valid excuse for anyone ever. You must rise for morning japa. You must be attentive and should not waste unnecessary time at night. You have to take little rest during the day and you must do it but under all circumstances you should be there for japa in the morning.
Any other question?
It seems a question is asked on- how can we know that we are advancing in Krishna consciousness?
Our spiritual advancement is dependent on the degree of our surrender to spiritual master
Srila Prabhupada said, you make advancement in Krishna Consciousness according to degree you accept responsibility on behalf of your spiritual master. This is the greatest illusion and not only that but it is a poison within our congregation to think that we can artificially imitate advanced devotees. Just like we were speaking last night that some of our devotees they want to be paramhamsas, going to Vrindavan simply to be on your own, according to our sampradaya the paramhansas stage, which means beyond the regulative principles because you are so advanced! And we find that of our devotees who go there they have no responsibility, they simply go to enjoy. They wanders through the groves of Vrindavan, they go to the holy place, they read all kind of books which give them all sorts of pleasures, so I know this pastime, I know that pastime. They are not in Vrindavan; Vrindavan is revealed to a person who is surrendered to the lotus feet of his guru and who takes all responsibility for guru. Those persons will never see Vrindavan until they become a little serious, come back to their guru’s feet, surrender and be an obedient servant. They are simply seeing a superficial, artificial reflection of Vrindavan. You cannot see Vrindavan, you have to obediently serve Krishna and then Krishna reveals Vrindavan to you wherever you are. So those who independently leave the responsibilities of their guru, to go to the Holy dham they don’t go to the Holy dham at all. The people right here who are responsibly accepting austerities on behalf of their guru, they are actually on the path to Vraja, they are on their way to Vrindavan. These are the people in the dream world. Krishna is not cheap, this is called sahajiya, to take Krishna cheaply and all the great acharayas condemned this sahajiya mentality. Trying to take a position far more advanced then you are.
Rupa Goswami explains, that
adau shraddha tatah saadhu sango tha bhajana kriya,
That first there is little faith, that faith is nourished by associating with devotees, by accepting a spiritual master, bhajana kriya, and by being disciplined by him. This is the process; gradually anartha nivrati, all unwanted things are removed and when there is nishtha, strong faith, then there is ruchi which is actually experiencing the higher taste. Then you can get a little glimpse of what is Vrindavan. That is a very high platform, very high. And we find that even in Vrindavana those people who are bonafide sadhus, they are surrendered, accepting austerities and responsibly, being disciplined and obeying their guru. But people who just go there just to wander through the groves and do what they want, they are not going to serve, but to enjoy. This enjoying spirit is the very thing that’s keeping us away from Krishna. Even to enjoy the holy dham is Maya. We go to the holy dham to serve the holy dham and how do we serve the holy dham which is non- different to Krishna, by serving His representative, spiritual master. It’s much more difficult staying here, but this is how we will be able to perceive the real Vrindavan. And what does it mean to stay here? It means to accept responsibility.
To the degree we are willing to accept responsibility, to that degree we will become mature devotees. We have the responsibility to chant every day, prescribed number of rounds. We have the responsibility to follow the four regulative principles; we have a responsibility to be humble and cooperative and put ourselves second, to create the unity amongst the Vaishnavas. We also have the great responsibility that in the guru’s mission that there are certain areas of service that our temple authorities are giving us and we will advance to the degree we take those things seriously, not being lazy, not thinking someone else will do it, not being under the impression that let me get it over with. This is your connection to Krishna, your service. And you have to take it with the heart that is grateful and you have to be enthusiastic to do it as well as you possibly can. This accepting of your responsibility is the basis of bhakti.
Rupa Goswami tells us in the Bhakti Rasamrita Sindhu, even in the discharge of ones most ordinary daily activities, one must do it very consciously and very carefully and one must put ones heart into it. The disciple that a guru is most pleased with is a disciple that the guru can depend upon. A useless disciple he does not know whether he is going to do this or that. May be he is going on leave when things get bad. What pleases a guru, when a disciple…, when spiritual master knows come hell or high, no matter what happens this disciple is going to be there . Right where I want him to do this service. His mind, his senses, his family, the whole society, if a nuclear war comes, he is going to be right there doing his service. Spiritual master can only built his mission on the foundation blocks of such devotees.
To the degree you are not dependable and steady and giving confidence to our guru that we are going to be there where he wants us, to that degree we are not like that, to that degree we are useless and to the degree we are like that, to that degree we are truly assets to build his mission, Lord Chaitanya’s mission. This is the fact and this is what the real blessings of the spiritual master comes when we become dependable when he can trust. That when he gives us a service he does not have to chase after us, did you do it, will you do it? He knows he is going to do it, he is going to give his life, he is going to try nothing is going to come in between him and his execution of the service.
Taking our responsibilities seriously
And that does not mean that the spiritual master must directly give you the service. That is the total disturbance, if the guru has to meddle in all management activities. If he can depend and you being the servant of the servant of the servant, he deputes particular servants who give instruction, if he knows you are going to be carrying out the service of his servants, then you become the dear most in his heart. So we have to learn to be dependable, not whimsical. We have to follow our guru’s desire not our minds, and this austerity is performed by taking our responsibilities. The servant of the servant of the servant has told me I must do like this I am going to do it, I am not going to change my ways and I am not going to volunteer for anything else until I can see that it is a higher service coming from higher authorities that I should do something else. I am going to be dependable and responsible, so I can help my guru. If we are not dependable and responsible then the Vaishnavas have to go out of their way and leave their own service just to try to rescue me. We are distracting the mission. But if I am dependable and I am responsible in whatever I may ask to do, rising in the morning, coming to the morning program, if I am doing food for life, I am doing book distribution and I am pujari whatever it may be. And the Vaishnavas and the spiritual master, they can build their service and they know that whatever I am suppose to do is taken care of, I am going to try my best. And the more devotees we have like that who are responsible and willing to make sacrifices to that extent this movement will grow, to that extent Maya cannot stop this movement, to that extent we will become empowered, individually as well as united. This is of the upmost importance. Don’t take any service whimsically. If you are asked to change a life boat, that changing of a life boat is your path back to Godhead. Don’t think all it a small thing someone else will do it. He asked me but someone else will do it. He asked me do it now but I’ll do it tomorrow or the next day because it is not convenient now. Whatever little service you are given, you have to take that as your life and soul and you have to be responsible. This is the way we make spiritual advancement. This is the way we become valuable assets to our guru’s mission and this is the way we become dear to our spiritual master and dear to Sri Sri Radharani and Lord Sri Krishna.
Therefore Prabhupada said, now I repeat again, that you make advancement in Krishna consciousness to the extent you accept responsibility in the mission of your guru. We don’t want useless devotees who just go up here and go up there thinking that they are advanced babajis. They are not advanced babajis, they are pretenders, and they are cheap pretenders. They might be blissful, but these people are blissful going to the cinemas and going to the dance halls too, it doesn’t mean they are advanced and tears roll from their eyes. According to Bhakti Vinoda Thakura, Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati, people who are not obediently serving their guru, who shed tears when they are chanting the holy names, those tears wash away all the conclusive truths of the Vedas, they wash away our devotional propensities. But those who humbly submissively obey the order of the guru and serve the gurus order responsibly, when they shed tears not out of show but out of natural devotion, humble devotion, those tears water, water the fruit of love of God to grow.
So we are not impressed by pretending babajis, shedding tears, going around Vrindavan chanting Radhe Radhe. We give no distinction or dignity to such devotees because it is only a distraction. We give only distinction to those devotees who are humble, sincere, responsible serving the mission of their guru and who are mature on the real path back home, back to Godhead as ordained by the great acharyas. And in order to do this we have to be fixed first of all in the knowledge of the disciplic succession of guru and Gauranga. Therefore, we are reading books and this is of utmost importance for each devotee.
Our own gurus books are the best to read, not any other books from outside is appropriate
Srila Prabhupada, he has given us books especially meant for our self realization, especially for our purification. Now there are many other books by many other acharayas, by many other bonafide spiritual masters and there are many books written by sahajiyas and imitationists that are not authorized. First of all we should consult the senior Vaishnavas before taking any book outside of our own guru’s line, because we don’t know, we are fools. There is one Hindi book that many many of our brahmacharis have been reading and enjoying. And I went to one of either, I can’t understand Hindi, I can’t make a comment on it, but I went to one of Prabhupada’s dearest Godbrother, not Godbrother but friends and associates who Prabhupada said we should consult in these technical matters. I asked him and he said I know this book very well, it’s written by a cheap imitationist, and it should not be read by any descendant of Bhaktisiddhanta and there are all of you are probably reading it, enjoying your senses and being polluted. What do you know? You don’t know anything; going beyond the limits of your guru is false pride, thinking I know what is best for me. And there are other books which are certainly bonafide books, which will have the same conclusions but my question is how have you first studied, learned, digested and understood your own spiritual master’s books and your own param guru’s books? These books may be bonafide and may be very very enlightening to us, but let’s go one step at a time. Srila Prabhupada sacrificed so much of time and energy to write these books especially targeted towards your purification. We don’t just mean reading them over and getting through and say oh I am finished; we need actually studying them and understanding them. How much reading time do you have? First of all you should master these books, you should be able to quote them, you should be able to cite them in preaching, any predicament of life you should remember the instructions in them, you should learn and be scholar in these books first, then you can think of doing further research in other books for enlivenments, inspiration and reference. I want to know many of you are reading so many books, even Prabhupada books, how have you really understood and learned these books?
When we were in Vraja dham, one sadhu, a very good sadhu was recommending one book about so many saints. He was saying it is so important to read stories about saints, so I looked at these two devotees I was with, they wanted to get these books, we should learn more about saints, we must know about the great acharyas and the great devotes how we understand Krishna ? I named about 15 great devotees that Prabhupada tells wonderful stories about in Chaitanya Charitamrita and Srimad Bhagavatam. I asked them to tell me, they could not tell me one story from one of those fifteen names and I could have said fifty names. They couldn’t tell me hardly anything about any of them. I said right in your own spiritual master books, right in your own home, right in your own book shelf, within the last 10-15 years you have the most wonderful, direct and most important stories about the most importance saints of our disciplic line, you know nothing about them and you want to run and go find other books to read about saints. This is taking your guru cheaply.
Therefore other books by other bonafide Vaishnavas acharyas that are authorized by your temple authority, this is what brahmacharya means, they can be read but they should be read very minimal in comparison to how much you are studying your own spiritual master’s books. In my opinion minimum one hour every day, our brahamachari should be reading Prabhupada books, studying, understanding, and digesting because these books will teach you how to get the real foundation and make spiritual advancement. Why do you take the guru? To get direction from him. And then after you really learned the stories, learned the philosophy, understand it, then for reference yes there are other books that are also very-very beautiful, very spiritual, very high, very pure. But there is nothing higher, purer then the books of your own guru, that’s the way you should feel in your own life. That is your first priority. Otherwise our minds will simply be diverted in every other direction accept surrender, unless we really have a strong philosophical base.
Brahamacharis should be learned in the scripture. I want each and every one of you brahamacharis to make it a point to very very carefully, scrutinizingly study Srila Prabhupada books. And Prabhupada’s books are translated in Marathi, they are translated in Hindi and they are in English. They are even in Bengali; there is no excuse for any of us to say that we cannot read out Gurudeva’s books.
A person speaks in between but not understood properly.
So I would like you and Devamrita, Shyamananda to come together and think of some way of further inspiring and giving people an understanding of the responsibility of reading their spiritual master’s books. You can do this? This is a responsibility, it is an austerity and it is necessary, especially for brahamacharis and sannyasis, its essential.
A person speaks in between but not understood properly.
To the extent we want to remain children. There is no harm in it, but that something we just do of little on the side if you want to do. That is not the basis of our reading, the basis of our reading is to hear from the acharayas. You are not going to get in purified by reading those; you are just going to get little enjoyment. May be you learn a few little stories. But the purification comes by studying the translations and the purports of the great acharayas. That’s where purification and knowledge comes, that’s going to come through your own guru maharaja’s books.
It seems a question is asked on movies based on Srila Prabhupada books.
If they are actually based on the books of Prabhupada, then that is good. But that should not substitute for our studying his books. Because the movies do not include his purports. And Prabhupada said, 99 percent of the value of my books is in the purports, because the translations you’ll never really understand what it means unless you carefully study the purports. Therefore in the Gaudiya Vaishanava Sampradaya, you will not find acharyas simply translating, they will always translate with purports. Bhakti Siddhanta and Vishwanath Chakravarty Thakur and Baladeva Vidyabhushana, they translated with in elaborate purports. Bhakti Vedanta Swami…. voice lost in between… his purport. And of the two, the purport is far more important because the translation is untouchable to your heart without the help of the explanation of the previous acharayas.
So therefore these movies only tell stories and even then they are not exactly what Prabhupada has said. So it’s all right, we are not against it. But it’s not going to really bring you to a higher realization. It can never be used as a substitute to studying the scriptures.
It seems a question is asked on -can we not watch these movies to utilize our time?
I would say there is certainly better ways to utilize our time, but I am not against it. If they are actually valid, but there are better ways to utilize our time.
A person speaks in between. Seems to be asking question about songs.
What we have to know, the best songs are the songs of our parampara, they are the best. But sometimes we sing songs that many of them are simply Krishna’s names, that are written by vaishanavas who we know that are authorized vaishanavas, that are not rasa bhasa or sahajiya by nature, but they learn local language, people can respond, so they are all right we are glorifying Krishna’s name, they are good but it should not be just done whimsically where any devotee just goes out looking for songs. They should have, they should be reviewed and be sanctioned by our senior devotees. Not just whimsically.
Just like in Pune, one of our senior devotees in public kirtan started singing a song which according to our sampradaya is rasabhasa, it’s a song somewhat offensive, because it is a popular song and we have to stop him in the middle of the kirtan, we don’t sing that song. Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was very careful about this rasabhasa, in fact there were many melodious songs in Vrindavana that are sung everywhere and right in Chaitanya Charitamrita Prabhupada says, these songs have a very beautiful melodious and poetic value, but they have no spiritual value because they are mixing different moods and they are not accepted by our acharyas.
Question– How do we know which is which? How do you know, are you a acharya?
Therefore it is best when we accept sources that we know are coming from genuine sincere vaishnavas and it should be with the sanction by the authority of higher devotees. But there is a special purification that we should always aspire for in the songs of our own acharayas like Narottam Das Thakura, Bhakti Vinoda Thakura, personally to me no other songs can compare to them, but with the purpose of bringing everybody into a congregated spirit of understanding, the glories of kirtan we sing many Hindi songs also but in our heart the songs of Narottam, BhaktiVinoda, Lochan Das are incomparable to realizations of those songs, are untouchable. Untouchable means that they are so high and they are so deep and they are so sweet with devotion.
It seems a question is asked on what are bonafide songs.
I would say that the songs that are in our song book which we come together and make a song book of songs we know are nice. Then we should not speculate.
It seems a question is asked about singing of songs by professional singers.
We are not concerned with professional singers. We are concerned with receiving our kirtan, our bhajans, our philosophy not from entertainers who are speaking to millions of people, not from entertainers who are singing to millions of people. For we are concerned with people who are deeply rooted vaishanavas who are sincerely and honestly following in the footsteps of the previous acharyas. Such persons we receive inspiration and information from, nobody else.
Someone asks a question but it is not clear.
Good for grihasthas, but is not good for brahmacharis. It’s not good for grihasthas either so much but it won’t hurt them too much. Brahmacharis will ruin, it will turn your saffron into a lighter shade of white. Brahmachari means regulated.
Someone asks a question but it is not clear.
Importance of controlling our tongue
If someone offers you some mahaprasad, then you should honor little whenever it is, whenever they offer, you can honour little bit. But as far as going out of your way to find mahaprasad at times that are unregulated to eating schedule. That is simply feeding the tendency for your tongue to continue to be uncontrolled.
jihvara lalase yei iti–uti dhaya
sisnodara-parayana krishna nahi paya
Chaitanya Mahaprabhu instructed Raghunath Das Goswami that he who simply chases after the satisfaction of his tongue, his belly and his genitals cannot attain Krishna. Bhakti Vinoda has said that tongue is the most ferocious and uncontrollable and is a straight line of all your senses, and if you can control your tongue, all your other senses will be controlled. If you cannot control your tongue it’s impossible to control your other senses. And controlling a tongue means two things, not to criticize others, not to gossip, but only speak constructive Krishna katha that’s conducive to increasing our service and other service. That is what we should speak. And also we must control the tendency to taste nice food stuffs. Prasad may be nice, that is all right to take, but we should take it at the times that we are regulated to take it. Otherwise if you just take it at the whims of our tongue and the whims of our mind, we become a slave of our mind and a slave of our tongue. It is said, that this human form of life is the boat that can guide us across that can bring us across the ocean of birth and death. And the spiritual master is the captain of the boat. He is directing how our body should act, how it should live. But as far as the boat itself, there is something called the rudder, you know what the rudder is? The boat may be as big as this room and the rudder is only this big. It’s on the bottom, its shape is just like your tongue, it’s flat. And according to the direction, the radar goes, the whole boat goes. According to how you control and don’t control your tongue, that’s how your whole life is directed or misdirected. Therefore according to the direction of the captain, the spiritual master, the great sadhus we must learn to control our tongue. Without that control of the tongue we simply are the slaves of our senses
jihvara lalase yei iti-uti dhaya
sisnodara-parayana krishna nahi paya
Mahaprabhu says, you cannot attain Krishna through that process.
Raghunath Das Goswami asks Chaitanya Mahaprabhu,” what are the duties of a person who are in the renounced order of life”? Brahamachari means renounced order of life. And His instruction was,
gramya–katha na sunibe, gramya–varta na kahibe
bhala na khaibe ara bhala na paribe
Do not speak non-sense; do not speak what the general public is speaking, gramya-katha, ordinary gossip. And never hear it, gramya-katha na sunibe, never hear it and never speak it.
bhala na khaibe ara bhala na paribe
Do not eat luxurious foods, unregulated and do not dress luxuriously. These are the basic principles for one in a renounced order. If you find that of this verse not to speak or hear non-sense means to control the tongue and not to eat unregulated, too opulently, that is also the control of the tongue. Most of the renunciation is the control of the tongue and then what is the next verse,
kirtaniyah sada harih
The next verse He explains is, one should offer all respects to others, one should expect no respect for oneself, one should always chant the name of Krishna and in one’s mind one should always be engaged in serving Radha and Krishna in Vrindavan. This is sum and substance of the duties of one in the renounced order, to be a humble servant, to chant the Holy names, to control ones speech and ones tongue, ones tendency for tasting. Otherwise we become the slave of the senses.
Any other question?
Possessiveness, for a grihastha?
According to the shastra, the way to counteract the very deeply strong tendency for possessiveness in the grihastha life is to giving charity to the Vaishnavas and the brahmans, to the mission of the guru. According to the shastra, the first fifty percent you have give it to your guru’s mission. And then whatever else you have, maintain, that is the ideal standard. You never be possessive if you do that, because the first priority with whatever you get goes to Guru and Krishna. You cannot do fifty percent; you should aspire to come as close to that as possible. But that should be the first thing you do with your Laxmi or your wealth or whatever you have. Not that I will take care of my own needs and whatever little is left will see. This is how a grihastha suppose to be trained according to the shastra. Then you will not be possessive, for you should give in charity and you should also always be aspiring to be the humble servant of the servant. And very important that you are always looking of to those who are in a renounced order of life. To the degree the grihasthas have respect for the dignity of the brahmacharis and the sannyasis, to that degree they will advance properly in Krishna consciousness. This is always been the teaching of Srila Prabhupada through his books. But this is very important for the first class brahmacharis and grihasthas. Because although grihasthas might be very very expert in whatever they do, often times they are very very expert. He may be expert managers, expert preachers, expert at giving donations and managing affairs, business, and doctors whatever. They will become proud and they will become possessive and they will become attached. Unless they have a very very deep and high esteem for those in the renounced order of life and they are thinking when will I become like that?
And we find the great kings like Yudhishtra, who was more an expert grihastha than him? When Narada muni or some great soul would come, he will simply bow down and say when will I become like you? You are really great, look at me. Dasharatha maharaja same thing, these are the real great grihasthas. They might even be better than those who are in renounced order of life. Ambarish maharaja was thinking that way towards Durvasa muni. He was far more advanced than Durvasa muni, but his humility was as a grihastha, that when will I become like you? You are so renounced and so great. So that high esteem for those in a renounced order of life is a very very essential ingredient within the heart, necessary within the heart of the grihastha. And therefore that high esteem must manifest in aspiring to be the humble servant of those in the renounced order of life.
And as far as brahamachari counteracting possessiveness, that comes by serving the other Vaishnavas. By keeping nothing for oneself, but being a servant. Whatever we keep we should understand it’s like holding on when we are trying to swim in the ocean, it’s like holding on to some heavy weight. Bhagavatam says, when one is drowning in the ocean and he is attached to beautiful golden crown, it might look nice, it might give him pride and prestige, but it only helps him sink faster and deeper. Nothing is ours, everything is Krishna’s…..voice missing…., dive for ourselves, we should know its bondage, and it’s going to cause us suffering.
It seems a question is asked on how should we deal with our relatives, wife, children.
Possessiveness means that you are meant to protect them on behalf of your guru and Krishna. They are not yours, they are not your slaves, and they are not your servants. You are their servant, you may have to train them, you may have to discipline them but in the mood of being their servant. Because they are Krishna’s children and Krishna has entrusted them and He has entrusted them to you. But they are His sacred property. Therefore you must always be in a mood of being the servant of all Vaishnavas, all family members, everyone. Sometimes we may have to serve them by disobediently following the order, Sometime you may have to serve them by disciplining them, by giving them instructions, But the mood is always service, there is nothing is yours. It is the sacred property of God, every devotee. The temple president is the servant of the people who are under him, he doesn’t think they are mine, they are my servants. He is serving them because they are his guru’s property. He must engage them in guru’s work. The father sees the children and the wife in the same spirit and the wife must see the husband and the children in the same spirit. This is an essential necessity of all our relationships, but nothing is ours. We are the masters over no one; this is ego and the servant. These people are my guru’s property, they are more precious than me. I have a great responsibility in my relationship with them.
We are not takers, we are givers. Even when we receive we are actually giving them the chance to serve, we are not taking something from them. When we expect something for someone, we should not expect it for ourselves; we should expect it for them. It’s like when you are a doctor when he expect someone to take medicines, is it for your good or his good? Devotional service is a medicine, if someone is serving you as the representative of the guru, we should not be expected for our self, and we should be expected for their benefit. It’s a medicine that will heal them. That should be our spirit. Therefore we are not attached, we have no personal attachment. But out of compassion we are diligently trying to engage them in their duty. A wife is meant to serve the husband, but the husband should not be proud thinking that she is serving me. By some inconceivable arrangement, I am supposed to be the representative of guru to this person. Therefore in serving me she is actually purifying her own existence because she is serving a guru. It’s not for me; I am not attached to what she gives me. I am only attached that she makes spiritual advancement. Then you are always in a mood of a servant, not an enjoyer. This we must cultivate, this consciousness being the servant of the servant.
It seems the question is asked on how to utilize spare time?
How to utilize spare time
Think of Krishna. How does one think of Krishna? By associating with devotees, by taking on some extra services if there is some need, by chanting extra rounds, by reading the shastra, engage that spare time in one of the nine processes of devotional service, use your good intelligence of what the best way you can now serve Krishna and remember Krishna. And if your good intelligence is in doubt then you ask someone who is in a respected position, how could I best utilize it this time, my spare time? Should I read, should I chant, is there some service that I can offer?
It seems a question is asked on –if someone offers us prasad at an odd time, what should we do?
You can honor a little; you can offer your prayers and honor a little. If you regulate your life so you are planning I am going to have prasad tonight so I would not have this time, then you have but you can take the more simpler items, you don’t have to take all the opulent items, you always have a choice. If you are taking the Prasad here then you just take little little, but don’t take it as a justification to transgress the principle of controlling the tongue. That is dangerous.
It seems a question is asked on – whom should we consult for our life’s problems?
You mean if you are having problems who you should consult? You should consult a person who you have faith as an advanced devotee who is going to properly represent your spiritual master’s teachings. That should be your first choice. If you just consult everybody and anybody you can get many opinions. Therefore your first choice to be to consult someone who is really teaching and living what your guru maharaja is giving to you.
It seems a question is asked on – how should we preach to people having very different background than ours.
That is according to who you are preaching to. Our philosophy is always one God; we are not a sectarian movement. There is one God. You have to preach in such a way that you are going to nourish that particular person’s spirituality. You simply repeat what is in your gurudeva’s books. Preaching means, an expert preacher is kala, desha, patra, he preaches according to the person, the place and the time; he emphasizes different aspects of our philosophy.
It seems a question is asked on –books outside parampara.Answer-What is the use of that, taking shelter of other books that are not coming in parampara? Actually most of our devotees speak English and it might be little more difficult but it might be an austerity but let them…. better they perform a little austere and get the real thing and just enjoyed the easiness of getting something that’s not the true thing.
Someone asks a question, but it is not clear.
We can discuss that later
It seems a question is asked on – some specific book published by Gaudiya mission.
Let us read our own gurus books first. I have nothing against that book, I am sure it’s a nice book, its approved by the Gaudiya mission, no doubt they are bonafide Vaishnavas. But the problem is they are easier to read than our gurus books, that may be, but that doesn’t mean we should neglect our gurus books because there are going to be something easier than our gurus books. Right? So let us take it as an austerity to study very carefully and understand our guru’s books. Not that we emphasize other things because they are easier, there’s lot of things easy that we don’t do because we are trying to be very very strict in serving our spiritual master and understanding the basic principles of Krishna consciousness from him. Prabhupada’s books in Hindi are understandable. If that is honestly our situation then we should listen to tapes, become very attentive in classes, but we should try to read, we should honestly make an attempt, it’s a great gift that our guru has given us. But if we just have no inclination in reading book we are just not able to, we just following a sleep every time we try, better you listen to tapes and you do some service. But most of us are not in that category.