Radhanath Swami: Thank you to His Holiness Chandramauli Swami Maharaja and thank you to all of you for being with us today. Maharaja was speaking about hearing the transcendental sound vibration of Krishna. The Srimad Bhagavatam tells
śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ kṛṣṇaḥ
hṛdy antaḥ stho hy abhadrāṇi
vidhunoti suhṛt satām
Srimad Bhagavatam 1.2.17
Krishna from within the heart destroys all impurities to that person who really develops a taste to eagerly hear His glories.
There are so many subject matters in this world. There is poetry, music, news, prajalpa, and so many things to discuss, so many things to hear everywhere. But one who focuses their attention on hearing the glories of the lord and really has that eagerness, that taste is an expression of love. Krishna reciprocates by seeing that the lord removes the anarthas from within and reveals Himself. In that same chapter of Srimad Bhagavatam, we learn that it is not just the matter of coming to classed to hear.
syān mahat-sevayā viprāḥ
Srimad Bhagavatam 1.2.16
One develops this actual eagerness to hear about Krishna on the spiritual platform through his service attitude by serving not only Krishna but by serving great souls, who have taken shelter of Krishna.
In essence what this is saying, “The service attitude that we cultivate is the basis of how we attract Krishna”. Bhakti Siddhant Saraswati Thakur he emphasized, the service attitude, it means that we are not the seers, we are the objects of Krishna’s seeing. We are not the enjoyers but we are meant to be seen as objects for Krishna’s enjoyment. “oà pürëam adaù pürëam idaà”. Krishna is the source of everything that exists and everything is His energies in all material and all spiritual worlds. The material conception of life is when we put our self in the center, we want to see and we want to enjoy what we see. This whole material existence or so many objects, wherever we look we are trying to enjoy what we see, what we taste, what we hear, smell, think, feel through all of our senses. “bhoktäraà yajïa-tapasäà sarva-loka-maheçvaram”. Krishna is the proprietor of everything that exists and ultimately Krishna is the supreme enjoyer. For a devotee wherever we look, we are thinking how Krishna can enjoy. This is Krishna’s property. This is Krishna’s person, meant for Krishna’s enjoyment. He is in the center. How could I facilitate? How could I serve him?
You see another person or another human being. The tendency is we want to enjoy them. “____”. This attraction between the male and female or in the age of Kali it is not limited to that. But this idea of, we see another person is the object of our enjoyment. Bhakti is that other person is the object of Krishna’s enjoyment. I am also the object of Krishna’s enjoyment. So that how to serve in such a way to utilize everything for Krishna’s enjoyment. Even when we come to the temple to see the deity, Srila Bhakti Siddhant Saraswati Thakur and Srila Prabhupada would quote him, “Do not try to see Krishna but try to behave, act, and live in such a way that Krishna is very please to see you”. We are the object and Krishna is the subject. When we accept this state of consciousness then the soul is liberated from the false ego which is under the conception that I am the enjoyer, the doer, the proprietor, and the controller. Then the true nature of the soul is blissful nature is revealed. “ye yathä mäà prapadyante täàs tathaiva bhajämy aham” according to how we develop this type of service attitude that Krishna is the center and let me behave in such a way that Krishna is happy to see me. Then Krishna reveals himself accordingly. Then there is real happiness.
It is just like in Caitanya-caritamrita, it describes the nature of the gopis. The gopis they did not care anything about themselves. They only were concerned with what gives Krishna pleasure. They would dress and decorate themselves only because it’s what Krishna wants them to do. It was for real, it was not for imagination. Krishna called them in His flute and they abandoned everything. It did not matter what happened to them but Krishna would be pleased. “äçliñya vä päda-ratäà pinañöu mäm”. If you please Krishna then I never get to see you again then let it be. If it pleases you that I am alone somewhere suffering in separation from you and never seeing you then let it be. Whatever makes you happy? If my suffering makes you happy that is my happiness. Bhaktivinoda Thakur prays that the sufferings and the miseries that I endure in serving Krishna are my greatest happiness because it is for Krishna. This is the consciousness.
This morning we were speaking about Rantideva and Vasudeva Datta. It may seeing very inconceivable, how Vasudeva Datta is actually willing to suffer hellish conditions for the rest of eternity just so that everyone else can be free from sins and enjoy Krishna. Is this for real? Can anyone really think like this? You see for Vasudeva Datta, his happiness is Krishna’s happiness. So Sir Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who came to deliver the whole world, if He is happy that everyone goes back to the godhead then Vasudeva Datta in his hellish sufferings will enjoy better than anybody else because he was not enjoying for himself. His enjoyment was in giving Krishna pleasure. So by doing this he was giving Krishna pleasure. He was not thinking like this that I’ll enjoy higher happiness because I am giving Krishna pleasure. He is only thinking of giving Krishna pleasure. But in his suffering he will give Krishna the greatest pleasure. The gopis enjoy that the deepest suffering but the highest pleasure of seeing Krishna most intimately within the core of their hearts, when Krishna was in Mathura and Dwaraka. They were crying and Krishna was enjoying watching them cry from within the heart.
Now, why anybody would love the perfect lover enjoy seeing their beloved cry. Because He understood the nature of their tears. They would not go to Dwaraka because they knew Krishna wanted them in Vrindavana and they would not give up their lives because they knew Krishna wanted to enjoy that love in separation. So actually the gopis were in the highest ecstasy in their suffering. Because Krishna was the subject. They were the objects. Krishna was the seer. They were the seeing and hankering to see Krishna. Because of the love in which they were hankering to see Krishna. Krishna was enjoying seeing them. But actually their hankering was not just to see Krishna. It was their hankering to see Krishna was only because that hankering gave Krishna satisfaction. So this is bhakti.
We cannot see Krishna through our eyes but we see Krishna through hearing the subject matter from the scriptures and from the vaisnavas. Bhakti Siddhant Saraswati Thakur, when he would go to Jagannath temple in Puri, he would stand behind the Garuda Sthamba, same place Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu would sand. The reason, He did this. He said, “It is because Garuda is a param vaisnava. He is a great devotee. He is a lover of Lord Jagannath. Jagannath would certainly be looking at him because of his great surrendering in devotion. Jagannath has very big lotus like eyes, bigger than any eyes in this entire world and he sees everything and everywhere. But the question is what is He please to see? Because Krishna sees not only our bodies but Krishna sees our desires, motivations, intensions, and Krishna is only pleased where there is love. If we do not have love in our hearts, Krishna sees but it is not please to see us. When we come before the deities, we may think, o Krishna is dressed so nicely. It is not that Radha Gopinath are like some short of Bollywood Cinema that we go see. What they are wearing today? That’s all right better than going to Bollywood Cinemas. But if we really are in the mood of a Vaisnava or the devotee, we come before Krishna so that Krishna is happy to see us.
One day Bhakti Siddhant Saraswati Thakur was standing in Sri Caitanya Math in front of the deities Gandharvik Giridhari without his spectacles. One of his disciples said, “Should I get your spectacles so that you can see the deities properly darshan”. He said that seeing Krishna is not that easy with these spectacles. He said that we should not be trying to see Krishna. When we stand before the deities we should be meditating on how we can develop the qualities and the characteristics by which Krishna will really be pleased to see Me. Then Krishna actually reveals himself to us. So when Bhakti Siddhant Saraswati Thakur was behind the Garuda Sthamba his logic was, it was Krishna’s pleasing. He won’t be please to see me but He will please to see Garuda. So if I am standing just behind Garuda, He will see me too. But He will see me behind His devotee and then He may be pleased with me.
This wanting to be the enjoyer, this observing material nature as the objects of our satisfaction, rather than seeing everything and everyone is the object of Krishna’s satisfaction including ourselves. It is because of the envy. As long as we put Krishna in the center there cannot be envy. Envy only happens when we put our self in the center. Otherwise if we see someone else prospering better than us, we are happy. We are in ecstasy. Because we are thinking Krishna must very much enjoy seeing this person being empowered in the spiritual setting. This person is doing such wonderful service. Krishna is enjoying seeing this person’s service. Why should I compare myself to that person?
Garland maker, someone makes better garland than us. A cook, someone makes better preparation than us. Kirtan, someone sings better. Someone gives better lecture. Someone manages better. Someone builds bigger and better temple. Someone has more people honoring them, whatever may be in Krishna Consciousness. Someone has a better son and well behaved. If we see somebody is doing well, we think Krishna is getting enjoyment from seeing what this person is doing. That makes me happy. But if I am the center, then we are thinking, why I am not getting that recognition? Why I am not getting that empowerment? Why I am not getting those benefits? Why I am not enjoying the way the person is enjoying? It is because we are seeing in the world the objects of our enjoyment instead of the objects of the Krishna’s enjoyment. It is very simple. But is the foundation of pure bhakti. Krishna is the enjoyer. Krishna is the proprietor and the controller. Krishna is the seer and I am the seeing and everything else that exists and everyone else that exists is the seeing by Krishna.
Hiranyakashipu he thought himself to be the seer. He said to Prahalad, “Where did you get this power that we can’t destroy you?” Then Prahalad, he did not take any credit for anything. He said, “The same place you get your power and the same place everyone gets their power. It is only from Krishna”. Hiranyakashipu was outraged. To him, that was an insult that his power is coming from Krishna. This is my power. I performed tapasya for so long to get this power and you are trying to give credit to someone else. This is very hard for ego. When you do something and you work very hard and then all the credit goes to somebody else. Have you get that experience? It is actually very depressing, if you are not transcendental. I may be very purifying too. You do so much; you sacrifice so much for so many years and then all the credit given to someone else. So imagine Hiranyakashipu, a hundred celestial years he was standing in his tip of toes with his hands raised without breathing. His body was being eaten away by the ants until there was nothing but skeleton standing like that. His arms were raised not like the panchatattwa. He was chanting his own names not Krishna’s names. What was an austerity? It was so painful. We have to understand this seriously. It is not that the ants were eating him away and he was just thinking, Oh no problem. He was just bearing it and tolerating it. So deeply fixing his mind on the object of his meditation that he could bear all of these sufferings. They drank all of his blood, ate all of his flesh and he was still standing there. He did not eat, did not drink. He did not sleep. That’s how he got all of his powers. Brahma came down and benedict him with powers because of his tapasya.
Here his five year old little son, he tells Hiranyakashipu “I got my power from the same place, you did from Krishna or Vishnu”. According to Hiranyakashipu Vishnu is the murderer of his brother. It is major insult. He said, “You talk about this Vishnu. Where is He? Show Him to me?” Prahalad said, “He is everywhere”. What is that mean that is every where? It means He hears everything. He sees everything. He feels everything. Through His energies He is everywhere. Like the sunshine is everywhere, emanating from the sun. Krishna even personally in and between every atoms the Paramatma. It is in conceivable and unbelievable. It is beyond intelligence and beyond logic. This is god. Hiranyakashipu said, “Oh, He is everywhere. Is He in this pillar?” Prahalad Maharaja said, “Yes. He is in the pillar also”. So Hiranyakashipu wanted to see Him and kill Him. He smashed the pillar with his fist and through his sword and went to shaver the head of Prahalad.
Little Prahalad, gigantic Hiranyakashipu with the best of all of his swords, he ran toward him to shaver his head. Prahalad had no defense himself. But he was not afraid. As Chandramauli maharaja was explaining, “If one really take shelter of Krishna, one is fearless”. “bhajahü re mana çré-nanda-nandana abhaya-caraëäravinda re”. My dear mind just worship the son of Sri Nandana and you will be fearless. This world is a place of fear. You go, find so many reasons to be fearful. Because, “padam padam yad vipadam na tesam” there is danger at every step in this world on every level, physically, emotionally, intellectually, and mentally. Prahalad was fearless because he did not think himself to be the seer. He understood Krishna is the seer. Therefore he had no animosity even to his father. His concern is simply Krishna, “Whatever makes You happy. If I am thinking of You with love You are happy. If I die thinking of You with love, You will be happy. Then I am thinking of You with love. So it does not matter if I die. If I get some terminal disease, if I loose everything I have, if people hate me, what is important is I am faithful to You. You are the center of existence. If You are enjoying my consciousness then it does not matter, what happens to me. I am happy.
Then the pillar began to tremble and then there was a loud noise coming of shrieking sound, a sound that nobody has ever heard before. Hiranyakashipu was looking in all directions where is that coming from. Then he saw the pillar is trembling. Suddenly it cracked open and from the pillar Lord Narahari appeared. It was the gigantic form. The Srimad Bhagavatam goes through many verses of graphic descriptions of Lord Narashingdeva. Hiranyakashipu was looking and trying to size him up and trying to see the vulnerable place that he could attack. He was trying to measure his strength. Because that should you do, when you are fighting with somebody. You have to measure their strength and look for the weakness and the vulnerabilities. He was trying to see god but actually God was seeing him. In the end Hiranyakashipu was destroyed and little Prahalad. Because Krishna enjoying his see so much. Why? Because Prahalad wanted to see Him but he wanted to see Him with love. He wanted to see Him in the way that he was giving pleasure to the Lord. You are the enjoyer. Let me see you enjoying me. It is not that I want to see You to enjoy You. That is the mood of the Srimad Bhagavatam. Lord comes in many forms.
Chandramauli Maharaja was explaining how we should be very eager to hear. When we come to hear the spirit is we come to serve the lord. It is not just that when we hear about Krishna we enjoy the darshan of Hari Katha. Rather we surrender our attentiveness, our consciousness. Because the Hari katha is none different than Krishna. It is Krishna’s sound vibration. We want to give Krishna pleasure by our attitude, by our eagerness, by our attentiveness. This is a very different way of looking from ordinary prospective. Hari Katha means we want to be enjoyed by the sound vibration. That we are trying so hard to listen so attentively and we are so much trying to apply these instructions. These examples are to our own life. We really do have a serious enthusiastic attitude to serve others, especially great souls. Then we will come down. Come to attentively hear about Krishna. Krishna is pleased. That sound vibration will reveal darshan, which means realizations. Krishna is none different than His names. Through we come to chant the holy names, it is not just how we feel when we chanting. How Krishna does feel while we are chanting. When we have this quality of
tṛṇād api su-nīcena
taror iva sahiṣṇunā
kīrtanīyaḥ sadā hariḥ
When we are actually in our life for humble, tolerant, forgiving, and really eager to keep Krishna in the center of our life, when we offer all respects to others and not demand or expect for oneself and in that state of mind we are sincerely genuinely trying to focus our mind in the holy name with whatever capacity we have. Krishna is pleased. A person, who is egoistic, may be concentrating in the holy name and hearing the syllable very nicely but Krishna is not interested in hearing that person’s chant. In other words, we should not just chant, so that we could hear the chanting. The idea is we should chant so that Krishna is pleased to hear us chanting. The more Krishna is pleased to hear us chanting the holy names the more He is going to give darshan in His holy name to us. It may be in separation. It may in meeting. But this unselfish or selfless spirit of service extends to every aspect of our life. That is the beauty of life, the real art of living.
According to Srimad Bhagavatam is Krishna is in the center. Krishna is the subject on the object. Krishna is the subject and everything within creation is object for his satisfaction, for His enjoyment. Let my happiness be his happiness and nothing can be that joy. Srila Prabhupada said that 99% of our advancement is through the chanting of the holy names of the lord. But through the process of hearing, we have to understand very clearly, what really is the process of chanting of the holy names of the Lord. There may be many excellent techniques to better concentrate, which are very very good. But Krishna is not pleased just by concentration. Krishna is pleased by devotion. That means the character of our life.
Concentration is the part of it that eagerness Krishna is pleased when we really wanted to absorb ourselves in remembering Him. “man-manä bhava mad-bhakto mad-yäjé mäà namaskuru” Krishna says, “Always think of Me, become My devotee, worship Me, and offer your homage to Me”. It is not just only always think of Me. We have to put all these together. Krishna says always think of Me but how to always think of Him. As His devotee. We are His devotees. We are thinking of Him. A devotee means, “My lord, how can I please You and how can I serve You. I am yours”. Worship Me that means, whatever make You happy is my happiness. Offer homage to Me, that means we are not concern with people offering homage to ourselves. We want to see the whole world offer homage to Krishna. When we have that consciousness then we are thinking of Krishna really gives pleasure to Krishna. Krishna only wants to give pleasure to us. But this is how? Krishna wants to give all of His love and all He wants in return. It is whatever little love a Jiva has, we just offer that to Him and whatever love He has is the paramatma the supreme Bhagavan. He is willing to give that in return.
Marriage disputes, conflicts between religions, conflicts between gurus, disciples of gurus, conflicts between sexes and races, conflicts between nations, conflicts between every aspects of human society, animal society, plant society, insect society, “jévo jévasya jévanam”. Everyone is trying to eat each other in one way or other. It is all manifesting from this one illusion forgetting that Krishna is the center of everything. Krishna is the enjoyer. I am the enjoyed. Krishna is the seer and I am the seen. This is the spirit of service. When we have faith in this principle through hearing and we honestly and honestly make that our goal in life and strive to live by those principles except what is favorable for developing those virtues and reject what is unfavorable. Then Krishna sees our honest and honest attempt. Even if we fail so many times, due to our very strong conditionings Krishna is very please that we really want that to put Krishna in the center of our lives. We want to put Krishna in the center of the world. He is already there. Bur we really want to accept it and surrender to that. Then Krishna will give us all help and even in the difficulties we are endure in the process, we are all bring us closer and closer to Krishna.
Rupa Goswami wrote that if you want to remain attached to your family, friendship, and love in the material platform of this world, do not go to Vrindavana, to the bank of Yamua at Krishna Consciousness ghat, where Sri Govinda deva is standing in His beautiful form dark like a monsoon cloud with elongated beautiful lotus like eyes in His three four folding form, placing His flute to His reddish lips, which are shining in the moon light. His vision of Krishna is willing to reveal it to all of us within our hearts on the altar. We are seeing Krishna in thinking, “Oh, very nice. Today it looks very nice”. We are seeing Krishna. But He is not revealing Himself to us very much, if He is will be in ecstasy. Will be seeing god. Will be seeing Rupagoswami’s talking about. He is there. “premäïjana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena”. According to our eyes in doubt with love with the self of love, Krishna reveals Himself. We cannot force our way into this spiritual world. We cannot force our way to realization. Everything can only come by mercy. Krishna bestows His mercy and reveals Himself according to the devotional love that we are describing today. It is for this purpose. With this mood that we interact with each other in the mood of servant of the servant of the servant of the Lord. Because that’s what pleases Krishna. To the degree want to please our self to that degree we bereft of true bhakti. What will please Krishna? How I deal with other people? How I deal with other vaisnavas as their servant and happy to see them progressing, sad to see them having set backs? That pleased Krishna.
Trying to uplift the condition souls seeing them as Krishna’s children and forgetfulness and trying to bring them back. According to our works, not according to what we like to do. Srila Prabhupada adjusted himself in so many ways to actually connect to people’s heart because he is really caring. Because he knew that’s what Krishna wants them, we connected. Even if you have to break some smart rules to reach them, try to reach them, that’s what Krishna wants. Try to make that connection for them. When we look at the world, wherever Srila Prabhupada looks he was thinking of what will please Krishna.
We are listening the other day through the reading in the prasadam hall, Srila Prabhupada would see a garden some place and he would call the leader of Mayapur and say we take photos of this garden. We should have something like this in Mayapur. Then he would see something else, somewhere else and he would call president of the temple. We should have something like this here. Go ensure somebody. Wherever he was looking, he was thinking of how to please Krishna. What pleases Krishna most? Pleasing His devotees and attracting conditioned souls back to Krishna’s lotus feet. The more everyone makes spiritual advancement the more everyone is empower, the more everyone is happy in that state, the more Krishna is happy. So that should be our happiness. Then there is no envy or jealousy. There is only competition of who could serve each other better. That is Krishna Consciousness, in that beautiful state of mind, when we come together to chant the holy names, how Krishna is so happy. Because we are flooding the world with the pure vibrations of selfless devotion. Krishna is actually manifesting Himself in the holy name through us into the whole universe when we chant in that spirit. “Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare”.