Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj explains how spiritual aspirants should understand the principle of parakiya-bhajan in their practising lives.
(Srimad Bhagavad-gita: 18 .66)
[“Abandon all religion.”]
ājñāyaivaṁ guṇān doṣān mayādiṣṭān api svakān
dharmān santyajya yaḥ sarvān māṁ bhajet sa cha sattamaḥ
(Srimad Bhagavatam: 11.11.32)
[“Realising the qualities and faults of the socio-religious system which I have instituted, one who completely abandons it and serves Me is the best of all sadhus.”]
To break the law should be the main characteristic of a Rupanuga Vaishnav. What I have conceived about this parakiya principle is important. I have thought it out in a particular way.
The pati, husband, is supposed to have full control over the wife, lordship. To disobey him, to be ungrateful for him, and seek comfort or pleasure in another place, is to leave our obligation. All our past activities have the right to exact their demand from us. Our karma, our jnan—wandering in the world we have incurred so many obligations in so many places. That is to be considered on one side: those demands that want to exert their mastership over us, to exact the payment due to them. These demands should be considered as our pati, husband. They have their demand to realise from us. So, to disobey this ‘husband’ and go to Krishna, to direct our free will towards Krishna, that is parakiya-bhajan.
The total demand on us by the environment, that is one side, and the other is directing our free will towards God, Krishna. This is pati-vanchana [deceiving the husband]. If we have borrowed money from a moneylender we are obliged to him. To disobey him, to get out of our obligation to him, is not publicly possible. So from our innermost heart we must clearly direct our free will towards Krishna. Because in our previous life we have acquired so many anti-Krishna tendencies that have captured us, we must direct out free will away from them by any means, without their awareness, and dedicate it to Krishna.
Wherever we are, and to whatever extent we are indebted, burdened, we can remove our free will from the circle of such obligations and direct it to Krishna. From our innermost hearts, our desire and prayer is for that. I am in the midst of an unfavourable environment: the husband, the mother-in-law, the sister-in-law, and the society, even the scripture, are all against, all against me. Deceiving them, I shall stealthily take my free will and, with the help of a particular group, approach Krishna.
I think that all the obligations are represented mainly by arya-patham and sva-janam (Sb: 10.47.61), society and the scriptures. This includes almost everything. They are all on one side and I must take my free will, deceiving them stealthily, and dedicate my heart to Krishna. I must pray, “My Lord, with Your own agent, take me out. Take me out.” We must be bold enough to courageously disobey our past obligations and approach Krishna with our innermost prayer and interest. Our desire must be to dedicate ourselves to Vrajaraj, Krishna, and His own.
Student: Maharaj, for a woman it is easy to develop this mood.
Srila Sridhar Maharaj: No. It is rather the opposite. It is perverted. It will be very difficult for them because the same perverted thing will come to occupy the position of the genuine thing. A woman’s position is more dangerous. Apparently it may seem that it will be easy. Of course, to some extent, it is easier, because Mahaprabhu has given more grace to women and sudras [labourers], those who have no rights in the ordinary sense. Nevertheless, we should be cautious: the womanly nature of this mundane world should not be compared with, or mistaken for, the womanhood of that plane.
Student: Maharaj, what I meant was that as long as we have false pride because we are males, we cannot develop this mood. We have to give up this feeling that we are the purush [enjoyer].
Srila Sridhar Maharaj: We are not the enjoyer; we are to be enjoyed. That is the negative conception. That should be done.
Student: What is the first thing to be done?
Srila Sridhar Maharaj: We are to be handled, and we are not to handle. We should adopt this posing; offering ourselves passively, not actively. We are active in the sense that things inside us are changing, but from Krishna’s side, we seek grace.
virachaya mayi daṇḍaṁ dīna-bandhu dayāṁ vā
[“O Friend of the fallen, You may punish me or You may bless me, as You wish.”]
This prayer is open; it makes no claim. Yet underground a claim is being established. Through this non-claiming attitude, claim is being established there. As much as we can develop a non-claiming attitude, automatically our claim is established there. The degree of our non-claiming attitude really establishes our claim there in that wonderful land. Dedication means such.
There we thrive. And here we die. “Die to live”: that is the theory. That is a very good expression of Hegel. “Reality is for itself”, and “die to live”. “Krishna, the ‘all-consumer’, everything is for Him.” And “die to live”: if you want to live you will have to die. Learn to die if you want to live. Dissolve your ego. Die means to dissolve your ego and then the covers, one by one, will be thrown out, and the inner jewel will come out in its pristine glory with its finest rays.
Gaur Haribol! Gaur Haribol! Gaur Haribol! Gaur Haribol! Nitai Gaur Haribol!