Śrīla Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj describes the glory of the Lord’s eternal servants.
Every day for our benefit we must sing some particular songs. First humility is necessary for us, and humility will come to us through songs like Gurudev! Kṛpā bindu diyā kara ei dāse and Ohe Vaiṣṇava Ṭhākura dayāra sāgara. There is no doubt that our Guru is supreme in our life, but the Vaiṣṇava is also not less than that. The Vaiṣṇava can give us Kṛṣṇa.
kṛṣṇa se tomāra kṛṣṇa dite pāra
tomāra śakati āchhe
[“Kṛṣṇa is yours. You can give Him. You have that power.”]
Generally, we see that the Guru’s position is on an elevated and exclusive level in Indian society, but the character of the Vaiṣṇava is very broad and very merciful. The goswāmīs showed this. Neither Śrīla Rūpa Goswāmī nor Śrīla Sanātan Goswāmī was the Dīkṣā-guru of Raghunāth Dās Goswāmī. His Dīkṣā-guru was Yadu Nandan Āchārya. But in his literature, Raghunāth Dās Gowāmī named Yadu Nandan Āchārya only one or twice and always praised Śrī Rūpa and Śrī Sanātan. They are Vaiṣṇavas. The Śikṣā-guru and the Vaiṣṇava are the same. Sometimes juniority and seniority are effective, but Śrīla Guru Mahārāj gave the example that the football always comes to the foot of someone who can play football, and someone who cannot play well may run up and down the field but not get the ball. Everything depends upon the person. All jīva-souls are independent, and jīva-souls have their own personality. Through that, they proceed. So, everybody’s prescription will not be the same. The disease may be the same, but the prescription will be different for everyone. Like this, many things are considerable. Everything is to be considered.
When a wave comes, then everyone, be they small, big, or medium-sized, are carried by that wave. In the time of Prabhupād Śrīla Saraswatī Ṭhākur, one wave came. In the time of Śrīla Narottam Ṭhākur, another wave came, and in the time of Śrīla Swāmī Mahārāj Prabhupād, another type of wave came.
Listener: Now your wave is coming.
Śrīla Govinda Mahārāj: No no [laughter]. I am only trying to serve them. I have no other duty. Guru Mahārāj took everything from me, and now I am living with the remnants of the Vaiṣṇava, the devotees. That is my life. I am trying as possible by me, and I do not know how many days I have, but if I can spend all my time for the satisfaction of the Vaiṣṇavas and the satisfaction of Guru Mahārāj, then I must be benefitted and also benefit others. Kṛṣṇa consciousness always produces good and nothing bad.
bhūmau skhalita-pādānāṁ bhūmir evāvalambanam
We may fall down, but again we will get up and try to walk ahead. We may fall down again, but we must go on.
kṣurasya dhārā niśitā duratyayā
The path is slippery, and there is always the possibility of falling. We are very tiny jīva-souls; we do not have much power, but we can gain power from others, the Vaiṣṇavas. When kāma, krodha, lobha, mada, moha, and mātsarya attack us, what should we do? What is the advice given by Raghunāth Dās Goswāmī? He said we should loudly call out the names of the Vaiṣṇavas and ask them for help.*
We are always praising the Vaiṣṇavas. We sing,
kabe śrī-chaitanya more karibena dayā
kabe āmi pāiba vaiṣṇava-pada-chhāyā
[“When will Śrī Chaitanya bless me? When will I reach the shade of the feet of the Vaiṣṇavas?”]
Guru always lives on a higher level of honour, but the Vaiṣṇava is the general helper for the conditioned soul. The Vaiṣṇava’s position is very merciful for the conditioned soul. The Vaiṣṇavas also very affectionately try to help each other.
Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur wrote,
apūrva vaiṣṇava-tattva! ātmāra ānanda-
prasravaṇa! nāhi yāra tulanā saṁsāre
sva-dharma baliyā yāra āchhe parichaya
e jagate! e tattvera śuna vivaraṇa
[“Wonderful is the nature of the Vaiṣṇava! It is the wellspring of joy for the soul! It has no comparison within material existence and is known in this world as the dharma of the self. Please hear a description of this nature.”]
This is not actually a song but a poem written in the style known as amṛtākṣar chhanda [blank verse]. It is found in Kalyāṇa-kalpa-taru; it is very nice.
We are so fortunate that we are trying to glorify Guru and Vaiṣṇava today, especially Prabhupād Śrīla Saraswatī Ṭhākur, whose mercy has now been spread all over the world by his dearmost associates. Chaitanya Mahāprabhu gave Kṛṣṇa consciousness, but that was given in a very wide and exclusive way by Śrī Rūpa and Śrī Sanātan. Following that line, Śrīla Saraswatī Ṭhākur spread Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and after that by divine will, Śrīla Swāmī Mahārāj Prabhupād and Śrīla Guru Mahārāj are now present here as only our hope. Through that, we are also so fortunate no doubt.
When we hear once the Name of Kṛṣṇa, that is sufficient for us when it comes to us from a living source.
Śrīmad Bhāgavatam gave us this verse about Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu.
kṛṣṇa-varṇaṁ tviṣākṛṣṇaṁ sāṅgopāṅgāstra-pārṣadam
yajñaiḥ saṅkīrtana-prāyair yajanti hi sumedhasaḥ
(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 11.5.32)
[“The wise worship Śrīman Mahāprabhu, who chants the Name of Kṛṣṇa, has a golden complexion, and is accompanied by His expansions, sub-expansions, weapons, and associates, through the sacrifice primarily of saṅkīrtan.”]
Yajña means sacrifice. The Upaniṣads say Ātmānaṁ viddhi. Nijeke jānte habe. Know yourself. But more than that: sacrifice yourself. That is the meaning of the mantras in the sacrifices. Svāhā means sacrifice. Sva-āhā: the word is divided in this way, and for the meaning we always use nimittārtha chaturthī, meaning, “Kṛṣṇa is the enjoyer, and you are to be enjoyed. Satisfy yourself with this.” This is the meaning of the gāyatrī-mantra and the goal of our life. But when can we do that? When will we offer ourself in that way? Whether we can or not depends upon us as a person.
17 October 1993.
gale baddhvā hanye ’ham iti bakabhid-vartmapa-gaṇe
kuru tvaṁ phutkārān avati sa yathā tvaṁ mana itaḥ
“I am being bound tightly around the neck by the fearsome highwaymen of lust, anger, and so forth with the painful, fearsome ropes of my wicked deeds; I am being killed!” Cry out in this way to the Vaiṣṇavas, the guardians on the path to Kṛṣṇa, the slayer of Baka, so that they save you from these foes, O mind!”