Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur

Reading Assignment

a) From Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur Prabhupada

Question: Can one worship Krishna without being under the guidance of gurudeva?

Guru-Disciple relationship

Summary: The text being quoted from here, Sri Sanat-kumara Samhita, is a very very old scripture. It is worth noting that Srila Prabhupada has given us a most authentic traditional ancient process! While some minor details have been adjusted (in our case, sampradaya-specific modification of details; the Kumara Sampradaya is distinct from the Brahma Sampradaya, although both are vaisnava sampradayas), the very same activities which are recommended herein are what Srila Prabhupada has given to us. A detail is that the process of Panca-samskara is also described in one essay written by Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura. One of the 5 items of samskara is slightly different. BVT explains why: the merciful nature of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. See attached file.

Unfinchingly following the Spiritual Master for the Ultimate good
May 24, 2007

Summary: By the mercy of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur, the message of this very simple story is nicely rendered.

Reading Assignment a) A Wise Old Monkey

Service to Guru leads to service to Krishna
July 18, 2007

Summary: The 3 gunas are sometimes compared to 3 ropes, twisted together to make one very strong rope, a rope that binds the conditioned living being to material existence. BHAGAVAD-GITA Ch 14 describes the effect of the 3 modes, but it also describes how the modes can STOP acting: when one undeviatingly engages in devotional service unto Krishna, avyabhicari-bhakti (BHAGAVAD-GITA 14.26; see below). Srimad-Bhagavatam also addresses this, both in Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.2.19 http://vedabase.net/Srimad-Bhagavatam/1/2/19/en and in the verse Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.15.25 below.

Haridas Thakur's mercy

Summary: The highlight of this section is summarized in the last purport of this reading assignment: the sign of a real spiritual master is that he transforms the hearts of those who take shelter of him. He changes their character. This is a very demanding service. To *not* be prepared and qualified to do so is a disservice.

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati
January 19, 2008

Our stalwart uncompromising "Simha-guru" Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur speaks out on the true qualifications of a guru. As strongly as are Srila Bhaktisiddhanta's directives regarding who is a true guru, the converse is also there: what is the result of guru-avajna, neglecting or ignoring the instructions of the guru (below).

Both are very heavy quotes, but both are sound, with foundation in the scriptures. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur's words very much mirror Rupa Goswami's Upadeshamrta (Nectar of Instruction) Texts 1 and 8. "A sober person who can tolerate the urge to speak, the mind's demands, the actions of anger and the urges of the tongue, belly and genitals is qualified to make disciples all over the world."