The Biography of HDG Srila Gaurakisora Dasa Babaji Maharaja, Part 6
BY: SUN STAFF
Sri Srimad Paramahamsa 108 Srila Gaurakisora Dasa Babaji
Gobind Deo Temple, Vrindavan
Painting by Sita Ram, c. 1815
Jun 06, CANADA (SUN) A serial presentation of the life and pastimes of our illustrious Sampradaya Acaraya.
Different Forms of Maya
Once during the rainy season, Srila Gaurakisora left the grass hut he was residing in and moved to a nearby lodging house. He began to reside on the outer veranda there. One day when prasadam was being served to Srila Gaurakisora a poisonous snake slid up the veranda near the plate, touched it and slithered away. Seeing the snake, an old widowed woman nearby came running and yelled, "A snake has bitten Babaji Maharaja!" Srila Gaurakisora, who was blind, beat his hand upon the ground and asked, "Where is the snake? Where is the snake?" By that time the snake had gone.
The woman exclaimed, "Babaji Maharaja, have you gone mad? That snake could have bitten your hand. He passed just next to your hand. If you had moved your hand just a little more to the right the snake would have bitten you. We are not going to let you remain here on this veranda anymore." Babaji Maharaja told her, "Please don't stand there any longer. You are inconveniencing yourself by standing so long." The old woman refused to go, saying, "As long as you do not go to a room, I will remain here."
Srila Gaurakisora said, "First I am going to honor prasadam and go to my room later. Still, the old woman persisted, "That prasadam you are about to take might have been touched by the lips of the snake. You cannot accept it because if it is poisonous, you will die. Wait, I will bring you some more offered foodstuffs right now." Then Srila Gaurakisora remarked, "I never accept foodstuffs that have been offered to the Deity in the temple but only prasadam that has been obtained through begging." Turning to a nearby servant, the old woman instructed, "Please go and arrange more rice for Babaji Maharaja." Srila Gaurakisora then told her, "My dear mother, if you do not leave here now, I will not listen to anything else you say." Feeling obliged, the woman left. After some time, Srila Gaurakisora asked a nearby servant, "Has she left yet?" When he knew that she had left, he told the servant, "Did you see the illusory energy, maya acting? Just see how the illusory energy tries to gradually enter, using her different deceptive ways. Accepting different forms she knows many different ways to trick the living entity. She never lets the living entity serve the Supreme Lord. Look at how maya is speaking: "Go to your room, that snake will bite you, don't take that prasadam or you will die." If I would have died it would have been better. What is the use of my body remaining alive if I cannot worship Lord Krsna?" Then Srila Gaurakisora began to sing the following song:
gora panhu na bhajiya mainu
prema ratana dhana helaya harainu
adhane yatana kari' dhana teyaginu
apana karama dose apani dubinu
sat-sanga chadi' kainu asate vilasa
te-karane lagila ye karmabandha-phanasa
visama visaya-visa satata khainu
gaura kirtana rase magana na hainu
kena va achaye prana ki sukha lagiya
narottamera dasa kena na gela mariya
"Not having worshipped the lotus feet of Lord Gauranga, I have met only death. I have lost the jewel of love of Godhead due to my own negligence. I have only given attention to useless things, abandoning the real treasure. I have sunk within this material world by the reactions of my own karma. Having left real devotional association, I am performing materialistic activities. For that reason I have become bound by the rope of my past fruitive activities. I have simply eaten the terrible poison of material sense gratification over and over again, and not become absorbed in the nectar of the glorification of Lord Gauranga. Why do I remain alive? What is this so-called happiness? Why haven't I, Narottama dasa, given up my life?"
Srila Gaurakisora and the Supersoul
One night, at about ten o'clock, Srila Gaurakisora suddenly woke up, shouting, "Did you see that? Did you see that? A professional Srimad Bhagavatam reciter just went to the district of Pavana and spoiled the chastity of a widow who lives there! This is abominable! These rascals are performing so many scandalous activities in the name of religion." Srila Gaurakisora spoke as if he were directly witnessing the lecturer's mischievous activities. Srila Babaji Maharaja continued, "Caitanya Mahaprabhu reveals many things to me. There is one so-called scholar who often comes here and travels to other places establishing himself as being very learned. In the name of giving Srimad-Bhagavatam class, he simply collects money to support himself. The ordinary people do not know his real devious nature. He always keeps a widow with him and whenever anyone asks him if she is his wife, he says yes. The money he earns by 'preaching' the Srimad-Bhagavatam is used to purchase bracelets, oils, and so forth for her. Is there any greater offender and hypocrity than him?"
One day Srila Gaurakisora wrapped his feet and body with a cloth. Covered by the shawl he said, "Many persons, having been informed by others, come here to collect the dust from my feet. I tell them, 'I am not a Vaisnava. But if you go to a place where there are Vaisnavas who openly extend their feet to everyone, and are ready to give their foot dust and water used to bathe their feet, caranamrta, then won't you get more foot dust?
At that time, a person named Bhattacarya came from Vrndavana with his friend to see Srila Gaurakisora. Approaching Babaji Maharaja, he said, "You are my spiritual master. Please be merciful unto me." Srila Gaurakisora told him, "I have no rasagullas, sandesha, luci, puris, money, sweet rice, or sweet words. So how can I bless you? Those spiritual masters who can nicely feed their disciples lucis, sandesa and pretentiously praise them by telling them they are advanced devotees are fit to become gurus and benedict their disciples.
Present-day learned persons define the word anukulya (favorable) as receiving wealth, a beautiful wife, and complimentary words." Bhattacarya then remarked, "Our minds are filled with different misconceptions. Whatever you instruct, we will follow." Srila Gaurakisora replied, "I can see what is most favorable for your devotional worship. You should eat chipped rice soaken in water and live in a straw hut. You should eat food that even a dog would not accept. You should wear clothes that even a thief would hate to wear. You must remain in the association of devotees and always chant the holy name of the Lord. However if you become a monkey like renunciate then your devotional service will be spoiled. Monkeys sometimes sit in one place and remain quiet. But as soon as they get a chance they steal something from someone else. As long as one acts like a monkey, his devotional service will never become resolute."
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