Dec 21, 2013 CANADA (SUN) A serial presentation of the life and pastimes of our illustrious Sampradaya Acaraya.
The Grains of the Materialist
Once, a lawyer named Bhattacarya came to visit Srila Gaurakisora in Kuliya, Navadvipa. He was living nearby and was renting a room from a certain caste gosvami on a monthly basis which included his meals. When the gentleman approached, Srila Gaurakisora asked him, "What arrangement have you made for your meals?" The lawyer replied, "I have arranged to take my meals in the house of a certain gosvami who is a Vaisnava brahmana."
Srila Gaurakisora then instructed, "Kindly give up eating cooked rice from his hand. Cook for yourself and accept that. Those so-called Vaisnavas from whom you are accepting your meals are fish-eaters, and they maintain their 'service' to Lord Caitanya by various deceptive ways. Their activities are the most offensive because of being in knowledge of what they are doing. Such rascal persons who do not fear committing offenses to the Supreme Lord should never be spoken to, for by speaking with them, one's devotional service will be destroyed."
Some time later, the lawyer brought several sweets he had offered to Lord Caitanya, and he prayed to Srila Gaurakisora to please accept his offering. Srila Gaurakisora then told him, "I never take sweets." The lawyer replied, "But there is nothing higher than accepting prasadam offered to the Lord." Immediately, Babaji Maharaja said, "Lord Caitanya does not accept foodstuffs from the hands of deceitful fish-eaters or others who make devotional offerings in name only. Such foodstuffs can never be considered the Lord's remnants. Whoever has no attachment for real saintly Vaisnavas can never distinguish between a devotee and a non-devotee. When such a person, who lacks the ability to properly discriminate, brings foodstuffs before Lord Caitanya, they are not accepted.
"If someone offers banana flowers because he likes the taste, his offering is not accepted by the Supreme Lord. Offering foodstuffs to the Supreme Lord that have been contaminated by one's lusty desires is considered a great offense. However, if a self-realized soul is offered his favorite preparation, the Lord accepts the offering. Krsna tastes foodstuffs that have been tasted by the lips of His pure devotees. But when you accept the grains of a sinful person, your mind becomes impure. With a repentant heart, one should feel that his worship to the Lord has not fructified, and consider how he can serve the pure devotee of the Lord. Then, when banana peels and the discarded skins of eggplants are boiled without salt and offered with a sincere, anxious heart filled with an attitude of full surrender, such foodstuffs become mahaprasadam. The pure devotees of the Lord accept the nicest foodstuffs. But what will happen to one's devotion if one continues eating nicely and wearing such nice clothes?"
Srila Gaurakisora's Love for Sri Mayapura Dhama
The pure character of Srila Gaurakisora remarkably harmonized everything opposing the real conclusions of pure dedication, bhakti. If one does not faithfully follow in the footsteps of the followers of Srila Gaurakisora, and lead a life of only pure bhajana, then all attempts to understand the inconceivable personality, example, and teachings of Srila Gaurakisora will meet with frustration. Some persons approached him hundreds of times and received no blessings, whereas others experienced his mercy abundantly.
One day, a householder devotee from Mayapura went to Kuliya for the association of Srila Gaurakisora. At that time Srila Gaurakisora was inside his grass hut. When the householder devotee approached him, Srila Gaurakisora closed and fastened the door. From outside the hut the person prayed to Srila Gaurakisora for the opportunity just to see him. Srila Gaurakisora replied, "If you want to have a glimpse of me, you must give two rupees." A resident who lived nearby collected the money from the visitor and then informed Srila Gaurakisora that he had the two rupees in hand. Babaji Maharaja then opened the door of his hut and said, "Kindly have a look." Remaining some distance from the grass hut, the gentleman offered his obeisances. Srila Gaurakisora allured him closer and took the man's hands within his own and said, "You have just come from Mayapura, the place where my supreme Master, Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu appeared. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has sent you here, so I will speak to Him on your behalf. Sri Caitanya will certainly listen to this wretched beggar. For your part, you should always take shelter of Krsna's holy name by always chanting. Then there will be no further obstruction in your life."
Whenever Srila Gaurakisora would see the residents of Mayapura, he would very affectionately say, "These are the residents of my Lord's sweet home." Srila Babaji Maharaja, who had an extremely independent nature, would often refuse people who tried to donate wealth or other articles. Then again, he would often personally beg in order to render service to the Vaisnavas in Navadvipa. Of course, he never accepted anything for himself, but used everything in the service of the Lord's devotees.
Superficial Symptoms of Ecstasy
Once, in Navadvipa, Srila Gaurakisora was sitting where he performed his bhajana, chanting Hare Krsna very loudly. Other devotees who had also assembled there were chanting with him. Just then, someone came and began to display different emotional symptoms such as crying with their hairs standing on end. Some devotees began to say, "Just see! He has attained the highest mood of devotional ecstasy by chanting the glories of the Lord." Srila Gaurakisora immediately requested the visitor to leave the area.
Several devotees assembled there became disturbed upon seeing this and also left. Srila Gaurakisora then said, "One who has actually attained love of Godhead will never display it to anyone. An advanced soul will always keep any advanced symptoms hidden, just as a chaste wife always keeps her body carefully covered out of natural shyness, and feels embarrassed to show her body."
The Devotee's Disturbing Explanation
Srila Gaurakisora always gave beneficial instructions to all the faithful living entities. One person regularly came to Srila Gaurakisora to hear topics about the Supreme Lord. One day he heard Srila Babaji Maharaja speak in a very harsh manner. This disturbed him at heart so he decided to stop coming. Afterwards this same person suddenly appeared one day and it was obvious he was in mental anguish. Srila Gaurakisora realizing this, asked him, "Leaving the association of the devotees, where topics of the Supreme Lord are discussed, are you living in a solitary place, carrying on your own worship? When one hears the topics of the Supreme Lord in the proper association of the devotees of the Lord, maya, the illusory potency, can no longer cause any hindrances on the path of devotion. But if one performs his bhajana in a solitary place, without proper association, he becomes more entangled by the illusory energy. Consequently, instead of spiritual topics glorifying the Supreme Lord in your heart, materialistic subject matters will rule over and possess you."
The person explained to Srila Gaurakisora, "I thought it was better to live in a solitary place and perform my own private worship rather than become disturbed at heart by hearing another sadhu's sharp words." Srila Gaurakisora replied, "Those devotees who speak sharp words to drive away the witch of the illusory energy are actually the only real devotees and the true friend of the conditioned living entities. The miserable living entity hears the harsh words of his wife and abusive language of his relatives until the end of his life, yet he never desires to leave their association. On the other hand, he absorbs himself in trying to please them by offering his service. But when a devotee of the Lord, who is always desirous of the living entity's ultimate welfare, speaks just one instruction to drive away the illusory energy, maya, that same conditioned soul immediately makes plans to abandon the devotee's company for the rest of his life. If you want to perform proper bhajana, then you must accept the harsh language of the devotees as the curing medicine by which maya can be abandoned. Then you can become advanced enough to purely chant the Holy Name."
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