Date: March 8th, 2011
Topic: Dhruva Maharaja Goes Back to Godhead
Speaker: HH Danavir Goswami
sa ca svarlokam aroksyan sunitim jananim dhruvah anvasmarad agam hitva dinam yasye tri-vistapam
TRANSLATION: Dhruva was seated in the transcendental airplane, which was just about to start, when he remembered his poor mother, Suniti. He thought to himself, “How shall I go alone to the Vaikuntha planet and leave behind my poor mother?”
PURPORT: Dhruva had a feeling of obligation to his mother, Suniti. It was Suniti who had given him the clue which had now enabled him to be personally carried to the Vaikuntha planet by the associates of Lord Visnu. He now remembered her and wanted to take her with him. Actually, Dhruva Maharaja’s mother, Suniti, was his patha-pradarsaka-guru. Patha-pradarsaka-guru means “the guru, or the spiritual master, who shows the way.” Such a guru is sometimes called siksa-guru. Although Narada Muni was his diksa-guru
(initiating spiritual master), Suniti, his mother, was the first who gave him instruction on how to achieve the favor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
It is the duty of the siksa-guru or diksa-guru to instruct the disciple in the right way, and it depends on the disciple to execute the process. According to sastric injunctions, there is no difference between siksa-guru and diksa-guru, and generally the siksa-guru later on becomes the diksa-guru. Suniti, however, being a woman, and specifically his mother, could not become Dhruva Maharaja’s diksa-guru. Still, he was not less obliged to Suniti. There was no question of carrying Narada Muni to Vaikunthaloka, but Dhruva Maharaja thought of his mother.
Whatever plan the Supreme Personality of Godhead contemplates immediately fructifies. Similarly, a devotee who is completely dependent on the Supreme Lord can also fulfill his wishes by the grace of the Lord. The Lord fulfills His wishes independently, but a devotee fulfills his wishes simply by being dependent on the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore as soon as Dhruva Maharaja thought of his poor mother, he was assured by the associates of Visnu that Suniti was also going to Vaikunthaloka, in another plane. Dhruva Maharaja had thought that he was going alone to Vaikunthaloka, leaving behind his mother, which was not very auspicious because people would criticize him for going alone to Vaikunthaloka and not carrying with him Suniti, who had given him so much. But Dhruva also considered that he was not personally the Supreme. Therefore, if Krishna fulfilled his desires, only then would it be possible. Krishna could immediately understand his mind, and He told Dhruva that his mother was also going with him. This incident proves that a pure devotee like Dhruva Maharaja can fulfill all his desires; by the grace of the Lord, he becomes exactly like the Lord, and thus whenever he thinks of anything, his wish is immediately fulfilled. [End of Srila Prabhupada’s purport to SB 4.12.32]
HH Danavir Goswami: There are many nice points here. We can appreciate Suniti’s vision. When he asked her she did not say, “Go get an MBA and then you will be able to have a lot of wealth.” She said, “Go to Krishna.” We understand,
akamah sarva-kamo va, moksa-kama udara-dhih tivrena bhakti-yogena, yajeta purusam param [SB 2.3.10]
Whether one has no material desires or has all material desires or desires liberation he should go to Krishna. Tivrena bhakti-yogena – he should engage in very strong devotional service. Devotional service means to Krishna, not to the demigods or anyone else. He should perform very strong devotional service and he will gain his desire. Krishna can give everything. He can give wealth and He does give wealth, material wealth to those He likes because they come to Him asking for wealth, He gives it to them.
ye yatha mam prapadyante, tams tathaiva bhajamy aham [Bg 4.11]
He rewards them accordingly. Those who want to merge into His existence or to the Brahmajyoti or to some other impersonal or voidistic goal He can give that and He does give that. But to those who are very dear to the Lord He gives devotional service and by that devotional service,
bhaktya mam abhijanati, yavan yas casmi tattvatah [Bg 18.55]
He gives Himself. He is purchased by devotional service. So Dhruva had a material desire but still his mother thought, “I am not going to send him to some material place to get wealth. I’ll send him to Krishna. Krishna can fulfill his desires.”
In the Caitanya-caritamrta it is stated by Krishna that, “When someone who worships Me for some material thing I can give it but being intelligent why should I give him something that is not good for him?” So Krishna may give him that material thing that he wanted in such a wonderful way that he loses his desire for it. Then because he came in contact with Krishna now he only wants Krishna. That is exactly what happened to Dhruva Maharaja
kacam vicinvann api divya-ratnam, svamin krtartho ‘smi varam na yace [Madhya 22.42]
Dhruva Maharaja (I guess I don’t want to spoil the story) has already seen the Lord (so it is not spoiling) He said when the Lord asked him during his bhajan for devotion under Narada Muni’s instruction – meditation, chanting om namo bhagavate vasudevaya for six months and then Lord Visnu-garbha came before him and asked him, “What do you want My boy? I am very pleased with you.” And Dhruva Maharaja said, “I was searching for pieces of broken glass but now I have found the most valuable jewel. I don’t have any more desires to be fulfilled. I am simply satisfied seeing You.”
So he became purified by association with Narada Muni. Narada Muni is his diksa guru. He initiated him in the chanting of the mantra.
sampradaya-vihina ye, mantras te nisphala matah [Padma Purana]
Unless one receives initiation in the sampradaya the mantra that he is chanting will not have any fruit. It won’t bear fruit.
We are also in the line of Narada Muni and we are also chanting the mantra. We are chanting om namo bhagavate vasudevaya and we are also chanting: Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. This mantra was also recommended in the Vedas. It is recommended by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Narada Muni brought the chanting of the maha mantra to earth so it is bona fide and we are initiated through the sampradaya of Narada Muni and Dhruva Maharaja and our goal is to go back to Godhead.
Why back to Godhead? Because the Lord wants us to come back to Godhead. We have been away far too long. How long have we been in the material world? Since time immemorial! How long have we been neglecting the Lord’s instructions? How long have we been committing so many abominable actions, eating abominable things in different species? The Lord wants us to come back to His lotus feet because after all He is the Supreme father and the Supreme Lord, the Supreme Master. Whatever one’s relationship is, whatever rasa one has with the Lord He is the ultimate shelter of that relationship, So He wants us to come back.
We should also want to come back because it is His desire and the duty of the servant is to fulfill the desire of the Lord or the master. The master wants us to come back to Godhead. Prabhupada made his magazine, which is meant to be the backbone of the Krishna consciousness movement, ‘Back to Godhead Magazine.’ Because that is what this movement is meant for, sending people back to Godhead. Whether we are acting as siksa gurus or diksa gurus it is the same thing – instructions.
yare dekha, tare kaha ‘krsna’-upadesa, amara ajnaya guru hana tara’ ei desa [Madhya 7.128]
Wherever we go, whoever we meet we should become guru. And what does it mean to become guru. In this age it means to teach them the process for going back to Godhead.
harer nama harer nama, harer namaiva kevalam kalau nasty eva nasty eva, nasty eva gatir anyatha [Adi 17.21]
In this age there is no other process, there is no other way to go back to Godhead – no other way, no other way, no other way. That means not by karma, not by jnana or not by yoga but by chanting Hare Krishna. That is the process for going back to Godhead in kali-yuga. kalau tad dhari-kirtanat [SB
12.3.52] Whomever we meet we should be kind to them. We should become their patha-pradarsaka-guru, show them the path, show them the way, chant Hare Krishna. That is the path. That is the way in this age. Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu is Krishna Himself.
sri krsna caitanya radha krsna nahe anya
Krishna has appeared as a devotee in kali-yuga to teach the yuga dharma that means the process of self-realization for the age and He showed us so dynamically that the process is chanting hare Krishna. So if the Supreme Personality of Godhead personally comes, not just the Supreme Personality of Godhead but the original Supreme Personality of Godhead, svayam bhagavan, the source of all incarnations, avatari. He has come and teaching this process. He only comes once in a day of Brahma. So,
sahasra-yuga-paryantam, ahar yad brahmano viduh [Bg 8.17]
Sahasra-yuga means a thousand ages make up Brahma’s one day and similarly his night. So two thousand ages 8 600 000 years, something like that. Lord Caitanya comes every 8 600 000 years. It is a very rare appearance. He has appeared only five hundred years ago in this place. How fortunate are we to be here. He made it very clear, He never instructed people to practice other processes. He never instructed people to practice karma or jnana or yoga. He instructed people to chant Hare Krishna because everything is there.
ceto-darpana-marjanam bhava-maha-davagni-nirvapanam sreyah-kairava-candrika-vitaranam vidya-vadhu-jivanam anandambudhi-vardhanam prati-padam purnamrtasvadanam sarvatma-snapanam param vijayate sri-krsna-sankirtanam [Siksastakam 1/ Antya 20.12]
Everything is there. Knowledge is there. Purification is there. Bliss is there. What more do you want? So it is all there in the chanting. The chanting gives knowledge. The chanting gives Krishna. The chanting of the holy names of the Lord is non-different than the Lord.
nama cintamanih krsnas, caitanya-rasa-vigrahah purnah suddho nitya-mukto, ‘bhinnatvan nama-naminoh [Madhya 17.133]
Krishna is present in kali-yuga in the form of His holy name.
kali-kale nama-rupe krsna-avatara [Adi 17.22]
Everything is complete by chanting Hare Krishna. When Narada Muni instructed Dhruva that was a different age. In this age people are,
mandah sumanda-matayo, manda-bhagya hy upadrutah [SB 1.1.10]
Very slow, not interested, lazy, not interested in self-realization and if they are interested a little bit they will find some cheater to take away all their money and mislead them. That is how unfortunate we are in this age but although this age is an ocean of faults,
kaler dosa-nidhe rajann, asti hy eko mahan gunah kirtanad eva krsnasya, mukta-sangah param vrajet [SB 12.3.51]
But there is one good quality and that is the chanting of the name of Krishna by which one can reach all good perfection. What is the perfection? You can board a Vaikuntha airplane to go back to home back to Godhead. In this case Dhruva Maharaja was the son. He was strong, very powerful and he achieved perfection. By his perfection his good mother also got perfection. Prabhupada said although we have a hard time accepting it at face value but at least we can repeat it that he was hoping that he would also have at least one very good disciple who would be able to go back to Godhead and take him also along – as if he were not qualified.
So every spiritual master should think like that, that, “I pray that I can inspire someone to become a pure devotee of Krishna and become qualified to go back to Godhead and then they will also take me back to Godhead simply by their desire as Dhruva Maharaja desired, ‘O my poor mother! How can I go alone?'” Krishna understood. The indication was given to the Visnuduttas and they said, “Yes she has also come in a separate airplane.”
This is what we are supposed to be shooting for in this life. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura said that that we should not come back here again, take birth here again because it is a very terrible place. Very dangerous! Maya can strike at any moment and we can fall down. If we are lucky enough not to have fallen we shouldn’t become too confident or over confident because it is very easy to fall down at any moment.
Therefore we should genuinely desire to go back to Godhead to get out of this material world. Krishna promises that, “Having once come to that abode of Mine you will not return here again.” Therefore we accept that. We don’t have to speculate that, “Maybe I will fall down again or whatever.” Krishna promises in Bhagavad-gita and we accept that. Therefore our mind can be put to rest. No need to be in anxiety. Krishna promises that if we attain that place by His grace. By His word we will not fall down again into this material world and we will be able to live eternally in the association of the Lord, in bliss and knowledge.
This is the real spirit of preaching isn’t it? That I am going back to Godhead but I don’t want to go alone. This was also the mood of Prahlad Maharaja,
soce tato vimukha-cetasa indriyartha-maya-sukhaya bharam udvahato vimudhan [SB 7.9.43]
Soce, means I am lamenting. He was assured of going back to Godhead but he was also thinking what about all these vimuddhas, all these foolish rascals who are making big, big plans to make a permanent settlement here in this material world or they are making big, big plans to make the material world a better place for their children or grandchildren who are also fools. We are making a big, big plan to stop the global warming, all kind of arrangements we are going to make a wonderful place here for our grandchildren. Why waste your time with that? That is a waste of time. Why not make an arrangement so that your grandchildren will come back to Godhead in this lifetime?
The word used her is jananim. Jananim means mother.
gurur na sa syat sva-jano na sa syat, pita na sa syaj janani na sa syat [SB
One should not become a guru or a father or a mother,
na mocayed yah samupeta-mrtyum [SB 5.5.18]
Unless he can deliver his ward from the cycle of birth and death, unless he can deliver his dependants. So if you want to become a mother then you have to be able to deliver them back to Godhead. If you want to become a guru or a worshipable demigod, this is the responsibility of being a leader or being practically any kind of guide or mentor. You have to take them back to Godhead. And if we do that then our going back to Godhead is guaranteed.
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarsavati Thakura also prayed, “If I could have one pure devotee I would consider all my efforts to be successful.” Of course one pure devotee is compared to a moon. The moon can destroy all the darkness. The moon can give more light that thousand and millions of stars – one pure devotee! And how will we get such pure devotees? We have to give them the opportunity; we have to transmit the same message as we have heard without any adulteration. That means without adding anything or subtracting anything. Subtracting is also adulteration.
If you take milk and you take out the essential product of milk and you just have some white substance left, it is not milk. It is an adulteration. And if you add something,
avaisnava-mukhodgirnam, putam hari-kathamrtam sravanam naiva kartavyam, sarpocchistam yatha payah [Padma Puraëa]
If you add something that is not pure to the milk that is also adulteration. So our duty as disciples is that we should receive a message as it is, hearing from a spiritual master with full faith. On my initiation letter I received from Srila Prabhupada he said, he wrote, that one who has implicit faith in both Guru and Krishna, to such a person all the imports of the Vedic knowledge are automatically revealed.
So implicit faith in Guru and Krishna all the transcendental knowledge is revealed and this transcendental knowledge, it is our duty to present it as we have heard it without changing it just like a postman brings the letter to the recipient. He doesn’t make any changes. He doesn’t consider what is politically correct or politically incorrect because if that were the case then it would certainly be politically incorrect for Srila Prabhupada to preach that one should give up intoxication, illicit sex, meat eating and gambling in America. Nobody was preaching that. That wasn’t correct. That was completely incorrect. He was preaching to people, we have some of them here, they were taking LSD and engaging in other illicit activities but Prabhupada preached, “You should give all these things up and simply surrender to Krishna.” Completely opposite! It was opposite government, the government’s policy was opposite but because he was initiated in the sampradaya, he was initiated in the Brahma Gaudiya Sampradaya, it was his duty to present the message whether the people accepted it or not. That was not up to him.
nacao nacao prabhu nacao [Written by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada at Boston Harbor, September 18, 1965]
“I am Your puppet so if you have brought me here to dance then make me dance. I will present the message and if they take it by Your grace then that will be very nice.” [Written by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada at Boston Harbor, September 18, 1965]
So that is the message. We have a big message. The ultimate message is surrender to Krishna, chant Hare Krishna but we have so many other things to teach also. We have the whole Srimad-Bhagavatam, all the Puranas, Mahabharata, Upanisads, so much knowledge to teach to convince people to chant Hare Krishna. All the Vedic literatures, just like this Temple of Vedic Planetarium – why, why so much effort to teach about planets? Because if they learn about the planets and they learn about cosmology then that will break their faith in the mundane nonsense atheistic scientific theories; big bang.
Modern science is teaching that everything comes from a void. What is a void? What is the scientific definition of a void? It doesn’t exist. At least there is space. Space is something. So there is no void scientifically. It is not proven that there is any void but science says that everything came out of a void and then the big universe popped out of the void. So if it is a void and there is nothing there how can universes pop out of it? It means something was there. Another contradiction!
Then after the universe came out of the void it exploded and everything became very orderly like we have today – the sun, moon – everything in orbit. This is modern science cosmology. And it all happened accidentally as well. No one in control! So this is atheistic demoniac theory and it is all wrong and there is no science to it. Therefore it has to be defeated and Prabhupada’s genius to defeat it was Vedic cosmology presented as it is. And if you present people will take notice. So I think we will stop there. Thank you for your kind attention. We have a few minutes if there are any questions.
Prabhu: Hare Krishna. Thank you Maharaja. Maharaja you quoted twice the statements, once of Srila Prabhupada and once of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura that if we take one person back to Godhead then we can also like they were telling for themselves in humility. . we are giving out Krishna consciousness to others as service. So we have quality and quantity. We have responsibility to preach to many people and still few people and bring quality.(?) So how do we balance between both of this two?
HH Danavir Goswami: When you first started your question I immediately thought yes we should become like mad men going out, “Here please take this. Take this Hare Krishna.” Take this Krishna consciousness to as many people as possible because one of them may become a pure devotee and then my path back to Godhead is guaranteed. Right? That is true. But then as you said we also have to train them up how to go back to Godhead.
I will tell you a story that was told by one of our god brothers who was preaching in India in the very beginning before there were any Iskcon temples when they were staying in other Gaudiya Math temples. So the devotee was speaking to Srila Prabhupada and he said that, “I have seen that in some of the temples we stay at that there are many. Many followers but the standard is not so high. And in other temples not so many devotees but the standard is high.’ He said, “But Prabhupada I noticed that in your preaching you have many, many devotees and also the standard is very high.” Prabhupada said, “Now you have understood.”
So that is the greatness of Srila Prabhupada that he is simultaneously presenting Krishna consciousness all over the world,
prthivite ache yata nagaradi-grama, sarvatra pracara haibe mora nama [Caitanya-bhagavata (Antya 4.126)]
Every town and village! He is sending devotee out to every town and village everywhere but at the same time he has a very strict standard of training. He said our temples are not for lazies and crazies. Our temples are for very serious people who want to follow and who want to go back to Godhead and are willing to follow. I know because I was given that service for training up new devotees and some if they were not capable of following or willing to follow then we had to ask them to leave. That is what Prabhupada wanted but at the same time he wanted to bring everyone into the temple.
So how do you reconcile? Reconciliation is everyone should be invited but the condition is, “Are you willing to follow the Vedic principles, follow Srila Prabhupada’s instructions?” Then everyone is welcome. We don’t discriminate on the basis of birth or caste or creed or gender or whatever they have done. It is not that, “Well, you are to sinful.” That may even be a qualification because if one thinks, “I am most sinful. My claim is first.” No restriction but the restriction is you have to follow. So I think we will stop there. Thank you very much. Srimad Bhagavatam Ki! Jai. [Applause] [To receive Mayapurlive lectures by email, write to firstname.lastname@example.org]