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Name Artha-vada Aparadha
To Consider the Glories of Chanting Hare Krishna To Be Imagination and To Give Some Interpretation on the Holy Name of the Lord
tathartha-vado hari-namni kalpanam
"To consider the glories of chanting Hare Krishna to be imagination and to give some interpretation on the holy name of the Lord."*
1. Glory to Shri Shri Gaura-Gadadhara! Glory to Shri Shri Radha-Madhava! Glory to the places of Lord Chaitanya's pastimes! Glory to the Yamuna! Glory to the Vaishnavas!
2. Haridasa said, "O Lord, O son of Shaci, now I will describe the fifth offense: to consider the glories of chanting Hare Krishna to be imagination and to give some interpretation on the holy name of the Lord.* (1)
The Glory of the Holy Name
3. "The Vedic scriptures say: `Kind Lord Krishna gives His mercy to anyone who with faith, or even with contempt, chants the holy name.'
4. "No knowledge is pure like the holy name. Now vow is powerful like the holy name.
5. "No meditation in the world is like the holy name. No philosophy brings a result like the holy name.
6. "No renunciation is greater than the holy name. Nothing will ever be equal to the holy name.
7. "No piety in this world is like the holy name. In my thoughts I do not see any goal greater than the holy name.
8. "The holy name is the highest liberation. The holy name is the highest destination. The holy name is the greatest peace. The holy name is the highest abode.
9. "The holy name is the greatest devotional service. The holy name is the most faithful heart. The holy name is the highest love. The holy name is the greatest meditation.
10. "The holy name is the supreme creator. The holy name is the master of all. The holy name is the highest object of worship. The holy name is the Supreme Personality of Godhead now come in the form of a teacher.
The Best Holy Name is the Name of Lord Krishna
11. "One thousand holy names of Lord Vishnu equal one holy name of Lord Rama, and three holy names of Lord Rama equal one holy name of Lord Krishna.
Persons Who Consider the Glories of the Holy Name imagination Will Certainly Go to Hell
12. "The Vedic scriptures eternally sing the glories of the holy name. They teach the world about the spiritual nature of the holy name.
13. "Persons who think the Shruti and Smriti scriptures' description of the benefits obtained by chanting the holy name are imaginary and untrue are great offenders.
14. "They who think the glories of the holy name are imagination are the lowest of sinners. Burning and burning in hell, they suffer greatly.
15-16. "Anyone who interprets the scriptures' meaning by saying, `The scriptures' descriptions of the benefits obtained by chanting the holy name are not really true. They are only given to attract people to the holy name', is the lowest of men. He does not know what is auspicious and what is not auspicious for the individual souls. The truth is the opposite of what he thinks. (2)
The Benefits Given by the Holy Name Are True. There Is No Need to Exaggerate Them
17. "The rascal cheating (3) of offering material blessings as a lure lives in the karma-kanda part of the Vedas. That rascaldom has no place in the descriptions of holy name or devotional service.
18. "I know that the material benefits described in the karma-kanda are meant to attract the people. I also know that benefits brought by devotional service are eternal and real.
19. "The glories of the holy name have no end. In describing the holy name's glories the scriptures do not offer the lure of material blessings.
One Should Not Renounce the Idea that the Benefits Given by Karma Are Exaggerations
20. "A person who has faith in the benefits brought by chanting the holy name engages in devotional service to Lord Krishna. He renounces the desire to attain material blessings.
21. "The performer of ordinary Vedic rituals attains material benefits in the end. Therefore he is actually cheated.
22. "The Vedas and Smriti-shastras have described limitless good results obtained by chanting the holy name. These results are not devoid of benefits (4) for the individual souls.
23. "Karma brings good and bad material results. The performer of karmic rituals thus requests results that are material.
24-25. "A person who throws far away the results of karma, who continues to act, whose heart is pure, and who takes pleasure in spiritual life (5) gradually becomes powerful.
The Holy Name is Spiritual. Descriptions of Its Glories Are Not Exaggerations
26. "A person who takes pleasure in spiritual life strives for and attains the holy name.
27. "The final result of a saintly persons efforts is the attainment of the nectar of the holy name.
28. "Wandering and wandering in the fourteen worlds, even a brahmana will not attain this result, will not taste the nectar of the holy name.
29. "The holy name is the highest of all attainments. How can karmis or jnanis forcibly grasp the holy name?
By Namabhasa (the Dim LIght of the Holy Name) One Attains All the Benefits Attained by Karma (Pious Deeds) and by Knowledge of Brahman
30. "By namabhasa one attains all the results of karma. By namabhasa one meets all the results attained by jnana.
31. "By namabhasa one attains a greater result. The holy name has the power to give a result greater than what karma and jnana can give. (6)
32. "Therefore the scriptures sing the glories of the benefits given by the holy name. They who purely take shelter of the holy name attain these benefits without doubt.
Persons Who Doubt the Benefits Attained From the Holy Name Do Not Attain Auspiciousness
33. "They who doubt the holy name's glories are the lowest of men. By that offense to the holy name they fall down. That is certain.
34. "In the Vedas, Ramayana, Mahabharata, and Puranas, in the beginning, middle, and end, the holy name is everywhere described.
35. "The words of the Shruti-shastra, words that have no beginning in time, describe the benefits attained from the holy name. How can those benefits be exagerrations or imaginations?
The Holy Name's Power Is Limitlessly Greater than that of Karma or Jnana
36. "The holy name and the person to whom the holy name refers are one. O Lord, You have placed all Your powers in Your holy name and You have placed devotional service to Your holy name above all other activities.
37. "O Lord, You are supremely independent. You are the master of all potencies. By Your wish the rules of spiritual life are founded.
38. "You have placed material results in karma, and You have placed Your nirvana-shakti (potency of impersonal liberation) in jnana. Supremely independent, You have done this.
39. "O Lord whose every desire is at once fulfilled, You have placed all Your potencies in Your holy name. What more may be placed in Your holy name? (7)
40. "Therefore Your holy name possesses all powers. Therefore a wise person will not say that the glories of Your holy name are imagination.
The Remedy for This Offense
41. "If one commits the offense of thinking the glories of the holy name imagination one should, placing a blade of grass between his teeth, enter an assembly of Vaishnavas. (8)
42. "Staying at the Vaishnavas' feet, one should explain his offense. With a sincere heart and with plaintive words one should beg forgiveness.
43. "Then the devotees, who well know the glories of the holy name, will forgive the offender and mercifully embrace him.
44. "Therefore one should never commit the offense of thinking the glories of the holy name imagination or of giving an imaginary interpretation of the holy name. That offense is Maya's trick. (9)
45. "If one somehow converses with a person who thinks the holy name's glories are imagination one should at once jump in the Ganga with all his clothes." (10)
46. A person who has faith in the mercy of Lord Krishna's dear devotees decorates himself with the cintamani jewels of the holy name, jewels that have taken the form of this book, Hari-nama-cintamani.
Chapter Eight Footnotes by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura
(1) To think that the glories of the holy name are imagination is an idea opposed to all the scriptures. “The glories of the holy name that are written in the scriptures are not real. They are exaggerations given to attract people to the holy name." A person who speaks words like these commits the opffense of thinking the glories of the holy name imagination. The glories of karma and jnana written in the karma-kanda and jnana-kanda parts of the Vedas are all exaggerations given to attract people to karma and jnana. But the glories of the holy name are not like that. To think the glories of the holy name are imagination is an offense.
(2) A person who has not performed the pious deeds of devotional service will not have faith in devotional service. Therefore attraction to the chanting of the holy name, chanting that is the best of all activities of devotional service, will not take birth in a person who has not performed these pious deeds. Such a person will not believe the descriptions of the limitless benefits brought by chanting the holy name. A person who is attached to only one part of the scriptures has no power to understand the scriptures as a whole.
(3) Here the word "kaitava" means “dhurtata" (rascal cheating).
(4) "Benefits" here means "activities by which the individual souls may become elevated".
(5) "Taking pleasure in spiritual life" means “taking pleasure in spiritual life and being disinterested in material life."
(6) By namabhasa one attains a result better than the results attained by karma and jnana. By namabhasa one attains the direct perception of the holy name. That result is much better than anything brought by karma or jnana. Who can doubt it?
(7) "O Lord, you are the independent Supreme Personality of Godhead whose every desire is at once fulfilled. You have placed all Your potencies in Your holy name. How can anyone argue with Your decision?
(8) "Assembly of Vaishnavas" means "an assembly of Vaishnavas who discuss topics about Lord Krishna".
(9) Persons who have no faith in the holy name commit the offense of thinking the glories of the holy name imagination. They are cheated and tricked by Maya.
(10) It is not right to even look at the face of a person who thinks the holy name's glories are imagination. If one somehow converses with such a person one should, still wearing his clothing, bathe in the Ganga. That is the right thing to do. If the Ganga is not nearby one should, still wearing his clothing, bathe in other pure water. If that is not possible one should meditate on bathing. In this way one will become purified.