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To Blaspheme the Vedic Literature or Literature in Pursuance of the Vedic Version.
"To blaspheme the Vedic literature or literature in pursuance of the Vedic version."*
1.Glory to Lord Chaitanya, to Lord Gadadhara, and to Lord Nityananda! Glory to Advaita, the husband of Sita! Glory to all the devotees of the Lord!
2. Haridasa said, "Lord, now I will describe the fourth offense, to blaspheme the Vedic literature or literature in pursuance of the Vedic version, an offense that stops the nectar of devotional service.
The Vedic Scriptures Are the Only Evidence for the Truth
3. "The Shruti-shastra, Vedas, Upanishads, and Puranas are manifested from Lord Krishna's breathing. In every situation they are the best evidence for the truth.
4. "The Vedic scriptures are especially evidence for the truth of what lies beyond the world of matter.
5. "The material senses cannot perceive what lies beyond the world of matter. Without Lord Krishna's mercy one cannot see or experience that world. (1)
6. "Human knowledge is plagued by four defects: imperfect senses (karanapatava), mistakes (bhrama), the tendency to cheat (vipralipsa), and illusions (pramada).
7. "The four Vedas are free from these defects. Without the Vedas one cannot walk on the path to the highest spiritual goal of life.
8. "Being very merciful to the souls imprisoned by Maya, Lord Krishna took the wisdom of the sages (2) and gave it to the imprisoned souls in the form of the Vedas, Puranas, and other scriptures.
The Ten Root Teachings and Nine Truths of the Vedic Scriptures
9. "I know that the karma-kanda and jnana-kanda parts of the Vedas are worthless like two piles of ashes. Only the Vedas' teaching about pure devotional service is sublimely good, the best of all truths.
10. "The souls in the material world are bewildered by maya. After first purifying them with the processes of karma and jnana and thus making them qualified, Lord Krishna teaches the conditioned souls the truth about pure devotional service (shuddha-bhakti). (3)
11. "The words of the Vedas are the best evidence. This evidence reveals nine truths. The teachings of the Vedas may also be described as sambandha (the relationship between the individual souls and the Supreme Lord), abhidheya (the activities of that relationship, or devotional service), and prayojana (the soul's true need, which is to love the Supreme Lord).
12. "The ten root teachings of the Vedas destroy the souls' ignorance and enlighten them with transcendental knowledge. (4)
1. Lord Krishna Is the One Supreme Truth, 2. He Possesses All Potencies, 3. His Form Is Sweet Like Nectar
13. "The first teaching is that Lord Krishna is the one supreme Truth. His complexion is dark. He is the master of all potencies. His form is sweet like nectar.
14. "He delights the individual souls. He stays eternally in His abode in the spiritual sky.
15. "These three truths about Lord Krishna the Vedic scriptures place in the conditioned souls' hearts.
Jiva-tattva (The Truth Abou the Individual Spirit Souls)
16. "The second teaching concerns the individual spirit souls (jiva). The individual souls are separated potencies (vibhinnamsha) of the Lord. They are infinitesimal spiritual sparks. Their numbers are beyond counting.
5. Eternally Conditioned (Nitya-baddha) and 6. Eternally Liberated (Nitya-mukta) Are the Two Kinds of Individual Spirit Souls
17. "The individual spirit souls are of two kinds: eternally conditioned (nitya-baddha) and eternally liberated (nitya-mukta). These two kinds of souls reside in the material world and the spiritual world respectively.
The Conditioned Souls (Baddha-Jiva)
18. "Turning their faces away from Lord Krishna, the conditioned souls accept maya. In endless material worlds they suffer and enjoy.
The Liberated Souls (Mukta-jiva)
19. "The eternally liberated souls worship Lord Krishna. They are Lord Krishna's associates. They enjoy blissful life in the spiritual world. They possess a great treasure of pure love for Lord Krishna.
20. "The Vedic scriptures, which are Lord Krishna's maidservants, teach these three truths about the individual spirit souls.
7. The Individual Spirit Souls Are Inconceivably Simultaneously One and Different From the Lord (Acintya-bhedabheda)
21. "Whether in the material world or the spiritual world, the individual spirit souls are all simultaneously, inconceivably one and different from the Supreme Lord.
22. "The individual spirit souls and the lifeless and inert material energy, indeed everything that exists, are all Lord Krishna's potencies. This the Vedic sciptures say.
23. "Understanding this truth, the individual spirit soul thinks, `I am Lord Krishna's servant. Lord Krishna is my master eternally. He is glorious like a spiritual sun.'
24. "The Vedas speak the doctrine of shakti-parinama (that the material world is manifest by Lord Krishna's potencies). The doctrine of vivarta (that the Supreme transforms Himself to become the material world) is false, a trick propounded by wicked-minded blasphemers of the Vedas. (5)
In This Seventh Truth the Truth About the Relationship Between the Individual Spirit Souls and the Supreme Lord Is Revealed
25. "In this seventh truth the Vedic scriptures teach about the relationship between the individual spirit souls and the Supreme Lord.
26. "Then the Vedic scriptures teach about abhidheya, the nine kinds of devotional service to Lord Krishna, and they also teach about raga (love for the Lord).
Abhidheya - the Nine Kinds of Activities in Devotional Service
27. "The nine kinds of activities in devotional service are hearing (sravana), chanting (kirtana), remembering (smrti), worshiping the Deity in the temple (pujana), serving (paricarya) carrying out orders (dasya), praying (vandana), serving Krishna as a friend (sakhya), and sacrificing everything for Him (atma-nivedana).
28. "Of these activities of devotional service the activity of chanting the holy name is the best. Therefore the Vedas preached the glories of chanting the sacred syllable om.
Prayojana - Pure Love (Prema) for Lord Krishna
29. "When he takes shelter of pure devotional service, a human being eventually attains, by the power of Lord Krishna's mercy, a great wealth of pure love for Lord Krishna. (6)
To Criticize These Teachings of the Scriptures Is an Offense
30. "The Vedic scriptures teach these nine truths. A spiritual master is learned in these truths of the scriptures.
31. "Anyone who criticizes the Vedic scriptures is an offender to the holy name. He is the lowest of men.
The Philosophies that Oppose the Vedas
32. "Jaimini, pseudo-Kapila, Nagna, Nastika, Sugata, and Gautama are the six famous speculative thinkers.
33. "In discussing philosophy they make no mention of God. Jaimini declares that the karma-kanda part of the Vedas is ther best.
34. "Pseudo-Kapila imagines that the existence of God remains unproved. God's existence, of course is proved, but pseudo-Kapila has no power to understand that proof.
35. "Nagna wrote tantras filled with darkness and ignorance. He preached a philosophy that opposed the Vedas.
36. "Nastika, or the atheist Cravaka, did not accept the Veda's authority. Sugata taught the Buddhist theory that all is one.
37. "Gautama taught the nyaya theory. He would not worship a creator-God. These are the six famous speculative philosophers.
By Following These Speculative Philosophies One Comes to Blaspheme the Vedic Scriptures
38. "All these wicked philosophies criticize the Vedas. Sometimes they do it openly and sometimes covertly, but the wise know their intentions.
39. "The followers of these philosophies are all offenders. Therefore everyone should avoid associating with them. That is certain.
The Mayavadis Accept a Very Wicked Philosophy, a Philosophy That Opposes the Vedas
40. "In addition to these wicked philosophies, the mayavada philosophy also opposes pure devotional service (shuddha-bhakti).
41. "The mayavada philosophy is opposed to the true scriptures. It is hidden Buddhism. It is a perversion of the Veda's teachings. It is widely accepted in the age of Kali.
42. "Assuming the form of a brahmana, Lord Shiva taught this philosophy. On Your order he became the great teacher of it.
43-44. "As Jaimini gave a perverted explanation of the Vedas to the world, so did the original teacher of the mayavadis. Concealing the descriptions of devotional service that are the actual heart of the Vedas' words, he taught a philosophy identical with Buddhism. (7)
45. "All these speculative philosophies reject devotional service and throw it far away. The followers of these philosophies commit an offense to the holy name of Lord Krishna. (8)
The Vedic Scriptures Give the Way to Become Purified
46. "By following the activities described in the Vedas one eventually attains pure devotional service. One attains a great treasure of pure love for Lord Krishna (prema-dhana). (9)
47. "One who does not follow the Vedas throws the eternal truth far away. Because of his offense he is lost.
48. "All the Vedas declare that the sacred syllable Om is a name of Lord Krishna. By chanting Lord Krishna'S name one attains the eternal spiritual abode.
49. "The sacred syllable om, which is the maha-vakya (great statement of the Vedas) is a name of Lord Krishna. A devotee of Lord Krishna eternally enjoys pastimes in that sacred syllable.
50. "To the whole world the Vedas explain the spiritual nature of Lord Krishna's holy name. By this light of the holy name (namabhasa), the followers of the Vedas attain all perfection.
The Vedas Teach the Pure and Transcendental Worship of the Holy Name
51. "Unfortunate people who do not understand the Vedas' teachings criticize the Vedas. In this way they offend the holy name.
52. "Great souls who are attached to the pure chanting of the holy name find, in the shelter offered by the Vedas, the nectar of the holy name and a great treasure of pure love for Lord Krishna.
53. "All the Vedas declare, `Chant the holy name of Lord Krishna. By chanting you will attain spiritual love and bliss that have no end.'
54. "Again they say, `The great liberates souls in the spiritual world always chant the holy name (nama-sankirtana).'
The Tamasa-tantras (Scriptures of Darkness and Ignorance) Oppose the Vedas
55. "In Kali-yuga even famous influential persons reject the nectar of the spiritual Supreme Personality of Godhead Krishna's holy name and instead worship the goddess Maya-shakti.
56. "Following the Tamasa-tantras, they criticize the Vedas. Fond of wine and flesh, the perish because of their sins.
57. "They will not touch even a drop of Lord Krishna's holy name. They do not attain Lord Krishna's abode of Vrindavana.
They Need Maya-devi's Sincere Mercy
58. "The mayavadis are all offenders destined to fall down. Therefore Goddess Maya is not inclined to give them the nectar of the holy name.
59. "However, if she is pleased by their service to a saintly devotee, she may, without tricking them, give them the shade of Lord Krishna's feet.
60. "Goddess Maya is Lord Krishna's maidservant. She punishes the souls who have turned their faces from Lord Krishna. By pretending to worship Goddess Maya, a hypocrite will not attain true auspiciousness in this material world.
61. "However, even mayavadis who chant Lord Krishna's holy name may attain Goddess Maya's sincere mercy and thus become able to cross to the farther shore of the ocean of birth and death. (10)
62. "Therefore, avoiding the offense of blaspheming the Vedic scriptures, day after day I swim in the nectar chanting of Lord Krishna's holy names.
The Remedy for That Offense
63. "If I foolishly blaspheme the Vedic scriptures, the I repent, feel remorse, and again offer obeisances to the Vedic scriptures.
64. "Offering flowers and tulasi, I then regularly worship the Shrimad-Bhagavatam and the Vedas with great care.
65. "Shrimad-Bhagavatam is the best of all Vedic scriptures. It is an incarnation of Lord Krishna Himself. It will certainly bestow on me mercy without limit. (11)
66. He who has faith in the dust of Haridasa's feet places the jewel necklace of Lord Krishna's holy names (Hari-nama-cintamani) around his neck.
Chapter Seven Footnotes by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura
(1) The material senses can perceive only what is made of matter. What is not material the material senses have no power to perceive. Lord Krishna is spiritual. He is beyond matter. Therefore lord Krishna kindly gives the scriptures in order that the conditioned souls will attain auspiciousness. The word "amnaya" here is used in the Vrindavana-sampradaya to mean "the Vedas"
(2) Here the words "the knowledge of the sages" (arsha-jnana) mean "the knowledge the sages attained while rapt in a trace of spiritual meditation (samadhi).
(3) After teaching that karma and jnana give only meager results, the scriptures teach that pure devotional service is the highest attainment.
(4) In the ten root teachings of the Vedas the first teaching is the truth that the Vedas are the only true source of knowledge. The other root teachings are the nine teachings also mentioned here. Those nine teachings are: 1. Lord Krishna is the only Supreme Truth. 2. His form is dark and handsome, and He is the master of all potencies. 3. His dark and handsome form is filled with the sweetest nectar. 4. The numberless individual souls are spiritual atomic particles. They are separated parts and parcels (vibhinnamsha) of Lord Krishna. 5. The individual souls who have turned their faces from Lord Krishna are imprisoned by Maya. 6. The pure devotees are liberated, free from Maya's prison. 7. The individual spirit souls and the inert world of matter manifested by the Lord's inconceivable potencies are eternally one and different from the Lord. 8. Abhidheya means the nine kinds of activities in devotional service to Lord Krishna. 9. Pure love for Lord Krishna is the true need, the true goal of life for the individual spirit souls.
(5) The Vedas teach that the world is manifested by the Supreme Lord's inconceivable potencies. The idea that the Supreme transforms Himself into the world is an idea very opposed to the Vedas.
(6) Pure devotional service (shuddha-bhakti) here refers to favorable service to Lord Krishna, service where the devotee has no desire other than the desire for devotional service, and where the devotee is untouched by karma or jnana. That condition of the heart is called pure devotional service. Devotional service mixed with karma or jnana cannot be said to be pure devotional service. One should take shelter of the holy name and engage in poure devotional service. That is the final teaching of all Vedic scriptures.
(7) Ashtavakra, Pseudo-Dattatreya, Govinda Muni, Gaurapada, Shankara, the followers of Shankara, and the jara-mimamsakas are examples of mayavadi-gurus. The attainment of nirvana is the primary teaching of Buddhism. Although they do not believe in the existence of Brahman, the Buddhists teach that the highest spiritual attainment is merging into the void, a condition identical with the mayavadis' merging into the qualityless Brahman. These philosophies are both very opposed to eternal devotional service.
(8) Mayavadis who accept this philosophy and somehow may chant the holy name commit an offense to the holy name.
(9) When the primary and secondary meanings of words are both possible interpretations in a given passage, it is not proper to accept the secondary meanings and the interpretation of the passage that goes with them. If the Vedic scriptures are interpreted in this way, according to the primary meanings of the words, it will be seen that the Vedas teach pure devotional service. Primary and secondary interpretations should be seen in this way.
(10) In the material world the mayavadis worship Goddess Maya and chant her names, names like "Durga" and “Kali". Lord Krishna's spiritual potency is His personal potencxy. Maya is the shadow of that spiritual potency. Gradually purifying them, Goddess Maya convinces the rebellious souls who have turned their faces away from Lord Krishna to turn and face Him again. Maya has two kinds of mercy: sincere mercy and cheating mercy. When she gives siccere mercy, she gives to the conditioned soul true knowledge and devotional service offered to Lord Krishna. When she gives cheating mercy she gives to the soul temporary material pleasures. When she is very merciful in this cheating way she throws the soul into the state of merging with impersonal Brahman. When that happens to the soul all is lost.
(11) Shrimad-Bhagavatam is the best of all Vedic scriptures. Persons whose auspicious day is late in coming may speak various harsh words to criticize Shrimad-Bhagavatam. That is their unfortunate nature.