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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Compiled and Imp Scriptures > Jaiva Dharma > 17. Prameya: The Jivas Free from Maya


C H A P T E R 17

Prameya: The Jivas Free

from Maya


Vrajanatha's grandmother completed all the arrangements for

his marriage, and in the evening she explained everything

to him. Vrajanatha simply took his meal in silence and made no

reply that day. He lay awake on his bed late that night, deep in

thought about the state of the pure spirit soul. Meanwhile, his

elderly grandmother was busy trying to find ways of convincing

him to agree to the marriage.


Just then, Vrajanatha's maternal cousin, Veni-madhava, arrived.

The girl that Vrajanatha was supposed to marry was Venimadhava's

paternal cousin, and Vijaya-Vidyaratna had sent him

to finalize the arrangements.


Veni-madhava inquired, "What's the matter, Grandmother? Why

are you delaying in arranging brother Vraja's marriage?"


The grandmother replied in a rather anxious voice, "My son,

you are an intelligent boy. Perhaps he will change his mind if you

speak to him. All my efforts have been in vain."


Veni-madhava's character was clearly proclaimed by his short

stature, small neck, black complexion, and his eyes, which blinked

frequently. He liked to pry into everything that was going on,

rather than taking care of his own business, but his involvement

in others' affairs was never particularly useful. After listening to

the old lady, he frowned slightly, then boasted, "This is no problem.

I just need your permission. Veni-madhava can accomplish

anything. You know me quite well. I can make money just by counting

the waves. Let me discuss this with him just once. And if I

succeed, then you'll treat me to a nice feast with puris and kacoris?"


"Vrajanatha has taken his meal, and he's asleep now," said



"All right, I'll come in the morning and put things in order,"

replied Veni-madhava, and returned home.


The next day, he returned early in the morning carrying a lota

in his hand, and completed his morning ablutions. When

Vrajanatha saw him, he was a little surprised, and said, "Brother!

How have you come so early in the morning?"


Veni-madhava answered, "Dada, you have been studying and teaching

nyaya-sastra for a long time now. You are the son of the Pandita

Harinatha Cudamani, and you have become famous all over the

country. You are the only surviving male member of the house, and

if you don't have any heirs, who do you suppose will take care of this

big house of yours? Brother, we have a request. Please get married."


Vrajanatha replied, "Brother, don't give me unnecessary trouble.

Nowadays I'm accepting the shelter of Shri Gaura-sundara's bhaktas,

and I don't have any desire to get involved in worldly affairs. I feel

real peace in the company of the Vaishnavas in Mayapura, and I don't

find any attraction for this world. I will either accept sannyasa, or

spend my life in the shelter of the Vaishnavas' lotus feet. I have

expressed my heart to you because I know that you are my close

friend, but don't disclose this to anyone else."


Veni-madhava understood that nothing but trickery could

change Vrajanatha's mind, so he cleverly curbed his feelings, and

in order to create a particular impression he said, "I have always

remained your assistant in whatever you have done. I used to carry

your books when you were studying in the Sanskrit school, so I

will carry your staff and water-pot when you accept sannyasa."


It is difficult to understand the minds of wicked people; they

have two tongues, and they say one thing with one, and exactly

the opposite with the other. They are bandits in the garb of saints,

carrying the name of Shri Rama in the mouth, and a knife under

the armpit.


Vrajanatha was a simple person. Warming to Veni-madhava's

sweet words, he said, "Brother, I have always regarded you as my

dear friend. Grandmother is just an old woman, and she doesn't

understand serious matters. She is very enthusiastic to drown me

in this ocean of worldly affairs by getting me married to some girl.

It will be a relief if you can change her mind and somehow dissuade

her; I will always be indebted to you."


Veni-madhava replied, "No one will dare to oppose your desire

as long as Sharmarama is living. Dada, you will see what I am capable

of. But just let me know one thing, why have you developed such

hatred towards this world? Who is advising you to cultivate such

feelings of renunciation?"


Vrajanatha explained about his renunciation, and said, "There

is one elderly and experienced babaji called Raghunatha dasa Babaji

in Mayapura. He is my instructor, and I go every day after dusk to

the shelter of his feet to find relief from the burning fire of this

material world. He is very merciful to me."


The evil Veni-madhava started thinking, "Now I understand

brother Vraja's weakness. He has to be brought back to the right

track by deception, force or skill." Outwardly he said, "Brother,

don't worry. I am going home now, but I will gradually change

Grandmother's mind."


Veni-madhava pretended to take the road that led to his home,

but instead he took another way, and reached Shrivasangana in

Mayapura. There he sat on the raised platform under the bakula tree

and began to admire the opulences of the Vaishnavas. "These

Vaishnavas are actually enjoying the world. They have such beautiful

houses and lovely kunjas. This is such a nice dias in a wonderful

courtyard." In each of the kutiras, a Vaishnava sat chanting hari-nama

on his beads. They seemed quite content, like the bulls of religion.

The women of the neighboring villages, who came to bathe in the

Ganga, of their own accord supplied the Vaishnavas with fruits, vegetables,

water and various eatables. Veni-madhava thought, "The

brahmanas have systematized karma-kanda to receive these facilities,

but instead these groups of babajis are enjoying the cream. All

glories to Kali-yuga! These disciples of Kali are having a wonderful

time. Oh! My birth in a high brahmana family is useless! No one even

cares about us any more, what to speak of offering us fruits and water.

These Vaishnavas even condemn learned brahmanas, and abuse

and insult us by calling us lowly and foolish. Brother Vraja fits this

description quite well though; although he's such a well-educated

man, he seems to have sold himself to these sly loin-cloth people. I,

Veni-madhava, will reform Vrajanatha and these babajis as well."


Thinking like this, Veni-madhava entered one of the kutiras,

which happened to be the one in which Shri Raghunatha dasa Babaji

was sitting on a mat made of banana leaves, chanting his hari-nama.


A person's character is evident from his face, and the ageing

babaji could understand that Kali personified had entered in the

form of this son of a brahmana. Vaishnavas consider themselves lower

than a blade of grass. They offer respect to those who insult them,

and they pray for the well being of an opponent, even if he tortures

them. Accordingly, Babaji Maharaja respectfully offered Venimadhava

a seat. Veni-madhava had no Vaishnava qualities at all, so

after sitting down, he offered his blessings to Babaji Maharaja,

considering himself above all Vaishnava etiquette.


"Baba, what is your name? What brings you here?" inquired Babaji

Mahasaya informally. Veni-madhava became furious by being addressed

informally, and he said angrily, "O Babaji, can you become

equal to the brahmanas just by wearing a kaupina (loincloth)? Never

mind! Just tell me, do you know Vrajanatha Nyaya-pancanana?


Babaji: (understanding the reason for his annoyance) Please excuse

this old man; don't become offended by my words. Yes,

Vrajanatha comes here sometimes, by his own mercy.


Veni-madhava: Don't think that he's a simpleton. He comes here

with ulterior motives. He is being polite at first, to gain your confidence.

The brahmanas of Belpukura are extremely annoyed at your

behavior, and they have consulted with each other and decided to

send Vrajanatha to you. You are an old man. Just be careful. I will

keep coming from time to time, to inform you how their conspiracy

progresses. Don't tell him about me; otherwise you will run into

even deeper trouble. I will take leave for today.


So saying, Veni-madhava got up and returned to his home. Later

that afternoon, while Vrajanatha sat on the verandah after his

meal, Veni-madhava suddenly appeared, as if from nowhere, sat

next to him, and struck up a conversation. "Brother, I went to

Mayapura for some business today," he began. "There I saw an old

man, maybe Raghunatha dasa Babaji. We were talking about things

in general, and then the conversation turned to you. The things

he said about you! I have never heard such repulsive things being

spoken about any brahmana. In the end he said, 'I will bring him

down from his high brahminical status by feeding him leftovers

from many low-caste people.' Fie on him! It is not proper for a

learned man like you to associate with such a person. You will ruin

the high prestige of the brahmanas if you act like this."


Vrajanatha was astounded to hear Veni-madhava say all this.

For some unknown reason, his faith and respect for the Vaishnavas

and old Babaji Maharaja only doubled, and he said gravely,

"Brother, I am busy at present. You go now; I will hear everything

from you tomorrow, and make a decision then."


Veni-madhava went away. Vrajanatha now became fully aware

of Veni-madhava's two-tongued nature. He was well versed in the

nyaya-sastra, and although he had a natural dislike for wickedness,

the thought that Veni-madhava would help him on the path to

sannyasa had induced Vrajanatha to be friendly towards him. Now,

however, he understood that all Veni-madhava's sweet words had

been for a particular motive. After further thought, Vrajanatha

realized that Veni-madhava was acting deceitfully because he was

involved in the marriage proposal. That must be why he had gone

to Mayapura - to sow the seed of some secret plot. He prayed in

his mind, "O Bhagavan! Let my faith in the lotus feet of my

Gurudeva and the Vaishnavas remain firm. May it never be reduced

by the disturbance of such impure people." He remained absorbed

in these thoughts until evening. Then he started out for

Shrivasangana, arriving there deep in anxiety.


Back in Mayapura, after Veni-madhava had left, Babaji thought,

"This man is certainly a brahma-raksasa.


raksasah kalim ashritya jayante brahma-yonisu


Taking shelter of Kali-yuga, raksasas take birth in brahmana



"This statement of sastra certainly holds true for that person.

His face clearly shows his pride in his high caste, his false ego, his

envy of Vaishnavas, and his religious hypocrisy. His short neck, his

eyes, and his deceptive way of talking actually represent his internal

state of mind. Ah, this man is a complete asura by nature,

whereas Vrajanatha is such a sweet-natured person. O Krishna! O

Gauranga! Never give me association of such a person. I must warn

Vrajanatha today."


As soon as Vrajanatha reached the kutira, Babaji called out to

him affectionately, "Come, Baba, come!" and embraced him.

Vrajanatha's throat choked with emotion, and tears started flowing

from his eyes as he fell down at Babaji's feet. Babaji picked him

up very affectionately and said gently, "A black-complexioned

brahmana came here this morning. He said some agitating things

and then went away again. Do you know him?"


Vrajanatha: Prabhu, your good self told me earlier that there are

different kinds of jivas in this world. Some of them are so envious

that without any cause, they find satisfaction in troubling

other jivas. Our brother, Veni-madhava, is one of the leaders in

that category. I will be glad if we don't discuss him further. It is his

very nature to criticize you to me and me to you, and to cause disputes

between us by manufacturing false accusations. I hope you

didn't pay any attention to what he said.


Babaji: Ha Krishna! Ha Gauranga! I have been serving the Vaishnavas

for many days now, and by their mercy, I have received the power

to tell the difference between a Vaishnava and a non-Vaishnava. You

don't need to say anything to me about this.


Vrajanatha: Please forget all this and tell me how a jiva can become

free from the clutches of maya.


Babaji: You will get your answer in the seventh sloka of Dasa-mula:


yada bhramam bhramam hari-rasa-galad-vaishnava-janam

kadacit sampasyan tad-anugamane syad ruci-yutah

tada krishnavrttya tyajati sanakair mayika-dasam

svarupam vibhrano vimala-rasa-bhogam sa kurute


When, in the course of wandering amongst the higher and

lower species in the material world, a jiva is able to behold

a Vaishnava absorbed in the flowing rasa of shri-hari-bhakti,

taste arises in his heart for following the Vaishnava way of

life. By chanting shri-krishna-nama, he gradually becomes free

from his conditioning. Step by step, he then gains his intrinsic,

chinmaya-svarupa (transcendental form), and becomes

qualified to taste the pure and spiritual rasa of direct

service to Shri Krishna.


Vrajanatha: I would like to hear some evidence from the Vedas to

verify this.


Babaji: It is said in the Upanisads,


samane vrkse puruso nimagno

'nisaya socati muhyamanah

justam yada pasyaty anyam isam

asya mahimanam eti vita-sokah


The jiva and the indwelling Paramatma both reside in the

body, like two birds in the same tree. The jiva is sunk in the

bodily conception of life because of his attachment to material

sense enjoyment. Bewildered by maya, he cannot find

any means of deliverance, and thus he laments and falls

down. When the jiva has darsana of the other person within

his heart - namely the Supreme Lord, who is served eternally

by His unalloyed bhaktas - he witnesses Krishna's uncommon

glories. He then becomes free from all lamentation,

and attains his glorious position as Krishna's servant.

(Mundaka Upanisad 3.1.2 and Svetasvatara Upanisad 4.7)


Vrajanatha: This sloka states that when the jiva sees the

worshipable Lord, he becomes free forever from all anxieties, and

directly perceives His magnificence. Does this imply liberation?


Babaji: Liberation means to be released from the clutches of maya.

Only those who have the association of saintly people attain this

liberation, but the real subject of research is the glorious position

that one receives after attaining liberation.


muktir hitvanyatha-rupam svarupena vyavasthitih

Shrimad-Bhagavatam (2.10.6)


The jiva in his original, constitutional form is a pure servant

of Krishna. When he falls down into the darkness of

nescience, he has to accept gross and subtle material bodies.

Liberation means to abandon these extraneous forms

completely and to be situated in one's original, spiritual



This half sloka explains that liberation means to abandon these

other forms and to be situated in one's svarupa. Attaining one's

constitutional position is the necessity for the jiva. The work of

liberation is complete the moment the jiva is released from the

clutches of maya. Then, so many activities begin once he attains

his natural, constitutional position. This is the fundermental

necessity of attainment, mula-prayojana of the jiva. Freedom from

intense misery can be called liberation, but following liberation

there is another stage, in which a person achieves spiritual happiness

(cit-sukha). That state is described in the Chandogya Upanisad



evam evaisa samprasado 'smac charirat samutthaya

param jyoti-rupa-sampadya svena rupenabhinispadyate

sa uttamah purusah sa tatra paryeti jaksan kridan ramamanah


When the jiva achieves liberation, he transcends the gross

and subtle material bodies and is situated in his own nonmaterial,

spiritual state, complete with his spiritual effulgence.

He then becomes transcendentally situated. In that

spiritual atmosphere, he becomes absorbed in enjoyment

(bhoga), activities (krida) and bliss (ananda).


Vrajanatha: What are the symptoms of those who are liberated

from maya?


Babaji: They have eight symptoms, which Chandogya Upanisad

(8.7.1) describes as follows:


ya atmapahata-papma vijaro vimrtyur visoko 'vijighatso 'pipasah

satya-kamah satya-sankalpah so 'nvestavyah


The liberated soul has eight qualities: He is freed from all

sinful activity, as well as the addiction to sinful activities

that arises because of the nescience of maya; he is not subject

to the miseries of old age; he always remains young and

fresh, and has no tendency to decay; he never comes to an

end, or dies; he is never morose; he has no sensual desires;

he has a natural inclination towards serving Krishna, with

no other desires; and all of his desires become realized. These

eight qualities are absent from the baddha-jiva.


Vrajanatha: It is said in the Dasa-mula sloka, "The good fortune of

the jiva who is wandering aimlessly in the material world arises

when he meets a rasika Vaishnava who relishes the nectar of Hari."

One might raise the objection that one could eventually attain

hari-bhakti by performing pious activities, such as astanga-yoga and

cultivating brahma-jnana.


Babaji: These are Shri Krishna's own words:


na rodhayati mam yogo na sankhyam dharma eva ca

na svadhyayas tapas tyago nesta-purttam na daksina

vratani yajnas chandamsi tirthani niyama yamah

yathavarundhe sat-sangah sarva-sangapaho hi mam

Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.12.1-2)


Shri Bhagavan said, "I am not controlled by those who perform

yoga, study sankhya philosophy, perform religious duties

and pious activities, study the Vedas, perform penances and

austerities, practice renunciation or accept sannyasa, perform

sacrifice and welfare activities, give donations in charity,

practice fasting and other vows, perform yajna, chant confidential

mantras, go on pilgrimage, and follow all the rules

and regulations for spiritual life. However, one who accepts

sat-sanga, which destroys all material attachments, can control

Me. How much can I say? Astanga-yoga can slightly satisfy

Me indirectly, but sadhu-sanga controls Me completely."


It is also stated in Hari-bhakti-sudhodhaya (8.51):


yasya yat-sangatih pumso manivat syat sa tad-gunah

sva-kularddhyaitato dhiman sva-yuthany eva samsrayet


Just as a jewel or crystal reflects the color of the object with

which it is in contact, so a person develops qualities according

to the company he keeps. Therefore, by keeping association with

pure sadhus, one can become a pure sadhu. Thus the association

of pure sadhus is the root cause of all good fortune.


In the sastras, the word nihsanga means 'to live in solitude.' This

implies that we should only live in the association of bhaktas.

Nihsanga means to leave all other association and to take the association

of bhaktas. Even unintentional association with saintly

people brings good fortune for the jiva.


sango yah samsrter hetur asatsu vihito 'dhiya

sa eva sadhusu krto nihsangatvaya kalpate

Shrimad-Bhagavatam (3.23.55)


The association of materialists is the cause of bondage in

the material world, even though one may not know that

this is so. Similarly, association with saintly people, even if

it happens by chance or unknowingly, is called nihsanga.

It is said in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (7.5.32):


naisam matis tavad urukramanghrim

sprsaty anarthapagamo yad-arthah

mahiyasam pada-rajo-'bhisekam

niskincananam na vrnita yavat


The lotus feet of Urukrama, who is glorified for His uncommon

activities, destroy all anarthas in the heart. However,

those who are very materialistic cannot be attached to His

lotus feet until they smear their bodies with the dust from

the lotus feet of great souls who are absorbed in bhagavatprema

and who are completely freed from material attachments.


And Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.48.31) states:


na hy am-mayani tirthani na deva mrc-chila-mayah

te punanty uru-kalena darsanad eva sadhavah


One is purified by the holy places where rivers such as the

Ganga flow and by the stone and clay deities of devatas only

after rendering them reverential service over a long period

of time. However, when one has darsana of a suddha-bhakta,

he is purified immediately.


That is why Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.51.53) also says:


bhavapavargo bhramato yada bhavej

janasya tarhy acyuta sat-samagamah

sat-sangamo yarhi tadaiva sad-gatau

paravarese tvayi jayate matih


O infallible Lord! The jiva has been wandering in this world

of birth and death since time without beginning. When the

time comes for him to leave this cycle of life and death, he

associates with Your suddha-bhaktas. From the moment that

he achieves this association, his mind becomes firmly fixed

on You, who are the sole and supreme shelter of the

surrendered bhaktas, the controller of all, and the cause of

all causes.


Baba, since time without beginning the jiva who is eternally

bound by maya has been moving in the universe, taking birth according

to his karma, sometimes as a deva, and sometimes in the

various animal species. From the time that he attains the association

of saintly people because of his past pious activities (sukrti),

he fixes his mind very strongly on Krishna, the controller of all.


Vrajanatha: You have said that the association of suddha-bhaktas

is achieved by sukrti. What is sukrti? Is it karma or knowledge?


Babaji: The sastras say that there are two types of auspicious karma

(subha-karma) that are in accordance with Vedic injunctions. One

causes the appearance of bhakti, while the other gives irrelevant,

inferior results. Performance of pious activities such as nitya and

naimittika-karma, studying sankhya, and cultivating jnana all give

irrelevant results. The only auspicious activities that give bhakti

as an end result (bhakti-prada-sukrti) are associating with suddhabhaktas

and with places, times and things that bestow bhakti.


When enough bhakti-prada-sukrti has been accumulated, it gives

rise to krishna-bhakti. The other type of sukrti, however, is consumed

after one enjoys its results, so it does not accumulate to give any

permanent result. All the pious deeds in the world, such as charity,

only result in achieving the objects of sense gratification. The

sukrti of impersonal speculation results in impersonal liberation.

Neither of these kinds of sukrti can give devotional service to Shri



Activities such as sadhu-sanga and observing Ekadashi,

Janmastami, and Gaura-purnima all help to develop one's saintly

qualities. Tulasi, maha-prasada, shri mandira, holy places, and articles

used by sadhus (sadhu-vastu) are all auspicious; touching

them or obtaining their darsana are pious deeds that give rise to



Vrajanatha: Can a person obtain bhakti if he is tormented by

material problems and takes shelter of Shri Hari's lotus feet in full

knowledge to become relieved of his problems?


Babaji: The jiva, harassed by the afflictions of the goddess of

illusion, may somehow understand through discriminating intelligence

that worldly activities are simply troublesome, and that

his only solace is Krishna's lotus feet and the feet of His suddhabhaktas.

Knowing this, he takes shelter of His lotus feet, and the

first step in this process of surrender is to accept the shelter of

suddha-bhaktas. This is the principal, bhakti-prada-sukrti, through

which he obtains the lotus feet of Bhagavan. Whatever renunciation

and wisdom he had originally were just a secondary means of

obtaining bhakti. Thus, the association of bhaktas is the only way

to attain bhakti. There is no other recourse.


Vrajanatha: If karma, jnana, renunciation and discrimination are

secondary ways of achieving bhakti, what is the objection to calling

them bhakti-prada-sukrti?


Babaji: There is a strong objection: they bind one to inferior,

temporary results. The performance of karma has no permanent

result, but it binds the jiva to the objects of sense gratification.

Renunciation and empirical knowledge can only lead the jiva as

far as knowledge of brahma, and this conception of an impersonal

supreme principle prevents him from attaining Bhagavan's lotus

feet. Consequently, these cannot be called bhakti-prada-sukrti. It

is true that they sometimes take one to bhakti, but that is not the

usual course of events. Sadhu-sanga, on the other hand, definitely

does not award any secondary benefit, but forcibly brings the jiva

towards prema. It is explained in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (3.25.25):


satam prasangan mama virya-samvido

bhavanti hrt-karna-rasayanah kathah

taj-josanad asv apavarga-vartmani

sraddha ratir bhaktir anukramisyati


In the association of suddha-bhaktas, the recitation and

discussion of My glorious activities and pastimes are

pleasing to both the heart and the ears. By cultivating

knowledge in this way, one becomes established on the path

of liberation and progressively attains sraddha, then bhava,

and finally prema-bhakti.


Vrajanatha: I understand that sadhu-sanga is the only sukrti that

gives rise to bhakti. One has to listen to hari-katha from the mouths

of sadhus, and thereafter one obtains bhakti. Is this the proper

sequence to progress in bhakti?


Babaji: I will explain the proper way of progressing in bhakti. Listen

attentively. Only by good fortune does the jiva who is wandering

throughout the universe achieve the sukrti that gives rise to

bhakti. One of the many limbs of pure bhakti may touch a jiva's life.

For example, he may fast on Ekadashi, or touch or visit the holy

places of Bhagavan's pastimes, or serve a guest who happens to be

a suddha-bhakta, or have the chance to hear hari-nama or hari-katha

from the lotus mouth of an akincana-bhakta. If someone desires

material benefits or impersonal liberation from such activities, the

resultant sukrti does not lead to devotional service. However, if

an innocent person performs any of these activities, either unknowingly

or out of habit, without desiring material sense gratification

or impersonal liberation, these activities lead to the accumulation

of bhakti-prada-sukrti.


After accumulating such sukrti for many births, it becomes concentrated

enough to give faith in pure bhakti, and when faith in

bhakti is undivided, one develops a desire to associate with suddhabhaktas.

By association, one gradually becomes engaged in performing

sadhana and bhajana, and this leads to the removal of anarthas,

in proportion to the purity of chanting. When anarthas are removed,

the previous faith is purified further to become nistha (firm

faith). This firm faith is also purified to become ruci (spiritual taste),

and by the saundarya (beauty) of bhakti, this ruci is strengthened

and takes the form of asakti (transcendental attachment). Transcendental

attachment matures into rati or bhava. When rati combines

with the appropriate ingredients it becomes rasa. This is the

step-by-step progression in the development of krishna-prema.


The principal idea is that when people with sufficient sukrti

have darsana of suddha-bhaktas, they develop an inclination to proceed

on the path of bhakti. One associates with a suddha-bhakta by

chance, and this leads to initial sraddha, whereupon he gets the

association of the bhaktas a second time. The result of the first association

is sraddha, which can also be termed surrender

(saranagati). The initial sadhu-sanga is brought about by contact

with holy places, auspicious times and paraphernalia, and recipients

of Shri Hari's grace, all of which are beloved by Him. These

lead to faith in His shelter. The symptoms of the development of

such faith are described in the Bhagavad-gita (18.66):


sarva-dharman parityajya

mam ekam saranam vraja

aham tvam sarva-papebhyo

moksayisyami ma sucah


Here the words sarva-dharman imply worldly duties (smartadharma),

astanga-yoga, sankhya-yoga, jnana and renunciation. The

jiva can never achieve his ultimate spiritual goal by practicing all

these dharmas, which is why the instruction here is to give them

up. Shri Krishna says, "My form of pure and condensed sac-cid-ananda

appearing as Vraja-vilasi (the performer of wonderful pastimes in

Vraja) is the only shelter for the jivas. When one understands this,

he gives up all desire for bhukti (material sense enjoyment) and

mukti (impersonal liberation), and with undivided attention, takes

shelter of Me." This is known as pravrtti-rupa-sraddha (the

exclusive tendency to engage in Krishna's service). When such faith

dawns in the jiva's heart, with tears in his eyes he resolves to become

a follower of a Vaishnava sadhu. The Vaishnava of whom he

takes shelter at that point is the guru.


Vrajanatha: How many types of anarthas does a jiva have?


Babaji: There are four types of anarthas: 1) svarupa-bhrama (being

in illusion about one's spiritual identity); 2) asat-trsna (thirst for

temporary material enjoyment); 3) aparadha (offenses); and 4)

hrdaya-daurbalya (weakness of the heart).


The jiva's first anartha, namely svarupa-bhrama occures when he

forgets the understanding that, "I - the pure, spiritual spark - am

Krishna's servant," and is carried far away from his original, spiritual

position. When the jiva considers that he and his dead material

possessions are 'I' and 'mine', he develops three types of asat-trsna.

These are the desire for a son, for wealth, and for celestial pleasures.

There are ten types of aparadha, which I will discuss later. The jiva

is grief-stricken because of hrdaya-daurbalya. These four types of

anarthas are the naisargika-phala, the fruit of nisarga, or the aquired

nature of the jiva who has been caught by ignorance, and they are

removed gradually by cultivating Krishna consciousness in the

association of suddha-bhaktas.


The four-fold path of yoga consists of withdrawal from sense

objects (pratyahara), self-control (yama), following various rules

and regulations (niyama) and renunciation (vairagya). This process

is not the proper means to free oneself from material anxiety,

for it is difficult to attain perfection, and there is always a strong

risk of falling down. The only way to become free from all anxiety

is to cultivate pure Krishna consciousness in the association of

suddha-bhaktas. Thus the jiva is freed from maya's stranglehold and

his constitutional position is revealed to the extent that anarthas

have been removed from his heart.


Vrajanatha: Can people with no trace of anarthas be termed liberated



Babaji: Please consider the following sloka:


rajobhih sama-sankhyatah parthivair iha jantavah

tesam ye kecanehante sreyo vai manujadayah

prayo mumuksavas tesam kecanaiva dvijottama

mumuksunam sahasresu kascin mucyate sidhyati

muktanam api siddhanam narayana-parayanah

sudurlabhah prasantatma kotisv api maha-mune

Shrimad-Bhagavatam (6.14.3-5)


He Bhagavan! There are as many jivas in this material world

as there are grains of sand. Only a few of these are human

beings, amongst whom only a few direct their efforts in

search of a higher goal. Of those who are endeavoring for a

higher goal, only a few rare individuals seek liberation from

this world, and out of thousands of such people, hardly one

is actually able to achieve siddhi (perfection) or mukti (liberation).

Out of millions of perfected liberated souls, it is

difficult to find a single peaceful, great soul who is fully

dedicated to seva of Shri Narayana. Therefore, Narayana's

bhaktas are very rare.


A person free from all anarthas is known as a suddha-bhakta. Such

bhaktas are very rare; indeed, even among millions of muktas, one

can hardly find a single bhakta of Shri Krishna. Therefore, no

association in this world is more rare than the association of

Krishna's bhaktas.


Vrajanatha: Does the word Vaishnava imply a bhakta who has renounced

family life?


Babaji: A suddha-bhakta is a Vaishnava, whether he is a grhastha

(householder) or sannyasi (renunciant), a brahmana or a candala

(dog-eater), rich or poor. A devotee is a krishna-bhakta to the degree

that he has suddha-krishna-bhakti (pure devotion for Krishna).


Vrajanatha: You have already said that there are five types of jiva

in maya's stronghold, and you have also said that bhaktas

performing sadhana-bhakti and bhava-bhakti are under maya's control.

At what stage are bhaktas maya-mukta (liberated from maya)?


Babaji: One is freed from the clutches of maya from the very beginning

of his devotional service, but vastu-gata-mukti, or complete

liberation from the two material bodies (gross and subtle), is only

obtained when one reaches the stage of full maturity in bhaktisadhana.

Before this, a person is liberated to the extent that he is

svarupa-gata, aware of his constitutional position. The jiva achieves

vastu-gata-maya-mukti, complete freedom from maya, only when he

is completely disassociated from the gross and subtle bodies. The

stage of bhava-bhakti dawns in the jiva's heart as a result of practicing

sadhana-bhakti. When the jiva is firmly established in bhava-bhakti,

he gives up his gross body and after that he gives up the subtle body

and becomes established in his pure spiritual body (cit-sarira). Consequently,

the jiva is not fully free from maya's control even in the

beginning stage of bhava-bhakti, because a trace of the conditioning

of maya always remains as long as the jiva is performing sadhana-bhakti.

The authorities in our line have carefully considered sadhana-bhakti

and bhava-bhakti, and have included bhaktas practicing both these

stages amongst the five stages of conditioned souls. The materialists

and the impersonalists are definitely included amongst the five

categories of conditioned souls.


The only path of deliverance from the clutches of maya is bhakti

for Shri Hari. The jiva has been put under maya's control because

he is offensive, and the root of all offense is forgetting that 'I am

Krishna's servant.' The offenses can only be eradicated if one has

Krishna's mercy; only then can one be freed from maya's control.

The impersonalists believe that one can gain liberation from maya

by cultivating knowledge, but this belief has no basis; there is no

possibility of becoming free from maya without His mercy. This is

explained in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.2.32-33):


ye 'nye 'ravindaksa vimukta-maninas

tvayy asta-bhavad avisuddha-buddhayah

aruhya krcchrena param padam tatah

patanty adho 'nadrta-yusmad-anghrayah


O lotus-eyed Lord! Those who proudly think that they are

liberated, but do not render devotional service unto You,

certainly have impure intelligence. Although they perform

severe austerities and penances, and rise up to the spiritual

position of impersonal realization of brahma, they fall down

again because they have no respect for devotional service

to Your lotus feet.


tatha na te madhava tavakah kvacid

bhrasyanti margat tvayi baddha-sauhrdah

tvayabhigupta vicaranti nirbhaya

vinayakanikapa-murddhasu prabho


O Madhava, Your dearmost bhaktas, who have true love for

Your lotus feet, are not like those proud jnanis, for they never

fall down from the path of devotional service. Since You

protect them, they move about fearlessly, stepping on the

very heads of those who obstruct their path, so that no obstacle

can check their progress.


Vrajanatha: How many different types of jivas are liberated from



Babaji: Two kinds of jivas are free from maya's control: 1) nitya-mukta

(the jivas who were never under maya's control), and 2) baddha-mukta

(those who were once under maya's control, but are now free). The

nitya-mukta-jivas are divided again into two categories: 1) aisvaryagata

(those who are attracted by Bhagavan's feature of opulence and

majesty), and 2) madhurya-gata (those who are attracted by His feature

of sweetness). Those jivas who are attracted by Krishna's aisvarya

are personal associates of Shri Narayana, the Master of Vaikuntha.

They are particles of spiritual effulgence emanating from Shri Mula-

Sankarsana, who resides in Vaikuntha. Those who are attracted by

Bhagavan's madhurya are personal associates of Shri Krishna, the Master

of Goloka Vrndavana. They are particles of spiritual effulgence

manifesting from Shri Baladeva, who resides in Goloka Vrndavana.


There are three kinds of baddha-mukta-jivas: 1) aisvarya-gata

(those who are attracted to Bhagavan's features of opulence and

majesty), 2) madhurya-gata (those who are attracted to Bhagavan's

feature of sweetness) and 3) brahma-jyoti-gata (those who are attracted

to Bhagavan's impersonal effulgence). Those who are attracted

to His opulence during their period of regulated service

become eternal associates of Shri Narayana, the master of the spiritual

sky, and they achieve salokya-mukti (the opulence of residing

on His planet). Jivas who are attracted to Shri Krishna's sweetness

during their period of sadhana attain direct service to Him when

they are liberated in the eternal abodes of Vrndavana and other

similar abodes. Jivas who attempt to merge into the impersonal

effulgence during their period of sadhana attain sayujya-mukti when

they are liberated. They merge into His effulgence, and are thus

completely destroyed in the form of brahma-sayujya.


Vrajanatha: What is the ultimate destination of the unalloyed

bhaktas of Shri Gaura-Kisora (Chaitanya Mahaprabhu)?


Babaji: Shri Krishna and Shri Gaura-Kisora are non-different in their

tattva (absolute nature). They are both shelters of madhurya-rasa.

However, there is a slight difference between Them because

madhurya-rasa has two prakosts (chambers). One is the mood of

madhurya (sweetness), and the other is the mood of audarya (magnanimity).

Shri Krishna's svarupa is manifest where madhurya is prominent,

and Shri Gauranga's form is manifest where audarya is prominent.

Similarly, the transcendental Vrndavana also has two

prakosts (divisions): Shri Krishna's abode and Shri Gaura's abode.


The nitya-siddha and nitya-mukta associates who reside in Shri

Krishna's abode are attracted first to madhurya, and then to audarya.

The nitya-siddha and nitya-mukta associates who reside in Shri

Gaura's abode are blissfully absorbed in audarya, and then

madhurya. Some of them reside in both abodes simultaneously by

expansions of the self (svarupa-vyuha), while others reside in one

spiritual form in only one abode, and not in the other.


Those who only worship Shri Gaura during their period of

sadhana, only serve Shri Gaura when they achieve perfection, while

those who only serve Shri Krishna during their period of sadhana serve

Shri Krishna on achieving perfection. However, those who worship

the forms of both Shri Krishna and Shri Gaura during their period of

sadhana manifest two forms when they attain perfection and reside

in both abodes simultaneously. The truth of the simultaneous

oneness and difference of Shri Gaura and Shri Krishna is a very

confidential secret.


When Vrajanatha had heard all these teachings about the state

of the jivas who are liberated from maya, he could no longer keep

his composure. Brimming with emotion, he fell down at the elderly

Babaji's lotus feet. Crying profusely, Babaji Mahasaya picked

him up and embraced him. It was already quite late in the night.

Vrajanatha took leave of Babaji Mahasaya and went home, totally

engrossed in meditating on Babaji's instructions.


When Vrajanatha reached home, he took his meal, and while

doing so, he warned his grandmother sternly, "Grandmother, if you

people want to see me here, stop all this talk about my marriage

and do not keep any sort of contact with Veni-madhava. He is my

greatest enemy and from tomorrow, I will never speak with him

again. You should also neglect him."


Vrajanatha's grandmother was very intelligent. Understanding

Vrajanatha's mood, she decided to postpone any question of marriage.

"From the kind of sentiments that he is displaying," she

thought, "if he is forced too much, he might leave for Vrndavana

or Varanasi. Let Bhagavan decide as He will."