Post Author: Swami Gaurangapada Date: 2006-01-14 06:54:29
Title: Chanting Without Diksha User: Swami Gaurangapada Date: 2007-03-13 20:33:40
Q. by Igor: Nitay-Gauranga! I have one question. What is value if someone chant Holy Name and he or she is not initiated (diksa)? Some devotees say that only benefit of such chanting is preparation for diksa, and that real connection and chanting is not possible if one do not receive mantra diksa? For example, I am reading vaisnava books and chanting Holy Names, associate with devotees and following regulative principles for more then decade. My wife is also devotee and we are practicing chanting and reading together, but we are not initiated. By Gauranga's mercy I preached to many devotees in this area and some of them become initiated within ISKCON, some in other Gaudiya organisations. I see that this divine process is eternal activity, but some devotees say what are you waiting - you must hurry, you never know how long you will live and without diksa there is no real connection with Lord! I was (and still am) in contact with several spiritual masters and advanced devotees and getting inspiration (siksa) from them. I was never interesting in "institucional" concesness but in finding devotee, in whenever institution or place he may belong. Could you please give me some advice? Thank you very much.
Answer by Swami Gaurangapada:
Nityananda! Gauranga! Hare Krishna! Thankyou Igor for your nice inquiry and for helping many souls to take up Naam bhajan. Please read fully the two links below which answer your question and then let me know if you have any further questions: http://vedabase.net/cc/madhya/15/108/en1: "http://vedabase.net/cc/madhya/15/108/en1"
Nityananda! Gauranga! Dear Gaurangapada Maharaja, could you please clarify to me next statements that seem to be contradictory to me. guru-mukha-padma-vakya, cittete koriya aikya! Haribol1
1. From one side: Unless one is initiated by a bona-fide Vaishnava spiritual master in a bonafide and authentic Vaishnava disciplic succession, the Mantra one might have received is without any effect.?from Padma Purana
So it is clearly stated that Unless one is initiated by a bona-fide Vaishnava spiritual master?the Mantra one might have received is without any effect.? 2.From other side: "O best of the brahmanas, even without initiation, preliminary purification or acceptance of the renounced order, one can attain perfection in devotional service simply by chanting the Lord's holy name." Ramarcana-candrika
So it is clearly stated that ?even without initiation?one can attain perfection in devotional service simply by chanting the Lord's holy name ? It is a little bit confusing ?without initiation mantra is without any effect?and evan without initiation simply by chanting one can attain perfection? So, I am humbly asking, could you please clarify this statements of sastra. prema-bhakti jaha hoite, avidya vinasa jate! Nityananda! Gauranga!
Nityananda! Gauranga! Hare Krishna! To answer your question, it is necessary to analyse the Ramarcana-candrika verse:
vinaiva diksham viprendra purascaryam vinaiva hi vinaiva nyasa-vidhina japa-matrena siddhi-da
In this verse it is not specifically mentioned perfection in terms of attaining pure love for the Lord. japa-mantena siddhi da means perfection in the process of chanting but it may not involve the supreme causeless mercy of the Lord upon us in terms of pure love of God which is the highest effect of chanting the Holy Name Mantras.
The Holy Names will surely benefit and deliver the souls from material bondage who simply vibrate Them with their tongue even without any initiation or external purification. But to attain pure love, which is the goal of chanting, one should receive the Holy Names from the Guru in the normal case. That is what the Padma Purana verse is taking about. Ofcourse sometimes the chanter may be very very much advanced from his or her previous lives and may have accepted Guru in the previous lives, then he or she may attain pure love simply by the mercy of the Holy Names. But this is very very rarely seen even among the eternal associates of the Lord who always accept Diksha from a living spiritual master to set an example for all souls.
The word "nishphala" in the Padma Purana verses means that the though the Holy Names may grant liberation to the chanter but generally to attain pure love of God by chanting the Name one should accept initiation in the Holy Names from a Vaishnava Guru from any of the four sampradayas, ideally a Gaudiya Vaishnava Guru.
In other words, the chanting of Nityananda, Gauranga and Hare Krishna is so powerful that it does not depend on initiation to deliver the soul, but if the soul wants to go higher than liberation and enter into the spiritual world and quickly attain pure love of God without a doubt, then the process of initiation is mandatory as it speedens up this process of attaining prema.
The tiny seed of a banyan tree contains the form of a huge, full-grown tree. Placing the seed directly into the ground, however, may not produce a tree. But if a sparrow eats the seed and passes it on the ground with its stool, then a majestic banyan tree will certainly grow forth. The banyan seed must be processed in this way to give sureshot results. Similarly, if one begins chanting the Holy Name Mantras after hearing or reading about Them, They will deliver him or her from all material miseries but the highest benefit may not be there. But if one receives the Name Mantras by hearing from the Guru though the process of initiation, then those Holy Names which are coated with the Guru's love, realizations, and relationship with the Lord will produce genuine and pure love for the Supreme Lord in the heart of the sincere disciple if the disciple patiently chants them daily with devotion and feeling.