Post Author: Swami Gaurangapada Date: 2006-01-14 06:54:29
Title: Escapism or spiritual advance? User: Igor Date: 2007-07-06 10:47:47
Nityananda Gauranga Hare Krsna
By regular chanting devotee may feel intense urge to chant more, to live on holy place, to stop with material struggle and never-ending mundane games. From other side he/she may have numerous obligations toward family/relatives/job etc. From one side devotee should be patient, do his duty but from other side he is feeling to be in iron, fire cage and consider all such affairs to be simply illusion. Relatives, friends and others are saying that serious spiritual practice is just escape from mundane obligations and that person should take more and more time in earning money and other similar activities. How to harmonize such opposite tendencies?
Nityananda! Gauranga! Hare Krishna! All glories to Srila Bhaktivinoda, Srila Prabhupada, my most beloved Srila Gaurangapada and all Vaisnavas. Please accept my humble obeisances and blessings. I pray that this meets you well and in the service/mercy of Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga.
My Dearest Bhakta Igor Prabhu;
For those of us who are in family life, there is no question as to whether we are escaping the realities of our responsibilities to home, wife, children or job, these responsibilities are reality and must be attended to. While we continually chant the Holy Names, we are ever mindful of our original position, and that our responsibilities to family and occupation are secondary to this spiritual endeavor.
Those that desire what they cannot have at this time in life are simply wishing upon a fallen star. While it is in our hearts to serve more and deeper in our relationship to Their Lordships, we must remember our first and greatest responsibility to those whom Sri Krishna has entrusted into our service. If the Lord has entrusted us with a wife and children, then it is our utmost responsibility to ensure that they too develop devotional service. Our wive's should be taught and lead properly to become ladies of the Lord's lotus feet, who's actions are above reproach. Our children should be reared in Krishna Conscious homes every waking moment, and when they take rest, they should be chanted over and prayed for continually and without hesitation.
The Vedas has outlined the proper and most respectful manner in which to spend this life-time in the Lord's service. We begin as brahmachari, then move into grihastha if we choose. As we age and mature, the children grow and ultimately leave our care to living their own lives, we move into vanaprastha. As we continue to age, and retirement years come, then we may look at sannyas if this is the Lord's and Sri Guru's desire. This plan for the perfect life spent in the Lord's service has been the blue-print for millinums, but we have to be honest with ourselves and also accepting as to the Lord's will for our life.
We have our responsibilities in this mundane world also. While we are in family life, we must work and maintain the family. Some may view this as undesireable, but for those in family life this is not a realistic opinion. The life of Sannyasi is not a replacement for the service of family life that Sri Krishna has given to us. In many instances, it is more important, because we do not know whom we are training up for the Lord. Srila Prabhupada is a perfect example of this. What if his parents had minimized his education, or worse, his spiritual up-bringing? What if the seeds of faith had not been sown in his heart at an early age and he had been born into a materialistic family? The "what-ifs" could go on forever, but the fact remains that Srila Prabhupada's father took his responsibility seriously to rear him up in Krishna Consciousness. What if Srila Gaurangapada's family had done differently? This is an example of the importance of leading our families in a solid Krishna Conscious foundation.
trai-gunya-visaya veda nistrai-gunyo bhavarjuna nirdvandvo nitya-sattva-stho niryoga-ksema atmavan
"The Vedas deal mainly with the subject of the three modes of material nature, O Arjuna, become transcendental to these modes. Be free from all dualities and from all anxieties for gain and safety, and be established in the Self." BG 2.45
While we must maintain our families and occupational responsibilities, we must remain above the modes of material nature and desire of the fruits of our labors. Our ultimate responsibility is to the Lord, and this means raising a Krishna Conscious family, being a Krishna Conscious influence to those at work, and in the community. Raising a family is a great responsibility, and those in the family life should be convenced that he can deliver his family from the clutches of birth, death, disease and old age, the four-fold miseries of material nature. This can only be done through properly teaching your family, and living a proper Krishna Conscious lifestyle. I too have suffered with this delima, but, Srila Gaungapada has taught me to be patient in my present circumstances, and my influence is great in my community. Put first Their Lordships, and everything else will fall into place.
It does not matter what asrama of life we are presently in, what matters is that we are living a Krishna Conscious centered life. This means that we take our responsibilities of family life as seriously as we do our spiritual life and spiritual advancement. It is our responsibility as the Head of the Family to ensure that those that Sri Krishna gives to us are properly trained, properly educated in the science of the soul, so that they too may go out into this world and teach the next generation of devotees that Their Lordships place within our influence. Do not underestimate the great power that you have as a devotee, if you are serious and dedicated to the Lord's lotus feet, obedient to Srila Gaurangapad, then your influence can change the very community you dwell in, and especially that of your immediate family. Do not desire to be in another asrama, the asrama of husband and father are the Lord's special service, and one that must be dedicated to His lotus feet and is as important as that of Sannyasi or living an austier life of the medicant.
Your eternal servant; Nitaipada
Title: Re: Escapism or spiritual advance? User: Igor Date: 2007-07-10 09:23:25
Nityananda Gauranga Hare Krsna My dear Nitaipada Maharaja, I am offering my humble obeisance unto your lotus feet again and again. Thank you so much for your answer. Your words entered deeply in my hearth and I got answers to solve this dilemma. I can understand that Lord gave me response via his pure devotee. Your answer to my question was like medicament to my agony. Guru mukhya padma vakya cittete koriya aikya ?simply by hearing instructions or answers from realized souls or our gurus, conciseness of fallen soul become purified. Thank you so much. Please accept my humble obeisancess once again. Nityananda Gauranga Hare Krsna Your\par
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By regular chanting devotee may feel intense urge to chant more, to live on holy place, to stop with material struggle and never-ending mundane games.
Then one should do it. Because the valuable human life is short and we don't know whether we are going to live until old age. Our heart is beating very delicately and it can stop at any time or any one of the unlimited diseases can attack our body any time and disable us for our remaining life.
From other side he/she may have numerous obligations toward family/relatives/job etc.
One should intensely pray to Lord Nityananda Prabhu to help us discharge all these obligations nicely as well as fulfill our above first desire. Shrila Raghunatha Dasa Goswami attained the lotus feet of Lord Gauranga in Puri Dhaam by the mercy of Lord Nityananda Prabhu.
From one side devotee should be patient, do his duty but from other side he is feeling to be in iron, fire cage and consider all such affairs to be simply illusion.
Then one should slowly but surely plan to give up those activities which are entangling the soul more and more in this cycle of birth and death. I know this is not easy and only if there is a very strong will then relief if possible. I have personally seen only very few devotee souls able to do this fully even though they have the theoretical philosophical knowledge of the flickering shallowness of mundane activities.
Relatives, friends and others are saying that serious spiritual practice is just escape from mundane obligations and that person should take more and more time in earning money and other similar activities. How to harmonize such opposite tendencies?
One should understand that the "well-wishing" relatives are only considering this temporary life and do not understand what will happen to us after death due to a lack if spiritual knowledge. Will they be there to counsel and save us after we die and become an animal due to our simply being engrossed in mundane activities? No. For that, they will have to save themselves first from the transmigration of the soul.
These may appear bitter words but they are the fact and suffering of the soul after death will also be a fact if we simply listen to them and do not seriously take up spiritual practices now due to wasting away our time in this material world. Since the Guru is not a false flatterer, the Guru's words will be bitter in the beginning but nectar in the end but the words of the spiritually ignorant people will be like nectar in the beginning but will lead to great suffering at the end because they do not know the science of the soul.
So the conclusion is that this is indeed Escapism but it is the Escapism from millions of lives of suffering and torment in the cycle of birth and death. Who does not want this escapism? If we cannot even give a few decades of our lives to permanently escape from such intolerable suffering, then how can we say we are actually serious to attain the Lord at the end of this life?
Daaso'smi, Swami Gaurangapada.
Title: Re: Escapism or spiritual advance? User: Igor Date: 2007-07-31 17:30:56
Nityananda Gauranga Hare Krsna Dear Gurudeva thank you for your wonderfull answer. I am praying to Lord Nityananda who is most mercifull to evan most fallen to kindly help me to fullfill my heart's desire and to reside and simply render devotional service sometimes in this life time under your guidance, silently in Holy Dham of Jagannatha Puri. From this point it is looks impossiable for me, but Lord Nityananda is most mercifull and if somehow or other He gave me drop of His causelless mercy then evan fool like me will be able to do some favorable service for satisfaction of His pure devotees. I abandon all hope in my own strenght, agility, management etc, and accepted this situation and obligations to be my present duty. Hoping that some day chanting and glorifying Lord's pure devotees will become my only ocupation. Your's insignificant Igor Nityananda Gauranga Hare Krsna
Nityananda! Gauranga! Hare Krishna! Thank you Igor. Nothing is impossible if we have the will and Lord Nityananda's mercy. Desire should be accompanied by the will. We miss your articles and realizations on Nityananda Gauranga Naam. Please write more of those articles. We need many more of them to defeat all the superficial arguments against the chanting of Nityananda Gauranga Naam along with the Hare Krishna Mahamantra.