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Title: Chanting of the Gaura Gopala Mantra
User: Damodara Svarupa dasa Date: 2005-03-30 19:21:54
Chanting of the Gaura Gopala Mantra -- By Swami Gaurangapada
>You have been recommending Gaur Gopal Mantra.Could you please enlighten about why Shrila Prabhupad did not recommend it to his followers?
Nityananda! Gauranga! Hare Krishna! Jaya Gauranga Dharma!
Jaya Shrila Prabhupada! Pranams and Blessings!
Thank you so much for your query. Any query on the chanting of the Gaura Gopala Mantra is the most sublime.
Shrila Prabhupada did authorize and recommend it to his followers on many many occasions (as seen in the quotes below) as did all the acharyas and Lord Nityananda Himself has recommended the Gauranga Mantra to all the living entities. So how can Shrila Prabhupada not desire to implement the order of Lord Nityananda Balarama, the original Guru of all Gurus? Infact Shrila Prabhupada being an eternal associate of Lord Gauranga in Navadvipa is constantly chanting the Gauranga Mantra there (as per Chaitanya Mangala and Jaiva Dharma) and the Hare Krishna Mahamantra in Vrindavana.
And he stated that a spiritual master can select a mantra for his disciple according to the disciple's ability to chant different mantras (Cc Madhya 24.330). So I have chosen the Gaura Gopala Mantraraja for my disciples and followers. Do you have any objection in that? I think you should not have any objection because as per Shrila Prabhupada a spiritual master can decide which Mantra is suitable to be chanted in the beginning by the disciples in order to help them to quickly achieve taste in chanting of the Hare Krishna Mahamantra.
As for the question why he did not apparently personally implement it even though he has clearly written in his books about the importance of the Gaura Gopala Mantra. An acharya is free to implement some of his own universal teachings in his books and some he may leave to his followers for implementing as per the desire of the Lord and as per the suitable time, place and circumstances. And it is not a taboo that if an acharya has not personally implemented some of his own teachings in his books no one can ever implement them in the future. Infact Shrila Prabhupada said that everything is in his books and they should be followed even more seriously than simply trying to do and imitate what he has done.
Also please understand it for sure that every word of the Acharya is his books is most applicable and important to all living entities and we should try to implement the teachings in his books rather than simply try to imitate what he has done and try to directly give the the Hare Krishna Mahamantra to everyone because we may not be on his platform and in doing so we may be destroyed by our own offenses and by the offenses of those whom we are directly giving the the Hare Krishna Mahamantra as per Hari Nama Chintamani. Shrila Prabhupada is like a big fire, he can extinguish all the garbage of offenses of his disciples by the dint of his elevated position but not all Gurus may have that kind of capacity and thus they cannot imitate Shrila Prabhupada directly but rather should try to follow his instructions in Shri Chaitanya Charitamrita Adi 8.31 purport of not allowing the people to directly indulge (word used by Shrila Prabhupada) in the chanting of the Hare Krishna Mahamantra without taking very regular shelter of chanting the Names of Nityananda and Gauranga.
Seventh Goswami Shrila Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura has categorically stated in Shri Navadvipa Dhama Mahatmya Chp One that there is no other way for the offensive souls of Kali Yuga other the regular and daily chanting of Gauranga's Name.
The below are some of the quotes where Shrila Prabhupada has authorized and recommended the chanting of the Gauranga Mantraraja:
Shrila Prabhupada in Cc Antya-lila 2.31 purport:
"Therefore one who chants the mantra "gauranga" and one who chants the names of Radha and Krishna are on the same level."
Yoga Student: "...to chant the names of Nitai-Gauranga before we encourage them so much to chant the maha-mantra?"
Prabhupada: "No. Why? Now, what is the difference, Nitai-Gauranga and Hare Krishna? Nitai-Gauranga and Hare Krishna, there is no difference. Nitai-Gauranga is also nice. Whatever he finds convenient, let him chant."
(Shrila Prabhupada's Room Conversation with Yoga Student specifically regarding Japa, March 14, 1975, Iran)
Shrila Prabhupada in Cc Madhya 24.330: "The spiritual master has to select a mantra for his disciple according to the disciple's ability to chant different mantras."
(Shrila Prabhupada in Cc Adi 8.31 purp) "A neophyte student who is not sufficiently educated or enlightened should not indulge in the worship of Shri Radha and Krishna or the chanting of the Hare Krishna mantra. Even if he does so, he cannot get the desired result. One should therefore chant the names of Nitai-Gaura and worship Them without false prestige. In the beginning one should very regularly chant Shri Gaurasundara’s holy name and then chant the holy name of Lord Nityananda. Thus one's heart will be cleansed of impure desires for material enjoyment. Then one can approach Vrndavana-dhama to worship Lord Krishna."
On board the ship Jaladuta, September 13, 1965, Verse 3, by Shrila Prabhupada:
"By his (my Guru Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada's) strong desire, THE HOLY NAME OF GAURANGA will first spread throughout all the countries of the Western world.
Shrila Prabhupada’s Letter to: Shachimata, Bombay, 8 December, 1974:
"It is the advice of Narottama das Thakura to chant the holy name of Gauranga either if one remains at home or in the forest. Similarly, do not forget the chanting of the Hare Krishna mantra either you live in the temple or at home."
Shrila Prabhupada in Shrimad-Bhagavatam Lecture 2.1.2, Vrndavana, March 17, 1974:
"Then you become gosvami. Then, as Narottama dasa Thakura says, grhe va banete thake ha gauranga bole dake. Ha gauranga, 'Always chanting Nitai-Gaura, and thinking of Nitai-Gaura,' such person, Narottama dasa Thakura says... Grhe va... 'He may be a sannyasi, or he may be a grhastha. It doesn't matter. Because he is absorbed in the thought of Nitai-Gaura.' So narottama mage tanra sanga: 'Narottama is always desiring to associate with such person.'"