1974 Montreal Temple Offering

Category: Offerings to Prabhupāda by Śivarāma Swami

Title: 1974 Montreal Temple Offering

Upload date: 1974-01-01

1974 Montreal Temple Offering

etad eva hi sac-chiṣyaiḥ
kartavyaṁ guru-niṣkṛtam
yad vai viśuddha-bhāvena
sarvārthātmārpaṇaṁ gurau

“In order to repay the debt to the divine master (guru), the only thing a sincere disciple should do is offer everything he has, including his very being, favorably in the eternal service of his guru.” (Bhāg. 10.80.41)

 Śrīla Prabhupāda, only your disciples will be able to understand the meaning of this verse. Generally speaking, the karmīs (non-devotees) like to feel themselves independent, and the controllers of their lives:

prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni
guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ
kartāham iti manyate

“The bewildered spirit soul, under the influence of the three modes of material nature, thinks himself to be the doer of activities, which are in actuality carried out by nature.” (Bhg. 3.27)

 But by your mercy we have learned our real constitutional position in relation to this temporary world, and more important, in relation to Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Jñāna refers to knowledge of self as distinguished from matter. Vijñāna refers to the specific knowledge of the self in relation to the Supreme Self. It is explained thus in the Śrīmad Bhāgavatam:

jñānaṁ parama-guhyaṁ me
yad vijñāna-samanvitam
sarahasyaṁ tad-aṅgaṁ ca
gṛhāṇa gaditaṁ mayā

“Knowledge of the self and the Supreme Self is very confidential and mysterious, being veiled by māyā, but such knowledge and specific realization can be understood if it is explained by the Lord Himself.” (Bhāg. 2.9.31)

Of course the Bhagavad-gītā gives us that knowledge, and it is spoken by the Lord Himself. But how is it that of al the translations of the Gītā, only yours has led people to become devotees of God, Kṛṣṇa? It is because you are a self-realized soul and pure devotee of Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa explains how this knowledge is taught in the Gītā (Bhg. 4.1-3)

imaṁ vivasvate yogaṁ 
proktavān aham avyayam
vivasvān manave prāha
manur ikṣvākave bravīt

evaṁ paramparā-prāptam
imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ
sa kāleneha mahatā
yogo naṣṭaḥ parantapa

sa evāyaṁ mayā te dya
yogaḥ proktaḥ purātanaḥ
bhakto si me sakhā ceti
rahasyaṁ hy etad uttamam

“The Blessed Lord said: I instructed this imperishable science of yoga to the sun-god, Vivasvān, and Vivasvān instructed it to Manu, the father of mankind, and Manu in turn instructed it to Ikṣvāku. This supreme science was thus received through the chain of disciplic succession, and the saintly kings understood it in that way. But in the course of time, the succession was broken, and the science as it is appears to be lost. That very ancient science of the relationship with the Supreme is today told to you by Me because you are my devotee as well as my friend; therefore you can understand the transcendental mystery of this science.”

 In other words the Bhagavad-gītā is not an imaginary theological, philosophical treatise meant to be studied and understood by mundane scholarship. It is the Absolute Truth spoken by God Himself. It is specifically meant for devotees, and it must be received through the disciplic succession of pure devotee spiritual masters, who alone can deliver this message purely on behalf of the Lord.

sākṣād-dharitvena samasta-śāstrair 
uktas tathā bhāvyata eva sadbhiḥ
kintu prabhor yaḥ priya eva tasya
vande guroḥ śrī-caraṇāravindam

“The spiritual master is honored as much as God on account of his being the most confidential servitor of the Lord. This is acknowledged in all revealed scriptures and followed by all authorities. Therefore I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of such a spiritual master, who is a bona fide representative of Śrī Hari [Kṛṣṇa].” (Śrī Gurvaṣṭakam 7)

Also in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam Kṛṣṇa says to His friend Uddhava that one should accept the spiritual master as the Lord’s very self. No one can understand the glories of the spiritual master without following completely his instructions. And if a person is not able to engage his disciples in the transcendental loving service of the Lord, he should not pose himself as a spiritual master. But you are engaged in Kṛṣṇa’s service, and have given us that boon also. You are serving Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, and we are serving Him by serving you.

 One serves the spiritual master according to the desires of the spiritual master, not according to his own desires. A servant means one who carries out the orders of the master. That you have taught us by your own example. It was the desire of your spiritual master that Kṛṣṇa consciousness be presented before the English-speaking people, and you have done it. In doing so, you have not compromised, but have spoken it as it is. That is the success and perfection of you activities, and our success is to assist you in your life’s mission without selfish motivation or desires for personal sense gratification.

Vicaru Dāsa / Bhartṛhari Dāsa / Gokulānanda Dāsa / Praghoṣa Dāsa / Śivarāma Dāsa / Harakumāra Dāsa / Jayabalarāma Dāsa / Bhakta Kevin / Premaniketana Dāsa / Bhakta Rick / Priyabhakta Dāsa / Bhakta Barry / Śukra Dāsa / Bhakta Michael / Bhakta John / Uttamaśoka Dāsa adhikārī / Bahirṣmatī Devī Dāsī / Māyāpur-śaśa Dāsa / Sarvamayī Devī Dāsī / Jotiraditya Devī Dāsī / Sāshvī Devī Dāsī / Śrīkari Devī Dāsī / Bhaktin Cindy / Candra Devī Dāsī / Bhaktin Leona / Mohinī Devī Dāsī / Rādhā Gopīnātha Dāsa