1976 Winnipeg Temple Offering
oṁ ajñāna-timirāndhasya jñānāñjana-śalākayā
cakṣur unmīlitaṁ yena tasmai śrī-gurave namaḥ
We are offering our homage unto the lotus feet of our most illustrious spiritual master, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, on this most auspicious time of his appearance. We are attempting this humble effort to thank him in some small way for the incomparable service he is doing all mankind.
Conditional life within the material world is a miserable state of existence wherein we are tormented my endless desires and bound by unbridled senses. In this way the living entity travels about the universe from heaven to hell in search of pleasure and happiness. Blinded by the bodily concept of life we suffer uncounted torments and thus we are lost in illusion. By māyā s influence we remain in this endless cycle of birth and death until somehow or other we come on contact with a pure devotee of the Lord.
guru-kṛṣṇa-prasāde pāya bhakti-latā-bīja
This process of contacting the spiritual master is further discussed by Kṛṣṇa in Bhagavad-gītā, where the Lord says:
tad viddhi praṇipātena
Kṛṣṇa advises that one should approach a bona fide spiritual master in the line of disciplic succession, inquire from him submissively and render service unto him. Such a spiritual master can dispel all nescience because he has seen the truth, Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa. For one who has submissively rendered service to the spiritual master with great faith and determination and has thus been delivered from the various crocodiles of impersonalism and voidism, he realizes the most confidential of all knowledge, surrender unto the Supreme Lord, Śrī Kṛṣṇa.
yasya deve parā bhaktir
yathā deve tathā gurau
tasyaite kathitā hy arthāḥ
This knowledge, the most valuable of all treasures, is not obtained by any speculative efforts, nor penances and austerities. Nor can it be purchased by quantities of gold. It is available only by the causeless mercy of the pure devotee. Having thus understood our previous ignorance of our constitutional position as eternal servants of Kṛṣṇa (jīvera svarūpa haya—kṛṣṇera nitya-dāsa ) spiritual part and parcels of the supreme whole (mamaivāṁśo jīva-loke jīva-bhūtaḥ sanātanaḥ), one realizes the real standard of happiness (brahmaṇo hi pratiṣṭhāham amṛtas-yāvyayasya ca) and thus engages in the devotional service of the Lord. This is just like a dead man being revived again. Therefore the disciple becomes greatly indebted to the spiritual master, realizing his body, mind, words and soul to be completely the property of his beloved Gurudeva (lokanātha lokera jīvana). For without his mercy we were struggling with death, identifying with dead matter.
Therefore we have incurred a great debt and no amount of gratitude can ever liquidate it. The disciple must dedicate his every moment for the pleasure of the spiritual master.
It is stated in the revealed scriptures that the pure devotee is very much anxious to spread the message of Lord Caitanya—the chanting of His holy name to every town and village. This is actually the mission of our spiritual master, Śrīla Prabhupāda. He is not forced to appear in the material world by the laws of material nature, but he has only descended from the spiritual world to save the fallen conditioned souls. In this great endeavor, the disciple must help his spiritual master to spread the distribution of Bhāgavatam literature in every town around the world and to help fulfill the prediction of Lord Caitanya that the chanting of the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra will go everywhere. This is then our prime goal, to unilaterally and unselfishly agree to help our spiritual master, His Divine Grace, in distributing his mercy and inundating this age of Kali with his pure sound vibration. Thus every word and instruction of Śrīla Prabhupāda must be taken as our life and soul and we must endeavor with all determination to help fulfill his every desire.
Let us further offer our thanks and humble prayers for strength to His Divine Grace and thank him a thousand times over for his kindness in engaging us in his service.
Śivarāma Dāsa / Śukra Dāsa / Rabindra Dāsa / Dharmaprāṇa Dāsa / Nātha Dāsa / Bhūdeva Dāsa / Bhakta John / Bhakta Ken / Bhakta Bruce / Miśrāṇī Devī Dāsī / Lalitā Devī Dāsī / Somya Devī Dāsī / Māyāvatī Devī Dāsī / Bhaktin Nina