(An excerpt of a speech delivered by Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj)
“You are all fully aware that singing the name of God (kirtan) is the means to God-realisation. God’s name can make you cross the ocean of material existence. Yes, you all know that. But do you know what is the first prerequisite or condition when doing God’s kirtan?
“Harer Namaiva Namaiva Namaiva Mama Jeevanam
Kalau Nasty eva Nasty eva Nasty eva Ghatir anyatha”
Mahaprabhu Ji used to recite this favourite sloka (verse) many times. “O worldly people, don’t get too involved in intellectual debates and quarrels; just remember this much knowledge – the only means of deliverance is the chanting of the holy name of God. There is no other way.
All else – Dharm, karm, yog, gyan, whatever you can think of and have read is wrong and misleading.
“Trinadapi suneechen tarorapi sahishnunah
Amaninah manden keertaneeyah sada Harih”
(Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu)
A devotee should not seek praise or compliments, but rather have respect for others (amaninah manden). He must be more humble than a blade of grass (trinadapi suneechen) and forgiving as a tree (tarorapi sahishnunah). Living like this, a devotee should always chant Krishna name with affinity while remembering His leelas, Grace and kindness (keertaneeyah sada Harih).
When you walk on the soft grass, you enjoy the feeling, and want to walk on it over and over again. Did you know that this grass is a living being? Yes, it is. Even today’s scientists have accepted this. You step over a living thing and put your whole weight over it. The poor grass was enjoying itself, fluttering in the wind and you went and put your feet over it and squashed it to the ground. How miserable it must feel! You do not care the least and continue to trample all over it. The grass does not complain even though you kept on walking over it again and again. Gaurang Mahaprabhu says that you have to become even more humble than that blade of grass. This is the very first instruction.
Being the followers of Mahaprabhu Ji, put your hand on your heart and introspect if any of you have actually followed this instruction at all? Not one of you sitting here does. Someone says something bitter to you and you immediately get all worked up and mad with anger. Why are you angry with what he says? He must have said that you are an angry, jealous, greedy or lusty person. Apart from this, what can anyone say? All these are natural attributes of Maya and inside all of us.
Accept it as a fact. From infinite lifetimes, you have been a sinner, engaging in lust, anger, greed and such vices. If anyone pointed out any of these vices to you, why do you feel bad? Answer me. If you feel bad, you have gone against your Guru’s teachings and God. You went against what was taught to you. You considered your mind to be superior to what you had been taught by Guru and scriptures. As far as you are concerned, the Scriptures and Guru can say anything, but you are not going to change.
Whatever wrongs we do in our daily life is due to the fact that we forget the Tatva Gyan (philosophy taught by Guru), When you are in a normal state of mind and someone asks you, “What conditions must we abide by when we do Bhagwan Bhakti, Naam sankirtan, etc.?” You enthusiastically reply, “You have to be humble like grass, more forgiving than a tree, give others respect but do not expect respect from others, etc. Maharaji had said all this.” Since you can explain it so well then, why don’t you believe this and practise it yourself.
You forgot it all just a while ago. How did that happen? For example – there is a revolver lying next to you and a man is threatening you with a stick and you are shaking in fright. You could just pick up the revolver, and order the person to throw that stick down, and put his hands up, and he would do it instantly.
You have such a powerful weapon in your hands – the Tatva Gyan (scriptural knowledge) – thanks to Guru and God’s Grace. Why don’t you apply it at the appropriate time? It just shows the level of carelessness on your part, nothing else.”
(Lord Chatainya Mahaprabhu was born about 500 years ago in the Nadia district of Eastern India. His childhood name was Nimai. When he was only a few weeks old, he showed to the world that he was not an ordinary child. He cried continuously and no one could quiet him. His mother, in distress, watched him. Then someone said “Hari bol, Hari bol” and the baby instantly stopped crying and began to gaze at that person and smile. From that day onwards, whenever he cried, the names of “Hari bol” would resound through the house. In this way, he introduced the name of Shri Krishna to the people of the house.
In another incident, a Brahmin going on a pilgrimage happened to stay the night in Nimai’s home. In the evening, he cooked food and offered it to his deity by closing his eyes and praying to God. Nimai slowly crept close to him and began to eat the offered food. When the Brahmin opened his eyes, he saw Baby Krishna eating his offering. He felt so much love that he could not absorb it and fainted.
Some years later, Nimai went to a Sanskrit college. Within two years, he completed his studies and exceeded even his teachers who were amazed at his supreme intelligence. After some years, he decided to reveal his actual personality of Divine Love and spread the name of Lord Krishna. He went to Gaya and returned as a great devotee often swooning at the name of Krishna and entering into Divine love trance.
Maharaprabhu Ji would conduct satsangs for his devotees where he would impart the deepest love to deserving and longing souls. He would speak on the Bhagwatam and attainment of Divine Love. He revealed eight verses called “Shikchastak” in which he imbued the secrets of God realisation. These eight verses explain the whole theory of divine love consciousness. They have great devotional power and are imparted for the devotionally dedicated and deserving souls by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the descension of the Supreme Divine Love power, Radha herself.
In his last five years, Mahaprabhuji, lived near a temple of Jagannathji in East India, and remained 24 hours a day in ecstasy of Krishna love. In this semi-conscious state, his closest disciples cared for his physical body. The period of his descension on the earth came to an end, and one morning, he went to the temple of Jagannathji. Mahaprabhuji, in his Divine excitement, ran towards the deity and disappeared, entering into his Divine Abode, Golok and leaving behind him those eight verses which have become the guideline for the seekers of Divine love).
*A brief introduction of Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj*
(Known by His devotees as Shri Maharajji)
The original title of Jagadguruttam (‘Greatest Spiritual Teacher of the World’) was bestowed upon Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj on January 14, 1957 by ‘Kashi Vidvat Parishad’ (a council of 500 greatest scholars saints of India). He composed divine texts like ‘Prem Ras Madira’, ‘Prem Ras Siddhant’, and ‘Radha Govind Geet’ to lead us on the right path of devotion. He also gave priceless monuments as gifts to the world which include - Bhakti Mandir located in Bhakti Dham, Mangarh, Prem Mandir located in Vrindavan Dham, and Kirti Mandir located in Barsana Dham. Shri Maharajji also built hospitals for the impoverished, the Jagadguru Kripalu Chikitsalaya in Vrindavan, Jagadguru Kripalu Chikitsalaya in Barsana, and another one in Pratapgarh. All three help millions of underprivileged to gain free access to medical care. His Kindergarten, School, and College for impoverished girls Jagadguru Kripalu Parishat Education is located in Kunda and provides completely free education.