This comes to immediate mind.
CC. Madhya 19.151
“According to their karma, all living entities are wandering throughout the entire universe. Some of them are being elevated to the upper planetary systems, and some are going down into the lower planetary systems. Out of many millions of wandering living entities, one who is very fortunate gets an opportunity to associate with a bona fide spiritual master by the grace of Krishna. By the mercy of both Krishna and the spiritual master, such a person receives the seed of the creeper of devotional service.
When we speak of brahmanda, we refer to the whole universe, or to the cluster of many millions of universes. In all the universes there are innumerable planets, and there are innumerable living entities upon those planets—in the air, on land and in the water. There are millions and trillions of living entities everywhere, and they are engaged by maya in suffering and enjoying the results of their fruitive activity, life after life. This is the position of the materially conditioned living entities. Out of many of these living entities, one who is actually fortunate (bhagyavan) comes in contact with a bona fide spiritual master by Krishna’s mercy.
Krishna is situated in everyone’s heart, and if one desires something, Krishna fulfills one’s desire. If the living entity by chance or fortune comes in contact with the Krishna consciousness movement and wishes to associate with that movement, Krishna, who is situated in everyone’s heart, gives him the chance to meet a bona fide spiritual master. This is called guru-krishna-prasada. Krishna is prepared to bestow His mercy upon all living entities, and as soon as a living entity desires the Lord’s mercy, the Lord immediately gives him an opportunity to meet a bona fide spiritual master. Such a fortunate person is fortified by both Krishna and the spiritual master. He is helped from within by Krishna and from without by the spiritual master. Both are prepared to help the sincere living being become free from material bondage.
How one can become this fortunate can be seen in the life of Srila Narada Muni. In his previous life he was born of a maidservant. Although he was not born into a prestigious position, his mother was fortunately engaged in rendering service to some Vaishnavas. When these Vaishnavas were resting during the Caturmasya period, the boy Narada took the opportunity to engage in their service. Taking compassion upon the boy, the Vaishnavas offered him the remnants of their food. By serving these Vaishnavas and obeying their orders, the boy became the object of their sympathy, and by the Vaishnavas’ unknown mercy, he gradually became a pure devotee. In the next life he was Narada Muni, the most exalted of Vaishnavas and the most important guru and acarya of Vaishnavas.
Following in the footsteps of Narada Muni, this Krishna consciousness movement is rendering service to humanity by giving everyone a chance to come in contact with Krishna. If one is fortunate, he becomes intimately related with this movement. Then, by the grace of Krishna, one’s life becomes successful. Everyone has dormant krishna-bhakti—love for Krishna—and in the association of good devotees, that love is revealed. As stated in the Caitanya-caritamrita (Madhya 22.107):
nitya-siddha-krishna-prema ‘sadhya’ kabhu naya
sravanadi-suddha-citte karaye udaya
Dormant devotional service to Krishna is within everyone. Simply by associating with devotees, hearing their good instructions and chanting the Hare Krishna mantra, dormant love for Krishna is awakened. In this way one acquires the seed of devotional service. Guru-krishna-prasade paya bhakti-lata-bija.
÷±hN ýÃÃÛž± LÁNõþ Îuý×ÃÃ õNæÃ Õ±Nõþ±óí h
|õí-LÁNîSÂd-æÃNh LÁõþNlþ ÎuaÂd N 152 N
mali hana kare sei bija aropana
sravana-kirtana-jale karaye secana
mali hana—becoming a gardener; kare—does; sei—that; bija—seed of devotional service; aropana—sowing; sravana—of hearing; kirtana—of chanting; jale—with the water; karaye—does; secana—sprinkling.
“When a person receives the seed of devotional service, he should take care of it by becoming a gardener and sowing the seed in his heart. If he waters the seed gradually by the process of sravana and kirtana [hearing and chanting], the seed will begin to sprout.
To live with devotees or to live in a temple means to associate with the sravana-kirtana process. Sometimes neophyte devotees think that they can continue the sravana-kirtana process without worshiping the Deity, but the execution of such sravana-kirtana is meant for highly developed devotees like Haridasa Thakura, who engaged in the sravana-kirtana process without worshiping the Deity. However, one should not falsely imitate Haridasa Thakura and abandon Deity worship just to try to engage in sravana-kirtana. This is not possible for neophyte devotees.
The word guru-prasada indicates that the spiritual master is very merciful in bestowing the boon of devotional service upon the disciple. That is the best possible gift the spiritual master has to offer. Those with a background of pious life are eligible to receive life’s supreme benefit, and to bestow this benefit, the Supreme Personality of Godhead sends His representative to impart His mercy. Endowed with the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the spiritual master distributes the mercy to those who are elevated and pious. Thus the spiritual master trains his disciples to render devotional service unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This is called guru-kripa. It is krishna-prasada, Krishna’s mercy, that He sends a bona fide spiritual master to the deserving disciple. By the mercy of Krishna, one meets the bona fide spiritual master, and by the mercy of the spiritual master, the disciple is fully trained in the devotional service of the Lord.
Bhakti-lata-bija means “the seed of devotional service.” Everything has an original cause, or seed. For any idea, program, plan or device, there is first of all the contemplation of the plan, and that is called the bija, or seed. The methods, rules and regulations by which one is perfectly trained in devotional service constitute the bhakti-lata-bija, or seed of devotional service. This bhakti-lata-bija is received from the spiritual master by the grace of Krishna. Other seeds, called anyabhilasha-bija, include karma-bija and jnana-bija. If one is not fortunate enough to receive the bhakti-lata-bija from the spiritual master, he instead cultivates such seeds as karma-bija, jnana-bija, or political, social or philanthropic bijas. However, the bhakti-lata-bija is different from these other bijas. The bhakti-lata-bija can be received only through the mercy of the spiritual master. Therefore one has to satisfy the spiritual master to get the bhakti-lata-bija (yasya prasadad bhagavat-prasadah **). The bhakti-lata-bija is the origin of devotional service. Unless one satisfies the spiritual master, he gets the bija, or root cause, of karma, jnana and yoga without the benefit of devotional service. But one who is faithful to his spiritual master gets the bhakti-lata-bija. This bhakti-lata-bija is received when one is initiated by the bona fide spiritual master. After receiving the spiritual master’s mercy, one must repeat his instructions, and this is called sravana-kirtana—hearing and chanting. One who has not properly heard from the spiritual master or who does not follow the regulative principles is not fit for chanting (kirtana). This is explained in the Bhagavad-gita (2.41): vyavasayatmika buddhir ekeha kuru-nandana. One who has not listened carefully to the instructions of the spiritual master is unfit for chanting or for preaching the cult of devotional service. One has to water the bhakti-lata-bija after receiving instructions from the spiritual master.
nÂ×ó¿æÃlþ± õ±NnÂl hîÂ± ‘õriipÁ±G’ ÎtÂ¿ðÃ’ l±lþ h
‘¿õõþæÃ±’, ‘õriipÁNh±LÁ’ ÎtÂ¿ðÃ’ ‘óõþNõI±÷’ ó±lþ N 153 N
upajiya bade lata ‘brahmanda’ bhedi’ yaya
‘viraja’, ‘brahma-loka’ bhedi’ ‘para-vyoma’ paya
upajiya—being cultivated; bade—grows; lata—the creeper of devotional service; brahmanda—the whole universe; bhedi’—penetrating; yaya—goes; viraja—the river between the spiritual world and the material world; brahma-loka—the Brahman effulgence; bhedi’—penetrating; para-vyoma—the spiritual sky; paya—attains.
“As one waters the bhakti-lata-bija, the seed sprouts, and the creeper gradually grows to the point where it penetrates the walls of this universe and goes beyond the Viraja River, lying between the spiritual world and the material world. It attains brahma-loka, the Brahman effulgence, and penetrating through that stratum, it reaches the spiritual sky and the spiritual planet Goloka Vrindavana.
A creeper generally takes shelter of a big tree, but the bhakti-lata, being the creeper of spiritual energy, cannot take shelter of any material planet, for there is no tree on any material planet that the bhakti creeper can utilize for shelter. In other words, devotional service cannot be utilized for any material purpose. Devotional service is meant only for the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Sometimes men with a poor fund of knowledge maintain that bhakti can be applied to material things also. In other words, they say that devotional service can be rendered to one’s country or to the demigods, but this is not a fact. Devotional service is especially meant for the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and it is beyond this material range. There is a river, or causal ocean, between the spiritual and material natures, and this river is free from the influence of the three modes of material nature; therefore it is called Viraja. The prefix vi means vigata (“completely eradicated”), and rajas means “the influence of the material world.” On this platform, a living entity is completely free from material entanglement. For the jnanis who want to merge into the Brahman effulgence, there is Brahma-loka. The bhakti-lata, however, has no shelter in the material world, nor has it shelter in Brahma-loka, although Brahma-loka is beyond the material world. The bhakti-lata grows until it reaches the spiritual sky, where Goloka Vrindavana is situated.
îÂNõ l±lþ îÂðRió¿õþ ‘Îá±Nh±LÁ-õÔµ±õd’ h
‘LÔÁøžaÂõþí’-LÁŠõÔNŽÂ LÁNõþ Õ±Nõþ±ýÃí N 154 N
tabe yaya tad-upari ‘goloka-vrindavana’
‘krishna-carana’-kalpa-vrikshe kare arohana
tabe—thereafter; yaya—goes; tat-upari—to the top of that (the spiritual sky); goloka-vrindavana—to the planet known as Goloka Vrindavana where Krishna lives; krishna-carana—of the lotus feet of Lord Krishna; kalpa-vrikshe—on the desire tree; kare arohana—climbs.
“Being situated in one’s heart and being watered by sravana-kirtana, the bhakti creeper grows more and more. In this way it attains the shelter of the desire tree of the lotus feet of Krishna, who is eternally situated in the planet known as Goloka Vrindavana, in the topmost region of the spiritual sky.
In the Brahma-samhita (5.37) it is said:
tabhir ya eva nija-rupataya kalabhih
goloka eva nivasaty akhilatma-bhuto
govindam adi-purusham tam aham bhajami
“I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord. He resides in His own realm, Goloka, with Radha, who resembles His own spiritual figure and who embodies the ecstatic potency [hladini]. Their companions are Her confidantes, who embody extensions of Her bodily form and who are imbued and permeated with ever-blissful spiritual rasa.” In the spiritual world, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, has expanded Himself by His spiritual potency. He has His eternal form of bliss and knowledge (sac-cid-ananda-vigraha [bs. 5.1]). Everything in the Goloka Vrindavana planet is a spiritual expansion of sac-cid-ananda. Everyone there is of the same potency—ananda-cinmaya-rasa. The relationship between the Supreme Personality of Godhead and His servitor is cinmaya-rasa. Krishna and His entourage and paraphernalia are of the same cinmaya potency. In this way the Supreme Personality of Godhead is expanded throughout the spiritual world, and when that cinmaya-rasa potency expands through the material potency, it becomes all-pervading. The idea is that although the Supreme Personality of Godhead exists on His own planet, Goloka Vrindavana, He is also present everywhere. Andantara-stha-paramanu-cayantara-stham. He is present within all the universes, although they are innumerable, and He is also present within the atom. Isvarah sarva-bhutanam hrid-dese ’rjuna tishthati: [bg. 18.61] He is also present within the heart of all living entities. This is His all-pervasive potency.
Goloka Vrindavana is the highest planet in the spiritual world. In order to go to the spiritual world after penetrating the covering of the material universe, one must penetrate Brahma-loka, the spiritual effulgence. Then one can come to the Goloka Vrindavana planet. There are also other planets in the spiritual world, called Vaikuntha planets, and on these planets Lord Narayana is worshiped with awe and veneration. On these planets santa-rasa is prevalent, and some of the devotees are also connected with the Supreme Personality of Godhead in dasya-rasa, the mellow of servitorship. As far as the mellow of fraternity is concerned, in Vaikuntha this rasa is represented by gaurava-sakhya, friendship in awe and veneration. The other fraternity rasa, exhibited as visrambha (friendship in equality), is found in the Goloka Vrindavana planet. Above that is service to the Lord in vatsalya-rasa (parental love), and above all is the relationship with the Lord in the madhurya-rasa (conjugal love). These five rasas are fully exhibited in the spiritual world in one’s relationship with the Lord. Therefore in the spiritual world the bhakti creeper finds its resting place at the lotus feet of Krishna.
îÂ±ýDÃÃ± ¿õ™¦±¿õþîÂ ýÃÃÛž± ôÂNh Î›¶÷-ôÂh h
ý×ÃÃýDÃÃ± ÷±hN ÎuNaÂ ¿dîÂI |õí±¿ðÃ æÃh N 155 N
tahan vistarita hana phale prema-phala
ihan mali sece nitya sravanadi jala
tahan—there in the spiritual world (in the Goloka Vrindavana planet); vistarita—expanded; hana—becoming; phale—produces; prema-phala—the fruit known as love of Godhead; ihan—in the material world, where the devotee is still present; mali—exactly like a gardener; sece—sprinkles; nitya—regularly, without fail; sravana-adi jala—the water of sravana, kirtana and so on.
“The creeper greatly expands in the Goloka Vrindavana planet, and there it produces the fruit of love for Krishna. Although remaining in the material world, the gardener regularly sprinkles the creeper with the water of hearing and chanting.
In Goloka Vrindavana the devotees have very intimate relationships with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The devotee engages in the Lord’s service in great ecstatic love. Such love was exhibited personally by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in His teachings to the people of the material world. The fruit of the devotional creeper is the pure desire to serve and please the senses of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Krishnendriya-priti-iccha dhare ‘prema’ nama. (Cc. Adi. 4.165) In the spiritual world one has no desire other than to please the senses of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The conditioned soul within the material world can neither understand nor appreciate how a pure devotee in the material world can render confidential service to the Lord out of feelings of ecstatic love and always engage in pleasing the Supreme Lord’s senses. Although seen within this material world, the pure devotee always engages in the confidential service of the Lord. An ordinary neophyte devotee cannot realize this; therefore it is said, vaishnavera kriya-mudra vijneha na bujhaya. The activities of a pure Vaishnava cannot be understood even by a learned scholar in the material world.
Every living entity is wandering within this universe in different species and on different planetary systems according to his fruitive activities. Out of many millions of living entities, one may be fortunate enough to receive the seed of the bhakti-lata, the creeper of devotional service. By the grace of the spiritual master and Krishna, one nourishes the bhakti-lata by regularly sprinkling it with the water of sravana-kirtana, hearing and chanting. In this way the seed of the bhakti-lata sprouts and grows up and up through the whole universe until it penetrates the covering of the material universe and reaches the spiritual world. The bhakti-lata continues to grow until it reaches the topmost planetary system, Goloka Vrindavana, where Krishna lives. There the creeper takes shelter at the lotus feet of the Lord, and that is its final destination. At that time the creeper begins to grow the fruits of ecstatic love of God. It is the duty of the devotee who nourishes the creeper to be very careful. It is said that the watering of the creeper must continue: ihan mali sece nitya sravanadi jala. It is not that at a certain stage one can stop chanting and hearing and become a mature devotee. If one stops, one certainly falls down from devotional service. Although one may be very much exalted in devotional service, he should not give up the watering process of sravana-kirtana. If one gives up that process, it is due to an offense. This is described in the following verse.
l¿ðÃ Æõøžõ-Õóõþ±sh nÂ×NêÂ ýÃÃ±îÂN ÷±îÂ± h
nÂ×ó±NnÂl õ± ¿riNG, îÂ±õþ q¿m’ l±lþ ó±îÂ± N 156 N
yadi vaishnava-aparadha uthe hati mata
upade va chinde, tara sukhi’ yaya pata
yadi—if; vaishnava-aparadha—an offense at the feet of a Vaishnava; uthe—arises; hati—an elephant; mata—mad; upade—uproots; va—or; chinde—breaks; tara—of the creeper; sukhi’—shriveling up; yaya—goes; pata—the leaf.
“If the devotee commits an offense at the feet of a Vaishnava while cultivating the creeper of devotional service in the material world, his offense is compared to a mad elephant that uproots the creeper and breaks it. In this way the leaves of the creeper are dried up.
One’s devotional attitude increases in the association of a Vaishnava:
tandera carana sevi bhakta-sane vasa
janame janame haya, ei abhilasha
By his personal example, Narottama dasa Thakura stresses that a devotee must always remember to please his predecessor acarya. The Gosvamis are represented by one’s spiritual master. One cannot be an acarya (spiritual master) without following strictly in the disciplic succession of the acaryas. One who is actually serious about advancing in devotional service should desire only to satisfy the previous acaryas. Ei chaya gosani yara, mui tara dasa. One should always think of oneself as a servant of the servant of the acaryas, and thinking this, one should live in the society of Vaishnavas. However, if one thinks that he has become very mature and can live separate from the association of Vaishnavas and thus gives up all the regulative principles due to offending a Vaishnava, one’s position becomes very dangerous. Offenses against the holy name are explained in Adi-lila, Chapter Eight, verse 24. Giving up the regulative principles and living according to one’s whims is compared to a mad elephant, which by force uproots the bhakti-lata and breaks it to pieces. In this way the bhakti-lata shrivels up. Such an offense is especially created when one disobeys the instructions of the spiritual master. This is called guru-avajna. The devotee must therefore be very careful not to commit offenses against the spiritual master by disobeying his instructions. As soon as one is deviated from the instructions of the spiritual master, the uprooting of the bhakti-lata begins, and gradually all the leaves dry up.
îÂ±NîÂ ÷±hN lP LÁ¿õþ’ LÁNõþ Õ±õõþí h
Õóõþ±sh-ýÃ™¦Nõþ ÆlNriÃ d± ýÃÃlþ nÂ×ðAÃá÷ N 157 N
tate mali yatna kari’ kare avarana
aparadha-hastira yaiche na haya udgama
tate—therefore; mali—the gardener devotee; yatna kari’—with great attention; kare—makes; avarana—protective fencing; aparadha—of offenses; hastira—of the elephant; yaiche—so that; na—not; haya—there is; udgama—birth.
“The gardener must defend the creeper by fencing it all around so that the powerful elephant of offenses may not enter.
While the bhakti creeper is growing, the devotee must protect it by fencing it all around. The neophyte devotee must be protected by being surrounded by pure devotees. In this way he will not give the maddened elephant a chance to uproot his bhakti creeper. When one associates with nondevotees, the maddened elephant is set loose. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has said, asat-sanga-tyaga,—ei vaishnava-acara. The first business of a Vaishnava is to give up the company of nondevotees. A so-called mature devotee, however, commits a great offense by giving up the company of pure devotees. The human being is a social animal, and if one gives up the society of pure devotees, he must associate with nondevotees (asat-sanga). By contacting nondevotees and engaging in nondevotional activities, a so-called mature devotee will fall victim to the mad elephant offense. Whatever growth has taken place is quickly uprooted by such an offense. One should therefore be very careful to defend the creeper by fencing it in—that is, by following the regulative principles and associating with pure devotees.
Even if one thinks that there are many pseudo devotees or nondevotees in the Krishna Consciousness Society, still one should stick to the Society; if one thinks the Society’s members are not pure devotees, one can keep direct company with the spiritual master, and if there is any doubt, one should consult the spiritual master. However, unless one follows the spiritual master’s instructions concerning the regulative principles and chanting and hearing the holy name of the Lord, one cannot become a pure devotee. By one’s mental concoctions, one falls down. By associating with nondevotees, one breaks the regulative principles and is thereby lost. In the Upadesamrita (2) of Srila Rupa Gosvami, it is said:
atyaharah prayasas ca prajalpo niyamagrahah
jana-sangas ca laulyam ca shadbhir bhaktir vinasyati
“One’s devotional service is spoiled when he becomes too entangled in the following six activities: (1) eating more than necessary or collecting more funds than required, (2) overendeavoring for mundane things that are very difficult to attain, (3) talking unnecessarily about mundane subject matters, (4) practicing the scriptural rules and regulations only for the sake of following them and not for the sake of spiritual advancement, or rejecting the rules and regulations of the scriptures and working independently or whimsically, (5) associating with worldly-minded persons who are not interested in Krishna consciousness, and (6) being greedy for mundane achievements.”
¿LÁc l¿ðÃ hîÂ±õþ ÕN/ nÂ×NêÂ ‘nÂ×óú±m±’ h
tRiÂ¿M-÷Ri¿MÃ-õ±>±, lîÂ ÕuShmI îÂ±õþ Îhm± N 158 N
kintu yadi latara sange uthe ‘upasakha’
bhukti-mukti-vancha, yata asankhya tara lekha
kintu—but; yadi—if; latara—the creeper of devotional service; sange—with; uthe—arise; upasakha—unwanted creepers; bhukti—for material enjoyment; mukti—for liberation from the material world; vancha—the desires; yata—as many as there are; asankhya—unlimited; tara—of those unwanted creepers; lekha—the writing.
“Sometimes unwanted creepers, such as the creepers of desires for material enjoyment and liberation from the material world, grow along with the creeper of devotional service. The varieties of such unwanted creepers are unlimited.
‘¿d¿ø¸X±aÂ±õþ’, ‘LRiÁiÂNd±iÂN’, ‘æÃNõ¿ýÃÃShud’ h
‘h±tÂ’, ‘óÓæÃ±’, ‘›¶¿îÂ‡Â±¿ðÃ’ lîÂ nÂ×óú±m±áí N 159 N
‘nishiddhacara’, ‘kutinati’, ‘jiva-himsana’
‘labha’, ‘puja’, ‘pratishthadi’ yata upasakha-gana
nishiddha-acara—behavior not to be exhibited by a person desiring to become perfect; kutinati—diplomacy; jiva-himsana—unnecessarily killing animals or the soul; labha—profit according to material calculations; puja—adoration achieved by satisfying mundane people; pratishtha-adi—becoming an important man in material calculations, and so on; yata—all these; upasakha-gana—unnecessary creepers.
“Some unnecessary creepers growing with the bhakti creeper are the creepers of behavior unacceptable for those trying to attain perfection, diplomatic behavior, animal-killing, mundane profiteering, mundane adoration and mundane importance. All these are unwanted creepers.
There is a certain pattern of behavior prescribed for those actually trying to become perfect. In our Krishna consciousness movement we advise our students not to eat meat, not to gamble, not to engage in illicit sex and not to indulge in intoxication. People who indulge in these activities can never become perfect; therefore these regulative principles are for those interested in becoming perfect and going back to Godhead. Kutinati, or diplomatic behavior, cannot satisfy the atma, the soul. It cannot even satisfy the body or the mind. The culprit mind is always suspicious; therefore our dealings should always be straightforward and approved by Vedic authorities. If we treat people diplomatically or duplicitously, our spiritual advancement is obstructed. Jiva-himsana refers to the killing of animals or to envy of other living entities. The killing of poor animals is undoubtedly due to envy of those animals. The human form is meant for the understanding of Krishna consciousness (athato brahma jijnasa), for inquiring about the Supreme Brahman. In the human form, everyone has a chance to understand the Supreme Brahman. The so-called leaders of human society do not know the real aim of human life and are therefore busy with economic development. This is misleading. Every state and every society is busy trying to improve the quality of eating, sleeping, mating and defending. This human form of life is meant for more than these four animal principles. Eating, sleeping, mating and defending are problems found in the animal kingdom, and the animals have solved these problems without difficulty. Why should human society be so busy trying to solve these problems? The difficulty is that people are not educated to understand this simple philosophy. They think that advancement of civilization means increasing sense gratification.
There are many religious propagandists who do not know how the ultimate problems of life can be solved, and they also try to educate people in a form of sense gratification. This is also jiva-himsana. Real knowledge is not given, and religionists mislead the general populace. As far as material profits are concerned, one should know that whatever material profit one has must be abandoned at the time of death. Unfortunately people do not know that there is life after death; therefore mundane people waste their time amassing material profit which has to be left behind at the time of death. Such profit has no eternal benefit. Similarly, adoration by mundane people is valueless because after death one has to accept another body. Material adoration and titles are decorations that cannot be carried over to the next body. In the next life, everything is forgotten.
All these obstructions have been described in this verse as unwanted creepers. They simply present obstacles for the real creeper, the bhakti-lata. One should be very careful to avoid all these unwanted things. Sometimes these unwanted creepers look exactly like the bhakti creeper. They appear to be of the same size and the same species when they are packed together with the bhakti creeper, but in spite of this, the creepers are called upasakha. A pure devotee can distinguish between the bhakti creeper and a mundane creeper, and he is very alert to distinguish them and keep them separate.
ÎuLÁæÃh ó±Ûž± nÂ×óú±m± õ±¿nÂl’ l±lþ h
™¦t ýÃÃÛž± ÷Óhú±m± õ±¿nÂlNîÂ d± ó±lþ N 160 N
seka-jala pana upasakha badi’ yaya
stabdha hana mula-sakha badite na paya
seka-jala—sprinkling water; pana—getting; upasakha—the unwanted creepers; badi’ yaya—grow luxuriantly; stabdha hana—becoming stopped; mula-sakha—the chief creeper; badite—to increase; na paya—is not able.
“If one does not distinguish between the bhakti creeper and the other creepers, the sprinkling of water is misused because the other creepers are nourished while the bhakti creeper is curtailed.
If one chants the Hare Krishna mantra while committing offenses, these unwanted creepers will grow. One should not take advantage of chanting the Hare Krishna mantra for some material profit. As mentioned in verse 159:
‘nishiddhacara’, ‘kutinati’, ‘jiva-himsana’
‘labha’, ‘puja’, ‘pratishthadi’ yata upasakha-gana
The unwanted creepers have been described by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura. He states that if one hears and chants without trying to give up offenses, one becomes materially attached to sense gratification. One may also desire freedom from material bondage like the Mayavadis, or one may become attached to the yoga-siddhis and desire wonderful yogic powers. If one is attached to wonderful material activities, one is called siddhi-lobhi, greedy for material perfection. One may also be victimized by diplomatic or crooked behavior, or one may associate with women for illicit sex. One may make a show of devotional service like the prakrita-sahajiyas, or one may try to support his philosophy by joining some caste or identifying himself with a certain dynasty, claiming a monopoly on spiritual advancement. Thus with the support of family tradition, one may become a pseudo guru, or so-called spiritual master. One may become attached to the four sinful activities—illicit sex, intoxication, gambling and meat-eating—or one may consider a Vaishnava to belong to a mundane caste or creed. One may think, “This is a Hindu Vaishnava, and this is a European Vaishnava. European Vaishnavas are not allowed to enter the temples.” In other words, one may consider Vaishnavas in terms of birth, thinking one a brahmana Vaishnava, another a sudra Vaishnava, another a mleccha Vaishnava and so on. One may also try to carry out a professional business by means of chanting the Hare Krishna mantra or reading Srimad-Bhagavatam, or one may try to increase his monetary strength by illegal means. Also, one may become a cheap Vaishnava by trying to chant in a secluded place for material adoration, or one may desire mundane reputation by making compromises with nondevotees concerning one’s philosophy or spiritual life, or one may become a supporter of a hereditary caste system. All these are pitfalls of personal sense gratification. Just to cheat some innocent people, one makes a show of advanced spiritual life and becomes known as a sadhu, mahatma or religious person. All this means that the so-called devotee has become victimized by all these unwanted creepers and that the real creeper, the bhakti-lata, has been stunted.
›¶nN÷ý×ÃÃ nÂ×óú±m±õþ LÁõþNlþ ÎriÃðÃd h
îÂNõ ÷Óhú±m± õ±¿nÂl’ l±lþ õÔµ±õd N 161 N
prathamei upasakhara karaye chedana
tabe mula-sakha badi’ yaya vrindavana
prathamei—from the very beginning; upasakhara—of the unwanted creepers; karaye—does; chedana—the cutting away; tabe—then only; mula-sakha—the chief creeper; badi’—growing; yaya—goes; vrindavana—to the lotus feet of Lord Sri Krishna in Vrindavana.
“As soon as an intelligent devotee sees an unwanted creeper growing beside the original creeper, he must cut it down instantly. Then the real creeper, the bhakti-lata, grows nicely, returns home, back to Godhead, and seeks shelter under the lotus feet of Krishna.
If one is misled by unwanted creepers and is victimized, he cannot make progress back to Godhead. Rather, he remains within the material world and engages in activities having nothing to do with pure devotional service. Such a person may be elevated to the higher planetary systems, but because he remains within the material world, he is subjected to the threefold material miseries.
‘Î›¶÷ôÂh’ ó±¿LÁ’ óNnÂl, ÷±hN Õ±¦¤±ðÃlþ h
hîÂ± Õõh¿¥¤’ ÷±hN ‘LÁŠõÔŽÂ’ ó±lþ N 162 N
‘prema-phala’ paki’ pade, mali asvadaya
lata avalambi’ mali ‘kalpa-vriksha’ paya
prema-phala—the fruit of love of God; paki’—becoming mature; pade—falls down; mali—the gardener; asvadaya—tastes; lata avalambi’—taking advantage of the growing bhakti-lata; mali—the gardener; kalpa-vriksha paya—reaches the desire tree in Goloka Vrindavana.
“When the fruit of devotional service becomes ripe and falls down, the gardener tastes the fruit and thus takes advantage of the creeper and reaches the desire tree of the lotus feet of Krishna in Goloka Vrindavana.