Stop Pampering - Part 3

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev.

The following is the concluding part of the notes from His Holiness Mahavishnu Goswami Maharaj’s class on Srimad Bhagavatam verse 5.10.10, in London on October 28, 2007.

In the previous offerings we learned from Maharaja that we must be very alert to avoid the bodily concept in all spheres of life, because it inevitably leads to pampering the body, which makes us completely lose the spiritual concept of life all together.

I asked the following question to Maharaja: "After coming back from India last time, I was very skinny-looking. One devotee told me that I should eat more, because it's bad preaching to look very skinny and so on."

Maharaja immediately answered, "We're not in control of skinny or fat. Krishna is. If you are not fit to preach, limit your services; do temple worship instead. It doesn't mean that we should eat more and then preach more. Preaching is Krishna's activity. It's up to Him to use us or not. For preaching of course, we should look good, you know. Our clothes should be clean etc. Healthy appearance is good. Actually, the mind frames the body. If the mind is clean then the body is going to be good. But if the mind is full of scratch then the body will also appear unhealthy. And association is most important, bhakta's association is the best! If material association, then the health will definitely be bad. The one thing we should remember here is that we should not be merciful to ourselves."

Following Maharaja, we again recited Srimad Bhagavatam verse 5.10.10 in unison.

sthaulyaṁ kārśyaṁ vyādhaya ādhayaś ca
kṣut tṛḍ bhayaṁ kalir icchā jarā ca
nidrā ratir manyur ahaṁ madaḥ śuco
dehena jātasya hi me na santi

Fatness, thinness, bodily and mental distress, thirst, hunger, fear, disagreement, desires for material happiness, old age, sleep, attachment for material possessions, anger, lamentation, illusion and identification of the body with the self are all transformations of the material covering of the spirit soul. A person absorbed in the material bodily conception is affected by these things, but I am free from all bodily conceptions. Consequently I am neither fat nor skinny nor anything else you have mentioned.

Maharaja said, "This verse again helps us to avoid pampering the body. However we pamper the body, it will have to fall down anyway, you know. This material desire must be checked. viṣayā vinivartante - you see, if we stop to eat, the tasting mellow will still be there! That mellow can only go away by continuous reciting scripture that is non-different from Krishna. nityaṁ bhāgavata-sevayā: then you will not lack anything else. Self-sufficiency and independence is needed, even in old age. Our bodily consciousness never leaves us, never. Unless we try very hard, it is very difficult to get out of this consciousness. Constant cleaning of the heart is required!"

Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva,
Amogha-drk Krishna das