Dharmashala - Part 1

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

Following is a transcription of a nectarean discourse given by H H Mahavishnu Goswami Maharaj in Sharjah on 10-7-1996.

This whole material manifestation is a big dharmashala. We may stay normally in a dharmashala for 7 days. But in this dharmashala (this world) we may stay for 70 years. But time doesn't matter. Dharmashala is dharmashala. Just like we are not attached to that dharmashala, the same attitude we should have here also. Instead we get attached. This is the result of our material body. Because of this bodily existence we get attached to it. We get attached to that extent that we do not want to leave. Day in and day out I think that my bank balance belongs to me. For the whole life time I am attached to my bank balance. Anybody wakes you up in the middle of the night and ask you, "Hey how much you have in the bank?", immediately we will tell the exact amount. Anything else we will forget. We will forget even the name of our wife. But we will not forget the bank balance. That is our attitude. Then we don't forget our house, we don't forget our children, we don't forget our parents. All these are different attachments. And why? Because we don't know that this is a dharmashala. This is just a temporary mela. We are all now together, this is a fact. This is not a dream. But we know that we are only here for 1 hour and then we may be separated, never to meet again. Who knows? samyujyante viyujyante tatā kālena dehinah - we come together and we get separated by kāla. Kāla separates us and may be never to meet again. This idea never sinks in us. That is why our attachment is very strong. How to develop these ideas? These are eternal ideas. These are not sectarean. Our Sanatana Dharma is not sectarean. If you see America is ruled by Christians, whole Europe is ruled by Christians, Russia is also ruled by Christians. These countries (UAE, Saudi Arabia etc) are ruled by Mohammedans. Why India is not ruled by Hindus? Because our consciousness is very broad. We welcome anybody and everybody and we don't mind tolerating other people. This is Sanatana Dharma attitude. We are very conscious that these are all temporary, whether we are Indian or anything else, one day we have to leave.

And then in the name of modern advancement, we have created so many things to kill ourselves. For eg,. Cars. If you go to India, you cannot breathe in Bombay. You cannot walk. So much dirty air is there. Polluted to that extent that even your clothes gets dirty. Here at least the cars are maintained and they are new. But in India three generations use the same car (laughter), and he is proud that this (car) belongs to my dada (laughter). Dada is gone, your father is also going but the car is still there. He says, "No, No, my son will also use". So fourth generations again. I don't know how much pollution it will throw into the air! And again diesel. If the municipal vehicle comes in front of you, Oh God! It pours the whole black smoke in front of you. This is our advancement! And then so many diseases! These are the results of the modern development. We are ashamed to buy the wheat and grind ourselves. Really ashamed. So we want to buy the readymade flour coming from Canada. I don't know what they have ground there. Is it wheat or not we don't know. But it is written in the cover that it is beautiful wheat flour. And we buy it. The maida they add makes it very thin. It will not be digested at all. And then we develop so many diseases. We have no control over eating. No control over anything in our life. This is a very serious problem of the human existence. We understand that we cannot escape these things. So we have to find out a way to escape. This is the main reason we have come together here.

So don't feel that you are new or you are just acquainted with Krishna consciousness. No, nobody is new. Basically we are all Krishna conscious. What is that nice sentence? jivera svarupa hāya krishnera nitya dāsa. It doesn't say hindu svarupa hayā krishnera nitya dāsa. No. it says jivera svarupa haya, that is the broad outlook of our philosophy. This philosophy, this culture is applicable to everybody. Who doesn't have to take birth? The Christians don't fall from the sky. The Mohammedans don't grow out of the ground. Everybody has to take birth. And those who are born, they have to die. In between birth and death everybody has to become old. You cannot claim that, "I am in Dubai, I have million dirhams in my bank and I don't want to get old." Yamaraj is not Indian government officer that we can bribe him. You have to have the old age. You have to have the diseases, repeated diseases. All these things when we consider practically, then there is no outlet anywhere. We want to escape out of this. But falsely what we do? If we have white hairs, you know first few white hairs. We want to hide it. We will apply oil and comb the hair and cover it so that nobody can see the white hair. We are very much ashamed of old age. And then when we are not able to hide them, we cut them. And if we can't cut them, then we put coal and powder (dye) on it. You die before your death (laughter). And why this whole endeavor? It is just a decoration of the dead body. The body is dying. And we are very proud of our birthdays. 60th birthday, 70th birthday and that person is worshiped! We do not know that 60 years already we have died. It is the deathday, it is not the birthday.  But we call it birthday. Falsely we are under the illusion, "How nice, I am 75 years old". It is not the thing to be enjoyed. We are just near the grave, one leg is already in the grave and one leg is outside. This is the main thing to be understood. And this forces us to come to the Bhagavad-gita and congregations like this. This forces us to come to the saner attitude of the human existence.

We will continue to hear the nectarean discourse by Maharaj in the next mail, Krishna willing.

Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva,
Kalacakra Krsna das