The Saga of Supreme Sacrifice

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

Once Indra, being too absorbed in material opulence, forgot himself and did not respect his spiritual master Brhaspati, who thus became aware of Indra's pride in his material opulence and immediately disappeared from the assembly to teach him a lesson. Indra repented that because of his opulence he had forgotten to respect his spiritual master. He left the palace to beg pardon from his spiritual master, but could not find Brhaspati anywhere. Now demons came to know about demigods being directionless due to unavailability of their spiritual master. So under the guidance of Shukracarya, demons attacked devatas and defeated them easily. The demigods who had won all the previous battles with demons, lost this time due to offending their spiritual master. Demigods were beaten up badly in this battle and so they approached Brahmaji, who in turn chastised them for offending their spiritual master out of ignorance. Nonetheless, Brahmaji advised demigods to approach Visvarupa, son of Tvasta muni who had become very powerful in his young age due to austerity and penance. Brahmaji asked demigods to accept Vishvarup as their Guru. 

When demigods approached Visvarupa requesting him to be their guru, Visvarupa said a very important thing. He said he was ready to accept priesthood of devatas even though it would cause loss of his previously acquired brahminical power. And he would do it by dedicating his life and possessions.

This statement of Visvarupa touched me to the core of my heart because it reminded me of our beloved Gurudev H H Mahavishnu Goswami Maharaj. Our beloved Maharaj, left everything he had, all the possessions he had acquired throughout his life by sheer hard work, sometimes maintaining the family by doing 2 to 3 jobs at a time. He had single handedly taken care of his family by performing all his duties accurately. He left all the financial security, house, car, property to live an austere life of bhakti in vanaprastha ashram, which added to his devotional service performed throughout his lifetime as he belonged to a Vaishnava Family. He had many pious credits to his account too. He then took sannyasa at a very later stage in life, when his health did not support him well. Normally people with ill health prefer to stay at home, under the care of their family hoping to live a comfortable life using the wealth they had acquired. But Maharaj was not one of them. He, at the advanced age, with ill-health, decided to leave all the comforts and emotional security that his family provided. He left his loving family to live an austere vanaprastha life. He did so by sleeping on simple mat on the floor and not on bed, (even in cold country like UK) and having meagre possessions like Bhagavatam set and 2 sets of dhoti, that’s all. All day he read Srimad Bhagavatam for 9 years continuously and finally he accepted sannyasa too. 

Srila Prabhupada in his purport to Srimad Bhagavatam verse says, "Normally learned brahmanas do not accept priesthood, because it means one loses all the results of his pious acts previously performed, by neutralizing the sinful reactions of disciples." So its definitely a supreme sacrifice that one does by accepting sannyasa. One sacrifice is of gross material possessions while the other sacrifice is at much higher level which is taking the sinful reactions of disciples. So practically speaking, spiritual master accepting disciples, is an extremely difficult sacrifice out of compassion for conditioned souls. How can we ever repay for this great act of sacrifice?

Further when Visvarupa said that he would fulfill all his duties by dedicating his life and possessions, though Maharaj never revealed to us the amount of sacrifices he had done for all of us, by the will of providence we got to know that he did dedicate his entire life for us and he did give up his all possessions just for us. Try finding a single person in entire three worlds, who would have sacrificed for us to this extent and we would fail to do so, because there is truly no one who loves us beyond this body. There is truly no one who genuinely cares for us beyond what services we can offer or we can’t offer. Without expecting anything in return, million times more love than a mother would to her child, Gurudev has loved us day and night. He has had several communications with Krishna just to resolve our issues and help us cultivate faith in bhakti. He has taken burden of all our sins and suffered physically but never ever said that he was suffering because of us. How in this world or in this lifetime or in millions of lifetimes will we ever be able to repay the profound favor that he has bestowed upon us?

Above story also made me realize few more things, that when one offends his spiritual master, even though spiritual master may not say anything externally, just like how Brihaspati just walked away without saying a word, the result is fixed and that is defeat. It is as good as army of lakhs and lakhs of soldiers is ought to loose in the absence of leader, even if all the soldiers are well equipped with weapons and talents and have all the required skills to defeat the enemy. But just the absence of leader dictates the defeat of entire army. What we need to understand is that we will have to keep Maharaj alive in our memories all the time so that demons like 6 anarthas (kaam,krodha,lobha, moha, mada, matsarya) doesn’t win. The only solution is to keep pleasing Gurudev yena kena prakārena.

I really pray that I remember what I have just written, by mercy of Maharaj who enters into our heart, whenever we try to write for the pleasure of Guru and Krishna. Our heartfelt gratitude over and over again million times towards our beloved Gurudev for all the sacrifices he has done for us.

Thank you very much,
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev,
Vinayasheel devi dasi