Successful Life

23rd Sep 2020
Sudarshana devi dasi

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

Krishna has blessed with one mouth and two ears so that we hear more and speak less. Particularly when we approach spiritual master, elders, saintly people it is important that we hear more from them. But these days we find that everyone of us have urge to speak more than to listen from others. When we are in this mood, it will not be possible for us to receive the knowledge from others. Our beloved spiritual master HH Mahavishnu Goswami Maharaj says that when we approach a spiritual master, our hearts should be like clean slate. Then we would be able to receive the knowledge from the acaryas nicely. But if we approach them with our own speculations and misconception, falsely thinking that we know better, we would not be the reseptacle of the priceless wisdom from them. In third canto 22nd chapter of Srimad Bhagavatam we find that Svayambhuva, although being a emperor of the whole world, went to the ashram of Kardama Muni, paid his obeisances, waited patiently for the sage to speak first. When the sage greeted him and glorified him for being a good emperor and following all Vedic injunctions, Manu very humbly says in Srimad Bhagavatam 3.22.7 that he is very fortunate to hear such nice instructions on how to be a good king. 

diṣṭyā tvayānuśiṣṭo ’haṁ kṛtaś cānugraho mahān
apāvṛtaiḥ karṇa-randhrair juṣṭā diṣṭyośatīr giraḥ

I have fortunately been instructed by you, and thus great favor has been bestowed upon me. I thank God that I have listened with open ears to your pure words.

Manu is teaching us by his personal example as to how we should approach saintly people and the way to make best use of such association. The words 'uśatīḥ' means pure and 'giraḥ' means words. The words emanating from the lotus mouth of such exalted saintly people are all pure and so we should receive them with great attention. To emphasise this the words 'apāvṛtaiḥ karṇa-randhrair' is being used in the above verse. apāvṛtaiḥ means open and karṇa-randhrair means holes of the ears. In conditioned state, we fail to realise the great fortune of meeting devotees and hearing from them. And therefore we continue to be entangled with miseries of the world. 

Srila Prabhupada in his purport to the above verse, very nicely reveals how Manu felt on meeting the great sage. "Manu said that since he was advised and instructed by Kardama Muni, he was very much favored. He considered himself lucky to receive the message by aural reception. It is especially mentioned here that one should be very inquisitive to hear with open ears from the authorized source of the bona fide spiritual master. How is one to receive? One should receive the transcendental message by aural reception. The word karṇa-randhraiḥ means “through the holes of the ears.” The favor of the spiritual master is not received through any other part of the body but the ears. This does not mean, however, that the spiritual master gives a particular type of mantra through the ears in exchange for some dollars and if the man meditates on that he achieves perfection and becomes God within six months. Such reception through the ears is bogus. The real fact is that a bona fide spiritual master knows the nature of a particular man and what sort of duties he can perform in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and he instructs him in that way. He instructs him through the ear, not privately, but publicly. “You are fit for such and such work in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. You can act in this way.” One person is advised to act in Kṛṣṇa consciousness by working in the Deities’ room, another is advised to act in Kṛṣṇa consciousness by performing editorial work, another is advised to do preaching work, and another is advised to carry out Kṛṣṇa consciousness in the cooking department. There are different departments of activity in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and a spiritual master, knowing the particular ability of a particular man, trains him in such a way that by his tendency to act he becomes perfect."

If not for the direction of spiritual master, we will be tottering in the waves of material ocean, not knowing our destination. But spiritual master, like a lighthouse guides us to final destination - which is Goloka. So what is the duty of disciple after meeting and receiving instruction from the spiritual master?  His Divine Grace very nicely mentions that in the concluding lines of the purport. "He should faithfully try to execute that particular instruction and should consider that his life and soul. The faithful execution of the instruction which he receives from the spiritual master is the only duty of a disciple, and that will bring him perfection. One should be very careful to receive the message from the spiritual master through the ears and execute it faithfully. That will make one's life successful."

Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva,
Sudarshana devi dasi.