Dear Respected Visitor,
Please accept our humble obeisance. We welcome you to the website of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math, a spiritual institution for practising and spreading spiritual life under the guidance and shelter of Sri Guru.
This website was created and is maintained on the order and under the auspice of Om Vishnupad Jagad-Guru Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj as a source of guidance and spiritual nourishment for all the sincere seekers and disciples worldwide.
We humbly pray that this website may become a living extension of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math, whose glories and mission are proclaimed by Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj himself:
"In the Holy Abode of transcendental touchstone Sri Nabadwip Dham—the selfsame Sri Vrindavan, in the land of Koladwip, whose inner identity is the King of mountains Sri Govardhan, near the charming shores of the holy River Bhagirathi who delivers all the fallen souls, stands that grand and glorious King of all Temples—Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math.
"In that beautiful retreat, the surrendered devotees whose lives are the message of Sri Gaura, are eternally absorbed in the loving service of the Divine Master, the Golden Lord Gauranga, and the Loving Lord Sri Govindasundar with His consort Srimati Gandharva, accompanied by all Their associates.
"With hearts always filled with good hope to attain the grace of the Lord, following faithfully in the line of Sri Rupa and Sri Raghunath—the storekeepers of the unlimited treasure of pure, sweet love divine, those surrendered souls ever sing the unending glories of the transcendental name and qualities of the most magnanimous, original Supreme Lord Sri Sri Gaurangasundar.
"Indeed the hearts of all beings, moving and still, marvel in the glory of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math as they take shelter in the soothing, affectionate shade of the victory flag that flies aloft and sings wholeheartedly to the world the ever-expanding renown of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math; bearing the banner of all transcendental benedictions, Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math ever shines resplendent in all its divine magnificence."
(Composed by Srila B.R. Sridhar Maharaj while residing on the banks of the Ganges in 1941. Rendered into English from the Bengali translation that was made by Srila B.S. Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj.)
What Is Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math
(A chapter from His Divine Grace Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj's book Guidance, Volume 3)
To explain to this world what Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is, what its purpose, preaching matter or distinctions are, is an extremely difficult task, but it is even more difficult to make those who are engrossed in and inspired by the commonplace ideas appreciate it even partially. Still, this Math's Founder-Acharya Om Visnupad Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj, his successor Sevaite-Acharya Om Visnupad Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj and his appointed current President-Acharya Om Visnupad Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj, strive tirelessly to rescue the conditioned souls in India, as well as all over the world, through practising and preaching the teachings of Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu in a pure way, following the path of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur.
The Founder-Acharya of the worldwide Sri Chaitanya Math and Gaudiya Math Bhagavan Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Goswami Thakur Prabhupad preached the teachings of Mahaprabhu all over the world, and among the dikpal (worshippable guardian) acharyas who came to help him, there was Om Visnupad Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj, a true scholar of Sanskrit and a great teacher. Srila Sridhar Maharaj took shelter at the feet of His Gurudev Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur in 1926. Seeing Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj's unflinching erudition and other devotional qualities, Srila Prabhupad conferred upon him the sannyas order in 1930. Sri Prabhupada-padma Stavakah (Sujanarvuda-radhita-pada-yugam) composed by Srila Sridhar Maharaj proved very dear to the devotees and is to this day chanted at all Gaudiya Maths. When Srila Prabhupad saw Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj's Srimad Bhaktivinod Viraha Dasakam, he was very happy. You all know that just before Srila Prabhupad disappeared, his heart was touched by the kirtan Sri Rupa-manjari-pada that he had listened to from Srila Sridhar Maharaj's mouth.
After Srila Prabhupad's disappearance, feeling extremely dejected, Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj left for Vrindavan. There, he stayed at Pavan-sarovar, near Nanda-gram. At that time, he received an akas-vani (divine message) from Srila Prabhupad and Srimati Radharani. Srila Prabhupad told him, "I have kept you here so that you could preach Rupa-Raghunath's line and rescue the conditioned souls—why have you then come to Vrindavan to practise on your own, in solitude?" Hearing this message, Srila Sridhar Maharaj immediately left Vrindavan and came to Sri Kolerganj, Nabadwip Dham. There, he made a thatched house on the bank of the Ganges and named it Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math. It was 1941. After that, many of Srila Prabhupad's disciples came to Srila Sridhar Maharaj and many among them also took initiation into the sannyas mantra from him.
When the Founder-Acharya of ISKCON Om Visnupad Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj was preaching in various countries, his disciples asked him, "Who will we hear Hari-katha from after you?" In reply to that, Srila Swami Maharaj said, "Srila Sridhar Maharaj is my siksa-guru and a bona fide Vaisnav and scholar. If you listen to Hari-katha from him, you will achieve spiritual advancement and I will also be happy." Following that, many devotees from Western countries surrendered to Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj.
Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj took shelter at the lotus feet of Srila Guru Maharaj in 1947. When he first took brahmacharya initiation, his name was Sri Gaurendu Brahmachari. During his brahmachari life, Srila Gurudev did a lot of service to Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math and helped Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj in many ways. In 1985, Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj conferred sannyas and the name Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj onto our Sri Gurupadpadma. At that time, Srila Guru Maharaj handed over all responsibility for Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math to him. After Srila Sridhar Maharaj's disappearance in 1988, Srila Gurudev tirelessly and assiduously preached the teachings of Sri Chaitanya in various corners of the world and opened 130 branches of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math.
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj took shelter at the lotus feet of Srila Gurudev in 1992. When he first came to the shelter of Gurudev, the brahmachari name he was given was Sri Vinod Ranjan Brahmachari. Since that time, following the order of his Gurudev, he has been expanding the branches of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math in various corners of India, West Bengal in particular. In 1999, Srila Gurudev conferred sannyas order onto him and his name became Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj. Inspired by Srila Sridhar Maharaj and striving to fulfil the strong desire of his Srila Gurudev, he renovated Govinda Kunda at Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math, Nabadwip, and established there the temples of Sri Giriraj and Lord Siva. He also installed the Deities of Sri Gaura Nityananda at the birthplace of Sri Nityananda Prabhu in Ekachakra.
In 2009, on his holy appearance day, Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj declared and appointed Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj the future President-Acharya of the Temple in front of Indian and foreign devotees.
After Srila Gurudev's disappearance in 2010, by the assiduous effort and blessings of Srila Gurudev, he has been fulfilling Srila Gurudev's desire and establishing temples in various places in India and abroad.
Below we have tried to present an overview of some of the distinctions of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math:
1) Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is not one of the numerous organisations existent in this world, nor is it their competitor; nor does it claim that you must consider it the best in comparison to any of them because more or less the majority of the organisations in this world aim at religiosity, material prosperity, sense gratification, and liberation or claim to be preachers of some concocted religion in the name of devotion.
2) Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math preaches and practises selfless devotion to the Lord. In this world, there is no scarcity of organisations that practise false devotion or display external rituals of devotion. It is a distinctive characteristic of this holy Math (temple) that it first studies what such show-off devotion or material pursuits behind it are (the frenzy of the desires for dharma, artha, kama, moksa—religiosity, prosperity, sense gratification, liberation), and then creates a moat around the fort of pure devotion that protects it carefully against them.
3) Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math does not consider devotion to be a faculty of body and mind. Devotion is realised as an unrestrained, causeless, natural and eternal propensity of the soul devoid of any material designations and fixed at the lotus feet of Lord Krishna. Whereas various organisations accept the word 'devotion', some even go as far as to superficially claim that devotion is the best of the four goals of life (religiosity, material prosperity, sense gratification, liberation); others consider that devotion is one of the remedies comparable to other practices such as karma, jnana, yoga, etc.; yet others accept (superficially, lip-deep only) that devotion is the highest among such practices; but they all describe devotion as per se more or less a conscious or unconscious propensity of the mind. Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is ready to neither compromise devotion in any way nor jumble it with any mental faculty.
4) Concocted religious bigotry (fanaticism) and the so called unifying doctrines with their bitter experience create religions featuring 'hidden religious fanaticism' or 'religious doctrine to suit your liking'—the message that Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math carries has nothing to do with the preaching of any such bigotry.
Just as people call an unrivalled, unchallengeable truth 'truth', when 'one and only' Supreme Absolute is called 'advitiya' (One without a second); when according to the Upanisads' maxim "na tat-samas chabhyadhikas cha drsyate" (there is no one equal to Him or greater than Him) the Absolute Truth is called 'unequalled and unsurpassed'; when a son says about his one and only father, "He is my father, the other person is not my father", when a chaste lady says, "He is my husband, the other person is not my husband"—in the same way, when we consider and call someone 'bigot' or 'arrogant' (speaking in general or about somebody in particular), we think that such people are ignorant, i.e. it is an indicative of their absence of knowledge regarding the nature of the world (sambandha-jnana). Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is not ready to sacrifice reality and integrity by thrusting it on the sacrificial pole of popularity and public opinion.
5) Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is not a servant of public opinion, but a servant of the opinion and views of exclusive followers of the Supreme Lord. According to this holy Math's vision, material public opinion is not the compass that ascertains the truth—the only tool to ascertain the truth is the transcendental opinion of Krishna's devotees. It is this kind of integrity amidst the age when public opinion prevails that distinguishes Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math from other organisations of this world.
6) The treasury of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math does not end at anartha-nivrtti, i.e. striving to gain liberation from the adversities of this world. Anartha-nivrtti is followed by artha-pravrtti, which is the root pursuit of this Math: to try to follow the ultimate practice that automatically removes all kinds of worldly adversities and unwanted elements. To unleash the fountainhead of love for Krishna, one must unleash himself from the clutches of illusory environment. It is the goal of this Math to allow liberated souls entrance into the inexhaustible and ever progressive kingdom of love of Krishna.
7) Opaque Guru is a person who stands in front of a disciple and through whom the disciple cannot see Krishna, i.e. in order to cheat others, such gurus, disguised hypocrites, actually stand as an impediment on the path of seeing Krishna. To fulfil their desires people accept such gurus or recognise them as gurus (?) as a result of their mental concoction and imagination resultant from their previously acquired disposition (samskara); they may take their guru as 'God' or reject the guru altogether considering him a redundant third party standing in the way of 'devotion' and 'God'. Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math does not interfere with any of these concocted ideas that are explicitly or inexplicitly present at the market place of religion. Unless they accept a Guru and this Guru is completely transparent, the fallen and shelterless jiva souls can never become surrendered to the lotus feet of the Lord. It is the distinction of this Math to whole-heartedly preach this truth.
8) When it comes to preaching, it is a prerequisite that one must practise himself and this practice should be in accordance with the precepts of the scriptures. Wherever Kali lives, Kali's associates (gambling, intoxication, attachment to one's legitimate wife or illicit association with other women, animal-slaughter, attachment to wealth for one's own enjoyment or resentment towards gold and money when one does not get riches for one's own enjoyment) are present there. Any material association you come in contact with trying to increase enjoyment is actually considered female association (and, therefore, an associate of Kali). When one indulges in female association in this way, be it secretly or openly, when one nurtures in their heart any hankering other than exclusive service to transcendental Lord Sri Krishna, considers such mundane hankering of great importance or equals such mundane aspirations to the service of Krishna—association of such persons is considered harmful and unfavourable (asat-sanga). If the number of such people in this world is great—even if almost 100% people in this world are like this—then it is better to be wise and maintain life practising properly and preaching about the service activities and practices that are meant for the pleasure of the transcendental Supreme Lord for the eternal benefit of one's self and others while staying independent and cautious on one's own rather than associate with such people. It is a distinction of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math to exclusively follow such proper practice without dragging anyone into the filth of manipulated miscalculations or any compromised conceptions.
9) Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math's preaching does not try to rectify organisations that promote various meditations, austerities, vows, materially motivated activities, religiosity (limited to sin and piety), pleasing others or following other people's advice, nor does it try to bring spirituality into any social, political, etc. movements or get involved with them. This Math's preaching does not have anything to do with the exploration of any sort of opportunism included in any of these worldly vocations. The sole subject matter of this Math's preaching is to reveal the intrinsic propensity of consciousness to continually search for happiness and satisfaction of the fully independent Supreme Lord Sri Krishna.
10) Krishna is not a fiction. Krishna is not an empirical mortal subject of history. Krishna is not an allegory, not some metaphysical or theoretical sentiment or element. Krishna is not merely some mental consolation. He is not an example of a debauchee. He is not an IPC (Indian Penalty Code) defendant. Krishna is not some object of temporary worship. Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math does not preach about such concocted 'worship'(?) of Krishna. Krishna is the main hero of the entire poetry of this world. His form, from head to toe, is the highest transcendental ideal of the poetry world. If, appealing to our entire reasoning, judgment and historical accounts, we worship the radiance emanating from the transcendental toe nails of Krishna, then we shall be supremely benefited. Krishna is the embodiment of the nectar relished by the immortal souls. The beauty found in the entire creation is illuminated by the light emanating from the lotus toe nails of Krishna. All sorts of consolation and peace come in abundance as primary concomitants of devotion to Krishna.
The goal of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is to practise and preach Krishna consciousness—to do away with the notion that Krishna lila has anything to do with the gross debauchery of this world, to preach about the eternal Absolute Truth who is by Himself and for Himself, about Krishna who is the absolutely independent Supreme Personality of Godhead and who is the highest eternal Being amongst all eternal souls.
11) Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is not to be wrongly perceived as a reformer, nor is it a pioneer. It should rather be considered a re-establisher of the eternal religion of the soul. Vaisnav-dharma is eternal and beginningless. It is not created at any particular period of time, nor can any history provide an account of its origin. When a religion is subject to time and history, then it is not Vaisnav-dharma but a random mano-dharma (mental concoction, or illusion). Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is a preacher of the ever-existent, eternal and original religion of the soul. That which is eternal and inherent to the soul must not be tampered with or reformed in any way. In the course of time, eternal religion of the soul declines or becomes extinct, but that is why acharyas come to preach about the eternal religion of the soul and help re-discover it. Reference about bhagavat-dharma can be found in Srimad Bhagavatam.
12) Many sampradayas attribute Srimad Bhagavatam to some historical period; some compose 'post-Vedic' Veda-samhitas and Upanisads; there are also some who claim that the composer of Brahma-sutra Vedavyas is not the same Vyasa who composed Bhagavatam; some publish contemporary Srimad Bhagavatam calling it a historical manuscript. The truth is that "puranarko 'dhunoditah" ("this brilliant Bhagavata Purana has just arisen") means, "Dharmam tu saksad bhagavat-pranitam na vai vidur rsayo napi devah / dharmah projjhita-kaitavo 'tra paramo nirmatsaranam satam: although fully situated in the mode of goodness, even the great rsis who occupy the topmost planets cannot ascertain the real religious principles, nor can the demigods or the leaders of siddhaloka. Real religious principles are enacted by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Completely rejecting all religious activities which are materially motivated, this Bhagavata Purana propounds the highest truth, which is understandable by those devotees who are fully pure in heart." (SB, 6.3.19)
It is a fully ripened fruit of a desire tree ("nigama-kalpa-taror galitam phalam"), the essence of the Vendanta philosophy ("sarva-vedanta saram hi"). If we discuss these and other slokas written in glorification of Srimad Bhagavatam, we can understand that when the morning comes and the sun appears to our vision, it seems new to us, or we think that a particular year or a particular date begins, but the truth is that the sun is eternal, permanent and self-manifest. The sun-god propels the wheel of time (kala-chakra), but the sun-god is not created at any time within it. Srimad Bhagavatam manifests in the heart of different Vyasas and through different writers in each age. That is why Srimad Bhagavatam said that bhagavat-dharma (teachings of devotion to the Supreme Lord) is created by the Lord Himself—it is not a creation of a rsi or a demigod. Srimad Bhagavatam is a ripened fruit of the Vedas and is worshipped by all pure sadhus (who are devoid of envy). There, liberation, meditation, deceit, etc. are kerbstones. The gist of bhagavat-dharma is found exclusively within the practice of chanting God's Names, and this practice is eternally worshipped and revered by the crest jewels of the Vedas and all the srutis (the Vedic knowledge received aurally). The Lord's Name is the fully-blown form of pranava (omkar). The pranava mantra om is the root or original seed of gayatri, the mother of all Vedas. The auspicious wish-fulfilling tree of the Vedas, the very embodiment of bhagavat-dharma, has spouted from this seed and borne a necterean fruit—aspiring to taste it, sadhus come to this world within the srauta-parampara (disciplic succession based on aural reception). Standing at the moat of this parampara, Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math worships the bhagavata-dharma that has come down from the Lord Himself to Brahma, from Brahma to Narada, from Narada to Vyasa, from Vyasa to Suka or Madhvacharya, and in this way it comes all the way to Sri Chaitanyadev and is then spread by the goswamis, the followers of Sri Chaitanyadev. Sri Chaitanyadev Himself is a divine tree of transcendental love, yet He distributed this fruit like an unsurpassed gardener. The actual and genuine meaning of preaching and 'jive daya' (mercy to the jiva souls) is to relish this fruit and distribute it all over the world.
bharata bhumite manusya janma haila yara
"One who has taken his birth as a human being in the land of India should take advantage of his birth and bring benefit to all other people."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta, Adi-lila, 9.41)
This is the order and instruction of Sri Chaitanyadev, and having entered this srauta-parampara, Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math has vowed to preach about this.
Sri Chaitanyadev predicted, "Prthivite yata achhe nagaradi grama sarvatra prachara haibe Mora Nama: My Name will spread to every village and town on this earth." (Chaitanya-bhagavata) To fulfil this prediction, the brahmachari, sannyasi, and sadachari grhastha devotees of this holy Math go house to house and preach continuously. This Math preaches all over the world about the all-auspicious Holy Name, Abode and Pastimes of Sri Chaitanya.
Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is trying its best to bring eternal benefit and auspiciousness to all jiva souls employing various modern scientific facilities to turn the heart of every person into a temple (an abode of kirtan), trying to practise and preach, to establish proper practice (sadachar), to organise in accordance with the supreme conclusions of the scriptures kirtans, festivals in remembrance of the Lord and His devotees, nagar-sankirtans, parikramas of Sri Gauda-mandala, Vraja-mandala, Ksetra-mandala and other holy abodes of the Lord.
This holy Math's programmes are harmoniously held based on two principles: first, rejecting all kinds of unfavourable association, and second, following the five best practices as instructed by Sriman Mahaprabhu—association of devotees, chanting of the Holy Name, hearing Bhagavatam, residing in Mathura and worshipping the Deities with faith.
13) Generally, when people hear about 'service to the jiva souls' (jiva-seva) and 'mercy to jiva souls' (jiva-daya), there arise various misconceptions. The general notion or perception of the word 'service' that many have is actually incomplete in its meaning. 'Service' means giving happiness and love to the object of the service. Service is present within the object of service and the servitor. If the service is not eternal (nitya), then there is no eternal benefit in such service offered by the servant; at the same time, if the servant is also not eternal, then he or she will not be able to serve eternally—when 'service' is not eternal, then servitor is merely temporarily and futilely cheating the object of the service.
Most of us in this world are roughly jiva souls who have been averse to the Lord since the time immemorial, and within the span of different ages there are only one-two great souls who come to this world to save the averse souls like us. Therefore, if someone tries to serve the averse jiva souls by satisfying their senses, they merely increase their aversion to the Lord and therefore are being actually cruel and merciless towards them. That is why there is no such notion of so called "service to the jiva souls" (jiva-seva) in the entire literary scope of Srimad Bhagavatam, among the teachings of Sri Chaitanyadev or within the conception of bhagavat-dharma, however there are mentions of "Vaisnav-seva" (service to devotees), "Hari-seva" (service to the Lord) or "jive daya" (mercy to the souls) because Vaisnavs (devotees) are always favourably disposed towards the Lord, they are engaged in the selfless service of the Lord, therefore if one serves a Vaisnava in any way, they automatically serve the Lord. Chanting kirtan in front of the averse souls provides eternal mercy, kindness to the souls and is a model of supreme benefit to others.
If you give food to the hunger-stricken, clothes to the homeless or to those who have no clothes, console the distressed, teach mundane knowledge about this world to the uneducated, etc. the help or mercy you offer to them is extremely short-lived. After the conditioned souls receive such temporary help, they will again suffer from hunger or they will soon again lack clothes, etc. If you cure a disease of a patient, they will eventually get some other disease or can be attacked by some mental disturbance: even if one is healthy, there is always some trouble-maker in the society who will engage in sinful activities. Even if one becomes enriched with material knowledge, they still remain desirous, angry, cruel, hateful—they still have animal consciousness and involve themselves in low and objectionable activities. If one increases their physical strength, they fall prey to various false practices and procedures that only increase animalistic strength. In other words, whatever momentary benefit one may get, it can be destroyed at any moment by the three-fold sufferings of this world (suffering caused by one's body, other souls, and environment).
Therefore, to awaken the consciousness of each and every soul, it is first of all necessary to have proper spiritual education and maintain life by accepting basic necessities that are favourable to such spiritual cultivation—then the jiva souls can individually and collectively receive benefit. Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math has taken up the responsibility of providing such "mercy to the jiva souls". Striving to help the conscious is not of no use to those who are unconscious—that is Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math's message; however if we waste time trying to help only those who are unconscious (conditioned souls who are unaware of their true nature), then there will be no time left for them to enter the kingdom of consciousness.
14) In order to cheat people and lead them away from the true religion of the soul and charm them more with the religion based on the bodily conception, there are many perverted ideas preached in this world. For example, there is a famous saying, "Body is the tangible means of practising dharma."
As far as the preaching of the bhagavat-dharma is concerned, the main mantra of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is, "Turnam yateta na pated anumrtyu yavan nihsreyasaya visayah khalu sarvatah syat: a sober human being should quickly endeavour for the ultimate perfection of life as long as his body, which is always subject to death, has not fallen down and died. Sense gratification is available even in the most abominable species of life, whereas Krishna consciousness is possible only for a human being."
Our first and foremost duty is to strive to revive our conscious form, or body. That is the highest religion of every jiva soul. It is necessary to first of all try to engage in the practices that help embodied souls revive the soul-consciousness, because every jiva soul will get a gross body in every birth, but it is very difficult and rare to get a human birth that affords the best opportunity to render service to the Lord—such birth is attained only by a great effort and a great fortune. Therefore, the root of service to the Lord is attainable only in a human body, and those people who do not take shelter of a guru for the benefit of their own soul are definitely committing suicide. The first and foremost duty should be to try to dedicate oneself exclusively to the service of the Lord without heeding any of the innumerable apparent and evident temporary duties.
Those who do not desire real benefit in their life, give importance to the ostensible things—their first concern is with various bodily practices, then only the spiritual practices; they first see the worldly, mundane benefit, the benefit of the country or society, and the thoughts about spiritual kingdom are stored for future—they put off the search for their real eternal home. On the other hand, those who consider that the natural function of the soul (eternal service of the Lord) is the bestower of the greatest benefit, are always firmly guided in their all-auspicious service to the Lord by the principle, "Subhasya sighram asubhasya kala-haranam: if you think something is auspicious and good for everyone, do it immediately, and when you think that something is inauspicious or not good, delay doing it."
Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math has firmly resolved to take up the highest duty of serving the Lord adhering to relatively neutral views (unaffected by anything material).
15) Many think that a great sadhu or spiritualist is someone who can smear ashes on their body, who can mat his hair and wear tree bark instead of clothes, someone who can leave all the material facilities that the consumer society is entrusted with and go to live in a forest, or someone who can live naked sustaining himself on some fruit or on air only. One of the noteworthy distinctions of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math is that if one decides to live austere or give up all material things, it is neither proper utilisation of things nor will it bring benefit to the one who renounces material things. It is our duty to search the method by which both the one who renounces and the objects that are renounced get eternal benefit and ultimate fulfilment.
When one gives up material things, the share of material things for the society of enjoyers increases, and this automatically brings about ruination because the proper utilisation of things becomes disturbed. This holy Math utilises all objects in the service to the One whom they belong to and therefore fulfils the purpose of all things. In this way materialists can get benefit because the wealth that has been entrusted to them by the Lord, is in some way or another utilised in the service of the Lord, and as a result those who are averse to service get some sukrti (spiritual merit) and the path towards awakening of the service mood becomes cleared. At the same time, everything that needs to be attained is achieved in all respects because when one enjoys material things, one gets some bad result, when one gives up material things, one gets some auspicious result, and both leave the person deprived, but when one gives up both propensities to enjoy and renounce and utilises material things in the proper way then it can bring supreme auspiciousness—then positive attainment is reached. When material things are utilised for the service of the Supreme Lord, it brings supreme result. On the other hand, when one renounces material things and becomes a renunciate sitting in one place rejecting all sense organs, making no effort towards any end, they commit suicide, and as a result they may be pardoned and get an opportunity to use material things in the proper way. That is why in this day and age Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math uses all benefits of science, such as the internet, websites, facebook, telephone, electric equipment, planes, printing press, electricity—by utilising the materials that enjoyers use in their own service and for their own enjoyment incurring thus material result, in the preaching of the message of the Lord, the proper utilisation is accomplished.
Money or wealth (artha) is the root of all evils (anartha), but Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math utilises wealth (artha) for preaching about the supreme wealth (paramartha, spiritual matters). The Math maintains and preserves monasteries and buildings not for the sake of luxurious life, but in order to chant there kirtan, speak Hari-katha, to organise various gatherings, assemblies and conferences. Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj and Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj have constructed this holy Math's building and towering temple, and just by observing it externally everybody can see how the Math functions under the supervision of the acharya. This building is the dwelling place of the Lord Himself (Sri Sri Guru Gauranga Gandharva Govinda Sundar jiu). One may say that installing Deities and calling some place a dwelling place of the Lord is merely an excuse for collecting some materials for enjoyment, but the acharyas of this holy Math do not indulge in this—on the contrary, they constantly inspire by preaching and their example those who engage in the chanting of the glories of the Lord to always, at every moment keep Sri Hari-kirtan resounding within this holy Math. Therefore the name of the place where such gatherings are held is "sarasvata-sravana-sadan", i.e. a hall where the message and the teachings of Sri Chaitanya are heard.
Here, electric lamps help see the beauty of the lotus toe nails of Krishna, the beauty of the lotus toe nails of the sadhus. Here, electric lamps help to give lectures and discuss the teachings of the Vedas, Bhagavatam, Gita, Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta, etc. Here, electric fans are used for the service of the devotees who assemble to hear Hari-katha and those who assemble to chant the glories of the Lord and speak Hari-katha. Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math uses a motor van to reach many places for preaching Hari-katha and engaging in other activities favourable to the service of the Lord in a much shorter time and spending much less energy.
Therefore, when one engages in the service of the Lord, material things utilised in their activities indirectly help them in their service. For example, the temple uses a gatekeeper to protect the people assembled to hear Hari-katha and to guard the property used for the service of the Lord. In other words, what seems to the eyes of an averse materialist to be somewhat similar to material enjoyment and even all the material paraphernalia for service that shall be created in future also, should not be renounced in vain—if this paraphernalia is used for the preaching about the Lord, for practising Krishna consciousness under the supervision of the acharya, then the purpose of all these things is fulfilled and the entire world can get benefit. This shows the practical distinction of this holy Temple.
The two instructions of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Sri Rupa Goswami given below are the main motto of this Math's preaching:
prapanchikataya buddhya hari-sambandhi-vastunah
"One who rejects everything without knowledge of its relationship to Krishna is not as complete in his renunciation. When one is not attached to anything, but at the same time accepts everything in relation to Krishna, one is rightly situated above possessiveness."
(Sri Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, 1.2.255-256)
If you are not quite familiar with the teachings of our Gurus and would like to know more, we sincerely invite you to have a look at such publications as:
Within the website, we also maintain two sections (Spanish translations are hosted on a separate website managed by Sriman Mohita Krishna Prabhu):
|"HUMILITY, TOLERANCE, GIVING HONOUR TO OTHERS | HUMILITY, TOLERANCE, GIVING HONOUR TO OTHERS"|
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