Tracing Our Roots
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Actually, I am very happy to be getting the association of all of you. We have all come from the same place, from the same family.
We think that some people here have come from Italy, Venezuela, Malaysia, or some other country, you are also coming from a village in Andhra Pradesh, but actually we all come from the same place—our home is one. Back to God, back to home. That is why Krishna appears in this age of Kali to bring us to our real home.
Srimad Bhagavatam also says,
"Those of sharp intellect will worship Krishna who appears with a non-black bodily hue, who is armed and surrounded by His associates and servants, and who always chants the Holy Names."
(Srimad Bhagavatam, 11.5.32)
Those who have come good merit, some good fortune (brahmanda bhramite kona bhagyavan jiva, ব্রহ্মাণ্ড ভ্রমিতে কোন ভাগ্যবান্ জীব, Cc, 2.19.151)—those who are great fortunate souls—they can get and take advantage of this opportunity.
You know that in Dvapar-yuga Krishna appeared in Mathura, Vrindavan, and He wanted to dance, chant and play with His devotees. There are four ages—Satya-yuga Treta-yuga, Dvapar-yuga, and Kali-yuga. Srimad Bhagavatam says that each age has its own prescribed religion. In Satya-yuga, people did meditation, in Treta-yuga fire sacrifices, in Dvapar-yuga worshipped Deities, and in Kali yuga the religion is Harinama sankirtan. There are four ages and four religions for each of them.
The duration of people's life in Satya-yuga was one lakh (100,000 years), and people did meditation for 60-70,000 years, this is how they got association of Krishna, but Krishna thought, "In Treta-yuga the lifespan is 10,000 years, in Dvapar-yuga 1,000 years, but in Kali-yuga the lifespan is only 120 years. This is a very short time, how will people be rescued from that kind of environment?" One day, Krishna was sitting under a tamarind tree on the bank of the Yamuna in Vrindavan and He saw His shadow (His reflection in the waters of the Yamuna). He was surprised, "How beautiful I am!" Then He thought, "Why does Radharani chant My Name and cry? Why do devotees chant, dance and cry? I want to taste it too!" So, as you know, Krishna appeared in the age of Kali in Nabadwip Dham some 527 years ago as Mahaprabhu, Sri Krishna Chaitanya, who is a combined form of Radha-Krishna, and He also appeared in the form of the Holy Name.
Mahaprabhu, who is Krishna Himself, went house to house, door to door, calling everybody,
জীব জাগ, জীব জাগ, গোরাচাঁন বলে ।
jiva jaga, jiva jaga, gorachanda bale
Sri Gorachand says, "O souls, awake! O souls, awake! How much longer will you sleep in the lap of the witch Maya?"
"Do not sleep, do not sleep! Wake up! This is not your house! This is not your real home! How many days will you stay here? We have all come from the same place—you have come from Me, and I have come to take you there!"
Sanatan Goswami asked Mahaprabhu five questions— (1) Who am I? (2) Why do I suffer? (3) How can I get relief from this suffering? (4) What is real? (5) How should I practise? First, we must know who we are. My name is this, your name is that, but this is not our real identity! We came
জীবের 'স্বরূপ হয়'—কৃষ্ণের 'নিত্যদাস' ।
jivera 'svarupa' haya—krsnera 'nitya-dasa'
"By its intrinsic nature, the soul is an eternal servant of Krishna; the souls comes from the marginal energy of Krishna and are simultaneously one with and different from the Lord."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 20.108)
We are Krishna's eternal servants, but we have forgotten it, and as a result we are suffering now.
You know that I and my body is not same. Just as we change our clothes, we also always change our bodies. Sometimes we have a cow's body, sometimes a goat's body, sometimes a cockroach's body, sometimes a mosquito's body, sometimes a cat's body, sometimes a dog's body—just as we change our clothes every day, we also always change our bodies.
When we were in our mother's womb for ten months, ten days, we cries and suffered there so much. Those who are fortunate souls can see Lord Krishna. Krishna comes to them and says, "When you come out of your mother's womb, you will forget Me! You will not see My divine form with your eyes, you will not hear My katha with your ears, you will not chant My Holy Name with your mouth—you will always forget Me!" Krishna also explains why:
দৈবী হেঽষা গুণময়ী মম মায়া দুরত্যয়া ।
daivi hy esa gunamayi, mama maya duratyaya
"My alluring, 'trimodal,' illusory potency is practically insurmountable. However, those who take shelter in Me can overcome this powerful obstacle."
(Srimad Bhagavad-gita, 7.14)
Lord Krishna Himself says in Srimad Bhagavad-gita, "I created this illusory environment and you cannot defeat it. However, if you surrender to Me, then I can remove My illusory environment—it will always run away from you."
Service to the Lord is the religion of all jiva souls. It is not a Hindu religion. We do not preach Muslim religion, we do not preach a Buddhist religion or a Christian religion—this is jaiva-dharma, the religion of the jiva soul. Every soul, even a tree also, must serve the Lord, but a tree does not know about it. So, if a devotee takes a flower from a tree and gives it to the Lord, then the tree can also do service to the Lord through a Vaishnav.
যেই ভজে, সেই বড়, অভক্ত—হীন, ছার ।
yei bhaje sei bada, abhakta—hina, chhara
"Only a nondevotee can be considered as worthless and abominable: anyone who takes to devotional service is great—there is no consideration of class, caste or any other status for those who have taken up service to Krishna."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Antya-lila, 4.67)
You can be a brahmin, a brahmachari or even a sannyasi, but if you do not worship the Lord, you will go to hell. Or you may be a sweeper, a low caste person, or even a person from the drain, the lowest caste, but if you serve the Lord, you become great. Mahaprabhu did not make division according to the caste and creed, He always said that everybody is equal, everybody is a jiva soul. We are not brahmins, we are not ksatryas, we are not vaisyas, we are not sudras, we are not sweepers or cleaners, or anything else, we are not Muslim, we are not Christian—we all come from the Lord and we all must go to the same place. That is why in Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's time even a brahmin and a chandal (the lowest persons) hugged each other and paid obeisance to each other.
We must understand Mahaprabhu's conception. The Lord comes from Goloka Vrindavan as the Holy Name and as a teacher. This Name comes through Guru-parampara...
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