Vaishnava-Vandana: Service Track
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
"Samsara-davanala" is Guru-vandana. Whose vandana do we do after Guru-vandana? Our line is Guru, Vaishnav, Bhagavan. Do you say Bhagavan, Vaishnav, Guru? No, it is Guru, Vaishnav, Bhagavan. So, after the Guru-vandana goes Vaishnav-vandana. This is how you must practise, this is the line you must follow. What happen if you do not follow the line? What happens if the train goes off the track? The train will fall upside down. There are many buses on the street, but if I am going to Nabadwip, I need to take the bus that goes to Nabadwip. If I go to Vrindavan, I must take the train that goes to Vrindavan. You must get on the right train. So,
What does it say? Jnana-karma parihari. It says you must give up karma. Does it mean you must give up your job, you must stop cooking, eating, etc.? What does it mean? You must understand what karma is. If you cook for yourself, this is karma; if you cook something and offer it to Govinda, this is seva (service). What happens when you do karma? You become bound by that karma. Suppose two brothers go to the market. Why do they go shopping? One brother says, "I have parents, children, their families at home, and I need to get some fruit, vegetables, etc. for them." The other brother says, "I have Gopal (Govinda) at home, and I am doing the shopping for Him." One is karma, one is seva. When a cat catches a mouse and carries it in its mouth, what does it do it for? For its own food, for pleasure. But when the same cat is carrying its own kitten in its mouth, does it do it to eat the kitten? No. It is carrying it and looking where to keep the kitten, how to protect it, etc. One is karma, one is seva.
আত্মেন্দ্রিয়প্রীতি-বাঞ্ছা—তারে বলি 'কাম' ।
atmendriya-priti-vancha—tare bali 'kama'
"The desire to gratify one's own senses is kama (lust), but the desire to please the senses of Lord Krishna is prema (love)."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Adi-lila, 4.165)
When you do something for your own pleasure, it is called kama, desire for enjoyment, lust, it is pleasure-seeking. When you do something for the Lord, it is called prema (love), or devotion.
So, again, what happens when you do karma? You become bound by the karma, and what is the result of the bondage of karma? Suffering in hell. So, jnana-karma parihari—give up knowledge, give up karma.
Remember Rupa and Sanatan. Why? To to be able to do service.
Jiva Goswami Prabhu served twenty-two and a half hours a day, and he used the remaining one and a half hours to sleep, eat, go to the bathroom, etc. How much service he did! There are eight divisions (asta-prahara) in a day, four at night and four in the day time, and he served his Guru during seven and a half of these praharas. But we do the opposite—we do service one and a half hours and sleep for twenty-two and a half hours. If you want to serve, you must remember Rupa-Sanatan and Jiva-Raghunath (Raghunath Das Goswami Prabhu served Svarup Damodar and Jiva Goswami Prabhu served Rupa Goswami Prabhu). If you remember how much they served, you will be able to serve them.
Mahaprabhu sent Rupa and Sanatan to Vrindavan, because He loved them so much, but everybody thinks, "Oh, Mahaprabhu sent Rupa and Sanatan to Vrindavan, there is so much austerity there, it is so hot and so cold there!" If I send now somebody to Siliguri, they will say, "Oh, it is a very bad place!" If I send them to Bamunpara, "Oh, it is a very bad place!" Even if I send them to Ekachakra, they will say, "No, it is a very bad place, it is too hot there, and there is no internet, no electricity, nothing!" What internet was there in Jiva Goswami Prabhu's time? I told once an Indian sannyasi to stay in some place and preach, but he said, "Oh, there is no internet there, and it is too hot there!" What can I do? They think I do not like them... In Ekachakra, for example, so many new visitors come there every day, may a thousand a day—if you just sit there and preach, going to Tarapith and Ekachakra from time to time, it is sufficient for the whole Bengal.
Mahaprabhu once told Gadadhar Pandit,
"Stay in Puri."
Gadadhar Pandit answered, "I will stay with You!"
"You want to stay with Me because when I am preaching, they are giving Me so much food, and you probably want to take good food! No, you must stay in Puri and do Gopinath's service!"
"If I see Your lotus feet one time, it is equal to a million times of Gopinath's service!" answered Gadadhar Pandit.
Gadadhar Pandit is expert, he is a scholar (pandit), and Mahaprabhu understood, "If I talk with him and fight with him further, I will lose, I cannot compete with him." Finally, Mahaprabhu closed his mouth and said, "Do not say anything more. You stay here, otherwise if you go with Me it will be seva aparadh. Go and serve there." Then, Mahaprabhu took a boat and left. As soon as Mahaprabhu took the boat, separation came to Gadadhar Pandit and he fainted.
What is service? Gurudev says you must stay wherever your service is, even if it is a jungle, it is not a question. If there is no service in some place, what will you stay there for? You have no interest there.
So, if you want to do service, who should you remember? Rupa, Sanatan and Jiva, Raghunath.
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