Great Stumbling Block
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
মূকং করোতি বাচালং পঙ্গুং লঙ্ঘয়তে গিরিম্ ।
mukam karoti vachalam pangum langhayate girim
"The dumb can speak, the lame can climb a hill—all it takes is mercy from Gurudev."
First of all, I am offering my full obeisance at the lotus feet of Om Vishnupad Jagad Guru Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj begging him for his causeless mercy. After that, I am offering my obeisance to all Guru-varga, all the worldwide acharyas, to all my God-brothers and sisters, to all devotees and all of you praying for your mercy to this low soul.
Param Gurudev Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur said one thing, and you must always remember it. I heard it from Guru Maharaj, and he heard it from his Guru Maharaj, Srila Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj. Listen. He said, "Vaishnava haite mane chhila bara asa, kintu 'trnad api sunichena' sloke parilena badha (বৈষ্ণব হইতে মনে ছিল বড় আশা, কিন্তু ‘তৃণাদপি সুনীচেন’ শ্লোকে পড়িলেন বাধা)." Does anyone understand the meaning? It means, "I had a great hope to become a Vaishnav, but here is the stumbling block—the sloka 'Trnad api sunichena...'" Before you become a Vaishnav, you must become humbler than a blade of grass, more tolerant than a tree and give all honour to others without desiring any honour for yourself. If you just call yourself a Vaishnav, you can never become a Vaishnav like that.
'আমি ত' বৈষ্ণব', এ বুদ্ধি হইলে
"ami ta' vaisnava," e-buddhi ha-ile,
"If I think, 'I am a Vaishnav,' then I will never stop expecting honour from others (I will never become void of the desire for honour)."
(Kalyan-kalpataru, Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur)
Listen to this carefully. These are very serious and astonishing words. It is not written anywhere in the books, but it can be heard from the mouth of the Guru-varga, Gurupadpadma. "You had a great hope to become a Vaishnav, but the stumbling block is the sloka 'Trinad api sunichena'." You must be humbler than a blade of grass, you must be more tolerant than a tree, and you must give honour to others.
Every day, when we do parikrama in the morning and in the evening, we sing in the kirtan, "Sakale samman karite sakati deha natha yatha-yatha (সকলে সম্মান করিতে শকতি দেহ' নাথ ! যথাযথ): O Master! Please give me the ability to give honour to everybody properly." We must give honour to everyone. "O Gurudev! Give me the power, give me the brain to be able to honour others and consider myself lower and fallen." Nityananda Prabhu rescued Jagai and Madhai, but there are many among us who are deprived of service—they are more fallen that Jagai and Madhai. "Prabhu, I am more sinful than Jagai and Madhai!" Who said this? Srila Krishna Das Kaviraj Goswami.
জগাই মাধাই হৈতে মুঞি সে পাপিষ্ঠ ।
jagai madhai haite muni se papistha
"I am more sinful than Jagai and Madhai and lower than the worms in the stool."
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Adi-lila, 5.205)
I am lower than the worms that live in the stool. He considers himself so low and destitute. He says, "I am more sinful than Jagai and Madhai and I am lower than the worms in the stool."
[Some noise.] Do not talk, listen attentively. You have heard many things in your life, but you have never heard these things—nobody tells this. Nobody tells what qualities are necessary to become a Vaishnav. I have told it many times,
“গোরার আমি, গোরার আমি” মুখে বলিলে নাহি চলে ।
"gorara ami, gorara ami" mukhe balile nahi chale
Just saying, "I am Gora's! I am Gora's!" does not do. Only when you follow Gora's practices and Gora's conception will you get the proper result.
লোক দেখান গোরা ভজা তিলক মাত্র ধরি ।
loka dekhana gora bhaja tilaka matra dhari'
You show the world you serve Gora simply by wearing tilak but secretly you misbehave. Gora will catch you, you thief!
(Sri Sri Prema-vivarta, 8.6-7)
If you do wrong secretly, Gora will catch you, He knows what you are doing.
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