The following is a class given by His Holiness Jayapataka Swami Maharaja on July 25th, 1981 in Bangalore, India.
Jayapataka Swami: It is said… gives us the instruction, that dharma is not something dry, not simply a dead ritual, not a empty tradition, not a concocted mythology. The dharma is such a thing that by practicing properly one develops a positive attraction, an affinity, a taste, an appreciation, an ecstasy for hearing about the glories of the Lord, chanting the glories of the Lord, serving the Lord.
notpādayed yadi ratiṁ. If one is practicing their religious principles very strictly and properly but at the bottom line, or at the ultimate review, if it becomes evident that one has not developed such a spontaneous attraction, such a devotion, such a taste, an actual taste or appreciation, then it says, śrama eva hi kevalam. That means so much effort simply went. The only fruit for that is the effort itself. So this science of Krishna consciousness, you see, is the science where one is guaranteed to develop a taste in spiritual life.
janayaty āśu vairāgyaṁ
jṣānaṁ ca yad ahaitukam
Not only taste but vairāgyaṁ jṣānaṁ, renunciation, viruktivat and also jṣānaṁ knowledge, ahaitukam coming spontaneously automatically from the heart. Even if someone comes for a short time, begins chanting, counting their rounds, chanting with the devotees, practicing the principles of Krishna consciousness, within a very short time one can feel a change. One can feel a new interest and a new attraction. This is the proof.
In a simple example if one has jaundice. Nowadays in Bangalore there are some jaundice epidemics. One symptom of jaundice is that if you taste sugar it will not taste sweet. One… Does that mean sugar has lost it sweet taste? If a jaundice person is tasting sugar and it is tasting bitter, does that mean that the sugar has now become bitter? No. That person’s taste has become diseased. He is no longer able to perceive things as they are. So even the sweet thing like sugar is tasting to that jaundice person to be a sour thing or a bitter thing. So in Ayurvedic, chikitsa, one of the cures for jaundice is itself is sugar candy or misri. One is recommended to take sugar candy, sucking on it and that will help the liver to be cured. As the person is being cured, gradually the sweet taste of the sugar is coming through. When he is fully cured at that time sugar tastes very sweet as it should, as it is.
So the example is this. Krishna, His message, His service are all very sweet, sweeter that honey.
madhuraṁ madhuraṁ vapur asya vibhor madhuraṁ madhuraṁ vadanaṁ madhuram
Everything — His smile, His face, His whole form, They are all madhuraṁ! Sweeter than sweet. Sweeter than honey. But in our diseased condition, we are thinking that sugar is not sweet, we are thinking this name of Krishna, message of Krishna, service of Krishna is not very pleasant, is not very attractive. This is only because we are diseased. But if one regularly takes the cure… The cure for jaundice is sugar. The cure for Krishna’s… lack of appreciation of Krishna…
[aside] Can you just close the door and not come out?
…is to chant Krishna! Hear Krishna! Serve Krishna! This is the cure.
And when one is chanting and becomes very eager, “I want to come to see the temple to associate with the devotees.” Then sometimes other family members, they are obstructing: “Why you want to go there?” Other friends they are obstructing: “Why you want to go there? What do you find so wonderful there?”
“No, no but it is very peaceful, it’s very nice. Because I find some wonderful atmosphere.” They cannot understand because they are under diseased condition, to that extent. Unless they also take the cure, they won’t be able to appreciate. If you are in a whole city of jaundice people, everyone will say sugar is bitter. If a… if a healthy person goes there and say sugar is very sweet. They will say that “You are crazy. You don’t know what you are talking about. We can taste that it is bitter.” So the whole world has lost their attraction for chanting and hearing the name of Krishna due to being in Maya for so long. Only a very few people are there who are spiritually attracted to this. But it is very contagious.
So this Krishna conscious movement is for spreading this particular type of epidemic. The epidemic of appreciation of hearing and chanting about Krishna. Once one develops the taste for Krishna, then he becomes fully, she becomes fully satisfied. Because Krishna is always available through His holy name. Some people are very addicted to smoking. And when the cigarette supply runs out, their twenty… twenty, or ten pack is empty, then they become very nervous to get one more because it may not be just available, they have to search and borrow and beg. But the devotee, whether you put the devotee in a jail, or whether he’s so called free, krishna-prema is always available simply by chanting
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna
Krsna Krsna Hare Hare,
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare
So this chanting as our Swami here has mentioned is of three levels. Offensive, clearing and pure. Offenseless, shall we say. In the beginning our chanting has some quantity of offenses. Still we should chant. Still we should chant. Offensive chanting is better than no chanting. Then as we start to reduce the number of offenses, that means we become clearing, cleansing stage. When more or less we are free from offenses, that is the offenseless stage.
In the offenseless stage… in the clearing stage, off and on one is getting some appreciation of Krishna. In the offensive stage, hardly one gets a very deep appreciation. Sometimes might get little taste. But in the clearing stage, off and on he is getting. But in the offenseless stage, one is all the time getting a perception of Krishna’s nectar, Krishna’s presence in that holy name. So everyone should try to advance themself to chanting. And from the chanting, from the offensive stage to the offenseless stage, to get the maximum realization of the nectar of devotion.
Caitanya Mahaprabhu told Rupa Goswami
pārāpāra-śūnya gabhīra bhakti-rasa-sindhu tomāya cākhāite tāra kahi eka ‘bindu’
That the ocean of nectar of devotion is so wide, is so deep, that there is no limit. One cannot find the limit of the wet… width and the depth of that ocean.
But Lord Caitanya has said, “Simply I am giving you one drop. By this one drop, you can get an appreciation of what is the whole ocean is like. It is not possible for me to explain or to give this whole ocean. But this one drop, you will find it far exceeding and exceling any experience you had in your whole life.” So that one drop… that one drop of nectar, we can get by chanting and gradually we can realize the whole ocean of nectar.
So today some individuals have chanted, have already started to taste nectar and have decided to make a permanent commitment because they want to be tied to the lotus feet of Krishna.
You see we are wandering in this material world. Who is our protector? Baby falls sick, mother and father call the doctor. Doctor says “I don’t know what to do”. They call another doctor. They call the specialist. Specialist says “No hope”. Then who will save? Mother and father can only call doctor, give some medicine, give some affection. But ultimate… even the best doctor can give no guarantee. If he could give a guarantee, then all the crore-patis and millionaires of this world, they would never die. They would just have very good doctors surrounding them and they would be able to live forever.
Just like in Bengal, there was one famous cinema star Uttam Kumar. One year ago he left his body. He had the best doctor of Calcutta, but in spite of having the best doctor, he grabbed on the doctor’s hand at the time of his death and he said “Doctor Doctor save me, save me! I want to live! I want to live!” And that moment he died. So what could the doctor do?
Our Guru Maharaja, Srila Prabhupada, he has explained that when he was at Allahabad, one of his friends was a great industrialist and he went to visit him in the hospital because he heard that he was very sick. At that time, the doctor told him that “You have maybe one month, or few weeks to live or few days maybe, maximum. There is no hope. Your organ are finished.” So he grabbed on to the doctor’s hand and he said “Doctor doctor, you just give me one more year. This year I’ve opened a new factory, in one year I will double my capital and I will make five lakhs in addition. So you give me one more year, these are only my request.”
So you see, is it within the power of the doctor to give one more year or to give one more minute then the allotted time? What do you think? So actually we are helpless in this world. We may surround ourselves with insurance policy, with so many doctors, with so many things, but ultimately there is no 100% protection. But the devotee being tied to the lotus feet of Krishna, some people say, “You are giving up your freedom.” they are actually achieving their real freedom. They are having the real protection because their future is guaranteed and everyone else’s future is unknown. Unknown and unestablished, what will be their result of their life, and the next life.
This is also very serious obligation. Once one is tied to Krishna’s lotus feet, then one has to act just as devotee of Krishna should act. Not just that one should not cause disgrace to the family, so to speak. But moreso one should not do something which would be unpleasant to Krishna, and something which is harmful to one’s own spiritual development. Our rules are most simplistic, they are simply don’t do those things which are not good for you. What the rules are you hear, but the basic purport whatever that is forbidden are regulated is basically what is only not good for you anyway. Rule don’t take any intoxication. Intoxication is bad for health, bad for mentality. So like this they are some rules. But these rules are simply common sense. Due to Kali Yuga we have lost our common sense, we have become habituated to doing things which are bad for our health, bad for our mentality, therefore they are also bad for our spiritual development.
When we achieve real spiritual realization and happiness. Yayātmā suprasīdati. Then the soul, the atma becomes completely satisfied. Atma means not only the soul, not only the jiva-atma, also mind, also body, everything becomes fully satisfied. So we are taking obligation to serve Krishna through his representative spiritual master. The devotee actually being freed from karma can wonder over the whole universe. He is free from all the conditioning of an ordinary person he cannot go here and there. He cannot do what he wants because he is always bound by so many considerations; friends, family, society, attachments, sense gratification. But devotee’s only attachment is Krishna, spiritual master, the other devotees. So for Krishna, he can do anything and go anywhere because he knows, “Sooner or later Krishna will call, and I have to leave this body. So I should prepare myself now for that call which may come at any moment.”
Prahlada Maharaj told his students, “Friends, you should all chant Hare Krishna.”
They said “No no, now we are going to play and study, we have no time for chanting, we are only kids.”
He told them “What are you speaking, nonsense. You should just listen for a second. You don’t know how dangerous the position you are in. You are wasting so much valuable time. How much time would you have, did you ever thought? Half of your life you are wasting, sleeping. First ten years of your life you are wasting simply playing around with no sense. Next ten years only studies and more play and sports. Then twenty till fifty running after women and men, or even more few years you can add family affairs, marrying, daughter, granddaughter, so on and so forth. Then next twenty years is not good, eye sight goes bad, teeth fall out, no hearing, bad digestion, weak, rheumatism, arthritis, nothing feels good. So where is the time? Athāto brahma jijñāsā. kaumāra ācaret prajño Now you can… from the kumara age, from the very childhood, you should start to chant Hare Krishna. You should begin. Because if you go on saying ‘Later later later.’ it will never happen. Life is very short.”
So today is a very happy occasion because initiation means the beginning of a new life, spiritual life. Up to the point of initiation, it is simply practice. And when one takes initiation, that means, just as the obligation to serve guru and Krishna, Krishna’s obligation is that He is also giving you shelter as long as one follows those instructions, one does not get affected by any karmas.
Krishna gives the protection to such devotees through His Yoga-maya. So that means they are… practically speaking that one is already liberated. Simply like a green mango. If you leave it long enough, it will turn ripe. Already liberation seed is there, simply watering go on and very soon it will fructify and the fruits will come forward. So this is a very joyous occasion.
In this movement we always recommend that people should chant for at least about six months or more because many people come up and say “Give me initiation.” You first of all, you try what is our process. You see for yourself, not simply on some sentiment, “Give me initiation.” You practice, if you feel yourself, you are making the advancement. You have the faith, based on real realization, knowledge, then you accept. Why should we bluff you? And people after chanting their faith grows more and more. What is the use if someone takes initiation and doesn’t practice? Practice is the essential.
One must have doctor and must take the medicine given by doctor, eat the diet recommended by doctor and do the type of treatment as given by the doctor. So our medicine is chanting Hare Krishna and dancing you see, our diet is krishna-prasadam feasting, and the treatment is association with devotees, serving the Lord, so what is difficult? Singing dancing and feasting, not very difficult but in Kali-yuga this is the only recommended yajṣa. kalau tad dhari-kīrtanāt. And it works so quickly. Anyone can find out. It is an open secret. “Come on.”
So when one is determined, “I will complete this human life and reach the supreme destination.” See, one is working so hard, going to school, getting degree, going to college getting degree, diploma everything. That’s on one side for this life. Simultaneously what about the next life? What about our eternal life? Both the present day studies and the spiritual cultivation must go on, if one wants to successfully utilize this human birth.
So, that’s why… that is why this Krishna Conscious movement is so successful all over the world. So we are also sure that here in Bangalore, South India, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, for the people who are already devotional minded, habituated to temple worship and other processes of spiritual practice, that if they chant within a few days and weeks, they will be able to perceive the ocean of nectar.
This chanting bridges what would ordinarily take lives and lives to obtain. One can achieve in a few days, in a few minutes. That is how powerful is this chanting. In Gita it also mentions: yajṣānāṁ japa-yajṣo ’smi. Of all forms of sacrifices, japa chanting the holy names of the Lord is the topmost. So today two people are receiving Harinama initiation, and some others are… two, four… some others are also receiving Gayatri-mantra. This Gayatri-mantra can only be chanted after one has successfully chanted Hare Krishna for some period of time. Chanting Gayatri does not mean that this is the beginning… the end of spiritual… This is also the beginning. One has to regularly chant and this will help one to further transcend the mind and reach the purely spiritual platform.
So may everyone partake of the remnants of the sacrifices today, the ashes, which are left and the mahaprasad which will be distributed. This is very purifying, may everyone take this purification and thus be able to advance further and further on the path of perfection. Thank you very much.
Devotees: Jaya! Haribol!
[Break] Jayapataka Swami: These families, Husband wife, father son, mother son, father daughter— whole family. No need to break up the family, let the whole family be Krishna Conscious.
Transcribed by Malini Priti devi dasi Revised by Jagannatha dasa Brahmacari