It is just nonsense if someone rattles off the Names of Krishna without knowing who Krishna really is. Only an avatara can bestow shakti upon a jiva to get immediate realization, i.e. to immediately understand the nature and the mutual relations between God, jiva and maya [sambandha-jnanam] and to repeat His Names without misunderstanding.
Swami Sadananda Dasa
There is a simple self test; try to think like this: I, my mind, body, soul, house, husband, children are His property. I am like a trustee appointed by Him and obliged to see that His property is kept well and prospers. – We must stand with both legs in this world of bitter realities and try to make it fragrant with Krishna’s fragrance.
Mysticism appears when man approaches the Absolute from his angle; this can still be understood in some way, still be sensed intuitively. Shastram means that which governs us, restrains, corrects, chastises us. It is not the way you think, says the Shastram. – What you yourself like, feel, love and think: the Absolute etc. must be like this or that – let go of it, altogether. Listen to what I, the Shastram, say, and you must accept it – if you have shraddha, at all – and hear it over and over again, however unpleasant, uncomfortable and totally contrary to your expectation it may be.
A vaishnava on the highest level, a parama-bhakta, can bestow the gift of shaktisancara, can transfer bhakti-shakti, but as long as he is not more than a vaishnava on the middle level, a madhyama-vaishnava, he is not able to bestow shakti-sancara and consequently he cannot offer the maha-mantra, let alone its artha, its import. Otherwise he becomes an aparadhi.
Nothing can be gained by running away from the unpleasant world in which
we live, by diving and plunging into the bliss of realization. Our spiritual
happiness is quite unimportant, rather an impediment. Her and His happiness is everything. Even with the greatest enthusiasm and inspite of all trances of bliss we must go step by step, otherwise we believe we are on a high stage but are only on an emotional, mind made stage.
The purpose of listening to the Dāmodara-līlā is not to satisfy man’s craving for knowledge. In the heart of those who want to serve, listening can awaken the desire to become, in a future life – through the mercy of God and those who are His Own – a particle of dust under the feet of those who are His Own eternal associates …
It is so cheap to go and to preach about God and the soul and their mutual relation. But there is so little enthusiasm in us to do also. I know for certain that from a stone I cannot press out water. Will my hearers from my dry intellectualism? “From the fruits you will recognise them – the fertile and the barren tree”. Fichte was saying: “A divine behaviour is the most evident proof for the existence of God”. “Not all, who say, O Lord, O Lord! will enter the kingdom of God, but those who do the will of my father” – did not even Christ tell us so?
As soon as one experiences joy while reading or listening to rasa-texts one has gone astray, onto the path of sin, of God-lessness, and exploits the Shastrams. The bhakta hasn’t got any time to feel joy; his service of God is his joy and he is unsatiable in his service, because the power of service is infinite, is nirguna, God’s Own power.
It is perfectly clear that there are only a few, very few, who are capable of understanding even a fragment of these things. Therefore, apart from moments when Mahaprabhu was not aware of the world, He never uttered a word of these things or sang of them before all groups of bhakta-s, only within the most intimate circle of the bhakta-s who belong to the gopi-lila in the fifth rasa of Krishna’s lila.
The principle of a religious community is based on a form of sublimated selfishness covered under the mask of “love” for one’s “Godbrother” or even for “God”. But is it possible at all to call an attitude of expecting reward for some pseudo-renunciation of some selfish interests by the name of “love”? Practically everything is done on payment. Even religions that contain some hint at the implicit truth of nature of the spiritual Subject, objects and their relation, follow this method of ethical and emotional materialism in their practices. We are expecting material profit and are strengthened in the tendency by the injunctions of the Scriptures of these religions.
As you see from my address – I am still living in the slums of Howrah. It is my experience that change of environment and place has no bearing on our (if we have it) real Love for Krishna in the service of the Gopis. We often think change of place or living at a so-called “holy” place can help us in some way – but that is quite wrong.
Letter from Svami Sadananda Dasa, 1960s Intellect and instinct are like useless fireflies before the sun. To understand a little bit only, one must first forget all what one thinks, feels, has heard or learned from books, translations etc. In Sanskrit «desirous to...
But certainly the worst criminal is a saint compared with the
person who talks about God and preaches religion though he does not know
himself what he is himself, what is God and the nature of the world, like
Christian missionaries in India.