“Failure is the pillar of success.” This is an English phrase. “Failure is the pillar of success.” If I try I must get the success pillar. One time I fall down, and then for all time I will sleep? No.
Whatever is considered good and whatever is considered bad in this mundane world—everything is bad here. Maybe that is affection, or maybe that is enviousness. Maybe that is apparently good or bad, but everything is bad.
‘dvaite’ bhadrābhadra-jñāna, saba — ‘manodharma’
‘ei bhāla, ei manda’, — ei saba ‘bhrama’
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta: 3.4.176)
[“In the material world, conceptions of good and bad are all mental speculations. Therefore, saying ‘This is good’ and ‘This is bad’ is all a mistake.”]
Srila Kaviraj Goswami expressed this very nicely. And Krishna very simply said,
mātrā-sparśās tu kaunteya śītoṣṇa-sukha-duḥkha-dāḥ
āgamāpāyino ’nityās tāṁs titikṣasva bhārata
(Srimad Bhagavad-gita: 2.14)
[“O son of Kuntī, the engagement of the senses with their objects produces the sensations of cold, heat, pleasure, and pain. But these effects are temporary—they come and go. Therefore, O Bhārat, you must endure them.”]
“It will come to you and you try to tolerate it. Don’t be foolish and don’t be hopeless.”
Hope is always in my front. We are seeing that now Krishna consciousness has spread all over the world by the mercy of our Gurus. It is not a lie; everybody knows now. Krishna consciousness is spreading all over the world, and how is it possible? Five hundred years ago, or maybe less than five hundred years but around four hundred and seventy years ago, Mahaprabhu said,
pṛthivīte āchhe yata nagarādi-grāma
sarvatra prachāra haibe mora nāma
“All over the world people will chant the Hare Krishna mahamantra.” And a hundred years ago Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur said that in Mayapur the Western devotees and Eastern devotees will dance and chant together in Nabadwip Dham. And we see that that is happening. Where is the lie? It is true, we can see that. Then we must follow their directives.
“Chant Hare Krishna” is only the primary teaching of Mahaprabhu. It is the primary teaching. After that there will be many things and we must face those tests. When we get the seed of the bhakti lata [creeper of devotion] we must protect that bhakti-lata-bij. Then nobody can check our fortune. Sometimes some blowing wind will come and give us some disturbance, but without disturbance how will our heart become strong? If you do not exercise then your body will not be strong. If you stay the same way from your birth, if you do not play with your hands and legs then your body will not become strong.
“Failure is the pillar of success.” This is an English phrase. “Failure is the pillar of success.” If I try I must get the success pillar. One time I fall down, and then for all time I will sleep? No. And what fault is there? I am a faulty person, I am a fallen soul, we are always saying, “I am fallen soul”. Then if I am always fallen, what loss do I have? What I practise, that is my gain. In this way we must proceed to our destiny.
Srila Gurudev speaking in Govardhan, March 1991
This is a continuation of the post ‘Falling down, getting up’.