Srila Swami Maharaj's appearance day

If Srila Swami Maharaj had not come to this world, where would we be?

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Talk by our Gurudev, His Divine Grace Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Deva-Goswami, on Nandotsav day, August 1988.
Today is the avirbhav day of Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj, and also Nandotsav. Bhagavan Sri Krishna appeared in this world yesterday night with his paraphernalia.
śrī-kṛṣṇa-chaitanya prabhu jīve dayā kari’
svapārṣada svīya dhāma saha avatari
[“Being merciful to the souls, Śrī Kṛṣṇa Chaitanya Mahāprabhu descends with His associates and abode.”]
“When Bhagavan comes to this world for the fallen souls, he brings his paraphernalia with him.”
You have seen that book, Loving Search for the Lost Servant: this is the main reason for Bhagavan Krishna Chandra’s appearance in this world, and in Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu we can see that in a full-fledged form in this world. Mahaprabhu is patit-pavan avatar.
In Chaitanya-charitamrita Srila Krishna Das Kaviraj Goswami gives two reasons for Mahaprabhu’s descent: one is external and one is internal.
অনর্পিতচরীং চিরাৎ করুণয়াবতীর্ণঃ কলৌ
সমর্পয়িতুমুন্নতোজ্জ্বলরসাং স্বভক্তিশ্রিয়ম্‌ ।
হরিঃ পুরটসুন্দরদ্যুতিকদম্বসন্দীপিতঃ
সদা হৃদয়কন্দরে স্ফুরতু বঃ শচীনন্দনঃ
anarpita-charīṁ chirāt karuṇayāvatīrṇaḥ kalau
samarpayitum unnatojjvala-rasāṁ sva-bhakti-śriyam
hariḥ puraṭa-sundara-dyuti-kadamba-sandīpitaḥ
sadā hṛdaya-kandare sphuratu vaḥ śachī-nandanaḥ

(Vidagdha-Mādhava: 1.1.2)
[“He mercifully descended in the Age of Kali to distribute in full His own wealth of bhakti, the most splendid and exalted rasa (madhura-rasa) which had never been distributed before. May Hari, abundantly radiant with beautiful golden lustre as the son of Śachī, shine forever within the core of your heart.”]
“My obeisance unto the lotus feet of Sri Sachinandan who appeared in this world to give Krishna-prema.”
This is the external cause for his appearance. And the inner cause:
শ্রীরাধায়াঃ প্রণয়মহিমা কীদৃশো বানয়ৈবা-
স্বাদ্যো যেনাদ্ভূতমধুরিমা কীদৃশো বা মদীয়ঃ ।
সৌখ্যঞ্চাস্যা মদনুভবতঃ কীদৃশং বেতি লোভা-
ত্তদ্ভাবাঢ্যঃ সমজনি শচীগর্ভসিন্ধৌ হরীন্দুঃ
śrī-rādhāyāḥ praṇaya-mahimā kīdṛśo vānayaivā-
svādyo yenādbhuta-madhurimā kīdṛśo vā madīyaḥ
saukhyaṁ chāsyā mad-anubhavataḥ kīdṛśaṁ veti lobhāt
tad-bhāvāḍhyaḥ samajani śachī-garbha-sindhau harīnduḥ
(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta, Ādi-līlā, 1.6)
[“‘What are the glories of Śrī Rādhā’s love? What sort of astonishing sweetness of Mine does She relish? What sort of happiness arises in Her alone through experiencing My sweetness?’ Ardently desiring to fully appreciate these three mysteries, Śrī Krishna, enriched with Śrī Rādhā’s devotional mood (bhāva), appeared like the moon from the ocean of Śachī Devī’s womb.”]
These are the two causes, one inner and one outer.
Mahaprabhu said:
pṛthvīte āche yata nagarādi-grāma
sarvatra prachāra haibe mora nāma
(Śrī Chaitanya-bhāgavata, 3.4.126)
[“My name will be spread in every town and village on earth.”]
Village after village in this world, everybody will chant the Hare Krishna mahamantra. This was Mahaprabhu’s desire and prediction. And it has happened now: Mahaprabhu’s followers are going door to door in this world, and already everyone is chanting the Hare Krishna mahamantra. Five hundred years ago Mahaprabhu appeared in this world with His dham and parsad, paraphernalia. And at that time He said that the whole world will chant the Hare Krishna mahamantra in the near future. We are so fortunate that we are seeing that and hearing that: all over the world the Hare Krishna mahamantra is spreading like thunder in this world. And through this mahapurus, Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, Mahaprabhu has done it.
You have seen the face of our Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaj. I heard from him that one psychiatrist told him that he is very brave and fearless. That is, he doesn’t care about anything: where is Krishna consciousness, he gave his blessings there; otherwise he does not care about anything.
From my childhood we have seen his lotus feet, at 6 and 7 Sitakanta Banerjee Lane. We were living together with Swami Maharaj for eight or ten years in his house. He has much love for our Guru Maharaj, and he liked our Guru Maharaj. At that time Swami Maharaj was living grhastha life and he wanted to preach. But the Indian style is that they like sannyasis, and for that reason he would take Guru Maharaj with him and go many places for preaching.
In Bombay he also took Guru Maharaj and his party—Bon Maharaj, Goswami Maharaj, and others. Door to door he tried to preach in his grhastha life, household life. After that, wanting to fulfil the desire of his Gurudev, Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Thakur, who is our Param Gurudev, he took sannyas, and alone he went to the West.
Prabhupad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur wanted to send our Guru Maharaj to the West but Guru Maharaj was hesitating at that time: he could not follow the accent of English men, and because he comes from a brahman family, he could not mix with the mlechchha society. Guru Maharaj was therefore hesitating and told Srila Prabhupad, “I am feeling very unfit for that. If you order me I must go, but it will be good if you send someone else to the West. Your preaching must be nicely spread in the West.” Prabhupad understood and knew Guru Maharaj’s nature as a ‘back pusher man’; so he did not give pressure to Guru Maharaj, and sent Aprakrita Bhakti Saranga Goswami Maharaj instead. He was a grhastha Vaishnava at that time.
Prabhupad’s desire was very clear: he wanted to spread Krishna consciousness door to door in this world, and when he saw anybody enthusiastic, he ordered him, “You are a qualified man, you can preach Mahaprabhu’s message to English men.” When Swami Maharaj first met him, at that time Prabhupad also told him, “Abhay Babu, you are a qualified man, a very qualified man, you can try to preach in the West and to Western people.”
Swami Maharaj always remembered this, and he was always very enthusiastic, very, very enthusiastic. We have seen this. He had no money, but whenever he got some money he would use that money for preaching. For that reason he could not maintain his business nicely. Whenever money would come he would spend it for Krishna consciousness. He would use that money, and his business went down. This was his nature. Lastly he thought, “I shall preach and this will be good for my life.”
He came to Guru Maharaj and asked Guru Maharaj for sannyas; but Guru Maharaj was very close with his family, and so Guru Maharaj hesitated, “If I give you sannyas, your wife and children will come and blame me. Immediately it is not good for you. You wait sometime: go to Vrindavan and wait six months or one year. Then you can take sannyas and go anywhere, and blame will not come to me.”
Swami Maharaj said, “No Maharaj, it is not possible for me to wait. I want immediately to take sannyas. And I shall go out from India.” Then Guru Maharaj said, “It is very difficult for me: Madan’s mother, your sister, will think it is wrong, and your family will also think something is wrong. You go to Keshav Maharaj: I gave sannyas to Keshav Maharaj, and you can take the mantram from there. Your desire will be fulfilled and I will be in a clear position.”
Then Swami Maharaj went to Keshav Maharaj. Guru Maharaj had given the title ‘Bhaktivedanta’ before to Swami Maharaj. After taking sannyas from Keshav Maharaj he went to Vrindavan. In Vrindavan he stayed at the Radha Damodar Temple, writing. He had previously written his Srimad Bhagavad-gita translation, while in Sita Kanta Banerjee Lane. Guru Maharaj had told me, “You go to Abhay Babu and every day hear Srimad Bhagavad-gita from him.” He was my master and I read Srila Swami Maharaj’s Srimad Bhagavad-gita in my childhood.
After taking sannyas Swami Maharaj thought, “I must go to the West.” And Krishna gave so much trouble to him. Krishna tried to examine him: “how much anxiety does he have for Myself, for spreading My Name and My fame in this world.” He wanted to know, for his lila. But Swami Maharaj was very determined, and without money, without his future maintenance, he started to go to the West. You know the history after that of Swami Maharaj; you have also read from his books, and you have seen so many of the preaching results of Srila Swami Maharaj.
When Swami Maharaj wanted to come back to India, everybody thought, “What will he preach? What he has already preached may also not be correct.” None of his godbrothers were enthusiastic to receive him nicely. Then he wrote a letter to me, “Govinda Maharaj, I want to go to India, and want to stay with Sridhar Maharaj in Nabadwip. Can you arrange it?” I told Guru Maharaj, and Guru Maharaj was very happy. Guru Maharaj told me, “You write immediately: he will come here and he will stay in this Math, in that Blue House. I am making the Blue House ready for him.” And when he came here Guru Maharaj was very happy. He came with two disciples, Achyutananda and Ramanuja. Many more disciples were in America at that time. He told the history of his preaching life, and Guru Maharaj was very happy. Guru Maharaj told me, “Can you arrange here a reception from the town people in Nabadwip?” I said, “Yes Maharaj, I shall try.” And I gave the first reception for Srila Swami Maharaj in this town hall of Nabadwip.
Then all of his godbrothers came. Every godbrother had some special affection and regard for Guru Maharaj, and when they saw that Guru Maharaj was praising Swami Maharaj then they also came to praise and give honour to Swami Maharaj.
Day by day Swami Maharaj continued spreading Krishna consciousness in this world. And you know how successful he was: now all over the world everyone is chanting the Hare Krishna mahamantra. Who does not know Hare Krishna, what Hare Krishna is, they are also telling ‘Hare Krishna’. When people see the tilak, mala, and shaved head, then they are chanting ‘Hare Krishna’. When people see us in the road when we are going from Nabadwip to Calcutta, they are telling us ‘Hare Krishna’.
yāṅhāra darśane mukhe āise kṛṣṇa-nāma
tāṅhāre jāniha tumi ‘vaiṣṇava-pradhāna’
(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta, 2.16.74)
[Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu said, “A first-class Vaiṣṇava is one whose very presence makes others chant the holy name of Kṛṣṇa.”]
With the blessings of Swami Maharaj, everybody is now Vaishnava-pradhan! This is the blessings of Swami Maharaj. Guru Maharaj said that Swami Maharaj is not an ordinary Vaishnava, and not an ordinary man, but he is avatar-purus, and Bhagavan Nityananda Prabhu is spreading Krishna consciousness in this world through him. Guru Maharaj said, “Swami Maharaj is Saktyaves-avatar.” Who is Saktyaves-avatar? Vedavyas. Vedavyas is Saktyaves-avatar and spread Krishna consciousness in this world. After that Saktyaves-avatar we heard from Guru Maharaj that Swami Maharaj is Saktyaves-avatar. Some think it is a very low position; but they do not know what is the position mentioned here. You know Bhagavan Vedavyas; Vedavyas is Saktyaves-avatar. He made so many books for the jiva-souls, and glorified Bhagavan’s nama, rupa, guna, lila etc., and Swami Maharaj has also done that in this world. And Mahaprabhu said,
pṛthvīte āche yata nagarādi-grāma
sarvatra prachāra haibe mora nāma
Through Swami Maharaj it is spreading, by Lord Krishna. Here there is no doubt.
Today is a very auspicious day for us. We have got our real path; we have got the consciousness of Krishna Chandra and Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu, and Pancha Tattva etc, and we have got this through Srila Swami Maharaj. This day is that day, his appearance day. If Srila Swami Maharaj had not come to this world, where would we be?
One day when Swami Maharaj was staying in the Blue House here I was serving breakfast to him, and Swami Maharaj told me, “No, no, you also will be seated here, and Hari Charan will serve you.” Hari Charan Prabhu was there, and he was also distributing the prasadam: luchi, aloo bhaja, begum bhaja, some pakori, etc. I was there, and one table was there with Swami Maharaj, Achyutananda, and Ramanuja. But I was hesitating: I was thinking Swami Maharaj is a big Acharya, Swami Maharaj is a world Acharya, so how can I take at the same table as him? I was hesitating. Then Swami Maharaj told me, “You are thinking you will become mlechchha?” “No, no!” I told Swami Maharaj. “No, Maharaj. I can take the prasad of Achyutananda also, that is not the cause here. The only cause is that you are a big Acharya, and I am a very fallen soul. Then I cannot take with you at the same table. That is why I am hesitating.” Swami Maharaj said, “No problem, you take!” And I took the prasadam there. At that time the Indian mind was like that.
On one occasion some of Swami Maharaj’s godbrothers refused to take prasadam served by his western disciples at the Chandroday Mandir in Mayapur. When Guru Maharaj heard of this he said, “I shall take prasadam at the Iskcon temple in Mayapur. And who will go with me?” At that time Paramahamsa Maharaj was here. And Guru Maharaj said, “Maharaj, you want to go with me, to have prasadam, to Iskcon?” Paramahamsa Maharaj said, “Yes, if you go I shall go.” Krishna Das Babaji Maharaj was also there, and he said, “Yes, I shall go.” So Guru Maharaj, Krishna Das Babaji Maharaj, myself, Paramahamsa Maharaj, and one boy, Gautam, who you have seen here, all came. There is a photograph of that printed in a book of the life history of Swami Maharaj. And when Guru Maharaj took prasadam at the Iskcon Math then everybody thought, “It is okay, no problem, we also can take.” Guru Maharaj had this kind of relationship with our Swami Maharaj.
Today is very fortunate for us, Swami Maharaj’s appearance day. And on this Nandotsav day Nanda Maharaj held a great festival in his house. The day after Krishna’s appearance, on this day we are celebrating Swami Maharaj’s appearance with great joy in our hearts.
vāñchhā-kalpatarubhyaś cha kṛpā-sindhubhya eva cha
patitānāṁ pāvanebhyo vaiṣṇavebhyo namo namaḥ
[“Again and again I offer my obeisance unto the Supreme Lord’s devotees, who are saviours of the fallen, oceans of mercy, and wish-fulfilling trees.”]
The Vaishnavas are wish-fulfilling trees, they know our heart. We cannot properly express our heart, but the Vaishnava knows everything, and he must be merciful. I am so fortunate because Swami Maharaj said in his lecture, “Govinda Maharaj is like my son.” This is my fortune.

In focus: “Life-Nectar of the Surrendered Souls”

“Everything is covered in this book Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam, and if you read it minutely you must stand in the plane of dedication.”

It is necessary to complete the first lesson, the second lesson, and the third lesson, then it is possible to understand the fourth lesson. Śrīla Guru Mahārāj gave those first three lessons in Śrī Śrī Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam [Life-Nectar of the Surrendered Souls] as well as the fourth. If you read this book carefully, you will get everything.
Śrīla Guru Mahārāj has given there the meaning of śaraṇāgati, in particular in this following śloka:
bhagavad-bhaktitaḥ sarvam ity utsṛjya vidher api
kaiṅkaryaṁ kṛṣṇa-pādaikāśrayatvaṁ śaraṇāgatiḥ
[“Being governed by the faith that all success is achieved by serving the Supreme Lord, to abandon servitude to even scriptural injunctions and take exclusive refuge in the lotus feet of Śrī Kṛṣṇa in every time, place, and circumstance, is known as śaraṇāgati, unconditional surrender.”]
What is śaraṇāgati? It is Bhagavad-bhaktitaḥ sarvam: it is not even necessary to serve any other god or demigod; through only the service to Kṛṣṇa we can get everything. Therefore we must take shelter at the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. Service to Kṛṣṇa can give us everything and this type of faith is called śaraṇāgati. If you can memorise one śloka and put that in your heart, then from this one śloka you will get everything given in any scripture.
I tried before to know in one sentence what is śaraṇāgati. We know that śaraṇāgati is surrender, but that is not sufficient. Therefore I asked Śrīla Guru Mahārāj. He replied, “Have you not read Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam?”
I said, “Yes Mahārāj, I have, but is the explanation there?” Then he quoted this same śloka, and this is the main thing.
Devotee: I heard that Śrīla Guru Mahārāj explained the difference between śaraṇāgati and ātma-nivedanam. Please explain to us what that difference is.
Śrīla Govinda Mahārāj: There are six kinds of śaraṇāgati. In Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam this is explained and in each case there are examples and expressions of the feelings of other devotees. If you read this book you can understand. There Śrīla Guru Mahārāj explains the subject very clearly and very nicely.
Devotee: What is the meaning of ātma-nivedanam?
Śrīla Govinda Mahārāj: The following verse describes the six kinds of symptoms of śaraṇāgati. Ātma-nikṣepa means ātma-nivedanam.
ānukūlyasya saṅkalpaḥ prātikūlya-vivarjanam
rakṣiṣyatīti viśvāso goptṛtve varaṇaṁ tathā
ātma-nikṣepa kārpaṇye ṣaḍ-vidhā śaraṇāgatiḥ
[The six limbs of surrender are:
1) To accept everything favourable for devotion to Kṛṣṇa.
2) To reject everything unfavourable for devotion to Kṛṣṇa.
3) To be confident that Kṛṣṇa will grant His protection.
4) To embrace Kṛṣṇa’s guardianship.
5) To offer one’s self unto Him.
6) To consider oneself lowly and bereft.]
Devotee: What about nava-vidhā bhakti, the nine principal forms of devotion?
Śrīla Govinda Mahārāj: There are nine kinds of devotional practices: śravaṇam, kīrtanam, Viṣṇoḥ smaraṇam, pāda-sevanam, archanam, vandanam, dāsyam, sakhyam, and ātma-nivedanam [Hearing and chanting the glories of the Lord, constantly remembering the Lord, serving the Lord’s lotus feet, serving Him as a servant, worshipping Him, offering prayers, serving Him as a friend, and completely offering the Lord one’s very self.]. They are also included in śaraṇāgati, unconditional self-surrender. But śaraṇāgati is the first thing—and śaraṇāgati is the last thing. If you want to enter into transcendental knowledge, you must first take shelter of śaraṇāgati. This is the first lesson and this is the last lesson.
Everything is covered in this book Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam, and if you read it minutely you must stand in the plane of dedication. Many examples are given there from the scriptures as well as from the devotees’ lives. It is divided into the six kinds of śaraṇāgati, part by part. It is a very valuable and nice book, no doubt, and everything is there including this verse spoken by Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu:
nāhaṁ vipro na cha nara-patir nāpi vaiśyo na śūdro
nāhaṁ varṇī na cha gṛha-patir no vana-stho yatir vā
kintu prodyan-nikhila-paramānanda-pūrṇāmṛtābdher
gopī-bhartuḥ pada-kamalayor dāsa-dāsānudāsaḥ
[“I am not a priest, a king, a merchant, or labourer (brāhmaṇ, kṣatriya, vaiśya, or śūdra); nor am I a student, a householder, a retired householder, or a mendicant (brahmachārī, gṛhastha, vānaprastha, or sannyāsī). I identify myself only as the servant of the servant of the servant of the lotus feet of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the Lord of the gopīs, who is the personification of the fully expanded (eternally self-revealing) nectarean ocean that brims with the totality of divine ecstasy.”]
Devotee: Is it necessary to have gone through Śrīmad Bhagavad-gītā, Śrīmad Bhāgavatam, and Chaitanya-charitāmṛta before reading Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam?
Śrīla Govinda Mahārāj: No, it is not necessary. This is the first book of reading—and this is the last book of reading. Śrīmad Bhagavad-gītā is also no doubt the first book of reading and the last book of reading, but there are many things there mixed in with bhakti.
In Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam is found only bhakti, and nothing else. But in the Gītā is some description about karma, yoga, jñān, and many other things; that is why everybody likes Śrīmad Bhagavad-gītā. The karmīs like it, the terrorists like Gītā, the yogīs like Gītā, Mahātmā Gandhi liked it, Jawaharlal liked it—everybody likes Bhagavad-gītā. The reason is that they each receive something from it to fulfil their own purpose. But in Śrī Śrī Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam whatever is included is only for the purpose of devotion: the relationship between Kṛṣṇa and the jīva. It is a very pure devotional book.
Śrīla Swāmī Mahārāj said to his sister, “This Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam is a very important and nice book. You have money, so please you spend some money for the printing of this Prapanna-jīvanāmṛtam.” Her name was Bhāvinī Didi. We called her Pishima or ‘Madan’s Mother’ and it was she who subsequently gave the money for the first printing.
Another of the very high type of ślokas there, is the following verse by Śrī Kulaśekhar:
nāsthā dharme na vasu-nichaye naiva kāmopabhoge
yad yad bhavyaṁ bhavatu bhagavan pūrva-karmānurūpam
etat prārthyaṁ mama bahu-mataṁ janma-janmāntare ’pi
tvat pādāmbhoruha-yuga-gatā niśchalā bhaktir astu
[“O Lord, I have no faith in religion, economic development, or sense enjoyment. May all these come to pass as they are ordained according to my previous karma. My earnest prayer is that birth after birth I may have unflinching devotion to Your lotus feet.”]
It is not very difficult to understand what Kṛṣṇa-bhakti is, but what is necessary is the mood of surrender. If you surrender then you can understand everything. But if you do not fully surrender, then many difficulties will come. There is no difficulty for the surrendered soul.
Excerpt from Golden Reflections, compiled from Srila Gurudev‘s talks.
Related reading: “New Year’s Resolution: Full Surrender”
Read the full text of Sri Sri Prapanna-jivanamrtam online here
Download a pdf file of scans of the original book here

Near, far

Within ten years Srila Swami Maharaj Prabhupad spread Krishna consciousness  all over the world. Now some cover has come and it has covered many of the practitioners’ hearts. That cover is ego and attachment. Ego is the greatest cover and we cannot easily remove that cover, but it is necessary to remove it, and then we will see that Krishna is very near to me.
ahaṅkāra-nivṛttānāṁ keśavo nahi dūragaḥ
ahaṅkāra-yutānāṁ hi madhye parvata-rāśayaḥ
(Brahma-vaivarta-purāṇa: 3.9.9)
[“The Supreme Lord Keśava remains in the company of persons who are free from a mundane conception of life; but there appears to be a great mountain range between the self-asserting egotists and the Lord.”]
That is the main thing, and our practising life is following the nine kinds of bhakti, that is sravanam [hearing], kirtanam [chanting], visnoh smaranam [remembering], pada-sevanam [serving the Lord’s feet], archanam [worshipping], vandanam [praying], dasyam [servitude], sakhyam [friendship], atma-nivedanam [self-surrender].
Srila Gurudev speaking in Govardhan, March 1991

The divine legacy of Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur

You are all in the group of Saraswati Thakur’s divine servitors. All over the world, not only our Mission. So many Missions have manifested in this world and all are the divine group of Saraswati Thakur’s servants. Finally all over the world everyone has received the Hare Krishna mahamantra, which was the preaching objective of Saraswati Thakur. Now that transcendental, subjective evolution has spread all over the world. I was recently questioned by someone, “You are seeing the world situation, what do you think it will be like?” I told and I believe the world will get more Krishna consciousness and day by day it will spread; the preaching will not stop. Krishna consciousness will never be stopped and it will grow day by day.
That objective was begun by Saraswati Thakur and his group. He wanted to preach Krishna consciousness out of India and all over the world. He sent, in his lifetime, two or three persons to London for preaching and so much money was spent for that. They were not so successful, no doubt, but Saraswati Thakur wanted that. Whoever would come to see him, seeing their capacity he would say, “You are an English-speaking man, you have that Krishna consciousness, and you can preach it.” Prabhupad A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami took that in his heart and after Prabhupad Saraswati Thakur, he did not forget it. He was always trying to preach and finally, he was successful. Now we are all taking his remnants and going country to country. Guru Maharaj liked him very much and Guru Maharaj gave so much enthusiasm to Prabhupad A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami. Others were envious of him but Guru Maharaj was not and always giving the conception of subjective evolution to him and Prabhupad A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami knew that. He was a very simple-hearted Vaisnava and he declared, “I am learning from Sridhar Maharaj.” This kind of declaration is not done by an ordinary man. One who has real substance in his heart, he can declare like that. “If you want to learn anything, go to Sridhar Maharaj and learn from him. He is my siksa-guru.”
I know him very well because at that time I was a child and lived with him. When all over the world they are chanting that Holy Name of the Lord and I am seeing that, then I understand it is coming down from above, it is not a material thing. If it was a material thing, after a few days it would be finished, but I am seeing that day by day this Krishna consciousness is spreading, and it will grow more. It is all the mercy of Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur. He started in Mayapur Vraja Patan and there was not one servant, only one maidservant cleaning, etc., but later, one by one they joined him. Now thousands of servants are trying to preach Krishna consciousness by the grace of Saraswati Thakur. We cannot glorify him properly, but we have tried to the best of our ability
Spoken by Srila Gurudev on the appearance day of Srila Saraswati Thakur, 1 March 2005, at the Soquel Seva Ashram, California, USA.

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