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Giridhari Swami's Class in Mayapur
By Vipramukhya Swami

CHAKRA (Mayapur, India) - February 8, 2001: His Holiness Giridhari Swami gave class in Mayapur yesterday morning, Wednesday, February 7, 2001, the first day of the GBC meetings.

Maharaja spoke about a man who contacted Srila Prabhupada's books in the Far East, and then presented himself as an incarnation of Krishna and a pure devotee. He developed thousands of followers. People turned all of their assets over to him, believing him to be a genuine sadhu, but when he disappeared with those assets, people realized he was a cheater.

ISKCON devotees then met up with these people and many of them became attracted to ISKCON.

Maharaja said that we know that we want to come to the level of a pure devotee. We want to come to the platform of chanting in pure love of Godhead, but we know there are many steps to get there. We also have heard that one of the important steps.

One of the most important steps, he said, is to begin to chant with great attention. All too often one is preoccupied with different thoughts that come in and out of the mind. They are just like rivers running into the ocean. To harness the mind and engage it in the process of hearing and chanting is not a real easy thing, but it is something one must do.

Maharaja said, "So just the other morning I was inspired by Kavicandra Maharaja when I asked him how he was doing. He said, 'Well, how can I say? I am fortunate because I have again come to Mayapur, associate with the devotees, see Radah-Madhava and engage in various kinds of services. So I am very fortunate.'

"Sometimes we face many problems, and there tends to be pessimism about what the future will bring. These problems are there. There is no doubt about it. On the other hand, we are very fortunate. We have been given a wonderful process of Krishna Consciousness, based on the principles of Srila Rupa Goswami. There are 64 angas, and among those there are 5 that are the most important:

"The first one is to reside in Mathura or the Dhama. Even if one can just come for a visit occasionally one will be greatly benefited. Prabhupada's greatness was that he created places in the Dham for us to visit. He did this only for our benefit. Whatever our condition is, but when one comes into the Dham one cannot help but feel some measure of purification. The Dham itself is so powerful."

The worship of the deity is also one of the main five principles. Srila Prabhupada arranged worship of the deities in the Dhams. Many first time visitors are very impressed by our deity worship.

One devotee's mother came to the Dham to visit her son, and after seeing the deities took rest in a guesthouse. That night she had a dream of the Krishna. This is evidence of the potency of deity worship in the Dham, he said.

Giridhari Maharaja said that Srimad-Bhagavatam hearing is very powerful, especially when hearing in association of devotees in the Holy Dham.

Serving devotees is very important along with chanting the Holy Name. The spiritual atmosphere in the temple when all the devotees are sitting in the temple room chanting is very thick, you can cut it with a knife, he said.

The faultfinding propensity is easy for us to invoke. It is very easy to point the finger and try to find the faults of others. That is probably our biggest problem. Although we've been warned again and again, still somehow or other we're able to continue to keep committing these offences.

In the Caitanya-caritamrta there is the story of Gopal Cakravarti. Gopal Cakravarti told Haridasa Thakura that if the chanting does not deliver what you're saying, then "I'll personally cut off your nose."

Haridasa replied that he would cut off his own nose if what he was saying were not true. Other people in the meeting were horrified by this offence. They kicked out Gopal Cakravarti form the meeting.

Within three days Gopal Cakravarti contracted leprosy and as a result he lost his nose.

These stories should at least frighten us so that we are very careful in dealing with devotees.

"We should offer obeisances to devotees and beg to be forgiven for offences," Giridhari Maharaja said.

The best way to protect the creeper of devotion, he said, was with an attitude of humility. "We have to learn the mood of pure devotional service and humility from those that already have it."

Giridhari Maharaja concluded his lecture by saying, "Coming to the Dham is meant for this purpose. If we can just imbibe some of the qualities of the many devotees who visit the Dham during this period we can go forward nicely in our Krishna Consciousness."

© CHAKRA 09 February 2001

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