Devotee: How do we fit in if the devotees don’t follow the last will and testament of the last ācārya, how do we harmonise it? There is an ācārya board but they are not following the last will and testament.
Śrīla Bhakti Vijñāna Bhāratī Mahārāja: Sometimes, according to the changes in the minds of the local people, devotees change the application of the teachings, but the conception is the same. Both are trying to worship God. So an apparent difference is not a difference. The conception is the same. The application is different, but not the conception.
Śrīla Gaura-kiśora dāsa Bābājī told Śrīla Prabhupāda Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī not to go to Kolkata. Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī was staying in Kolkata and he said: I have never gone to Kolkata, I have always been at the lotus feet of my Gurudeva.
Is it possible?
Because of his sincerity the circumstances of Kolkata never touched him. As the water does not touch the leaves of the lotus.
No doubt is there.
You can believe it or not, but if there is a cause to believe it, why should you not believe it?
You should examine these teachings properly.
For example: Arjuna and Bhīṣmadeva, both are trying to serve Lord Kṛṣṇa. But they are fighting each other, they are on different sides.
Is there any difference?
If you are a football player: you are on one side and on the other side is your brother, you try to make a goal. But there is no difference, both are doing the same.
Going back to the point, there is no difference if somebody is trying to serve the Lord. The way of preaching can be through different moods, but the conception is not different.
How can you realize and understand this?
Pray to a Vaiṣṇava. By the blessings of a real Vaiṣṇava you can understand this point. Otherwise you will see a difference and you will commit aparādha.
If you are not realizing this, you cannot follow the teaching of Śrī Caitanya-deva or the teachings of Lord Kṛṣṇa. You have to follow Rāmacandra, and then you will understand. If you want to follow the teachings of Lord Kṛṣṇa and His devotees, you will have to understand these things. You can also discuss this with other senior Vaiṣṇavas because by the association of a real Vaiṣṇava you can easily understand.
To inquire is good but it should be honestly. In this mood it is always appreciated, not in a challenging mood.
tad viddhi praṇipātena
upadekṣyanti te jñānaṁ
[Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Inquire from him submissively and render service unto him. The self-realized souls can impart knowledge unto you because they have seen the truth.]
For example, if your health is not good you have to take vitamins, without these vitamins you cannot recover. In the same way, without the help of the sādhus, you cannot understand the teachings of the śāstra. The meaning of the śāstra, the purpose of the śāstra. How can you realize these?
If you are not serving a niṣkiñcana Vaiṣṇava and you are not blessed by a niṣkiñcana Vaiṣṇava your mind will never be upon the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
By the grace of a real Vaiṣṇava you can know the purpose of the śāstra.
You have to read the śāstra under the guidance of a Vaiṣṇava, they know the purpose of the śāstras, but we do not. Because of this, a real Vaiṣṇava gives his followers instructions from the śāstra.
The aim of the devotee is the service of the Lord, without the service of the Lord you cannot have peace of mind and you cannot conquer your desires. When you have developed bhakti there is no other desire than the service of the Lord.
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