by Srila Bhakti Raksaka Sridhara Maharaja
Srila Sridhar Maharaj: Pujala raga-patha gaurava bhange – that is the motto of our Guru Maharaj. That is the property of our Gurudeva, and we are serving that from one step lower. But we must be conscious of the fact that the real wealth of my Gurudeva is raganuga-bhakti. That is our aim. “But I am not particularly fit. I am to acquire my fitness for this aim by the servants of those that are within raganuga-bhakti. I pray one day I will be able to reach that standard.”
”This should be our attitude, and if we think we are quite fit, then that is faulty. That progress will be indirect, not direct. Mahaprabhu says – na prema gandho’sti darapi.“
There is not a drop of real raganuga-bhakti within Me. That is infinite, that is an ocean. My attempt is a sham. It is artificial.” He is blaming Himself in such a way – but from the background it is known that raganuga-bhakti is filling Him up, capturing Him wholesale.
Raganuga-bhakti is the very life of prema, the internal, irresistible attraction for service to Krsna. It is continuous, not calculative of any gain or loss. We are to pray for that. It has come in such an irresistible way and captured us. As the ocean plays with a straw, it shall also play with me in that way. That is bhakti. That is raganuga – that prema is an ocean of love. You will have no initiative at all – but that is not a curse, that ocean is a cosmos. Harmony is there, and we are all in His hand. Yoga-maya is making arrangements for all these things. We must look with a feeling of helplessness – we shall feel the emanation of the loving service, prema – love divine.
I am not teaching raganuga-bhakti, but I am making it clear that it is our goal. We must have that on our head – pujala raga-patha gaurava bhange. We are worshipping this and our highest aim is raganuga-bhakti. With that object in mind we are doing work here in this world.
The different stages of development, sambandha, abhidheya, and prayojana, are also different stages of devotional service, like vaidhi-bhakti, raganuga-bhakti etc.
In vaidhi-bhakti, we generally see the constitutional position of the Master, the Master of the world. He is in cooperation with us, and we are guided by some law – that is Narayana in Vaikuntha. “This is a good thing, I get some special pleasure by His service. The sastra also encourages me to do this.” This sort of conclusion is held by the servitor in vaidhi. There is some awe, grandeur, and some apprehension that I may not do my service correctly – it is calculated devotion and calculated service.
But in raga-marga one’s service is spontaneous and automatic. “I am helpless – I can’t resist doing it.” That service is fully dependent, just as in the inner workings of the body, there is some voluntary action, and some reflexive involuntary action.
It is involuntary that when we eat something, the process of digestion is automatic – I can’t assist it. Without my consciousness the work is going on. So in raga-marga, it goes on without our calculated faculty – our voluntary faculty does not have much scope there. It must follow this internal, spontaneous energy which works there. Those in raga-marga cannot live for anything but to do their service. That is the position there. But it is not measured or calculated – it is automatic and spontaneous.
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