Protection of the Dhāma and Dharma

Question: I have read and heard that Lord Śiva always protects the holy dhāma where Lord Kṛṣṇa has performed His pastime. What sort of protection would that be? If Lord Śiva protects the dhāma, then how do we understand when dhāma gets attacked by aggressors?

Answer: You may have read that in Vaikuṇṭha, Lord Viṣṇu has gatekeepers for protection. From whom do they protect? No non-devotee can enter Vaikuṇṭha and there is no need of protection from devotees. The same applies to the dhāma because non-devotees cannot approach the dhāma. It is just a protocol, just as when a king moves, he has many bodyguards and associates around him even though there may be no danger. You write that the dhāma gets attacked by aggressors. Which aggressors do you have in mind? Even when an aggressor breaks the deity of Kṛṣṇa, it does not mean that he has killed Him, because for such a person, the deity is not Kṛṣṇa. They mostly don’t even believe that God has a form and therefore they break the deity. What they are breaking is a piece of stone and not the deity. You may ask then why devotees protect the deity when an aggressor attacks? Because a devotee does not consider the deity to be a piece of stone, for him He is Kṛṣṇa who manifested to accept service and protection from His devotee and just give him a chance to serve. Therefore just as the deity is simultaneously also a piece of stone, in the same way for aggressors, the dhāma manifests as a material place and they can only attack that material manifestation. The real dhāma is unapproachable to them because it is beyond prakṛti. Nothing material, object or person can contact the dhāma.

Question: Do our ācāyras ever mention the importance of protecting the integrity of Vedic culture; protecting the borders (whatever was defined at that time) from external aggression?

Answer: As you know, Kṛṣṇa Himself says in Bhagavad Gīta that He comes to establish dharma. It is also seen from His personal life that He worked very hard for the establishment and propagation of dharma. Then it naturally follows that devotees of Krishna who take pleasure in serving and pleasing Him would take a natural interest in protecting dharma. As far as protecting the borders is concerned, that is not within the purview or means of a devotee because that is the responsibility of the State government. One should not unnecessarily engage in an enterprise which is beyond one’s means and capability. This will only bring frustration and may become a blockage in one’s advancement.

Question: We see and read how people of Bharata themselves are axing their own feet expertly? Should we keep ourselves aloof from such news/incidents and be concerned with our own self and our own kind?

Answer: There is no harm in having knowledge and a genuine concern for protecting dharma, but this should not become the source of disturbance to our mind. Otherwise, forget about protecting dharma, we will not even be able to protect ourselves.

Question: Is saying, “We can’t do anything. It’s the karma of the people to suffer, they are complacent and they have brought such unfortunate situation upon themselves,” an appropriate response and answer to the mind’s constant argument and concern?

Answer: No, this is not the appropriate response. The appropriate response is that one should not be disturbed about things which are beyond one’s control, which is the advice that Kṛṣṇa gives in Bhagavad Gīta, where He repeatedly instructs Arjuna to maintain equanimity of mind under all circumstances. A disturbed mind cannot achieve anything beneficial.

 

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man reading newspaperQuestion: For devotees, there is a recommendation to refrain from reading mundane literature like novels, newspapers, movies, etc. What is your opinion on this?

Answer: It depends on the level of advancement of the devotee and purpose behind reading such news or literature. The reason behind this restriction is not to pollute one’s mind by mundane news or literature because that does not serve the purpose of achieving pure devotion. However, if it is helpful in one’s service, such as in preaching, where one may need to be updated on the current affairs or it relates to management where also knowledge of current of social and political affairs may be necessary. Then such a restriction does not apply. Still one should not waste too much time in reading such literature or listening to the news. Moreover, one has to introspect one’s own mind, to see whether one is relishing such literature. If that is the case, it is not very healthy because it may become an obstacle to one’s devotion.

 

 

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Comments ( 12 )
  1. Stoka Krsna Das

    Thanks Babaji

    These days the statement is “Think Big” and in some spiritual circles it is also advised that we should “Think Big” in our service to Krishna like distributing more and more literature, preaching and getting more and more numbers on board etc. But you have advised that one should try to be within one’s means and capabilities otherwise it’s going to disturb the mind which is not conducive for Sadhna.

    Is the statement “Think Big” just a pep talk or does it really have any basis in spirituality?

    • Babaji Post author

      You can “Think Big,” if that is not a disturbance to your mind and thus becomes a distraction to your devotion. Sri Rupa Gosvami advises not to take huge undertakings – maharambhady anudyamah (BRS 1.2.78). He cites SB 7.13.8 – narambhan arabhet kvacit – in support of it in BRS 1.2.113. While commenting on this, Sri Jiva Gosvami writes that the injunction that one should not study many books means that one should not study sastra other than Vaisnava scriptures, meaning scriptures opposed to SB.
      The injunction about big undertakings should be understood in the same way.
      In other words, Big Projects unrelated to bhakti should not be undertaken.

  2. Deepak Pradhan

    Radhe Radhe Babaji Maharaj
    Dandavat Pranama
    Thanks for nice posting
    As you told that “What they are breaking is a piece of stone and not the deity”.
    Does it mean that the same deity acts spiritual for devotees and matter for non devotee ?

    Similarly does Govardhana sila act a piece of stone(matter) for non devotee by withdrawing its spiritual potency completely and saksat Nanda nandana for devotees?

    Does it mean that matter can become spirit (manifestation of svarupa shakti) after prana pratistha and simultaneously spirit (take an example self manifested deity like Radharamanaji as manifestation of svarupa shakti) becomes dull matter (stone) for the aggressor?

    • Babaji Post author

      > Does it mean that the same deity acts spiritual for devotees and matter for non devotee?

      Yes.

      > Similarly does Govardhana sila act a piece of stone(matter) for non devotee by withdrawing its spiritual potency completely and saksat Nanda nandana for devotees?

      Yes.

      > Does it mean that matter can become spirit (manifestation of svarupa shakti) after prana pratistha and simultaneously spirit (take an example self manifested deity like Radharamanaji as manifestation of svarupa shakti) becomes dull matter (stone) for the aggressor?

      Yes. Shri Krishna says in Gita – ye yatha mam prapadyante tans tathaiva bhajami aham. He reciprocates according to the bhava of people.

    • Deepak Pradhan

      Thanks Maharaj for your answer

      One thing I could not understand that if Krishna by His achintya shakti converts matter into spirit and spirit it matter then
      1.Does it nt violate the nityata (eternnity) of spirit which can not be matter?

      2.Then for Krishna nothing is material energy and material world.For Him,one internal(svarupa) shakti acts in both ways.As one electriciy can be used for cooling and heating purpose by an expert enginner.Like for Krishna,when His maya transfer Balaram from the womb of Devaki to womb of Rohini,she acts as internal potency Yogamaya and when the same Yogamaya as girl child ,brought by Vasudeva and when snatched and thrown by Kamsa she immediately became astabhuja Durga (maha maya) for Kamsa.
      Am I right in my undestanding.If not please help me in understanding.

      3.Then what is the need of Krishna to manifest the dhama which is the manifestation of svarupa shakti (internal potency) in this material world (manifestation of external potency)?He can convert this material world into Dhama for His pastime.
      Dandavat Pranama
      Radhe Radhe

    • Babaji Post author

      Q: One thing I could not understand that if Krishna by His achintya shakti converts matter into spirit and spirit it matter then
      1.Does it nt violate the nityata (eternnity) of spirit which can not be matter?

      A: Converting means manifestation. He can manifest or unmanifest His energies.

      2.Then for Krishna nothing is material energy and material world.For Him,one internal(svarupa) shakti acts in both ways.As one electriciy can be used for cooling and heating purpose by an expert enginner.Like for Krishna,when His maya transfer Balaram from the womb of Devaki to womb of Rohini,she acts as internal potency Yogamaya and when the same Yogamaya as girl child ,brought by Vasudeva and when snatched and thrown by Kamsa she immediately became astabhuja Durga (maha maya) for Kamsa.
      Am I right in my undestanding.If not please help me in understanding.

      A: He has different energies which He can use at His will. It is not that He has just one type of energy.

      3.Then what is the need of Krishna to manifest the dhama which is the manifestation of svarupa shakti (internal potency) in this material world (manifestation of external potency)?He can convert this material world into Dhama for His pastime.

      A: See above

  3. Kalu Ram

    Respected maharaj
    You have given a nice explanation to the queries of Deepak Pradhan. But one good question he asked about yogamaya and mahamaya. Would u like to give the clarity the question he asked that
    “Like for Krishna,when His maya transfer Balaram from the womb of Devaki to womb of Rohini,she acts as internal potency Yogamaya and when the same Yogamaya as girl child ,brought by Vasudeva and when snatched and thrown by Kamsa she immediately became astabhuja Durga (maha maya) for Kamsa.”
    How this happened? Means if yogamaya and mahamaya are always two different energies of lord, then how yogamaya changed to astabhuja mahamaya?

    • Babaji Post author

      She did not change. She became unmanifest and Mahamaya became manifest. I already wrote in my earlier reply.

    • Kalu Ram

      Thank you. Now it is understood clearly.Still one last part of this query has not been cleared.Please help me in this regard.
      In HBV or elsewhere, example is given that bell metal when comes in contact with sulphur, by special treatment it is converted to gold. Similarly when iron comes in contact with parasa mani it becomes gold irrespective of the iron.
      Now question comes whether there is any real difference in quality between original gold and converted gold?

      Similarly when it is said that after the influence of sadhana,a sadhaka vaisnava’s body becomes chinmaya or spiritual and similarly material paraphernalia used in the service of lord becomes chinmaya, that time what it exactly means?

      So please tell me ,here what is the exact difference between the transcendental body of sadhana siddha vaisnava like Srila Bhakti Vinod thakur and original transcendental body of a nitya siddha parsada like sad goswami?

      Then how the material body of Dhruva maharaj becomes chinmaya like body manifested from svarupa shakti which is fit to enter into spiritual world for the service of Krishna.Here I think he had not to leave his material body.Please make me understand in a simpler way.
      But it is said that we have to leave this material body and get a appropriate body as per our sadhana to do service in the spiritual world.This is the confusion.
      Please clear the doubts………………….I will be very grateful to you.
      Jaya Gaura Nitai

    • Babaji Post author

      Q: Now question comes whether there is any real difference in quality between original gold and converted gold?

      A: Yes, there is a difference.

      Q: Similarly when it is said that after the influence of sadhana,a sadhaka vaisnava’s body becomes chinmaya or spiritual and similarly material paraphernalia used in the service of lord becomes chinmaya, that time what it exactly means?

      A: It has two meanings. One is that it actually becomes chinmaya but we ordinarily do not perceive it that way. We still perceive it like any other material body.
      The other meaning is that although it is material, it is called chinmaya because now it is engaged in the service of Bhagavan, just like a chinmaya body. The material body and mind work for material desires, material pleasure. The chinmaya body and mind engage in the service of Bhagavan.

      Q: So please tell me ,here what is the exact difference between the transcendental body of sadhana siddha vaisnava like Srila Bhakti Vinod thakur and original transcendental body of a nitya siddha parsada like sad goswami?

      A: There is no difference.

      Q: Then how the material body of Dhruva maharaj becomes chinmaya like body manifested from svarupa shakti which is fit to enter into spiritual world for the service of Krishna.Here I think he had not to leave his material body.Please make me understand in a simpler way.

      A: This is a very special instance. This does not happen to everybody. Dhruva got the spiritual body without going through the experience of giving up his material body.
      Usually, a sadhaka siddha gives up the material body and then is awarded the spiritual body as is described by Narada Muni in 1.6.28,29.

  4. Parikshit

    Thank you very much for the Daily Bhakti Byte feature on the website. It is great. _/\_

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