This quiz is designed to motivate you to study the Gaudiya Vaishnava scriptures in specific, and the Sad Darshanas in general, which are necessary to understand Gaudiya philosophy properly.
Jnana or knowledge related to bhakti is also part of bhakti. In fact, hearing, which includes studying shastra, is the first limb of bhakti. Learning, followed by consolidating and then testing our knowledge in the form of a quiz is a fun and effective way to help us retain information.
This quiz is in multiple-choice questions format. (MCQs). If you see the response that you anticipated simply click on it. The quiz will immediately show which answers are correct or incorrect so we can learn as we go.
1 / 10
What is the concept of sat-kārya-vāda?
Sat-kārya-vāda is defined in the Sāñkhya Kārikā by Iswara Krsna as follows:
"The effect is existent [in the cause] because what is non-existent cannot be produced, because an effect requires a corresponding constituent cause, because all things are not produced from all causes, because a competent cause can bring forth only that effect for which it has competence, and because the effect is of the same essence as the cause." - Sāñkhya Kārikā 9.
The idea is that an effect (kārya) exists (sat) as an inherent potential in its cause. As such, the effect is non different from the cause. At the same time, the cause is different from the effect, because the cause is something more than the effect. An agent or instrument is needed to bring out the effect from the cause.
2 / 10
What is yadṛcchayā?
Śrī Jīva Goswami glosses yadṛchhayā as:
– by the auspicious fortune born of the grace issuing from the association of a devotee of Bhagavān, who is supremely independent (parama-svatantra) [in the matter of bestowing such grace]
By yadṛchhayā one gets sādhu-saṅga that instills śraddhā in bhakti. This faith then inspires the person for further sādhu-saṅga which results in bhajana-kriya etc.
3 / 10
If bhakti is supremely powerful just like Bhagavān and even a semblance of bhakti has purifying power, then why are its effects generally not experienced by people practicing it?
A single act of devotion will bring perfection once a person is free of offenses.
Therefore, a sincere devotee should avoid offenses very carefully and execute devotion meticulously. Then one can experience the glory of bhakti.
Learn more: Influence of Offenses.
4 / 10
What the primary types of offenses to bhakti?
There are primarily two types of offenses, namely sevāparādha and nāmaprādha. A bhakta must avoid them very attentively.
5 / 10
There are various effects of offenses to bhakti, of which five are prominent; which of the following is the effect of the first offense?
There are various effects of offenses of which five are prominent: crookedness, faithlessness, absorption in objects that erode one’s faith in Bhagavān, slackness in devotion, and pride arising from one’s own devotional service.
Crookedness, the effect of the first offense, means to be dishonest in one’s behavior, that is, to act and speak while maintaining a hidden motive. Bhagavān does not accept the service of a crooked person. He knows everyone’s true intentions and thus it is not possible to cheat Him. He accepts even a leaf or water given with sincerity but does not look at a big feast if offered with a hidden motive.
6 / 10
Surrender (śaraṇāpatti) is sixfold, being divided into the whole (aṅgī) and its constituent parts (aṅgas). Which of the following is the aṅgī, or “the whole.”?
Surrender (śaraṇāpatti) is defined in the Vaiṣṇava Tantra:
“ānukūlyasya saṅkalpaḥ prātikūlyasya varjanamrakṣiṣyatīti viśvāso goptṛtve varaṇaṁ tathā”
“There are six symptoms of self-surrender: a firm resolve to act congenially to Bhagavān, to forsake all that is unfavorable to Bhagavān, a firm belief that Bhagavān will give one protection, deliberate acceptance of Bhagavān as one’s guardian and nourisher, submission of the self, and humility.”
Śaraṇāpatti is sixfold, being divided into the whole (aṅgī) and its constituent parts (aṅgas). The fourth item, goptṛtve varaṇam, or “the deliberate acceptance of Bhagavān as one’s guardian,” is the aṅgī, or “the whole.” The reason for this is that the act of selecting someone as one’s guardian or protector constitutes the true meaning of the word śaraṇāgati, or “approaching someone for shelter.” The other five items are aṅgas, or “parts,” because they are assistants to this principle.
Learn more: Surrender.
7 / 10
According to Śrī Jīva Gosvāmī, in which of the following ways can surrender (śaraṇāpatti) can be undertaken?
Śrī Jīva Gosvāmī explains that surrender can be undertaken in two ways. The first occurs when a person who has tried everything else but failed to solve the problems of material life finally surrenders to Bhagavān. An example of this type of surrender is Gajendra (lit., “chief of the elephants”), whose leg was caught by a crocodile. First he tried to release himself by his own power. Then he appealed to his family members for help, but still he was unsuccessful. Finally, he gave up and just surrendered to Bhagavān.
This story also hints at the plight of the conditioned beings. The word gaja, which means “an elephant,” is derived from the root gaj, meaning “to be intoxicated.” On this basis, a conditioned human being is also a gaja, because he is intoxicated by ignorance and caught in the clutches of māyā. He struggles to release himself in order to feel free. But whatever efforts he makes in this regard serve only to implicate him still further. Friends and relatives, whom he approaches for help, cannot deliver him, because they themselves are bound. Thus, the struggle continues until, like Gajendra, one takes shelter of Bhagavān, the Master of māyā.
The second type of surrender comes about when someone who had previously surrendered to some other cause or person out of ignorance later realizes his mistake and surrenders to Bhagavān. An example of this is seen in the brāhmaṇas of Mathurā, who were first surrendered to varṇāśrama-dharma but later surrendered to Kṛṣṇa.
8 / 10
What would happen to one who chants the mahāmantra avoiding any offenses but without accepting a guru?
Although the Name is all-powerful, it does not reveal its power to a person who is not free of offense, niraparādha. There are ten major offenses against the Name and one of them is śruti-śāstra-nindanam – criticizing śruti and smṛti. Criticizing is not just a verbal thing. It also includes not respecting what is stated in them. Accepting a guru is one of the important instruction of the śastra. In Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu, Śrī Rūpa Gosvāmi lists accepting guru as the primary step on the path of sādhanā bhakti which leads to prema. So if one chants the Name without accepting a guru avoiding offenses then the Name will guide such a person to a guru. This is the verdict of Śri Viśvanatha Cakravartī Ṭhākura in his commentary on the story of Ajāmila in Śrīmad-Bhāgavata.
Learn more: No Bhakti Without Surrender.
9 / 10
What is krama mukti?
Those who are devotees and are interested in krama mukti (gradual liberation), go to Brāhma's planet.
At the end of Brāhma's life, they enter into the spiritual world.
10 / 10
What is the meaning of the word namaḥ?
In the word namaḥ, the syllable ma refers to the separate “I-sense” (ahaṅkṛti), and the syllable na means the negation of the same (tan-niṣedhaka). Therefore, the word namaḥ indicates the living being’s conscious relinquishment of the false sense of independence (svātantrya).
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The very people who want liberation, which means becoming free from material existence, become distressed if they lose some wealth. This is really amazing.
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