Who is The Topmost Object of Service?

by Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Prabhupāda

To the extent that I fail to take complete shelter of śrī gurudeva, or that I present myself before him with duplicity or disobey him, I am actually cheating myself. It is important to contemplate such things. Otherwise we will not find much benefit despite outwardly taking shelter of the lotus feet of śrīla gurudeva.

Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, who is the supremely auspicious source of all auspiciousness, has mercifully handed over our complete well-being to the hands of our śrī gurudeva. If I do not surrender cent percent unto the lotus feet of śrī gurudeva, if I engage in duplicity by not surrendering fully, then how shall he be able to bestow all auspiciousness upon me? If I remain engaged in worldliness internally, and externally make a false or hypocritical show of being engaged in devotion, then śrī guru, who is omniscient, will have no choice but to deprive me of true benefit.

Yādṛśī bhāvanā yasya siddhir bhavati tādṛśī – one’s perfection will be according to one’s mood and thoughts during the phase of spiritual practice.” When I disregard śrī gurudeva and Śrī Kṛṣṇa by not fully engaging in serving them, and instead remain engaged in serving the material energy – that is, serving my worldly relatives and so on – then śrīla gurudeva, who, as the indwelling Supersoul, knows the heart of every living being, will mercifully tell me:

“You have not become a disciple yet. You do not accept the discipline of my instruction. You do not listen to what I say. There is still sin present in your heart. You have not presented your ears in order to hear my words because you listen to your own treacherous mind and to the principles and ideals of worldly people. Therefore, you have been deprived.”

Therefore, I say once again, it is our duty to accept with a bowed head whatever arrangement śrī gurudeva genuinely and mercifully makes for us. This alone is the characteristic of a disciple, or one who has truly taken shelter of śrī guru. Without this trait, misfortune is assured.

O my friends, do not become sense enjoyers. Do not pursue the enjoyment of sense objects through the gateways of the senses, for everything in this world is an instrument meant for serving śrī guru. Everything is meant for serving Śrī Kṛṣṇa. If we keep the mentality of enjoying objects that are truly meant for serving śrī guru, we will never be granted auspiciousness. If we do not see every object in relation to śrī guru, we are certainly inviting our own misfortune.

Excerpted from Śrīla Prabhupādera Upadeśāmṛta

Śrīla Prabhupādera Upadeśāmṛta is a compilation of Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Prabhupāda’s instructions in question-and-answer form.


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