No one in this rotting material world is more fortunate than one who receives the mercy of a pure devotee. Certainly amongst the most wealthy, intelligent or famous men and women in this world today, no one is nearly as fortunate as the most humble person who even ONCE saw, heard or served our guru maharaja, nitya lila pravista om visnupada paramhamsa A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Darshan of Prabhupada is no longer possible except rarely in dreams, but hearing and service can be realized even now. One need not be his initiated disciple. Not by some bogus ritvik initiation, but by inquisitively hearing and reading his books, lectures, conversations and correspondence, anyone can still associate with Srila Prabhupada.
We who are disciples of Srila Prabhupada should never take him for granted or misuse him for materially selfish purposes. The real legacy and inheritance he left for us is not the marble buildings or the institution he created, but his holy association thru his books, bhajans, classes, conversations and letters. His unlimited mercy also gives us entrance to the entire Brahma-Madhva-Gaudiya sampradaya of which we are its most humble followers. This param para begins with Srila Prabhupada for us, but always includes the previous acaryas.
Prabhupada’s guru maharaja is our parama guru, nitya lila pravista om visnupada paramhamsa Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur Prabhupada. Our spiritual grandfather is an immeasurable ocean of mercy for anyone who seeks to understand the science of love for Krishna. Currently i’m reading an anthology originally published in Bengali as “Srila Prabhupadera Upadesamrta” (Nectarean Teachings of Srila Prabhupada). This Bengali book was recently translated into English by Bhumapati Das and published as “Amrta Vani” by Isvara Das of Touchstone Media (www.touchstonemedia.com). Here is a brief sample from the words of our parama guru, His Divine Grace:
“Human beings proudly consider themselves brahmans, ksatriyas, vaisyas, or sudras, brahmacaris, grhasthas, vanaprasthas, or sannyasis. Those who are intelligent, however, should not claim these false identities. We are simply the Lord’s servants. We are not products of this world."
“Lord Hari is situated in every atom, and He attracts fools and learned alike. Only those who have no desire for material enjoyment, for becoming the master, no desire to command respect as sadhus, are qualified to hear His instructions. Those who are attached to something as insignificant as their own pride, however, will not hear the Lord’s call.”
“Because we do not hear properly from the mouth of the spiritual master we are unable to see Krishna. If we hear properly, we will chant properly. If we chant properly we will remember Krishna properly and thus realize Him.”
“The first order is to take shelter of a spiritual master. That requires humility. Actually humility and taking shelter are synonymous. If we do not take shelter, who can help us?”
“If out of good fortune we receive a bona fide spiritual master, we must observe carefully how he serves Krishna constantly with all his senses. Unless we hear from the spiritual master and apply his instructions, how can we give up material enjoyment?”