I'm still in Chicago, visiting my father who turned 94 today. Physically and mentally he is in excellent shape for someone who has been thru 94 years of kali yuga. But emotionally, he is a poor wreck because he is not a devotee and he is hopeless and helpless at this stage of his life.
We who aspire to be devotees put a lot of emphasis on knowledge, and rightly so. Without knowledge and discrimination we cannot make progress on the journey back to Godhead. This confidential knowledge is one of the matchless gifts of the mahajan great souls, including our own worshipable spiritual master, om visnupada paramahamsa A.C. Bhaktivedenta Swami Prabhupada.
But more than knowledge, more than logic, the greatest gift our spiritual preceptors have given us is the faith they showed us and the emotional strength that was the byproduct of their faith. At the end of the day, it's emotions that rule. And emotions are guided by faith. It is this unseen and unspoken power of faith that gives us the emotional strength to have hope and to feel inspiration, to aspire for a closer and more intimate connection with the saints, and for the determination to become a genuine devotee, not just an imitation or materialistic follower of the 3rd class.