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Does the devotee go through these levels of understanding Brahman then Paramatma then Bhagavan? Does the devotee gradually go through these levels, or does he immediately realize Brahman when his service is perfect?

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"does the devotee go through these levels of understanding Brahman then Paramatma then Bhagavan? Does the devotee gradually go through these levels, or does he immediately realize Brahman when his service is perfect"

Conversations and Morning Walks

1976 Conversations and Morning Walks

That depends on his capacity.
Garden Conversation -- June 27, 1976, New Vrindaban:

Prabhupāda: So is it clear? (laughs) It is not so easy. Therefore it is postgraduate.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: Can these things be understood theoretically, Śrīla Prabhupāda, or is realization required?

Prabhupāda: Realization required. What is the use of theoretical knowledge?

Devotee (2): Śrīla Prabhupāda, can realization be had through service without theoretical understanding?

Prabhupāda: This whole science is understood through service only. Everything becomes revealed. Sevonmukhe hi jihvādau svayam eva sphuraty adaḥ (BRS. 1.2.234). Revelation. Everything is revelation. Unless one is very sincere servant, there is no revelation.

Dhṛṣṭadyumna: Śrīla Prabhupāda, it described a gradual process of realizing Kṛṣṇa, but does the devotee go through these levels of understanding Brahman then Paramātmā then Bhagavān? Does the devotee gradually go through these levels, or does he immediately realize Brahman when his service is perfect?

Prabhupāda: That depends on his capacity. (directing someone:) Just on the head of the...

Devotee (2): Mahārāja Kīrtanānanda said that our actual realization comes through our actions. So we are building this New Vrindaban we are, actually..., this is taken to be our preaching or our life and soul.

Dhṛṣṭadyumna: What is your question?

Devotee (2): My question is how do we...

Devotee (3): Prabhupāda, his question is will one become realized by continually engaging in devotional service under the direction of a bona fide representative of the spiritual master?

Dhṛṣṭadyumna: The question is that his service is here in New Vrindaban under Kīrtanānanda Mahārāja. Will serving the representative of the spiritual master..., is that as good as serving the spiritual master? Will it get the same result?

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: I don't think that was the question. No? At least, I understand the question to be: Is service to the Supreme Lord the same as realization of the Absolute Truth?

Dhṛṣṭadyumna: That is the Absolute Truth.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: Is service to the Supreme Lord the same as realization of the Absolute Truth?

Prabhupāda: Yes. Absolute means there is no difference. Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa's service, same. So discuss it further.