Foolish devotees

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Expressions researched:
"Foolish people, therefore, become devotees" |"foolish and passionate cannot be devotees" |"foolish devotee" |"foolish devotees" |"foolish so-called devotees"

Srimad-Bhagavatam

SB Canto 1

The harmful, foolish and passionate cannot be devotees of the Lord, however they may advertise themselves as devotees by outward dress.
SB 1.2.19, Purport:

A devotee is always in the mode of unalloyed goodness; therefore he harms no one. But the nondevotee, however educated he may be, is always harmful. A devotee is neither foolish nor passionate. The harmful, foolish and passionate cannot be devotees of the Lord, however they may advertise themselves as devotees by outward dress. A devotee is always qualified with all the good qualities of God. Quantitatively such qualifications may be different, but qualitatively both the Lord and His devotee are one and the same.

The fruitive workers want to lord it over the material world. Similarly, a neophyte devotee foolishly thinks of accumulating some material power in exchange for devotional service. Such foolish devotees are sometimes put into difficulty by the Lord Himself. As a special favor, He may remove all material paraphernalia. By such action, the bewildered devotee is forsaken by all friends and relatives, and so he comes to his senses again by the mercy of the Lord and is set right to execute his devotional service.
SB 1.5.19, Purport:

A devotee of the Lord automatically becomes uninterested in the enchantment of material existence because he is rasa-graha, or one who has tasted the sweetness of the lotus feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa. There are certainly many instances where devotees of the Lord have fallen down due to uncongenial association, just like fruitive workers, who are always prone to degradation. But even though he falls down, a devotee is never to be considered the same as a fallen karmī. A karmī suffers the result of his own fruitive reactions, whereas a devotee is reformed by chastisement directed by the Lord Himself. The sufferings of an orphan and the sufferings of a beloved child of a king are not one and the same. An orphan is really poor because he has no one to take care of him, but a beloved son of a rich man, although he appears to be on the same level as the orphan, is always under the vigilance of his capable father. A devotee of the Lord, due to wrong association, sometimes imitates the fruitive workers. The fruitive workers want to lord it over the material world. Similarly, a neophyte devotee foolishly thinks of accumulating some material power in exchange for devotional service. Such foolish devotees are sometimes put into difficulty by the Lord Himself. As a special favor, He may remove all material paraphernalia. By such action, the bewildered devotee is forsaken by all friends and relatives, and so he comes to his senses again by the mercy of the Lord and is set right to execute his devotional service.

SB Canto 2

In the material world the family members and friends honor persons who are very successful in accumulating wealth by any means. The foolish devotee of the Lord is thus put into forcible penance by the grace of the Lord, and at the end the devotee becomes perfectly happy, being engaged in the service of the Lord.
SB 2.9.23, Purport:

One cannot enjoy material illusory prosperity if he desires to return home, back to Godhead. One who has no information of the transcendental bliss in the association of the Lord foolishly desires to enjoy this temporary material happiness. In the Caitanya-caritāmṛta it is said that if someone sincerely wants to see the Lord and at the same time wants to enjoy this material world, he is considered to be a fool only. One who wants to remain here in the material world for material enjoyment has no business entering into the eternal kingdom of God. The Lord favors such a foolish devotee by snatching all that he may possess in the material world. If such a foolish devotee of the Lord tries to recoup his position, then the merciful Lord again snatches away all that he may have possessed. By such repeated failures in material prosperity he becomes very unpopular with his family members and friends. In the material world the family members and friends honor persons who are very successful in accumulating wealth by any means. The foolish devotee of the Lord is thus put into forcible penance by the grace of the Lord, and at the end the devotee becomes perfectly happy, being engaged in the service of the Lord. Therefore penance in devotional service of the Lord, either by voluntary submission or by being forced by the Lord, is necessary for attaining perfection, and thus such penance is the internal potency of the Lord.

SB Canto 10.1 to 10.13

Apart from Lord Śiva, if one is a devotee of any other demigod, one receives some material advantages. Foolish people, therefore, become devotees of demigods.
SB 10.10.2-3, Translation and Purport:

Śukadeva Gosvāmī said: O King Parīkṣit, because the two sons of Kuvera had been elevated to the association of Lord Śiva, of which they were very much proud, they were allowed to wander in a garden attached to Kailāsa Hill, on the bank of the Mandākinī River. Taking advantage of this, they used to drink a kind of liquor called Vāruṇī. Accompanied by women singing after them, they would wander in that garden of flowers, their eyes always rolling in intoxication.

This verse mentions some of the material advantages afforded to persons associated with or devoted to Lord Śiva. Apart from Lord Śiva, if one is a devotee of any other demigod, one receives some material advantages. Foolish people, therefore, become devotees of demigods. This has been pointed out and criticized by Lord Kṛṣṇa in Bhagavad-gītā (7.20): kāmais tais tair hṛta jñānāḥ prapadyante 'nya-devatāḥ. Those who are not devotees of Kṛṣṇa have a taste for women, wine and so forth, and therefore they have been described as hṛta jñāna, bereft of sense.

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta

CC Adi-lila

Śrī Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī sets the example of offering obeisances to all the preacher devotees of Lord Caitanya, without distinction as to higher and lower. Unfortunately, at present there are many foolish so-called devotees of Lord Caitanya who make such distinctions.
CC Adi 10.7, Translation and Purport:

I offer my obeisances to all the dear devotees of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, the eternal tree of love of Godhead. I offer my respects to all the branches of the tree, the devotees of the Lord who distribute the fruit of love of Kṛṣṇa.

Śrī Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī sets the example of offering obeisances to all the preacher devotees of Lord Caitanya, without distinction as to higher and lower. Unfortunately, at present there are many foolish so-called devotees of Lord Caitanya who make such distinctions. For example, the title "Prabhupāda" is offered to a spiritual master, especially to a distinguished spiritual master such as Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī Prabhupāda, Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī Prabhupāda or Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Gosvāmī Prabhupāda. When our disciples similarly wanted to address their spiritual master as Prabhupāda, some foolish people became envious. Not considering the propaganda work of the Hare Kṛṣṇa movement, simply because these disciples addressed their spiritual master as Prabhupāda they became so envious that they formed a faction along with other such envious persons just to minimize the value of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. To chastise such fools, Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī very frankly says, keha karibāre nāre jyeṣṭha-laghu-krama. Anyone who is a bona fide preacher of the cult of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu must be respectful to the real devotees of Lord Caitanya; one should not be envious, considering one preacher to be very great and another to be very lowly. This is a material distinction and has no place on the platform of spiritual activities.

CC Madhya-lila

CC Madhya 24.102, Translation:

"When merciful Lord Kṛṣṇa understands that a foolish devotee desires material prosperity, He gratefully gives him the shelter of His lotus feet. In this way, the Lord covers the devotee's undesirable ambitions."

CC Antya-lila

"Jagannātha has saved Gopīnātha Paṭṭanāyaka from being killed by the King today, but if he commits the same offense again, who will give him protection?" Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu thus warns all such foolish devotees that Jagannātha will not protect them if they continue to commit offenses.
CC Antya 9.65, Purport:

"Even if one commits the most abominable actions, if he is engaged in devotional service he is to be considered saintly because he is properly situated in his determination. He quickly becomes righteous and attains lasting peace. O son of Kuntī, declare it boldly that My devotee never perishes." However, if a devotee or so-called devotee purposefully commits sinful activities continually in the hope that Kṛṣṇa will give him protection, Kṛṣṇa will not protect him. Therefore Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu said, kāli ke rākhibe, yadi nā dibe rāja-dhana?: "Jagannātha has saved Gopīnātha Paṭṭanāyaka from being killed by the King today, but if he commits the same offense again, who will give him protection?" Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu thus warns all such foolish devotees that Jagannātha will not protect them if they continue to commit offenses.

Lectures

Srimad-Bhagavatam Lectures

Then, in the meeting... Caitanya Mahāprabhu was beautiful, very beautiful in His bodily features. So... It is summary I am speaking. So the Prakāśānanda Sarasvatī inquired from Him that "You are a sannyāsī. You do not engage Yourself in studying Vedānta-sūtra, but in sentiment, with some foolish devotees, You some chant and dance. What is this?"
Lecture on SB 3.25.5-6 -- Bombay, November 5, 1974:

Then, in the meeting... Caitanya Mahāprabhu was beautiful, very beautiful in His bodily features. So... It is summary I am speaking. So the Prakāśānanda Sarasvatī inquired from Him that "You are a sannyāsī. You do not engage Yourself in studying Vedānta-sūtra, but in sentiment, with some foolish devotees, You some chant and dance. What is this?" So Caitanya Mahāprabhu replied, "My dear sir, My Guru Mahārāja saw Me a great fool number one." Guru more mūrkha dekhi' karila śāsana (CC Adi 7.71). "Therefore He has chastised Me." "What is that?" " 'You don't read Vedānta-sūtra. You chant Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra.' He has ordered Me like that. Because I am a fool, I have no knowledge; therefore he has given Me this engagement, chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa. So I am chanting this Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, and I do not know. I become mad after chanting. And I get, I feel transcendental pleasure. And sometimes I act like a madman. So My Guru Mahārāja has said that 'You are very fortunate. You are very fortunate.' " Then Prakāśānanda Sarasvatī very mildly said, "It is all right, You're chanting. What is the wrong if You study Vedānta-sūtra?" Then Caitanya Mahāprabhu said that "Vedānta-sūtra We know, but not like you. We know. If you don't mind, then I can explain Vedānta-sūtra." So He explained Vedānta-sūtra that Brahman, Brahman means "the biggest."

Facts about "Foolish devotees"
Compiled byVisnu Murti + and Alakananda +
Completed sectionsALL +
Date of first entryDecember 16, 0008 JL +
Date of last entryNovember 22, 0009 JL +
Total quotes8 +
Total quotes by sectionBG: 0 +, SB: 4 +, CC: 3 +, OB: 0 +, Lec: 1 +, Conv: 0 + and Let: 0 +