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Words of the spiritual master

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Srimad-Bhagavatam

SB Canto 4

One should serve the words of the spiritual master.
SB 4.28.51, Purport: When one becomes serious to follow the mission of the spiritual master, his resolution is tantamount to seeing the Supreme Personality of Godhead. As explained before, this means meeting the Supreme Personality of Godhead in the instruction of the spiritual master. This is technically called vāṇī-sevā. Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura states in his Bhagavad-gītā commentary on the verse vyavasāyātmikā buddhir ekeha kuru-nandana (Bg. 2.41) that one should serve the words of the spiritual master. The disciple must stick to whatever the spiritual master orders. Simply by following on that line, one sees the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
If one instead sticks to the principle of following the words of the spiritual master, he will see the Supreme Lord without difficulty.
SB 4.28.51, Purport: In conclusion, if a disciple is very serious to execute the mission of the spiritual master, he immediately associates with the Supreme Personality of Godhead by vāṇī or vapuḥ. This is the only secret of success in seeing the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Instead of being eager to see the Lord in some bush of Vṛndāvana while at the same time engaging in sense gratification, if one instead sticks to the principle of following the words of the spiritual master, he will see the Supreme Lord without difficulty.

SB Canto 7

One must have full faith in the words of the spiritual master and similar faith in the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
SB 7.7.17, Purport: These are Vedic instructions. One must have full faith in the words of the spiritual master and similar faith in the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Then the real knowledge of ātmā and Paramātmā and the distinction between matter and spirit will be automatically revealed. This ātma-tattva, or spiritual knowledge, will be revealed within the core of a devotee's heart because of his having taken shelter of the lotus feet of a mahājana such as Prahlāda Mahārāja.
People sometimes do not have staunch faith in the words of the spiritual master who comes by the disciplic succession, and therefore they are unable to understand transcendental knowledge.
SB 7.7.17, Purport: A devotee of the Lord desires for everyone to take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Unfortunately, however, people sometimes do not have staunch faith in the words of the spiritual master who comes by the disciplic succession, and therefore they are unable to understand transcendental knowledge. The spiritual master must be in the line of authorized disciplic succession, like Prahlāda Mahārāja, who received the knowledge from Nārada. If the class friends of Prahlāda Mahārāja, the sons of demons, were to accept the truth through Prahlāda, they would certainly also become fully aware of transcendental knowledge.
SB 7.11.23, Translation: Being always devoted to the demigods, the spiritual master and the Supreme Lord, Viṣṇu; endeavoring for advancement in religious principles, economic development and sense gratification [dharma, artha and kāma]; believing in the words of the spiritual master and scripture; and always endeavoring with expertise in earning money—these are the symptoms of the vaiśya.

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta

CC Adi-lila

Acceptance of the words of the spiritual master is called śrauta-vākya, which indicates that the disciple must carry out the spiritual master’s instructions without deviation.
CC Adi 7.72, Purport: Śrī Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Gosvāmī Mahārāja comments in this connection, “One can become perfectly successful in the mission of his life if he acts exactly according to the words he hears from the mouth of his spiritual master.” This acceptance of the words of the spiritual master is called śrauta-vākya, which indicates that the disciple must carry out the spiritual master’s instructions without deviation. Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura remarks in this connection that a disciple must accept the words of his spiritual master as his life and soul. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu here confirms this by saying that since His spiritual master ordered Him only to chant the holy name of Kṛṣṇa, He always chanted the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra according to this direction (‘kṛṣṇa-mantra’ japa sadā,—ei mantra-sāra).
Faith in the words of the spiritual master and in the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the secret of success.
CC Adi 7.95–96, Purport: Only unto those great souls who have implicit faith in both the Lord and the spiritual master are all the imports of Vedic knowledge automatically revealed.” This Vedic injunction is very important, and Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu supported it by His personal behavior. Believing in the words of His spiritual master, He introduced the saṅkīrtana movement, just as the present Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement was started with belief in the words of our spiritual master. He wanted to preach, we believed in his words and tried somehow or other to fulfill them, and now this movement has become successful all over the world. Therefore faith in the words of the spiritual master and in the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the secret of success.
To one who has staunch faith in the words of the spiritual master and the words of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the secret of success in Vedic knowledge is revealed.
CC Adi 12.8, Purport: The Vedas confirm this:
yasya deve parā bhaktir yathā deve tathā gurau
tasyaite kathitā hy arthāḥ prakāśante mahātmanaḥ

[ŚU 6.23]

“To one who has staunch faith in the words of the spiritual master and the words of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the secret of success in Vedic knowledge is revealed.” The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is being propagated according to this principle, and therefore our preaching work is going on successfully, in spite of the many impediments offered by antagonistic demons, because we are getting positive help from our previous ācāryas.

CC Madhya-lila

It is customary that the words of the spiritual master are more worshipable than the words of a disciple.
CC Madhya 10.175, Purport: Brahmānanda Bhāratī admitted that when there is an argument between the spiritual master and the disciple, the spiritual master is naturally victorious, although the disciple may put forward a strong argument. In other words, it is customary that the words of the spiritual master are more worshipable than the words of a disciple. Under the circumstances, since Brahmānanda Bhāratī was in the position of a spiritual master, he emerged victorious over Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, who considered Himself Brahmānanda Bhāratī’s disciple. However, Brahmānanda Bhāratī reversed the argument and took the position of a devotee, stating that Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu was the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa. This means that the Lord was voluntarily defeated out of affection for His devotee.

CC Antya-lila

Everyone in the line of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s devotional cult should accept the words of the spiritual master and thus spread the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.
CC Antya 4.144, Purport: The words prabhu-datta deśa are very significant. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s devotional cult teaches one not to sit down in one place but to spread the devotional cult all over the world. The Lord dispatched Sanātana Gosvāmī and Rūpa Gosvāmī to Vṛndāvana to excavate and renovate the holy places and from there establish the cult of bhakti. Therefore Vṛndāvana was given to Sanātana Gosvāmī and Rūpa Gosvāmī as their place of residence. Similarly, everyone in the line of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s devotional cult should accept the words of the spiritual master and thus spread the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. They should go everywhere, to all parts of the world, accepting those places as their prabhu-datta deśa, the places of residence given by the spiritual master or Lord Kṛṣṇa.

Other Books by Srila Prabhupada

Teachings of Lord Caitanya

It appears from the talks of Lord Caitanya that a person who cannot keep his faith in the words of the spiritual master and who acts independently cannot attain the desired success in chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa.
Teachings of Lord Caitanya, Chapter 19: Lord Caitanya further informed Prakāśānanda Sarasvatī: "Because I have full faith in My spiritual master's words, I am always engaged in chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare. I do not exactly know how I have become just like a madman, but I believe the name of Kṛṣṇa has induced Me. I realize that the transcendental pleasure derived from chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare is just like an ocean. In comparison, all other pleasures, including the pleasure of impersonal realization, are like shallow water in channels." It appears from the talks of Lord Caitanya that a person who cannot keep his faith in the words of the spiritual master and who acts independently cannot attain the desired success in chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa. In the Vedic literatures it is stated that the import of all transcendental literature is revealed to one who has unflinching faith in the Supreme Lord and his spiritual master. Lord Caitanya firmly believed in the statements of His spiritual master, and He never neglected the instructions of His spiritual master by stopping His saṅkīrtana movement. Thus the transcendental potency of the holy name encouraged Him more and more in chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, the mahā-mantra.
We have got practical experience how a great institution was lost by whimsical ways. Without carrying out the order of the spiritual master, they manufactured something and the whole thing was lost. Therefore Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura stresses very much on the words of the spiritual master.
Lecture on SB 1.2.11 -- Vrndavana, October 22, 1972: Just like Caitanya Mahāprabhu said, āmāra ājñāya guru hañā [Cc. Madhya 7.128], "You become a spiritual master under My order." So if you carry out the order of Caitanya Mahāprabhu, Kṛṣṇa, then you become guru. Āmāra ājñāya guru hañā. Unfortunately, we do not wish to carry out order of the ācāryas. We manufacture our own ways. We have got practical experience how a great institution was lost by whimsical ways. Without carrying out the order of the spiritual master, they manufactured something and the whole thing was lost. Therefore Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura stresses very much on the words of the spiritual master. Vyavasāyātmikā buddhir ekeha kuru-nandana [Bg. 2.41]. If you stick to the order of spiritual master, then, without caring for your own convenience or inconvenience, then you become perfect.
yasya deve parā bhaktir
yathā deve tathā gurau
tasyaite kathitā hy arthāḥ
prakāśante mahātmanaḥ
[ŚU 6.23]
This is the confirmation of all authorities. We have to carry out very faithfully the order of the bona fide representative of Kṛṣṇa. Then our life is successful. Then we can understand Kṛṣṇa in truth. Vadanti tat tattva-vidas tattvam [SB 1.2.11]. We have to hear from the tattva-vit, not from the so-called scholars and politicians. No. One who knows the truth, you have to hear from him. And if you stick to that principle, then you understand everything very clearly.
Vyavasāyātmikā buddhiḥ means to take the words of the spiritual master as life and soul.
Lecture on SB 1.16.24 -- Los Angeles, July 14, 1974:

Prabhupāda: So if we want to be Kṛṣṇa conscious, we shall fix up our mind on Kṛṣṇa, and... How to become fixed up, that art will be given to you by the spiritual master. Therefore Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura says in connection with the explanation of this verse, vyavasāyātmikā buddhiḥ, so he says vyavasāyātmikā buddhiḥ means to take the words of the spiritual master as life and soul. That is vyavasāya... That is called vyavasāyātmikā buddhiḥ. And Viśvanātha Cakravartī says that "Whatever I am ordered by the spiritual master, that is my life and soul. I don't care for liberation. My only business is to serve my spiritual master." And in the song you have just sung, ye prasāde... What is that? Ye prasāde...?

Rāmeśvara: Pūre sarva...

Prabhupāda: Pūre sarva āśā. You do not know the meaning. Ye prasāde means "By his mercy, all our desires are fulfilled." Ye prasāde pūre sarva āśā...

So, so this is our process, to depend on Kṛṣṇa. Depend does not mean I shall remain idle. Depend means to work according to the direction of the śāstra. Sādhu-śāstra-guru-vākya, tinete kariyā aikya. Depend does not mean, "Now let me sleep, and Kṛṣṇa will do everything. Depend on Kṛṣṇa." No, not like that. Kṛṣṇa never advised Arjuna that "You sleep on this chariot. (laughter) I'll..." Hare Kṛṣṇa. He never said that. He said, "You must have to fight." Yudhyasva mām anusmara [Bg. 8.7]. "Fighting you have to do. But you always think of Me." This is the success. Not that depend on Kṛṣṇa means, "I have not to, nothing to do."
Don't spoil yourself by manufacturing ideas. Take word from him. You carry it out. Don't bother whether you'll be spiritually advanced or not, but take the word of the spiritual master and carry it. Then everything is guaranteed.
Lecture on CC Madhya-lila 20.105 -- New York, July 11, 1976:

Prabhupāda: Cittete kariyā aikya. Now this is the determination. We must approach the real guru, empowered guru, with power of attorney. Then if we take his word... Guru-mukha-padma-vākya, cittete kariyā, āra nā kariyā mane... **. Don't try don't manufacture ideas. Then if you take up that seriously, then your life is successful. Guru-mukha-padma, cittete, āra nā kariyā mane. Don't spoil yourself by manufacturing ideas. Take word from him. You carry it out. Don't bother whether you'll be spiritually advanced or not, but take the word of the spiritual master and carry it. Then everything is guaranteed. Guru-mukha-padma-vākya, cittete koriyā aikya, āra nā koriyā mane āśā **. Then?

Dhṛṣṭadyumna: Śrī-guru-caraṇe rati...

Prabhupāda: Śrī-guru-carane rati, ei sei uttama-gati. You want advancement in spiritual consciousness, but it is possible only—śrī-guru-caraṇe rati. If you keep your faith only on the lotus feet of your guru, then you'll make advance. There is no doubt about it. Then?

Dhṛṣṭadyumna: Ye prasāde pūre sarva āśā.

Prabhupāda: Ye prasāde pūre... We have got so many desires, but if we have got strong faith at the lotus feet of guru, everything will be fulfilled automatically. Ye prasāde pūre sarva āśā. Then?

Dhṛṣṭadyumna: Cakhudāna dilo yei...

Prabhupāda: Cakhudāna dilo yei, janme janme prabhu sei. Guru's business is cakhudāna. We are kept in the darkness of this material existence, and guru's business is to open it, bring him to light. That is guru, not to keep him again in the darkness. Cakhudāna dila yei janma janma prabhu sei. Prabhu means master. Then?

Dhṛṣṭadyumna: Divya-jñāna hṛde prokāśito.

Prabhupāda: Divya-jñāna hṛde prokāśito. What is that divya-jñāna? Divya-jñāna is that we are all servant of Kṛṣṇa, and our only business is to serve Kṛṣṇa. Divya-jñāna. This is divya-jñāna. It is not difficult at all. Simply we have... We have become servant of so many things—servant of society, servant of community, servant of country, servant of wife, servant of children, servant of dog and so many. "Now let me become servant of Kṛṣṇa." This is divya-jñāna. Dīkṣā. Dīkṣā means from this divya-jñāna. That is dī. And kṣā means kṣapayati, expands. Then?

Conversations and Morning Walks

1976 Conversations and Morning Walks

Don't concoct. Don't you sing daily? Āra nā koriha mane āśā. Don't manufacture ideas. That is dangerous.
Garden Conversation -- June 23, 1976, New Vrindaban:

Devotee (4): The difficulty is that we cannot understand, we cannot feel what pleases Kṛṣṇa now, yet we can feel what pleases us, and that is the difficulty?

Prabhupāda: You have no feeling, that everyone knows. Therefore you have to carry out the order of spiritual master, that's all.

Devotee (1) : If we try to please Kṛṣṇa with all of our service and activities, that automatically brings pleasure to the self?

Prabhupāda: You cannot please Kṛṣṇa directly. You please your spiritual master, Kṛṣṇa will be pleased. If you want to please directly Kṛṣṇa, that is not possible. That is concoction You cannot please. Yasya prasādād bhagavat-prasādaḥ **. You have to please your spiritual master, then Kṛṣṇa will be pleased. Don't jump. Guru-mukha-padma-vākya, cittete koriyā aikya **. What is that song you daily sing? What is that?

Pradyumna: By the words of the spiritual master our mind becomes conclusive from...

Prabhupāda: Āra nā koriha mane āśā. Don't concoct. Don't you sing daily? Āra nā koriha mane āśā. Don't manufacture ideas. That is dangerous. Caitanya Mahāprabhu teaches by His example. Guru more mūrkha dekhi' karilā śāsana [Cc. Ādi 7.71]. Caitanya Mahāprabhu said to Prakāśānanda Sarasvatī that "My spiritual master saw Me fool number one, so he has chastised Me, that 'Don't try to read Vedānta; chant Hare Kṛṣṇa.' So I'm doing."

Correspondence

1970 Correspondence

To serve the Spiritual Master's word is more important than to serve him physically.
Letter to Syamasundara -- Los Angeles 19 July, 1970: You are expecting to see me, but I also expected to see the London Rathayatra, but you made no arrangement so what can I do? So let us meet by Sankirtana. I also do not feel separation from my Guru Maharaja. When I am engaged in His service His pictures give me sufficient strength. To serve the Spiritual Master's word is more important than to serve him physically. Please try to open as many branches as possible in European countries.
Syamananda +  and Visnu Murti +
December 23, 0007 JL +
March 28, 0009 JL +
BG: 0 +, SB: 5 +, CC: 5 +, OB: 1 +, Lec: 3 +, Conv: 1 +  and Let: 1 +