The Books Are Our Siksa-GurusIf my heart has accepted Srila Rupa Gosvami as my siksa guru, and I am accepting all his teachings, no one can challenge this. My heart accepts this. If I am accepting as my siksa-guru Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja, there are none to challenge. This is the relation between one heart and Gurudeva.
We should treat all the books of the Gosvamis as our siksa-gurus. We should offer pranama to the books, and then read them. If we do this, we will realize that all siddhanta is coming automatically in our heart. This is the process of reading – not reading, but serving – the books.
Never try to ‘eat’ prasadam. Once someone asked me, “Will you eat anything?” I replied, “I have never eaten anything in my entire life.” He then asked, “So, how are you alive?” I said, “I have served prasadam.” Try to be like this. Don’t ‘chant’ Hare Krsna; try to serve Hare Krsna. Don’t ‘eat’ maha-prasada, always try to serve.
When you are reading these books, don’t ‘read.’ Serve. Offer pranama, place the book on your forehead and heart, and pray, “O Prabhu, you are personally Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami. Please be merciful to me.” This is the process of reading.
When you are reading the dialogue between Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Raya Ramananda on the bank of the Godavari, you can think, “I am on the bank of Godavari. Raya Ramananda and Mahaprabhu are sitting here. I am also peacefully sitting with them, and hearing all their topics. O Mahaprabhu, O Raya Ramananda Prabhu, please be merciful to me. Please sprinkle your mercy upon me so that I can understand this high-class siddhanta.”
Without praying in this way, you will have doubts and you will not be able to realize anything. Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami never met personally with Srila Rupa Gosvami, Srila Sanatana Gosvami, Srila Gopal Bhatta Gosvami, or Srila Raghunatha Bhatta Gosvami. He only met with Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami and Srila Jiva Gosvami. How, then, can he write in Caitanya-caritamrta that they are all his siksa-gurus? The answer is that everything Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami had in his heart was from Srila Rupa Gosvami, and then he explained his heart’s realizations to Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami. Krsnadasa Kaviraja received rasa-tattva from Raghunatha dasa Gosvami and all siddhanta from Srila Jiva Gosvami. From where did that siddhanta come? Srila Gopal Bhatta Gosvami collected appropriate siddhanta from all the scriptures, such as Veda, Upanisads, and Vedanta. From that he made some notes, but the information was not organised. Srila Jiva Gosvami put that information in order; thus everything is coming from them. Srila Sanatana Gosvami wrote many books, one of which is Brhad-bhagavatamrta. Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami took the essence of all the topics therein and gave it to Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami. They realized all the knowledge they received, not like us who think, “Krsna is my siksa-guru, and Rupa Gosvami is siksa-guru, but I am not taking any essence from them and I don’t follow them. To follow a guru actually, by heart, is the acceptance of siksa-guru.
That is why Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami is able to write [in Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi-lila 1.36-37]:
sri-jiva, gopala-bhatta, dasa-raghunatha
tan’-sabara pada-padme koti namaskara