Mahanidhi Swami

A human being is very, very fortunate if he has taken diksha or initiation from a genuine wisdom teacher or illuminator, commonly known as guru. Nowadays, however, when people hear the word “guru”, they immediately think, “O some cheater, charlatan or debauchee in the disguise of a “holy man”.

This negative attitude toward the “guru” is due the influence of Kali, and the many exposures of extremely debased and degraded characters claiming to be the Absolute or representatives of the same.
On his own, a seeker on the path of enlightenment will face many obstacles and challenges created by his karmic inheritance, the environment, and other living entities. The opposition to self-realization appears before one in many forms i.e. lust, anger, greed, illusion, envy, pride, fear, lamentation, desire, mental distraction, violence, sleep, and the three modes of nature (ignorance, passion and goodness).

Alone—how will one ever conquer all these seemingly invincible foes? The secret is the power and blessings of a real guru. And thankfully, the sincere can find a properly qualified guru with the help of the sacred scriptures. The definition, symptoms and qualities of the true guru, along with his powers and activities have been extensively described in the Vedas, Puranas and Upanisads. One must read these, and then choose the right guru based on intelligent discrimination according to the dictates of scriptures.

Regarding the obstacles, in the Srimad Bhagavatam (7.15.22-15), Sri Narada Muni suggests different means to conquer the problems we mentioned above, and here’s the list.

  1. Lust: DETERMINATION not to enjoy, asankalpa jayet kamam.
  2. Anger: RENOUNCE desire, krodham kama vivarjanat.
  3. Greed: CONSIDERATION the trouble wealth brings, artha anartha ikshaya lobham.
  4. Fear: TRUTH and be established in it, bhayam tattva avamarshana.
  5. Lamentation & Illusion: METAPHYSICAL KNOWLEDGE, anvikshikya shoka moha.
  6. Pride: SERVICE to great devotee, dambham mahad upasaya.
  7. Mental Distraction: SILENCE, yoga antarayan maunena.
  8. Violence: RENOUNCE desire to enjoy, himsam kama adi anihaya.
  9. Suffering from others: COMPASSION express it to other living entities, krpaya bhutajam duhkham.
  10. Suffering from environment: CONCENTRATION on God, daivam jahyat samadhina
  11. Suffering from own body & mind: YOGA asana & pranayama, atmajam yoga viryena.
  12. Sleep: GOODNESS, cultivate it along with light eating, nidram sattva nishevaya.
  13. Passion & Ignorance: GOODNESS increased to prominence, rajas tamasa ca sattvena.
  14. Goodness: TRANSCENDENCE of all modes by full detachment, sattvam ca pashamena.

Although Narada Muni mercifully mentions the means to overcome these different impediments, the means themselves are also very difficult to execute. However, to show even more mercy to us, Narada Muni mentions one way to immediately conquer every single obstacle.

He says, “All these obstacles are quickly and easily conquered by guru bhakti or devotion to the wisdom teacher, etat sarvam gurau bhaktya, purusho hy anjasa jayet!”

Just see the incredible power and blessings of the true Guru! All these supremely insurmountable problems can be “easily” defeated by love, bhakti.

They say that love conquers all. But in this case, it is love for Sri Guru (guru bhakti) which enables one to conquer and transcend all material difficulties and attain the spiritual realm. Guru bhakti means fondly remembering Sri Guru, imbibing his spiritual teachings and following them, serving him, and trying one’s best to be a perfect disciple and a perfect devotee of Sri Krishna.

So if one is fortunate to have a real guru in his life, he should always remain thankful and grateful, loyal, surrendered and above all always “Love Your Guru”!

Samasti Gurus ki jai! Sri Guru ki jai! Srila Prabhupada ki jai!

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

By Mahanidhi Swami

When one becomes serious about spiritual progress in life he/she may seek a Guru to learn how to attain spiritual perfection. But who is my guru, what to look for, and how to choose which one among the thousands of divine preceptors gracing the planet?

From whom should one accept mantradiksa? Let’s examine the shastras to determine the qualities of the Guru. The Kramadipika states that mantras should be taken from an uttama-mahabhagavata devotee of Krishna who knows the shastras and the Vaisnava siddhanta.

The Bhaktavali says that a qualified guru should be pure in his dealings and saintly in character. He should be free from anger, pride and all material desires. He must be learned in Vedic shastras, speak sweetly, possess a handsome appearance, be full of compassion and do good to others. He should be peaceful, worship Radha and Krishna, be fully engaged in Their service and attached to chanting harinama.

The Visnusmrti says that a spiritual master who demands fame, wealth, and comforts from the disciples is not worthy to be calledguru. The spiritual preceptor should have the twenty-six qualities of a devotee, be free from material desires, absorbed in pure devotional service of Krishna, and capable of destroying the disciple’s doubts by speaking with full logic and reason.

The Tattvasagar states that mantradiksas hould never be taken from a person who is idle, greedy, or attached to sense gratification.

In the following entry, based on all our research about Guru tattva, we present a summary of what qualities to look for in choosing a spiritual master.

Firstly, you should select a Guru who is fixed in brahman (brahma-nistham). He is a realized soul who dispels ignorance. He is simple, honest, humble, serene, free from false ego, and ever united with God. Lust, anger, greed, envy, arrogance and infatuation (the six enemies of conditioned souls) have been totally converted into love, compassion, benevolence, auspiciousness, selfless action, and forgiveness. You should see in your savior that he is the embodiment of all the great virtues.

Sri Guru knows and lives the spirit of the shastras. He follows and respects the masters of the past, and though upholding the tradition, gives new meaning to it. He is the light showing the way and he lives in the highest plane of Krishna consciousness.

Sri Guru is one with the desire of Lord Sri Krishna and he acts accordingly. He strictly follows the exemplary path ofpure bhakti dharma. He is the compassionate father and benevolent mother of his disciples. He shows his love to all including plants, animals, and inanimate objects.

Sri Guru lives to serve Sri Hari, Sri Guru, the Vaisnavas and the whole planet! He teaches and practices what he preaches. He lives and loves for the sake of the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna. His words are wisdom. Sri Guru is child-like and always happy, for he is fixed in remembering the lotus feet of his Guru and Radha and Krishna.

Dualities do not affect Sri Guru. Heat and cold, pleasure and pain, loss and gain are one and the same. Controlled in body, mind, and speech, Sri Guru delights independent of any object. He has no prejudices, nor does he divert His mind from the Divine to judge others. Saving people from illusion, suffering and sin, he lovingly guides, befriends, and protects them.

The benevolent Guru blesses all by offering them the treasure of Krishna bhakti. Pure love of God emanates from every pore of his body. Within himself Sri Guru enjoys a constant festival of bliss relishing his eternal seva to Radha-Krishna in the divine realm of Vrindavana. And he gives this bliss and perfection to all who seek.

(Excerpt from book Gayatri Mahima Madhuri by Mahanidhi Swami)

Sri Guru Charana Padma ki jai!

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

By Mahanidhi Swami

Each and every Guru, be they vartma pradarshaka, siksha or diksha, is an extraordinary and special personality. If we are connected with any of these guardians of Divinity, we are fortunate and should be very grateful and always remain loyal.

To further understand how to select a spiritual master, Srila Sanatana Goswamipada describes two types of Gurus; the regular and the exceptional. Both Gurus have extraordinary divine attributes and are qualified to be one’s spiritual master.

In Srila Sanatana Goswamipada’s terminology, however, he says one type of Guru has exceptional qualities (vishesha-guna), and thus he would be the best and preferred choice. But both types of Gurus are fully capable of guiding and liberating their disciples.

In Hari-bhakti-vilasa (#1), Srila Sanatana Gosvami describes both the “ordinary”, which are actually rather rare and extra ordinary, and the special characteristics (vishesha-guna) of a bona fide spiritual master.

Ordinary Characteristics:

“The spiritual master is learned in theVedasandbhakti-sastraslike theSrimad Bhagavatam. He destroys the doubts in his disciples, and fills them with faith. He understands Kṛṣṇa’s glories as the benefactor of His devotees, the protector, and so on. Because of his firm faith and worship of Bhagavan Sri Krishna he has realized the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Because of his purity and surrender he has received Kṛṣṇa’s mercy potency (krpa-shaktimurti). Thus the spiritual master is empowered to infuse mercy into his disciples and bring them along the path ofbhakti.

“He has attained the grace of his own guru by being similarly devoted to his guru’s lotus feet. He is completely peaceful and fully surrendered to Kṛṣṇa-bhakti. He has offered his heart to Kṛṣṇa. His body is free from disease or invalidity. He had controled his senses, and has defeated the six enemies headed by lust, anger, greed, envy, madness, and illusion. He has been blessed bysadhus, knows the immaculate path of theVedas, and is in constant transcendental consciousness (brahma nistha). Through his devotion he is deeply attached to Kṛṣṇa.” (HBV 1.32-35)

Exceptional Characteristics:

“A guru who is born in a pure family; who is sinless and faultless himself; who is well-behaved, belongs to a particularasrama, free from anger, knows the Vedasand all other scriptures, has faith, does not find faults, speaks affectionately, is young, nice to behold and smartly dressed, engaged in the welfare of all living entities, nonviolent, intelligent, prideless, satisfied, grateful, pure-hearted and merciful, able to judge transcendental truths, endowed with parental love, expert in puja of the Supreme Lord, affectionate towards his disciples, able to punish and reward, and who knows all kinds of arguments and counter-argument – is an ocean of glories.” (HBV 1.38-41)

Any devotee who is endowed with such attributes, and filled with parental love for his disciples can act as a bona fide guru. Such a spiritual master is able to destroy the various obstacles in a disciple’s bhajana, bless him with prema, and deliver him to the lotus feet of Radha and Kṛṣṇa.

On behalf of all my friends, I sincerely pray to the Samasti Guru, Bhagavan Sri Krishna that everyone will benefit from these descriptions on choosing a Guru, and soon be blessed with the greatest fortune of your life: diksha from a genuine Sad Guru.

(Excerpt from book Gayatri Mahima Madhuri by Mahanidhi Swami)

Sri Guru Krpa hi kevalam!

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

By Mahanidhi Swami

The word Upanayanam means adjacent to, supplemental to the eye, or keeping one close by. Upanayanam is the eye of spiritual knowledge, or the vision induced by proper initiation into the Gayatri.

The term Upanayanam is connected with the Vedic gurukula tradition wherein the preceptor would keep his students close by in order to train them in Vedic rites and impart religious teachings. The Upanayanam is usually done by the acarya during adolescence. Traditionally, a brahmana boy would receive Upanayanam from the family guru. Those not born in brahmana families did not get it.

There are three types of brahmanas: 1) Dvijas—those initiated with Brahma-gayatri but devoid of Vedic knowledge; 2) Vipras— those initiated with Brahma-gayatri who have studied the Vedic knowledge; 3) Vaisnavas—those initiated with Brahma-gayatri who have realized the purpose (vedanta) of Vedic knowledge, to know and serve Lord Visnu or Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Of the three, the Vaisnava Brahmana is considered the highest and most worthy recipient of charity.

Upanayanam is the most important samskara because it makes one eligible to chant the Vedas and perform Vedic rites, homas, yajnas, marriages, etc. Upanayanam is also known as brahmopadesa because the acarya teaches (upadesa) the newly initiated disciple how to realize brahman.

The Upanayanam is a major samskara or purificatory rite of life. In this ceremony a young boy is initiated into spiritual knowledge by the guru (traditionally the father) who gives the child the Brahma-gayatri mantra, defines its meaning, and explains the method of chanting. At this time, the boy takes the dress of a brahmacari, accepts the upavlta (sacred thread), and begins learning the duties of a civilized man. After completing his spiritual education the celibate boy may take up household life.

Since He was born in a brahmana family, Lord Caitanya also accepted Upanayanam and received the Brahma-gayatri. Later He took diksa from Isvara Puri and received the ten-syllable Gopala-mantra. The ten-syllable Gopala-mantra is generally given only to born brahmanas, but the eighteen-syllable Gopala-mantra mentioned in the Brahma-samhita is open to everyone.

Upanayanam is a Vedic samskara wherein one receives the Vedic mantra known as Brahma-gayatri. The word upa means near, and nayanam means leading near the teacher. Upanayanam then is a process that brings the student closer to the teacher, who in turn brings him closer to God by giving him transcendental knowledge. The first birth is the seminal birth. Upanayanam and Brahma-gayatri are the second birth (dvija).

One book we read gave the following esoteric explanation of why Upanayanam is called the second birth. In the first birth a baby is born from the virya (semen or vital energy) of the father which is dissipated downwards below the navel into the mother’s womb. In the second birth, however, the spiritual progeny (jnanaputra) are produced by the spiritual father (Vaisnava acarya) who has retained his virya and drawn it upward (rather than dissipating it downwards) from the navel region. The virya, conserved through celibacy, rises up to nourish the brain and gives spiritual purity and enlightenment.

The acarya then passes this vital force of purity onto the disciple by elevating him to the brahminical platform by giving him his second birth. Upanayanam is called the second birth because by this samskara one attains a spiritual regeneration with the guru or acarya acting as the father and Savitr, or Gayatri Devi, as the mother.

(Excerpt from book Gayatri Mahima Madhuri by Mahanidhi Swami)

Gayatri Mata ki jai! Brahmana Bhu Devas ki jai!

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

By Mahanidhi Swami

The word namaḥ is uttered by all disciples whenever they offer respects unto the lotus feet of their respective spiritual masters: om ajnana timirandhasya, jnan anjana shalakaya, chakshur unmilitam yena, tasmai sri guruve NAMAH.

But exactly what does the word namah mean?

In general, namah means, “I am offering obeisance unto the lotus feet of my beloved Gurudeva.” On a deeper level, namah means to submit one’s self with the meditation, “I am giving up my worldly vanity and false ego. I renounce the false sense of being the supreme controller and enjoyer.”

The word namah means NA or saying no to MAH which means false ego. In other words, NAMAH means to annihilate the false identity, and fully surrender to the servitorship and control of God standing before you as Sri Guru.

Renouncing one’s pride or vanity is actually the primary and most important object to be offered in one’s worship of Sri Guru. Therefore, the act of offering obeisances to the spiritual master means to give up the pride of thinking one’s self the doer, possessor and enjoyer of anything in this world.

The real Vyasa-puja begins here. The moment the disciple realizes this and acts solely for the pleasure of Sri Guru, he starts engaging in the true worship and eternal service of his spiritual master.

To conclude, I invite every disciple to join me in the following prayer: “I pray that someday I can fall at Sri Guru’s lotus feet, and with the full backing of my dedicated heart, utter this phrase, ‘Dearest Gurudeva, please accept my most respectful and genuinely humble obeisances.’’’

(Excerpt from Tribute of Love by mahanidhi swami)

Srila Vyasadeva ki jai! Sri Gurudeva ki jai!

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

By Mahanidhi Swami

Srila Vrndavana dasa Thakura describes how Caitanya Mahaprabhu instituted the first Vyasa-puga ceremony in 1509 a.d. through Sri Nityānanda Prabhu in Srivāsa Angana, Mayapura, West Bengal:

“Srivasa Pandita, the head priest for the function, gave Lord Nityananda a flower garland to offer to a painting of Vyasadeva. Holding the garland in His beautiful lotus hand, Nityananda Prabhu hesitated and began glancing here and there as if He was looking for someone. Then to everyone’s surprise, Nityananda offered the garland to Sri Caitanyadeva instead. At that moment, Lord Caitanya immediately manifested His six-armed form, sad-bhuja.” (Caitanya Bhagavata (Madhya khanda chp. 5)

Thus, Sri Nityananda Prabhu completed the Vyasa-puja ceremony by offering a garland to that personality from whom everything emanates and whose empowered incarnation is Sri Vyasadeva. By this Nityananda Prabhu established the real meaning of Vyasa-puja by worshiping the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna in the form of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Lord Gauranga is the guru of Sri Nityananda Prabhu. Therefore, the worship of Vyasadeva is actually the worship of Bhagavan Sri Krishna and Lord Gauranga in the form of the present acarya.

In the scriptures, Sri Krishna tells Uddhava that the acarya is the manifestation of Himself: “One should know the acarya as Myself and never disrespect him in any way. One should not envy him, thinking him an ordinary man, for he is the representative of all the demigods.” (SB 11.17.27)

If Sri Guru is not regarded as identical with the Supreme Lord, the worship of the acarya is not properly performed, and the said worshiper will not realize the true purport of the following edict from the Shruti: “For one who has unflinching faith in the lotus feet of the Lord, as well as in the spiritual master, the real import of Vedic knowledge can be revealed.” (Shvetashvatara Up. 6.23)

(Excerpt from Tribute of Love by mahanidhi swami)

Jagat Guru Bhagavan Sri Krishna ki jai!

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

By Mahanidhi Swami

To serve and not to be served is the constitutional position of the jiva, the living entity. Forgetting his real eternal nature, the conditioned soul becomes the false master of the material world. He plays the role of God and tries to enjoy his senses in every way imaginable and unimaginable. Though he tries very hard to be the supreme enjoyer, in reality the conditioned soul becomes a completely bound slave of Maya. Ironically, the more one strives for lordship, freedom and pleasure, the more he increases his bondage of servitude and misery.

For a fortunate soul, the spiritual master, Sri Guru, appears in his life to remove the darkness of misconception and establish him in the light of eternal truth. Sri Guru proclaims, “O lost soul! Verily, my dear friend, you are actually the eternal servant of the Supreme Lord Krishna (jivera, svarupa haya nitya krishna dasa).” Ahh…… A new life begins. Joy awakens and the highest divine prospect descends to lighten the burden of a million previous births.

But who is the spiritual master? What is his relationship with Sri Krishna and Srila Vyasadeva, the compiler of all Vedic thought? And lastly why and how is Sri Guru worshiped in a ceremony commonly known as Vyasa-puja?

Since the Vedas contain all the knowledge and mantras one needs to achieve both material happiness and spiritual perfection, why can’t one just study the Vedas by himself, without a spiritual master, and attain all material and spiritual perfection? Besides, it is said that the Supreme Lord is within everyone, so why does one need a spiritual guide to realize God?

The sacred books alone are not the revelation. The acaryas, spiritual teachers, are a necessary part of revelation. The Vedic texts preserve the spoken words of the Supreme Lord and various liberated saints known as rishis. But alone, the books cannot speak personally to us.

God is transcendental sound and He must be heard. Therefore, the Vedic literature is called Shruti, which means that which is heard or communicated orally from the beginning; sacred knowledge orally transmitted by the spiritual teachers from generation to generation. The word Shruti also means the ear organ or the power of hearing.

The transcendental sound spoken by a God realized soul, the spiritual master, to the surrendered disciple disposed to rendering unconditional service to Sri Guru, is not the same as the transcendental sound written in or read in the sacred scriptures, the Vedas. The personal factor, Sri Guru, provides the essential link connecting the covered consciousness of the disciple and the Absolute Truth. The Supreme Lord engages select persons to act as His delegated, empowered representatives, the spiritual masters, who act in this world to dispel the ignorance eclipsing the original, pure and brilliant consciousness of the conditioned souls.

By His own will the Absolute Truth appears on the lips of a surrendered devotee. But the Absolute Truth, which is fully experienced as Sri Krishna the transcendental autocrat, forever reserves the right of not revealing Himself to the mundane senses of the conditioned soul attached to material sense enjoyment. Personal submission to the living pure devotee is the key to spiritual perfection. The spiritual preceptor is the empowered representative of Srila Vyasadeva, who is none other than Lord Narayana Himself.

Mundane scientists research the phenomenal world to make discoveries to improve the quality of human life. Similarly, one may argue that, “Since God is within everyone, why can’t a spiritual seeker independently research within himself, and thereby gain transcendental knowledge and realization of God? Why does one need a spiritual master?” Such statements reveal one’s ignorance about the essential nature of the Absolute Truth and transcendental knowledge of Him.

In summary, the Absolute Truth is the fully conscious, supreme Absolute Person. In other words, God is the supremely conscious individual. Connection with the Absolute Truth depends solely on His sweet will, which God expresses by sending his agent, the spiritual master, when I am qualified with transcendental faith and surrender.

(Excerpt from Tribute of Love by mahanidhi swami)

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

By Mahanidhi Swami

For success in chanting any mantra, one must engage his senses, mind and heart. Mantra chanting demands complete absorption of our entire being. Expectation and visualization also play a key role in bringing perfection.

In the tika to Sri Brahmaji’s Samhita (v. 60), it says, “He who cultivates the preliminary devotional activities anxiously keeping in view that realized state of devotion can alone attain to that object of all endeavor. None else can have the same.”

This important quote from Brahma-samhita shows that the eager and conscientious devotee must always keep the goal (prayojana) of Krishna-prema in his mind and heart. One should never lose sight of the meaning and purpose of his life. And we should try to see that meaning in all our words, actions, and meditations.

The Gayatris (Guru, Gaura, Kama) and the Gopala-mantra direct one into Vrndavana. According to the Gayatri one chants and his understanding of it, he will enter a specific spiritual planet either Vaikuntha or Goloka Vrndavana.

Srila Sanatana Goswamipada explains this point, “One day Gopa-kumara’s gurudeva said. The Gopala-mantra will fulfill all your desires. Because the chanting of this diksa-mantra will fulfill all your desires, if you desire to attain Krishna, this mantra will also fulfill that desire. Always think of His beautiful Syamasundara form. His transcendental qualities and pastimes. If you do this, this mantra will fulfill your desire to get Krishna.” (Brhad-Bhagavatamrta)

Vyasacarya Vrindavana Dasa Thakura, said, “As the devotee meditates on the Lord, so the Lord manifests that form to a devotee. The Lord gives His servants the power to sell Him to others.” (CB Madhya 23.465)

Sri Brahmaji said, “0 my Lord, Your devotees can see You through the ears by the process of bona fide hearing, and thus their hearts become cleansed, and You take Your seat there. You are so merciful to Your devotees that You manifest Yourself in the particular eternal form of transcendence in which they always think of You.”

“The statement here that the Lord manifests Himself before the devotee in the form in which the devotee likes to worship Him indicates that the Lord becomes subordinate to the desire of the devotee—so much so that He manifests His particular form as the devotee demands. This demand of the devotee is satisfied by the Lord because He is pliable in terms of the transcendental loving service of the devotee. This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gitd (4.11): ye yatha mam prapadyante tams tathaiva bhajamy aham.” (SB 3.9.11 v. & p.)

Besides concentrating on the meaning of the mantra and its component words, one must correctly pronounce each word to insure the proper result. In order to concentrate on the meaning of the Gayatri mantras, one may break the mantras into sections and pause for a moment between sections. For example, the Gopala-mantra: breaks after klim—Krishnaya—govindaya—gopi-janavallabhaya—svaha—. Kama-gayatri breaks after kim—vidmahe—dhimahi— pracodayat—.

These breaks for meditation correspond with the three divisions of sambandha, abhidheya, and prayojana. The technique is to combine the meaning of the words (vidmahe, dhimahi, prayojana) with their accompanying concepts (sambandha, abhidheya, prayojana) while meditating on each section of the mantra. This reflective process will quickly yield results.

In the following entry, Srila Prabhupada reiterates the need to follow a system of chanting and meditation to attain mantra chanting success: “Of course, those who are actually following the rules and regulation of Gayatri mantra will gradually come to the spiritual understanding. But not by official chanting. That will not help. [you cannot just think], “Because I have got the Gayatri mantra, oh, burble bura burra…” (Srila Prabhupada makes sound) Finish. Not like that. Don’t cheat yourself. Try to understand.” (SPT 26/11/72)

(Excerpt from Gayatri Mahima Madhuri by Mahanidhi Swami)

Mantra artha and dhyana ki jai!

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

By Mahanidhi Swami

To honor the Samasti Guru Bhagavan Sri Krishna and Srila Vedavyasa on this Guru Purnima celebration, we enclose the following most inspiring and illuminating quotes concerning the truth of Sri Guru. The true spiritualist sees with two eyes, shastra chaksus and guru-chaksus, the eye of the infallible, perfect, transcendental wisdom of Veda, and the enlightened merciful eye of one’s benevolent personal Sri Guru. May the wise words of the Bhagavata lead all to perfection on the path of the highest selection.

Serving the Guru with devotion and offering Him all that one gains (practical service) is one means for easily attaining love of God. (sb 7.7.29-30)

Indeed, the Guru, who is Lord Hari Himself, is the most loved one, the very Self, from whom there is not even the slightest fear. He alone is wise, who knows this truth, and he who is wise is the Guru. (sb 4.29.51)

All vices and obstacles together i.e. lust, anger, greed, envy etc. can be conquered simply by devotion to the Guru. (sb 7.15.22-25)

Whoever sees the Guru, who is God Himself giving us the lamp of divine knowledge, as a mere mortal, loses all his knowledge. (sb 7.15.26)

Bhagavan Sri Krishna said, “Those who follow the Guru’s words, which are My words, easily cross over the ocean of material life.” (sb 10.80.33)

“An intelligent person will worship the Guru with exclusive devotion because he knows that Sri Guru is both the Lord Himself and His dearest servant.” (sb 11.2.37)

Commenting on (sb 11.3.48), Srila Sridhara Swami said, “If Sri Guru does not know the truth, he cannot erase the student’s doubts about bhajana matters. And if Sri Guru is not devoted he cannot infuse bhajana experiences into his student.”

Bhagavan Sri Krishna said, “You should know the acharya to be Me, and never slight or disrespect him or find faults in him, considering him to be an ordinary mortal. Sri Guru is the aggregate of all the Gods.” (sb 11.17.27)

When Uddhava asked, Who is the friend? Bhagavan Sri Krishna replied, “The greatest friend is the Guru, who is none other than Me. (sb 11.19.31, 43)

Om tat sat!

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

By: Mahanidhi Swami

Diksha mantras are chanted daily as a form of meditation, praising the Ishta-Devata, and calling out for mercy.

Within the Gaudiya Vaisnava tradition most all the Gurus initiate disciples with the ancient pancharatrika mantras of Gopala (Krishna) mantra and the Kama Gayatri. In addition, other mantras and gayatris are given for Sri Guru, Gauranga, Pancha Tattva, Srimati Radharani, Yogamaya, etc.

The six Gosvamis of Vrndavana followed this process of giving pancharatrika diksha. And down to the present day, the Gaudiya Vaisnava acaryas are continuing to give diksha with the pancharatrika mantras and the Hare Krishna maha-mantra.

To qualify all classes of people for Gaudiya Vaisnava diksha, Gurus purify their disciples by performing five rites of purification called pancha samskaras, which will be described in our next article.

(Excerpt from book Gayatri Mahima Madhuri by Mahanidhi Swami)

Gaudiya Vaisnava Diksha ki jai! Vrindavana Sad Goswamis ki jai!

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!