The Nectar of Instruction

Nectar of Instruction

The Nectar of Instruction
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

This morning I was reading through the “Bhakti-sastri Study Guide”, compiled by Atmatattva Dasa, and in the pages dedicated to the study of the ‘Nectar of Instruction’ there was the following summary which I use as an index to the Preface and the 11 Texts:

click on following underlined links to go to text

Preface

Text 1 Six urges to be controlled

Text 2 Six hindrances to advancement in devotional service

Text 3 Six principles favorable to the execution of devotional service

Text 4 Six Symptoms of love shared by devotees

Text 5 Appropriate etiquette for dealing with the three types of devotees

Text 6 A warning against offending a pure devotee

Text 7 The potency of the holy name, character and pastives of Kṛṣṇa to become attractive to the conditioned soul

Text 8 The essence of all advice; to engage in devotional service twenty-four hours a day

Text 9 Importance of Visiting the Holy Places

Text 10 The glory of the devotees of Kṛṣṇa

Text 11 The glory of Śrī Rādhā-kuṇḍa

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Advanced Knowledge

Nectar of Instruction

Continuing with our series on the Nectar of Inststuction (Upadeśāmṛta), we are posting Text 10, the very important instructions given by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī on advanced knowledge of the higher values of life.

…The gopīs are exalted above all the advanced devotees because they are always totally dependent upon Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the transcendental cowherd boy. Among the gopīs, Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī is the most dear to Kṛṣṇa. Her kuṇḍa [lake] is as profoundly dear to Lord Kṛṣṇa as this most beloved of the gopīs. Who, then, will not reside at Rādhā-kuṇḍa and, in a spiritual body surcharged with ecstatic devotional feelings [aprākṛtabhāva], render loving service to the divine couple Śrī Śrī Rādhā-Govinda, who perform Their aṣṭakālīya-līlā, Their eternal eightfold daily pastimes. Indeed, those who execute devotional service on the banks of Rādhā-kuṇḍa are the most fortunate people in the universe. (The Nectar of Instruction Text 10)

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Importance of Visiting the Holy Places

Nectar of Instruction

Continuing with our series on the Nectar of Instruction (Upadeśāmṛta), we are posting Text 9, the very important instructions given by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī on visiting the holy places of pilgrimage.

The Nectar of Instruction
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Text Nine

vaikuṇṭhāj janito varā madhu-purī tatrāpi rāsotsavād
vṛndāraṇyam udāra-pāṇi-ramaṇāt tatrāpi govardhanaḥ
rādhā-kuṇḍam ihāpi gokula-pateḥ premāmṛtāplāvanāt
kuryād asya virājato giri-taṭe sevāṁ vivekī na kaḥ

SYNONYMS

vaikuṇṭhāt—than Vaikuṇṭha, the spiritual world; janitaḥ—because of birth; varā—better; madhu-purī—the transcendental city known as Mathurā; tatra api—superior to that; rāsa-utsavāt—because of the performance of the rāsa-līlā; vṛndā-araṇyam—the forest of Vṛndāvana; udāra-pāṇi—of Lord Kṛṣṇa; ramaṇāt—because of various kinds of loving pastimes; tatra api—superior to that; govardhanaḥ—Govardhana Hill; rādhā-kuṇḍam—a place called Rādhā-kuṇḍa; iha api—superior to this; gokula-pateḥ—of Kṛṣṇa, the master of Gokula; prema-amṛta—with the nectar of divine love; āplāvanāt—because of being overflooded; kuryāt—would do; asya—of this (Rādhā-kuṇḍa); virājataḥ—situated; giri-taṭe—at the foot of Govardhana Hill; sevām—service; vivekī—who is intelligent; na—not; kaḥ—who.

TRANSLATION

The holy place known as Mathurā is spiritually superior to Vaikuṇṭha, the transcendental world, because the Lord appeared there. Superior to Mathurā-Purī is the transcendental forest of Vṛndāvana because of Kṛṣṇa’s rāsa-līlā pastimes. And superior to the forest of Vṛndāvana is Govardhana Hill, for it was raised by the divine hand of Śrī Kṛṣṇa and was the site of His various loving pastimes. And, above all, the superexcellent Śrī Rādhā-kuṇḍa stands supreme, for it is overflooded with the ambrosial nectarean prema of the Lord of Gokula, Śrī Kṛṣṇa. Where, then, is that intelligent Person who is unwilling to serve this divine Rādhā-kuṇḍa, which is situated at the foot of Govardhana Hill?

PURPORT

The spiritual world is three fourths of the total creation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and it is the most exalted region. The spiritual world is naturally superior to the material world; however, Mathurā and the adjoining areas, although appearing in the material world, are considered superior to the spiritual world because the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself appeared at Mathurā. The interior forests of Vṛndāvana are considered superior to Mathurā because of the presence of the twelve forests (dvādaśa-vana), such as Tālavana, Madhuvana and Bahulāvana, which are famous for the various pastimes of the Lord. Thus the interior Vṛndāvana forest is considered superior to Mathurā, but superior to these forests is the divine Govardhana Hill because Kṛṣṇa lifted Govardhana Hill like an umbrella, raising it with His lotuslike beautiful hand to protect His associates, the denizens of Vraja, from the torrential rains sent by the angry Indra, King of the demigods. It is also at Govardhana Hill that Kṛṣṇa tends the cows with His cowherd friends, and there also He had His rendezvous with His most beloved Śrī Rādhā and engaged in loving pastimes with Her. Rādhā-kuṇḍa, at the foot of Govardhana, is superior to all because it is there that love of Kṛṣṇa overflows. Advanced devotees prefer to reside at Rādhā-kuṇḍa because this place is the site of many memories of the eternal loving affairs between Kṛṣṇa and Rādhārāṇī (rati-vilāsa).

In Caitanya-caritāmṛta (Madhya-līlā) it is stated that when Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu first visited the area of Vrajabhūmi, He could not at first find the location of Rādhā-kuṇḍa. This means that Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu was actually searching for the exact location of Rādhā-kuṇḍa. Finally He found the holy spot, and there was a small pond there. He took His bath in that small pond and told His devotees that the actual Rādhā-kuṇḍa was situated there. Later the pond was excavated by Lord Caitanya’s devotees, headed first by the six Gosvāmīs, such as Rūpa and Raghunātha dāsa. Presently there is a large lake known as Rādhā-kuṇḍa there. Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī has given much stress to Rādhā-kuṇḍa because of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s desire to find it. Who, then, would give up Rādhā-kuṇḍa and try to reside elsewhere? No person with transcendental intelligence would do so. The importance of Rādhā-kuṇḍa, however, cannot be realized by other Vaiṣṇava sampradāyas, nor can persons uninterested in the devotional service of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu understand the spiritual importance and divine nature of Rādhā-kuṇḍa. Thus Rādhā-kuṇḍa is mainly worshiped by the Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavas, the followers of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Mahāprabhu.

radha_kund

The Essence of All Advice

Nectar of Instruction

Continuing with our series on the Nectar of Iststuction (Upadeśāmṛta), we are posting Text 8, the very important instructions given by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī on how one should utilize one’s full time—twenty-four hours a day—in nicely chanting and remembering the Lord’s divine name, transcendental form, qualities and eternal pastimes.

The Nectar of Instruction
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Text Eight

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The Holy Name of Lord Kṛṣṇa

Nectar of Instruction

Continuing with our series on the Nectar of Iststuction (Upadeśāmṛta), we are posting Text 7, the very important instructions given by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī on chanting the holy names of the Lord.

The holy name, character, pastimes and activities of Kṛṣṇa are all transcendentally sweet like sugar candy. Although the tongue of one afflicted by the jaundice of avidyā [ignorance] cannot taste anything sweet, it is wonderful that simply by carefully chanting these sweet names every day, a natural relish awakens within his tongue, and his disease is gradually destroyed at the root.

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The Nectar of Instruction

Nectar of Instruction

Continuing with our series on the Nectar of Iststuction (Upadeśāmṛta), we are posting Text 6, the very important instructions given by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī on the position of a person situated in Krsna consciousness. Srila Prabhupada explains in the purport that a person engaged in devotional service must be free from material motives. In this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, one’s consciousness is what needs to be changed. How we should view the pure devotee, and also the warning is there how to avoid offenses at the feet of the Vaiṣṇavas. Very important instructions.

The Nectar of Instruction
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda

Text Six More

The Nectar of Instruction (Free Download)

Nectar of Instruction

Also for a free pdf downlaod of entire book click on link at bottom More

The Nectar of Instruction

Nectar of Instruction

…In this verse Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī advises the devotee to be intelligent enough to distinguish between the kaniṣṭha-adhikārī, madhyama-adhikārī and uttama-adhikārī. The devotee should also know his own position and should not try to imitate a devotee situated on a higher platform. Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura has given some practical hints to the effect that an uttama-adhikārī Vaiṣṇava can be recognized by his ability to convert many fallen souls to Vaiṣṇavism. One should not become a spiritual master unless he has attained the platform of uttama-adhikārī. A neophyte Vaiṣṇava or a Vaiṣṇava situated on the intermediate platform can also accept disciples, but such disciples must be on the same platform, and it should be understood that they cannot advance very well toward the ultimate goal of life under his insufficient guidance. Therefore a disciple should be careful to accept an uttama-adhikārī as a spiritual master.

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How to Perform Devotional Activities in the Association of Other Devotees

…Continuing with our series on the Nectar of Iststuction ( Upadeśāmṛta ). The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is conducted under the supervision of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī. The Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavas, or Bengali Vaiṣṇavas, are mostly followers of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, of whom the six Gosvāmīs of Vṛndāvana are direct disciples. Śrī Rūpa Gosvāmī was the leader of all the Gosvāmīs, and to guide our activities he gave us this Upadeśāmṛta (The Nectar of Instruction) to follow.

“Pure love for Kṛṣṇa is eternally established in the hearts of living entities. It is not something to be gained from another source. When the heart is purified by hearing and chanting, the living entity naturally awakens.” Since Kṛṣṇa consciousness is inherent in every living entity, everyone should be given a chance to hear about Kṛṣṇa. Simply by hearing and chanting—śravaṇaṁ kīrtanam—one’s heart is directly purified, and one’s original Kṛṣṇa consciousness is immediately awakened. Kṛṣṇa consciousness is not artificially imposed upon the heart, it is already there. When one chants the holy name of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the heart is cleansed of all mundane contamination.

The Nectar of Instruction
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda

Text 4

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Devotional Service

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…Devotional service means transcendental activities.

Devotional service is not a matter of sentimental speculation or imaginative ecstasy. Its substance is practical activity.

The execution of devotional service is not a matter of idle meditation but practical action in the foreground of spiritual life.

“In the course of traversing the universal creation of Brahmā, some fortunate soul may receive the seed of bhakti-latā, the creeper of devotional service. This is all by the grace of guru and Kṛṣṇa.” (Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 19.151)

If by fortune one takes advantage of this opportunity to engage in devotional service, the path of liberation immediately opens.

One should accept this opportunity to return home, back to Godhead, very enthusiastically.

The Nectar of Instruction
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Text 3

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The Nectar of Instruction

Click on link at bottom of post to download the entire “Nectar of Instruction” on pdf file.

The Nectar of Instruction
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Preface

The Krishna consciousness movement is conducted under the supervision of Srila Rupa Gosvami. The Gaudiya Vaisnavas, or Bengali Vaisnavas, are mostly
followers of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, of whom the six Gosvamis of Vrndavana are direct disciples. Therefore Srila Narottama dasa Thakura has sung:

rupa-raghunatha-pade ha-ibe akuti
kabe hama bujhaba se yugala-piriti

“When I am eager to understand the literature given by the Gosvamis, then I shall be able to understand the transcendental loving affairs of Radha and Krishna.”

Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu appeared in order to bestow upon human society the benediction of the science of Krishna. The most exalted of all the activities of Lord Krishna are His pastimes of conjugal love with the gopis. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu appeared in the mood of Srimati Radharani, the best of the gopis. Therefore, to understand the mission of Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and follow in His footsteps, one must very seriously follow in the footsteps of the six Gosvamis–Sri Rupa, Sanatana, Bhatta Raghunatha, Sri Jiva, Gopala Bhatta and Dasa Raghunatha.

Sri Rupa Gosvami was the leader of all the Gosvamis, and to guide our activities he gave us this Upadesamrta (The Nectar of Instruction) to follow. As Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu left behind Him the eight verses known as Siksastaka, Rupa Gosvami gave us Upadesamrta so that we may become pure Vaisnavas.

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Human life is meant for plain living and high thinking

Nectar of Instruction

…Kṛṣṇa conscious devotees know very well that this material world is designed by the complete arrangement of the Lord to fulfill all the necessities of life for all living beings, without their having to encroach upon the life or rights of one another. This complete arrangement affords the proper quota of wealth for everyone according to his real needs, and thus everyone may live peacefully according to the principle of plain living and high thinking. Unfortunately, materialists who have neither faith in the plan of God nor any aspiration for higher spiritual development misuse their God-given intelligence only to augment their material possessions. They devise many systems—such as capitalism and materialistic communism—to advance their material position. They are not interested in the laws of God or in a higher goal. Always anxious to fulfill their unlimited desires for sense gratification, they are conspicuous by their ability to exploit their fellow living beings…

The Nectar of Instruction
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Text 2

atyāhāraḥ prayāsaś ca
prajalpo niyamāgrahaḥ
jana-saṅgaś ca laulyaṁ ca
ṣaḍbhir bhaktir vinaśyati

ati-āhāraḥ—overeating or too much collecting; prayāsaḥ—overendeavouring; ca—and; prajalpaḥ—idle talk; niyama—rules and regulations; āgrahaḥ—too much attachment to (or agrahaḥ—too much neglect of); jana-saṅgaḥ—association with worldly-minded persons; ca—and; laulyam—ardent longing or greed; ca—and; ṣaḍbhiḥ—by these six; bhaktiḥ—devotional service; vinaśyati—is destroyed.

One’s devotional service is spoiled when he becomes too entangled in the following six activities: (1) eating more than necessary or collecting more funds than required; (2) overendeavoring for mundane things that are very difficult to obtain; (3) talking unnecessarily about mundane subject matters; (4) Practicing the scriptural rules and regulations only for the sake of following them and not for the sake of spiritual advancement, or rejecting the rules and regulations of the scriptures and working independently or whimsically; (5) associating with worldly-minded persons who are not interested in Kṛṣṇa consciousness; and (6) being greedy for mundane achievements.

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Glories of Sri Rādhā-kuṇḍa

Rādhā-kuṇḍa

It is stated that a devotee will at once develope pure love of Kṛṣṇa in the wake of the gopīs if he once takes a bath in Rādhā-kuṇḍa.

The Nectar of Instruction
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Text 11

kṛṣṇasyoccaiḥ praṇaya-vasatiḥ preyasībhyo ’pi rādhā
kuṇḍaṁ cāsyā munibhir abhitas tādṛg eva vyadhāyi
yat preṣṭhair apy alam asulabhaṁ kiṁ punar bhakti-bhājāṁ
tat premedaṁ sakṛd api saraḥ snātur āviṣkaroti

kṛṣṇasya—of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa; uccaiḥ—very highly; praṇaya-vasatiḥ—object of love; preyasībhyaḥ—out of the many lovable gopīs; api—certainly; rādhā—Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī; kuṇḍam—lake; ca—also; asyāḥ—of Her; munibhiḥ—by great sages; abhitaḥ—in all respects; tādṛk eva—similarly; vyadhāyi—is described; yat—which; preṣṭhaiḥ—by the most advanced devotees; api—even; alam—enough; asulabham—difficult to obtain; kim—what; punaḥ—again; bhakti-bhājām—for persons engaged in devotional service; tat—that; prema—love of Godhead; idam—this; sakṛt—once; api—even; saraḥ—lake; snātuḥ—of one who has bathed; āviṣkaroti—arouses.

Of the many objects of favored delight and of all the lovable damsels of Vrajabhūmi, Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī is certainly the most treasured object of Kṛṣṇa’s love. And, in every respect, Her divine kuṇḍa is described by great sages as similarly dear to Him. Undoubtedly Rādhā-kuṇḍa is very rarely attained even by the great devotees; therefore it is even more difficult for ordinary devotees to attain. If one simply bathes once within those holy waters, one’s pure love of Kṛṣṇa is fully aroused.

Why is Rādhā-kuṇḍa so exalted? The lake is so exalted because it belongs to Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī, who is the most beloved object of Śrī Kṛṣṇa. Among all the gopīs, She is the most beloved. Similarly, Her lake, Śrī Rādhā-kuṇḍa, is also described by great sages as the lake that is as dear to Kṛṣṇa as Rādhā Herself. Indeed, Kṛṣṇa’s love for Rādhā-kuṇḍa and Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī is the same in all respects. Rādhā-kuṇḍa is very rarely attained, even by great personalities fully engaged in devotional service, not to speak of ordinary devotees who are only engaged in the practice of vaidhī bhakti.

It is stated that a devotee will at once develope pure love of Kṛṣṇa in the wake of the gopīs if he once takes a bath in Rādhā-kuṇḍa. Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī recommends that even if one cannot live permanently on the banks of Rādhā-kuṇḍa, he should at least take a bath in the lake as many times as possible. This is a most important item in the execution of devotional service. Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura writes in this connection that Śrī Rādhā-kuṇḍa is the most select place for those interested in advancing their devotional service in the wake of the lady friends (sakhīs) and confidential serving maids (mañjarīs) of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī. Living entities who are eager to return home to the transcendental kingdom of God, Goloka Vṛndāvana, by means of attaining their spiritual bodies (siddha-deha) should live at Rādhā-kuṇḍa, take shelter of the confidential serving maids of Śrī Rādhā and under their direction engage constantly in Her service.

This is the most exalted method for those engaged in devotional service under the protection of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. In this connection Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura writes that even great sages and great devotees like Nārada and Sanaka do not get an opportunity to come to Rādhā-kuṇḍa to take their baths. What, then, to speak of ordinary devotees? If, by great fortune, one gets an opportunity to come to Rādhā-kuṇḍa and bathe even once, he can develop his transcendental love for Kṛṣṇa, exactly as the gopīs did. It is also recommended that one should live on the banks of Rādhā-kuṇḍa and should be absorbed in the loving service of the Lord. One should bathe there regularly and give up all material conceptions, taking shelter of Śrī Rādhā and Her assistant gopīs. If one is thus constantly engaged during his lifetime, after giving up the body he will return back to Godhead to serve Śrī Rādhā in the same way as he contemplated during his life on the banks of Rādhā-kuṇḍa. The conclusion is that to live on the banks of the Rādhā-kuṇḍa and to bathe there daily constitute the highest perfection of devotional service. It is a difficult position to attain, even for great sages and devotees like Nārada. Thus there is no limit to the glory of Śrī Rādhā-kuṇḍa. By serving Rādhā-kuṇḍa, one can get an opportunity to become an assistant of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī under the eternal guidance of the gopīs.

108 Imporant Slokas from the 1972 Bhagavad-gita As It Is

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