Sahajiyā

sadhu

Sahajiyā is a word I have been researching lately, trying to come up with a clear understanding of its meaning, and to better understand why Srila Prabhupada has warned us to ‘avoid the association of Sahajiyā’s and Māyāvādīs, and not to become Sahajiyā’. So the following post is the beginning of our research.

Dr. Patel: What is sahajiyā?

Prabhupāda: Sahajiyā… Sahaj means easy. Easy-going. They will smoke cigarette at the same time they will play rasa-līlā. This is sahajiyā. This is sahajiyā. They will do all nonsense; still, they will become God, imitation of God. (Morning Walk Excerpts; May 1, 1974, Bombay)

…One thing, on the invitation card you have written All Glories to Our Guru Maharaja. This is impersonalism. As soon as we offer obeisances to guru, the name should be there. We are strictly personalists. The sahajiya’s, they write Glories to Guru. Why you are learning this impersonalism, who has taught you? Daily I am offering obeisances to my Guru by vibrating his real name, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, otherwise it is impersonal. (Letter to: Bhavananda London 14 July, 1972)

Prabhupāda: These sahajiyās will come out of so many devotees. What can be done? From my Guru Mahārāja’s disciples, so many sahajiyās came. These are called sahajiyās. Very easily they capture thing. So my Guru Mahārāja used to say, “When my disciples will be sahajiyā, it will be more dangerous.”

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The Spiritual Master: Emissary of the Supreme Person

This is a well researched, nicely written article by Sriman Hayagriva Prabhu, with many quotes from Srila Prabhupada’s books. Worth the read!

The Spiritual Master: Emissary of the Supreme Person
By Hayagriva Dasa Adhikari
Published in Back to Godhead Magazine 1970, Vol.1, No.38

brahmāṇḍa bhramite kona bhāgyavān jīva
guru-kṛṣṇa-prasāde pāya bhakti-latā-bīja

“According to their karma, all living entities are wandering throughout the entire universe. Some of them are being elevated to the upper planetary systems, and some are going down into the lower planetary systems. Out of many millions of wandering living entities, one who is very fortunate gets an opportunity to associate with a bona fide spiritual master by the grace of Kṛṣṇa. By the mercy of both Kṛṣṇa and the spiritual master, such a person receives the seed of the creeper of devotional service.”(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta: Madhya-līlā 19.151)

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, Srila Prabhupada, once said that religion without philosophy is fanaticism and philosophy without religion is mental speculation. For a sincere student engaged in God realization, major philosophical points should be understood in the light of the guru, scripture and practical devotional service. One of the first points to understand is the position of the spiritual master. How is he related to Krsna? Is he Krsna? Is he an ordinary man? How should the disciple approach him? How can one know that the spiritual master is bona fide? What is the duty of the spiritual master? What are his symptoms? These and other questions concerning the spiritual master and Krsna are discussed herein by way of authoritative evidence compiled from the writings of Srila Prabhupada, the spiritual master himself.

In addition to rendering devotional service to Krsna through the spiritual master, the student should come to a philosophical understanding based on scripture of his own identity and the identity of the Supreme Person, Sri Krsna, and His emissary, the bona fide spiritual master. This understanding should correlate with the basic teachings of the spiritual master and other great saints and sages.

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