Who is the Jagad-Guru?

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Who is the Jagad-Guru?

Compilation of Quotes

by Prabhupada Connection

“The acaryadeva to whom we have assembled tonight to offer our humble homage is not the guru of a sectarian institution or one out of many differing exponents of the truth. On the contrary, he is the jagad-guru, or the guru of all of us, the only difference is that some obey him wholeheartedly, while others do not obey him directly.”

 

(Srila Prabhupada Vyasa-Puja Speech, Bombay, 1935)

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Connecting with Prabhupada is Connecting with Krishna

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I saw this photo and post yesterday on the Prabhupada Connect web page. It was such a special photo that I thought we should share it with you all here as well.

“The Lord is seated in the heart of all living beings, and thus, He knows very well the movements of all individual persons. As soon as the Lord finds that a particular soul is very eager to go back to Godhead, the Lord at once sends His bona fide representative. The sincere devotee is thus assured by the Lord of going back to Godhead. The conclusion is that to get the assistance and help of a bona fide spiritual master means to receive the direct help of the Lord Himself.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.19.36, Purport)

Characteristics of the Bona Fide Guru

bona fide spiritual master Srila Prabhupada

Recently there has been some discussion on the internet about Jayadvaita Swami’s remarks on kirtana standards in his Kirtan Seminar lectures. I cannot repeat here, what he said on the YouTube Lecture, finding it offensive and not worthy of repeating. Rather than dwell on the negetive statements of Jayadvaita Swami, we thought it better to repeat the words of the bona fide spiritual master Srila Prabhupada, who so nicely describes the characteristics of the “Bona Fide Guru” in the pages of the Sri Caitanya-caritmrta.

…The guru must be situated on the topmost platform of devotional service. There are three classes of devotees, and the guru must be accepted from the topmost class. The first-class devotee is the spiritual master for all kinds of people. It is said: gurur nṛṇām. The word nṛṇām means “of all human beings.” The guru is not limited to a particular group. It is stated in the Upadeśāmṛta of Rūpa Gosvāmī that a guru is a gosvāmī, a controller of the senses and the mind. Such a guru can accept disciples from all over the world. Pṛthivīṁ sa śiṣyāt. This is the test of the guru.

…When one has attained the topmost position of mahā-bhāgavata, he is to be accepted as a guru and worshiped exactly like Hari, the Personality of Godhead. Only such a person is eligible to occupy the post of a guru. (purport Madhya 24.330)

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Approaching a Bona Fide Guru

Srila Prabhupada with books

The following is chapter four in our series on the Teaching of Lord Kapila entitled “Approaching a Bona Fide Guru”. This is a nice chapter for anyone who is serious about receiving spiritual knowledge, and interested to know the process. We are fortunate in this age to have the books of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada to guide us. Human knowledge was originally preserved through oral tradition, but today we have this knowledge preserved in the books of His Divine Grace.

Any person who seriously desires to achieve real happiness must seek out a bona fide spiritual master… (Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 11.3.21)

…A bona fide guru does not impart some self-styled, concocted knowledge; his knowledge is standard and received from the paramparā system. He is also firmly fixed in the service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead (brahma-niṣṭham). These are his two qualifications: he must have heard the Vedic knowledge through the disciplic succession, and he must be established in service to the Supreme Lord.

Teachings of Lord Kapila, the Son of Devahūti
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Chapter Four

Approaching a Bona Fide Guru

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Guru-Disciple Relationship

The bona fide guru will simply present what the supreme guru, God, says in bona fide scripture. A guru cannot change the message of the disciplic succession.

The guru’s business is to bring his disciples from darkness to light.

The guru’s business is to see that no human being suffers in this material world. No one can claim that he is not suffering. That is not possible. In this material world, there are three kinds of suffering; adhyatmika, adhibhautika, and adhidaivika. These are miseries arising from the material body and mind, from other living entities and from the forces of nature. We may suffer mental anguish, or we may suffer from other living entities-from ants or mosquitoes or flies-or we may suffer due to some superior power. There may be no rain, or there may be flood. There may be excessive heat or excessive cold. So many types of suffering are imposed by nature. Thus there are three types of miseries within the material world, and everyone is suffering from one, two, or three of them. No one can say that he is completely free from suffering.

Guru-Disciple Relationship

The Guru – Guide to the Spiritual World
from the Bhakta Handbook

On hearing the word guru, we tend to envision a caricature like image: a bizarre-looking old fellow with a long, stringy beard and flowing robes, meditating on distant, esoteric truths. Or we think of a cosmic con man cashing in on young seekers’ spiritual gullibility. But what really is a guru? What does he know that we don’t? How does he enlighten us?

In a talk given in England in 1973, Srila Prabhupada provides some enlightening answers.

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Bona Fide Spiritual Master

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…So to find out a bona fide guru is not difficult, provided one is bona fide to search out a guru. Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu said, guru-kṛṣṇa-kṛpāya pāya bhakti-latā-bīja [Cc. Madhya 19.151]. By the mercy of guru and Kṛṣṇa… Because by the mercy of Kṛṣṇa one gets a bona fide guru, and by the mercy of bona fide guru, one gets Kṛṣṇa. This is the process. When I am actually serious to have connection with Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa is sitting in everyone’s heart. Īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ hṛd-deśe ’rjuna tiṣṭhati [Bg. 18.61]. So Kṛṣṇa can understand. We cannot hide anything from Kṛṣṇa. That is not possible.

Bona Fide Spiritual Master

Lecture from The Nectar of Devotion
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Vṛndāvana, October 31, 1972

Pradyumna: (reading) Page xxi. “In the Caitanya-caritāmṛta, by Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī, Lord Caitanya states that it is a fortunate person who comes in contact with a bona fide spiritual master by the grace of Kṛṣṇa. One who is serious about spiritual life is given by Kṛṣṇa the intelligence to come in contact with a bona fide spiritual master.”

Prabhupāda: Yes. Here it is stated, “It is…, it is a fortunate person.” Not the unfortunate. “It is the fortunate person who comes in contact with a bona fide spiritual master.” This question, we were just discussing before coming to the class, how to select a bona fide spiritual master. So that is not very difficult. Just like in our ordinary business life, we accept somebody as representative of the firm who is actually come, canvassing for the benefit of the firm. He’s representative. Suppose he’s representing some book seller, publisher, so he should canvass for selling the books published by his firm, not for anything else. Suppose he has taken the advantage of becoming representative of a business firm, but he’s doing his own business. He’s not bona fide. He’s not bona fide. So real guru is Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa… Aham eva āsam agre. Kṛṣṇa existed before the creation. Then He made His representative, Brahma. Tene brahma hṛdā ādi-kavaye. He instructed the original guru, Brahma. Because there was no other living creature, except Brahma, in the beginning of creation, and He instructed Brahma. Tene brahma hṛdā ādi-kavaye. There are other versions in the Vedas, that He instructed Brahma. So therefore, the original guru is Kṛṣṇa. The same guru, Kṛṣṇa, is instructing Arjuna also. Kṛṣṇa became guru of Arjuna. Arjuna accepted Him guru: śiṣyas te ’ham. Arjuna said, “Now I am not talking with You as friend, but I accept You as my guru.” Therefore, by sastric conclusion, Kṛṣṇa is the original guru. Who can deny it? Kṛṣṇa is jagat-guru. He’s guru of everyone, because everyone (is) accepting this authority of Kṛṣṇa. Anyone is accepting the authority of Bhagavad-gītā, he’s accepting, imperceptibly, Kṛṣṇa as guru. Therefore, bona fide spiritual master means who is representing Kṛṣṇa. Who can deny it?

So to find out a bona fide spiritual master is not a very difficult job, because if one is representing guru, Kṛṣṇa, then he must speak of Kṛṣṇa, canvass for Kṛṣṇa. What do you think, Visanji?

Indian man: Jaya, Mahārāja.

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