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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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

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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Prabhupada Library

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Prabhupada Library

Reading Srila Prabhupada’s books is personal association with a pure devotee of Krishna. Prabhupada is living in his books and Krishna is also living in them.

“You may please me the most by reading my books and following the instructions therein…” (Srila Prabhupada)

A library of 16 essential books on Krishna consciousness by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Founder-Acarya of the Hare Krishna Movement. Includes: Bhagavad-gita As It Is, Krsna–The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.1, Science of Self-Realization,Teachings of Lord Caitanya, Nectar of Devotion, Nectar of Instruction, Sri Isopanisad, Perfection of Yoga, Beyond Birth and Death, Matchless Gift, Elevation to Krishna Consciousness, King of Knowledge, Easy Journey to Other Planets, On the Way to Krishna, Krsna the Reservoir of Pleasure, On Chanting Hare Krishna.

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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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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.

Radha Kunda


Radha Kunda

“The holy place known as Mathura is spiritually superior to Vaikuntha, the transcendental world, because the Lord appeared there. Superior to Mathura-puri is the transcendental forest of Vrndavana because of Krishna’s rasa-lila pastimes. And superior to the forest of Vrndavana is Govardhana Hill, for it was raised by the divine hand of Sri Krishna and was the site of His various loving pastimes. And, above all, the superexcellent Sri Radha-kunda stands supreme, for it is overflooded with the ambrosial nectarean prema of the Lord of Gokula, Sri Krishna. Where, then, is that intelligent person who is unwilling to serve this divine Radha-kunda, which is situated at the foot of Govardhana Hill?”

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