16th January, 2014, Gurgaon
I was very fortunate take darshan of his HH Janananda Maharaj at Sumeet Prabhu’s home today in Gurgaon.
Maharaj is a very quite, simple, deep and yet an affable sanyasi. Taking his darshan I felt as if I had taken a dip in holy water of Ganga river.
Maharaj asked if I have some question, but more than my silly questions I wanted to hear Krishna katha from him. Being less intelligent, questions do not come easily to me and most of the time I forget them when asked so by a senior devotee. Hence when I meet devotees my only interest is to listen to the pastimes of devotees, Krishna, Mahaprabhu, acharayas, their realisation etc. and hoping against hope that this will make my heart soft and I may absorb something.
Fortunately for me, one devotee asked Maharaj a question and as Maharaj replied so patiently, I asked something which was bothering me as a supplementary question.
My puzzle was that Ramananda Raya quoted the verse brahma-bhutah prasannatma (BG 18.54) as higher than sarva-dharmān parityajya (BG 18.66), in his discussions with Mahaprabhu (cc madhya 8). I understood the logic of verse 18.66 being referred to as sanyas which is still within the material world, and also that devotion with knowledge is superior to devotion with rituals and that brahma-bhutah platform is out of the material world, etc. But, I knew that something was amiss in my understanding, and I could not get it. I read the purports (cc madhya 8.65) again and again, but could not get the understanding from my own endeavor. I asked Maharaj to kindly clarify the same to me and Maharaj’s reply not only solved this puzzle but another question as well which I had forgotten since long.
Maharaj replied that yes the Brahma-bhutah platform may be a very high spiritual platform but devotees do not aspire for it. He explained that the distance doesn’t matter what matter is that what are our intentions (consciousness). He gave a very good example. He said consider that two people are walking towards Delhi. The first person is more closer to Delhi than the second. But the first person wants to plant a bomb in the city where as the second person is coming to serve the city. So even if the first person is nearer to Delhi but because his intentions are bad hence being near doesn’t qualify as being any useful.
Maharaj further added that similarly being a simple-hearted devotee of the Lord in the material world is a far better situation than being a spiritually elevated person going towards impersonalism with his own knowledge because there are more chances of the former going back to Godhead and serving The Lord personally than the latter.
Maharaj’s above reply also solved my other unsolved question `What is the status of those devotees who worship Lord Krishna with devotion and love but without much knowledge ? ‘
Maharaj’s merciful reply cleared the fog in my mind like a bright sun in Delhi’s winter.
All glories to HH Janananda Maharaj.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.