The Nature of the Mind

Excerpts from the Holy Biography of His Divine Grace Nityalila-pravista Om Visnupada Paramahamsa 108 Sri Srila Bhakti Dayita Madhava Gosvami Maharaja
Srila Bhakti Dayita Madhava Gosvami Maharaja is the Spiritual Preceptor of His Divine Grace Sri Srila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaja, who related these excerpts originally in Bengali. A full English edition of this biography will be available from GOKUL in the near future.

In this text, the title "Srila Gurudeva" refers to Srila Bhakti Dayita Madhava Gosvami Maharaja [pictured at left].

The disciples of the Sri Caitanya Gaudiya Math and its well-wishers organize a religious convention annually. The purpose is to hold a meeting of like-minded persons from Amrtsar, Ludhiyana, Hosiyarpur, Khanna and other places throughout the Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. "Sangha saktih kalau yuge:" In the Kali-yuga, the treasure of bhakti must be guarded by an organization of bhaktas (devotees). Without such an organization, the capital of bhakti will not be able to multiply. That is why there is a real need for such types of religious conventions. This is what compelled Srila Gurudeva to persevere with His mission, even in the face of illness. Sri Sudarsana dasa Adhikari (Sri Surendra Kumara Agarwala) was the main person who organized a massive rally near the Maihira Gate at the Sanatana Dharma Mandir. From Thursday, May 5 through Sunday, May 8, 1966, Srila Gurudev graced the residence of Dr. Kailasa Natha Kapur at Vikramapur. Other monks and devotees stayed at the Cintapurni temple and at the houses of nearby residents. At 8 A.M., Sunday, May 8, Srila Gurudeva departed Sanatana Dharma Mandir for a huge, elaborate nagar-sankirtana through the districts of Adda Hosiyarpur, Khingra Gate, Panca-Pida Cauk, Atari Bazaar, Suda Cauk, Rena Bazaar, Sekha Bazaar, Bhairo Bazaar and other places, and finally back to the Mandir.

On these preaching tours, Srila Gurudeva always had ready answers, accompanied by a smile, for the many who came to Him with different types of queries. The arrogant and the shrewd, who tried to bait Srila Gurudeva, never succeeded in making Him forget His smile. On the contrary, His replies always left them astounded. His calm and composed personality was a portion of the Divine. The wise never lose their composure under any circumstances. One particular example among many that could be cited is worthy of mention.

At Jalandhar, Srila Gurudeva was staying at the house of Dr. K. N. Kapur, which was not far from Sri Sanatana Dharma Temple at Maihira Gate. The religious convention was to be inaugurated by Him at the temple at 8 P.M. Srila Gurudeva, accompanied by Srimad Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaja, was about to leave to attend the function when they were interrupted by the sudden arrival of notable persons in a cavalcade of cars. These people insisted upon an interview, despite Srila Gurudeva's repeated reminders that many people, who had spent a great sum of money to bring Him there, were waiting at the convention site for Him. He also informed them that they were most welcome to join the gathering and that if they could not, they were welcome to call on Him the following morning. These visitors, however, claimed that they were scheduled to leave Jalandhar that very night. At this juncture, Dr. K. N. Kapur returned home where he recognized one of the visitors to be an income tax officer named Mr. Pande, and earnestly appealed to Srila Gurudeva to spare them at least ten to fifteen minutes of His time.

Srila Gurudeva then returned to His room and seated Himself. In a bellicose mood, Mr. Pande led a verbal attack saying, "I do not believe in the existence of the atma or the Paramatma. I do not admit to the reality of anything that I cannot see or touch. I have come to You with twenty questions."

Srila Gurudeva, smiling and without showing the least bit of irritation, started writing the questions down. This alone took about fifteen minutes. If at least five minutes were to be devoted to answering each question, then yet another one hundred minutes would be required to answer all the questions. However, Srila Gurudeva did not have another minute to spare. When He stood up and politely requested the visitors to try and return the following morning, Mr. Pande suddenly burst forth saying, "Svamiji, I am greatly disturbed. My mind is restless. Tell me something quickly. Give me a mantra that will calm my nerves."

Srila Gurudeva then broke into a broad smile and said, "Pande Saheb! You are misleading me."

Taken aback, Mr. Pande again fervently repeated that his mind was truly tossing and turning and that he was not misleading anyone.

Srila Gurudeva now explained to him, "Pande Saheb! Does your mind even exist? By your own declaration, you cannot admit to the existence of something you can neither see nor touch. Can you see your mind? What is its shape? What colour is it? Is it black or white? Is it hard or soft? Since you can neither see nor touch it, obviously it must not exist. It follows, therefore, that rest and unrest of the mind cannot be an issue if the mind itself is non-existent."

Pande Saheb replied instantly, "Although I can neither see nor touch my mind, I know of its existence through the action of thinking."

Srila Gurudeva then replied, "Pande Saheb, you have answered your own question. Just as the mind can be experienced by the stream of thoughts, despite the fact that it cannot be grasped by either sight or touch, so also do I know that I am a spark of the fire of sat-cit-ananda (eternal existence, knowledge and bliss) because I want to exist eternally, I want to know eternally and I want to be in bliss eternally. Thus, behind the self, or atma, is the Super-Self, or the Paramatma. One has to be qualified to obtain the darsana of the atma and Paramatma. They can be experienced only by the worthy.

What is the true value of these perishable, material senses? Even a slight injury to the eye or ear cuts off the world of sight and sound. If such a learned person as you says that the material world, dependent upon these perishable senses, is real, then where will lesser mortals like us go? It is only by the grace of God that it is possible to spontaneously and directly perceive reality."

[Home Page] sbdmgm.jpg - 4632 Bytes

Srila Bhakti Dayita Madhava
Goswami Maharaja Page