I am here in Prayag to attend Kumbha-mela. You will be inspired to know that even Caitanya Mahaprabhu attended Kumbha-mela here in Prayagraj. It was an ardh-Kumbh that time. It was a yearly Magh-Mela. He did take the holy dip, but that was not satisfying. He chanted Hare Krishna Hare Krishana Krishna Krishna Hare Hare - Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare.
Ganga is flowing here and Yamuna is also flowing, but there is no flood. In the month of Magha there is never flood. But as Mahaprabhu chanted and danced, there was a flood. He flooded the whole of Prayagraj and surrounding areas with Harinama. In that Magh-mela every one was floating in the nectar of holy name. Caitanya Mahaprabhu drowned everybody in the flood of the nectar of holy name. He continues to flood the whole world. He is still chanting and we are also chanting with him. We shall remember that. Naam nache jiva nache , nache prem-dhan. (Hari-nama-cintamani: 1.2.58) As we chant the holy name of the lord, you the living entities are dancing, the holy name is dancing ,Gauranga is dancing. We have come here in Kumbha-mela.
Prabhupada had also come, I was there with him in 1977. He said, “We do not come to Kumbha- mela , aspiring for Amrita from the Kalash, or nectar that emerged with the churning that took place and the same nectar that emerges on particular dates. There will be millions of seekers of nectar. There are already many of them gathered here to swim in that amrit. But we don’t come here for that. We come here to chant. We come here to preach the holy name of the Lord. To chant the glories of the holy names of the Lord, pastimes of the Lord, form of the Lord. By this we make another kind of nectar available to the pilgrims here. To compare the Kumbha-mela amrit with that of Namamrit is an offence. This is the 8 offence. To consider Harinama as one of the ritualistic activities mentioned in the Karma – kanda sections of the Vedas. So that nectar cannot be compared, but trying to compare also is an offence.
Sukadev Goswami was about to recite his Bhagvatam – ‘Krishna-Kathamrut’, or ‘namamrut’ or ‘Lilamrut’. The demigods had arrived at the scene. This is mentioned in the Srimad- Bhagavat mahatmya in Padma-purana. Demigods arrived with the nectar which they had derived as a result of the churning of the ocean and requested to feed King Parikshit so that he becomes immortal. They were pleading to Sukadev Goswami to give them, Krishna-Kathamrut, namamrut, Lilamrut in exchange. When Sukadev Goswami heard this proposal, he rejected it out rightly and he told them to leave the place immediately saying that they are the offenders of the holy name; they don’t understand the value of Krishna- Kathamrut. They don’t need amrit brought by demigods, as they have superior and transcendental amrit, which just doesn’t make you immortal by making you live long, to enjoy this world, but Krishna Kathamrit will give you eternal life of service unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead. By taking demigod’s amrit one may go to heaven and live long enjoying heavenly pleasures, but by drinking holy name of the Lord by the chanting of the mahamantra, you will go far beyond heaven, beyond this material existence. You will go beyond Vaikuntha. You will go to the top most Vaikuntha. You will go to Goloka, you will go to Vrindavan and you will attain the shelter of the Lotus Feet of Sri Krishna and you will remain eternally busy serving the Lord of you heart. So let us keep chanting and chanting and chanting. Finally we have received this benediction of Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
There are hundreds and thousands of camp here, like a new township on the bank of the river of Ganga-Jamuna. But among all those camps, ISKCON’s camp, Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s camp is the best, representing Brahma-madhva-Gaudiya sampradaya, which is super excellent school of thought. Otherwise every one over here is doing ‘yat mat tat path’. ( C.C. Madhya lila 9.49) They have their own opinions or diluted opinions, propagating devotion adulterated with Karma or jnana etc. Here in Kumbha-mela it is quiet confusing and bewildering with so many paths being proposed. But sampradayaa vihinaha viphale mataha. If your opinion is against Vaisnava Sampradaya , then it is ‘viphala’ or without the fruit. Then you may not get the right nectar, but may end up getting poison. As the churning was taking place, the first thing that came was poison and then came the Nectar. So teachings should come down from Parampara, or authorised school of thought. It’s not that you are being cheated. Dharma ‘projjita kaitavaha nirmatsaranam satam’. (SB. beginning verse) From the teachings of the right Sampradaya all that is anti-Krishna is kicked out. Cheating religion has no place in the authorised school of thoughts. Teachings which are presented are the purest. Teachings as it is. Bhagvatam as it is.
Yesterday devotees here distributed 6000 Prabhupada’s books, and 600 of Kumbha – Festival of Immortality’ book. There is also big prasad distribution . Thousands of Sadhus are relishing full belly , meal prasad. Food for life is supported by ISKCON Mumbai. Some dioramas are also put up which is a big attraction. The day after is Shahi-snan. So keep chanting.