12 July 2020Vaisnavas should avoid asat-saṅga
Hare Krishna. Gaur Premanande! Devotees are chanting from 827 locations. I am seeing a good crowd from Sydney also. Many of you are joining more often. Some are cooking in the kitchen. Some are doing Deity worship or Japa talk, morning walk. My brother, Ramdas became my disciple, and now daily he is chanting.
Today at 8 am there will be a Srimad Bhagavatam class and I'll speak about my memories of Bhakti Caru Maharaja or My Bhakti Caru Maharaja. If you all are free, you are welcome to attend the class. Many devotees of ISKCON temple do japa with us and also hear the japa talk. Many devotees are joining us like from Amravati Temple. Many devotees have taken Caturmasya vows. I hope that you're completing those sankalpas and progressing. Smart devotees take vows. It proves that you are smart by taking vows.
kṛṣṇa yei bhaje sei baḍa catura.
I was thinking whether it may be Caturmasya or any ordinary day, one Sankalpa that we need to take is...
asat-saṅga-tyāga,—ei vaiṣṇava-ācāra 'strī-saṅgī'—eka asādhu, 'kṛṣṇābhakta' āra
Translation: “A Vaiṣṇava should always avoid the association of ordinary people. Common people are very much materially attached, especially to women. Vaiṣṇavas should also avoid the company of those who are not devotees of Lord Kṛṣṇa.[ CC Madhya 22.87]
Devotees should avoid asat-saṅga. Their lifestyle should be in such way that they avoid the association of ordinary people. We should daily try and take a sankalpa about how we can give up asat-saṅga. Then we can say that we are Vaisnavas.
There are 2 types of associations in this world - satsang and asat-saṅga. One is Krsna and the other is Maya.
utsāhān niścayād dhairyāt tat-tat-karma-pravartanāt saṅga-tyāgāt sato vṛtteḥ ṣaḍbhir bhaktiḥ prasidhyati
Translation: There are six principles favorable to the execution of pure devotional service: (1) being enthusiastic, (2) endeavoring with confidence, (3) being patient, (4) acting according to regulative principles [such as śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ smaraṇam – hearing, chanting and remembering Kṛṣṇa], (5) abandoning the association of non-devotees, and (6) following in the footsteps of the previous ācāryas. These six principles undoubtedly assure the complete success of pure devotional service.[ NOI Verse 3]
We give up asat-saṅga and follow in the footsteps of saintly persons and then we become perfect and refined human beings.
kaler doṣa-nidhe rājann asti hy eko mahān guṇaḥ kīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasya mukta-saṅgaḥ paraṁ vrajet
Translation: My dear King, although Kali-yuga is an ocean of faults, there is still one good quality about this age: Simply by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, one can become free from material bondage and be promoted to the transcendental kingdom.[SB 12.3.51]
If we do sravanam and kirtana and if it is related to Krsna then we can go back to Godhead. Those who do japa, kirtana and sadhu sanga will become free from asat-saṅga. So all of you think about this.
We need to identify whether this is satsanga or asat-saṅga. From morning till the time we go to sleep, we should identify it. Even in our dreams. 24 hours a day we have to identify this. Sometimes satsanga or sometimes asat-sanga happens. The Lord gives us the intelligence to identify. If not able to identify, then pray to the Lord.
tesam satata-yuktanam bhajatam priti-purvakam dadami buddhi-yogam tam yena mam upayanti te
Translation: To those who are constantly devoted and worship Me with love, I give the understanding by which they can come to Me.[ BG 10.10]
The Lord gives us the intelligence. Intelligence does this task of discrimination between sat and asat, Krsna and Maya. Intelligence which is given by sadhu, sastra, and acarya gives the power of discrimination. This is supposed to be rejected and this should be accepted.The Lord has said, “I give intelligence”.
sarvasya cāhaṁ hṛdi sanniviṣṭo mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyo vedānta-kṛd veda-vid eva cāham
Translation: I am seated in everyone’s heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge, and forgetfulness. By all the Vedas, I am to be known. Indeed, I am the compiler of Vedānta, and I am the knower of the Vedas.[ BG 15.15]
The Lord is residing in the hearts of all the living entities and from Him we all get intelligence, whether it is sat or asat. May the Lord give all of you the kind of intelligence so that you can discriminate. The Lord gives such intelligence and speaks with us, but we are not able to hear. Hence there is an arrangement of the sadhu, sastra and acarya. They become the authority and speak on behalf of the Lord. What the Caitya Guru [Lord] has to speak cannot be heard by us. So the Lord appears in the form of Guru. The Lord speaks through sadhu, sastra, and acarya to all the fallen souls.
māyā-mugdha jīvera nāhi svataḥ kṛṣṇa-jñāna jīvere kṛpāya kailā kṛṣṇa veda-purāṇa
Translation: The conditioned soul cannot revive his Kṛṣṇa consciousness by his own effort. But out of causeless mercy, Lord Kṛṣṇa compiled the Vedic literature and its supplements, the Purāṇas.[ CC 20.122]
The syllabus is there, but someone has to be someone there to teach the Vedas and the Puranas. It is said ācāryavān puruṣo veda. One who has acarya and has taken the diksa in the disciplic succession is called acaryavan. One who has wealth is called wealthy in the same way when one has an acarya, one becomes intelligent. He can discriminate between sat and asat. Then at every step, he knows what to do and what not to do. At every step a Vaisnava should identify. As Caturmasya is going on, try to identify, what is sat and asat. We are exposed to asat-sanga. Sometimes there is asat-sanga at every moment at home, office while talking on the phone or watching television or listening to prajalpa. We can't explain all this now. We need to see this if asat thoughts or food is there, asat events or asat place might be there. In this way, we need to introspect. The lion is famous for his introspection. A monkey or goat does not do introspection. They never stop and think before they proceed. We need to stop and see where we can get asat saṅga and where we can get satsanga and take benefit from it.
I was thinking of giving you 5 minutes so that you can write how you can get into asat-saṅga. Television is there, internet, waste of time on the phone, social media like Instagram and WhatsApp. Association with non-devotees is also an asat-sanga. Might be we also are becoming a cause for asat-saṅga. Getting updates on Coronavirus. You can get a little information, but you don't need to see more. Keep on reading this. We will edit this and post it so that you can get to knowwhat is asat-saṅga. Caitanya Lila is writing his Sankalpa. The propensity of me and mine should be balanced. We are getting good ideas. You are declaring that these are asat-saṅgas.
I am going to address the devotees of Ujjain and other devotees. So if you are free, you are welcome. Kindly read these, we will post it.