by Nisikanta Sanyal | 1933 | 274,022 words | ISBN-10: 818919500X
The present work is an attempt to offer a theistic account in the English language of the career and teachings of Sri Chaitanya (representing the Absolute Truth in His full manifestation). Sri Chaitanya came into this world to make all people understand that in reference to their eternal existence they should have nothing to do with non-Godhead. A...
It will not be out of place at this stage to introduce the great personality who is the practising teacher (acharya) of the chanting of the Holy Name, the special Divine Dispensation for the Age of discord (Kali Yuga), the establishment of which is one of the Purposes of the Appearance of Sri Gaursundar in this world. Thakur Haridas is the eternal associate of the Supreme Lord and appears in the Company of the Lord whenever and wherever the Lord Himself chooses to make His Appearance. Thakur Haridas plays a different role in the different Avataras of the Lord. In this Avatara he is the acharya of the Holy Name.
The Holy Name is both the Method and Object of worship of every pure soul. In the Kali Age nothing less than the Name Himself can effect the deliverance of fettered souls. This Teaching of Sri Gaursundar is exemplified by, the life of Thakur Haridas. In order, therefore, to be able to understand the method and object of worship that can alone be acceptable to a highly controversial Age like the present, which is least disposed to take anything on trust, it will be necessary to follow attentively the events of the life of the acharya
The fashionable theology at Nabadwip, which was the cultural center of Bengal at the time of the Appearance of the Lord, was frankly atheistical. The Philosophical School of the New Logic (Naba Nyaya) may be described as the attempt of our empiric reason to deny the necessity, as well as practicability of all worship. The jiva is himself discovered to be both worshipper and worshipped. Worship itself is supposed to be but a concoction of the jiva’s own erroneous speculations. The position to which one of the most highly developed system of the Philosophy of Logic led the people of Nabadwip, at the time of the Appearance of the Lord, and through them was accepted by people all over the country was exactly what w as specifically the worst fitted for understanding the uncompromising pure form of worship which it was the Will of the Lord to propagate by the life of Thakur Haridas. Whatever name might be borne by the different system of speculative philosophy they are in common agreement as regards the logical-necessity of atheism. Even the Gîta and the Bhagavatam were taught at Nabadwip at this period as Scriptures of atheism. It gives us an idea of the audacity and range of activity of the New School of Logic of Nabadwip that it could devise interpretations even of the unambiguous texts of the Bhagavatam itself in favour of their theory of rankest atheism. It is only to be expected in these circumstances that the Scholarship and acumen of Bengal should be generously recognized in all parts of the country and abroad and even by the atheistical Vedantists of Benares, who have always claimed for themselves the theological leadership of philosophical atheism in India.
Thakur Haridas made his appearance in the village of Budhan in the District of Jessore in East Bengal. This has made that part of the country since then a center of the worship of Godhead by means of the Kirtan. Thakur Haridas was born in a Muhammedan family. He comes into the light of our definite narrative under his changed name of Haridas, which means literally ‘the servant of Hari’; Hari being the Name of Godhead in the Scriptures. So Haridas must have given up his family and society in some manner that is not definitely known to us, had been the recipient of the mercy of a Vaishnava and had already made extraordinary progress on the path of pure devotion, although he was in the first flush of youth when he is found living as a recluse in the forest of Benapole in his native District of Jessore. In the depth of the forest he resided in a solitary hut, worshipped the holy Tulasi, chanted. daily the Holy Name three lacs (3,00,000) of times night and day and ate food cooked in the homes of Brahmanas, which he obtained by begging.
The Hindu Chief, who was in charge of the Local Administration of that part of the country, bore the name of Ramachandra Khan. He was one of the greatest of atheists and a hater of the servants of Vishnu (lit. the One All-pervading Lord). Haridas was treated with great reverence by the people. Ramachandra Khan found this intolerable. He could not rest till he had actually devised a plan for effecting the humiliation of Thakur Haridas. For this purpose he did not hesitate to stoop to be basest of devices.
Ramachandra Khan, finding that Haridas was reputed to be absolutely free from all vices, hit upon a plan of creating in him the vice by exposing which he hoped to accomplish his ruin. He summoned to his help the most famous harlots and told them to destroy the chastity of Haridas who was under the vow of continence as an ascetic. One of the harlots, who was young and possessed great beauty, undertook to effect his ruin in course of three days. Ramachandra Khan pressed her to take an armed footman (paik) who was to catch him redhanded and bring both of them for punishment. But the harlot proposed that she should at first go by herself and after being with Haridas once take the paik to capture him on her second visit.
That harlot, having put on her best attire, then presented herself at nightfall at the solitary cell of Thakur Haridas. After making her obeisance to the Tulasi she went up to the entrance of the cell and bowing to the Thakur remained there standing. She then sat down at the door-step, exposing her body to the view of Haridas, and made confession of her uncontrollable passion for him praying to be favoured by his intimate society.
Thakur Haridas agreed to fulfill her wish after he had finished chanting the due number of the Name, bidding her in the meantime to wait and listen to the Sankirtana of the Name chanted by himself. The harlot on this assurance remained seated there as Haridas went on with his loud chant of the Holy Name til break of day. The harlot came away disappointed when it was morning, and informed Ramachandra Khan that Haridas had promised to enjoy her society and that the promise would be carried out when she met him next night.
As the harlot presented herself before Thakur Haridas on the second evening he expressed his request that as on the previous occasion he could not keep his promise to her for the reason that he could not complete the chant of the due number of the Name, he would certainly fulfill her desire after the chanting of the due number of the Name had been completed, and he accordingly bade her wait there and listen to the chanting of the Name. The harlot made obeisance to the Tulasi and the Thakur and sat listening to the chanting of the Holy Name. But she naturally grew restive as the night was drawing to a close. The Thakur, noticing her impatience, told her that he had taken the vow of chanting a crore of the Name in course of the month. He had expected to finish the full number that night but could not do so although he had chanted ‘Him’ the whole night. The number would be certainly completed by the next night and then the vow would be fulfilled and he would be in the position to enjoy her company. The harlot reported accordingly to Ramachandra Khan.
On the third evening the harlot duly made her appearance and, after making obeisance to the Tulasi and the Thakur, sat at the entrance of the cell listening to the chanting of the Holy Name, chanting the Same herself, till the close of that night. The mind of the harlot was changed by chanting the Holy Name all night in the company of Thakur Haridas. She now fell prostrate at the Feet of Thakur Haridas and confessed to him everything regarding the plot of Ramachandra Khan. She said she had committed endless sin as she was a harlot by trade. She begged the Thakur to save her, who was so vile, by his mercy.
Haridas Thakur replied that he knew everything about the Khan and would have left the place three days ago. He had delayed his departure by three days on her account. The harlot then prayed that he might mercifully instruct her as to how she was to get rid of the miseries of the worldly life. Thakur Haridas then tendered her this advice. ‘Give away everything of your household to the Brahmanas. Come and stay here in this cell, chant constantly the Holy Name. Worship the Tulasi. You will then obtain the Feet of Krishna in no time’. After saying this and instructing her in the Holy Name the Thakur rose up and left the place, chanting the Name of Hari.
Then that harlot on obtaining the command of the Guru gave away to the Brahmanas all the wealth that she had. With shaven head and a single piece of cloth for wrapping her body she lived in that cell and took the Holy Name three lakhs of times in course of every night and day. She worshipped the Tulasi, ate uncooked food by chewing, and often fasted. The senses were controlled and love of Godhead manifested itself. She became a famous devotee and a great spiritual teacher; and Vaishnavas of the highest order often came thither to have a sight of her. The people were astonished by this wonderful behaviour of the quondam harlot and bowed with reverence whenever they spoke of the greatness of Haridas.
As the above theme is the subject of the highest importance to the present Age, I have tried to keep scrupulously to the words of Sri Kaviraj Goswami in describing this famous event of the life of Thakur Haridas. The chanting of the Holy Name of Krishna imparted by a pure devotee rescued a youthful harlot who had tried to seduce the saint at the instigation of a most profligate atheist. By this process the harlot was not merely rescued from a life of shame but became a devotee of the Lord fit to lift others to the plane of perfect purity.
The chanting of the Holy Name can, therefore, reclaim the worst of sinners. The Holy Name has to be heard with reverence from the lips of a pure devotee. The Holy Name has to be received as a Sacrament from a pure devotee by complete submission at his feet. The Holy Name so received has to be constantly chanted by being free from all offense. The Tulasi has to be worshipped. All earthly possessions and all association with worldly people, especially in matters of food, clothing and residence, must be disowned. By this method, in a short time, the highest spiritual state is realizable. That state consists in serving exclusively the Feet of Krishna. This is the special Divine Dispensation for this Age of discord announced by the spiritual Scriptures and promulgated by the Supreme Lord, Sri Krishna-Chaitanya, through His eternal servant, Thakur Haridas.
The obvious objection to the above, that is likely to suggest itself to those who are too much addicted to the concerns of this world, is that it does not sufficiently appeal to the rationalistic imagination. The scheme seems to be dry and sterile. It also appears to be both meaningless and impracticable. Every admittedly futile speculation, despite its futility, seems to be more worthy of the serious consideration of the worldling than any transcendental proposition. Appearances are decidedly against the acceptance of the teaching of Thakur Haridas by the average merely intellectual worldling.
In the first place Thakur Haridas seems to ignore wholly the life that is ordinarily led by people all over the world. The new life, that is proposed, has apparently no point of contact with the life previously led by the disciple after election. This is not likely to appeal to those to whom the theory of materialistic evolution has become as it were the very breath of their nostrils. ‘Is a real gap or abrupt revolution possible in the world of life?’ ‘Can there be any such thing as the absence of proper purpose anywhere on the part of anybody in this fair world?’ Such and similar questions are bound to rush into the brain of all mental speculationists the moment they are asked to take the Holy Name of Krishna to the exclusion of every worldly function. The proposal seems to be so puerile and so queer and so utterly destructive of all that is near and dear to the heart of the average man!
It is for this reason that the sadhus are on principle opposed to discuss spiritual subjects with persons who do not really seek the Truth. Those, who think that for them there is no driving necessity for such quest, are not likely to follow seriously any elucidation of propositions that have nothing to do with anything in which they feel really interested. The complete denial of any place to empiric conclusions, in the life that is proposed for the novice, is a staggering blow to most people who feel instinctively that they should refuse to listen to what obviously amounts to nothing short of an incitement to the commission of suicide.
The spiritual purpose itself cannot, however, be explained away nor whittled down by means of clever interpretations. The actual doings and saying of Thakur Haridas stand in the way of those who try to do so. The Thakur literally acted as he taught. He acted also in accordance with the plainest meaning of his words. So there can be no ambiguity whatsoever.
The harlot’s condition was not essentially different from that of any other worldling. The irrepressible desire for complete renunciation of the world, is the natural and inevitable result of the appearance of any real inclination for the spiritual life. The awakened worldly mind understands the necessity of committing mundane suicide in order to be reborn as the immaculate soul for the purpose of realizing the life eternal. The material mind is not a figment of the empiric imagination. It is a real envelope and has to be completely discarded. It will not do to imagine this enveloping darkness as possessing anything in common with the light. The material mind is like a sheet of impenetrable darkness that completely shuts out the light of the soul. The soul is by his nature self-refulgent and has nothing to do with the material mind which acts as a screen to cut off the light of the soul from the view of the observer who uses the mind for such purpose. This is fact and not a hypothesis like the so-called ‘truths’ and ‘facts’ conceived by the material mind in the vanity of its ignorance. The spiritual realization of the categorical difference, and relation of utter incompatibility between mind and soul is the first unique experience on the threshold of the awakened spiritual life.
The harlot was not ‘converted’ by speculative arguments addressed to the mind but simply by listening to the Name of Hari from the lips of Thakur Haridas and chanting the Same herself in his company. She had apparently the advantage of possessing at the very outset a natural regard for Thakur Haridas and for his advice and also for the holy Tulasi. This was the only antecedent condition of her redemption. Was it, therefore, blind and traditional faith that actually saved her in this crisis?
The answer must be in the negative. Those, who are most officiously given to the cult of blind faith, are not necessarily attracted towards the actual devotee. The affinity for the true soul is itself a spiritual, that is to say perfectly selfconscious, impulse. It must be most carefully distinguished from the blind, material impulse which is so common and which, as a matter of fact, is the worst form of obstacle in the way of the realization of the spiritual life. The instinctive affinity of the harlot for Haridas is an activity of the soul and as such is, therefore, perfectly moral, perfectly self-cognizant and categorically different from sensuous sentimentality that ordinarily passes in this world as blind, faith. Faith is the instinctive attitude of the soul towards the Truth and can, therefore, never be blind. It is the blind who in their blindness confound true faith with the counterfeit ware with which alone they happen to be, unfortunately for themselves, only too familiar.
Real faith can alone lead one to the presence of the pure soul. The material mind cannot reach the proximity of a Sadhu. The harlot possessed the spiritual faculty by which it was possible for her to really approach Thakur Haridas. The Shastras say that this true instinctive reverence for sadhus is the result of previous unconscious association with the pure devotees of the Lord.
For the proper unconscious association with sadhu also sensuous sentimentality is often the chief hindrance. The sensuous sentimentalist seeks the gratification of his own senses. He, therefore, is least disposed to serve the sadhu on the account of the latter. It is going against his grain. The sadhus accordingly keep away from philanthropists as these are not willing to learn to get rid of their sentimentality. A pseudo-devotee, who parades his false sentimentality, readily enough obtains the cheap reverence of all worldly persons as his due, by misunderstanding of the purpose of the Scriptures. Such a person is not likely to bow to the sadhu, as he really wants to be served himself. Plain worldly people are likely to be more easily benefited by the process of unconscious association with the sadhus. Those who bring with them any previously formed notions regarding the nature of the sadhus, find it difficult to get rid of those false sentiments which stand in the way of their associating on a proper footing with the real sadhus. The only natural way of associating with the devotees of Godhead consists in doing whatever the sadhu wants one to do and in the way that he advises, without expecting any desirable or undesirable result to oneself therefrom. The harlot possessed something like this natural faith in sadhus by reason of her previous unconscious association with the devotees of Godhead.
The immoral life, that was being actually led by the harlot did not stand in the way of her redemption. The point is made absolutely clear by the fact that she went to Thakur Haridas for the purpose of seducing him. This shows also that her instinctive faith in sadhus was not colored by any conventional moral sentiments. This was an advantage. Too rigid empiric morality obstructs spiritual awakening more effectively than even confirmed immorality. This is due to want of humility and spirit of submission to the sadhu that is sure to be engendered more or less by the dogmatic professor of conventional morality. True morality is never possible prior to spiritual awakening. That which passes as morality in the society of worldlings, is only a hypocritical, and, therefore, more dangerous form of immorality The moral instinct proper, which belongs to the soul, must not be confounded with this hypocritical immorality and its conventions. The harlot was not hampered by the conventions of a hypocritical morality. She possessed an open mind with a natural liking for the society of really pure souls, although she herself was actually leading a life that is condemned by moralists. But as it is not possible for a person to be really and fully moral before he realizes the nature of his true self, the case of the harlot, instead of being worse, was in certain respects better than that of the conventional moralist who is rigidly committed to the casuistical defence of the unspiritual life that he actually leads.
It is not, of course, intended to undervalue the principle of morality in anyway. That instinct, in its pure form, as in the case of ever other instinct, belongs to the soul. The form, in which it passes current in the world, is only the perverted reflection of the real principle and is not conducive to spiritual life. Its apparent advantages are strictly confined to this perverted existence. Whatever tends to reconcile us to the worldly life. stands self condemned for that very reason. Empiric morality is fully open to this charge of pandering, to the unspiritual life. As a matter of fact neither conventional morality nor conventional immorality are praised by the sadhus, as, by themselves, they stand without any relation to the Truth. As soon as our conduct gets related to the Truth it assumes its natural state which has nothing to do with either the conventional moral or immoral principle of this world. To call the spiritual conduct as merely moral in the ordinary conventional sense of the world, would, therefore, be wholly misleading. The spiritual conduct is no doubt perfectly wholesome, being free from all affinity with the unwholesome things of this world. The so-called ‘moral’ conduct based on worldly experience owes all its value to its worldly utility. This fact categorically differentiates spiritual ‘purity’ from worldly morality. There is, of course, no possibility of immoral conduct on the spiritual plane. In the absence of all possibility of immorality there is no scope for worldly morality in the realm of the Absolute. The Kingdom of Godhead accommodates all varieties of conduct by endowing all of them with perfect wholesomeness. Can such conduct be appropriately called ‘moral’ in the conventional sense of the term?
For instance the trade of the harlot is in this world generally held to be utterly immoral. Is it possible for the ‘ethical” mind to conceive of a state of existence that is infinitely higher than any conceivable worldly moral excellence?
Those fanatics who, grossly misunderstanding the nature of the subject treated by the spiritual Scriptures, set up as orthodox and uncompromising ‘believers’ in the ‘letter’ of the Scriptural texts and try to ‘reform’ the ‘abuses’ of this world by immoral regulations that are profanely attributed to Godhead Himself on the strength of such silly and mischievous interpretation, deserve to be put into the pound in the company of those ‘innocent’ creatures that are mercifully denied the quality of voicing their ‘notions’ for harming everybody. There are hypocritical pedants who, affect to hold up their nose at the very sound of the name of a harlot and forthwith prescribe penitential punishment of the most atrocious kind for reforming their morals in ‘obedience’ to the injunctions of the Holy Scriptures. The Devil is also permitted to quote the Scriptures for his purposes.
Fanatics and hypocrites were in possession of the stage of the tragic drama of worldly life at the time when Thakur Haridas emerged on the bewildered vision of those pseudo-religionists and began to supply by his actual conduct the real explanation of the only purpose of all the Scriptures, by electing the harlot as the fittest and the very first object of the Divine Grace. He was naturally opposed by the renegade Brahmana Ramachandra Khan who, in order to exploit the letter of the Scriptures for the accomplishment of his villainy, gave it out as his ‘duty’ to put down by all means a Muhammedan who had the temerity to set up as the expounder of the Shastras of the Hindus!
This brings us to the principle of hereditary caste. The teaching of the Shastras belongs exclusively to the twice-born. The Shastras themselves lay down elaborate rules by which to constitute the community of the Brahmanas who are to be the only teachers of them. This last part of the system had been allowed to pass out of the memory of the people, and, in its place, had been substituted by gradual and insidious steps and by general connivance, the principle of heredity. The hereditary Brahmanas by the strict Shastric test are no Brahmanas at all. Ramachandra Khan was the champion of this corrupt system, not for any real regard born of sincere conviction for the merits of the system itself or from any knowledge of the Shastras, but, as it always happens in such cases, from malice and insolence.
If Haridas Thakur would practice the function strictly reserved for hereditary Brahmanas then the whole system of caste based upon the principle of heredity is challenged at its source. If a Muhammedan can become a Brahmana, the present social system of the Hindus, which is claimed to be part and parcel of the Religion, is utterly demolished. This was bound to agitate profoundly all caste-Hindus.
Nor was this all. The chanting of the Holy Name of Krishna was also practiced with a loud voice. This was an entirely novel mode of worship to the Hindus of that time. The new out-caste apostle of the eternal religion, in opposition to all current rituals and forms of worship, was declaring to admiring Hindus an apparently new form of worship as the one enjoined by the Shastras. Could all the contemporaneous Hindus be so utterly mistaken that they required to be imparted ab initio the knowledge of the fundamentals of their own religion by a Muhammedan, against the teaching of all the hereditary Brahmanas, the exclusive teachers of the same by the rules of the Shastras themselves?
It is quite easy to imagine the intense consternation and hostility that were naturally aroused in an Age of casuistical fanaticism by the preaching of the simple doctrines of the Religion of the Truth. The chanting of the Holy Name of Godhead is the only sacrament of the true religion prescribed for the present Age. This simplification is in keeping with the spirit of all the other sacraments authorized by the Shastras. The other sacraments are not suitable for this Age which is too much addicted to skeptical argumentation ad nauseam. As soon as one realizes the true nature of the soul all his activities are thence forward naturally and necessarily performed on the spiritual plane. The narrow ceremonial view of the sacrament is due to the imperfect spiritual vision of the observer. The sacrament may, therefore, differ in the different Ages in its external appearance, which, is however, the only view that is open to the notice for whose special benefit it is ordained.
The chanting of the Holy Name is liable to the least objection even as sacrament, from a casuistical Age. The Mercy of Godhead must be sought willingly, nay with the keenest hankering that is born of positive liking, for obtaining real touch with him in order to serve Him by means of the spiritual senses of the pure soul.
The sacrament implies a real mutual personal relationship between the Lord and His servant. It is definite, concrete and loving, but in the spiritual (not abstract, notional or concocted i.e., purely mental) sense. The personality, senses and functions of the soul are not comprehensible to, nor admissible by the mind. The mental refusal to recognize the substantive existence of the soul, is the greatest curse of this Age of dogmatic empiricism. This piece of dogmatism must be got rid of.
The empiric reason is confronted to a fight at its own weapons when it is summoned to admit the rationale of the worship of Godhead by means of His Name only. The Name of Godhead must not also be supposed to connote or denote anything of this world, in no shape, neither as precept nor concept. This should, in all conscience, more than satisfy the passion for abstraction of even the Moslem iconoclast.
The next point is that the Name of Godhead must be admitted as true and not as a mere concoction of the material mind. The Scriptural Name of Godhead is not a thing of this world. The Scriptural Name is Himself Divine. The Scriptural Name requires to be served with the tongue by an attitude of humble supplication for manifesting His Divine Nature to the pure serving, essence of our soul. Even the most rabid iconoclast need have no cause of complaint against such service. It is this pure service that was practiced by Thakur Haridas, which, he maintained, was the only sacrament enjoined by the Scriptures as suitable for this Age of wrangling sophistry (Kali Yuga.) The implications of this position will be more fully developed in course of this Narrative at the proper stages.
As the service of Godhead is the eternal function of the individual soul in the state of grace, it transcends all mental and physical activities. The Shastras accordingly reserve the service of Godhead to those who are twice-born. The terms Brahmana (one who has knowledge of Godhead as the Great) and Dwija (twice-born) applied to persons who are eligible for the service of Godhead, refer to the individual soul in the state of grace and not to caste. If Thakur Haridas be regarded as a Moslem born, it is then the physical body that is denoted by the Name Thakur Haridas. If Ramachandra Khan claimed to be a Brahmana on the strength of his seminal birth in a Brahmana(?) family, he also supposed his physical body to be Brahmana. The objection of Ramachandra Khan to Thakur Haridas, on the strength of such foolish interpretation of the Shastras, was met by Thakur Haridas by pity and indifference. Ramachandra Khan did not possess the good fortune of the harlot, whom he made the dupe of his deviltries, to be enabled to listen to the Holy Name of Godhead from the lips of Thakur Haridas. A Brahmana, who claims to be such by right of seminal birth, is less fit for spiritual service than even an open minded harlot.
From Fulia Thakur Haridas moved off to Chandpur. The village of Chandpur was situated in the present District of Hughly in the neighbourhood of Tribeni (Saptagram-Tribeni). Balaram and Jadunandan Acharyas, the purohits (familypriests) of Hiranya and Gobardhan Mazumdars of Tribeni, had their residence in the village of Chandpur which lay to the east of Tribeni. The word ‘Mazumdar’ is the equivalent of ‘Majumadar,’ the title of an accountant of the royal revenues under the Nawabs. Balaram Acharya was the disciple of Thakur Haridas and regarded himself as his servant. Haridas stayed with Balaram acharya in the later’s house. Balaram Acharya with great care made arrangements for the residence of the Thakur in the village. Haridas lived there in a hut and accepted the alms of food at the house of Balaram Acharya. The boy Raghunath Das son of Gobardhan, was at this time studying under Balaram Acharya. Raghunath used to go to Thakur Haridas for a sight of the saint. Haridas was merciful to the boy. Thakur Haridas’s mercy was the cause of the subsequent attainment of spiritual enlightenment by Raghunath Das. The following event occurred while Thakur Haridas was staying at Chandpur.
One day Balaram Acharya, by his humble supplications, induced Thakur Haridas to repair to a gathering at the house of the Mazumdars. The two brothers stood up on seeing the Thakur and, falling at his feet, offered him a seat with great respect. There was present in the assembly a very large number of Pandits, Brahmanas, and other worthy people. The two brothers Hiranya and Gobardhana were also very learned persons. All present spoke highly in praise of Thakur Haridas. This met with the hearty approval of the brothers. It was known to all that the Thakur recited the Holy Name three lakhs of times daily. The Pandits accordingly talked about the greatness of the Name as Thakur Haridas assumed his seat in their midst.
Some of the Pandits said that the cure of all sinfulness automatically results from uttering the Name of Godhead. Others expressed the view that the individual soul (jiva) is freed from the miseries of this life by uttering the Name. Haridas declared that those two were not proper fruits of the chanting of the Name. Love to the Feet of Krishna is aroused by taking of the Name. Haridas said that the condition of a person who realizes such love is described in a sloka of the Bhagavatam (Bhagavatam 2-35). ‘A person, who is habituated to serve Krishna in the ways enunciated above (viz., hearing, chanting, etc., loses all control over his mind and, by reason of realizing the quality of love by chanting the Name of Krishna, experiences an anxious restlessness of the heart. He loses all consideration for the opinion of the people and laughs, cries, shouts, sings and dances at intervals. Salvation and destruction of sinfulness are only attendant results—‘Just as the rising of the Sun dispels all darkness, so also no sooner does the Name of Hari manifests Himself than He forthwith destroys all the sins of the person who utters His Name.’
Haridas requested the Pandits present to explain the above ½loka. All the Pandits desired Thakur Haridas to elucidate its meaning to them. Haridas who had recited the ßloka now said that even before the Sun actually begins to appear darkness is dispelled by his approaching light and the fear from thieves, ghosts and demons is also destroyed; and, on his actual appearance, all useful activities begin to be performed. In like manner sins and other evils are destroyed by the reflected light of the approaching Sunrise of the full manifestation of the Name; while, on the actual appearance of the Name, love to the Feet of Krishna is aroused. Salvation is a trivial result which is effected by the dim reflection cast by the Name as His Appearance draws nigh. The devotee does not wish to accept salvation which is at first offered by Krishna. Haridas quoted the two following ßlokas of the Bhagavatam in support of his contention (Bhagavatam 2-42; 5-19-12). ‘If the dying Ajamil could attain to the realm of the Vaikuntha by calling upon Hari, which happened to be the name of his son, who can estimate the effect if the Name is chanted with faith?, ‘My own,’ says Krishna, ‘Never accept the different forms of salvation, e.g., attainment of My realm, attainment of power and wealth and fame similar to Mine, the privileges of dwelling near Me, even the favour of becoming one with Myself; all of which privileges I offer them unreservedly. They covet nothing except My service.’
Gopal Chakravarti was a Brahmana who belonged to the household of the Mazumdars, being employed to carry letters and money to the king. He had to go up to Gauda and appear before the Padishah himself in connection with the discharge of his official duties. He used to convey twelve lakhs of rupees annually to the king. He was, in his early youth, very handsome and a very good scholar. Gopal lost his patience on hearing that salvation can be obtained by the dim reflection of the Name. He then spoke in great anger.
“Pandits who are in assembly here,” said Gopal, “All of you have heard the conclusion announced by one whose trade is to amuse people by dance and song. Emancipation, which is unattainable by means of knowledge of the Brahman in crores of births, is held by him to follow automatically the manifestation of the dimmest reflection of the Name.”
At this point Haridas entreated Gopal not to entertain any doubt on the subject, as the Shastras themselves declare that liberation from the bondage of the world results at once from the appearance of the dim reflection of the Name. The bliss of liberation is utterly trivial in comparison with the happiness of loving service. It is for this reason that the devotees do not accept liberation The Thakur then quoted the sloka of Hari Bhaktisudhodaya (H. Bh. S. 14-31). ‘Teacher of the universe, to me, immersed in the pure ocean of bliss by meeting Thee, the bliss of the attainment of the knowledge of the Brahman (the Great Nourisher) appears to be as contemptible as the tiny speck of water filling a whole in the ground indented by the hoof of cattle.’
The Brahmana now became furious. He shouted out that he would assuredly cut off his nose if liberation does not result from the dim reflection of the Name. On hearing the blasphemy the members of the assembly gave vent to their sorrow at the behaviour of Gopal. Mazumdar reproved him severely. Balaram Acharya expressed his indignation by remarking that the offender was a fool fit only for hair-splitting sophistry and was perfectly ignorant of the principle of devotion. How could he go the length of insulting even Thakur Haridas! He was doomed to perdition beyond all help.
Haridas rose to leave the place as he heard the words of the Brahmana. Mazumdar forthwith severed all his official connection with Gopal and with all the assembled persons fell prostrate at the feet of Thakur Haridas. Haridas smiled and spoke sweet words. He said, “None of them had done anything offensive except that Brahmana The Brahmana was also not to blame. His addiction to controversial discussion was the cause of his strange behaviour. The greatness of the Name is not realizable by futile discussion. How could he, therefore, understand those principles?” He then bade them depart to their homes in peace, expressing the wish that no one might come to grief by his connection with himself.
Hiranya-das came back to his house after receiving this assurance of pardon and forbade Gopal to cross his threshold. In course of three days the offending Brahmana was attacked with virulent leprosy. His very prominent nose rapidly melted away. The fingers of his hands and feet, rivaling the champaka buds in their delicacy, all shriveled up and dissolved away by the corrosive force of the malady. On beholding this all the people were filled with great wonder. They praised Haridas and made obeisance to Him with reverence.
Sri Krishna Kaviraj Goswami concludes the above account with the pregnant observation that although Haridas did not feel offended by the conduct of the Brahmana yet did Godhead award the offender the punishment due to his transgression. It is the nature of the devotee of Godhead that he ever pardons the faults of the ignorant. It is Krishna’s Nature that He cannot bear any calumniation of His devotees even through ignorance.
Haridas was grieved at heart on hearing of the misery of the Brahmana, He apprised Balaram Acharya of his intention to leave the place and proceed to Shantipur.
The account is prefaced by Krishnadas Kaviraj Goswami with the remark that the event narrated is most wonderful for the reason that it contains the clear elucidation, from the lips of the Acharya himself, of the Divine Dispensation of the present Age. The reader must not forget the point, which is the center of interest of the whole narrative detailed in this work, viz., that Thakur Haridas is the Acharya or the practicing teacher, authorized by Godhead to promulgate the congregational chanting (Sankirtana) of the Holy Name, which is the mode of worship that alone can demolish the worst form of atheism in the name of ‘free’ thinking that is unfortunately so prevalent now-a-days all over the world and which is the terrible but inevitable natural consequence of the exclusive worship of Mammon by all the resources of mind and body.
The world is gratuitously assumed by a pseudo-rationalism to be the only reality and the attempt is, therefore, made to ascertain the methods by following which we can attain the gratification of the senses which function appears to be the relationship naturally subsisting between ourselves (?) and the world. The senses are assumed to be an integral and undetachable part of ourselves. The mind is identified with the senses on the one hand and the soul on the other. The senses connect the mind, or the soul, by this assumption, with the external world. The senses are the eyes of the whole system. All pain and pleasure suffered by the mind are due to the way in which the mind directs the senses in their-relations with the world. The mind cannot apparently know by intuition, at any rate ordinarily, all the consequences of any particular mode of employment of the senses. The mind can, indeed, try to guess about them. But it can never be quite sure about any occurrence till after actual experience. This uncertainty is supposed to be reducible to certainty if it could be possible to know from experience the uniform ‘laws’ that are assumed to govern all phenomenal occurrences under all circumstances. This hypothesis of the uniform operation of the ‘laws’ of Nature has been built up by the accumulated ‘experiences’ of the race. But as the occurrences themselves present an infinity of complications it has not been possible to attain to anything like certainty in isolating the single threads of the web in order to be certain of our hypothesis in every case by being enabled to reproduce an the occurrences of nature in the Laboratory.
Assuming that the above object of scientific endeavour will be realizable in practice in the long run, its success should make it possible for us to prolong the possibility and scope. of sensuous enjoyment ad infinitum. If we fail to be perfectly ‘happy’ by the complete elimination of ‘pain’ by the proper employment of the ‘forces’ of Nature in the way that is calculated to produce such a result under the then known ‘laws of Nature,’ our labours should still have really no abiding value for ourselves. But has our ‘experience’ up to the present moment taken us an inch towards the realization of unmixed or lasting pleasure? Is ‘pleasure’ really different from 'pain,? Or is it only different by circumstance? That which is food for the goose is food for the gander, is not found to be more true than most hypotheses. Variation, which is sought to be eliminated, is found on close inspection and analysis to be the indispensable condition of the pleasures itself. We are, therefore, left inevitably to the present condition of necessary and complete ignorance in order to have any ‘pleasure’ at all by our dealings with the world by means of our senses.
It is argued that pleasure and pain might themselves be enriched, deepened and broadened by more experience and that it is worth our while to help this process in a conscious manner. To this the answer would be that the better and more detailed realization of our utter ignorance, in the midst of the mockery of a civilization that is claimed to be based upon knowledge, would be a self contradiction that is not likely to appeal to the assorting instinct of our rational nature and is calculated to make our condition no better than it is. Civilized wickedness and filth are not preferable to any nuisance of the uncivilized state. Satan, who may be allowed to possess the perfection of worldly culture, is probably more miserable than the uncivilized Gond. It would be difficult for the unbiased reason of man to choose between materialistic savagery and materialistic civilization.
‘Ignorance is misery,’ says one of the wisest of proverbs. Increase of ignorance is not any decrease of misery. Ignorance is supposed to be the state of all empiric knowledge which is improperly assumed to be alone available to man. Our very nature is sometimes supposed to be incapable of real enlightenment. This axiom of pessimism is exploited for advising man to turn a deaf ear to the Teacher of the Absolute. It is even more disastrously utilized for condemning the devotees themselves.
It cannot be otherwise. The soul is in this case identified with the mind-cumbody. Abandonment of the mind, therefore, appears as equivalent to the abandonment of the soul, or to self immolation. The mind seems to be our all. Groping in perpetual ignorance appears as our inevitable function miscalled ‘Search for the Truth.’ Empiric enthusiasts imaginatively describe this process as the ‘eternal quest’. These metaphors and denunciations do not, however, help us in anyway; but, on the contrary, they only tend to obstruct the process of the real quest.
Gopal Chakravarti is a typical Brahmana of the pseudo Vedantic School of Sankara. He has no doubts regarding the goal of the Vedanta. According to him the attainment of the Knowledge (?) of the Brahman, Who possesses no distinctive function at all that is capable of being defined, is the goal. By the attainment of the knowledge of the real Nature of the Brahman, the individual soul is freed from all the miseries of his apparent existence which only seems to be limited and is, therefore, only supposed to be miserable. As there is only One Entity, viz., the Brahman, Who is ever (?) free from all defects and all merits, the goal can be no other than complete absorption (?) into the One. On the attainment of this desirable goal there is no difference between the devotee, devotion and the Object of devotion. The service (?) of the Brahman is thus only a temporary means to a final end, which means being different from the end and is, therefore, necessarily terminable with the attainment of the goal. It is the highest form, of religion to try to realize, by the appropriate methods, the knowledge of, and absorption into, the undifferentiated Brahman. When the individual soul becomes one with the Brahman the state of separate existence and necessity for any kind of distinguishable function terminate together. According to Gopal Chakravarti and his associates this knowledge of the Brahman is higher than service and the termination of both (?) knowledge and service is the highest goal. Gopal is quite sure that this is the only teaching of the Scriptures. It may be observed at this place that Sankara does not discard the principle of worship, but declares its tentative necessity which is terminable on self-realization which, according to him, is identical with complete absorption into the One.
Thakur Haridas distinguishes between devotion, work and knowledge. The soul in the bound state desires one of two alternative functions. If he is optimistic he wants greater scope for enjoyment. If he happens to be pessimistic he hankers for emancipation from the misery of mundane existence.
The latter, viz., the pessimist, sometimes thinks that real emancipation is impossible so long as the consciousness of one’s being different or separate from the One, persists. It is to this extreme school of atheistic Vedantists, advocating unification with the Brahman, that Gopal Chakravarti, like most cultured people of his day as well as of this, happened to belong by his empiric predisposition. According to this school fruitive work leads to empiric knowledge and the latter to the third position of inexpressible oneness with the Brahman. Devotion or service is classed under fruitive work, which is assigned a lower position than empiric knowledge. The process of advance to the goal of complete unification with the One, according to this school, is devotion (blind faith rendering possible utilitarian work of a low order) (Bhakti?) leading to work of a higher order (Karma), which, in its turn, leads up to empiric knowledge of the uselessness of all knowledge and all activity terminating in perfect absorption into the one (Brahm-laya).
Haridas is neither a pessimist nor an optimist. He is an absolutist. He is convinced that the theory of complete absorption into the One is logically unsound and opposed to the real teaching of the Scriptures. The alternatives of enjoyment and abstention from enjoyment exhaust indeed, the possibilities of function of the mind and body; but they have no application to the soul which is located beyond the reach of body and mind. The soul is substantially different from the mind and body. The soul is the substantive reality while the mind is only his perverted reflection in the mirror of limited existence. The mind is the material shadow so to say of the soul who is the spiritual substance. The mind is a material phenomenon galvanized into the appearance of selfconsciousness by the impulse communicated to it by the deluded soul. Mind is the shadow of the perverse soul mirrored in matter. This description is, and can be, but an imperfect and misleading analogy of the relationship that actually subsists between mind and soul. The shadow of the material substance is not categorically different from the substance itself, both of them being material phenomena. The shadow of the soul in this case is, however, categorically different from the soul, being a material phenomenon pure and simple. The soul in his spiritual or natural conditional is categorically different from material phenomenon. The soul is self-consciousness itself. There can be no such thing as ignorance in the soul. There can be no such thing as genuine selfconsciousness in the mind which is non-soul. The apparent self-consciousness of the mind is really a state of complete ignorance which is given its shape and colour by the qualities of matter, viz., grossness, limitation, perishability, changeableness, etc. These unwholesome traits are non-existent and impossible in the soul. The soul is capable of forgetting his real nature mistaking himself to be a material entity. The soul is not above one possible weakness, viz., willful rebellion against the Truth. It is a real blunder on the part of the soul to choose to be a rebel. But the soul is perfectly free to refuse to serve the Truth, i.e., Godhead. He thereby proves deliberately false to his own substantive nature, because it is the constituent function of the soul, in his natural state of perfect spiritual existence, to be the exclusive servant of the Truth. The soul who rebels against Godhead is punished by his exile to the phenomenal world and by incarceration in the double material case of mind and body. The point will be further elucidated later.
Fruitive work and empiric knowledge are functions of the mind and, therefore, purely material phenomena. By means of such work and knowledge the deluded soul cannot realize his natural function for the plain reason that they are not his proper function at all. By means of work and knowledge the Soul only moves in a vicious circle of material existence which is seemingly conscious but really one of absolute ignorance. This is the explanation why by means of the undifferentiated knowledge of the Brahman freedom from the fetters of work and knowledge of this anomalous existence can be attained by crores of years of endeavour. This is what Gopal says. The delay is, however, not due to the complexity of the process, as he supposes it to be. So long as a person continues to suppose that an impersonal all-pervasive Entity is the goal of knowledge one is not yet freed from the real ignorance of his spiritual function. This must be so because Truth is not impersonal.
Neither is Truth a person in the sense in which the mentalists, including Sankara, apparently want us to understand the term. Spiritual personality is categorically different from the distorted empiric notion of the same. Until the nature of the personality of the Truth is properly grasped one continues in the deluded state which is also the state of limitation (bondage). Therefore Gopal Chakravarti is right, although he is unaware of it, in holding that the chance of emancipation of a person who has attained to the notion of Godhead as an impersonal and inactive, although all pervasive and transcendental, Entity, is very slight. Gopal does not understand that his ideal person is also necessarily no less deluded than himself if he supposes his condition to be the goal.
The interpretation of the text relied upon by Gopal Chakravarti, said Thakur Haridas, is that of a person who does not understand the Nature of the Name by reason of his having no access to Him. The deluded person is no longer consciously contradicting himself and is not, therefore, insincere in the sense of being double tongued. He is certainly to be pitied. Neither can his conduct be regarded as sincere inasmuch as it is opposed to his real nature of which he only happens to be ignorant by his own conscious perversity. The empiric casuist who affects to believe in the impersonal nature of the Truth is only pushing his conscious perversity of the choice of untruth to its logical conclusion. If the deliberate error is not ignored his conduct cannot be regarded as consistent being altogether untrue.
Gopal Chakravarti’s source of error lay deeper than the plane on which he stood and was, therefore, naturally incomprehensible to him in his condition of cultured perversity. The Vaishnavas, who alone understand the real cause of the worldly ailment, alone possess the true spirit of toleration. Thakur Haridas showed his toleration of the rank atheism of deluded Gopal Chakravarti by abstaining from disturbing him further. This toleration really means the withdrawal of his causeless apparently aggressive mercy from a deluded soul whose opposition to Godhead is likely to be increased by the process. It is the greatest possible misfortune that can befall a conditioned soul to miss the special mercy of the Vaishnava by his successful opposition to the Truth. The apparent intolerance of a Vaishnava is as helpful to a person as his tolerance of evil. The Vaishnava never co-operates with the offending soul in his sinful activities. He does not agree to be false to himself and his eternal Master to please the confirmed apostate. Such sympathetic toleration of evil is a grave offense against the Truth notwithstanding the significant fact that it alone is relished by the pantheistic school of the pseudo-Vedantists.
The point reached marks almost the limit of rational discussion towards the spiritual issue, that is open to the empiricist. He cannot proceed further without discarding the method of empiricism by giving up completely the process of his unaided effort. It was not possible for Gopal Chakravarti to retrace his steps by any other. method. That he was not at all prepared for this is proved by his offensive conduct towards Thakur Haridas who had, therefore, no other alternative but to leave him to the mercies of Maya. But the actual goodwill of Haridas towards the offender bore its fruit in the swift punishment, that could be intelligible to the sufferer himself, that smote him in the form of leprosy. Gopal was, thereby, afforded an excellent opportunity of revising his impersonal doctrine. But he was of course free to avail of it or not.
The Godless attitude is an attitude of absolute confidence in one’s own judgment and power. The atheist is not at all disposed to submit to another in any circumstances. He has to be compelled to submit to non-God because he can consistently submit only to compelling force. Such submission alone is appreciated in the state of sin and ignorance which is a radically false position and necessarily entails constant irrational conduct on a really rational being unnaturally disposed to accept the same through the no less unnatural fear of punishment.
The Holy Name of Godhead is not a thing of this world. The Name of Godhead is identical with Godhead Himself. The Godhead appears in this world in the Form of the Name on the lips of His pure devotees. He appears as the transcendental Sound on the spiritual lips of the soul in the state of grace.
The Name of Godhead appearing on the lips of a pure devotee as the Transcendental Sound, is perceptible as such only to the spiritual ear. These statements are likely to appear absurd and puerile to the dogmatic impersonalist. Can the soul, he will persist to ask, have lips and ears? Can the soul have senses? But can the empiricist know, even if he has?
The transcendentalists maintain that the soul has an infinity of senses of which the physical senses, are a perverted reflection. There cannot even be the shadow of existence of the physical senses if there were no substantive spiritual senses. But there are also the spiritual senses themselves as distinct from but not unrelated to their corresponding shadowy reflections in this phenomenal world. This is involved in the very definition of the Absolute. The spiritual sense is categorically different from the physical sense. The spiritual senses are perfect and self-conscious, there being no interva1 or barrier of time or space between the sense and its possessor. The spiritual body is indivisible and perfectly self-conscious in every part and is identical with the owner of the body. All this is incomprehensible to us although it is perfectly consistency with the fundamental principles of indivisible substantive existence, that are also acceptable to the empiricist. The empiricist, although he may sometimes under pressure of his own logic, seem to agree with the conclusions of transcendentalism, finds it impossible to adopt them in practice. The absolute conduct is not possible on the mundane plane to which he finds himself strictly confined by his own postulates backed by the real Deluding Potency.
If one is merely disposed to regard any sound as transcendental, such wish alone will not make the sound of his choice to become really transcendental. Similarly if a person is disposed to regard a transcendental Sound as an occurrence of the mundane atmosphere such attitude will not also affect the subjective nature of the transcendental Sound. There is real difference between the transcendental Sound and mundane sound. The transcendental Sound is identical with the object denoted by the sound. The mundane sound is separated from the object denoted by it by the intervals of time and space. To hear the mundane sound of the name of a Lion is not the same thing as to see the beast. On the spiritual plane the very word ‘Lion’ is identical with the animal. The animal is fully realizable by and in the hearing of his name. Whereas the real nature of the mundane animal, denoted by the mundane sound, ever remains a thing unknown.
The Name of Krishna is identical with Godhead. But the Name of Krishna does not manifest Himself on mundane lips nor to the mundane ear. The Name Krishna appears in His Form of the Transcendental Sound on the spiritual lips of His devotees and is heard by the spiritual ear of the submissive soul by the Grace of Krishna. The Name Krishna is identical with the Possessor of the Name. The Name Krishna appears to the listening ear, as He is, only by degrees. As soon as the dormant soul catches the first faint reflection of His Light he is at once completely free from the bondage of ignorance and sin. It is the Name Who comes of His Own accord to our fettered soul. The bound jiva. has no access to the Presence of Krishna on his own initiative. Krishna’s Approach is heralded by the harbinger of Light whose first glimmerings on their appearance put an end to all misconception regarding the categorical difference between light and darkness.
Unless and until the soul becomes aware of the true nature of spiritual existence by being so enlightened by the Source of all consciousness, he is sure to mistake the mind for his real self and the mental function as the only knowledge. If at this stage he does not willfully shut his eyes but keeps them turned towards the growing Light he gradually and in due course obtains the sight of the concrete Source of all light. This is the mode of Appearance of the Holy Name. The sight of Krishna is alone capable of inspiring love for Krishna. This is the position of Thakur Haridas as explained by himself to the Pandits who were in assembly at the house of the Mazumdars.
Thakur Haridas mercifully explains that the different concrete forms of the socalled ‘liberation’ concocted by the mentalists as their unknowable summumbonum are the outcome of the desire for sensuous gratification. If one could live in the happy realms of Krishna described in the Scriptures, the empiricist supposes that such a person should be enabled to enjoy more good things than are available on the Earth if his condition is really worth having. The same desire for extended opportunities of sensuous enjoyment happens also to be the real motive behind the formulation of the other ‘forms’ of the empiricist’s ‘saved’ existence. The grossness of the ideal of liberation is fully unmasked when one is told that the salvationist’s ‘final’ form is to become the equal of Godhead by merging with the Object of his worship?
It is to this unnatural and profane position that the unchecked speculations of the mentalists are logically bound to lead in the long run. Thakur Haridas ascribes the grossness of the ideal to the attitude of the empiric thinker, viz. the insatiable desire for sensuous pleasure.
The desire to enjoy is categorically different from, and wholly incompatible with, the desire to serve, to love. If one feels a real desire to serve Krishna he would lose all taste for his own enjoyment. All impurity, unwholesomeness and misery are fortunately and mercifully ordained by the Lord as the inevitable consequence of the insatiable desire for selfish enjoyment. But the soul who turns away from immediate enjoyment by considerations of greater prospective enjoyment in the sequel, cannot also for that very reason realize the condition of loving devotion to the Feet of the Lord, however strongly impressed he may profess to be of the desirability of such a state. He is, no doubt, free to think that he really desires it; but at the same time he is wholly incapable of ever attaining to it by such desire. But, says Thakur Haridas, he may nevertheless attain to love for Krishna by the Chanting of the Holy Name, by the Grace of the Holy Name Himself. This is the special Dispensation for the Age which is so irremediably speculative; and there is no other way open to the Age of attaining to the loving service of Krishna.
Haridas refers to the texts of the Scriptures to prove the truth of his statements. This is the only proper use of the Shastras. The Shastras bear witness to the Truth of the realizations of all really pure souls.
There is one other fact which is worthy of our notice. The Pandits of the learned assembly, headed by Hiranya Mazumdar the master of the house, took the side of Thakur Haridas. They not only strongly censured the conduct of Gopal Chakravarti in the open assembly but Hiranya Mazumdar thought it his duty to renounce all further connection with a Brahmana who could be guilty of an act of discourtesy to the devotee of Godhead. Nevertheless the Pandits and Mazumdar himself felt themselves involved in the sin of Gopal Chakravarti by the unhappy circumstance of their having had to hear most reluctantly the blasphemous words uttered by Gopal in their presence. For this sin the only expiation, prescribed by the Shastras, was to seek in all humility the pardon of Thakur Haridas, not for the offender but for themselves. This is not mere courtesy but an unavoidable necessity if one really wants to serve the Truth. Any association, deliberate or accidental, with untruth tends to obscure our vision of the Truth, Who is, indeed, a very Jealous Master. Those who are disposed to serve the Truth with causeless, loving devotion, throw to the winds all considerations of ignorant propriety or ignorant justice and are never satisfied by serving the Truth by all their senses at all time and in all circumstances. By the grace of Thakur Haridas this instinct of loving devotion actually manifested itself in the conduct of those who had listened with faith to the Absolute Truth from his pure lips.
Sri Raghunath das Goswami was a child at this time. He used to visit the Thakur in his hut during his stay at Chandpur. The boy was the fortunate recipient of the mercy of Thakur Haridas. This is considered by Shree Krishnadas Kaviraj Goswami as the real cause of Raghunath Das’s subsequent unique devotion to the Feet of Sri Chaitanya. The mercy of a sadhu acts equally on all persons, irrespective of age, sex or condition, all of whom have an equal chance of being benefited by associating with a real sadhu. The interests of the soul are not capable of being adversely affected by any worldly conditions. The boy’s soul has no defect of immaturity any more than that of an old man the advantage of maturity. Such maturity or immaturity has no relevancy in one’s associating with a sadhu. The boy’s soul, eventually with the Soul of the old man, may or may not be disposed to listen to the words of a Sadhu for the genuine purpose of acting up to the same. It is as necessary for a child to associate with a sadhu acts for an adult; but in neither case one can be sure of obtaining the mercy of the sadhu. with whom he may choose-to associate. The sadhu is kind to one who is really inclined to serve Godhead. It is the function of a sadhu to foster one’s inclination for the service of the Lord by means of his conduct and words. The articulated sound is, however, the sadhu’s unambiguous weapon to fight all ungodliness. It should puzzle the muddled brain of the whole race of self-conceited empiricists to understand why and how the sadhu need have no other work except talking about almost anything to whom he likes. Any person, who is spoken to by a sadhu even for the tiny space of a second, has every chance of attaining the real object of life which is unattainable by infinite endeavour by any other method. Nay, it is our duty to listen to a real sadhu, if we are fortunate enough to meet him, in preference to all other duties which are not only of secondary importance but a positive obstruction on the path of the highest and only good.