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Thursday, June 01, 2006

Special service to the Guru

Yesterday, on vilasa kunja (public section!), Krishna Das wrote:

“Otherwise why would the acharyas say that simply service to guru is sufficient, one does not have to do anything else, that one can even give up one's bhajan? (e.g. Visvanath Cakravarti writes it somewhere in his commentary on Bhagavatam, but I cannot remember where exactly.)”

Here are some references to such exclusive Guru seva:

In Bhakti Sandarbha (237) Śrīmat Jīva Gosvāmīpāda has written :

tatra yadyapi śaraṇāpattyaiva sarvaṁ siddhyati. śaraṇaṁ taṁ prapannā ye dhyāna yoga vivarjitāh. te vai mṛtyum atikramya yānti tad vaiṣṇavaṁ padam. iti gāruḍāt tathāpi vaiśiṣṭya lipsuḥ śaktaś cet tataḥ bhagavac chāstropadeṣṭṛṇāṁ bhagavan mantropadeṣṭṛṇāṁ vā śrī guru-caraṇānāṁ nityam eva viśeṣataḥ sevāṁ kuryāt. tat prasādo hi sva sva nānā pratikāra dustyājyānartha hānau parama bhāgavat prasāda siddhau ca mūlam.


"Although the sādhaka achieves all perfection by surrendering to the Lord's lotus feet, still if a person wants to attain special perfection, then he must always specially serve the Guru who instructs him in the scriptures as well as the Guru who initiates into the Lord's mantras. By his grace all one's personal anarthas, that are otherwise hard to give up through other means, are conquered. It is the greatest cause of receiving the grace of the Lord."

In Padma Purāṇa, in the Śrī Devahuti-stava, it is seen —

bhaktir yathā harau me'sti tad variṣṭhā gurau yadi;
mamāsti tena satyena sandarśayatu me hariḥ

"If I have more devotion for the Guru than for Śrī Hari Himself, then through this truth Lord Hari will surely reveal Himself to me."

Śrī Viśvanātha Cakravartīpāda’s comments on Śrīmad Bhāgavata 4.28.34 :

sutāt hitveti pativratā patyur iva guroḥ sevāyāṁ pravṛttaḥ śiṣyaḥ śravaṇa kīrtanādīnyapi bhogān tad utthāna premānandān api gṛhān tad ucita vivikta sthalam api naivāpekṣate. śrī guru sevayaiva sukhena sarva sādhya siddhyartham ityupadeśa vyañjitaḥ..........guru sevāyā eva vedena sarvādhikasyoktatvā

“A disciple deeply absorbed in the service of the Guru does not even depend on hearing and chanting, knowing that by guru-sevā he can easily attain complete perfection in devotion. Just as a devoted wife does not want any sense enjoyment and home comfort, a disciple completely absorbed in guru-sevā does not seek even premānanda arising out of hearing and chanting nor even seek secluded places suitable to his bhajana. The Vedas say that service to the Guru is the greatest.”

Hope this helps!

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