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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Pratiṣṭhā in the Smṛti-śāstra

Beautiful verses exist in the Gosvāmīs' books, like Haribhakti Vilāsa and Manaḥ Śikṣā, warning against and condemning pratiṣṭhā, or seeking glorification of oneself. However, in the more ancient śāstras there are some nice verses too. For instance, in the Bhāgavata (11.11.39 - yes, everything is in the Bhāgavata!) Śrī Kṛṣṇa says to Uddhava: kṛtasyāparikīrtanam "One should not glorify one's own devotional services."

In a footnote of the Gita Press Edition, C.L. Goswami quotes the Smṛti: dharmaḥ kṣarati kīrtanāt "One's virtue (dharma) is depleted by (self-) glorification."

Though pure bhakti is not regular virtue or dharma, the same warning undoubtedly goes for the path of pure bhakti - one deprives oneself of the result (prema) of bhakti by proclaiming one's own glory.

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