Follow by Email

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Truth is offensive? Bhakti is Cancala, and Modakas


Bhakta: “Sometimes you spreak strongly about other Vaiṣṇavas. Are you not supposed to refrain from finding faults with Vaiṣṇavas?”

Advaitadās: “Not finding fault with Vaiṣṇavas is ridiculous and dangerous. If you know a Vaiṣṇava is a thief would you let a rich devotee rent a place from him? If a Vaiṣṇava is a debauch would you let a pretty single woman rent a place from him? If a Guru abuses young female disciples or sucks all the money out his followers, and even tells you all kinds of immoral bogus teachings as well, is it an offence to warn people against him? I think it is a much greater aparādha to a Vaiṣṇava to have him or her duped and exploited by another Vaiṣṇava, who appears superior or sincere but is actually rotten within. Sometimes the text nindāṁ doṣa kīrtanam is quoted, from Jīva Goswāmī, to say that one should not criticize a Vaiṣṇava, even if he is wrong, but that text is just a gloss. It does not mean you should not criticise any Vaiṣṇava. So many disasters have taken place because of such a foolish mentality. A Guru should be madhyama bhāgavata - īśvare tad adhīneṣu bāliśeṣu dviṣatsu ca prema maitri kṛpopekṣā make distinction between the Lord, the devotee, the ignorant and the envious.

Bhakta - "But my Guruji never criticises everyone."

Advaitadas - "You can take dīkṣā from an uttam bhāgavat, no problem, but you cannot imitate such a great saint if you are not yourself free from material desires. So after taking dīkṣā from an uttam bhāgavat go and take śikṣā from a madhyam bhāgavat who will give you proper instructions how to behave in the practical world. Having said all this, this does not mean that one should fritter away one’s short and precious human life gossiping about or making politics against Vaiṣṇavas all day and night for no good reason, or out of sheer malice or envy. That means you have no ruci for bhajan and that is likely to get worse as a result of such genuine Vaiṣṇava aparādha. If an innocent person is about to get duped by a crooked Vaiṣṇava or Guru, though, one should certainly warn such a person with critical words about that Vaiṣṇava.”


Bhakta - “Do you have a clue why he (some devotee) gave up? Something serious must have happened."

Advaita Das - "Not necessarily. Bhakti devi comes and goes as she pleases. We cannot explain why people join and also not why they leave. Bhakti is independent, ahaituki  (SB 1.2.6).”

Bhakta- “But it was a traditional Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava.”

Advaitadas – “Whatever - traditional or IGM, in connection with Bhakti, such are mere adjectives. Even if the Guru demands little or no sādhanā from the pupil, Bhakti may still go. Bhakti comes and goes as she pleases.”

Bhakta- “I know, but there is always a story, so something happened…”

Advaita Das: “Well if you analyse it further, there are two things -

1. nāyam ātma bala hīnena labhya - People are weak and they get burned out in the long run. They cannot resist māyā anymore due to weak Bhakti.”
2. aparādha. Some devotees are too smart, too clean etc. so they get proud and condescending. As a result of this arrogant attitude they displease Bhakti-devī and leave the path.


The word modaka in Rādhā Rasa Sudhānidhi 243 means sweetballs, not just any square sweet. This change has been processed in the blueprint of my Rādhārasa Sudhānidhi translation. In modern parlance modaka also means fried things like samosas, but back when Rādhā Rasa Sudhānidhi was composed it was probably just sweetballs like perā, gulab jamon and laḍḍu.


  1. By first saying a Guru should be madhyama bhagavat and later saying it is OK to take diksa from an uttam bhagavat, I do not mean to contradict myself. It is best to take diksa from a madhyam bhagavat, But if he IS an uttam bhagavat, be sure to get your siksa from a madhyam bhagavat.

  2. "Regarding Vaishnavas leaving, you can never know what's in their heart. So many people have left, but they have been touched by bhakti and prema. The Lord will continue to guide them. "Even if one runs along with eyes closed, one will never slip or fall from this path." SB 11.2.35"

  3. Anonymous

    I do not think Advaita das is referring to those devotees who formally left an institution or a community of devotees but only those who left the path of Bhagavata dharma or in other words, whose way of life are in opposition to the dharma.

    Otherwise even I myself, can be considered someone who left GVism because I do not belong to any community nor do I belong to any sanga or any association.

    Sure, those that externally left the association of devotees but still take to the path of Bhagavat dharma,SB 11.2.35 " will not slip or fall down while running on the highways of samsara, even if his two eyes are blindfolded. (ie. even if he is without the knowledge derived from the two types of scripture, sruti and smirti)", if and only if, SB 11.2.36 ".... whatever actions he/she does with his/her body, word and mind, he/she dedicates them to Narayan (in respect of their fruits and agency). This is the essence of Bhagavat Dharma."

    Having said that, it is going to be very difficult to not be tempted to divert from the path if you do not deal with things or people that will remind you of the Lord. You, therefore, have to be very strong in your walk on the path and be onepointedly focused on the Lord.