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Sunday, March 22, 2015

Thank you! And next life’s Guru

Saying “Thank you” is not Vedic. There is no real word for it in Sanskrit. The word ‘dhanyavāda’ being used in modern India for ‘thank you’ is introduced to facilitate westerners only, but can’t be found used in śāstra. People who are related in love or friendship do not say ‘thank you’ to each other. It is showing a distant relationship only. Of course, we do express gratitude, as Uddhava Mahāśaya did in Śrīmad Bhāgavata (11.29.6) after Śrī Kṛṣṇa spoke the Uddhava-gīta to him –

naivopayanty apacitiṁ kavayas taveśa
brahmāyuṣāpi kṛtam ṛddha-mudaḥ smarantaḥ
yo ’ntar bahis tanu-bhṛtām aśubhaṁ vidhunvann
ācārya-caittya-vapuṣā sva-gatiṁ vyanakti

“O my Lord! Intelligent persons can not fully express their indebtedness to you, even if they were endowed with the lifetime of Brahmā, because on remembering what you have done for them, their joy increases even more: appearing externally as Guru and internally as Paramātma, you reveal the supreme destination to them.”

Bhakta – „Some say this verse and the song „Caksu dān dilo ye, janme janme prabhu se‘ means that guru-tattva appears in another form in the next life to a śiṣya who did not attain perfection yet.“

Advaitadas – „The words ‚ye‘ and ‚se‘ refer to an individual person, not that anyone else becomes the Guru in the next life. That happens to casual śiṣyas, not to loving śiṣyas. For loving śiṣyas Śrī Gurudeva will re-appear as exactly the same person. How can it be otherwise? Kṛṣṇa says in Bhagavad-gītā (8.6) – yaṁ yaṁ vāpi smaran bhāvan tyajantyante kalevaram. „Whatever bhāva you contemplate, when you leave your body....“ You meditated on a Guru with a certain form, features and characteristics your whole life and as a result you will get another Guru in the next life? Sadā tad-bhāva bhāvita. „Due to always contemplating that sentiment“, tam tam evaiti, „You will surely attain that‘. For a devotee who abandoned bhakti-mārga there will be no bhakti-guru next life, for a casual śiṣya it may be anyone, for a loving śiṣya Gurudeva will reappear in his selfsame form and for a siddha śiṣya Gurudeva appears as guru-rūpa sakhī only. Nikuñja yūnoḥ rati-keli-siddhyaiḥ yā yālibhir yuktir apekṣanīya.


Ashamed of never having seen anything yet? These are words of hope (āśā-vāṇī) -

asphūrtitaḥ kathāto'pi śrīmad-vṛndāvane vasa

“Even if one has no divine revelations, one should still engage in Kṛṣṇa-kathā, living in Śrī Vṛndāvana." (Vṛndāvana Mahimāmṛta 8.42)


Lamenting about one's tapasya

Bragging about one's tapasya

Both will dim Hari's satisfaction with them.


  1. Dāmodar Das: Monier Williams: स्वस्त्यक्षर (svastyakSara) - n. expressing thanks for anything.

    Advaita Das: yes, that may be there in dictionary, but nowhere in sastra.... svastyaksara is same as danyavada, it actually means ' words of blessing'

    Dāmodar Das: probably nowhere in sastra because sastras are written by kavis in format of slokas? while words such as dhanyavada and svastyaksara are just casual and would sound bad there?

    Advaita Das: no no, it would fit in linguistically. sanskrit is not steel framed. fact is that even now it's not a custom among indians to say thank you. not then, not now
    that's why i quoted uddhavaji's sloka, to show that vedic culture is not ungrateful

    Dāmodar Das: how they express gratitude then? i mean in casual life

    Advaita Das: its not done at all. madangopal baba hands out things to the kids and they just accept the gift and smile, bas

    damodar: AC Bhaktivedanta had a disciple Dhanyavāda dāsa brahmacārī

    S.B 10.60.57: dūtas tvayātma-labhane su-vivikta-mantraḥ
    prasthāpito mayi cirāyati śūnyam etat
    matvā jihāsa idaṁ aṅgam ananya-yogyaṁ
    tiṣṭheta tat tvayi vayaṁ pratinandayāmaḥ

    bbt translates: When you sent the messenger with your most confidential plan and yet I delayed going to you, you began to see the whole world as void and wanted to quit your body,
    which could never have been given to anyone but Me. May this greatness of yours remain with you always; I can do nothing to reciprocate except joyfully thank you for your devotion.

    pratinandana - [L=132437] n. greeting , salutation , friendly acceptance AV.
    [L=132438] thanksgiving MW.

    kusakrata translates - pratinandayAmaH-- respond by rejoicing

    "I can do nothing to reciprocate but simply rejoice."

    bhanu swami repeats bbt:
    "i can do nothing to reciprocate except joyfully thank you for your devotion".

    advaitadas - dhanyavada means word of blessing, so its no problem.
    not only pratinandana, also abhinandana is there, but that means 'congratulations'
    10.60.57 is like 11.29.6, a flowery way of saying thank you

  2. shukriya is also in there hindi, as well as abhari to express thanks and gratitude. I dont see the point of saying that people didnt not say thank you to each other in everyday social interaction. do we want that to happen again where people just take each other for granted?

  3. Anon, ' shukriya' is imported into Hindi from Arabic and is thus nowhere in sastra, nor do I ever hear it in India. About the casual ' thank-you' point we are in agreement.

  4. AdvaitaDasJi, i suppose hindi movies by urdu writers have something to do with it. I hear shukriya being used, as well as dhanyavaad as well as saying "mai aapka abhari hoo" meaning i am indebted to you. i suppose the exclaimation mark, the question mark is also perhaps not in sanskrit, along with other punctuation marks. I am sure AdvaitaDasJi you will confirm no such use of colon or semi-colon or others in the sanskrit writing of the gosvamis.
    a couple of articles come up in google:

  5. I acknowledged in the blog that Indian culture is not ungrateful, but a single ' thank you' is not the custom. Indeed, punctuation marks do not exist in Sanskrit, though kim is a question mark and aho is a mark of astonishment (!). They come in the form of words.

  6. Sorry anon, I found it better not to post your latest comment, as it is too political, though I personally agree with some of your points.

  7. Dear advaitadasji,
    I have some questions regarding Lord Shiva:
    1) Is Lord Shiva a tattva between Jiva and Ishwara? In such a case, is he to be considered swamsha or vibhinnamsha? Or is there any other category? Like wise are the avesha ,shaktiavesha,and even Lord Brahma considered to be swamsha due to being a certain type of incarnation of Krishna or are they to be considered vibhinnamsha due to being jivas(as we all are)?
    2) Coming back to Lord Shiva,can a Jiva occupy that position in some other mahakalpas?
    3)Sri Jiva has commented on Brahma Samhita verse(5.45) and has compared the gunaavatar Shiva to gold manifesting through touchstone(Vishnu),gold (Shiva)being quantitatively different from touchstone(Vishnu)... So my question is who is Shiva? Is he Vishnu himself, consorted with Maya? If that is so what is the meaning of "Vishnu never consorting with Maya directly".

    3) In other cases,whenever qualified jivas are not present, Vishnu himself accepts the role of Brahma or Indra... Jiva Goswami says that during those times Brahma and Indra attain equality with Vishnu... So in kalpas when Shiva is not a Jiva,why is it said that he is still subordinate to Vishnu or that he associates with Maya?

    4) Is Lord Sadashiva ,Vishnu himself and is a Vishnu-murti?

    Waiting eagerly for your answer...
    Sarva Sri Sri Radha Krishna arpanamastu...

  8. Shiva-tattwa is a very complicated one. In my humble opinion He is a different category, between jiva and isvara, though in glorifications of Vishnu He is often called a devata.

    Laghu bhagavatamrita 27

    kvacij jīva-viśeṣatvaṁ
    harasyoktam vidher iva
    tat tu śeṣavad evāstaṁ
    tad-aṁśatvena kīrtanāt

    kvacit-sometimes; jiva-visesatvam-as a specific jiva soul; harasya-of Siva; uktam-said;
    vidheḥ-of Brahma; iva-like; tat-that; tu-but; sesa-vat-as Ananta Sesa; eva-certainly; astam-is;
    tat-amsatvana-as a direct expansion of the Personality of Godhead; kirtanat-from the glorification.

    The scriptures explain that, as Brahmā is, so Śiva is sometimes a jīva soul and sometimes
    an aṁśa-avatāra like Lord Śeṣa.

    Laghu bhagavatamrita 31

    sadāśivākhya tan-mūrtis
    aṅga-bhūta svayam-prabhoḥ
    vāyavyādiṣu saiveyaṁ
    śiva-loke pradarśitā

    sadasiva-akhya-named Sadasiva; tat-of him; murtiḥ-from; tamaḥ-of the mode of ignorance;
    gandha-of the slightest touch; vivarjita-free; sarva-karana-bhuta-the original cause of all
    causes; asau-he; anga-bhuta- manifested; svayam-prabhoḥ-from the Supreme Personality of
    Godhead; vayava- in the Vayu Purana; adisu-and other Vedic literatures; sa-that form; evacertainly; iyam-that; siva-loke-on the Sivaloka planet in the spiritual world; pradarsita-seen.

    Śiva's form named Sadāśiva, who is a direct expansion of the Personality of Godhead, is
    the cause of all causes, is free from the slightest scent of the mode of ignorance, and resides
    in Śivaloka, is described in the Vāyu Purāṇa and other scriptures.

    Laghu bhagavatamrita 55 and 56

    atra svāṁśa harer eva
    kalā-śabdena kīrtitaḥ
    ato vidhi-harādīnāṁ
    nikhilānāṁ su-parvanām
    śrī-viṣṇoḥ svāṁśa-vargebhyo

    atra-here; svamsaḥ-svamsa-vataras; hareḥ-of Lord Hari; eva-certainly; kala-sabdena-by the
    word "kala"; kirtitaḥ-described; ataḥ-therefore; vidhi-of Brahma; hara-Siva; adinam-and the
    other demigods; nikhilanam-all; su-parvanam-of the demigods; sri-visnoḥ-of Lord Visnu;
    svamsa-vargebhyaḥ-than the incarnations; nyunata-inferior position; abhiprakasita-manifest.

    The svāṁśa-avatāras here are called kalās. Brahmā, Śiva, and all other demigods are
    inferior to the svāṁśa-avatāras of Lord Viṣṇu.

    Though our acaryas tend to place Lord Shiva under Lord Krishna because they want us to worship only Krishna, Brihad Bhagavatamrita [1.2.96] does acknowledge –

    sri mahadeva-lokas tu saptavaranato bahih

    Now let me tell you the opinion of the Vayu Purana: The abode of Sri Mahadeva lies outside the seven coverings of the universe.

    As well as Laghu Bhagavatamrita 298 – “Lord Siva, who is known as Sadasiva and Sambhu, is manifest in the northeast part of Vaikunthaloka.

  9. Dear advaitadasji,
    I wanted to know that what is the ten syllable mantra given to Lord Chaitanya and who is capable of receiving it?

  10. It is not permitted to spell out such mantras. It is the gopal-mantra for brahmins, but it is not given anymore, not even to brahmins in orthodox lines like my own.

  11. Why is it so? I just got to know from one article dat the mantra is Gopal mantra without the first two it true?

  12. I thought the last word was taken out, also 8 syllables. Why is what so?

  13. Dear sir ,
    I meant that why is it so that the 10 syllabled mantra is not given to Brahmins these days?
    I got to know from a site that the mantra is same as Gopal mantra without the words "krishnaya" and "govindaya"... Is it true? Did the acharyas give any information in this regard?

  14. Perhaps a Google-search could help you. In our family brahmins receive 18-syllable gopal mantra only. Perhaps the 10-syllable mantra does not bestow prema.

  15. Advaita Dasji,
    Namaskaar. It indeed was great speaking with you yesterday in the flight. I look forward to continue to read your blog. :-)