Adventures in Humility

News, Views, and Chews on spiritual issues.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Need to Read

When I first met Madhava all those years ago, he dazzled me with his abundant knowledge of shastra. Wow, how he answered all of my questions with scripturally-correct answers, and even quoted the relevant passages to back up his point. It was obvious to me that he was and is a very learned guy. I felt a twinge of envy, not in a bad way of course, but a healthy admiration sort of envy. Here was a guy who knew EVERYTHING!

At the same time I realised that all that was needed to come to such a stage was some serious learning and reading of our philosophy and theoogy. Madhava is not the only one who has done this. Others like Jagat and Advaita have done this too, Advaita knows practically all of Bhagavatam by heart!

I note with a feeling of of sadness how devotees these days seem to be more pre-occupied with issues of controversy and excessive contemplation regarding the application of philosophy to reality. Either they talk of IGM this-and that or rail against raganuga-bhakti, or discuss endlessly about giving up sexual desires and so on. Nobody knows the meaning of 'Nimai' or why it was chosen for Mahaprabhu as a second name. No one finds it interesting to talk of Srimati's ontological position in Gaudiya Vaishnavism. Nobody is fussed to "intellectually" understand whether Srimati has blue or black eyes, and so on..

It's no one's fault, really. Ignorance has no explanation as I have often found to be the case. In this way I'd humbly suggest that people should make the effort to undertake a deep study of our philosophy of Gaudiya Vaishnavism. Learn all the little details. We must know, and realise! Our knowledge should not have any blank spaces or gaps. If we are expected to get all of the details right for our siddha-deha-dhyana, then why can we not get details right for discussions?

I make a humble effort to learn this by my current reading of CB. For all those devotees who look at me quizzically every Sunday whenever I ask a question, I would humbly urge them to do the same. A deep study of shastric literature. 'Tis an education in itself!


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