Friday, December 7, 2018

What is Full Time / Part Time / or Congregation Devotee?

AKD: What is the meaning of a full time devotee? Anyone who is even casually reading Srila Prabhupada books will not speak like this -- "being congregation is better than full time..? Have you ever lived a full time devotee's life? Ever experienced?"

In which scripture you'll not find these words -- "Full time", "Part-Time" or "Congregational devotee." These are foolish labels. There is nothing like a "full time" or "part time" in the dictionary of a devotee. Full time devotee doesn't mean to live inside a temple. This is the meaning of a full time devotee:-

iha yasya harer dasye karmana manasa gira nikhilasv apy avasthasu jivan-muktah sa ucyate

“A person acting in the service of Krishna with his body, mind, and words is a liberated person even in the material world, although he may be engaged in many so-called material activities.” (Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu 1.2.187)

"Though engaged in all kinds of activities, My devotee, under My protection, reaches the eternal and imperishable abode by My grace. In all activities just depend upon Me and work always under My protection. In such devotional service, be fully conscious of Me. " (BG 18.56-57)

"The material position of a devotee doesn’t matter because devotional service is not dependent on material considerations. In his earlier life, Srila Rupa Goswami was a government officer and a grihastha. He was not even a brahmachari or sannyasi. He associated with mlecchas and yavanas, but because he was always eager to serve, he was a qualified recipient for the Lord’s mercy. A sincere devotee can therefore be empowered by the Lord regardless of his situation.” (Sri Caitanya-Caritamrta, Madhya-lila 19.135, purport)

“Because the real purpose of working is to satisfy Krsna. He is the center. He is the center of all activities. Sva-karmana tam abhyarcya samsiddhim labhate param. Simply by satisfying the central point, Krsna, then you get samsiddhi. It doesn't matter whether you are a sudra or a brahmana or engineer or lawyer. The real point is how to satisfy Krsna. But that education is lacking. So our Krsna consciousness movement is teaching how to serve Krsna from any position. It doesn't matter. Whether you are a brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra, lawyer, engineer, or film actor or anything, it doesn't matter, but whether you are trying to satisfy Krsna. That is the point.” (74/04/06 Bombay, Bhagavad-gita 4.17)

So brother, you have not properly understood the message of Lord Krishna in the Bhagavad-Gita and sastra. Please read Bhagavad-Gita sincerely and hear more lectures of Srila Prabhupada on Bhagavad Gita to understand what is the real meaning of a full-time devotee. It requires more spiritual strength, knowledge, determination, and sacrifice to sincerely work in Krishna consciousness while living outside the temples.
"I was questioned by some gentleman sometimes in 1940. He charged that the Vaiṣṇava, "This Vaiṣṇava means a lazy fellow." He said like that. (laughs) So I said, "You have never seen a Vaiṣṇava." I told him, "You have never seen a Vaiṣṇava." "No, I have seen these Vaiṣṇavas. They do not do anything and taking mālā and pretending to be very highly elevated and sleep and snore." That's... You have seen... "But you have not seen. You might have seen these pseudo-Vaiṣṇavas, but real Vaiṣṇava you have not seen." 

"What is that real Vaiṣṇava?" And I said that in India there were two big wars. One war was the Rāma-Rāvaṇa, and another war Kurukṣetra. So in these two wars, the hero is Vaiṣṇava. One is Hanumān and another is Arjuna. Have you seen them? Have you heard about them? Are they lazy fellows? Hanumān is Vaiṣṇava. He could raise one mountain and jump over the sea and set fire in the very beautiful state of Rāvaṇa. This is Vaiṣṇava. This is Vaiṣṇava." (Srila Prabhupada, October 9, 1976, Aligarh)

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