We have been discussing for the last few days about the process of acquiring knowledge. An important thing is acaryopasanam. If you want to make progress you have to approach an acarya. Just like if you want to be educated you have to go to school. Similarly, if you want to make advancement in knowledge you have to approach an acarya. Knowledge does not mean material knowledge. Actual knowledge means to advance in spiritual understanding. In Bhagavad-gita the beginning of knowledge was given by Krishna: "I am not this body." Dehino `smin yatha dehe kaumararm yauvanam jara. - "I am encaged in this body. I am not this body." Unfortunately, at the present moment this bodily concept is accepted knowledge. "I am Indian." "I am American." "I am brahmana." "I am ksatriya." Actually, knowledge begins when one understands, "I am not American." "I am not Indian." "I am not brahmana." "I am not ksatriya." Then what you are? Chaitanya Mahaprabhu says gopi-bhartuti pada-kamalayor dasa-dasanudasah. - "I am the servant of the servant of the servant of Krishna, the maintainer of the gopis." Gopi-bhartu. That is my real identification, not this body. To understand this knowledge one has to approach an acarya. Acarya means, one who knows the purpose of the Vedic literature, Sastra. Acinoti yah Sastram. He practices it in his life and he teaches it to his disciple. He is called acarya. So before engaging yourself in devotional service to the Lord you must first of all worship the acarya, acaryopasanam.
One cannot become a devotee by one's personal endeavor. Just like some rascals’ say, "What is the use of accepting a guru?" Of course, they have got very bad experience. Who is acarya? Acarya means one who has received Vedic knowledge through the parampara system. Evam parampara-praptam imam rajarsayo viduh. He is acarya. An acarya cannot be manufactured or self-made. He must come in disciplic succession. One who is under the shelter of an acarya, he knows things. Krishna recommends that if you actually want to have real knowledge then you must worship the acarya, acaryopasanam. This is the Vedic system. Tad vijnanartham sa gurum evabhigacchet. It is not that, "If I like I can go to a guru, and if I don't like I can study books at home and learn everything." No, that is not possible. It is practical. Just like if you purchase a medical book, study at home, and then begin to practice, you will be called a quack. The government will not recognize you. You will not get the practitioner's registration. Unless you have passed through the medical college and had your medical examination you will not be accepted, even if you say, "I have read all the books." Similarly, someone may say, "I have read Bhagavad-gita a hundred times." But if you ask him what is Krishna he cannot say because he has not approached the acarya. This is the difficulty. He might have read Bhagavad-gita a thousand times but he will not understand a single word because he has not approached.
Therefore Vedic literature says, tad vijnanartham sa gurum evabhigacchet. Abhigacchet. This word is used when the sense is "you must". It is the vidhilin form of the verb. "You must. There is no excuse. You cannot learn."
Tasmad gurum prapadyeta jijnasuh sreya uttamam. "ut" means udgatam, transcending. "Tamara" means this material world. This material world is tama, darkness. If you are interested in uttamam, the subject matter that is transcendental to this material world, the spiritual world, then, Tasmad gururm prapadyeta, you must surrender to a guru. Jijnasuh sreya uttamam, you must inquire. Not ordinary inquiry, ordinary jijnasuh. It is not like going to the market, "What is the rate of this share? What is the rate of rice? What is the rate of dahl? Not that kind of jijnasuh. Brahma jijnasuh. Athato brahma-jijnasa. This human life is meant for inquiring about Brahman, spirit, not this rice, dal, share market.
Book's Contents and Sample Pages
Item Code: NAX866 Author: Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja Cover: PAPERBACK Edition: 2020 Publisher: Gopal Jiu Publication Bhubaneswar, India Language: English Size: 8.50 X 5.50 inch Pages: 185 Other Details: Weight of the Book: 0.25 Kg