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I have always heard devotees saying that Srila Prabhupada had mentioned something about the divinity of our beloved Guru Maharaja as an eternal associate of Lord Chaitanya. I had searched through the vedabase and other sources but could not find any quote to this effect. But once I chanced upon one of the transcribed lectures that he gave in Chowpatty during 2010 Damodar Month inauguration program. I got what I was looking for (at least for me). This document dwells a little deeper on the evidence and the consequent inferences for us. The new thing in this lecture is GM not only acknowledged the purported comment but he himself quoted another similar anecdote of Srila Prabhupada which again points to the same fact re-confirming his divinity. Please feel free to distribute to other God brothers and aspiring GB if it helps in enhancing their faith in our beloved GM.
It is our great privilege that we have amongst us Jayapataka Maharaj ki jai… He is one of the senior most disciples of HDG AC Bhaktivendanta Swami Srila Prabhupad. With your permission, Maharaj, I would like to say something about when you first came to India in 1970. Jayapataka maharaj must have been at time in his early 20s and Prabhupad brought several of his disciples to Bombay. They came for lunch at my father’s house and Maharaj was of course one of them. Prabhupad told my father, who was a Member of Parliament( Lok Sabha) that this young gentleman whom you see in this chair now, at that time he was Jayapataka prabhu. So he wanted to become an Indian citizen from an American citizen. So my father said this is very strange. So many Indians want to become American citizens and why does an American want to become an Indian citizen and he wanted my father to sponsor him to become an Indian citizen. At this stage Prabhupad made a phenomenal statement which I still remember as I was a witness to it as I was standing there.And he said that this young man at that time Jayapataka prabhu is an eternal associate of Lord Caitanya! Hari bol! Hari bol! He will always be in India, he will preach in India, he will have thousands and thousands of disciples who will be Indians. They will be from Bengal, he will preach in Bengali language.
Now please note at that time I could see total surprise on Maharaj’s face and it must have come as a shock to him but anyway I was right there as a witness. So I can say I am now 70 years old and that time I was 30 years old. 40 years ago ki baath hai yeh (this is 40 years old event). So then by Krishna’s mercy, Maharaj became an Indian citizen and the first thing he did was to write a letter to my father- a thanks letter to my father, which I have in original, signed by him with his pen in his handwriting and thanking my father for sponsoring him to become an Indian citizen. Maharaj, we welcome you with our deepest hearts and gratitude for coming to this temple. You have undergone so many difficulties, indescribable how a human being can bear it but you have been able to for one purpose only- we know this and that is to fulfill Prabhupad’s desire to preach!! And you started preaching straight away! So once more , thank you for coming to Sri Sri Radha Gopinath temple and with these few words I would like Maharaj to give us his class. Thank you very much Maharaj!
Jayapataka Swami Maharaj: Guru Maharaj's words
I want to thank Srinathji. As in 1970 on Radhashtami I took sanyas. At that time I was in Calcutta. It was a few years later Prabhupad said that I should stay in India. He asked me how I liked India? I said I liked it. I was feeling guilty. Because I thought that carrying out the orders of the guru would be something you don’t liked like it should be hard but I liked all the Indians and to be in the holy dham so I was feeling guilty. Prabhupad said no, it is you are lucky, fortunate if you like what guru orders you. Whether you like it or not you have to do it. Just because you like it does not mean you should not do it. You should do it whether you like it or not. So I was actually refused citizenship from Bengal. So I had to shift my residence over to Bombay and then here Srinathji’s father who at time was a Rajya Sabha member and there was what you called the united front or something? No but when I got the actual citizenship there was Atal Behari Vajpayee, he was the foreign minister there was a coalition. So at that time I was sponsored by Mr. Desai and had some ministers and also 13 members of parliament who also cosigned. So but for his father I do not think I would have got the citizenship...
So I am deeply grateful to Srinathji’s father and I have no comment on Prabhupad’s remark. Once I told him – he said you were born in India before and I said , oh I am very sinful how can I be born. He became very angry and said “Don’t doubt the words of the guru! “ So since then I have no comment.....
So long that I am having this body I am trying to carry out the orders that Prabhupad gave me. So I would like to offer my prayers to Prabhupad – Om ajnana timirandhasya ….
How to understand him?
Some comments from senior God brothers relevant.
1. Guru Maharajah has taken over the mood of Lord Nityananda. And hence his attention goes to weakest of the weakest souls. He is looking to somehow deliver the mercy of Lord Caitanya to these unfortunate souls who are otherwise not much attended to by others.
2. Guru Maharaja classes are directed to the most newest and weakest devotees in the audience so he doesn't speak on highly esoteric or complicated topics of devotional service. And he encourages devotees to hear from his other God brothers. But still there are so many valuable instructions loaded with practical ingenuity in practicing devotional service. Many devotees tend to compare him and his lectures with lectures by other Gurus and tend to under estimate his transcendental position.
3. He is the one who clearly establishes the Srila Prabhupada is universal siksha Guru and Acharya and he himself is a guru because he is trying to follow the instructions of his divine grace. He minimizes his position to educate the devotees of what is Guru tattva and how one should consider himself absolutely unqualified and any good qualities are due to his spiritual master.
Appeal to God Brothers?
We have to understand as disciples of an eternal associate of Lord Chaitanya. We can't explain how fortunate we are to be connected to a pure devotee in discipleship. It is indeed a great privilege. And with this privilege comes responsibility to conduct ourselves appropriately befitting a disciple. We have to train ourselves and raise our quality of sadhana, sadachar, philosophical understanding and Seva as disciples become the ambassadors of the Guru. We have to understand the mood and mission of GM and act under the guidance of senior God brothers. We seem to hear from many new God brothers and God Sisters that they don't know much about GM and nobody has explained much. And they also tend to be swayed by other Guru's disciples propaganda and charisma and develop a sort of inferiority complex about our own identity. This is only because we don't have proper understanding of tattva of our Gurudeva as being an eternal assosciate of Lord Chaitanya. It is difficult to understand the activities are pure devotees.
We should keep in mind Srila Prabhupada has not attributed such comments to any other disciple certainly not as eternal associate. So take pride about your identity as a disciple of His Divine Grace and be sure we are in the most safest position to go back home back to Godhead. All we need to do is sincerely follow the vani of our GM. In Sri Sampradaya they have the concept of prappatti or saranagati which is the most esoteric principle in their line even better than bhakti. If someone does Saranagati (full surrender) and gets connected to an acharya (Read Ramanujacharya) through the disciplic succession then we don't have to worry about our own liberation. It becomes the responsibility of the Lord to look into it. The very fact that you have an acharya sambandha (relationship) to pure devotee qualifies you to liberation. Of course the relationship is vani (through instructions) not mere diksha. So in that sense we have an unique privilege of having acharya sambandha through our Guru Maharaja H.H. Jayapataka Swami. Just remain connected to him and we will be back home.
Also we have to observe and understand GM's mood very carefully. He doesn't invent new techniques or strategy in Krishna consciousness or employs modern management techniques to manage disciples or boost his image. He is simply interested in serving his Guru come what may. And he is least bothered about how presentable he is to general public. He has completely emulated Srila Prabhupada's teaching. All his teachings and instructions are within the teachings of Srila Prabhupada or personally authorized by Srila Prabhupada. No addition, deletion or invention. He has not changed a bit since from the times of Srila Prabhupada. When somone asks him a question he would quote and emphasize what Srila Prabhupada said on that topic. He is a parampara man to the core. Although ISKCON as such has moved into a new generation our GM has always stuck to the teachings and techniques of our acharyas.
So please feel confident about your identity and feel proud to be a disciple of GM. And more important lets be his disciple in the truest sense by following his instruction and working in cooperation with each other to realise his vision. Lets celebrate our connection to his Divine Grace H.H. Jayapataka Swami one of the dearmost disciple of the Founder Acharya Srila Prabhupada.
Your aspiring Servant,
Lakshmi Narasimhadeva Dasa