My Dear Gajendra das,
Please accept my blessings, I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated January 24, 1970 and I am so glad to learn that at the present moment you are president of the center; it is a great satisfaction to me.
When a Krishna Conscious person is elevated to a responsible position, he never becomes puffed up. Just like a tree when overladen with fruits becomes humble and lower down; similarly, a great soul in Krishna Consciousness becomes humbler than the grass and bowed down like the fruitful trees because a Krishna Conscious person acts as the agent of Krishna, therefore he discharges his duty with great responsibility.
You are very much welcome to write once in a month, and I shall be very glad to reply them point by point. I am glad to learn that everyone is busily engaged in Krishna’s business and chanting 16 rounds and reading Srimad-Bhagavatam regularly. This is our life. Here also I have introduced in the L.A. Temple 24 hour engagement. When Krsnakanti (Carl) returns, you will learn from him everything how this Temple is doing nicely.
Extend your activities to the University campus because the younger generation is our future hope. Bamboo while it is green can be bent and carved, but while it is yellow and ripe if there is any attempt to bend it, it cracks. Krishna is evergreen youthful Original Person and He gathers around Him all young boys and girls as cowherd boys and gopis in His eternal Vrndavana Lila. So try seriously to impress upon the young hearts and you will be successful. Try to get that fraternity house as soon as possible.
Your first question: are disciplic successions from Brahma and from Arjuna different? No. Brahma’s disciplic succession accepts Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead and Arjuna also accepted Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. So that is not a new disciplic succession. Krishna says in the fourth chapter that I am again reintroducing unto you–so anyone who accepts Lord Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead is to be understood as belonging to the same disciplic succession.
Balarama is holding a plow, that is His weapon. Jagannatha is holding the Cakra, that is His weapon. Krishna’s name is Cakradhara (dhara = carries) or One Who Carries the Disc. Balarama’s name is Haladhara, the Carrier of the Plow (hala).
Your third question: why does Srila Narada Muni condemn Srila Vyasadeva for compiling the Vedic Scriptures? Sri Narada Muni was the Spiritual Master of Srila Vyasadeva. A Spiritual Master has the right to chastise his disciple any way He likes. A sisya or a disciple means one who accepts the disciplinary action given by the Spiritual Master. Even although sometimes a Spiritual Master chastises his disciple as a fool or rascal in fatherly affection, it does not mean necessarily that the disciple is a fool or a rascal.
You will find even in the statement of Lord Caitanya–He presents Himself as a fool designated by His Spiritual Master, but that does not mean that He was a fool. A sincere disciple feels it pleasurable when his Spiritual Master chastises him with calling him such names as fool and rascal. My Spiritual Master sometimes called me in that way and I remember that day always and feel transcendental pleasure.
By following His footsteps, you can approach Nityananda Prabhu. Nityananda Prabhu approached Jagai and Madhai at the risk of being personally injured and still He definitely delivered them. The world is full of Jagais and Madhais; namely drunkards, women-hunters, meat eaters and gamblers, and we will have to approach them at the risk of insult, injury and similar other rewards. To face such reverse conditions of life and to suffer thereby the results of actions is considered as the greatest penance and austerity in the matter of spiritual advancement of life.
To sit down in a corner without preaching risk and to make a show of chanting Hare Krishna Mantra is condemned by my Spiritual Master and He has written a very nice song in this connection, which I am recording. The substance is that to become very dear to Krishna or Balarama or in other words to Lord Caitanya and Nityananda is to take the task of preaching work very seriously at all risk. Please always remember this and you will be successful.
So I see in your letter that you are also being bold in Krishna’s service in the matter of the preaching work.
You asked me to pray for the devotees, and that is the only business of my life.
Upendra is preparing for going to Australia.
I hope this will meet you in good health.
Your ever well-wisher,
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami