13 November, 1968
My Dear Upendra,
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your nice letter of Nov. 7, 1968, and thank you very much for it. Regarding your question, Sayamrupa means the Original Form. Sayamprakash means Balarama. And Tadekatmarupa is the purusa, just like Mahavishnu.
It is not necessary to remember or fully understand all these different forms, at the present, but it is like if you simply stick to the master faithfully that is very good, but if you know that my master is so great, and so rich, and great in this way and rich in this way, and that way, then your veneration for your master will increase.
To know Krishna is great, how He is expanded into different forms, that enhances our attachment to Krishna more rigidly.
You ask about the desire for fame.
Fame is a material desire, but to desire fame in Krishna Consciousness is not bad. If you think that people may know me as a great devotee of Krishna, that they may acknowledge me a nice devotee of Krishna, that is not at all bad.
But even one is highly elevated in Krishna Consciousness he should not think himself a great devotee, he should think himself always humble.
You can celebrate Rasa-lila by having nice kirtana and prasadam distribution, that is our way of celebrating.
Your question, “When one has become pure enough, Krishna conscious, does one take regular dictation from one’s Guru Maharaja? I know you to confirm yes, but how is this so?
Understanding that each individual has a certain particular rasa with Krishna, how would one relate with another soul of a different rasa? Especially between that of the Guru and disciple?” That doesn’t matter.
The Spiritual Master’s position is to train the disciples. Just like a teacher, he may be a very expert mathematician, but in the lower class he is teaching English.
The Spiritual Master’s duty is to train him, but when he comes to the perfectional stage of training, then he realizes his position. That is not a gift of the Spiritual Master, the Spiritual Master helps him to realize his relationship with the Lord.
Just like the student in lower stages has to study so many things as preliminary education, English, history, math, etc., but in higher stage of education, he has got a particular taste for a special subject, so he specializes as a mathematician or a historian, etc. So that special qualification reveals in the higher stage.
So these topics are not to be discussed in the conditioned stage, and when we come to the liberated stage we can understand. This is useless talks in the preliminary stage. In the beginning let us do the preliminary routine work very nicely, and be cured of the disease (out of maya), then we can know what taste you have for what particular type of food. So these things are not to be discussed at the present moment.
Yes, you can pray to Krishna—Krishna may be prayed that I am unwilling to become Krishna Conscious, so you can force me to become so. You put me under certain circumstances so that I may be forced to accept Krishna Consciousness. You can pray like that. It is Krishna’s special favor and mercy that He sometimes forces a devotee to surrender fully to Him.
Hoping you are well,
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
Letter to Upendra, November 13, 1968