We are reading from the Bhagavad gita fourth chapter text number thirty four, 4.34
Thank You very much, the title of the chapter is transcendental knowledge, page 262….everyone there…almost.
tad viddhi pranipatena
upadeksyanti te jnanam
tat–that knowledge of different sacrifices; viddhi–try to understand; pranipatena–by approaching a spiritual master; pariprasnena–by submissive inquiries; sevaya–by the rendering of service; upadeksyanti–initiate; te–unto you; jnanam–knowledge; jnaninah–the self-realized; tattva–truth; darsinah–the seers.
Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Inquire from him submissively and render service unto him. The self-realized soul can impart knowledge unto you because he has seen the truth.
The path of spiritual realization is undoubtedly difficult. The Lord therefore advises us to approach a bona fide spiritual master in the line of disciplic succession from the Lord Himself. No one can be a bona fide spiritual master without following this principle of disciplic succession. The Lord is the original spiritual master, and a person in the disciplic succession can convey the message of the Lord as it is to his disciple. No one can be spiritually realized by manufacturing his own process, as is the fashion of the foolish pretenders. The Bhagavatam says: dharmam tu saksad bhagavat-pranitam–the path of religion is directly enunciated by the Lord. Therefore, mental speculation or dry arguments cannot help one progress in spiritual life. One has to approach a bona fide spiritual master to receive the knowledge. Such a spiritual master should be accepted in full surrender, and one should serve the spiritual master like a menial servant, without false prestige. Satisfaction of the self-realized spiritual master is the secret of advancement in spiritual life. Inquiries and submission constitute the proper combination for spiritual understanding. Unless there is submission and service, inquiries from the learned spiritual master will not be effective. One must be able to pass the test of the spiritual master, and when he sees the genuine desire of the disciple, he automatically blesses the disciple with genuine spiritual understanding. In this verse, both blind following and absurd inquiries are condemned. One should not only hear submissively from the spiritual master, but one must also get a clear understanding from him, in submission and service and inquiries. A bona fide spiritual master is by nature very kind toward the disciple. Therefore when the student is submissive and is always ready to render service, the reciprocation of knowledge and inquiries becomes perfect.
So first we must find a bona fide spiritual master….so how to find a bona fide spiritual master, it it is difficult because so many are presenting themselves as authorities so how can we understand, Who is an authority? As I drove into Leicester I saw a temple on the right hand side with some big spear in front of the entrance some baba and something more…..and some are very convinced that this is the bona fide spiritual master others are following a certain baba in south India and are convinced that he is the bona fide spiritual master and again there are all kinds of gurus in this age. So the first question is to determine who is a bona fide spiritual master.
There are very impressive societies with large establishments, some much larger than this, very costly temples …but the question is…. Are they bona fide spiritual masters?
So Srila Prabhupada pointed out that a bona fide spiritual master must come in a disciplic succession, no one on his own can come to claim that he has seen the light and no he his ready to teach, rather one should become the servant of the servant, then one can become eleigible to be a spiritual master. So the first qualification of a spiritual master is to be a servant of a spiritual master. We see how Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, before Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu appeared and displayed this extraordinary love of God…it is said that this love of god was already displayed by Madhevendra puri. Madhevendra puri had a disciple called Isvara Puri, the main qualification of Isvara Puri was that he was the servant of his spiritual master, that was his outstanding quality and he became the spiritual master of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. So the first qualification of the spiritual master is that he is a servant. The servant of his own spiritual master who in turn is a servant of his spiritual master and in this way the disciplic succession goes all the way back to the Supreme Personality of Godhead…..contd tomo