(Kadamba Kanana Swami, Mayapur, November 2011) Lecture – Caitanya-caritamrta Part 4
I think that the Caitanya-caritamrta in many ways provides us with our identity, because it outlines what we are meant to do as devotees, particularly in this day and age.
Whereas Srimad Bhagavatam is having many passages that are applying to people of another era. In Srimad Bhagavatam we find personalities like Bhima. Bhima has the strength of ten thousand elephants. So he looks stronger than spider man! That is pretty impressive. Although he is an historical person, he is almost mythological by his qualifications and in comparison to us!
We see that Bhisma Dev is lying on a bed of arrows. For me one arrow is enough. A cut on my finger and already I’m out of action. What to speak of an arrow – call an ambulance, and with a hundred arrows…I’m done! So we are looking at personalities who are extraordinary in so many ways.
We can take from their example, the spirit but we cannot imitate! Like Dhruva Maharaja is fasting and at one point he stops eating, which we could try, but then he stops breathing, which again is sort of impossible for us to do. So one can from Dhruva Maharaja maybe take a spirit of being austere, of chanting a mantra and so on.
But in the Caitanya-caritamrta we receive role models of devotees who are more like us. Or who are like what we should be, and who are living in a way that we actually should be living. They are representing our culture. So we find a cultural identity, especially in the Caitanya-caritamrta. We find that through the process of bhakti (as given in the Caitanya-caritamrta) we become purified, and that process gives us our identity!