680729 - Letter to Madhusudana written from Montreal
A.C. BHAKTIVEDANTA SWAMI
Acharya: International Society For Krishna Consciousness
ISKCON RADHA KRISHNA TEMPLE
3720 Park Avenue
Montreal 18, Quebec, Canada
July 29, 1968
My Dear Madhusudan,
Please accept my blessings. I thank you very much for your letter of July 17, and of July 25, 1968, and have noted the contents carefully. Yes, by keeping engaged in Krishna Consciousness activities we can keep out of Maya's clutches, and there are so many nice engagements, as you have stated. By your sincerity and service attitude you are making good progress; by your letter it is shown.
Regarding your question about the picture of Lord Chaitanya with six arms: This form was shown to Ramananda Roy, and Sarvabhouma Bhattacharya. This is called Sadbhuja Murti. This Sadbhuja Murti is worshiped also by the devotees of Lord Chaitanya, and especially the Murti is situated in the temple of Jagannatha Puri. Sometimes when you may go to India and visit the temple of Jagannatha, you will find this Murti.
Affection for God-brothers is nice, it is a good sign. Affection for God-brothers as well as for all other living entities, even they are not God-brothers, these signs are seen in the advanced devotees. There are three kinds of devotees: The lower grade devotees, they have high regard for the Deity in the temple, but not very much regard for devotees or people in general. The second grade devotee takes compassion with innocent non-devotees. In that stage, he has got 4 kinds of vision: one is that he always keeps Krishna as the most Lovable Object, second is that he makes intimate friendship with his devotee God-brothers or any other devotees, third is that he takes compassion with innocent non-devotees, and tries to convince them about the importance of Krishna Consciousness, and fourth is that he does not take any serious interest for the atheist class of men. The first grade devotee, of course, sees everyone in relationship with Krishna and as such, he makes no distinction between a devotee or nondevotee. His vision is high grade, because he sees that everyone is engaged in Krishna's service directly or indirectly. This position of high-grade devotee should never be imitated. It was possible only in Lord Chaitanya or Lord Nityananda, or Haridas Thakur. Thakur Haridas was so powerful that he could convert even a harlot. But we should not try to imitate Haridas Thakur or Lord Chaitanya. Our position is in the second grade platform. We should not be satisfied remaining in the third grade platform. But we should try to elevate ourselves in the second grade platform. So far the first grade platform is concerned, it is not attained by our endeavor, but it is possible when we have full Grace of Krishna. It completely depends on the causeless Mercy of Krishna.
Subhadra is yogamaya. The spiritual energy is called yogamaya. And she has 16 different expansions. Out of these 16 expansions, Subhadra is one. The mahamaya of the material energy is also expansion of the energy of yogamaya; and both yogamaya and mahamaya are equally important to Krishna as much as any government department is equally important for functioning of the government. The police department may be horrible for the criminals, but to the government it is a department as good as university department. Similarly, mahamaya is horrible to the conditioned soul, but to the liberated soul, there is no fear of mahamaya, because he is protected by yogamaya. It is stated in the Bhagavad Gita when Krishna said the following: "I am not visible to everyone on account of being curtained by yogamaya." So when a conditioned soul surrenders unto Krishna, the yogamaya winds up the curtain and Krishna is visible to the devotee.
Hoping you are all well.
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami