M) Genuine Disciples Beg All, “Accept Srila Prabhupada As Your Eternal Guru.”
The primary aim of missionary work done by Srila Prabhupada’s bona fide disciples is to help everyone hear from, worship and serve Srila Prabhupada and in this way learn the complete science of Krishna consciousness. Srila Prabhupada’s mercy and instruction provide the only sure way for everyone to participate in the sankirtana mission of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and attain perfection in this life.
“…devotional service to the Lord is so powerful that it can cleanse the hearts of the people in general, by the devotional service of the pure, empowered devotee. A true representative of the Lord like Narada, Sukadeva Gosvami, Lord Caitanya, the Six Gosvamis, and later Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura and Srimad Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, etcetera, can deliver all people by their empowered devotional service.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.8.5, Purport)
“Knowledge should be taken from the perfect person—because if you take knowledge from a person who is defective, your knowledge has no value. You must take knowledge from the perfect.” (Lecture, April 12,1974, Bombay)
“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.” (Blwgavad-gita As It Is 4.34)
“By the mercy of the spiritual master, one receives the mercy of Krishna. Without the grace of the spiritual master, no one can make any advancement.” (Sri Sri Gurv-astaka, Verse 8, by Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura)
“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.”(Bhagavad-gita As It Is 4.34, Purport)
“The spiritual master is the mercy representative of the Lord. Therefore, a person burning in the flames of material existence may receive the rains of mercy of the Lord through the transparent medium of the self-realized spiritual master. The spiritual master, by his words, can penetrate into the heart of the suffering person and inject knowledge transcendental, which alone can extinguish the fire of material existence.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam, 1.7.22, Purport)
N) The Vaisnava Acarya or Diksa-Guru Never Falls Down.
An acarya or diksa-guru in the Brahma-Madhva-Gaudiya Sampradaya is, by definition, a fully self-realized pure devotee, or uttama-adhikari, free from all defects or imperfections. In other words, such a guru is a fully liberated soul. A Vaisnava acarya, or diksa-guru, being liberated and self-realized, is never deluded or confused in any circumstance and never forgets Krishna even for a moment. The idea that a Vaisnava acarya or diksa-guru may become fallen or degraded is apasiddhanta, a severe deviation. Such offensive ideas run contrary to Srila Prabhupada’s teachings and the conclusions of the Vedic scriptures.
“A bona fide spiritual master is in the disciplic succession from time eternal, and he does not deviate at all from the instructions of the Supreme Lord…” (Bhagavad-gita As It Is 4.42, Purport)
“The spiritual master must never be carried away by an accumulation of wealth or a large number of followers. A bona fide spiritual master will never become like that. But sometimes, if a spiritual master is not properly authorized and only on his own initiative becomes a spiritual master, he may be carried away by an accumulation of wealth and large numbers of disciples. His is not a very high grade of devotional service.” (Nectar of Devotion, Chapter 14)
“A first-class devotee never deviates from the principles of higher authority….” (Nectar of Devotion, Chapter 3)
“There is no possibility that a first-class devotee will fall down…” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 22.71, Purport)
maha-bhagavata-srestho brahmano vai guru nrnam
sarvesam eva lokanam asau pujyo yatha harih:
“The guru must be situated on the topmost platform of devotional service. There are three classes of devotees, and the guru must be accepted from the topmost class… When one has attained the topmost position of maha-bhagavata, he is to be accepted as guru and worshiped exactly like Hari, the Personality of Godhead. Only such a person is eligible to occupy the post of a guru.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 24.330, Purport, citing Padma Purana)
O) Self-Appointed, Unauthorized Preachers Should Be Neglected.
Persons who insist on posing themselves as acaryas or diksa-gurus—and who thus neglect Srila Prabhupada’s clear instructions on this matter—are, in truth, jealous imitators with no substantial connection to Srila Prabhupada’s mission. Serious devotees should neglect such self-styled pretenders, their foolish promoters, and other materially contaminated individuals.
“A jealous person in the dress of a Vaisnava is not at all happy to see the success of another Vaisnava in receiving the Lord’s mercy. Unfortunately in this Age of Kali there are many mundane persons in the dress of Vaisnavas, and Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has described them as disciples of Kali. He says, kali-cela. He indicates that there is another Vaisnava, a pseudo-Vaisnava with tilaka on his nose and kanthi beads around his neck. Such a pseudo-Vaisnava associates with money and women and is jealous of successful Vaisnavas. Although passing for a Vaisnava, his only business is earning money in the dress of a Vaisnava. Bhaktivinoda Thakura therefore says that such a pseudo-Vaisnava is not a Vaisnava at all but a disciple of Kali-yuga. A disciple of Kali cannot become an acanja by the decision of some high court. Mundane votes have no jurisdiction to elect a Vaisnava acarya. A Vaisnava acanja is self-effulgent, and there is no need for any court judgment. A false acarya may try to override a Vaisnava by a high-court decision, but Bhaktivinoda Thakura says that he is nothing but a disciple of Kali-yuga.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 1.220)
“If a Vaisnava, by the mercy of the Lord, is empowered by Him to distribute the Lord’s holy name all over the world, other Vaisnavas become very joyful-that is, if they are truly Vaisnavas. One who is envious of the success of a Vaisnava is certainly not a Vaisnava himself, but an ordinary mundane man… A mundane person in the dress of a Vaisnava should not be respected but rejected. This is enjoined in the sastras (upeksa). The word upeksa means neglect. One should neglect an envious person…” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 2.218, Purport)
“As soon as a foolish disciple tries to overtake his spiritual master and becomes ambitious to occupy his post, he immediately falls down. Yasya prasadad bhagavat-prasado yasyaprasadan na gatih kuto pi. If the spiritual master is considered an ordinary man, the disciple surely loses his chance to advance further.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 5.12.14, Purport)
“…gurusu nara-matir … naraki salt: One who considers that the spiritual master is an ordinary human being…is considered a naraki, a candidate for hellish life.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta,Antya 6.294, Purport)
“One is forbidden to regard the spiritual master as an ordinary human being (gurusu nara-matir … naraki sail). The spiritual master, or acanja, is always situated in the spiritual status of life.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.4.24, Purport)
“Presently people are so fallen that they cannot distinguish between a liberated soul and a conditioned soul.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 4.18.5, Purport)
“If one tries to mingle the worship of yogamaya with mahamaya, considering them one and the same, he does not really show very high intelligence.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 8.90, Purport)
“Intermingling the spiritual with the material causes one to look on transcendence as material and the mundane as spiritual. This is all due to a poor fund of knowledge.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 16.72, Purport)
“One may try to support his philosophy by joining some caste or identifying himself with a certain dynasty, claiming a monopoly on spiritual advancement. Thus with the support of family tradition, one may become a pseudo-guru or so-called spiritual master… All these are pitfalls of personal sense gratification. Just to cheat some innocent people, one makes a show of advanced spiritual life and becomes known as a sadhu, mahatma, or religious person.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 19.160)
“Influenced by an envious temperament and dissatisfied because of an attitude of sense gratification, mundaners criticize a real acarya. In fact, however, a bona fide acarya is nondifferent from the Personality of Godhead, and therefore to envy such an acarya is to envy the Personality of Godhead Himself.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi 1.46, Purport)