The Process of Devotional Service
In the twenty-second chapter, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu describes the process of devotional service. In the beginning He describes the truth about the living entity and the superexcellence of devotional service. He then describes the uselessness of mental speculation and mystic yoga. In all circumstances the living entity is recommended to accept the path of devotional service as personally explained by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. The speculative method of the so-called jñānīs is considered a waste of time, and that is proved in this chapter. An intelligent person should abandon the processes of karma-kāṇḍa, jñāna-kāṇḍa and mystic yoga. One should give up all these useless processes and take seriously to the path of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. In this way one’s life will be successful. If one takes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness fully, even though he may sometimes be agitated due to having previously practiced mental speculation and yogic mysticism, he will be saved by Lord Kṛṣṇa Himself. The fact is that devotional service is bestowed by the blessings of a pure devotee (sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ). A pure devotee is the supreme transcendentalist, and one has to receive his mercy for one’s dormant Kṛṣṇa consciousness to be awakened. One has to associate with pure devotees. If one has firm faith in the words of a great soul, pure devotional service will awaken.
In this chapter Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu differentiates between a pure devotee and others. He also describes the characteristics of a pure devotee. A devotee’s most formidable enemy is association with women in an enjoying spirit. Association with nondevotees is also condemned because it is also a formidable enemy on the path of devotional service. One has to fully surrender unto the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa and give up attraction for women and nondevotees.
The six symptoms of fully surrendered souls are also described in this chapter. Devotional service has been divided into two categories — regulative devotional service and spontaneous love. There are sixty-four items listed in regulative devotional service, and out of these sixty-four the last five are considered very important. By practicing even one of the nine processes of devotional service, one can become successful. Speculative knowledge and mystic yoga can never help one in devotional service. Pious activity, nonviolence, sense control and regulation are not separate from devotional service in its pure form. If one engages in devotional service, all good qualities follow. One does not have to cultivate them separately. Spontaneous devotional service arises when one follows a pure devotee who is awakened to spontaneous love of God. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu describes the symptoms of devotees who are already situated in spontaneous love of God. He also describes the devotees who are trying to follow in the footsteps of the pure devotees.
Text 1: I offer my respectful obeisances unto Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. He is an ocean of transcendental mercy, and although the subject matter of bhakti-yoga is very confidential, He has nonetheless manifested it so nicely, even in this Age of Kali, the age of quarrel.
Text 2: All glories to Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu! All glories to Nityānanda Prabhu! All glories to Advaitacandra! And all glories to all the devotees of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu!
Text 3: Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu said, “I have described one’s relationship with Kṛṣṇa in various ways. This is the subject matter of all the Vedas. Kṛṣṇa is the center of all activities.
Text 4: “Now I shall speak about the characteristics of devotional service, by which one can attain the shelter of Kṛṣṇa and His loving transcendental service.
Text 5: “A human being’s activities should be centered only on devotional service to Lord Kṛṣṇa. That is the verdict of all Vedic literatures, and all saintly people have firmly concluded this.
Text 6: “ ‘When the mother Vedas [śruti] is questioned as to whom to worship, she says that You are the only Lord and worshipable object. Similarly, the corollaries of the śruti-śāstras, the smṛti-śāstras, give the same instructions, just like sisters. The Purāṇas, which are like brothers, follow in the footsteps of their mother. O enemy of the demon Mura, the conclusion is that You are the only shelter. Now I have understood this in truth.’
Text 7: “Kṛṣṇa is the nondual Absolute Truth, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Although He is one, He maintains different personal expansions and energies for His pastimes.
Text 8: “Kṛṣṇa expands Himself in many forms. Some of them are personal expansions, and some are separate expansions. Thus He performs pastimes in both the spiritual and the material worlds. The spiritual worlds are the Vaikuṇṭha planets, and the material universes are the brahmāṇḍas, gigantic globes governed by Lord Brahmā.
Text 9: “Expansions of His personal self — like the quadruple manifestations of Saṅkarṣaṇa, Pradyumna, Aniruddha and Vāsudeva — descend as incarnations from Vaikuṇṭha to this material world. The separated expansions are the living entities. Although they are expansions of Kṛṣṇa, they are counted among His different potencies.
Text 10: “The living entities [jīvas] are divided into two categories. Some are eternally liberated, and others are eternally conditioned.
Text 11: “Those who are eternally liberated are always awake to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and they render transcendental loving service at the feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa. They are to be considered eternal associates of Kṛṣṇa, and they are eternally enjoying the transcendental bliss of serving Kṛṣṇa.
Text 12: “Apart from the ever-liberated devotees, there are the conditioned souls, who always turn away from the service of the Lord. They are perpetually conditioned in this material world and are subjected to the material tribulations brought about by different bodily forms in hellish conditions.
Text 13: “Due to his being opposed to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, the conditioned soul is punished by the witch of the external energy, māyā. He is thus ready to suffer the threefold miseries — miseries brought about by the body and mind, the inimical behavior of other living entities and natural disturbances caused by the demigods.
Texts 14-15: “In this way the conditioned soul becomes the servant of lusty desires, and when these are not fulfilled, he becomes the servant of anger and continues to be kicked by the external energy, māyā. Wandering and wandering throughout the universe, he may by chance get the association of a devotee physician, whose instructions and hymns make the witch of the external energy flee. The conditioned soul thus gets into touch with devotional service to Lord Kṛṣṇa, and in this way he can approach nearer and nearer to the Lord.
Text 16: “ ‘O my Lord, there is no limit to the unwanted orders of lusty desires. Although I have rendered these desires so much service, they have not shown any mercy to me. I have not been ashamed to serve them, nor have I even desired to give them up. O my Lord, O head of the Yadu dynasty, recently, however, my intelligence has been awakened, and now I am giving them up. Due to transcendental intelligence, I now refuse to obey the unwanted orders of these desires, and I now come to You to surrender myself at Your fearless lotus feet. Kindly engage me in Your personal service and save me.’
Text 17: “Devotional service to Kṛṣṇa is the chief function of the living entity. There are different methods for the liberation of the conditioned soul — karma, jñāna, yoga and bhakti — but all the others are dependent on bhakti.
Text 18: “Without devotional service, all other methods for spiritual self-realization are weak and insignificant. Unless one comes to the devotional service of Lord Kṛṣṇa, jñāna and yoga cannot give the desired results.
Text 19: “ ‘When pure knowledge is beyond all material affinity but is not dedicated to the Supreme Personality of Godhead [Kṛṣṇa], it does not appear very beautiful, although it is knowledge without a material tinge. What, then, is the use of fruitive activities — which are naturally painful from the beginning and transient by nature — if they are not utilized for the devotional service of the Lord? How can they be very attractive?’
Text 20: “ ‘Those who perform severe austerities and penances, those who give away all their possessions out of charity, those who are very famous for their auspicious activity, those who are engaged in meditation and mental speculation, and even those who are very expert in reciting the Vedic mantras are not able to obtain any auspicious results, although they are engaged in auspicious activities, if they do not dedicate their activities to the service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. I therefore repeatedly offer my respectful obeisances unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, whose glories are always auspicious.’
Text 21: “Speculative knowledge alone, without devotional service, is not able to give liberation. On the other hand, even without knowledge one can obtain liberation if one engages in the Lord’s devotional service.
Text 22: “ ‘My dear Lord, devotional service unto You is the only auspicious path. If one gives it up simply for speculative knowledge or the understanding that these living beings are spirit souls and the material world is false, he undergoes a great deal of trouble. He only gains troublesome and inauspicious activities. His endeavors are like beating a husk that is already devoid of rice. His labor becomes fruitless.’
Text 23: “ ‘This divine energy of Mine, consisting of the three modes of material nature, is difficult to overcome. But those who have surrendered unto Me can easily cross beyond it.’
Text 24: “The living entity is bound around the neck by the chain of māyā because he has forgotten that he is eternally a servant of Kṛṣṇa.
Text 25: “If the conditioned soul engages in the service of the Lord and simultaneously carries out the orders of his spiritual master and serves him, he can get out of the clutches of māyā and become eligible for shelter at Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet.
Text 26: “The followers of the varṇāśrama institution accept the regulative principles of the four social orders [brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya and śūdra] and four spiritual orders [brahmacarya, gṛhastha, vānaprastha and sannyāsa]. However, if one carries out the regulative principles of these orders but does not render transcendental service to Kṛṣṇa, he falls into a hellish condition of material life.
Text 27: “ ‘From the mouth of Brahmā, the brahminical order has come into existence. Similarly, from his arms the kṣatriyas have come, from his waist the vaiśyas have come, and from his legs the śūdras have come. These four orders and their spiritual counterparts [brahmacarya, gṛhastha, vānaprastha and sannyāsa] combine to make human society complete.
Text 28: “ ‘If one simply maintains an official position in the four varṇas and āśramas but does not worship the Supreme Lord Viṣṇu, he falls down from his puffed-up position into a hellish condition.’
Text 29: “There are many philosophical speculators [jñānīs] belonging to the Māyāvāda school who consider themselves liberated and call themselves Nārāyaṇa. But their intelligence is not purified unless they engage in Kṛṣṇa’s devotional service.
Text 30: “ ‘O lotus-eyed one, those who think they are liberated in this life but do not render devotional service to You must be of impure intelligence. Although they accept severe austerities and penances and rise to the spiritual position, to impersonal Brahman realization, they fall down again because they neglect to worship Your lotus feet.’
Text 31: “Kṛṣṇa is compared to sunshine, and māyā is compared to darkness. Wherever there is sunshine, there cannot be darkness. As soon as one takes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, the darkness of illusion (the influence of the external energy) will immediately vanish.
Text 32: “ ‘The external illusory energy of Kṛṣṇa, known as māyā, is always ashamed to stand in front of Kṛṣṇa, just as darkness is ashamed to remain before the sunshine. However, that māyā bewilders unfortunate people who have no intelligence. Thus they simply boast that this material world is theirs and that they are its enjoyers.’
Text 33: “One is immediately freed from the clutches of māyā if he seriously and sincerely says, ‘My dear Lord Kṛṣṇa, although I have forgotten You for so many long years in the material world, today I am surrendering unto You. I am Your sincere and serious servant. Please engage me in Your service.’
Text 34: “ ‘It is My vow that if one only once seriously surrenders unto Me, saying “My dear Lord, from this day I am Yours,” and prays to Me for courage, I shall immediately award courage to that person, and he will always remain safe from that time on.’
Text 35: “Due to bad association, the living entity desires material happiness, liberation or merging into the impersonal aspect of the Lord, or he engages in mystic yoga for material power. If such a person actually becomes intelligent, he takes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness by engaging himself in intense devotional service to Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa.
Text 36: “ ‘Whether one desires everything or nothing, or whether he desires to merge into the existence of the Lord, he is intelligent only if he worships Lord Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, by rendering transcendental loving service.’
Text 37: “If those who desire material enjoyment or merging into the existence of the Absolute Truth engage in the Lord’s transcendental loving service, they will immediately attain shelter at Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet, although they did not ask for it. Kṛṣṇa is therefore very merciful.
Text 38: “Kṛṣṇa says, ‘If one engages in My transcendental loving service but at the same time wants the opulence of material enjoyment, he is very, very foolish. Indeed, he is just like a person who gives up ambrosia to drink poison.
Text 39: “ ‘Since I am very intelligent, why should I give this fool material prosperity? Instead I shall induce him to take the nectar of the shelter of My lotus feet and make him forget illusory material enjoyment.’
Text 40: “ ‘Whenever Kṛṣṇa is requested to fulfill one’s desire, He undoubtedly does so, but He does not award anything which, after being enjoyed, will cause one to petition Him again and again to fulfill further desires. When one has other desires but engages in the Lord’s service, Kṛṣṇa forcibly gives one shelter at His lotus feet, where one will forget all other desires.’
Text 41: “When someone engages in Lord Kṛṣṇa’s devotional service for the satisfaction of the senses and instead acquires a taste for serving Kṛṣṇa, he gives up his material desires and willingly offers himself as an eternal servant of Kṛṣṇa.
Text 42: “[When he was being blessed by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Dhruva Mahārāja said:] ‘O my Lord, because I was seeking an opulent material position, I was performing severe types of penance and austerity. Now I have gotten You, who are very difficult for the great demigods, saintly persons and kings to attain. I was searching after a piece of glass, but instead I have found a most valuable jewel. Therefore I am so satisfied that I do not wish to ask any benediction from You.’
Text 43: “The conditioned souls are wandering throughout the different planets of the universe, entering various species of life. By good fortune one of these souls may somehow or other be delivered from the ocean of nescience, just as one of the many big logs in a flowing river may by chance reach the bank.
Text 44: “ ‘Because I am so fallen, I shall never get a chance to see the Supreme Personality of Godhead.” This was my false apprehension. Rather, by chance a person as fallen as I am may get to see the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Although one is being carried away by the waves of the river of time, one may eventually reach the shore.’
Text 45: “By good fortune one becomes eligible to cross the ocean of nescience, and when one’s term of material existence decreases, one may get an opportunity to associate with pure devotees. By such association, one’s attraction to Kṛṣṇa is awakened.
Text 46: “ ‘O my Lord! O infallible Supreme Person! When a person wandering throughout the universes becomes eligible for liberation from material existence, he gets an opportunity to associate with devotees. When he associates with devotees, his attraction for You is awakened. You are the Supreme Personality of Godhead — the highest goal of the topmost devotees and the Lord of the universe.’
Text 47: “Kṛṣṇa is situated in everyone’s heart as the caittya-guru, the spiritual master within. When He is kind to some fortunate conditioned soul, He personally gives him lessons so he can progress in devotional service, instructing the person as the Supersoul within and the spiritual master without.
Text 48: “ ‘O my Lord! Transcendental poets and experts in spiritual science could not fully express their indebtedness to You, even if they were endowed with the prolonged lifetime of Brahmā, for You appear in two features — externally as the ācārya and internally as the Supersoul — to deliver the embodied living being by directing him how to come to You.’
Text 49: “By associating with a devotee, one awakens his faith in devotional service to Kṛṣṇa. Because of devotional service, one’s dormant love for Kṛṣṇa awakens, and thus one’s material, conditioned existence comes to an end.
Text 50: “ ‘Somehow or other, if one is attracted to talks about Me and has faith in the instructions I have set forth in the Bhagavad-gītā, and if one is neither falsely detached from material things nor very much attracted to material existence, his dormant love for Me will be awakened by devotional service.’
Text 51: “Unless one is favored by a pure devotee, one cannot attain the platform of devotional service. To say nothing of kṛṣṇa-bhakti, one cannot even be relieved from the bondage of material existence.
Text 52: “ ‘O King Rahūgaṇa, without taking upon one’s head the dust from the lotus feet of a pure devotee [a mahājana or mahātmā], one cannot attain devotional service. Devotional service is not possible to attain simply by undergoing severe austerities and penances, by gorgeously worshiping the Deity, or by strictly following the rules and regulations of the sannyāsa or gṛhastha order; nor is it attained by studying the Vedas, submerging oneself in water, or exposing oneself to fire or scorching sunlight.’
Text 53: “ ‘Unless human society accepts the dust of the lotus feet of great mahātmās — devotees who have nothing to do with material possessions — mankind cannot turn its attention to the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. Those lotus feet vanquish all the unwanted, miserable conditions of material life.’
Text 54: “The verdict of all revealed scriptures is that by even a moment’s association with a pure devotee, one can attain all success.
Text 55: “ ‘The value of a moment’s association with a devotee of the Lord cannot be compared even to the attainment of the heavenly planets or liberation from matter, and what to speak of worldly benedictions in the form of material prosperity, which is for those who are meant for death.’
Text 56: “Kṛṣṇa is so merciful that simply by aiming His instructions at Arjuna, He has given protection to the whole world.
Texts 57-58: “ ‘Because you are My very dear friend, I am speaking to you My supreme instruction, the most confidential knowledge of all. Hear this from Me, for it is for your benefit. Always think of Me and become My devotee, worship Me and offer your homage unto Me. Thus you will come to Me without fail. I promise you this because you are My very dear friend.’
Text 59: “Although Kṛṣṇa previously explained the proficiency of executing Vedic rituals, performing fruitive activity as enjoined in the Vedas, practicing yoga and cultivating jñāna, these last instructions are most powerful and stand above all the others.
Text 60: “If the devotee has faith in the strength of this order, he worships Lord Kṛṣṇa and gives up all other activities.
Text 61: “ ‘As long as one is not satiated by fruitive activity and has not awakened his taste for devotional service by śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ, one has to act according to the regulative principles of the Vedic injunctions.’
Text 62: “Śraddhā is confident, firm faith that by rendering transcendental loving service to Kṛṣṇa one automatically performs all subsidiary activities. Such faith is favorable to the discharge of devotional service.
Text 63: “ ‘By pouring water on the root of a tree, one automatically satisfies the trunk, branches and twigs. Similarly, by supplying food to the stomach, where it nourishes the life air, one satisfies all the senses. In the same way, by worshiping Kṛṣṇa and rendering Him service, one automatically satisfies all the demigods.’
Text 64: “A faithful devotee is a truly eligible candidate for the loving service of the Lord. According to one’s faith, one is classified as a topmost devotee, an intermediate devotee or an inferior devotee.
Text 65: “One who is expert in logic, argument and the revealed scriptures and who has firm faith in Kṛṣṇa is classified as a topmost devotee. He can deliver the whole world.
Text 66: “ ‘One who is expert in logic and in understanding the revealed scriptures, and who always has firm conviction and deep faith that is not blind, is to be considered a topmost devotee in devotional service.’
Text 67: “One who is not very expert in argument and logic based on the revealed scriptures but who has firm faith is considered a second-class devotee. He also must be considered most fortunate.
Text 68: “ ‘He who does not know scriptural argument very well but who has firm faith is called an intermediate or second-class devotee.’
Text 69: “One whose faith is soft and pliable is called a neophyte, but by gradually following the process he will rise to the platform of a first-class devotee.
Text 70: “ ‘One whose faith is not very strong, who is just beginning, should be considered a neophyte devotee.’
Text 71: “A devotee is considered superlative or superior according to his attachment and love. In the Eleventh Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, the following symptoms have been given.
Text 72: “ ‘A person advanced in devotional service sees within everything the soul of souls, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Śrī Kṛṣṇa. Consequently he always sees the form of the Supreme Personality of Godhead as the cause of all causes and understands that all things are situated in Him.
Text 73: “ ‘An intermediate, second-class devotee shows love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is friendly to all devotees and is very merciful to neophytes and ignorant people. The intermediate devotee neglects those who are envious of devotional service.
Text 74: “ ‘A prākṛta-bhakta, or materialistic devotee, does not purposefully study the śāstra and try to understand the actual standard of pure devotional service. Consequently he does not show proper respect to advanced devotees. He may, however, follow the regulative principles learned from his spiritual master or from his family who worships the Deity. He is to be considered on the material platform, although he is trying to advance in devotional service. Such a person is a bhakta-prāya [neophyte devotee], or bhaktābhāsa, for he is a little enlightened by Vaiṣṇava philosophy.’
Text 75: “A Vaiṣṇava is one who has developed all good transcendental qualities. All the good qualities of Kṛṣṇa gradually develop in Kṛṣṇa’s devotee.
Text 76: “ ‘In one who has unflinching devotional faith in Kṛṣṇa, all the good qualities of Kṛṣṇa and the demigods are consistently manifest. However, he who has no devotion to the Supreme Personality of Godhead has no good qualifications because he is engaged by mental concoction in material existence, which is the external feature of the Lord.’
Text 77: “All these transcendental qualities are the characteristics of pure Vaiṣṇavas, and they cannot be fully explained, but I shall try to point out some of the important qualities.
Texts 78-80: “Devotees are always merciful, humble, truthful, equal to all, faultless, magnanimous, mild and clean. They are without material possessions, and they perform welfare work for everyone. They are peaceful, surrendered to Kṛṣṇa and desireless. They are indifferent to material acquisitions and are fixed in devotional service. They completely control the six bad qualities — lust, anger, greed and so forth. They eat only as much as required, and they are not inebriated. They are respectful, grave, compassionate and without false prestige. They are friendly, poetic, expert and silent.
Text 81: “ ‘Devotees are always tolerant, forbearing and very merciful. They are the well-wishers of every living entity. They follow the scriptural injunctions, and because they have no enemies, they are very peaceful. These are the decorations of devotees.’
Text 82: “ ‘It is the verdict of all śāstras and great personalities that service to a pure devotee is the path of liberation. By contrast, association with materialistic people who are attached to material enjoyment and women is the path of darkness. Those who are actually devotees are broadminded, equal to everyone and very peaceful. They never become angry, and they are friendly to all living entities.’
Text 83: “The root cause of devotional service to Lord Kṛṣṇa is association with advanced devotees. Even when one’s dormant love for Kṛṣṇa awakens, association with devotees is still most essential.
Text 84: “ ‘O my Lord! O infallible Supreme Person! When a person wandering throughout the universes becomes eligible for liberation from material existence, he gets an opportunity to associate with devotees. When he associates with devotees, his attraction for You is awakened. You are the Supreme Personality of Godhead — the highest goal of the topmost devotees, and the Lord of the universe.’
Text 85: “ ‘O devotees! O you who are free from all sins! Let me inquire from you about that which is supremely auspicious for all living entities. Association with a pure devotee for even half a moment in this material world is the greatest treasure for human society.’
Text 86: “ ‘The spiritually powerful message of Godhead can be properly discussed only in a society of devotees, and it is greatly pleasing to hear in that association. If one hears from devotees, the way of transcendental experience quickly opens, and gradually one attains firm faith that in due course develops into attraction and devotion.’
Text 87: “A Vaiṣṇava should always avoid the association of ordinary people. Common people are very much materially attached, especially to women. Vaiṣṇavas should also avoid the company of those who are not devotees of Lord Kṛṣṇa.
Texts 88-90: “ ‘By association with worldly people, one becomes devoid of truthfulness, cleanliness, mercy, gravity, spiritual intelligence, shyness, austerity, fame, forgiveness, control of the mind, control of the senses, fortune and all opportunities. One should not at any time associate with a coarse fool who is bereft of the knowledge of self-realization and who is no more than a toy animal in the hands of a woman. The illusion and bondage that accrue to a man from attachment to any other object are not as complete as that resulting from association with a woman or with men too much attached to women.’
Text 91: “ ‘It is better to accept the miseries of being encaged within bars and surrounded by burning flames than to associate with those bereft of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Such association is a very great hardship.’
Text 92: “ ‘One should not even see those who are bereft of devotional service in Kṛṣṇa consciousness and who are therefore devoid of pious activities.’
Text 93: “Without hesitation, one should take exclusive shelter of Lord Kṛṣṇa with full confidence, giving up bad association and even neglecting the regulative principles of the four varṇas and four āśramas. That is to say, one should abandon all material attachment.
Text 94: “ ‘After giving up all kinds of religious and occupational duties, if you come to Me, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and take shelter, I shall give you protection from all of life’s sinful reactions. Do not worry.’
Text 95: “Lord Kṛṣṇa is very kind to His devotees. He is always very grateful and magnanimous, and He possesses all abilities. A learned man does not give up Kṛṣṇa to worship anyone else.
Text 96: “ ‘My dear Lord, You are very affectionate to Your devotees. You are also a truthful and grateful friend. Where is that learned man who would give You up and surrender to someone else? You fulfill all the desires of Your devotees, so much so that sometimes You even give Yourself to them. Still, You neither increase nor decrease by such activity.’
Text 97: “Whenever an experienced person develops real knowledge of Kṛṣṇa and His transcendental qualities, he naturally gives up all other engagements and renders service to the Lord. Uddhava gives evidence concerning this.
Text 98: “ ‘Oh, how wonderful it is! Pūtanā, the sister of Bakāsura, wanted to kill Kṛṣṇa by smearing deadly poison on her breasts and having Kṛṣṇa take it. Nonetheless, Lord Kṛṣṇa accepted her as His mother, and thus she attained the destination befitting Kṛṣṇa’s mother. Of whom should I take shelter but Kṛṣṇa, who is most merciful?’
Text 99: “There are two kinds of devotees — those who are fully satiated and free from all material desires and those who are fully surrendered to the lotus feet of the Lord. Their qualities are one and the same, but those who are fully surrendered to Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet are qualified with another transcendental quality — ātma-samarpaṇa, full surrender without reservation.
Text 100: “ ‘The six divisions of surrender are the acceptance of those things favorable to devotional service, the rejection of unfavorable things, the conviction that Kṛṣṇa will give protection, the acceptance of the Lord as one’s guardian or master, full self-surrender, and humility.
Text 101: “ ‘One whose body is fully surrendered takes shelter at the holy place where Kṛṣṇa had His pastimes, and he prays to the Lord, “My Lord, I am Yours.” Understanding this with his mind, he enjoys spiritual bliss.’
Text 102: “When a devotee thus fully surrenders unto Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet, Kṛṣṇa accepts him as one of His confidential associates.
Text 103: “ ‘The living entity who is subjected to birth and death attains immortality when he gives up all material activities, dedicates his life to the execution of My order, and acts according to My directions. In this way he becomes fit to enjoy the spiritual bliss derived from exchanging loving mellows with Me.’
Text 104: “My dear Sanātana, please now hear about the regulative principles for the execution of devotional service. By this process, one can attain the highest perfection of love of Godhead, which is the most desirable treasure.
Text 105: “ ‘When transcendental devotional service, by which love for Kṛṣṇa is attained, is executed by the senses, it is called sādhana-bhakti, or the regulative discharge of devotional service. Such devotion eternally exists within the heart of every living entity. The awakening of this eternal devotion is the potentiality of devotional service in practice.’
Text 106: “The spiritual activities of hearing, chanting, remembering and so forth are the natural characteristics of devotional service. The marginal characteristic is that it awakens pure love for Kṛṣṇa.
Text 107: “Pure love for Kṛṣṇa is eternally established in the hearts of the living entities. It is not something to be gained from another source. When the heart is purified by hearing and chanting, this love naturally awakens.
Text 108: “There are two processes of practical devotional service. One is regulative devotional service, and the other is spontaneous devotional service.
Text 109: “Those who have not attained the platform of spontaneous attachment in devotional service render devotional service under the guidance of a bona fide spiritual master according to the regulative principles mentioned in the revealed scriptures. According to the revealed scriptures, this kind of devotional service is called vaidhī bhakti.
Text 110: “ ‘O descendant of Bharata! O Mahārāja Parīkṣit! The Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is situated in everyone’s heart as Paramātmā, who is the supreme controller, and who always removes the miseries of the living entities, must always be heard about from reliable sources, and He must be glorified and remembered by one who wishes to become fearless.’
Text 111: “ ‘From the mouth of Brahmā, the brahminical order has come into existence. Similarly, from his arms the kṣatriyas have come, from his waist the vaiśyas have come, and from his legs the śūdras have come. These four orders and their spiritual counterparts [brahmacarya, gṛhastha, vānaprastha and sannyāsa] combine to make human society complete.
Text 112: “ ‘If one simply maintains an official position in the four varṇas and āśramas but does not worship the Supreme Lord Viṣṇu, he falls down from his puffed-up position into a hellish condition.’
Text 113: “ ‘Kṛṣṇa is the origin of Lord Viṣṇu. He should always be remembered and never forgotten at any time. All the rules and prohibitions mentioned in the śāstras should be the servants of these two principles.’
Text 114: “I shall say something about the various practices of devotional service, which is expanded in so many ways. I wish to speak briefly of the essential practices.
Text 115: “On the path of regulative devotional service, one must observe the following items: (1) One must accept a bona fide spiritual master. (2) One must accept initiation from him. (3) One must serve him. (4) One must receive instructions from the spiritual master and make inquiries in order to learn devotional service. (5) One must follow in the footsteps of the previous ācāryas and follow the directions given by the spiritual master.
Text 116: “The next steps are as follows: (6) One should be prepared to give up everything for Kṛṣṇa’s satisfaction, and one should also accept everything for Kṛṣṇa’s satisfaction. (7) One must live in a place where Kṛṣṇa is present — a city like Vṛndāvana or Mathurā or a Kṛṣṇa temple. (8) One should acquire a livelihood that is just sufficient to keep body and soul together. (9) One must fast on the Ekādaśī day.
Text 117: “(10) One should worship dhātrī trees, banyan trees, cows, brāhmaṇas and devotees of Lord Viṣṇu. (11) One should avoid offenses against devotional service and the holy name.
Text 118: “The twelfth item is to give up the company of nondevotees. (13) One should not accept an unlimited number of disciples. (14) One should not partially study many scriptures just to be able to give references and expand explanations.
Text 119: “(15) The devotee should treat loss and gain equally. (16) The devotee should not be overwhelmed by lamentation. (17) The devotee should not worship demigods, nor should he disrespect them. Similarly, the devotee should not study or criticize other scriptures.
Text 120: “(18) The devotee should not hear Lord Viṣṇu or His devotees blasphemed. (19) The devotee should avoid reading or hearing newspapers or mundane books that contain stories of love affairs between men and women or subjects palatable to the senses. (20) Neither by mind nor words should the devotee cause anxiety to any living entity, regardless how insignificant he may be.
Text 121: “After one is established in devotional service, the positive actions are (1) hearing, (2) chanting, (3) remembering, (4) worshiping, (5) praying, (6) serving, (7) accepting servitorship, (8) becoming a friend and (9) surrendering fully.
Text 122: “One should also (10) dance before the Deity, (11) sing before the Deity, (12) open one’s mind to the Deity, (13) offer obeisances to the Deity, (14) stand up before the Deity and the spiritual master just to show them respect, (15) follow the Deity or the spiritual master and (16) visit different places of pilgrimage or go see the Deity in the temple.
Text 123: “One should (17) circumambulate the temple, (18) recite various prayers, (19) chant softly, (20) chant congregationally, (21) smell the incense and flower garlands offered to the Deity, and (22) eat the remnants of food offered to the Deity.
Text 124: “One should (23) attend ārati and festivals, (24) see the Deity, (25) present what is very dear to oneself to the Deity, (26) meditate on the Deity, and (27-30) serve those related to the Lord.
Text 125: “Tadīya means the tulasī leaves, the devotees of Kṛṣṇa, the birthplace of Kṛṣṇa (Mathurā), and the Vedic literature Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Kṛṣṇa is very eager to see His devotee serve tulasī, Vaiṣṇavas, Mathurā and Bhāgavatam.
Text 126: “(31) One should perform all endeavors for Kṛṣṇa. (32) One should look forward to His mercy. (33) One should partake of various ceremonies with devotees — ceremonies like Lord Kṛṣṇa’s birthday or Rāmacandra’s birthday.
Text 127: “(34) One should surrender to Kṛṣṇa in all respects. (35) One should observe particular vows like kārttika-vrata. These are some of the sixty-four important items of devotional service.
Text 128: “One should associate with devotees, chant the holy name of the Lord, hear Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, reside at Mathurā and worship the Deity with faith and veneration.
Text 129: “These five limbs of devotional service are the best of all. Even a slight performance of these five awakens love for Kṛṣṇa.
Text 130: “ ‘With love and full faith one should worship the lotus feet of the Deity.
Text 131: “ ‘One should taste the meaning of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam in the association of pure devotees, and one should associate with the devotees who are more advanced than oneself and who are endowed with a similar type of affection for the Lord.
Text 132: “ ‘One should congregationally chant the holy name of the Lord and reside in Vṛndāvana.’
Text 133: “ ‘The power of these five principles is very wonderful and difficult to understand. Even without faith in them, a person who is offenseless can awaken his dormant love of Kṛṣṇa simply by being a little connected with them.’
Text 134: “When one is firmly fixed in devotional service, whether he executes one or many processes of devotional service, the waves of love of Godhead will awaken.
Text 135: “There are many devotees who execute only one of the nine processes of devotional service. Nonetheless, they get ultimate success. Devotees like Mahārāja Ambarīṣa execute all nine items, and they also get ultimate success.
Text 136: “ ‘Mahārāja Parīkṣit attained the highest perfection, shelter at Lord Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet, simply by hearing about Lord Viṣṇu. Śukadeva Gosvāmī attained perfection simply by reciting Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Prahlāda Mahārāja attained perfection by remembering the Lord. The goddess of fortune attained perfection by massaging the transcendental legs of Mahā-Viṣṇu. Mahārāja Pṛthu attained perfection by worshiping the Deity, and Akrūra attained perfection by offering prayers unto the Lord. Vajrāṅgajī [Hanumān] attained perfection by rendering service to Lord Rāmacandra, and Arjuna attained perfection simply by being Kṛṣṇa’s friend. Bali Mahārāja attained perfection by dedicating everything to the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa.’
Texts 137-139: “ ‘Mahārāja Ambarīṣa always engaged his mind at the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa, his words in describing the spiritual world and the Supreme Personality of Godhead, his hands in cleansing and washing the Lord’s temple, his ears in hearing topics about the Supreme Lord, his eyes in seeing the Deity of Lord Kṛṣṇa in the temple, his body in embracing Vaiṣṇavas or touching their lotus feet, his nostrils in smelling the aroma of the tulasī leaves offered to Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet, his tongue in tasting food offered to Kṛṣṇa, his legs in going to places of pilgrimage like Vṛndāvana and Mathurā or to the Lord’s temple, his head in touching the lotus feet of the Lord and offering Him obeisances, and his desires in serving the Lord faithfully. In this way Mahārāja Ambarīṣa engaged his senses in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. As a result, he awakened his dormant loving propensity for the Lord’s service.’
Text 140: “If a person gives up all material desires and completely engages in the transcendental loving service of Kṛṣṇa, as enjoined in the revealed scriptures, he is never indebted to the demigods, sages or forefathers.
Text 141: “ ‘One who has given up all material duties and taken full shelter at the lotus feet of Mukunda, who gives shelter to all, is not indebted to the demigods, great sages, ordinary living beings, relatives, friends, mankind or even his forefathers who have passed away.’
Text 142: “Although the pure devotee does not follow all the regulative principles of varṇāśrama, he worships the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore he naturally has no tendency to commit sin.
Text 143: “If, however, a devotee accidentally becomes involved in a sinful activity, Kṛṣṇa purifies him. He does not have to undergo the regulative form of atonement.
Text 144: “ ‘One who has given up everything and taken full shelter at the lotus feet of Hari, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is very dear to Kṛṣṇa. If he is involved in some sinful activity by accident, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is seated within everyone’s heart, removes his sins without difficulty.’
Text 145: “The path of speculative knowledge and renunciation is not essential for devotional service. Indeed, good qualities such as nonviolence and control of the mind and senses automatically accompany a devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa.
Text 146: “ ‘For one who is fully engaged in My devotional service, whose mind is fixed on Me in bhakti-yoga, the path of speculative knowledge and dry renunciation is not very beneficial.’
Text 147: “ ‘O hunter, good qualities like nonviolence, which you have developed, are not very astonishing, for those who are engaged in the Lord’s devotional service are never inclined to give pain to others because of envy.’
Text 148: “My dear Sanātana, I have now in detail described devotional service according to the regulative principles. Now hear from Me about spontaneous devotional service and its characteristics.
Text 149: “The original inhabitants of Vṛndāvana are attached to Kṛṣṇa spontaneously in devotional service. Nothing can compare to such spontaneous devotional service, which is called rāgātmikā bhakti. When a devotee follows in the footsteps of the devotees of Vṛndāvana, his devotional service is called rāgānugā bhakti.
Text 150: “ ‘When one becomes attached to the Supreme Personality of Godhead according to one’s natural inclination to love Him and is fully absorbed in thoughts of the Lord, that state is called transcendental attachment, and devotional service according to that attachment is called rāgātmikā, or spontaneous devotional service.’
Text 151: “The primary characteristic of spontaneous love is deep attachment for the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Absorption in thought of Him is a marginal characteristic.
Text 152: “Thus devotional service which consists of rāga [deep attachment] is called rāgātmikā, spontaneous loving service. If a devotee covets such a position, he is considered to be most fortunate.
Text 153: “If one follows in the footsteps of the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana out of such transcendental covetousness, he does not care for the injunctions or reasonings of śāstra. That is the way of spontaneous love.
Text 154: “ ‘Devotional service in spontaneous love is vividly expressed and manifested by the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana. Devotional service that accords with their devotional service is called rāgānugā bhakti, or devotional service following in the wake of spontaneous loving service.’
Text 155: “ ‘When an advanced, realized devotee hears about the affairs of the devotees of Vṛndāvana — in the mellows of śānta, dāsya, sakhya, vātsalya and mādhurya — he becomes inclined in one of these ways, and his intelligence becomes attracted. Indeed, he begins to covet that particular type of devotion. When such covetousness is awakened, one’s intelligence no longer depends on the instructions of śāstra [revealed scripture] or on logic and argument.’
Texts 156-157: “There are two processes by which one may execute this rāgānugā bhakti — external and internal. When self-realized, the advanced devotee externally remains like a neophyte and executes all the śāstric injunctions, especially those concerning hearing and chanting. But within his mind, in his original, purified, self-realized position, he serves Kṛṣṇa in Vṛndāvana in his particular way. He serves Kṛṣṇa twenty-four hours a day, all day and night.
Text 158: “ ‘The advanced devotee who is inclined to spontaneous loving service should follow the activities of a particular associate of Kṛṣṇa’s in Vṛndāvana. He should execute service externally as a regulative devotee as well as internally from his self-realized position. Thus he should perform devotional service both externally and internally.’
Text 159: “Actually the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana are very dear to Kṛṣṇa. If one wants to engage in spontaneous loving service, he must follow the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana and constantly engage in devotional service within his mind.
Text 160: “ ‘The devotee should always think of Kṛṣṇa within himself and should choose a very dear devotee who is a servitor of Kṛṣṇa in Vṛndāvana. One should constantly engage in topics about that servitor and his loving relationship with Kṛṣṇa, and one should live in Vṛndāvana. If one is physically unable to go to Vṛndāvana, he should mentally live there.’
Text 161: “Kṛṣṇa has many types of devotees — some are servants, some are friends, some are parents, and some are conjugal lovers. Devotees who are situated in one of these attitudes of spontaneous love according to their choice are considered to be on the path of spontaneous loving service.
Text 162: “ ‘My dear mother, Devahūti! O emblem of peace! My weapon, the disc of time, never vanquishes those for whom I am very dear — for whom I am the Supersoul, son, friend, spiritual master, well-wisher, worshipable Deity and desired goal. Since the devotees are always attached to Me, they are never vanquished by the agents of time.’
Text 163: “ ‘Let me offer my respectful obeisances again and again to those who always eagerly meditate upon the Supreme Personality of Godhead as a husband, son, friend, brother, father or intimate friend.’
Text 164: “If one engages in spontaneous loving service to the Lord, his affection for the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa gradually increases.
Text 165: “In the seed of affection, there is attachment which goes by two names, rati and bhāva. The Supreme Personality of Godhead comes under the control of such attachment.
Text 166: “That by which one can attain loving service to the Lord I have described in detail as the execution of devotional service, called abhidheya.
Text 167: “My dear Sanātana, I have briefly described the process of devotional service in practice, which is the means for obtaining love of Kṛṣṇa. It cannot be described broadly.”
Text 168: Whoever hears this description of the process of practical devotional service very soon attains shelter at the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa in love and affection.
Text 169: Praying at the lotus feet of Śrī Rūpa and Śrī Raghunātha, always desiring their mercy, I, Kṛṣṇadāsa, narrate Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, following in their footsteps.