A Treatise; Making a “Case” for the Reconstitution of Srila Prabhupada’s “Mission”
“My Mission Is” According to Srila Prabhupada. Part 2.
Lecture Bhagavad-gita 7.1— Los Angeles, December 2, 1968:
“People are generally demonic, more or less. One may be fifty percent demon, another may be eighty percent demon, buteveryone in this material world is a demon.”
The manner of dealing with “miscreants”, today in Kali-yuga, where there is not too much obedience to the regulative principles of scriptures, is different than it was during Krishna’s appearance 5,000 years ago.
When Lord Caitanya appeared, 500 years ago, just a moment in universal time, He also had these same two missions.
Srila Prabhupada writes about Lord Caitanya in the Introduction to Srimad-Bhagavatam Canto 1:
“The Lord had a very high estimation of the affections of the damsels of Vrajabhümi (Vrndavana) for Krishna, and in appreciation of their unalloyed service to the Lord, once Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu chanted the holy names of the gopis (cowherd girls) instead of the names of the Lord. At this time some of His students, who were also disciples, came to see Him, and when they saw that the Lord was chanting the names of the gopis, they were astonished. Out of sheer foolishness they asked the Lord why He was chanting the names of the gopis and advised Him to chant the name of Krishna. The Lord, who was in ecstasy, was thus disturbed by these foolish students. He chastised them and chased them away. The students were almost the same age as the Lord, and thus they wrongly thought of the Lord as one of their peers. They held a meeting and resolved that they would attack the Lord if He dared to punish them again in such a manner. This incident provoked some malicious talks about the Lord on the part of the general public.
When the Lord became aware of this, He began to consider the various types of men found in society. He noted that especially the students, professors, fruitive workers, yogis, nondevotees, and different types of atheists were all opposed to the devotional service of the Lord. He thought,
” ‘My mission is to deliver all the fallen souls of this age.’
But if they commit offenses against Me, thinking Me to be an ordinary man, they will not benefit. If they are to begin their life of spiritual realization, they must some way or another offer obeisances unto Me. Thus, the Lord decided to accept the renounced order of life (sannyasa) because people in general were inclined to offer respects to a sannyasi.”
In Caitanya-caritamrta Madhya-lila, Sanatana Gosvami is teaching the nature of a sadhu. Caitanya-caritamrta Madhya-lila 20.98-105:
“Putting a straw in his mouth and bowing down, Sanatana Gosvami clasped the lotus feet of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and humbly spoke as follows:
Sanatana Gosvami said,
‘I was born in a low family, and my associates are all low- class men. I myself am fallen and am the lowest of men. Indeed, I have passed my whole life fallen in the well of sinful materialism. I do not know what is beneficial for me or what is detrimental. Nonetheless, in ordinary dealings people consider me a learned scholar, and I am also thinking of myself as such. Out of Your causeless mercy, You have delivered me from the materialistic path. Now, by the same causeless mercy, please tell me what my duty is. Who am I? Why do the threefold miseries always give me trouble? If I do not know this, how can I be benefited? Actually, I do not know how to inquire about the goal of life and the process for obtaining it. Being merciful upon me, please explain all these truths.’
Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said,
‘Lord Krishna has bestowed His full mercy upon you so that all these things are known to you. … Since you possess Lord Krishna’s potency, you certainly know these things. However, it is the nature of a sadhu to inquire. Although he knows these things, the sadhu inquires for the sake of strictness.’”
In this reference, Caitanya Mahaprabhu is affirming that,
“You (Sanatana Goswami), are authorized by Krishna. Therefore, you have come to help Me.”
Lord Caitanya affirmed that Sanatana Goswami was sent by Lord Krishna to assist Him, “you have come for My help”; even though Sanatana considered himself as very fallen. As fallen as we all were before we met Srila Prabhupada, we accepted him as our spiritual master by making some vows. As neophyte as we were, and as fallen as we were when we met him, Srila Prabhupada still acknowledged that Krishna had sent us to him, in order to “help” him fulfill the instructions he received from his spiritual master.