Nectar of Devotion Thematic #1

NECTAR OF DEVOTION THEMATIC STUDY, SASTRA CAKSUS YEAR 2, LECTURE #1, 15th Sep 2011

  • Chronological and thematic study.
  • Vedic education and theology is always practiced. Academic and practical always go together.
  • Formerly in the West the church had to authorize teachers, even for secular subjects.
  • The rank of a teacher was formerly determined by how much they could affect the lives of their students, not simply teaching a skill.

  • The 6 themes of the Nectar of Devotion 1) Definition of pure devotional service; 2) Guru-padashraya; 3) development from sraddha to prema; 4) the 9 limbs of bhakti; 5) the 10 offenses against the Holy Name; 6) the 6 principles of surrender.
  • Only first 19 chapters of the Nectar of Devotion will be included in this study. Later chapters will be integrated along with the study of Caitanya-caritamrta.
THE DEFINITION OF PURE DEVOTIONAL SERVICE
  • Pure devotional service is free from karma and jnana. That means, we start with devotional service, but we can engage karma and jnana.
  • Spiritual has senses, activities, needs and desires, but they are all connected to the Lord.
  • Spiritual is our natural state, material is artificial.
  • If we are interested in spiritual life, we have to give up all social considerations (karma) and speculations (jnana).
  • If there is no desire, there will be no inclination for karma and jnana.
  • Devotional service mixed with karma and jnana is dangerous, therefore one has to carefully study the science to be able to distinguish.
  • The person in passion actually suffers more than one in ignorance.
  • Anushilanam is cultivation to engage the mind and body in devotional service, and disengage it from material activities.
  • Svarupa-lakshana means cultivating activities exclusively meant for the pleasure of the Lord.
  • Automatic means that if we endeavor with the proper understanding of what uttama-bhakti is, it will come automatically.
  • If we are not the material doer, we are not the spiritual doer either; we are an assistant to either spiritual or material energy.
  • Tattva is only meant for the expression of rasa.
  • Even the intellectuals are only looking for a taste; if somebody brings out taste in another intellectual perspective, everyone will drop the old one.
  • In Sri and Madhva sampradayas discussions on this level would only be had by the top scholars because they do not see contradictory things happening at once as in the acintya-bhedabheda-tattva.
  • Unless one is extremely pious, one will not be able to properly work with the material energy and get results.
  • Suddha-bhakti is not just activity that accidentally pleases Krishna, it must have the intention to please Him.
  • Those who discuss and preach mixed devotional service are more dangerous than the atheists.

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