Difficult Versus Unfavorable Family Life

Reading from Nectar of Instruction Study Guide (based on the essays of Bhaktivinoda Thakura): “But, when the home becomes unfavorable for his service, he then becomes eligible to leave home.”

HH BVPS Maharaja: So it’s an eligibility, to leave home. Not just you don’t like it in the home. Your wife drives you nuts, your kids drive you nuts, therefore you are eligible to leave home. No. That going nuts is not that eligibility. Means, it’s unfavorable. One could say, ‘Well, this is unfavorable.’ Is it unfavorable? Means, you are realizing that you are not going to be happy and enjoy in this environment, so how is it unfavorable? Do you understand? It’s unfavorable when you can’t do your service, you can’t connect things to Krishna, you don’t have the facility for it, that’s when it becomes unfavorable, not that it drives you nuts.

Prabhu (1): Then you should actually stay.

HH BVPS Maharaja: Yeah, just like the businessman, he is doing his business. The phone is going off the hook, he is talking on 2 phones at once, I have actually seen it, like that. And so he says, ‘This drives me nuts, I am going to drop this business. You know, it’s so hapening, it’s so dynamic, so much money is coming in, I can’t keep up, it’s driving me crazy, so I am just going to drop this!’ Right? Everybody would go, ‘Yeah… No, it’s a good point, yes…’ Right? So the point is is, he is engaging the senses, but engaging the senses means more you are exposed to going nuts. Just like the more you work at the business, the more the facility is there for becoming crazy because it’s more work. So the more the senses are engaged, the more opportunities there are to go nuts. So that’s not the reason.

It’s unfavorable for his service. Means, it was favorable and now it’s not favorable, that’s the point. So if you can do your service, it doesn’t change. Why are you going crazy? So that means, the balance is not right. So that’s not the problem of being a grihastha, that’s a problem that you are not applying yourself thoughtfully enough to being a grihastha. Because otherwise the balance in the householder and the renunciant is the same, you can find the balance in both. Yudhisthira was peaceful, Ambarisha Maharaja was peaceful, Prithu Maharaja was peaceful, they are all grihasthas. You are not going to get more management and more intense interaction than they all.

Prabhu (2): What would be the example of unfavorable situation?

HH BVPS Maharaja: Unfavorable situation? When your wife sells your Bhagavatam for tea biscuits, that’s unfavorable. You go to read your Bhagavatam, and you open it up, and you find a bunch of biscuits there. I’ve heard you can read tea leaves, but I’ve never heard you can read biscuits. Okay? Yes?

Prabhu (2): This thing has happened?

Prabhu (1): It’s sounds like it’s a real… real story.

HH BVPS Maharaja: It’s Prabhupada, his wife…

Prabhu (1): She did? I didn’t know…

HH BVPS Maharaja: She was one of the first ones to distribute his books. [Laughter] His wife was the first one to distribute his books, yeah. But somehow or another Prabhupada didn’t come back and say, ‘Double it.’ [Laughter] There was something wrong with it.

Prabhu (1): Oh my God. Okay.

Prabhu (3): Before we read Bhaktivinoda Thakura say, ‘As a support of devotional service, the householder should find a suitable wife.’ So what would be…

HH BVPS Maharaja: Yes. But she was suitable. It brought him to the point of renunciation. So that’s suitable. Or, if they can cooperate together and all that, that’s suitable.

(From HH Bhaktividya Purna Svami Maharaja’s lecture on Nectar of Instruction, 2nd Dec 2011, Sridham Mayapur)

Lecture audio

This excerpt starting 23:50

Photo Courtesy of Madireksana dd

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