HH Bhaktividyā Pūrṇa Svāmī lectures in Śrī Māyāpura, circa 2015
HH Bhaktividyā Pūrṇa Svāmī lectures in Śrī Māyāpura, circa 2015

Reading from Manu Saṁhitā [2.162-3]: "A brāhmana should always fear homage as if it were poison; and constantly desire to suffer scorn as though he would long for nectar. For he who is scorned nevertheless may sleep with an easy mind, awake with an easy mind, and with an easy mind walk here among men; but the scorner utterly perishes."

His Holiness Bhaktividyā Pūrṇa Mahārāja: So, you don't have to worry about 'They said this, we got to get them back...' No, you don't have to. You just go on, do your service, and because the person said it, they will - they will perish. That's the point. Because when you scorn somebody, you take on their karma. So actually the person who has been scorned has been benefited, so therefore he can sleep with an easy mind, he has just been relieved of more karma. His ego may be able to handle it or not, but that's why one has to be humble and tolerant and not expect respect. Then people can say whatever they like, and if they criticize, it is to your benefit because then they take all your bad qualities. So then they have benefited you, therefore then you feel kind towards them, you hope for their welfare. Then that will make them advance also.

Prabhu (1): They take the karma because they....

HH BVPS Mahārāja: ... have criticized. Whatever you criticize for... I mean, it's a typical scenario, is that you have one person or a group of persons criticizing another person or group of persons about  a quality or an activity. And you see, with time they do the same thing. Isn't it? Isn't that typical?

Prabhu (1): Yeah, yeah.

HH BVPS Mahārāja: Why is it typical? It is typical because the persons who criticize take on the karma of those persons in that area. So they take on that quality, that's why it's just typical that those who criticize after a while become like those who they criticize. One, it is in their consciousness. But it becomes in the consciousness, becomes fixed in the consciousness because they take the karma of that, that creates that. Let's say, the person acts in a particular way because of a particular mentality. So when you criticize them for that then you take that quality yourself, and you take those reactions. You take the reactions that caused that quality. Does that make some sense?

So, the other person is actually purified. So those persons who are highly critical of everyone, then they are doing great welfare work for all these people that they are criticizing. Of course, they don't do themselves much good, but they do to the others. But now, that's also, if you are like this, 'sleep with an easy mind.' If you react and then start to criticize back, then you take their qualities. So then neither is benefited. If you do like this: is they criticize you and you don't react and it's fine with you, then you are benefited, they are not benefitted. And, or if you go to the next level where they may criticize you, you don't react, but you become their well-wisher, then both are benefited. Like that. So that's the three alternatives you have in dealing with a critical attitude. Because by homage you may become proud, by proud then he becomes less tolerant. Right? Humility creates tolerance. Pride creates intolerance.

Prabhu (2): Maharaja, it is said to listen to critics...  from others... so it's better to leave the place because the mind becomes contaminated. So what what you said, it seems like it's about a very much qualified person who can, you know... Who does not accept that his own... doesn't touched by this... So what about this situation, those who are not on such level? I mean, in a situation when, okay, externally one does not respond to such criticism, but in the mind he feels some kind of...

HH BVPS Mahārāja: So, to that degree he is going to be caught up in it. And to that degree he is not then he won't be.

Prabhu (2): One becomes frustrated for something...

HH BVPS Mahārāja: To that degree that you are caught up in it then you will be affected by it, it's that simple. It's just like if I say, you say, 'Well, you are saying if you don't put your hand in the water then you won't get wet.' But if you put your hand a little bit in the water, then what happens? You get a little wet, you know. You put your whole arm in, then your whole arm is wet. If you jump in, then you are fully wet. So it's just how much you were involved, that much you will be affected. So then you try to be as minimally involved as possible, understanding that the goal is to be not involved at all. So from whatever point you are then that should be practiced. We may react strongly and then figure out, 'No, no...' and then relax. And then after a while you don't react strongly, but in the heart still something is there, and then you get rid of that. And then it comes to the point where it doesn't bother you.

From lecture on Manu Śikṣā Sāra, Bhaktivedānta Academy, Śrīdhāma Māyāpura, this passage starts at about 15 mins
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