Response to ‘Guru Book Rebuttal’ by Swamiji
Posted on April 20, 2015 · Posted in Guru

In July of 2008 a new American devotee candidate from Ohio visited us in Baltimore. He asked us a question from the ‘Guru Book Rebuttal’ presented on our website. Because we are very busy, we had not reviewed this entry, but we answered his questions. Upon reading the ‘Guru Book Rebuttal’ we felt very unhappy finding such offensive language and philosophy against our publication. Our duty as a devotee should be to follow what the scriptures say and not be influenced by personal opinion or the whims of a mortal person. Even if a spiritual master comes down in the unbroken chain of disciplic succession his statements should be based on the ancient scriptures. One may wonder what the scriptures are and what is their origin? The scriptures have directly emanated from the breath of the Supreme Lord and are written by Srila Vyasadeva. We have answered this question clearly in the introduction to our Bhagavad-Gita page 6 readily available for anyone interested. Sanskrit is the language of God and every scripture that emanated from Him were spoken in Sanskrit and Srila Vyasadeva wrote them in Sanskrit. Books written in other languages cannot be called scriptures. Following scriptures blindly also will not lead one to the spiritual world. Books written in Bengali, Hindi, English, Spanish or any other language, even though substantiated by Sanskrit scriptures, are only used as medium to preach to people who speak those languages.

A real Vaisnava is very meek and humble, unless pushed to make compromises in Vedic scriptures. A real Vaisnava feels joy following and encouraging others to follow Vedic scriptures. See Bhagavad-Gita 16-23.24. One has to have firm and unflinching faith in the Vedic scriptures to receive success on the spiritual platform. The definition of faith is found in the Markandeya Purana thus, nigamacarya vakyesu bhakti sraddheti, “Having firm and full dedication in, and following the statements of the ancient Vedic scriptures and in the scripturally authentic Spiritual Master, is called faith.” A person reaps results on the spiritual path per their quality and amount of faith they have in their heart.
As stated in the Skanda Purana:

mantre tirthe dvije deve daivajne bhesaje gurau
yadrsi bhavana yasya siddhir bhavati tadrsi

“Per one’s faith chanting mantras, observing holy places, serving traditional Brahmanas, worshipping the deity of God, in predictions of an astrologer, in herbal medicine and in a scripturally authentic Spiritual Master, one reaps results accordingly.”

A scripturally authentic Spiritual Master develops a spiritually inclined candidate by removing the deeply rooted ignorance from the heart and by rewarding transcendental knowledge. One may wonder what kind of knowledge a Guru should be expert in? To this Sripada Sankaracharya states, jnanam sastrokta padarthanam parijnanam, vijnanam tu sastrato jnatanam tathaiva svanubhava karanam,  ”Real knowledge is the knowledge that is obtained from the ancient Vedic scriptures and practicing and experiencing the information learnt from the Vedic scriptures is called realized knowledge.” A true Spiritual Master is expert in spiritual science, which is why the scriptures recommend having full faith in the Supreme Lord and an equal level of faith in their scripturally authentic Spiritual Master. The Svetasvatara Upanisad also states, yasya deve para-bhaktir, please see the verse and its translation in our Svetasvatara Upanisad book.

The Spiritual Master should be perfectly pure, Brahmana born, learned in the Vedic scriptures and connected to the Supreme Lord in the unbroken chain of disciplic succession. As stated in the Mundaka Upanisad, tad vijnanartham sa gurum evabhi gacchet samit-panih srotriyam bramanistham, “To learn spiritual knowledge one should humbly approach a Spiritual Master who is born in the unbroken traditional chain of a Brahmana dynasty, expert in scriptural knowledge, is a real devotee and should serve him with full faith. By doing so he will impart knowledge about the Absolute Truth properly.” The word srotriyam stated in this text is very important. This word is defined in the Manu Smruti thus:

janmana brahmano jneyah samskarad dvija ucyate
vidyaya yati vipratvam tribhih srotriya sabda-bhak

“By taking birth from Brahmana parents one is called a Brahmana. When he becomes purified by going through the thread giving ceremony he is called twice born; when he becomes expert in Vedas he is called a Vipra (learned Brahmana); and upon acquiring these three qualities he is called a srotriya Brahmana.”

One may wonder why the Spiritual Master is given so much importance in Vedic scriptures? In answer to this the Padma Purana, Bhumikhanda states:

sarvesam eva lokanam yatha suryah prakasakah
guruh prakasakas tad-vac chisyanam buddhi-danatah

“Just as the sun removes the darkness from this world by spreading its illuminating rays, similarly the Spiritual Master removes the darkness of ignorance of a student’s inner world by rewarding spiritual knowledge selflessly, which is why he is honored in every way.”

The Guru Gita also states thus:

sosanam papa-pankasya dipanam jnana-tejasam
guroh padodakam samyak samsararnava tarakam

“The water used to wash a Guru’s feet cleans and destroys punk-like material sin and rewards the bright-light-like transcendental knowledge that removes the darkness of ignorance, which easily takes one across this material existence of rebirth and death.”


sarva-tirthavagahasya samprapnoti phalam narah
guroh padambujau smrtva jalam sirasi dharayet

“Whatever merit is received by bathing in all the holy places in this world can also be gotten by remembering the two lotus feet of the Spiritual Master while placing the water that washed his feet over their head.”

The Yogavasisthya states:

yah snto ‘sita-dhiyo sadhu-sangati gangaya
kim tasya danaih kim tirthaih kim tapobhih kim adhvaraih

“A person who does not commit any offense and has faithfully established a connection with a scripturally authentic Spiritual Master and associates with him guilelessly, because the Spiritual Master is a pure devotee of the Lord and his association is as pure as Ganges there is no need to give charity openly to anyone, nor necessary to go to holy places, nor necessary to follow any vow of austerities, perform any penance, or perform any sacrifice.”

The Srimad Bhagavatam also states:

bhavad vidha bhagavatas tirtha-bhuta svayam vibho
tirthi kurvanti tirthani svantah sthena gada-bhrta

“Pure devotees are so holy that they even purify places of pilgrimages, because Lord Sri Krsna resides in their hearts in His manifested form.”

These are some reasons why a scripturally authentic Spiritual Master is worshipped equal to God. Occasionally, for whatever reason, a student may unknowingly commit an offense against a scripturally authentic Spiritual Master, but such offenses can be cleansed by following his instructions and by worshipping him. The logic kupa-khanana nyaya, “The logic of digging a well,” from the Nyaya Sastra states that, just as a well digger kills many worms and insects while digging the well and becomes dirty from touching mud, he cleans himself by washing with the water from that well. Similarly a student who unknowingly committed an offense can become purified by servicing the Spiritual Master in good faith. If the Spiritual Master is scripturally authentic it is always best to be careful while servicing the Guru and to not commit offense.

One may wonder, if a scripturally authentic Spiritual Master is so important why do people in general not take shelter of him? Why do so many end up following an inauthentic Spiritual Master? In answer the Subhasitani states:

kakah padma-vane ratim na kurute hamso na kupodake
murkhah pandita-sangame na ramate daso na simhasane
ku-stri sajjana-sangame na ramate nicam-janam sevate
ya yasya prakrtih svabhava-janita kenapi na tyajyate

“Just as crows do not enjoy in a forest of lotuses; as swans are not happy drinking well water, as fools (feel demeaned near a learned person) do not associate with learned people; as servants cannot sit upon the seat of the boss or a king; as loose women are compelled to leave ideal people to enjoy the company of loose men, similarly a person whose nature is wicked does not care to get a scripturally authentic Spiritual Master, because they do not have sufficient pious merits from their previous life and thus they remain bereft of obtaining a real Guru, because avoiding good is in their nature.”

Lord Krsna states in the Bhagavad Gita, sadrsam cestate svasyah prakrter jnanavan api prakrtim yanti bhutani, “Even learned people act according to the three modes of material nature, which develops habits in a person. Thus all living entities are compelled to follow their nature (habits).” Therefore saintly association is very potent, provided saints are dealt with properly. Their association can change anyone’s nature, whether they be men, women, birds, beasts, aquatics, reptiles or immovable living entities, all of which can become liberated by the correct saintly association. This is the power of saintly association. For example, among men, Valmiki and Narada Muni are human examples whose lives were changed within one lifetime and obtained the blessings of the Supreme Lord. Among women, Savari received the association of Sage Matanga, from which she developed a serving attitude toward Lord Rama and thus received His blessing. Among birds, Sampati received the association of Sage Chandrama, by whose association he developed the attitude of serving Lord Rama, which influenced him to help the Lord’s monkey soldiers by showing them where Mother Sita was, thus he obtained liberation. A crow named Bhusundi received the association of Lomasa Rishi, by whose blessings; he received spontaneous love for the Lord. Also, the squirrel that helped Lord Rama construct a bridge to Sri Lanka received Lord Hanuman’s association and thus received the blessings of the Lord. Among beasts Sugriva and Jambavan received the saintly association of Lord Hanuman and received nearness of Lord Rama. Among aquatics, all living entities living under water at that time in the ocean that helped Lord Rama and His army while they were crossing the ocean to reach Sri Lanka received liberation. Among reptiles, the crocodile that fought with the elephant Gajendra, as described in Srimad Bhagavatam , received the association of the devotee Gajendra and thus received liberation. Among immovable beings, Ahilya, who was turned into stone by a curse from her husband, Gautama, was transformed to her original form and received liberation. These are examples of the power of receiving saintly association positively.

One may wonder why is it that all people do not receive a perfect saintly person to associate with? In answer the scriptures state one has to be blessed by the Supreme Lord to obtain saintly association. If one has not received saintly association in their human existence, their life is said to have been wasted. That is why Saint Tulasidas states, sadhu sangati paiye papa-rasi nasaiye, “Try to obtain saintly association to remove their acquired sins.” But such association is obtained only when one is truly blessed by the Lord. As stated in the Ramayana, binu hari krpa milahin nahi santa, “Without being blessed by the Lord one cannot obtain a correct saint to associate with.” One may wonder what is saintly association? The very sight or just beholding a real devotee is called saintly association. Listening to his words is better and following his instructions is the most beneficial. One should have the right attitude and positive mood while associating with a saintly person because a negative attitude will implicate one with offense. One may think they don’t need saintly association and they can receive the Lord’s blessings without any saintly association? To this Tulasidas states, binu satsang bibeka na hoi, “Without the correct saintly association one cannot develop the right quality of intelligence required for liberation.” The Prasanga Ratnavali describes the mood of a saintly person thus:

anjalisthani puspani vasayanti kara-dvayam
aho sumanasam pritir vama-daksinayoh sama

“Just as flowers placed in cup made by joining both hands together make both hands smell equally fragrant, similarly saintly association gives equal benefit to both good and bad people. Just as flowers don’t differentiate between left and right hands, neither does a saintly person.”

Flowers do not protest a person picking with their right hand and transferring them to their left and they do not give extra appreciation to the left where shelter is provided. But transfers its fragrance equally to both the hands thus making them smell equally nice. This is similar to how a real devotee deals with others. He gives his association to everyone regardless of their good or bad nature and helps them develop spiritually so Krsna loves them. Just as an ax that cut a sandalwood tree takes on its fragrance, similarly a real devotee, although given difficulty by a wicked person, still prays to the Lord to bless them. We humbly pray to the Lord to forgive the offensive writer/writers of guru rebuttal for a real Vaisnava cannot put such offensive mood in writing. The spiritual principle is that it is best to act properly to receive blessings rightly, therefore why would a person act wrongly in hope of receiving blessings from a saint?

One may wonder what causes a person to be considered wicked. In answer the Prasanga Ratnavali states:

para-vade dasa-vadanah para-randhra niriksane
sahasraksah sad-vrtta vitta-harane bahu-sahasrarjuno nicah

“People who (act like the ten headed Ravana) magnify faults of others and enjoy doing so, people who (act like Indra with a thousand eyes) seek and investigate others faults, and people who (act as Sahasrabahu) meticulously plan to loot the dignity or wealth of a gentle and pious person are called wicked.”

Such wicked people use their power, strength, wealth and reputation to create trouble for others. They act as malicious as death personified, who tortures the sinners. Similarly the wicked create trouble for saintly people until their death. As stated by Vyasadeva in the Prasanga Ratnavali:

na vina para-vadena ramate durjano janah
kakah sarva-rasan-bhunkte bina ‘medyam na tusyati

“Although crows eat all types of palatable foods, they do not feel satisfied until they eat meat (or undesirable things), similarly it doesn’t matter what nice program they follow, wicked people do not feel satisfied unless they fault-find, criticize, insult or put someone else down.”

The Niti Sastra also states:

vidya vivadaya dhanam madaya
sakti paresanu para-pidanaya
khalasya sadho viparitam etat
jnanaya danaya tu para-pidanaya

“The difference between a true saintly person and a wicked one is that saintly acquires knowledge to be wise and to help lead others to liberation whereas the wicked learns knowledge to argue/criticize/put others down or to fault find in others. The saintly acquires wealth to donate whereas wicked acquires wealth to show off proudly. If saintly person had physical strength they use in protecting others whereas wicked used to torture others. Thus saintly person is diametrically opposed to the wicked.”

Saintly and wicked people are both born into this world, similarly lotuses and leaches take birth in water. A lotus’ fragrance is soothing, whereas leaches create disturbance by sucking blood. Similar is the difference between devotees and debauchees. Sometimes it seems as though real devotees find faults in others and criticizes them, how is that explained? In answer the Nyaya Sastra states, sad vaidyasya pathya kupathya vicar, “Just as a qualified Ayurvedic doctor while prescribing medicine instructs the patient what to eat and what not to eat for the desired result, similarly a real devotee gives constructive criticism or chastisement to correct/cure a person’s bad attitude and alert them as to how to avoid developing bad qualities. Just as rainwater enters the Karmanasa River and becomes untouchable and impure, whereas the same rainwater entering the Ganges River becomes liberating and purifying, similarly association with wicked people degrades a person whereas association of a pure person uplifts them. Honey is healthy and good, and so is butter. Both are good for health. But if mixed in equal proportion and consumed on a regular basis the combination is unhealthy. As stated in the Rasendra Sarasangraha:

ayorajah slaksna-pistam madhuna saha yojitam
asmarim vinihanty asu mutra-krccham ca darunam
madyam amla-rasam caiva tyajet lohasya sevakah

“Honey is beneficial for health and if consumed mixed with Lohabhasma, a powdered form of medicated iron, it cures every category of urine disease and also helps in removing gallstones. But if that same honey contacts wine or sour things it reacts in reverse for ones health.”

Our endeavor is sincere and we have seriously tried to bring out what we think is right for one’s spiritual uplifting and put it in our Guru Nirnaya Dipika. Those who are sincere seekers will appreciate our endeavor and will follow the ancient scriptures presented in the book. But the insincere will find fault in it because they want to be Gurus and take their followers to hell with them. As stated in the Saradusanam:

maksika vranam icchanti dosam icchanti durjanah
bhramarah puspam icchanti gunam icchanti sadhavah
guna-gana gumphita granthe mrgayati dosam khalo na guna-jatam
manimaya mandira-madhye pasyati hi pipilika chidram

“Just as flies seek a wound on a person, similarly wicked rascals search for faults in everything. Just as a bumblebee seeks fragrant flowers, similarly the pious with saintly qualities seek out good qualities in everything.” Even though our Guru Nirnaya Dipika book is filled with ancient Vedic scriptures and is completely transcendental, still the wicked fabricate faults in it and exhort their fallaciousness to others and the like-minded. The position of such people are like a wicked pilgrim that goes to a gorgeous temple but before appreciating it, looks for an ant hole filled with dirt. How unfortunate the wicked are, just see!

Sometimes lowborn people adopt spiritual life and wear devotee’s garbs, and unless trained properly, because of their low nature they think everyone except them is not a devotee. As stated in the Niti Sastra, adhanena dhanam praptam trnavat manyate jagat, “If a person with a low nature obtains some wealth or good education they become narcissistic and consider everyone else completely insignificant.” They are likened to a small river in the rainy season that becomes flooded and inundates villages and towns in its way, but dries up just after the rainy season. Contrary to such people, are the pious saintly people whose nature is diametrically opposed. As stated in the Nitisatakam, para-guna-paramanun parvati-krtya nityam nija-hrdi vikasantah santi santah kiyantah, “Real devotees take even a very tiny good quality of a person and greatly magnify it, and they feel very pleased by doing so.” The language and mood presented in the guru rebuttal writing presented by those against our book entitled, The Guru Nirnaya Dipika, is very offensive and the translations of their Bengali write up is wrong. Therefore, without going into such offensive matter, we present that a Brahmana is he or she who is born through the right parentage and possesses the qualities of an authentic Brahmana. As stated in the Meru Tantra:

brahma-viryam brahma-ksetram samskarad brahma sambhavah
brahmanacaranad brahma vidyabhir brahmano bhaved

“A Brahmana is he who is born from a Brahmana father and Brahmana mother and has gone through the sacred thread ceremony and has developed all brahminical qualities and is expert in the Vedas and knows the Absolute Truth.”

We are not envious of anyone in any way and we understand how envious people develop enmity towards us, as is seen through allegations presented in their write ups. About twenty years ago a disciple of one of our American god brothers developed hostile attitude and argued with us to the point where we told him, “Even if we sleep with five hundred women a day, still we are better than your so called Guru in every way.” We do not perform any wrong things and our statement presented here or any other books hold true at all times and that devotee can read it on our website. As stated by Srila Vyasadeva:

asamyato dvijah pujyo na ca sudro jitendriyah
ko dustam gam parityajya duhyad silvatim kharim

“A qualitative Brahmana remains worshipable even if he has some faults in him, but not a lowborn devotee whose senses are under control, because no one in this world milks a female donkey because she is gentle and leaves a cow aside because she is naughty.”

Kaliyuga is advancing day-after-day and the quality of spiritual life is diminishing day-after-day. That is why even in the Gaudiya Matha we now find many non-Brahmana born devotees occupying the guru position. Previously this was not so-only Brahmana born devotees or Kayastha born devotees had functioned as Gurus. Most devotees don’t like quoting ancient scriptures anymore, they only quote Bengali, Tamil, Hindi or other material languages to substantiate their position. What will happen in the future pertaining to spiritual life in Kaliyuga is stated in Srimad Bhagavatam thus:

sudrah prati-grhisyanti tapo-veso’pi jivinah
dharmam vaksanti adhrmajnah adhiruhyanti tamasan

“Many lowborn Sudras will adopt spiritual life and live like austere devotees and will speak scriptures eloquently, but in their heart they will be irreligious and not have the required faith in spiritual life. Thus they will mislead the innocent public.”

We are passing through this critical time. Mercifully Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu has come down to liberate the innocent by giving the chanting of the Holy Name-Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare / Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare. If we simply follow this rule we will surely be liberated. But if we desire to become Gurus we have to follow guidelines stated in the ancient Vedic scriptures. Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu followed ancient Vedic scriptures and everyone coming in His chain did so, so why do we want to break that tradition now? Anyone can become Vaisnava and chant and receive liberation, but to become Guru there are rules. We should not become a headache to our divine Master Srila Prabhupada. As he had stated, angara sata-dhautena manam na jayate, “Even if washed hundreds of times the dirtiness of charcoal cannot be removed.” He further stated that he was trying wash charcoal like people by teaching Krsna conscious philosophy.

Srila Sridhara Swami on several occasions had told us to join him and become an acharya under him and initiate people everywhere. But we had told him that we are already initiated and have not broken spiritual rules therefore there is no need for us to take a re-initiation from him. But many of our god brothers, even after taking three initiations, took re-initiation because they wanted to become Gurus to obtain money and respect from innocent people. Can anyone in this world even conceive what treatment they would receive after their death? No Vedic scripture gives the answer to this question. Let their initiated followers decide about the answer to this question. Moreover one of our god brothers is telling his disciples that he is unable to take them to Krsna, he can take them to Srila Prabhupada. No Acharya, no spiritual teacher, no Guru, no Vaisnava from any Sampradaya ever had said this before. No spiritualist in the Indian civilization ever said this before but it is being said in our Guru Parampara. Why? This we have answered in our Guru Nirnaya Dipika vividly. If you are interested to know more please visit us personally. We will not answer you through e-mail. Jai Sri Radhe.

Krsna Balaram Swami

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EDITOR’S NOTE: As a real Vaisnava, Swamiji writes back to the American caucasion born B.G. Narasingha Maharaja and his disciple’s refutations against the whole age old Vedic civilization. In the GURU NIRNAYA DIPIKA, Swamiji quoted from 90 Vedic authorities irrefutably accepted in Vedic civilization. The book GURU NIRNAYA DIPIKA is presented in Devanagari Sanskrit and English translations and no one until today has brought out refutations from any authorized Vedic scriptures against the GURU NIRNAYA DIPIKA. If you read Swamiji’s reply in its entirety to their speculated refutation, you will find out who is actually offensive by nature.