FOLLOWING MULTIPLE CONCEPTS IN DEVOTION – DEMERITS!
A devotee (Name hidden) asked like this:
“I am a BBA student. Today, I read your post that said that we should have only one initiating guru. I am an ISKCON devotee. Many other college friends are the devotees of another spiritual personality (Name hidden). When I give them the books of Srila Prabhupada, they give me the books of the miracles of that spiritual person. They say, that guru was god and he will fulfil the prayers of each and every devotee. When I read those books, I am confused whether to believe those miracles or not, as he also write quotes from Bhagavad Gita and speak of Radha Krishna lilas very well. When I told about this to a prabhu in our temple, he says that we should read the books of Prabhupada only. why he said so??? Is it wrong to read the spiritual books by other gurus also? Because, they are also speaking about god. pl guide me.”
What that Prabhu said was true about following multiple concepts in devotion. There are valid reasons for this.
If your purpose of reading the books is just to enhance the knowledge about God, but not to be serious in devotion and becoming the dear devotee of God, you can read any number of books on God. Because, your target is just knowing about different concepts, not to improve in devotion.
(The devotional books that are the gems of India – A review! READ HERE!)
But, if your target is getting the mercy of God, you should stick to a single concept.
If you like to follow the path shown by Sri Caitanya Maha Prabhu, you can read the books of Srila Prabhupada alone.
If you like to follow the path shown by Sri Vaishnavam, you can read the books of Sri Ramanujacharya.
If your target is to become one in brahmam, ie, attaining mukti, you can read the books of Sri Sankaracharya and his successors.
But, do not confuse by reading and following multiple concepts in devotion.
During the initial days before choosing your preferred path, you might have read many concepts. But, at a point, cut everything and stick to a preferred path and follow till you die.
Life is only once. Our life time is also very short. The time that we can allot to learn about Krishna is also very short. So, practically, there will be no time to read all concepts in this birth.
(Why In India many gods are worshiped contrary to other countries? READ HERE!)
In case, we read many authors about spirituality, we will end up in confusion.
Anyone can speak of Krishna, including a thief. It needs memory power, speaking talent and some books. But, not all are gurus.
Particularly, there are so many self made SPIRITUAL PERSONALITIES in this world who do not come under a bonafide guru-disciple succession and claim themselves as guru. Just because one speaks attractively, we should not consider him as guru. Because, anyone can memorize certain verses from the scriptures and speak attractively. If they pay money, any media will release advertisements and coverage about them.
So, becoming popular in spirituality is very easy in this world now a days as the people are ready to be deceived and to pay to get any material benefits.
A bonafide guru must come under a bonafide sampradaya; A bonafide guru speaks only those that was spoken by his spiritual master and sastras, and does not manufacture new concepts. A bonafide guru has perfect sense control.
And, a bonafide guru teaches you self realisation and God consciousness. Other things are not expected from him. A bonafide guru will always say that he is the servant of Lord and his guru.
(Why India has no uniformity in religious and family customs and practices? READ HERE!)
So, when you come across so many concepts about spirituality, please note the above points and decide.
When we study only one course in a college, we can perform well. If we do many contrary courses at a time, can we shine in all these courses? Impossible. We can not do well in all the courses.
That is why, we have to follow one spiritual concept at a time.
If you like to get a degree, you study in only one college and syllabus. Then, why should you follow different paths to get God?
There are hundreds of spiritual and devotional concepts in this world.
If you start to read various concepts, there will be no end at all, and you will one day become mad and you will fall back in the hands of maya or you will become an atheist losing your faith in the concept of God itself.
So, if you want to proceed peacefully and decisively in devotional life, follow ONLY ONE CONCEPT at a time.
(Why devotees call others as Prabhuji as only Krishna is Prabhu? READ HERE!)
You can compromise in buying vegetables. But, you should never compromise in following a spiritual path.
Particularly, you must be very careful in internet. The people are bewildered what to read and what not to. There are some genuine sites and imitations also that pretend and divert you to different concepts.
Anyone can ‘fool’ anyone now a days. The devotees of Krishna should be very intelligent, selective and very cautious in choosing the sources of learning and associating. If you are not strict in this matter, you can not grow in Krishna Consciousness. There should be no compromise for the sake of friends, relatives, etc. For example, Read all the books of Srila Prabhupada that are sufficient to take you to Krishna! This life time will be insufficient to read and understand Prabhupada’s books and other books based on his teachings. Then, why should we scatter our attention?
If you are comfortable with the revered way devotional practices, follow Sri Ramanujacharya.
But, follow only one path at a time IF YOUR TARGET IS GOING BACK TO GODHEAD, KRISHNA.
All the best.
(Why the scriptures claim many Supreme Gods that confuses my devotion to Krishna? READ HERE!)