Lessons From The Life of Srila Bhakti Vinoda Thakura

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Today is the appearance day of one of the great Acharayas of our disciplic succession, ‘Srila Thakur Bhakti Vinod.’ And if we read the songs of Sri Bhakti Vinod Thakur or we study his autobiography or his writings, the amazing discovery that we will find is how he always presents himself and thinks of himself as the most ordinary common person. Not that “Oh! I am parahamsa acarya.” Sometimes in the most intimate moods of ecstasy, he actually reveals his eternal position in the spiritual world and how he descended to this world by the order of Srimati Radha Rani and Krishna to assist in Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s mission, but generally he is presenting himself for two reasons in a very common way as Prahlad Maharaj says: one is he presents himself as a conditioned soul, reaching out for the mercy of the great Vaishnavas to teach us by his example how we should be. Because just like the example is given when a teacher wants to teach the classmates A, B, C or basic addition and subtraction, the teacher will go to the blackboard and say “This is the lesson how to make an A. First you make line this way, then you make line this way and then you connect the two lines with a line in the middle. That is A.” Now, the teacher is going through the whole exercise in front of the student. It is not the teacher needs to learn how to make ‘A’ but is going through the exercise the same way a student would, to teach a student how to learn, how to make A and B and C and D and all of these letters. So, in the same the great devotees of the Lord, their mercy is that they teach us how to perfect our lives, so they actually go through the basic standard devotional practices by which we can learn how to be devotees and they pray in such a way to teach us how to pray.

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