Bhakti Sandarbha – Introduction and Overview. PPT and recordings of this class are available at http://tinyurl.com/6-sandarbhas
Discussion Highlights: Introduction and Overview Themes 1-10, Lessons 1-24, Texts 1-340: 1) Criteria of complete methodology for realization of the Absolute [Lessons 1-9, Texts 1-120] 2) The nature of devotional service (ds) [Lessons 10-12, Texts 121-164] 3) Unalloyed devotion culminates into natural attraction [Lesson 13, Texts 165-178] 4) Devotees as the cause of attaining devotion [Lesson 14, Texts 179-187] 5) Characteristics of devotees [Lesson 15, Texts 188-202] 6) Devotees as the cause of progress on the path [Lesson 16, Texts 203-213] 7) Awareness in the form of direct worship [Lesson 17, Texts 214-234] 8) Vaidhi-bhakti-impelled by two types of injunctions [Lessons 18-21, Texts 235-309] 9) Raganuga-Bhakti – The most confidential wisdom – Conclusions [Lessons 22-24, Texts 310-340]
Bhakti sandarba is 5th of 6 sandarbas of Srila Jiva Goswami. Krishna Sandarba deals with Sambandha, defining Lord in His aspect as Paramatma, Bhagavan Sri Krishna, the original personality of Godhead.
The present one, Bhakti Sandarbha, deals with the abhidheya, the method or means to realize Bhagavan Sri Krishna – Sadhana Bhakti, same is explained by Srila RupaGoswami in Nectar of Devotion (Bhakti Rasamrta Sindhu), here in Bhakti Sandarbha subject is expanded greatly.
First four Sandarbhas deal with sambandha jnana, knowledge of relationship with Bhagavan.
Charu prabhus book talks about Communication between matter and spirit through Bhakti process – Abhideya is the process.
Final 6th one is Priti Sandarbha – Supreme goal of human life – Krishna prema bhakti – Love of Godhead as the prayojana, ultimate goal, higer than liberation.
Bhakti yoga is higher than Karma yoga, Jnana yoga, Astanga yoga, these three yogas unless until come to bhakti level whole process is incomplete. Bhakti yoga is completely independent of other paths, one can directly take up bhakti yoga.
Bhakti is the most blissful process both in practice and in perfection.
BG 2.40: Even small endeavor in the bhakti process can deliver one from the most dangerous type of fear.
1/3rd of the book is about first theme,Criteria of complete methodology for realization of the Absolute.
Anukarana – blindly following, not at all helpful, anusharana – following in the footsteps of guru, pure devotee to develop knowledge, this is very critical, to follow a devotee. Knowledge can only flow from higher to lower, Lord’s mercy flows through disciplic succession parampara. Spiritual master is direct representative of the Supreme Lord.
Follow scriptural regulations, must get rid of undesirable traits, engage in devotional service. There are 64 angas of bhakti. Engaging all 10 senses in Bhakti, eyes to see the Lord, ears to hear about the Lord, nose to smell flowers offered to the Lord, tongue to taste Krishna Prasadam, mind to think about Lord, legs to walk to the temple, hands to clean Krishna’s temple…etc.
Prabhupad translates Bhakti as Devotional Service.
One should have powerful jignasa, follow senior vaishnavas to develop jignasa, serve them.
Raga means attachment, anu means to follow. To follow those devotees who has developed attachment for Lord Sri Krishna.
Srila Jiva Goswami Bhakti Sandarba is little bit different from Rupa Goswami Bhakti Rasamrta Sindhu. Jiva Goswami in Bhakti Sandarba talks about everything based on Srimad Bhagavatam.
Bhakti is intrinsic duty of every soul.
Bhakti process is so powerful that it can eradicate even prarabda karma, currently suffering fructified sinful reactions.
Faith develops by Sadhu sanga, associating those who already have jignasa, attraction to Krishna, progression happens from faith all the way to Krishna Prema.
Sravana Guru – Whom we hear from, we can have many Sravan Gurus.
Siksha Guru – From whom we take direction to progress in Bhakti, we can have many Siksha Gurus.
Diksha Guru – Intiated spiritual master, only one. One must accept a bonafied spiritual master.
Vaidhi bhakti – Sadhana Bhakti: Engaging our senses in Bhakti.
Raganuga Bhakti, Natural attraction for Krishna. Which is a stepping stone to Priti sandarbha.