Pejavara Svami Lecture

Speech by HH Pejavara Svami, a leading acharya in the Madhva sampradaya, on February 28, 1995, at the inaugural function (2nd day) of Srila Prabhupada's Puspa Samadhi, Sri Mayapur Chandrodaya Mandir (ISKCON):

Pejavara Svami: Bhakti is not only meant for liberation. Devotion is actually meant for the upliftment of the entire humanity. The ultimate goal of life is devotional service unto the Supreme. Along with devotion, service is also there. Devotion and service go hand in hand. Without service, there cannot be devotion.

And service unto the Supreme Controller (Paramesvara) is not limited only to serving the Lord in the temple. Of course, Bhagavan is in the temple. There is no doubt about that. He is present in His Deity form.

But He is simultaneously all-pervasive. He is omnipresent. He is everywhere. Therefore, it is important that we serve the living entities as well. And the best way to serve the living entities is by giving them devotion to God. The best way to serve them is by preaching the glories of the Lord and offering them Krsna bhakti.

Pejavara SvamiJagad-guru Madhvacarya used to say that by serving the living entities in this way, one actually serves Madhava. Therefore, devotion actually means to see the Lord in the heart of everyone, and devotional service means to offer Krsna consciousness to everyone by preaching the glories of Visnu.

Devotion is not meant for only a limited number of people or a certain class of people. Bhakti is meant for anyone and everyone. According to Srimad Bhagavatam, the lower classes of people have been considered to be kirata-hunandhra-pulinda-pulkasabhira-sumbha-yavana-khasadayah. These different types of people, human beings, who are considered to be the lower classes. But in the Srimad Bhagavatam, it has been pointed out that these classes of people are also eligible for devotion. Irrespective of one's background, when one accepts devotional service and becomes a devotee of Sri Krsna, he becomes the best of humans. He becomes the highest class person, the best of all.

Therefore, of all people, the devotee is the greatest. And in order to become a devotee, one does not need to be born in any specific type of class or caste or nation. Devotion to Krsna was limited only to India but Swami Prabhupada took this devotion out of India and distributed it to anyone and everyone all over the world. That's why today we can see that people from all over the world are accepting devotional service and becoming devotees of Krsna. In this way, they are becoming the best of humans.

The river Ganga is famous for her purifying effect. At one time, however, this Ganga did not flow through the earth planet. It is Bhagiratha who brought the Ganga from the celestial planets down to the earth planet. That is why Bhagiratha is celebrated. Swami Prabhupada, like Bhagiratha, spread this devotion, the bhakti-ganga, all over the world. In this way, Swami Prabhupada has done something which is much better than what Bhagiratha had done.

I feel very proud that I am also connected to Swami Prabhupada. The message of Jagad-guru Madhvacarya and the message of Caitanya Prabhu are the same. Their messages are identical. And in this way, it is a confluence. Caitanya Prabhu actually gave what Madhvacarya gave, and thus I belong to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu's line. Therefore, I feel proud that Swami Prabhupada, who actually belongs to our sampradaya, has done such a wonderful job by distributing Krsna consciousness all over the world. My relationship with ISKCON has been very intimate but today I became even more intimately related with ISKCON.

We also feel very honored that the King of Orissa [sic] has come here. He came here representing Jagannatha because he came from the land of Orissa, the land of Jagannatha. Thus, through him, we are also experiencing the presence of Jagannatha Himself.

[End of speech]