What About Explaining Dharma To Non-Devotees

“For one who explains the supreme secret to the devotees, devotional service is guaranteed, and at the end he will come back to Me.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 18.68)

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य इदं परमं गुह्यं
मद्-भक्तेष्व् अभिधास्यति
भक्तिं मयि परां कृत्वा
माम् एवैष्यत्य् असंशयः

ya idaṁ paramaṁ guhyaṁ
mad-bhakteṣv abhidhāsyati
bhaktiṁ mayi parāṁ kṛtvā
mām evaiṣyaty asaṁśayaḥ

Friend1: You know me, I like to be a stickler with the details. When hearing instruction, I accept the words literally.

Friend2: That is a good thing. It means you are paying attention.

Friend1: As an extension, I look at the negation to certain principles. For instance, in Bhagavad-gita we have the proclamation that no one is more dear to Krishna than the person who explains the supreme science to the devotees.

Friend2: The science refers to the confidential information just presented to Arjuna, the disciple. This is at the end of that sacred conversation, which has been passed down through the ages in the Sanskrit text known as Bhagavad-gita.

Friend1: It is a nice thing to say, since it could have been left as a confidential matter.

Friend2: What do you mean?

Friend1: Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, was talking to Arjuna. It was a private conversation. It was Arjuna who had the doubts on how to proceed, whether to fight in the Bharata War. It was Arjuna who asked the questions. No one else was involved, though there were many soldiers assembled on the battlefield.

Friend2: We know of the information through the blessings provided to Sanjaya.

[Krishna and Arjuna]Friend1: He could witness the events on the battlefield. This was a benediction offered by Vyasadeva. In that sense, we are so thankful to be privy to the information. Not only did someone else witness what was going on, everything was documented in Sanskrit shlokas. The original sounds, as they were first produced, are preserved through today, despite the absence of advanced technology during that time period.

Friend2: I could argue that Sanjaya had the most advanced technology anyone can imagine, but I know what you mean.

Friend1: So I automatically think of the negative. If the person who describes the science to the devotee is dear, then someone doing the same, but to non-devotees would not be dear.

Friend2: There are a lot of clauses to the particular proof you are conducting, but I would say you are on the right track. I could get on board with that.

Friend1: Of course that raises a question. Why does the target audience determine the level of satisfaction in Krishna?

Friend2: Do you really have to ask?

Friend1: Sure.

Friend2: Try to play out the situation of describing Krishna’s teachings on the living entity, the material nature, eternal time, karma, and the Supreme Lord to someone who is not a devotee already.

Friend1: Such a person is not difficult to find. Okay, if I were to try I would likely meet opposition.

Friend2: In what sense?

Friend1: The person might blow me off. They might be restricted by dogmatic insistence, wherein they refuse to have an open mind about cultures that are foreign to them. They may deride Krishna as a womanizer, not reading the entire Bhagavata Purana, but only cherry-picking select verses.

Friend2: Alright, so let’s say that you are the recipient of this opposition. Take every case. How would you be dear to Krishna, then?

Friend1: Why would I not be dear, though? I am trying to explain the highest wisdom to someone who desperately needs it. Shouldn’t I get credit for the effort?

Friend2: The words are falling on deaf ears. You are basically wasting your time. It is like explaining calculus to someone in the first grade. If I barely know the times tables, how will I understand advanced concepts such as algebra?

Friend1: Are you saying that the devotee audience is more likely to understand the science of self-realization?

Friend2: They will have so much to gain from it. Their attachment to Krishna will only increase. They will advance on the path of liberation.

Friend1: How is someone expected to be a devotee without hearing such information?

Friend2: You can try to introduce them to the concepts. If the target audience has a genuine interest, then those following in the line of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu try to explain. Mind you, they will not simply share the conversation between Arjuna and Krishna. They will provide elaborate commentary and explanation in the process.

Friend1: And then if the people hearing have interest, they are essentially friendly to the material.

Friend2: It is similar to the concept of deity worship in the temples. Not like the nonsense they pull today, where they try to determine a person’s qualifications simply by looking at them. Originally, the idea was that only people who had some faith would be allowed into the temples. It makes sense, if you think about it.

Friend1: Why?

Friend2: Because if someone else sees a statue made of stone, resin or wood worshiped like God, they might get the wrong idea. They will think it is idol worship or a made-up, false God.

Friend1: That happens now.

[Shri Krishna]Friend2: Exactly. Such a mindset is extremely offensive. The person gets no benefit out of meeting the deity. The same holds true with the Bhagavad-gita content. The person who explains to the devotees is most dear, and so the kind-hearted souls try to make as many devotees as possible through means such as prasadam distribution and the congregational chanting of the holy names: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.

In Closing:

First devotees make,
Where opposition to forsake.

Then ready to hear,
To Krishna becoming dear.

Since supreme science explaining,
Blessed with highest wisdom gaining.

One by one the verses to save,
Profound is every page.

Categories: conversations

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1 reply

  1. Radhe Radhe oshriRadhekrishnaBole
    Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare
    Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare

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