01 The holy name should be propagated throughout the world
A devotee should not only chant the holy name, but should preach the chanting of the holy name to others:
[isvara Puri to Lord Caitanya]: "My dear child, continue dancing, chanting and performing sankirtana in association with devotees. Furthermore, go out and preach the value of chanting krsna−nama, for by this process You will be able to deliver all fallen souls."
It is another ambition of the spiritual master to see his disciples not only chant, dance and follow the regulative principles but also preach the sankirtana movement to others in order to deliver them, for the Krsna consciousness movement is based on the principle that one should become as perfect as possible in devotional service oneself and also preach the cult for others' benefit. There are two classes of unalloyed devotees−namely, gosthy−anandis and bhajananandis. Bhajananandi refers to one who is satisfied to cultivate devotional service for himself, and gosthy−anandi is one who is not satisfied simply to become perfect himself but wants to see others also take advantage of the holy name of the Lord and advance in spiritual life. The outstanding example is Prahlada Maharaja. When he was offered a benediction by Lord Nrsimhadeva, Prahlada Maharaja said:
naivodvije para duratyaya−vaitaranyas
soce tato vimukha−cetasa indriyartha−
maya−sukhaya bharam udvahato vimudhan
"My dear Lord, I have no problems and want no benediction from You because I am quite satisfied to chant Your holy name. This is sufficient for me because whenever I chant I immediately merge in an ocean of transcendental bliss. I only lament to see others bereft of Your love. They are rotting in material activities for transient material pleasure and spoiling their lives toiling all day and night simply for sense gratification, with no attachment for love of Godhead. I am simply lamenting for them and devising various plans to deliver them from the clutches of maya." (S.B. 7.9.43)
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati thakura explains in his Anubhasya, "A person who has attracted the attention of the spiritual master by his sincere service likes to dance and chant with similarly developed Krsna conscious devotees. The spiritual master authorizes such a devotee to deliver fallen souls in all parts of the world. Those who are not advanced prefer to chant the Hare Krsna mantra in a solitary place." Such activities constitute, in the language of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati thakura, a type of cheating process in the sense that they imitate the activities of exalted personalities like Haridasa thakura. One should not attempt to imitate such exalted devotees. Rather, everyone should endeavor to preach the cult of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in all parts of the world and thus become successful in spiritual life. One who is not very expert in preaching may chant in a secluded place, avoiding bad association, but for one who is actually advanced, preaching and meeting people who are not engaged in devotional service are not disadvantages. A devotee gives the nondevotees his association but is not affected by their misbehavior. Thus by the activities of a pure devotee even those who are bereft of love of Godhead get a chance to become devotees of the Lord one day.
– Sri Caitanya caritamrta Adi lila 7.92
One who is advanced in chanting the holy name induces others to chant:
Many fools, not knowing the transcendental nature of the Hare Krsna maha mantra, sometimes impede our loudly chanting this mantra, yet one who is actually advanced in the furfillment of chanting the Hare Krsna maha mantra induces others to chant also. Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami explains, krsna−sakti vina nahe tara pravartana: unless one receives special power of attorney from the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he cannot preach the glories of the Hare Krsna maha mantra. As devotees propagate the Hare Krsna maha mantra, the general population of the entire world gets the opportunity to understand the glories of the holy name.
– Sri Caitanya caritamrta Adi lila 7.83
After initiation, the devotee takes very seriously the chanting and spreading of the holy name:
[Narada Muni to Srila Vyasadeva]: Thus I began chanting the holy name and fame of the Lord by repeated recitation, ignoring all the formalities of the material world. Such chanting and remembering of the transcendental pastimes of the Lord are benedictory. So doing, I traveled all over the earth, fully satisfied, humble and unenvious.
The life of a sincere devotee of the Lord is thus explained in a nutshell by Narada Muni by his personal example. Such a devotee, after his initiation by the Lord or His bona fide representative, takes very seriously chanting of the glories of the Lord and traveling all over the world so that others may also hear the glories of the Lord.Such devotees have no desire for material gain. They are conducted by one single desire: to go back to Godhead. This awaits them in due course on quitting the material body. Because they have the highest aim of life, going back to Godhead, they are never envious of anyone, nor are they proud of being eligible to go back to Godhead.Their only business is to chant and remember the holy name, fame and pastimes of the Lord and, according to personal capacity, to distribute the message for others' welfare without motive of material gain.
– Srimad Bhagavatam 1.6.26
One must become the servant of the holy name by distributing it to the world:
In the spiritual world the Absolute is always absolute; the name, form, quality and pastimes of the Absolute are all as good as the Absolute Himself. As such, one is understood to be an eternal servant of the Supreme Personality of Godhead if he considers himself an eternal servant of the holy name and in this spirit distributes the holy name to the world. One who chants in that spirit, without offenses, is certainly elevated to the platform of understanding that the holy name and the Personality of Godhead are identical. To associate with the holy name and chant the holy name is to associate with the Personality of Godhead directly. In Bhakti−rasamrta−sindhu it is clearly said: sevonmukhe hi jihvadau svayam eva sphuraty adah. The holy name becomes manifest when one engages in the service of the holy name.
This service in a submissive attitude begins with one's tongue. Sevonmukhe hi jihvadau: one must engage his tongue in the service of the holy name. Our Krsna consciousness movement is based on this principle. We try to engage all the members of the Krsna consciousness movement in the service of the holy name.
– Sri Caitanya caritamrta Adi lila 8.16
A true Vaisnava bestows the priceless gift of the maha mantra upon society:
Harav abhaktasya kuto mahad−guna mano−rathenasati dhavato bahih [SB 5.18.12]. One who has developed Krsna consciousness will manifest all the good qualities of the demigods. Indeed, it is stated, vanca−kalpatarubhyas ca krpa−sindhubhya eva ca: a Vaisnava or devotee of Krsna is an ocean of mercy to others. He gives the greatest gift to society, for society is in dire need of God consciousness. A Vaisnava bestows the priceless gift of the maha mantra,
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
Simply by chanting this mantra, one can remain in a liberated state.
– Krsna Consciousness: The Matchless Gift
The true acarya presents Krsna to everyone by preaching the holy name throughout the world:
One cannot become an acarya simply by mental speculation. The true acarya presents Krsna to everyone by preaching the holy name of the Lord throughout the world. Thus the conditioned souls, purified by chanting the holy name, are liberated from the blazing fire of material existence. In this way, spiritual benefit grows increasingly full, like the waxing moon in the sky. The true acarya, the spiritual master of the entire world, must be considered an incarnation of Krsna's mercy. Indeed, he is personally embracing Krsna. He is therefore the spiritual master of all the varnas (brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya and sudra) and all the asramas (brahmacarya, gṛhastha, vanaprastha and sannyasa). Since he is understood to be the most advanced devotee, he is called paramahamsa−thakura. thakura is a title of honor offered to the paramahamsa. Therefore one who acts as an acarya, directly presenting Lord Krsna by spreading His name and fame, is also to be called paramahamsa−thakura.
– Sri Caitanya caritamrta Antya lila 7.1
Lord Caitanya predicted that the Hare Krsna mantra would be chanted in every town and village in the world:
This method [hari−kirtana] is recommended in the scriptures, and it was given to us by Caitanya Mahaprabhu five hundred years ago. He appeared in a town which is known as Navadvipa. It is about sixty miles north of Calcutta. People still go there. We have a temple center there. It is also a sacred place of pilgrimage. Caitanya Mahaprabhu appeared there, and He started this mass sankirtana movement, which is conducted without discrimination. He predicted that this sankirtana movement would be spread all over the world and that the Hare Krsna mantra would be chanted in every village and town on the surface of the globe.
– Krsna Consciousness: The Topmost Yoga System
All devotees should combine to distribute the Hare Krsna maha mantra all over the world:
[Lord Caitanya to His devotees]: "I am the only gardener. How many places can I go? How many fruits can I pick and distribute? It would certainly be a very laborious task to pick the fruits and distribute them alone, and still I suspect that some would receive them and others would not. Therefore I order every man within this universe to accept this Krsna consciousness movement and distribute it everywhere."
Here Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu indicates that the distribution of the Hare Krsna maha mantra should be performed by combined forces. Although He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, He laments, "How can I act alone? How can I alone pick the fruit and distribute it all over the world?" This indicates that all classes of devotees should combine to distribute the Hare Krsna maha mantra without consideration of the time, place or situation.
– Sri Caitanya caritamrta Adi lila 9.34−36
Even if one is not wealthy, he can act for the highest welfare of human society and please the Supreme Lord by preaching the Hare Krsna mantra to everyone:
[Lord Caitanya to His devotees]: "I am merely a gardener. I have neither a kingdom nor very great riches. I simply have some fruits and flowers that I wish to utilize to achieve piety in My life."
In performing welfare activities for human society, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu presents Himself as being not very rich, thus indicating that a man need not be rich or opulent to act for the welfare of humanity. Sometimes rich men are very proud that they can perform beneficial activities for human society whereas others cannot. A practical example is that when there is a scarcity of food in India on account of meager rainfall, some members of the richer class very proudly distribute foodstuffs, making huge arrangements with the help of the government, as if merely by such activities people will be benefited. Suppose there were no food grains. How would the rich men distribute food? Production of grains is completely in the hands of God. If there were no rain, there would be no grains, and these so−called rich men would be unable to distribute grains to the people.
The real purpose of life, therefore, is to satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Srila Rupa Gosvami describes in his Bhakti−rasamrta−sindhu that devotional service is so exalted that it is beneficial and auspicious for every man. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu also declared that to propagate the bhakti cult of devotional service in human society, one does not need to be very rich. Anyone can do it and thus render the highest benefit to humanity if he knows the art. Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu takes the part of a gardener because although a gardener is naturally not a very rich man, he has some fruits and flowers. Any man can collect some fruits and flowers and satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead in devotional service, as recommended in Bhagavad−gita:
patram puspam phalam toyam yo me bhaktya prayacchati
tad aham bhakty−upahrtam asnami prayatatmanah
One cannot satisfy the Supreme Lord by his riches, wealth or opulent position, but anyone can collect a little fruit or flower and offer it to the Lord. The Lord says that if one brings such an offering in devotion, He will accept it and eat it. When Krsna eats, the entire world becomes satisfied. There is the story in the Mahabharata illustrating how by Krsna's eating, the sixty thousand disciples of Durvasa Muni were all satisfied. Therefore it is a fact that if by our life (pranaih), by our wealth (arthaih), by our intelligence (dhiya) or by our words (vaca) we can satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead, naturally the entire world will become happy. Therefore our main duty is to satisfy the Supreme Godhead by our actions, our money and our words. This is very simple. Even if one does not have money, he can preach the Hare Krsna mantra to everyone. One can go everywhere, to every home, and request everyone to chant the Hare Krsna mantra. Thus the entire world situation will become very happy and peaceful.
– Sri Caitanya caritamrta Adi lila 9.44
In this age, saintly persons should help the general populace not by political action, but by chanting the maha mantra:
Saintly persons are not interested in political matters, yet they are always thinking of the welfare of the people in general. Consequently they sometimes have to come down to the political field and take steps to correct the misguided government or royalty. However, in Kali yuga, saintly persons are not as powerful as they previously were. They used to be able to burn any sinful man to ashes by virtue of their spiritual prowess. Now saintly persons have no such power due to the influence of the age of Kali. Indeed, the brahmanas do not even have the power to perform sacrifices in which animals are put into a fire to attain a new life. Under these circumstances, instead of actively taking part in politics, saintly persons should engage in chanting the maha mantra, Hare Krsna. By the grace of Lord Caitanya, by simply chanting this Hare Krsna maha mantra, the general populace can derive all benefits without political implications.
– Srimad Bhagavatam 4.14.12
The chanting of Hare Krsna should be vigorously propagated all over the world because it gives tremendous benefit:
The process of Krsna consciousness should be very vigorously propagated all over the world. Simply by seeing the Deity or simply by joining in chanting of the Hare Krsna mantra, people will derive tremendous benefit. If one performs kirtana, chanting, one will be able to think of Krsna. One may think, "I danced for two hours and chanted Hare Krsna. What is the meaning of this?" This is smarana, thinking of Krsna. One may even think, "I foolishly chanted 'Krsna, Krsna' for two hours." But that also is smarana.
– Teachings of Queen Kunti
Distributing and receiving the holy name as an example of the devotional principle of giving and receiving charity:
By chanting the holy names of the Lord we can actually convert many people throughout the world to Krsna consciousness. Contributing or distributing the holy name of the Lord is a sublime example of contributing or giving charity (the dadati principle). By the same token, one must also follow the pratigrhnati principle and be willing and ready to receive the transcendental gift.
– The Nectar of Instruction Text 4
One should go on chanting the Hare Krsna mantra and preaching the chanting of this mantra, tolerating the harassment of envious persons and atheists:
trnad api sunicena taror iva sahisnuna
amanina manadena kirtaniyah sada harih
[Cc. adi 17.31]
When one is engaged in devotional service, he is often surrounded by envious people, and often many enemies come to try to defeat him or stop him. This is not new in this present age, for even in the days of yore Prahlada Maharaja, who was engaged in the devotional service of the Lord, was harassed by his demoniac father, Hiranyakasipu. The atheists are always prepared to harass a devotee; therefore Caitanya Mahaprabhu suggested that one be very tolerant of these people. Nonetheless, one has to continue chanting the Hare Krsna mantra and preaching the chanting of this mantra because such preaching and chanting constitute the perfection of life. One should chant and preach about the urgency of making this life perfect in all respects.
– Srimad Bhagavatam 4.24.67
When one situated on the platform of love of God chants the holy name loudly, everyone becomes initiated in the chanting of the holy name:
When a devotee is perfectly qualified in chanting the transcendental vibration of the holy name, he is quite fit to become a spiritual master and to deliver all the people of the world. The chanting of the holy name is so powerful that it gradually establishes its supremacy above everything in the world. The devotee who chants it becomes transcendentally situated in ecstasy and sometimes laughs, cries and dances in his ecstasy. Sometimes the unintelligent put hindrances in the path of chanting this maha mantra, but one who is situated on the platform of love of Godhead chants the holy name loudly for all concerned. As a result, everyone becomes initiated in the chanting of the holy names
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
– Teachings of Lord Caitanya