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Kanistha, Madhyma, Uttama

The first-class devotee never deviates from the principles of higher authority, and he attains firm faith in the scriptures by understanding with all reason and arguments. When we speak of arguments and reason, it means arguments and reason on the basis of revealed scriptures. The second-class devotee he is not very expert in arguing on the strength of revealed scripture, but he has firm faith in the objective. The purport of this description is that the second-class devotee has firm faith in the procedure of devotional service unto Ka, but he may sometimes fail to offer arguments and decisions on the strength of revealed scripture to an opposing party. The neophyte or third-class devotee is one whose faith is not strong and who, at the same time, does not recognize the decision of the revealed scripture. The neophyte's faith can be changed by someone else with strong arguments or by an opposite decision. Unlike the second-class devotee, who also cannot put forward arguments and evidences from the scripture, but who still has all faith in the objective, the neophyte has no firm faith in the objective. Thus he is called the neophyte devotee. 1) Qualification for vaidhi bhakti based on the sastras 2) Faith in the process and the objective, not faith in a list of I believe

Initiation (NOI)
5 One should mentally honor the devotee who chants the holy name of Lord Ka, one should offer humble obeisances to the devotee who has undergone spiritual initiation [dk] and is engaged in worshiping the Deity, and one should associate with and faithfully serve that pure devotee who is advanced in undeviated devotional service and whose heart is completely devoid of the propensity to criticize others. The kaniha-adhikr is a neophyte who has received the hari-nma initiation from the spiritual master and is trying to chant the holy name of Ka. One should respect such a person within his mind as a kanihavaiava. A madhyama-adhikr has received spiritual initiation from the spiritual master and has been fully engaged by him in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. The madhyama-adhikr should be considered to be situated midway in devotional service. The uttama-adhikr, or kanistha madhyama uttama Page 1

highest devotee, is one who is very advanced in devotional service. An uttama-adhikr is not interested in blaspheming others, his heart is completely clean, and he has attained the realized state of unalloyed Ka consciousness. (pp) The prkta-sahajiys generally chant the Hare Ka mah-mantra, yet they are attached to women, money and intoxication. Although such persons may chant the holy name of the Lord, they are not yet properly purified. Such people should be respected within one's mind, but their association should be avoided. Those who are innocent but simply carried away by bad association should be shown favor if they are eager to receive proper instructions from pure devotees, but those neophyte devotees who are actually initiated by the bona fide spiritual master and are seriously engaged in carrying out the orders of the spiritual master should be offered respectful obeisances. (pp) When a neophyte devotee is actually initiated and engaged in devotional service by the orders of the spiritual master, he should be accepted immediately as a bona fide Vaiava, and obeisances should be offered unto him. Out of many such Vaiavas, one may be found to be very seriously engaged in the service of the Lord and strictly following all the regulative principles, chanting the prescribed number of rounds on japa beads and always thinking of how to expand the Ka consciousness movement. Such a Vaiava should be accepted as an uttama-adhikr, a highly advanced devotee, and his association should always be sought. (pp) Definition by initiation If we define by diksa, is that external? Taking diksa should involve material detachment as evidenced in a person being willing to accept materially unpalatable situations if they help in spiritual advancement One who is prepared to take diksa has to be ready to accept austerity, celibacy, and control of the mind and the body. One should inquire with relevant and useful questions Definition by strictness and dedication to preaching (pages 50-51, bottom page 57) Why is the criterion of avoiding criticism so essential? According to Sripad V. Cakravarti, SB 4.4.12, there are four gradations of good persons, and four of bad persons, based on the degree of sattva guna or tamo guna in the individual. Good persons: 1. Mahat: sees others' faults as capable of being transformed into good qualities. 2. Mahattara: overlooks faults and sees the good. 3. Mahattama: magnifies small good qualities and sees no faults. 4. Ati-mahattama: sees only good qualities where there are none. kanistha madhyama uttama Page 2

Bad persons: 1. Asadhu: sees others' good qualities as capable of being transformed into faults. 2. Asadhutara: overlooks the good in others but sees the faults. 3. Asadhutama: magnifies small faults and sees no good. 4. Aty-asadhutama: sees only faults in others where there are none. SB 4.4.12

How one treats others

NOI Neophyte: They cannot ascertain who is in what position in devotional service, nor can they tell who has realized the Supreme Lord. Such devotees follow the routine formulas and sometimes quarrel among themselves, considering one type of devotion better than another. Mantra 6 Madhyama: Those who have attained the second stage of realization are called madhyama-adhikrs. These devotees observe the distinctions between four categories of being: (1) the Supreme Lord; (2) the devotees of the Lord; (3) the innocent, who have no knowledge of the Lord; and (4) the atheists, who have no faith in the Lord and hate those in devotional service. The madhyama-adhikr behaves differently toward these four classes of person. He adores the Lord, considering Him the object of love; he makes friends with those who are in devotional service; he tries to awaken the dormant love of God in the hearts of the innocent; and he avoids the atheists, who deride the very name of the Lord. Mantra 6 Uttama: Above the madhyama-adhikr is the uttama-adhikr, who sees everything in relation to the Supreme Lord. Such a devotee does not discriminate between an atheist and a theist but sees everyone as part and parcel of God. He knows that there is no essential difference between a vastly learned brhmaa and a dog in the street, because both of them are part and parcel of the Lord, although they are encaged in different bodies on account of the different qualities of their activities in their previous lives. He sees that the brhmaa particle of the Supreme Lord has not misused his little independence given him by the Lord and that the dog particle has misused his independence and is therefore being punished by the laws of nature by being encaged in the form of a dog. Not considering the respective actions of the brhmaa and the dog, the uttama-adhikr tries to do good to both. Such a learned devotee is not misled by material bodies but is attracted by the spiritual spark within them. Mantra 6

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Those who imitate an uttama-adhikr by flaunting a sense of oneness or fellowship but who behave on the bodily platform are actually false philanthropists. Mantra 6 11TH CANTO A pure devotee engaged exclusively in the Lord's service should not be criticized, but a devotee whose devotional service is mixed with material qualities may be corrected so that he can rise to the platform of pure devotional service. 11.21.2 pp Neophyte: one unable to fully engage in pure Ka consciousness should not give up his family, considering it an illusion, for by doing so he will fall into illicit sex life. 11.21.2 pp If a neophyte on the path of devotional service to the Lord's pure devotees is attacked by envious persons, he must accept it as a consequence of his previous fruitive activities. One should be intelligent and avoid future unhappiness by rejecting the ethic of an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. If one refuses to enter into enmity with envious men, they will automatically leave him alone. 11.25.5 kaniha-adhikris engage in worship of the Supreme Lord, especially in the temple, but are indifferent to the Lord's devotees. by continuing to serve the Supreme Lord and the devotees engaged in propagating the Lord's mission, the kaniha-adhikr also advances in his realization and comes to the stage of dedicating his activities to helping more advanced Vaiavas. Even such kaniha-adhikrs can help ordinary living entities by their association, since at least the kaniha-adhikrs have faith that Ka is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Because of this faith, the kaniha-adhikr gradually becomes inimical to those who are opposed to the Lord. As he gradually becomes more and more inimical to those who hate the supremacy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and becomes more attracted to friendship with other faithful servants of the Lord, the kaniha-adhikr approaches the second-class stage, called madhyama. 11.2.45 A devotee who faithfully engages in the worship of the Deity in the temple but does not behave properly toward other devotees or people in general is called a prkta-bhakta, a materialistic devotee, and is considered to be in the lowest position. 11.2.47 a kaniha-adhikr cannot imagine that anyone is more pious or religious than he, and he is not even aware that other devotees are more advanced. Thus he cannot understand the madhyama or uttama standard of devotional service, and sometimes, because of his false pride, he criticizes the more advanced devotees of the Lord, neglects them or simply has no understanding of their exalted position as preachers or completely selfrealized souls [and] is disturbed if a second-class devotee criticizes the nondevotees since a kaniha-adhikr who cannot properly respect kanistha madhyama uttama Page 4

other devotees will certainly fail to offer respects to ordinary living entities who are not even devotees, a kaniha-adhikr is useless for practical preaching work unless he comes to a higher platform of understanding. as a kaniha-adhikr gradually comes to perceive the mental activities of a devotee and tries seriously to advance to a higher stage, his materialistic conceptions will go away of their own accord. He then exhibits loving service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead and makes friendship with the devotees who are the dearmost sons of the Lord, and by appreciating the universal quality of devotional service to Ka he becomes very much eager to engage other innocent people in the service of the Lord. Further, as he begins to make significant advancement he becomes inimical to anything or anyone that hinders the progress of his devotional life, and thus he avoids atheistic people who cannot benefit by good instruction. 11.2.47 Madhyama: In the madhyama stage the Vaiava sees the Lord as the cause of all causes and the chief goal of everyone's loving propensity. He sees the Vaiavas as his only friends within this morbid world and is eager to bring innocent people within the shelter of Vaiava society. Also, a madhyamaadhikr strictly avoids associating with the self-proclaimed enemies of God. When such an intermediate qualification becomes mature, the concept of supreme qualification begins to present itself; that is, one comes to the stage of uttama-adhikr. 11.2.45 A madhyama-adhikr cannot at any time perceive the presence of the Supreme Lord within all living beings, whereas an uttama-adhikr, however he acts on the second-class platform to carry out the Lord's mission, is aware that every living entity is ultimately a forgetful Ka conscious living entity. Therefore, although a devotee may externally engage four different types of behavior, as mentioned in this verse namely, worship of the Lord, friendship with the devotees, preaching to the innocent and rejection of the demonshe is not necessarily on the second-class platform, since an uttama-adhikr also may exhibit these symptoms to carry out the Lord's mission. In this regard, rla Bhaktisiddhnta Sarasvat hkura mentions that it is the duty of the madhyama-adhikr to extend himself as the right hand of the uttamaadhikr, vowing to work for the benefit of others and offering to help in distributing love of Ka. 11.2.46 by envying any of the three classes of devoteesuttama-adhikr, madhyama-adhikr or kaniha-adhikrone falls down to the platform of impersonalism and loses all power to benefit others or even himself. 11.2.48 Bhagavatam

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SB 3.29.7 - Lord Kapila, the Personality of Godhead, replied: O noble lady, there are multifarious paths of devotional service in terms of the different qualities of the executor. SB 3.29.8 - Devotional service executed by a person who is envious, proud, violent and angry, and who is a separatist, is considered to be in the mode of darkness. SB 3.29.9 - The worship of Deities in the temple by a separatist, with a motive for material enjoyment, fame and opulence, is devotion in the mode of passion. SB 3.29.10 - When a devotee worships the Supreme Personality of Godhead and offers the results of his activities in order to free himself from the inebrieties of fruitive activities, his devotion is in the mode of goodness. SB 3.29.11-12 - The manifestation of unadulterated devotional service is exhibited when one's mind is at once attracted to hearing the transcendental name and qualities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is residing in everyone's heart. Just as the water of the Ganges flows naturally down towards the ocean, such devotional ecstasy, uninterrupted by any material condition, flows towards the Supreme Lord. ___________________ SB 3.29.21 - I am present in every living entity as the Supersoul. If someone neglects or disregards that Supersoul everywhere and engages himself in the worship of the Deity in the temple, that is simply imitation. SB 3.29.22 - One who worships the Deity of Godhead in the temples but does not know that the Supreme Lord, as Paramtm, is situated in every living entity's heart, must be in ignorance and is compared to one who offers oblations into ashes. SB 3.29.23 - One who offers Me respect but is envious of the bodies of others and is therefore a separatist never attains peace of mind, because of his inimical behavior towards other living entities. SB 3.29.24 - My dear Mother, even if he worships with proper rituals and paraphernalia, a person who is ignorant of My presence in all living entities never pleases Me by the worship of My Deities in the temple. SB 3.29.25 - Performing his prescribed duties, one should worship the Deity of the Supreme Personality of Godhead until one realizes My presence in his own heart and in the hearts of other living entities as well. SB 3.29.26 - As the blazing fire of death, I cause great fear to whoever makes the least discrimination between himself and other living entities because of a differential outlook. kanistha madhyama uttama Page 6

SB 3.29.27 - Therefore, through charitable gifts and attention, as well as through friendly behavior and by viewing all to be alike, one should propitiate Me, who abide in all creatures as their very Self.

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