>> “Srila Prabhupada Quotes” > Activities of sannyasa
1. Does not imitate the parivrajakacarya
2. Controls the tongue, mind and senses
3. The process of cooking and eating explained
4. The process of accepting invitations explained
5. Follows the regulative principles
6. Chants the hare krsna maha-mantra
7. Should be afraid of wealth
8. Writes literatures and holds discourses
9. All sannyasis study the vedanta sutra
10. Strives to advance in spiritual life
11. Should not ask for more than required
12. Is forbidden to see materialists
13. Completely depends on mercy of the lord
14. Never returns to his home
15. Sleeps on the ground and bathes thrice daily.
16. Observes social customs
17. Does not construct temples or monasteries
18. May have an institution for preaching purposes
19. May keep small deities of the lord
20. May visit temples of lord siva
1. DOES NOT IMITATE THE PARIVRAJAKACARYA (top)
ONE WHO TAKES THE VOW OF RENUNCIATION FROM FAMILY LIFE NEED NOT IMITATE THE PARIVRAJAKACARYA LIKE LORD CAITANYA MAHAPRABHU
In this age, devotional service of hearing and repeating the holy glories of the Lord is strongly recommended, and one who takes the vow of renunciation of family life need not imitate the parivrajakacarya like Narada or Lord Caitanya, but may sit down at some holy place and devote his whole time and energy to hear and repeatedly chant the holy scriptures left by the great acaryas like the six Gosvamis of Vrindavana.
(Bhag. 1.6.13, purp.)
ONE SHOULD NOT UNNATURALLY IMITATE HARIDAS THAKUR
One reference is made here for those who are very anxious to imitate the behavior of Thakura Haridasa in an unnatural way. One must receive the order of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu or His representative before adopting such a way of life. The duty of a pure devotee or a servant of the Lord is to carry out the order of the Lord. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu asked Nityananda Prabhu to go to Bengal and preach, and He asked the Gosvamis, Rupa and Sanatana, to go to Vrndavana and excavate the lost places of pilgrimage. In this case the Lord asked Haridasa Thakura to remain there at Jagannatha Puri and constantly chant the holy names of the Lord. Thus Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu gave different persons different orders, and consequently one should not try to imitate the behavior of Haridasa Thakura without being ordered by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu or His representative. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura condemns such imitations in this way:
dusta mana! tumi kisera vaisnava?
pratisthara tare, nirjana ghare,
tava hari-nama kevala kaitava
“My dear mind, you are trying to imitate Haridasa Thakura and chant the Hare Krsna mantra in a secluded place, but you are not worth being called a Vaisnava because what you want is cheap popularity and not the actual qualifications of Haridasa Thakura. If you try to imitate him you will fall down, for your neophyte position will cause you to think of women and money. Thus you will fall into the clutches of maya, and your so-called chanting in a secluded place will bring about your downfall.”
(Cc. Madhya 11.195 , purp.)
THE MEMBERS OF THE HARE KRSNA MOVEMENT SHOULD RIGIDLY FOLLOW SRILA HARIDAS THAKURA’S EXAMPLE BY CHANTING SIXTEEN ROUNDS DAILY AND OFFERING RESPECT TO THE TULASI PLANT
Haridas Thakur used to chant the holy name on his beads 300,00 0 times daily. Throughout the entire day and night, he would chant the sixteen names of the Hare Krsna maha-mantra. One should not, however, imitate Haridasa Thakura, for no one else can chant the Hare Krsna maha-mantra 300,00 0 times a day. Such chanting is for the mukta-purusa, or liberated soul. We can follow his example, however, by chanting sixteen rounds of the Hare Krsna maha-mantra on beads every day and offering respect to the tulasi plant. This is not at all difficult for anyone, and the process of chanting the Hare Krsna maha-mantra with a vow before the tulasi plant has such great spiritual potency that simply by doing this one can become spiritually strong. Therefore we request the members of the Hare Krsna movement to follow Haridasa Thakura’s example rigidly. Chanting sixteen rounds does not take much time, nor is offering respects to the tulasi plant difficult. The process has immense spiritual potency. One should not miss this opportunity.
(Cc. Antya 3.100 , purp.)
2. CONTROLS THE TONGUE, MIND AND SENSES (top)
IT IS A GREAT OFFENSE TO INDULGE IN SATISFYING THE TONGUE
“For a sannyasi to indulge in satisfying the tongue is a great offense. The duty of a sannyasi is to eat only as much as needed to keep body and soul together.”
(Cc. Antya 8.85 )
IN THE PATH OF DEVOTIONAL SERVICE ONE MUST FIRST CONTROL THE TONGUE
In the bhakti-marga, the path of devotional service, one must strictly follow the regulative principles by first controlling the tongue, sevon-mukhe hi jihvadau svayam eva sphuratyadah). The tongue (jihva) can be controlled if one chants the Hare Krsna maha-mantra, does not speak of any subjects other than those concerning Krsna and does not taste anything not offered to Krsna. If one can control the tongue in this way, brahmacarya and other purifying processes will automatically follow. It will be explained in the next verse that the path of devotional service is completely perfect and is therefore superior to the path of knowledge. Quoting from the Vedas, Srila Viraraghava Acarya explains that austerity involves observing fasts as fully as possible (tapasanasakena). Srila Rupa Gosvami has also advised that atyahara, too much eating, is an impediment to advancement in spiritual life. Also in Bhagavad-gita (6.17 ) Krsna says:
yogo bhavati duhkha-ha
“He who is temperate in his habits of eating, sleeping, working and recreation can mitigate all material pains by practicing the yoga system.”
(Bhag. 6.1.13-14 , purp.)
A SANNYASI SHOULD NOT BE SUBSERVIENT TO THE TONGUE
“If a renunciant is eager for his tongue to taste different foods, his spiritual life will be lost, and he will be subservient to the tastes of his tongue. “The duty of a person in the renounced order is to chant the Hare Krsna mantra always. He should satisfy his belly with whatever vegetables, leaves, fruits and roots are available. “One who is subservient to the tongue and who thus goes here and there, devoted to the genitals and the belly, cannot attain Krsna.”
(Cc. Antya 6.224-227 )
A SANNYASI MUST REMOVE HIMSELF FROM THE URGES OF THE TONGUE, BELLY AND GENITALS
A sannyasi must specifically remove himself from the urges of the tongue, belly and genitals, which disturb one as long as one is not fully aware that the body is separate from the soul.
(Bhag. 7.15.40 , purp.)
A SANNYASI IS MEANT TO CONTROL THE MIND AND SENSES
One has to follow the principles of the scriptures. There are different prescribed duties for persons in the different social and spiritual orders….Atmendriya-jaya, control of the mind and taming of the senses, is meant for persons in the renounced order of life.
(Bhag 3.32.34-36 , purp.)
A SANNYASI WHO IS UNABLE TO CONTROL THE MIND WILL LOSE HIS ORIGINAL TASTE FOR KRSNA CONSCIOUSNESS
If one takes up the sannyasa order of life but is not able to control the mind, he will think of objects of sense gratification–namely family, society, expensive house, etc. Even though he goes to the Himalayas or the forest, his mind will continue thinking of the objects of sense gratification. In this way, gradually one’s intelligence will be affected. When intelligence is affected, one loses his original taste for Krsna consciousness.
(Bhag. 4.22.30 , purp.)
3. THE PROCESS OF COOKING AND EATING EXPLAINED (top)
advaita-nityananda vasiyachena eka thañi
dui-jane krida-kalaha lagila tathai
“Sri Advaita Acarya and Nityananda Prabhu sat side by side, and when prasada was being distributed, They both engaged in a type of mock fighting.”
prabhu ta sannyasi, unhara nahi apacaya
anna-dose sannyasira dosa nahi haya
“Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is in the renounced order of life. Consequently He does not recognize discrepancies. As a matter of fact, a sannyasi is not affected by eating food from anywhere and everywhere.”
“nanna-dosena mascari”- ei sastra pramana
ami ta grihasta-brahmana, amara dosa sthana
“According to sastra, there is no discrepancy in a sannyasi’s eating at another’s house. However for a householder brahmana, this kind of eating is faulty.”
(Cc. Madhya 12.188-190-191)
A SANNYASI IS NOT SUPPOSED TO COOK
Balabhadra Bhattacarya acted as a brahmacari, or personal assistant of a sannyasi. A sannyasi is not supposed to cook. Generally a sannyasi takes prasada at the house of a grhastha, and a brahmacari helps in this connection. A sannyasi is supposed to be a spiritual master and a brahmacari his disciple. Balabhadra Bhattacarya acted as a brahmacari for Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu when the Lord toured Mathura and Vrindavana.
(Cc. Adi 10.146)
A SANNYASI MAY BEG FOR HIS FOOD, BUT HE MAY NOT COOK TRANSLATION:
TRANSLATION: Sanatana replied, “I shall practice the process of madhukari. Whyshould I accept full meals in the house of a brahmana?”
PURPORT: The word madhukari comes from the word madhukara, which refers to bees collecting honey from flower to flower. A madhukari is a saintly person or a mendicant who does not accept a full meal at one house but begs from door to door, taking a little food from each householder’s place. In this way he does not overeat or give householders unnecessary trouble. A person in the renounced order may beg but not cook. His begging should not be a burden for the householders. The madhukari process is strictly to be followed by a babaji, that is, one who has attained the paramahamsa stage. This practice is still current in Vrndavana, and there are many places where alms are offered. Unfortunately, there are many beggars who have come to Vrndavana to accept alms but not follow the principles of Sanatana Gosvami. People try to imitate him and lead an idle life by practicing madhukari. It is almost impossible to strictly follow Sanatana Gosvami or Rupa Gosvami. It is better to accept food offered to Krsna in the temple than to try to imitate Sanatana Gosvami and Rupa Gosvami.
yuktahara-viharasya yukta-cestasya karmasu
yukta-svapnavabodhasya yogo bhavati duhkha-ha
“He who is temperate in his habits of eating, sleeping, working and recreation can mitigate all material pains by practicing the yoga system.” (B.g. 6.17 )
The ideal sannyasi strictly follows the ways practiced by the Gosvamis.
(Cc. Madhya 20.81 )
A SANNYASI HAS NO NEED TO COOK
TRANSLATION: The sage Kardama accepted silence as a vow in order to think of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and take shelter of Him exclusively. Without association, he traveled over the surface of the globe as a sannyasi, devoid of any relationship with fire or shelter. PURPORT: Here the words anagnir aniketanah are very significant. A sannyasi should be completely detached from fire and any residential quarters. A grhastha has a relationship with fire, either for offering sacrifices or for cooking, but a sannyasi is freed from these two responsibilities. He does not have to cook or offer fire for sacrifice because he is always engaged in Krsna consciousness; therefore he has already accomplished all ritualistic performances of religion.
(Bhag. 3.24.42 , purp.)
FOR A SANNYASI, COOKING FOR THE SUPREME LORD IS NOT PROHIBITED
TRANSLATION: Prescribed duties should never be renounced. If, by illusion, one give up his prescribed duties, such renunciation is said to be in the mode of ignorance.
PURPORT: Work for material satisfaction must be given up, but activities which promote one to spiritual activity, like cooking for the Supreme Lord and offering the food to the Lord and then accepting the food, are recommended. It is said that a person in the renounced order of life should not cook for himself. Cooking for oneself is prohibited, but cooking for the Supreme Lord is not prohibited. Similarly, a sannyasi may perform a marriage ceremony to help his disciple in the advancement of Krsna consciousness. If one renounces such activities, it is to be understood that he is acting in the mode of darkness.
FOODSTUFF TO SATISFY THE TONGUE IN SENSE GRATIFICATION IS NOT TO BE ACCEPTED
The body needs food, but a devotee should not accept foodstuff to satisfy the tongue in sense gratification. It is recommended in Bhagavad-gita that one should accept as much food as necessary to keep the body fit, but one should not eat for luxury. Dhruva Maharaja is an acarya, and by undergoing severe austerities and penances he teaches us how one should execute devotional service.
(Bhag 4.8.72 , purp.)
A SANNYASI EATS ONLY TO KEEP BODY AND SOUL TOGETHER
“For a sannyasi to indulge in satisfying the tongue is a great offense. The duty of a sannyasi is to eat only as much as needed to keep body and soul together.”
(Cc. Antya 8.85 )
ONE SHOULD NOT EAT LUXURIOUS FOODSTUFFS IN THE NAME OF PRASADA
TRANSLATION: After taking his dinner and having his thirst and hunger satisfied, King Puranjana felt some jo y within his heart. Instead of being elevated to a higher consciousness, he became captivated by Cupid, and was moved by a desire to find his wife, who kept him satisfied in his household life.
PURPORT: This verse is very significant for those desiring to elevate themselves to a higher level of Krsna consciousness. When a person is initiated by a spiritual master, he changes his habits and does not eat undesirable eatables or engage in the eating of meat, the drinking of liquor, illicit sex or gambling. Sattvika- ahara, foodstuffs in the mode of goodness, are described in the sastras as wheat, rice, vegetables, fruits, milk, sugar, and milk products. Simple food like rice, dahl, capatis, vegetables, milk and sugar constitute a balanced diet, but sometimes it is found that an initiated person, in the name of prasada, eats very luxurious foodstuffs. Due to his past sinful life he becomes attracted by Cupid and eats good food voraciously. It is clearly visible that when a neophyte in Krsna consciousness eats too much, he falls down. Instead of being elevated to pure Krsna consciousness, he becomes attracted by Cupid. The so-called brahmacari becomes agitated by women, and the vanaprastha may again become captivated into having sex with his wife.
(Bhag. 4.26.13 )
A SANNYASI SHOULD EAT SIMPLY WHAT IS NECESSARY TO MAINTAIN HIS BODY
A sannyasi is expected to collect a little food from each and every householder. That is to say, he should take whatever he requires to eat. This system is called madhukari. The word madhukari comes from the word madhukara and means “honey- collecting bees.” Bees collect a little honey from each flower, but all these small quantities of honey accumulate to become a beehive. Sannyasis should collect a little from each and every householder and should eat simply what is necessary to maintain the body.
(Cc. Madhya 15.243 , purp.)
A SANNYASI SHOULD NOT EAT PALATABLE DISHES; ALL THE RICH FOODSTUFF OFFERED TO KRSNA IS TO BE GIVEN TO THE GRHASTAS
TRANSLATION: Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said: “It is not proper for a sannyasi to eat such a variety of foodstuff. If he does, how can he control his senses?” PURPORT: The word upakarana indicates a variety of foodstuffs, such as dahl, vegetables and other varieties of possible dishes that one can eat very nicely with rice. It is not proper, however, for a sannyasi to eat such palatable dishes. If he did so, he would not be able to control his senses. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu did not encourage sannyasis to eat very palatable dishes, for the whole Vaisnava cult is vairagya-vidya, as renounced as possible. Caitanya Mahaprabhu also advised Raghunatha dasa Gosvami not to eat very palatable dishes, wear very nice garments or talk on mundane subjects. These things are all prohibited for those in the renounced order. A devotee does not accept anything to eat that is not first offered to Krsna. All the rich foodstuffs offered to Krsna are given to the grhasthas, the householders. There are many nice things offered to Krsna–garlands, bedsteads, nice ornaments, nice food, and even nicely prepared pan, betel nuts– but a humble Vaisnava, thinking his body material and nasty, does not accept such preparations for himself. He thinks that by accepting such things he will offend the lotus feet of the Lord. Those who are sahajiyas cannot understand what Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu meant when He asked Advaita Acarya to bring two separate leaves and give a small quantity of the prasada to Him.
(Cc. Madhya 3.70 )
PALATABLE DISHES ARE UNFIT FOR A SANNYASI TO EAT
Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura says in his Amrta-pravaha-bhasya that when a man and woman are married, they beget children and are thus entangled in family life. Talk concerning such family life is called gramya-katha. A person in the renounced order never indulges in either hearing or talking about such subjects. He should not eat palatable dishes, since that is unfit for a person in the renounced order.
(Cc. Antya 6.23 7 purp.)
VORACIOUS EATING CAUSES EXCESSIVE SLEEP, SENSE GRATIFICATION AND CHECKS SPIRITUAL PROGRESS
Eating is not prohibited, but if we eat voraciously we shall certainly sleep more than required. Sense gratification ensues, and we may be degraded to a lower life form. In that way our spiritual progress may be checked at least for the time being.
(Bhag. 5.8.29 , purp.)
ONE SHOULD EAT ONLY PRASADA, AND THAT ONLY AS MUCH AS REQUIRED; IF ONE BECOMES TOO FAT IT IS TO BE ASSUMED THAT HE IS NOT ADVANCING SPIRITUALLY
We can definitely see that to advance in Krsna consciousness one must control his bodily weight. If one becomes too fat, it is to be assumed that he is not advancing spiritually. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura severely criticized his fat disciples. The idea is that one who intends to advance in Krsna consciousness must not eat very much. Devotees used to go to forests, high hills or mountains on pilgrimages, but such severe austerities are not possible in these days. One should instead eat only prasada and no more than required. According to the Vaisnava calendar, there are many fasts, such as Ekadasi and the appearance and disappearance days of God and His devotees. All of these are meant to decrease the fat within the body so that one will not sleep more than desired and will not become inactive and lazy. Overindulgence in food will cause a man to sleep more than required. This human form of life is meant for austerity, and austerity means controlling sex, food intake, etc. In this way time can be saved for spiritual activity, and one can purify himself both externally and internally. Thus both body and mind can be cleansed.
(Bhag. 4.28.35-36 , purp.)
BEING TOO FAT IS AN IMPEDIMENT TO SPIRITUAL PROGRESS
It is the practice of the yogi, brahmacari, vanaprastha and sannyasi to bathe at least three times daily–early in the morning, during noontime and in the evening. These principles are strictly followed even by some grhasthas, especially brahmanas, who are elevated in spiritual consciousness. …To be too fat is not very good for spiritually advanced life. Rather, one should reduce because if one becomes fat it is an impediment to progress in spiritual understanding. One should be careful not to eat too much, sleep too much or remain in a comfortable position. Voluntarily accepting some penances and difficulties, one should take less food and less sleep. These are the procedures for practicing any kind of yoga, whether bhakti-yoga, jnana-yoga or hatha-yoga.
(Bhag. 3.33.14 , purp.)
A SANNYASI SHOULD NOT LEAVE REMNANTS
TRANSLATION: Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, “I will not be able to eat so much food, and it is not the duty of a sannyasi to leave remnants.”
PURPORT: According to Srimad-Bhagavatam (11.18.19) : “Whatever a sannyasi gets that is edible from a householder’s house, he should take outside near some lake or river, and, after offering it to Visnu, Brahma and the sun (three divisions), he should eat the entire offering and should not leave anything for others to eat.” This is an injunction for sannyasis given in Srimad- Bhagavatam.
(Cc. Madhya 3.74 )
4. THE PROCESS OF ACCEPTING INVITATIONS EXPLAINED (top)
SANNYASI ACCEPTS MEALS FROM ALL CLASSES OF VAISNAVAS
Lord Caitanya appeared in the family of a high-caste brahmana, and over and above that as sannyasi He was the preceptor for all the varnas and asramas. But He used to accept meals from all classes of Vaisnavas. At Mathura the Sanodiya brahmanas are considered to be in the lower status of society, but the Lord accepted meals in the family of such a brahmana also because His host happened to be a disciple of the Madhavendra Puri family.
(Bhag. Intro, page 37 )
A SANNYASI MAY TAKE PRASADAM IN A BRAHMANA’S HOUSE
According to the system of Vedic society, whenever an unknown sannyasi comes to a village or town, someone must invite him to take prasada in his home. Sannyasis generally take prasada in the house of a brahmana because the brahmana worships the Lord Narayana sila, or salagrama-sila, and therefore there is prasada that the sannyasi may take.
(Cc. Adi 17.269 , purp.)
LORD CAITANYA ACCEPTED LUNCH FROM A LOWER CLASS BRAHMANA BECAUSE OF THEIR SPIRITUAL RELATIONSHIP
TRANSLATION: The brahmana belonged to the Sanodiya brahmana community, and a sannyasi does not accept food from such a brahmana.
PURPORT: The Sanodiya brahmanas were the guides of the Kalaoyara and Sanoyada. They are therefore considered to be lower-class brahmanas, and a sannyasi is not allowed to take alms or food from them. However, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu accepted lunch cooked by a Sanodiya brahmana simply because he belonged to Madhavendra Puri’s community. Srila Madhavendra Puri was the spiritual master of Isvara Puri, who was the spiritual master of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Thus a spiritual relationship is established on the spiritual platform without consideration of material inferiority or superiority.
(Cc. Madhya 17.179 )
A VAISNAVA SANNYASI CAN ACCEPT AN INVITATION FROM ANY INITIATED VAISNAVA
Actually a sannyasi or a brahmana will not accept an invitation extended by a person born in a lower family. However, there are many devotees who are raised to the platform of brahmana by their initiation. These people are called sudra- mahajana. This indicates that one who is born in a non-brahmana family has accepted the brahmana status by initiation. Such devotees extended invitations to Balabhadra Bhattacarya. A Mayavadi sannyasi will accept an invitation only from a brahmana family, but a Vaisnava does not accept an invitation from a brahmana if he does not belong to the Vaisnava sect. However, a Vaisnava will accept an invitation from a brahmana or sudra- mahajana if that person is an initiated Vaisnava. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself accepted invitations from sudra- mahajanas, and this confirms the fact that anyone initiated by a Vaisnava mantra can be accepted as a brahmana. One can accept an invitation from such a person.
(Cc. Madhya 17.60, purp.)
A SANNYASI SHOULD TAKE PRASADA AT THE HOUSES OF VAISNAVAS
In the days of Haridasa Thakura, all the brahmanas worshiped Narayana in the form of the salagrama-sila. Therefore begging from a brahmana’s house meant taking krsna-prasada, which is transcendental (nirguna). If we take food from the house of others, such as karmis, we shall have to share the qualities of those from whom we take alms. Therefore Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu took prasada in the houses of Vaisnavas. This is the general process. The members of the Krsna consciousness movement are advised not to take food from anywhere but a Vaisnava’s or brahmana’s house where Deity worship is performed. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has said, visayira anna khaile dusta haya mana: if a devotee takes alms or food from the house of a karmi who is simply interested in money, his mind will be unclean.
(Cc. Antya 3.101 , purp.)
SANNYASIS OF THE HARE KRSNA MOVEMENT ARE NOT TO ASSOCIATE WITH MAYAVADI SANNYASIS, NOR ACCEPT INVITATIONS FROM PEOPLE WHO CONSIDER MAYAVADI SANNYASIS AND VAISNAVA SANNYASIS TO BE ONE AND THE SAME
TRANSLATION: When the brahmanas of Varanasi would invite Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to lunch, the Lord would not accept their invitations. He would reply, “I have already been invited somewhere else.” Every day Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu refused their invitation because He feared associating with Mayavadi sannyasis.
PURPORT: A Vaisnava sannyasi never accepts an invitation from a party who considers Mayavadi sannyasis and Vaisnava sannyasis to be one and the same. In other words, Vaisnava sannyasis do not at all like to associate with Mayavadi sannyasis, to say nothing of eating together. This principle must be followed by the sannyasis of the Krsna consciousness movement. That is the instruction of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu given by His personal behavior.
(Cc. Madhya 17.102-103 )
LORD CAITANYA’S EXAMPLE IN NOT ACCEPTING INVITATIONS FROM MAYAVADIS
PURPORT: This exemplary behavior of Lord Caitanya definitely proves that a Vaisnava sannyasi cannot accept invitations from Mayavadi sannyasis nor intimately mix with them.
(Cc. Adi 7.46 )
A SANNYASI SHOULD NOT ACCEPT AN INVITATION TO EAT AT A DEVOTEE’S HOUSE CONTINUOUSLY FOR MANY DAYS
TRANSLATION: Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya said, “Please accept my invitation for lunch for one month.” The Lord replied, “That is not possible because it is against the religious principles of a sannyasi.” Sarvabhauma the said, “Please accept the invitation for twenty days,” but Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu replied, “It is not a religious principle of the renounced order.” When Sarvabhauma requested Caitanya Mahaprabhu to accept lunch for fifteen days, the Lord said, “I shall accept lunch at your place for one day only.” Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya then caught hold of the Lord’s lotus feet and submissively begged, “Please accept lunch for at least ten days.” In this way, by and by, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu reduced the duration to five days. Thus for five days He regularly accepted the invitation to lunch. After this, Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya said, “My Lord, there are ten sannyasis with You.” PURPORT: A sannyasi should not cook food for himself or accept an invitation to eat at a devotee’s house continuously for many days. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was very kind and affectionate toward His devotees, yet He would not accept a long invitation at Sarvabhauma’s house. Out of affection, He accepted only five days in the month. The ten sannyasis living with the Lord were (1 ) Paramananda Puri, (2 ) Svarupa Damodara, (3 ) Brahmananda Puri, (4 ) Brahmananda Bharati, (5 ) Visnu Puri, (6 ) Kesava Puri, (7 ) Krsnananda Puri, (8 ) Nrsimha Tirtha, (9 ) Sukhananda Puri and (10 ) Satyananda Bharati.
(Cc. Madhya 15.188-193 )
IT IS RISKY TO ACCEPT FOODSTUFFS FROM MATERIALISTIC PERSONS
It is very risky to accept money or foodstuff from materialistic persons, for such acceptance pollutes the mind of the charity’s recipient.
(Cc. Adi 12.50, purp.)
A SANNYASI DOES NOT RESIDE IN A SUDRA’S HOUSE
Lord Caitanya stayed at the house of Candrasekhara, a clerk, although a sannyasi is not supposed to reside in a sudra’s house.
(Cc. Adi 7.45, purp.)
5. FOLLOWS THE REGULATIVE PRINCIPLES (top)
TAPASYA IS THE AUSTERITY OF BODY, MIND AND TONGUE AND IS MEANT FOR THOSE WHO HAVE RETIRED FROM FAMILY LIFE
Tapas, or austerity is especially meant for the retired life… A man retired from householder life, must practice austerity of the body, mind and tongue. That is tapasya. The entire varnasrama-dharma society is meant for tapasya. Without tapasya or austerity no human being can get liberation. The theory that there is no need of austerity in life, that one can go on speculating and everything will be nice, is neither recommended in the Vedic literature nor in the Bhagavad-gita. Such theories are manufactured by showbottle spiritualists who are trying to gather more followers. If there are restrictions, rules and regulations, people will not become attracted. Therefore those who want followers in the name of religion, just to have a show only, don’t restrict the lives of their students nor their own lives. But that method is not approved by the Vedas.
(B.g. 16.1-3, purp.)
THE FOUR REGULATIVE PRINCIPLES MUST BE FOLLOWED, SIXTEEN ROUNDS CHANTED AND PRASADAM OFFERED TO THE LORD ACCEPTED
We must carefully know the process of Dhruva Maharaja’s service; how severely he passed his days will be shown in later verses. We should always remember that to become a bona fide devotee of the Lord is not an easy task, but in this age, by the mercy of Lord Caitanya, it has been made very easy. But if we do not follow even the liberal instructions of Lord Caitanya, how can we expect to discharge our regular duties in devotional service? It is not possible in this age to follow Dhruva Maharaja in his austerity, but the principles must be followed; we should not disregard the regulative principles given by our spiritual master, for they make it easier for the conditioned soul. As far as our ISKCON movement is concerned, we simply ask that one observe the four prohibitive rules, chant sixteen rounds and, instead of indulging in luxurious eating for the tongue, simply accept prasada offered to the Lord. This does not mean that with our fasting the Lord should also fast. The Lord should be given foodstuff which is as nice as possible. But we should not make it a point to satisfy our own tongues. As far as possible we should accept simple foodstuff, just to keep the body and soul together to execute devotional service. It is our duty to remember always that in comparison to Dhruva Maharaja we are insignificant. We cannot do anything like what Dhruva Maharaja did for self-realization because we are absolutely incompetent to execute such service. But by Lord Caitanya’s mercy we have been given all concessions possible for this age, so at least we should always remember that neglect of our prescribed duties in devotional service will not make us successful in the mission we have undertaken. It is our duty to follow in the footsteps of Dhruva Maharaja, for he was very determined. We should also be determined to finish our duties in executing devotional service in this life; we should not wait for another life to finish our job.
(Bhag. 4.8.72 , purp.)
SRI CAITANYA MAHAPRABHU IS HAPPY TO SEE A SANNYASI STRICTLY FOLLOWING THE PRINCIPLES
Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu felt unlimited happiness to observe Sanatana Gosvami’s strict following of the principles of sannyasa.
(Cc. Madhya 20.82 )
A SANNYASI CANNOT GIVE UP THE REGULATIVE PRINCIPLES AND MUST CONTINUE FOLLOWING THE RULES AND REGULATIONS OF AUSTERITY AND PENANCE
We have to be very cautious in executing our spiritual duties by observing the rules and regulations and regularly chanting the Hare Krsna maha-mantra. If we neglect doing this, we will eventually fall down. We must rise early in the morning, bathe, attend mangala-arati, worship the Deities, chant the Hare Krsna mantra, study the Vedic literatures and follow all the rules prescribed by the acaryas and the spiritual master. If we deviate from this process, we may fall down, even though we may be very highly advanced. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (18.5) :
na tyajyam karyam eva tat
yajno danam tapas caiva
“Acts of sacrifice, charity and penance are not to be given up but should be performed. Indeed, sacrifice, charity and penance purify even the great souls.” Even if one is in the renounced order, he should never give up the regulative principles. He should worship the Deity and give his time and life to the service of Krsna. He should also continue following the rules and regulations of austerity and penance. These things cannot be given up. One should not think oneself very advanced simply because one has accepted the sannyasa order. The activities of Bharata Maharaja should be carefully studied for one’s spiritual advancement.
(Bhag. 5.8.8, purp.)
6. CHANTS THE HARE KRSNA MAHA-MANTRA (top)
CHANTING THE HARE KRSNA MAHA-MANTRA SAVES ONE FROM THE ALLUREMENT OF WOMEN
If we stick to the principle of chanting the hare krsna maha- mantra offenslessly, then, by the grace of Srila Haridasa Thakur, we may be saved from the allurement of women. However, if we are not very strict in chanting the Hare Krsna maha- mantra, we may at any time fall victim to women.
(Bhag. 5.6.3, purp.)
A SANNYASI SHOULD CHANT THE NAMES OF THE LORD AS HIS ONLY OCCUPATION
TRANSLATION: Govinda said to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, “Raghunatha dasa no longer takes prasada here. Now he stands at the Simha-dvara, where he begs some alms to eat.” When Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu heard this, He was greatly satisfied. “Raghunatha dasa has done well,” He said. “He has acted suitably for a person in the renounced order. “A person in the renounced order should always chant the holy name of the Lord. He should beg some alms to eat, and he should sustain his life in this way.
PURPORT: A well-to-do householder Vaisnava cannot live like a person in the renounced order who completely takes shelter of the holy name. Such a householder should chant the holy name of Krsna in the morning, at midday and in the evening. Then he will be able to cross beyond nescience. Pure devotees in the renounced order, however, who fully surrender to the lotus feet of Krsna, should chant the holy name of the Lord with great love and faith, always thinking of Krsna’s lotus feet. They should have no other occupation than canting the holy name of the Lord.
(Cc. Antya 6.221-223 )
THE DUTY OF A SANNYASI IS TO ALWAYS CHANT THE HARE KRSNA MAHA- MANTRA
“A person in the renounced order should always chant the holy name of the Lord. He should beg some alms to eat, and he should sustain his life in this way. “A Vairagi [a person in the renounced order] should not depend on others. If he does so, he will be unsuccessful, and he will be neglected by Krsna. “If a renunciant is eager for his tongue to taste different foods, his spiritual life will be lost, and he will be subservient to the tastes of his tongue. “The duty of a person in the renounced order is to chant the Hare Krsna mantra always. He should satisfy his belly with whatever vegetables, leaves, fruits and roots are available. “One who is subservient to the tongue and who thus goes here and there, devoted to the genitals and the belly, cannot attain Krsna.”
(Cc. Antya 6.223-227 )
(Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu discussing Ragunatha Dasa’s activities with His servant, Govinda)
SANNYASIS SHOULD NOT RENOUNCE CHANTING THE HARE KRSNA MAHA MANTRA
na tyajyamkaryam eva tat
yajno danam tapas caiva
“Acts of sacrifice, charity and penance are not to be given up but should be performed. Indeed, sacrifice, charity and penance purify even the great souls.” (B.g. 18.5)
Even one who has renounced the world and has taken sannyasa should not renounce chanting the Hare Krsna maha-mantra. Renunciation does not mean that one has to renounce sankirtana- yajna. Similarly, one should not renounce charity or tapasya. The yoga system for control of the mind and senses must be strictly followed. Lord Rshabadeva showed how severe types of tapasya could be performed, and He set an example for all others.
(Bhag. 5.6.2, purp.)
7. SHOULD BE AFRAID OF WEALTH (top)
A SANNYASI SHOULD BE AFRAID OF BOTH MONEY AND WOMEN
As Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was playing the part of a world teacher, He did not agree to see the king because a king is a mundane person interested in money and women. Indeed, the very name “king” suggests one who is always surrounded by money and women. As a sannyasi, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was afraid of both money and women. The very word “king” is repugnant to one who is in the renounced order of life. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu refused to see the king but indirectly, by the Lord’s causeless mercy, the king was able to understand the Lord’s mysterious activities. Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s activities were exhibited to show Him as a devotee. Both kinds of activity are mysterious and appreciated only by pure devotees.
(Cc. Madhya 13.61 )
SANNYASI AND THE POSSESSION OF WEALTH
For a sannyasi, intimate relations with women and possession of wealth for sense gratification are strictly forbidden.
(B.g. 16.1-3, purp.)
A TRANSCENDENTALIST HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH WOMEN AND MONEY
On the principles of the renounced order of life and discipline the Lord knew no compromise, and therefore even though He knew that the King (Maharaja Prataparudra, king of Orissa) was a great devotee, He refused to see the king only because the king was a dollar-and-cent man. By this example the Lord wanted to emphasize the proper behavior for a transcendentalist. A transcendentalist has nothing to do with women or money. He must always refrain from such intimate relations.
(Bhag. Intro, page 31 )
ATTRACTION TO HOUSEHOLDERS’ WEALTH IS MORE DANGEROUS THAN DRINKING POISON AND COMMITTING SUICIDE
TRANSLATION: He [Sukadeva Gosvami] was accustomed to stay at the door of a householder only long enough for a cow to be milked. And he did this just to sanctify the residence. PURPORT: Sukadeva Gosvami met Emperor Pariksit and explained the text of Srimad- Bhagavatam. He was not accustomed to stay at any householder’s residence for more than half an hour (at the time of milking the cow), and he would just take alms from the fortunate householder. That was to sanctify the residence by his auspicious presence. Therefore Sukadeva Gosvami is an ideal preacher established in the transcendental position. From his activities, those who are in the renounced order of life and dedicated to the mission of preaching the message of Godhead should learn that they have no business with householders save and except to enlighten them in transcendental knowledge. Such asking for alms from householders should be for the purpose of sanctifying his home. One who is in the renounced order of life should not be allured by the glamour of the householder’s worldly possessions and thus become subservient to worldly men. For one who is in the renounced order of life, this is much more dangerous than drinking poison and committing suicide.
8. WRITES LITERATURES AND HOLDS DISCOURSES (top)
SANNYASIS FIRST DUTY IS TO CONTRIBUTE LITERATURE AND HOLD DISCOURSES
The first duty of a person in the renounced order of life is to contribute some literary work for the benefit of the human being in order to give him realized direction toward self-realization. Amongst the other duties in the renounced order of life of Srila Sanatana, Srila Rupa and the other Gosvamis of Vrndavana, the foremost duty discharged by them was to hold learned discourses amongst themselves at Sevakunja, Vrndavana (the spot where Sri Radha-Damodara Temple was established by Srila Jiva Gosvami and where the actual samadhi tombs of Srila Rupa Gosvami and Srila Jiva Gosvami are laid). For the benefit of all in human society, they left behind them immense literatures of transcendental importance.
(Bhag 2.2.5, purp.)
9. ALL SANNYASIS STUDY THE VEDANTA SUTRA (top)
TRANSLATION The Bhattacarya said: “Hearing the Vedanta philosophy is a sannyasi’s main business. Therefore, without hesitation You should study Vedanta philosophy, hearing it without cessation from a superior person.”
(Cc. Madhya 6.212 )
SANNYASIS MUST READ VEDANTA-SUTRA
The Vedanta- or Brahma-sutra, written by Srila Vyasadeva, is a book studied by all advanced spiritual students, especially by the sannyasis of all religious communities (sampradayas). The sannyasis must read Vedanta-sutra to establish their final conclusions concerning Vedic knowledge.
(Cc. Madhya 6.120 , purp.)
SRIMAD BHAGAVATAM IS THE EXPLANATION OF VEDANTA
The Lord posed Himself before the Bhattacarya as a foolish student and pretended that He heard the Vedanta from him because the Bhattacarya felt that this was the duty of a sannyasi. But the Lord did not agree with his lectures. By this the Lord indicated that the so-called Vedantists among the Sankara- sampradaya, or any other sampradaya who do not follow the instructions of Srila Vyasadeva, are mechanical students of Vedanta. They are not fully aware of that great knowledge. The explanation of the Vedanta-sutra is given by the author himself in the text of Srimad Bhagavatam. One who has no knowledge of the Bhagavatam will hardly be able to know what the Vedanta says.
(Bhag. Intro, page 20 )
A SANNYASI SHOULD READ SRIMAD BHAGAVATAM WHICH IS THE REAL COMMENTARY OF VEDANTA-SUTRA AND STRICTLY AVOID SRIPADA SANKARACARYA’S COMMENTARY KNOWN AS SARIRAKA BHASYA
Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu approved of a sannyasi’s reading Vedanta-sutra, or Brahma-sutra, but He did not approve the Sariraka commentary of Sankaracarya. Indeed, He said elsewhere, mayavadi-bhasya sunile haya sarva-nasa: “If one hears the Sariraka-bhasya of Sankaracarya, he is doomed.” Thus a sannyasi, a transcendentalist, must read Vedanta-sutra regularly, but he should not read the Sariraka- bhasya. This is the conclusion of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. The real commentary of Vedanta-sutra is Srimad-Bhagavatam. Artho ‘yam brahma- sutranam: Srimad-Bhagavatam is the original commentary of Vedanta-sutra written by the author himself, Srila Vyasadeva.
(Cc. Madhya 6.127 , purp.)
THE BHAKTIVEDANTA TITLE IS OFFERED TO VEDANTIST VAISNAVAS
Bhattacarya was the professor of many sannyasis in the order of the Sankaracarya-sampradaya, and he himself also belonged to that cult. As such, the Bhattacarya desired that the young sannyasi Lord Caitanya also hear from him about the teachings of Vedanta. Those who are followers of the Sankara cult are generally known as Vedantists. This does not, however, mean that Vedanta is a monopoly study of the Sankara-sampradaya. Vedanta is studied by all bona-fide sampradayas, but they have their own interpretations. But those in the Sankara- sampradaya are generally known to be ignorant of the knowledge of the Vedantist Vaisnavas. For this reason the Bhaktivedanta title was first offered to the author by the Vaisnavas.
(Bhag. Intro, page 19)
10. STRIVES TO ADVANCE IN SPIRITUAL LIFE (top)
SANNYASIS DO NOT HAVE TO DO ANYTHING EXCEPT STRIVE FOR ADVANCEMENT IN SPIRITUAL LIFE
As for those who are not grhasthas–the brahmacaris, vanaprasthas and sannyasis–they don’t have to do anything but strive for advancement in spiritual life. This means that three fourths of the entire population should stop sense gratification and simply be engaged in the advancement of Krsna consciousness. Only one fourth of the population should be grhastha, and that should be according to laws of restricted sense gratification. The grhasthas, vanaprasthas, brahmacaris and sannyasis should endeavor together with their total energy to become Krsna conscious. This type of civilization is called daiva-varnasrama. One of the objectives of the Krsna consciousness movement is to establish this daiva-varnasrama, but not to encourage so-called varnasrama without scientifically organized endeavor by human society.
(Bhag. 7.14.10 , purp.)
11. SHOULD NOT ASK FOR MORE THAN REQUIRED (top)
SANNYASI SHOULD NOT ASK FOR MORE THAN IS NECESSARY
Here His Lordship Vamanadeva also teaches sannyasis and brahmacaris that one should not ask more than necessary. He wanted only three paces of land, although Bali Maharaja wanted to give Him anything He wanted.
(Bhag. 8.19.2 , purp.)
A SANNYASI IS QUALIFIED TO ASK FOR CHARITY, BUT BECAUSE HE LIVES AT THE COST OF OTHERS, HE IS PUNISHABLE IF HE TAKES MORE THAN NECESSARY. TO ACQUIRE AND SPEND MONEY EXTRAVAGANTLY IS SINFUL
A brahmana or sannyasi is qualified to ask charity from others, but if he takes more than necessary he is punishable. No one can use more of the Supreme Lord’s property than necessary. Lord Vamanadeva indirectly indicated to Bali Maharaja that he was occupying more land than he needed. In the material world, all distresses are due to extravagance. One acquires money extravagantly and also spends it extravagantly. Such activities are sinful. All property belongs to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and all living beings, who are sons of the Supreme Lord, have the right to use the Supreme Father’s property, but one cannot take more than necessary. This principle should especially be followed by brahmanas and sannyasis who live at the cost of others. Thus Vamanadeva was an ideal beggar, for He asked only three paces of land. Of course, there is a difference between His footsteps and those of an ordinary human being. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, by His inconceivable prowess, can occupy the entire universe, including the upper, lower and middle planetary systems, by the unlimited measurement of His footsteps.
(Bhag. 8.19.17 , purp.)
WHATEVER MONEY IS COLLECTED SHOULD BE SPENT ONLY FOR KRSNA
Whatever money is collected should be spent for Krsna, and not a farthing for sense gratification. This is the Bhagavata principle.
(Bhag. 7.13.34 , purp.)
12. IS FORBIDDEN TO SEE MATERIALISTS (top)
A SANNYASI IS STRICTLY FORBIDDEN TO SEE MATERIALISTS
A sannyasi is strictly forbidden to see the visayis and materialistic people. However, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, out of His boundless and causeless mercy, could show favor to anyone, regardless of birth and position.
(Cc. Madhya 8.37 , purp.)
A SANNYASI SHOULD NOT TAKE INTEREST IN MATERIAL ACTIVITIES
TRANSLATION: Indeed when all the devotees had requested the Lord to bestow His mercy upon Gopinatha Pattanaika, the Lord had said that He could do nothing PURPORT: When a person is sinful, he loses both the chance for spiritual advancement and the chance for material opulence. If one enjoys the material world for sense gratification, he is certainly doomed. Advancement in material opulence is not the direct mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; nevertheless, it indicates the indirect mercy of the Lord, for even a person too attached to material prosperity can gradually be detached and raised to the spiritual platform. Then he can offer causeless, purified service to the Lord. When Sri Caitanya said, ama haite kichu nahe (“It is not My business to do anything”), He set the ideal example for a person in the renounced order. If a sannyasi takes the side of a visayi, a person engaged in material activities, his character will be criticized. A person in the renounced order should not take interest in material activities, but if he does so out of affection for a particular person, that should be considered his special mercy.
(Cc. Antya 9.148 , purp.)
A SADHU SHOULD NEVER FLATTER KINGS OR RICH MEN
A sadhu should never flatter kings or rich men to live comfortably at their cost. A sadhu is to speak to the householders about the naked truth of life so that they may come to their senses about the precarious life in material existence. …A sadhu like Vidura is meant to awaken such blind persons and thus help them go back to Godhead, where life is eternal. Once going there, no one wants to come back to this material world of miseries. We can just imagine how responsible a task is entrusted to a sadhu like Mahatma Vidura.
(Bhag. 1.13.23, purp.)
SANNYASI’S PRINCIPLES REGARDING MEETING A KING OR A WOMAN ENUNCIATED BY SRI CAITANYA MAHAPRABHU
TRANSLATION: “Since I am in the renounced order, it is as dangerous for Me to meet a king as to meet a woman. They are both just like drinking poison.” Greatly lamenting, the Lord then informed Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, “‘Alas, for a person who is seriously desiring to cross the material ocean and engage in the transcendental loving service of the Lord without material motives, seeing a materialist engaged in sense gratification and seeing a woman who is similarly interested is more abominable than drinking poison willingly.'”
PURPORT: This is a quotation from Sri Caitanya-candrodaya-nataka (8.23) . Thus Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu enunciates the principles for a sannyasi renouncing the material world for spiritual advancement. In the material world, the via media for sense gratification is mainly a woman. One who is seriously interested in spiritual life should strictly avoid women. A sannyasi should never see a man or a woman for material benefit. In addition, talks with materialistic men and women are also dangerous, and they are compared to drinking poison. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was very strict on this point. He therefore refused to see King Prataparudra, who was naturally always engaged in political and economic affairs. The Lord even refused to see the King despite the request of a personality like Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, who was the Lord’s intimate friend and devotee.
(Cc. Madhya 11.7-8)
A SANNYASI AVOIDS POLITICIANS
Previously the Lord had been asked by Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya to visit the great devotee Ramananda Raya at Karur. The Lord could understand that the man approaching the river bank was Ramananda Raya, and He desired to see Him immediately. However, because He was in the renounced order of life, He restrained Himself from going to see a political personage.
(TLC ch. 27 , page 292 )
A king, governor or any politician is always absorbed in thoughts of political affairs and pound-shillings-pence; therefore such persons are avoided by sannyasis.
(TLC Ch. 27, page 293 )
A SANNYASI AVOIDS MONEY-CONSCIOUS MEN
The King requested both Bhattacarya and Raya to arrange his meeting with the Lord. When, however, the Lord was petitioned by His two stalwart devotees, He flatly refused to grant the request, even though it was put forward by personal associates like Ramananda Raya and Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya. The Lord maintained that it is dangerous for a sannyasi to be to be in intimate touch with worldly money-conscious men and with women.
(Bhag. Intro, page 31 )
A SANNYASI SHOULD FEAR MATERIALISTIC PERSONS AND WOMEN
TRANSLATION: “‘Just as one is immediately frightened upon seeing a live serpent or even the form of a serpent, one endeavoring for self-realization should similarly fear a materialistic person and a woman. Indeed, he should not even glance at their bodily features.’
PURPORT: This is a quotation from Sri Caitanya-candrodaya-nataka (8.24) .
(Cc. Madhya 11.11 )
A SANNYASI SHOULD NOT MEET A KING
From the spiritual point of view, a sannyasi is strictly forbidden to see materialistic people, especially a king who is always engaged in counting pounds, shillings and pence. Indeed, the meeting between a sannyasi and a king is always considered abominable. A sannyasi is always subjected to public criticism, and a small fault on his part is taken seriously by the public. People actually expect a sannyasi to preach and not take part in any social or political matters. If a sannyasi is subject to public criticism, his preaching will not be fruitful. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu specifically wanted to avoid such criticism so that His preaching work would not be hampered.
(Cc. Madhya 12.25 purp.)
TRANSLATION: “If a mendicant meets a king, this world and the next world are both destroyed for the mendicant. Indeed, what is there to say of the next world? In this world, people will jok e if a sannyasi meets a king.”
(Cc. Madhya 12.48 )
IT IS VERY DANGEROUS TO HAVE INTIMATE RELATIONSHIPS WITH MUNDANE PEOPLE OR WITH WOMEN
The word niskincanasya refers to a person who has finished his material activities. Such a person can begin to execute his activities in Krsna consciousness to cross over the ocean of nescience. It is very dangerous for such a person to have intimate relationships with mundane people or to become intimately related with women. This formality is to be observed by anyone who is serious about going back home, back to Godhead. To teach His personal associates these principles,
Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu expressed external anger when touched by the King. Since the Lord was very satisfied with the humble behavior of the king, He intentionally allowed the king to touch Him, but externally He expressed anger just to warn His personal associates.
(Cc. Madhya 13.185 , purp.)
ONE SHOULD BE CAREFUL IN DEALING WITH MATERIALISTIC MEN
TRANSLATION: Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, “Although it is correct that the king is a great devotee, he is still to be considered a venomous snake. Similarly, even though a woman be made of wood, one becomes agitated simply by touching her form.
PURPORT: Sri Canakya Pandita in his moral instructions has stated: tyaja durjana- sam-sargam bhaja sadhu-samagamam. This means that one has to abandon the association of materialistic people and associate with spiritually advanced people. However qualified a materialist may be, he is no better than a venomous serpent. Everyone knows that a snake is dangerous and poisonous, and when its hood is decorated with jewels, it is no less poisonous or dangerous. However qualified a materialist may be, he is no better than a snake decorated with jewels. One should therefore be careful in dealing with a bejeweled serpent.
(Cc. Madhya 11.10 )
13. COMPLETELY DEPENDS ON MERCY OF THE LORD (top)
FOR A SANNYASI, COMPLETE DEPENDENCE ON THE MERCY OF THE SUPREME PERSONALITY OF GODHEAD IS BEST
Although the profession of begging is allowed for a brahmana or sannyasi, one does better if he can avoid such a profession and completely depend on the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead for maintenance.
(Bhag. 9.18.25 , purp.)
14. NEVER RETURNS TO HIS HOME (top)
A SANNYASI NEVER RETURNS TO HIS HOME
TRANSLATION: Sacimata submitted: “As far as you are concerned, you can meet Nimai, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, many times somewhere else, but what is the possibility of my ever meeting Him again? I shall have to remain at home. A sannyasi never returns to his home.”
(Cc. Madhya 3.170 )
A SANNYASI SHOULD NOT REMAIN AT HIS BIRTHPLACE
TRANSLATION: “After accepting sannyasa, it is not the duty of a sannyasi to remain at his birthplace, encircled by relatives. “Make some arrangement so that I may not leave you and at the same time people may not blame Me for remaining with relatives after taking sannyasa.”
(Cc. Madhya 3.177-178 )
15. SLEEPS ON THE GROUND AND BATHES THRICE DAILY (top)
IT IS A SANNYASIS DUTY TO SLEEP ON THE GROUND AND BATHE THREE TIMES A DAY
TRANSLATION: “Being a sannyasi, it is My duty to lie down on the ground and take a bath three times a day, even during the winter. But Mukunda becomes very unhappy when he sees My severe austerities.
(Cc. Madhya 7.23 )
A SANNYASI MUST BATHE THREE TIMES A DAY
A Vaisnava who is supposed to be advanced in spiritual understanding—be he a householder or sannyasi–must bathe three times a day: morning, noon and evening. When one is engaged in the service of the Deity, he must especially follow the principles of Padma Purana and take regular baths. He should also, after bathing, decorate his body with the twelve tilakas.
(Cc. Madhya 8.55 , purp.)
A SANNYASI SHOULD BATHE THREE TIMES A DAY
It is the practice of the yogi, brahmacari, vanaprastha and sannyasi to bathe at least three times daily–early in the morning, during noontime and in the evening. These principles are strictly followed even by some grhasthas, especially brahmanas, who are elevated in spiritual consciousness.
(Bhag. 3.33.14 . purp.)
16. OBSERVES SOCIAL CUSTOMS (top)
SO LONG AS A SANNYASI IS IN THIS MATERIAL WORLD, HE MUST OBSERVE SOCIAL CUSTOMS TO AVOID CRITICISM
There are many instances of devotional service rendered by previous acaryas who did not care about social behavior when intensely absorbed in love for Krsna. Unfortunately, as long as we are within this material world, we must observe social customs to avoid criticism by the general populace. This is Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s desire.
(Cc. Madhya 7.29, purp.)
17. DOES NOT CONSTRUCT TEMPLES OR MONASTERIES (top)
THE FIRST BUSINESS OF A SANNYASI IS TO PREACH KRSNA CONSCIOUSNESS, NOT TO CONSTRUCT TEMPLES AND MONASTERIES
TRANSLATION: A sannyasi must not present allurements of material benefits to gather many disciples, nor should he unnecessarily read many books or give discourses as a means of livelihood. He must never attempt to increase material opulences unnecessarily.
PURPORT: So-called svamis and yogis generally make disciples by alluring them with material benefits. There are many so-called gurus who attract disciples by promising to cure their diseases or increase their material opulence by manufacturing gold. These are lucrative allurements for unintelligent men. A sannyasi is prohibited from making disciples through such material allurements. Sannyasis sometimes indulge in material opulence by unnecessarily constructing many temples and monasteries, but actually such endeavors should be avoided. Temples and monasteries should be constructed for the preaching of spiritual consciousness or Krsna consciousness, not to provide free hotels for persons who are useful for neither material nor spiritual purposes. Temples and monasteries should be strictly off limits to worthless clubs of crazy men. In the Krsna consciousness movement we welcome everyone who agrees at least to follow the movement’s regulative principles—no illicit sex, no intoxication, no meat-eating and no gambling. In the temples and monasteries, gatherings of unnecessary, rejected, lazy fellows should be strictly disallowed. The temples and monasteries should be used exclusively by devotees who are serious about spiritual advancement in Krsna consciousness. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura explains the as meaning mathadi- vyaparan, which means “attempts to construct temples and monasteries.” The first business of the sannyasi is to preach Krsna consciousness, but if, by the grace of Krsna, facilities are available, then he may construct temples and monasteries to give shelter to the serious students of Krsna consciousness. Otherwise such temples and monasteries are not needed.
(Bhag. 7.13.8 )
18. MAY HAVE AN INSTITUTION FOR PREACHING PURPOSES (top)
A SANNYASI CAN HAVE AN INSTITUTION TO PREACH KRSNA CONSCIOUSNESS BUT MAY NOT ACCUMULATE MONEY FOR HIMSELF
According to Vedic civilization, the ultimate perfection of life is to take sannyasa, but at the present moment people do not know why sannyasa is accepted. Because of misunderstanding, they think that one accepts sannyasa to escape social responsibilities. But one does not accept sannyasa to escape from responsibility to society. Generally one accepts sannyasa at the fourth stage of spiritual life. One begins as a brahmacari then becomes a grhastha, a vanaprastha and finally a sannyasi to take advantage of the duration of one’s life by engaging oneself fully in self-realization. Sannyasa does not mean begging from door to door to accumulate money for sense gratification. However, because in Kali-yuga people are more or less prone to sense gratification, immature sannyasa is not recommended. Srila Rupa Gosvami writes in his Nectar of Instruction (2):
atyaharah prayasas ca
jana-sangas ca laulyam ca
sadbhir bhaktir vinasyati
“One’s devotional service is spoiled when he becomes too entangled in the following six activities: (1 ) eating more than necessary or collecting more funds than required; (2 ) over endeavoring for mundane things that are very difficult to obtain; (3 ) talking unnecessarily about mundane subject matters; (4 ) practicing the scriptural rules and regulations only for the sake of following them and not for the sake of spiritual advancement, or rejecting the rules and regulations of the scriptures and working independently or whimsically; (5 ) associating with worldly-minded persons who are not interested in Krsna consciousness; and (6 ) being greedy for mundane achievements.” A sannyasi should have an institution meant to preach Krsna consciousness; he need not accumulate money for himself. We recommend that as soon as money accumulates in our Krsna consciousness movement, fifty per cent of it should be invested in printing books, and fifty per cent for expenditures, especially in establishing centers all over the world. The managers of the Krsna consciousness movement should be extremely cautious in regard to this point. Otherwise money will be the cause of lamentation, illusion, fear, anger, material attachment, material poverty, and unnecessary hard work. When I was alone in Vrndavana, I never attempted to construct mathas or temples; rather, I was fully satisfied with the small amount of money I could gather by selling Back to Godhead, and thus I would provide for myself and also print the literature. When I went to foreign countries, I lived according to the same principle, but when Europeans and Americans began to give money profusely, I started temples and Deity worship. The same principle should still be followed. Whatever money is collected should be spent for Krsna, and not a farthing for sense gratification. This is the Bhagavata principle.
(Bhag. 7.13.34 , purp.)
19. MAY KEEP SMALL DEITIES OF THE LORD (top)
A SANNYASI CAN KEEP SMALL DEITIES OF THE LORD FOR DAILY WORSHIP
Becoming Krsna conscious is the topmost stage in understanding of religious principles. One who reaches this stage performs the arcana process in devotional service. Anyone, whether a grhastha or a sannyasi, can keep small Deities of the Lord suitably packed or, if possible, installed, and thus worship the Deities of Radha-Krsna, Sita-Rama, Laksmi-Narayana, Lord Jagannatha or Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu by offering food prepared in ghee and then offering the sanctified prasada to the forefathers, demigods and other living entities as a matter of routine daily work.
(Bhag. 7.15.11 , purp.)
20 . MAY VISIT TEMPLES OF LORD SIVA (top)
VAISNAVA SANNYASIS CAN ALSO VISIT THE TEMPLES OF LORD SIVA BECAUSE THEY DO NOT BEHAVE IMPUDENTLY TOWARDS THE DEMIGODS
TRANSLATION: When the Lord went to visit the temple of Visvesvara, hundreds and thousands of people assembled to see Him.
PURPORT: The important point in this verse is that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu regularly visited the temple of Visvesvara (Lord Siva) at Varanasi. Vaisnavas generally do not visit a demigod’s temple, but here we see that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu regularly visited the temple of Visvesvara, who was the predominating deity of Varanasi. Generally Mayavadi sannyasis and worshipers of Lord Siva live in Varanasi, but how is it that Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who took the part of a Vaisnava sannyasi, also visited the Visvesvara temple? The answer is that a Vaisnava does not behave impudently toward the demigods. A Vaisnava gives proper respect to all, although he never accepts a demigod to be as good as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In the Brahma-samhita there are mantras offering obeisances to Lord Siva, Lord Brahma, the sun god and Lord Ganesha, as well as Lord Visnu, all of whom are worshipped by the impersonalists as pancopasana. In their temples impersonalists also install deities of Lord Visnu, Lord Siva, the sun god, goddess Durga and sometimes Lord Brahma also, and this system is continuing at present in India under the guise of the Hindu religion. Vaisnavas can also worship all these demigods, but only on the principles of Brahma-samhita, which is recommended by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
(Cc. Adi 7.157 )