Gaudiya Vaisnava tradition stipulates that spiritual presentations be verified by sastric quotations; for sastra, the divine descent of the Absolute Truth, is after all the non-differentiated representation of the divine will.
However, these revealed scriptures are only pointing the way, for the essential truths are hidden in the hearts of the self-realized pure-hearted saints-dharmasya-tattvam nihitam guhayam. Knowledge itself (jnana) may be acquired, but sastra in and of itself is a representation of the divine descent in a passive form; different conceptions will be extracted from it according to one's spiritual merit and purity. Vijnana (realized knowledge) is therefore infinitely more valuable, for it is the spiritual reality seen with the eye of divine service, reflected in the pure heart of the practitioner. The active principle of spiritual realization is hearing from the tatva darsi-the saint who is continuously in connection with the spiritual reality by virtue of his substantial faith and realization.
The essence of initiation into our Gaudiya Vaisnava sampradaya is the infusion of divya-jnana, the imparting of transcendental knowledge by the guru. The current predominant Vaisnava worldview is that "We are simply servants of Sri guru, we do not have our own opinion." Certainly we do not wish to generate opinions filtered by our own idiosyncrasies and impure desires. But realizations we must have, for realizations are the expression of the degree to which we have actually embraced the Absolute Truth. They are the substantiation of our divine connection, of our spiritual standing or adhikari. If we do not have realizations, then we have not embraced the spiritual reality according to the Lord's intentions; we have failed in our spiritual quest.
The present socio-religious climate amongst Gaudiya Vaisnavas is somewhat lacking in spiritual dimension, due to the rise of relative considerations may well hinder the natural development of sraddha (faith) in the Vaisnavas's hearts. If the healthy progression of sraddha is hindered, there is no question of substantial spiritual development, for sraddha is an essential element in our attempt to join the confidential serving group.
In the Caitanya-caritamrta it is related that the associates of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu responded to Mahaprabhu's attempt to conceal His divinity with the statement, "It is as if the sun upon rising, is attempting to conceal itself." Similarly, essential divine revelations stand self-illumined by their own obvious merit, but can only be accessed properly through faith. We would like to humbly submit that one may judge the adhikari (spiritual standing) of Vaisnavas according to their capacity to capture and reveal the essential spiritual truths. In this spirit, we present Sri Gayatri Mantrartha Dipika, for we feel that it is an irrefutable expression of this principle of divine revelation.
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