to Read Satsvarupa dasa Goswami’s Free Writing:
Sometimes we hear disciples of Satsvarupa Maharaja express confusion about his free writing. The following thoughts are intended to help disciples approach Satsvarupa Maharaja’s free writing in a spirit appropriate for a disciple.
In reading Satsvarupa Maharaja’s free writing, I would suggest that the disciple perform a kind of spiritual algebra.
In arithmetic, one asks, “2 plus 3 equals what?” But in algebra, one asks, “2 plus what equals 5?” In both cases, the idea is to have something come into view that is currently beyond one’s vision. As practitioners of Krishna consciousness, what we want to have come into view is the truth of who we are.
To answer the question, “2 plus what equals 5?,” we must subtract 2 from both the lefthand side and the righthand side of the equation. In spiritual algebra, I perform a similar operation.
On the lefthand side of
the spiritual equation are my current beliefs about what Krishna
consciousness is. Also on the lefthand side of the equation is a big
question mark as to the meaning of Satsvarupa Maharaja’s free writing. On
the righthand side of the equation are Prabhupada’s books and everything
that’s in them (what we might call Spiritual Reality. It bears noting that
for those who are not self-realized, much of what we here call Spiritual
Reality is hidden from view.). Thus, our spiritual equation looks like
“spiritual algebra,” I position myself in my relationship with Satsvarupa
Maharaja and his personal writings in a manner appropriate for a disciple.
For me to read Satsvarupa Maharaja’s free writing in this way is, in
effect, to consider myself a fool at the lotus feet of my spiritual
master. This is factually the appropriate mood for a disciple who wishes
to approach the spiritual master. By approaching Satsvarupa Maharaja’s
free writing in a mood that is appropriate to a disciple, a variety of
perspectives on the spiritual reality revealed in Prabhupada’s books come
into view that were otherwise hidden from vision, and one progresses on
the path of self-knowledge. To read Satsvarupa Maharaja’s personal
writings in this way is to place oneself in an optimum position to receive
the mercy of the Lord.