“In this exalted state of love for Krishna, Nanda Maharaja and the other residents of Vrindavan show qualities that even we, in our stage, should aspire to and try to develop. The development of Krishna consciousness is hierarchical in that whatever qualities exist in the lower stages continue in the higher stages. It is not that they disappear. For example, in our stage we are trying to develop faith in Krishna and surrender to Him, and when we do have faith in Him and surrender to Him we can proceed in devotional service. And there are different stages delineated by Srila Rupa Gosvami in his Bhakti Rasamrta Sindhu: adau sraddha — faith; then sadhu-sangah — association with pure devotees; then bhajana-kriya — performance of devotional practices; then anartha-nivrittih — the diminishing of unwanted habits; then nishtha — firm, steady faith and practice; then rucih — taste; then asaktih — attachment; and so on. As one progresses, all of those continue. It is not that ‘Now I am advanced, so I am not surrendered any more — surrender is for a lower stage.’ Rather, genuine advancement means that one’s surrender deepens. And the most surrendered devotees are Krishna’s personal associates, especially His associates in Vrindavan. So, those moods also pertain to us at our stage. But there is also the other aspect, that they are being exhibited in an extreme condition of ecstatic love for Krishna in separation. Nanda Maharaja feels that he and Mother Yasoda are disqualified because of their so-called hard-heartedness and that therefore Krishna arranged for more qualified devotees to be His parents. This indicates the extreme predominance of the sancari-bhava of dainya, humility, within them.”
“There are anarthas, such as the desire for recognition and fame, in the heart, and they give you trouble. Now what are you going to do about them? Do you believe that they will eventually just automatically disappear? No. One should think, “Let’s look at what they are exactly. Why are they there? Let me open the closet,” and so on. Then let the light of Krishna consciousness shine on them.
I have done this over the past years and found great benefit. I see how things that I previously didn’t dare to look at now dissolve. And do you know why they dissolve? It is not because of my own strength. I am too weak. I am a conditioned soul. These materialistic anarthas have been here life after life. Just having knowledge of some verses will not drive them away. I sincerely have to turn to Krishna. And the question that Krishna asks is, “Wait a minute, you are asking me to take this away. Do you really want to lose it?” And I think, “Of course, we have our philosophy.” But Krishna asks, “Are you really prepared to become a humble devotee without any prestige and honor?” And then I have to scratch my head. And I begin to understand why my lips say, “I want to be pure,” yet my heart says, “But not just now, please. I actually like these things.” This is the situation of a conditioned soul who is divided.” — Sacinandana Swami