Patience is the Key
[The following is an excerpt of a bhāva anuvāda of a darśana with Śrīla Bhakti Vijñāna Bhāratī Gosvāmī Mahārāja on January 24, 2014 in Jagannath Puri. Editors’ input: Additional text has been included in square brackets to facilitate the flow of content.]
Śyāmalā Dīdī: In Śrī Caitanya-Bhāgavata, there is one līlā where Mukunda was going here and there, to the Māyāvādīs. For this reason, Mahāprabhu didn’t want to give prema to Mukunda because he was going here, there and everywhere. The devotees were very worried so they posed a question and Mahāprabhu responded, “Ok, after millions of lifetimes he can have My darśana.” When Mukunda received this news, he was in so much ecstasy that he danced with joy.
I was thinking the other day if that happened to me, that if I was informed I wouldn’t see Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa and Mahāprabhu for millions of lifetimes, I would be very depressed. And sometimes I think that it will take me millions of lifetimes also to reach the goal. I guess this means I am not surrendered. I don’t know how to develop this patience.
Mādhava-priya Prabhu: Your main question is how to develop patience? [Mādhava-priya Prabhu then translates her question to Śrīla Mahārāja]
Śrīla Mahārāja: If you get depressed, then you will not get hari-bhakti!
Mādhava-priya Prabhu: So her question is how can patience be increased?
Śrīla Mahārāja: By hearing [hari-kathā]. If there is no patience, one may expect a fruit as soon as one plants a tree. Such a person must not engage in gardening. Even if he does endeavor, it will be useless [because his expectation is unrealistic].
Mādhava-priya Prabhu: Śrīla Mahārāja is saying that just by sowing the seed, one will not be able to get the fruit. It will take time, because there is a natural process involved. So if a person, just by sowing a seed, immediately thinks, ‘When will I reap this?’ he will not be able to get anything. So one has to be practical and understand that the process takes time.