Q/A: dying in Vṛndāvana

Maharajji answers questions in Śrī Guru Darśanam, p 490

Question: Many people believe if they just leave their body here in Vṛndāvana, they will go to Kṛṣṇa-loka. What is the actual destination of somebody who leaves his body in Vṛndāvana?

Answer: Just by dying you do not go to the abode of Bhagavān. It depends on one’s consciousness, as Kṛṣṇa Himself says in Gītā 8.5, “One who thinks of Me alone, even at the time of death while departing from the body, attains My nature. There is no doubt about this. ” Whatever consciousness one has at the time of death, he attains that destination.

Generally, those who die here go to hell. Because people who live outside of Vṛndāvana have some respect for Vṛndāvana, whereas those who live here, have no respect. They commit offenses. How can they attain the abode of Bhagavān if they are offensive to His abode?

Dying in Vṛndāvana is not instrumental in your destination. Your consciousness is instrumental. As it is said in Upadeśāmṛta 8, tiṣṭhan vraje tad-anurāgi janānugāmi, “While staying in Vraja, one should follow the devotees who have love for Kṛṣṇa.” The śāstras say that the qualification to live here is surrender to Bhagavān and His devotees, to associate with them and to serve them. That is the meaning of living in Vraja. Saying that such and such devotee has attained the abode of Bhagavān is to say some nice words about a dead person.

People generally are offenders in knowledge. They all know that this is the abode of Bhagavān, and it is to be honored and respected. But they use it for their own selfishness, such as getting respect and worship from others. Those people, who are interested in their own respect, worship and honor, cannot go to the abode of Bhagavān. If they live here, they have to accept that this is the abode of Bhagavān, and they have to behave accordingly.

Although the abode has the power, it does not give the benefit to unqualified people. Ajāmila was not living in Vṛndāvana, but he went to Vaikunṭha just by nāmābhāsa, because he was not an offender.

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