California, USA — July 14th, 2013
The cover of Srila Gurudeva's latest book, Revealed Truth — compiled and published by His Holiness Sripad Bhakti Kamal Tyagi Maharaj — is both beautiful and profound.
Yes, I know, 'you can't judge a book by its cover' (and this is generally good advice in our ordinary, day-to-day dealings with others), but when we are dealing, literally, with the revealed truth (as we are here), this proverb should be ignored — just as it's generally good advice to follow the Vedic directives, but as Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita,
sarva-dharman parityajya / mam ekam saranam vraja
"If a scriptural injunction impedes your service to Me, ignore it!"
The revealed truth — our only hope for a connection with reality — supersedes all other advice and considerations. Skepticism and doubt are disqualifications when dealing with this transcendental plane:
Veda means 'revealed truth.' No truth can be expected to be found here, so absolute knowledge must come from [beyond] this world. Revealed truth is our only solace, our only support — and that is called veda. Veda means jnana: 'know this.'
—Srila Sridhar Maharaj (July, 1982)
The meaning of the word veda, is 'know.' No rhyme or reason is shown why you should know, and no explanation is given: simply, 'know.' Because doubt is absent in the spiritual plane, no cheating is possible.... Here, we are in the plane of misunderstanding and doubt, so we want to examine everything.... But where cheating is unknown, transactions are very simple and straightforward. So, no reason is given for suggestions that come down from that plane.
—Search For Sri Krishna: Reality the Beautiful
Anyway, when I first received this sturdy, handsome hardcover edition of Revealed Truth (thanks, Hasyapriya Prabhu!) I marveled at just how appropriate the picture on the front cover was, because I recognized the Srimad Bhagavatam verse that it conceptualized,
nigama-kalpa-taror galitam phalam
pibata bhagavatam rasam alayam
muhur aho rasika bhuvi bhavukah
—Srimad Bhagavatam (1:1:3)
and its ever so subtle import,
O devotees! Everyone who is searching, and has some appreciation for the truth — presented so eloquently by Srila Bhakti Rakshak Sridhar Maharaj as Search for Sri Krishna: Reality the Beautiful — will find this Revealed Truth to be even more relishable, because it is sweetened by the exquisite insights and beautiful realizations of his dear disciple and friend, Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Maharaj.
even before I saw this confirmed on the back cover. And after reading this 432-page tome, I am even more impressed with the brilliant and astute choice of this picture for the front cover.
Srila Guru Maharaj admonished us not to put pictures of Krishna or His divine pastimes on the covers of our Math publications (to reduce the risk of offenses by careless or non-devotees), but this does not mean that our books cannot have beautiful or attractive covers!
As Sripad Tyagi Maharaj points out in his Preface to Revealed Truth, "both content and organization are elements of revelation" — and so is its presentation. The conceptual art (by Sushila Devi Dasi, of the Seva Ashram in Soquel) chosen for the cover of Revealed Truth gives the reader a subtle indication of just how sublime this presentation of that revelation is.
But why not see for yourself? Download an ebook version of Revealed Truth from the Sri Gaudiya Darshan web site — and please support the further publication of these gems by purchasing a hardcopy.
iMonk — July 14th, 2013