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The Ten Offenses to the Holy Name (from Padma P.)

1. satam ninda-namnah param aparadham vitanute yatah khyatim yatam katham u sahate tad vigarham-To show envy or criticize a devotee or saintly person.

2. sivasya sri visnor ya iha guna namadi sakalam dhiyd bhinnam pasyet sa khalu hari-nama hitakarah-To think that the names or qualities of the demigods are equal to Krsna.

3. guror avajhd-To disrespect or disobey the guru.

4. sruti sastra-nindanam-To disrespect the scriptures.

5. tatharthavado-To think that the glorification of the Name is empty praise.

6. hari namni kalpanam-To imagine meanings of the Name.

7. namno balad yasya hipdpabuddhi-To commit sin on the strength of the Name.

8. na vidyate yasya yamair hi suddhih dharma-vrata-tyaga-hutadi-sarva-subha-kriya samyam api pramadah-To consider the Name on the same level as pious ac¬tions.

9. asraddadhane vimukhe'py asrnvati yas copadesah siva-namaparadhah-To give the Name to unqualified people.

10. srute'pi nama-mahatmye yah priti rahito narah aharh mamadi paramo namni so'py aparddha-krt-Not to have faith or taste in the Name even after hearing its glories, and to accept the Name with
out giving up material attachment.

Elaboration on the Ten Offenses

(1) "It is a great offense to blaspheme devotees who have completely given up material practices such as karma, dharma, jnana, yoga and tapasya to take complete shelter of the holy names. Hari-nama Prabhu will not tolerate blasphemy of those preaching the real glories of the holy name. One who accepts such devotees as the best of saintly people, and performs nama-kirtana with them will quickly get the mercy of the holy name." (Jaiva Dharma)

(2) "Thinking that other demigods like Siva are supreme controllers separate from Lord Krsna. It should be known that the various devatas are the vibhutis or expanded energies of Lord Krsna. With this understanding the fault of considering them to be different than Krsna, or thinking that there are numerous Supreme Lords, will Cease." (Ajna-Tahal) "The first explanation is this. Although Lord Visnu and Lord Siva are the leaders of the demigods, the truth is that Lord Siva and the other demigods have no power independent of Lord Visnu. "The second interpretation is this. It is also an offense to the holy name to think that the names, forms, qualities and pastimes of the all-auspicious (siva) Supreme Personality of Godhead are different from the eternally perfect, transcendental body of the Lord. By performing krsna-nama sankirtana with this sambandha-jnana one will not commit this offense to the holy name." Jaiva Dharma)

(3) "Disregard for the spiritual master. There are two kinds of gurus: the diksa-guru and the siksa-guru. One should have faith in the words of the guru and consider him to be either a specific mani

festation of Krsna, or Krsna's eternally dear, pure truth (nitya- prestha suddha-tattva)." (Ajna-Tahal) "One should have unwavering devotion to the spiritual master who gives one the holy name (nama-guru), for the holy name is the highest of all spiritual activities. It is nama-aparddha to minimize the position of the nama-guru, thinking that he only knows about nama-sastra, whereas scholars of Vedanta and other sastras actually know the meaning of the sastras. No guru is superior to one who knows the truth of the holy name (nama-tattva-vidguru). Thus, to think that he is less important is an offense to the holy name."(Jaiva Dharma)

(4) "Blasphemy of the revealed scriptures (sruti-sastra nindanam). The sruti-sastras comprise all the following: the Vedas; the Puranas and dharma-sastras that supplement the Vedas; the Bhagavad-gita-sastra, which is the embodiment of the Vedic siddhanta; the Brahma-sutra, which is the manifestation of the Vedic mimamsa- darsana; the Srimad-bhagavata, which is the purport (bhashya) of the Brahma-sutra; the expansions of the Vedas such as the Itihasas (histories) and various Satvata-Tantras (esoteric worship manuals in the mode of goodness); and finally, all the bhakti-sdstras written by numerous mahajans which represent extensive commentaries on all the above-mentioned scriptures. One must have particular faith in all these sastras." (Ajna-Tahal)

"The Vedas and Upanisads are full of slokas glorifying the holy name. Unfortunately, some people neglect these slokas, and give more respect to other instructions of the srutis. Thus they commit nama-aparddha by blaspheming the parts of the scriptures proclaiming the glories of the holy name. Such offenders will not develop any taste for the holy name. One should perform harinama with the understanding that the slokas describing the glories of the holy name are the crest jewels of all the Vedas." (Jaiva Dharma)

(5) "Interpretation of the name of Hari; in other words, concluding that the glories of the holy name (nama-mahatmya) as recorded in the scriptures are merely exaggerated praises." (Ajna-Tahal)

"The Jaimini-samhitd explains this offense as follows:

sruti-smrti-puranesu, nama-mahatmya-vacisu

ye 'rtha-vdda iti bruyur, na tesam niraya-tsayah

Persons who claim that the glories of the holy name described in the Sruti, Smrti and Puranas are exaggerations live always in hell." "Although the sastric descriptions of the holy name's glories are completely true, karmis and jnanis declare that they are exaggerations intended to create a taste for the holy name. Such namaparadhis will never get taste for hari-nama. "One should perform hari-nama with full faith in the sastras, and avoid the association of those who give mundane explanations. If somehow you see such a person, you should immediately take bath with your clothes on. That is the instruction of Lord Gauranga.

(6) "The sixth offense is to consider sri-bhagavana-nama to be imaginary. Harinama is eternal spiritual reality-the Absolute Truth. If one thinks He is imaginary, one can never attain His mercy.

(7) "Conducting sinful activities on the strength of chanting the holy name. By chanting the holy name of the Lord with faith, one's previous sinful reactions are destroyed and one loses the taste to commit further sinful actions. But if one desires to commit sins with the hope that the holy name will afterwards eradicate them, then that is an offense.

(8) "When one wishes that the holy name will bestow rewards of bhoga or moksha, considering the name to be equal to pious actions like dharma (religiosity), vrata (following vows), or tyaga (renunciation), then he is an offender unto the holy name (namaparadhi).

(9) "It is an offense to give the holy name to others who are faithless, and to those who are averse or disinclined to hear about it. Instructions on hati-ndma should not be given to those whose faith will not be kindled; the glories of the holy name (nama-mahatmya) should be spoken only to those whose sraddha may arise." (Jaiva Dharma)

(10) "To not have full faith or taste even after hearing about the glories of the holy name. It is an offense for persons who are full of a sense of false egotism and possessiveness (ahamta-mamata) to engage in the practice of chanting hari-nama. When one considers the material body to be the self, and develops false vanity based on such a body, imagining material objects to be one's own property and thereby becoming attached to them, then such a person naturally commits hari-nama dparddha. This is because he is cheated from the knowledge that the sadhya (the goal) as well as the sadhana (the practice for reaching that goal) are both spiritual." ("Ajna-Tahai"in Gitavali) Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura describes the tenth offense: "The holy name is never revealed to one who is situated in the bodily concept of life and thinks in terms of "I" and "mine." If one doesn't reject the enjoying mentality, the transcendental platform Will never be attained." (Prakrta Rasa Sata Dusini V.4)

Taken from The Art of Chanting Hare Krsna by Mahanidhi Swami

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