yanhara darsane mukhe aise krsna-nama
tanhare janiha tumi 'vaisnava-pradhana'
yanhara darsaneby the sight of whom; mukhein the mouth; aiseautomatically awakens; krsna-namathe holy name of Krsna; tanharehim; janihamust know; tumiyou; vaisnava-pradhanathe first-class Vaisnava.
Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, "A first-class Vaisnava is he whose very presence makes others chant the holy name of Krsna."
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura says that if an observer immediately remembers the holy name of Krsna upon seeing a Vaisnava, that Vaisnava should be considered a maha-bhagavata, a first-class devotee. Such a Vaisnava is always aware of his Krsna conscious duty, and he is enlightened in self-realization. He is always in love with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, and this love is without adulteration. Because of this love, he is always awake to transcendental realization. Because he knows that Krsna consciousness is the basis of knowledge and action, he sees everything connected with Krsna. Such a person is able to chant the holy name of Krsna perfectly. Such a maha-bhagavata Vaisnava has the transcendental eyes to see who is sleeping under the spell of maya, and he engages himself in awakening sleeping conditioned beings by spreading the knowledge of Krsna consciousness. He opens eyes that are closed by forgetfulness of Krsna. Thus the living entity is liberated from the dullness of material energy and is engaged fully in the service of the Lord. The madhyama-adhikari Vaisnava can awaken others to Krsna consciousness and engage them in duties whereby they can advance. It is therefore said in Caitanya-caritamrta (Madhya-lila, Chapter Six, verse 279):
lohake yavat sparsi' hema nahi kare
tavat sparsa-mani keha cinite na pare
"One cannot understand the value of touchstone until it turns iron into gold." One should judge by action, not by promises. A maha-bhagavata can turn a living entity from abominable material life to the Lord's service. This is the test of a maha-bhagavata. Although preaching is not meant for a maha-bhagavata, a maha-bhagavata can descend to the platform of madhyama-bhagavata just to convert others to Vaisnavism. Actually a maha-bhagavata is fit to spread Krsna consciousness, but he does not distinguish where Krsna consciousness should be spread from where it should not. He thinks that everyone is competent to accept Krsna consciousness if the chance is provided. A neophyte and intermediate devotee should always be anxious to hear the maha-bhagavata and serve him in every respect. The neophyte and intermediate devotees can gradually rise to the platform of uttama-adhikari and become first-class devotees. Symptoms of a first-class devotee are given in Srimad-Bhagavatam (11.2.45):
sarva-bhutesu yah pasyed
bhagavad-bhavam atmanah
bhutani bhagavaty atmany
esa bhagavatottamah
When teaching Sanatana Gosvami, the Lord further said:
sastra-yuktye sunipuna, drdha-sraddha yanra
'uttama-adhikari' se taraye samsara
"If one is expert in Vedic literature and has full faith in the Supreme Lord, then he is an uttama-adhikari, a first-class Vaisnava, a topmost Vaisnava who can deliver the whole world and turn everyone to Krsna consciousness." (Cc. Madhya 22.65) With great love and affection, the maha-bhagavata observes the Supreme Personality of Godhead, devotional service and the devotee. He observes nothing beyond Krsna, Krsna consciousness and Krsna's devotees. The maha-bhagavata knows that everyone is engaged in the Lord's service in different ways. He therefore descends to the middle platform to elevate everyone to the Krsna conscious position.

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