The Purpose of Sajjana Toṣaṇī Magazine (Sajjana Toṣaṇī Patrikāra Uddeśya)

The Purpose of Sajjana Toṣaṇī Magazine (Sajjana Toṣaṇī Patrikāra Uddeśya)

Vastu-NirddesaIdentifying the Supreme Object (Vastu Nirdeśa)
The Place of Sri Nakula BrahmacariThe Place of Śrī Nakula Brahmacārī (Śrī Nakula Brahmacārīra Pāṭa)


Sajjana Toṣaṇī Patrikāra Uddeśya 
(The Purpose of Sajjana Toṣaṇī Magazine) was first published in Sajjana Toṣaṇī, Vol.2 issue 4 in 1885. In this editorial, Bhaktivinoda Thākura explains to his readers the true purpose of his magazine, and how it differs to other newspapers.

(translated by Swami B.V. Giri)

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Many amongst our readers are not aware of the purpose of Sajjana Toṣaṇī. No one can express an opinion about an activity without understanding its purpose. Therefore, I am writing to express the purpose of Sajjana Toṣaṇī.

Sajjana Toṣaṇī does not discuss temporal worldly news. All that news is being published in various transient newspapers every day. The purpose of this magazine is to discuss some of the statements concerning the jīva’s eternal dharma.

The pure condition of the jīva is not in this material world. The jīva in this world is in a state of being bound to matter. All worldly affairs have arisen due to the impermanent relationship of the jīva with gross matter. Within the world, the jīva accepts material designations, or perversions of his true nature. Pure divine prema is the eternal nature of the jīva. The jīva is a spiritual element (cid-vastu), thus the jīva’s nature is pure spiritual dharma. From contact with material elements, the jīva’s eternal dharma has become perverted and today, that which is known as the jaiva-dharma (the true nature of the jīva), has become formal dharma. That is why the jīvas refer to all worldly affairs as dharma.

That which is capable of elevating formal dharma to become loyal to pure eternal dharma, may be called actual dharma by us. That dharma which maintains the status-quo of formal dharma, or demotes us to become engrossed in material objects, we call anātmya (without a conception of the ātmā) or anitya (temporary) dharma. Thus, after rejecting anātmya and anitya dharma, we may observe two conditions of dharma, namely, the pure state of jaiva-dharma, and a pure condition aiming towards that state of jaiva-dharma.

The pure state of jaiva-dharma is called bhagavat-prema. This is the jīva’s highest necessity. Despite being in a bound condition, whoever progresses in this dharma becomes free from material contact.

Those in whom that unalloyed dharma has not arisen, but who have devoted their entire lives to it are indeed blessed, since they will achieve it in a very short time. We call those mahājanassajjana.’ The purpose of this magazine is to satisfy them. Therefore, the name of this magazine is Sajjana Toṣaṇī (‘that which satisfies the sajjanas.’)

The prime purpose of this magazine is the propagation of bhagavat-prema. For the sake of that which is favourable to prema, biographies of great personalities who relished prema, and their songs and books will be discussed in this magazine. All the propaganda work done by prema-bhaktas will be published in this magazine.

Worldly knowledge, science, art, civilization, society, politics, varṇāśrama-dharma, vairāgya and all types of pleasures and sorrows take refuge in the bodily activities and material conditions of the jīva. In all these activities two natures are observed, namely, the bahirmukha-pravṛtti (adverse tendency) and antarmukha-pravṛtti (favourable tendency). When all these activities assist the jīva in achieving bhagavat-prema, then they are seen to have antarmukha-pravṛtti. When they do not accompany bhagavat-prema and become independent activities, then they are bahirmukha-pravṛtti. Those activities that are seen to be antarmukha-pravṛtti are called bhakti. When bahirmukha-pravṛtti is stronger, its gross activities are called karma, and its subtle activities are designated as jñāna. We shall not discuss jñāna or karma.

In a place where we are generally inclined to discuss material subject matters (a newspaper) we will only discuss bhakti. Sometimes, with the intention of discouraging, I will discuss anarthas and pāpa, or I will discuss other religions in order to establish bhakti. We will never be malicious towards other religions.

In many places, illicit and anti-devotional activities are practiced in the name of bhakti. Pure bhakti will not be victorious if all those things are not shown clearly. Therefore, we will take special care to judge the difference between pure bhakti and deceitful dharma for the benefit of the jīvas. I will take special care to correct all the selfish anarthas that have entered into the society of our pure devotees. So many insects have penetrated the flowers of the pure dharma taught and practiced by Śrī Śrī Mahāprabhu – our purpose is to try and remove all those harmful insects from the flowers of dharma. All these insects are trying to gradually destroy the flowers of dharma completely.

Mahāprabhu Caitanyadeva, Nityānanda Prabhu and His son Vīracandra Prabhu planted the seeds of Their divine teachings to establish the Vaiṣṇava community, yet some were planted in barren fields and produced no result, or they were sown on unsuitable land and gave rise to worthless trees. In this regard, the significance of this magazine is to approve of that work that should be done nowadays according to the heart-desire of the Lord. We hope that all pious devotees, as well as well-wishers of the country and the jīvas, read our magazine carefully, and from time to time whatever auspicious proposals we make, we will specifically discuss those.

(‘Sajjana Toṣaṇī Patrikāra Uddeśya (The Purpose of Sajjana Toṣaṇī Magazine)’ by Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura – was first published in Sajjana Toṣaṇī, Vol.2 issue 4 in 1885, and translated into English by Swami B.V. Giri)
Vastu-NirddesaIdentifying the Supreme Object (Vastu Nirdeśa)
The Place of Sri Nakula BrahmacariThe Place of Śrī Nakula Brahmacārī (Śrī Nakula Brahmacārīra Pāṭa)

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