Student:So, how can we develop our faith in Krishna consciousness?
Student: By reading Bhagavad-gita.
Srila Sridhar Maharaj: Bhagavad-gita. From the scriptures. And the scriptures are written by whom? Some saint. So, the association of saints and the advice of scriptures are both necessary.
Start with faith in saints, the living scriptures
The saint is the living scripture, and the scripture advises us in a passive way. A saint can actively approach us, and passively we may receive benefit from the scriptures. The association of the scriptures and the saints can help us achieve the ultimate realization: sadhu shastra krpaya haya. The saints are more powerful. Those who are living the life of the scriptural advice are scripture personified. In their association, and by their grace, we can imbibe such higher, subtle knowledge and faith.
Faith will take you all the way
All our experiences are futile in the attempt to attain the ultimate destination; only faith can lead us there. The spiritual world is far, far beyond the jurisdiction of our limited visual, aural, and mental experience. The experience of the eye, ear, and mind is very meager and limited, but faith can rise up and pierce through this area, and enter the transcendental realm.
Seek the shelter of those who have faith: the saints
Faith should be developed with the help of scriptures and saints. They will help us understand that the spiritual world is real and this world is unreal. At that time, this material world will be night to us, and that will be day.
Presently, the eternal world is darkness to us, and we are awake in this mortal world. What is night to one is day to another. A saint is awake in some matter, and a dacoit [thief] is working in another plane. They are living in two separate worlds. A scientist is living in one world; a rowdy is living in another. One’s day is night to another. The ordinary persons cannot see what Einstein and Newton have seen, and what the ordinary man sees is ignored by a great man. So, we have to awaken our interest in that plane, and ignore the interests of this plane.
–An excerpt from Srila Sridhar Maharaj’s The Search for Sri Krishna: Reality the Beautiful (50-51).