Glorification is very intoxicating. When someone glorifies me especially devotees I feel adrenaline rushing and levels of serotonin and dopamine levels increasing. This increase gives a rush to the brain thus giving a pleasing effect of the body and senses. To simply put – sense gratification. This is the gross experience.
At a more subtle platform I become proud that people especially devotees listen to me and that I am “someone” in this world especially among the devotee community. I am someone in this world to the point where I enjoy being around devotees and at some level this boost of ego is the fuel to perform devotional service. Unfortunately if this is my condition, I am practicing bhakti yoga for all the wrong reasons.
The foundation of practicing yoga is to dismantle this hard knot of “I” and “mine”. However if devotee glorification actually enhances this “I” and “mine”…then I would as an extreme step not associate. I take this step because maya works in such a way that this ego boost will eventually lead to fault finding of devotees and thus aparadh. This is dangerous.
So when we are around devotees we should be grave internally practicing detachment of body and mind. Speak the truth for the pleasure of Guru and Gauranga, and serve to our best capacity. If the mind is hankering for acknowledgement just “ignore” the mind. This strategy actually was given by Prabhupada that is - to ignore the wandering mind. The more we practice the art of ignoring the egoistic mind, the more we will be detached from it. This detachment will bring us peace and ultimately happiness. This happiness is in the mode of goodness and conducive for our spiritual growth.
If we feel happy and elated internally when devotees glorify us then perhaps we need to check our motives. However when devotees glorify us and spontaneously transfer the glory without any ownership to Guru, Prabhupada and Krishna, and in that mood feel happy, then we are on the right track.
We have to be determined and convinced that glorifying Guru and Krishna is in our best interest and anything else is not. It is very subtle and hence we have to be on watch constantly especially when we are showered with glorious words by devotees.
One who is truly Krishna consciousness will treat words of glory and disgrace equally and not be mentally disturbed. This is the true test of a devotee of Krishna.