(Srila Prabhupada chants beneath a painting of his grand-spiritual master, Srila Gaura Kisora)
"So Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu was a great scholar. There is no doubt of it. But in spite of His becoming a great scholar, He is presenting Himself as a great fool. He says, 'My Guru Mahārāja saw Me a great...' Even one is very great scholar, he has to abide by the decision of his spiritual master. Even one is very great scholar, and if his spiritual master says that 'You are a great fool,' he should accept it. This is called full surrender. For example, I'll give you a practical... My Guru Mahārāja was very great scholar, and his Guru Mahārāja, from literary point of view, he could not even sign his name, Gaura-kiśora dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja. And Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura asked Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura to accept Gaura-kiśora dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja as his..., as his spiritual master, that 'You go and take your initiation from Gaura-kiśora dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja.' So he thought that 'I am a great scholar, and I am son of a magistrate, Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura, and great Vaiṣṇava. He'll be very much pleased to accept me.' Of course, he was very much pleased. But in the beginning he refused. He refused. Because... Of course, that is only show—he was not proud—just to teach us. Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī explained that 'I was little proud. So I was thrice refused by Guru Mahārāja,' although he was the only disciple.
So the scholarship is not a qualification of becoming devotee. That is Caitanya Mahāprabhu's teaching. Scholarship may help, but it is not necessary. Real necessary is that one should be humble and meek and follow the instruction of the spiritual master. This is real qualification."
(Srila Prabhupada Lecture, Vrindavan, March 13, 1974)