“The spiritually powerful message of Godhead can be properly discussed only in a society of devotees, and it is greatly pleasing to hear in that association. If one hears from devotees, the way of transcendental experience quickly opens, and gradually one attains firm faith that in due course develops into attraction and devotion.”
This verse appears in Srimad-Bhagavatam (3.25.25), where Kapiladeva replies to the questions of His mother, Devahuti, about the process of devotional service. As one advances in devotional activities, the process becomes progressively clearer and more encouraging. Unless one gets this spiritual encouragement by following the instructions of the spiritual master, it is not possible to make advancement. Therefore, one’s development of a taste for executing these instructions is the test of one’s devotional service. Initially, one must develop confidence by hearing the science of devotion from a qualified spiritual master. Then, as he associates with devotees and tries to adopt the means instructed by the spiritual master in his own life, his misgivings and other obstacles are vanquished by his execution of devotional service. Strong attachment for the transcendental service of the Lord develops as he continues listening to the messages of Godhead, and if he steadfastly proceeds in this way, he is certainly elevated to spontaneous love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
(Sri Caitanya Caritamrta, Adi-lila 1.60)