Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Nectar of Instruction



His Divine Grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Text 1

In his book Prema-vivarta, Chapter Seven, Śrī Jagadānanda Paṇḍita says:

vairāgī bhāi grāmya-kathā nā śunibe kāne
grāmya-vārtā nā kahibe yabe milibe āne

svapane o nā kara bhāi strī-sambhāṣaṇa
gṛhe strī chāḍiyā bhāi āsiyācha vana

yadi cāha praṇaya rākhite gaurāṅgera sane
choṭa haridāsera kathā thāke yena mane

bhāla nā khāibe āra bhāla nā paribe
hṛdayete rādhā-kṛṣṇa sarvadā sevibe

“My dear brother, you are in the renounced order of life and should not listen to talk about ordinary worldly things, nor should you talk about worldly things when you meet with others. Do not think of women even in dreams. You have accepted the renounced order of life with a vow that forbids you to associate with women. If you wish to associate with Caitanya Mahāprabhu, you must always remember the incident of Choṭa Haridāsa and how he was rejected by the Lord. Do not eat luxurious dishes or dress in fine garments, but always remain humble and serve Their Lordships Śrī Śrī Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa in your heart of hearts.”

The conclusion is that one who can control these six items—speech, mind, anger, tongue, belly and genitals—is to be called a svāmī or gosvāmī. Svāmī means master, and gosvāmī means master of the go, or senses. When one accepts the renounced order of life, he automatically assumes the title of svāmī. This does not mean that he is the master of his family, community or society; he must be master of his senses. Unless one is master of his senses, he should not be called gosvāmī, but go-dāsa, servant of the senses. Following in the footsteps of the six Gosvāmīs of Vṛndāvana, all svāmīs and gosvāmīs should fully engage in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. As opposed to this, the go-dāsas engage in the service of the senses or in the service of the material world. They have no other engagement. Prahlāda Mahārāja has further described the go-dāsa as adānta-go, which refers to one whose senses are not controlled. An adānta-go cannot become a servant of Kṛṣṇa. In Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (7.5.30), Prahlāda Mahārāja has said:

matir na kṛṣṇe parataḥ svato vā
mitho ’bhipadyeta gṛha-vratānām
adānta-gobhir viśatāṁ tamisraṁ
punaḥ punaś carvita-carvaṇānām

“For those who have decided to continue their existence in this material world for the gratification of their senses, there is no chance of becoming Kṛṣṇa conscious, not by personal endeavor, by instruction from others or by joint conferences. They are dragged by the unbridled senses into the darkest region of ignorance, and thus they madly engage in what is called ‘chewing the chewed.’ ”


Friday, November 2, 2012


The following is the CONSTITUTION OF ASSOCIATION written by Srila Prabhupada in his first year at Second Avenue in New York City in July of 1966.

His Divine Grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

1. The name of the society is The International Society for Krishna Consciousness.

2. The headquarters of the Society are located at Radhakrishna Temple, 26 Second Avenue, New York City, 10003, USA.

3. The objectives for which the Society is being established are:
(A) To educate the greater human society in the techniques of spiritual life as the basis for a balanced psychic and biological development, and thereby achieve for the first time in human society a real peace and unity among the contending forces in the world today.
(B) To propagate the Sense of Godhead, the all attractive Personality of primal and eternal Form, as He Himself revealed in His own words in the Bhagavad Gita, the Holy Scripture of the Lord Sri Krishna, the Godhead.
(C) To bring together individuals in a Society, regardless of nationality and irrespective of creed or caste, in order to develop a nearness to the Godhead and thereby the idea that within the members and humanity-at-large there is an infinitesimal soul-spirit that is part and parcel in quality with the Godhead, and that all life is meant for the satisfaction of said Godhead, the Supreme Soul.
(D) To encourage the teachings of Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu who demonstrated practically the transcendental process of approaching the absolute Personality of Godhead by His acts of congregational chanting of the holy name of God, a process known as Samkirtan.
(E) To prove by active work and preaching that Lord Sri Krishna is the only enjoyer of all the outcomes of individual and collective sacrifice, penance, meditation, arts, culture, science, because He is the Supreme Proprietor of the whole universe, eternally apart of Him everyone knows Him as a friend. Real peace can be attained when this is realized, in fact.
(F) To assist whenever and wherever possible in the building of a social structure on the real foundation of spiritual progress and establishment of peace and unity between men throughout the world.
(G) To attempt to save men individually from the chain of victimization the ongoing trend in modern civilization operates by, in the name of ideologies of false sentiment, so that Man may again be a free soul, to act and live freely with spiritual vision. This is possible by individual spiritual initiation, Diksha, when a man can see everything in Godhead and Godhead in everything.
(H) To further toward realization this highest truth as revealed by Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and the six Goswamins headed by Srila Rupa and Sanatana Goswamins.
(I) To have for its objectives amongst the others four principles which the Goswamins had in view. They are the following:
1. To erect a holy place of transcendental pastimes as well as a place where members of the Lord Sri Krishna can flourish.
2. To propagate all over the world in the form of missionaries the process of devotion, the transcendental service to the Godhead, and to make known that this devotional service is the main function of the human being.
3. In order to accomplish this, to adopt proselytizing methods of peaceful means and to establish a broader society of association for all members, including scholars and admirers, to engage in this service as put forth in the Srimad Bhagwatam.

4. To install, wherever it is possible, the worship and temple of Radhakrishna and that of Sri Chaitanya, and to give facility to everyone to become trained in the modes of Archan or preparatory principles of devotional service.
(J) To introduce to the members of the Society and humanity-at-large a simpler and more natural purpose in life by means suitable to the particular place and time, and as enjoined in the Bhagavad Gita.
(K) To organize educational programs, such as classes and lecture tours, and to institute services, such as mailing, for the benefit of the members of the Society and humanity-at-large.
(L) To publish periodicals, books and/or pamphlets in all important languages in order to reach human society and give an opportunity to same to communicate with the Society.
(M) To invoke the quality of goodness particularly in every member of the Society, individually by the process of Diksha and by establishing one in the status of a Brahmin (good and intelligent man) on the basis of truthfulness, knowledge and faith in the transcendental service of the Lord.
(N) Among the secondary objectives of the Society, it shall undertake the following activities:
1. To revive the scientific system of social orders of classification based on intelligence, martial spirit, productivity and common assistance, generally known as the four castes with reference to quality and worth for the common cause of world society.
2. To discharge as a matter of course the vitiated system of supremacy of one man over another by false prestige of birthright or vested interests.
3. To popularize the vegetable-grain diet under approved methods in order that full value of protein, carbohydrate, fat and vitamin benefit may be derived therefrom.
4. To discourage intoxicating or addicting habits of all descriptions and dimensions and to expose such persons thus afflicted to approved methods of spiritual realization.

                    A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, Acharya

                    Raymond Marais
                    Michael A. Grant
                    Robert Lefkowitz
                    James S. Greene

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 3

AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prahupada


The following is from statements that appeared in the New York Times on August 21, 2012.

Assad has claimed he would not use Chemical Weapons on his own citizens.

It is clear that Obama has. In McCloud California this ongoing while wildfires have burned several homes. If the firefighters are using surface water from streams and lakes it would be contaminated.

“We cannot have a situation in which chemical or biological weapons are falling into the hands of the wrong people,” Mr. Obama said in response to questions at an impromptu news conference at the White House. “We have been very clear to the Assad regime but also to other players on the ground that a red line for us is, we start seeing a whole bunch of weapons moving around or being utilized.”

“That would change my calculus,” he added. “That would change my equation.”


arjuna uvāca

jyāyasī cet karmaṇas te

matā buddhir janārdana

tat kiṁ karmaṇi ghore māṁ

niyojayasi keśava


arjunaḥ—Arjuna; uvāca—said; jyāyasī—speaking very highly; cet—although; karmaṇaḥ—than fruitive action; te—your; matā—opinion; buddhiḥ—intelligence; janārdana—O Kṛṣṇa; tat—therefore; kim—why; karmaṇi—in action; ghore—ghastly; mām—me; niyojayasi—engaging me; keśava—O Kṛṣṇa.


Arjuna said: O Janārdana, O Keśava, why do You urge me to engage in this ghastly warfare, if You think that intelligence is better than fruitive work?


The Supreme Personality of Godhead Śrī Kṛṣṇa has very elaborately described the constitution of the soul in the previous chapter, with a view to deliver His intimate friend Arjuna from the ocean of material grief. And the path of realization has been recommended: buddhi-yoga, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Sometimes Kṛṣṇa consciousness is misunderstood to be inertia, and one with such a misunderstanding often withdraws to a secluded place to become fully Kṛṣṇa conscious by chanting the holy name of Lord Kṛṣṇa. But without being trained in the philosophy of Kṛṣṇa consciousness, it is not advisable to chant the holy name of Kṛṣṇa in a secluded place where one may acquire only cheap adoration from the innocent public. Arjuna also thought of Kṛṣṇa consciousness or buddhi-yoga, or intelligence in spiritual advancement of knowledge, as something like retirement from active life and the practice of penance and austerity at a secluded place. In other words, he wanted to skillfully avoid the fighting by using Kṛṣṇa consciousness as an excuse. But as a sincere student, he placed the matter before his master and questioned Kṛṣṇa as to his best course of action. In answer, Lord Kṛṣṇa elaborately explained karma-yoga, or work in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, in this Third Chapter.


yad yad ācarati śreṣṭhas

tat tad evetaro janaḥ

sa yat pramāṇaṁ kurute

lokas tad anuvartate


yat—whatever; yat—and whichever; ācarati—does he act; śreṣṭhaḥ—respectable leader; tat—that; tat—and that alone; eva—certainly; itaraḥ—common; janaḥ—person; saḥ—he; yat—whichever; pramāṇam—evidence; kurute—does perform; lokaḥ—all the world; tat—that; anuvartate—follow in the footsteps.


Whatever action is performed by a great man, common men follow in his footsteps. And whatever standards he sets by exemplary acts, all the world pursues.


People in general always require a leader who can teach the public by practical behavior. A leader cannot teach the public to stop smoking if he himself smokes. Lord Caitanya said that a teacher should behave properly even before he begins teaching. One who teaches in that way is called ācārya, or the ideal teacher. Therefore, a teacher must follow the principles of śāśtra (scripture) to reach the common man. The teacher cannot manufacture rules against the principles of revealed scriptures. The revealed scriptures, like Manu-saṁhitā and similar others, are considered the standard books to be followed by human society. Thus the leader's teaching should be based on the principles of the standard rules as they are practiced by the great teachers. The Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam also affirms that one should follow in the footsteps of great devotees, and that is the way of progress on the path of spiritual realization. The king or the executive head of a state, the father and the school teacher are all considered to be natural leaders of the innocent people in general. All such natural leaders have a great responsibility to their dependents; therefore they must be conversant with standard books of moral and spiritual codes.


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Divine and Demonic Natures

Bhagavad Gita As It Is

Srila Prabhupada


Radha Kund

Chapter 16


asatyam apratiṣṭhaṁ te

jagad āhur anīśvaram


kim anyat kāma-haitukam


asatyam—unreal; apratiṣṭham—without foundation; te—they; jagat—the cosmic manifestation; āhuḥ—is said; anīśvaram—with no controller; aparaspara—by mutual lust; sambhūtam—caused; kim anyat—there is no other cause; kāma-haitukam—it is due to lust only.


They say that this world is unreal, that there is no foundation and that there is no God in control. It is produced of sex desire, and has no cause other than lust.


The demoniac conclude that the world is phantasmagoria. There is no cause, no effect, no controller, no purpose: everything is unreal. They say that this cosmic manifestation arises due to chance material actions and reactions. They do not think that the world was created by God for a certain purpose. They have their own theory: that the world has come about in its own way and that there is no reason to believe that there is a God behind it. For them there is no difference between spirit and matter, and they do not accept the Supreme Spirit. Everything is matter only, and the whole cosmos is supposed to be a mass of ignorance. According to them, everything is void, and whatever manifestation exists is due to our ignorance in perception. They take it for granted that all manifestation of diversity is a display of ignorance. Just as in a dream we may create so many things, which actually have no existence, so when we are awake we shall see that everything is simply a dream. But factually, although the demons say that life is a dream, they are very expert in enjoying this dream. And so, instead of acquiring knowledge, they become more and more implicated in their dreamland. They conclude that as a child is simply the result of sexual intercourse between man and woman, this world is born without any soul. For them it is only a combination of matter that has produced the living entities, and there is no question of the existence of the soul. As many living creatures come out from perspiration and from a dead body without any cause, similarly, the whole living world has come out of the material combinations of the cosmic manifestation. Therefore material nature is the cause of this manifestation, and there is no other cause. They do not believe in the words of Kṛṣṇa in Bhagavad-gītā: mayādhyakṣeṇa prakṛtiḥ sūyate sa-carācaram. "Under My direction the whole material world is moving." In other words, amongst the demons there is no perfect knowledge of the creation of this world; every one of them has some particular theory of his own. According to them, one interpretation of the scriptures is as good as another, for they do not believe in a standard understanding of the scriptural injunctions.


etāṁ dṛṣṭim avaṣṭabhya

naṣṭātmāno 'lpa-buddhayaḥ

prabhavanty ugra-karmāṇaḥ

kṣayāya jagato 'hitāḥ


etām—thus; dṛṣṭim—vision; avaṣṭabhya—accepting; naṣṭa—lost; ātmānaḥ—self; alpa-buddhayaḥ—less intelligent; prabhavanti—flourish; ugra-karmāṇaḥ—in painful activities; kṣayāya—for destruction; jagataḥ—of the world; ahitāḥ—unbeneficial.


Following such conclusions, the demoniac, who are lost to themselves and who have no intelligence, engage in unbeneficial, horrible works meant to destroy the world.


The demoniac are engaged in activities that will lead the world to destruction. The Lord states here that they are less intelligent. The materialists, who have no concept of God, think that they are advancing. But, according to Bhagavad-gītā, they are unintelligent and devoid of all sense. They try to enjoy this material world to the utmost limit and therefore always engage in inventing something for sense gratification. Such materialistic inventions are considered to be advancement of human civilization, but the result is that people grow more and more violent and more and more cruel, cruel to animals and cruel to other human beings. They have no idea how to behave toward one another. Animal killing is very prominent amongst demoniac people. Such people are considered the enemies of the world because ultimately they will invent or create something which will bring destruction to all. Indirectly, this verse anticipates the invention of nuclear weapons, of which the whole world is today very proud. At any moment war may take place, and these atomic weapons may create havoc. Such things are created solely for the destruction of the world, and this is indicated here. Due to godlessness, such weapons are invented in human society; they are not meant for the peace and prosperity of the world.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Srimad Bhagavatam


Canto 7


Lord Viñhëu Himself, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the reservoir of all pleasure. Therefore, what benefit would He derive from siding with the demigods? What interest would He fulfill in this way? Since the Lord is transcendental, why should He fear the asuras, and how could He be envious of them?


We should always remember the distinction between spiritual and material. That which is material is infected by material qualities, but these qualities cannot touch that which is spiritual, or transcendental. Kåñëa is absolute, whether He is in the material world or spiritual world. When we see partiality in Kåñëa, this vision is due to His external energy. Otherwise how could His enemies attain salvation after being killed by Him? Everyone who deals with the Supreme Personality of Godhead gradually acquires the qualities of the Lord. The more one advances in spiritual consciousness, the less he is affected by the duality of material qualities. The Supreme Lord, therefore, must certainly be freed from these qualities. His enmity and friendship are external features presented by the material energy. He is always transcendental. He is absolute, whether He kills or bestows His favor.

Envy and friendship arise in one who is imperfect. We fear our enemies because in the material world we are always in need of help. The Lord, however, does not need anyone's help, for He is ätmäräma. The Lord says in Bhagavad-gétä (9.26):

patraà puñpaà phalaà toyaà
yo me bhaktyä prayacchati
tad ahaà bhakty-upahåtam
açnämi prayatätmanaù

"If a devotee offers Me with devotion a little leaf, a flower, fruit or water, I shall accept it." Why does the Lord say this? Is He dependent on the offering of the devotee? He is not actually dependent, but He likes to be dependent upon His devotee. This is His mercy. Similarly, He does not fear the asuras. Thus there is no question of partiality in the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

The Kidnapping of Subhadra and Lord Krishna’s Visiting Sukadeva and Balarama


Krishna Book

Chapter 31

The Kidnapping of Subhadrä and Lord Kåñëa's Visiting Çukadeva and Balarama

After hearing this incident, King Parékñit became more inquisitive to hear about Kåñëa and His pastimes, and thus he inquired from Çukadeva Gosvämé how his grandmother Subhadrä was kidnapped by his grandfather Arjuna at the instigation of Lord Kåñëa. King Parékñit was very much eager to learn about his grandfather's kidnapping and marriage of his grandmother.

Thus Çukadeva Gosvämé began to narrate the story as follows: "Once upon a time, your grandfather Arjuna, the great hero, was visiting several holy places of pilgrimage, and while he was thus traveling all over he happened to come to Prabhäsakñetra. In the Prabhäsakñetra he heard the news that Lord Balaräma was negotiating the marriage of Subhadrä, the daughter of Arjuna's maternal uncle, Vasudeva. Although her father, Vasudeva, and her brother, Kåñëa, were not in agreement with Him, Balaräma was in favor of marrying Subhadrä to Duryodhana. Arjuna, however, desired to gain the hand of Subhadrä."

As he thought of Subhadrä and her beauty, Arjuna became more and more captivated with the idea of marrying her, and with a plan in mind he dressed himself like a Vaiñëava sannyäsé, carrying a tridaëòa in his hand. The Mäyävädé sannyäsés take one daëòa, or one rod, whereas the Vaiñëava sannyäsés take three daëòa, or three rods. The three rods, or tridaëòa, indicate that a Vaiñëava sannyäsé vows to render service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead by his body, mind and words. The system of tridaëòa-sannyäsa has been in existence for a long time, and the Vaiñëava sannyäsés are called tridaëòés, or sometimes tridaëòi-svämés or tridaëòi-gosvämés.

Sannyäsés are generally meant to travel all over the country for preaching work, but during the four months of the rainy season in India, from September through December, they do not travel, but take shelter in one place and remain there without moving. This non-movement of the sannyäsé is called Cäturmäsya-vrata. When a sannyäsé stays in a place for four months, the local inhabitants of that place take advantage of his presence to become spiritually advanced.
Arjuna, in the dress of a tridaëòi-sannyäsé, remained in the city of Dvärakä four months, devising a plan whereby he could get Subhadrä as his wife. The inhabitants of Dvärakä as well as Lord Balaräma could not recognize the sannyäsé to be Arjuna; therefore all of them offered their respect and obeisances to the sannyäsé without knowing the actual situation.

One day Lord Balaräma invited this particular sannyäsé to lunch at His home. Balarämajé very respectfully offered him all kinds of palatable dishes, and the so-called sannyäsé was eating sumptuously. While eating at the home of Balarämajé, Arjuna was simply looking over beautiful Subhadrä, who was very enchanting even to the great heroes and kings. Out of love for her, Arjuna's eyes brightened, and he began to see her with glittering eyes. Arjuna decided that somehow or other he would achieve Subhadrä as his wife, and his mind became agitated on account of this strong desire.

Arjuna, the grandfather of Mahäräja Parékñit, was himself extraordinarily beautiful, and his bodily structure was very much attractive to Subhadrä. Subhadrä also decided within her mind that she would accept only Arjuna as her husband. As a simple girl, she was smiling with great pleasure, looking at Arjuna. Thus Arjuna also became more and more attracted by her. In this way, Subhadrä dedicated herself to Arjuna, and he resolved to marry her by any means. He then became absorbed twenty-four hours a day in the thought of how he could get Subhadrä as his wife. He was afflicted with the thought of getting Subhadrä, and he had not a moment's peace of mind.

Once upon a time, Subhadrä, seated on a chariot, came out of the palace fort to see the gods in the temple. Arjuna took this opportunity, and with the permission of Vasudeva and Devaké, he kidnapped her. After getting on Subhadrä's chariot, he prepared himself for a fight. Taking up his bow and holding off with his arrows the soldiers ordered to check him, Arjuna took Subhadrä away. While Subhadrä was being thus kidnapped by Arjuna, her relatives and family members began to cry, but still he took her, just as a lion takes his share and departs. When it was disclosed to Lord Balaräma that the so-called sannyäsé was Arjuna, and that he had planned such a device simply to take away Subhadrä and that he had actually taken her, He became very angry. Just as the waves of the ocean become agitated on a full moon day, Lord Balaräma became greatly disturbed.

Lord Kåñëa was in favor of Arjuna; therefore, along with other members of the family, He tried to pacify Balaräma by falling at His feet and begging Him to pardon Arjuna. Lord Balaräma was then convinced that Subhadrä was attached to Arjuna, and He became pleased to know that she wanted Arjuna as her husband. The matter was settled, and in order to please the newly married couple, Lord Balaräma arranged to send a dowry, consisting of an abundance of riches, elephants, chariots, horses, servants and maidservants…

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Nectar of Instruction


His Divine Grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

     syāt kṛṣṇa-nāma-caritādi-sitāpy avidyā-   
     pittopatapta-rasanasya na rocikā nu   
     kintv ādarād anudinaṁ khalu saiva juṣṭā   
     svādvī kramād bhavati tad-gada-mūla-hantrī   


     syāt—is; kṛṣṇa—of Lord Kṛṣṇa; nāma—the holy name; carita-ādi—character, pastimes and so forth; sitā—sugar candy; api—although; avidyā—of ignorance; pitta—by the bile; upatapta—afflicted; rasanasya—of the tongue; na—not; rocikā—palatable; nu—oh, how wonderful it is; kintu—but; ādarāt—carefully; anudinam—every day, or twenty-four hours daily; khalu—naturally; sā—that (sugar candy of the holy name); eva—certainly; juṣṭā—taken or chanted; svādvī—relishable; kramāt—gradually; bhavati—becomes; tat-gada—of that disease; mūla—of the root; hantrī—the destroyer.   
     The holy name, character, pastimes and activities of Kṛṣṇa are all transcendentally sweet like sugar candy. Although the tongue of one afflicted by the jaundice of avidyā [ignorance] cannot taste anything sweet, it is wonderful that simply by carefully chanting these sweet names every day, a natural relish awakens within his tongue, and his disease is gradually destroyed at the root.   
     The holy name of Lord Kṛṣṇa, His quality, pastimes and so forth are all of the nature of absolute truth, beauty and bliss. Naturally they are very sweet, like sugar candy, which appeals to everyone. Nescience, however, is compared to the disease called jaundice, which is caused by bilious secretions. Attacked by jaundice, the tongue of a diseased person cannot palatably relish sugar candy. Rather, a person with jaundice considers something sweet to taste very bitter. Avidyā (ignorance) similarly perverts the ability to relish the transcendentally palatable name, quality, form and pastimes of Kṛṣṇa. Despite this disease, if one with great care and attention takes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, chanting the holy name and hearing Kṛṣṇa’s transcendental pastimes, his ignorance will be destroyed and his tongue enabled to taste the sweetness of the transcendental nature of Kṛṣṇa and His paraphernalia. Such a recovery of spiritual health is possible only by the regular cultivation of Kṛṣṇa consciousness.    
     When a man in the material world takes more interest in the materialistic way of life than in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, he is considered to be in a diseased condition. The normal condition is to remain an eternal servant of the Lord (jīvera ‘svarūpa’ haya—kṛṣṇera ‘nitya-dāsa’ [Cc. Madhya 20.108]). This healthy condition is lost when the living entity forgets Kṛṣṇa due to being attracted by the external features of Kṛṣṇa’s māyā energy. This world of māyā is called durāśraya, which means “false or bad shelter.” One who puts his faith in durāśraya becomes a candidate for hoping against hope. In the material world everyone is trying to become happy, and although their material attempts are baffled in every way, due to their nescience they cannot understand their mistakes. People try to rectify one mistake by making another mistake. This is the way of the struggle for existence in the material world. If one in this condition is advised to take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness and be happy, he does not accept such instructions.    
     This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is being spread all over the world just to remedy this gross ignorance. People in general are misled by blind leaders. The leaders of human society—the politicians, philosophers and scientists—are blind because they are not Kṛṣṇa conscious. According to Bhagavad-gītā, because they are bereft of all factual knowledge due to their atheistic way of life, they are actually sinful rascals and are the lowest among men.   

     na māṁ duṣkṛtino mūḍhāḥ
prapadyante narādhamāḥ
māyayāpahṛta jñānā-
āsuraṁ bhāvam āśritāḥ   

     “Those miscreants who are grossly foolish, lowest among mankind, whose knowledge is stolen by illusion, and who partake of the atheistic nature of demons, do not surrender unto Me.” (Bg. 7.15)   
     Such people never surrender to Kṛṣṇa, and they oppose the endeavor of those who wish to take Kṛṣṇa’s shelter. When such atheists become leaders of society, the entire atmosphere is surcharged with nescience. In such a condition, people do not become very enthusiastic to receive this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, just as a diseased person suffering from jaundice does not relish the taste of sugar candy. However, one must know that for jaundice, sugar candy is the only specific medicine. Similarly, in the present confused state of humanity, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, the chanting of the holy name of the Lord—Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare—is the only remedy for setting the world aright. Although Kṛṣṇa consciousness may not be very palatable for a diseased person, Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī nonetheless advises that if one wants to be cured of the material disease, he must take to it with great care and attention. One begins his treatment by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra because by chanting this holy name of the Lord a person in the material condition will be relieved from all misconceptions (ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanam [Cc Antya 20.12]). Avidyā, a misconception about one’s spiritual identity, provides the foundation for ahaṅkāra, or false ego within the heart.   
     The real disease is in the heart. If the mind is cleansed, however, if consciousness is cleansed, a person cannot be harmed by the material disease. To cleanse the mind and heart from all misconceptions, one should take to this chanting of the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra. This is both easy and beneficial. By chanting the holy name of the Lord, one is immediately freed from the blazing fire of material existence.   
     There are three stages in chanting the holy name of the Lord—the offensive stage, the stage of lessening offenses, and the pure stage. When a neophyte takes to the chanting of the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, he generally commits many offenses. There are ten basic offenses, and if the devotee avoids these, he can glimpse the next stage, which is situated between offensive chanting and pure chanting. When one attains the pure stage, he is immediately liberated. This is called bhava-mahā-dāvāgni-nirvāpanam. As soon as one is liberated from the blazing fire of material existence, he can relish the taste of transcendental life.   
     The conclusion is that in order to get freed from the material disease, one must take to the chanting of the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra. The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is especially meant for creating an atmosphere in which people can take to the chanting of the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra. One must begin with faith, and when this faith is increased by chanting, a person can become a member of the Society. We are sending saṅkīrtana parties all over the world, and they are experiencing that even in the remotest part of the world, where there is no knowledge of Kṛṣṇa, the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra attracts thousands of men to our camp. In some areas, people begin to imitate the devotees by shaving their heads and chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, only a few days after hearing the mantra. This may be imitative, but imitation of a good thing is desired. Some imitators gradually become interested in being initiated by the spiritual master and offer themselves for initiation.   
     If one is sincere, he is initiated, and this stage is called bhajana-kriyā. One then actually engages in the service of the Lord by regularly chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, sixteen rounds daily, and refraining from illicit sex, intoxicants, meat-eating and gambling. By bhajana-kriyā one attains freedom from the contamination of materialistic life. He no longer goes to a restaurant or hotel to taste so-called palatable dishes made with meat and onions, nor does he care to smoke or drink tea or coffee. He not only refrains from illicit sex, but avoids sex life entirely. Nor is he interested in wasting his time in speculating or gambling. In this way it is to be understood that one is becoming cleansed of unwanted things (anartha-nivṛtti). The word anartha refers to unwanted things. Anarthas are vanquished when one becomes attached to the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.   
     When a person is relieved from unwanted things, he becomes fixed in executing his Kṛṣṇa activities. Indeed, he becomes attached to such activities and experiences ecstasy in executing devotional service. This is called bhāva, the preliminary awakening of dormant love of Godhead. Thus the conditioned soul becomes free from material existence and loses interest in the bodily conception of life, including material opulence, material knowledge and material attraction of all variety. At such a time one can understand who the Supreme Personality of Godhead is and what His maya is.   
     Although māyā may be present, it cannot disturb a devotee once he attains the bhāva stage. This is because the devotee can see the real position of māyā. Māyā means forgetfulness of Kṛṣṇa, and forgetfulness of Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa consciousness stand side by side like light and shadow. If one remains in shadow, he cannot enjoy the facilities offered by light, and if one remains in light, he cannot be disturbed by the darkness of shadow. By taking to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, one gradually becomes liberated and remains in light. Indeed, he does not even touch the darkness. As confirmed in Caitanya-caritāmṛta (Madhya 22.31):   

     kṛṣṇa——sūrya-sama; māyā haya andhakāra
yāhāṅ kṛṣṇa, tāhāṅ nāhi māyāra adhikāra   

     “Kṛṣṇa is compared to sunshine, and māyā is compared to darkness. Wherever there is sunshine, there cannot be darkness. As soon as one takes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, the darkness of illusion, the influence of the external energy, will immediately vanish.”

Friday, April 6, 2012

Kaṁsa Begins His Persecutions

Krishna Book  1

Chapter 4  


     After Vasudeva adjusted all the doors and gates, the gatekeepers awoke and heard the newborn child crying. Kaṁsa was waiting to hear the news of the child's birth, and the gatekeepers immediately approached him and informed him that the child was born. At that time, Kaṁsa got up from his bed very quickly and exclaimed, "Now the cruel death of my life is born!" Kaṁsa became perplexed now that his death was approaching, and his hair stood on end. Immediately he proceeded toward the place where the child was born.    
     Devakī, on seeing her brother approaching, prayed in a very meek attitude to Kaṁsa: "My dear brother, please do not kill this female child. I promise that this child will be the wife of your son; therefore don't kill her. You are not to be killed by any female child. That was the omen. You are to be killed by a male child, so please do not kill her. My dear brother, you have killed so many of my children who were just born, shining as the sun. That is not your fault. You have been advised by demoniac friends to kill my children. But now I beg you to excuse this girl. Let her live as my daughter."    
     Kaṁsa was so cruel that he did not listen to the beautiful prayers of his sister Devakī. He forcibly grabbed the newborn child to rebuke his sister and attempted to dash her on the stone mercilessly. This is a graphic example of a cruel brother who could sacrifice all relationships for the sake of personal gratification. But immediately the child slipped out of his hands, went up in the sky and appeared with eight arms as the younger sister of Viṣṇu. She was decorated with a nice dress and flower garlands and ornaments; in her eight hands she held a bow, lancet, arrows, bell, conchshell, disc, club and shield.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Srimad Bhagavatam


Canto 6

TEXT 2   
     pravṛtti-lakṣaṇaś caiva   
     traiguṇya-viṣayo mune   
     yo ’sāv alīna-prakṛter   
     guṇa-sargaḥ punaḥ punaḥ   


pravṛtti—by inclination; lakṣaṇaḥ—symptomized; ca—also; eva—indeed; trai-guṇya—the three modes of nature; viṣayaḥ—possessing as objectives; mune—O great sage; yaḥ—which; asau—that; alīna-prakṛteḥ—of one who is not freed from the clutches of māyā; guṇa-sargaḥ—in which there is a creation of material bodies; punaḥ punaḥ—again and again.   
     O great sage Śukadeva Gosvāmī, unless the living entity is freed from the infection of the material modes of nature, he receives different types of bodies in which to enjoy or suffer, and according to the body, he is understood to have various inclinations. By following these inclinations he traverses the path called pravṛtti-mārga, by which one may be elevated to the heavenly planets, as you have already described [in the Third Canto].   
     As Lord Kṛṣṇa explains in Bhagavad-gītā (9.25): 

yānti deva-vratā devān
pitṝn yānti pitṛ-vratāḥ
bhūtāni yānti bhūtejyā
yānti mad-yājino ’pi mām   

     “Those who worship the demigods will take birth among the demigods; those who worship ghosts and spirits will take birth among such beings; those who worship ancestors go to the ancestors; and those who worship Me will live with Me.” Because of the influence of the various modes of nature, the living entities have various tendencies or propensities, and therefore they are qualified to achieve various destinations. As long as one is materially attached, he wants to be elevated to the heavenly planets because of his attraction to the material world. The Supreme Personality of Godhead declares, however, “Those who worship Me come to Me.” If one has no information about the Supreme Lord and His abode, one tries to be elevated only to a higher material position, but when one concludes that in this material world there is nothing but repeated birth and death, he tries to return home, back to Godhead. If one attains that destination, he need never return to this material world (yad gatvā na nivartante tad dhāma paramaṁ mama [Bg. 15.6]). As Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu says in Caitanya-caritāmṛta (Madhya 19.151):   

     brahmāṇḍa bhramite kona bhāgyavān jīva
guru-kṛṣṇa-prasāde pāya bhakti-latā-bīja   

     “According to their karma, all living entities are wandering throughout the entire universe. Some of them are being elevated to the upper planetary systems, and some are going down into the lower planetary systems. Out of many millions of wandering living entities, one who is very fortunate gets an opportunity to associate with a bona fide spiritual master by the grace of Kṛṣṇa. By the mercy of both Kṛṣṇa and the spiritual master, such a person receives the seed of the creeper of devotional service.” All living entities are rotating throughout the universe, going sometimes up to the higher planetary systems and sometimes down to the lower planets. This is the material disease, which is known as pravṛtti-mārga. When one becomes intelligent he takes to nivṛtti-mārga, the path of liberation, and thus instead of rotating within this material world, he returns home, back to Godhead. This is necessary.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Prabhupada Lecture


The Nectar of Devotion

Bombay, December 27, 1972

He's brahma-bhūtaḥ. He's self-realized. Self-realized. That is mukti. Muktir hitvā anyathā rūpaṁ svārupeṇa vyavasthitiḥ [SB 2.10.6]. Mukti does not mean stopping activities. That is not mukti. That is suicidal. You are living entity. How you can stop? That is not possible. They say that, Māyāvādī philosophers, they say to become desireless. That..., you cannot be desireless because you are living entity. How you can stop your desires? But you have to rectify, you have to purify your desires. Now we are desiring simply for sense gratification, to lord it over the material nature. That is your desires. And, and when this desire is purified, then you'll desire that how everything should be engaged in the service of God. Now I am trying to become God, lord it over the material nature, but when my desires are purified, then I shall understand that everything belongs to God; therefore everything should be dovetailed in the service of God. That is liberation. Muktir hitvā anyathā rūpaṁ svarūpeṇa... This is svarūpa.    
     Therefore śūnyavādi, or nirviśeṣa-vādi, they are not liberated. They are still in māyā. Vimukta-māninaḥ. In the Bhāgavata it is said that they are thinking, concocting that they have become liberated. Actually they are not liberated. Ye 'nye 'ravindākṣa vimukta-māninaḥ. Māninaḥ. Say somebody thinks that "I'm the proprietor of all the banks." Let him think like that. But that does not mean he has become the proprietor of the banks. That is a different thing. Similarly, one may think that "I have become liberated," but actually he's not liberated. Liberated is he who is engaged in the service of the Lord. He's liberated. Nobody's liberated. Ye 'nye 'ravindākṣa vimukta-māninas tvayy asta-bhāvād aviśuddha-buddhayaḥ [SB 10.2.32]. Just like they are going to the Moon planet. They have got very high speed sputniks. Simply riding on, boarding on high-speed sputnik does not mean he has gone to the moon planet. Actually he has to go there and live there. Then it is successful. But what they are doing? They are going and coming back. They are going and coming back. Similarly, āruhya kṛcchṛeṇa paraṁ padaṁ tataḥ patanti adhaḥ [SB 10.2.32]. If you have to stay in the higher status of life, brahma anubhūti, then you'll have to come back again. Āruhya kṛcchreṇa. Kṛcchreṇa means by practicing severe austerities, penances, one may go up to the Brahman effulgence, paraṁ padam. That is called paraṁ padam. But because there is no stay... Just like in the sky. You may go with high speed, but if you cannot stay in some planet, you'll have to come back again. Similarly, āruhya kñcchreṇa paraṁ padaṁ tataḥ, patanti adhaḥ anādṛta-yuṣmad-aṅghrayaḥ. Because they cannot get shelter under the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa, they have to come down again to these material activities. And we have seen practically, so many big, big sannyāsīs, they give up this material world, take sannyāsa to understand Brahman, but because they could not understand Brahman, they again come to open hospital and schools. That is their business. Āruhya kṛcchreṇa paraṁ padaṁ tataḥ patanti adhaḥ [SB 10.2.32].


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Brahma Samhita

brahma samhita

Śrī Brahma-saṁhitā, Verse 29

Los Angeles, November 5, 1968


cintāmaṇi-prakara-sadmasu kalpa-vṛkṣa-
lakṣāvṛteṣu surabhīr abhipālayantam
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
[Bs. 5.29]    

"I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who is the cause of all causes. He is in the cintāmaṇi-dhāma." Cintāmaṇi-dhāma means the place which is not made of earth and stone, but they are made of touchstone. Most probably you have heard the name of touchstone. Touchstone can turn iron into gold. So the Lord's abode is made of touchstone, cintāmaṇi. There are houses... As we have got our experience here in this world that houses are made of bricks, there, in the transcendental world, the houses are made of this cintāmaṇi stone, touchstone. Cintāmaṇi-prakara-sadmasu kalpa-vṛkṣa [Bs. 5.29]. There are also trees, but those trees are not like this tree. The trees are kalpa-vṛkṣa. Here you can take one kind of fruit from one tree, but there, from the trees you can ask anything, and you get it because those trees are all spiritual. That is the difference between matter and spirit. Cintāmaṇi-prakara-sadmasu kalpa-vṛkṣa lakṣā-vṛteṣu [Bs. 5.29]. Such kind of trees, there are many, not one or two. All the places are covered by all those trees. Cintāmaṇi-prakara-sadmasu kalpa-vṛkṣa-lakṣāvṛteṣu surabhīr abhipālayantam. And the Lord is very much fond of cowherding. And the cows there, they are called surabhīs. Surabhī cow means you can milk as many times and as much as you like. Surabhīr abhipālayantam. And lakṣmī-sahasra-śata-sambhrama-sevyamānaṁ [Bs. 5.29]. And the Lord is always surrounded by the goddesses of fortune, lakṣmī-sahasra-śata, not one or two, but hundreds and thousands, hundreds and thousands of goddesses of fortune, they are always serving the Lord. And in this way, eternally, blissfully, the Lord is staying in His abode, which is called cintāmaṇi-dhāma. (aside:) Now, how to stop this?

Monday, January 30, 2012

Caitanya Caritamrta

Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Ādi-līlā 1.1

Māyāpur, March 25, 1975  

Radha Madhva


     vande gurūn īśa-bhaktān
īśam īśāvatārakān
tat-prakāśāṁś ca tac-chaktīḥ
[Cc. Ādi 1.1]   

     Kṛṣṇa Caitanya is Kṛṣṇa. That was observed by Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya. He composed one hundred verses praising the glories of Lord Caitanya, but because Caitanya Mahāprabhu was playing the part of a devotee, He threw away the ślokas, because "This is not for Me." That was Caitanya Mahāprabhu's humbleness. But the devotees know that Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is Kṛṣṇa Himself. Śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya rādhā-kṛṣṇa nahe anya. Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa combination of Śrī Caitanya... Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu means Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa combined. In the beginning there is Kṛṣṇa, and then Kṛṣṇa divided into two, Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. And then again combined, that is Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu.   

rādhā-kṛṣṇa-praṇaya-vikṛtir hlādinī śaktir asmād
ekātmānāv api (bhuvi purā) deha-bhedaṁ gatau tau
caitanyākhyaṁ prakaṭam adhunā tad-dvayaṁ caikyam āptam...
[Cc. Ādi 1.5]    

So the Gosvāmī's siddhānta, that Kṛṣṇa is one. There is no rivalry with Kṛṣṇa. God is one. Eka-brahma dvitīya nāsti. There cannot be many Gods. So when God, Kṛṣṇa, wants to enjoy His pleasure potency, that is Rādhārāṇī. So He manifests Himself, manifests His energy... His energy and He, there is no difference. Śakti-śaktimator abhedaḥ. The śāstra says śakti and the śaktimat—means one who possesses the śakti (śakti means power, potency)—they are equal. There is no difference. Just like the sun. Sun is the powerful, and the sunshine is the power. So there is heat in the sun and there is heat also in the sunshine. There is light in the sun and there is light in the sunshine also. Therefore qualitatively they are one so far heat and light is concerned. But the temperature of the sun and the temperature of the sunshine may be different. May be not. Actually there is difference. This is the basic principle of all philosophies. Acintya-bhedābheda. Acintya means inconceivable, bheda means different, and abheda means nondifferent. The whole situation... The one is there, God, but He has expanded Himself in different way. Eko bahu syām.   

So that is described here. Kṛṣṇa-caitanya-saṁjñakam. Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Mahāprabhu, He has expanded Himself as gurūn. The guru, the spiritual master, he's also Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Sākṣād-dharitvena samasta-śāstrair uktaḥ **. In all the śāstras, guru is accepted as Kṛṣṇa. Sākṣād-dharitvena. Sākṣād means directly. Just like you offer your devotion, respects, to guru. So that respect is offered to Kṛṣṇa. Guru also does not think himself that he is Kṛṣṇa, but he collects the devotional services of the disciples to offer to Kṛṣṇa. This is the process. We cannot approach Kṛṣṇa directly. We should approach through guru. Tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta jijñāsuḥ śreya uttamam [SB 11.3.21]. That is the injunction of the śāstra, that one should approach the guru who can transfer the service from the disciple to the Supreme Person. So... Therefore the first offering is guru, vande gurūn. Then guru creates many devotees. Guru's business is to canvass on behalf of Supreme Lord. That is guru's business. Kṛṣṇa says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja [Bg. 18.66], so, "You give up all material, engage..." Sarva-dharmān means in the material world we have created so many so-called duties. This is our material disease. People are interested in material engagements and they have created different varieties of engagements. Sociology, communism, and this "ism," that "ism," philanthropism, altruism, internationalism, nationalism—many, many duties they have created. That is all material. Kṛṣṇa, out of His causeless mercy... (children crying) Stop that children. Out of His causeless mercy, He comes, He descends. Yadā yadā hi dharmasya glānir bhavati bhārata [Bg. 4.7]. Glānir, this is glānir. Human life is meant for one thing, athāto brahma jijñāsā, to inquire about the Supreme Absolute Truth. But instead of doing that, they have created so many "isms." That is their misfortune.