Srila Prabhupada’s Diksa

Bury Place Vyasasana

The following is an article that was sent to me through email sometime back. I just recently got a chance to read it in full. There are many very good quotes by Srila Prabhupada, on the matter of accepting a bona fide spiritual master. I did some slight editing (highlighting) but all the notes and comments are by the author.

Srila Prabhupada’s Diksa
by Vidura Mahatma dasa

In order to attain the highest perfection of life one must approach a bona fide spiritual master coming in the disciplic succession from Lord Krishna Himself. The self-realized spiritual master is able to present the real conclusions of Krishna’s instructions in a way that can be understood and executed as applicable to this day and age. This is the special purpose and great need of accepting a bona fide spiritual master. The rare opportunity to approach a bona fide, self-realized spiritual master coming in the authorized chain of disciplic succession is available to everyone today and is indeed intended for everyone [in every town and village] to take advantage of, owing to the mercy of Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and His Divine Grace Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Readers will find this composition instrumental in ascertaining the philosophical basis of taking shelter of Srila Prabhupada – the current approachable link in the disciplic succession – by adhering to the principles and instructions given in his books. The execution of Srila Prabhupada’s discipline will surely elevate one to the perfectional stage of life leading back home, back to Godhead.

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Transcendental Teachings of Prahlada Maharaja

Transcendental_Teachings_of_Prahlad_Maharaj-original-cover

For some reason (supersoul, I guess), I have been reading the “Transcendental Teachings of Prahlada Maharaja”. There are so many books on my shelves, but I searched for this small paper back book amongst the many small books in our library. We have included it here today as a post. You can also download it as a free pdf file, or as a scanned pdf of the original. Just click on following links to download.

Transcendental Teachings of Prahlad Maharaj 1973 Original

Transcendental_Teachings_of_Prahlad_Maharaj-Original_book-SCAN

The following is based on a series of talks Śrīla Prabhupāda gave in 1968 on the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Canto 7, Chapter 6.

Transcendental Teachings of Prahlāda Mahārāja
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

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Letter to Visnujana

Srila Prabhupada and Visnujhana

…I have got confidence in you because Krishna has given you special talent for chanting Hare Krishna Mantra. When you were chanting in L.A. temple in the evenings, or in the mornings, I enjoyed your chanting so nicely that I thought myself immediately carried to Vaikuntha. So I am always thankful to you for your activities in announcing the interest of our mission. Thank you very much. Most probably when I return to L.A. I may call you back just to hear your chanting of Hare Krishna Mantra.

…So take advantage and enchant those who are coming by your chanting of Hare Krishna Mantra. You will be victorious. And try to introduce our books there and it will be a great missionary success. One Krishna book sold means we go forward one step in our Krishna Consciousness. We should always remember this. (Letter to Visnujana Swami April 4, 1971)

This morning as I was reading some letters by Srila Prabhupada, this letter to Visnujana Swami really touched my heart. “My Dear Son, Visnujana Maharaja, Please accept my blessings.” Srila Prabhupada was so sweet in his dealings with his disciples, particularly those who took the mission seriously.

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Krsna is the Source of All Incarnations

incarnations of krsna

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O brāhmaṇas, the incarnations of the Lord are innumerable, like rivulets flowing from inexhaustible sources of water. (SB1.3.26)

This morning as I was reading the Srimad Bhagavatam, First Canto, Vol. 1, I spent a few minutes just looking at the pictures. They say a picture tells a thousand words, and the above image is no exception. The Thousand words follow…

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Canto One, Chapter Three

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Let the World Unite

Hare Krishna Maha Mantra1

…In this present day, man is very eager to have one scripture, one God, one religion, and one occupation. So let there be one common scripture for the whole world—Bhagavad-gītā. And let there be one God only for the whole world—Śrī Kṛṣṇa. And one mantra only—Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare. And let there be one work only—the service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. (from Introduction to the Bhagavad-gita As It Is)

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Krishna and the Cowheard Boys

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All the boys would be differently engaged. Some boys blew their flutes, and others blew bugles made of horn. Some imitated the buzzing of the bumblebees, and others imitated the voice of the cuckoo. Some boys imitated flying birds by running after the birds’ shadows on the ground, some imitated the beautiful movements and attractive postures of the swans, some sat down with the ducks, sitting silently, and others imitated the dancing of the peacocks. Some boys attracted young monkeys in the trees, some jumped into the trees, imitating the monkeys, some made faces as the monkeys were accustomed to do, and others jumped from one branch to another. Some boys went to the waterfalls and crossed over the river, jumping with the frogs, and when they saw their own reflections on the water they would laugh. They would also condemn the sounds of their own echoes. In this way, all the cowherd boys used to play with Kṛṣṇa, who is the source of the Brahman effulgence for jñānīs desiring to merge into that effulgence, who is the Supreme Personality of Godhead for devotees who have accepted eternal servitorship, and who for ordinary persons is but another ordinary child. The cowherd boys, having accumulated the results of pious activities for many lives, were able to associate in this way with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. How can one explain their great fortune? (SB 10.12.7-11)

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Srila Prabhupada’s Books

Srila Prabhupada's Books

First of all, let me offer my humble, respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of my spiritual master, His Divine Grace Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Gosvāmī Prabhupāda. Sometime in the year 1935 when His Divine Grace was staying at Rādhā-kuṇḍa, I went to see him from Bombay. At that time, he gave me many important instructions in regard to constructing temples and publishing books. He personally told me that publishing books is more important than constructing temples. Of course, those same instructions remained within my mind for many years. In 1944 I began publishing my Back to Godhead, and when I retired from family life in 1958 I began publishing Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam in Delhi. When three parts of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam had been published in India, I then started for the United States of America on the thirteenth of August, 1965.

I am continuously trying to publish books, as suggested by my spiritual master. Now, in this year, 1976, I have completed the Seventh Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, and a summary of the Tenth Canto has already been published as Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Still, the Eighth Canto, Ninth Canto, Tenth Canto, Eleventh Canto and Twelfth Canto are yet to be published. On this occasion, therefore, I am praying to my spiritual master to give me strength to finish this work. I am neither a great scholar nor a great devotee; I am simply a humble servant of my spiritual master, and to the best of my ability I am trying to please him by publishing these books, with the cooperation of my disciples in America. Fortunately, scholars all over the world are appreciating these publications. Let us cooperatively publish more and more volumes of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam just to please His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura.

by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
from Summary to the 8th Canto, Chapter 1

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Lord Krishna Shows the Universal Form Within His Mouth

Krishna eating dirt

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One day while Krishna was playing with His small playmates, including Balarama and other sons of the gopas, all His friends came together and lodged a complaint to mother Yasoda. “Mother,” they submitted, “Krishna has eaten earth.” Upon hearing this from Krishnas’s playmates, mother Yasoda, who was always full of anxiety over Krishna’s welfare, picked Krishna up with her hands to look into His mouth and chastise Him. Her eyes fearful, she spoke to her son as follows. Dear Krishna, why are You so restless that You have eaten dirt in a solitary place? This complaint has been lodged against You by all Your playmates, including Your elder brother, Balarama. How is this? Lord Śrī Krishna replied: My dear mother, I have never eaten dirt. All My friends complaining against Me are liars. If you think they are being truthful, you can directly look into My mouth and examine it. Mother Yasoda challenged Krishna, “If You have not eaten earth, then open Your mouth wide.” When challenged by His mother in this way, Krishna, the son of Nanda Mahārāja and Yasoda, to exhibit pastimes like a human child, opened His mouth. Although the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, who is full of all opulences, did not disturb His mother’s parental affection, His opulence was automatically displayed, for Krishna’s opulence is never lost at any stage, but is manifest at the proper time. When Krishna opened His mouth wide by the order of mother Yasoda, she saw within His mouth all moving and non-moving entities, outer space, and all directions, along with mountains, islands, oceans, the surface of the earth, the blowing wind, fire, the moon and the stars. She saw the planetary systems, water, light, air, sky, and creation by transformation of ahaṅkāra. She also saw the senses, the mind, sense perception, and the three qualities goodness, passion and ignorance. She saw the time allotted for the living entities, she saw natural instinct and the reactions of karma, and she saw desires and different varieties of bodies, moving and nonmoving. Seeing all these aspects of the cosmic manifestation, along with herself and Vṛndāvana-dhāma, she became doubtful and fearful of her son’s nature. (SB 10.8.32-45)

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Cow Protection and Brahminical Culture

Krsna and Balarama with Cows

“The Lord is the protector of cows and the brahminical culture. A society devoid of cow protection and brahminical culture is not under the direct protection of the Lord, just as the prisoners in the jails are not under the protection of the king but under the protection of a severe agent of the king. Without cow protection and cultivation of the brahminical qualities in human society, at least for a section of the members of society, no human civilization can prosper at any length. By brahminical culture, the development of the dormant qualities of goodness, namely truthfulness, equanimity, sense control, forbearance, simplicity, general knowledge, transcendental knowledge and firm faith in the Vedic wisdom, one can become a brāhmaṇa and thus see the Lord as He is.” (from within the Purport of Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.14.34)

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Bhagavad-gita As It Is Introduction

kumbha mela

“One may cleanse himself daily by taking a bath in water, but if one takes a bath even once in the sacred Ganges water of Bhagavad-gita,
for him the dirt of material life is altogether vanquished. One who drinks the water of the Ganges attains salvation, so what to speak of one who drinks the nectar of Bhagavad-gita? Bhagavad-gita is the essential nectar of the Mahabharata, and it is spoken by Lord Krishna Himself, the original Vishnu.”
– Introduction to Bhagavad-gita As It Is

Sometimes when I need a boost in my Krsna consciousness, I will re-read the very powerful Introduction to the Bhagavad-gita As It Is. For me this Introduction explaines the entire philosophy of the Gita in a very nice way that even a layman like myself can easily understand. Although our readers can find this complete Introduction on other sites such as Prabhupadagita, Causlessmercy, or Prabhupadabooks I have decided to post the entire Introduction again here this morning. There is a print icon at the bottom of post where one can print out this entire post it they are son inclined. Hare Krishna!

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The Arrival of a Pure Devotee

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I have always enjoyed going back in time and re-reading the old Back to Godhead Magazines. This one was from 1974 and chronicles the arrival of Srila Prabhupada.

The Arrival of a Pure Devotee
by Visakha-devi dasi

New York: His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, founder and spiritual master of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), stopped here for a few days recently as part of his continuing tour of ISKCON centers around the world. At JFK International Airport, as more than one hundred disciples royally greeted him and curious reporters thronged around him, Srila Prabhupada explained, in clear language and with fixed conviction, the Krsna conscious philosophy of a God-centered society in which “everything animate and inanimate is recognized to be controlled and owned by the Lord.”

“Will this solve the energy crisis?” one reporter asked. “Yes, why not?” Srila Prabhupada immediately responded. “The only lack in the world today is the lack of God consciousness.”

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Spiritual Knowledge Through Kṛṣṇa

The Urgent need for Krsna Consciousness

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Kṛṣṇa Consciousness, The Matchless Gift
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Chapter One

Spiritual Knowledge Through Kṛṣṇa

The aim of this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is to bring all living entities back to their original consciousness. All living entities within the material world are, to varying degrees, afflicted with a type of madness. This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement aims at curing man of his material disease and reestablishing his original consciousness. In a Bengali poem a great Vaiṣṇava poet has written, “When a man is haunted by ghosts, he can only speak nonsense. Similarly, anyone who is under the influence of material nature should be considered haunted, and whatever he speaks should be considered nonsense.” One may be considered a great philosopher or great scientist, but if he is haunted by the ghost of māyā, illusion, whatever he theorizes and whatever he speaks is more or less nonsensical. Today we are given the example of a psychiatrist who, when requested to examine a murderer, proclaimed that since all the patients with whom he had come in contact were more or less crazy, the court could excuse the murderer on those grounds if it so desired. The point is that in the material world it is very difficult to find a sane living entity. The prevailing atmosphere of insanity in this world is all caused by the infection of material consciousness.

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Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Goswami Prabhupada’s Disappearance Day

Back to Godhead - Volume 01, Number 68 - 1974

His Divine Grace Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Gosvāmī Prabhupāda’s Disappearance Day, Lecture
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Los Angeles, December 13, 1973

Prabhupāda:

nama oṁ viṣṇu-pādāya kṛṣṇa-preṣṭhāya bhūtale śrīmate bhaktisiddhānta sarasvatīti nāmine

Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura passed away from this material world on 31st December, 1936. So almost forty years past. So there are two phases, prakaṭa and aprakaṭa, appearance and disappearance. So we have nothing to lament on account of disappearance because Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa’s devotee… Not only devotees, even the nondevotees, nobody disappears. Nobody disappears because every living entity… As Kṛṣṇa is eternal… It is confirmed in the Vedic literature, nityo nityānāṁ cetanaś cetanānām. The description of the Supreme Lord is that He is also nitya, eternal, and the living entities are also eternal. But He is the chief eternal. Nityo nityānāṁ cetanaś cetanānām. So qualitatively, there is no difference between Kṛṣṇa and the living entities. And quantitatively, there is difference. What is the difference between nitya, the singular number nitya, and the plural number nitya? The plural number nitya is subordinate, eternal servants of the singular number nitya. Just like if you want to serve somebody, so the master is also exactly like you. He has got two hands, two legs, or the same sentiments. He also eats. Everything is same there. But the difference is the master and the servant. That’s all. Otherwise, equal in every respect. More

King Prthu’s Appearance and Coronation

King Prthu

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam: Canto 4: “The Creation of the Fourth Order”
by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda

Canto Four, Chapter 15

King Pṛthu’s Appearance and Coronation

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Hearing is Most Important

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By associating with persons for whom the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Mukunda, is the all in all, one can hear of His powerful activities and soon come to understand them. The activities of Mukunda are so potent that simply by hearing of them one immediately associates with the Lord. For a person who constantly and very eagerly hears narrations of the Lord’s powerful activities, the Absolute Truth, the Personality of Godhead in the form of sound vibrations, enters within his heart and cleanses it of all contamination. On the other hand, although bathing in the Ganges diminishes bodily contaminations and infections, this process and the process of visiting holy places can cleanse the heart only after a long time. Therefore who is the sane man who will not associate with devotees to quickly perfect his life? (SB 5.18.11)
…Bathing in the Ganges can certainly cure one of many infectious diseases, but it cannot cleanse one’s materially attached mind, which creates all kinds of contaminations in material existence. However, one who directly associates with the Supreme Lord by hearing of His activities cleanses the dirt from his mind and very soon comes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
…All the great ācāryas strongly recommend that people be given a chance to hear about the Supreme Lord. Then success is assured. The more we cleanse the dirt of material attachment from our hearts, the more we will be attracted by Kṛṣṇa’s name, form, qualities, paraphernalia and activities. This is the sum and substance of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. (from purport SB 5.18.11)
Full Text and Purport

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Teaching and Study Guide to the Bhagavad-gita As It is

Krsna and Arjuna

This morning I happened upon this nice Study Guide on the Bhagavad-gita As It Is.  It begins with the Introduction to the Bhagavad-gita, some notes on the Original Edition, the significance of the Bhagavad-gita, a philosophical synopsis, chapter by chapter summary, Q & A, and a suguested teaching syllabus.  All in all ,a very nice presentation prepared by disciples and followers of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.

We are offing it here as a free pdf download that you can view, save or print, by clicking on the following link:

Teaching_and_Study_Guide_to_Bhagavad-gita_As_It_Is

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Overpopulation?

overpopulation

The theory of overpopulation was explained by Srila Prabhupada at the famous New York Ratha-yatra festival in 1976.  I remember clearly, We were at the park, in one of the worlds largest cities, sourounded by thousands of people, and Srila Prabhupada was speaking about how Krsna is feeding the world…

…God is father, supreme father of everyone. If we simply study this verse from the Bhagavad-gītā, that the mother nature is the mother of all living entities and God is the supreme father of everyone… We can study these two lines very carefully. On the earth we can see so many living entities are coming out, beginning from the grass, then so many insects, reptiles, big trees, then animals, birds, beasts, then human beings. They are all coming from the earth, and they are living at the expense of earth. The earth is supplying food to everyone. As the mother gives life or maintains the child by the milk of her breast, similarly, the earth mother is maintaining all different types of living entities. There are 8,400,000 different forms of life, and the earth, mother earth is supplying food. There are thousands of elephants in the African jungle, they are also being supplied with food. And within your room in a hole there are thousands of ants, they are also being supplied food by the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. So the philosophy is that we should not be disturbed by the so-called theory of over-population. If God can feed elephants, why he cannot feed you? You do not eat like the elephant. So this theory, that there is a shortage of food or overpopulation, we do not accept it. God is so powerful that He can feed everyone without any difficulty. Simply we are mismanaging. Otherwise there is no difficulty.

 

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No Change

Bhagavad-Gita_As_It_Is…That is the gift of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu. It is in the śāstra. Caitanya Mahāprabhu does not give you anything which is not in the śāstra. He’s ācārya, although He’s God Himself. He can make śāstra. Whatever He does, whatever He speaks, that is śāstra. But still, because He’s playing the part of ācārya, He immediately gives Vedic evidences. That is the way of ācārya. Ācāryas will never say, “I think.” “It is in my opinion.” No. Such things are not accepted. No personal opinion. It must be supported by Vedic evidences. That is called paramparā system, genuine system of understanding. As Kṛṣṇa says, evaṁ paramparā-prāptam imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ [Bg. 4.2]. No change. Therefore we are presenting Bhagavad-gītā as it is. We do not change. We have no power to change. Then where is the authority of Bhagavad-gītā? I am a third-class man, and if I change the statements in the Bhagavad-gītā, then where is the authority of Bhagavad-gītā? That is going on. Therefore it is practically… You have got experience that there are hundreds of Bhagavad-gītā editions in the Western countries, but because we are presenting Bhagavad-gītā as it is, our sale is better than all others. There is a report from the trade manager of Macmillan. He says, “While other editions are dwindling, going down, this edition is coming up.” They published our, this present enlarged edition of Bhagavad-gītā, fifty thousand in the month of August. They are going to print again, second edition, August, September, October. So the reason is that if we present things as they are, it will be accepted. Without any adulteration. Sometimes, you know, people say that I have done miracles. They say everywhere. But I do not know anything, miracles or magic. If there is any miracle, that miracle is that we present things as they are. That’s all. Without any adulteration. So that should be the principle. Present as it is. It will be accepted.

excerpted from a lecture on the Srimad Bhagavatam 1.2.11  Vrindavan India October 22, 1972

 

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Disappearance of Srila Gaura Kishora dasa babaji

Srila Gaura KishoraSrila Prabhupada gives praise to the exalted Srila Gaura Kishora dasa babaji

excerpted from Srila Prabhupada Lectures : Bhagavad-gita 4.24-34 — New York, August 12, 1966

 

…And you will be surprised that my Guru Mahārāja’s spiritual master was Gaura Kiśora dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja. He was completely illiterate. He did not know how to sign, and my spiritual master was the most learned man of his age. He accepted that guru who was completely illiterate. But when he would speak, that Gaura Kiśora dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja, he would speak with all Vedic references. And you will find in the Veda that:

yasya deve parā bhaktir
yathā deve tathā gurau
tasyaite kathitā hy arthāḥ
prakāśante mahātmanaḥ
[ŚU 6.23]

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The Real Peace Formula

SrilaPrabhupada

Latley I have been reading some of Srila Prabhupada’s early Essays & Articles, as can be found at Prabhupada Books. The following “The Real Peace Formula” is an example of his early writting.

The Real Peace Formula
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

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Previous Older Entries

108 Imporant Slokas from the 1972 Bhagavad-gita As It Is

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The Hare Krishna Cookbook

Songs of the Vaisnava Acaryas

Bhagavad-gita As It Is 1972 Edition “Online”

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Raja-Vidya the King of Knowledge

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Important Slokas from the Brahma-samhita

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Slokas from the Sri Isopanisad

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Prayers By Queen Kunti (Slokas)

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Gajendra’s Prayers of Surrender (Slokas)

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