Disappearance of Haridasa Thakura

HaridasaThakura1

After the passing away of Haridāsa Ṭhākura, the Lord Himself took his body on His lap, and He danced with it in great ecstasy. (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Adi-lila 10.46)

Today being the Disappearance of Haridāsa Ṭhākura, we honor him with this short post. We have selected a verse from the Bhagavad-gita 6.44 wherein Srila Prabhupada mentions in the purport;

…Lord Caitanya, accepted Ṭhākur Haridāsa as one of His most important disciples. …he was elevated to the post of nāmācārya by Lord Caitanya due to his rigidly attended principle of chanting three hundred thousand holy names of the Lord daily: Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare.

Full Text and Purport More

How the Teachings of Lord Caitanya Came to the Western World (Part 3)

Lord Caitanya's Sankirtan Party

This is Part 3, or the conclusion, of the very informative article by Sriman Brahmananda Prabhu as it appeared in Back to Godhead Magazine in 1975, which gives not only some of the History of Lord Caitanya’s Mission, but on the preaching of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Gaudiya Vaisnavism, and the Hare Krishna Movement here in the West.

How the Teachings of Lord Caitanya Came to the Western World (Part 3)
Excerpted from Back to Godhead Magazine
Vol.10, No. 1, 1975
by His Holiness Brahmananda Swami

After the disappearance of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, his son, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Maharaja, a great scholar and pure devotee, continued to expand the mission of Lord Caitanya. He wrote many books and established printing presses and sixty-four temples dedicated to preaching the message of Krsna consciousness.

The following is the third of three articles depicting the pioneering efforts of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami, and those who have followed them in spreading the benediction of Krsna consciousness throughout the world.)

More

The Singing Sadhu

Acyutananda das

It was my good fortune to finally meet one of my singing mentors, and God-brother, the legendary Acyutananda das, at the Festival of Inspiration held annually at the New Vrindavan farm community in West Virginia. He was a very likable character and willingly signed my 1974 copy of the Songs of the Vaisnava Acaryas. He opened the Festival of Inspiration with a Question and Answer session, answering all kinds of questions on the “Early Days”, “India”, “Life with Srila Prabhupada”, “Spiritual Life” etc., etc. with his own blend of sarcastic humor, wit, and intellectual powers. It was quite enjoyable and enlightening. He is a very ‘real’, unpretentious fellow, and as I said very likable.

In honor of our visit with him we are posting the Foreword from the Songs of the Vaisnava Acarays, wherein Srila Prabhupada is giving his thanks and blessings:

…I confer all my blessings upon Acyutananda Swami for his genuine attempt to advance in Krishna consciousness. I hope he will attempt to advance more and more and never be hampered my maya. We should always remember the danger of maya’s influence and endeavor to save ourselves from her great power. We must therefore always merge in the transcendental mellow of kirtana-rasa, for kirtana-rasa is the safest situation within this material world. Hare Krishna.

A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami

Foweard More

The Perfect Devotee

Jesus and Lamb

Continuing with our series of a True account entitled Perfect Questions, Perfect Answers… A search for meaning carries Bob Cohen, a young American Peace Corps worker halfway around the world, to an ancient village in the midst of West Bengal. There, in a small bamboo hut, he finds a teacher who is able to tell him everything he ever wanted to know.

…The spiritual master has to take the responsibility for all the sinful activities of his disciples…He takes responsibility for all the fallen souls. That idea is also in the Bible. Jesus Christ took all the sinful reactions of the people and sacrificed his life. That is the responsibility of a spiritual master.

Perfect Questions Perfect Answers
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
February 29, 1972, evening
Chapter Six

More

The Generals Who Could Not Be Defeated

…whatever Krsna Consciousness exists outside of India is due to the humble efforts of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who openly challenged the scientific voidism and sectarian impersonalism dominating the world. Like Bhaktivinode Thakur and Bhaktisiddhanta Thakur, his predecessors in bringing Lord Caitanya’s causeless mercy of Harinama out of India, His Divine Grace remains undefeated, and is prepared to commission any and all of his followers to carry on the tradition of victory.

…The Generals who could not be defeated have already provided the strategy, weapons, and knowledge, the spiritual strength, to guarantee ultimate victory. The Parampara Acaryas have chosen Srila Prabhupada-vani to lead the mission into this 21st Century…

Therefore, the wise shall accept the infallible guidance and protection of Srila Prabhupada and to best capacity help deliver, by His Divine Grace, the inconceivable benediction of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

The Generals Who Could Not Be Defeated
by Sriman Rupanuga das

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada once remarked to his disciples, “You must become a general like me. I cannot be defeated.” Srila Prabhupada was commissioned by another undefeated general, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Thakur, who against all opposition established the legitimacy and influence of the Gaudiya Vaisnava siddhanta in India. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta met resistance from every quarter: professional gurus, prakrta-sahajiyas, caste goswamis, ecumenists, eclecticists, et al., but anyone who dared to sally forth and meet his challenge was ultimately trounced.

More

The Spiritual Master (Part 2)

click on image to enlarge

This is a continuation from our previous post, The Spiritual Master a few days ago. This is a fascinating account by Sriman Locanananda Prabhu revealing his insights into the ‘guru issue’ in our ISKCON society today, from his own personal understanding, and his realizations of the instructions given by Srila Prabhupada shortly before his untimely departure. Our obeisances to him for sharing his personal recollections and realizations. [Note: some of the other comments were edited out so as not to distract from Locanananda Prabhu’s train of thought. You can follow the entire stream of comments by going to Prabhupada News

…Because the focus of every devotee’s efforts is to please Srila Prabhupada knowing him to be Krishna’s pure representative, we can understand that the officiating acarya’s function is to formalize the disciple’s connection with Srila Prabhupada and the disciplic succession by the giving of diksa.

… According to this correct understanding, the officiating acarya is not particularly empowered to take those he initiates back to Godhead. But if he is capable of acting as the transparent via medium to the founder acarya, he is certainly to be honored and shown great respect. However, so that Srila Prabhupada remains the central figure and worshipable spiritual master within the Hare Krishna movement, no other spiritual personality should become his competitor by exacting worship from disciples. It is the responsibility of the GBC to preserve this unique role as exclusively the position of Srila Prabhupada.

More

The Smile of a Krishna Conscious Person

“That is the way of Krishna consciousness. Pure devotees are so absorbed in thought of Krishna that they have no other engagement; although they may seem to think or act otherwise, they are always thinking of Krishna. The smile of such a Krishna conscious person is so attractive that simply by smiling he wins so many admirers, disciples and followers.” (from purport to Srimad Bhagavatam, 3.22.21)

Full text and purport More

Srila Prabhupada Guru Tattva

Blessings from Srila Prabhupada

This is an older article, and rather long, but is full with information, quotes, and insightful analysis, on the most important issues, facing our society, concerning guru tattva, and following the instructions of Srila Prabhupada. Many good quotes and a highly recomended read!

Srila Prabhupada Guru Tattva
By Sriman Harinam Prabhu
June 12, 2006

It is widely known that Srila Prabhupada instituted a ritvik or representative (proxy) initiation system throughout ISKCON as early as 1971 in order to meet the growing need to initiate his disciples worldwide. However what is not widely known is that he instructed his disciples to continue initiating new disciples on his behalf even after his physical disappearance.

He called those disciples who performed the initiation ceremonies ritvik representatives of the acharya (officiating acharyas). Below are quotes directly from Srila Prabhupada for the evidence of these intructions as well as explanations, philosophical insights, and historical background.

More

Srila Prabhubada; “Your ever well-wisher”

"Your ever well wisher"


Former Hare Krishna leader Kirtanananda Swami dies at 74

Kirtananda Swami, former American Hare Krishna leader, died Monday in a hospital near Mumbai, India. According to his brother, Gerald Ham, he died of kidney failure at age 74.
 
Kirtananda Swami, was born September 6, 1937 New York. Given the name Keith Gordon Ham, he was the youngest child of a Baptist minister, Kirtananda was among the first Hare Krishna devotees in the United States. In 1968 he founded what eventually became the largest Hare Krishna community in the country. Despite having been excommunicated in 1987 by the leadership of the Hare Krishna movement, he presided over that community until 1994.

In a letter written to Janardana in 1968, Srila Prabhupada has this to say about Kirtananda Swami and to all those he has accepted as disciples…

Regarding Kirtanananda’s letter, I may inform you that I always think of him and pray to Krishna for his good sense. That is my duty. Anyone who comes to me for my help or wants advance in Krishna Consciousness, and whom I initiate and accept as my disciple, I must pray for him and his welfare always. So Kirtanananda personally served me, especially during my illness, which I always remember. But because somehow or other he has misunderstood our activities that does not mean that I am no longer his well wisher. I write at the end of my letters to my disciples, “Your ever well-wisher”, and as such, I cannot become otherwise than being ever well-wisher of my disciples, even though he may leave me. So I was praying to Krishna that He may save Kirtanananda from his misunderstanding and if ever he chanted Hare Krishna at least once in sincere heart, I am sure Krishna would not allow him to go out of his influence. Therefore, I believe that he can never forget the Form of Krishna, neither he can deny His Personality. It is good news that he is trying to establish a new Vrindaban, which I suggested through Hayagriva Brahmacari, and if he is successful, in his attempt, certainly it will be considered a great benediction upon him by Lord Krishna. When I offered him Sannyas, I expected such great achievements through him and if Krishna desires, he will come out successful in his great attempt. Yes, I expressed my desire to go there through Hayagriva Brahmacari, and if I am invited, to go there, by Kirtanananda Swami, it will be my great pleasure to see the place and enjoy his company.

For entire letter

More

Srila Prabhupada Speaks Out / His Final Instructions

Remembering Srila Prabhupada


Srila Prabhupada Speaks Out
His Final Instructions

Back to Godhead Magazine
Volume 13, Number 102, 1978

During his last months, Srila Prabhupada was not very active physically, and he spoke relatively little. Yet when he did speak, his words were full of spiritual strength. These excerpts from Srila Prabhupada’s last statements reveal the mind of the pure devotee and universal teacher. And they show that Srila Prabhupada is indeed a transcendental personality, whose devotion to Lord Krsna and to the mission of spreading love of Krsna is undying.

“There is nothing new to be said. Whatever I had to say, I have already said in my books. Now you must all try to understand it and continue with your endeavors. Whether I am present or not present doesn’t matter. Just as Krsna is living eternally, the living being also lives eternally. But especially… kirtir yasya sa jivati: ‘One who has done service to the Lord lives forever.’ You have been taught to serve Krsna, and with Krsna we’ll live eternally. Our life is eternal. Na hanyate hanyamane sarire: the disappearance of this temporary body doesn’t matter. The body is meant for disappearance. So, live forever by serving Krsna. Thank you very much.”

More

Srila Prabhupada is the Only Spiritual Master for ISKCON

Srila Prabhupada is the Only Spiritual Master for ISKCON

Srila Prabhupada created ISKCON for his disciples and it is really only going to work for his disciples. There is no history of a group of gurus living together and having all their disciples together. Even the Goswamis in Vrindavan, they were coming together for kirtans but they all had their own separate temples and disciples.

A short while back I read an interesting article written by Madhuvisa Prabhu, and posted by Rochan Prabhu on his site Sampradaya Sun. The article was entitled Evidence and Clarification. We are posting some of it here.

“…But as far as the facts are concerned it is certainly a fact that Prabhupada established a ritvik initiation system in ISKCON in the early 70′s where he would appoint representatives to perform the fire yajnas for his disciples on his behalf. And it is a fact that he gave these “ritviks” more power as the years went on, and in the July 9th letter, he gave them complete power to accept disciples on his behalf and chant on their beads and give them a name, without having any physical involvement in the matter at all.

It is also a provable fact that Srila Prabhuapda did not consider that any of his disciples were qualified for the position of acharya. And therefore it is very reasonable to say that Srila Prabhupada did not appoint any successor acharyas. I was just listening to one of the 1977 conversation tapes a couple of days ago and Srila Prabhupada told Tamal that the problem is among his disciples there is no strong man. He said they are all like children and among all Ramesvara may be the best. The same thing is there in other places where Prabhupada is clearly stating that his disciples are immature and not qualified for the post of acharya.

So it is a fact that the system Srila Prabhupada used in ISKCON to accept disciples in him physical presence was ritvik, 100% ritvik in the later years. And we can say it is a fact that he did not appoint any successor acharyas. Even Tamal confirms this in his Topanga Canyon talks. He says clearly that Prabhupada only appointed ritviks.

More

The Expansions of Advaita Ācārya

Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Ādi-līlā 12.1-12

The order of the spiritual master is the active principle in spiritual life. Anyone who disobeys the order of the spiritual master immediately becomes useless.

…the followers of Advaita Ācārya divided into two parties. Such disagreement among the disciples of one ācārya is also found among the members of the Gauḍīya Maṭha. In the beginning, during the presence of Oṁ Viṣṇupāda Paramahaṁsa Parivrājakācārya Aṣṭottara-śata Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Prabhupāda, all the disciples worked in agreement; but just after his disappearance, they disagreed. One party strictly followed the instructions of Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura, but another group created their own concoction about executing his desires. Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura, at the time of his departure, requested all his disciples to form a governing body and conduct missionary activities cooperatively. He did not instruct a particular man to become the next ācārya. But just after his passing away, his leading secretaries made plans, without authority, to occupy the post of ācārya, and they split into two factions over who the next ācārya would be. Consequently, both factions were asāra, or useless, because they had no authority, having disobeyed the order of the spiritual master. Despite the spiritual master’s order to form a governing body and execute the missionary activities of the Gauḍīya Maṭha, the two unauthorized factions began litigation that is still going on after forty years with no decision.

TEXT 1
The followers of Śrī Advaita Prabhu were of two kinds. Some were real followers, and the others were false. Rejecting the false followers, I offer my respectful obeisances to Śrī Advaita Ācārya’s real followers, whose life and soul was Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu.

TEXT 2
All glories to Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu! All glories to Lord Nityānanda! All glories to Śrī Advaita Prabhu! All of Them are glorious.

TEXT 3
I offer my respectful obeisances to the all-glorious Advaita Prabhu, who forms the second branch of the eternal Caitanya tree, and to His followers, who form His subbranches.

TEXT 4
Śrī Advaita Prabhu was the second big branch of the tree. There are many subbranches, but it is impossible to mention them all.

TEXT 5
Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu was also the gardener, and as He poured the water of His mercy on the tree, all the branches and subbranches grew, day after day.

TEXT 6
The fruits of love of Godhead that grew on those branches of the Caitanya tree were so large that they flooded the entire world with love of Kṛṣṇa.

TEXT 7
As the trunk and branches were watered, the branches and subbranches spread lavishly, and the tree grew full with fruits and flowers.

TEXT 8
At first all the followers of Advaita Ācārya shared a single opinion. But later they followed two different opinions, as ordained by providence.

PURPORT
The words daivera kāraṇa indicate that by dint of providence, or by God’s will, the followers of Advaita Ācārya divided into two parties. Such disagreement among the disciples of one ācārya is also found among the members of the Gauḍīya Maṭha. In the beginning, during the presence of Oṁ Viṣṇupāda Paramahaṁsa Parivrājakācārya Aṣṭottara-śata Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Prabhupāda, all the disciples worked in agreement; but just after his disappearance, they disagreed. One party strictly followed the instructions of Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura, but another group created their own concoction about executing his desires. Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura, at the time of his departure, requested all his disciples to form a governing body and conduct missionary activities cooperatively. He did not instruct a particular man to become the next ācārya. But just after his passing away, his leading secretaries made plans, without authority, to occupy the post of ācārya, and they split into two factions over who the next ācārya would be. Consequently, both factions were asāra, or useless, because they had no authority, having disobeyed the order of the spiritual master. Despite the spiritual master’s order to form a governing body and execute the missionary activities of the Gauḍīya Maṭha, the two unauthorized factions began litigation that is still going on after forty years with no decision.

Therefore, we do not belong to any faction. But because the two parties, busy dividing the material assets of the Gauḍīya Maṭha institution, stopped the preaching work, we took up the mission of Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura and Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura to preach the cult of Caitanya Mahāprabhu all over the world, under the protection of all the predecessor ācāryas, and we find that our humble attempt has been successful. We followed the principles especially explained by Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura in his commentary on the Bhagavad-gītā verse vyavasāyātmikā buddhir ekeha kuru-nandana. According to this instruction of Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura, it is the duty of a disciple to follow strictly the orders of his spiritual master. The secret of success in advancement in spiritual life is the firm faith of the disciple in the orders of his spiritual master. The Vedas confirm this:

yasya deve parā bhaktir
yathā deve tathā gurau
tasyaite kathitā hy arthāḥ
prakāśante mahātmanaḥ

“To one who has staunch faith in the words of the spiritual master and the words of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the secret of success in Vedic knowledge is revealed.” The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is being propagated according to this principle, and therefore our preaching work is going on successfully, in spite of the many impediments offered by antagonistic demons, because we are getting positive help from our previous ācāryas. One must judge every action by its result. The members of the self-appointed ācārya’s party who occupied the property of the Gauḍīya Maṭha are satisfied, but they could make no progress in preaching. Therefore by the result of their actions one should know that they are asāra, or useless, whereas the success of the ISKCON party, the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, which strictly follows guru and Gaurāṅga, is increasing daily all over the world. Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura wanted to print as many books as possible and distribute them all over the world. We have tried our best in this connection, and we are getting results beyond our expectations.

TEXT 9
Some of the disciples strictly accepted the orders of the ācārya, and others deviated, independently concocting their own opinions under the spell of daivī-māyā.

PURPORT
This verse describes the beginning of a schism. When disciples do not stick to the principle of accepting the order of their spiritual master, immediately there are two opinions. Any opinion different from the opinion of the spiritual master is useless. One cannot infiltrate materially concocted ideas into spiritual advancement. That is deviation. There is no scope for adjusting spiritual advancement to material ideas.

TEXT 10
The order of the spiritual master is the active principle in spiritual life. Anyone who disobeys the order of the spiritual master immediately becomes useless.

PURPORT
Here is the opinion of Śrīla Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī. Persons who strictly follow the orders of the spiritual master are useful in executing the will of the Supreme, whereas persons who deviate from the strict order of the spiritual master are useless.

More

Current Link

Recently there was a nice article on the Sampradaya Sun posted by Sriman Dhira Govinda Prabhu on the Current and Direct Link, for continuance of the disciplic succession in ISKCON, and two nice spin off articles. Enclosed are two of the recent articles submitted by readers.

Current Link
BY: DUSYANTA DAS

Apr 27, 2011 — UK (SUN) — In Srimad Bhagavatam 2.9.7 is where the quote is found concerning the word “link”. In the purport, Srila Prabhupada identifies this phenomena thus: “…in order to receive the real message of Srimad Bhagavatam one should approach the current link, or Spiritual master, in the chain of disciplic succession.”

The definition of “current” is explained clearly from the Collins English dictionary thus:
“most recent, commonly known, practiced or accepted, widespread, circulating and valid at present”. Which all seems to fit very easily into the idea that Srila Prabhupada is the Spiritual Master, the current link that is illustrated here in the purport of SB 2.9.7.

The application of this phenomena, the “current link” is hinging on the word in the sentence “approach”. Which is either a verb or noun. The verb “approach” is defined as “to come near, to go to someone with a request or offer, to set about doing something.” The noun “approach” is defined as “a way or road to a place, a method of doing something.”

If we follow the premise that Srila Prabhupada uses the term “immediate acarya” as synonymous with the term “current link”, then we come up with the definitions lending the validity to a direct relationship with Him without intermediaries and regardless of physical presence. Immediate definition as “without intervening medium, closest or most direct in effect of relationship.”

The point in approaching a spiritual master or current link in disciplic succession is to take initiation from him.

More

Special Message

This exchange between His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and reporters took place at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport.

Reporter: Swamiji, what special message would you have for people who don’t know anything about your movement and would like to know something about it?

Srila Prabhupada: It is a little difficult to understand this movement, because it is a spiritual movement. Unfortunately, people have practically no information about what spirit is and what a spiritual movement is. They can simply understand that the body is there — but the body is a machine, and the driver of the machine is the spirit soul. So we are beginning our movement from this platform. People are very much engrossed with the machine only, but they have no information about who is driving the machine. That is what we are teaching.

Reporter: Swamiji, your movement has received much attention because many of your followers dress in what, for the West, is an odd fashion. Why have you asked your followers to dress in this fashion and play drums on the streets?

Srila Prabhupada: This is our preaching method — somehow or other to draw people’s attention, so that they may have the opportunity to revive their eternal relationship with God.

More

Same solution as desired by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura

Same solution as desired by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura
Pradyumna Prabhu (ACBSP): 7 August, 1978

Dear Satsvarupa Maharaj,

Please accept my most humble obeisances.

Maharaj, I am writing you this letter with GREAT anxiety in my heart and after days and days and long nights of thought and careful consideration.

I have been staying in Vrndavan for some time and have not visited any other center recently except Delhi. Therefore, my information I have about what is happening at our other centers comes only from devotees visiting here, occasional letters, newsletters and our society’s magazine and other publications. But the news I hear from these sources is very alarming and therefore I am writing you in some anxiety.

More

A Short Statement of the Philosophy of Krishna Consciousness

click on image

click on image

July 9th Letter

click on image

click on image

Bhagavad-gita As It Is 1972 Edition “Online”

click on image

click on image to visit site

Srimad Bhagavatam Online

click on image

Blog Stats

  • 698,894 hits

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 626 other followers

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

Click on image to go to Post

Click on image to go to Post

Important Slokas from the Brahma-samhita

click on image

click on image

Slokas from the Sri Isopanisad

click on image

click on image

Prayers By Queen Kunti (Slokas)

click on image

Gajendra’s Prayers of Surrender (Slokas)

click on image
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 626 other followers