Hare Krishna!

Lord Sri Krishna with Cows

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We will be away for a couple of weeks, but leave you with this beautiful image of Lord Sri Krishna and a short book entitled “Prabhupada”

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Advanced Knowledge

Nectar of Instruction

Continuing with our series on the Nectar of Inststuction (Upadeśāmṛta), we are posting Text 10, the very important instructions given by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī on advanced knowledge of the higher values of life.

…The gopīs are exalted above all the advanced devotees because they are always totally dependent upon Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the transcendental cowherd boy. Among the gopīs, Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī is the most dear to Kṛṣṇa. Her kuṇḍa [lake] is as profoundly dear to Lord Kṛṣṇa as this most beloved of the gopīs. Who, then, will not reside at Rādhā-kuṇḍa and, in a spiritual body surcharged with ecstatic devotional feelings [aprākṛtabhāva], render loving service to the divine couple Śrī Śrī Rādhā-Govinda, who perform Their aṣṭakālīya-līlā, Their eternal eightfold daily pastimes. Indeed, those who execute devotional service on the banks of Rādhā-kuṇḍa are the most fortunate people in the universe. (The Nectar of Instruction Text 10)

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Lord Balarama’s Appearance Day

Lord Balarama

Lord Balarama’s Appearance Day

Lord Balarama is Krishna’s elder brother and His appearance day takes place on the full moon day (purnima), two weeks before Krishna Janmashtami. Krishna and Balarama were the darlings of Vrindavan/ Vraja. Together They would spend the day enjoying the company of the cowherd boys in the forests of Vraja. Their wonderful pastimes are related in the tenth canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam, which Srila Prabhupada also translated as The Krishna Book. Lord Balarama is also considered the original spiritual master and His worship is therefore most important for Vaishnavas.

Lord Balarāma has two weapons, a plow and a club, from which He takes service when they are required.
(from Kṛṣṇa Book Chapter 65 Lord Balarāma Visits Vṛndāvana)

…In the Upaniṣads it is stated, nāyam ātmā bala-hīnena labhyaḥ. The purport is that one cannot attain the supreme platform of self-realization without being sufficiently favored by Balarāma. Bala does not mean physical strength. No one can attain spiritual perfection by physical strength. One must have the spiritual strength which is infused by Balarāma, or Saṅkarṣaṇa. Ananta, or Śeṣa, is the source of the power which sustains all the planets in their different positions. Materially this sustaining power is known as the law of gravitation, but actually it is a display of the potency of Saṅkarṣaṇa. Balarāma, or Saṅkarṣaṇa, is the source of spiritual power, or the original spiritual master. Therefore Lord Nityānanda Prabhu, who is also the incarnation of Balarāma, is the original spiritual master. And the spiritual master is the representative of Balarāma, the form of the Supreme Personality of Godhead who supplies spiritual strength. In the Caitanya-caritāmṛta it is confirmed that the spiritual master is the manifestation of the mercy of Kṛṣṇa. (from Kṛṣṇa Book Chapter 2: Prayers by the Demigods for Lord Kṛṣṇa in the Womb)

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Resident of Krishna Loka

Srila Prabhupada

…Unless one is a resident of Krishna Loka, one cannot be a Spiritual Master. That is the first proposition. A layman cannot be a Spiritual Master, and if he becomes so then he will simply create disturbance. And who is a liberated person? One who knows Krishna. It is stated in BG, fourth chapter, anyone who knows Krishna in truth is immediately liberated, and after quitting the present body, he immediately goes to Krishna. That means he becomes a resident of Krishna Loka. As soon as one is liberated he is immediately a resident of Krishna Loka, and anyone who knows the truth of Krishna can become Spiritual Master. That is the version of Lord Caitanya. So to summarize the whole thing, it is to be understood that a bona fide Spiritual Master is a resident of Krishna Loka. (Letter to Mukunda June 10, 1969)

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Madhudvisa dasa (ACBSP) Departs

Madhuvisa dasa

…I have no objection if you feel like going to Australia for heading up the Sankirtana party there and managing things in general….You can go to Australia, there you have got enough field for your dancing. (Letter to Madhudvisa dasa April 26, 1972)

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Soul Slokas

Soul

This morning I was thinking about the soul and its eternal journey. So I went to Srila Prabhupada’s Bhagavad-gita As It Is and found some of the important slokas that pertained to the subject of the soul.

As the embodied soul continually passes, in this body, from boyhood to youth to old age, the soul similarly passes into another body at death. The self-realized soul is not bewildered by such a change. (Bg. 2.13)

For the soul there is never birth nor death. Nor, having once been, does he ever cease to be. He is unborn, eternal, ever-existing, undying and primeval. He is not slain when the body is slain. (Bg. 2.20)

As a person puts on new garments, giving up old ones, similarly, the soul accepts new material bodies, giving up the old and useless ones. (Bg. 2.22)

The soul can never be cut into pieces by any weapon, nor can he be burned by fire, nor moistened by water, nor withered by the wind. (Bg. 2.23)

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The Nectar of Devotion Lectures

Nectar of Devotion Lectures Photo by Gurudas B18310

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..utilize everything for the purpose of Kṛṣṇa. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. Most scientific and authorized movement. Trying to place people in his original, constitutional position and cooperate for the service of Kṛṣṇa. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.

…So bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu is to taste the mellow of serving Kṛṣṇa. That is the science of serving Kṛṣṇa. Therefore we have named this book, “Nectar of Devotion.” It is summary study of bhakti-rasa, the mellow, the transcendental mellow which one can taste. Everyone is tasting. Otherwise he cannot work. So yat karoṣi yaj juhoṣi. Kṛṣṇa says, “Whatever engagement you may have, kuruṣva tad mad-arpaṇam, do it for Kṛṣṇa.” Don’t take the result yourself. Give it to Kṛṣṇa. Then you’ll taste the rel…, relish the mellow, transcendental mellow, bhakti-rasa. And then you’ll be happy. (The Nectar of Devotion Lectures Vṛndāvana, October 17, 1972)

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2014 Ratha Yatra @ New Vrindavan

Radha Vrndavan Chandra 2014 Ratha Yatra @ New Vrindavan 067

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Yesterday, the Ratha Yatra Festival was celebrated at New Vrindavan, West Virginia. Although there were scattered rain showers, and the umbrellas came out, still it was a very auspicious day, and nice event enjoyed by all. Following are some of the pictures I took along the festival rout.

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Nectar of Devotion Lecture

Nectar of Devotion Lecture by Gurudas B18306

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The Nectar of Devotion
given by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Vṛndāvana, October 16, 1972

Pradyumna (reading): “The Nectar of Devotion is a summary study of Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu, which was written in Sanskrit by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī Prabhupāda. He was the chief of the six Gosvāmīs who were the direct disciples of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu. When he first met Lord Caitanya, Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī Prabhupāda was engaged as a minister in the Muhammadan government of Bengal. He and his brother Sanātana were then named Sākara Mallika and Dabira Khāsa respectively, and they held responsible posts as ministers of Nawab Hussain Shah. At that time, five hundred years ago, the Hindu society was very rigid and if a member of the brāhmaṇa caste accepted the service of a Muhammadan ruler he was at once rejected from brāhmaṇa society. That was the position of the two brothers, Dabira Khāsa and Sākara Mallika. They belonged to the highly situated sārasvata-brāhmaṇa…”

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Captain of the Ship

Srila Prabhupada murti

This morning I saw this image of Srila Prabhupada’s murti while I was surfing on Sampradaya Sun. I like it very much and just wanted to include it here on our page.

…When one wants to cross a large ocean, he requires a strong boat. It is said that this human form of life is a good boat by which one can cross the ocean of nescience. In the human form of life one can obtain the guidance of a good navigator, the spiritual master. One also gets a favorable wind by the mercy of Kṛṣṇa, and that wind is the instructions of Kṛṣṇa. The human body is the boat, the instructions of Lord Kṛṣṇa are the favorable winds, and the spiritual master is the navigator. The spiritual master knows well how to adjust the sails to catch the winds favorably and steer the boat to its destination. If, however, one does not take advantage of this opportunity, one wastes the human form of life. Wasting time and life in this way is the same as committing suicide.

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The Hare Krishna Explosion

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The joyful history of a dynamic transcendental movement
Excerpted from the Back to Godhead Magazine 1969 Vol. 1, Number 26

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare vibrates from a walkup temple on New York’s Lower East Side, from the sidewalks of Haight Ashbury, from Golden Gate Park, from a London flat, from student quarters in Hamburg and Amsterdam, from a storefront in Santa Fe, an exbowling alley in Montreal, a sprawling university campus in Ohio, from Old Vrindaban in India to New Vrindaban in the West Virginia mountains, and from Boston and Buffalo to Los Angeles, Seattle and Vancouver and across the Pacific to Hawaii.

Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. The voices chanting the magic vibrations are invariably young. The chanting, accompanied by khartals (small hand cymbals), tambourines and drums, is often loud and frenetic. The dancing is vigorous. The middle-aged and elderly usually stand in doorways or look through windows, watching in amazement, unaware that they are witnessing a process of spiritual realization that has been practiced on this planet for thousands of years. They do not understand. No one really understands. The chanting just spreads. Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna …

The Hare Krishna Explosion
By Hayagriva dasa

Hayagriva dasa

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Just Give Them A Chance to Hear About Krishna

Just let them hear about Krsna

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Just Give Them Chance to Hear About Krishna

I have not bribed these American and European boys to become Krishna conscious. I have no money. When I went to America, I had only seven dollars. One hour’s expenditure in New York. There is no question of bribing them. But they heard about Krishna. I was reading Bhagavad-gita on the street, in the park, and chanting. They heard, and they came to me. They became attracted. Why? (Srila Prabhupada)

Lecture by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.2.17 Vrndavana, October 28, 1972

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Farming With Krsna in Mind

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Farming With Krsna in Mind
Excerpted from Back to Godhead Magazine Vol. 12, No. 11 1977

I just spent the day here at New Vrindavan farm community, discussing plans for the future cow protection program, which will include an Ox barn and training for teams of young oxen, for use in plowing, wood harvesting, and pulling carts and wagons. It was all very inspiring and I am very much eger to become more deeply involved in this important aspect of our philosophy. Personally I have plans to work with some young oxen, build an ox cart, and put them to work. What is that saying…”when the father is employed the family will prosper”…so it is time to engage the bulls in some meaningful activity so the family will prosper and they will become joyful once again.

With this idea in mind, we post this older article from the Back to Godhead Magazine.

“Naturally, cow protection includes bull protection. The bull is our father and the symbol of religion. At present a few boys are working the oxen and hauling wood, plowing fields, and cutting hay. Of course, we do have tractors, but we want to develop skill working the oxen. They are our future.”

“Human prosperity flourishes by natural gifts, and not by gigantic industrial enterprises, “says His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who has founded many Krsna-conscious farming communities all over the world. “The gigantic industrial enterprises are products of a godless civilization, and they cause the destruction of the noble aims of human life…. What we need, therefore, is to be obedient to the laws of the Lord and achieve the perfection of human life by devotional service to Him. “Here’s a look at two ‘ ISKCON farms in action.

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23rd Annual Prabhupada Festival

 Prabhupada Festival 2014

Prabhupada Festival 2014

Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu predicted that His holy name would be broadcast in every town and village of the world. Acaryas of His sampradaya predicted that the spread of Krsna consciousness would usher in a ten-thousand year Golden Age within the dark age of Kali. And in Caitanya Mangala, Locana dasa Thakura foretold that a great senapati (military general) would appear to widely and powerfully preach Lord Caitanya’s message. That confidential task of spreading Krsna consciousness all over the world was entrusted to:

His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Today marks the 23rd Annual Prabhupada Festival taking place in Los Angles California. For more information click on the link;

http://www.prabhupadafestival.com/index2014.html

or visit on them on Facebook at;

https://www.facebook.com/prabhupadafestival

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada!

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The Sankirtan Movement

Lord Caitanya Kirtan

I love reading all these letter written by Srila Prabhupada to his aspiring disciples, and the following letter written to Susan Beckman is very sweet.

…Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the incarnation of Godhead in this age has delivered the medicine for all problems of the world by his introducing the Sankirtan movement. Sankirtan means to chant that Holy names of the Lord and to give up all other engagements. The chanting is a process of purification. Just like we use soap to cleanse the body, this is material, but the chanting is spiritual cleansing.

…The conclusion is that one should learn the art of chanting the Holy name of Krishna 24 hours a day and that alone is the remedy for all problems of material existence. How is it possible to chant 24 hours a day? Lord Chaitanya gave the hint, “One can chant the holy name of God in a humble state of mind, thinking himself lower than the straw in the street, more tolerant than a tree, devoid of all kinds of sense of false prestige, and always ready to offer all respects to others. In such a humble state of mind one can chant the Holy name of God constantly.” So I cannot give you any better advice for your problem, simply chant Hare Krishna and everything will be all right. (Letter to Susan Beckman)

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Peaceful

Srila Prabhupada with devotees

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I was looking through some pictures this morning of Srila Prabhupada and my attention was drawn to this above image. He looked so peaceful, and I remembered that peacefulness is one of the transcendental qualities of the pure devotee. You can click on link at bottom of post to see the other Beautiful Transcendental Qualities of Srila Prabhupada.

Peaceful

Srila Prabhupada once described the mind of a pure devotee as being very peaceful, like a country pond filled with crystal-clear water, beautiful lotus flowers and swans gliding happily across it. This much desired state of mind is a natural quality of one who is situated in transcendence, at the lotus feet of Lord Krishna, far beyond the turbulent material world and senses. Srila Prabhupada was very peaceful due to his own pure Krishna consciousness. Shouldering the immense pressure and responsibility of a worldwide spiritual family, with its concomitant problems, Srila Prabhupada gracefully meted out love, guidance and practical instructions with full composure, never once losing touch with his peaceful Lord Krishna. (from “Srila Prabhupada’s Beautiful Transcendental Qualities” by Ajitananda das)

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The Guru Issue

Hansadutta

My good friend and Godbrother Hansadutta Prabhu, has asked me to post this nice paper written by H.H. Bhakti Charu Swami on “Correcting ISKCON’s Guru System”, and his reply. Both the article and response have been alive in cyberspace for some time now, but the the Truth bears repeating.

Response to Bhakti Caru Swami
by Hansadutta das
[Hansadutta's response was also posted at ISKCON Bangalore's website]

Dear Bhakti Caru Maharaja,

Please accept my most humble obeisances, all glories to Srila Prabhupada. It’s been some years since we met and associated in person (Mayapur 2003, later in Berkeley, California temple). I think of you often with fond memories. Sometimes you asked me how “The Guru problem might be solved.” We would discuss, but nothing came of it. Now you have publicly posed the issue, so I feel I should make some comments that might shed some light on the matter. Please allow me to go thru your presentation and make some comments.

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Śrīla Prabhupāda Stotram

Srila-Prabhupada-Sun

Śrīla Prabhupāda Stotram
(Composed by Ananta Dasa Sastri)

Ananta Dasa Sastri was a disciple of Srila Prabhupāda. He used to travel with Srila Prabhupāda in India and he was in the Sanskrit department assisting Srila Prabhupāda in translation work. He compiled five slokas which describe much of Srila Prabhupāda’s divine character and his divine mission also.Prabhupāda very much liked these five slokas. We used to sing them every morning before Guru Puja by his vyasasana, so some of you may remember them.

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Gaurangera Duti Pada

Gauranga duti pada

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…Gauranga refers to Lord Caitanya, who has a fair complexion. One who has a fair complexion is called gaura, and since Lord Caitanya was very fair, just like molten gold, He was also named Gaurasundara. Narottama dasa Thakura says, gaurangera duti pada, jar dhana-sampada, se jane bhakati-rasa-sar. Anyone who has accepted the two lotus feet of Lord Caitanya can understand the true essence of devotional service. Devotional service is very difficult. It cannot be understood by any ordinary man. As it is stated in the Bhagavad-gita, out of many thousands of persons who are trying to achieve the perfection of human life, only some actually become perfect and realize the self. And out of many thousands of such self-realized persons, only one can understand Krsna. Without understanding Krsna, how can one engage himself in the service of Krsna? Therefore, the devotional service of Krsna is not an ordinary thing. But fortunately, if one follows in the footsteps of Lord Caitanya (gaurangera duti pada) by following the path shown by Lord Caitanya-the process of simply chanting Hare Krsna-he can very easily understand what devotional service is. (from purport to the song “Gaurangera Duti Pada”)

Full song with Bengali Lyrics, English translation, and purport by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

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Harinama Dikska Written Test Question Paper

BackTo-Godhead-ISKCON-Initiation

Harinama Dikska Question Paper

Sometime back, we published the “Harinama Diksha Reference Material and Study Guide“. Today we share with you the “Harinama Dikska Question Paper”. This was put out by the devotees at ISKCON Bangalore, and is very interesting. I won’t say anymore about it now, other than to say it is worth taking a few minutes to ‘take the test’, by answering the few basic questions.

click on following link

Harinam_Diksha_Question_Paper

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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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Srimad Bhagavatam 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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