Spring Has Arrived!

 spring waterfall

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Like many of you, I am happy about the first day of Spring. It was a long hard winter for many places in the country and I am sure that most everyone welcomes the coming of spring. The following is a verse from the Srimad Bhagavatam which describes our enchantment with the material existence. A symptom of this enchantment is our spring fever.

The branches of the trees standing on the bank of the lake received particles of water carried by the spring air from the falls coming down from the icy mountain. (SB 4.25.18)

…The spring air (kusumākara) is smell. All these varieties of enjoyment make life very pleasing, and thus we become captivated by material existence. (from purport)

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The Pilgrim’s Progress

Pilgrims Progress

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With the coming of Spring I am always inclined to travel. Spring always seems like a good season to began a journey. With this in mind, I was reading this morning from the Srimad Bhagavatam about how Vidura left the home of his brother to devote himself completely to the transcendental loving service of the Lord.

Places of pilgrimages are meant for eradicating the sins of the pilgrims, and they are distributed all over the universe just to give facility to all concerned for attaining pure existence and God realization. One should not be satisfied, however, merely by visiting the places of pilgrimage and performing one’s prescribed duties; he should be eager to meet the great souls who are already there, engaged in the service of the Lord. In each and every place of pilgrimage, the Lord is present in His various transcendental forms.

In the land of Bhāratavarṣa (India) there are many hundreds and thousands of places of pilgrimage distributed all over the country, and by traditional practice the common man visits such holy places during all seasons of the year. Some of the arcā representations of the Lord situated in different places of pilgrimage… There are millions and billions of such arcā forms of the Lord distributed all over the universe. All these arcā-mūrtis are summarized in the Caitanya-caritāmṛta in the following words:

“The Lord has so distributed Himself all over the universe just to give pleasure to the devotees, to give the common man facility to eradicate his sins, and to establish religious principles in the world.” (from purports to SB 3.1.17-18)

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The Pleasure (ānanda) Potency of the Lord

Sharma-village-cows-krishna-gopies-gopas-gopas-cowherd-men

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This morning as I was finishing the Tenth Chapter of the Second Canto, the following verse and purport jumped out at me from the pages. And I realized for the thousandth time, what great good fortune we have in that we can hear directly from the pure devotee of the Lord, about the eternal pastimes of the Lord, through the pages of the Srimad Bhagavatam.

Of the three types of Transcendentalist’s, namely the jñānī, the yogī and the bhakta, or the impersonalist, the meditator and the devotee. It is only the devotee who can factually know the Lord as He is and thus be trained in the bona fide service of the Lord and be allowed to enter into the direct association of the Lord in so many capacities. The highest glorious association with the Lord is made possible in the planet of Goloka Vṛndāvana, where Lord Kṛṣṇa enjoys Himself with the gopīs and His favorite animals, the surabhi cows.

… The impersonalist is satisfied simply by understanding the all-pervasive influence of the Lord. This is called Brahman realization. Greater than the impersonalist is the mystic who sees the Lord situated in his heart as Paramātmā, the partial representation of the Lord. But there are pure devotees who take part in the direct pleasure (ānanda) potency of the Lord by factual reciprocation of loving service. The Lord in His abode called the Vaikuṇṭha planets, which are eternal manifestations, always remains with His associates and enjoys transcendental loving services by His pure devotees in different transcendental humors.

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Cleansing of the Heart

Srimad Bhagavatam

A friend of mine was asking me how we could realize Paramātmā or the Lord within the heart? How would I explain it to someone? I immediately thought of the following verses from the Second Canto of the Srimad Bhagavatam, and I replied to his question by saying ‘by reading about the glories of the Lord and chanting His names, we can begin to purify our hearts and come to understand through His mercy, the Lord within our hearts’. After getting home and looking up these verses…it was clear I gave him the correct answer.

O greatly fortunate Śukadeva Gosvāmī, please continue narrating Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam so that I can place my mind upon the Supreme Soul, Lord Kṛṣṇa, and, being completely freed from material qualities, thus relinquish this body.

Persons who hear Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam regularly and are always taking the matter very seriously will have the Personality of Godhead Śrī Kṛṣṇa manifested in their hearts within a short time.

The sound incarnation of Lord Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Soul [i.e. Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam], enters into the heart of a self-realized devotee, sits on the lotus flower of his loving relationship, and thus cleanses the dust of material association, such as lust, anger and hankering. Thus it acts like autumnal rains upon pools of muddy water. (Srimad Bhagavatam 2.8.3-5)

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The First Step in God Realization

Sukadeva Goswami

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

The First Step in God Realization

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Free Download of Second Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam

Free Download of Second Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam

Srimad Bhagavatam Second Canto Part One

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Srimad-Bhagavatam, First Canto (Free pdf download) 1972 Edition

Srila Prabhupada Translating

For a Free pdf download of the entire First Canto of the Srimad-Bhagavatam Original 1972 Editions (scanned copiess), click on the following underlined links;

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New Years Resolution

Srimad-Bhagavatam-1_1

This year I almost forgot to make a ‘New Years Resolution’. Typically my resolutions don’t even make it past the first week in January. But this year I hope it will go differently. This year my New Years Resolution is to read a chapter a day from Srila Prabhupada’s Srimad Bhagavatam. That’s it. I am not giving up anything, or vowing to jog a mile every day, or change my life in any drastic way…just to read a little more.

With this in mind I will introduce a new blog that I have been painstakenly working on for some time; The Srimad Bhagavatam. I can simply click on a chapter link and have the entire chapter in front of me on the same page. This I hope will help me to stay focused and keep a New Years Resolution. It is a work in progress and by years end hope to have some 365 chapters posted (LOL). Or at least a few more cantos.

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The Process of Meditation

Radha Raman

The process of meditation should begin from the lotus feet of the Lord and progress to His smiling face. The meditation should be concentrated upon the lotus feet, then the calves, then the thighs, and in this way higher and higher. The more the mind becomes fixed upon the different parts of the limbs, one after another, the more the intelligence becomes purified. (SB 2.2.13)

…The process of meditation recommended in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam is not to fix one’s attention on something impersonal or void. The meditation should concentrate on the person of the Supreme Godhead, either in His virāṭ-rūpa, the gigantic universal form, or in His sac-cid-ānanda-vigraha [Bs. 5.1], as described in the scriptures. There are authorized descriptions of Viṣṇu forms, and there are authorized representations of Deities in the temples. Thus one can practice meditating upon the Deity, concentrating his mind on the lotus feet of the Lord and gradually rising higher and higher, up to His smiling face.

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Saffron Particles

Lotus Feet

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This following verse reminds me of the importance of reading Srila Prabhupada’s books every day. Hearing from the pure devotee of the Lord, is so powerful that it can revive the living entity’s memory of his eternal relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

My dear Lord, You are glorified by the selected verses uttered by great personalities. Such glorification of Your lotus feet is just like saffron particles. When the transcendental vibration from the mouths of great devotees carries the aroma of the saffron dust of Your lotus feet, the forgetful living entity gradually remembers his eternal relationship with You. Devotees thus gradually come to the right conclusion about the value of life. My dear Lord, I therefore do not need any other benediction but the opportunity to hear from the mouth of Your pure devotee.

Reading the books of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada is hearing from the mouth of the pure devotee.

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The Life of a Sincere Devotee of the Lord

Chanting  Hare Krishna

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The following is a nice verse from the Srimad Bhagavatam spoken by Narada Muni. As I was looking for an image for this post, I thought I should put up a picture of Him. But then it hit me, this verse could have just as easily been spoken by Srila Prabhupada! In fact it was.

Thus I began chanting the holy name and fame of the Lord by repeated recitation, ignoring all the formalities of the material world. Such chanting and remembering of the transcendental pastimes of the Lord are benedictory. So doing, I traveled all over the earth, fully satisfied, humble and unenvious.

The life of a sincere devotee of the Lord is thus explained in a nutshell by Nārada Muni by his personal example. Such a devotee, after his initiation by the Lord or His bona fide representative, takes very seriously chanting of the glories of the Lord and traveling all over the world so that others may also hear the glories of the Lord. Such devotees have no desire for material gain. They are conducted by one single desire: to go back to Godhead. This awaits them in due course on quitting the material body. Because they have the highest aim of life, going back to Godhead, they are never envious of anyone, nor are they proud of being eligible to go back to Godhead. Their only business is to chant and remember the holy name, fame and pastimes of the Lord and, according to personal capacity, to distribute the message for others’ welfare without motive of material gain.

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A Player and His Playthings

Game of Chess

As a player sets up and disperses his playthings according to his own sweet will, so the supreme will of the Lord brings men together and separates them. (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.13.43)

…Generally the law of karma is that one is awarded the result of one’s own actions…A rich man gets his son born with a silver spoon in his mouth, but the child who came as the rich man’s son deserved such a place, and therefore he is placed there by the will of the Lord… but in special cases, by the will of the Lord, such resultant actions are changed also. But this change can be affected by the will of the Lord only, and no other. Therefore, the example of the player cited in this verse is quite appropriate, for the Supreme Will is absolutely free to do whatever He likes, and because He is all-perfect, there is no mistake in any of His actions or reactions. These changes of resultant actions are especially rendered by the Lord when a pure devotee is involved. (from purport)

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Anomalies in the Kali Age

Srimad Bhagavatam

The great sage Vyāsadeva saw anomalies in the duties of the millennium. This happens on the earth in different ages, due to unseen forces in the course of time.

The great sages like Vyāsadeva are liberated souls, and therefore they can see clearly past and future. Thus he could see the future anomalies in the Kali age, and accordingly he made arrangement for the people in general so that they can execute a progressive life in this age, which is full of darkness. The people in general in this age of Kali are too much interested in matter, which is temporary. Because of ignorance they are unable to evaluate the assets of life and be enlightened in spiritual knowledge.

…The unmanifested forces of time are so powerful that they reduce all matter to oblivion in due course. In Kali-yuga, the last millennium of a round of four millenniums, the power of all material objects deteriorates by the influence of time. In this age the duration of the material body of the people in general is much reduced, and so is the memory. The action of matter has also not so much incentive. The land does not produce food grains in the same proportions as it did in other ages. The cow does not give as much milk as it used to give formerly. The production of vegetables and fruits is less than before. As such, all living beings, both men and animals, do not have sumptuous, nourishing food. Due to want of so many necessities of life, naturally the duration of life is reduced, the memory is short, intelligence is meager, mutual dealings are full of hypocrisy and so on.

Srimad Bhagavatam
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Canto One, Chapter 4, Texts 16, 17-18

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Srimad Bhagavatam Tenth Canto Part 3 (Free Download)

Srimad Bhagavatam 10 3

This is the final Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam volume translated by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Founder-Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, before his untimely departure. We share it with you as a free PDF download. You can click on following link to view the complete volume or save it to your computer.

click on following link; Srimad Bhagavatam Tenth Canto Part 3

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The Childhood Pastimes of Kṛṣṇa

Krsna & Balarama Hiding from Mother Yasoda

Today is Rama Ekadasi (fast from grains and beans), so on this auspicious day, in the auspicious month of Damodara, we wanted to do a special post. The following is the entire 11th chapter of the Tenth Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam entitled “The Childhood Pastimes of Kṛṣṇa”.

The following two verses are just an example of the nectar one will find in the following chapter…

…The gopīs would say, “If You dance, my dear Kṛṣṇa, then I shall give You half a sweetmeat.” By saying these words or by clapping their hands, all the gopīs encouraged Kṛṣṇa in different ways. At such times, although He was the supremely powerful Personality of Godhead, He would smile and dance according to their desire, as if He were a wooden doll in their hands. Sometimes He would sing very loudly, at their bidding. In this way, Kṛṣṇa came completely under the control of the gopīs.(Text 7)

To pure devotees throughout the world who could understand His activities, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa, exhibited how much He can be subdued by His devotees, His servants. In this way He increased the pleasure of the Vrajavāsīs by His childhood activities. (Text 9)

Srimad Bhagavatam
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Canto 10, Chapter 11

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Mother Yaśodā Binds Lord Kṛṣṇa

Mother Yasoda & Krishna1

In celebration of the month of Damodara (Kartika) we are focusing our attention on the pastimes of Krishna in Vrndavan. Especially Krishna’s childhood pastimes. So with this in mind we are posting the entire 9th chapter from the Tenth Canto of Srila Prabhupada’s Srimad Bhagavatam entitled Mother Yaśodā Binds Lord Kṛṣṇa.

When caught by mother Yaśodā, Kṛṣṇa became more and more afraid and admitted to being an offender. As she looked upon Him, she saw that He was crying, His tears mixing with the black ointment around His eyes, and as He rubbed His eyes with His hands, He smeared the ointment all over His face. Mother Yaśodā, catching her beautiful son by the hand, mildly began to chastise Him. (SB 10.9.11)

Yogīs, mystics, want to catch Kṛṣṇa as Paramātmā, and with great austerities and penances they try to approach Him, yet they cannot. Here we see, however, that Kṛṣṇa is going to be caught by Yaśodā and is running away in fear. This illustrates the difference between the bhakta and the yogī. Yogīs cannot reach Kṛṣṇa, but for pure devotees like mother Yaśodā, Kṛṣṇa is already caught. (from purport to SB 10.9.9)

Srimad-Bhagavatam
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Tenth Canto, Chapter 9

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Glories of the Bhagavad-gita As It Is

086_-_BTG_Year-1973_Volume-01_Number-57_Page_01

1973 Back to Godhead cover

This morning I was reading from the Srimad Bhagavatam Canto 1, Chapter 15, Text 27, wherein Srila Prabhupada was describing the glories and importance of the the Bhagavad-gita As It Is. The following is some excerpts from this amazing purport, followed by full text and purport. I found this one purport to be a very nice synopsis of the entire Bhagavad-gita As It Is.

…The Lord left behind Him the instructions of the Bhagavad-gītā not for the benefit of Arjuna alone, but also for all time and in all lands. The Bhagavad-gītā, being spoken by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the essence of all Vedic wisdom. It is nicely presented by the Lord Himself for all who have very little time to go through the vast Vedic literatures like the Upaniṣads, Purāṇas and Vedānta-sūtras.

…the Bhagavad-gītā can be consulted in all critical times, not only for solace from all kinds of mental agonies, but also for the way out of great entanglements which may embarrass one in some critical hour.

…The merciful Lord left behind Him the great teachings of the Bhagavad-gītā so that one can take the instructions of the Lord even when He is not visible to material eyesight.

…There is no difference between the sound representation of the Lord and the Lord Himself. One can derive the same benefit from the Bhagavad-gītā as Arjuna did in the personal presence of the Lord.

…The Bhagavad-gītā begins with the problems of life by discriminating the soul from the elements of matter and proves by all reason and argument that the soul is indestructible in all circumstances and that the outer covering of matter, the body and the mind, change for another term of material existence which is full of miseries. The Bhagavad-gītā is therefore meant for terminating all different types of miseries, and Arjuna took shelter of this great knowledge, which had been imparted to him during the Kurukṣetra battle. (from Purport to SB 1.15.27)

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Lunch with the Lord

Krsna & the cowheard boys taking Prasadam

Today, being Monday, and the start of another workday week, I wanted to focus my mind, not on all the work ahead, but rather, on some Krishna Nectar from Srila Prabhupada’s Srimad Bhagavatam. We share with you a few of Srila Prabhupada’s divine ecstasies. As we mentioned is a previous post, there are two kṛṣṇa-kathās; narrations spoken by Kṛṣṇa, and narrations spoken about Kṛṣṇa. Please note text 5 & 6 which is spoken by Krsna.

…devotees who have accepted the essence of life, are attached to Kṛṣṇa in the core of their hearts, and He is the aim of their lives. It is their nature to talk only of Kṛṣṇa at every moment, as if such topics were newer and newer.

Like the whorl of a lotus flower surrounded by its petals and leaves, Kṛṣṇa sat in the center, encircled by lines of His friends, who all looked very beautiful. Every one of them was trying to look forward toward Kṛṣṇa, thinking that Kṛṣṇa might look toward him. In this way they all enjoyed their lunch in the forest.

Among the cowherd boys, some placed their lunch on flowers, some on leaves, fruits, or bunches of leaves, some actually in their baskets, some on the bark of trees and some on rocks. This is what the children imagined to be their plates as they ate their lunch.

Srimad Bhagavatam
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Canto 10, Chapter 13, Text 1-12

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Punishment and Reward of Kali

Age of Kali

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Chapter Seventeen

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Appearance day of Lord Vamandeva

Lord Vamanadeva1

Today we honor the Appearance of Lord Vamandeva, who, as some of you know, appeared as the fifteenth incarnation of Krsna. Lord Vāmanadeva assumed the form of a dwarf-brāhmaṇa [Vāmana] and visited the arena of sacrifice arranged by Mahārāja Bali. The following is a brief summary from Srila Prabhupada’s Srimad Bhagavatam, 8th Canto, Chapter 18.

Today also marks the Appearance of Srila Jiva Goswami, and there is a brief instruction given by him on understanding God at bottom of post.

Lord Vāmanadeva appeared in this world from the womb of Aditi completely equipped with conchshell, disc, club and lotus. His bodily hue was blackish, and He was dressed in yellow garments. Lord Viṣṇu appeared at an auspicious moment on Śravaṇa-dvādaśī when the Abhijit star had arisen. At that time, in all the three worlds (including the higher planetary system, outer space and this earth), all the demigods, the cows, the brāhmaṇas and even the seasons were happy because of God’s appearance. Therefore this auspicious day is called Vijayā.

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Previous Older Entries

A Short Statement of the Philosophy of Krishna Consciousness

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July 9th Letter

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Bhagavad-gita As It Is 1972 Edition “Online”

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

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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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The Hare Krishna Explosion

The Hare Krishna Cookbook

Songs of the Vaisnava Acaryas

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Raja-Vidya the King of Knowledge

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