Srila Prabhupada’s England Visit

Srila Prabhupada Bury Place Morning Walks

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Srila Prabhupada’s England Visit
by Kulashekara Das

The journey with Swami Prabhupada has been the most satisfying aspect of my life. His values of life has given a new dimension to the world and has helped people in all the facets of life.

Advent

In the late 1960’s I first came in contact with practitioners of the Vaishnava tradition. Several American disciples of A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada had arrived in the UK to establish a Radha Krishna Temple.

I was quite impressed with the depth of Vedic philosophy and especially with the chanting of the Holy Names of God. Almost overnight I quit my entire Rock n Roll lifestyle and my job and began my life as a Brahmachari. I soon found myself living at John & Yoko Lennon’s eighty plus acre estate – “Tittenhurst” and ended up staying there for six months.

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All Devotees Should Write

Srila Prabhupada writting 2

This is a very nice compilation of quotes on the importance of writting based on the works of Srila Prabhupada.

“All students should be encouraged to write some article after reading Srimad-Bhagavatam, Bhagavad-gita and Teachings of Lord Caitanya. They should realize the information, and they must present their assimilation in their own words. Otherwise, how they can become preachers?”
(Letter to Brahmananda — Los Angeles, July 1, 1969)

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Maṅgalācaraṇa Prayers

Srila Prabhupada speaking

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Maṅgalācaraṇa Prayers

vande ’haṁ śrī-guroḥ śrī-yuta-pada-kamalaṁ śrī-gurun vaiṣṇavāṁś ca
śrī-rūpaṁ sāgrajātaṁ saha-gaṇa-raghunāthānvitaṁ taṁ sa-jīvam
sādvaitaṁ sāvadhūtaṁ parijana-sahitaṁ kṛṣṇa-caitanya-devaṁ
śrī-rādhā-kṛṣṇa-pādān saha-gaṇa-lalitā-śrī-viśākhānvitāṁś ca

I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of my spiritual master and unto the feet of all Vaiṣṇavas. I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī along with his elder brother Sanātana Gosvāmī, as well as Raghunātha Dāsa and Raghunātha Bhaṭṭa, Gopāla Bhaṭṭa, and Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī. I offer my respectful obeisances to Lord Kṛṣṇa Caitanya and Lord Nityānanda along with Advaita Ācārya, Gadādhara, Śrīvāsa, and other associates. I offer my respectful obeisances to Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī and Śrī Kṛṣṇa along with Their associates, Śrī Lalitā and Viśākhā.

Purport to the Maṅgalācaraṇa Prayers
by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Los Angeles, January 8, 1969

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Beyond Samsara

samsara

Beyond Saṁsāra

As I was reading from the Srimad Bhagavatam this morning about the passing of Bhīṣmadeva it was being described how “The perfect yogīs or mystics can leave the material body at their own sweet will at a suitable time and go to a suitable planet desired by them.” And how it is possiable to go beyond Saṁsāra, and go back to Godhead without any doubt.

…In the momentous hour of leaving his material body, Bhīṣmadeva set the glorious example concerning the important function of the human form of life. The subject matter which attracts the dying man becomes the beginning of his next life. Therefore, if one is absorbed in thoughts of the Supreme Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, he is sure to go back to Godhead without any doubt.

And what is Samsara?

Saṁsāra means material existence. That is called saṁsāra. Bhūtvā bhūtvā pralīyate (BG 8.19). You take your birth once in some form of body. You live for some time. Then you have to give up this body. Then you have to accept another body. Then again live for some time. Then give up that body. Again accept another body. In this way, it is going on. That is called saṁsāra, rotating within this material world. (Lecture on Gurvastakam at Upsala University by His Divine Grace -Stockholm, September 9, 1973)

The saṁsāra means repetition of different bodies. That is called saṁsāra. (Lecture on SB 1.2.4 -Rome, May 28, 1974)

Saṁsāra means this material entanglement. This is called saṁsāra.
(Lecture on CC Madhya-lila 25.40-50 – San Francisco, January 24, 1967)

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Lord Nityananda’s Appearance Day Lecture

Lord Nityananda

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…Balarāma means guru-tattva. Balarāma represents guru. Yasya prasādād bhagavat-prasādaḥ. If we want to understand Caitanya Mahāprabhu, if we want to understand Kṛṣṇa, then we must take shelter of Balarāma. Nāyam ātmā bala-hinena labhyaḥ. This bala-hinena labhyaḥ, this Vedic injunction, means “Without the mercy of Balarāma you cannot understand, you cannot realize your spiritual identification. So that Balarāma comes as Nityānanda Prabhu.”

…So if we want actually peace of mind, if we actually want to be free from this material fatiguement, then we must take the shelter of Nityānanda Prabhu. Nityānanda Prabhu is the strength, spiritual strength. And without spiritual strength you cannot approach Kṛṣṇa.

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The Sun & Moon

sun and moon

“I offer my respectful obeisances unto Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya and Lord Nityānanda, who are like the sun and moon. They have arisen simultaneously on the horizon of Gauḍa to dissipate the darkness of ignorance and thus wonderfully bestow benediction upon all.”

Śrī Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma, the Personalities of Godhead, who formerly appeared in Vṛndāvana and were millions of times more effulgent than the sun and moon, have arisen over the eastern horizon of Gauḍadeśa [West Bengal], being compassionate for the fallen state of the world.

The appearance of Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya and Prabhu Nityānanda has surcharged the world with happiness.

As the sun and moon drive away darkness by their appearance and reveal the nature of everything, these two brothers dissipate the darkness of ignorance covering the living beings’ and enlighten them with knowledge of the Absolute Truth.

By the grace of Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityānanda, this darkness of ignorance is removed, and the truth is brought to light.

The Absolute Truth is Śrī Kṛṣṇa, and loving devotion to Śrī Kṛṣṇa exhibited in pure love is achieved through congregational chanting of the holy name, which is the essence of all bliss.

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare
Hare Rama, Hare Rama
Rama Rama, Hare Hare

These two, the sun and moon, are very kind to the people of the world. Thus for the good fortune of all, They have appeared on the horizon of Bengal.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

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Verses excerpted from:
Sri Caitanya-caritamrta 1975 Edition
by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Adi-lila 1.84-89, 95-96, & 102

Nitai Pada Kamala

Lord Nityananda

Nita Pada Kamala
Sri Nityananda Nistha (offical name)
by Narottama Dasa Thakura

nitāi-pada-kamala, koṭi-candra-suśītala
je chāyāy jagata jurāy
heno nitāi bine bhāi, rādhā-kṛṣṇa pāite nāi
dṛḍha kori’ dharo nitāir pāy

The lotus feet of Lord Nityananda are a shelter where one will get the soothing moonlight not only of one, but of millions of moons. If the world wants to have real peace, it should take shelter of Lord Nityananda. Unless one takes shelter under the shade of the lotus feet of Lord Nityananda, it will be very difficult for him to approach Radha-Krsna. If one actually wants to enter into the dancing party of Radha-Krsna, he must firmly catch hold of the lotus feet of Lord Nityananda.

se sambandha nāhi jā’r, bṛthā janma gelo tā’r
sei paśu boro durācār
nitāi nā bolilo mukhe, majilo saḿsāra-sukhe
vidyā-kule ki koribe tār

Anyone who has not established his relationship with Nityananda Prabhu is understood to have spoiled his valuable human birth. Such a human being is actually an uncontrollable animal. Because he never uttered the holy name of Nityananda, he has become merged into so-called material happiness. What can his useless education and family tradition do to help him?

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Appearance of Lord Nityananda Tomorrow

Nityananda

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We just wanted to remind our readers that tomorrow is the appearance of Lord Nityananda Prabhu. It is recommended that one fast till noon tomorrow, in honor of Lord Nityananda’s appearance, and for spiritual benefit.

Lord Varaha’s Appearance Day

Lord Varaha Khajuraho India Vamana_Temple

In honor of Lord Varaha’s Apperance Day we are posting some words by Srila Prabhupada from the Bhaktivedanta Purports to the Srimad Bhagavatam and some words from one of his lectures on the Srimad Bhagavatam explaining the Lords various incarnations.

Lord Varaha’s Appearance Day
Kṛṣṇa Is the Source of All Incarnations

As the supreme controller of both the material and spiritual worlds, the Lord has different incarnations of unlimited categories. Incarnations like Brahmā, Rudra, Manu, Pṛthu and Vyāsa are His material qualitative incarnations, but His incarnations like Rāma, Narasiṁha, Varāha and Vāmana are His transcendental incarnations. Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa is the fountainhead of all incarnations, and He is therefore the cause of all causes. (SB 1.1.17 Purport)

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Eight Prayers to the Spiritual Master (Śrī Śrī Gurv-aṣṭaka)

Srila Prabhupada pridelessness

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Śrī Śrī Gurv-aṣṭaka
Eight Prayers to the Spiritual Master

by Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura

Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura, who appeared in the latter half of the 17th Century, is a great spiritual master in the Kṛṣṇa conscious chain of gurus and disciples. He says that one should loudly chant the following eight prayers, with care and attention, during brahma-muhurta, the auspicious time an hour and a half before sunrise when devotional practices are especially potent. Anyone who thus chants these eight beautiful prayers glorifying the spiritual master will certainly get a chance to render direct service to Krishna, the lord of Vrndavana, after the demise of his body.

…This song is offering obeisances particularly to the spiritual master, and the symptoms of the spiritual master are described in this prayer. The spiritual master has two kind of symptoms in his activities. One kind is called constant, and other kind is called temporary. So the first verse says that the constant symptom of the spiritual master is that he can deliver his disciples from the blazing fire of this material existence. That is the eternal qualification of spiritual master. (From purport by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada)

For full song with Roman transliteration, English equivalents, translation and purport by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada More

Krsna Consciousness is the Process of Eternal Life

Chant and be happy

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…Our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is genuine, historically authorized, natural and transcendental due to its being based on Bhagavad-gītā As It Is. It is gradually becoming the most popular movement in the entire world, especially amongst the younger generation. It is becoming more and more interesting to the older generation also. Older gentlemen are becoming interested, so much so that the fathers and grandfathers of my disciples are encouraging us by becoming life members of our great society, the International Society for Krishna Consciousness.

…The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is essential in human society, for it offers the highest perfection of life. How this is so is explained fully in the Bhagavad-gītā. This knowledge constitutes a great science, and each and every living being has to hear it for his own interest. (from Preface to the Bhagavad-gita As It Is)

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Kṛṣṇa-kathā

Srila Prabhupada preaching to disciples

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…When discourses on kṛṣṇa-kathā take place between a liberated spiritual master and his disciple, others also sometimes take advantage of hearing these topics and also benefit. These topics are the medicine to stop the repetition of birth and death. The cycle of repeated birth and death, by which one takes on different bodies again and again, is called bhava or bhava-roga. If anyone, willingly or unwillingly, hears kṛṣṇa-kathā, his bhava-roga, the disease of birth and death, will certainly stop. Therefore kṛṣṇa-kathā is called bhavauṣadha, the remedy to stop the repetition of birth and death.

In India it is the practice among the general populace to hear about Kṛṣṇa, either from Bhagavad-gītā or from Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, in order to gain relief from the disease of repeated birth and death. Although India is now fallen, when there is a message that someone will speak about Bhagavad-gītā or Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, thousands of people still gather to hear. The following verse indicates, however, that such recitation of Bhagavad-gītā and Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam must be done by persons completely freed from material desires (nivṛtta-tarṣaiḥ).

If we hear the glories of the Supreme Personality of Godhead from liberated persons, this hearing will certainly free us from the bondage of material activities, but hearing Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam spoken by a professional reciter cannot actually help us achieve liberation. Kṛṣṇa-kathā is very simple. In Bhagavad-gītā it is said that Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. As He Himself explains, mattaḥ parataraṁ nānyat kiñcid asti dhanañjaya: “O Arjuna, there is no truth superior to Me.” Simply by understanding this fact—that Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead—one can become a liberated person. (Purport SB 10.1.4)

Full Verse and Purport More

Sri Rupa-cintamani (Free PDF Download)

Radha Krishna

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…Decorated with splendid jewel lotus petals, the youthful and fragrant divine couple are splendid as a monsoon cloud and lightning as They stand on a jeweled golden pavement under a tall kalpa-druma tree by the Yamunā in Vṛndāvana Forest. O mind, please always remember Their charming, gentle smile.

O mind, please remember Lord Hari’s splendid crown decorated with peacock feathers and guñjā, His wavy locks of hair, His forehead splendid with tilaka, His eyebrows, eyes, nose, splendid cheeks, ears, glittering jewel earrings, red lips, flute, face, arching neck marked with three lines, soft shoulders, broad arms decorated with armlets and other ornaments, hands, fingers marked with wavy lines, chest decorated with kaustubha jewel and garlands of pearls and forest flowers and the splendid mark of the goddess of fortune, the line of hairs on His splendid abdomen, His lotus navel, slender waist, tinkling bells, yellow garments, large knees, ankles decorated with tinkling ankle-bells, lotus feet, graceful toes, pink toenails, the redness that extends across the soles of His feet up to His heels, and on His right foot: the barleycorn-mark at the base of His big toe, the ūrdhva-rekhā by His fore-toe, the curved lotus in the middle of His foot, the flag on the surface of His foot, the elephant-goad and thunderbolt at the base of His little-toe, the four svastikas, the jambus, and the eight-pointed star in the middle.

A charming couple, two mountainous oceans of the nectar of the love they bear for each other, shines in Vṛndāvana Forest. The young girl, whose splendor rebukes the lightning flash, hides a gentle smile under Her blue sari. Please remember that smile.

O mind, please meditate on Rādhā’s fine, curly, braided hair, the jewel, golden leaf, tilaka, and curly hairs on Her forehead, Her eyebrows, mascara-anointed eyes, ears, the charming shark-shaped earings at Her cheeks, Her pearl-decorated nose, lips. splendid teeth, musk-dot-decorated chin, neck marked with three lines and decorated with many necklaces, gracefully sloping shoulders, armlet-decorated arms, elbows, lotus hands endowed with beautiful and auspicious lines and decorated with bracelets, jewel ūrmikās, rings, beautiful fingernails, breasts covered with a splendid red bodice, locket, flower-petal abdomen with a line of hairs, navel, slender waist marked with three lines, colorful undergarments, blue petticoat, thighs, knees, legs, ankles, anklets, ankle-bells, toe-ūrmikās, toe-rings, and toe-nails, the barleycorn and ari beneath Her left big-toe, the ūrdhva-rekhābeneath Her fore-toe, the small chariot nearby, the lotus, flag, flower, and vine in the middle, the elephant-goad beneath Her little-toe, beneath that a bracelet and parasol, on the heel a half-moon, on the heel of the other foot a fish, above that a flying mountain, on the sides a śakti and pada, under the big-toe a conchshell, under the little toe an altar, and beneath that an earring…

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The Perfection of Self-realization

Krishna and the gopis

…Kṛṣṇa’s only business is satisfying the devotees, and their only business is satisfying Kṛṣṇa. This is the reciprocation of love… The Supreme Personality of Godhead, wanders on the banks of the Yamunā to please the gopīs, the cowherd boys, the birds, the bees, and the cows and calves. These are not ordinary birds, bees, cows, calves, or men; they have all reached the summit of self-realization and thus, after many, many lives, have attained a position whereby they can play with Kṛṣṇa. This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement can enable everyone to go to Kṛṣṇaloka and become Kṛṣṇa’s associate as a friend, servant, father, or mother. Kṛṣṇa is agreeable to take any of these positions in relation to His devotee.

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Striving for Perfection

Gold and Diamonds

Gold and Diamonds
(Author Unknown)

Gold must pass through fire to achieve its ultimate beauty.

Diamonds only become brilliant overtime and under great pressure.

It is the times that try us the most, that shape us, define us, that bring us closer to the perfection within.

Appearance of Advaita Acharya

Advaita Acharya

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In honor of the Appearance day of Advaita Acharya we share this short biography of the live and pastimes of this great vaisnava acharya.

Sri Advaita Acharya’s Appearance Day
February 16, 2013

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Under the Direction of God (Krishna)

Srila Prabhupada dictating

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Under the Direction of God (Krishna)
His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada speaks as Krsna speaks

“It is not possible for a common man to write books on bhakti, for his writings will not be effective. He may be a very great scholar and expert in presenting literature in flowery language, but this is not at all helpful in understanding transcendental literature. Even if transcendental literature is written in faulty language, it is acceptable if it is written by a devotee, whereas so-called transcendental literature written by a mundane scholar, even if it is a very highly polished literary presentation, cannot be accepted. The secret in a devotee’s writing is that when he writes about the pastimes of the lord, the lord helps him; he does not write himself.

We Don’t Allow Any Literature Not Given by Liberated Soul
compiled by Sriman Mahesh Prabhu

The difference between Srila Prabhupada’s books and other so-called gurus’ (conditioned souls) writing is Srila Prabhupada’s instruction was coming directly from Krsna. This is the transcendental platform.

Srila Prabhupada encouraged his disciples, however, to write their realizations. Other conditioned souls may present their nonsense commentaries on Bhagavad-Gita etc., but they will never be quoted for references. Srila Prabhupada is on the trancendental platform and Krishna speaks through him, consequently only he will be quoted for reference.

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Jaya Rādhā-Mādhava; Further Explained

Radha

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Jaya Rādhā-Mādhava
by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura

jaya rādhā-mādhava kuñja-bihārī
gopī-jana-vallabha giri-vara-dhārī

jaya–all glories to: rādhā-mādhava–Rādhā and the Lord of sweetness; kuñja-bihārī–He who enjoys loving pastimes in the groves of Vṛndāvana; gopī-jana-vallabha–the lover of the cowherd maidens of Vraja; giri-vara-dhārī–the holder of the great hill named Govardhana;

Krsna is the lover of Radha. He displays many amorous pastimes in the groves of Vrndavana, He is the lover of the cowherd maidens of Vraja, and the holder of the great hill named Govardhana.

yaśodā-nandana braja-jana-rañjana
yāmuna-tīra-vana-cārī

yaśodā-nandana–the beloved son of mother Yaśodā; vraja-jana-rañjana–the delighter of the inhabitants of Vraja; yāmuna-tīra-vana-cārī–who wanders in the forests along the banks of the river Yamunā

He is the beloved son of mother Yasoda, the delighter of the inhabitants of Vraja, and He wanders in the forests along the banks of the River Yamuna!

Purport to Jaya Rādhā-Mādhava
New York, July 20, 1971

Prabhupāda: So you know this song Jaya Rādhā-Mādhava?

Devotees: Jaya!

Prabhupāda: So you can follow me?

Devotees: Jaya! Haribol! (Śrīla Prabhupāda leads singing of Jaya Rādhā-Mādhava)

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Bhāva

Radha Krishna Bhava

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Here is a new word for your Vaisnava Vocabulary: Bhāva. In the Glossary in the back of the Bhagavad-gita As It Is, 1972 Edition, the word Bhāva is defined as; the preliminary stage of transcendental love of Godhead. Bhāva is a big word and has various meanings

The last stage of the devotional life is called bhāva, or transcendental love of Godhead.

“In the beginning one must have a preliminary desire for self-realization.This taste leads one further forward to attachment for Kṛṣṇa consciousness, which is matured in bhāva, or the preliminary stage of transcendental love of God. Real love for God is called premā, the highest perfectional stage of life.” In the premā stage there is constant engagement in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. So, by the slow process of devotional service, under the guidance of the bona fide spiritual master, one can attain the highest stage, being freed from all material attachment, from the fearfulness of one’s individual spiritual personality, and from the frustrations resulting from void philosophy. Then one can ultimately attain to the abode of the Supreme Lord. (Bhagavad-gita 4.11)

So it seem that bhāva is not only the preliminary stage of transcendental love of Godhead but we find that this preliminary stage of transcendental love is also the path to the highest perfectional stage of life, pure love or premā. There are two ways to approach the Lord, one is with awe and reverence and the other is with affection; bhāva. One who approaches the Lord with affection, is sure to advance spiritually.

In the Srimad Bhagavatam we find many references to the word Bhāva and highlighted some of them here. More

Dhṛtarāṣṭra Quits Home

Vidura and Dhrtarastra

When they saw Vidura return to the palace, all the inhabitants—Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, his younger brothers, Dhṛtarāṣṭra, Sātyaki, Sañjaya, Kṛpācārya, Kuntī, Gāndhārī, Draupadī, Subhadrā, Uttarā, Kṛpī, many other wives of the Kauravas, and other ladies with children—all hurried to him in great delight. It so appeared that they had regained their consciousness after a long period.

With great delight they all approached him, as if life had returned to their bodies. They exchanged obeisances and welcomed each other with embraces.

Due to anxieties and long separation, they all cried out of affection. King Yudhiṣṭhira then arranged to offer sitting accommodations and a reception.

After Vidura ate sumptuously and took sufficient rest, he was comfortably seated. Then the King began to speak to him, and all who were present there listened… (SB 1.13.3-7)

King Yudhiṣṭhira was expert in reception also, even in the case of his family members. Vidura was well received by all the family members by exchange of embraces and obeisances. After that, bathing and arrangements for a sumptuous dinner were made, and then he was given sufficient rest. After finishing his rest, he was offered a comfortable place to sit, and then the King began to talk about all happenings, both family and otherwise. That is the proper way to receive a beloved friend, or even an enemy. According to Indian moral codes, even an enemy received at home should be so well received that he will not feel any fearful situation. An enemy is always afraid of his enemy, but this should not be so when he is received at home by his enemy. This means that a person, when received at home, should be treated as a relative, so what to speak of a family member like Vidura, who was a well-wisher for all the members of the family. Thus Yudhiṣṭhira Mahārāja began to speak in the presence of all the other members.
(SB 1.13.7 purport)

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