Vegetarian Life

Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for the survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet. -Albert Einstein

I personally feel it is very important to eat as healthy as possible. That is one of the reasons I plant a garden. Although not everyone has that luxury to plant a garden, still there are so many fresh fruits and vegetables available in every American grocery store, there is ample opportunity to eat a healthy vegetarian diet.

Back in 1972 when I first became a vegetarian, the challenge was learning how to cook vegetarian meals. Therefore I am including the first cookbook that taught me the basics as a free pdf download (just click on link at bottom of post). Wishing you all a happy and healthy life. -V

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Basic Chapati Recipe

With all this extra time at home, I have been spending more time in the kitchen. Instead of the quick meal that often took place after a long days work, we are finding renewed pleasure in going through our vegetarian cookbooks and planning nice well balanced meals. One thing we have been eating more of is chapatis. They go well with almost every vegetable dish, are easy to prepare, and are a healthy alternative to bread which usually contains yeast.

From The Hare KRSNA Cookbook 1972

Basic Chapati
1 cup Whole Weat Flour
1/4 cup Melted Butter
Warm water

Mix the flour and water together, adding water gradually until dough is soft but not wet, and can be kneaded. Knead the dough until it’s fairly soft (8 to 10 minutes). Cover and let dough rest for one hour. Sprinkle flour on rolling area and makes 1-1/2 inch balls out of dough. Flatten balls and roll out to about 4-5″ diameter. Place the chapati on a heated skillet (dry, free from oil) and cook until bubbles appear. Turn chapati quickly and let cook until bubbles appear again. Using tongs, remove chapati from pan, and hold over an open flame or burner to make it puff up. Heat it first on the side that was first cooked. You can lay directly on the burner for a brief moment, but don’t let it stick. When chapati puffs up, turn quickly and repeat on other side till it puffs. Remove, butter both sides, and cover with a clean cloth to keep in heat while remaining chapatis are cooked.

Health Consciousness/Standard Devotee Diet

Once when Srila Prabhupada saw what was being served to the devotees, lavishly prepared multi-course lunches, he told the managers that it was too opulent. He said we should eat simply during the week with rice, dhal, chapatis and a little subji and once a week on the Sunday love feasts we could be more lavish. Today with more of us becoming Health Conscious, it is good to remember the very simple devotee diet that was recommended to us so long ago.

Standard Devotee Diet

Srila Prabhupada recommended a standard diet for the devotees, and instructed that all of the temples should follow it every day. That menu follows:

BREAKFAST:

Simple farina cereal with nuts and raisins
Milk (steaming hot), or yogurt in the summertime
Chick peas (raw, soaked overnight)
Ginger root (raw)
Oranges, apples and/or bananas

LUNCH:

Rice
Chapatis
Dal made with freshly ground ginger root and freshly ground spices
Subji made with ghee, freshly ground ginger root and freshly ground spices

BEFORE TAKING REST:

Milk (steaming hot)
Bananas

For a free download of the Hare Krishna Cookbook on pdf More

The evidence is in: Raw milk actually boosts immunity, prevents infections

raw-milk-in-glass

The following article was emailed to me from a devotee friend which he took from the web page “naturalnews.com In addition I have posted chapter 23 of “The Teachings of Queen Kunti” entiled “Natural Prosperity”. Milk is an important and beneficial requirement to a healthy diet and human prosperity.

…Human prosperity flourishes by natural gifts and not by gigantic industrial enterprises. The gigantic industrial enterprises are products of a godless civilization, and they cause the destruction of the noble aims of human life…For real peace and tranquillity and a sufficient supply of milk, water, and everything else we need, we simply have to depend on Kṛṣṇa. (Teachings of Queen Kuinti Chapter 23 “Natural Prosperity”)

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) would like us all to believe that raw milk is a flaming health hazard with the potential to cause a national disaster. What could be more toxic than raw food, right? That must be what is making our nation sick – not the over-consumption of genetically-modified, pesticide-laden foodstuffs.

However, a recent study published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology has shown that consuming raw milk will not, in fact, be a death sentence.

Researchers, doctors and other medical professionals from across Europe joined forces to investigate the effects of consuming raw milk, and revealed that raw milk isn’t just non-toxic, but also yields some impressive health benefits!

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Heavenly Delights: Gulab Jamuns

Today being the New Year, a Holiday celebrated around the world, we thought we would post a festive recipe. This Gulab Jumaun recipe was taken from the very nice cooking web page Cooking with Kurma. I encourage you all to try this wonderful recipe on your friends and family.

Succulent Milk Balls in Rose-scented Syrup (Gulab Jamuns)

Gulab Jamuns are ideal confections for festive moments and entertaining. When guests are confronted with them for the first time they invariably ask, “What are they? ” Guesses then range from preserved fruits to doughnuts. In fact, Gulab Jamuns are made from just milk powder and flour. They’re fried slowly in ghee until the lactose in the milk powder caramelises and turns them a golden brown, and then they are soaked in a rose-scented, medium- heavy sugar syrup. Hence, the Hindi words Gulab Jamun meaning literally “rose ball”.

Full recipe follows More

Eggless Tapioca Pudding

tapioca

This morning I was thinking what to cook for a Thanksgiving Offering. There was some confusion on the two calendars we have, because one said that today was Ekadashi (fasting day from grains and beans) and the other gave an alternate date of tomorrow for our location. But I decided to play it safe and observe Ekadashi with my menu planning. I decided it would be good to make a nice Tapioca Pudding (without eggs).

The beauty of this tapioca pudding is that it is egg-less and it does not need baking. It is cooked right on stove top with just three main ingredients: tapioca, milk and sugar. Just like that it tastes good but often it is further embellished with cashews, saffron and cardamom. Or you can use seasonal fruits to garnish.

Eggless Tapioca Pudding

1/2 cup tapioca
1/2 cup sugar
4 cups milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS

* Combine tapioca, milk & sugar in a medium/large saucepan and let sit for 5 minutes.

* Bring to a slow boil over medium high heat. Stir the milk and tapioca and sugar frequently to prevent it from sticking to the bottom of the container. It thickens as it cooks but will still be a liquid.

* Remove from heat and add vanilla.

* Cardamom (optional), Saffron (optional), and Cashews (optional)

* Stir & allow to cool. It thickens as it cools.

Makes 8-10 servings

Note: Two tablespoons of tapioca for a cup of milk will give you a fairly thick pudding. If you want yours thin, use less tapioca or more milk. Same goes for sugar.

Prasadam – Ghee, Part Three

ghee

Previously we posted part One & Two of the article on Ghee (which is the crown jewel of oils, and is one of Srimati Radharani’s most favored ingredients). Today we are posting part Three of this fine article as posted on the Sampradaya Sun

Prasadam – Ghee, Part Three
by Sun Staff (SUN)

A journey through India: border to border, bhoga to prasadam.

The importance of golden ghee in cooking Krsna prasadam is very evident when we consider books of Vaisnava literature such as Sri Govinda-lilamrta and Sri Caitanya-caritamrta. In Govinda-lilamrta we find descriptions of the great range of uses for ghee, as it’s described in the conversations between Mother Yasoda and the gopis who are arranging so many nice foodstuffs for Krsna.

In Verse 53, Mother Yasoda is telling Kilimba that they had milked the cow named Sugandha, and churned her milk into butter, and the gopis could use this special butter to make ghee. Yashoda requests the gopis to make many different dishes cooked in ghee, and to prepare sweets with ghee, and Rohini Devi also describes the preparations Radharani has been making for Krsna with ghee.

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Ghee is Life

ghee

This morning I happened to visit the Sampradaya Sun web page. Rocan Prabhu has been doing a series entitled ” A journey through India: border to border, bhoga to prasadam” and in the last week has done a two part article on ‘Ghee’. We have reprinted both the first and second part here.

Prasadam – Ghee
by Sun Staff

…the Mother of all ingredients is milk, and all its glorious byproducts. Today we’ll begin an exploration of ghee, which is one of the final foodstuffs derived from processing milk. Cow’s milk is said to possess the essential sap of all plants, and ghee is a most valued derivation of that nutritious stuff. The clear golden liquid known as ghee is the crown jewel of oils, and is one of Srimati Radharani’s most favored ingredients.

The word ghee comes from the Sanskrit ghrta [ghrit], or “sprinkled”. Aayurghritam means ‘ghee is life’, and this is reflected in the many sacred ways the stuff is used in devotional practice, from cooking to feeding the sacred fire, or performing abhisheka with panchamrta. Use of ghee as a substance to anoint the Deities is mentioned in Yajurveda, and the Rgveda has many references to butter and ghee.

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Foods in the Mode of Goodness

food1

I must have woke up hungry, because my meditation this morning was on wholesome, nurturing foods in the mode of goodness.

…The purpose of food is to increase the duration of life, purify the mind and aid bodily strength. This is its only purpose. (from purport to Bg. 17.8-10)

Foods in the mode of goodness increase the duration of life, purify one’s existence and give strength, health, happiness and satisfaction. Such nourishing foods are sweet, juicy, fattening and palatable. Foods that are too bitter, too sour, salty, pungent, dry and hot, are liked by people in the modes of passion. Such foods cause pain, distress, and disease. Food cooked more than three hours before being eaten, which is tasteless, stale, putrid, decomposed and unclean, is food liked by people in the mode of ignorance. (Bhagavad-gita As It Is 17.8-10)

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Animal Rights

Animal-Rights

This morning I was reading from Srila Prabhupada’s Srimad Bhagavatam:

…Any living being, if he terrifies other living beings, is a most wretched subject, and the king should at once kill such a disturbing element. As the wild animal is killed when it creates disturbances, similarly any man who unnecessarily kills or terrifies the jungle animals or other animals must be punished at once. By the law of the Supreme Lord, all living beings, in whatever shape they may be, are the sons of the Lord, and no one has any right to kill another animal, unless it is so ordered by the codes of natural law. The tiger can kill a lower animal for his subsistence, but a man cannot kill an animal for his subsistence. That is the law of God, who has created the law that a living being subsists by eating another living being. Thus the vegetarians are also living by eating other living beings. Therefore, the law is that one should live only by eating specific living beings, as ordained by the law of God. The Īśopaniṣad directs that one should live by the direction of the Lord and not at one’s sweet will. A man can subsist on varieties of grains, fruits and milk ordained by God, and there is no need of animal food, save and except in particular cases. (from purport SB 1.17.10-11)

Full text and purport More

Bill Clinton Explains Why He Became a Vegan

bill cliton

Last night former President Bill Clinton spoke at the Democratic National Convention. I was able to catch part of his speech. I woke up this morning thinking that sometime back Bill Clinton had stopped eating meat, fish and eggs, and became a vegan. Veganism, by definition is; “Veganism is a way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose.” (this quote was taken from the Vegan Society). Although I personally am an avid vegetarian, and believer in offering everything to Krsna, I very much appericate the ideals of veganism and its attempt to practice ahimsa, or the idea of causing no injury and harm to other living entities, as well as it being a healthy lifestyle. There is a definition of ahimsa, or nonviolence, at end of post.

…”I just decided that I was the high-risk person, and I didn’t want to fool with this anymore. And I wanted to live to be a grandfather. So I decided to pick the diet that I thought would maximize my chances of long-term survival.” -Bill Clinton

Bill Clinton Explains Why He Became a Vegan
by Joe Conason

Full article More

Foods in the Three Modes

food in the mode of goodness

Foods in the mode of goodness increase the duration of life, purify one’s existence and give strength, health, happiness and satisfaction. Such nourishing foods are sweet, juicy, fattening and palatable. Foods that are too bitter, too sour, salty, pungent, dry and hot, are liked by people in the modes of passion. Such foods cause pain, distress, and disease. Food cooked more than three hours before being eaten, which is tasteless, stale, putrid, decomposed and unclean, is food liked by people in the mode of ignorance. (Bhagavad-gita As It Is 17.8-10)

…The purpose of food is to increase the duration of life, purify the mind and aid bodily strength. This is its only purpose. In the past, great authorities selected those foods that best aid health and increase life’s duration, such as milk products, sugar, rice, wheat, fruits and vegetables. These foods are very dear to those in the mode of goodness. (from purport to Bhagavad-gita 17.8-10)

full translation and purport More

Krsna Prasadam

Krsna Prasadam

The following excerpt from a letter written by Srila Prabhupada was circulated on Facebook last week, and my wife read it aloud to me. It was very informative in that it explained our position on vegetarian vs. non-vegetarian, and the benefits of eating Krsna prasadam (food offered first to the Lord).

…Regarding propaganda against animal slaughter in BTG. Please do not print any picture showing how a cow is being murdered in our BTG. This will pollute the whole atmosphere. We are not meant for moving anyone’s sentiment against animal slaughter, we are neither Buddhists or Jains, whose main propaganda is against animal slaughter. Even the so-called vegetarians who do not take Krishna prasadam are as much sinful as the non-vegetarians. Our propaganda is different, to make people Krishna Conscious, which automatically makes them sympathetic against any kind of animal slaughter. According to Srimad-Bhagavatam, one living entity subsists on the life of other living entities, either vegetarian or non-vegetarian. But we are neither of them. We are not vegetarian nor non-vegetarian. We are transcendental. We are concerned with Krishna Prasadam. Try to popularize Krishna Prasadam as you have already done. People will naturally become vegetarian without any ghastly propaganda.

full letter More

Protectors of the Cow

samurai_04

The following article I found very interesting. It was circulating on Face book before I saw it on the Sampradaya Sun this morning. It is very informative, and is worth reprinting here.

The Samurai: Protectors of the Cow
by Jahnava Nitai das
Mar 01, 2015 — ORISSA (SUN)

If I were to tell you, that once, no other country, save India, revered the cow as much as Japan, I could understand your disbelief. Today, we think of Japan as a meat-eating culture. However, this image is a product of the last 150 years of American influence. The traditional Japanese culture held the cow as the most sacred animal. What follows next is the true story of among the greatest protectors of the cow – the Samurai.

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Kachori Recipes

Kachori recipes

Kachoris Recipes

Today being Sunday, and with the weather cold and wet, I decided to stay indoors and practice my cooking, by learning how to cook Kachoris, which is basically a pastry with filling, for the Lord. I have never actually made them before, although I have eaten countless kachoris at various feasts. So I searched for some recipes in our cookbooks and on the Internet and found a nice selection of recipes for different types of Kachoris at harekrsna.com. So I have posted many nice Kachori recipes or variations, and will pick one to cook today for our Sunday Feast.

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Krishna Prasadam

Krishna prasadam

On our previous post I was searching the “Letters Books”, and just got caught up in reading…I began reading letters about offering prasadam, cooking for the Lord, and why we do not eat meat, etc. which spurred this collection of quotes on Krishna Prasadam.

Please accept my blessings. I thank you very much for your letter of May 31, 1968, which is duly in hand. I had not heard anything from you in long time, so I was very glad to hear that you are doing well. I am pleased to hear that you have so nicely installed the Jagannatha Deities at your home, and that you are worshiping Them regularly with nice offerings of prasadam, incense and flowers, and also saying prayers before Them. That is very good. Please continue chanting and reading Srimad-Bhagavatam before the Deity, and you will progress nicely. (Letter to: Krsna Devi, 13 June, 1968)

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Vegetarian Ethics

loving-mother-cow-and-calf1

I ran across the following article on the Sampradaya Sun the other day on Vegetarian Ethics. It is a very nice collection of quotes on the importance of a vegetarian diet, and a case against animal slaughter.

“Many people consider the ethical reasons the most important of all for becoming vegetarian. The beginning of ethical vegetarianism is the knowledge that other creatures have feelings, and that their feelings are similar to ours. This knowledge encourages one to extend personal awareness to encompass the suffering of others.” (The Hare Krishna Book of Vegetarian Cooking)

“If you have men who will exclude any of God’s creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men.”  (St. Francis of Assisi)

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The Higher Taste

The Higher Taste

This is a nice little cookbook, with information on vegetarian cooking, health, nutrition, cow protection, bhakti yoga, etc. We offer it as a free download which you can view, print or save to your computer by following the link below:

click on link to veiw or download book; The Higher Taste

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The Practice of Yoga

The gopis remembered their pastimes with Krishna p208

click on image to enlarge

This morning as I was making a breakfast offering, and was offering a nice glass of fresh milk, my mind just seemed to go to this picture of Krsna milking a cow. And I thought ‘milk is such a wonderful food, miraculous really. One can live on milk, and as small children milk is all that is required, and as we develop as yogis, we can subsist on the gifts of God, such as fruits, grains and milk, without a need for killing.

The above picture is one of my very favorites from the Krsna Book, because it is so simple and sweet, and there is a noticeable absence of technology.

The following are two verses from the Bhagavad-gita As It Is describing the healthy diet, and activities of the yogi.

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Milk, the Miracle Food

Milk

…Although in this age men can live up to one hundred years, their duration of life is reduced because they do not drink large quantities of milk

…Milk is compared to nectar, which one can drink to become immortal. Of course, simply drinking milk will not make one immortal, but it can increase the duration of one’s life. In modern civilization, men do not think milk to be important, and therefore they do not live very long. Although in this age men can live up to one hundred years, their duration of life is reduced because they do not drink large quantities of milk. This is a sign of Kali-yuga. In Kali-yuga, instead of drinking milk, people prefer to slaughter an animal and eat its flesh.

The Supreme Personality of Godhead, in His instructions of Bhagavad-gītā, advises go-rakṣya, which means cow protection. The cow should be protected, milk should be drawn from the cows, and this milk should be prepared in various ways. One should take ample milk, and thus one can prolong one’s life, develop his brain, execute devotional service, and ultimately attain the favor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. As it is essential to get food grains and water by digging the earth, it is also essential to give protection to the cows and take nectarean milk from their milk bags. (purport to SB 8.6.12)

Full Text and Purport More

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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A Short Statement of the Philosophy of Krishna Consciousness

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July 9th Letter

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The Hare Krishna Explosion

Reference Material/Study Guide

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