Srila Haridasa Thakura’s Disappearance Day

haridas_thakur

Today we honor Srila Haridasa Thakura’s Disappearance Day. We are posting the entire chapter from the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta entitled “The Passing of Haridasa Takura”

“After the passing away of Haridasa Ṭhakura, the Lord Himself took his body on His lap and danced with it in great ecstasy.” (Caitanya-caritamrta Adi 10.46)

“The transcendental qualities of Haridasa Ṭhakura are innumerable and unfathomable. One may describe a portion of them, but to count them all is impossible.” (Caitanya-caritamrta Antya 3.95)

Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Antya-līlā, Chapter 11

The Passing of Haridāsa Ṭhākura

The summary of the chapter is given by Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura in his Amṛta-pravāha-bhāṣya as follows. In this chapter, Brahma Haridāsa Ṭhākura gave up his body with the consent of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, and the Lord Himself personally performed the funeral ceremony and carried the body to the sea. He personally entombed the body, covered it with sand, and erected a platform on the site. After taking bath in the sea, He personally begged prasāda of Jagannātha from shopkeepers and distributed prasāda to the assembled devotees.

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New Year Resolution

Sun Salutation A by Neil Keleher

Sun Salutation A by Neil Keleher

I heard an interesting fact the other day. That the Number 1 New Year’s Resolution each year is to; “Get Healthy” and/or “Lose Weight”. I usually try to make this my number two, followed by my usual No. 1, which is to read and chant more. Hatha yoga is not something I promote as a means to self realization or increasing God consciousness, for that there is the higher practice of bhakti-yoga, but it is effective in this age for maintaining some semblance of good health and circulation.

This body is our temple, so keeping it clean, strong and healthy, is our duty and responsibility. With this in mind I share with all of you, this nice description of the sun salutation and overview of some the movements. The bulk of this post including the nice images, came from the web page Sensational Yoga Poses so thank you to Neil Keleher for some of the text and drawings.

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Goloka Vṛndāvana; The Supreme Abode

Goloka

With the beginning of a new year, I am always apt to take up my studies with renewed enthusiasm, a resolution and firmness of purpose, to read more from Srila Prabhupada’s books, and to delve more deeply into the practice of bhakti-yoga. This morning I was reading about the spiritual sky; Goloka Vṛndāvana.

The abode of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa is described in the Bhagavad-gītā, Fifteenth Chapter, sixth verse:

na tad bhāsayate sūryo na śaśāṅko na pāvakaḥ
yad gatvā na nivartante tad dhāma paramaṁ mama

“That abode of Mine is not illumined by the sun or moon, nor by electricity. And anyone who reaches it never comes back to this material world.” (Bg. 15.6)

This verse gives a description of that eternal sky. Of course we have a material conception of the sky, and we think of it in relationship to the sun, moon, stars and so on, but in this verse the Lord states that in the eternal sky there is no need for the sun nor for the moon nor fire of any kind because the spiritual sky is already illuminated by the brahmajyoti, the rays emanating from the Supreme Lord. We are trying with difficulty to reach other planets, but it is not difficult to understand the abode of the Supreme Lord. This abode is referred to as Goloka. In the Brahma-saṁhitā it is beautifully described: Goloka eva nivasaty akhilātma-bhūtaḥ. The Lord resides eternally in His abode Goloka, yet He can be approached from this world, and to this end the Lord comes to manifest His real form, sac-cid-ānanda-vigraha. When He manifests this form, there is no need for our imagining what He looks like. To discourage such imaginative speculation, He descends and exhibits Himself as He is, as Śyāmasundara. Unfortunately, the less intelligent deride Him because He comes as one of us and plays with us as a human being. But because of this we should not consider that the Lord is one of us. It is by His potency that He presents Himself in His real form before us and displays His pastimes, which are prototypes of those pastimes found in His abode. (from Introduction to the Bhagavad-gita As It Is)

…The ultimate goal in practicing yoga is now clearly explained. Yoga practice is not meant for attaining any kind of material facility; it is to enable the cessation of all material existence. One who seeks an improvement in health or aspires after material perfection is no yogī according to Bhagavad-gītā. Nor does cessation of material existence entail one’s entering into “the void,” which is only a myth. There is no void anywhere within the creation of the Lord. Rather, the cessation of material existence enables one to enter into the spiritual sky, the abode of the Lord. (from purport to Bg 6.15)

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Krishna Conscious Children and the Gṛhastha Ashram

Srila Prabhupada with children

My wife read me following letter this morning, that she saw on FaceBook. It is a letter written by Srila Prabhupada in 1971 to his female disciple Indira devi dasi, and is explaining how to practice household life (gṛhastha ashram) in Krishna consciousness.

My Dear Indira,

Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter. So far your son leaving you, his parents, at 5 years, that is not necessary. Especially our Krishna Conscious children; they are already living in a asrama. The children of our devotees may live with their parents perpetually because you are all living in the temple and already engaged in devotional service. Other instructions are for those not engaged in Krishna Consciousness. Any family engaged in Krishna’s service is living not in this material world. Such a home is considered as Vaikuntha. That is the verdict of Bhaktivinode Thakura.

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The Culmination of Yoga Practices

Syamasundara

“Of all yogis, he who abides in Me with great faith is the highest of all.”

It is by great fortune that one comes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness on the path of bhakti-yoga to become well situated according to the Vedic direction. The ideal yogī concentrates his attention on Kṛṣṇa, who is called Śyāmasundara, who is as beautifully colored as a cloud, whose lotus-like face is as effulgent as the sun, whose dress is brilliant with jewels and whose body is flower garlanded. Illuminating all sides is His gorgeous luster, which is called the brahmajyoti. He incarnates in different forms such as Rāma, Nṛsiṁha, Varāha and Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and He descends like a human being, as the son of Mother Yaśodā, and He is known as Kṛṣṇa, Govinda and Vāsudeva. He is the perfect child, husband, friend and master, and He is full with all opulences and transcendental qualities. If one remains fully conscious of these features of the Lord, he is called the highest yogī. (from purport to Bg. 6.47)

This is more or less a continuation of yesterdays post Freedom From All Miseries as it is the last verse in the Chapter 6, entitled; “Sankhya-yoga”. This is one of the very best verses and purports in the Bhagavad-gita for study if one is an aspiring yogi…

…The culmination of all kinds of yoga practices lies in bhakti-yoga. All other yogas are but means to come to the point of bhakti in bhakti-yoga. Yoga actually means bhakti-yoga; all other yogas are progressions toward the destination of bhakti-yoga. From the beginning of karma-yoga to the end of bhakti-yoga is a long way to self-realization. Karma-yoga, without fruitive results, is the beginning of this path. When karma-yoga increases in knowledge and renunciation, the stage is called jñāna-yoga. When jñāna-yoga increases in meditation on the Supersoul by different physical processes, and the mind is on Him, it is called aṣṭāṅga-yoga. And, when one surpasses the aṣṭāṅga-yoga and comes to the point of the Supreme Personality of Godhead Kṛṣṇa, it is called bhakti-yoga, the culmination. Factually, bhakti-yoga is the ultimate goal, but to analyze bhakti-yoga minutely one has to understand these other yogas. The yogī who is progressive is therefore on the true path of eternal good fortune. (from purport to Bg. 6.47)

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