Incarnation of Sound

Why Chant Hare Krishna?
By Sriman Hansadutta Prabhu

God is absolute, and therefore anything directly connected with Him, such as His holy name, form, pastimes, paraphernalia and entourage, is identical with Him. In the material world of duality, objects are different from their names. A thirsty man’s cry–“Water! Water! Water!”–will never satisfy his thirst, because the name water and the substance water are completely different. In the absolute world, however, there are no such differences. There an object and its name, or a person and his name, are one. Therefore, simply by vibrating the holy name of God, one associates with God directly.

nama chintaminih krishnash
chaitanya-rasa-vigrahah
pumah shuddho nitya-mukto
‘bhinnatvan nama-naminoh

The holy name of Krishna is like a transcendental touchstone, for it is Krishna Himself, the reservoir of all pleasure. Krishna’s name is complete, and it is the form of transcendental mellows. It is always pure and liberated from all material contamination. This is because the name of Krishna and Krishna Himself are identical.–Padma Purana

Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, an incarnation of Krishna, recommended that one chant the maha-mantra twenty-four hours a day and thus make one’s life perfect. He said:

One can chant the holy name of God in a humble state of mind, thinking himself lower than the straw in the street. One should be more tolerant than a tree, devoid of all 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 the Lord constantly.–Shikshastaka, Verse 3

Chanting Hare Krishna gradually frees one from material concepts and elevates one to samadhi, a trance-like state in which one realizes the Supersoul (Paramatma, or Krishna residing in the heart) through his transcendental mind and intelligence. God realization is the goal of yoga. The living entity is called jivatma (the atomic self), and Krishna is called Paramatma (the Supreme Self). In perfect Krishna consciousness, one realizes the eternal relationship between the atomic soul and the Supreme Soul, Krishna, without misidentifying himself with the Supreme.

In this age, the best method of practicing yoga is to chant and hear the holy names of God, as found in the maha-mantra: Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. This is the beginning of bhakti-yoga, or Krishna consciousness. There are no hard and fast rules for chanting. One can chant at any time or in any place. One need not give up his job or family, because the chanting automatically purifies one’s life, adjusting unwanted and unnecessary difficulties. The authorized scriptures of the world’s civilized nations give various names for God, but the Vedic scriptures especially recommend the chanting of Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. We therefore humbly request you to chant this maha-mantra and be happy.

Without the self-realized soul at its head…


Without the self-realized soul at its head…
By Hansadutta Prabhu

“The heart has reasons that reason fails to understand.”—Blaise Pascal

When the Acharya comes, he gathers around him so many people, but they’re bringing their own baggage and cannot prevail. It seems to be the rule that a collection of disciples can go only so far before there’s an overwhelming of their past.

“O well-wisher of the devotees. May you obtain peace! The nature that the living entities have developed, according to their respective karma from birth after birth in this world, influences them to engage in fruitive activities. Until desires opposed to devotional service are destroyed from the heart, no amount of good instruction can bring any auspiciousness. Such instructions will simply come out of the ear-holes and will not enter into the heart. No amount of preaching to them or discussing devotional service will produce a good result because of their bad karma. Your discourses and discussions will therefore not yield any result. My order to you is that you should live at the place where I kept My dear Haridasa and where I loudly chanted the holy names of the Lord. You should constantly sing the glories of the holy names for the benefit of the fallen souls. As a result of the piety that people will achieve by hearing from you, and the faith they will develop, they will attain unduplicitious faith in pure devotional service in a future lifetime.”—Mahaprabhu to Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur (Sri Bhaktivinoda Vani Vaibhava)

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