Lord Caitanya & The Hare Krishna Maha Mantra

Lord Caitanya Kirtan

Who is Lord Chaitanya?

Krishna appeared as Lord Chaitanya 500 years ago in India to bring the medicine for the diseased human society in the form of this movement. He brought the chanting of Hare Krishna.

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The Wise Man

Buddha om

Teachings of Lord Caitanya
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Chapter Four

The Wise Man

Since no one can trace the history of the living entity’s entanglement in material energy, the Lord says that it is beginningless. By beginningless it is meant that conditional life exists prior to the creation; it is simply manifested during and after the creation. Due to forgetfulness of his nature, the living entity, although spirit, suffers all kinds of miseries in material existence. It should be understood that there are also living entities who are not entangled in this material energy but are situated in the spiritual world. They are called liberated souls and are always engaged in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, devotional service.

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The Nectar of Devotion

The Nectar of Devotion - 1970 ISKCON press edition SCAN

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This morning I wanted to share with you all one of my most favorite books The Nectar of Devotion. I began re-reading it this morning, and feel very inspired to practice my bhakti yoga with new enthusiasm. You can click on following links to read or save to your computer the scanned version or the pdf version.

From Preface

…The Nectar of Devotion is a summary study of Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu, which was written in Sanskrit by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī Prabhupāda. He was the chief of the six Gosvāmīs, who were the direct disciples of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu. …The Nectar of Devotion is specifically presented for persons who are now engaged in the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. I beg to offer my sincere thanks to all my friends and disciples who are helping me to push forward the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement in the Western countries, and I beg to acknowledge, with thanks, the contribution made by my beloved disciple Śrīman Jayānanda brahmacārī. My thanks are due as well to the directors of ISKCON Press, who have taken so much care in publishing this great literature. Hare Kṛṣṇa.

A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami

ISKCON Headquarters
Los Angeles, California

Scanned The_Nectar_of_Devotion-1970_ISKCON_Press_edition-Hardcover-SCAN (1)

PDF Nectar-of-Devotion-1970-Edition

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Don’t Be A Crazy Fellow, Be Patient and Return Home

Srila Prabhupada

“Be patient and return home. Don’t be a crazy fellow. By and by you will be able to cross the ocean of material existence. You should not make yourself a showbottle devotee and become a false renunciant. For the time being, enjoy the material world in a befitting way and do not become attached to it. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu continued: “Within your heart, you should keep yourself very faithful, but externally you may behave like an ordinary man. Thus Kṛṣṇa will soon be very pleased and deliver you from the clutches of māyā.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta: Madhya-lila Chapter 16, Text 237-239)

I have always liked this verse, it is sage advise for anyone practicing spiritual life (self-realization), in this age. “Within your heart, you should keep yourself very faithful, but externally you may behave like an ordinary man.” It is not that everyone who is interested in practicing Krishna Consciousness must artificially renounce the world, shave their head, put on robes, become a nun or monk, and live in a temple. No the instruction is here; “enjoy the material world in a befitting way and do not become attached to it.”

The peace and happiness for which we are all hankering for life after life, moment after moment, we will get when our desires become purified, and dovetailed with the Lord. One who desires sense gratification, the enjoyment of material satisfaction, will never be happy. That is not possible. If you want peace, if you want happiness, if you want perfection in your life, then just begin to dovetail your desires, activities, and potentials with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Then you will see what real happiness is, and can tell who is really crazy.

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Sanātana Gosvāmī

Sanatana Goswami

This morning I was inclined to do a post about the special mercy of the devotee of the Lord, by whose mercy one can make spiritual advancement. So we chose the chapter from “Teachings of Lord Caitanya” entitled “Sanātana Gosvāmī”

The instructions and teachings of Lord Caitanya are very important for people in general. He teaches the process of devotional service, which is the constitutional occupation of every living entity, for it is every man’s duty to advance in spiritual science. Many subjects were thoroughly discussed in the talks between Lord Caitanya and Sanātana Gosvāmī. Due to the mercy of Lord Caitanya, Sanātana was able to put important questions before Him, and these questions were replied to properly.

“I offer my respectful obeisances unto Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu, by whose mercy even a person in the lowest form of life can find direction in transcendental devotional service to the Lord.” (Cc. Madhya 20.1)

…when Sanātana entered the courtyard, Lord Caitanya hurriedly came to see and embrace him. When the Lord embraced him, Sanātana became overwhelmed with spiritual ecstasy, and he said, “My dear Lord, please do not touch me.” But both of them embraced each other and began to cry. Seeing Sanātana and Lord Caitanya acting thus, Candraśekhara was struck with wonder. At length, Caitanya Mahāprabhu asked Sanātana to sit down with Him on a bench. He was touching the body of Sanātana with His hand, and Sanātana asked Him again, “My dear Lord, please do not touch me.”

“I am touching you just for My purification,” the Lord replied, “for you are a great devotee. By your devotional service you can deliver the whole universe and enable everyone to go back to Godhead.”

The Lord proceeded to quote a verse from Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam to the effect that a person who is a devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa and is one hundred percent engaged in devotional service is far better than a brāhmaṇa who is versed in all the Vedic literatures but who does not engage in the devotional service of the Lord. Because he is carrying the Supreme Lord within his heart, the devotee can purify everyplace and everything.

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Kali-yuga Is an Ocean of Faults…but There Is One Good Thing

Lord Caitanya's Sankirtan Movement

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..Simply by chanting the holy name of Kṛṣṇa: Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare simply by chanting the holy name…,” kīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasya, “he becomes free from all these contaminations, by one thing, simply chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa.”

Kīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasya, mukta-saṅgaḥ paraṁ vrajet

…although Kali-yuga is an ocean of faults, there is still one good quality about this age: Simply by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, one can become free from material bondage and be promoted to the transcendental kingdom.

This is a very important sloka (verse), as can be confirmed by the number of times Srila Prabhupada has cited it. I was curious about this verse so I went to the incomparable web page Vani Quotes and did a search on the phrase kīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasya, mukta-saṅgaḥ paraṁ vrajet, and was surprised to find just how many times Srila Prabhupada used this verse in his preaching. I think this will be the next verse I try to memorize.

Full verse:

kaler doṣa-nidhe rājann
asti hy eko mahān guṇaḥ
kīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasya
mukta-saṅgaḥ paraṁ vrajet

kaleḥ—of the age of Kali; doṣa-nidheḥ—in the ocean of faults; rājan—O King; asti—there is; hi—certainly; ekaḥ—one; mahān—very great; guṇaḥ—good quality; kīrtanāt—by chanting; eva—certainly; kṛṣṇasya—of the holy name of Kṛṣṇa; mukta-saṅgaḥ—liberated from material bondage; param—to the transcendental spiritual kingdom; vrajet—one can go.

My dear King, although Kali-yuga is an ocean of faults, there is still one good quality about this age: Simply by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, one can become free from material bondage and be promoted to the transcendental kingdom. (SB 12.3.510

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Krsna Consciousness in the Age of Kali

sri chaitanya mahaprabhu1

“In the sastra it is said this Kali-yuga is full of faults, so many faults. It is the ocean of faults. But there is a very nice thing, asti hy eko mahan gunah, a very great quality. What is that? Kirtanad eva krsnasya mukta-sangah param vrajet [SB 12.3.51]. If you simply chant Hare Krishna mantra, then you become perfect. Is it very difficult? Chant Hare Krishna and you become perfect. But we are so unfortunate, we are not even prepared to chant. This is our position. So you have to make little determination that ‘I shall chant henceforward Hare Krishna mantra.’ Then everything is all right.” (Srila Prabhupada from Lecture)

and this from Srimad Bhagavatam 8.5.23

When Kṛṣṇa appeared, He gave His orders, and when Kṛṣṇa Himself appeared as a devotee, as Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, He showed us the path by which to cross the ocean of Kali-yuga. That is the path of The Hare Kṛṣṇa Movement. When Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu appeared, He ushered in the era for the saṅkīrtana movement. It is also said that for ten thousand years this era will continue. This means that simply by accepting the saṅkīrtana movement and chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, the fallen souls of this Kali-yuga will be delivered. After the Battle of Kurukṣetra, at which Bhagavad-gītā was spoken, Kali-yuga continues for 432,000 years, of which only 5,000 years have passed. Thus there is still a balance of 427,000 years to come. Of these 427,000 years, the 10,000 years of the saṅkīrtana movement inaugurated by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu 500 years ago provide the opportunity for the fallen souls of Kali-yuga to take to the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, chant the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra and thus be delivered from the clutches of material existence and return home, back to Godhead.

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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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Śrīla Prabhupāda vāṇī

Srila Prabhupada on the Bowery

Śrīla Prabhupāda vāṇī
Submitted by Vidura dasa

“When I was alone in your New York, I was thinking, who will listen to me in this horrible, sinful place? All right, I shall stay little longer, at least I can distribute a few of my books, that is something. But Krishna was all along preparing something I could not see, and He brought you to me one by one, sincere American boys and girls, to be trained-up for doing the work of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Now I can see that it is a miracle. Otherwise, your city of New York, one single old man, with only a few books to sell for barely getting eatables, how he can survive, what to speak of introducing God-consciousness movement for saving the humankind? That is Krishna’s miracle. Now I can see it.” (Letter to: Sudama — Bombay 23 December, 1972)

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The Hare Krishna Tree

In 1966, Srila Prabhupada began chanting the Hare Krsna mahamantra under a tree in New York’s Tompkins Square Park, thereby inaugurating the western advance of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s glorious Sankirtana movement.

On November 18, 2001, Srila Prabhupada’s Disappearance Day, a plaque was placed in Tompkins Square Park in honor of His Divine Grace, who brought the Hare Krishna Movement to the west 35 years before.

Inscription on Plaque:

“One of Tompkins Square Park’s most prominent features is its collection of venerable American elm (Ulmus americana) trees. One elm in particular, located next to the semi-circular arrangement of benches in the park’s center, is important to adherents of the Hare Krishna religion. After coming to the United States in September, 1965, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada (1896-1977), the Indian spiritual leader, founded the International Society for Krishna Consciousness in New York. He worked from a storefront on nearby Second Avenue that he used as the Society’s American headquarters. Prabhupada and his disciples gathered in Tompkins Square Park in the fall of 1966 to introduce the East Village to the group’s distinctive 16-word mantra:

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

On October 9, 1966, Prabhupada and his followers sat beneath this tree and held the first outdoor chanting session outside of India. Participants chanted for two hours as they danced and played cymbals, tambourines, and other percussive instruments; the event is recognized as the founding of the Hare Krishna religion in the United States. Prabhupada’s diverse group that day included Beat poet Allen Ginsberg (1926-1997). Krishna adherents continue to return to the tree to acknowledge its significance.

American elm trees are known for their towering canopies, which provide abundant shade through spring, summer, and fall. It is rare today to find such a collection of American elms, since many of the mature elms planted across the country have been killed by Dutch Elm Disease. This incurable disease, a fungus carried by bark beetles ( Coleoptera Scolytidae) which colonize on the branches of the elm tree, swept across the United States in the 1930s and remains a threat to the park’s collection of elms. Despite having lost at least 34 of the trees, Tompkins Square Park still hosts a large assemblage of elms, which continue to this day to enchant park patrons. The East Village Parks Conservancy, a volunteer group, raises significant private funds for the ongoing care and maintenance of the American elms and other historic trees in Tompkins Square Park.

City Of New York
Parks and Recreation

Rudolph Giuliani, Mayor
Henry J. Stern, Commissioner

October 2001

pasted from; harekrsna.com

Appearance day of Sītā Ṭhākurāṇī

In honor of the Appearance day of Sītā Ṭhākurāṇī (the eternal wife of Sri Advaita Acharya), we are posting a brief pastime from Srila Prabhupada’s Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta: Ādi-līlā Chapter 13, Text 111-119, which gives the following account of Sita Thakurani’s visit to the house of Jagannatha Mishra after the birth of the Lord

One day shortly after Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu was born, Advaita Ācārya’s wife, Sītādevī, who is worshipable by the whole world, took her husband’s permission and went to see that topmost child with all kinds of gifts and presentations

She brought different kinds of golden ornaments, including bangles for the hand, armlets, necklaces and anklets.

There were also tiger nails set in gold, waist decorations of silk and lace, ornaments for the hands and legs, nicely printed silken sārīs and a child’s garment, also made of silk. Many other riches, including gold and silver coins, were also presented to the child.

Riding in a palanquin covered with cloth and accompanied by maidservants, Sītā Ṭhākurāṇī came to the house of Jagannātha Miśra, bringing with her many auspicious articles such as fresh grass, paddy, gorocana, turmeric, kuṅkuma and sandalwood. All these presentations filled a large basket.

When Sītā Ṭhākurāṇī came to the house of Śacīdevī, bringing with her many kinds of eatables, dresses and other gifts, she was astonished to see the newly born child, for she appreciated that except for a difference in color, the child was directly Kṛṣṇa of Gokula Himself.

Seeing the transcendental bodily effulgence of the child, each of His nicely constructed limbs full of auspicious signs and resembling a form of gold, Sītā Ṭhākurāṇī was very much pleased, and because of her maternal affection, she felt as if her heart were melting.

She blessed the newly born child by placing fresh grass and paddy on His head and saying, “May You be blessed with a long duration of life.” But being afraid of ghosts and witches, she gave the child the name Nimāi.

On the day the mother and son bathed and left the maternity home, Sītā Ṭhākurāṇī gave them all kinds of ornaments and garments and then also honored Jagannātha Miśra. Then Sītā Ṭhākurāṇī, being honored by mother Śacīdevī and Jagannātha Miśra, was greatly happy within her mind, and thus she returned home.

In this way mother Śacīdevī and Jagannātha Miśra, having obtained a son who was the husband of the goddess of fortune, had all their desires fulfilled. Their house was always filled with riches and grains. As they saw the beloved body of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, day after day their pleasure increased.

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Śrī Śrī Śikṣāṣṭaka

Śrī Śrī Śikṣāṣṭaka
Eight Instructions
Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu

Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu instructed His disciples to write books on the science of Kṛṣṇa, a task which His followers have continued to carry out down to the present day. The elaborations and expositions on the philosophy taught by Lord Caitanya are, in fact, the most voluminous, exacting, and consistent, due to the system of disciplic succession. Although Lord Caitanya was widely renowned as a scholar in His youth, He left only eight verses, called Śikṣāṣṭaka. These eight verses clearly reveal His mission and precepts. These supremely valuable prayers are translated herein.

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Controversy Theory

…(At the Mayapur GBC meeting in 1977 Srila Prabhupada made their duty clear): The real thing is to somehow or other introduce these books… and in the long run that will be the real beneficial thing for the whole world. Now we are very much wanting to distribute full force and push book distribution without fear of public reaction… Our book distribution means that he has helped our attempt to expand the glorification of Krsna. Or if he is reading our book that is also glorification of Krsna… Our attempt is to awaken people to understand Krsna. There is no other way — hearing, glorifying Krsna through book distribution.

…the unique position of Srila Prabhupada — empowered to teach to the whole world the ultimate siddhanta as originally taught by the Supreme Lord Himself — is not carefully understood in his own movement, especially by those who were born after his disappearance. This, even though many of his disciples are still present. The result has been that newcomers in recent decades have inherited a poor fund of knowledge about Srila Prabhupada’s exalted position and his priorities for his ISKCON, notwithstanding abundant evidence of his unequalled accomplishments and documented instructions.
During his manifest presence devotees had a much clearer understanding, even though the movement, entirely new to them, was without the extensive facilities of temples, books, experienced adherents, etc., all of which are now the norm.

Controversy Theory
By Rupanuga das (ACBSP)
Jul 04, 2012 — JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA, USA (SUN)

During a Bhagavatam lecture (1.16.11) January 8, 1974 in Los Angeles, Srila Prabhupada said, “There is a controversy among the Vaisnava community about Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, just as the Nimbarka Sampradaya, they say “We accept Lord Caitanya as a great devotee.” But the Gaudiya Sampradaya, we say that Lord Caitanya is the Supreme Personality of Godhead because it is stated in the Sastra.”

Lord Caitanya’s advent is predicted and described in many Sastras, including the Kurma Purana Padma Purana, Sama Veda, Visvasara Tantra, Jaimini-bharata, Visnu-yamala, Brahma-rahasya, et al. For example, in the Saura Purana it is said: “The Supreme Personality of Godhead appears in two forms. He is either dark Lord Krsna, who is always worshipped by all, or He is fair Lord Gaura, a brahmana who knows the meaning of all the Vedas.” And in the Matsya Purana: “In the Kali-yuga I will take birth in a place where three rivers meet. I will be fair and tall. I will have a shaven head. I will be very merciful. I will eagerly chant the Holy Names.”

Therefore, the authority and order of the Sastra is clear, Lord Caitanya is to be accepted as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Yet, the controversy goes on because the sastra is either overlooked or ignored, both of which indicate a poor fund of knowledge.

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Bookworm

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“If one becomes a bookworm, reading many books and scriptures and hearing many commentaries and the instructions of many men, this will produce doubt within his heart. One cannot in this way ascertain the real goal of life.” (Adi-lila 16. 11)

…Man has a general tendency toward fruitive activities, religious ritualistic ceremonies and philosophical speculation. A living entity thus bewildered since time immemorial does not understand the real goal of life, and thus his activities in life are wasted. Innocent persons misled in this way are deprived of unalloyed kṛṣṇa-bhakti, devotional service to the Lord. Tapana Miśra is a vivid example of such a person. He was a learned scholar, but he could not ascertain what the goal of life is. Therefore he was given a chance to hear Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu instructing Sanātana Gosvāmī. Lord Caitanya’s instruction to Tapana Miśra is especially significant for persons who loiter here and there collecting books and reading none of them, thus becoming bewildered regarding the aim of life.

.. Simply by studying, becoming bookworm, you cannot advance. The real secret is… Yasya deve para bhaktir yatha deve tatha gurau [ŚU 6.23] That is stated in the Vedas. Unflinching faith in God and spiritual master. Then things will be revealed from within.

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Adi-lila Chapter 16, Text 11

The Pastimes of the Lord in His Childhood and Youth

bahu-śāstre bahu-vākye citte bhrama haya
sādhya-sādhana śreṣṭha nā haya niścaya

bahu-śāstre—by many books or scriptures; bahu-vākye—by many versions of many persons; citte—within the heart; bhrama—doubt; haya—there is; sādhya-sādhana—objective and means; śreṣṭha—about the best; nā—not; haya—there is; niścaya—certainty.

If one becomes a bookworm, reading many books and scriptures and hearing many commentaries and the instructions of many men, this will produce doubt within his heart. One cannot in this way ascertain the real goal of life.

PURPORT
In Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (7.13.8) it is said, granthān naivābhyased bahūn na vyākhyām upayuñjīta: “One should not read many books, nor should one try to make a profession of reciting many books, especially if one is a devotee.” One must give up the ambition to be a learned scholar and in this way earn a worldly reputation and financial facilities. If one diverts his attention to studying many books, he cannot fix his mind in devotional service, nor can he understand many scriptures, for they are full of grave statements and meanings. In this connection Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura gives his opinion that those who are attracted to studying many kinds of literature concerning various subject matters, especially fruitive activities and philosophical speculation, are deprived of unalloyed devotional service because of their splayed attention.

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Sankirtan; The Yoga for the Modern Age

..When Rupa Gosvami first met Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu at Prayag, Lord Caitanya was chanting and dancing in the street “Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna.” At that time also he offered one prayer. Namo maha-vadanyaya krsna-prema-pradaya te. “O You are the most munificent of all incarnations because You are distributing love of Godhead.” Krsna-prema-pradaya te krsnaya krsna-caitanya-namne gaura-tvise namah. “You are Krsna Himself because if You were not Krsna You could not distribute Krsna-prema or love of God, for love of Krsna is not so easily acquired. But You are distributing this love freely to everyone.”

Hari Kirtana: The Yoga for the Modern Age
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Excerpted from ‘Back To Godhead’ Magazine
1970, Vol., 1 No. 34

Ceto-darpana-marjanam bhava-mahadavagni-nirvapanam sreyah kairava candrika vitaranam vidyavadhu jivanam anandambudhi-vardhanam pratipadam purnamrtasvadanam sarvatma-snapanam param vijayate sri-krsna-sankirtanam. All glories to the sankirtana movement. Param vijayate sri-krsna-sankirtanam. Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, when He was only a sixteen-year-old boy, introduced this sankirtana movement 500 years ago in Navadvipa, India. It was not that He manufactured some religious system, just as nowadays so many religious systems are being manufactured.

Actually religion cannot be manufactured. Dharmam tu saksad-bhagavat-pranitam. Religion means the codes of God, the laws of God, that’s all. Certainly we cannot live without obeying the state laws, and similarly, we cannot live without obeying the laws of God. And in the Bhagavad-gita the Lord says, “yada yada hi dharmasya glanir bhavati bharata abhyutthanam adharmasya,” and there is a predominance of irreligious activities, “tadatmanam srjamy aham,” at that time I (Krsna) appear. And in the material world we can see the same principle demonstrated, for whenever there is disobedience of state laws, there is the advent of some particular state officer or police man to “set things right.”

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The Appearance of Lord Caitanya

The Appearance of Lord Caitanya

Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is Krishna Himself, and He is teaching how to develop love of God by a very simple method…chanting the names of the Lord. Only five hundred years ago Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu, prophesied that the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra would resound throughout every town and village in the world. At a time when Western man was directing his exploratory spirit toward studying the physical universe and circumnavigating the globe, in India Śrī Caitanya was inaugurating and masterminding a revolution directed inward. His movement swept the subcontinent, gained millions of followers, and profoundly influenced the future of religious and philosophical thinking, both in India and the West. In the following talk, presented in November 1969 at London’s Conway Hall, Śrīla Prabhupāda describes the divine appearance of Śrī Caitanya.

Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, the golden avatāra, appeared in India nearly five hundred years ago. It is the custom in India that when a child is born, an astrologer is called for. When Lord Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, appeared five thousand years ago, Gargamuni was called by His father, and he said, “This child formerly incarnated in three complexions, such as red and golden, and now He has appeared in blackish color.” Kṛṣṇa’s color is described in the scriptures as blackish, just like the color of a cloud. Lord Caitanya is understood to be Kṛṣṇa appearing in golden complexion.

There is much evidence in Vedic literature that Caitanya Mahāprabhu is an incarnation of Kṛṣṇa, and this is confirmed by scholars and devotees. In the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam it is confirmed that the incarnation of Kṛṣṇa, or God, in this present age, Kali-yuga, will always engage in describing Kṛṣṇa. He is Kṛṣṇa, but as a devotee of Kṛṣṇa He describes Himself. And in this age His bodily complexion will not be blackish. This means that it may be white, it may be red, or it may be yellow, because these four colors—white, red, yellow, and black—are the colors assumed by the incarnations for the different ages. Therefore, since the red, white, and blackish colors were already taken by former incarnations, the remaining color, golden, is assumed by Caitanya Mahāprabhu. His complexion is not blackish, but He is Kṛṣṇa.

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Krsna’s Scent

” ‘The scent of Kṛṣṇa’s transcendental body surpasses the aroma of musk and attracts the minds of all women. The eight lotus like parts of His body distribute the fragrance of lotuses mixed with that of camphor. His body is anointed with aromatic substances like musk, camphor, sandalwood and aguru. O My dear friend, that Personality of Godhead, also known as the enchanter of Cupid, always increases the desire of My nostrils.’

Sri-Caitanya-caritamrta 1975 Edition
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Antya 19 Text 88-106
The Inconceivable Behavior of Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu

The entire garden was filled with the scent of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s transcendental body. When Srī Caitanya Mahāprabhu smelled it, He fell unconscious at once.

The scent of Kṛṣṇa’s body, however, incessantly entered His nostrils, and the Lord became mad to relish it.

Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī expressed to Her gopī friends how She hankers for the transcendental scent of Kṛṣṇa’s body. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu recited that same verse and made its meaning clear.

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With Srila Prabhupada in Vrndavana

“We should try to make Krsna happy like the gopis of Vrndavana. In Vrndavana everyone is trying to please Krsna—the birds, trees, cows, the river and all His associates. It is not that Vrndavana is only here. We can have Vrndavana everywhere. Krsna is not limited. We should not think that Krsna is far away in Goloka Vrndavana and cannot accept food from us. If you offer food with love, Krsna eats. Krsna does not leave Goloka Vrndavana, but His expansion goes and accepts food. This Vrndavana, which so happens to appear in India, is as worshipable as Krsna. As Krsna is worshipable, His dhama [residence] is also worshipable. So we cannot offend His dhama. If we live in Vrndavana, we are living with Krsna, for Vrndavana is nondifferent from Krsna. There is no difference between the original Vrndavana and this Vrndavana. Vrndavana is so powerful.”

With Srila Prabhupada in Vrndavana
By Hayagriva Dasa

Vrndavana, India, the land of Krsna five thousand years after the disappearance of the Supreme Person, is invaded by eighty American and European disciples of Srila Prabhupada. The white and saffron robed pilgrims arrive in Vrndavana for Karttika, a celebration of Krsna’s rasa dance with the cowherd girls (gopis) of Vrndavana. Yearly, Vrndavana is crowded with Karttika pilgrims from October 15th to November 15th, the best time of year for Vrndavana, a month of clear, pleasant days and cool nights.

Vrndavana is approached by train from Delhi to Mathura, about ninety miles to the Southeast of Delhi. From Mathura, one takes a bus some eight miles to the village of Vrndavana bordered on three sides by the holy River Yamuna. As a cowherd boy, Krsna sported in the Yamuna, and Vaisnavas consider its waters more purifying than the Ganges itself. In Krsna’s time, Vrndavana was a forest, as its name indicates. Today it is a congested holy-town forgotten by the tourist maps, a town of crumbling temples, memories, chanting devotees, filth and poverty-stricken masses. Tourists whiz by it on the Delhi-Agra Express, unaware of passing Krsna’s old abode. Vrndavana was rediscovered by Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu and His disciples Rupa and Sanatana Gosvami in the early 16th Century. Many magnificent temples were built in honor of Lord Krsna, but despite the sanctity of the place, it has not been kept up.

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Unity in Diversity


Material nature means dissension and disagreement, especially in this Kali yuga. But, for this Krsna consciousness movement its success will depend on agreement, even though there are varieties of engagements. In the material world there are varieties, but there is no agreement. In the spiritual world there are varieties, but there is agreement. That is the difference. The materialist without being able to adjust the varieties and the disagreements makes everything zero. They cannot come into agreement with varieties, but if we keep Krsna in the center, then there will be agreement in varieties. This is called unity in diversity.

In an October 18, 1973 letter, Srila Prabhupada wrote to Kirtanananda

My Dear Kirtanananda Maharaja:

Please accept my blessings, and I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated October 16, 1973 and I have noted the contents carefully..

Now this displeasing of god brothers has already begun and gives me too much agitation in my mind. Our Gaudiya Math people fought with one another after the demise of Guru Maharaja but my disciples have already begun fighting even in my presence. So I am greatly concerned about it.

Following in the footprints of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu:

trnad api su-nicena taror iva sahisnuna
amanina manadena kirtaniya sada harih

“One should chant the holy name of the Lord in a humble state of mind, thinking oneself lower than the straw in the street; one should be more tolerant than a tree, devoid of all sense of false prestige and should be ready to offer all respect to others. In such a state of mind one can chant the holy name of the Lord constantly.”

We must always remember this verse and be as tolerant as the tree, as we execute the Krsna consciousness movement. Without this mentality we cannot be successful.

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Origin of the Hare Krishna Movement

Lord Sri Krishna Caitanya's Sankirtan Movement


During Sankirtan the learned and the fool, the rich and the poor, the Hindu and the Moslem, the Englishman and the Indian, the common man and the priest—all can give aural reception to the transcendental sound vibration of Hare Krishna, and thereby cleanse the dust from the mirror of the mind.

Origin of the Hare Krishna Movement
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Back to Godhead Magazine Volume 01, Number 20, 1968

Lord Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the Great Apostle of love of God and the Father of the Sankirtan Movement, advented Himself in the City of Nabadwipa in Bengal, India. This was in February, 1486, by Christian reckoning.

By the will of the Lord there was a lunar eclipse on that evening. It is the custom of the Hindu public to bathe in the Ganges of any other sacred river during the hours of eclispe, and to chant the Vedic mantras for purification. When Lord Chaitanya was born during the eclipse, then, the whole India was roaring with the holy sound of Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.

These sixteen Names of the Lord are mentioned in many Puranas and Upanishads, and they are described as “Tarak Brahman,” the Names for this age. It is stated in the “Shashtras,” the accepted Scriptures, that offenseless chanting of the Holy Names of the Lord can deliver a fallen soul from material bondage. There inumerable Names for the Lord both in India and elsewhere, and all of them are equally good because all of them indicate the Supreme Personality of Godhead. But because these sixteen Names are especially recommended for this Age, called Kali Yuga, it is better for people to take the path of the great Acharyas, the saintly teachers who attained success by practice of this system.

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Important Slokas from the Brahma-samhita

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Reference Material/Study Guide

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