Ecstasy of Rememberance

gopal

I guess we all have our favorite verse or sloka from Srila Prabhupada’s books, and a favorite picture as well. This is probably my favorite verse from the Srimad Bhagavatam. It speaks to me, and I find that I quote this verse often when I am speaking with others about the joyous nature of Krishna consciousness.

I will be away from the computer for the next few weeks as we are taking a ‘spring break’, but I wanted our last post to be about Remembering Krishna.

My dear Vyāsa, even though a devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa sometimes falls down somehow or other, he certainly does not undergo material existence like others [fruitive workers, etc.] because a person who has once relished the taste of the lotus feet of the Lord can do nothing but remember that ecstasy again and again. (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.5.19)

…Pure devotional service is so spiritually relishable that a devotee becomes automatically uninterested in material enjoyment. That is the sign of perfection in progressive devotional service. A pure devotee continuously remembers the lotus feet of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa and does not forget Him even for a moment, not even in exchange for all the opulence of the three worlds. (from purport)

Full Verse and Purport More

Remembering Krishna

Hare Krishna Maha Mantra

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” Simply our prayer should be, My dear Krishna, please remind me to always chant Your Holy Name, please do not put me into forgetfulness. You are sitting within me as Supersoul, so you can put me into forgetfulness or into remembering You. So please do not put me into forgetfulness. Please always remind me to chant, even You send me into the hell, it doesn’t matter, just so long as I can always chant Hare Krishna…” (from Srila Prabhupada’s letter to Devananda dated Nov.23,1968)

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I am the Taste of Water

…Thus when a devotee drinks water or any other liquid, he immediately remembers Kṛṣṇa. For a devotee there is no difficulty in awakening Kṛṣṇa consciousness twenty-four hours a day. If you simply drink water, and practice the simple meditation of remembering that Krishna says in the Bhagavad-gita 7.8 “raso ‘ham apsu kaunteya prabhāsmi śaśi-sūryayoḥ”, “I am the taste of water, the light of the sun and the moon”. It is easy to remember Krishna (God)

Is there any land within this universe where there is no sunshine, moonshine? Everywhere. So where is the difficulty to become Kṛṣṇa conscious? You are practicing meditation. Why not this simple meditation?

“How I can think of Kṛṣṇa constantly? Kṛṣṇa says that you think of Kṛṣṇa while drinking water, you think of Kṛṣṇa when you see the sunshine, think of Kṛṣṇa when you see the moonshine, day and night. So at daytime there is sunshine, at night there is moonshine. So day and night you can think of Kṛṣṇa. So, so many ways…

Because our only business is to remember Kṛṣṇa. That we can do any stage of life. It does not require that you have to become a brāhmaṇa, an Indian, and so on, so on, great learned scholar in Vedic scripture. No. You may be in the far away country, in Europe, America, or you may not be in brāhmaṇa family. It doesn’t matter. But you can remember Kṛṣṇa. We are teaching this art through Kṛṣṇa consciousness, that you may remain in whichever position Kṛṣṇa has put you. It doesn’t matter. But try to understand Kṛṣṇa. “How can I understand?” Well, you are drinking water. You can understand Kṛṣṇa. Where is the difficulty? Raso ‘ham apsu kaunteya [Bg. 7.8]. Kṛṣṇa says that “I am the taste of water.” Then where there is a person who does not drink water? Is there any land where people do not drink water? Is there any land?

So many ways we can remember Kṛṣṇa always.

A devotee who has purified his existence through devotional service sees only Kṛṣṇa in every step of life. (Paraphrased from Lecture by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada given in Vrndavan India August 17, 1974)

Full Bhagavad-gita verse 7.8 and Lecture follow More

Remembering Krishna

In the previous article, Srila Prabhupada is describing the nine types of devotional service recommended ….(hearing, chanting, remembering, worshiping, praying, serving, engaging as a servitor of the Lord, establishing friendly relations with the Lord, offering everything to the Lord). These are all easy to practice and should be joyfully performed. So with this in mind we are posting one of Krishna’s unlimited pastimes, to help us in remembering the Lord.

Both the gopīs and Kṛṣṇa entered the water of the Yamunā just to relieve their fatigue from the rāsa dance. The lily flower garlands around the necks of the gopīs were strewn to pieces due to their embracing the body of Kṛṣṇa, and the flowers were reddish from being smeared with the kuṅkuma on their breasts. The bumblebees were humming about in order to get honey from the flowers. Kṛṣṇa and the gopīs entered the water of Yamunā just as an elephant enters a water tank with his many female companions. Both the gopīs and Kṛṣṇa forgot their real identity, playing in the water, enjoying each others’ company and relieving the fatigue of rāsa dancing. The gopīs began to splash water on the body of Kṛṣṇa, all the while smiling, and Kṛṣṇa enjoyed this. As Kṛṣṇa was taking pleasure in the joking words and splashing water, the demigods in the heavenly planets began to shower flowers. The demigods thus praised the superexcellent rāsa dance of Kṛṣṇa, the supreme enjoyer, and His pastimes with the gopīs in the water of Yamunā. (Krsna The Supreme Personality of Godhead Chapter 32)

Image courtsy of Syamarani devi http://www.bhaktiart.net

“Your Bhagavad-gītā reading is perfect. You have taken the essence.”

Remembering Krishna. This is Krishna Consciousness

Bhagavad-gītā 2.1-10 and Talk
by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Los Angeles, November 25, 1968

…It is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā, that we have to try to remember Kṛṣṇa. He’s so beautiful, His instructions are so nice. If we simply remember Kṛṣṇa… That was the perfection approved by Lord Caitanya.

I think I have narrated the story. When Lord Caitanya was traveling in South India in a big temple, Raṅganātha temple, He went to see the Deity, and He saw one brāhmaṇa was reading Bhagavad-gītā. And people were joking him, “Oh, Mr. brāhmaṇa, how you are reading Bhagavad-gītā?” Because they were the neighbors, they knew that this brāhmaṇa was illiterate and he was studying Bhagavad-gītā. So they were joking. But the brāhmaṇa did not about care them. He was taking the book and in his own way he was reading. Caitanya Mahāprabhu saw this incident, He came to the brāhmaṇa. So He asked the brāhmaṇa, “My dear brāhmaṇa, what you are reading?” So he could understand “This persons is not joking with me; He is serious.” So he explained, “My dear sir, I am reading Bhagavad-gītā. Unfortunately, I am illiterate. I do not know even the alphabets.” “Why you are reading Bhagavad-gītā?” So he said that, “My spiritual master knows that I am illiterate, but still, he has asked me to read Bhagavad-gītā. What can I do? Therefore I have taken this book. I am seeing simply. I do not know how to read.” “Oh, that’s all right. You cannot read. But I see that you are crying. How you are crying if you are not reading?” “Yes, I am crying. Of course, there is cause.” “What is that?” “As soon as I take this Bhagavad-gītā, I remember Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is sitting as driver and Arjuna is hearing. I have heard the story. I know something of the instruction but cannot read. So as soon as I take this book, this picture comes before me and I simply think, ‘Oh, how Kṛṣṇa is nice that He has become a charioteer of His devotee. He is so great. Still, He has accepted a menial service of His devotee.’ This gives me so much pleasure that I cry.” Caitanya Mahāprabhu embraced him, “Your Bhagavad-gītā reading is perfect. You have taken the essence.” So this is the thing. If you simply remember Kṛṣṇa is teaching Arjuna and Arjuna is hearing, if you simply remember the picture, that is sufficient. Even if you think that you cannot read. Because after all we have to become Kṛṣṇa conscious. We haven’t got to become a learned man to argue with another learned man. If it is possible we can do that, but that does not make any difference if I cannot argue with others or if I cannot teach very nicely Bhagavad-gītā to others. Simply if I remember this picture, that is perfection. Because we have to become Kṛṣṇa conscious. We have to simply think of Kṛṣṇa. You think in any way. That is your perfection. Smartavyaḥ satataṁ viṣṇuḥ. This is the injunction. You have to think of Viṣṇu always. This is samādhi; this is meditation; this is yoga siddhi, perfection of yoga.

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