Spiritual Advancement – The Simple Method

srilaprabhupada1

Spiritual Advancement – The Simple Method
by Padmapani Prabhu

Sometimes it appears very difficult to make advancement in Krsna consciousness, and we become impatient. If we expect immediate results and they aren’t forthcoming, we can easily become discouraged. For those of us who are unable to live in a temple (or even near a temple), this is especially true. So what’s the solution?

In November of 1969, while speaking in London’s Conway Hall, Srila Prabhupada stated the following:

“The process is very simple. Just keep a picture of Lord Caitanya with His associates. Lord Caitanya is in the middle, accompanied by His principal associates — Nityananda, Advaita, Gadadhara, and Srivasa. One simply has to keep this picture. One can keep it anywhere. It is not that one has to come to us to see this picture. Anyone can have this picture in his home, chant this Hare Krsna mantra, and thus worship Lord Caitanya. That is the simple method. But who will capture this simple method? Those who have good brains. Without much bother, if one simply keeps a picture of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu at home and chants Hare Krsna, then one will realize God. Anyone can adopt this simple method. There is no expenditure, there is no tax, nor is there any need to build a very big church or temple. Anyone, anywhere, can sit down on the road or beneath a tree and chant the Hare Krsna mantra and worship God. Therefore it is a great opportunity.”

In this brief statement, Srila Prabhupada underlines the simplicity and accessibility of Krsna consciousness for everyone. Nothing fancy is required. Srila Prabhupada says here that one simply has to chant Hare Krsna, and keep a picture of Lord Caitanya and His associates (Sri Panca-Tattva) in his or her home. “That is the simple method,” he declares. But who will take to it? “Those who have good brains.”

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The Cause of Confusion and Dissension in the Krishna Consciousness Movement

The Hare Krishna Movement

Here is another fine article compiled by Vidura Mahatma Prabhu, which appeared in my mailbox some time back. Some very nice quotes.

The Cause of Confusion and Dissension in the Krishna Consciousness Movement
by Vidura Mahatma Das

“When disciples do not stick to the principle of accepting the order of their spiritual master, immediately there are two opinions. Any opinion different from the opinion of the spiritual master is useless. One cannot infiltrate materially concocted ideas into spiritual advancement. That is deviation. There is no scope for adjusting spiritual advancement to material ideas.” (Caitanya-caritamrta Adi 12.9 purport)

“All the devotees connected with this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement must read all the books that have been translated (Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Bhagavad-gītā and others); otherwise, after some time, they will simply eat, sleep and fall down from their position. Thus they will miss the opportunity to attain an eternal, blissful life of transcendental pleasure.”
(Chaitanya-caritamrta Madhya-lila 25.278 : Purport by Srila Prabhupada)

“The order of the spiritual master is the active principle in spiritual life. Anyone who disobeys the order of the spiritual master immediately becomes useless.” (CC Adi 12.10)

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The Complete Yoga

Srila Prabhupada on Vyasasana

This morning I was reading from the Bhagavad-gita As It Is, the following verse;

teṣāṁ satata-yuktānāṁ
bhajatāṁ prīti-pūrvakam
dadāmi buddhi-yogaṁ taṁ
yena mām upayānti te

To those who are constantly devoted and worship Me with love, I give the understanding by which they can come to Me.

This is one of those verses that years ago I added to my repertoire of memorized slokas, and remains today one of my favorite verses. I have come to realize, that it is not by any great knowledge or scholarship, on my part, that I will make spiritual advancement, but rather, it is by faith and devotion, that I might be able to advance spiritually.

…A person may have a bona fide spiritual master and may be attached to a spiritual organization, but still, if he is not intelligent enough to make progress, then Kṛṣṇa from within gives him instructions so that he may ultimately come to Him without difficulty. The qualification is that a person always engage himself in Kṛṣṇa consciousness and with love and devotion render all kinds of services. He should perform some sort of work for Kṛṣṇa, and that work should be with love. If a devotee is intelligent enough, he will make progress on the path of self-realization. If one is sincere and devoted to the activities of devotional service, the Lord gives him a chance to make progress and ultimately attain to Him. (from purport to Bg. 10.10)

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Women in ISKCON in Prabhupada’s Times

Women in ISKCON-Boston-Devotees-Chanting-Hare-Krishna-in-1968

This is an older article written by Jyotirmayi devi dasi that was originally posted on Chakra back in 1998. We are posting it here just to include it in the archives and history of The Hare Krishna Movement as founded by Srila Prabhupada. There is some very nice historical information, and pertinent insights by a woman practicing within the society.

…By accepting women in the temples and giving them the brahmacarini status, Prabhupada was not pretending: he gave them all the same rights and duties of the brahmacaris in the guru’s ashrama. The same thing applied when he gave them Brahman initiation. The women devotees had exactly the same spiritual activities, the same tasks, the same possibilities to progress spiritually and they were entitled to the same respect. At that time everything was done according to the abilities and the spiritual advancement of a person and not according to sex. Prabhupada did not make any distinction.

Women in ISKCON in Prabhupada’s Times
by Jyotirmayi Devi Dasi
[Originally posted on Chakra on January 22, 1998]

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Sri Sri Krishna Balaram Mandir Kartika Parikrama Schedule

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Sri Sri Krishna Balaram Mandir Kartika Parikrama Schedule
by Deena Bandhu das

Kartika is glorified in the Puranas as very special for making spiritual advancement and the best place to be in Kartika is Sri Braja Dham. In fact this month is known as Damodar, since in the middle of this month, the Lord performed His very enchanting Damodar Lila. Kartika month also represents Radharani, and devotees perform special austerities to gain Her favor.

With great happiness in our hearts, we invite everyone to join in the auspicious Kartika Festival in Vrindavan. We have organized a wonderful variety of parikramas to the Holy Places of Krishna’s pastimes in Braja for all of you.

Almost daily, we will be going by bus leaving in the morning and returning in time for lunch around 3 PM, unless otherwise noted. Sometimes we will also join up with Lokanatha Swami’s Braja Mandala Parikrama and enjoy the association of the many devotees who will be wandering around Braja on foot. Tickets will be available from the newly renovated Welcome Center next to the temple, and all of Srila Prabhupada’s disciples and accompanied family members are free!

The 17th of November is the Holy Disappearance Day Festival of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and we extend a warm invitation to all to come and commemorate this sacred occasion with us in Sri Vrindavan, where His Divine Grace is sitting in Samadhi. Leading up to this day, every evening, senior disciples will be relating their memories of Srila Prabhupada. One day before, we will take Srila Prabhupada in the very same palanquin from 1977 for a grand Sankirtan Procession past all the Goswami temples in Vrindavan.

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Karma-Yoga


Bhagavad-gita As It Is – Macmillan 1972 Edition
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Chapter 3

TEXT 1
arjuna uvāca
jyāyasī cet karmaṇas te
matā buddhir janārdana
tat kiṁ karmaṇi ghore māṁ
niyojayasi keśava

arjunaḥ—Arjuna; uvāca—said; jyāyasī—speaking very highly; cet—although; karmaṇaḥ—than fruitive action; te—your; matā—opinion; buddhiḥ—intelligence; janārdana—O Kṛṣṇa; tat—therefore; kim—why; karmaṇi—in action; ghore—ghastly; mām—me; niyojayasi—engaging me; keśava—O Kṛṣṇa.

TRANSLATION

Arjuna said: O Janārdana, O Keśava, why do You urge me to engage in this ghastly warfare, if You think that intelligence is better than fruitive work?

PURPORT

The Supreme Personality of Godhead Śrī Kṛṣṇa has very elaborately described the constitution of the soul in the previous chapter, with a view to deliver His intimate friend Arjuna from the ocean of material grief. And the path of realization has been recommended: buddhi-yoga, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Sometimes Kṛṣṇa consciousness is misunderstood to be inertia, and one with such a misunderstanding often withdraws to a secluded place to become fully Kṛṣṇa conscious by chanting the holy name of Lord Kṛṣṇa. But without being trained in the philosophy of Kṛṣṇa consciousness, it is not advisable to chant the holy name of Kṛṣṇa in a secluded place where one may acquire only cheap adoration from the innocent public. Arjuna also thought of Kṛṣṇa consciousness or buddhi-yoga, or intelligence in spiritual advancement of knowledge, as something like retirement from active life and the practice of penance and austerity at a secluded place. In other words, he wanted to skillfully avoid the fighting by using Kṛṣṇa consciousness as an excuse. But as a sincere student, he placed the matter before his master and questioned Kṛṣṇa as to his best course of action. In answer, Lord Kṛṣṇa elaborately explained karma-yoga, or work in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, in this Third Chapter.

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Knowledge of Kṛṣṇa’s Appearances and Activities

Kṛṣṇa’s birth, His appearance and disappearance, are likened unto the appearance and disappearance of the sun. In the morning it appears as if the sun is born from the eastern horizon, but actually it is not. The sun is neither rising nor setting; it is as it is in its position. All risings and settings are due to the rotation of the earth. Similarly, in Vedic literatures there are prescribed schedules for the appearance and disappearance of Śrī Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa’s rising is just like the sun. The sun’s rising and setting are going on at every moment; somewhere in the world people are witnessing sunrise and sunset. It is not that at one point Kṛṣṇa is born and at another point He is gone. He is always there somewhere, but He appears to come and go. Kṛṣṇa appears and disappears in many universes. We only have experience of this one universe, but from Vedic literatures we can understand that this universe is but a part of the infinite manifestations of the Supreme Lord.

Raja-vidya: The King of Knowledge
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Chapter 6

Knowledge of Kṛṣṇa’s Appearances and Activities

There are two forces of nature working in us. By one we decide that in this lifetime we will make spiritual advancement, but at the next moment the other force, māyā, or illusory energy, says, “What is all this trouble that you’re going to? Just enjoy this life and be easy with yourself.” This tendency to fall into forgetfulness is the difference between God and man. Arjuna is a companion and associate of Kṛṣṇa’s, and whenever Kṛṣṇa appears on any planet, Arjuna also takes birth and appears with Him. When Kṛṣṇa spoke Bhagavad-gītā to the sun god, Arjuna was also present with Him. But, being a finite living entity, Arjuna could not remember. Forgetfulness is the nature of the living entity. We cannot even remember what we were doing at this exact time yesterday or a week ago. If we cannot remember this, how is it possible to remember what happened in our previous lives? At this point we may ask how it is that Kṛṣṇa can remember and we cannot, and the answer is that Kṛṣṇa does not change His body.

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The Perfect Gentleman

Srila Prabhupada The Perfect Gentleman
By Sriman Padmapani Prabhu

“…we know that as soon as one understands how to deal with God, he will automatically deal very nicely with others.”

“Although there may be some difficulties within our society, these things are not very important. What is important is that we should simply fix our mind on Krishna’s Lotus Feet. This is His instruction in the Bhagavad-gita. So we associate with one another so that we can assist each other in hearing and chanting about Krishna. That is the purpose of our Society.” (Srila Prabhupada letter, November 22, 1974)

On July 29, 1971, Srila Prabhupada was interviewed on television at the University of Gainesville in Florida (which His Divine Grace described as “a remote corner of the world, thousands of miles from the birthplace of Lord Caitanya”).

At one point, Srila Prabhupada was asked the following question:

Interviewer: How would I recognize a true follower of the Krsna consciousness movement by his behavior? What would his traits be? What would his outward expressions be?

Srila Prabhupada: He’d be a very perfect gentleman, that’s all. You could not find any fault in him.

What’s particularly striking about his reply is that Srila Prabhupada never mentioned any external symptoms such as dress, title, social position, or even what religious or spiritual practices one followed. His evidence was the result — or fruit — of spiritual advancement. As he often said, “You can judge a thing by its result.”

Earlier in the conversation, Srila Prabhupada informed the interviewer that, “We are not concerned with how one man deals with another man.” Rather surprised, the interviewer asked, “Isn’t that part of your Krsna consciousness movement?” Srila Prabhupada replied, “No, this is not important because we know that as soon as one understands how to deal with God, he will automatically deal very nicely with others.”

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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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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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