The Appearance Day of Advaita Acarya

Today marks the appearance day of Advaita Acarya. We honor it with a half day fast and a reading of the Sixth Chapter from the Adi-lila of the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Full chapter follows:

The truth of Advaita Ācārya has been described in two different verses. It is said that material nature has two features, namely the material cause and the efficient cause. The efficient causal activities are caused by Mahā-Viṣṇu, and the material causal activities are caused by another form of Mahā-Viṣṇu, known as Advaita. That Advaita, the superintendent of the cosmic manifestation, has descended in the form of Advaita to associate with Lord Caitanya. When He is addressed as the servitor of Lord Caitanya, His glories are magnified because unless one is invigorated by this mentality of servitorship one cannot understand the mellows derived from devotional service to the Supreme Lord, Kṛṣṇa.

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The Appearance Day of Srimati Radharani

Srimati Radharani

Today, being the most auspicious day of the appearance of Srimati Radharani, we honor the day with a half day fast, and anxiously await Her hour of appearance, at noon.

Today we post from the Sri Caitanya-caritmrta Madhya-lila 2.18-30 The Lamnentations of Srimati Radharani

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Srimati Radharani The Queen of Vrindavan

Installation Ceremony of Sri Sri Radha Shyamsundar  NJ 2015

Installation Ceremony of Sri Sri Radha Shyamsundar NJ 2015

“Once Lord Krsna considered with His heart: Although My beauty defeats the beauty of ten million cupids, although it is unequalled and unsurpassed and although it gives pleasure to the three worlds, seeing Radharani gives pleasure to My eyes.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta)

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Characteristics of the Bona Fide Guru

bona fide spiritual master Srila Prabhupada

Recently there has been some discussion on the internet about Jayadvaita Swami’s remarks on kirtana standards in his Kirtan Seminar lectures. I cannot repeat here, what he said on the YouTube Lecture, finding it offensive and not worthy of repeating. Rather than dwell on the negetive statements of Jayadvaita Swami, we thought it better to repeat the words of the bona fide spiritual master Srila Prabhupada, who so nicely describes the characteristics of the “Bona Fide Guru” in the pages of the Sri Caitanya-caritmrta.

…The guru must be situated on the topmost platform of devotional service. There are three classes of devotees, and the guru must be accepted from the topmost class. The first-class devotee is the spiritual master for all kinds of people. It is said: gurur nṛṇām. The word nṛṇām means “of all human beings.” The guru is not limited to a particular group. It is stated in the Upadeśāmṛta of Rūpa Gosvāmī that a guru is a gosvāmī, a controller of the senses and the mind. Such a guru can accept disciples from all over the world. Pṛthivīṁ sa śiṣyāt. This is the test of the guru.

…When one has attained the topmost position of mahā-bhāgavata, he is to be accepted as a guru and worshiped exactly like Hari, the Personality of Godhead. Only such a person is eligible to occupy the post of a guru. (purport Madhya 24.330)

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I Worship Govinda

Govinda

The full opulence of the internal potency of Godhead is always resplendent in Vaikuṇṭhaloka, where goddesses of fortune are ever-increasingly attached to serving the lotus feet of the Personality of Godhead. These goddesses of fortune, accompanied by their friends, always create a festive atmosphere of transcendental mirth. Always singing the glories of the Lord, they are not silent even for a moment. ( from purport to: Adi-lila 5.22)

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The Hlādinī Potency

Radha and Krishna

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Here is a new word for your vaisnava vocabulary; hlādinī .  As I was reading from the Caitanya-caritamrta this morning, this word hlādinī was used to describe the pleasure potency of the Lord.  Now keep in mind, that this is all way over my head, but still as an aspiring devotee, I am interested in developing  “Love of God”.  So I find all of Srila Prabhupada’s writings to be wonderfully beneficial.

 

…Hlādinī is the personal manifestation of the blissfulness of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, by which He enjoys pleasure… When the pleasure potency of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is exhibited by His grace in the person of a devotee, that manifestation is called love of God. “Love of God” is an epithet for the pleasure potency of the Lord. Therefore devotional service reciprocated between the Lord and His devotee is an exhibition of the transcendental pleasure potency of the Lord.  (from purport to Adi 4.60)

 

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Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Original 17 Volume Set (1974 Edition) available again!

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta

I happened to go to the Prabhupada News site this morning just to see what was new. So glad I did because I discovered that the original Sri Caitanya-caritamrta’s are back in print again! I was overjoyed to see this and share the links with all of you.

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Original 17 Volume Set (1974 Edition) available again!

Hare Krishna, we have wonderful news. After 20 years of being out of print Srila Prabhupada’s original 17 Volume Sri Caitanya-caritamrta set is now finally available again at www.KrishnaStore.co.uk

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Simply Keep Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu Within the Core of Your Heart

Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu Bhagavad-Gita-Original-Art-Pancha-Tattva1

“May that Lord, who is known as the son of Śrīmatī Śacīdevī, be transcendentally situated in the innermost chambers of your heart. Resplendent with the radiance of molten gold, He has appeared in the age of Kali by His causeless mercy to bestow what no incarnation ever offered before: the most sublime and radiant spiritual knowledge of the mellow taste of His service.”

…He is giving His blessing that “This form of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Hari, may always remain within your…, in the core of your heart.” If we simply keep Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu within our heart, then it will be very easy to understand what is Kṛṣṇa, because if you understand Kṛṣṇa, then your life is successful. Janma karma ca divyaṁ me yo jānāti tattvataḥ. That is only. Our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement means just try to understand Kṛṣṇa; then your life is successful. Kṛṣṇa says, “Anyone who understands Me, why I come here, what is My activities,” tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma [Bg. 4.9], “he becomes liberated. After giving up this body, he does not accept any material body. In his own spiritual body he goes back to home, back to Godhead.” This is our Kṛṣṇa consciousness. (from lecture on Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta Ādi-līlā 1.4)

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Real Opulence

Radha Krsna

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…Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura says: “My real riches are Nityānanda Prabhu and the lotus feet of Śrī Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa.” He further prays, “O Lord, kindly give me this opulence. I do not want anything but Your lotus feet as my property.” (from purport Adi-lila 13.124)

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Krsna’s Sweet Flute Playing Within The Forest of Vṛndāvana

radha-learning-flute-from-krishna

[This is a verse spoken by Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī.] “My dear friend, now I have met My very old and dear friend Kṛṣṇa on this field of Kurukṣetra. I am the same Rādhārāṇī, and now We are meeting together. It is very pleasant, but still I would like to go to the bank of the Yamunā beneath the trees of the forest there. I wish to hear the vibration of His sweet flute playing the fifth note within that forest of Vṛndāvana.”

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The Vibration of Krishna’s Flute

Sri Krishna with flute

“The vibration of His flute is just like a bird that creates a nest within the ears of the gopīs and always remains prominent there, not allowing any other sound to enter their ears. Indeed, the gopīs cannot hear anything else, nor are they able to concentrate on anything else, not even to give a suitable reply. Such are the effects of the vibration of Lord Kṛṣṇa’s flute.” (Madhya-lila 21.144)

…This vibration of Kṛṣṇa’s flute is represented by the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra. A serious devotee of the Lord who chants and hears this transcendental vibration becomes so accustomed to it that he cannot divert his attention to any subject matter not related to Kṛṣṇa’s blissful characteristics and paraphernalia. (from purport)

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The Beauty of Srimati Radharani

Srimati Radharani

The following is a very beautiful verse from the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya-lila 8.166, describing the beauty and fragrance of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī. The purport is a summary translation of the Sri Premāmbhoja-maranda, a song composed by Raghunatha Dasa Goswami, which Kavirāja Gosvāmī quotes, and is given to us by Srila Prabhupada, as described by Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura. The full song follows the text and purport.

“Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī’s transcendental body is brilliant in luster and full of all transcendental fragrances. Lord Kṛṣṇa’s affection for Her is like a perfumed massage. (Madhya 8.166)

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When Service is Rendered in Affection, It is the Lord’s Special Mercy

Lord Krishna and the gopis

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Two Ways to Approach the Lord; Affection & Veneration

“Lord Kṛṣṇa’s mercy is dependent only on affection. Being obliged only by affection, Lord Kṛṣṇa acts very independently. (Cc. Madya 10. 139)

I have been looking for this(above) verse for the longest time. I remember reading this verse and purport a couple of years ago, and could not remember which book of the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta it came from. But today by Krsna’s mercy, I found the verse and purport.

“…Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is merciful, but His mercy does not depend on mundane rules and regulations. He is dependent only on affection and nothing else. Service to Lord Kṛṣṇa can be rendered in two ways. One can serve the Lord in affection or in veneration. When service is rendered in affection, it is the Lord’s special mercy. When service is rendered in veneration, it is doubtful whether Kṛṣṇa’s mercy is actually involved.” (from purport Cc. Madya 10. 139)

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Talks Between Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu and Rāmānanda Rāya

Ramananda Raya from Back to Godhead Magazine

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Not only is this one of my most favorite pictures from the Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, but this is one of the most nectarean chapters as well. This is a continuation from our previous post Drops of Nectar, and includes texts 279-289 from chapter eight of the Madhya-lila entitled “Talks Between Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu and Rāmānanda Rāya”.

Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa is the reservoir of all pleasure, and Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī is the personification of ecstatic love of Godhead. These two forms has combined as one in Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. This being the case, Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu revealed His real form to Rāmānanda Rāya.

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Worship the Lord with Affection

Krsna leaving Vrndavan

“In whatever transcendental mellow My devotee worships Me, I reciprocate with him. That is My natural behavior. (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Adi-lila 4.19)

…The Lord, by His inherent nature, reveals Himself before His devotees according to their inherent devotional service. The Vṛndāvana pastimes demonstrated that although generally people worship God with reverence, the Lord is more pleased when a devotee thinks of Him as his pet son, personal friend or most dear fiance and renders service unto Him with such natural affection. The Lord becomes a subordinate object of love in such transcendental relationships. (from purport)

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Faith in the Words of the Spiritual Master

Founder-Acarya ISKCON

This is another nice verse from the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, on the importance of following strictly the instructions of the spiritual master, and thereby receiving his blessings and mercy. Allowing us to taste the nectar of the Holy Name.

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta 1975
By His Diine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Adi-lila 7. Texts 95-96

ei tāṅra vākye āmi dṛḍha viśvāsa dhari’
nirantara kṛṣṇa-nāma saṅkīrtana kari
sei kṛṣṇa-nāma kabhu gāoyāya, nācāya
gāhi, nāci nāhi āmi āpana-icchāya

ei—this; tāṅra—his (My spiritual master’s); vākye—in the words of; āmi—I; dṛḍha—firm; viśvāsa—faith; dhari’-depend; nirantara—always; kṛṣṇa-nāma—the holy name of Lord Kṛṣṇa; saṅkīrtana—chanting; kari—continue; sei—that; kṛṣṇa-nāma—the holy name of Lord Kṛṣṇa; kabhu—sometimes; gāoyāya—causes Me to chant; nācāya—causes Me to dance; gāhi—by chanting; nāci—dancing; nāhi—not; āmi—Myself; āpana—own; icchāya—will.

TRANSLATION

“I firmly believe in these words of My spiritual master, and therefore I always chant the holy name of the Lord, alone and in the association of devotees. That holy name of Lord Kṛṣṇa sometimes causes Me to chant and dance, and therefore I chant and dance. Please do not think that I intentionally do it. I do it automatically.

PURPORT

A person who cannot keep his faith in the words of his spiritual master but acts independently never receives the authority to chant the holy name of the Lord. It is said in the Vedas (Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad 6.23):

yasya deve parā bhaktir
yathā deve tathā gurau
tasyaite kathitā hy arthāḥ
prakāśante mahātmanaḥ

“Only unto those great souls who have implicit faith in both the Lord and the spiritual master are all the imports of Vedic knowledge automatically revealed.”

This Vedic injunction is very important, and Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu supported it by His personal behavior. Believing in the words of His spiritual master, He introduced the saṅkīrtana movement, just as the present Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement was started with belief in the words of our spiritual master. He wanted to preach, we believed in his words and tried somehow or other to fulfill them, and now this movement has become successful all over the world. Therefore faith in the words of the spiritual master and in the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the secret of success. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu never disobeyed the orders of His spiritual master and stopped propagating the saṅkīrtana movement.

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Singing, Dancing and Chanting the Lord’s Holy Name

Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu

…Lord Caitanya’s movement of Kṛṣṇa consciousness is full of dancing and singing about the pastimes of Lord Kṛṣṇa. It is compared herein to the pure waters of the Ganges, which are full of lotus flowers. The enjoyers of these lotus flowers are the pure devotees, who are like bees and swans. They chant like the flowing of the Ganges, the river of the celestial kingdom. The author desires such sweetly flowing waves to cover his tongue. He humbly compares himself to materialistic persons who always engage in dry talk from which they derive no satisfaction. If they were to use their dry tongues to chant the holy name of the Lord-Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare-as exemplified by Lord Caitanya, they would taste sweet nectar and enjoy life. (from purport to Adi 2.2)

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Chanting the Holy Name of the Lord

Srila Prabhupada showered with flowers

The Following is a very nice verse from the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta about the importance of Chanting the Holy Name of the Lord. Following that is the verse which describes the importance of chanting the names śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya prabhu-nityānanda before chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, and the ten kinds of offenses which should be avoided.

…”Of the nine processes of devotional service, the most important is to always chant the holy name of the Lord. If one does so, avoiding the ten kinds of offenses, one very easily obtains the most valuable love of Godhead.” (Antya-lila 4.71)

Similarly, Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī has praised the chanting of the holy name as follows in his Bṛhad-bhāgavatāmṛta (Chapter One, verse 9)

“All glories, all glories to the all-blissful holy name of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, which causes the devotee to give up all conventional religious duties, meditation and worship. When somehow or other uttered even once by a living entity, the holy name awards him liberation. The holy name of Kṛṣṇa is the highest nectar. It is my very life and my only treasure.”

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Concluding Words from Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta books

For some reason I love reading the Concluding Words of the Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, and find myself reading it again and again. The printing of this English translation is historically, a miraculous achievement, and yet reading Srila Prbhupada’s words and hearing the depth of his humility, is awe inspiring. He gives thanks to his American disciples, and to His Spiritual Master His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura with the following words:

…I think that His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura is always seeing my activities and guiding me within my heart by his words. As it is said in Śrīmad Bhāgavatam, tene brahma hṛdā ya ādi-kavaye. Spiritual inspiration comes from within the heart, wherein the Supreme Personality of Godhead, in His Paramātmā feature, is always sitting with all His devotees and associates. It is to be admitted that whatever translation work I have done is through the inspiration of my spiritual master because personally I am most insignificant and incompetent to do this materially impossible work. I do not think myself a very learned scholar, but I have full faith in the service of my spiritual master, His Divine Grace Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhakura. If there is any credit to my activities of translating, it is all due to His Divine Grace. Certainly if His Divine Grace were personally present at this time, it would have been a great occasion for jubiliation, but even though he is not physically present, I am confident that he is very pleased by this work of translation. He was very fond of seeing many books published to spread the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. Therefore our society, the International Society for Kṛṣṇa Consciousness, has formed to execute the order of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu and His Divine Grace Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhakura.

Although Srila Prabhupada gives all credit to his spiritual master, we give all credit to him. All Glories to Srila Prabhupada!

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The Pastimes of Lord Kṛṣṇa Are the Essence of All Nectar

Krsna and Radharani

…The essence of spiritual knowledge is found in the pastimes of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, which are identical with the pastimes of Lord Kṛṣṇa. This is the essence of knowledge. If knowledge does not include the understanding of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu and Kṛṣṇa, it is simply superfluous. By Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s grace, the nectar of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes is flowing in different directions in hundreds and thousands of rivers. One should not think that the pastimes of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu are different from Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes. It is said: śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya, rādhā-kṛṣṇa nahe anya. Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu is a combination of Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa, and without understanding His pastimes, one cannot understand Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. Śrīla Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura therefore sings: rūpa-raghunātha-pade haibe ākuti kabe hāma bujhaba se yugala pirīti. “When shall I become very eager to study the books left by the six Gosvāmīs? Then I shall be able to understand the conjugal pastimes of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa.” (Purport Madha-lila 25.271)

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Previous Older Entries

108 Imporant Slokas from the 1972 Bhagavad-gita As It Is

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The Hare Krishna Cookbook

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Raja-Vidya the King of Knowledge

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