In the Spirit of Cooperation

 

In the Spirit of Cooperation

 

Recently there was a post on Dandavats with a letter (at bottom of post) by the BBT Communications Team trying to justify their attempts to stop the distribution of the newly printed Original Srimad-Bhagavatams that Jitarati Prabhu has printed.  I read the article with some interest, just to hear their argument and justification, for trying to stop the distribution of this fine set.  But what was more interesting to me was the nice comment posted by Padmapani Prabhu.

 

His comment is as follows:

 

Hare Krishna Prabhus. Thank you for airing this matter publicly. I’ve been deluged with inquiries from concerned devotees around the world about this conflict and I’d like to get a better understanding of the details so that I can respond accurately. I was under the impression that devotees had reached an amicable agreement after the last court case that KBI (Krishna Books Inc.) could legally print Srila Prabhupada’s original books, so I was surprised and dismayed to learn that there is yet another court case on the horizon. Surely devotees can somehow or other work this out co-operatively between one another without resorting to expensive lawyers and creating even more bad publicity for Srila Prabhupada’s movement.

 

On a personal note, I’d like to mention that I served with Jitarati Prabhu back in the 70’s in both the Winnipeg and Montreal yatras. Due to Jitarati’s leadership and dedication to sankirtana, the Winnipeg temple was consistently number one in distributing Srila Prabhupada’s books for years in the small temple category. Later Jitarati helped to spearhead large-scale collections for remodeling the old church in Montreal which is now the beautiful home of Sri Sri Radha Manohara. Although I haven’t seen Jitarati Prabhu for at least 40 years, I always remember him as a sincere and devoted disciple of Srila Prabhupada.

 

We all have our own slants in Krishna Consciousness, but Srila Prabhupada repeatedly told us that we should try and work together despite our differences. I know from personal experience in publishing a magazine for devotees back in the 80’s (The Vaisnava Journal) that we can get along no matter how far apart we might be on personal or philosophical issues. Devotees of all persuasions and from all camps — including the GBC — were communicating together on the same page, so I know it can be done. Where there’s a will there’s a way.

 

 

Below are but a few of the many quotes from Srila Prabhupada which I hope will remind us all of the bigger picture and our collective duty to His Divine Grace. Thank you for listening.

 

“Now all my disciples must work combinedly and with cooperation to spread this Sankirtan Movement. If you cannot work together then my work is stopped up. Our Society is like one big family and our relationships should be based on love and trust. We must give up the fighting spirit and use our intelligence to push ahead.” (SPL to Upendra, August 6, 1970)

 

“We have so much work to do, we cannot lose our solidarity.” (SPL to Malati, January 7, 1974)

 

“Let us try to work cooperatively, otherwise the fighting spirit will ruin our great movement.” (SPL to Ramesvara, April 10, 1974)

 

“So we have to all cooperate amongst ourselves, otherwise what will people think if we ourselves fight with one another?” (SPL to Patita Uddharan, December 12, 1974)

 

“Everyone should be friendly for the service of the Lord. Everyone should praise another’s service to the Lord and not be proud of his own service. This is the way of Vaisnava thinking, Vaikuntha thinking. There may be rivalries and apparent competition between servants in performing service, but in the Vaikuntha planets the service of another servant is appreciated, not condemned. This is Vaikuntha competition. There is no question of enmity between servants. Everyone should be allowed to render service to the Lord to his best ability, and everyone should appreciate the service of others. Such are the activities of Vaikuntha. Since everyone is a servant, everyone is on the same platform and is allowed to serve the Lord according to his ability.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.5.12, Purport)

 

 

 

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Dhrtarastras in Every Home

Dhrtarastra inquires from Sanjaya

This morning I did a quick study on Dhrtarastra, the father of the Kurus. This being a political season, the description of Dhrtrastra seems very approiate. I was particularly amused by this statement by Srila Prabhupada from the first canto of the Bhagavatam…

…Five thousand years ago there was one Dhṛtarāṣṭra, but at the present moment there are Dhṛtarāṣṭras in every home. (purport to SB 1.13.24)

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Srila Prabhupada Receives the First Big 1972 original unrevsied Bhagavad Gita As

Srila Prabhupada with first Bhagavad-gita As It Is

Srila Prabhupada Receives the First Big 1972 Original Bhagavad Gita As It Is
by Nanda Kumar Das

One day, when I was first with His Divine Grace in L.A., Brahmananda Prabhu came from New York and they were talking about the printing of a Bhagavad Gita with Sanskrit included. Evidently, there was a question as to whether the western people could pronounce the transliteration with diacritic marks.

Srila Prabhupad rang his bell, and I came into his room. Brahmananda was there. Srila Prabhupad handed me a paper with Sanskrit transliteration and said “Read this!” I have been able to read since I was three, so evidently, I made the pronunciations close enough. Srila Prabhupad said to Brahmananda, with great enthusiasm, “See! I told you they could do it!” He was very happy.

So the printing went on, and in New York, when His Divine Grace was there, Brahmananda brought in the first edition of the big Gita with all the Sanskrit in it. Remembering the LA experience, he very kindly gave the Gita to me, and said “Here, you can give this to Srila Prabhupad.” I was overjoyed, and went to His room to offer it to Him, followed by a photographer. I gave it to Him and said “Here is the first copy of Your new Bhagavad Gita, Srila Prabhupad.”

In His amazing way of innocence and childlike excitement, He took it and held it to His head, saying “Jai! Jai!” It was awesome to be present for such an important and empowering moment. Srila Prabhupad was so kind to me. Even though I was/am a deeply entrenched rascal, He has engaged me so many times in wonderful service. All Glories to Srila Prabhupad!

Nanda Kumar Das

Balarama Rasayatra & Sri Krsna Vasanta Rasa

Rasa Lila

Last night I noticed that the moon was full, and it reminded me that this must be Balarama Rasayatra, or the night that Lord Balarama danced the Rasa dance with the Gopis. It was also Sri Krsna Vasanta Rasa, the Lord’s springtime rasa lila pastime. We honor these pastimes with a chapter from the Krsna Book, entitled “Lord Balarama Visits Vrndavana”.

…Lord Balarāma could, of course, understand the ecstatic feelings of the gopīs, and therefore He wanted to pacify them. He was expert in presenting an appeal, and thus, treating the gopīs very respectfully, He began to narrate the stories of Kṛṣṇa so tactfully that the gopīs became satisfied. In order to keep the gopīs in Vṛndāvana satisfied, Lord Balarāma stayed there continually for two months, namely the months of Caitra (March-April) and Vaiśākha (April-May). For those two months He kept Himself among the gopīs, and He passed every night with them in the forest of Vṛndāvana in order to satisfy their desire for conjugal love. Thus Balarāma also enjoyed the rāsa dance with the gopīs during those two months. Since the season was springtime, the breeze on the bank of the Yamunā was blowing very mildly, carrying the aroma of different flowers, especially of the flower known as kaumudī. Moonlight filled the sky and spread everywhere, and thus the banks of the Yamunā appeared to be very bright and pleasing, and Lord Balarāma enjoyed the company of the gopīs there.

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Teachings of Lord Chaitanya 1968 Edition

1968 Edition of Teachings of Lord Chaitanya

 

With the advent of the Gaura Purnima, or the Appearance day of Lord Caitanya, rapidly approaching, I thought it would be nice to again offer the free pdf file of the Teachings of Lord Chaitanya.  Just click on link to read it online or save it to your computer.  Hare Krishna!

 

Teachings-of-Lord-Chaitanya-original-1968

Transcendental Teachings of Prahlada Maharaja

Transcendental_Teachings_of_Prahlad_Maharaj-original-cover

For some reason (supersoul, I guess), I have been reading the “Transcendental Teachings of Prahlada Maharaja”. There are so many books on my shelves, but I searched for this small paper back book amongst the many small books in our library. We have included it here today as a post. You can also download it as a free pdf file, or as a scanned pdf of the original. Just click on following links to download.

Transcendental Teachings of Prahlad Maharaj 1973 Original

Transcendental_Teachings_of_Prahlad_Maharaj-Original_book-SCAN

The following is based on a series of talks Śrīla Prabhupāda gave in 1968 on the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Canto 7, Chapter 6.

Transcendental Teachings of Prahlāda Mahārāja
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

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Srila Prabhupada’s Books

Srila Prabhupada's Books

First of all, let me offer my humble, respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of my spiritual master, His Divine Grace Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Gosvāmī Prabhupāda. Sometime in the year 1935 when His Divine Grace was staying at Rādhā-kuṇḍa, I went to see him from Bombay. At that time, he gave me many important instructions in regard to constructing temples and publishing books. He personally told me that publishing books is more important than constructing temples. Of course, those same instructions remained within my mind for many years. In 1944 I began publishing my Back to Godhead, and when I retired from family life in 1958 I began publishing Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam in Delhi. When three parts of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam had been published in India, I then started for the United States of America on the thirteenth of August, 1965.

I am continuously trying to publish books, as suggested by my spiritual master. Now, in this year, 1976, I have completed the Seventh Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, and a summary of the Tenth Canto has already been published as Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Still, the Eighth Canto, Ninth Canto, Tenth Canto, Eleventh Canto and Twelfth Canto are yet to be published. On this occasion, therefore, I am praying to my spiritual master to give me strength to finish this work. I am neither a great scholar nor a great devotee; I am simply a humble servant of my spiritual master, and to the best of my ability I am trying to please him by publishing these books, with the cooperation of my disciples in America. Fortunately, scholars all over the world are appreciating these publications. Let us cooperatively publish more and more volumes of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam just to please His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura.

by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
from Summary to the 8th Canto, Chapter 1

Kindly Help Me2

No Change

Bhagavad-Gita_As_It_Is…That is the gift of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu. It is in the śāstra. Caitanya Mahāprabhu does not give you anything which is not in the śāstra. He’s ācārya, although He’s God Himself. He can make śāstra. Whatever He does, whatever He speaks, that is śāstra. But still, because He’s playing the part of ācārya, He immediately gives Vedic evidences. That is the way of ācārya. Ācāryas will never say, “I think.” “It is in my opinion.” No. Such things are not accepted. No personal opinion. It must be supported by Vedic evidences. That is called paramparā system, genuine system of understanding. As Kṛṣṇa says, evaṁ paramparā-prāptam imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ [Bg. 4.2]. No change. Therefore we are presenting Bhagavad-gītā as it is. We do not change. We have no power to change. Then where is the authority of Bhagavad-gītā? I am a third-class man, and if I change the statements in the Bhagavad-gītā, then where is the authority of Bhagavad-gītā? That is going on. Therefore it is practically… You have got experience that there are hundreds of Bhagavad-gītā editions in the Western countries, but because we are presenting Bhagavad-gītā as it is, our sale is better than all others. There is a report from the trade manager of Macmillan. He says, “While other editions are dwindling, going down, this edition is coming up.” They published our, this present enlarged edition of Bhagavad-gītā, fifty thousand in the month of August. They are going to print again, second edition, August, September, October. So the reason is that if we present things as they are, it will be accepted. Without any adulteration. Sometimes, you know, people say that I have done miracles. They say everywhere. But I do not know anything, miracles or magic. If there is any miracle, that miracle is that we present things as they are. That’s all. Without any adulteration. So that should be the principle. Present as it is. It will be accepted.

excerpted from a lecture on the Srimad Bhagavatam 1.2.11  Vrindavan India October 22, 1972

 

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Changes

Srila Prabhupada

“I am not much fond of the idea of changing things to accommodate the
public — better to change the public to accommodate us.”

(Letter to Bali-mardana — Bombay, December 28, 1971)

“The standards I have already given you, now try to maintain them at
all times under standard procedure. Do not try to innovate or create
anything or manufacture anything, that will ruin everything. Simply do
as I am doing and be always serious and sincere to serve Krsna, and He
will give you intelligence how to do everything.”

(Letter to Bali-mardana, Pusta Krsna — Los Angeles, September 18, 1972)

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Asssociate Derectly with Srila Prabhupada by Reading His Books

Book distribution to the masses

Sometime back I saw this article on the Prabhupada News website that I saved to my files because it is a good assortment of quotes.

 

You Can Directly Associate With Srila Prabhupada by Reading His Books

compiled by Mahesh Raja

 

…. it is described here that ONE HAS TO ASSOCIATE WITH LIBERATED PERSONS NOT DIRECTLY, PHYSICALLY, BUT BY UNDERSTANDING, THROUGH PHILOSOPHY AND LOGIC, THE PROBLEMS OF LIFE.  (Srimad-Bhagavatam – 3.31.48 Purport)

 

 Prabhupada:   JUST FOLLOW HIS ORDER. SPIRITUAL MASTER IS ALONG WITH YOU BY HIS WORDS. Just like my spiritual master is not physically present, but I am associating with him by his words.  (Lecture – London, August 18, 1971)

 

 

 

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Over 78000 Copies of Bhagavad-gita Distributed During Book Marathon

Srila Prabhupada with Books

I am always happy to see Srila Prabhupada’s books being distributed. When I saw this book distribution report on facebook, I couldn’t help but post it here. ISKCON Bangalore seems to be doing an outstanding job distributing these transcendental books, and in 5 different languages as well! Very inspiring. Glories to all of Srila Prabhupada’s book distributors. Hare Krishna!

Over 78000 Copies of Gita Distributed During Book Marathon

The book marathon program of ISKCON Sri Radha Krishna temple, Bangalore which commenced on 7th Dec 2014 during the auspicious occasion of Gita Jayanti, went on till 8th Feb 2015 and concluded with a prize distribution ceremony on 15th Feb, 2015.

Book distribution is one of the major activities of ISKCON centers around the world as it was the desire of Srila Prabhupada, the founder-acharya of ISKCON to spread the teachings of Vedic literature all over the world by distributing his books to the people at large as ordered by his spiritual master, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura. In fact, Srila Prabhupada considered it as his life and soul. He instructed, guided and encouraged his disciples to engage in book distribution more and more and that would please him very much.

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Conversations with George Harrison

George-Harrison-and-Srila-Prabhupada

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Conversations with George Harrison
London, England – July 26, 1976

Srila Prabhupada: “Are you reading sometimes my books? Which one?”

George Harrison: “Mainly Krsna.”

Srila Prabhupada: “That is the main book.” [laughs)

George Harrison: “Mukunda gave me the new books, but there’s so much to read.”

Srila Prabhupada: “Philosophy.”

George Harrison: “I don’t know how anybody could have written it, it’s is difficult to read all that amount”

Srila Prabhupada: “Sometimes, they are surprised how one man can write so many books, but it is Krsna’ s grace. Otherwise, not possible. Human being, it is not possible.”

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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)

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The First Step in God Realization

Sukadeva Goswami

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Canto Two, Chapter One

The First Step in God Realization

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Bhagavad-gita As It Is 1972 Edition

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Srila Prabhupada on Editing His Books

Book distribution

This is an older compilation of quotes and excerpts that first appeared on BookChanges.com back in 2009. I do not think one can overemphasize the importance of the Book Change issue.

For instance the way Arjuna accepted the Bhagavad-gita from Krsna was: “O Krishna, I totally accept as truth all that you have told me… ” [Bhagavad-gita 10.14]

This is the way of receiving transcendental knowledge.

Just this morning on Sampradaya Sun there was an article with this quote:

“Service means you must take order from the master. That is service. Otherwise it is mental concoction. Actually, the servant requests, “How can I serve you?” So when the master orders, “You serve me like this,” then you do that, that is service. And if you manufacture your service, that is not service. That is your sense gratification. Yasya prasādād bhagavat-prasādaḥ. You have to see how he is pleased. Now if he wants a glass of water and if you bring a nice glass of milk, you can say milk is better than water, you take it. That is not service. He wants water, you give him water. Don’t manufacture better thing.” (Lecture, Bhagavad-gita 15.15, August 5, 1976, New Mayapur, France)

So in the interest of preserving the words of our spiritual master we present this compilation of quotes. Some highlight editing has been done by me. -Vyasasan das

Srila Prabhupada on Editing His Books
Excerpted quotes by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

The Principle is No Change

“One should accept the instructions of the Supreme Personality of Godhead by bowing down at the lotus feet of the Lord. This means that anything spoken by the Personality of Godhead should be taken as it is, with great care and attention and with great respect. It is not our business to amend the words of the Supreme Personality of Godhead or make additions or alterations, as it has become a custom for many so-called scholars and swamis who comment on the words of Bhagavad-gita. Here the practical example of how to accept the instruction of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is shown by Prthu Maharaja. This is the way to receive knowledge through the parampara system.” (Purport SB 4.20.17)

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1979 Interview with Ramesvara Prabhu

Srila Prabhupada with Ramesvara

click on image to enlarge

In case anyone missed this important 1979 interview with Ramesvara Prabhu, on the History of ISKCON, Book Changes, Book Publication, etc., etc. We are re-posting again.

Testimonial by Ramesvara dasa
Ramesvara-interview-1979

A very, very important document has just become public. It is a 300+ page transcript of a 1979 interview betweem Baladeva Vidyabhusana Prabhu and Ramesvara Prabhu, the manager of the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, the person who was directly in charge of printing Srila Prabhupada’s books durning that time. Ramesvara had many direct instructions from Srila Prabhupada in regard to printing his books, and he also gives an eye-witness account of many events that took place while Srila Prabhupada was physically present. Very interesting read!!!

You can download the PDF file of the interview by clicking on: Ramesvara-interview-1979

Or you can read the entire interview here… More

I Have Instructed Everything in My Books

 Srila Prabhupada  LA Garden

Here are some nice quotes stressing the importance of reading Srila Prabhupada’s books.

One has to associate with liberated persons not directly, physically, but by understanding, through philosophy and logic, the problems of life.
(SB 3.31.48)

What we have heard from the spiritual master, that is living.
(Lecture Excerpt – Los Angeles, January 13, 1969)

In my books the philosophy of Krishna Consciousness is explained fully so if there is anything which you do not understand, then you simply have to read again and again. By reading daily the knowledge will be revealed to you and by this process your spiritual life will develop.…You may please me the most by reading my books and following the instructions therein and by becoming fully Krishna Conscious in this life time.
(Letter to: Bahurupa Bombay 74-11-22)

I have instructed everything in my books.
(Letter to: Dina Dayala Mayapur 76-02-25)

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Transcendental Knowledge is Received by Hearing/Reading Srila Prabhupada’s Books

Srila Prabhupada Translating

This is a nice post put together by Krishna Path entitled “Accepting the Line of Disciplic Succession”, with some slight editing (highlighting) done by us. What is particularly nice about it, are the Quotes at bottom stressing the importance of reading Srila Prabhupada’s books.

So there is nothing to be said new. Whatever I have to speak, I have spoken in my books. Now you try to understand it and continue your endeavor. Whether I am present or not present, it doesn’t matter. (Arrival Speech – May 17, 1977, Vrndavana)

So although a physical body is not present, the vibration should be accepted as the presence of the spiritual master, vibration. What we have heard from the spiritual master, that is living. (Lecture Excerpt – Los Angeles, January 13, 1969)

So utilize whatever time you find to make a thorough study of my books. Then all your questions will be answered. (Letter to: Upendra – Nellore 7 January, 1976)

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“Kindly Help Me” (Free Download)

Kindly Help Me1

Front Cover

We are pleased to offer this new book; “Kindly Help Me”, for free pdf download.

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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

Songs of the Vaisnava Acaryas

Bhagavad-gita As It Is 1972 Edition “Online”

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Srimad Bhagavatam 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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