His Grace Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Lecture:  Srimad Bhagavatam 7.3.18

Denver, Colorado - 17 January 2005 

om namo bhagavate vasudevaya
om namo bhagavate vasudevaya
om namo bhagavate vasudevaya

Srimad-Bhagavatam Canto Seven, Chapter 3, Hiranyakasipu's Plan to Become Immortal, Text number 18.

adraksham aham etam te
hrit-saram mahad-adbhutam
prana hy asthishu serate


adraksham -- have personally seen; aham -- I; etam -- this; te -- your; hrit-saram -- power of endurance; mahat -- very great; adbhutam -- wonderful; damsa-bhakshita -- eaten by worms and ants; dehasya -- whose body; pranah -- the life air; hi -- indeed; asthishu -- in the bones; serate -- is taking shelter.

Translation and purport by Srila Prabhupada. 

I have been very much astonished to see your endurance. In spite of being eaten and bitten by all kinds of worms and ants, you are keeping your life air circulating within your bones. Certainly this is wonderful.


It appears that the soul can exist even through the bones, as shown by the personal example of Hiranyakasipu. When great yogis are in samadhi, even when their bodies are buried and their skin, marrow, blood and so on have all been eaten, if only their bones remain they can exist in a transcendental position. Very recently an archaeologist published findings indicating that Lord Christ, after being buried, was exhumed and that he then went to Kashmir. There have been many actual examples of yogis' being buried in trance and exhumed alive and in good condition several hours later. A yogi can keep himself alive in a transcendental state even if buried not only for many days but for many years. [end of purport]


om ajnana-timirandhasya
cakshur unmilitam yena
tasmai sri-gurave namah


Some years ago, one boy in the temple who had spent some time in India told us that he read a newspaper article that some yogis were buried alive.  In order to meditate in an undisturbed condition, they had themselves buried  alive underground.  But then somebody came along to put up a building there.  They were excavating.  They were digging and the yogis were dug up and their meditation was broken.  They were very very angry.  It was in the newspaper in India, a true story.  That confirms what we're reading here, in the Srimad-Bhagavatam, that even nowadays, there are yogis who can bury themselves underground for quite a while.  They must have been there for some time.  One may ask, well this is very interesting, but I thought we were trying to cultivate Krishna consciousness.  Why are we hearing about yogis being buried underground?  One might ask why is Prabhupada even telling us about this.  I thought we were trying to develop krishna-bhakti, no desire for karma jnana or yoga.  Then why are we hearing about how great the yogis are. 


There is one obvious answer.  Even though we are not trying to cultivate this type of yoga, which is very very difficult, especially in this example from India where they got dug up.  But, it does illustrate the non material existence of the soul.  This is a very important point.  This is another proof that we are not this body.  Prabhupada doesn't speak anything whimsically.  Every single word, every single purport has a very potent and poignant purpose for being there.


What we have to understand is what is our actual identity.  Even though we know we're not this body, we still think that we're the body.  We feel that we're our bodies.  This is the difference between theoretical and practical realization.  We can say, Yeah!  I'm not the body.  But, then, we may look in the mirror and ask, I'm I aging now, do I look older?  We may sometimes do that, which is an illusion.  Theoretically, we can say I'm not the body, but we still feel that I am the body.  That's a problem.  It means we're lacking practical realization.


As we're reading in the Madhurya-kadambini, one who has actually received the perfection of Krishna consciousness, they are so far beyond the bodily conception, that even when they die, they may not know.  The body just drops off and they're not even aware of it.  That's on the highest possible level one could achieve, to come to that state.  In the middle, as we're struggling to advance along the pathway, how can we get more solidly situated?  This is what we need to know.


What is the purpose of this Bhagavatam class?  The purpose is that the devotees can become trained up, how to become more solidly fixed in Krishna consciousness.  That's why we have the morning class.  That's why Prabhupada said boil the milk until it becomes thick and sweet.  We keep pouring more milk into the pot, without boiling it down, then we will never get burfi.  You make burfi, you have to keep boiling down boiling down, boiling down, finally you get nice burfi.  You keep adding more milk, then you'll never get the burfi.


Prabhupada wants that this morning class should go on regularly.  All the devotees should attend, so that we can get very good training and understanding of how to advance nicely in Krishna consciousness.  The external things that are going on, the shopping, this activity, that activity, these are all important, but the very most important thing is, as Prabhupada said, that we save ourselves from illusion.  The most important thing is to save the world, but even more important is to save yourself. 


The activities we are doing are most important.  Distributing books, buying the bhoga, distributing prasada, worshiping the Deities, all these external activities are most important for saving the world, but even more important is saving ourselves.  That's most important.  That's why our japa is of the utmost importance, attending mangala arati, attending the Bhagavatam class.  We have to cultivate the inner advancement of our Krishna consciousness.  Externally, we also want to become more expert.  Be better at distributing books.  Be better at doing our service whatever that may be.  That we want to improve.  We should not neglect the internal growth.  That comes by hearing especially.  Hearing the Bhagavatam.  Cultivate the internal development of our Krishna consciousness.  Study Prabhupada's books.   Hearing in the association of devotees.  To hear is actually more important that to read silently on our own. 


Both are important, but this is the most important thing, that we sit and study Prabhupada's books together.  This is more potent than studying on our own.    So, as Prabhupada says, it appears the soul can exist, even through the bones, because its beyond the body.  Prabhupada means exist in an embodied sense, because the soul of course, exists even without the bones. 


There's two types of souls.  There's an embodied soul and a liberated soul, totally situated in the spiritual body.  He is disembodied in the material sense.  So, when Prabhupada says it appears the soul can exist even in the bones, it means that a soul can be a materially embodied soul, even if there's only bones and nothing else left.  Of course, one has to be very expert to do that. Many people have tried to do that.  Did you know that?  There's many people who try to exist through their bones, but they're not able to.  Did you know that?  Ghosts.  The body is buried in the cemetery  Gradually, it rots and falls apart, and turns into dust and just the bones are lying there in the coffin.  The living being will still hover over there, with a desire to exist through his bones.  He's not able to.  One has to be very expert and advanced, to be able to maintain one's life air just within the bones.  Highly advanced yogis or ascetics like Hiranyakasipu are the only ones who can do that. 


Of course, its a futile thing.  That's why in India, we see that they cremate.  There's no sense in trying to do that.  What's the advantage?  Hiranyakasipu did it, because he had a very strong material desire.  He was able to create a disturbance in the universe, even just keeping his life air within his bones.  Brahmaji had to come and say, ok, tell me what you want.  I will give it to you.  That's futile.  Its a material desire.  So, therefore, we have our bodies cremated.  That is our system in Vedic culture.  Cremation.  We don't want to have any attachment left so that I subtlely hover around my dead body, thinking that I can maintain my existence in the body.  Let the body be cremated.  Let the ashes be thrown in the Ganga.  Then I can go on to my next destination, without any entanglement. 


Still, in spite of that, people come back and try to enjoy this material world again.  There is one wealthy man.  He took birth again as a pauper in the very same neighborhood.   He went back to his own house, to beg alms.  His own children, were chastising him.  He was coming back to his own house to beg some of his own wealth he had accumulated as a beggar.  They were just treating him like dirt.  Get out of here you rascal!  So, instead of coming back to this material world, because of material attachment, we should try to simply become completely attached to Krishna.  Become completely attached to Sri guru and Sri Krishna.  This is our Krishna consciousness movement.


We don't want to hover in this material existence, trying to live in this place of our material attachments.  People, who think like that, take their land of birth to be sacred. 

Yasyatma-buddhih kunape tri-dhatuke
Sva-dhih kalatradisu bhauma ijya-dhih

In this way they take their place of their birth as a holy place.  I actually heard this confirmed some years ago.  When I was working a job.  During the Christmas break, there was a boy in our office from Detroit who said, I'm going back to the holy land for Christmas break.  This fact was actually confirmed.  They take the place of their birth to be a sacred place.  They want to go back and see where they grew up and rode their tricycle around the block.  Oh, its a sacred place.  Where did I ride that kiddy bicycle with the training wheels.  Let me see that neighborhood.  That holy tirtha.


We know what the Bhagavatam says about such a mentality: sa eve go-kharah.  They are simply in the mood of cow and ass.  They take this bodily bag which is made of three elements kapha pitta and vayu.  If they take that to be the very self, they are also in the category of cow and ass.  If they go to a holy place of pilgrimage to simply take a bath there, without wanting to hear from the sages, they are considered a cow or an ass.  Or if they come to the iskcon Denver Hare Krishna temple simply to see the Deities and they don't want to really hear the speaker who's giving class, I noticed that last night.


  Their are many people coming here, who just sit there and they looking at the Deities, like they couldn't care less.  When will this be over?  They were just riveted on the Deities, not caring what points were being made in the class.  Even people in the temple or holy place, i.e. Hindus, spiritualists who have some degree of spirituality, if they're not eager to actually hear from the sages, the devotees of the Lord, who are teaching bhagavat-dharma, in that temple, or in that holy place, they're in the category of cow and ass.  I have noticed so many cows and asses sitting in the audience at the program.  They didn't really give a damn what was being spoken.  They just wanted to sit, and look at the Deities, as if the lecture wasn't even happening.  It was as if I wasn't even there.  There is no lecture going on.  They just totally blocked it out of their consciousness. 


We should not be in this category of cow and ass.  Haven't we been a cow and ass for enough lifetimes?  Do you realize you've been a cow and an ass in previous lifetimes?  We've been cow.  We've been ass.  Why shall we try to be a cow and an ass again?  This doesn't make much sense.  We've already tried it, and we didn't like it.  How would you like to be an ass again?  Hee Haw Hee Haw!  Braying up and down the village streets with your advanced philosophy, Hee Haw Hee Haw!  Thinking, Oh, I'm such a great philosopher.  Finally you're labeled a disturbance, and they give you a kick, they give you a hit. 


We see that in India, they load them down with a huge burden of bricks.  The little donkey is caving in.  He can barely even stand up.  He's being pressed into the earth by such a huge weight.  If we don't want to become a donkey, or an ass, in your next birth, then make sure that when you come to the temple, that you are very eager to hear and learn what is this sublime philosophy.  Srimad-Bhagavatam.  Become very very eager. 


We're meant to be enthusiastic.  That's what we're meant to be.  Not lethargic.  Prabhupada very much encouraged me in this principle of enthusiasm when I first wrote him in 1971.  I had gotten initiated.  Prabhupada had actually chanted on my beads in London, and accepted me has a disciple in the mail.  In August 12th, 1971, he accepted me.  He mailed me my japa beads and had the local leader, Visnujana Maharaja, do the yajna.  Prabhupada wasn't able to come.  He was on his way to Africa, so he wanted me to get initiated.  I couldn't wait for him to come back. 


I collected some daksina for the yajna and mailed it to Prabhupada.  I don't remember what exactly I said in this letter, but it was my first chance to write a letter to Prabhupada in my life.  It was a great moment that I would get to have an audience with Prabhupada via the mail. I must have said something that I wanted to spread Krishna consciousness.  I must have told Prabhupada that, because he wrote me back.  He said, I see that you are very sincere and enthusiastic boy, very eager to spread this Krishna consciousness movement.  He said, continue enthusiastically in this way, surely Krishna will bless you. 


That order has been reverberating in my heart ever since.  Its never stopped echoing in my heart.  Prabhupada ordered me to be enthusiastic.  Its an order.  You be enthusiastic.  My guru's order.  Whatever order you receive from your spiritual master, you have to take it on your head, as your very life and soul.  Prabhupada ordered me to always be enthusiastic. 


We've seen so many ups and downs since I've joined this Krishna consciousness movement now.  34 years ago.  So many ups and downs.  Ups and downs.  When Prabhupada was here, there were ups and downs.  When Prabhupada left there were ups and downs.  Ups and downs are always going on, isn't it so?  Don't we have a lot of ups and downs in this Krishna consciousness movement?  Prabhupada's order is not up and down.  The order of the spiritual master is not up and down, its always unlimitedly up. 


If we take hold of it, its pulling us up.  We're going on an upward ride.  Straight up to Krishna.  Prabhupada ordered me to always be enthusiastic.  This is a very important thing  utsaha.  Also, Rupa Gosvami said that is the first principle, utsaha.  Enthusiasm.  First principle: utsaha.  The very first thing is always be fired up.  Always be enthusiastic.  Don't let anything ever bring you down.  If you hold on to Prabhupada's instructions, hold on to your guru maharaja's instructions, then nothing will ever bring you down in any time, any place, or any situation.  You'll always be enlivened, ecstatic in Krishna consciousness. 


Isn't that what we're really looking for?  Isn't that why we joined this movement?  That we will always be ecstatic?  Who would like to be morose today?  Anybody would like to volunteer to be depressed today?  Would you like, mataji, to be depressed today?  No?  Why not?  Its no fun, is it?  Its a bummer, as they say.  Its a real bummer.   Who wants to be depressed.  If we actually want to be ecstatic and enlivened, all we have to do is hang on to Prabhupada's lotus feet.  Take the instructions he's giving us in his wonderful books, follow the system of krishna-bhakti that he's giving us, and magic happens. 


Even though, all chaos may be going on around us, we have that order of Srila Prabhupada that keeps us sane.  Devotees go to the airport to distribute books.  There's complete chaos in all directions.  In all directions, north, west, east, south, up and down.  Every single angle is chaos on all sides.  But, you have the order of Srila Prabhupada, to remember Krishna and tell people about Krishna.  SO, even though, you're in the middle of complete chaos, you walk right in the mouth of Aghasura, and there you are inside of Aghasura, but look at what as happened.  Krishna has come marching in.  He's right there with you inside of Aghasura, and He's going to blow Aghasura to smithereens. 


Actually, we're protected by Krishna at every minute, if we just take shelter of the orders coming down the parampara system.  We have our guru.  We have our parama guru.  There's a whole line of disciplic succession.  If we just connect with this guru-parampara system, then we are fixed at the lotus feet of every single acarya in the entire line of disciplic succession.  Prabhupada explains in one purport that Prahlada Maharaja is our guru.  If you take shelter of the parampara system, under the lotus feet of your initating guru, then you're actually connecting with every single guru of the entire line.  Srila Prabhupada, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta, Gaurakisora dasa Babaji Maharaja, Bhaktivinoda Thakura, Jagannatha dasa Babaji, all the way to Narottama dasa Thakura, Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura.  All the great acaryas even those who are not directly in the line.  Prahlada Maharaja, Arjuna.  We're connected with every single Vaisnava acarya, when we follow the order of our guru Maharaja very sincerely. 


This Krishna consciousness movement is quite revolutionary.  I ask you this.  Would you prefer to live a humdrum boring depressing semi existence, or would you rather live on the cutting edge, the vanguard of world history as a spiritual-revolutionary?  What would you prefer?  Would you rather be a spiritual-revolutionary, on the cutting edge, the vanguard of world history, or would you rather live a boring humdrum monotonous depressing semi-existence?  What would you prefer?  Humdrum boring, or cutting edge spiritual-revolutionary?  Which would you like? 


Spiritual Revolutionary.  That's why I joined this movement.  I couldn't stand the boring depressing mundane, humdrum semi-existence that the material society was offering me.   I could not hack it at all.  It looked to me so bad, I was living in 1271 Lafayette street.  I said, I'm going to India and be one of those mendicants.  All I will do is wander around to different holy places.  That's what I have to do with my life.  I can't hack this material world. 


But, at the last minute before I headed out, I got this inspiration.  I was supposed to go to San Francisco instead. I got there and walked into Golden Gate park, and who did I see?  Here comes the harinama party.  (Laughing)  It was like right out of some movie.  It was really mystical.  They just came back from hippie hill, this huge beautiful harinama party.  It was extraordinary to see them actually, dancing men and women in these beautiful flowing robes.  It was a really amazing sight.  Of course, it took me a while.  I was very materially attached. 


Gradually, gradually, over a period of two years, Krishna was working on me.  You know the technique they have for deep sea fishing?  When you reel in a huge fish in deep sea fishing, the actual technique is don't just start reeling them in because those are very strong fish.  They can easily break the line and pull the fishing rod right out of your hand.  What they do is reel them in but when you feel them fighting, let them go the opposite direction so that he doesn't realize he's being reeled in.  That way, they actually let the line go out.  The deep sea fishermen have reels with long lines so the fish can go out and feel that he's free.  He doesn't realize that he's captured.  He gradually gradually, by give and take, little by little you get him and pull him into the boat.  He wonders how did this happen?  How did I get captured?


That's how I got ensnared within the network of Prabhupada's lotus feet.  It was like I was going out, getting gradually gradually brought in over a couple year period.  This truly the place to be.  This Krishna consciousness movement.  This is really where its at if you want to live a life that's worth living.  There's no life worth living outside of Krishna consciousness.  There is none.  Srama eva hi kevalam, it is simply a useless waste of time to live a life outside of Krishna consciousness. 


Don't ever think about leaving.  Don't ever think about leaving.


If there is any difficulty, you approach senior devotees to help you with the difficulty.  Keep yourself humble.  Don't be so proud that you can't take help if you have difficulty.  Keep yourself humble so that if you're having difficulty, you can approach an older devotee for help.  The duty of the older devotees is to be very merciful.  An older devotee means merciful.  If they're not merciful, they're not really a senior devotee.  They may have years under their belt, but the real meaning of a senior devotee, is a devotee who is very kind and merciful. 


If we're having difficulty, then we should approach someone who is an ocean of mercy.  Find the devotee who is an ocean of mercy, who can understand the difficulty we're going through, and who can give us their love and their kindness to help us through that difficulty.  We should never be so proud that we can't approach someone.  That could be our initiating guru, or it can be a temple president, or any older devotee.  We can approach to help us, so that we do not fall down into maya's grip. 


In this way, we can actually realize the state of consciousness even greater than what was achieved by Hiranyakasipu.  Instead of just existing, within our bones, we can fully exist outside of the bones altogether.  That's even bigger of an accomplishment then Hiranyakasipu.  Become a pure devotee.  Then you can be beyond the bones, and even beyond the subtle body, which the ghosts exist in.  A devotee purely exists in the spiritual body, beyond the subtle or gross bodies. 


Take this process very seriously and I absolutely assure you, or as I've been offering this week, $10,000 cash I'll give you, if you sincerely take up this process, and you do not achieve your spiritual body, I will give you $10,000 cash.  Pretty serious bloop money, huh?  But, actually I trust that you will sincerely take up Krishna consciousness, and I know for a fact, otherwise, I would have to go bankrupt, because I would max out my credit card.  I have sixty thousand dollars worth of credit, but it would just take six people to put me in the pauper's prison.  (laughter.) 


I have full faith that anybody who sincerely takes up Krishna consciousness will actually regain their original spiritual form, svarupa-siddhi as mentioned in the Bhagavad-Gita Introduction.  They will achieve the perfection of regaining their eternal spiritual body. 


I know for a fact that Prabhupada lie or say foolish words.  Prabhupada is the fully enlightened greatest spiritual master in the history of the world, every word he spoke is gospel truth, as good as the words of Krishna, because Krishna dictates to Prabhupada every single word in his purports.  These words in the purports are actually the words of Krishna, and Prabhupada is just the one who took the dictation from Krishna, what to say. 

Of course Krishna wants us to give credit to Prabhupada.  That's the system.  Its described in the 3d canto of Bhagavatam that Krishna likes to see His devotee as the hero of some episode of which He Himself is the doer.  So, Krishna's actually doing everything, just like Lord Caitanya could have easily spread Krishna consciousness all over the world, so why didn't He do it?  He's God Himself.  Why did He stay only in India.  Prabhupada said its because He wanted that I should get the credit. 

Just see what dear disciple of all the unlimited number of devotees in the spiritual world, one particular devotee is chosen to be the one to do what even Krishna Himself did not do.  Just try to understand how special Srila Prabhupada is in the eyes of Krishna. 


There are so many great acaryas in the history of the world, the six gosvamis, Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, so many great great acaryas, but there was one very special acarya who was chosen by Krishna to be the one who would take Krishna consciousness all over the world.  We are the fortunate persons who have gotten the opportunity to take shelter at his lotus feet. 


Never underestimate your great unlimited good fortune for being a member of Prabhupada's movement.  Never underestimate it. 


Are there any questions?  Yes, mataji. 


Devotee 1:  We're always trying to hear properly.  Susrushoh sraddadhanasya.  But so often we are distracted in that attempt.


SDA:  There's a lot of static going on.  Its like a radio station.  If you're not completely tuned in, if you're pretty close to being tuned in, you get the broadcast, but you also get a lot of static.  So, we may find, that if we're trying to hear, but we may be falling asleep, or thinking about something else, that's a natural thing for a neophyte devotee.  We have to all work through it.  How do we work through that, where we can fine tune our consciousness, or even laser focus our consciousness, so that the static goes away, the distractions become more and more subdued.  How do we do that?  Is that your question?  That's an excellent question.  There's an old saying.  Practice makes perfect.  Any activity, if we want to perfect it, we have to do it on a regular basis.  That's why we have the regular Bhagavatam class every day. 


If we train ourselves every day, that I'm going to sit down in class in such a state of mind, that I can stay awake, and hear what's being said.  I'm well rested enough, and I'm trying my best to hear, if we make that endeavor on a daily basis, Krishna will see, this person is trying to hear.  They're trying to understand.  This was Prabhupada's great qualification. 


You may remember how Prabhupada gives us this example that Bhaktisiddhanta would speak such high level English, that practically no one could understand what he was talking about.  The materialistic demeanor cannot possibly stretch to the transcendental autocrat who is ever-inviting the fallen conditioned souls.  And that was one of the more simple things he said.  Prabhupada said, my guru maharaja would speak in such big language.  I could not always understand what he was talking about, but still I would go on hearing. 


Here in America, Night life means bars, cinemas, the strip-joints.  But in Vrindavan means darshan time.  Go to this temple, that temple.  That is the night life in Vrindavan.  There was an evening lecture.  There was an option.  You could go for darshan or you could hear the lecture.  Many of the devotees went for darshan.  Only a small handful of devotees listened to Bhaktisiddhanta, and one of them was a young man named Abhay Caran De.  He said, I would understand, or I would not understand, but still I would go on hearing guru maharaja.  Therefore guru maharaja noted that, this boy likes to hear.  He accepted me as his disciple on that basis.  He likes to hear, so I will accept. 


This is in our line.  In fact, in the Introduction of the Bhagavad-Gita, it is described about the 9 processes of devotional service.  Hearing from a realized soul is the easiest to do.  Its the easiest way to connect with Krishna consciousness process.  Of all 9 things, hearing chanting remembering, offering prayers and so on.  To hear from a realized devotee is the easiest way to connect with the bhakti yoga system.  Once you're connected with it, it gives you immediate access to all the other 8 processes. 


Your desire should be applauded, and you should be congratulated actually, for having this desire to understand how one can overcome all the mental distractions and become completely fixed in sravanam.  This is the most important thing.  To regularly practice sravanam is one, and you can also pray.  You can pray to Prabhupada, my dear Srila Prabhupada, I know that you want me to be absorbed in hearing your wonderful teachings, which you're mercifully blessing me with at every minute.  Please, Srila Prabhupada, bless me that I can be 100% absorbed in hearing.  Just pray for Prabhupada's mercy.  Prabhupada is so kind.  If you pray to him, he'll just shower you with unlimited mercy.  We can pray to Radha-Govinda, pray to Gaura Nitai, pray to Lord Jagannatha.  In this way, we can take shelter so that we can hear the words with, I like this term, laser focus.  A laser is extremely focused.  It's a light beam which is so focused that it can burn a hole through a wall or steel. 


We have to have our hearing ability so focused, that through that hearing alone, we can actually penetrate through the coverings of this material universe.  If you laser-focus your hearing intensely enough, you can burn a hole through the coverings of the universe, and enter the spiritual world.  Hearing is how you connect up through the mercy of guru and Krishna.  Who was the great acarya of hearing?  Pariksit Maharaja.  We can pray to Pariksit Maharaja.  He is the acarya, Haridas Thakura and Sukadeva Gosvami are acaryas of the chanting process, but the great acarya of hearing is Pariksit Maharaja. 


We can study the pastimes of the life of Pariksit Maharaja.  We can read in the Bhagavatam how intensely he was hearing.  We can pray, My dear Pariksit Maharaja, you're the great acarya of hearing, and I'm just a stumbling, bumbling neophyte, who has a hard time staying fixed in hearing.  So, I am begging for your special blessings that as you are absorbed in hearing, I can also become absorbed in hearing.  How incredibly absorbed he was!  He didn't think of drinking water, there was no question of going to the bathroom, there was no question of sleeping.  It was just hearing, and nothing else for seven days, around the clock.  


We can pray to Pariksit Maharaja for his blessings.  Pray to Prabhupada.  Please bless me that I can be 100% absorbed in hearing.  Excellent question.  Perfect question, I hope the answer was perfect.  (Laughter)


Questions more. 


Devotee 2:  You were talking about needing to be enthused.  What is the practical way to do it?


SDA:  Another practical question.  Very good.  What is the practical system for remaining enthused?  There's many many many many techniques  Prabhupada had a technique in the early days.  You may remember in the Lilamrta, in the early days in iskcon, the devotees would go through mood swings.  Sometimes they would be fired and enthused, but other times, they would feel down.  In the early days there was very special system to keep the devotees enthused.  They had the jar of gulab jamuns there. If you lose your enthusiasm, you would go to the jar and take a gulab jamun.  You would become enthused again.  (Laughs)  You can always have some nice prasadam.  That is always there.  Take prasadam, and there's so many other things you can do that may be nice.  You have a nice cd of lecture or kirtana that really fires you up.  An old Visnujana kirtana or something, Vaiyasaki.  You should always have your arsenal at hand.  When maya attacks you, you can immediately plug in. 


Every one of us has things that turn us on.  Krishna comes as things that turn us on.  It might be a particular purport.  It might be a particular devotee.  You talk to them, call them, send them an email.  You should always have an arsenal of things available whenever maya attacks.  Just like a warrior has his arsenal.  He has hand grenades strapped to his belt.  He's got a bayonet on the end of his rifle.  He's got his M-16.  He's got all sort of things.  When he's attacked, he can use any variety of weapons to defend himself. You have to be well armed.  You have to have an arsenal.  When maya attacks you, just have this amazing counter attack.  Become Krishna conscious means you're declaring war on maya.  When she attacks you, you have to counter attack.  The best defense is a good offense. 


You have to send mayadevi running the opposite direction, as fast as she can get away from you, by just whipping out one of your prized weapons from your arsenal.  Prabhupada gave the example of himself to Visnujana in L.A.  I always repeat this again and again.  Its so sweet.  He was with Prabhupada in his quarters in L.A.  Prabhupada said, see.  I have this harmonium.  No gaps for maya.  If there's nothing else to do, I can sit down and sing some bhajan on this harmonium.  You will never lose your enthusiasm  The only reason we lose our enthusiasm, sometimes we leave a gap in our Krishna consciousness  Spacing out.  We leave some space.  We can say Gapping out.  Using Prabhupada's words.  No gap for maya.  Leaving a gap for maya to get it.  We stop reading, stop hearing, stop kirtana, we leave a big gap for maya to drive a big Mack truck through.  We cant do that.  You've got to close the gap.


You don't wear a loose-knit sweater in the dead of winter.  You wear a tight-knit sweater to keep the cold air out.  In Denver, those cold Colorado breezes getting through to your skin if you donít have a tight-knit sweater.  We have to have tight-knit Krishna consciousness  You've just got to capture the mood of enthusiasm and never let go. 


Any other questions?  Yes mataji,


Devotee 1:  prabhu, sometimes the static in the chanting process, when your chanting with others, or even by oneself, we hear this too, about the Sunday feast...


SDA:  We hear what? 


Devotee 1:  Comments we get at the feast.  We've heard this philosophy over and over again.  Its so repetitive 


SDA:  We've heard it again and again.  Its old hack.  We're tired of hearing it.


Devotee 1:  So what can we do to encourage ourselves and others to understand what is the benefit of this repetition.


SDA:  Prabhupada says very clearly in his purport, that understanding comes through repetition.  I have a very poignant letter that Prabhupada wrote me about this actually.  He told me that if you simply study this philosophy and don't put it into practice, then it will become dry and useless.  If someone is finding the philosophy not to be very enlivening, oh I've heard that again and again and again, yeah yeah yeah yeah  yeah, that means they're not practicing Krishna consciousness properly.  They're committing aparadha.


 Those persons who are actually sincerely applying the principles at every minute in their lives will be super-enlivened to hear about Krishna 24 hours a day.  Super-enlivened to hear that I'm not the body.  Super-enlivened to hear that Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and that I'm His servant.  They'll never be bored with it.  If someone is getting bored, they're breaking principles, they're not following.  There's some defect in their practice.  That's what it means. 


If we find ourself in that position, that I'm not relishing it, then we have to see, what am I doing wrong.  What nama-aparadhas, then we go back to the 10 offenses again, and look carefully in my heart, and see where am I disobeying, where I am I committing nama-aparadha?  Anyone who is strictly following the principles of Krishna consciousness will never find this philosophy boring.  Never.  It just becomes sweeter and sweeter and sweeter and sweeter, the more that you apply it. 


We're going way over time.  Its almost 9:00.  We'll stop here.  Jaya.


Thank you very much.  Srila Prabhupada ki Jaya!  Srimad-Bhagavatam ki Jaya!



Transcribed by His Grace Jagannatha Dasa

Index of Transcribed Lectures