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Thought for the Day

Featuring realizations and selected correspondence of
His Grace Sriman Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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An Appeal for Your Help

On the order of his spiritual master, Srila Prabhupada, Sankarshan Prabhu has dedicated his life for the most urgent work of spreading Krishna consciousness all over the world. The more that Krishna consciousness spreads, the more that the suffering, scarcity, and hate on this planet will be replaced with bliss, abundance and love. This is a golden opportunity for us to do the highest good for all living beings and receive the special blessings of the Lord. Therefore we should, as much as possible, sacrifice our time, energy, and resources to assist Sankarshan Prabhu in his most important work. If you would like to help out to any extent, little or big, kindly inform Sankarshan Prabhu of your desire.

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Sunday, April 30, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga,Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Breaking Down the Barriers

It's 11:40 am on Saturday 29 April 2006. I am the back seat of a car traveling from Vilnius, Lithuania to Riga, Latvia. It was a very nice two day preaching excursion to Lithuania. Yesterday we were invited to include Russia in our itinerary on our next tour in September. (We'll have to get a visa to enter Russia. The other Baltic states do not require a visa for visiting US citizens.) We were invited to preach in a small isolated piece of Russia separated from the rest of Russia. It is located on the Baltic coast below Lithuania. Since we are covering the Baltic countries twice a year, it is not out of our way to also preach in the Baltic portion of Russia. We can travel by car for a few hours from our preaching centers in Lithuania.

Gazing out on the Lithuanian countryside and seeing the charred remains of a burned down farm house I am reminded of the desolate nature of this material existence. It's really crazy the way we've separated ourselves by having so many different languages. In Vilnius an hour ago I was trying to communicate with our leader there, His Grace Syamananda Prabhu. He speaks Russian; I speak English. I know only a few words of Russian; he is not fluent to speak in English. We could share so much with other as fellow preachers of the Krishna consciousness movement, but yet we were restricted by a language barrier.

This material world is a world of barriers. We are constrained by so many barriers. They are all based on the false conception, "I am this body." It's time we break down the barriers by elevating ourselves and everyone else to the common platform of the spirit-soul. On the bodily platform there will always be vast differences between us. But on the spiritual platform we are all one family. It's time that we all come together as one world-wide spiritual family and thus bring the world a new era of peace and prosperity. If we can all come to the platform of Krishna consciousness, we will experience as a human society a happier more abundant life than anything we could have ever imagined could be possible.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Ecstatic Send off from ISKCON Kaunas

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Questions and Answers:

How to Understand "Imperfectly Composed"?...

A few days ago I came across the following verse:

tad-vag-visargo janatagha-viplavo
yasmin prati-slokam abaddhavaty api
namany anantasya yaso 'nkitani yat
srnvanti gayanti grnanti sadhavah

"That literature which is full of descriptions of the transcendental glories of the name, fame, forms, pastimes, etc., of the unlimited Supreme Lord is a different creation, full of transcendental words directed toward bringing about a revolution in the impious lives of this world's misdirected civilization. Such transcendental literatures, even though imperfectly composed, are heard, sung and accepted by purified men who are thoroughly honest." (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.5.11)

It is strange to understand the term "imperfectly composed"... Even when we know that these scriptures present us the highest truths. How could Vyas Muni, the literary incarnation of Krishna compose something imperfectly?

Please enlighten me on the same.

Your Servant,

Darshu

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Typos or No Typos, We are Trying to Inspire a Worldwide Spiritual Revolution...

The verse does not say that the Vedas are imperfectly composed. The point is being made that even if there were some literary fault such literatures are meant for transforming the human society. Just like sometimes my students point out a typo in "Thought for the Day." Typos or no typos "Thought for the Day" is meant for inspiring a worldwide spiritual revolution, and it is appreciated as such by our sincere readers.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Saturday, April 29, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Kaunas, Lithuania

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Kaunas Krishna Consciousness

It's 6:18 am on Friday 28 April 2006. I am here in the temple room at ISKCON's center in Kaunas, Lithuania. It was another one of those super-enlivening ISKCON Kaunas greetings when we arrived here last night. A large happy, smiling throng of chanters and dancers serenaded us with the famous Hare Krishna chant to welcome us back to ISKCON Kaunas. Upon arrival I immediately entered the temple room, took darshan of the most merciful Lords Sri Sri Nitai Gauracandra, and gave a lecture on the following verse from the Bhagavad-gita:

mam upetya punar janma
duhkhalayam asasvatam
napnuvanti mahatmanah
samsiddhim paramam gatah

"After attaining Me, the great souls, who are yogis in devotion, never return to this temporary world, which is full of miseries, because they have attained the highest perfection."
Bhagavad-gita 8.15

I explained that we can either be mahatmas (great souls) or duratmas (cripple-minded souls). To become a mahatma means that we experience the full freedom of an eternal blissful existence while remaining on the duratma platform confines us to a highly restricted anxiety-ridden existence. The method for becoming a mahatma is very simple. All we have to do is associate with and favorably serve those who are actual mahatmas. How do we recognize the mahatmas? They are those souls who have fully dedicated their lives for Krishna's service.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

Can I Have Lord Shiva as My Guru?...

Can I have Lord Shiva as my Guru? I can talk to him before his statue or photo and he can guide me through the Paramatma in my heart thus enabling two way communication.

Regards ,

J.K Sah

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We Require a Guru Who is Physically Manifested on this Material Plane...

Lord Shiva is certainly our Guru because he is the topmost of Lord Krishna's devotees. You may certainly follow his instructions. In his incarnation as Sankaracharya he has instructed us to worship Lord Krishna. Although you may certainly pray to Lord Shiva, you are not sufficiently qualified to take instructions from him via the Paramatma within your heart. If you try to do so, you will run the risk of surrendering to your mind only and thus remaining entangled perpetually in the cycle of birth and death.

This is why we are required to take shelter of a guru who is physically manifested on this material plane, whose instructions we can clearly understand. The living guru can tell us clearly whether we are pleasing God or not by our thoughts, words, and deeds.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Friday, April 28, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Kaunas, Lithuania

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Back to Lithuania

It's 5:51 am on Thursday 27 April 2006. After I give the morning lecture and we take breakfast, Mataji and I are heading out for two days of preaching Krishna consciousness in Lithuania. We have very sweet memories of previous visits there to Kaunas and Vilnius. There is nothing more enlivening than to be hearing and chanting the glories of the Lord in the association of the Lord's devotees. This is confirmed by Lord Sri Krishna in the Bhagavad-gita as follows:

mac-citta mad-gata-prana
bodhayantah parasparam
kathayantas ca mam nityam
tusyanti ca ramanti ca

"The thoughts of My pure devotees dwell in Me, their lives are fully devoted to My service, and they derive great satisfaction and bliss from always enlightening one another and conversing about Me." Bhagavad-gita 10.9

My unanswered emails received from my many students all over the world are starting to get backlogged again. The several hours drive from Riga to Kaunas will be a golden opportunity for me to try to catch up on this all important correspondence. I've made sure that both of my laptop computer batteries are charged up to the max so I will have enough power to last for the entire drive. To practice Krishna consciousness nicely, in addition to the chanting, we must also be attentive to the mundane details so that our service is not impaired by material difficulties.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

How to Atone for Serving Beef?...

We were listening to His Holiness Gopal Krishna Maharaja's lecture this morning, and he said that the punishment for killing a cow is to take equal number of birth equivalent to the number of hairs on the cow's body.

Before we joined the Hare Krishna Movement we used to serve beef at our restaurant and we have done this for seven years. How can we atone for all the sins we have accumulated?

Regards,

Manish

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Simply by Surrendering to Krishna...

Simply by the one act of complete, total surrender at the lotus feet of Lord Sri Krishna under the guidance of the bona fide spiritual master you will be relieved from the reactions to all the sins that you have committed in millions and millions of lifetimes. This is confirmed by Lord Sri Krishna in the Bhagavad-gita:

sarva-dharman parityajya
mam ekam saranam vraja
aham tvam sarva-papebhyo
moksayisyami ma sucah

"Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me. I shall deliver you from all sinful reactions. Do not fear." Bhagavad-gita 18.66

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Thursday, April 27, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

The Spiritual Master Bestows Unlimited Bliss

In this material world everyone is looking for bliss, the highest happiness, at every minute. But no one is finding it. They may experience illusory happiness for sometime, but then after some time it will go away and they will feel miserable again. What can we do to get out of this quagmire? How can we achieve permanent happiness?

The good news is that the Supreme Lord, our eternal father, wants us to experience unlimited bliss at every minute. The only reason we are not presently tasting it is that we ran away from our father's home foolishly thinking we could be happier living separately from Him. Now if we can learn our lesson and realize that we made a very foolish mistake, we can humble ourselves before the Lord and beg His mercy that He will allow us back into His eternal kingdom. If we do this, He will bless us with the guidance of a bona fide spiritual master who will connect us with our original pure all-blissful, all-knowing nature.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

How to Trust an Individual?...

Again I have to approach you with my questions. I am wondering that how does one develop faith and trust in an individual? In the material world it sometimes just seems so difficult.

Servant of the servant of your servant

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Only Trust Krishna...

One time Srila Prabhupada said that the only person we can trust is Krishna. So we really cannot trust anyone in this material world. What you should do, however, is trust people to the extent that they are surrendered to Krishna and thus purely represent Him. This is why we put our complete trust in the spiritual master, because he purely represents Krishna. So we can trust others, but only to the extent that they are fully surrendered to Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godheadin the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

An Appeal for Your Help

On the order of my spiritual master I have dedicated my life for the most urgent work of spreading Krishna consciousness all over the world. The more that Krishna consciousness spreads, the more that the suffering, scarcity, and hate on this planet will be replaced with bliss, abundance and love. It is not possible for me to do this work alone. I need all the help I can get. The more the better. If you would like to seriously dedicate yourself to assisting me in spreading Krishna consciousness all over the world I can assure you that your life will be unlimitedly blessed. You will taste the sweetest happiness at every minute throughout this lifetime, and at the time of death you will enter into the eternal spiritual world, never to take birth again in this world of birth and death. If you are willing to make sacrifices for the sake of doing the highest good for all others and giving the best possible service to the Supreme Lord, kindly send me an email to inform me of your desire. Here is my email address: sda@backtohome.com

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

What is Life?...

Prabhu, can you tell me?

What is life?
Why are we born?
Why do we have sadness and happiness in our life?
Who is God Krishna?
What is atma and Paramatma and human being life?

Maheshwari

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The Gift of Krishna...

Here are your questions with answers:

Question: What is life?
Answer: Life is the gift of Krishna to allow us to have a loving relationship with Him.

Question: Why were we born?
Answer: The soul is never born. It is eternally existing. Only the material body is born. The material body is not us. It is simply a garment that is temporarily worn by the soul when it is in this material world.

Question: Why do we have sadness and happiness in our life?
Answer: Because we have forgotten Krishna. If we can always remember Krishna, we will only experience happiness. There will be no more sadness.

Question: Who is God Krishna?
Answer: He is the origin of everything that exists.

Question: What is atma and Paramatma and human being life?
Answer: You are the atma, the tiny spiritual particle situated within the material body. Paramatma, is the four-armed form of the Lord Who is also seated within your heart. Life for the human being is to awaken his lost relationship with the Paramatma by following the directions of the Bhagavad-gita under the guidance of a bona fide spiritual master.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

An Effulgent Light at the End of the Tunnel

Things have been going wrong on Planet Earth for far too long. For the last 5,000 years since the Kali Yuga (Age of Quarrel and Hypocrisy) began, it has simply been a downhill spiral. Bad leads to worse, and then worse leads to worst. And then it gets even worse. The good news is that we do not have to subscribe to the philosophy of doom and gloom. There is a light at the end of the chaos tunnel, an effulgent light ten thousands times more brilliant than the sun, which can illuminate the entire universe. That light is the ancient text known as the Srimad Bhagavatam. The Bhagavatam states:

tad-vag-visargo janatagha-viplavo
yasmin prati-slokam abaddhavaty api
namany anantasya yaso 'nkitani yat
srnvanti gayanti grnanti sadhavah

"That literature which is full of descriptions of the transcendental glories of the name, fame, forms, pastimes, etc., of the unlimited Supreme Lord is a different creation, full of transcendental words directed toward bringing about a revolution in the impious lives of this world's misdirected civilization. Such transcendental literatures, even though imperfectly composed, are heard, sung and accepted by purified men who are thoroughly honest." (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.5.11)

If we can simply adopt the principles clearly enunciated in the Srimad Bhagavatam, our lives will become free from anxiety and scarcity and we will have a profound, revolutionary impact on this planet. Then as more and more people adopt the Bhagavatam lifestyle we will see the gradual upliftment of the entire human society, a complete transformation of Planet Earth will progressively evolve.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


If you would like your life to be blessed by the revolutionary Srimad Bhagavatam you can get a copy here:

 http://www.ultimateselfrealization.com/store

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If you'd like to contribute something to help cover the expenses of Sankarshan Prabhu's European Lecture Series you can do so at:
http://www.ultimateselfrealization.com/donate

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Questions and Answers:

When a Person Dies...

You once said that when a person dies, his soul straightaway enters a new body. If the soul is reincarnating into another human being rather than a different form, at what point in the creation/ conception of a baby does the soul enter? Is it at conception or after the baby is born? Many thanks.

Your student

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From the Moment of Conception...

From the moment of conception the soul is present in the womb of the mother.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Monday, April 24, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Sunday Afternoon Realizations in Riga

Gazing from my quarters located behind our Riga ISKCON temple upon the quiet Sunday afternoon downtown Riga scene below, I remember how much I was suffering before I came to Krishna consciousness. Life had no purpose or meaning. It was simply an empty ritual of fulfilling the meaningless expectations of others whose lives were also meaningless.

What an empty drab painful existence.

Oh, how much my heart pined for happiness in those days!

Nothing made sense, but yet I was expected to enthusiastically go about pursuing so many goals that made no sense. The only goal that was meaningful was the search for the meaning. By the grace of God, I was given a bona fide spiritual master who led me out of the darkness into the realm of eternity, knowledge, and bliss. How inconceivably blessed and fortunate I am! Now it is my duty to make others fortunate.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Get Krishna's Special Mercy by Rendering Devotional Service

If you'd like to contribute something to help cover the expenses of Sankarshan Prabhu's European Lecture Series you can do so at:
http://www.ultimateselfrealization.com/donate

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Questions and Answers:

How Could the Pure Soul Fall into Material Existence?...

I have a doubt in my mind. Please kindly forgive this ignorant fool if I offended You. From what I know and understand, we all are eternal servants of God who are full of knowledge and bliss, and we were originally in the spiritual world with Him. Because of our independence and enviousness of the Lord we fell down into material nature. My question is that if we were full of knowledge and bliss, etc then what is the question of contamination, i.e. being envious of the Lord even in the spiritual world. And if we do have independence then surely as spirit soul with full of knowledge and bliss we will know how material nature acts and hence we wouldn't think of being separate from the Supreme Lord.

Am I missing the point? Please kindly clarify this point.

Many thanks,

Susheel

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Focus on Getting Out of Here, Not How You Got Here...

Because we are qualitatively one with the Supreme and because He is supremely independent, we also possess independence. The tendency for misuse must be there otherwise we have no independence. Tendency means that there always exists the possibility of misuse, otherwise we cannot say that tendency exists. If tendency for fall down is there, it must necessarily sometimes manifest.

Instead of being so concerned about how you fell down, you should instead focus on how you can regain your lost position in the spiritual world. This is the proper use of your intelligence.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Sunday, April 23, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Working Hard for Krishna

It's 7:50 pm on Saturday April 22, 2006. Today has been hard work. I've been giving Krishna conscious lectures and counseling sincere souls how to awaken their dormant Krishna consciousness practically the entire day since 3:00 am this morning. "Thought for Day" is usually not pushed to the end of the day like this, but I have just not had a moment free until now.

Of course such full absorption in Krishna consciousness is our perfection. To squeeze every drop of energy out of ourselves for Krishna until finally we take rest by 10:00 pm is a sign of our dedication to Him. Taking rest by 10:00 pm is essential because the ideal time for is rising is no later than 4:00 am. If we rise by 4:00 am and immediately take our morning shower, then we can peacefully absorb ourselves in chanting the Hare Krishna mantra on our japa beads. Regulated early morning chanting will enable us to stay surcharged in Krishna consciousness whether we are working a job, living in an ashram, or going to school.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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If you'd like to contribute something to help cover the expenses of Sankarshan Prabhu's European Lecture Series you can do so at:
http://www.ultimateselfrealization.com/donate

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Questions and Answers:

Is Krishna Consciousness Completely Different Devotion?...

All respects to you for the work you are doing to enlighten others to Krishna! Being devoted to God, the Father--Jesus, the Son unity for 32 years it is at times difficult for me change my devotion to Radha-Krishna. What is your view on this matter? Is it completely different devotion?

Your student

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Devotion is Devotion...

What is the difficulty? Krishna is God, the Father. Devotion is devotion. Either you are devoted to God or not. As soon as we think of Hindu devotion, Christian devotion, or Muslim devotion we are on the material platform. Pure devotion is completely transcendental to all forms of material designation, even the so-called spiritual ones.


Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Saturday, April 22, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

I Wouldn't Trade this Life for Anything

It's 5:05 pm on Friday afternoon, the 21st of April 2006. I'm here in my quarters in downtown Riga, Latvia located just behind our local ISKCON temple getting ready to give a Bhagavad-gita class in the temple room followed by a second lecture somewhere else here in Riga. I'm happily absorbed in Krishna conscious writing during the day and doing a series of lectures and preaching programs in the mornings and evenings. Plus I am meeting at various times with members of the temple community who are inspired to become my initiated disciples. I have just gotten off the phone from talking to Bhakta Aruna, a representative of our temples in Lithuania, regarding my upcoming preaching tour in Lithuania.

I wouldn't trade this life for anything. By the unlimited mercy of my beloved spiritual master upon this useless soul, I have been blessed with the ultimate life of adventure, spreading Krishna consciousness all over the world. There are so many sincere souls all over the world who are very serious to make their life successful by full surrender to Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He has blessed me with the opportunity to serve them.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Get Krishna's Special Mercy by Rendering Devotional Service

If you'd like to contribute something to help cover the expenses of Sankarshan Prabhu's European Lecture Series you can do so at:
http://www.ultimateselfrealization.com/donate

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Questions and Answers:

How Does Krishna View Other Religions?...

I come from a Christian background and find the sectarianism present in Christianity to be very unattractive. Many different sects of Christians are always at odds as to who has the rightful claim to Jesus' teachings. From my brief foray into Christian history I have noted that many scriptures from the early Christians were removed from their belief system and what we have at present is not at all like the original teachings. Many of the Gnostic texts where considered heretical and a concerted effort was made by the established church to eliminate their teachings. Not only were their scriptures vilified but anyone who believed in them was persecuted. So my question is.....How does Krishna view other religions? And how do the followers of Krishna not fall into the same trap of creating a sectarian religion? By sectarian I mean that you think that anyone who does not follow the way Krishna as presented by the Hare Krishna's is wrong and will forever be condemned to live in hell.

Thank you,

Gary

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"Many Religions" is a Man-Made Conception...

Krishna conscious philosophy rejects the concept of many religions as a man-made conception. Krishna or God has given us only one religion, to develop our love for Him and fully surrender unto Him. This same religion has been taught by Lord Krishna and all the great religious leaders of history. The Bhagavad-gita enjoins us to give up the idea of different religions and fully surrender ourselves unto the Supreme Lord. That one Supreme Lord is known as Krishna, Rama, Govinda, Allah, Jehovah, etc.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Friday, April 21, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day: Relishing Nectar in Riga

Here at the ISKCON temple in Riga, Latvia I am blessed with the opportunity to give daily morning and evening classes to a temple room full of eager listeners and inquirers. In the morning I speak on the Srimad Bhagavatam, and in the evening I speak on the Bhagavad-gita. There is truly nothing more enlivening than to engage in hearing, chanting, and discussing the transcendental name, fame, form, pastimes, entourage, abode, qualities, paraphernalia and teachings of the Supreme Personality of Godhead in a very receptive atmosphere. According to the degree of receptivity of the hearers I am able to dive and deeper and deeper into the nectar of Krishna consciousness. Because the devotees here are very eager to hear the glories of the Lord I can dive very deeply into the sweet, nectarean ocean of bhagavat-katha (topics of the Lord.)

In the Bhagavad-gita Lord Sri Krishna explains:

mac-citta mad-gata-prana
bodhayantah parasparam
kathayantas ca mam nityam
tusyanti ca ramanti ca


"The thoughts of My pure devotees dwell in Me, their lives are fully devoted to My service, and they derive great satisfaction and bliss from always enlightening one another and conversing about Me." Bg 10.9

There is truly nothing more enlivening and stimulating than Krishna katha. It contains more bliss than all of the pleasure that has ever been experienced in the entire history of this material world.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Relishing the Nectarean Bhagavad-gita at ISKCON Riga

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If you'd like to contribute something to help cover the expenses of Sankarshan Prabhu's European Lecture Series you can do so at:
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Questions and Answers:

How to Find Out the True Spiritual Leader?...

Sir,

How do we find out the true spiritual leader?

Most of the so-called Godmen have got more weaknesses than a normal human being. I feel that in today's materialistic world the student seeking guidance can go to any level to test the authenticity of his master because he is the one who is going to surrender, not the master.

It is better not to have a guru instead of having a bogus guru.

Sir, I take this opportunity to sincerely thank you for your mail.

Regards,

Kumaran

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Find the One Whose Only Business is to Glorify Krishna...

We find out the true spiritual leader by looking for that person whose only business is to glorify Lord Sri Krishna.

Just as we are careful to receive medical care only from a qualified physician, similarly we must be very careful to take spiritual guidance only from a bona fide spiritual master, not from others who may misguide us.

It is a fact that it is better not a have a guru, than to have a bogus guru. But better than not having a guru, is to have a bona fide guru, because without having a bona fide guru we can never find our way out of the dense, deep, dark forest of delusion. This point is confirmed in the Mundaka Upanisad as follows:

tad-vijnanartham sa gurum evabhigacchet

"In order to understand the transcendental science, one must approach a bona fide spiritual master." Mundaka Upanishad 1.2.12

When by the grace of Krishna you come into contact with a bona fide spiritual master, you should take full advantage of your good fortune by submissive inquiry and the rendering of service.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Thursday, April 20, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Wonderful Krishna Prasadam

The all-merciful Supreme Personality of Godhead manifests in this material world in the form of prasadam, the vegetarian foodstuffs that have been offered to him with love and devotion. Simply by relishing the delicious taste of Krishna prasadam one's natural tendency to serve God with love and devotion becomes revived. Therefore in our Krishna consciousness movement we very much emphasize prasadam distribution. Krishna prasadam is the doorway to spiritual realization.

Here in Riga, Latvia part of the temple complex is the highly popular Rama Restaurant. Rama serves nothing but Krishna prasadam to capacity crowds that fill it every day. If you are not able to drop by Rama try another one Krishna prasadam restaurant from this list:

Krishna Prasadam Restaurants

You can also make your own Krishna prasadam at home as described at the following:

 http://www.ultimateselfrealization.com/articles.php?articleId=53

Sankarshan Das Adhikari



Rama Restaurant Serves Krishna Prasadam in Downtown Riga, Latvia



Relishing Krishna Prasadam at the Rama Restaurant



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Get Krishna's Special Mercy by Rendering Devotional Service

If you'd like to contribute something to help cover the expenses of Sankarshan Prabhu's European Lecture Series you can do so at:
http://www.ultimateselfrealization.com/donate

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Questions and Answers:

A Different Path for Every Soul?...

Next to Krishna Consciousness I still feel an interest in learning more about Buddhism and also about Vishnu and Shiva. Could this be egoistic interest or could it be that there is a different way, path for every soul?

If one feels an interest in getting to know with different paths, should they do it? I am sorry if my question was offensive or egoistic. Thank you for your kind attention,

Servant

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When You Realize Krishna, You Realize Everything...

There is only one path to spiritual perfection, the path of developing pure love for God. There are various stages along that path. Krishna consciousness is the highest stage. When you come to Krishna consciousness you automatically achieve all other stages as well. So there is no need to study other subordinate stages separately. You will realize all of them simply by coming to Krishna consciousness.

If you have a trillion dollars, you automatically have a billion dollars and a million dollars. If you have Krishna consciousness, you automatically have perfect knowledge of Buddha, Vishnu, Shiva, and everything else.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Sweet Vaisnava Hospitality

There is no more wonderful culture in this world than Vaisnava culture because it is a culture based on the all-perfect teachings of Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. It is a culture that honors and respects all living beings, including the non-human ones, as being parts of parcels of the Supreme Lord. One of the most remarkable features of traveling and preaching all over the world is the caliber of loving dealings we have with so many wonderful Krishna conscious souls all over the world.

Vaisnava culture is based on six varieties of loving exchange as mentioned by Srila Rupa Goswami in his great devotional classic, the Upadeshamrita, the Nectar of Instruction. Therein he states in Text Four:

dadati pratigrhnati
guhyam akhyati prcchati
bhunkte bhojayate caiva
sad-vidham priti-laksanam

"Offering gifts in charity, accepting charitable gifts, revealing one's mind in confidence, inquiring confidentially, accepting prasada and offering prasada are the six symptoms of love shared by one devotee and another."

The more we engage in these six loving exchanges with devotees all over the world, the more our Krishna consciousness expands. We become happier, more peaceful, and more enlightened in our relationship with Krishna and His wonderful devotees.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Devotee from ISKCON Riga offering us a cake she personally baked for our arrival


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Questions and Answers:

Philosophical Doubt...

For the last few days I am going through a situation about which I am surprised. I have some doubts about Krishna consciousness philosophy. I don't know why. I am really concerned. I don't know from where these doubts have started coming in my mind?

Just like, "Is there really God?" and "Is the Hare Krishna mantra imaginative?", etc.

You may say in short that I am becoming an atheist. But I am not. I think this is a serious thing and am asking for your help.

Please guide me,

Vishal

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Intelligent Understanding Destroys Doubts...

I am very happy to help you overcome your doubts. Overcoming our doubts is a very important step on the pathway of self-realization. We should place all of our doubts before the spiritual master for clarification.

Our intelligence must be fully satisfied if we want to be successful in completely surrendering ourselves at the lotus feet of Lord Sri Krishna.

To understand that there is God, you simply have to understand that there is no such thing as something coming out of nothing. Everything comes from something. And if you trace back, back, back to that original thing that does not come from something before it, that is God.

Whatever the Hare Krishna mantra may be, imaginative or non-imaginative, we have practical experience that by chanting it sincerely with love, that one can fully realize God. It is practical. It enables us to personally experience the highest truth.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Riga, Latvia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Realizations on the Road to Riga

It's 11:30am on Monday, April 17, 2006. After diving deep in Tallinn, Estonia into the timeless ocean of Krishna bhakti, we are now on the road to Riga, Latvia. The last road sign we passed said that it is 192 kilometers to Riga.

There is no way I can possibly calculate the unlimited good fortune that has been bestowed by my most beloved spiritual master, His Divine A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, that he has ordered us, his followers, to spread this Krishna consciousness science everywhere, to make a worldwide spiritual revolution. There is no sweeter or more exciting adventure than this. Instead of studying the dry history of this material world we can make history by teaching the lost souls of this age how to awaken the dormant enlightened consciousness currently sleeping there within their hearts.

I am seeing more and more as the years go rolling by how much potency there is in the orders received from our spiritual master. Even if we receive an order that seems impossible to fulfill, that order contains within itself the full potency to enable us to successfully carry it out. All we have to do is tightly embrace within our heart the order received from Sri Guru and try our best to carry it out. It is guaranteed by his grace that sooner or later we will be able to successfully execute his order.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Enthusiastic Greeting Upon Arriving at ISKCON Riga


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Questions and Answers:

Is a Living Guru Required for Liberation?...

I have a question. In many of your discourses, lectures and various books you stress upon having a living personal guru in the line of Brahma Madhava Vaishnava parampara (disciplic line) to get liberation.

Will I not attain liberation as I practice Krishna Consciousness at home? It is not possible for me to accept a guru at this stage of life because of the rules and regulations of chanting 16 rounds, abstaining from onion, garlic, tea and coffee etc. I am a vegetarian. I follow the four regulative principles, but in a latter stage of life will accept a guru.

So my question is at this moment of my life I consider Srila Prabhupada and his books especially Bhagavad-gita as guru. I do not chant a single round of the Hare Krishna mantra on beads, but I do practice the other forms of devotion such as vandanam (praying), smaranam (remembering the Lord), pujanam (worshipping the Lord) etc. Will I achieve liberation?

I am eagerly awaiting for my answer.

Yours truly,

Hari Bol,

Veerendra

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Yes. A Living Guru is Required for Liberation...

It is very nice that you consider Srila Prabhupada and his books as guru. Through his writings Srila Prabhupada is no doubt the spiritual master for the entire world. Accepting Srila Prabhupada as guru means to obey his instructions. Therefore if you accept him as your guru, you must obey his instruction to chant at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra on beads and follow the regulative principles including giving up onion, garlic, tea, and coffee. There is no question of liberation unless we strictly obey the orders of the spiritual master.

He also teaches that you cannot simply take a guru through books. He tells us to approach a spiritual master and inquire from him submissively. For inquiry you require a spiritual master who is physically manifested on this plane. Therefore to enable you to be able to surrender yourself fully to the instructions given in his books Srila Prabhupada empowered his disciples who are strictly following his instructions to be spiritual masters to guide and initiate those who would join this Krishna consciousness movement after his physical departure from this material plane.

In this Kali yuga we can never be sure of our duration of life. Therefore to ensure your liberation I encourage to strictly take up following all of Srila Prabhupada's instructions as soon possible. The sooner the better. Do not postpone your full surrender to Krishna until later in your life. Now may be your only chance.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Monday, April 17, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Tallinn, Estonia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Topmost Treasure in Tallinn

Tallinn, Estonia is like every other city in the material world. It is a place of birth, death, old age, and disease. Although it attracts many tourists with its beautiful medieval architecture, it does not offer them anything beyond some temporary sense gratification. Unless, of course, they visit the Tallinn Hare Krishna temple. At the temple they will find a spiritual oasis because they will find an atmosphere that is surcharged with the regular congregational chanting of the Hare Krishna Mahamantra:

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare

The Tallinn devotees are eagerly hearing my Krishna consciousness lectures and inquiring also. Wherever we travel around the world we are so happy to experience the topmost treasure, association with the dear members of our global Krishna consciousness family.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

Why Do Very Few People Practice Krishna Consciousness?...

If Krishna consciousness is the highest truth how you do explain that only a small insignificant fraction of the world population is practicing Krishna consciousness?

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Most People are Faith Impoverished...

Just as only a small percentage of the population purchase valuable diamonds, similarly only a small percentage of the world's population have taken to Krishna consciousness. Sufficient wealth is required for purchasing diamonds and sufficient faith is required for purchasing Krishna consciousness. Those who are faith impoverished cannot purchase Krishna consciousness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Sunday, April 16, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Tallinn, Estonia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

On the Road to Tallinn

There is truly nothing more ecstatic than traveling all over the world to spread the rays of Lord Caitanya's benediction moon to every town and village. It's Saturday morning at 11:36am. Mataji and I are now traveling in a car with Ugis and his wife Vita (she is the driver) from Sillamae to Tallinn for two days of nectarean Krishna consciousness before we proceed on to Riga, Latvia for two weeks of more divine bliss.

Some accuse me of excessive superlatives in my writing, but all I can say is that they must not have yet tasted the indescribable bliss of Krishna consciousness. If they had, they would also be touting its glories like anything.

The Sillamae devotees melted our hearts with their overflowing-with-love send off. Those two days we spent with Gaurasundara Prabhu and his wife, Nityalila devi dasi, will forever remain carved in our memories as some of the sweetest, most wonderful times we have ever experienced in our lives. We had four separate programs, each of which packed tight their apartment with the assembled guests. Each program consisted of ecstatic kirtan, my lecture followed by a question and answer session, and then simply wonderful Krishna prasadam. This morning's breakfast featured over ten different items.

Proceeding through the Estonian forests and open farm land dotted with occasional farm houses, barns, and haystacks on our way to Tallinn, I can't help but think how important this Krishna consciousness movement is for the upliftment of the ignorant, suffering humanity. Some people would regard this vision as vanity, but the reality is that this vision is compassion. This the legacy that I have inherited from my spiritual master, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta and his predecessor acharyas in the disciplic succession descending from Lord Brahma, the powerful personality empowered by Krishna to create this universe.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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With the Wonderful Sillamae Devotees


Fare Well Kirtan

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Questions and Answers:

Guidance Sought...

I am bringing to your kind consideration the case of a close acquaintance of mine. She is a lady who dearly loved and trusted her husband, but was then cruelly abandoned by him. It has caused a deep wound in her. She now finds no meaning in life. Sir, what is she supposed to do? She gets suicidal thoughts very often. Is there any meaning to her life?

It would be very grateful of you, if you can please shed some light in this matter.

Thanking you,

Yours sincerely,

Smita

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Surrender to Krishna...

Your friend should not be so disturbed. Her husband was her wife in a previous lifetime whom she cruelly abandoned. Now her former wife has taken birth and become her husband so she can get her revenge by becoming her husband and similarly abandoning her.

Instead of being disturbed, your friend now should be resolved to get out of karma-chakra, the wheel of karma, and go back to her original position in the spiritual world before she fell down into this material world by fully surrendering herself at the lotus feet of Lord Sri Krishna under the guidance of the bona fide spiritual master. Only this will make her fully happy.

Suicide will not help her. Her karma will haunt her birth after birth until she fully surrenders to Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Saturday, April 15, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Sillamae, Estonia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Sailing in the Spiritual Sky in Sillamae

We are right now in Sillamae, Estonia 18 kilometers away from the Russian border. Estonia was part of the Soviet Union before its collapse. Here everyone speaks Russian. I was asking the devotees if we could cross the border and hold a Hare Krishna kirtan in Russia. They informed me that unless I have a visa I cannot enter Russia. (Estonia, being a part of the European union, does not require US citizens to have a visa to enter.) As usual when I preach in the Baltic countries, I take the help of a translator. We are staying with Gaurasundar Prabhu and his nice wife, Nityalila devi dasi, in their simple but comfortable apartment overlooking the Baltic Sea.

Our arrival was greeted with the warmest Vedic hospitality, and then we were served a tasty, invigorating lunch. Although ISKCON has no formal temple here, there is a very active devotee community. The devotees regularly gather together to chant, hear the Vedic teachings, and honor Krishna prasadam. After I took a short rest, the apartment started filling up as the devotees arrived for an afternoon/evening of chanting Hare Krishna and hearing me speak on the science of Krishna consciousness.

After a half-hour of chanting I spoke on the philosophy of the Bhagavad-gita for two hours. Included within that two hours were many questions, which I answered according to the realizations bestowed upon me by my beloved spiritual master, Srila Prabhupada. Then it was time for the perfect finishing touch to a festival of bliss, the prasadam (vegetarian food stuffs offered to Lord Krishna with love and devotion.)

Even though the external surroundings here in Sillamae are rather bleak and dismal, to be here packed up tightly hearing and chanting the glories of the Lord in the association of His devotees transported each and every one of us to the spiritual sky.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Ecstatic Kirtan with ISKCON Devotees in Sillamae, Estonia


Diving Deeper into the Nectarean Ocean of Krishna Kirtan


Serving Prasadam to the Wonderful Estonian Devotees

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Questions and Answers:

Why Do We Worship the Lord's Feet and the Guru?...

There are two particular things that are confusing me a little. Would you be able to clear these things up for me?

1: Why do we worship the Lord's feet? What is the significance, or the reason?

2: Why do we also worship the Guru? That never made much sense to me. Isn't it bad to put your faith and devotion in a fallible human instead of wholly in God? I know the Guru is the link between the devotee and God, but why do we worship the Guru like we do God?

I hope you didn't take these questions to be offensive in any way, and thank you for listening.

Hare Krishna

Your student

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For Easily Crossing Over the Ocean of Material Existence...

I will try to clear up your confusion by sharing with you what I have understood and realized by the mercy of the previous acharyas (spiritual masters):

We approach the Lord through His lotus feet for the sake of cultivating humility. Approaching His feet means that we must bow down to His feet. They function as a suitable boat for enabling us to cross over the ocean of material existence.

In this regard it is stated in the Srimad Bhagavatam:

samasrita ye pada-pallava-plavam
mahat-padam punya-yaso murareh
bhavambudhir vatsa-padam param padam
padam padam yad vipadam na tesam

"For those who have accepted the boat of the lotus feet of the Lord, Who is the shelter of the cosmic manifestation and is famous as Murari, the enemy of the Mura demon, the ocean of the material world is like the water contained in a calf's hoof-print. Their goal is param padam, Vaikuntha, the place where there are no material miseries, not the place where there is danger at every step." SB 10.14.58

Srila Prabhupada explains the worship of the spiritual master with an example from India during the period of British rule. The British king was not present in India, but the viceroy was there acting on his behalf. The viceroy would be given all the honor and respect that was due to the king, but whatever gifts he received would all be sent to London to be deposited in the royal treasury. He could not keep anything for himself.

We do not put our faith in a fallible man. We put our faith in Krishna that He has so kindly sent me a spiritual master to help me connect directly with Him, Lord Krishna. Krishna is very far away and is thus inaccessible to us in our conditioned state of consciousness. But He has so kindly made Himself accessible through the form of the spiritual master. Krishna explains to Uddhava in the Srimad Bhagavatam, "My dear Uddhava, the spiritual master must be accepted not only as My representative, but as My very self." We can inquire from the spiritual master and learn directly from Him what are the teachings of Lord Krishna. We can personally serve the spiritual master. Whatever personal service we render to the spiritual master is accepted by Krishna to be personal service to Him, Lord Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Friday, April 14, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Sillamae, Estonia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Become Happy by Giving Happiness to Others

Somehow due to so much traveling and preaching my correspondence has gotten seriously backlogged. Yesterday I put myself into "seclusion mode" and spent the entire day reading and answering my email with sober compassion and careful thoughtfulness based on the authoritative Vedic wisdom. After many hours of intensely absorbing myself in trying to help others realize the ultimate happiness of Krishna consciousness I was still not caught up, but I was feeling supremely happy. I envisioned an eternal existence of always helping others to attain the supreme happiness, an eternal existence of ever-increasing satisfaction and fulfillment.

How have I been so fortunate to have received such a perfect existence? It is all by the mercy of my spiritual master, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. He saved me from a miserable, selfish, impersonal existence. I knew that I had to fully absorb myself in serving God, but I had not a clue of what God wanted me to do. It was Srila Prabhupada who perfectly enlightened me with the knowledge of exactly what God wants me to do and how He wants me to do it. I am therefore eternally indebted unto him. By always taking shelter of his lotus feet I am ever protected from the influence of the illusory material energy, and I am empowered to bestow upon others the same divine blessings that have been bestowed upon me.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

Have You Melted Your Ego?...

Respected Sir,

I have gone through the items sent by you. They helped me to understand reality. I have learned that the ego and the Lord cannot coexist.

Have you melted your ego? Or are you still living with it (the self)?

Best regards,

Imran

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False Ego Melts. Real Ego Does Not Melt...

The real ego that I am a servant of God co-exists with God. It does not melt at the time of liberation.
What does melt is the false ego that I am this body.

That false ego melts. Not the real ego, that I am the servant of God.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Thursday, April 13, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Tartu, Estonia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Free Tickets for the Spiritual Sky Distributed at the University of Tartu

On Tuesday, April 11, Krishna blessed us with the most auspicious opportunity to bring the ultimate knowledge of Krishna consciousness to the campus of the University of Tartu. We began the program with an ecstatic kirtan as more and more souls eager for higher knowledge gradually filtered in. After the kirtan, a lecture, questions and answers, and prasadam distribution, the members of the audience then visited our book table where many of them purchased Krishna conscious literatures. Some of them, enthusiastic for even more nectar, came back to the temple to attend our evening program.

There is truly no more wonderful feeling in the heart than to see souls who have been wandering in the cycle of birth and deaths for millions of lifetimes take advantage of the opportunity to escape the material existence and return to their original constitutional existence in the timeless Spiritual Sky.


Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Kirtan at University of Tartu Lecture Program:

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Questions and Answers:

Please Help Me Start from Scratch...

Please accept my humble pranams. Thank you for the very inspirational messages you are sending out to all of your students.

I have been every day receiving your "Thought for the Day". I have been reading every single one of them, and I feel truly blessed. However I have to admit that I have a problem. Maybe I have been putting my own interpretations to Lord Sri Krishna's teachings, or maybe I still have some doubts. My difficulty is that I am not progressing in any way. In short, right now my life is in a total mess. I will not waste your time describing all my problems, but the more I want God's presence in my life the more sins I m committing.

I think of God most of the days, but I am still not coming out my messy life. Perhaps earlier I was not ready to apply everything you have taught because I had too many doubts. But I have totally lost this battle now. Please help me start from scratch. I really do want to begin a new life.

I understand that you have many other commitments now, but I hope you will be able to help me get out of this mess by showing me a way which I can follow step by step.

Your student.

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I Can Help You, If You Agree to Surrender....

If you want me to to show you step by step how to become solidly situated in Krishna consciousness, you must first of all agree to sincerely follow all of my instructions. Do you agree to do that?

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Tartu, Estonia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Beyond Martyaloka, the Realm of Death

We are currently living in the material world. It is called Martyaloka, the realm of death, because everyone here is forced by the laws of nature to die, sooner or later. We don't know when our death will come. It can come at any moment. Therefore we must constantly be prepared by keeping our consciousness always dovetailed with the Supreme Consciousness.

Whatever consciousness we have at the time of death will determine our next birth. Therefore we must always think of Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, our eternal Lord and master. By always thinking of Krishna we will constantly live in the sweet transcendental Vaikuntha atmosphere. We will realize our all-blissful, all-knowing, eternal nature and we will qualify ourselves to enter the realm of deathless immediately upon leaving this body.

Here in Tartu, Estonia at the ISKCON center, Mataji and I are living for a few days with a small group of young people who have joined together as a spiritual family for the purpose of reawakening their dormant Krishna consciousness. Hearing and chanting the glories of Krishna in such transcendental company greatly strengthens the mind's fixity on Sri Krishna, the ultimate goal of human existence. It is first class opportunity for escaping this Martyaloka.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

How Can We Completely Surrender to Krishna?...

Could you please define how we can completely surrender ourselves to the Supreme Being by staying on in our material world? Is it as simple as chanting the Lord's name at all times or does it have deeper connotations?

I am trying to understand the meaning of worship and surrender and would be obliged to you if you clarify my doubts. Thank you.

Meenu

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By Surrendering through the Medium of Guru...

In this world we can easily fully surrender ourselves to the Supreme Being by taking shelter of Krishna's pure devotee, the bona fide spiritual master. It is only by the blessings of the spiritual master that we can actually get full shelter at the lotus feet of the Lord.

This is why it is stated in the Srimad Bhagavatam:

tasmad gurum prapadyeta
jijnasuh sreya uttamam

"Any person who is seriously desirous of achieving real happiness must seek out a bona fide spiritual master and take shelter of him by initiation."

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Tartu, Estonia

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Breaking through the Ice of Material Existence

It's 10:25 am on Monday, April 10, 2006. There is snow falling and we are cruising across the icy Gulf of Finland on the ship, Melodia. Because the ship is powerful, the ice is not a formidable obstacle. In a similar way, if we become powerful in our practice of Krishna consciousness, the ice of material consciousness will not be an obstacle for us. We will easily be able to push through and successfully cross over the ocean of birth and death and enter into our eternal existence.

What is that ice of material existence? It manifests in many ways such as: false pride, lust, anger, greed, intolerance, impatience, laziness, dull-headedness, opposition from atheists, etc. These are some of the many obstacles we face on the path of Krishna consciousness.

What is the spiritual power that enables us to easily break through the obstacles? That is Krishna consciousness. There are many things which contribute to our spiritual strength, Krishna consciousness: rising early in the morning, taking bath, chanting the Lord's holy names as much as possible, eating only Krishna prasadam (vegetarian food offered to the Lord with love and devotion), devotee association, studying scripture, taking shelter of a bona fide spiritual master, etc.

Traveling like this to spread spiritual strength, strengthens me and, I pray that by Krishna's grace I can in some way be used as His instrument to help those who are suffering in this material existence to become spiritually strong and go back home, back to Godhead.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Icy sea

 More icy sea

Cutting through the ice of material existence by writing Krishna conscious emails

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Questions and Answers:

How Can I Increase my Devotion to Lord Krishna?...

Sir, with great honor to Lord Krishna and love to you, please give me a piece of a lecture on the devotion towards Lord Krishna. How can I realize that Lord Krishna is the supreme power? Maya is always attracting me towards worldly things. Please give me a unique piece of lecture so that I can love Lord Krishna day and night and keep myself away from worldly things.

With great thanks to you for your letters to me.

Hare Krishna, I will definitely come to you under your training. Please write me more and I will be grateful to you.

Yours,

Naresh

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Everyone is Mentally Ill without Krishna Consciousness...

The ability to love Krishna and surrender unto fully is within you sleeping. The spiritual master can shake you to wake you up. But you must also agree to wake up. Many people will pretend to be asleep. What can be done for those? But those who agree to be awakened can gradually come to the point of fully realizing God.

Our training program is very simple. You must approach Krishna through all humility by implementing the following items in your life as soon as possible:

(These are the basic items of sadhana bhakti to be executed by all those who are serious about being a devotee of Lord Krishna.)

1. No illicit sex (sex other than for procreation)
2. No meat eating (including fish and eggs)
3. No intoxication (including coffee, tea, and cigarettes)
4. No gambling
5. Chant at least 16 rounds of Hare Krishna mantra every day on chanting beads
6. Only eat Krishna prasadam (food which has been first offered to Lord Krishna)
7. Regularly study authorized scriptures such as Bhagavad-gita As It Is and Srimad Bhagavatam
8. If possible in your area, to solidify your connection with Krishna become an active participant in community of ISKCON devotees
9. Take shelter of a bona fide spiritual master.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Monday, April 10, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Helsinki, Finland

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Today's Thought for the Day:

From Helsinki to Estonia

Today after three absolutely ecstatic days of preaching in Helsinki we are crossing the Gulf of Finland on the ship, Melodia. After a three hour voyage we will land in Tallin, Estonia where we will be driven by car to Tartu, an Estonian university town. I have a lecture scheduled there at the university and will also be giving morning and evening classes for several days at ISKCON's preaching center near the campus.

Traveling and preaching the message of Krishna consciousness has got to be the ultimate nectar. The more we travel and preach, the more our message is appreciated. It's not that I want to be appreciated and glorified. Rather my mood is that I want to see that the message of Krishna is more and more appreciated, glorified and followed all over the world because this will bring lasting peace and happiness to the entire human society.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

Dealing with the Mentally Ill...

In your Krishna consciousness movement how do you deal with the mentally ill?

Thank you.

William

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Everyone is Mentally Ill without Krishna Consciousness...

The first thing to understand is that everyone in this material world is mentally ill. That's why we are here. This material world is a place for those who are suffering from the mental disease of thinking that they are God, that they are the center of the universe.

Within this material world there are certain people we say are mentally ill and there are certain people that we describe as being sane. But this is a misunderstanding. This misconception is a sign of our mental illness.

The sane person is the one who realizes that he is the eternal servant of God and fully engages himself in the service of God. If we are blessed by the association of such a pure devotee of God, then we come out our mental illness and achieve the actual platform of sanity, pure Krishna bhakti.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Sunday, April 9, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Helsinki, Finland

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Connecting with Krishna

There is nothing sweeter and more enlivening than connecting with Krishna. This is most easily done when we are in the association of devotees, especially devotees who have fully absorbed themselves 24 hours a day in preaching Krishna consciousness for the benefit of the fallen, conditioned souls of this age. But even more sweet and enlivening is connecting others with Krishna. There is no service more pleasing to the Lord than this. This connects us with Krishna in the fullest and most complete way.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

I Need Power and Money...

Hello. Thanks for this message. I am happy for this. I have a serious problem, and I don't know how I will solve it. So my friend told about this course. So that is why I visited your website. I need power and money.

Thanks,

Ugo

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Money and Power are Nothing...

Our system is not for getting power and money. It is for developing pure love for God. Once you realize God you will no longer hanker for money and power. You will be fully satisfied by your surrender at the Lord's lotus feet. Power and money are nothing compared to realizing God.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Saturday, April 8, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godheadin the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Helsinki, Finland

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Today's Thought for the Day:

The Ultimate Benefit of all Living Beings

5,000 years ago in India in the Naimasharanya forest an assembly of sages inquired from the great spiritual master, Srila Suta Goswami, "Please, therefore, being blessed with many years, explain to us, in an easily understandable way, what you have ascertained to be the absolute and ultimate good for the people in general." He replied, "The supreme occupation [dharma] for all humanity is that by which men can attain to loving devotional service unto the transcendent Lord. Such devotional service must be unmotivated and uninterrupted to completely satisfy the self."

As long as we approach God with our own personal agenda in mind, it is not pure devotion. It is rather like a business man trying to make a deal with another business man. "My dear Lord, I will agree to flatter You and worship You, if you will give me this, this, this, and this. If you don't give me what I want, the deal will be off, and I won't worship you any more." Although it is good that someone is approaching God, because such approach is polluted by material desires the worshipper can never be happy even if his material desires are all fulfilled. His mentality, although mixed with God consciousness, is selfish.

God cannot be realized and we cannot be fully satisfied as long as we maintain even the slightest tinge of selfishness. Therefore we must come to the position of complete total surrender to the will of Lord with no strings attached, no conditions. This is known as ahaituki-bhakti, pure unmotivated devotional service.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

What God Is It of Whom You Speak?...

I enjoy your teachings and thoughts to live by.

What God is it of whom you speak?

How much distance do you seek to place between the self and the earthly world?

How does one rid himself from sin and yet still live and work amongst such a sinful world?

William

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There is No Question of "What God?"...

You have asked three very nice questions, which I will answer one by one:

1. What God is it of whom you speak?

There is no question of what God that we are speaking of because there is only one God. He is the very source of all that exists. He has created us for the one purpose of knowing Him and loving Him.

2. How much distance do you seek to place between the self and the earthly world?

We remove all distance by teaching our students how to see and serve the divine that is within everything.

3. How does one rid himself from sin and yet still live and work amongst such a sinful world?

By completely surrendering to Lord Sri Krishna through the medium of the bona fide spiritual master.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Friday, April 7, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godheadin the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Helsinki, Finland

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Detachment from the Tongue on Rama Navami

It's 4:10 pm on April 6. We have just arrived in Helsinki and are getting ready for the evening program, a festival in celebration in honor of Lord Rama, because today is Rama Navami, His transcendental appearance day. On this day Vaisnavas are required to fast all day until evening time when a feast is offered to Lord Rama and then served to all the devotees. I left the Cologne, Germany temple this morning at 4am and have traveled from Germany to Amsterdam to Helsinki having to fast the entire way.

I welcome the fast as an opportunity to detach myself from the pleasures of the tongue. Even taking Krishna prasadam can become materialistic if we take too much. So the ability to restrain oneself while eating is required even when we take only Krishna prasadam (food offered to the Lord.) Practicing complete abstention even from taking prasadam is a very good training to help us become solidly situated on the transcendental platform. The austerity of fasting all day for Lord Rama will make the feast this evening all the more relishable.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

What Was Srila Prabhupada Like?...

What was His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada like?

How old were you when you met His Divine Grace?

And if I may venture another question - what do you find in ISKCON that has satisfied your soul?

Peace be upon you,

Buddy Gastineau

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An Inconceivable Ocean of Mercy...

Srila Prabhupada was an inconceivable ocean of mercy. Just by being in his presence one was automatically transported into the spiritual world.

I was a young man in my 24th year.

ISKCON is the living embodiment of Srila Prabhupada. In ISKCON I find his lotus feet.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Thursday, April 6, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Cologne, Germany

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Relishing Sankirtan Nectar in Helsinki

Today we fly from Cologne, via Amsterdam to Helsinki, Finland. This is a stop on our preaching tours that we always very much appreciate because the Finnish devotees are very much absorbed in preaching Krishna consciousness for the benefit of the souls who are lost in illusion in this age of Kali. This spirit is called the sankirtan spirit. Sankirtan is the activity of trying to attract everyone the join in the congregational chanting of the holy names of God, the solution for all problems of existence. If we dedicate our lives fully for the ultimate welfare activity, sankirtan, we will taste the sweetest nectar while trying to give everyone else a chance to taste the sweetest nectar also.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

When Will I Relish Chanting?...

When can I relish the process of chanting ? Will it come naturally or what qualities should I adopt to attain this stage of relishing?

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When Your Life is 100% for Krishna's Pleasure...

You will relish the chanting of the holy names when you chant for the pleasure of Krishna, instead of for your own pleasure. At that time you will enter into an ocean of unlimited, ever-expanding nectar.

Chanting Hare Krishna is a prayer of total, complete submission to the will of God. The chanter is begging the Lord that from now on for all of eternity he will only think, speak, and act for the pleasure of the Lord.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Wednesday, April 5, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Cologne, Germany

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Freeing the Mind from the Shackles of Illusion

Some people say that the Hare Krishna movement is a cult based on mind control. They think that some exploitative cult leader hypnotizes us and brings our minds under control. This is not at all the case. We are, however, a movement based on mind control in a different sense. We teach our members how to bring their minds fully under their own control.

Right now our minds are constantly being manipulated with misinformation from the many, many forms of media that we are exposed to: billboards, magazines, television, radio, Internet,etc. There is also tons of misinformation we are being bombarded with by our friends, family, educators, etc.

How can we so strongly refer to this as misinformation? Because these influences that we are constantly exposed to are always reinforcing the false bodily conception of the self. This misconception is the cause of all the suffering in the world. We therefore teach our students to free their minds from the illusion of bodily identification by reviving the original dormant enlightened consciousness that has been sleeping within their hearts since time immemorial. Thus the mind becomes freed from the shackles of illusion.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Email and Reply:

Peace Possible only by Krishna Consciousness...

Bangladesh is a predominantly Muslim population. In 1971 20% was Hindu, but with continuous eviction from their dwelling places now it has come down to 8% Hindu. The Buddhists and Christians are not countable population. All non Muslims are living with panic. I think that without a Krishna revolution the peace of Bangladesh will not be possible.

Songgpriya Bhikkhu

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Everyone Can Chant Hare Krishna...

You are right that without a Krishna revolution peace is not possible in Bangladesh. Last year I went to Turkey and engaged an entire hall full of Muslims in chanting the Hare Krishna Mahamantra. The Krishna revolution is possible in every part of the world and will eventually inundate this entire planet, even the Muslim countries.

Of course our revolution is not one of guns, bombs, terrorism, and hatred. Our revolution is one of love and peace based on the congregational chanting of the holy names of God. You can hear my lectures in Turkey at:

http://spiritual-revolutionary.com/Lecture_Pages/lectures_Turkey.htm

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Tuesday, April 4, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Cologne, Germany

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Today's Thought for the Day:

Waking Up in Heaven

Words cannot begin to fully describe the sweet transcendental atmosphere here at ISKCON's center in Cologne, Germany. The temple architecture is post card perfect and the devotees are very saintly. They are treating us with such sweet, loving dealings that it melts the heart. Suffice it to say that waking up here this morning in this transcendental abode was like waking up in heaven. I pray that as soon as possible the sweet atmosphere that permeates our ISKCON center in Cologne, Germany will inundate this entire material world in a tsunami of love of God.

Returning to the spiritual world at the time of death will be like this. All of sudden we will find ourselves in the sweetest, most enlivening atmosphere where all varieties of anxiety and illusion are conspicuous by their absence.

Here are a few photographs of this ecstatic oasis of spiritual bliss, a way station in the vast ocean of material existence:

This is an outside view of ISKCON Colgone. Govinda's Vegetarian Buffet is on the ground floor. The three stained glass windows pictured below are the windows for the temple room seen from the outside on the second floor.

The deities of ISKCON Cologne, Sri Sri Gaura Nitai, the most merciful Lords.
 


Stained glass Krishna.
 


Stained glass Krishna Balarama.
 


Stained glass Radha Krishna.

Please, please, please enter into the sublime atmosphere of Krishna bhakti (devotion to Lord Sri Krishna). Your life will be unbelievably sublime!

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Questions and Answers:

I'm Confused...

Hare Krishna!

I'm confused. Since I have started going to the programs at my local ISKCON center I am remembering Krishna at every minute. Even I am having dreams of Krishna. I am so much thinking of Krishna that I am even losing interest in my job. Is this normal, or am I missing something?

But I like to think about Krishna. I used to have nightmares and I used to see things like shadows or what they call ghosts, but since I have read the Bhagavad-Gita As It Is the nightmares have disappeared, and now I'm not afraid of ghosts or whatever they are any more. I am beginning to like Krishna.

Please clarify my confusion. Thank for your patience.

Sincerely,

Your student

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Work with Love for Krishna...

It is very nice that you are always remembering Krishna. If we lose interest in everything else and are only interested in Krishna, this is the perfection of our existence.

Krishna consciousness frees us from all nightmares and ghostly influences. By Krishna's unlimitedly sweet mercy we enter into an eternal existence full of bliss and knowledge.

You mention that you are becoming so much absorbed in Krishna consciousness that you are losing interest in your job. But kindly try to understand that Krishna consciousness means to engage everything in the service of Krishna. So you should become now more eager to go to your job because it gives you a very nice opportunity to do practical service for Krishna.

How can you serve Krishna through your job? By engaging as much as possible of your monthly earnings in the service of Krishna through regular donations to your local ISKCON center. This is the greatest blessing. You can now render devotional service by serving Krishna through your job. This will help His movement become successful in blessing everyone with the same happiness and freedom of anxiety that you are now experiencing.

So now with a heightened sense of responsibility go to your job and work in a first class way for Krishna. In this way you can show Krishna how much you love and appreciate Him.

You are on the right track. There is no need for anxiety. The next step is to make yourself spiritually perfect by full surrender to Krishna. This is accomplished by chanting at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day on japa beads, strictly avoiding illicit sex, intoxication, meat eating, and gambling, and fully taking shelter at the lotus feet of Krishna's representative, the bona fide spiritual master. This will completely free you from all confusion.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Monday, April 3, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godheadin the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Cologne, Germany

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Today's Thought for the Day:

At Home in Cologne

In Germany:

After wonderful devotee association in Hohenstein, where the new temple for Hohenstein was inaugurated and I initiated a new disciple, Hari Kripa devi dasi, Mataji and I are now here in Cologne. This is my first time to stop in Cologne. I passed through here last fall at the end of our fall 2006 Germany lecture tour to fly from the Cologne airport via Amsterdam to deliver a series of lectures in Helsinki, Finland. Now Mataji and I are comfortably situated at ISKCON's center here where I will be delivering a series of lectures on the ultimate self realization science, Krishna consciousness. I can't think of any more wonderful life than this, to live solely and wholly for the purpose of spreading Krishna consciousness all over the world.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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If you'd like to contribute something to help cover the expenses of Sankarshan Prabhu's European Lecture Series you can do so at:
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Questions and Answers:

Can a Devotee Abandon His Normal Duties?...

It is mentioned that if someone takes to the transcendental service of the Lord, even without discharging his prescribed duties, whatever he may be able to advance in the cause is accepted by the Lord (buddhi-yoga).

Does this means that if one does not perform his duties but is a sincere devotee of the Lord Krishna, he is liberated from this material world? I am sure I am misinterpreting it. When one is a sincere devotee then whatever he does is for Krishna and hence he should perform all his duties with Krishna bhava (emotion) and not abstain or abduct from his responsibilities and duties of being father/ mother/ son/ daughter/ husband/ wife/ etc. Please advise and enlighten me with your blessings.

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare

Warm regards,

Ajay Chandak

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We Have Only One Duty...

We have one duty and one duty only, to surrender fully unto Lord Krishna. This surrender is manifested by complete surrender unto the orders one receives from one's spiriitul master. All one has to do to achieve spiritual perfection is to fully surrender to the orders received from one's guru.

Generally the spiritual master will instruct you to expertly execute your worldly duties and offer the result of those to Krishna. In exceptional cases where the execution of those duties is detrimental for one's Krishna consciousness, the spiritual master may order the disciple to abandon those duties.

But in either case, whether one Krishna-consciously executes one's worldly duties or abandons one's worldly duties, the principle is the same--our perfection is to fully surrender to the orders received from our spiritual master.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Sunday, April 2, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees in Hohenstein, Germany

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Today's Thought for the Day:

On the Road to Relieve Lord Caitanya's Anxiety

As I continue traveling and preaching the Krishna consciousness movement I am repeatedly reminded that there is truly no greater need in the current human society than the introduction of the Krishna consciousness movement all over the world. This is so because the entire world is suffering due to a lack of Krishna consciousness. The global distribution of Krishna consciousness is therefore the greatest welfare activity.

Lord Caitanya is feeling great anxiety to see the plight of the fallen, conditioned souls who are entrapped within the cycle of birth and death. Srila Prabhupada explains in this connection, "Everyone should adopt the cause of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to try to relieve Him from the anxiety He feels. This is actually service to the Lord. One who tries to relieve Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu's anxiety for the fallen souls is certainly a most dear and confidential devotee of the Lord. "

Anyone who fully dedicates his life for relieving Lord Caitanya's anxiety will taste sweet, sweet ever-increasing nectar throughout his life and always experience the ultimate adventure of extending the mercy of the Lord to whose who are so greatly in need of it

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answering Emails on the Road

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Questions and Answers:

People Sometimes Look Down on Devotees...

I have subscribed to the Ultimate Self Realization Course and feel truly privileged to receive Krishna's divine mercy. (I am however not so lucky to read it every day regularly.) I have a small query for which I would request your kind answer please:

As we work towards Krishna Consciousness there is the action of Maya in numerous ways. One of them is that the people around you start to look at you in a very lowly manner. They reduce their interactions with you such that one might take it for ignoring or disrespecting you. While one is moving towards Krishna Consciousness one tends to get disturbed and feels frustrated at times when the world behaves in this manner. These and such feelings tend to put an impediment in achieving Krishna Consciousness. Please guide us as to how do we tackle this and continue our spiritual journey towards a more Krishna Conscious life.

Neeraj

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Ignore, Abhor, Adore...

If others look down on you for your Krishna consciousness, this is a great blessing from the Lord to help you break free from your material attachments and totally take shelter of Him. There is no reason to be disturbed. Even the greatest spiritual revolutionaries in history had to face similar impediments.

What happens is ignore, abhor, and adore:

In the beginning they ignore us.

Then when they notice that our example is a challenge to their life of unrestricted sense gratification they abhor us.

But in the end when they realize that Krishna consciousness is the ultimate happiness, they will adore us.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Saturday, April 1, 2006

Broadcast from the ecstatic road back to Godhead in the association of the wonderful ISKCON devotees at the ISKCON center, New Goloka Dham, in Abentheuer, Germany

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Today's Thought for the Day:

The Sublime Beauty of Sri Sri Radha Madana Mohan

Here in New Goloka with are very blessed with the daily darshan of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Sri Madan Mohan, and His eternal consort, Srimati Radharani. They are served here with great love and devotion. These exquisitely beautiful deities are seated majestically on Their beautiful altar where they receive arati worship ceremonies regularly throughout the day beginning at 4:15am.

It is such a joyous feeling to sing and dance before the deities in an assembly of enlivened devotees. The benefits of such dancing are described by Lord Krishna as follows in the Dvaraka-mahatmya:

"A person who is in a jubilant spirit, who feels profound devotional ecstasy while dancing before Me, and who manifests different features of bodily expression can burn away all the accumulated sinful reactions he has stocked up for many, many thousands of years."

It is also mentioned in the Skanda Purana:

"If someone sees the face of the Lord while arati is going on, he can be relieved of all sinful reactions coming from many, many thousands and millions of years past. He is even excused from the killing of a brahmana or similar prohibited activities."

Of course to receive these boons depends on the quality of how we dance before the Lord and view the face of the Lord. We have to dance before the Lord and see the Lord with great feelings of devotion. The good news is that Krishna is so beautiful and His arati ceremony is so enchanting that our innate tendency to love the Lord becomes naturally stimulated in His presence, especially during the arati ceremony.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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If you'd like to contribute something to help cover the expenses of Sankarshan Prabhu's European Lecture Series you can do so at:
http://www.ultimateselfrealization.com/donate

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Questions and Answers:

Destiny?...

How can we define destiny? Sometimes, people ask that when everything is predestined what is the use of chanting and performing austerities such as following the four regulative principles for the purpose of attaining liberation from the cycle of birth and death. They are thinking that their endeavor will have no impact on when they become liberated since everything is predestined, that liberation will happen eventually of its own accord when it's meant to happen and not before that.

Thanking you so much.

Your humble servant,

Draupadi Rani devi dasi,

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You Take Control of Your Destiny When You Surrender to Krishna..

It's a fact that under the control and direction of the three modes of material nature everything in this material world is predestined. But this principle only applies if you do not surrender to Krishna. When you surrender to Krishna you take complete control of and totally transform your destiny.

Your decision of when you will surrender to Krishna is not predestined by the influence of the three modes of material nature. It is fully under your power. It is not dictated or predestined by the modes of material nature. When by the mercy of Sri Guru and Sri Krishna you exercise your option of surrendering to Krishna, you then take full control of your destiny, which then becomes inconceivably glorious

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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