Thought for the Day

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

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Swami Prabhupada

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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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Wednesday 30 April 2008

from ISKCON Riga, Latvia
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Today's Thought:

Religion is One, But Don't Kill Cows


Here in Riga I met, along with my wife and disciples, Mr. Russell Watterson, the president of the Mormon Church for the entire Baltic region. It was a very nice meeting in which we both mutually appreciated each other's dedication to the principle of serving the will of God. God, after all, is one, even though He has innumerable names. But when he mentioned that every human being is dear to God I had to remind him that not only is every human being dear to God. All living beings are dear to the Supreme Person.

How can we be so cruel to kill the cow after she stops giving milk? When we stop taking the milk from our first mother we then take the milk from our second mother, the cow. So we should allow her to live peacefully and happily even after she stops giving milk. We should not subject her to the horrors of the slaughterhouse. If we subject our mother, the cow, to such torture, what kind of karmic reactions can we expect to come upon us?

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Meeting with the Head of the Mormon Church
for the Baltic Countries

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Focus on Quality Chanting?


Hare Krishna. Please accept my pranams. I have a concern about chanting.

How to focus on quality of chant without being concerned with quantity?

Whenever I start chanting, I am always concerned about the time required for this effort. As a result I am unable to chant clearly but rather race through my chanting. The intention at start of chant is to focus on quality of chant, but as I complete rounds or run out of time my speed of chant increases and I am concerned about quantity or completing rounds rather than chanting with devotion.

I do work and allocate some time daily for chanting. I honestly feel that I can only chant 1 mala with devotion and rest of the malas are for the sake of completing the rounds. As a result the chant gets inaudible as I get more and more anxious to complete the rounds.

Please advise on how to overcome this . I do not use a watch or a timer during chanting, but I still unable to escape this anxiousness.

Hare Krishna
-krish

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Answer: Savor Every Minute

If you want quality japa without any concern for quantity, you may chant japa 24 hours a day. But since you are not able to do that you should chant at least 16 rounds a day. Even the highest quality medicine available must be taken in sufficient quantity to cure the sick person.

If you will chant your 16 rounds before the sunrise when there is nothing to do except meditate on the Lord's holy names, you will find it easy to stop analyzing your chanting from the material point of view.

Always remember that the holy names are Krishna Himself. They are not a material commodity. If you were meeting with Krishna would you look at your watch to see how soon the meeting will be over? No. You would be savoring every second of it and hoping that it will never end. This is the mood you must have when you are chanting japa.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Tuesday 29 April 2008

from the road to Riga, Latvia
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Today's Thought:

The Ultimate Good Fortune


Whenever I think about where my consciousness is now compared to where it was before I took shelter of my spiritual master I am totally and complete awed by how fortunate I am. There is no amount of my personal endeavor which could have ever brought me even anywhere close to this most auspicious life that I am now able to relish on a daily basis. It is only due to the causeless mercy of my most beloved spiritual master, His Divine Grace Om Vishnupada Paramahamsa Parivrajakacharya Astottara Sata Sri Srimad A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja Prabhupada, that I am blessed with this most sublime opportunity to practice the science of Krishna consciousness at every second. In spite of my innumerable disqualifications Srila Prabhupada has so kindly blessed me with this ultimate good fortune. Therefore I eternally offer my respectful obeisances at his lotus feet.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Benefit of Chanting?

What is the benefit of chanting Hare Krishna the whole day when my inner self is still so violent, aggressive and gets easily deluded by the impressions of maya?

Please enlighten me,

Manu

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Answer: Delusion and Bad Qualities Go Away

The first point is that if you are still suffering from bad qualities and deluded by maya or illusion, you cannot be chanting the whole day. In order for someone to chant the whole day they must be experiencing genuine transcendental taste. Someone who is getting such taste will naturally be so deeply absorbed in chanting that all delusion and bad qualities will automatically go away.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Monday 28 April 2008

from Tallinn, Estonia
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Today's Thought:

Memories of Estonia


Today we are on the road to Riga to the share with the people of Latvia this inconceivably sweet nectar, Krishna consciousness. As we travel to the Latvian border for several hours through Estonia we will be passing forests and farm houses. I will be reflecting within my heart on the sweet, delicious flavor of Krishna consciousness relished here in the association of the Estonian devotees. There is truly nothing like Krishna consciousness anywhere within the fourteen worlds. The amazing quality of Krishna consciousness is that no matter how sweet it gets, it just keeps getting sweeter and sweeter for all of eternity. As soon as the residents of planet earth begin to understand what is this amazing process known as Krishna consciousness, they will all come forward to join this Krishna consciousness movement. It will be the most amazing paradigm shift in the history of the universe.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Estonia Memories:

Diving Deep into the Ocean of Hare Krishna Kirtan

Reaching Out to Help a Suffering Soul

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How Can One Live without Meat?

If one says he cannot live without eating non-vegetarian food, what can we say to such a person?

Sanjeet

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Answer: Observe an Ox

Ask them how the powerful ox is able to live on a purely vegetarian diet.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Sunday 27 April 2008

from Tallinn, Estonia
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Today's Thought:

Expanding the Spiritual Family


The more that the spiritual family of Krishna's devotees grows bigger and bigger, the more the world atmosphere becomes blessed with auspiciousness. Therefore it is most auspicious every time that a new devotee is initiated into the Krishna consciousness movement. Yesterday in Tallinn I initiated as my disciple Bhaktin Karolin, a young college student from Tartu, Estonia. I have given her the new name, Kishori devi dasi. Kishori is a name for Srimati Radharani as a young girl. So Bhaktin Karolin is now Kishori devi dasi, the servant of Srimati Radharani.

Initiation is the formal linking between the disciple and the spiritual master. It is through this link that one becomes solidly connected with Krishna. It is something like plugging a lamp into a wall socket. The disciple is like the lamp. The spiritual master is like the wall socket. And Krishna is like the powerhouse.

If someone wants to be initiated they must be solidly fixed in chanting at least 16 rounds daily of the Hare Krishna mahamantra on japa beads, and they must also strictly avoid illicit sex life, meat eating, intoxication, and gambling.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Initiation Ceremony for Kishori devi dasi
Tallinn, Estonia 26 April 2008

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Is Hearing and Chanting the Center?


Dear Teacher,

I offer my respectful obeisances unto you.

Is it that hearing and chanting Hare Krishna mantra is the most important regulative principles among all devotional methods?

Is it that hearing and chanting Hare Krishna is the center, and all others such as no illicit sex, no meat eating, no intoxication, no gambling, reading Srila Prabhupada's books, etc all serve as making the chanting smooth and powerful and effective? Right?

Your most humble servant,

from China

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Answer: Yes

Your understanding is correct.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Saturday 26 April 2008

from Tallinn, Estonia
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Today's Thought:

The Brilliant Pathway of Unlimited Bliss


In Tartu, Estonia Krishna sent a young woman who has been devastated by depression for the past six years to hear my lecture at the University of Tartu. She also attended my lectures each day after that, and I personally met with her as well. Since conquering over depression is the immediate, automatic by-product of Krishna consciousness I tried my level best during my three days in Tartu to inspire her to fully dedicate herself to Krishna. I knew that this would end her misery for good. If she can seriously take to Krishna consciousness, instead of walking around with a cloud hanging over her head she will become like a brilliant sun illuminating the atmosphere wherever she goes. The psychiatrists prescribe anti-depressant medicine, but still their patients are miserable. We prescribe the path of bhakti and have saved thousands and thousands of people from a life of misery by introducing them to the pathway of unlimited bliss.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Deal with Urges?

What should one do about the urges? They can become a great nuisance!

Thank you,

Alexis

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Answer: Awaken Your Higher Urges

Urges cannot be avoided. You simply must transition to a new higher set of urges, i.e. the urges to hear about, glorify, remember, and serve that unlimitedly amazing Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Sri Krishna. These urges are already there buried deep within your soul. You simply must revive them by practice. And once they start to wake up you will easily walk away from all the puny insignificant urges of this world.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Friday 25 April 2008

from Tartu, Estonia
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Today's Thought:

Saving the World from Ecological Disaster


On Wednesday 23 April 2008, I gave a lecture at the University of Tartu in Tartu, Estonia entitled "Global Warming--How to Save the World from Ecological Disaster." It was not the standard global warming blabber. I explained in full detail how the false identification of the body with the self causes us to overindulge our senses, and how the consequent over-consumption of material resources which arises from this overindulging mood is the root cause of all the world's current ecological, economical, and sociological problems.

In other words all this ballyhoo about global warming is more or less a waste of time because so-called global warming experts don't have even the foggiest idea that bodily consciousness is the root cause of global warming.

As long as we consider ourselves to be our bodies we will necessarily always base our sense of happiness on how much we can gratify our senses. And the senses are like fire. No matter how much you feed them, they are still hunger for more and more gratification.

If we want to save the world from global warming and all other forms of disaster, there is only one solution. We must awaken the dormant Krishna consciousness which is sleeping in our heart and in the hearts of all living beings. This and only this will quickly and easily solve all of the world's problems. There is no need to waste billions of dollars on research. Simply chant Hare Krishna and the world will be saved.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Global Warming Lecture
at the University of Tartu, in Tartu Estonia

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Are Gay People Demons?

Greetings to you. I bow to you and all the wonderful work you are doing for the good of the world.

The question comes before me from reading something somewhere I hear that the 'line" is that gay people are demons or that they come from demons. I worship our Lord, chant and try to keep my ever wondering mind fixed on God. I have a partner for 9 years. we are of course, monogamous. He is a UCC minister...respecting my faith. I read some different views from different web sights.......but I love your sight and read it every day.

Help me and tell me what you think.....I think very highly of you so please be sweet.....and truthful.

Gaurish

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Answer: All Forms of Lust Are Enemies of the Soul

I am so happy to hear that you are my regular reader and that you love my writing. This is Krishna's special blessing upon me that he has sent me dedicated readers such as yourself to encourage me in my attempt to spread the Krishna consciousness movement all over the world.

Because you have requested me to be sweet and truthful I shall certainly try my level best to please you. But in this connection I humbly beg you to note that it is the duty of a Krishna conscious person to speak the truth whether it is perceived as sweet or bitter. Of course, for those who are seriously desiring to become free of all material attachments and purely absorbed in the Lord's service, every word of Vedic wisdom is experienced as the sweetest nectar even if those words are sometimes heavy and piercing. It is only when we try to hold onto our material attachments that we find the Vedic teachings to seem sometimes bitter.

Regarding your question regarding whether or not homosexuality is demoniac, I beg to inform that all forms of sexuality are born of the demoniac desire to enjoy this material world. This is why in the Vedic culture sex education means to stop sex. In this regard Sri Krishna states in the Bhagavad-gita:

kama esha krodha esha
rajo-guna-samudbhavah
mahasano maha-papma
viddhy enam iha vairinam


"It is lust only, Arjuna, which is born of contact with the material mode of passion and later transformed into wrath, and which is the all-devouring sinful enemy of this world."
--Bhagavad-gita 3.37

A Krishna conscious person sees everyone equally, no matter what their sexual orientation may be. And he encourages everyone to come beyond the pleasure of the material senses to the unlimitedly sweet platform of transcendental bliss because that's where the real nectar is. As long as we are attached to the temporary illusory pleasures of this world we will never taste the unlimitedly sweet pleasure of pure Krishna consciousness, the epitome of wonderfulness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Thursday 24 April 2008

via mobile phone on the road to Tartu, Estonia
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Today's Thought:

Total Collapse of the World Civilization


Right now we are living in a world that is completely dedicated to material sense gratification. As this society becomes more and advanced technologically, it is becoming more and more Godless. This is the result of taking God as as an agent for providing our sense gratification instead of that supreme person unto whom we must fully surrender ourselves. People will think, "Since our goal is sense gratification, and we can get it simply through technological advancement, what is the need for God?" Thus the disease of the material civilization is that they want the kingdom of God without God. But they cannot have it. They do not realize that all of their material necessities are being supplied by God at every minute. By their grossly sinful activities, such as massive cow killing and baby killing, they are quickly burning off the results of their past pious activities. This means that very soon unless there is drastic reversal of the status quo there will be a total collapse of the entire world civilization.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Contradictory Philosophies?


Lord Krishna says that evil should be destroyed. And Jesus says that He comes to the earth to rescue the sinners. As a Vaishnava, a devotee of Krishna, I am tormented between the above two philosophies. Please do educate me in this regard and excuse me if this question is offensive.

Nirmala

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Answer: No Contraction

There is no contradiction between these two philosophies. In the previous age known as the Dvapara Yuga, when the earth's atmosphere was much more pious, Krishna personally killed the demons to relieve the earth from her tortuous burden.

In this present sinful age of Kali when Krishna appeared as Lord Caitanya He was about to personally kill two demons named Jagai and Madhai who had offended Lord Nityananda. However, Lord Nityananda pleaded to Lord Caitanya to spare them because in this age everyone is sinful like those rascals. Lord Nityananda explained that if the Lord's agenda in this age were to kill the demons, He would have to kill everyone. Therefore in this age instead of killing the demons, Krishna, in His most merciful form as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, rescues us by killing the sinfulness in our hearts through the wide scale introduction of the Nama sankirtan movement, the congregational chanting of the Holy Names of God.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Wednesday 23 April 2008

from Helsinki, Finland
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Today's Thought:

First Yourself, then the Whole World


Make it your mission to engage the entire world in Krishna consciousness beginning with yourself, and then go about engaging as much of it as you possibly can in the Lord's service. Stay focused on this goal. Make it the entire theme of your existence and you will be amazed how your consciousness and your ability to influence others will evolve over time. You've got nothing to lose except for your anxiety and everything to gain. So why not strive for the ultimate life style right now, engaging everything in the service of Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead? You'll be mighty glad that you did, and the people that you impact along the way will appreciate forever your kindness upon them of saving them from the repetition of birth and death.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why is Cow's Milk Pure?

My colleagues ask me why we consider cows milk as pure or vegetarian when it is produced by an animal. Please help me to answer them.

Neel

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Answer: The Cow is Pure in All Respects

Regarding the suitability of cow's milk as a food for human beings, we see that Sri Krishna Himself was very fond of cow's milk and the products of cow's milk. The cow gives more milk than her calf can consume. This is Krishna's arrangement to make milk available for human beings.

The cow is pure in all respects so much so that even the stool and urine of the cow are pure. The cow has a wonderful ability to take the grass, which we cannot eat, and turn it into the most amazing miracle food, milk, which is full of all vitamin values for nourishing the brain for higher spiritual understanding. Modern day society does not so much appreciate the wonderful nature of drinking milk because they spoil it by homogenization. Otherwise if one drinks milk straight from the cow, it has a very sublime and wonderful flavor. Only boiling and offering it to Lord Krishna are required before drinking it.

If one will sip a cup of very hot sweetened milk before taking rest every night, one will get very nice taste and good nourishment for the body and the brain.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Tuesday 22 April 2008

uploaded from Timisoara, Romania
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Today's Thought:

Turning Hell into Paradise

We cannot expect this world to be paradise. It is, after all, the prison for all those who could not live in harmony with the Supreme Person in the transcendental world. In other words, we were originally situated with the Supreme Personality of Godhead in the spiritual world as participants in His transcendental pastimes. But due our manifesting a rebellious attitude of wanting to ourselves be the Supreme instead of serving the Supreme, our desire was facilitated by our being given a new home in this material world, a place in we can consider ourselves to be the Supreme. This is why in this material world conflicts are going on at every minute. Everyone thinks that they are the center of the universe and that everything therefore revolves around them. When one person's circle of enjoyment overlaps with another person's circle there is bound to disturbance, which sometimes manifests as fighting, and sometimes escalates into a war between two countries or two groups of countries. It is only when we re-establish the one common center for all living beings that we can enjoy peace and prosperity in this world and turn this hell into a paradise. The common center is naturally the source from which everything emanates. That source is Krishna or God.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Do They Pursue Fleeting Happiness?

I feel strange at the mentality of general people. From childhood, when I was not Krishna conscious, I lived a painstaking life. I identified with my material body. No matter how much material happiness I enjoyed, I knew it was ephemeral and one day when my body perishes everything is over. Whenever I thought of this, I felt great depression and anxiety, and that anxiety suppressed any material happiness I experienced. The only meaningful thing at that time was searching for the Truth (even though I sought it via material science), but I was sad that maybe I would never make it during the whole life. But I kept on seeking.

Thinking back on those days, now I feel that how fortunate I am right now, it's because of the mercy of Krishna that I gradually became enlightened with spiritual knowledge. I pray that I won't fall down. But I feel strange at the mentality of people in general. They know that everything will be over one day, why are they still enjoying fleeting happiness and do not find what is eternal? When I ask them about this, their reply was always: "I know that everything is gonna over one day, but who cares, over is over, let's simply enjoy right now. Be optimistic and don't think of death, even those who are old also live a joyful life, don't be so pessimistic."

Even for some persons who know everything, that we are not this body, that God exists, they still do not care it and are madly after fleeting material things. It is strange. Why? Please explain the reasons for their mentality so that I will know how to convince them to take to self-realization one day.

Your most humble servant,

Yechen

from China

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Answer: Because They Don't Know Any Better

As Srila Prabhupada would say, it is due to their poor fund of knowledge. In other words because they are completely ignorant of the the transcendental bliss of Krishna consciousness they try to make do the best they can with the temporary so-called bliss of this material existence.

When Indra, the king of heaven, was cursed to take birth as a hog he forgot that he was Indra the king of heaven and he became very attached to the so-called enjoyment of a hog's life. Srila Prabhupada describes this story as follows:

"It is said that once Indra, the King of heaven, was cursed by his spiritual master, Brihaspati, on account of his misbehavior, and he became a hog on this planet. After many days, when Brahma wanted to recall him to his heavenly kingdom, Indra, in the form of a hog, forgot everything of his royal position in the heavenly kingdom, and he refused to go back. This is the spell of maya. Even Indra forgets his heavenly standard of life and is satisfied with the standard of a hog's life. By the influence of maya the conditioned soul becomes so affectionate towards his particular type of body that if he is offered, 'Give up this body, and immediately you will have a king's body,' he will not agree. This attachment strongly affects all conditioned living entities. Lord Krishna is personally canvassing, 'Give up everything in this material world. Come to Me, and I shall give you all protection,' but we are not agreeable. We think, 'We are quite all right. Why should we surrender unto Krishna and go back to His kingdom?' This is called illusion, or maya. Everyone is satisfied with his standard of living, however abominable it may be."

Since our nature is to enjoy, we find it intolerable to be in a world of suffering. Therefore we imagine this miserable world to be a place of enjoyment. It is only after one experiences the higher taste of Krishna consciousness that he can give up the false, illusory pleasures of material existence. This is easy for the Krishna conscious person. He is no longer interested in running after the mirage of material enjoyment because he is relishing the unlimited pleasure of Krishna consciousness within his heart at every minute.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Monday 21 April 2008

from Timisoara, Romania
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Today's Thought:

Saving the World from Total Anarchy


After three weeks of wonderful transcendental adventures of spreading the ultimate science in Germany, Bulgaria, Macedonia, and Romania today we are heading north via Malev Airlines to share this supreme nectar in Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Russia. Even though the whole world is gradually dying due to a lack of Krishna consciousness, we are now so fortunate that His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada has given us the switch by which the entire darkened, deluded, dead world can be illuminated, enlightened and revived. All we have to do is spread to every city, town, village, and hamlet on the globe the sublime teachings of Lord Krishna which have been so profoundly, perfectly, and succinctly explained by Srila Prabhupada. The more we spread these teachings, the more we will see how the entire world has been saved from the brink of total anarchy.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Sharing the Supreme Bliss
in Timisoara, Romania--19 April 2008

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Are Krishna Devotees Less Opulent?


Beloved Teacher,

Forgive my stupid question, but this troubles me....

I have read in texts that devotees of Lord Krishna are often not materially opulent. This I understand is in fact the mercy of the Lord for when material opulences are taken away the devotee truly learns to be dependent upon the Lord. Thus losing material possessions is in fact a boon in disguise.

However, my beloved teacher, I have fear that if I advance more in bhakti yoga I would lose my material opulences. I am young businessman with ambitions to expand my business and be among the top firms in my field of expertise. Do I have to choose between Krishna and my business ambitions? Or is there a way I can have the goodness of both the worlds?

Please guide me,

Hare Krishna

Rik

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Answer: Become World's Wealthiest Businessman

Material opulences are only removed from those who are torn between spirit and matter. My advise to you is that you should fully dedicate yourself to Krishna and aggressively pursue your business ambitions in His service by trying to become the wealthiest businessman in the entire world. In this way you will be able to render unparalleled service to the Lord by profusely funding the expanding of the Krishna consciousness movement.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Sunday 20 April 2008

from Oradea, Romania
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Today's Thought:

Introducing the Public to Basic Principles of Reality


The devotees in Oradea, Romania rented a large hall and advertised a Krishna consciousness program to the general public. When I arrived to give my lecture on this topmost of all self-realization systems I was delighted to see the hall packed so full of people that some members of the audience had to stand or sit on the floor. After a kirtan that was wonderfully super-charged by the participation of an enlivened assembly of Romanian and Hungarian devotees, I spoke for one hour to the interested audience explaining the basic principles of reality. Many sincere, intelligent questions were asked, and I got some challenges as well, which as usual were easily defeated by the powerful light of transcendental knowledge as revealed by Lord Sri Krishna in the Bhagavad-gita.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Public Hall Lecture
in Oradea, Romania--18 April 2008

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Conquer Smoking?


I read the Bhagavad-gita every day, and I also regularly recite the Hare Krishna mahamantra. Yet I am still addicted to smoking, which I very much want to to quit. Despite my efforts, I am unable to quit. Please guide me how I can come out of this disease.

Hare Krishna,

A.S.K. Prakash

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Answer: Implement the Higher Taste Principle

The key to giving up your smoking habit is to understand and to practically implement the principle of higher taste. This principle is described by Lord Sri Krishna in the Bhagavad-gita as follows:

vishaya vinivartante
niraharasya dehinah
rasa-varjam raso 'py asya
param drishtva nivartate


"The embodied soul may be restricted from sense enjoyment, though the taste for sense objects remains. But, ceasing such engagements by experiencing a higher taste, he is fixed in consciousness." ---Bhagavad-gita 2.59

The more you increase your chanting, the less time you will have for smoking. Plus the more you increase your chanting, it will become sweeter and sweeter until you are deriving so much taste from it that you wouldn't even dream of going back to the disgusting, degrading taste of cigarettes.

Our initiated disciples vow to chant at least 16 rounds a day of the Hare Krishna mahamantra on japa mala beads. This comes out to at a minimum of 1,728 repetitions of the Hare Krishna mantra every day. So kindly increase your chanting more and more and your cigarette smoking will naturally fade away into oblivion.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Saturday 19 April 2008

from Oradea, Romania
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Today's Thought:

Inevitable Collapse of the Global Civilization?

The modern day petroleum-based global social order is destined to collapse. For a society to be stable it must be based on locally grown agriculture. Ours is not. Instead of depending on locally grown produce, our global economy depends on trucking or flying in produce from distant places. The cost of that transportation of food is dependent on the price of oil. As the price of oil becomes astronomical and unaffordable, the price of food will do the same. This will lead to mass riots. And this is exactly what is already happening. Until we revert our global economy back to its original model of locally grown produce we are going to see a world social order that will deteriorate more and more until it completely collapses and mere anarchy is loosed upon the world.

Such a simplification of the world society back to locally produced agriculture is completely doable if we are willing to simplify our lives by giving up our present mode of "high living and no thinking" replacing with it "plain living and high thinking." High thinking means that the self-realization science must be taught to all the citizens of the world through all available means so that it can be easily understood and applied by the people in general. We are currently in the process of trying to convince the world leaders to allow and facilitate our doing this most important work for the deliverance of the entire human society from eventual utter chaos.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Live Appearance on Radio Transylvania
in Oradea, Romania--18 April 2008

Check out the video clip of the radio show at the following link:

http://www.backtohome.com/video/Romania-Radio-Show.wmv

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Remember the Lord 24 Hours Day?

In this age of Kali when everybody is busy working hard to earn money, how can one remember the Lord at every moment?

Please enlighten me.

Thanks

Bharat

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Answer: Engage Money In Krishna's Service

If you will engage that money which you are working so hard to earn fully in the service of Lord Krishna, by your work you will automatically advance in Krishna consciousness. This is not simply a mental adjustment. It means that you must completely give up sense gratification and mental speculation and fully surrender yourself to Krishna through the transparent via medium of the bona fide spiritual master. Then you will be in blissful Krishna consciousness remembering the Lord 24 hours a day whether you are at home, at the temple, or at work.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Friday 18 April 2008

from the Budapest, Hungary Airport
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Today's Thought:

We've Got to Get this Message Through to the World Society


17 April 2008--I am now here in the Budapest airport on a stopover on our way from Bulgaria to Romania. The material world is going on all around me. Airplanes are landing and taking off. People are coming and going. It's business as usual as the world civilization caught up in false identification with the material body goes about its normal daily activities of sense gratification trying to squeeze enjoyment out of the hard rock of material existence. If they only knew who they actually are beyond their temporary bodies and that they can enjoy an eternal existence of ever-expanding bliss and knowledge, what an astoundingly different and wonderful place this world would be. Somehow or other we have to get this message through to them loud and clear.

In this connection I was very pleased when my disciples sang a kirtan in the airport this morning as we were departing from Sofia. So many souls who happened to be at the airport were blessed with Lord Caitanya's mercy in the form of Hare Krishna kirtan. The more we hold kirtan in the public, the more the entire world will become transformed. Simply by wide scale public kirtan this entire planet will be gradually transformed into a paradise.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Final Kirtan at Sofia, Bulgaria Airport

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Distractions While Chanting

Whenever I want to meditate on the Hare Krishna mantra, "Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare", I cannot concentrate. There are always a lot of images, past memories, yawning, sleepiness, and disturbance. How can I get rid of all this annoyance and get on with my meditation?

Please help.

Devaraj

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Answer: Train Your Mind

The mind is like a naughty little child that wants to go running here and there all over the place. Just as we gradually train a naughty child how to behave properly, you simply have to grab your immature mind and fix it on the sound of Krishna's name. Do this again and again yet again until the mind learns the art of how to take complete shelter of the Lord's name. This technique is confirmed as follows in the Srimad Bhagavad-gita:

yato yato niscalati
manas cancalam asthiram
tatas tato niyamyaitad
atmany eva vasam nayet


"From wherever the mind wanders due to its flickering and unsteady nature, one must certainly withdraw it and bring it back under the control of the self." Bhagavad-gita 6.26

If you are feeling sleepy, stand up. If you are still feeling sleepy, pace back and forth.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Thursday 17 April 2008

from Sofia, Bulgaria
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Today's Thought:

Unlimited Spiritual Sky


After many, many wonderful days of sharing Krishna consciousness with the wonderful devotees of Bulgaria and Macedonia, today we are flying north for several days of tasting the sweetest nectar of Krishna consciousness in Romania. Wherever we travel all over the world we find people who are trying to make their lives perfect by seriously adopting the Krishna consciousness lifestyle. There is nothing more wonderful than this because this means that after millions of lifetimes of being entangled in the cycle of birth and death they are finally becoming liberated and returning to their original position full of knowledge and full of bliss in the eternal pastimes of the Supreme Person in that most amazing of all places, the unlimited spiritual sky.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Transcendental Questions and Answers
in Sofia, Bulgaria

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Krishna is the Supreme?

Dear Guru Maharaja,

Why is Lord Sri Krishna considered to be the greatest of all gods? Why is He considered as the Supreme Personality of Godhead?

ISKCON says we can chant any God's name. Its not a compulsion to chant only the Hare Krishna Mantra. But then why do we pray only to Krishna when Lord Rama, Allah, Jesus are all equally great gods?

Please enlighten me,
Your Aspiring servant,

Shweta

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Answer: Everything Emanates from Him

Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the greatest of all the gods because everything emanates from Him. He is the source of all the gods and everything else that exists.

God has many names. Whether we say Krishna, Rama, or Allah, we are speaking of the same Supreme Being. Chanting Hare Krishna is the best worship of the Supreme Lord who can be addressed as Krishna, Rama, or Allah.

Jesus Christ is the son of God. He never claims to be God, the Father. When we worship his father by chanting Hare Krishna, Jesus Christ is naturally pleased with us and bestows his blessings upon us.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Wednesday 16 April 2008

from the road to Sofia, Bulgaria
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Today's Thought:

The Epitome of Sweetness

Everyone is looking for loving reciprocation with a lover, a friend, or a family member because loving reciprocation is what gives life purpose and meaning. What if you could have ongoing 24 hours a day loving reciprocation with the Supreme Person, the source of all existence? That would truly be the epitome of sweetness. This opportunity is available for you right now. Because the Supreme Person is absolute everything in relationship to Him is also Him. Therefore His wondrous transcendental name, fame, qualities, pastimes, and teachings are all non-different from Him. Therefore if we absorb ourselves in hearing and explaining these, we are directly associating with Him, and the more we do this the deeper and deeper we are cultivating our loving relationship with Him. Trust me. There is nothing sweeter than this! You can taste this bliss every day. Why every day? You can dive into this ocean of nectar at every second.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Diving into the Ocean of Nectar in Sofia, Bulgaria

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why It Is So?

Pranam Guruji, thank you very much for the great ways you teach us how to live and connect with Krishna. I am in a situation in life, where I am finding it very hard to concentrate on Krishna.

My brother-in-law who is visiting us from India for 6 weeks tries to intimidate me and makes me feel like a stranger in my own house. He takes my husband out to drink every single night, until the wee hours of the morning. They think because I am praying or meditating whenever I find time, that I come from a different culture and cannot understand why people eat meat or drink. They never pray. They drink and eat meat yet they have a life which is completely trouble free, and here I am trying to be good and do good at every chance I get, and there is no end to my miseries. Please help me understand why is it so. I appreciate your time and awaiting your reply.

Hare Krishna!

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Answer: For the Ultimate Good

Don't be disturbed by the so-called enjoyment of the materialists. They are simply burning off the reactions of their previous pious activities. As soon as they have spent off their pious karma they will be plunged into the darkest region of the universe. By this suffering situation you are burning off the reactions to your past misdeeds. Simply remain pure and ever grateful to Lord Krishna for His unlimited kindness upon you even if it appears in the form of distress. If you will faithfully execute the bhakti yoga system without deviation, soon you will able to fully take shelter of the Lord's lotus feet and attain unlimited happiness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Tuesday 15 April 2008

from Skopje, Macedonia
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Today's Thought:

Say No to Mayadevi


Mayadevi, the super powerful material energy, has us tightly in her clutches and is doing everything possible to keep us permanently entrapped. Therefore to successfully become liberated from the cycle of birth and death we must with great strength and determination break free from her grip. The greatest obstacle we experience on the path of spiritual perfection is our tendency for sense gratification, i.e. unnecessarily indulging our senses beyond what is required for keeping body and soul together. Therefore when our senses scream at us for sense gratification we must firmly and resolutely respond with, "No, you cannot have it!" In this way, if we are strong, we will become free from all material distractions and will be able to fully absorb ourselves in transcendental meditation upon the unlimitedly nectarean name, fame, form, pastimes, entourage, and paraphernalia of that inconceivably wondrous Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Sri Krishna. This transcendental absorption will situate us solidly on the spiritual platform and guarantee our passage into the eternal spiritual sky at the time of death.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Kirtan Bliss in Sofia, Bulgaria

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How Can Bhakti Yoga Be a Science?


In today's "Thought for the Day," you referred to bhakti yoga as a science. How can we understand bhakti as "science"? Many people cannot relate to a religion that is science.

Hare Krishna,

Thank you

Bruce

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Answer: Bhakti Yoga is the Perfection of Science

Science means to discover what is true. There are many fields of scientific study through which the scientists try from different angles of vision to discover what is true. But in spite of hundreds of years of research going on in these various fields of science, the scientists are still groping in the dark to try to figure out what is true. This is why the scientific textbooks have to be constantly updated.

Unknown to the modern day scientists is the original field of science in which one can quickly and thoroughly understand and realize what is true both in this world of matter as well as in the anti-material world, which lies beyond this material world and from which the sustaining, supporting energy manifests to give this material world its very existence.

This original field of science is known as bhakti yoga. Unlike the modern day science, in which the scientists generally keep themselves separate from their experiments, in the bhakti yoga science the scientist puts himself fully into the experiment and personally experiences the result of his experiment. Instead of relying on imperfect and limited scientific instruments such as microscopes and telescopes he personally awakens his own ultimate knowledge acquiring instrument, pure consciousness. With this perfect scientific instrument at his disposal he can then easily perceive and understand all of the secrets of the universe and what lies beyond the universe.

The word religion comes from the Latin word religare, which means to reconnect. Therefore the real meaning of religion is to reconnect with the original source of all existence. This grossly abused word does not refer to a dogmatic set of rules and rituals. When the bhakti yoga scientist fully awakens his pure consciousness, he naturally, in a state of intense love, reconnects himself with the original source of all existence, Lord Sri Krishna. Therefore when he becomes perfect in science he naturally simultaneously becomes perfect in religion.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Monday 14 April 2008

from the road to Skopje, Macedonia
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Today's Thought:

Taking Shelter of a Paramahamsa


The quick and easy way to become fully God realized is take shelter of a paramahamsa, someone who is fully God realized. Because such a person possesses God, if he likes, he can easily give God to us. In the Bhagavad-gita Lord Sri Krishna instructs us that such a bona fide spiritual master should be approached with submissive inquiries and sincere service and that such spiritually enlightened beings can reveal the truth to us because they have seen the truth. If we will intelligently take advantage of this sublime instruction of the Supreme Lord, our lives will become perfect and this entire planet will be transformed into a paradise.


Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Chant 16 Rounds?


Can I ask you a question that often troubles me? Which is important chanting only 16 round or investing all our time 24/7 at his service?

Why should we count when we chant His holy names? Is there any importance?

And also, why should not we use onion and garlic while preparing prasadam for the Lord?

Hare Krishna,

Yours servant,
Aruna

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Answer: Sufficient Strength for Curing the Material Disease

It is very nice that you have approached me to clear your confusion. This is recommended in the Bhagavad-gita.

Here are the answers:

What makes you think that chanting is not service? This is your misconception. Any activity that we engage in under the instructions of Lord Sri Krishna or His bona fide representative, the spiritual master, is service to the Supreme Lord. Krishna specifically orders us in the Bhagavad-gita that we must chant. So how can we neglect the Lord's order? This would be an offense. The humble devotee accepts whatever duty he is given as the sweetest mercy of Sri Guru and Sri Krishna and enthusiastically carries it out to the best of his abilities.

Just as a doctor will prescribe that we take a certain number of a particular pill on a regular daily basis in order to cure our disease, similarly the spiritual master prescribes that we chant a certain minimum number of Hare Krishna mantras on a regular daily basis in order to gain sufficient spiritual potency to repel the disease of material consciousness, which has so completely infected our hearts.

Krishna prefers tasty dishes, not foul tasting dishes containing a bad aroma caused by onions or garlic.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Sunday 13 April 2008

from Sofia, Bulgaria
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Today's Thought:

On the Road to Macedonia


Today we are heading out for Macedonia by car. My disciple, Sarvabhauma Das, will drive us up into the mountains where we will cross the border by foot at a high elevation border station to be picked up by the Macedonian devotees who will then drive us down from the mountains to Skopje for a couple of days of hearing, chanting, and remembering the inconceivable glories of that amazingly wonderful, unlimitedly sweet transcendental Lord, Sri Krishna. There is no doubt in my mind that Krishna is God. Otherwise how could I go on continuously for thirty-seven years doing nothing else except absorbing myself in Him without getting bored? I have sweet memories of my visit to Macedonia two years ago, and I'm very much looking forward to again being with the Macedonian devotees. The secret of advancing rapidly in Krishna consciousness is to as much as possible cultivate loving relationships with devotees. My around-the-world lecture tours give me a wonderful opportunity to do this. We get to have a great time while we fully absorb ourselves in revolutionizing this planet. What a life!

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why No Sex for Pleasure?


It has been mentioned in one of the regulative principles that sex is only meant only for procreation. Why not sex for pleasure? Sex is harmless. No killing is involved like in meat eating. Moreover, sex is natural. It was born in each one of us. We did not create it artificially like alcohol or drugs, and sex is also the most powerful of human emotions. So what is wrong in sex for pleasure?

Please enlighten me. I would be ever grateful for your spiritual perspective on the above.

best wishes,

Your aspiring student.

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Answer: Why Limit Ourselves to Misery?

Sex for pleasure murders the spiritual consciousness of those who indulge in it. The root cause of all our suffering is misidentification with the material body. The only way to get free from the sufferings of material existence is to fully realize that we are not our bodies. There is nothing that reinforces the bodily misconception more powerfully than sex indulgence. Therefore those who are realized in transcendental knowledge completely give up sex or cut it to the bare minimum by only using it for producing saintly children.

The transcendentalist is not frustrated by giving up sex. Rather he increases his pleasure by millions and billions of times because the pleasure of reawakening one's loving emotional relationship with the Supreme Person, the Source of all existence, is millions of light years beyond the pleasure of scratching the itch of sex desire through sexual intercourse.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Saturday 12 April 2008

from Sofia, Bulgaria
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Today's Thought:

Making the Entire World Krishna Conscious


The great spiritual authority, Krishnadas Kaviraja, has predicted that the entire world will become inundated with pure Krishna bhakti. So there is no doubt that it will happen. It is simply a question of when. So how can we make that day come sooner? The more we dedicate ourselves to this mission by being ideal examples and by engaging in the practical activity of planting the seeds of bhakti wherever we go, the faster it will happen. So you can be a part of this exciting revolutionary movement. Simply seriously adopt the principles of Krishna consciousness in your life and do everything possible to promote it to others. If everyone who is practicing Krishna consciousness can induce even one person to also take it up, we will gradually in due course of time make the entire world Krishna conscious. And if each devotee can make two people Krishna consciousness this movement will spread like wildfire inundating this entire world in a very short time.

For example, if one person makes two new devotees. There are now three devotees on the planet. And if this doubling process repeats itself only ten more times, there will now be over 4,000 devotees on the planet. We can just to try to imagine how many devotees there would be after 100 cycles. In this way after a relatively small number of cycles the entire world population can become Krishna conscious.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

P.S. Some of my readers who are mathematicians can run this calculation to see how many cycles it would take before the entire world population is Krishna conscious.

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Do I Get Headaches?


Why is it that I get headaches every time I study spiritual things or meditate or chant? This is not Bliss!!

Dianne

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Answer: You Are Burning Off Karma

You are burning off some karma from previous misdeeds. Just tolerate it and push on through the fog. The bright sun of spiritual perfection is awaiting you.

If you will regularly every morning study the Bhagavad-gita As It Is and chant the Hare Krishna Mantra on japa beads gradually a whole new world of enlightened consciousness will open up for you, and you will be swimming constantly in an ocean of transcendental bliss. Just as the brilliant morning sun dissipates the night time fog, the wonderful illuminating power of the Hare Krishna mantra will gradually free you from your past karma.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Friday 11 April 2008

from Sofia, Bulgaria
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Today's Thought:

Religion Taught in Schools?

It has recently been debated here in Bulgaria whether or not religion should be taught in the public schools. Many are in favor of this concept and many are opposed to it also. For example, the Holy Synod of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church has stated, "Religion should be a compulsory school subject with Orthodox Christianity as its primary focus and Islam as an option." I was given an opportunity yesterday here at public lecture in Sofia to state our position on this controversial issue.

I clearly stated in no uncertain terms that this idea about which religion to teach is completely erroneous. There is no such thing as different religions. God has given us one religion to develop our pure love for Him. Everyone should be taught to reconnect with God. No one should be taught a sectarian, limited conception of what is religion. There is only one Supreme Person although He is addressed with different names according to different languages.


Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Travel Far and Wide?


Why travel far and wide to spread Krishna consciousness, when in America the people need this knowledge because they are suffering and are causing others to suffer too?

Tauofik

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Answer: Whole World is Suffering

I am willing to travel wherever people are suffering due to a lack of Krishna consciousness. This lack is not limited to America. The entire world is suffering due to a lack of Krishna consciousness. So wherever there is practical facility for me to carry this message I am very happy to do so.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Thursday 10 April 2008

from Sofia, Bulgaria
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Today's Thought:

Unforgettable Sofia Arrival


As we were flying from Frankfurt to Sofia I could not definitely recall if I had informed anyone of my arrival time in Sofia. So I was wondering whether or not there would be anybody to great us at the airport and what kind of hassles we would face if no one was there. So while going through the red tape of clearing customs and getting our luggage there was a lingering uncertainty in my heart, "What will we do if no one is there on the other side of the door to greet us?" As we proceeded into the reception area the intensity of my uncertainty increased. But then as we rounded the corner and I saw and heard twenty-five bright-faced devotees ecstatically singing and dancing Hare Krishna with tasteful musical accompaniment transforming the airport into the spiritual world, my heart melted in ecstasy. I could not imagine any sweeter greeting than that. This was clearly one of the high points of my entire life. And then as I joined in with the devotees joyously singing and dancing to the amazed looks of the crowds in the airport, I felt that I had truly come home to the ultimate platform basking in the mercy of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. We carried our kirtan through the terminal out to the pick up area in front of the terminal. And then when I saw than even the airport employees were joining us in dancing for the Lord's pleasure I envisioned a world in which the entire planet is ecstatically singing and dancing the Hare Krishna mahamantra. May that day come soon. May that day come right now.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Be Chaste to Guru?

Could you answer a question for me please?

What does it mean to be chaste to Guru?

Thank you always for your compassion

your servant
Rebecca

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Answer: Always Remember, Glorify, and Serve

To be chaste to guru means to always remember him, glorify him, and serve his instructions.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Wednesday 9 April 2008

from Frankfurt, Germany Airport
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Today's Thought:

On the Road to Bulgaria


After an ecstatic week of spreading the ultimate self realization science in Germany we are now heading south to Bulgaria to reveal this sublime knowledge there. The whole world is suffering due to a lack of Krishna consciousness and we are so fortunate that we have been blessed with the opportunity to save the fallen souls of this age by sharing this profound bhakti science with them. I am praying for Krishna's blessings that everyone throughout the entire world may hear and heed His teachings.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Writing "Thought for the Day"
in the Frankfurt Airport

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Articles Are Worn by Devotees?

All glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga.

I hope you are well and finding lots of success on your world tour, and I hope that the months will go by quickly to have you among us in June.

My question in this message is: Could you explain about using certain articles such as kunti (neck beads), devotional clothes and their colors, the use of sikha (tuft of hair worn by male devotees) and tilak (clay markings), and about japa. I hope you will dispel my doubts.

I say goodbye, sending you an affectionate greeting from Lima-Peru.

Namaste!!!

Carlo

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Answer: To Remember and Remind Others of Krishna

Thank you very much for welcoming us back to Lima, Peru. We are eagerly awaiting our return in June.

The various traditional articles worn by devotees are very nice because they remind us and those who see us of Krishna. Japa beads are the personal beads used by each devotee for chanting at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day. Chanting on the beads helps the devotee to fix his mind more strongly on the names of Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Tuesday 8 April 2008

from Birkenfeld, Germany
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Today's Thought:

Deliverer of the Fallen Souls


A Vaisnavas, a godly person, is always feeling distress in his heart to see the deplorable condition of the suffering souls of this age. Therefore he fully dedicates his life for the deliverance of all from the clutches of illusion. Even if he has to accept suffering in order to carry out his missionary activities, he will do. A notable example in this connection is Jesus Christ. He preferred to suffer even to the point of being crucified rather than give up his missionary activities. In our Krishna consciousness movement we see the wonderful example of Sriman Ananta Santi Prabhu who single-handedly even at the risk of his own life spread Krishna consciousness throughout Russia during the height of the Communist era. Because of his valiant efforts tens of thousands of people across the former Soviet Union are now blessed with the pathway back to home, back to Godhead.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Process of Becoming a Devotee


Sir, a few days back you told us about practical initiation and formal initiation. You said that by dedication and love towards the spiritual master one can get practically initiated, so:

(1.a) Just by practical initiation a chanter can get converted into a devotee or is formal initiation also required?

(1.b) Does a chanter get practically initiated just by dedication and love towards the master or is the master's feelings also necessary to get practically initiated?

2) If a chanter faces obstacles and frustration on his path of chanting and regulative principles, what should he or she do?

Regards,

Sunil

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Answer: Mutual Acceptance

Practical initiation is when the chanter accepts within his heart that he has now found his spiritual master. Formal initiation is when the spiritual master accepts the chanter as his disciple in the initiation ceremony. Since becoming a devotee requires to fully surrender unto the regulative principles of devotional service, the chanter will naturally accept formal initiation from the spiritual master. Until the spiritual master accepts the person as his disciple in the formal initiation ceremony, the initiation is not complete.

If the chanter faces obstacles, he must approach the spiritual master seeking guidance how to overcome those obstacles.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Monday 7 April 2008

from the road to Goloka Dham, Germany
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Today's Thought:

Call for Volunteers


By grace of Sri Krishna nothing is impossible. Anything can be accomplished by His pure devotees who have dedicated everything for His service. Therefore we might as well strive for the greatest accomplishments. Why should we sell ourselves short by shooting for a lesser goal? Therefore why not shoot the highest possible goals of becoming pure devotees and completely revolutionizing this planet with pure Krishna bhakti? If we make these our goals and we don't fully attain them, what is our loss? Even a partial attainment of these goals will be a meaningful life of phenomenal accomplishment. And if we do attain them, it will be the greatest turn around in the history of the universe giving unlimited pleasure to Srila Prabhupada.

So this is a call for volunteers. Would you like to fully dedicate your life for these two goals?

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Are You in Contact with Srila Prabhupada?


Namaskarams Guruji,

I am a big fan of Srila Prabhupada. I like him every much. The way he talks and his speech is very interesting. I am crazy to watch him. In "Thought for the Day" I saw your message that Prabhupada Maharaja still guides his disciples even after having left this world. How it is possible? If so, he is in contact with you now. Please guide me. I want your blessings to move forward in Krishna bhakti.

Thanks,

Krishna Prasad

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Answer: At Every Moment

Srila Prabhupada gave so many instructions to his disciples. These instructions are the guiding principles of their lives. The disciple who is faithfully carrying out the instructions he received from his spiritual master does not feel that he is separated from his spiritual master. Rather he finds that his spiritual master is fully present in the form of his instructions.

Because my life is fully dedicated to serving the instructions I have received from Srila Prabhupada I feel how he is present with me at every moment, guiding me, blessing me, and inspiring me.

Srila Prabhupada has ordered me to boldly push forward this Krishna consciousness movement for the re-spiritualization of the entire society. Therefore my life is fully dedicated to trying to spark off a spiritual revolution on this planet.

You have my full blessings that you can become a pure devotee of Krishna and become fully absorbed in assisting us in pushing forward this Krishna consciousness movement all over the world.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Sunday 6 April 2008

from Hari Nam Desh, Hohenstein, Germany
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Today's Thought:

Initiations


Yesterday in Hari Nam Desh in Hohenstein, Germany I initiated two new disciples: Karuna Sindhu Das, and Jalangi Devi Dasi. Initiation is the ceremony in which one solemnly commits one's entire life to following the process of Krishna consciousness under the guidance of their spiritual master. The ceremony was held in a beautifully decorated temple room which was filled with over one hundred guests. It was a festive, joyous occasion which included singing, dancing, and feasting. It gladdened the hearts of all to see these two souls taking their second birth. Our first birth is from our mother and father, and our second birth is from Guru and Krishna. Recently in Houston, Texas I initiated Sukhada Das as my disciple. Below are some photos for your enlivenment from these ecstatic events.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Sukadha Das Initiation, Houston, Texas


Karuna Sindhu Das at His Initiation
Hohenstein, Germany

Jalangi Devi Dasi at Her Initiation
Hohenstein, Germany


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Carried Away by Success and Failure


I am Amit, your servant from India. I am about 29 years old. It has been my personal experience in life that only the powerful person is respected in society even if he may be the most evil-minded person in the world. Whereas the not so strong person in terms of money and power is always cursed and ill treated even though he may be the greatest devotee of the Lord.

Since childhood I have lived a very miserable life. I have been very weak physically and social-status wise. People have always considered me as a mentally retarded person. Now at the present phase of my life, by the grace of the Supreme Lord and you blessings I have got well settled in both my job and my married life. But still I sometimes get very depressed when the fearful thoughts of my past days enter my mind. I pray to the Lord to never show me those days again in my future.

Please advise me how to come out of those fearful memories in life and live a Krishna conscious life now. One main problem of mine is that I easily get drawn by feeling of ego and pride even if I get a little success. Then when there are failures I get depressed. Please suggest to me how to come out of the state of being carried away by circumstances in life and get fully absorbed in the devotion of the Lord.

Thank you,

Amit

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Answer: See Them Both as the Mercy of Krishna

Material success and failure go together like day and night. Therefore you should understand than whenever there is success it will soon be followed by failure and that whenever there is failure it will soon be followed by success. If you allow yourself to be elated by success, you are sure to become depressed by failure. The simple solution is to be equipoised, equal both in success and failure seeing them both as the mercy of Krishna and both to be engaged in His service. Krishna describes such an equipoised vision as follows in the Bhagavad-gita:

na prahrishyet priyam prapya
nodvijet prapya capriyam
sthira-buddhir asammudho
brahma-vid brahmani sthitah

bahya-sparseshv asaktatma
vindaty atmani yat sukham
sa brahma-yoga-yuktatma
sukham akshayam asnute


"A person who neither rejoices upon achieving something pleasant nor laments upon obtaining something unpleasant, who is self-intelligent, who is unbewildered, and who knows the science of God, is already situated in transcendence. Such a liberated person is not attracted to material sense pleasure but is always in trance, enjoying the pleasure within. In this way the self-realized person enjoys unlimited happiness, for he concentrates on the Supreme." Bhagavad-gita 5:20-21

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Saturday 5 April 2008

from Pforzheim, Germany
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Today's Thought:

Fight for the Right


A self-realized soul, although personally tasting great transcendental happiness at every minute, is not oblivious to the pains and suffering of the general world population. In fact he is greatly disturbed to see humanity in such an unfortunate situation. Therefore armed with the most powerful weapon of transcendental knowledge he stands boldly in opposition to the vast ocean of injustice and ignorance which has completely engulfed the modern day human society. He is not afraid to fight for the right at every step. In fact he thrives on it.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Instructions from Departed Gurus


In the lesson C24, it is stated, "A neophyte on the pathway of spiritual enlightenment cannot be expected to be able to accurately hear messages from a departed spiritual master in response to his questions. Even if he claims to be able to do this, in all likelihood the answers he 'receives' are simply his own fanciful imagination, not the answers of the departed guru the student claims to be following."

I read it and am really confused. Does it mean that my following of instructions which Srila Prabhupada spoke through his lectures was a mere imagination?

Neeraj

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Answer: Neophytes Require Living Gurus

You can certainly receive instructions from Srila Prabhupada through his lectures. My point is that the neophytes do not generally receive direct personal instructions within the heart from departed acharyas. Therefore they require a living guru to give them personal instructions. If we could all receive personal instructions from previous acharyas from within the heart, there would be no need for a disciplic succession. We could all just take instructions from Krishna directly. But because our hearts are not pure, we require a guru who is physically present who can guide us.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Friday 4 April 2008

from ISKCON Heidelberg, Germany
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Today's Thought:

If They Only Knew

If the world population knew the science of bhakti, this entire planet would become transformed into a paradise. Peace and happiness would predominate. All forms of material distress would be greatly reduced. The climatic conditions would become pleasing. There would abundant supplies of fresh water and sumptuous foodstuffs. The political leaders would be ideal examples of saintly behavior. The world economy would become stabilized with full employment for all. Family life would become so happy that nobody would ever desire divorce. There would be a renaissance of transcendental expression in the form of art, drama, music, poetry, and architecture, and philosophy. Science would progress to the point of finally fully discovering the secrets of the universe. If they only knew, if they only knew.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How May I Serve You?

Friction is coming from the fact that my husband believes that religion, with all the rites, formalities and rituals that accompany it, is unnecessary and that only belief in God is needed.

How can I do my duty as a good wife and mother but also perfect my life? Please instruct me, Srila Gurudeva, how may I serve you?

Thank you,

Your student

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Answer: Assist Me in Delivering the Fallen Souls

Religion does not mean rites, formalities, and rituals. Religion simply means to reconnect with God. If a husband tells his wife that believes in her but he does not want to serve her in any way, what kind of nonsense husband is that? Similarly with God. If I truly believe in Him, I will naturally serve Him. Religion simply means to serve God, that's all. The word religion comes from the Latin word "religare", which means to reconnect. That which reconnects us with God is religion. That which disconnects us from God is irreligion. If someone says that they believe in God, but not in religion, this means that they acknowledge God's existence but they do not want to have any connection with him.

To be a good wife and mother you should always act in such a way that your husband and children can become delivered from the cycle of birth and death.

The best service you can do for me is to become a pure devotee of Krishna and assist me in my mission of delivering the fallen, conditioned souls of this Kali Yuga.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Thursday 3 April 2008

from ISKCON Heidelberg, Germany
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Today's Thought:

Beyond All Problems

In this material world we are forced by the laws of nature to face so many problems one after another after another. How can we escape this ocean of problems? The answer is quite simple really. All we have to do is understand the one basic problem which is the cause of all other problems. What is that problem? Each of us thinks that we are the center of all existence. Even though we do not have the power to manifest even the smallest portion of the total existence from ourselves, we foolishly cling to the crazy notion that we are the center of it. We need to seek out knowledge of that original, supreme person who is in fact the source of all existence and establish a loving relationship with Him. This will immediately bring a stop to all our problems of existence and elevate us to our original consciousness situated far, far beyond all the problems of material existence.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Did Lord Caitanya Reject the Bhagavad-gita?

If the Bhagavad-gita is giving us the highest teachings then why did Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu reject Ramananda Raya's proposal that the highest principle was to surrender to Krishna, as described in the Bhagavad-gita?

Your student

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Answer: No. He Affirmed Its Full Understanding

Krishna affirms in the Bhagavad-gita that the Bhagavad-gita is the highest knowledge, therefore it is a fact that the Bhagavad-gita is the highest knowledge. The Bhagavad-gita philosophy can be presented with incomplete understanding or it can be presented with full understanding. When Ramananda Raya presented surrender to Krishna as the highest truth Lord Caitanya rejected this proposal because He wanted to demonstrate that renunciation in itself is not sufficient. There must be positive engagement. Without positive engagement, the highest perfectional stage cannot be attained. Lord Caitanya did not reject the Bhagavad-gita's being the highest truth. What he did reject was Ramananda Raya's incomplete presentation of the Bhagavad-gita.

What was finally presented by Ramananda Raya as the highest truth and was accepted as the highest truth by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is that devotional service based on information received from a realized devotee of the Lord and rendered without any attempt at cultivation of knowledge or mental speculation is the highest stage of perfection. This is the complete understanding of the Gita's message, which is indeed the highest truth.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Wednesday 2 April 2008

from ISKCON Heidelberg, Germany
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Today's Thought:

Connecting with the ISKCON-Net


It's really nice to be back with the wonderful ISKCON devotees here in Heidelberg, Germany. We are staying in a small preaching center serenely situated inside Heidelberg town on the side of a forested mountain. The devotees are so warm and friendly. We don't feel like strangers here because the devotees welcome us just like family members who have been away for a long time. Srila Prabhupada has created such a warm, loving international network of sincere devotees all the world. He has named that network as ISKCON, the International Society for Krishna Consciousness. This ISKCON-Net is far more exciting and beneficial than the Internet. Of course, the Internet is also nice. Through it you are getting connected right now with the highest level ISKCON-Net.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Are You Worried About Global Warming and Other Imbalances of Nature?

Now you make a difference in this world for solving the myriad of problems that are devastating the human society. Krishna consciousness is the process of re-harmonizing the individual consciousness with the Supreme Consciousness. Through this sublime method in one stroke all the problems that are besieging the human society can easily be solved. Contribute today to help make this miracle happen. Together we can usher in a new era of peace and prosperity for the entire world.


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Each Person Seek His Own Truth?

My trouble is that I am not able to answer the queries of my dearest friend. He believes that we have to pay for our karma in this lifespan only and there is no proof of rebirth. He says doing our karma properly is the foremost thing and devotional or spiritual activities are pursued by those who want to escape from doing hard work or by those who do not find any engaging or fruitful activity to pursue. He says, "What good are we doing by wasting our time in chanting and other devotional activities? Everyone should be engaged in doing his karma responsibly to contribute to make this world better place. Every person has to seek his truth by himself and there is no benefit in blindly following the theories of a sect like ISKCON."

Kindly enlighten me on this so that I can revive my shaken faith in Krishna consciousness.

Thanks and regards

Hare Krishna

Saurabh

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Answer: That is Not Absolute Truth

Your friend is wrong. Those who are spiritually awakened work harder than anyone else. They are engaged 24/7 for the deliverance of the suffering humanity from the clutches of illusion.

Regarding rebirth your friend should try to understand that we are being reborn at every minute, because at every minute within the body the old blood corpuscles are dying and new ones are taking their place.

A foolish child may think that going to school is a waste of time. He thinks that it would be nicer to run and play all day. But his parents can see his future need and therefore send him to school. Similarly those who have the vision to see the future need of the living beings instruct that they must engage in devotional activities.

We can see at the present moment that the hard work of those who are spiritually blind is transforming this planet into more and more of a hell. I am not very impressed by their hard work. Every day they are making our air and water and the atmosphere in which we live more and more dirty.

The absolute truth is one. If each individual has a different truth, this is relative truth. It is not absolute truth.

ISKCON is not a sect. ISKCON is composed of persons who are eager to transcend the relative sectarian "truths" of this world of conflict and realize the absolute truth that will bring lasting peace and happiness for every man, woman, and child on this planet.

In ISKCON we condemn blind following. It is not allowed. We train our members how to intelligently understand and then practically realize what is spirit, what is matter, and Who is the controller of both.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

from Dallas-Fort Worth Airport--USA
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Today's Thought:

Thanks to You


Getting back out on the road was pretty intense. A hacker took over our secondary email server rendering it useless, thus wickedly depriving some of our readers from receiving "Thought the Day". Now with this problem still unresolved I am en route from the USA to Germany. At the present moment I am on a transit stop at the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport. By Krishna's mercy I was able to land a computer work station to access my email and to write "Thought for the Day" before we board our flight to Frankfurt.

Thanks to all of you, my beloved readers. By your dedicated reading you are blessing me with the most auspicious opportunity to describe every day the glories of the sublime Krishna consciousness science.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

A Brief Hiatus at the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport
 


You can help make a difference in this world for the deliverance of all living beings from the repetition by supporting the spreading of Krishna consciousness all over the world. It's the right thing to do. You'll feel great! Contribute today.


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Don't You Fly By Mystic Power?


Why don't devotees like you pray to the Lord to carry you everywhere immediately with mystic power so that you can preach everywhere without riding airplanes. Such a praying is not for your personal enjoyment, rather, it is for the benefit of all. And it will save time and money also.

Yechen Zhang

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Answer: Engaging Others in Service

The devotee does not ask Krishna to serve him. He simply prays for the service of Krishna. If Krishna wants to empower his devotee to fly without an airplane, He can easily do this as He does in the case of Sri Narada Muni, the liberated spaceman. The devotee leaves this up to Krishna and does not petition the Lord in such a way.

By my current means of travel--via airplanes, ships, and cars--Krishna is giving so many others the opportunity to engage in devotional service by assisting me in my travels.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

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