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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Thursday 31 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

As Within, So Without


Whatever sort of atmosphere we cultivate within our hearts will be manifest externally in the form of the world we see all around us. The more we cultivate inner purity, the more the external world will become pure in every way. And conversely, the more we are polluted with lust, anger, greed, and envy without our hearts, the more this world will be manifested as a nightmarish, polluted hell.

So the point is that if we want to live in a clean, happy, pollution-free world, this will only be possible when we clear out the pollution from our hearts. The easiest and most effective way of doing this is to reawaken the original, natural pristine state of consciousness now lying dormant within our hearts. In other words, we must become fully self-realized. For this age of Kali, the Kali Santarana Upanishad especially recommends that the most effective way of awakening our enlightened consciousness is to chant the Hare Krishna mahamantra:

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

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Heavily Polluted Beijing, China

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Position of Goddess Lalitha Parameshwari


Gurudeva, one of my colleagues asked me to check with you as to what is the position of Goddess Lalitha Parameshwari, who is also known as Goddess Thripurasundari or Adi Para Shakhti. She is also worshipped in Sri Chakra form. According to Sri Lalitha Sahasranamam, she is the origin of all and things and beings - material non material including all gods came from her.

According to your instructions, Lord Sri Krishna is the Supreme. How is Lord Krishna related to Goddess Lalitha Parameshwari? Pray, kindly dispel our ignorance.

Aspiring to be your servant,

Haridasan.P

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Answer: Subordinate to Krishna

Although there are portions of the Vedas that cater to those with material desires as a temporary measure until they are ready to move on to spiritual perfection, the ultimate conclusion of all Vedic wisdom is to give up all material desires by fully surrendering oneself to Lord Sri Krishna or Lord Vishnu. This culmination of spiritual understanding is clearly described in the Bhagavad-gita as follows:

arjuna uvaca
param brahma param dhama
pavitram paramam bhavan
purusam sasvatam divyam
adi-devam ajam vibhum

ahus tvam rsayah sarve
devarsir naradas tatha
asito devalo vyasah
svayam caiva bravisi me

"Arjuna said: You are the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the ultimate abode, the purest, the Absolute Truth. You are the eternal, transcendental, original person, the unborn, the greatest. All the great sages such as Narada, Asita, Devala and Vyasa confirm this truth about You, and now You Yourself are declaring it to me."
--Bhagavad-gita 10.12-13

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Wednesday 30 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Don't Remain in Illusion


The choice is ours. We can remain in illusion or we can come out of illusion. Due to a poor fund of knowledge most people fear the stark reality of material existence and prefer the false security of remaining in illusion holding onto so many false crutches, like the proverbial ostrich who buried his head in the sand when he was being chased by a predator. They don't realize that if they would just go deeper into reality, they would break through the clouds of illusion and enter into an unbelievably beautiful transcendental existence where life is eternal, full of knowledge, and ever-increasing blissful. Simply we need a tour guide who can escort us beyond the clouds of the material existence into that most sublime region which is known as the paravyoma, the spiritual sky.

That tour guide is known as the bona fide spiritual master. This is not the spiritual master who claims to be Krishna, as is the fashion nowadays even though according to the authoritative Vedic scriptures Krishna is not coming again until He appears as Kalki avatar 427,000 years from now. The bona spiritual master is the spiritual master who humbly remains the servant of Krishna and of the predecessor acharyas in the disciplic line from Sri Krishna. He does not invent any new teaching. He simply repeats the teachings of Krishna as given in the Bhagavad-gita and the Srimad Bhagavatam.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Krishna Allows Us to Be in Maya?


I humbly present this question before you.

The material senses are manifestations of Maya, the Lord's illusory energy, to keep us entangled in the cycle of birth and death. Why would Lord Krishna allow us to be exposed to Maya?

Grim

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Answer: So We Can Voluntarily Return to Him

When we so foolishly desired to be in illusion, instead of keeping us against our will in the spiritual world, like an affectionate father Krishna facilitated our desire by letting us try out the illusion of being the center of existence. He did this so that we could personally realize how foolish it is to give up His service and could then voluntarily return to His eternal kingdom to serve Him there forever with pure love.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 
Tuesday 29 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Does God Exist?

Many people nowadays claim that God does not exist, that there is no such thing as God. Before we proceed further with this discussion we should understand what we mean by the word "God." God means the origin of existence. So the question is this: Does existence have an origin or is it simply existing on its own? To answer this question we can use the modern day scientific method known as empirical observation. Do we have any experience of something that exists on its own without being caused by something else? The answer is no. We have never observed such a phenomena. Therefore we can rightfully conclude that since everything we have ever observed has a cause for its existence, existence itself must have a cause and therefore God must exist

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Can I Ask for Some Grace?

This is with reference to recent bomb blasts in Bangalore and Ahmedabad. Though I am not seated there, yet I feel a great amount of compassion for the people and feel concerned about their security. Can I ask for some grace from you, Srila Prabhupada, and Lord Krishna Caitanya for those suffering there? I could not sleep well yesterday. There is big threat from our neighboring country brothers and I am hearing from various sources that some of them are inducing large mass people to act in this way of killing others. Please offer some grace to the common people.

Is it possible to spread Krishna consciousness in Muslim nations like Pakistan and Afghanistan? At the same time, I wouldn't personally like you to take any sort of risk visiting these nations.

Yours humbly,

Siva

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Answer: May the Entire Universe Become Krishna Conscious

My heart also bleeds along with your heart for the horrible suffering experienced the other day by those who were killed and injured in the terrorist bomb blasts in Bangalore and Ahmadabad. Let us pray now with this beautiful mantra from the Srimad Bhagavatam that all over the world such terror may now come to an end, that the entire world may take up the liberating pathway of Krishna bhakti:

svasty astu visvasya khalah prasidatam
dhyayantu bhutani sivam mitho dhiya
manas ca bhadram bhajatad adhoksaje
avesyatam no matir apy ahaituki

"May there be good fortune throughout the universe, and may all envious persons be pacified. May all living entities become calm by practicing bhakti-yoga, for by accepting devotional service they will think of each other's welfare.
Therefore let us all engage in the service of the supreme transcendence,
Lord Sri Krishna, and always remain absorbed in thought of Him."

--Srimad Bhagavatam 5.18.9

Krishna consciousness can also be spread in the Muslim countries I had a very good experience engaging a hall of Muslims in chanting the Hare Krishna mantra several years ago when I was in Turkey.

You can see this at:

http://www.spiritual-revolutionary.com/Videos.htm

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Monday 28 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Don't Be a Slave of Maya


The material senses are manifestations of Maya, the Lord's illusory energy, to keep us entangled in the cycle of birth and death. Therefore the intelligent person avoids gratifying his senses any more than is required for keeping body and soul together. As soon as we over-indulge the senses we immediately come under the influence of Maya. We become enslaved by Maya. The devotee of the Lord does not want to become the slave of anyone. He wants to become free to engage himself 24 hours in the service of Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Unexpected Results When Talking of Krishna


I humbly put my doubts in front of you. One thing which I observe in me is that whatever be the subject of my conversation with others I always end up speaking of the glories of Lord Krishna. Now this has become a regular habit, and when I do not get the expected response I feel hurt. Now I have decided to take mauna vrata, a vow of silence. Kindly suggest me some solution.

Hare Krishna

Smita

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Answer: Be Their Best Friend First

It is very wonderful that you have a regular habit of turning every conversation towards Krishna. By doing so you are doing the greatest service for those who are not Krishna conscious. Instead of of now becoming frustrated and taking mauna vrata, a vow of silence, because of some unpleasant reactions, what you should do is become more expert in the art of introducing Krishna in the best descriptive manner so that everyone comes to appreciate Krishna and seeks you out for having wonderful Krishna conscious conversations as much possible.

In this connection Lord Sri Krishna states in the Bhagavad-gita:

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

If you want someone to hear from you, they must first like you. And in order for them to like you, they must first feel that you like them. Krishna says that His devotee is friendly to all living beings. If you will conscientiously follow this instruction by sincerely sharing Krishna's mercy with everyone you meet, you will find that so many people will want to hear from you about Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Sunday 27 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

When Disaster Strikes


This material world is not always a calm and peaceful place. Sometimes we experience devastating disasters. These are the times when one who has seriously practiced Krishna consciousness can really shine forth and be an ideal example of someone who sees everything in relationship with the Supreme Lord. While the ordinary person becomes bewildered and confused, the Krishna consciousness person remains equipoised seeing everything in relationship with the ultimate plan of the Lord. Therefore he never has anything to be afraid of. Since Krishna is both all good and all powerful, the devotee is fully confident that Krishna will never in any situation act against the highest self interest of each and every one of His beloved children. Therefore the devotee always remains confident and enthused in all varieties of so-called pleasant and unpleasant situations having full faith that everyone is safely situated in the loving hands of Krishna at every minute.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Meaning of the Hare Krishna Mantra


Kindly help me to know the word by word meaning of the entire Mahamantra, what we exactly say to Lord when we chant His holy names.

Your servant in the service of Lord Krishna,

Hiten Das,

Mumbai - India

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Answer: Engage Me in Service

Hare means the energy of the Lord, and Krishna and Rama are both names for the Lord. So when when chant the Hare Krishna mantra...

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

...we are begging the Lord and His energy to please engage us their pure devotional service.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Saturday 26 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Are Devotees Fanatics?

Sometimes devotees of Krishna are accused of being fanatics. Is such an accusation valid or invalid? To answer this question we must first understand what is the meaning of the word "fanatic." A fanatic is defined as follows in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary:

"a person exhibiting excessive enthusiasm and intense uncritical devotion"

The first point is excessive enthusiasm. Enthusiasm is okay, but not excessive enthusiasm. To be excessively enthusiastic means to be more enthusiastic than is warranted. In Krishna consciousness there is no such thing as excessive enthusiasm because no matter how enthusiastic you are about Krishna consciousness, it is not enough. It is proper for a devotee to continue increasing his enthusiasm for Krishna consciousness unlimitedly for all of eternity. Therefore he can never be excessively enthusiastic.

The second point is intense uncritical devotion. Intense devotion is not ruled out as long as it falls with the realm of critical thinking. Critical thinking means to analyze a thing carefully with one's intelligence from as many different angles of vision as possible. In our Krishna consciousness movement we train our disciples how to think critically and thus avoid the fanatical, blind-follower pitfall.

If one practices Krishna consciousness blindly without cultivating philosophical vision, he is indeed a fanatic. But if one practices Krishna consciousness based on philosophical understanding, he is accepted as a broad-minded philosopher. Even though any type of Krishna consciousness is beneficial, fanatical practice of Krishna consciousness is discouraged because it will not last. The fanatical follower will eventually abandon his practice. But if one carefully hears and studies the profound Vedic wisdom of the Bhagavad-gita and the Srimad Bhagavatam, he will quickly advance on the pathway of deep philosophical understanding and become very solidly, non-fanatically situated in Krishna consciousness. He will become eternally situated in pure prema-bhakti.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: The Killer of the Soul?

When I was reading "The Laws of Nature" book, I read the following:

"As it is said in the Isopanisad, 'The killer of the soul, whoever he may be, must enter into the planets known as the worlds of the faithless, full of darkness and ignorance.' So don't be the killer of your soul."

But then in the Bhagavad-gita we find the following verses:

BG 2.23: The soul can never be cut to pieces by any weapon, nor burned by fire, nor moistened by water, nor withered by the wind.

BG 2.24: This individual soul is unbreakable and insoluble, and can be neither burned nor dried. He is everlasting, present everywhere, unchangeable, immovable and eternally the same.

My doubt is that since, according to the Bhagavad-gita, no one can kill or harm the soul, how is it possible for the killer of the soul to exist?

Kindly enlighten me in this subject matter.

Your humble servant,

Venumkvanantham Krishna Das

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Answer: Virtual Death

"Killer of the soul" means one who gives himself a virtual death by abandoning the Lord's service and taking to the pathway of material sense gratification. What he kills is his spiritual consciousness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Friday 25 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

What is Your Choice?

The key to unlimited happiness is not at all complicated. We simply have to see everything as the property of Krishna and engage everything in His service. It's as simple as that. Nothing else is required. If we will fully absorb our consciousness in this vision, every aspect of our existence will become perfect. Of course, if we deny Krishna's personal existence and His proprietorship over everything, we will never be able to taste this sweet, unlimited happiness. So the choice is ours. Will we agree to take the necessary training to factually experience everything as being the property of Krishna, or will we not? No one can force us how we choose to see reality. We can opt to take the training to experience the source of all existence, or we can simply go on blindly trying to gratify our temporary senses. The choice is ours, and whichever choice we make we will then live with its results.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Regain the Bliss?

I am unable to get the bliss and mercy of Krishna while chanting and also while doing other services, which I used to get during my first year in Krishna Consciousness. It is my personal experience, and also I have heard from other devotees who are around 3-5 years in Krishna Consciousness. Everyone is saying that they want to get back to their first year of Krishna Consciousness. Is this experienced by all neophyte devotees? What is the reason? And how to overcome it?

Your servant in need of your blessings

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Answer: Cultivate Pure Devotional Service

No, this not experienced by all neophyte devotees. If someone is properly engaged in Krishna consciousness, he will make steady progress and thus experience ever-increasing bliss. Each year will be more ecstatic than the year which preceded it. If devotees are not experiencing ever-increasing mercy and bliss, they are doing something wrong. I am surprised to hear your report that this is so widespread. I can understand from this that the devotees are not being properly trained how to practice Krishna consciousness.

Since the mission of our course is to give everyone the proper training so they can steadily advance in Krishna conscious starting from day one and continuing uninterruptedly year after year for their entire life, kindly inform these devotees to sign up for our course at:

http://www.backtohome.com

The reason that neophytes devotees experience a gradual diminishing of their bliss and enthusiasm for devotional service is that they are performing devotional service in the mode of passion. Krishna describes in the Bhagavad-gita that happiness in the mode of passion is nectar in the beginning and poison in the end.

The solution for the passionate neophyte is that besides enthusiastically engaging his passion in Krishna's service, he must also actively cultivate pure devotional service. Simply to be recognized by other devotees as being a nice devotee is not enough. One must conscientiously strive to execute uninterrupted devotional service 24 hours day without any tinge of material desire in his heart. In this way, if one is always striving for pure devotional service, he will never tire of practicing bhakti. To the contrary, he will derive ever-increasing pleasure from it year after year for his entire life in this body and even beyond that.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Thursday 24 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

All Calamities Disappear


This material world is always unstable, a place of calamities. Here there is only one thing we can be sure of, and that is uncertainty. Therefore we can never find solid shelter here. As soon as we think that our material situation is stable and secure, something comes along to disrupt it. Therefore those who are thoughtful do not look to material arrangements as their basis for happiness and security. They look instead to the Supreme Person, the source of all existence. When we take direct shelter of Him by total surrender at His lotus feet or the lotus feet of His representative, our position becomes sure and solid, and we become completely peaceful and free from all anxieties. Thus all calamities disappear when you have Sri Krishna's shelter

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Surrender to Krishna?

All my respects to you.

I humbly with folded hands put forward my doubts.

Is the Bhagavad-gita the base of all the Vedas?

Since Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu, and Lord Shiva are the three forms which have emerged from the brahma-tattva in the three modes of rajas (passion), sattva (goodness), and tamas (ignorance) respectively, why does Lord Krishna suggest that we should surrender to Him instead of the brahma-tattva?

Shouldn't our purpose of studying Bhagavad-gita be to know the ultimate truth which even the Vedas are not able to explain?

Is the brahma-tattva different or same as Lord Krishna?

Should we strictly not worship any other gods and goddesses if we want to advance in Krishna consciousness?

Can a person who is a samsari (caught up in illusion) advance in Krishna consciousness?

Kindly feel free to correct me if I am wrong.

Smita

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Answer: Krishna is the Source of Everything

Thank you very much for your sincere questions. The answers are as follows:

Yes, the wisdom contained in the Bhagavad-gita is the base or foundation for all of the Vedic wisdom. The Bhagavad-gita is indeed the finest essence of all the Vedic wisdom.

Although the demigods and all other living beings emerge, as you say, from the brahma-tattva (the impersonal Brahman effulgence), that brahma-tattva is nothing other than the aura or effulgence radiating from the transcendental body of Lord Sri Krishna. Therefore the real origin of all gods and living beings is that they are all coming from Krishna and merely coming through His effulgence, the brahma-tattva. It only appears that they are originating in the brahma-tattva, when in fact they are all originating in Krishna. Lord Krishna confirms in the Bhagavad-gita that He is the source of the brahma-tattva, the impersonal Brahman effulgence:

brahmano hi pratisthaham

"I am the basis of the brahma-tattva, the impersonal Brahman effulgence."
--Bhagavad-gita 14.27

Therefore Krishna's injunction that everyone should surrender to Him is fully just and proper. By surrendering to Krishna we become fully reconnected with our original source of existence and thus become unlimitedly peaceful and happy.

Yes, our purpose in studying the Bhagavad-gita is to understand the ultimate truth. The ultimate truth is explained throughout the Vedic wisdom but often in a hidden or covered way. It is in the Bhagavad-gita and the Srimad Bhagavatam where the ultimate truth is unequivocally explained as the Supreme Personality of Godhead Krishna.

Even though the demigods have higher positions in this material world than we do, there is no sense in worshipping them. This is because they are conditioned souls just like us who are also caught up in the cycle of birth and death. Therefore they are not able to deliver us from the clutches of illusion. Only Lord Krishna can do that.

No matter how much you may be caught up in illusion, if you will chant the Hare Krishna mantra at least 16 rounds daily on japa mala beads and give up sinful activities, you can quickly and easily advance on the path of self-realization.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Wednesday 23 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Dutiful or Non-Dutiful?

The greatest defect of the modern civilization is the abandonment of duty. As soon as we abandon the principle of duty we descend to a level lower than the animals. We see how dutiful the mother dog is take good care of her puppies, while as human beings we slaughter our children in the womb through abortion. How many people promise in their wedding vows to never separate from their spouse and then turn right around and have an affair with someone else? How many people promise to their spiritual master to strictly follow their initiation vows and then turn right around and flagrantly violate them? These things are the symptoms of the Age of Kali. As long as we stick to Kali's principles we can never have peace and prosperity. Our minds will always be agitated and we will be in great anxiety how to meet our material needs. But if we become dutiful to obey the instructions of Lord Krishna and His pure representatives, we will have peaceful happy lives in which we can easily meet our material needs. Everybody gets to make the choice of what kind of life they would like to have by acting either in a dutiful or non-dutiful manner.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Which Religion to Practice?

In a world where so many religions are being practiced, which religion would you recommend one to practice while awakening one's consciousness? Is there a difference between religions?

Anna

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Answer: The Essence of Religion

Practicing a particular religion automatically puts us into a sectarian non-spiritual mentality, and is therefore counter-productive in regards to achieving the supreme perfection of developing pure love for God. Therefore Lord Krishna instructs us in the Bhagavad-gita to abandon all sectarian conceptions of religion and take to the very essence of Religion itself, before it became polluted by being divided into this religion and that religion. That original pure form of undivided religion is revealed by Lord Krishna to be fully surrendering ourselves in love unto the Supreme Person, the source of all existence. According to all the great spiritual masters, who in previous ages guided the entire human society, that Supreme Person is Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Tuesday 22 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Why Sixteen Rounds of Japa?

Why do strict followers of the bhakti yoga system chant the Hare Krishna mantra for at least 16 rounds every day on their japa mala beads? They do so because this is the order of the world's leading exponent of the bhakti yoga system, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.

Why did he order that at least 16 rounds should be chanted every day without fail? He did so because this is the minimum amount of chanting which will give the devotee sufficient spiritual energy to remain connected with Krishna 24 hours day.

What is the advantage of remaining always connected with Krishna? Why does a fish like to remain in the water? He does so because this is how he is able to sustain his life. If he remains outside of the water too long, he will die. In a similar way, devotees want to remain always connected with Krishna because this gives them life. If they become disconnected from Krishna, they can immediately feel how they are dying. And if they are connected with Krishna, they experience an ever-increasingly sublime existence of eternity, knowledge, and bliss at every minute.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Souls Chose to Leave Krishna?


I was trying in the last days to find out an explanation of the next described point. On one hand, the pastimes of Lord Sri Krishna in Goloka Vrindavan are the most attractive events that ever exist. On other hand, the material world/creation is ¼ of Sri Krishna's creation. (Some devotees says that is smaller like a cloud in the Vaikuntha sky). Anyway, this still means that a lot of souls (jivas) are living in separation and ignorance regarding their original position.

My question, and I am asking gladly you to help me understand this point, is how and why is it possible that so many souls chose not to stay together with Sri Krishna, but to come to this material creation. Till now I don't get any acceptable answer to this point. So please give me instruction how should I understood this point.

I hope this meets you in the best of health.

Your humble servant,

Minaketana Ramadasa das

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Answer: Love Requires Freedom of Choice

Since love is voluntary, unless the living entities have a choice to love Krishna or leave Krishna, love cannot exist. Since Krishna wants our love, He gives us the choice to love Him or to reject Him. The freedom of choice cannot exist unless there is the possibility of misusing it. And possibility of misuse means that there has to be some probability of misuse. If there is no probability of misuse, there is no possibility of misuse, and free will does not exist, and love cannot exist. So in order for love to exist there has to be some degree of probability that free will can be misused. That most unlikely probability will naturally be infinitesimally small, i.e. so small that you cannot measure it. But if we take the most infinitesimally small, inconceivably small fraction of the unlimited number of living beings in the spiritual sky we will still end up with an infinite number of living beings who enter into this material world in a futile attempt to be God here in this abode of birth and death.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Monday 21 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Evolve, Don't Devolve


The Vedanta Sutra enjoins that in the human form of life our duty is to inquire regarding the nature of the Absolute Truth. If we simply utilize our human life for engaging in the animalistic activities of eating, sleeping, mating, and defending, we are still, in spite of having gotten a human body, on the animal platform.

We see at the present moment that there are over 6.68 billion human beings on this planet, but that the vast majority of them have no interest in the self-realization process. This means that even though they have evolved through 8,400,000 species to attain this human birth, instead of continuing their upward evolution to the self-realization platform so they can be delivered from the cycle of birth and death, they are wasting this extremely rare opportunity and will thus devolve back down to the animal kingdom or even lower in their next birth.

The intelligent person, therefore, carefully utilizes this rare human birth for realizing the Absolute Truth, and thus re-establishing his lost loving relationship with Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: What is Devotional Service?


What is devotional service? Is it everything that the guru has instructed although it may seem to others that it is not? Can one also practice devotional service when he or she lives outside of a temple?

I am submissively requesting you to enlighten me.

Gopal Sakti devi dasi

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Answer: To follow the instructions of  Bhagavad-gita

Devotional service means to follow the instructions of the Bhagavad-gita under the guidance of the bona fide spiritual master.

What others consider devotional service to be or not to be does not matter. We simply put our unflinching faith in the words of Lord Sri Krishna and our spiritual master. This strong faith makes us solid in the practice of devotional service.

It does not matter whether one lives at home or in a temple. One simply has to strictly follow the regulative principles mentioned below so that one becomes fully absorbed in Krishna consciousness 24 hours daily:

1. No illicit sex
2. No intoxication
3. No meat eating
4. No gambling
5. Chant the Hare Krishna mahamantra at least 16 rounds a day on japa mala beads.
6. Regularly read authorized scriptures such asBhagavad-gita As It Is
7. Eat only Krishna prasadam (vegetarian foodstuffs offered with love and devotion to Lord Sri Krishna)

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Sunday 20 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Hear from the Proper Source


If we want to become enlightened with that knowledge by which nescience is destroyed, we must carefully hear what is the distinction between reality and illusion from a bona fide spiritual master. If we hear from someone who does not know what he is talking about, we will be misled and thus not be successful in realizing the truth and escaping the cycle of birth and death.

How do we recognize who is the bona fide spiritual master? He must be repeating the Vedic conclusion which has been taught by all the great acharyas throughout history, and he must be fully absorbed in Krishna consciousness 24 hours a day. This method of discerning the bona fide spiritual master is confirmed as follows in the Mundaka Upanishad:

tad-vijnanartham sa gurum evabhigacchet
samit-panih srotriyam brahma-nistham

"In order to learn the transcendental science, one must approach the bona fide spiritual master in disciplic succession, who is fixed in Krishna consciousness."

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Become Initiated?


Please instruct me how I can become initiated. I know nothing. Please make me your disciple.

Ashutosh

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Answer: Are You Ready?

It is very nice that you want to become my initiated disciple. Initiation means that one enters into a new dimension of consciousness beyond birth, death, old age and disease. It means one has the ticket for regaining his original transcendental form in the spiritual world. But at the same it must be understood that initiation is not something cheap. It means that the initiate agrees to place himself completely under the discipline of the spiritual master. Whatever instruction the spiritual master gives, the disciple joyfully tries to carry it out to the best of his ability.

The disciple must give up the bad habits of illicit sex life, meat eating, intoxication, and gambling and take up the positive habits like chanting the holy names of the lord every day on japa mala beads.

Are you ready to put yourself completely under my instructions? If so, I will provide you further information about how you can become qualified for becoming my initiated disciple.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Saturday 19 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Devotee of Krishna's Devotee


Sometimes people wonder why we offer so much respect to the devotees. They inquire, "Isn't simply offering respect to God sufficient?" Of course, the perfection of our existence to become completely absorbed in glorifying Krishna or God 24 hours daily by our every thought, word, and deed in all times, places, and circumstances. So why do we also glorify, respect, and even worship the Lord's devotees? The answer is quite simple. Krishna has instructed us to do this. Being a devotee of Krishna or God is on His terms, not our terms. When we surrender ourselves unto the Lord we become completely submissive to doing whatever He tells us to do.

And He has very clearly instructed us in the Adi Purana in the following instruction that He gave to Arjuna:

ye me bhakta-janah partha
na me bhaktas ca te janah
mad-bhaktanam ca ye bhaktas
te me bhakta-tama matah

"Those who are My direct devotees
are actually not My devotees,
but those who are the devotees of My devotee
are factually My devotees."

So when we worship the Lord directly, our worship is not very much appreciated, but when we worship Him through the via medium of worshipping His devotees, our worship is then accepted.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Businessman in the Kali Yuga


First off all I want to thank you for the darshan when you where in Lithuania. I think that inspired me to do my practices. I now chant japa, and that has become my life's anchor - the only settled thing in my situation. I would be very grateful if you would answer a few questions.

1. I'm amazed that bhakti yoga is so similar to Christianity. Could it be that those two spiritual traditions had the same historical root?

2. There is a saying: the karma law is fair-good deeds makes good results, bad deeds - disasters, diseases and so on. When Narada Muni's mother was bit by a snake and died, he accepted it as the special mercy of Krishna. (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.6.10) Was this event induced by Narada Muni's bad karma? Or is it that every event-even the worst ones-are good for the spiritual evolution of man? Does God in this way induce us to take to the path of salvation?

3. God created man to be similar to God and gave him free will. Man never stops to seek happiness in the material world, but chastened by the law of karma man finally understands that there is a pathway to eternal happiness. So why did God gave man free will?

4. If we can't find fulfillment in this material world through economic development, scientific research, and if even Ayurvedic products and spiritual journeys, etc have no future, is there another choice? Maybe natural farms or product swapping? How should a business man behave in this age?

With respect,

Gytis


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Answer: Do Business for Krishna

The bhakti yoga system taught by Lord Sri Krishna and taught by Lord Jesus Christ are the same system. In fact Jesus spent time in India before returning to Israel to introduce his pure bhakti movement. The basic principles are the same although the details sometimes vary according to time, place, and circumstance.

On a higher level, everything that happens to us both as a result of our good and bad karma is for our ultimate good to help us return back to home, back to Godhead.

If there were no free will, we would just be robots. Nobody takes pleasure in associating with robots. Therefore Krishna gives us the free will to either love Him or leave Him. Now it is up to us to decide whether we want to maintain our so-called independence or give it up and return to Him in His transcendental all-blissful eternal abode.

The perfect formula for a Krishna conscious businessman is given by Sri Krishna in the Bhagavad-gita:

yat karosi yad asnasi
yaj juhosi dadasi yat
yat tapasyasi kaunteya
tat kurusva mad-arpanam


"Whatever you do, whatever you eat,
whatever you offer or give away,
and whatever austerities you perform --
do that, O son of Kunti, as an offering to Me."

--Bhagavad-gita 9.27

So you may adopt whatever means of business is practical for making a profit in your country. Earn as much profit as possible for pushing forward this Krishna consciousness movement for the deliverance of the suffering souls of this planet. In this way one's business activities will be creating a bright future for you and for the entire human society.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Friday 18 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Unlimited Beautiful Colors


As a college student I studied so many different philosophers: the Greek and Roman philosophers, the medieval and renaissance philosophers, and the modern ones as well. But after wading through all of that philosophical verbiage I found that I was still not even one step closer to understanding the truth. These were supposed to be great authorities for understanding what is reality. But yet they were themselves so much in the dark. How could they possibly lead us out of the ignorance? But then by the grace of Lord Sri Krishna I came into contact with a bona fide spiritual master, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who clearly revealed to me in no uncertain terms what is reality and what is illusion. Simply by hearing from this great teacher everything became crystal clear. Now by his grace I am no longer confused. There are no more shades of gray. By seeing clearly the black and white distinction between reality and illusion now I can experience the unlimited beautiful colors of eternal existence.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Which is Most Important: Service, Pastimes, or Philosophy?

One of my associates has a doubt. He wants to know which is more important: Krishna's pastimes, Krishna's teachings, or service to Krishna.

If a person doesn't know Krishna's pastimes, how he can develop love for Krishna?

If he doesn't know the philosophy of the Bhagavad-gita, how can he understand the goal of life?

And, if he doesn't do any service, how will he ever develop the mode of surrender?

Among the devotees here there are some who work very hard to do services like cooking, cleaning, etc. They do not know so much philosophy or about Krishna's pastimes.

And there are those who know more philosophy and who are always ready for kirtan and dancing, but are not ready to work hard.

What is the most important?

Your humble servant,

AGD

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Answer: All Three, But Especially Service is Important

In the ultimate analysis service always wins. Bhakti yoga means devotional service. If we do not develop a taste for doing service to Krishna we must remain in this material existence birth after birth. Krishna says to give up everything else and dedicate yourself fully to serving Him 24 hours daily. But to understand the philosophy and pastimes of Krishna are also equally important, because without this knowledge and inspiration it is difficult to give one's entire life to serving Krishna. Therefore, the answer is that all three of them are the most important, but if you can only do one of them, service should always be given the first consideration. One who develops a good service mood can dive the most deeply into the unlimited ocean of Krishna's teachings and pastimes. Those without a service mood can only skim the surface of that unlimited ocean of transcendental bliss.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 
Thursday 17 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Come Out of the Cocoon

At the present moment our situation in this material existence is more or less of a dream state. Each of us has forgotten our factual eternal identity as the eternal all-blissful, all-knowing servant of Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. We are dreaming that we are these bodies, thinking, "I am male; I am female; I am white; I am black" etc. Nothing could be further from the truth. We have nothing to do with these gross and subtle material bodies. They are simply coverings or garments that are covering our actual spiritual nature. It's time we wake up from our dream and come out of the cocoon of this material world in which we are suffering lifetime and lifetime in repeated births and deaths. Why suffer when you can enjoy unlimited bliss?

Does this make sense to you? I hope it does, because if it does, you are ready to become liberated once and for all from all forms of material suffering.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Difficulty: I Cannot Find Krishna

I have been chanting 16 rounds as advised by you. Here are my observations and deductions. Please shed some light on this.

Before I began chanting 16 rounds, I had a strong emotive connection with Krishna, in silence I felt his presence through body and mind. Chanting has mechanized this connection and I can't find Him anymore. It is now about obeying you and getting in 16 rounds - a goal, a target another 'clockwork' and rat-race in the AM.

Maybe this is why one of the 10 commandments say "Thou shall not take the name of thy Lord thy God in vain", - it commoditizes my beloved and sacred Lord. I would rather have my own conversations with Him and be in that state of ecstasy.

Though I must say chanting is a form on mental drill and has some type of psychological benefit - a centering, an internal weapon and inner strength.

...Please shed some light on my understanding and correct my thinking

With humility and deep respects
Your student

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Answer: Go Deeper into the Chanting

There is a higher presence of Krishna that you have not yet experienced. Even though in the beginning chanting 16 rounds of japa seems mechanical and forced, if you will continue chanting on the order of the spiritual master, you will gradually be amazed to experience Krishna on a much higher level of connection far beyond what you have ever tasted in the past or could even conceive to be possible in your wildest imagination.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Wednesday 16 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Real Goal of Our Existence


The real goal of our existence is to reestablish our forgotten relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead and engage in devotional service so that we may regain our association with Him after giving up our present material body. It does not matter what is our occupation. We may be a brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra or whatever. In any position, while discharging our prescribed duties, we can reawaken our dormant Krishna consciousness simply by associating with devotees who are representatives of Krishna and who can teach us this amazing transcendental science. There is nothing more wonderful, more exciting, or more exhilarating than this.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Resting and Not Resting in Krishna


I have a question concerning Bhagavad-gita chapter 9 text 5 and 6. In text 5 Lord Krishna states, "And yet everything that is created does not rest in Me." And in text 6 He says "all created beings rest in Me."

I've read the purports of both texts, and still I'm confused about what appears to be a contradiction within these texts. Gurudeva, please enlighten me as to the meaning of these two texts in relation to each other.

Looking forward with great anticipation to your reply,

Ron

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Answer: Both Are True. Here's How:

According to the Bhagavad-gita the reality is that everything rests in Krishna and also does not rest in Krishna. So what is the meaning? Everything rests in Krishna in the sense that everything is resting in Krishna's energy, which is Him in the sense that it is non-different from Him being His expanded energy. But yet everything does not rest in Krishna personally because He is separately situated, enjoying life in Goloka Vrindavana surrounded by His loving devotees.

When you read such statements simply consider that Krishna's energy is Krishna and is not Krishna both at the same time like the sun and the sunshine. The sunshine is nothing but the sun, but yet is separately situated from the sun. This comparison will help you to resolve the apparent contradictions and clearly understand the meaning.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Tuesday 15 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Is Unlimited Nectar Pie in the Sky?

We have stated that through Krishna consciousness one can eventually reach a state of spiritual perfection where he tastes unlimited nectar at every minute. One of our readers in response to this statement expressed his view that this sounds like "pie in the sky". So is this "pie in the sky", or is it a practical reality that by becoming purely Krishna consciousness one can taste unlimited nectar at every minute? For this answer we will not speculate. We will turn instead to the authoritative Vedic wisdom where we will get the topmost enlightened guidance. There are many verses to support it. In the following verse the Supreme Personality of Godhead appearing in His incarnation as the great king Rishabhadeva instructs His one hundred sons:

nayam deho deha-bhajam nr-loke
kastan kaman arhate vid-bhujam ye
tapo divyam putraka yena sattvam
suddhyed yasmad brahma-saukhyam tv anantam

"My dear sons, there is no reason to labor very hard for sense pleasure while in this human form of life; such pleasures are available to the stool-eaters [hogs]. Rather, you should undergo penances in this life by which your existence will be purified, and as a result you will be able to enjoy unlimited transcendental bliss."
--Srimad Bhagavatam  5.5.1 cited in Bhagavad-gita 5.22

Unlimited nectar at every minute is also confirmed by Lord Sri Krishna as follows in the Bhagavad-gita:

bahya-sparsesv asaktatma
vindaty atmani yat sukham
sa brahma-yoga-yuktatma
sukham aksayam asnute

"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 5.21

Though we may not be able to understand how tasting unlimited nectar at every minute could be a reality, this does not mean that it is an imagination. The realness of it is confirmed in the above verses. Now we simply have to qualify ourselves to experience it.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Guru Must Have Seen Krishna's Universal Form?

I hope that you are in good health, and please receive this message to clarify my ignorance...

Is having seen the universal form of Krishna as described in the Bhagavad-gita a necessary qualification for someone to be a bona fide spiritual master? Or is it not necessary?

Please enlighten me!

Yours faithfully.

Mario E. Rodríguez

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Answer: Simply He Must Be a First Class Devotee

It is not necessary for the spiritual master to have seen the universal form of Krishna. His qualifications are described as follows by Srila Prabhupada in the Nectar of Devotion:

"The devotee in the first or uppermost class is described as follows. He is very expert in the study of relevant scriptures, and he is also expert in putting forward arguments in terms of those scriptures. He can very nicely present conclusions with perfect discretion and can consider the ways of devotional service in a decisive way. He understands perfectly that the ultimate goal of life is to attain to the transcendental loving service of Krishna, and he knows that Krishna is the only object of worship and love. This first-class devotee is one who has strictly followed the rules and regulations under the training of a bona fide spiritual master and has sincerely obeyed him in accord with revealed scriptures. Thus, being fully trained to preach and become a spiritual master himself, he is considered first class. The first-class devotee never deviates from the principles of higher authority, and he attains firm faith in the scriptures by understanding with all reason and arguments. When we speak of arguments and reason, it means arguments and reason on the basis of revealed scriptures. The first-class devotee is not interested in dry speculative methods meant for wasting time. In other words, one who has attained a mature determination in the matter of devotional service can be accepted as the first-class devotee."

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Monday 14 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

The Twelfth Position


Our critics are hard at work trying to undermine our sincere attempt to serve the order of our spiritual master, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. He ordered us, his disciples, in Los Angeles, California, USA on December 17, 1973:

"Just become perfect in the understanding of this science and become guru and deliver the whole world."

Our misguided critics claim that by our trying follow the above instruction we are usurping the position of our spiritual master. Nothing could be further away from the truth because the disciple is always meant to obey the order of his spiritual master. This is his duty. By his becoming a spiritual master on the order of his spiritual master, he is not taking over the position of his spiritual master. Rather, he is solidly situating himself as the eternal servant of his spiritual master by surrendering himself fully to serving his guru's order.

This point is reconfirmed by Srila Prabhupada as follows in a lecture he gave upon his arrival at our center in Los Angeles on 18 May 1972:

"So we have got this message from Krishna, from Caitanya Mahaprabhu, from the six Goswamis, later on, Bhaktivinode Thakur, Bhaktisiddhanta Thakur. And we are trying our bit also to distribute this knowledge. Now, tenth, eleventh, twelfth... My Guru Maharaja is tenth from Caitanya Mahaprabhu, I am eleventh, you are the twelfth. So distribute this knowledge. People are suffering."

So the disciples who serve Srila Prabhupada's order to become gurus are taking position #12 under him. They are not taking his position, position #11.

The disciplic line from Lord Caitanya is as follows:

1. Lord Caitanya
2. Rupa, (Svarupa, Sanatana)
3. Raghunatha, Jiva
4. Krishnadasa
5. Narottama
6. Visvanatha
7. (Baladeva) Jagannatha
8. Bhaktivinode Thakur
9. Gaurakisora das Babaji
10. Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati
11. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
12. Disciples of Srila Prabhupada

We can see clearly that on the order of Srila Prabhupada his disciples have taken the position under him. They are not taking his position as the Founder-Acharya of ISKCON or as the 11th spiritual master in disciplic succession from Lord Caitanya. They are simply humbly carrying out their duty.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Only Krishna as my Guru?

You are humbly requested with the folded hands, please quench my thirst of this disturbing question. This question comes again and again in my mind: Can't I just accept Krishna Himself as my guru by following His teachings in Bhagavad-gita? Why should I accept a human being as my guru, why not just Krishna Himself?

Yours Sincerely,

Surender Kumar

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Answer: Krishna Says Accept His Devotee as Guru Also

Your question is not at all disturbing. In fact, it is a very nice question. Lord Sri Krishna certainly is our spiritual master. In fact, He is called Adi Guru, the original spiritual master. Because He is our spiritual master we are meant to fully surrender ourselves to Him. This is what He instructs us to do this in the Bhagavad-gita. Surrender means that whatever instructions He has given to us we must follow. It does not mean that we can pick and choose which instructions we would like to follow and which we would like to ignore. No. We must follow each and every one of His instructions if we actually accept Him as our spiritual master. So since Krishna has ordered us in the Bhagavad-gita that we must accept a spiritual master we therefore we must accept a spiritual master if indeed we are actually devotees of Krishna. If we refuse to accept a spiritual master, we are not devotees of Krishna. In that case, we are simply the devotees of our own mental concoctions. Therefore we should show Krishna that we are His real devotees by fully surrendering to His order that we should accept a spiritual master. Otherwise our so-called bhakti is simply a farce. Farcical bhakti should be avoided because it will not deliver us from the cycle of birth and death.

This point is further clarified by Lord Sri Krishna in the Adi Purana as follows:

ye me bhakta-janah partha
na me bhaktas ca te janah
mad-bhaktanam ca ye bhaktas
te me bhakta-tama matah

"Those who are My direct devotees
are actually not My devotees,
but those who are the devotees of My devotee
are factually My devotees."

So in conclusion, we can understand that if we refuse to accept a guru on the plea that only Krishna is our guru, our so-called bhakti will be rejected by Krishna. Therefore in addition to accepting Krishna as our guru we must also accept His devotee as our guru.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Sunday 13 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Transcendental Bliss


There are four kinds of happiness: happiness in the mode of ignorance, happiness in the mode of passion, happiness in the mode of goodness, and transcendental bliss (happiness in pure goodness). Happiness in the mode of ignorance is poison in the beginning and poison in the end. Happiness in the mode of passion is nectar in the beginning and poison at the end. Happiness in goodness is poison in the beginning and nectar in the end. And transcendental bliss, happiness in pure goodness, is nectar in the beginning and nectar in the end.

The neophyte devotee who has not yet come to the platform of pure goodness must sometimes undergo austerities in his practice of Krishna consciousness because his practice is still being conducted in the mode of goodness. If he perseveres in his practice without giving it up, gradually the goodness will become pure goodness and he will taste unlimited nectar at every minute on the transcendental platform of pure goodness.

The key for advancement is to not give in to the urge for instant gratification which is experienced in the mode of passion. For example, one should shun the pleasures of illicit sexual connection, meat eating, intoxication, and gambling. The easy way to avoid this temptation is to immediately taste transcendental bliss by engaging in the process of sankirtan, the congregational chanting of the holy names of the Lord. This sankirtan immediately gives one a taste of transcendental bliss on the platform of pure goodness. It allows one to immediately dive into a reservoir of unlimited nectar.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Ecstatic Sankirtan Transports You
Immediately into Transcendental Bliss

Devotees Below Chant in Bliss in Boston
in the Early Days of ISKCON


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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Who is the Bona Fide Guru?

My question in regard to your statement below is, "Who is the bona fide guru? Are you? If so, how do I know?

AKA

"The bona fide spiritual master never considers himself great. He simply considers himself to be the humble servant of his spiritual master, and thus he dedicates his entire life to carrying out the orders of his spiritual master. Sometimes envious persons who do not possess the spiritual potency to preach like the spiritual master preaches try to minimize and/or find fault with him. They even go so far as to make aggressive false, propaganda against him that he is not bona fide, that he lacks the authority to be master."

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Answer: He Who is Realized and Empowered

Thank you very much for your sincere inquiry. The answer to your first question is given in the Srimad Bhagavatam as follows:

tasmad gurum prapadyeta
jijnasuh sreya uttamam
sabde pare ca nisnatam
brahmany upasamasrayam

"Therefore any person who seriously desires real happiness must seek a bona fide spiritual master and take shelter of him by initiation. The qualification of the bona fide guru is that he has realized the conclusions of the scriptures by deliberation and is able to convince others of these conclusions. Such great personalities, who have taken shelter of the Supreme Godhead, leaving aside all material considerations, should be understood to be bona fide spiritual masters."
--Srimad Bhagavatam 11.3.21

Regarding your 2nd and 3rd questions, the bona fide spiritual master does not advertise himself as such. Therefore you have to personally study the prospective spiritual master in light of the above verse to see whether or not he is a bona fide spiritual master.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Saturday 12 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Spreading the Word


I am often asked by my students and disciples what they can do to assist me in spreading Krishna consciousness all over the world. This eagerness is the most wonderful thing because when someone desires to push forward this Krishna consciousness movement they give the greatest pleasure to Lord Sri Krishna, to Srila Prabhupada, and to all the acharyas--the great spiritual masters who teach by their words and by their examples.

One of my students, named Peggy Caldwell, has been uploading my videos onto www.youtube.com. You can see them at:

http://youtube.com/results?search_query=Sankarshan&search_type=&aq=f

Another of my students, named Milind Joshi, has accepted the service to be my publicist. He has recently published a story about our preaching on CNN's www.ireport.com. You will find it at:

http://www.ireport.com/docs/DOC-42900

The more we can engage the media in broadcasting the activities of the Krishna consciousness movement, the more the world will become benefited.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Plea for Help: Worried About Absolute Nothingness


I am busy with the inner truth of God, how He caused Himself, being absolutely everything there is, and with His energies. I also am very attracted to His personal form. But I must admit that in looking at His personal form, I get distracted in my mind concerning the energy that He holds within Himself, namely the presence of absolute nothingness. This worries me a lot, because I believe that, like Krishna says in Bhagavad-gita 12.5...

"For those whose minds are attached to the unmanifested, impersonal feature of the Supreme, advancement is very troublesome. To make progress in that discipline is always difficult for those who are embodied."

...that this makes progress slow and difficult. Before I was conscious about this verse, it felt comfortable and secure to hold on to ideas like absolute nothingness. But now I would like you to enlighten me how Krishna can take away the disadvantage of my former philosophical attachments and make me fortunate in Bhakti-yoga.

Your eternal servant

Rodrigo Hermans (Belgium)

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Answer: Absolute Somethingness

Absolute nothingness does not exist. It is simply a concept. The concept itself is something. So the very concept of absolute nothingness negates the existence of absolute nothingness. If even only the concept of absolute nothingness exists, then surely something exists.

Why be worried? Be always blissful in Krishna consciousness. If you will take complete shelter of the name, fame, form, pastimes, entourage, and paraphernalia of that all powerful, all beautiful, all renounced, all knowing, all wealthy, and all famous Supreme Personality of Godhead Who is known by thousands and millions of names but especially likes to be called "Krishna" you will become solidly situated in Absolute Somethingness and you will never be tormented ever again by the concept of Absolute Nothingness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Friday 11 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Got to Get Out of this Place


Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur used to say that this material world is not a fit place for a gentleman's residence. This is certainly a fact. Everywhere we see that the world population is knowingly or unknowingly engaged in cruel acts against the will of the Supreme. And to justify their barbaric activities they have concocted so many varieties of bogus philosophies. Those who are saintly do not wish to live in such a place. They would rather live in the association of devotees. Therefore they dedicate their lives fully for getting out this material world and returning to their original home in the spiritual sky. But if the Lord so desires, they are willing to remain in this world for the sake of delivering those who are lost in delusion.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How Can I Meet Krishna?


How can I meet with Lord Sri Krishna? I do believe in Him, and I think myself lucky as I have been born to such parents who believe in Him. But now I can't decide what I should do . Please show me the way through which I can reach Him, my original source. Please guide me-------- please, please, please.

Ashutosh

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Answer: Become His Pure Devotee

If you want to meet Krishna, you must become His 100% pure devotee. You can learn the science of how to become the Lord's pure devotee by carefully reading and applying the teachings given in the Bhagavad-gita As It Is by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Do you have a copy?

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 
Thursday 10 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

"Become Guru and Deliver the Whole World"

In Los Angeles, California, USA on December 17, 1973 my spiritual master, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, instructed us, his disciples:

"Just become perfect in the understanding of this science and become guru and deliver the whole world."

Since he accepted me as his disciple it is my duty to obey his instructions. But amazingly enough, because of the materialistic nature of this age, there are many envious persons who label me a demon and criticize me for my humble attempt to serve the orders of my spiritual master. They say that I am not qualified to do what my spiritual master has ordered me to do and that my attempt to do so is sinful.

Of course, I agree with them that I am not qualified. The disciple must always feel himself to be unqualified. But still it is my duty to faithfully try to execute the orders given to me by my spiritual master and depend on his mercy that the seemingly impossible task of delivering the whole world can be accomplished by his mercy. So it is most definitely not sinful. In fact, it is most pious and virtuous to try one's best to serve his spiritual master's orders.

Therefore I am simply placing myself as an instrument in his hands so that through me and his other followers he can deliver the world. The disciple never feels that he is the doer. He simply sees himself as the servant of his spiritual master. In this connection there is a wonderful Vedic mantra as follows:

mukam karoti vacalam
pangum langhayate girim
yat-krpa tam aham vande
sri gurum dina-taranam

"I offer my respectful obeisances unto my spiritual master, the deliverer of all fallen souls, whose mercy turns the dumb into eloquent speakers, and enables the lame to cross mountains."

So even though I am certainly most dumb and lame, I am praying that by the mercy of my spiritual master I can do something wonderful to assist him in making the whole world Krishna conscious.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How Are We One with Krishna?


You mentioned that we are eternal spirit-souls in quality one with the supreme source of all existence, Krishna or God. However it is also mentioned that Krishna is the energetic, i.e. the source and that we are his marginal energies. How then these two entities be qualitatively the same?

Your servant,

Nishikant


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Answer: As the Sun and the Sunshine

The sunshine is one with the sun planet because it is nothing other than the expanded energy of the sun planet. In a similar way, the living beings and the Supreme Being are one because the living beings are nothing but the expanded energy of the Supreme Being.

The difference is that the sun planet is emanating the sunshine. The sun planet is not being emanated by sunshine. Similarly, the Supreme Being is emanating the living beings. He is not an emanation from the living beings.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Wednesday 9 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Bona Fide Guru is Humble


The bona fide spiritual master never considers himself great. He simply considers himself to be the humble servant of his spiritual master, and thus he dedicates his entire life to carrying out the orders of his spiritual master. Sometimes envious persons who do not possess the spiritual potency to preach like the spiritual master preaches try to minimize and/or find fault with him. They even go so far as to make aggressive false, propaganda against him that he is not bona fide, that he lacks the authority to be master.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How Can I Be Initiated?


How can I be initiated?

James

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Answer: First Become Solid in Krishna Consciousness

Initiation requires that you become solidly fixed in the practice of Krishna consciousness. The way to do this is to become well read in the books of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and to also follow the guidelines mentioned below:

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)

Once you are certified as being fixed in the above principles by your nearest ISKCON temple, you can then be accepted for initiation.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Tuesday 8 July 2008

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram, Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Plea to the World Leaders


My dear leaders of the world,

Please accept my greetings.

You have been blessed with the most important service of leading the human society. According to the ancient Vedic scripture known as the Srimad Bhagavatam, no one should be a leader unless they can deliver their dependents from the cycle of birth and death. So, that you are currently positioned as the world's leaders is the greatest opportunity for you to make your lives successful by becoming perfect in self-realization and then rendering the ultimate welfare of seeing that all of your followers are properly educated in the self-realization science. If you will kindly heed this humble plea, you will be able to bring a new enlightened era of peace, prosperity, and eternal happiness to all the inhabitants of this increasingly troubled planet.

Hoping this meets you in good health and in a cheerful mood,

Always your well-wisher,

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Worship Krishna All Through Life?

Since I am from India, I know that a man must follow four stages or ashrams in his life:

1, Brahmacarya (celibacy)
2. Grihastha (married life)
3. Vanaprastha (detaching himself from worldly ties)
4. Sannyasa (full renunciation)

I am 24 years old now (i.e in Brahmacarya), so my primary duty is working hard to get name, fame, and wealth. I can get into Krishna Consciousness when I enter the stages of Vanaprastha and Sannyasa. Even by doing this, I will still be dedicating many, many years solely to Krishna for attaining the Absolute Truth. So, why should we worship Krishna all through our life? Instead, we should divide our duties for each stage and fulfill them. Even in ancient India, the kings took to meditation and spirituality only after they had handed over their empires to their sons (at around 50-55 years of age). Please guide me.

Your servant,

Ankit Agrawal

India

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Answer: Death Can Come at Any Time

You have not fully and properly understood the four stages of life. The brahmacari is meant to fully absorb himself in Krishna consciousness so that when he gets married and takes up family duties he will have a strong spiritual background to protect him from the material atmosphere that he must deal with when earning his livelihood.

Besides this, there is no guarantee how long we will live. In today's uncertain world we can die at any time. Therefore in order to properly prepare ourselves for the inevitable moment of death, we must seriously cultivate our Krishna consciousness at every stage of our lives. Since we can die at any time, we must immediately take to Krishna consciousness so that we can remember Krishna at the time of death.

Even though the saintly kings of the Vedic times were engaged in ruling their kingdoms, they were also devoted to Lord Krishna at every step. Look at the example of Arjuna and his brothers. They were all devotees even when they were ruling the earth. Arjuna fully surrendered to Krishna even when he was actively engaged in his royal duties.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Monday 7 July 2008

from ISKCON--Atlanta, Georgia, USA
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Today's Thought:

Back to Austin

After fourteen weeks and fourteen different countries on our around-the-world lecture tour, we are today heading back to Bhaktivedanta Ashram, our home base in Austin, Texas, to prepare for our next around-the-world lecture tour, which begins on 15 September of this year. It has been a truly wonderful opportunity to spread the rays of Lord Caitanya's benediction moon all over the world. We have been blessed with so many wonderful Krishna conscious experiences that it is hard to remember them all. The great benefit of sacrificing everything for spreading Krishna glories all over the world is that this makes it easy to remember Krishna. And remembering Krishna is the ultimate perfection of existence. We especially want to thank all those of you who helped in so many ways to make this preaching tour a wonderful success.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Do I Feel Close to You?

Please accept my humble obeisances.

I quickly glance your mails and read the Vedic version of answers to the questions you receive, Maharaja. I am very happy to read even though I don't get much of time to read leisurely. I feel like I see you in front of me and feel like very closely associated.

Could you please explain me why I feel like this?

I don't chant everyday, but I always tell Krishna whenever I feel, maybe minimum 20 times. I hum songs of Krishna. Will it help me any way to advance?

I request your blessings to advance in Krishna consciousness.

Thank You Maharaja

Rajesh

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Answer: Vibrational Presence

You feel that the spiritual master is close to you because even more powerful than his physical presence is his vibrational presence, which manifests in the form of his teachings. This is all by the divine potency of Lord Sri Krishna to facilitate His devotees on their pathway back to home, back to Godhead.

Any kind of remembrance of Krishna is wonderful and will help you advance. But it is stated in the revealed scriptures that we should follow carefully the pathway blazed through the wilderness of this material world by the great acharyas. This means that if you take the standard system given by the great spiritual masters of the past, you will quickly advance. Just like if one wants to travel from New York to Los Angeles, he can get there by walking, or he can get there by airplane. So if he wants to quickly reach Los Angeles, he will fly. Similarly, if we accept the authorized Hare Krishna mantra as prescribed by the great acharyas, we will quickly and easily attain the ultimate goal of spiritual perfection. Other methods are compared to walking to Los Angeles. They will also take us there, but only gradually, slowly, slowly after many, many lifetimes in the cycle of repeated birth, death, old age, and disease.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Sunday 6 July 2008

from ISKCON--Atlanta, Georgia, USA
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Today's Thought:

Krishna is God


Krishna is the center of all existence because everything emanates from Him. Since we come from Him, we are of the same quality as Him. He is eternal; we are eternal. He is full of bliss; we are full of bliss. He is full of knowledge, and we are full of knowledge. But at the present moment due to bodily consciousness we are misidentifying ourselves with material bodies that are temporary, full of ignorance, and full of misery.

What a pity! How much we are selling ourselves short! It's time to wise up and come to the transcendental platform where we can fully connect with our actual identities and enjoy life like anything in eternal service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead Sri Krishna.

There is no person in all of existence who is more powerful, more beautiful, more renounced, more knowledgeable, more wealthy, or more famous than Krishna. Therefore we can understand that He must be God.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Disconnected from Reality?

Is there a danger of becoming disconnected from reality by surrendering to Krishna?

Respectfully,

Ashley

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Answer: Reconnected with Reality

Quite to the contrary, we are already disconnected from reality. It is surrender to Krishna which reconnects us with reality.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

 

Saturday 5 July 2008

from ISKCON--Atlanta, Georgia, USA
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Today's Thought:

Worldwide Peace and Prosperity


The world is becoming more and more stricken with poverty and turmoil. The politicians do not have a clue how to solve these problems. They do not even know how to make their own lives peaceful and happy, what to speak of properly guiding anyone else. If those who recognize the supremacy of the Personality of Lord Sri Krishna will seriously try to understand the Bhagavad-gita and and the Srimad Bhagavatam, become fully realized in this supreme science, and spread it all over the world, there will come the dawning of a beautiful new age of spiritual enlightenment on this planet. Everyone throughout the entire world will become peaceful and prosperous. Social turmoil and poverty will be relegated to the history books as symptoms of the times when the world was not Krishna conscious.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why is Krishna Beyond Hinduism?


Revered Gurudeva,

Please accept my humble pranam. In one of your recent replies to a question you placed Sri Krishna's teachings beyond Hinduism. But Lord Sri Krishna is regarded by Hindus only! I am sure there must be a reason in your saying so which is not understood by me. Please enlighten me.

Sincere regards

Rajen

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Answer: Because He is Jagannatha, not Hindunatha

"Hindu" is a word that exists nowhere in the Vedas. It is a term that was coined by the Muslims to describe those persons who lived east of the River Sindu. They mispronounced "Sindu" as "Hindu" according to their language, and thus they described those persons on the east of the Sindu river as Hindus.

We should never think that Lord Krishna is only Lord for the Hindus. His another name is Jagannatha, the Lord of the entire universe. He has never in the history been designated as Hindunath, the Lord of the Hindus. He is Jagannatha, the Lord of every living being throughout the entire universe.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Friday 4 July 2008

from ISKCON--Atlanta, Georgia, USA
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Today's Thought:

Celebration of Independence


Here in the USA today is Independence Day, a celebration of that day in 1776 when the US declared independence from Great Britain. It is a national holiday, and everything shuts down so that everyone is free to celebrate their independence.

But are they really independent? As long as we are under the influence of the three modes of material nature, we are not independent. We remain entangledly bound in the clutches of illusion.

So instead of becoming all excited to celebrate the independence of one nation from another nation, we should cultivate pure devotional service to the Supreme Person so that at every minute we can celebrate our independence from birth, death, old age, and disease, in order to become factually independent from the binding influence of the material nature.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Rise Above Job Stresses?


For this entire week I have been "acting-president" of the hat company I work for. Taking on so many new responsibilities, and so many new stresses alike. When I read your "Thought for the Day" I was thinking about how you are setting foot in different countries each week. You answer 100's of emails, and you do it all for Krishna. On top of it all, when I have the opportunity to sit with you in a room one-on-one, I feel as if I am your only disciple. That may be very selfish, but it's the truth. I am so thankful that Krishna put you on this planet at this time to help the world better understand the causeless mercy of the Supreme. Let alone the small speck that is me.

Thank you, Gurudeva.

How can I better rise above the stresses of my daily job, and do this job for Krishna? Sometimes I get so overwhelmed with stress.

Fully surrendered,
Sukhada Dasa

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Answer: Become Surcharged with Bhakti

For a stress free day, rise early in the morning before sunrise. No later than 4:00 am is the ideal time. Take your bath. Dress yourself in devotional clothing and decorate your body with tilaka. Then after offering obeisances to Guru and Krishna, sing the Gurvastakam prayers with great feeling and devotion, chant 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra on your Japa mala beads, study the Srimad Bhagavatam, and have a Krishna prasadam breakfast. Now you are fully surcharged to handle and conquer over any and all stresses that the material energy may hurl at you throughout the day.

And once you get to work the best way to rise above the stresses of your job is to see that this entire material world is a special arrangement of the Lord to help you reconnect yourself with Him. There is nothing here that is absolutely important save and except your fully surrendering yourself at the lotus feet of Lord Sri Krishna. The things and events of this world only have genuine importance when they are offered fully in the Lord's service. In this mood you should enthusiastically and expertly conduct your job for the pleasure of Krishna for He is your ultimate boss.

Doing your job for the pleasure of Krishna means that all of the money earned from your job is Krishna's money. It is not your money. He has entrusted that money unto you for spending in a Krishna conscious way. In other words, you should provide your family with a comfortable Krishna conscious life style, save for their future needs, and beyond that the remaining balance should be donated to those who are pushing forward this Krishna consciousness movement for the deliverance of the suffering souls of this age.

In this way you will cultivate detachment and gain deeper and deeper practical realization of how everything throughout the entire world is the property of Krishna and should all be utilized in His service. By such an enlightened lifestyle, you will be an acharya, someone who teaches the principles of Krishna consciousness by his example, and you will qualify yourself to regain your original, eternal position as an associate of the Supreme Personality of Godhead in His unlimited pastimes in the spiritual world.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Thursday 3 July 2008

from ISKCON--Atlanta, Georgia, USA
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Today's Thought:

Life on the Road for Krishna


Life on the road for Krishna is a never-ending exciting challenge. You never know what is going to happen next, and you thus have to always take shelter of Krishna at every minute. Even though one encounters sometimes very difficult and traumatic circumstances, it is this taking shelter of Krishna that always makes it very sweet and wonderful. The happiness experienced by a traveling preacher is not that of the mundane tourist, who wants to see all the famous sites of the world. For example, I have never seen the Taj Mahal, although I went very near to it one time for giving a lecture on the Bhagavad-gita. The happiness is accepting Krishna as one's only shelter in all varieties of pleasant and unpleasant situations, and especially it is the happiness of being able to share this supreme nectar of Krishna consciousness with so many sincere souls who are very eager for it all over the world.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Taking Advantage of a Delayed Flight
to Write "Thought for the Day"
at the Miami, Florida, USA Airport

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Suffering from Sexual Desires


I am suffering from a serious problem from which you can drag me out and help me.

My age is 17 years. I am chanting everyday, but almost everyday I suffer from sexual desires. I don't know how to come out of it. Please help me. Due to this I am so much disturbed and am in the mood of doing a mistake. I am not able to control my senses. Please guide me. My Krishna consciousness will be lost if I continue this, but I am not able to control it. I am asking for your answer and guidance.

Please help me.

Your student

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Answer: Billions of Times Better than Sex

Sex desire is quite normal for a 17 year old body. Even a 70 year old can also feel lusty. You've got to philosophically detach yourself from your body. Instead of thinking "I am lusty" you should think instead, "My body is feeling lusty." In this way, you should remain equipoised and detached, fully taking shelter of Lord Sri Krishna and be like the ocean which always remains still even though so many billions of gallons of water are flowing into it at every minute.

The pleasure of Krishna's shelter is billions of times more enlivening than even the juiciest sexual intercourse experience. Therefore a devotee can say goodbye to sex with no regrets understanding full well that he has gotten something billions of times better.

Of course, sex can be utilized if one is trying to produce Krishna conscious children. That is spiritual sex. But other than this, sex life is completely shunned by those who are serious about spiritual emancipation, because they do not want their consciousness dragged back down to the bodily platform, which will keep them entangled in the miserable cycle of repeated birth and death. By freeing up their consciousness from sex attraction and absorbing it in Krishna attraction, they can revive their original dormant enlightened spiritual form and identity in the eternal pastimes of the Supreme Lord in His eternal abode in the spiritual sky.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

Wednesday 2 July 2008

from ISKCON, Atlanta, Georgia
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Today's Thought:

Importance of Submissive Hearing


Amazingly enough the other day when I described in "Thought for the Day" that our religion is to develop pure love for the Supreme Person, one of our subscribers dropped out of course complaining that my statement was Mayavadi philosophy. Mayavadi philosophy states the Supreme is not a person, that the Supreme is instead the impersonal, formless oneness. This is the just the opposite of what I stated. So it is truly uncanny that our subscriber would take my statement of the personal nature of the Supreme to be a statement that the Supreme is impersonal. In our e-course, we have always repeatedly reaffirmed from many different angles of vision that the Supreme is a person. We have given His name (Sri Krishna) , His address (Goloka Vrindavan), and we teach the means by which one can re-establish one's lost loving relationship with Him as His eternal associate. We are so obviously and consistently presenting a personal conception of the Supreme that it is truly amazing that one of our readers would take our statement as an expression of Mayavadi impersonalism. Although we certainly wish him well, we sadly note that such foolishness on his part is symptomatic of this confused age, the age of Kali. People hear one thing
and construe something else. This is called interpretation. One should learn to hear submissively so that one can ascertain exactly what is being said, instead of filtering what one is hearing or reading through one's prejudices and thus taking what is being clearly being stated to be something quite different altogether.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Become Free from Bad Memories?

All Glories to His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada!
All Glories to the Holy Name of the Lord!
All Glories to the Guru Parampara and all Vaishnavas!
All Glories to your merciful Lotus feet!

My Beloved Master,

I am very very glad to see your reply. I was waiting for last three days like anything, and after seeing your reply only I got my life back. Thank you very much. By your Grace I have started to chant 16 rounds.

Dear Master, many times I get disturbed or depressed by my past which makes me frustrated. What shall I do in those times? To fully eradicate my past memories what shall I do, Gurudeva? Please instruct me.

Waiting for your kind instructions.

Always longing to serve your Lotus feet,

Sathya Sadhana

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Answer: Fill Your Consciousness with Good Memories

All you have to do is fully absorb yourself in the most wonderful Krishna consciousness present. In this way you will be creating a new stock of memories that are chock full of exciting transcendental bliss. Gradually, in this way, your memories of the past will become more and more transcendental squeezing out the bad stuff which will naturally become less and less significant until it becomes negligible.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 
Tuesday 1 July 2008

from Lima, Peru
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Today's Thought:

Back to the USA


Today after over three months on the road spreading the rays of the Krishna consciousness moon in 14 different countries around the globe, we are heading back for the USA. In spite of its numerous disqualifications, the USA has one saving grace: Of all the nations in the world, it is that one nation which more than any other nation facilitated Srila Prabhupada in getting his movement started. For many years Srila Prabhupada attempted to launch the Krishna consciousness movement in India, but to no avail. He tried to go preach in Japan, but was not able do so. It was not until he landed in America in 1965, and after struggling to preach there for one year with no facility, that he was able to establish in 1966 the International Society for Krishna consciousness, which has now spread to over 300 centers all over the world.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Srila Prabhupada
Launches the Hare Krishna Movement
In Tompkins Square Park, New York 1966

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Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Which is My Religion?


My question is: Often people ask me what is my religion. My answer would be "Hindu" because I was born a Hindu. But I feel it's not right to say this because I am a devotee, and when I say, "I am Hindu" to people they have a different view. But if I say, "Vaishnava" is this correct?
Please guide me

If people ask me, "Which religion are you?", what should be my answer? "I am a .............."

Your servant,

Ashvin

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Answer: There is No Question of Which Religion

You can tell them that there is no such thing as this religion and that religion because religion is one, to become a pure devotee of the Supreme Person. So you can tell them that your religion is to become a pure devotee of the Supreme Person, the original pure form of religion before man polluted it by dividing it into this religion and that religion.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
 

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