Thought for the Day

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

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His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta
Swami Prabhupada

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Tuesday 30 June 2009

from Suva, Fiji
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Today's Thought:

From Bitterness to Sweetness

There is nothing sweeter than becoming reconnected with Krishna. And hearing the topics of Krishna is the means of becoming reconnected with Him. But someone who is deeply entangled in the modes of material nature and is thus very much attached to material sense gratification will find the topics of Krishna to be a threat to his material enjoyment and will not want to hear them. Just as medicine, although sometimes very bitter, must be taken on the physician's order to recover from disease, even if the topics of Krishna appear bitter to us we should absorb ourselves in hearing them anyway. By this transcendental hearing process we will gradually become cured of our all distress, all bitterness will go away, and we will enter into the transcendental eternal dimension of unlimited bliss and knowledge in the association of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Sri Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Revealing the Supreme Sweetness

at ISKCON temple Suva, Fiji--28 June 2009


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Krishna Bhakti During Difficulty?

Is it easier to concentrate on Krishna bhakti during difficulty?

Sunil

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Answer: It's the Easiest Time.

Those who are advanced in Krishna consciousness find that times of difficulty are the easiest times for connecting with Krishna. Therefore they pray to always be in difficulty.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Monday 29 June 2009

from Suva, Fiji
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Today's Thought:

Take Krishna Everywhere

Wherever we go we should always take Krishna with us. This is possible because whenever and wherever we remember Krishna He is personally present. In other words He and His remembrance are one and the same. The result of this connection is that we become absolutely ecstatic by re-entering our original all-blissful, all knowing eternal nature. So the smartest thing is to do is to always be engaged in hearing about, glorifying, and remembering that supreme all attractive personality, Lord Sri Krishna, in all times, places, and circumstances. In this way we will always be tasting the sweetest nectar and never become discouraged by the influence of the material energy.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Sharing Krishna at a Home in Suva, Fiji

27 June 2009


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Give Up the Enjoying Mood?

I theoretically know that I am not the enjoyer, but still I feel desperate to enjoy independently away from Lord Krishna. How to get over this propensity of sense enjoyment in the service of the Lord ?

Ashish

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Answer: Offer Your Talent to Krishna

Whatever you like to do, whatever is your talent, you should engage that in the service of Krishna. For example, if you are a writer, write for Krishna. Or if you are an architect, design temples for Krishna. In this way you will be satisfied and you will learn how to derive your satisfaction by the satisfaction of Krishna instead of trying to be an independent enjoyer.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Sunday 28 June 2009

from Suva, Fiji
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Today's Thought:

Wake Up, World

Citizens of planet earth, it's time that you all wake up from the slumber of material existence. There is no reason to continue suffering in the cycle of birth and death. Srila Prabhupada has come to deliver the key to eternity, knowledge, and bliss. Simply chant the holy names of God with love and devotion:

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

You will awaken your true, all-blissful, all-knowing identity as the eternal servant of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Sri Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari





Hare Krishna
Kirtan Wake Up in Bulgaria


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Advance to the First Class Stage?

What is required for a madhyama-adhikari to rise to uttama-adhikari stage? Madhyama-adhikari is already a high position. It is possible that they remain on this level and make no progress. Srila Prabhupada said that they can rise to uttama-adhikari level by associating with first-class devotees and studying sastras. Does the association Srila Prabhupada refers to here include following the guru's instructions, even after the guru departs from the material world? First-class devotee's association is rare in this world anyway.

Your humble servant,

Yechen

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Answer: Follow a First Class Devotee

A madhyama adhikari (2nd class devotee) is elevated to the platform of uttama adhikari (1st class devotee) by associating with and serving an uttama adhikari. A madhyama adhikari will naturally progress to the position of uttama adhikari simply by this favorable association and by carefully abiding by the scriptural injunctions.

If the madhyama adhikari is not able to associate physically with the uttama adhikari, he can also associate with the uttama adhikari by strictly following his instructions. This following of the uttama adhikari's instructions is the best way to associate with and the get the mercy of the uttama adhikari and to be elevated the first class platform.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Saturday 27 June 2009

from Suva, FijiToday's Thought:

Where is Patrick Dolan?

I am eternally indebted to my dear friend, Patrick Dolan, who in the fall of 1968 in Denver, Colorado introduced me to the Hare Krishna mahamantra. I had for a long time been searching desperately and futilely for a means of attaining spiritual enlightenment. That night when he introduced me to the mahamantra was a most significant turning point in my eternal existence. I have for many years been hankering to locate him so I could thank him for the tremendous difference he has made in my life. But for the last 41 years his whereabouts have remained completely unknown to me. So if any of my readers happen to know of a Patrick Dolan who lived in Denver, Colorado in 1968, I request them to kindly inform me how to get into contact with him.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Prove that the Source of Existence Has Personality?

Hare Krishna

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada and your valiant preaching efforts.

I humbly request more clarification and guidance from you regarding this subject. I'm still having difficulty fully understanding. How do we scientifically and philosophically show that the source of existence has personality and is a person?

R.P.

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Answer: Meet Him

We do not require to show anyone that the source of all existence is person. All we need to do is meet Him. That is sufficient. The bhakti yoga system is a scientific process which enables the devotee to personally meet the Supreme Person and enter into an eternal loving relationship with Him in His constant association. The devotee has no obligation to prove that he has met God to the so-called scientists, philosophers, and logicians. He will simply relish and ever deeper, ever sweeter relationship with that Supreme All-Attractive Personality.

For example, I am writing to you from Fiji. If you demand absolute proof that Fiji exists, how will I prove it to you? The easiest way would be to bring you to Fiji so you can personally experience it yourself. But if you refuse to come and want me to absolutely prove it to you at your home in New Zealand, I can bring you so many things: historical documents, photographs, etc. But you may argue that all of my evidence is fake. So when you tell me that I must show you that Fiji exists I will advise you to get on an airplane and fly to Fiji. In this way you will know for sure that Fiji exists.

In a similar way we invite everyone to hop on the airplane of the Hare Krishna mantra and fly to Krishna's transcendental abode. Then they will experience first hand that Krishna and His eternal kingdom exist. But if they remain like owls who demand scientific proof of the existence of daylight while refusing to open their eyes, what can be done?

I hope that this has cleared up your confusion. I am coming next week to New Zealand, and I will be happy to meet with you personally to help you clarify your understanding of how to verify the existence of the Supreme Person.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Friday 26 June 2009

from Suva, Fiji
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Today's Thought:

Krishna Prasadam in Suva, Fiji

Srila Prabhupada very much appreciated the nicely prepared prasadam made by the devotees here in Fiji. And he wanted that all the ISKCON cooks should be able to cook prasadam to this standard. So it is always a special treat to experience this caliber of prasadam so much relished by Srila Prabhupada. Currently there are three Krishna prasadam restaurants in Suva: the Hare Krishna restaurant, Govinda's, and the newly-opened Gaura's Higher Taste. Jairama Prabhu, the president of ISKCON Suva, is also managing Gaura's Higher Taste, and he took us there to experience lunch prasadam.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Gaura's Higher Taste Restaurant in Suva, Fiji
Managed by Jairama Prabhu (in the front)



Simply Wonderful Gaura's Cuisine


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Satisfaction from Bhakti?

While doing Krishna bhakti is it wrong to expect satisfaction from bhakti?

Sunil

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Answer: By Satisfying Krishna

No, but you have to know how to get it. If you try to get it directly, you will be disappointed. But when you get it by giving satisfaction to Krishna, you will be unlimitedly satisfied.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Thursday 25 June 2009

from Hamilton, New Zealand
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Today's Thought:

Bhakti Bliss in Hamilton

There's no bliss like bhakti bliss. Other kinds of bliss fade in and out. They are not steady. But the bliss of bhakti goes on increasing unlimitedly for all of eternity. So if you really want to enjoy life to the fullest extent, you've got no choice except to take to the path of bhakti. Any other path that you take will leave you ultimately disappointed. If you want to keep searching on your own for the best path, the ideal path, you are welcome to do that. But if you do not feel like wasting your time and you want to taste the full nectar of immortality immediately, here's a word to the wise. Forget everything else and fully absorb yourself in bhakti right now. You will be unlimitedly glad that you did!

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Blissful Devotees in Hamilton, New Zealand


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Conflict Between Christ and Krishna

Respected Teacher,

I have one really very painful question for me. Some years ago I belonged to the Christian church and used mostly Christian prayers in my life. But the Hare Krishna mantra helped me a lot, especially when I got some kind of psychiatric illness and was allergic to almost all of the medicines which the doctors gave me. So I even don't know how it happened, but I just started chanting the Hare Krishna mantra, and it really helped me. I use this mantra a lot for my healing, and it can do real miracles.

The problem is that I have lost many good friends. My parents also can not understand me. I never talk to them about Krishna. Christians have told me that I have given my soul to the devil because I left the Christian church. Sometimes I feel guilty because I can not be a Christian any more while chanting Hare Krishna mantra. But I can not stop using the Hare Krishna mantra because it helps me without any medication. It gives happiness. It is a miracle. But I really do not know how to solve this inner conflict between Christianity (the religion of my childhood) and the Hare Krishna mantra (my everyday healer ). I would be so much grateful if you could help me a little.

Thank You very much in advance!
Kind regards
C. R.

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Answer: No Conflict--Like Father, Like Son

There is no reason for you to despair because Jesus Christ is a pure devotee of Krishna. When he speaks in the Bible about his heavenly father. he is referring to Lord Krishna. In fact the name "Christ" is an etymological derivation from the word "Krishna." In the Bible Jesus says that he is God, the Son. And the Bhagavad-gita Krishna says that He is God, the Father. So as it is said "Like father, like son," there is no conflict of interest between Krishna, the father, and Christ, the son. Both of them are in perfect agreement with each other. Both of them are teaching the science of pure love of God. It is only the rascal so-called followers who have made this artificial division between Krishna and Jesus. Kindly understand that both of them are teaching exactly the same thing, that we should fully surrender ourselves unto God.

The major difference between Christianity and Krishna consciousness is that while the Bible gives only introductory information of the science of God, the Vedas go very deeply into this subject matter. So in this regard the Bible can be compared to a pocket dictionary, and the Vedas can be compared to a big unabridged dictionary. Both of them are correctly defining the words, but one of them is going into great detail while the other one only gives a brief introduction. I know a Christian minister who has secretly become a devotee of Krishna. He studies the Bhagavad-gita and the presents the philosophy of the Bhagavad-gita to his Christian congregation couching it in Christian terminology which they can understand.

So there is no reason for you to despair. By chanting Hare Krishna you are giving the greatest happiness to Lord Jesus because he is also Krishna's devotee. He did not reveal this to the people of Israel because as he states in the Bible, "I have more to tell you, but you are not ready for it yet." For even the introductory level presentation of the science of bhakti, which he presented, they nailed him to a cross. So he did not reveal to them everything he knew about God.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Wednesday 24 June 2009

from Hamilton, New Zealand
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Today's Thought:

Power of Association

Our consciousness is developed by the company that we keep. Therefore if we are serious about becoming purified from all material contamination and reviving our original enlightened consciousness, we should associate with pure devotees of Krishna as much as possible. By hearing, inquiring from, and serving great devotees the nature of the transcendentalist will become very attractive to us, and we will naturally pursue the path of self-realization with great enthusiasm for attaining the ultimate perfection of pure devotion.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Nothing Sweeter than Devotee Association


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Request: Tone Down Initiation Requirements

Dear Gurudeva,

All obeisances unto you. You have stated the importance of initiation. But initiation comes with conditions attached. There should be no pre-conditions for initiation. Then only will neophytes like me me dare to get initiated. I would like for you to tone down the minimum requirements for initiation. I am looking forward to getting initiated from you during your Mumbai visit at the end of the year. Would you oblige me with initiation?

Your servant,

Rajendra

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Answer: Initiation Means Accept Instructions

Initiation means the disciple agrees to accept the instructions of the spiritual master. It does not mean that the spiritual master agrees to accept the instructions of the disciple. If you do not agree to accept my instructions, there is no meaning to initiation. Thousands of people all over the world are being initiated every year into our sampradaya. They do not find the requirements to be prohibitive. Rather they find that the requirements liberate them from bondage to the cycle of birth and death. I would like very much to accept you as my disciple and deliver you from all anxieties, but without you doing your part by giving up sinful activities and chanting the holy names of God it will not be possible for me to deliver you.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Tuesday 23 June 2009

from Hamilton, New Zealand
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Today's Thought:

Strictly Follow the Acharya

When a great acharya such as His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada appears in this world, he creates order out of the chaos of material existence. And when such a powerful acharya as Srila Prabhupada departs, chaos naturally returns. Therefore it is up to the sincere followers of such a great acharya to manifest his full shakti or potency in their preaching work by strictly obeying and repeating his instructions not like a parrot, but with full realization. In this way the full potency of that great acharya will continue acting on this planet bringing order out of chaos.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




The Great, Powerful Acharya:

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Do I Have to Stay Here?

I hate this material world and want to leave it and go live in Goloka Vrindavan and always serve Radha and Krishna and the gopis. I really don't want to be here any longer. I see that there is nothing here in this material world that I want. I feel that I am wasting my time here.

So my question is: Why do I have to stay here? The material world is a useless prison house of disgust, so why can't I leave it right away? It doesn't make any sense for me to be here. But it would be bad karma to commit suicide, right?

That seems like a catch 22. I find myself somewhere I very much don't want to be, but I have to wait until I die naturally until I can go where I would much rather be. Doesn't seem right to me. The only way we leave the material world and go to Goloka Vrindavan is by leaving this material body, right? So wouldn't Krishna be happy that I want to leave sooner rather than later? Why wouldn't he give me the means to leave this body right now?

Thank you,

Neil

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Answer: To Burn Off All of Your Material Desires

Your desire to go back to home, back to Godhead is wonderful. Because you originally desired to come here, now it is Krishna's special mercy to keep you here until you are completely freed from even the slightest tinge of a desire to enjoy any type of material sense gratification here. This is His wonderful program for fully qualifying you to become an eternal resident of His kingdom.

Committing suicide is not the way to return to the spiritual world. So kindly give up this idea. In fact it is most sinful because that body does not belong to you. It is the property of Krishna and therefore meant to be engaged in His service. It you kill it, you are removing it from service to Krishna. The karma for suicide is that one must become a ghost and suffer in a horrible nightmarish condition without a gross body even though one is full of gross desires.

The solution for your predicament is that you should fully absorb yourself in the mood of pure devotional service. If you will do so, for you this entire material world will be transformed into the spiritual world, and you will be living in Goloka Vrindavan at every minute. And upon leaving your body you go to sleep and wake up in the pastimes of Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Monday 22 June 2009

from Hamilton, New Zealand
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Today's Thought:

No One But Krishna

When we say that we are giving all of our love and devotion to Lord Krishna many people become disturbed. They feel that we should instead spread our love and devotion here, there, and everywhere. Of course, we agree with them on the principle of universal love, but our point of contention is regarding the proper way that true universal love can be manifested. Just as when we water the root of a tree all the leaves and branches are nourished, when we give our love fully to Krishna, who is the very root of everything in existence, our love is fully distributed to all living beings everywhere. If however, we opt for loving all living beings in a piecemeal fashion, we can go on trying to fully love this person, that person, this person, and to that person, etc. etc. but nobody will be fully satisfied. So instead of wasting our energy and becoming frustrated in our attempts to love everyone, we simply exclusively give our love to the person who is the root cause of the entire existence. In this way we will become the perfect lovers and servants of everyone.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Give All of Your Love to Krishna


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Women Subordinate to Men

Please accept my humble obeisances,
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

I have read that according to Vedic culture the female should be subordinate to men. My friends do not agree. They find this difficult to understand. They feel that respect should be from both partners in a relationship, which is very true. I understand from some of our literature that women are to be subordinate to the male. How can I help these friends understand this concept?

Your student

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Answer: Men and Women Subordinate to Each Other

In the Vedic culture the men adopt a very responsible position of giving first class service to the women by always seeing that they are properly honored and that they are never abused. When the women experience how they are being so lovingly served by the men they happily, naturally, and eagerly reciprocate with the men by serving them in return.

So the men subordinate themselves to the women just as a son lovingly serves and protects his mother, and the women subordinate themselves to the men just as a mother lovingly takes care of her son.

In short, the Vedic culture is based on the principle of subordination. Everyone lovingly subordinates themselves to Krishna, to guru, to Krishna's devotees, and even to the non-devotees by giving them Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Sunday 21 June 2009

from Hamilton, New Zealand
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Today's Thought:

Determined Seekers Realize the Absolute Truth

In this world it is very rare to find someone who is seeking the Absolute Truth because mostly people nowadays are absorbed in the maddened pursuit of material sense gratification, both subtle and gross. And out of those who are seeking the Absolute Truth, it is rarer still to find someone who has factually discovered it. However there is no need for the seeker to become discouraged by this rarity of success on the self-realization path. All the seeker has to do is to become very, very determined in his search for the Absolute Truth. When he does so the Supreme Lord who is situated within his heart will see his staunch determination and will then manifest Himself externally in the form of the bona fide spiritual master, who will then carefully guide the seeker how to fully and completely realize the Absolute Truth.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Seekers Who Became Finders:

Blissful Devotees in Lithuania



Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Is It a Sin to Change Religions?

My mother once told me that in the Bhagavad-gita it has been told that leaving one's own religion and converting to some other religion is a sin. Then is not it a sin to change a Christian or Muslim into our Hinduism for living the life of a Hindu? We are Hindu so we pray Krishna. How can a Muslim or Christian can do that since it is told changing one's religion is a sin?

Moli

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Answer: Sinful to Think that there are Different Religions

This idea of changing one's religion is a misconception. There is actually no such thing as changing one's religion because religion is one, to become a pure lover of God. If anyone becomes a pure lover of God, they are considered to be a first class religious person. It does not matter whether they are designated externally as a Christian, Muslim, or Hindu, etc. Whether we address the Supreme Person as Krishna, Jehovah, or Allah we are calling out to the same person. So it does not matter if we switch names. It is not sinful. What does matter is that we call out to Him with love free of any selfish desires. This is known as pure bhakti, and it is the universal religion. So, the conclusion is that it is not a sin to change religions because factually there is no such as changing religions. Rather what is sinful is to think that there are different religions.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Saturday 20 June 2009

from Melbourne, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Initiation--the Most Important Step

After unlimited lifetimes of suffering in the rotation of birth, death, old age, and disease there is nothing more wonderful and inconceivably blissful than being released from the prison of material existence and receiving entry into the eternal spiritual sky where the Supreme Person is eternally engaged in loving pastimes with His dear devotees. The most important step for making this ultimate journey is to take initiation from the bona fide spiritual master. Srila Prabhupada explains that it is at the moment of initiation that the disciple becomes deathless. At this moment he enters into immortality provided that he remains always faithful to the vows that he accepts at the time of initiation. Those vows are to chant at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mahamantra on japa beads every day and to strictly avoid illicit sex, intoxication, meat eating, and gambling.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Initiation of Krishnaprema Das

19 June 2009--Melbourne, Australia


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Knowing Truth with Imperfect Senses?

From reading Srila Prabhupada's books I learn that we conditioned souls have four defects. Because we have imperfect senses we have a tendency to be illusioned and thus we make mistakes and cheat. So how with these defects can we know that we are reading in the Vedic teachings is true and not false?

R.V.

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Answer: Senses Are Perfected by Krishna Consciousness

I appreciate that you asked a very intelligent question. If we are all possessing the four defects of imperfect senses, the tendency to be illusioned, making mistakes, and cheating, how can we trust our judgment to accept the truth of the Bhagavad-gita? If our senses are imperfect, how can we know for sure that Krishna is God and that His teachings are the Absolute Truth?

It is indeed a fact that with our imperfect senses we cannot know certainly that anything is true. So how with these imperfect senses can we with any degree of intellectual integrity accept the truth of the Vedic wisdom? Are we simply blindly, dogmatically accepting the Vedic wisdom like brainwashed cult members?

The answer is that although it is a fact that with our imperfect senses we cannot know the truth, by the process of Krishna consciousness our senses become perfect and with perfected senses we can perfectly understand and directly experience the truth of the Vedic wisdom.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Friday 19 June 2009

from Melbourne, Australia
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Today's Thought:

The Pure Devotee is an Ocean of Mercy

The pure devotee of Krishna is an ocean of mercy because he bestows the unlimited benediction of Krishna's mercy upon the suffering humanity. Without any discrimination of who is fit and who is not fit, the pure devotee distributes the pure loving mercy of Lord Sri Krishna to everyone he meets. He does not remain a recluse only concerned with his salvation. Rather he travels and preaches widely throughout the world to bless as many suffering souls with the soothing balm of Lord Sri Krishna's liberating mercy. He asks no compensation for this most valuable of all services to the suffering humanity. His only compensation is to see that Krishna is being pleased by the deliverance of His lost children back to His eternal abode in the spiritual sky.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Srila Prabhupada--

The Preeminent Pure Devotee
of the Modern Age


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Contradiction in the Vedas?

Is there a contradiction anywhere in the Vedas regarding the Supreme being a personality?

Regards,

Vishnu

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Answer: Only Apparently, Not Factually

For those who are not realized in Vedic wisdom and who are thus only able to approach the Vedic wisdom superficially, it sometimes appears that there are contradictions in the Vedic wisdom. For example in the Sri Isopanisad Mantra 5 it is stated:

tad ejati tan naijati

"The Supreme Lord walks and does not walk."

From a mundane standpoint it is not possible that someone walks and does not walk. But in Krishna even the inconceivable becomes possible because He is the supreme controller. Everything is acting under His absolute power. He can make anything to be exactly how He wants it to be, even if it defies mundane logic. In this case the Lord's not walking refers to His impersonal, formless, all-pervading nature, and His walking refers to His transcendental form in which He walks in His loving pastimes with His devotees. Both of the natures of the Lord are acting simultaneously, but it is the personal nature which is predominate and the impersonal nature which is subordinate. This is confirmed by the Supreme Person Krishna in the Bhagavad-gita when He states that He, the Person Krishna, is the source of the impersonal Brahman.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Thursday 18 June 2009

from Melbourne, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Make a Revolution Now

Enough is enough. It is time now to take a strong stand against the material civilization which will, if it continues unabated in its program of deluding the entire humanity by promoting the false bodily conception of existence, continue transforming this planet into an ever-increasingly disordered and nightmarish disaster area. We must speak out strongly now to challenge the false values such as greed and lust upon which they are basing their modern day culture. The old bodily conscious models are not working anymore. They are pitiably flawed and outdated. They cannot sustain the human race. It is time to now reharmonize ourselves and the entire planet with the very source of our existence. In short, it is now time to make a revolution.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Final Question and Answer Session

Canberra, Australia Airport--16 June 2009


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Is Only Worshipping Guru Bona Fide?

Dear Gurudeva,

Please accept my humble obeisances.

Recently I was invited by a friend to visit a Bhakti centre, where they teach some spiritual matters. I visited there and my humble questions are as below:

Their teachings are they only worship guru. No other God worship is done at their Bhakti centre. They worship their guru's sandals, which they worship daily.

Can you please explain how this worship is connected with our Vedas and is it recommended by our Vedas. I am very confused and please dissipate my darkness.

Hare Krishna

Sham

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Answer: It is Completely Bogus

This teaching has nothing to do with the Vedas. It is not bhakti and is completely bogus. A bona fide spiritual master will never engage his disciples in this way. A spiritual master who teaches his disciples to worship him and not to worship God is bogus. He is not a spiritual master. The bona fide spiritual master teaches his disciples to fully surrender to Krishna or God. While the spiritual master is meant to accept all honor and worship on behalf of the Supreme Person, he personally worships God and engages his disciples in doing the same. Such a center, although advertised as a bhakti center, cannot give you genuine bhakti. Instead it will give bewilderment and delusion. Therefore it is better to avoid such a center.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Wednesday 17 June 2009

from Canberra, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Beyond the Bursting Bubble

This material existence is a bewildering quagmire for those who have not realized the source and purpose of their existence. If we do not know why we exist, how can we have a meaningful existence? We cannot. All we will be able to do is invent a so-called meaning and try to live happily in the bubble of our dream world. But all bubbles eventually burst. We cannot remain forever satisfied by embracing an imaginary purpose for our existence. Therefore instead of taking a pathway which leads to confusion, disappointment, and frustration, we should take the path that leads us to eternity, knowledge, and bliss by seeking out a bona fide spiritual master, a teacher who can genuinely enlighten us in the science of the origin and purpose of our existence.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Srila Prabhupada--the Spiritual Master
at Whose Feet the Spiritual Masters Sit


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Is the Bhagavad-gita for Women?

Thank you for the inspiring e-mails. My favorite section is the questions and answers. I have a question. Why is Bhagavad-gita so difficult to understand for common people like me? There is no instruction available that says how a woman should live her life according to Vedic literature. What is her duty? I need your guidance.

Thanks,

Arti

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Answer: The Bhagavad-gita is for Everyone

The Bhagavad-gita instructs us that for understanding its sublime teachings that we should approach a bona fide spiritual master, inquire from him submissively, and render service unto him. This is how everyone, men and women both, will understand properly the Bhagavad-gita. It cannot be understood by mental speculation. It can only be understood by submissively serving and inquiring from self-realized souls.

Our identities as male and female are external coverings only. The actual identity of every living being is that he or she is the eternal servant of Krishna. Therefore men and women both have the same duty, to fully surrender themselves unto Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Tuesday 16 June 2009

from Canberra, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Taste the Ultimate Nectar

Here in Canberra, Australia we have been repeatedly diving deeply into the nectarean ocean of Hare Krishna kirtan. What an experience, to intensely absorb our minds in the sweet transcendental vibration of Krishna's names! Those who are struggling to enjoy here in this material world have been badly misinformed by their mentors that happiness comes through sense gratification. But those who are most fortunate have been informed of the unlimited ocean of nectar available in Krishna's holy names, and they dive deeply into that ocean as much as possible twenty-four hours a day. Now we must somehow inform everyone about how they too can taste the ultimate nectar. The entire world will be transformed into a paradise.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Devotees Relishing Krishna Kirtan in Russia


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Request: Who is the Real Guru?

Who is the real guru?
Why is the guru important to us?
Who in this world is guru?

Gajanan

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Answer: Krishna and His Pure Representative

The real guru is Krishna because He is adi-guru, the original spiritual master who fully reveals everything we need to know regarding the Absolute Truth. In our conditioned state we are not pure enough to be able to directly hear Krishna speaking to us from within. Therefore for those who sincerely desire to discover the will of God He manifests externally in the form of the spiritual master. The spiritual master is all important to us because Krishna does accept our devotion unless it is channeled to Him through the medium of His pure representative, the bona fide spiritual master. The great Vaisnava acharya, Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakur, has confirmed that without the grace of the spiritual master we cannot make any spiritual advancement.

You can easily find the guru in this world by seeing who is purely repeating the teachings of Lord Sri Krishna without any adulteration. When you find such a bona fide spiritual master you should fully surrender yourself unto him accepting him as Krishna's pure representative.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Monday 15 June 2009

from Canberra, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Live Your Dream

Have you ever aspired to be a great saintly hero who can save the world from impending doom? Well, if so, now you can live your dream. All you have to do is fully awaken your dormant Krishna consciousness through honestly taking up the bhakti yoga system under the guidance of a bona fide spiritual master. Gradually as you progress along the bhakti yoga pathway, you will more and more become a repository of all saintly qualities, and a new you will naturally emerge, who is a powerful force for positive change in world, which is now more than ever before in desperate need of saintly heroes.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Young Hare Krishna Monk

on the Road to Sainthood


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Request: Save Me

Save me. I need a spiritual master. Help me.

Yours student from Russia

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Answer: Follow the Bhagavad-gita

If you will fully surrender yourself to Krishna's instructions as spoken in the Bhagavad-gita, you will be saved. Do you have a copy of Bhagavad-gita As It Is by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada?

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
Sunday 14 June 2009

from Canberra, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Be Thoroughly Honest

Those teachings coming from the Srimad Bhagavatam, which are full of descriptions of the transcendental glories of the name, fame, forms, pastimes, etc., of the unlimited Supreme Lord, are overflowing with transcendental words meant for bringing about a revolution in the impious lives of this world's misdirected civilization. Such transcendental teachings, even though of imperfect composition are heard, sung and accepted by purified men who are thoroughly honest. Since unless one is thoroughly honest he will not able to understand and realize these sublime teachings, we must always strive for the utmost in honesty so that we will be blessed with transcendental realization.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Pariksit Maharaja Hears the Srimad Bhagavatam

from Sukadeva Goswami 5,000 Years Ago


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Finish My Rounds?

I am chanting 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna daily on japa beads for the sixe months as well as following the four regulative principles. I am also living in association of devotees for five days in a week. But my problem is that whenever I go to my home on weekends I become lazy especially in the morning. That is why sometimes I am unable to finish my rounds in morning. Also if I wake early in the morning then my mind showers too many stupid thoughts and I am totally in mode of ignorance. How to overcome this problem? Please help me.

Your servant,

A.M.

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Answer: No Breakfast Until Your Rounds are Done

Simply make it your program that you will not take your breakfast until you complete your 16 rounds. This will insure that you get your rounds done as soon as possible early in the morning. If you shower your mind with the holy names very nicely every morning, your mind will shower you back with Krishna consciousness all day long.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Saturday 13 June 2009

from Sydney, Australia
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Today's Thought:

The Supreme Super Star

In this material world stars and especially super stars are very adored by the people in general. They like to hear about and discuss the activities of their famous heroes. But they do not realize that the most famous, most heroic person in all existence is Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is worshipped and adored by countless millions and billions devotees in the spiritual world. In terms of numbers of devoted followers He is thousands and millions times more famous than even the biggest super stars of this world. Even though in this material world the super stars seem to be more prominent than Krishna, their reputations will eventually fade into oblivion while Krishna's name and fame will continue to glorified ever-expandingly throughout all of existence for all of eternity. So there is truly no greater super star than Lord Sri Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Krishna--the Supreme Super Star


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Your Flying is Polluting the World?

Dear Gurudeva,

Please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

One question:

You are flying all the year around the globe. What is your idea about that pollution?

Bhakta S.

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Answer: My Flying is Freeing the World from Pollution

Pollution begins on the subtle plane when one is infected with a desire to lord it over the material nature, and from there it filters down to the gross plane in the form of air pollution, water pollution, global warming, etc. Because the cause of the pollution is on the subtle plane, all the efforts of the modern day society to clean up the pollution will prove to be futile unless they address the original cause of the pollution, the lording-it-over mentality. While it may appear superficially that my regularly traveling all over the world is having a polluting effect on the world atmosphere, the actual fact is that I because I am aggressively campaigning to clean up the pollution on the causal level, the subtle plane, the actual effect of my regular traveling and preaching is to have a powerful cleansing effect on the global environment.

And besides that we are reintroducing the Vedic culture to this planet. This was a culture which had airplanes which not did require any fuel and thus had a zero polluting effect on the environment. These airplanes were so amazing that they could carry an entire city with palaces, houses, parks, and lakes and could travel across the entire universe in a short period of time.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Friday 12 June 2009

from Sydney, Australia
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Today's Thought:

Vedic Psychology

Modern day psychology is defined as the science of the mind, and modern day psychologists focus on the mind considering it to be the self. But according to the Greek language, from which the term psychology has been derived, psychology can also mean the science of the soul. It is this approach to psychology that we find in Vedic psychology. The mind by its very nature is fickle and unsteady. So as long as we identify the self with the mind we are going to be in an unstable psychological state. As long as we allow our mind to predominate we will find ourselves shifting from one thing to another without ever finding peace of mind. It is only when the mind is brought under control by the superior conscious self, the spirit-soul, by being engaged steadily in progressive activities for its elevation that we will find permanently lasting peace. Progressive activities are those practices which reconnect the individual conscious self with the supreme conscious self, and loving devotion to that supreme self is the easiest, quickest way to accomplish this. The Vedic scriptures especially recommend the regular repetition of the holy names of the supreme person, mantra yoga (the yoga of delivering the mind), as the most powerful, effective method for perfecting the consciousness in this age.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Elevating the Mind by Krishna Kirtan

Shah Alam, Malaysia--1 June 2009


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Chanting Before 4am?

Can chanting on japa mala be done before 4 am, or is 4 am the earliest time to begin chanting for the day?

Sunil

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Answer: Yes

Japa may be chanted before 4am. Sometimes devotees will rise by 2am and finish their 16 rounds before the mangal arati at 430am. In this way they can complete their rounds in the early morning hours and still have have time to bathe and dress the deities or study and write during the auspicious brahma muhurta time beginning 1.5 hours before sunrise.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Thursday 11 June 2009

from Sydney, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Winning the War Against Maya

Because we are presently captives of Maya, the illusory energy, to become Krishna conscious means to declare a war of independence against Maya. To win a war one has to be very determined because Maya, who has held us in her tight grip for thousands and millions of lifetimes, is not going to let go of us very easily. Therefore to be successful in this struggle we must take all help from every available resource. And there are many: the spiritual master, the Lord's devotees, the scriptures, the holy names, the holy places of pilgrimage, Krishna prasadam, deity worship, etc. If we take full advantage of these many resources with patience, determination, and enthusiasm, we are sure and certain to win the war and regain full independence in the transcendental spiritual sky.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Waging the War Against Maya

Bhakti Caru Swami Leads Hari Nam Sankirtan


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Please a Guru?

Being a reader of these mails I feel that you are a selfless representative of Lord Krishna. I know that it is wrong to judge a devotee by my fallen intelligence. Neither I have the capacity to understand your selfless services to the society. Nor am I capable of judging a devotee's capabilities. Please let me know how can I can please a devotee and above all a guru, who I understand is actually an external representative of Krishna. Please help me understand this, and also forgive my foolishness.

Regards.

SG

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Answer: Dedicate Your Life Fully to His Mission

If you want to please me in the best possible way, you should dedicate your life fully for assisting me in my mission given to me by Srila Prabhupada of saving the fallen souls of this world from the repetition of birth and death.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Wednesday 10 June 2009

from Sydney, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Perfect Follower of Krishna

We are often asked why it is necessary to accept a spiritual master. Many wonder why can't they simply accept Krishna as their guru and achieve spiritual perfection in that way. The answer is very simple. Krishna instructs that unless we become the devotee of His devotee He will not accept us as His devotees. It is only by becoming the devotee of the devotee of Krishna that we can actually become the devotee of Krishna. So in order to please Krishna by our sincere surrender unto Him we must seek out a devotee who is purely engaged in devotional service to Lord and surrender ourselves completely unto him. In this way we become the perfect followers of Krishna as confirmed by the scriptures and by all the great saintly teachers.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Lecture in Home of Vanmali Krishna Das

& Kadambini Radha devi dasi
Sydney, Australia--8 June 2009


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Recognize Krishna's Voice?

When we in are in difficulty or when we are in a situation where we need to make a decision, at that time our mind moves in two directions, whether to do this or that. It is said that everything is planned by Krishna. Even though I believe in my Krishna, sometimes I get caught in this mind maze. In that situation how do I recognize the Krishna voice which is within us?

Your disciple

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Answer: By Pure Devotion

If you want to become empowered to clearly recognize the voice of Krishna within, you must enter into the state of pure devotion which is described as follows in the Bhagavad-gita:

teṣāṁ satata-yuktānām
bhajatām prīti-pūrvakam
dadāmi buddhi-yogam taṁ
yena mām upayānti te

"To those who are constantly devoted to serving Me with love,
I give the understanding by which they can come to Me."
--Bhagavad-gita 10.10


Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Tuesday 9 June 2009

from Sydney, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Sharing the Ultimate Blessing

Our first business is to save ourselves from the repetition of birth and death. We have been rotting in this hellish cycle since time immemorial. Now having achieved the human form of life we have a golden opportunity to become free from this material existence and enter into the wondrous spiritual existence far, far beyond the pinching confines of time and space. And our second business is to be compassionate upon those who are still entangled in this hellish material existence. We must fully dedicate ourselves to saving as many people as possible during the course of our lifetimes by enlightening them with this perfect science of Krishna consciousness. This sharing of the ultimate blessing with others who are lacking it is real love. It is powerful, illuminating, genuine compassion.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Sri Sri Radha Gopinath

the Deities of ISKCON Sydney


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Jesus is the Only Way

Dear Teacher!

One of my psychotherapy clients, a young man, is a sincere follower of Jesus Christ. He is deeply confused that I am not a Christian. He agrees that God is one, but he also insists that there must be only one path back to the home. In his opinion it is the Christian path.

He wonders now:
1) I could be kind of a demon.
2) The Christian literature he is reading is not right.
3) There is no truth at all in this world.

We are quite close and frankly speaking with each other, nevertheless I feel that our communication is beginning to disturb his mind. What should I do? What would be the best way here in serving Krishna and meeting my clients needs?

Hare Krishna!

I.R.

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Answer: Jesus' Way of Pure Bhakti is the Only Way

There is only path, the path of pure devotion to the Supreme Person. And since Christ was teaching pure love of God, we accept Christianity as a bona fide path.

One who is sincerely absorbed in pure devotion automatically recognizes all others who are sincerely absorbed in devotion. Therefore his perception that a sincere devotee of God such as yourself is a demon reveals his lack of proper spiritual vision.

His doubt about the correctness of the literature he is reading is a valid doubt. I am also doubtful about such sectarian, fanatical teachings.

You can inform him his fear about there being no truth in this world is unfounded. If we accept the idea that there is no truth in this world, we must accept that there is no truth to the idea that there is no truth. In other words because the non-existence of truth in impossible.

In order to present Krishna consciousness teachings in the role of being a psychiatrist you will need to present our teachings in a language which will connect in a meaningful way with the terminology being used by modern day psychiatrists without sounding like religious preaching. You need to expertly avoid disturbing his mind by presenting our teachings in such a way that is comprehensible and acceptable by him.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Monday 8 June 2009

from Govinda Valley, Australia
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Today's Thought:

How to Know that God is Pleased?

During our retreat in Govinda Valley, one of the attendees asked me, "How do we know that God is pleased?" The answer is very simple. We have to see if the spiritual master is pleased with us. Because the spiritual master has been trained by his spiritual master to know what pleases God and what displeases God he can pass that same training onto us. In this way by placing ourselves under the loving guidance of the bona fide spiritual master we can know precisely what to do and what not to do in order to please God. In this way our spiritual lives can be full glorious and successful. We are assured to go back to home, back to Godhead at the time of death.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Help the Poor?

I am extremely concerned about the poor all around. Although a few of us are privileged still we keep complaining about the shortcomings on our lives. The poor have no means to acquire the Vedic knowledge to get liberated. Should we leave them to their destiny as it is the outcome of their previous karmas and the Lord is accordingly making them undergo the sufferings? Please help me understand this and also forgive my ignorance on this basic question.

Best regards,

Santosh

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Answer: Everyone is Poor

The first thing is that we have to understand that everyone in the entire world is poor in spiritual realization. This is the greatest poverty of all. For the materially poor we should organize massive sankirtan parties to introduce them to the chanting of the holy names along with massive prasadam distribution to satisfy their hungry bellies.

Its not that the materially rich are any better off spiritually than the materially poor. In fact, usually because of their being blinded by their material wealth they are worse off spiritually than those who are materially poor.

If we sincerely engage whatever material wealth we have, whether it be meager or profuse, in the service of Krishna, the Lord being pleased by our sincerity will bestow more and more wealth upon us to engage it in his service. Indeed if we become spotlessly pure devotees, He will give us unlimited wealth to engage in His service. This is the real solution for all problems, economic and otherwise.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Sunday 7 June 2009

from Govinda Valley, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Relishing the Supreme Nectar

Here in Govinda Valley, Australia during the Benediction Moon Retreat we are blessed with the most wonderful opportunity to fully absorb ourselves for an entire weekend in doing nothing but hearing and chanting the glories of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. There is truly no sweeter nectar than this. Even Krishna, to increase His own happiness, becomes His own devotee in order to experience the supreme nectar of being fully absorbed in Krishna consciousness. In any condition of life one can cultivate Krishna consciousness. One can be rich or poor, famous or unknown, healthy or sick, young or old. It does not matter. Simply one has to absorb his consciousness fully in the glories of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In this way he will become fully happy regardless of his material circumstances.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Sharing the Bliss in Govinda Valley



Relishing the Nectar in Govinda Valley


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Marriage to a Non-Devotee

I have been married to the same women for over 25 years and hope to remain married for the next 25 years. The problem I have, however, is my desire to live a Krishna conscious life while my wife has no interest in such a life. How can this be resolved?

Faithfully,

Your student

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Answer: Gradually Make Her a Devotee

You have to fully open your heart to her and reveal both of your desires to her. In this way of honest loving dealings hopefully her heart will become softened and she will agree to facilitate your Krishna consciousness. If she truly loves you, she will agree to facilitate you in your practice of Krishna consciousness. If she is not willing to facilitate you, this means that she is simply using you for her own personal sense gratification. In this case, you will have to be staunch in your practice of Krishna consciousness ignoring whatever demands she may have for you to engage in material sense gratification and with great determination try to gradually bring her in Krishna consciousness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Saturday 6 June 2009

from ISKCON Sydney, Australia
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Today's Thought:

Benediction Moon Retreat

Friday 5 June 2009--Tonight we are heading out to beautiful Govinda Valley south of Sydney for a two day retreat to focus on the mercy of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. The retreat organizers have titled the retreat "Benediction Moon" and have asked me to come to be the speaker. I am accepting this as the greatest blessing to laser focus my consciousness on Lord Sri Krishna in His most merciful manifestation as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Rupa Goswami has so wonderfully gloried Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in the following prayer:

namo mahā-vadānyāya
kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāya te
kṛṣṇāya kṛṣṇa-caitanya-
nāmne gaura-tviṣe namaḥ


"O most munificent incarnation! You are Krishna Himself
appearing as Sri Krishna Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
You have assumed the golden color of Srimati Radharani,
and You are widely distributing pure love of Krishna.
We offer our respectful obeisances unto You."


Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Lord Caitanya, the Benediction Moon,

Causelessly Bestows His Mercy
Upon the Suffering Souls of this World


Aerial View of
Govinda Valley Retreat Center


Creek at Govinda Valley

Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How to Please a Guru?

Dear Sir,

Being a reader of these mails I feel that you are a selfless representative of Lord Krishna. I know that it is wrong to judge a devotee by my fallen intelligence. Neither I have the capacity to understand your selfless services to the society. Nor am I capable of judging a devotee's capabilities. Please let me know, how can I please a devotee and above all a guru who I understand is actually an external representative of Krishna. Please help me understand this, and also forgive my foolishness.

Regards

SG

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Answer: Develop Your Love for Krishna

The way to please the Lord's devotees and especially the spiritual master is to develop your love for Krishna. The spiritual master's only mission is to awaken the dormant love for Krishna in the hearts of all men. So if you will fully dedicate your life for awakening your dormant Krishna consciousness, the spiritual master will be most pleased with you.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Friday 5 June 2009

from the Hong Kong Airport
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Today's Thought:

Beautiful Moment at the Airport

In the Nectar of Devotion Srila Prabhupada describes Ekadasi as follows,

"In the Brahma-vaivarta Purana it is said that one who observes fasting on Ekadasi day is freed from all kinds of reactions to sinful activities and advances in pious life. The basic principle is not just to fast, but to increase one's faith and love for Govinda, or Krishna. The real reason for observing fasting on Ekadasi is to minimize the demands of the body and to engage our time in the service of the Lord by chanting or performing similar service. The best thing to do on fasting days is to remember the pastimes of Govinda and to hear His holy name constantly."

Ekadasi is observed by not taking any grains or beans and increasing our Krishna consciousness. It occurs twice in a month on the 11th day of the waning and waxing moon. Once a year there is a special Ekadasi known as Nirjala Ekadasi during which many devotees completely abstain from all eating and from even drinking water for 24 hours. This Nirjala Ekadasi is not required, but many devotees relish the opportunity to perform this extra austerity.

Our last day in Kuala Lumpur was Nirjala Ekadasi. So we observed it along with many of the Malaysian devotees. And it just so happened that the time for breaking the fast (sunrise on the day following Ekadasi) occurred just as we arrived at the airport for our departure to Sydney, Australia. It was a beautiful moment. The morning sun was rising over the mountains in the east. The devotees were chanting a Hare Krishna kirtan. And we all got to break our fast together taking some water and grains. After I took a final group photograph of these wonderful devotees, Mataji and I headed in to check-in and departed for my next lecture venue.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Ecstatic Send Off from Malaysia

4 June 2009


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Is Deity Worship Idol Worship?

Hare Krishna, Gurudeva,

Please accept my humble obeisances.

Thank you, Gurudeva, for your daily emails.

Many times people of other faith criticize us Hare Krishnas for worshiping idols. We explain to them that we don't worship idols but we worship Deity. Idol is concocted form whereas Deity is made according to the description of the Supreme Lord provided in the scripture.

I came across following passage from Holy Bible (Old Testament):

Of what value is an idol, since a man has carved it?
Or an image that teaches lies?
For he who makes it trusts in his own creation;
he makes idols that cannot speak.
Woe to him who says to wood, 'Come to life!'
Or to lifeless stone, 'Wake up!'
Can it give guidance?
It is covered with gold and silver;
there is no breath in it.
---------------------------

How should we explain better to other people that our Deity worship is bona fide.

Thank you.

Hare Krishna!

Your servant,

Santosh

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Answer: God Fully Manifests in the Authorized Deity Which is Worshipped with Love

If I put a facsimile of a mailbox in my front yard, it will not be authorized by the post office. I can mail letters in it as much as I want, but they will not go anywhere. But if I mail letters in a mail box authorized by the post office, they will go their destination, even if I live at a far distance from the post office.

An idol is an unauthorized "mail box", and a deity is an authorized "mail box." Even though the Lord is far away in His spiritual abode, He agrees to accept loving service and fully manifest His divine presence in the authorized deity form which is worshipped with love. The Bible condemns idol worship, just the Vedas condemn idol worship. The compilers of the Bible were not aware of the legitimacy of authorized deity worship, otherwise they would have recommended it in the Bible.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Thursday 4 June 2009

from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
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Today's Thought:

Sweet Memories of Malaysia

We knew that our visit to Malaysia for spreading the rays of Lord Caitanya's benediction moon was going to be ecstatic. But we had no idea how ecstatic it would be. What we experienced exceeded our expectations by a long shot. What made the difference? It was the wonderful loving exchanges that we had with so many devotees. It is sometimes said that love makes the world go around, and we see in spiritual life that this is especially true. The more we have loving exchanges with the Lord's devotees, the more our hearts swim in an ocean of transcendental bliss, and the more we automatically make progress towards the ultimate destination of returning to our original home in the spiritual sky.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Sharing the Mercy of Krishna Consciousness

in Malaysia--1 June 2009


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Do We Have Material Duties?

I am confused by the apparent contradiction between these two quotes from the Bhagavad-gita As It Is:

"We have to practice remembering the Lord always, twenty-four hours a day, by chanting His names and molding our life's activities in such a way that we can remember Him always. How is this possible? The acaryas give the following example. If a married woman is attached to another man, or if a man has an attachment for a woman other than his wife, then the attachment is to be considered very strong. One with such an attachment is always thinking of the loved one. The wife who is thinking of her lover is always thinking of meeting him, even while she is carrying out her household chores. In fact, she carries out her household work even more carefully so her husband will not suspect her attachment. Similarly, we should always remember the supreme lover, Sri Krishna, and at the same time perform our material duties very nicely."
--from Bhagavad-gita Introduction

"Anyone who has taken shelter of the lotus feet of Mukunda, the giver of liberation, giving up all kinds of obligation, and has taken to the path in all seriousness, owes neither duties nor obligations to the demigods, sages, general living entities, family members, humankind or forefathers." Such obligations are automatically fulfilled by performance of devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead."
--from Bhagavad-gita Chapter One

In the first quote it is stated that we should perform our duties more nicely and remember Lord Krishna. And in the second quote it is stated that one does not owe any duties and material obligations to anyone, that all duties are fulfilled by one's performance of devotional service to the Supreme Personality. I am confused by the apparent contradiction, and I therefore request you to please give some clarification.

Thank you.

Hare Krishna!

Jaishree G

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Answer: All Duties Should Be Merged into Our One Duty

If we perform our material duties nicely so that others are not disturbed with us, we will have better facility to peacefully absorb our minds in Krishna consciousness. The material duties are not performed for their own sake. Rather they are performed in such a way to facilitate our Krishna consciousness.

For example, if someone neglects his duties at his job, he will lose his job and become disturbed how to pay for his living expenses. But if he expertly executes his duties at work, he will keep a steady flow of income and can focus his mind peacefully on developing his Krishna consciousness.

In short, there is only one duty, to surrender to Krishna. All other so-called duties are merged into this one duty.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Wednesday 3 June 2009

from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
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Today's Thought:

Always Be in a Service Mood

The key to always being happy is to always be in a service mood. Our tendency in this material world is to try to be happy by being in an enjoying mood. But this approach does not work. This is why so many people are unhappy throughout the world. As long as we try to enjoy in this way sometimes we will be happy and sometimes we will be miserable. But if we can master the art of being happy by always being in a service mood, we will always remain happy in all circumstances. To fully embrace the service mood we must find someone to serve who will never exploit us or take advantage of us. That person is Krishna or God. So the perfection of our existence is to fully absorb ourselves in service to Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the source of everything. Just as when we water the root of a tree and all the leaves and branches are nourished, when we give loving service to the Supreme Lord, our loving service is automatically distributed to all living beings and we taste unlimited happiness at every minute.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari



Proving that God Has Form

at the Hari Das Giri Seva Samajam Ashram
Shah Alam, Malaysia 1 June 2009






Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Are Peace of Mind and Happiness the Same?

I am not clear about a thing. In Krishna Consciousness are happiness and peace of mind the same thing? Or are they different?

Thanks and regards,

Sunil

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Answer: Similar But Different

They are almost the same, but they are slightly different as explained in the Bhagavad-gita:

nāsti buddhir ayuktasya
na cāyuktasya bhāvanā
na cābhāvayataḥ śāntir
aśāntasya kutaḥ sukham


"One who is not connected with the Supreme [in Krishna consciousness]
can have neither transcendental intelligence nor a steady mind,
without which there is no possibility of peace.
And how can there be any happiness without peace?"

--Bhagavad-gita 2.66


In other words, a peaceful state of mind is a prerequisite of happiness. It is required that one have a peaceful mind in order to be happy.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Tuesday 2 June 2009

from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
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Today's Thought:

Beginning of Deathlessness

On the evening of 31 May 2009, in the ISKCON Klang, Malaysia temple room, which was packed full with guests, I initiated two new disciples: Sanat Kumar das and Sacisuta das. Initiation is the most auspicious event because it is at the time of initiation that the devotee enters into deathlessness or immortality. Of course, this requires that he strictly follows his initiation vows for his entire life. He must chant at least 16 rounds daily of the Hare Krishna mahamantra and he must strictly avoid illicit sex life, intoxication, meat eating, and gambling. It is truly wonderful to see sincere souls making a solemn vow before the deities and the spiritual master to stick solidly to the pathway of Krishna consciousness for their entire lives. May they be blessed with all success on their pathway back to home, back to Godhead.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Initiation of Sanat Kumar Das (left)

and Sacisuta Das (right)
on 31 May in Klang, Malaysia


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Balancing Spirit and Matter

Please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

I'm studying engineering, and it's okay. But at the same time it's difficult, because I am associating with materialistically minded people, even though I try to associate with them only insomuch as is necessary. The difficulty is that I'm exposed to so many materialistic ideas. How can I balance my spiritual practices in Krishna consciousness with my material duties?

Thank you and I hope your traveling and preaching is going nicely.

Ignacio

Chile

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Answer: Sixteen Rounds of Japa Before Sunrise

The balance formula is to chant 16 quality rounds every day before sunrise and to strictly follow the regulative principles. If you do these things, you will be fixed in Krishna consciousness in spite of your mundane association.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Monday 1 June May 2009

from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
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Today's Thought:

Unlocking the Secrets of the Universe

31 May 2009--Today I gave a presentation at Malaya University in Kuala Lumpur entitled "The Anti-material Particle--Unlocking the Secrets of the Universe." In it I explained that what the material scientists have yet to discover has been fully known and realized by the Vedic scientists beginning with Lord Brahma from the very beginning days of the universe 155 trillion years ago. From this we can conclude that there is no need to start from scratch in trying to discover what has already been discovered. If we will simply take of advantage of the scientific discoveries of Lord Brahma and carefully perform the same scientific experiment which he performed, we too can personally unlock the secrets of the universe and come face to face, eye to eye with the supreme person, the source of all existence, Lord Sri Krishna.


Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Universal Secrets Revealed at Malaya University



Eager Hearers Drink Up the Nectar


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: What is the Spiritual World Like?

Dear Srila Gurudeva.

Please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to Sri Sri Guru and Gauranga.

I would like to inquire about the spiritual world. Please, your Grace, just in few words explain how it is. Is the spiritual world like here but everything is spiritual? Please guide this fallen soul. I would also like to express how happy I am to have finally met with you Your Grace and Mataji. I am still strike with wonder what did I do to deserve your association just for one minute. Gurudeva, please instruct me. Tell me how I must serve you.

Thank you very much again.

Your student,

Michael

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Answer: Everything Wonderful With Nothing Bad

If it you take all the good, beautiful, and wonderful things of this world and you subtract everything that is bad about this world, you will get some idea of what it is like in the spiritual world.

My best advise to you on how you can best serve me is that you should chant 16 quality rounds of Hare Krishna japa every day and strictly follow our regulative principles as taught in the books of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. You should also participate in a wonderful loving, co-operative way with the other members of the Krishna consciousness movement in your area. By this association you will get more strength in your spiritual practice. Try to every day increase your Krishna consciousness more and more. In this way soon your heart will be so full of Krishna consciousness that gradually there will no room left for any material desires.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


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