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Looking back

(Kadamba Kanana Swami, 27 June 2015, New York, USA, Bhagavad-gita 9.33)

When I was a kid, I was quite wild. One of my favourite games was to take a ball, throw it onto the roof of the house then climb up the drainpipe, grab the ball, come back down and throw it onto the roof again and climb up again… and I could do this for hours. I mean as a kid, you have too much energy and you do not know what to do with it all, so I found a way. Then, at that time, we had a maid and well, she did not like the game so much. So one day, she grabbed me and she grabbed by my ear and she squeezed it really hard between two fingers and turned it around at the same time, and I still remember it very well! Somehow or other, I pulled out of her grip and when I was free, I stood before her very calm and I said, “You wait until I grow up,” and she got it. I was serious, I thought, “Okay, you wait till I grow up,”  and I was ready to grow up.

But when I grew up, I saw everything from a different perspective. I could appreciate that I was actually doing a dangerous thing and that she was concerned that I would fall from the roof which is fair enough. Of course, still it was a bit mean, rather than twist my ear that way, she could have sat me down and explained it to me nicely; that might have worked better. She could have given some descriptions of squashed tomatoes and kids that have sort of fallen off roofs and being taken away in an ambulance and so on… that might have impressed me! So I was still not in favour of her tactics but then again, I look it now in a different way and I now, I see that her intentions were actually benevolent.

 

Categories: Personal Blogs

Lokanatha Swami On Chanting

Japa Group - Sat, 2015-08-22 18:41
Lokanatha Swami gives a very insightful lecture about chanting and how it impacts on the mind. Email subscribers please click the big blue link above to see the video.
Categories: Personal Blogs

Sweet challenges

(Kadamba Kanana Swami, 26 June 2015, Gita Nagari, USA, Srimad Bhagavatam 3.25.8)

Srila Kavi Karnapura, in his Caitanya Candrodaya Nataka, explains how there are two types of devotional service which are: devotional service with nectar and devotional service without nectar. Many get involved in the latter, in devotional service without nectar. But devotional service is not meant for that, it is meant for svādu svādu pade pade (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.1.19); it is meant for relishing at every step. So this is our challenge and the spiritual master is challenging the disciple.

One thing I learned from Tamal Krsna Maharaj, is that the duty of the spiritual master is to give the disciple a vision of what he can do with his life which is greater than what he would have thought of by himself! We see that Prabhupada did it. We see that Prabhupada would just literally blow the minds of his disciples by having ideas that were like much greater than they ever had.

Prabhupada generated that spirit by his purity, by his dedication, by his learning and by coming down to the level of people. Prabhupada did not, although he was also in his presence worshiped on great vyasasans and so on, Prabhupada did not stay on that platform. Prabhupada came down and lived with people, lived with hippies on the Lower East Side, stayed with them and gave so much personal attention so that people began to feel indebted. That is the only thing a spiritual master can do!

If it was so easy, just give some transcendental knowledge and the job is done, people will say, “Yeah, very nice.” But then how will they give their life? So Prabhupada pushed. He pushed. Prabhupada was very demanding. He would push devotees, push them to do things that were very difficult. Great struggle! Prabhupada wanted all these impossible tasks and because he was the spiritual master of the entire movement at that time, the whole movement just had to do what he said. His word was absolute for all.

Now, you know, it is different. Now we have so many spiritual masters and now in some temples, especially bigger temples more than one guru visits and each time, there are different people who come. When there is a certain guru coming, some people come out of the woodwork, otherwise, you do not see them so much. But when the guru is there, they all come and are around him.

When the next guru comes, again a whole new assembly is there. Otherwise, usually there are more deities than devotees in the temple. Maybe that is a little cynical from my side to say that but you know, you get the idea…

So, in that way, nowadays it is easier to sort of escape. There is more leeway for the mind to take advantage and to avoid the order on the head, that order of the spiritual master which is meant to be the jewel on the head, the jewel that the devotee carries on his head. The chudamani is the order of the spiritual master and whatever he wants, that we must do!

Categories: Personal Blogs

Must Come To The Understanding

Japa Group - Fri, 2015-08-21 21:53
"One must come to the understanding that the Holy name of the Lord and the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself are identical. One cannot reach this conclusion unless one is offenseless in chanting the Holy name."

Chaitanya Caritamrta Adi Lila 8.16
Categories: Personal Blogs

UK Students Get Immersive Experience on Senagetaway

With the help of a European Union grant for building youth relations, about 175 European youth received an immersive experience of Krishna consciousness on the Senagataway retreat at ISKCON’s beautiful Radhadesh community in Belgium from August 1st to 10th. The event was organized by the Pandava Sena, a UK-based youth organization.

ISKCON Birmingham Host 8hr Kirtan in Honor of 50th Anniversary Celebrations

Taking place just days after the formal inauguration of ISKCON's 50th anniversary celebrations in Kolkata, the eight hour kirtan event brought together top kirtaneers from all over country, which really embodied the spirit of a whole UK yatra.

Lord of The Universe And His Day Out

In today’s  ‘motor car civilization’, one of the most profound thing to ask would be, ‘who owns the world’s biggest and the most exotic car?’ To get an answer to this question, you would have to go to the Eastern part of India, to Jagannath Puri.

Please Join The Japa Group

Japa Group - Thu, 2015-08-20 20:01
Please share your realisations with other devotees from around the world...simply send me an introduction email and I will be happy to make you a member:

rasa108 ::_::{.at.}::_:: gmail dot com

ys

Rasa Rasika dasa
Categories: Personal Blogs

Whatever Happens, Don’t Stop Chanting

Giriraja Swami - Thu, 2015-08-20 17:29

At her initiation ceremony yesterday, Rose Forkash received the name Rajani-priya dasi. Rajani is a name of Durga, an expansion of Srimati Radharani, who is the divine, universal mother. Rajani was also the name of Srila Prabhupada’s mother. Priya means “dear” or “dear to,” and dasi means “servant” or “servant of.”

During the ceremony, Rtadhvaja Swami, Niranjana Swami, and especially Indradyumna Swami encouraged Rajani-priya via Skype with words of appreciation, affection, and instruction.

Rajani-priya has deep attachment to the holy name, and even now, at almost ninety-five years of age, she continues to induce people from all different backgrounds and walks of life to chant and read Srila Prabhupada’s books.

As Srila Prabhupada wrote to Rose in 1977, “If the parents of our devotees study the philosophy of Krishna consciousness, there is not doubt they will benefit equally as their children.”

Rajani-priya’s daughter, Lila-sakti dasi, who was initiated by Srila Prabhupada forty-five years ago, left her body in late June. Just days before her departure, Lila told her mother, “Whatever happens, don’t stop chanting Hare Krishna.” The accompanying photo shows Rajani-priya holding Lila-sakti’s image shortly after her initiation. “I wish Lila could have been here,” Rajani said. “She would have been so proud and happy.”

Hare Krishna.

—Giriraj Swami

 

Categories: Personal Blogs

Rajani-Priya Dasi’s Initiation, August 19, Carpinteria, California

Giriraja Swami - Thu, 2015-08-20 15:55

Rose Forkash was initiated by Giriraj Swami and given the name Rajani-priya dasi at 94 years of age.

“I was looking at you and Sam looking at each other so lovingly, and I asked, ‘You have been together for sixty-five years and you are so full of love. What is the secret to that kind of marriage?’ You and Sam looked each other in the eyes and almost simultaneously replied, ‘Respect.’ You respected each other so much. And you respect every one of us. You respect everyone you come in contact with—like those homeless people you inspired to take up chanting. Unconsciously or consciously you see the spirit soul within all of us, and you don’t judge people by the outside. You find that love in our hearts and you connect with us.”

—Urvasi dasi

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Kirtan by Giriraj Swami
Initiation talks

Categories: Personal Blogs

Double-edged Sword

Srila Prabhupada repeatedly stressed that real education is character development. His name reminds us of the balance we have to strike – “Bhaktivedanta: knowledge with devotion.”

Vote of Thanks by Radhanath Swami at 50th Anniversary of Srila Prabhupada's Jaladuta Yatra

Vote of Thanks by Radhanath Swami at 50th Anniversary of Srila Prabhupada's Jaladuta Yatra at Netaji Indoor Stadium on Day 1 Afternoon Session on 13th August 2015.

Musical Symphony by Eklavya Das at 50th Anniversary on Song Yadi Prabhupada Na Hoito

Musical Symphony by Eklavya Das on Song Yadi Prabhupada Na Hoito at Srila Prabhupada's 50th Jaldutta Anniversary Journey to USA at Netaji Indoor Stadium Kolkata on Day 1 Afternoon Session on 13th August 2015.

Indian Politician Kiran Bedi Praising Srila Prabhupada's Journey to USA

Kiran Bedi Praising Srila Prabhupada's 50th Jaldutta Anniversary Journey to USA on Day 1 Afternoon Session on 13th August 2015.

Who Knows the Way to Happiness: Positive Psychology or Bhakti Yoga?

 Positive Psychologists are perhaps the first group of scientists willing to hold out an open space for God-related-ideas.

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