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Retreating into the Heart of the Holy Name



Eight day japa retreat focused on
living, breathing vital Krishna consciousness,
expanding on the “basics”
by looking at them in deeper ways.

Some said that they
couldn’t be paid to attend
revealing (sadly) their lack of taste
negative projection, dejection, resignation.

This demonstrates the necessity to revisit
rethink, reexperience, revitalize our relationship
to the Holy Name, seeing it as the Divine Couple
full of mercy and delightful, uplifting taste.

So much more than “only japa” as we joined
prayerfully together in service mood
for essential spiritual practices
to revitalize our consciousness.
Hearing from the Sadhus
A loose agreed upon hierarchy
the sadhus and facilitators lead
yet everyone felt supported/honored—
equality, humility, joy before God.

No trips, ego demonstrations
irrelevant dramas, mundane competition
only shared purpose, with support
in our shortcomings, yet ever hopeful.

Reciprocal dealings between all—
participants’ intensity and eagerness
buildings' good energy, bringing out sadhus’
realizations, experience and feeling.
Dancing and blissful chanting
Ecstatic, uplifting, heartfelt kirtana,
focused japa by remembering that
the Lord, his name are one
before incredibly beautiful Deities.

Nothing else but spiritual observances
each day praying to go deeper
gaining more methods to invoke
our full participation and heart attention.

At every step we filled our cup
in remembering and glorifying
the Divine Couple’s name, form and lila
creating community without pretense.
The beautiful Lords

Combined comments from old site

10/09/2010 - 18:48
In a nutshell

I feel a little bad because while the title of this free verse poem accurately describes my feelings during and after the retreat I really didn't elaborate in great detail. This is just like a small outline of my experience which I hope to unravel in the weeks ahead. As I have many things going on at the moment, I wanted to give a tiny taste or an outline of my experience while I had a small window of time. I couldn't help myself to at least write some small offering. My blog on and other sites is my holy service to you, the devotees and spiritual seekers, with the hope that by sharing my spiritual life I may be empowered to give hope and encouragement.

Certainly our two "sadhus" or holy persons at the retreat, Their Holinesses Sacinandana and Giriraja Swami, provided great inspiration for me by their presence, deep spirituality and wise words. Though I can't compare myself to them, never the less--as I have often shared in the years of my blog--I have high aspirations, which I would imagine many devotees share. As I mentioned, I aspire to help, encourage and uplift others by my words and actions. If I can be pure in my life and sincere in my aspirations I know the Lord will help me--as he always has for my desires for service. As it is said in the great Vaishnava scripture, Chaitanya Charitamrita: "By remembering the lotus feet of the Panca-tattva (Lord Chaitanya and his associates), a dumb man can become a poet, a lame man can cross mountains, and a blind man can see the stars in the sky" Cc Adi 8.5

Thanks for reading and for your thoughts and questions. I hope I have the opportunity to be with you again soon.

Your friend in Krishna,



10/18/2010 - 19:40
most grateful

i regularly follow and read your blog postings, for i find them inspiring and encouraging. your sincerity makes it easier for novices like myself to continue, despite the doubts that so often accompanies us. i hope you will always share your thoughts and realizations, and know that we are grateful for the Lord's mercy, through your service. Harebol!



10/19/2010 - 11:05

Very kind of you to stop by and share your comment. Part of association with devotees is to become appreciators of one another--not in a phony, forced way, but to sincerely be a good quality finder or a bee rather then a fly. Material conditioning means to be a fly and have envy toward others. We, as aspiring Vaishnava, want to be like the bee, finding only nectar, or the swan who is said to be able to extract the milk from a mixture of milk and water. Shrila Bhaktivinode Thakur has encouraged us to be "essence seekers" or those who understand the most essential part of any activity and focus on that. Krishna is very merciful to his devotees and takes the essence of their attitude.

Here are two quotes from Prabhupada's commentary on the Shrimad Bhagavatam, which explain these points:

"The Lord, being bhakta-vatsala, compassionate upon His devotees, accepts these offerings. Atheists may think that the devotees are engaged in idol worship, but the fact is different. Janardana, the Supreme Lord, accepts bhava, the attitude of service. The neophyte devotee engaged in the worship of the Lord may not understand the value of such worship, but the Supreme Lord, being bhakta-vatsala, accepts His devotee and in due course of time takes him home." SP pp to SB 4.30.28

"If a devotee sincerely surrenders, the Lord, as the Supersoul in everyone's heart, immediately understands this. Thus even though, externally, a devotee may not render full service, if he is internally sincere and serious the Lord welcomes his service nonetheless. Thus the Lord is known as bhava-grahi janardana because He takes the essence of one's devotional mentality." SP pp to SB 8.23.2

It is good to hear from you. I have been wondering how you were!

May you realize your most cherished ideal!

Your friend in Krishna,


10/09/2010 - 11:21