Thursday, December 31, 2009

Flower outfit darshan of Sri Sri Radha- Madhava

By Shyamagopika dd on Thu, 2009-12-31 16:55.
On the occasion of Sri Krishna Pusya abhisheka, Sri Sri Radha-Madhava were offered flower outfits. Preparations for making the outfit began a few days ago. During the past one week, under the dedicated planning, organizing and designing of HG Ramadevi mataji, the clothes designing, stitching of outfits, making butterflies and satin ribbons were done. Working on the outfit with the flowers began at 4 p.m. on 30th & continued till the morning. Mayapur community devotees, children along with students of Bhakti Shastri, Bhakti Vaibhava and Mayapur Academy engaged themselves in the service to Sri Sri Radha-Madhava. Enthusiasm of devotees increased when Yamuna mataji, Dinatarini mataji visited the sewing room in the evening.

Yamuna mataji worked on the flower outfit of Small Srimati Radharani. Stuti mataji artistically decorated the altar with colorful flowers, bouquets and lights. In the evening, a spectacular flower abhisheka will take place after Sandhya Arti. Please take darshan of flower abhisheka live at

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Year Resolutions

(This has been excerpted from a lecture given by H.H.Radhanath Maharaj in 2004.)

Traditionally throughout the ages amongst thoughtful people, the New Year coming is a time of reflection- what have I done during the past year, what have I achieved, what are my strengths and weaknesses and where am I today and in the coming year what do I wish to do?. The Bhagvatam declares that with every rising and setting of the sun, a person is one day closer to death, except those who take pleasure in hearing and chanting the Glories of the Lord. For them with every rising and setting of the sun they are one day closer to eternal life.

In the 11th chapter of the Bhagavad-Gita Krishna says, “Time I am, controlling everything within material nature, devouring ultimately all living beings.” Time is so important, so sacred; it is the manifestation of God Himself within material existence. And how we utilise our time will determine the value of our lives.

Srila Prabhupada quotes that a miserly person is one who attains this human life and dies without realising God, dies like the animals. Human life is the junction in which we actually can make the choice and perfect our existence, realise the true identity of the self and the unlimited treasure of happiness that we are meant to experience in relation to God. What is the nature of all the acquisitions we may achieve in this world? It is like a drop of water on the leaf of a lotus flower. It is there for a moment and then it slips away into oblivion. That is the nature of our wealth, body, our prestige, all of our abilities, all of our friends and family members. All of these connections and these relationships are extinguished by the power of time. But Mayadevi makes us think that we can be happy through temporary material enjoyment. And we put so much of our life's energies pursuing the mirages created by maya.

New Year's is the time of resolution, a time to introspectively question what do I really want in life - to take serious resolutions in our life to be determined to give up our bad habits, to really make an effort to overcome our weaknesses, to increase our enthusiasm to do the right thing, to be honest, to be truthful and to be compassionate and kind to others, to offer all respects and to be humble. Actually if we take one resolution, we can achieve life's perfection, “to strive to be humble like the grass, to be tolerant like the tree, to offer all respects to others and expect none in return”. There are three essential principles on this path of perfection. To
worship the lord in his avatar in the age of kali is by chanting His holy names,

“Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare,
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare”

serving the Vaishnavas sincerely from our hearts and being a compassionate well wisher of all living beings. And whatever is separating us from following these three principles that we should try to resolve to overcome. Let us pray to follow that path that will help us to always remember the Lord and never forget Him. If we pray sincerely for these things, Krishna will hear our prayers and will give us all help.


“ The secret of surrendering to Krishna is that such surrendered devotee sees that everything is part of Krishna's plan. Let me become absorbed in such service, never mind what it is. Let all other considerations be forgotten and only my desire to do the thing best for Krishna's pleasure is my motive.”                               Srila Prabhupada

Friday, December 18, 2009

Nectarean Advice Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura

Nectarean Advice

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati ThakuraSrila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura
(1) Obtaining the shelter of the lotus feet of a genuine guru is, without a doubt, a matter of both great fortune and great dilemma for the baddha-jiva (conditioned soul). If, however, a fortunate soul has a sincere longing and ardency to attain a true guru, he does so by the mercy of Sri Krishna.
(2) The baddha-jiva is extremely insignificant; it is impossible for him to realise the magnitude of Sri Guru.
(3) One who, birth after birth has accumulated bhaktiunmukhi-sukriti, or spiritual merits leading to bhakti, will, in one birth, come face to face with the devotee of Sri Krishna, Sri Guru, by Sri Krishna’s mercy. By the mercy of that krishna-bhakta (devotee of Krishna, Sri Gurudeva) one hears krishna-katha (topics of Krishna) from his mouth and gradually experiences the appearance of devotion in one’s heart. By the light of the sun, one sees the sun. Similarly, in the light of the sadhu’s mercy one can comprehend the sadhu’s svarupa (eternal nature), and an acute hankering awakens to engage in hari-bhajana (worship of Krishna) in the shelter of his lotus feet.
(4) The sadhu (saintly personality, Sri Guru) mercifully gives mantra initiation (diksha) and instructions (siksha) in the path of hari-bhajana to that sincere and surrendered person.
(5) As a result of accepting the shelter of a sadhu’s lotus feet, a person performs hari-bhajana, and as he gradually becomes free from anarthas (unwanted impressions in the heart), he becomes cognizant of the nature of the transcendental reality.
(6) Only a sadhu who knows the imports of all sastras (scriptures), who is devoted to Bhagavan and who is intent on bhajana, is a genuine guru. Those who speak in order to appease the fancies of the baddha-jiva’s mind and thus try to attract it are not worthy of the title guru; rather they are the jiva’s enemies. Never associate with them no matter how fond of their charming words you may be.
(7) Know that the entirety of instructions given by the karmis (material enjoyers), jnanis (impersonalist speculators), yogis and pseudo bhaktas to the jiva so he can obtain his own pleasure contain no message of eternal, supreme auspiciousness. The association of such persons is always to be rejected, no matter how enjoyable it is.
(8) One cannot understand that the association of nondevotees brings utter inauspiciousness until, as a matter of fortune one achieves the pure devotee’s mercy, which results from Sri Krishna’s grace.
(9) The words of pure devotees are contrary to our sense gratification. No matter how pitiless and harsh their words may seem if we can sincerely submit to them with our body, mind and words, our eternal welfare is assured.
(10) Maha-bhagavata Vaishnavas (exalted devotees of Sri Krishna) are the eternal, dear associates of Gaura-Krishna (Lord Chaitanya and Lord Krishna). If a soul has not accumulated an unlimited amount of bhaktiunmukhi-sukriti, the association and shelter of such Vaishnavas does not come within the scope of his fortune.
(11) Merely maintaining the arrogance that one has received the mercy of pure devotees does not actually award that mercy or the position of being their disciple.
(12) A genuine disciple is just as rare as a genuine guru.
(13) Sri Bhagavan, as antaryami, resides in the hearts of all. Since pure devotees are the antaryami of even Bhagavan, they can serve Him according to His internal desires and thus please Him. Thus they are known as bhagavat-preshtha. Even after becoming the genuine disciple of such a person, one must understand the inner desire of Sri Gurudeva and serve him accordingly.
(14) One cannot charm Sri Gurudeva with a display of external emotions, gestures and formalities. If one becomes a disciple without sincerely surrendering oneself at Sri Gurudeva’s lotus feet, it is like trying to cheat a blacksmith regarding iron, and one is bound to be cheated of his own welfare.
(15) Only at the time of Sri Gurudeva’s disappearance can one recognise the actual identity of his disciples. One can then understand who has approached Sri Guru with what intention.
(16) Even after taking shelter of a sad-guru’s lotus feet, some disciples secretly strive to occupy the seat of Sri Gurudeva at the time of his disappearance. Their acceptance of the shelter of Sri Guru’s feet was merely deceit. They are, in fact, hostile and inimical to guru.
(17) Moreover, some disciples try to misappropriate the opulence and paraphernalia intended for the service of Sri Guru-Gauranga. This is not understood while Sri Gurudeva is still present, but after he has disappeared from this world, it assumes a terrible form. Know these disciples to be hypocrites, enjoyers and offenders.
(18) Even at the time of Sri Gurudeva’s manifest presence, some try to control their godbrothers instead of regarding them as worshipable. Thus, they become severe offenders of the Vaishnavas.v
(19) Those who have been appointed to the position of temple-manager, but who do not serve in mutual cooperation with others and are reluctant to give due respect to their godbrothers, are sense enjoyers, that is, enjoyers of the temple. Instead of serving Bhagavan they are greedy to enjoy His property. They are a disgrace to the title “disciple”.
(20) Many, who are disciples in name only, even try to destroy the institution when Sri Gurudeva disappears because the honor they receive decreases at that time. These people are most inimical to guru and most certainly condemned to hell.
(21) Those disciples who deviate and engage in numerous acts of malice against Sri Guru when he disappears were undoubtedly hidden deceivers at the time of his manifest presence.
(22) Those in the stage of sadhana, who are not careful about obeying Sri Guru and avoiding offenses to Vaishnavas, fall down even though they may have reached an elevated level.
(23) Those who take shelter at the lotus feet of a sadguru with a desire to do hari-bhajana should simple-heartedly follow Sri Gurudeva’s instructions with their body, mind and words. If they fail to drive extraneous desires from their hearts, the prohibited endeavours for karma and jnana will present numerous deterrents to remaining on the path of suddha-bhakti.
(24) If the disciple’s heart is not clean, Sri Guru’s heart does not reflect in it. Only out of immense fortune does the moon of bhakti that exists in the heart of Sri Gurudeva, maha-bhagavata, manifest within the heart of the disciple.
(25) A simple-hearted disciple, who desires his true benefit, practically never meets a bad end.
(26) A disciple surrendered at the lotus feet of a sad-guru should always keep in mind the teachings from “Sri Rupa-siksha” in Sri Caitanya-caritamrita. In this way he should serve Sri Guru without duplicity, and with utmost caution he should cultivate the limbs of sravana and kirtana of sri hari-katha.
(27) If the sadhaka’s life lacks simplicity and caution, he will achieve the opposite of his cherished ideal.
(28) Among all the jivas who are wandering throughout the universe, one who has accrued spiritual merit over many lifetimes obtains the seed of the creeper of bhakti, or sraddha. This takes place when the jiva, by Krishna’s mercy, is favoured by His dear associates. Endowed with that sraddha, the disciple as a gardener, plants that seed in his heart. He waters it by hearing and chanting the instructions flowing from the mouth of Sri Gurudeva. Thus by these activities, the creeper sprouts and gradually climbs to the lotus feet of Sri Krishna.
(29) That creeper of bhakti passes beyond this universe, and beyond the Viraja River, Brahma-loka and Paravyoma, the spiritual sky, and goes to Goloka Vrindavana where it climbs the kalpa-vriksha (wish-fulfilling tree) of Sri Krishna’s lotus feet. The gardener, still in this world, continues to irrigate the creeper with the water of sravana and kirtana and thus welcomes the fortune of tasting the fruit of prema.
(30) If, in the stage of sadhana (spiritual practice in this world), innumerable weeds, such as the desire for enjoyment, liberation, material gain, worship and fame grow, as well as the tendency to engage in prohibited behaviour – cheating, violence, and so forth – then the main plant cannot grow. At the time of watering it, the practitioner will first cautiously cut the weeds so that they don’t grow.
(31) One fault can arise that is most detrimental to the practitioner. It is known as vaishnava-aparadha (offenses to devotees of Krishna) and it can either uproot or cut the creeper of devotion like a mad elephant uproots a plant. As a result, the creeper of devotion immediately dries up. Therefore, the practioner is to remain diligent to ensure this does not happen. If gurva-avajna (disobeying guru) and vaishnava-aparadha occur, all one’s progress in Krishna consciousness is destroyed.
(32) I have instructed those who have taken shelter of me to always remain cautious in this regard. I have tried to the best of my ability to repeat the instructions of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, His associates and our Sri Guru-varga. Nevertheless, those who remain inattentive and consequently not cautious about committing offenses to great personalities or about uprooting the weeds cannot be helped. After I leave this body, none of you (my followers) should commit offenses and thus act to cause even slight damage to the institution. If all of you cannot cooperate to perform hari-bhajana together according to my instructions, it is better that you either enter household life or move to a place of pilgrimage and perform hari-bhajana.
Excerpt from Sri Upadesamrta by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura

Sastra about cow protection

namo brahmanya-devaya go-brahmana-hitaya ca
 jagad-dhitayakrishnaya govindaya namo namah

“My Lord, You are the well-wisher of the cows and the brahmanas, and You are the well-wisher of the entire human society and the world.” (Vishnu Purana 1.19.65)

Five thousand years ago, the Supreme Personality of Godhead appeared to perform many pastimes here on earth. He spent much of His youth herding the calves and cows of Vrindavan. About 4,500 years later, Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu appeared in Mayapur Dham. Since He was Krsna Himself in the mood of Radharani, His greatest devotee, He was especially merciful to all living entities, and also had deep love for the cows. The following verses are from Chaitanya-charitamrita (Madhya 17.194-196):
“When Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu passed through Vrindavan, herds of grazing cows saw Him and immediately surrounding Him, began to moo very loudly. Seeing the herds approach Him, The Lord was stunned with ecstatic love. The cows began to lick His body out of great affection. Becoming pacified, Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu began to caress the cows, and the cows, being unable to give up His company, went with Him.”

Lord Chaitanya, being Krishna Himself, told an astrologer:
“In My last birth, I was born in the family of cowherd men, and I gave protection to the calves and cows. Because of such pious activities, I have now become the son of a brahmana.” (C.C.Madhya 17.111)
Lord Chaitanya was referring to His appearance of Krishna in Vrindavan and, playing the part of a jiva soul, spoke of how association and service with the cows can only enhance one’s material and spiritual life.
One may ask, “What exactly is so important about the cow?” Here are some scriptural quotes that can illustrate her glories:
  • In the Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.21.18, Govardhan Hill is glorified as the best devotee because of supplying water, soft grass, caves, fruits, flowers, and vegetables to Krsna, Balarama, the cowherd boys, and the cows.
  • In the Srimad-Bhagavatam 3.16.10, Krsna Himself states, “The brahmanas, the cows, and the defenseless creatures are My own body.”

All throughout the Vedic literature, it is mentioned how dear brahminical culture and cows are to Krsna, and how important they are in human civilization.
“Lord Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the prime protector of brahminical culture and the cow. Without respecting these two, one cannot realize the science of God, and without this knowledge, welfare activities or humanitarian propaganda cannot be successful.” (SB 4.21.38)

It is said that cows and brahmanas belong to the same family. They are both in the mode of goodness. The brahmanas are qualified to chant Vedic mantras, and the cows supply the ingredients for sacrifices. Parasurama said in the Gomati-vidya from Vishnu-dharmottara:
“Only by the combination of brahmanas and the cows, is the performance of sacrifice for the pleasure of Visnu complete.”
In fact, Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.8.21 indicates that human prosperity depends on two items: brahminical culture and cow protection. Lord Krishna in never satisfied where these are lacking.
In the Brihat Parasara-smriti, it is written:
“Simply by eating grass, the cows give us milk. From milk, ghee is produced by which demigods become satisfied. So how can one neglect the cow ? Simply by her association, a person becomes purified. By serving her, one achieves unlimited wealth, and by donating cows, one can transfer himself to heaven. There is no wealth superior to the cow. All the demigods reside in different parts of her body. By serving the cow with devotion, Lord Hari becomes pleased. Her milk nourishes human beings. How can such a cow not be worshipable.”
Actually, the cow is one of the seven mothers, for she nourishes us with her milk, the miracle of aggregate food values, and other milk products. Many mothers who cannot nurse their babies, turn to cow’s milk. In the same way as a father supplies food for the family, the bull is meant to help in the production of grains and vegetables by plowing the fields. Srila Prabhupada states:
“The bull is the emblem of the moral principle (dharma), and the cow is the representative of the earth.” (SB 1.16.18, purport)

Srila Prabhupada further comments (SB 1.17.3, purport) that indeed it is a law of nature that one can earn happiness by pleasing the bull and the cow. When the bull and cow are in a joyful mood, it is to be understood that the people of the world are also in a joyous mood.
When the perfect king, Maharaja Parikshit, was touring the earth, he witnessed a man dressed as a king mercilessly hurting a cow. The saintly king of the world had never even imagined that anyone would think of harming mother cow. A king’s duty is to protect all citizens especially the brahmanas, the cows, the elderly, women and children. The criminal was Kali, the personality of sin personified. At that time, it was the beginning of Kali-yuga, which is the age of quarrel and hypocrisy.
“The principal sign of Kali-yuga is that lower class sudras, or men without brahminical culture and spiritual initiation will be dressed like administrators or kings and the main business of such rulers will be to kill the innocent animals—especially the cows and bulls who shall be unprotected by the bona fide vaisyas.” (SB 1.17.1, purport)
The symptoms of Kali-yuga are intoxication, illicit sex, gambling, and animal slaughter. By abstaining from these four vices, we can transcend Kali’s influence. It is not surprising to devotees of the Lord that these ancient words of wisdom have indeed come to pass. The International Society for Krsna Consciousness is working hard to educate and train people in brahminical culture and cow protection.
The Gomati-vidya by Parasurama says:
“Wherever the thirsty cow drinks water from, that body of water is as good as the Ganga, Yamuna, Sindhu, or Sarasvati. In the body of the cows, all holy places and rivers are present. Lakshmidevi resides in cow dung. Simply by the cow’s touch and sight, she purifies all living entities. Among all purified objects, she is most pure, and among all auspicious objects, she is the most auspicious.”
In the Agni Purana, Dhanvantari said to Acharya Susruta:
“To caress and to bathe the cow is like cleansing ones sinful reactions.”
According to the Gavopanisad:
“One should see, offer obeisances to, and circumambulate the cow. By doing so, one is supposed to have circumambulated the entire earth with its seven islands. The cow is the mother of all. She gives happiness to everyone. People who desire prosperity should daily circumambulate the cow.”
For those interested in spiritual and devotional advancement, milk is said to be religious principles in liquid form. In the Mahabharata it is written:
“Oh Bharata, nothing is rare for a devotee of the cow. Whatever such devotees desire, they achieve. A lady who is devoted to the cow can have her desires fulfilled by the cow’s mercy. One who desires a son or a daughter, who desires wealth, one who desires piety, or knowledge — all can get their desires fulfilled by the mercy of the cow.”

Benefits of cow products

“The bull and cow are symbols of the most offenseless living beings because even the stool and urine of these animals are utilized in human society.” (SB 1.17.13, purport)
Please see the list below to find out what the Ayurveda says about the benefits for human health of each cow product.


Contains every nutrient that is required for the growth of the human body; increases the physical, mental, and spiritual power of the human being; a complete food, it slows down the aging process and increases intelligence and strength; regulates and increases the duration of life.


Gives strength to the body; makes food tasty, nourishing and pure; stimulates the body; removes gas; increases intelligence; cures piles and stomach ailments.


Beneficial, makes one fair, shiny, and bright; cures tuberculosis, piles, and coughing; especially essential for children.


Gives a shining complexion; enhances memory; increases strength; nourishes body; regulates air and mucus imbalance; removes tiredness; destroys bile; cures heart disease; increases fire in stomach.

Cow urine

Stops gas disorders; cures all ailments born from mucus, bile, and gas; helps with acidity, stomach disease, and more; removes leprosy and other skin diseases.

Cow dung

Purifying, antiseptic agent; stops gas disorders; pesticide and fertilizer; in India, dried dung is used like charcoal; it is also a form of energy producing methane gas.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Prayers to the Lord’s Weapons

Prayers to the Lord’s Weapons
By Shyamagopika dd on Thu, 2009-12-03 15:56.
 Please take today’s darshan of Lord Nrisimhadeva adorned with shining silver divine weapons in His arms. Not very often, we get darshan of Sri Nrisimhadeva, adorned with silver weapons. “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)

Prayers to the Lord’s Weapons

To the Chakra

chakram yugantanala-tigma-nemi
bhramat samantad bhagavat-prayuktam
dandagdhi dandagdhy ari-sainyam ashu
kaksham yatha vata-sakho hutashaha
Set into motion by the Supreme Personality of Godhead and wandering in all the four directions, the disc of the Supreme Lord has sharp edges as destructive as the fire of devastation at the end of the millennium. As a blazing fire burns dry grass to ashes with the assistance of the breeze, may the Sudarshana chakra burn our enemies to ashes.

To the Club

gade ‘shani-sparshana-visphulinge
nishpindhi nishpindhy ajita-priyasi
bhuta-grahamsh churnaya churnayarin
O club in the hand of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, you produce sparks of fire as powerful as thunderbolts, and you are extremely dear to the Lord. I am also His servant. Therefore kindly help me pound to pieces the evil living beings known as Kushmandas, Vainayakas, Yakshas, Rakshasas, Bhutas and Grahas. Please pulverize them.

To the Conchshell

tvam yatudhana-pramatha-preta-matri
darendra vidravaya krishna-purito
bhima-svano ‘rer hridayani kampayan
O best of the conchshells, O Panchajanya in the hands of the Lord, you are always filled with the breath of Lord Krishna. Therefore you create a fearful sound vibration that causes trembling in the hearts of enemies like the Rakshasas, Pramatha ghosts, Pretas, Matas, Pishachas and brahmana ghosts with fearful eyes.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Gita Jayanthi

Gita Jayanthi
By Shyamagopika dd on Fri, 2009-11-27 16:20.

On the occasion of Gita Jayanthi, devotees around the world are enthusiastically distributing Bhagavad -gita in every corner of the world. As I saw hundreds of students of Gita Study course congregating in Mayapur to celebrate this festival, I was reflecting on how this message of Godhead is reaching millions all over the world by the divine mercy of Srila Prabhupada. After the Mangala Arti, I walk around the campus chanting my japa, I take a look at the local pilgrims opening their eyes wide in amazement on seeing Srila Prabhupada Pushpa Samadhi Mandir, which is as magnificent as his personality. My heart is filled with feelings of gratitude for this unlimited compassion for giving shelter under his lotus feet.
For me, though born in a so called Brahmin family, it was merely a ritual to recite few verses of Gita on festival days of Vishnu or also I  remember memorizing the verses to get the prize in Sloka recitation competition until I was bestowed with the mercy of receiving “Bhagavad Gita As It Is”. I am ever grateful to those kind representatives of this unbroken disciplic succession, who took time and effort to put me in the right path, saving me from sinking in the dark well of  material existence. I am sure everyone will have their eye opener or favorite words, but for me it is the introduction to Bhagavad-gita which introduced me to Krishna Consciousness.  The introductory part of Bhagavad-gita has profound insights of this timeless wisdom, which I often share in the congregational meetings, for it contains ‘all in all’ of Srimad Bhagavad-gita in nutshell.

“We work not with our body, actually, but with our mind and intelligence. So if the intelligence and the mind are always engaged in the thought of the Supreme Lord, then naturally the senses are also engaged in His service. Superficially, at least, the activities of the senses remain the same, but the consciousness is changed. The Bhagavad-gita teaches one how to absorb the mind and intelligence in the thought of the Lord. Such absorption will enable one to transfer himself to the kingdom of the Lord. If the mind is engaged in krsna’s service, then the senses are automatically engaged in His service. This is the art, and this is also the secret of Bhagavad-gita: total absorption in the thought of Krsna. Modern man has struggled very hard to reach the moon, but he has not tried very hard to elevate himself spiritually. If one has fifty years of life ahead of him, he should engage that brief time in cultivating this practice of remembering the Supreme Personality of Godhead.’ (Bhagavad-gita As It Is-Introduction)
I pray at the lotus feet of Sri Nrsimhadeva to remove all the obstacles and bless all the wonderful servants of Srila Prabhupada who are engaged in distributing this transcendental literature.

Glories of Bhagavad Gita from Padma Purana

Glories of Bhagavad Gita from Padma Purana
By Shyamagopika dd on Fri, 2009-11-27 16:17.

"I Myself have manifested in the Form of Bhagavad-gita. Please understand that the first five chapters are My five heads, the next ten chapters are My ten Arms, and the Sixteenth Chapter is My stomach. The last two chapters are My lotus-feet. In this way you should understand the transcendental Deity of the Bhagavad-gita. This Bhagavad-gita is the destroyer of all sins. And that intelligent man who daily recites one chapter or even one shloka, one half shloka, or at least one quarter shloka, will attain the same position as Susharma had attained."
The Glories of Chapter One of the Bhagavad Gita from the Padma Purana
Parvati said "My dear husband, You know all the transcendental truths, and by your mercy I have heard the glories of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Krishna. Oh Lord, now I long to hear from You the glories of the Srimad Bhagavad-Gita, which was spoken by Lord Krishna, and by hearing which, one’s devotion to Lord Krishna increases"
Lord Shiva replied "That person, Whose body is the color of a dark rain cloud, whose carrier is the king of birds, Garuda, and Who is lying on Ananta-Sesha, the thousand headed serpent, that Lord Vishnu, Whose glories have no limit, I am always worshipping. My dear Parvati once after Lord Vishnu had killed the demon Mura, He was resting peacefully on Ananta-Sesha, when the bestower of all good fortune of the universe, Sri Lakshmi, respectfully inquired from Him.
"Bhagavan, You are the controller and maintainer of the whole universe, but yet You are sleeping unhappily on this ocean of milk What is the reason?"
Lord Vishnu said, "My dear Lakshmi, I am not sleeping, but I am watching how wonderfully My energy is working. It is by this wonderful energy of Mine, by which I am controlling all things, and yet remain separate. And it is by remembering these divine activities of Mine, that the great devotees and yogis manage to free themselves from the wheel of birth and death, and attain that transcendental nature of Mine, which is eternal and free from all qualities."
Lakshmi said, "O, controller of all things. You are the goal of the meditation of great yogis. Nothing can go on without You. And yet You are separate. You are the cause of creation, maintenance and destruction of all the material universes. Kindly inform me about the workings of Your wonderful energies, which are so attractive, that even You are lying here, meditating upon them"
Lord Vishnu said, "My dear Lakshmi, the workings of My multi-fold energies, and how to become free from the bonds of birth and death, and attain My eternal Nature, can only be understood by one of pure intelligence, who has an inclination to render service unto Me. This transcendental knowledge is fully explained in the Srimad Bhagavad-Gita"
Lakshmi inquired, "My dear Lord, if you yourself are amazed, by the workings of Your energies, and are ever trying to fathom their limit, then how is it possible that the Bhagavad -Gita can describe those unlimited energies of Yours, and how to cross over them, and attain the transcendental nature?"
Lord Vishnu said, "I Myself have manifested in the Form of Bhagavad-Gita. Please understand that the first five chapters are My five heads, the next ten chapters are My ten Arms, and the Sixteenth Chapter is My stomach. The last two chapters are My lotus-feet. In this way you should understand the transcendental Deity of the Bhagavad-gita. This Bhagavad-gita is the destroyer of all sins. And that intelligent man who daily recites one chapter or even one shloka, one half shloka, or at least one quarter shloka, will attain the same position as Susharma had attained."
Lakshmi inquired, "Who was Susharma? What class did he belong to? And what destination did he attain?"
Lord Vishnu said, “My dear Lakshmi, Susharma was a very wicked and a most sinful man. Although he was born in a brahmana family, his family had no Vedic knowledge. And he only took pleasure from hurting others. He never engaged in the chanting of My names, in giving charity, or receiving guests. In fact, he never performed any pious activities. For his livelihood he collected leaves, and sold them in the bazaar. He especially enjoyed drinking wine, and eating flesh. In this way he passed his life.
“One day that foolish Susharma had gone to the garden of one sage for collecting leaves, when a snake came and bit him, and he died. After his death he was cast into many hells, where he suffered for a long time. After which he attained the body of a bull. That bull was purchased by a crippled man, who engaged him in his service. For about seven or eight years he was carrying extremely heavy loads. One day that crippled man had piled a very heavy load onto the back of his bull. Very quickly he was forcing that bull along when suddenly the bull fell over and became unconscious. Many persons gathered there, to see what was happening, feeling sorry for that bull. One pious man bestowed upon that bull the results of some of his pious activities. Seeing that, other persons standing there started remembering their pious activities, and offered the results of some of those activities to that bull. In that crowd there was also one prostitute who did not know if she had ever performed any pious activities, but seeing everyone else offering their pious credits to that bull, she also offered the results of any pious activities she might have performed After that, the bull died, and was taken to the abode of Yamaraja, the God of Death.
There, Yamaraja informed him, “You are now free from the reactions of all your previous sinful deeds, due to the pious credits given to you by that prostitute." Then he took birth in a very high brahmana family. In that birth, he was able to remember his past lives. After many days, he decided to search out that prostitute, who had been the cause of freeing him from his hellish situation.
After he had found and introduced himself to that lady he inquired from her “What were the pious activities performed by you, the fruits of which freed me from my hellish situation?
The prostitute replied to him, “My dear sir, in that cage is one parrot, which recites something everyday. Hearing that recitation, my heart has become completely pure. The results of hearing that recitation I had given to you.” Thereafter they both inquired from that parrot about that recitation. That parrot, remembering his previous life, started to narrate his history. “Previously, I had been a very learned brahmana. But due to my pride, I used to insult other learned persons. I was also extremely jealous. After I died, I was cast into many hells, and after a long time of suffering, I achieved this body of a parrot. Due to my past sinful activities, my mother and father died while I was a baby. One day, while I was lying on the hot sands, with no protection, some rishis saw me, and took me to their ashram, and put me in a cage. At that same place, the children of those rishis were learning the recitation of the First Chapter of the Srimad Bhagavad-Gita, Hearing them repeat those Shlokas, I also, started repeating those shloka along with them.
“Shortly after, one thief stole me from that place and sold me to this pious lady.” Lord Vishnu continued, “By reciting the First Chapter of the Bhagavad-Gita, that parrot had become completely pure. And by hearing that recitation that prostitute also became completely pure. And by receiving some of the pious results of hearing that recitation, Susharma also become completely pure.
After discussing for some time the glories of the first chapter of Bhagavad-Gita, Susharma returned to his home, and the three of them individually engaged in reciting the First Chapter of Srimad Bhagavad-Gita, and very quickly attained the supreme destination, Vaikuntha." Anyone who recites, who hears, or studies the First Chapter of Bhagavad-Gita, will very easily cross over the ocean of material miseries, and attain the service of the lotus-feet of Lord Krishna.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Cleaning the heart everyday!

Cleaning the heart everyday!

By jalangi on Tue, 2009-11-17 15:28.

Because of some unimaginable good fortune, I got a service of cleaning Sri Sri Radha-Madhava’s dressing room. The room is actually very clean plus all the windows are closed all the time. Everyone entering into the room is also very clean. You have to take a bath and wear freshly washed clothes before you enter this room. However, when I am sweeping the floor, I can find some dust, flower petals and grains of sand every day. Therefore, I am wondering where the dirt comes from. Then I found out that outside of the dressing room, the floor is dirty. So when devotees are walking from outside, they carry the dirt on their feet. And they bring the dirt into the dressing room. So every day the floor should be swept and mopped.

Sometimes we tend to be lazy, thinking that everything is cleansed today, so no need to clean tomorrow. However, our heart is just like the floor of the dressing room.  It gets dirty every day. Every day there are many things happening in our life. Every day we consciously or unconsciously take association from other people. All these events and other people’s words, thoughts will leave certain impact in our heart. If we are not careful, we may unconsciously take a lot of dirt from outside, and thus make our heart dirty. The best solution is to clean our heart every day by chanting Hare Krishna Maha-Mantra and executing the other aspects of devotional services.
Besides, we have to be careful about the impact from outside. Don’t let dirty things lingering in our heart. As soon as we identify them, throw them all out and keep ourselves away from undesirable association. Similarly, I clean the outside of the dressing room a little bit. Then the cleanliness of the room is easier to maintain.

  Just like Srila Prabhupada said in a purport in Sri Caitanya Caritamrta, “Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu also cleansed the outside of the temple, fearing that the grains of sand would again come within. In this connection,Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakur explains that even though one may become free from the desire for frutive activity, sometimes the subtle desire for frutive activity again comes into being within the heart.” (CC Madhyda lila 135)

We are still in this material world, so no wonder dirty things are everywhere. However, if we clean our heart every day, then we are not afraid of the dirty things any more. Just like me, I am not afraid of the floor getting dirty, because I am cleaning it every day. After cleaning, I always feel very happy. Why? The answer is in Sri Caitanya

    In this way, all the rooms were cleansed with a hundred waterpots. After the rooms had been cleansed, the minds of the devotees were as clean as the rooms. (CC Madhya 12.105)
    When the temple was cleansed, it was purified, cool and pleasing, just as if the Lord’s own pure mind had appeared.” (CC Madhya 12.106)
All glories to Sri Sri Radha-Madhava!
(Jalangi devi dasi is a disciple of HH Umapati Swami)

Friday, October 9, 2009

SRI DAMODARASTAKAM Tika by Sri Sanatana Gosvamipada

Srila A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada's sannyasa guru, Srila Bhaki-prajnana Kesava Maharaja said, "Due to the eternal nature of Sri Sri Damodarastaka, it is necessary to study it every day during the month of Karttika (or Damodara)." The following passages describing this bhajan are taken from Sri Sanatana Gosvamipada's commentary on the DAMODARASTAKAM:
Kartik Vrata: What day was Damodara bound by Yasoda's rope? It was the day of Govardhana Puja (Krsna sukla pratipat, the first day after Divalli, which falls on Amavasya) when Krsna was four years old in Gokula lila. Later on when Krsna was seven years old, He lifted Govardhana Hill on this same day (Kartika month Krsna sukla pratipat). Hari Bhakti Vilas says its a rule that one must daily worship Radha Damodara with ghee lamp and chant the Damodarastakam. HBV 16.95-96- "One who worships a deity of Radha Damodara for purpose of Radhika's happiness, then Damodara Hari becomes very satisfied. One worships Damodara by daily chanting Damodarastakam attracts the Supreme Lord Damodara Himself."
Introduction: The Prayer--- The stotra named Sri Damodarastaka is found in the Padma P., spoken by Satyavrata Muni during conversation with Saunaka and Narada. Sanatana Gosvami, "This prayer is nitya-siddha, eternally perfect. It manifested through Satyavrata Muni and is capable of attracting Damodara Krsna."
Verse 1: Mula sloka, opening prayer defines the spiritual position of God-His transcendental form, sweet beauty and sweeter still pastime of breaking Mother Yasoda's butter pot.
Namam== I bow down with love and devotion before commencing description of the Supreme Lord's excellences (visesa) or attributes of tattva visesa, lila visesa, guna and rupa visesa. When starting any function it is customary to offer respects to the Isvara. This word serves as the Mangalacaran.
Isvara== an individual attributes or characteristics. This indicates tattva visesa, an excellence of the truth of the Supreme Lord. Obeisances are offered to the Supreme Controller in order to get the power to offer this prayer and prove that only the Supreme Lord is worthy of such glorification.
Sac-cid anandam rupam==defines the Supreme Lord as one with a transcendental form of eternity, knowledge, and bliss (rupa visesa) or a description of the excellence of His beauty.
Lasanti Kundalam== Swinging earrings running in fear of Yasoda. Earrings have a position above all other ornaments because always kissing Damodara's cheeks. Lasanti=glistening because reflect the splendorous effulgence of Krsna's bodily complexion. Therefore, Krsna's body is the ornament of all ornaments. See Subala 3.2.12 vismapanam
Gokule Bhrajamanam== Parivara visesa, excellence of His family, the Vrajavasis. Gokula, which is filled with gopas, gopis, cows, calves, Yamuna and Govardhana Hill, is a befitting place wherein Krsna can manifest His topmost pastimes.
Yasoda Bhiya== Lila visesa, excellence of Krsna's pastimes. Krsna displays great fear of Mother Yasoda punishment for breaking her yogurt pots and stealing the fresh butter.
Ulukhalat== Krsna stood on a large wooden grinding mortar to steal butter hanging from the rafters.
Dhavaman==Krsna jumps down and runs away.
Details see SB 10.9.8-9
Paramrstam== saundarya visesa, excellence of Yasoda's beauty.=caught by the back
Atyantato Drutya==Mother Yasoda running swiftly behind Krsna. Her beautiful hips, full breasts, flowers falling from loosened hair, perspiring.
Gopya== Mother Yasoda.
Verse 2: Description of details of Damodara lila. The Supreme Lord, crying in fear, can only be bound Mother Yasoda's love. Shows lila visesa.
Rudantam==Crying. Upon seeing the whipping stick of Mother Yasoda, Krsna becomes terrified and starts crying.
Netra Yugmam Mrjantam== rubbing two lotus eyes again and again
Karambhoja Yugmena==with His lotus hands fearful Krsna rubs His eyes to make the tears fall out.
Satanka Netram==fearful eyes glancing here & there
Muhuh Svasa==crying again and again
Kampa== trembling
Tri-rekhanka Kanta== three lines on His conchshell neck
Sthita Graivam== pearl necklace situated there
Bhakti Baddham==Bound by love. Bhakta vatsalya, Krsna's quality of coming under control of His devotees. God can only be bound by a devotee's love and nothing else.
Krsna was bound by the pure parental love of Yasoda. Damodara willingly accepted the binding, although no rope has the power to bind the Supreme Absolute Truth. The Srimad Bhagavatam 10.9.18-21 sva matuh gives proof that Krsna is controlled by His devotees. Krsna performs this Damodara lila and all His other pastimes because of His devotees's love.
Verse 3: This sloka glorifies Vraja madhurya maya bhakti over aisvarya jnana bhakti. It describes Krsna's
Guna Visesa, the excellence of His qualities.
Itidrk==Srimad Bhagavatam 10.11.7-8 Damodara lila shows how Krsna under control of His devotees.
Sva Lilabhir==His own transcendental sportive pastimes like this
Ananda Kunda==pool of ecstasy, full of deep mellows and rich rasas.
Sva Ghosam==His own family in Gokula; ghosh also means loudly proclaims His glories and the sweet glories of His eternal Vraja bhaktas by this lila
Nimajjantam==immersed personally in pools of bliss
Akhyapayantam==let everyone see and understand My position by seeing this lila of Me coming under the control of My pure madhurya bhaktas.
Tadiyesita Jnesu==tadiya (opulence, majesty) Isa= the master, controller. Aisvarya jnana bhaktas who are the Vaikuntha vasis. Those attached to knowledge of the Lord's majestic opulences (aisvarya).
Bhaktair Jitatvam==Krsna only conquered by love and devotion of His devotees.
Line three means: "I willfully submit to the control of My bhaktas, but I never submit Myself to those fond of jnana.
Punah== repeatedly
Prematah== with an excellence of love and devotion
Tam==unto that Isvara, Lord Sri Krsna.
Satavrtti==100 times
Line four means: "I offer my obeisances hundreds and hundreds of times to the process of pure devotion, Vraja bhakti. This type of divine love puts the Supreme Lord Krsna under the control of His devotees.
Verse 4: Verse 4 & 5 mention Satyavrata Muni's cherished desire-to see the transcendental form of Gopal manifested within his heart. He wants no other boon than this. The muni is thinking, "Oh! If Your divine form of a bala gopal would be manifested in my heart, then I would feel very very pleased; nothing short of this will satisfy me." Verse four shows that the longing for inner darsan of Krsna is the best of all goals.
Varam== boon
Deva== effulgent Supreme Lord
Moksam== Brahman liberation
Na== not want, reject
Moksavadhim== highest type of liberation to Vaikuntha planets
Na Canyam anya== reject all other things, not want anything else.
Vrne== pray
This verse rejects three Boons: 1-moksa=Brahman liberation 2-moksavadhim=Vaik. Liberation which is the zenith of all liberations 3-na canyam= boons achieved by following nava vidha bhakti
Idam== this
Vapur== vani/vapuh divine form and words; instructions.
Natha==Lord. The are four famous Nathas that if one sees all then gets liberation. Badri in north, Jagan in east, Dvaraka in west, Ranga in south and Gopal Nathji in center. But if see only one Natha, Sri Nathji or Gopal Nathji get full benefit of seeing other 4.
Gopal Balam== young cowherd boy
Sada==always sac-cid-ananda
Manasy==mind, heart
Avirastam==ever manifested (avirbhava)
Kim Anyaih==What good are they? What is the use of any other thing such as moksa or the boons gained by performed devotional service?
Summary: This attitude, as stated by Sat. Muni above, comes from one absorbed in thinking of Krsna's name, form, qualities and pastimes. If one attains Krsna, then everything else in automatically and perfectly attained. If Krsna is not attained, then all other boons are useless
Verse 5: This verse, describing the beauty of Krsna's face, is a prayer to see the sweet lotus face of Krsna.
Mukhambhojam==lotus face. Krsna's face resembles a fully blossomed lotus flower.
Avyakta==un manifested , dark
Vrtam==surrounded; lotus face surrounded by bumblebee like curly locks of hair
Kuntalaih==curly dark blue hair
Snigdha==soft, glossy
Raktais==red tint
Gopya==a gopi, = that face kissed by either Radhika or Yasoda
Muhuh==again and again
Bimba==like a bimba fruit
Raktadharam==lips cherry red
Avirastam==avirbhava, manifested. May this lotus face that is kissed by that fortunate gopi, Srimati Radhika, be manifested within my mind.
Labhaih==greed; attainment of other boons and benedictions
Summary## IN deep meditation on the Damodara lila, one will see the divine lotus face of Krsna as described in this verse five.
Verse 6: Is a prayer for saksat darsan; the boon of seeing Krsna face to face
Deva==divine, beautiful Supreme Lord
Damodara==bound by the affection of Yasoda. Indicates his param bhakti vatsalya visesa. Therefore, there is nothing He cannot do
Ananta==Full of inconceivable sakti and unlimited mercy
Visno==all-pervading Supreme Lord Visnu is living everywhere
Prasida==show mercy, be pleased with one
Prabho==master, controller, astonishing power to reveal Yourself to me
Dukha==suffering, natural miseries
Ati Dinam==very fallen
Grhana==uplift, accept
Esa==independent Lord, controller
Aksi Drsyah==give Your darsana, become visible to me
Summary Verse Six: Explains how to see Krsna?
1. Must fix Krsna in the mind and by pure bhakti will see Him
2. Attain pure bhakti by chanting Nama Sankirtan with love and devotion and sorrowful prayers. (verse six full of Krsna's names-Deva, Prabho, Damodara, Visnu, Ananta)
3. There are no fixed rules governing the appearance of the Lord. It is His free will only.
What happens if one gets the direct darsana of Supreme Lord Krsna?
In Hari-bhakti Sudhodaya says Prahlada M. Saw the Lord by the sea one day. Narada, Dhruva, Kardama Muni and Bilvamangala all received direct darsana, saksat darsana, of the Lord.
BRHAD BHAGAVATAMRTA chap. 3 179-182: "1. Seeing Lord Krsna in person direc tly with the eyes is the final reward for practicing nava vidha bhakti. One will experience profound bliss that surpasses all other forms of darsana such as seeing the Lord in meditation. 2. The ignorance and Maya covering the soul is destroyed. 3. Bhava increases 4. Devotee becomes overwhelmed with bliss and exhibits different sattvika bhavas, such as shivering, crying, hair standing erect. Prema vikaras, ecstatic symptoms.
Verse 7: Describes Prema visesa, the excellence of Krsna prema. It is a prayer to attain prema bhakti, which is the only means for attaining darsana of Lord Krsna as described in verse 6. Verse 7 also rejects moksa, liberation.
Kuveratmaja==sons of Kubera, Nalakuvara, Manigriva
Baddha==bound with ropes
Murtyaiva==Sri Vigraha, divine form
Yat vat== curse birth as trees
Bhakti bhajau==performance of devotional service. Never give up practice of bhakti
Krtau==gave, made them, Krsna awarded them prema bhakti
Prema bhaktim==pure devotion
Svakam==Your own, shelter Your lotus feet
Prayaccha==give intense, profuse
Graho==enthusiasm, have no eagerness for any other type of liberation
Damodara==Lord Damodara who is bhakta vatsala
Iha==this or here in Vrndavana, please bestow prema bhakti.
Verse 8: This verse summarized things the prayer stands for
Dipti dhamne==effulgent abode
Tvadiya-udaraya==unto your belly
Radhikayai priyayai==dearest beloved Radha
Nanta lila==unlimited sportive pastimes
Summary: The rope around Krsna's belly represents the Brahman effulgence surrounding the spiritual world. His belly supports all the universe in creation. One lotus flower growing from His navel or belly sustains the 14 worlds (planetary systems). Krsna showed His universal form to Mother Yasoda. By binding this waist Mother Yasoda has single-handedly bound the whole universe and brought the entire creation under her control by the strength of Her vatsalya prema. For anyone else it would be totally impossible to bind the all pervading unlimitedly potent Supreme Lord; but He willingly accepts Mother Yasoda's binding as an attribute of His bhakta vatsalya visesa, excellence of His being controlled by the love of His devotees.
Radhika is also engaged in Krsna's aradhana or worship only for His pleasure. Eternally Radhika is Krsna's dearmost beloved nitya priya or Priyayai.
Namo Nanta Lilaya==Satyavrata Muni is herein glorifying the topmost unlimited pastimes of Krsna such as rasa lila which Krsna performed with His beloved Priyaji, Sri Radhika. Such confidential pastimes are hinted at and offered respects to with the word (Namo). Namo nanta lilaya refers to ananta lila, Ananta Bhagavan Sri Krsna who continually enjoys limitless pastimes. Satyavrata Muni is offering obeisances to Radha-Krsna unlimited pastimes of rasa lila.
Word LILA== root L i means lingita or embrace. La means to accept. Therefore, word lila means those playful pastimes wherein Krsna accepts the embraces of the gopis. Thus Satyavrata Muni is ending his prayer on a sweet note (madhurena samapayet, a sanskrit rule of drama meaning that everything should end on a sweet note) by offering respectful obeisances unto the topmost transcendental pastime of Krsna's rasa lila and other such confidential pastimes in Vraja Dhama.


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