Vishal Puri, 04th April 2012
Hare Krishna Prabhu,
Can you please Reply to my query.
Can chanting help in getting rid of the negative habits like.
Laziness, indecisiveness, depression, negativity, anxiety, introvertedness.
What should I do to get rid of these habits, please guide me.
Struggling to became a devotee.
Mahabhagavat Das SDA , 04th April 2012
If you are asking this question then you are already a devotee, it is just a question of increasing the purity through a gradual process. Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita that there are four types of pious people who surrender to Him:
catur-vidhā bhajante māḿ
janāḥ sukṛtino ‘rjuna
ārto jijñāsur arthārthī
jñānī ca bharatarṣabha
“O best among the Bhāratas, four kinds of pious men begin to render devotional service unto Me — the distressed, the desirer of wealth, the inquisitive, and he who is searching for knowledge of the Absolute.” BG 7.16 (please read purport very carefully and see how it applies to your question)
The answer to your questions is that yes, chanting Hare Krishna to the best of one’s ability can very quickly get rid of acquired material anarthas like laziness, indecision, depression, negativity, anxiety, and introversion. If the next question is “how long will it take”, the answer is, depends on how big the mountain of anarthas is and how strong our determination to chant Hare Krishna is.
The best way is to serve and remain in the association of those who are chanting very seriously every day and following the regulative principles. Follow the regulative principles of freedom, and take only Krishna Prasadam. Go to your nearest bona-fide ISKCON temples (there are some which call themselves ISKCON temples but are apasampradaya – against the instructions of the disciplic succession – stay away from them, ask us if you are in doubt)
On 11th May 2007, Srila Gurudeva, His Divine Grace Sripad Sankarshan Das Adhikari wrote:
“I am very, very pleased with you for your sincerity. I know that you are presently living in a situation in which it is very, very difficult to practice Krishna consciousness. May Lord Krishna bestow His special mercy upon you to help you through your present difficulties.
The perfectional stage of pure love of God is the ninth step and the culmination of the Krishna consciousness pathway. It takes time to reach that stage. We have been in the cycle of birth and death for millions of lifetimes and are thus very, very covered by the contaminating influence of the three modes of material nature. Therefore we cannot expect to become 100% pure devotees immediately.
The nine steps of bhakti are described as follows in the Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu (1.4.15-16):
adau sraddha tatah sadhu-
sango ‘tha bhajana-kriya
tato ‘nartha-nivrttih syat
tato nistha rucis tatah
athasaktis tato bhavas
sadhakanam ayam premnah
pradurbhave bhavet kramah
“In the beginning one must have a preliminary desire for self-realization. This will bring one to the stage of trying to associate with persons who are spiritually elevated. In the next stage one becomes initiated by an elevated spiritual master, and under his instruction the neophyte devotee begins the process of devotional service. By execution of devotional service under the guidance of the spiritual master, one becomes free from all material attachment, attains steadiness in self-realization, and acquires a taste for hearing about the Absolute Personality of Godhead, Sri Krishna. This taste leads one further forward to attachment for Krishna consciousness, which is matured in bhava, or the preliminary stage of transcendental love of God. Real love for God is called prema, the highest perfectional stage of life.”
Here are the above steps given in a list form:
1. Sraddha–faith, the preliminary desire for self realization
2. Sadhu-sanga–associating with devotees
3. Bhajana-kriya–initiation by the bona fide spiritual master and adopting the practices of bhakti
yoga under his direction
4. Anarta-nivriti–freedom from material attachment
5. Nistha–steadiness in self-realization
6. Ruci–taste for hearing about Krishna
7. Asakti–attachment for Krishna consciousness
8. Bhava–preliminary state of love of God
9. Prema–pure love of God.
In the prema stage there is constant engagement in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. So, by the slow process of devotional service, under the guidance of the bona fide spiritual master, one can attain the highest stage, being freed from all material attachment, from the fearfulness of one’s individual spiritual personality, and from the frustrations that result in void philosophy. Then one can ultimately attain to the abode of the Supreme Lord.
You are wondering when you will attain prema. You should set your sight on attaining the third step as soon as possible, bhajana-kriya. Once you do that you will become very jolly and will make steady progress on the path to perfection.
You are also wondering why as a beginner on the pathway you cannot love God immediately. But you must be feeling some degree of love of God. Otherwise why are you spending so much time and energy practicing Krishna consciousness. You are certainly not getting paid to do so. Therefore you must be acting out of love. Higher stages of almost pure and completely pure love await you, but even at the present you must have some sense of loving Krishna.
For example, when you see a painting of Krishna, don’t you find Him to be beautiful? This is love. Now you simply have to strengthen your feelings of love more and more to the perfectional stage by going through the nine steps under the guidance of the spiritual master and the Vaisnavas.”
Aashi, 04th April 2012
Hare krishna prabhu ji, please feel your experience which happen by krishna and then delete your laziness from your mind and you will be happy from heart. So chant chant chant……………………………chant from your tongue. hare krishna hare krishna
Vishal Puri, 07th April 2012
I have a question, how to improve the chanting. I am not chanting 16 rounds, but I want to, as I have enough time with me.
I am not able to pronounce Krishna properly, and feel very difficult to chant, my mouth becomes dry, and jaw starts aching.
How to come to level of chanting of 16 rounds quickly?
Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 07th April 2012
Dear Bhakta Vishal,
Most auspicious! Very excellent plan. Now your desire combined with your determination, Krishna will help you personally.
Your bodily troubles are just like those of a new runner, keep going and they will go away. You will get ‘second wind’ if you persist.
For dry mouth, keep a bottle or glass of water handy and take a sip if you have to, now and then, say every 4-8 rounds.
For pain in jaw, take a break for 2-3 minutes when pain comes. Slowly your muscles will get stronger and you can chant more and more rounds without needing a bio-break.
Take every opportunity to chant in the association of other chanters, maybe in bona fide ISKCON temple after Mangala Arati.
Above all, let nothing or no one, especially your own mind or body get in the way of your minimum 16 rounds.
All the best!
Harish, 7th April 2012
Hare Krsna !
Keep it up, keep trying, Krsna sees the sincerity. Like a father understands what his small baby is speaking in broken language, similarly our Supreme Father Krsna understands what we are speaking, He being very near to us in Parmatma form in our heart.
I read today In BG 10.10,
Tesam satata-yuktanam, bhajatam priti-purvakam
Dadami buddhi-yogam tam, yena mam upayanti te
Srila Prabhupada has so beautifully explained that ” A person may have a bonafide spiritual master & may be attached to a spiritual organization, but if he is still not intelligent enough to make progress, then Krsna from within gives him instructions so that he may ultimately come to him without difficulty. The qualification is that a person always engage himself in Krsna consciousness and with love and devotion render all kinds of services. He should perform some sort of work for Krsna, and that work should be with love. If a devotee is not intelliigent enough to make progress on path of self-realization but is sincere and devoted to the activities of devotional service, the Lord gives him a chance to make progress and ultimately attain to Him.
Regarding pain in jaws, earlier I also used to face same problem as before coming to Krishna Consciousness, being married I could hardly have opportunity to speak, only listening (only sarvanam, no kirtanam, that too mundane 🙂
You can take breaks between chanting as u have time and keep water bottle with you. Hope you are not addicted to soft or hard drinks.
Vishal PR, Still if u need some favour, I am ready to exchange my jaw with your free time 🙂
Niri, 6th April 2012
I used to chant 16 rounds but when I began studying I struggled to keep up. I also want to bring up my rounds. Please help.
Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 07th April 2012
Another quick note regarding pronouncing Krishna… If we keep trying to hear Krishna nicely automatically our pronunciation also will improve.
Better hearing = better chanting…
Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 07th April 2012
Hare Krishna Mataji,
What seems to be the problem? Time? What is your current minimum? If one can build up a minimum and link some other regular activity to it, like don’t take breakfast before chanting 4 rounds, don’t take lunch before chanting 8, no dinner until 12, and no sleep until minimum 16, that is a great way. If you feel chanting is important enough then you will make time for it.
But note that chanting helps us to be better at everything else in quality. For example if I am absent-minded then I may have to run up and down the stairs many times because once I forgot my wallet, and another time my keys, another time my visiting cards, etc… What is the solution? To be not absent-minded, to focus on what I need, carefully, and get it all at once and double-check before going down the stairs first time.
Similarly without a strong Krishna focus, we go through precious human life in an absent-minded wasteful way, no focus, or at best very short-term focused, just like I was focused on getting my keys one time and wallet another time.
Think about what is result from studies. Job? Career? Money? Does it sound like anything better in quality than eating nicely, sleeping in posh comfort, finding and keeping that ‘handsome/beautiful/rich/healthy’ mate and struggling like anything to preserve that eating sleeping mating and defending? Then how is it different from the dog or squirrel or monkey? They are all doing the same… But you can do better, you have a choice, they don’t.
Otherwise, what is result of eating sleeping mating and defending?
Grand exclusive prize of irresistible old age, exciting disease and glamorous and fashionable death? 🙂
Get your priorities right and carefully think of what you’d like to do with this life that you haven’t done before in other species of life… And you already have had a great start – how many people have
had the privilege of getting to 16 rounds even on one day? Very very few, you are already part of elite few. So finish the job, become consistently perfect starting right now.
Does this help?
Harish, 07 April 2012
Chanting minimum 16 rounds + following 4 regulative principles are must. Rest things will themselves follow. Don’t compromise on chanting, Krsna being absolute there is no difference between Him and His name.
Try to finish chanting in the morning itself. Keep association of devotees as much as possible, this will guide and motivate you getting up early in the morning. You can check from where you can save your time for reading Srila Prabhupada’s books by contemplating on your daily schedule or take some senior devotee friend help or take assistance from local Iskcon center.
Rest Mahabhagavat Prabhu ji has already replied : “Above all, let nothing or no one, especially your own mind or body get in the way of your minimum 16 rounds.”
Niri, 6th April 2012
Thank you for your feedback. I want to sincerely chant 16 rounds, do mangal aarti and get you to date
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