Bhaktin Bhavita, 30 November 2018
Hare Krishna dear devotees
Please accept my humble and respectful obeisances
All glories to Srila Prabhupada
All glories to Guru Maharaj
I’d like to know, I am currently doing the self realization course, which goes through the verses of the Gita. The purpose of this course amongst other things is to give us an opportunity to thoroughly study the Bhagavad Gita.
I would like to know, how do the devotees end up understanding scriptures so thoroughly. Remembering various Sanskrit words etc…
I find myself reading various books by Srila Prabhupada yet if someone were to come to me and ask me a question I would struggle to give a detailed response. It kind of seems like I am doing all of it in vain.
Please offer advice.
Bhakta Sunil, 03 December 2018
Hare Krishna Mataji
Any amount of reading or devotional activity which you do is your permanent asset and never goes in vain
So please continue, although you may feel that you do not remember or can repeat
The remembrance of verses and the responses which you can give to others will automatically improve with continuing of reading, chanting as self purification occurs and your realizations keep happening to you from reading of the books
Even if you can improve even 1% daily it indicates job well done irrespective of whether you could quote verses or responses from the books
Lord give the remembrance those who want to remember Him,
Even if you could not give detail response to someone who asks you but if at that moment you sincerely chant the Maha mantra or pray to God to guide you then you will become potent to respond in detail
Hope this helps,
Shreyas, 04 December 2018
Hare Krishna Bhaktin Bhavita Mataji (and all devotees),
Please accept my humble obeisance!
All Glories to Srila Prabhuipada!
All Glories to Sri Guru & Gauranga!
Very relevant question. I recall similar feelings I would develop in the past and hence am very happy to discuss on this aspect.
It’s a matter of training. Everything we do in life has taken a shape due to our practicing it day after day in a favorable culture. If not this, then those samskaras come from previous births.
Whenever we compare ourselves with others, it should happen on the basis of Satisfaction. We should know that a particular quality in a devotee has manifested because of one’s hard efforts and by Krishna’s empowerment. Some grasp immediately, some take time, others (like me) keep forgetting slokas, concepts time after time. Everyone has their own past history. So, if you also spend years training yourself in daily hearing, reading, chanting attentively and practicing various limbs of devotional service in association of devotees, you will also cultivate these qualities. It’s simply a matter of Perseverance. We have to faithfully stick with the process and sincerely practice w/o losing enthusiasm and patience even if it apparently seems that we are too conditioned and slow to catch up unlike others. This requires faith.
If we have faith that Krishna can empower me at this very moment if He so desires and His not doing so is also out of His concern and affection for me, so that I can become more sincere and selfless in my practice, then we will remain happy & busy in our efforts to please Krishna.
Fortunately, Vedas are revealed. It’s not understood by mental/intellectual exercise. It’s not revealed by brain exercises. Vedas are revealed by sincere selfless devotional service unto Lord and His pure devotees:
yasya deve parä bhaktir yathä deve tathä gurau
tasyaite kathitä hy arthäù prakäçante mahätmanaù
“Only unto those great souls who have implicit faith in both the Lord and the spiritual master are all the imports of Vedic knowledge automatically revealed.” [SU 6.23]
1) Srila Gaur Kishor Das Babaji, spiritual master of Srila Prabhupada’s spiritual master (Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur), was illiterate. He couldn’t even write his own name. But when he spoke, he quoted various references from Vedas.
2) Once Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu visited Sri-Ranga-Ksetra in South India. There a Brahmana was crying in ecstasy while reading Bhagavad Gita and others were laughing on him because of his improper pronounciation of slokas. When Mahaprabhu asked, what section of BG interests you so much? The Vaishnava Brahmana replied that I cannot read properly, neither can I understand properly what I read. I am simply reading it because my spiritual master has instructed so. But when I see the picture of Parthasarthi Krishna, who has accepted the role of a chariot driver of His devotee, I cry tears thinking of His love and kindness for His devotees. This is what gives me joy. Mahaprabhu immediately embraced the Vaishnava Brahmana and declared him as the authority on reading Bhagavad Gita.
In one lecture Srila Prabhupada states that when one becomes a pure devotee, then Krishna upon seeing the sincerity of the devotee, reveals the knowledge into his/her heart of how to defeat even a Mayavadi.
While above points hold true, we also have a duty of representing our parampara properly. So we also have to become expert in our representing of Srila Prabhupada books but simply the endeavor to do so is pleasing to Guru & Krishna if done with the intent of pleasing them. So service attitude matters. Memory, skills, etc. will automatically be given by Krishna if He so desires. Things will reveal as we purify our senses in the process. No scholarly qualification is required.
In your case, it is rather a blessing to know personal shortcoming. It makes us humble to chant the Holy Names and gives opportunity to appreciate others by seeing how Krishna has empowered them. At the same time, there must be other skills that each one of us have that others also glorify about. That we must fully dovetail in serving Krishna. That will satisfy the soul and give it joy to connect with the spiritual sound vibration.
Lastly, I request all devotees to read BTG article “Prayerful Reading” by HG Bhurijan Prabhu. Can search on Vedabase. Wonderful article on how to read Srila Prabhupada books.
Bhakta Sunil, 15 Dec 2018
P.S : Mataji we have a wonderful opportunity to read the books in group right here via Google Groups in form of book reading academy where you can not only read in group but also share your own realisations and get answers to your queries too
If you like to take this opportunity right now, kindly reply back and you will be getting the proper instructions how to join the Google group
Are you ready?
Bhavita Keshav, 15 December 2018
Yes please this sounds like a wonderful opportunity!
Helen Thomas, 16 February 2019
I am interested in joining the book reading academy if possible please.
P.S: Anyone interested in getting Srila Prabhupada’s books or in the Bhagavata Online Academy of the Ultimate Self Reaization Course, please contact me!
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