What is the final destination of the Yogi who sees the Supersoul?

If the goal of the Yogi is to see the Supersoul, then how can they end up at the Impersonal Effulgence instead? Is it possible to attain perfection with devotion to the Supreme Personality of Godhead?

Partha Das, 17 August 2020

Hare Krsna . Dandavats.Prabhu. 

One doubt crossed my mind. If the yogi’s aim is to see the Paramatma(supersoul) in the heart, why is it that after seeing the Lord the destination he achieves is nirakar brahman (formless effulgence).

Regards,

Partha Das

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 19 August 2020

Dear Sriman Partha,

Hare Krishna!

Please accept my humble obeisances.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

All glories to Srila Gurudeva, Srimati Gurumataji and all their associates!

Thank you for your question. This question has been answered in the Bhagavad Gita and by Srila Prabhupad in various purports.

Srila Gurudeva has also answered this question in a succinct way as follows (paraphrased): “When a Yogi sees the Paramatma in the heart, then the yogi falls in love with the Lord and becomes a Bhakta, then he can proceed towards Bhagavan realization, or eternal loving devotional service. Upon reaching the Paramatma platform, one has a choice to go higher to Bhagavan realization or slide back down to Brahman platform… All of these are spiritual perfections, but Brahman realization is said to be perfect, Paramatma realization is said to be more perfect, and Bhagavan realization is to be most perfect”

This has been comprehensively confirmed as follows: https://vedabase.io/en/library/sb/3/25/19/

“Perfection in self-realization cannot be attained by any kind of yogī unless he engages in devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, for that is the only auspicious path.”

Gurumataji is giving a Bhagavatam class on this specific verse right now, if you want to join, the URL is http://livelectures.net/ The present date is Wed 19 Aug, and the time is 8:50AM Eastern Time (Toronto), 6:20PM India time. Class will go on for another 30-40 minutes… please join if you can. Highly recommended, as Gurumataji’s classes are not recorded as per her desire.

Sincerely,

Mahabhagavat Das

dasadas.com

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Slaughtered in moments on the 401

Death can come at any moment. We experience death regularly, whether of a fish that just got caught, or a person who died in a car accident, or someone who had a heart attack. Animals, birds, fish and insects can’t do anything about their death. But as humans, how can we prepare for death? How can we transcend it altogether?

My current office is near the waterfront. Some days when I can take a walk along the waterfront, especially in summer, I see these birds diving into the water. They look like Cormorants, but I’m not a bird expert.

The birds dive into the water and surface after a little while. Sometimes, they have a writhing fish in their beaks, which they then promptly swallow.

Cormorant with a fish in it’s beak

The fish was probably happily swimming around enjoying its fish life, until, out of the blue comes death. Of course, the fish can’t really do much about this, when death comes, death comes.

One summer day a couple of years ago, early into the pandemic, we were driving west on what is one of the busiest highways in the world, the Ontario 401. Suddenly, my map instructed me to take the next exit and took me a detour, which I followed… as we re-entered the highway at another point, I saw some vehicles on the empty stretch of highway behind me, they were stopped, and covered with tarpaulins.

Later in the afternoon, on my way back, I saw the vehicles still at the same spot, still covered with tarps. Clearly it had been a bad collision.

I continued to follow the incident, and found out it was an incident involving three cars. One eastbound car, for some reason, lost control and hit another eastbound one in the fast lane, which caused this second car to jump the barrier and land in the westbound lane – resulting in a head-on collision with a westbound car travelling in the fast lane.

Three people lost their lives in that collision, and death was almost immediate. The first responders had no chance, and had to cut open the cars to extract the mortal remains. It was surely gruesome.

I read about the people, a man in his forties in one car, and a woman in her thirties and her father-in-law in his sixties in the other car. I cannot imagine any of them expected to lose their lives on the 401 that morning.

Do we think any meal could be our last meal?

I wondered how their mornings were… did they have their breakfast their morning and say bye to their loved ones? What did they go through during those fatal moments? Did they feel a lot of pain? Did they have family members who were grieving for them? Did they have unfinished business? Maybe an incomplete project?

Death can come at any moment. No ordinary soul can predict the exact moment of their death. And when death comes, everything that was so important until the moment before ceases to matter. It’s just like when I live in an apartment with noisy neighbours and then move to another apartment, the noise in my previous apartment ceases to matter. What happens after death?

Death can come at any moment

Some say that we are just a bunch of chemicals, and nothing more significant than a halt of the electrochemical reactions in the body. Or in other words, after death, there is nothingness. But that logic is faulty on so many levels, after all, a bottle of chemicals doesn’t care about itself and other bottles of chemicals don’t lament it’s loss.

The logic that some combination of material elements somehow develops consciousness is faulty, as I wrote about Descartes’ ignorance about consciousness. His “cogito ergo sum” (I think, therefore I am) should have been something like “sum ergo cogito” (I am, therefore I think).

Actually, the law of momentum applies to us all – just like my baby body is “dead”, my child body is gone too. I still have memories of when I was a baby or a child, even though every single cell of my body back then is dead, this means that I transcend my body, more about that in detail another time.

Beyond Birth and Death. I am not this body.

But anyways, while the fish cannot do anything about their death, us, as human beings, with our highly developed sense of consciousness, can. We can inquire into our true nature, we can inquire into the Supreme Absolute Truth, indeed, human life begins only when we reach that stage of inquiring beyond eating, sleeping, mating, and defending, or rise above the animal propensities.

This stage is called “athāto brahma-jijñāsā“.

The human form is meant for the understanding of Kṛṣṇa consciousness (athāto brahma-jijñāsā), for inquiring about the Supreme Brahman. In the human form, everyone has a chance to understand the Supreme Brahman. The so-called leaders of human society do not know the real aim of human life and are therefore busy with economic development. This is misleading. Every state and every society is busy trying to improve the quality of eating, sleeping, mating and defending. This human form of life is meant for more than these four animal principles. Eating, sleeping, mating and defending are problems found in the animal kingdom, and the animals have solved these problems without difficulty. Why should human society be so busy trying to solve these problems? The difficulty is that people are not educated to understand this simple philosophy. They think that advancement of civilization means increasing sense gratification.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/cc/madhya/19/159/ purport

In fact, accidental or not, death awaits everyone who has taken birth… so, if we are sure to die, then we can at least prepare for it. How?

आयुर्हरति वै पुंसामुद्यन्नस्तं च यन्नसौ ।
तस्यर्ते यत्क्षणो नीत उत्तमश्लोकवार्तया ॥ १७ ॥

āyur harati vai puṁsām
udyann astaṁ ca yann asau
tasyarte yat-kṣaṇo nīta
uttama-śloka-vārtayā

Both by rising and by setting, the sun decreases the duration of life of everyone, except one who utilizes the time by discussing topics of the all-good Personality of Godhead.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/sb/2/3/17/

The moment of death, in fact, is quite significant. We can reach any destination by adjusting our consciousness at the moment of death.

यं यं वापि स्मरन्भावं त्यजत्यन्ते कलेवरम् ।
तं तमेवैति कौन्तेय सदा तद्भ‍ावभावित: ॥ ६ ॥

yaṁ yaṁ vāpi smaran bhāvaṁ
tyajaty ante kalevaram
taṁ tam evaiti kaunteya
sadā tad-bhāva-bhāvitaḥ

Whatever state of being one remembers when he quits his body, O son of Kuntī, that state he will attain without fail.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/8/6/

The moment of death is actually a great opportunity, a rare portal through which we can escape birth and death altogether!

अन्तकाले च मामेव स्मरन्मुक्त्वा कलेवरम् ।
य: प्रयाति स मद्भ‍ावं याति नास्त्यत्र संशय: ॥ ५ ॥

anta-kāle ca mām eva
smaran muktvā kalevaram
yaḥ prayāti sa mad-bhāvaṁ
yāti nāsty atra saṁśayaḥ

And whoever, at the end of his life, quits his body remembering Me alone at once attains My nature. Of this there is no doubt.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/8/5/

If I were to live every moment thinking that it could be my last, then certain longer-term things could not reasonably be done, but on the other hand if I don’t think about death then it will surely take me by surprise.

So how to live? My spiritual master gave me the perfect instruction in this regard.

My spiritual master
His Grace Sriman Sankarshan Das Adhikari

He said, live as if you could die in the next 80 seconds or live for the next 80 years. And his life is a living proof of his instructions, so I choose to follow in his footsteps.

I remind myself that this life of mine can end at any moment, but I work diligently in Krishna Consciousness as if I have another 80 years to go.

Would you like to learn how? Drop me a line!

2019.61-71 Old City Hall, Vaishnava Sanga, Janmashtami, Trinity Bellwoods, Cabbagetown, Travel

2019 Summer Sankirtan Adventures. Krishna is Adventure. When you go out on Sankirtan, your life becomes an adventure too! Sankirtan is life. Live it!

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 05 October 2019

Dear Devotees,

Hare Krishna!

Please kindly accept my humble obeisances.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Even though it appears that summer may be coming to a close, at least as far as my Sankirtan Life is concerned, the summer of Sankirtan continues on, thanks to blessings from the spiritual master and the devotees!

Being out on Sankirtan is the most adventurous thing one can do. When we are out on Sankirtan, we literally put our lives in the hands of Sri Krishna. We beg for His mercy, we remember Him intensely, we make ourselves vulnerable as beggars, and we just go out on a limb to serve the disciplic succession. It is truly a privilege and pleasure to serve in this way.

Sankirtan is also the surest way – second only to marriage 🙂 to remind oneself about one’s false pride in action, and to see what a sad and sorry state the present world in, and just how much everyone just suffering.

Like all genuine pleasures, it takes time to begin to appreciate, and it takes time to practice and hone, it takes time to appreciate every single experience, but once one is in that circle of mercy, truly in that circle of mercy, then one hankers to be back in that flow, that zone of intense Krishna consciousness.

Nowhere does one witness the magic of Krishna consciousness more than being out on Sankirtan. Miracles happen at every moment, and the most unlikely experiences occur, and each experience is hand-picked by Krishna for one’s own betterment.

If you want to see Krishna’s hand in your life, then go out on Sankirtan! If you want to lose attachment to material pleasure, then go out on Sankirtan,. If you want to be humbled, then go out on Sankirtan. If you want to feel pride for Krishna, then go out on Sankirtan. Little or a Lot, PLEASE, do go out on Sankirtan!

Summary:

10 Aug 2019 – Old City Hall

14-17 Aug – Vaishnava Sanga  (3 outings in Shawinigan, Quebec)

23 Aug – Sri Krishna Janmastami (2 outings in the temple)

31 Aug – Trinity Bellwoods Park

31 Aug – Sri Radha Shyamsunder Janmashtami

4 Sep – Downtown Individual Outing (after a LONG time!)

8 Sep – Cabbagetown festival

17-30 Sep – Business Trip Sankirtan in Toronto, New York, San Luis Obispo, San Francisco, Los Angeles, etc.

———-

Total 11 Outings

Vaisesika Prabhu and His wave of Sankirtan mercy

Vaisesika Prabhu distributes books on the street

Whenever great Sankirtan warriors descend, in their presence and in their footsteps we experience tremendous empowerment. Old City Hall was another magical experience, with the devotees performing Harinam right in front of Old City Hall, and so many devotees greeting the souls milling about. We also got an opportunity to bathe in the nectar shower that was his Vyasa Puja in ISV.

Michael, Dennis, and Wes all gave me their contact information, in fact that’s the only reason I still remember them – they gave me their contact information! Especially Dennis was coming “home” to Canada via Russia, China, and London, England. He felt at home with Krishna too, saying “Hey you’re a Krishna guy, I’ve seen your guys all around”. Wes was back to Toronto after a long stretch in Australia.

Right after that outing, in the temple, I met Karishma and Raghav who were visiting the temple for the first time. They both also took books, gave donations, chanted Hare Krishna and heard all about Radha Kshir Chor Gopinath! And yes, they did share their contact info.

If I can only follow up effectively with everyone I meet (remember these are the cream of the crop, they stopped, gave their time, attention, money, took a book, and left a contact!), ISKCON Toronto will surely be forced to expand into the church across the street! 🙂

Vaishnava Sanga magic

On Harinam in Shawinigan during Vaishnava Sanga

Right after Vaisesika Prabhu left, we got a solid dose of inspiration from the great souls gathered in St. Mathieu Du Parc in Quebec. I got to serve in the kitchen on 2 days, it was blissful service, cooking for all these delightful Vaishnavas! But what’s more, I got to go out on the famous Shawinigan Harinams, not once, not twice, but thrice!

These Shawinigan Harinamas are directly from the spiritual world (like every other Harinama, but I experienced the magic most here. First of all, its not a bunch of shy newbies, but veterans of the art of Harinam, senior devotees, disciples of Srila Prabhupada, advanced souls like Bhaktimarga Swami, Mahatma Prabhu, Krishnadas Kaviraj Prabhu, Lakshminath Prabhu, Guru Prasad Prabhu, and many more elevated souls! And accompanied by such young veterans of the art of Harinam as Krishna Dulal Prabhu and Prana Gauranga Prabhu! It was a pleasure to take the little town of Shawinigan by the storm of Sri Harinam Sankirtan.

Right before, we had stopped at ISKCON Montreal and stocked up on those elusive French books on Krishna consciousness. With a nice box full of books, we set out, only to almost run out on day 1! 🙂

ISKCON Montreal

Here we witness the power of the Holy Name. One can’t speak French or Quebecois to save one’s life, except for a hearty Bonjour (surely said with the wrong accent)! So how these books get distributed, and how donations come in is just a complete mystery to me. Well, not only me, but many many devotees took books, our own Vrajalalana Mataji, and Mathieu Prabhu from Ottawa, and many others, they just congregated on the books and within a very short time almost all the books were gone!

Quebec, Canada

A few years ago, I had met the wife of the owner of a restaurant, she was from Mauritius. Now this time I met her husband and his employees, who all took books and made donations! Now the circle is complete, the whole family has Srila Prabhupada’s books. I am convinced that Krishna has a GRAND plan for this family – I mean he sent a whole Harinam Party after them, not once, not twice, but SO MANY times! 🙂 And His pure devotee’s books! He has accepted donations from them, and allowed them to serve the devotees with drinking water (in that hot weather, it is the most precious thing)… I can’t wait to see what Krishna unfolds in due course of time!

Also followed up with another contact I met a couple of years ago – her family attended one of the events at the Vaishnava Sanga!

I met a couple visiting Quebec from Brazil!

Many many souls took books, not only French, but also English. Very successful in reaffirming the magic of Sri Harinam to me!

A lady who accepted books 3 years ago in Shawinigan texted me excitedly “Hi Krishna das do you have Mahabharat in French?”. So I’m asking around.

Here are a few I remember from the other Sankirtan outings…

On Sri Krishna Janmashtami, I was almost exclusively at the book table, eagerly approaching visiting guests with our books, some took, some didn’t but so what, “next”! Our two little Sankirtan warriors, Govinda and Vitthal Bhakta wanted to distribute books too. And they did. Not only did they distribute books, but also collected handsome donations for Krishna. I was distressed to see these little children treated badly by a couple of guests who treated them as if they were some sort of street urchins begging for themselves! But they are small enough not to notice the insults, and happily and enthusiastically carried on. However, this drives home to me how careful we need to be to protect these little innocent devotees from nastiness (unlike some other Sankirtan warriors who did not get that kind of protection as children or vulnerable adults), so their Sankirtan outings need to be carefully planned and arranged so that they have happy childhood experiences of Sankirtan.

Get Spiritual Books

At the Janmashtami celebration of Sri Radha Shyamsunder close to Toronto, there was this one lady who wanted to begin the Bhagavatam but couldn’t commit to the full set. So she took the personal copy of teh first Canto copy Mother Sucaru! Mother Sucaru was in the midst of reading that particular copy, but she graciously allowed the distribution of her own copy… I had thought that the devotees could replenish, but apparently that big First Canto is not being printed at the moment! She reminded me of Srila Prabhupada who gave his personal copy away for distribution!

Devotees at a Book Table

Two sisters from Wales visited our booth, and said “cool, our Mum is a yoga teacher” and “she probably has tha’one and tha’one”, until suddenly one of them said “tha’one, tha’one I’d like to read”, and took a couple of books, made a donation. They also chanted Hare Krishna “no problem, we’ve chanted before”.

Abhishek was a gas station attendant, a bright young man from Nepal. This was at a gas station close to ISKCON Berkeley – New Jagannath Puri Dham. He didn’t know about this amazing temple! He told me he was reading Paramahamsa Yogananda’s “Autobiography of a yogi”. He said he’d read the Bhagavad Gita As It Is before, promised to read again, accepted a couple of books, and said “sometimes we follow this path, sometimes that path”. And then he acknowledged “without guru we cannot make spiritual advancement, so a group of us are looking for a genuine guru”. He gave me all the contact information and responded with a “Hare Krishna. Thank you very much”

David chanced upon us – on a bike with his toddler son, in Trinity Bellwoods, and was gracious enough to ask very intelligent questions, get a Bhagavad Gita and make a generous donation. He didn’t want to go further in terms of giving me contact details etc., but at least he has the Gita!

Krishna the gas station attendant at a Shell said “Hare Krishna” and pointed to his name badge. He didn’t know about the ISKCON of Silicon Valley, so I wrote down the address for him. He passed the book back to me saying “and your contact information also, in case I have questions”.

Syed, from Lahore, Pakistan had been chased out of a cushy job in Dubai after it was discovered that he was the wrong kind of Muslim – a Shia instead of a Sunni. He’s arrived just 5 months ago, and we could tell he was feeling the cold – with his car warmed up like an oven and togged up with a hoodie with the hood on inside that baking hot car today with 18C weather outside. We had a good philosophical conversation about how God is fair to all and no one sect has a monopoly on God. He had said he liked to cook, found it amazing that I liked to cook too, and accepted a Higher Taste, saying “I like vegetarian food”.

J, a colleague in California, has steadily accepted (and read) Srila Prabhupada’s books over the last couple of years. I started with Prasadam, and cookbooks, and now she has Devamrita Swami’s Hiding in Unnatural Happiness and the Bhagavad Gita As It is.

Bhagavad Gita As It Is

Wonderful Serendipitous meeeting with Book Distribution General Vijaya Prabhu – on our way to Los Angeles we stopped at Ahimsa Cafe for some Prasada. This is a restaurant run by Tukaram Prabhu and his wife, in Long Beach California. I was reluctant, but the family was eager… and as I parked the car and walked over, what do I see but Vijaya Prabhu relishing Prasada! I got some undeserved mercy from a very humble Vaishnava who was out distributing the Bhagavad Gita at the Long Beach College. I pray that I may be able to follow in his footsteps, and 10, 20, 30, more years from now always continue to distribute Srila Prabhupada’s books, Srila Gurudeva’s books, my spiritual mentors’ books.

Vijaya Dasa Master Book Distributor & Inspirational Speaker

In Los Angeles lives a saint, His Holiness Amala Bhakta Swami. About 87 years of age, he doesn’t travel anymore, but is the prime example of “tirtham kurvanti tirthani”, for him, a picture of Sri Krishna is not just a picture, but directly Krishna. He took us around a tour of his Ashram, asking us “why would I need to go anyplace else”? He said his focus was on chanting and praying and purifying himself, and that he would preach in New Dvaraka but not leave those auspicious premises. He was extremely encouraging with my book distribution efforts. He told us about some of his early experiences, how he transitioned from a Hollywood actor to a Sadhu gradually, but with firm determination. Meeting him was a great highlight of my life, and when I distribute books, I do so in the hope of pleasing great souls such as him. He is one of the few, in addition to my spiritual master, who have taken the effort to actually correct me, caution me, warn me and guide me in the right direction. To these souls I remain grateful.

Amala Bhakta Swami, a modern-day saint

I’ve been writing this in bits and pieces for many days, actually over 3 weeks, but I fear that it is already too long and may tax you, dear devotee more, so even though I have a lot of amazing stories, they will have to wait for some other day.

My Sankirtan outings goal for 2019 is 108, and write about them all, and I now have 37 to go. Please bless me that I may humbly perform this service. I am very greedy for your blessings. In fact, I am 100% convinced that I can only go out on Harinam Sankirtan because of your blessings, because otherwise I am just a useless fool.

Praying to be always out on Harinam Sankirtan, or at least be in Harinam Sankirtan consciousness 24X7, this is my humble desire, though I must admit that unfortunate as I am, I still maintain all sorts of material attachments.

your servant,

Mahabhagavat Das

dasadas.com

Chaitanya Das, 05 October 2019,

Hare Krishna Prabhuji. Dandavat Pranam. Please accept my humble obeisances.

Thank you so much for sharing, hope one day i should also be able to do it, seeking your blessings Prabhuji.

your servant,

Chaitanya Das.

Rasika Krishna Das, 6 October 2019

Hare Krishna Prabhuji,

Jaya!! All glories to your Sankirtan outings.

your servant,

Rasika Krishna Das

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 08 October 2019

Dear Chaitanya Prabhu,

Hare Krishna!

Thank you for your kind encouragement.

Why not let today be the day? Today you can give a book by Srila Prabhupada or Srila Gurudeva to one of your family members, friends, or colleagues. And if no one is around, then give to yourself, meaning, read to yourself 🙂 The power emanated by vibrating the contents of a pure devotee’s writings changes the world for the better. Please try it.

your servant,

Mahabhagavat Das

dasadas.com

Chaitanya Das, 08 October 2019

Hare Krishna Prabhu. Please accept my humble obeisances. Thank you so much Prabhu, will do. Will read Srila Prabhupada’s books everyday and distribute whenever i can. Hare Krishna. 

your servant,

Chaitanya Das

Tapas Chakraborty, 09 October 2019

Hare Krishna

Thanks for sharing the enormity of your involvement in spreading the Krishna conscious movement and experience which will benefit us immensely in our determination to progress with higher enthusiasm. We firmly believe setting targets will enable the resolve to reach greater heights of spiritual and transcendental knowledge.

With warm Regards

Tapas

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If Krishna is self satisfied, then how can Radharani satisfy Krishna?

Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is self-satisfied. So how can Srimati Radharani’s touch satisfy Krishna? How can any devotee’s service satisfy someone who is already self-satisfied? Why words like “lust” used in connection with Krishna?

Sudhanshu Soni, 28 August 2019

Hare Krishna 

Please accept my humble obeisances 

Prabhuji I respectfully and humbly wanted to know the answer from all the devotees for the one question that came in my mind as we are reading nowadays radhika ashtakam,since radha-ashtami is coming .

If Krishna is self satisfied or if he does not have any lust then why is it in the third verse of radhika-ashtakam is written “when she touches the master of the gopis ,she dispels the burning heat of his lusty desires”.

please answer, i really need to know this …

thank you 

your servant 

sudhanshu

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 03 September 2019

Dear Sudhanshu,

Hare Krishna!

Please accept my humble obeisances.

All glories to Srila Gurudeva.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

There are at least 2 Radhika Ashtakam, one by Srila Krishnadasa Kaviraja Goswami, and one by Srila Rupa Goswami. Both are incredibly advanced as to their meaning and purport. I must confess that I do not fully appreciate those high spiritual mellows myself.

You are referring to verse 3 of Krishnadasa Kaviraja Goswami.

“saukumarya-shrishta-pallavali-kirti-nigraha

candra-candanotpalendu-sevya-sita-vigraha

svabhimarsha-ballavisha-kama-tapa-badhika

mahyam atma-pada-padma-dasya-dastu radhika

Her charming youthful delicacy negates the fame of freshly-sprouted leaves. Her refreshing form is worthy of being served by the cooling moon, sandalwood paste, lotus flowers, and camphor. When She touches the master of the gopis, She dispels the burning heat of His lusty desires. May Sri Radhika always bestow upon me the service of Her own lotus feet.”

Yes, your understanding is correct that Krishna is beyond and higher than all mundane material qualities. He is “nirguna” that Krishna has no material qualities. But Krishna is also described as “saguna”, which means that He is the reservoir of all auspicious spiritual qualities. It is a fact that Krishna is “Atmarama” or fully satisfied within Himself.

Radha and Krishna are one, They are expanded only to enact pastimes. Srimati Radharani is Krishna’s internal potency Hladini Shakti. No one knows how to give pleasure to Krishna better than Srimati Radharani.

Even though words like “lust” are used, in connection with Radha and Krishna, they do not bear their usual mundane meaning.

It is true that everything we see in the material realm is a perverted reflection of what we see in the spiritual realm. Because we do not have an understanding of the pure spiritual essence of these things, we hear these words and connect that to our material experience.

It is said that the pure devotee sees the mundane and even the mundane reminds the pure devotee of the purely spiritual, for example, Rupa Goswami says “let me be attracted to Krishna like a young boy and girl are attracted to each other”… in other words when Rupa Goswami sees the mundane attraction between a boy a girl, he is reminded of Krishna. Another example, when an advanced devotee sees a baby crying for its mother, she may hanker to chant with that intensity for Sri Sri Radha Krishna to come and save her.

On the contrary, a materially contaminated soul, a conditioned soul such as myself is unfortunately liable to see the mundane in the spiritual, such as the pure interactions of Krishna with the Gopis or Krishna with Srimati Radharani.

Therefore, these advanced topics are not discussed except amongst pure devotees.

When one has fully appreciated Srila Prabhupada’s books, and acquired maturity in one’s understanding of the depths of Bhakti, then one may proceed to these confidential writings of the previous predecessor Acharyas, or spiritual masters.

The confusion you are facing makes it clear that there is some work to be done wrt. fully understanding what Srila Prabhupada has left behind for us…

I hope this helps.

Sincerely,

Mahabhagavat Das

dasadas.com

Rasika Krishna Das, 04 September 2019

Hare Krishna,

Thank you for enlightening my mind Prabhuji with your excellent answer 🙂

your servant,

Rasika Krishna Das

Sudhanshu soni, 04 September 2019

Thank you so much Prabhuji ,it is very convincing..

your servant,

Sudhanshu

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The Profession of Confession and Atonement

In many religious traditions, there is the concept of confessing and atoning for sins. But why do people keep sinning and keep confessing, keep atoning? What is the use of such confession and atonement? What can be done to completely get out of this nasty habit of committing sinful activities?

Some souls accept the authority of God in theory, but not in practice. In the article “Love of God, The Ultimate Variety“, I wrote about fear vs. love… who fears God? One who does not properly follow the instructions of God must necessarily fear God. Just like ordinary citizens are not afraid of the police, but the thief is.

The idea is that just as there is the state law, there is also God’s law. And just as someone who flouts the state law becomes a criminal or an outlaw, similarly, one who flouts God’s law also faces reactions. And depending on the severity of the crime, the reactions can be rather heavy.

In some traditions, practically all religious traditions, there is the idea of “atonement” or in Sanskrit “praayaschitta”. This has been formalized in so many different ways, for example, Christians often go to Church and then confess their sins to the priest. The priest says “OK, repent by doing this and this”, or maybe a Hindu might go to the temple and the priest might tell her “give this and that charity to such-and-such to atone for this sin”.

The atonement is supposed to release the soul of the sinful reaction for a much lower “cost”…

Confession, useful, but is it enough?

But even with or without atonement, though there is hellish punishment that purifies the sinner of the sinful reactions, the soul commits sin again, after all the purification! Why is this?

Do you know what the problem is?

क्‍वचिन्निवर्ततेऽभद्रात्‍क्‍वचिच्चरति तत्पुन: ।
प्रायश्चित्तमथोऽपार्थं मन्ये कुञ्जरशौचवत् ॥ १० ॥

kvacin nivartate ’bhadrāt
kvacic carati tat punaḥ
prāyaścittam atho ’pārthaṁ
manye kuñjara-śaucavat

Sometimes one who is very alert so as not to commit sinful acts is victimized by sinful life again. I therefore consider this process of repeated sinning and atoning to be useless. It is like the bathing of an elephant, for an elephant cleanses itself by taking a full bath, but then throws dust over its head and body as soon as it returns to the land.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/sb/6/1/10/
An elephant bathes in the water

Let’s examine the elephant… the elephant goes to the river and takes a bath in the river. Then the elephant comes out and pours dirt, sand and dust on itself after it comes out. Now, the wildlife experts may say why the elephant is doing that, how it protects its skin etc., but let’s just keep to the spirit of the example here.

An elephant dusts itself with mud

If we treat a confession or atonement as a bath, then why is it that people perform the required atonement and then sin again? Why do you need to take a bath again and again? Because you got dirty again after the last bath!

In the material world, dirt is unavoidable, our very bodies are quite dirty, and need to be cleansed again and again. But what about the spirit soul? Is the spirit soul not clean originally?

Hindus bathe in the Ganga to atone for their sins

Is it a good thing to become a professional at confession and atonement? There is no doubt that God is infinitely merciful… and can forgive unlimitedly. Does anyone think that God is such a fool as to accept repeated confessions of a professional sinner without giving the proper reactions to maintain fairness? God is also unlimitedly wise!

In the Srimad Bhagavatam, the highly intelligent Maharaja Parikshit and Shukadeva Goswami had this wonderful conversation on this topic. To this question, the answer given was:

Śukadeva Gosvāmī, the son of Vedavyāsa, answered: My dear King, since acts meant to neutralize impious actions are also fruitive, they will not release one from the tendency to act fruitively. Persons who subject themselves to the rules and regulations of atonement are not at all intelligent. Indeed, they are in the mode of darkness. Unless one is freed from the mode of ignorance, trying to counteract one action through another is useless because this will not uproot one’s desires. Thus even though one may superficially seem pious, he will undoubtedly be prone to act impiously. Therefore real atonement is enlightenment in perfect knowledge, Vedānta, by which one understands the Supreme Absolute Truth.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/sb/6/1/11/

But knowledge enough is not sufficient, one must act on that knowledge, Shukadeva Goswami continues…

My dear King, if a diseased person eats the pure, uncontaminated food prescribed by a physician, he is gradually cured, and the infection of disease can no longer touch him. Similarly, if one follows the regulative principles of knowledge, he gradually progresses toward liberation from material contamination.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/sb/6/1/12/

One should go beyond the lifestyle that produces sinful desires…

तपसा ब्रह्मचर्येण शमेन च दमेन च ।
त्यागेन सत्यशौचाभ्यां यमेन नियमेन वा ॥ १३ ॥
देहवाग्बुद्धिजं धीरा धर्मज्ञा: श्रद्धयान्विता: ।
क्षिपन्त्यघं महदपि वेणुगुल्ममिवानल: ॥ १४ ॥

tapasā brahmacaryeṇa
śamena ca damena ca
tyāgena satya-śaucābhyāṁ
yamena niyamena vā

deha-vāg-buddhijaṁ dhīrā
dharmajñāḥ śraddhayānvitāḥ
kṣipanty aghaṁ mahad api
veṇu-gulmam ivānalaḥ

To concentrate the mind, one must observe a life of celibacy and not fall down. One must undergo the austerity of voluntarily giving up sense enjoyment. One must then control the mind and senses, give charity, be truthful, clean and nonviolent, follow the regulative principles and regularly chant the holy name of the Lord. Thus a sober and faithful person who knows the religious principles is temporarily purified of all sins performed with his body, words and mind. These sins are like the dried leaves of creepers beneath a bamboo tree, which may be burned by fire although their roots remain to grow again at the first opportunity.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/sb/6/1/13-14/

It is commonly seen that even priests, supposed to be God’s representatives, sin, what to speak of the lay person! This means that even though one may lead a very closely regulated lifestyle, the desire to sin can still remain hidden as a root within the heart. So what is the ultimate solution?

केचित्केवलया भक्त्या वासुदेवपरायणा: ।
अघं धुन्वन्ति कार्त्स्‍न्येन नीहारमिव भास्कर: ॥ १५ ॥

kecit kevalayā bhaktyā
vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ
aghaṁ dhunvanti kārtsnyena
nīhāram iva bhāskaraḥ

Only a rare person who has adopted complete, unalloyed devotional service to Kṛṣṇa can uproot the weeds of sinful actions with no possibility that they will revive. He can do this simply by discharging devotional service, just as the sun can immediately dissipate fog by its rays.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/sb/6/1/15/

So therefore, it is impossible to be completely pure without being a pure devotee of God. Without being a pure lover of God, one cannot escape this sin. In fact, when one is rendering devotional service, at that time it is impossible to sin, because where is the time and the energy to perform sinful actions?

So therefore, instead of sinning and confessing, sinning and confessing, sinning and atoning, sinning and atoning, one should seek to develop pure uncontaminated Love of God in a practical way, which is the only way to be free of the desire and tendency to sin.

My spiritual master says it best “it’s hard to hit a moving target, so keep moving for Krishna, if you give illusion an inch, you will lose your life!”

What does it mean “uttama sloka vartaya”? What is Sloka?

What is the meaning of “uttama-sloka-vartaya”? What does “sloka” mean?

Raul, 23 January 2020

Hare Krishna!!

What is the meaning of uttama-sloka-vartaya?

Is this reference to the eight slokas the Lord Caitanya left in writing known as the Siksastaka?

What exactly is the meaning of the word sloka?

Best regards,

Raul

Haladhar Das, 27 January 2020

Hare Krsna prabhu

All glories to Srila Gurudeva

All glories to Srila Prabhupada

What is the meaning of uttama-sloka-vartaya?

Lord Krsna is known as uttama sloka as He is glorified in the transcendental literatures by the choicest poetry or perfect transcendental words. The demigods and devotees worship Lord Krsna to the best of their God given ability in the most profound words. So He is known as uttam sloka. 

Similarly pure devotees of the Lord are known as punya sloka, being in constant association of the Lord by way of chanting His holy names or serving Him in various prescribed methods, they are so purified, that even by coming in their contact or taking their names, one can be purified too or delivered from the kuntha jagat.

Is this reference to the eight slokas the Lord Caintanya left in writing known as the Siksastaka?

What exactly is the meaning of the word sloka?

Yes Lord Chaitanya also glorifying the holy names of Lord as non-different from Him and being manifested with full potency of the Lord. 

I don’t know the Sanskrit language, but my understanding is, a verse or combination of words in Sanskrit is known as sloka like Bhagavad Gita 700 verses.

Thank you.

your servant

Haladhar Das

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 28 January 2020

Dear Sriman Raul – thank you for two nice questions!

Dear Haladhar Prabhu, thank you for your wonderful answers.

Requesting all the devotees on this group to come closer together by asking and answering questions about spiritual life, about Krishna, about helping ourselves and each other. Simply by asking and answering questions according to our disciplic succession the Brahma Madhva Gaudiya Sampradaya, under guidance and shelter from Srila Prabhupaa and Srila Gurudeva, we will make all advancement in spiritual life and make the world a better place…

Sincerely,

Mahabhagavat Das

Please subscribe to daily inspirational emails from His Grace Sriman Sankarshan Das Adhikari (Writings and lectures archived at www.ecstaticmedia.com ), written fresh every day from his travels around the world sharing the highest spiritual knowledge with everyone. Sign up now at www.joincourse.com

A bridge to the Moon

With all this talk of going to Mars and the Moon, did you ever pause to think that this has been tried before? There is a way to go to other planets but is this it? But anyways, why go here and there when it is all necessarily temporary?

At least 2.1 Million Years ago, there was a very powerful personality named Ravana. He was the king of a Golden Kingdom called Lanka. He was a very learned scholar, practically unbeatable in battle, and had practically conquered the entire Universe. You can say he was the greatest atheist of his time too.

Ravana

He really wanted to change things up – among other things, he wished to construct a bridge from Lanka to the Moon. He was technically capable of accomplishing this, seeing that he was undefeated in the Universe.

The Moon

The Moon is a Heavenly Realm, where the residents enjoy a very long duration of life, very strong, attractive bodies, with all manners of facilities for sense gratification, all powered by a beverage called “Soma Rasa” – literally, the nectar available on the Moon.

Chandra Deva, King of the Heavenly Realm of the Moon Planet

Naturally, everyone wants to go to a beautiful place where a lot of sense gratification is available. The hordes of humans going to various places for tourism is the proof of this. Mostly, people go on vacation for a weekend, a week, maybe a month or two, and yet others manage to stay on vacation for a long time, according to how much wealth and health someone possesses.

A vacation spot is not without its perils

In order to gain health and wealth, one must try very hard, and many are unsuccessful. Quite often, the healthy are not wealthy, and the wealthy are far from healthy. So, their capacity for sense gratification is limited. Most people who are on vacation don’t want the vacation to end. They want it to last as long as possible.

If someone is able to go on an unearned vacation, that is seen as a great stroke of good luck. If a politician was to promise his people unlimited free vacations, he would stay in power for ever, and the people would remain grateful to such a leader for ever!

Student slogging away

But to go to the Moon planet requires tremendous merits, which can be obtained by performing various severe austerities and penances, quite painful, and most cannot make it. Great practitioners of the process of material elevation, called “karma kanda” strive for many, many lifetimes to enter the heavenly realm of the moon. But one cannot go to the heavenly realm in these earthly bodies, just like an astronaut puts on a space suit to go into space and a diver puts on a diving suit to go under water, similarly, the heavenly realm requires a heavenly body.

The kundalini yogi can choose the moment of his departure

Not everyone can afford an astronaut suit or a diving suit, or the training needed to perform those activities, or the means of transport needed!

Astronaut wearing a special suit

This is generally true… to become a great rich businessman, to become a rich professional like a doctor or software engineer, stock broker or real estate tycoon, one must work very hard. What to speak of those things, if one wants to get a mere University degree, one has to slog for a good 20+ years through school and University. And even then a degree is not guaranteed, after all, so many students fall by the wayside without earning a University degree.

Stock Brokers struggling to earn a livelihood

So naturally, Ravana was a very popular king, he promised the Ultimate heavenly luxury just for the mere price of climbing a staircase!

But Ravana didn’t make it. In fact, he bit the dust at the hands of Lord Rama – God who appeared as the Ideal King. And needless to say, the staircase never materialized.

So, these days, it is all the rage to want to go and live in space, on the Moon, or maybe Mars. Fools are claiming to take anyone who wants to go anyplace in our Universe in due course of time. But they too will bite the dust, just like the mighty Ravana. And it’s not only Ravana, but unfortunately, a large number of his followers were also slain in the battle outside Lanka.

In fact, compared to the Original Ravana, these little ravanas like Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Richard Branson are not even as significant as bacteria. They are rich on imaginary wealth, somehow everyone is accepting their billions of dollars of fake money as real. Every single day, just by rising and setting, the sun is eroding their lifetimes. They are already old men, and will sooner or later succumb to inevitable death.

The intelligent person should ask the right questions…

  1. What about this planet? What about getting along with each other here without trying to kill each other? What about respect for all of us, all races, all species, all species? What problems are we trying to solve running away from this planet and this life here and now?
  2. No matter how amazing a place might be on this planet, no matter how beautiful, how relaxing, or how exciting, has it’s own share of problems. Every “tropical paradise” has it’s share of birth, death, old age, and disease, not to mention mosquitoes, crime, violence, exploitation, and corruption!
  3. If I live in a poor country, say a place like Burundi or Somalia, say I want to go to a rich country like the United States of America or Germany… can I go there without a passport, a visa, and a plane ticket? Can everyone in the world go to any place on the planet today? So, why can someone travel to other planets without acquiring the necessary qualifications?
  4. Those of us who have the experience of being on holiday, does the holiday last for ever? Is it not that once the money is finished, one has to get back home and resume work? So, even if someone was able to go to some heavenly realm, would it not be temporary? Should we not look for a permanent solution to the problems of the world?

आब्रह्मभुवनाल्ल‍ोका: पुनरावर्तिनोऽर्जुन ।
मामुपेत्य तु कौन्तेय पुनर्जन्म न विद्यते ॥ १६ ॥

ā-brahma-bhuvanāl lokāḥ
punar āvartino ’rjuna
mām upetya tu kaunteya
punar janma na vidyate

From the highest planet in the material world down to the lowest, all are places of misery wherein repeated birth and death take place. But one who attains to My abode, O son of Kuntī, never takes birth again.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/8/16/

While the Moon is a heavenly realm, Mars is actually an inauspicious planet, why should anyone go there!

NASA, little Ravanas

So therefore, instead of being in the Ravana camp by being a fan of NASA or Musk or the like, or placing any faith in them, we should instead go beyond their bluffs and reach a higher level of consciousness, Krishna Consciousness. Instead of going here and there, we should strive to go back home, or be right at home in our eternal spiritual identities, regardless of where we may be placed.

We are spiritual beings at our core, we all are. We’re having this material experience, and striving to get the material experience that will truly satisfy us. But no material experience can make us truly happy just as a fish out of water will never be happy.

Easy Journey to Other Planets

If you want to read this book “Easy Journey to Other Planets” by A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, click here. If you would like a paper copy, or send a copy to the little Ravanas, let me know!

Questions? Would you like to reach out to me?

Krishna – Duality Confusion – One And Many?

Is the Supreme Absolute Truth One or Many? Is Krishna One or Many? How is it that Krishna is One without a Second? How about Love? How about Relationships? How to understand this?

Jyoti Gupta, 27 April 2020

Hare Krishna 

If you could explain Chapter 5, Text 17 of Bhagavad Gita, where it has been told that there is duality in Krishna-simultaneous identity and individuality.

One more thing I would like to know – He is one without a second.. kindly explain .

Thank you 

🙏

Hare Krishna 

Jyoti Gupta

Mahabhagavat Das, 28 April 2020

Dear Mother Jyoti,

Hare Krishna!

You are referring to BG 5.17, where in the purport Srila Prabhupada writes: “A Kṛṣṇa conscious person can thoroughly understand that there is duality (simultaneous identity and individuality) in Kṛṣṇa, and, equipped with such transcendental knowledge, one can make steady progress on the path of liberation.”

What this means is that Krishna is a person originally, and that He has impersonal aspects.

Before we go to Krishna, let us look at ourselves…

You are a person, but if you completely ignore someone, then that is your own impersonal aspect. Also, when you are angry, then anyone who comes in your way will experience your anger, whether they did something to deserve your anger or not, so in this way, your anger can be said to be impersonal, even though you are a person yourself.

Similarly, Krishna, has His own impersonal aspects. The primary impersonal aspect is His Brahman feature. In the Brahman feature, which is His bodily effulgence, there is no individuality. Another one of Krishna’s impersonal features is time, time does not care for any person, it is impersonal, time just moves on and forces the world to keep moving along with it.

In addition to Krishna’s impersonal features, there is also the “localized Supersoul” or Paramatma feature, where Krishna expands into unlimited expansions, enters into the heart of every living entity along with the Atma, and also enters into the atoms and the space within the atoms. Even though Krishna expands in this way, Krishna still remains Krishna individually.

His closest, most intimate feature is Himself, His personal form, name, and identity.

Another crude example is – you may get a letter from the Government… inside the Government there is a department, and that department has a head, and that head has a boss, that boss has another boss, and ultimately it is the President or the Prime Minister who is the top power of the government. But when we see a policeman on the street enforcing the order of the government, then that policeman has the combined force of the entire government, and if necessary, through that policeman, the entire government can act. So, the government can be seen as some sort of “Brahman” – the government is impersonal, but inside that Brahman, there are so many little government representatives… Of course all of this cannot compare to SrI Krishna because Krishna is inconceivable by material means.

Krishna is one without a second because when you rank someone #1, #2, #3, etc., then it implies that there is some measure by which #1 is superior to #2, and #2 is superior to #3… so if #3 tries a bit harder, then they can overtake #1 and become the new #1… but in the case of Krishna, there is no comparison whatsoever, no one else can compare or match up to Krishna!

There may be occasionally some delay in answering questions sometimes, but rest assured that we are here to serve you on your spiritual journey.

I hope this helps.

Sincerely,

Mahabhagavat Das

dasadas.com

Jyoti Gupta, 29 April 2020

Hare Krishna !

Thank you so much for the kind response, and for bringing clarity to my mind.

Regards

Jyoti Gupta

Please subscribe to daily inspirational emails from His Grace Sriman Sankarshan Das Adhikari (Writings and lectures archived at www.ecstaticmedia.com), written fresh every day from his travels around the world sharing the highest spiritual knowledge with everyone. Sign up now at www.joincourse.com

The Milk Controversy – should we give it up?

Should spiritualists consume milk or should they be vegan? The Vedic texts enjoin us to develop solid intelligence through milk consumption, but yet modern milk production is fraught with violence. So what is the spiritualist to do?

Partha Das, 26 April 2020

Hare Krsna,

I was surprised to see many articles and interviews by modern day doctors saying milk is white poison.

As a Hare Krsna devotee, I have given up tea, coffee, alcohol smoking etc . My only source of pleasure is daily cups of hot milk . I also enjoy all the milk byproducts such as yogurt, paneer, cheese, milk, sweets etc.

I tried to be a vegan for 3 months , on advice of a doctor who is against milk. But the result was that my bones and tooth became weak and brittle. I was forced to restart milk immediately.

Could you enlighten me a little on this matter. It is not possible to get milk from an ISKCON farm , which doesn’t use injections on cows, or is not cruel to animals.

What is the ISKCON stand on this matter, as our source of milk is the Govt dairy farm and it’s not possible to keep a cow in a city.

Dandavats,

Partha Das

Paramahamsa Das, 28 April 2020

Hare Krishna, 

Please accept my obeisances 

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada 

All Glories to Srila Gurudev, 

I would like to thank you for your wonderful question and also appreciate that you have worked your way to avoid Tea, coffee, and nasty habits like smoking. It indeed shows your dedication to imbibe a proper lifestyle that will bring you closer to Krishna by at least reaching to the mode of goodness. 

As far as Milk and milk products are concerned or in that case, any foodstuff you enjoy if you do so without making an offering to Krishna then you are verily eating sin as mentioned in the Bhagavad Gita 3.13 

yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo

mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ

bhuñjate te tv aghaṁ pāpā

ye pacanty ātma-kāraṇāt

And if you enjoy the foodstuff after they are offered to Krishna then you can rest assured that you are not eating white poison as you point out modern doctors referring to milk. Of course given the fact that your body is able to digest milk and you don’t have some intolerance which might be the case for some individuals and they need to be consulting proper medical care. 

But, from the perspective of Sastra, Srila Prabhupada has very clearly mentioned in many different places that one can maintain ones’ body with any kind of foodstuffs but special emphasis is on Cow milk. It is very essential for the development of finer tissues of the human brain so that they can understand the intricacies of Transcendental knowledge.

Now as far as the milk you are referring to (from ISKCON Farm ) is called Ahimsa milk. This is very rare for people like us living in a city to get but in this matter, Srila Gurudev gives an analogy of a thorn to remove another thorn.

If you are not able to protect or participate in any way to directly protect Mother Cow then at least the milk you get from commercial dairy farms could be used to offer it to Krishna so that at least that particular Cow’s life is successful and you are getting the needed nourishment to developed your brain’s fine tissue to understand the Transcendental knowledge and who knows in the near future with that intelligence you might be able to come up with some scheme for Cow protection! 

your servant, 

Paramahamsa Das

Rahul Prasad, 28 April 2020

Hare Krishna …

Dandavat Pranam…

Please accept my obeisances 

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada 

All Glories to Srila Gurudev, 

How can milk (commercial) be considered in goodness? In the current scenario, cows have to suffer a lot to produce milk (commercial). For the production of commercial milk, the cow needs to undergo various known sufferings.

Then how can the milk produced commercially be considered in goodness?

I request you to please advise.

your servant

Rahul

Paramahamsa Das, 28 April 2020

Hare Krishna Rahul, 

Please accept my humble obeisances 

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada 

All Glories to Srila Gurudev

The milk that has been offered to Krishna and then accepted as prasadam is transcendental i.e above 3 modes of material nature. 

The milk of the cow even though derived by commercial means when offered to Krishna could be seen as service rendered by the Go (cow/cows) to Govinda  ( the Supreme Personality of Godhead) so it is similar to us working in the commercial world going under so much trouble and collecting little Laksmi and then we utilize it i in the service of Guru and Krishna( Narayan ).

Does this help?

your servant, 

Paramahamsa das.  

Partha Das, 28 April 2020

Hare Krsna Rahul Prabhu,

If we see the way plants are treated nowadays with pesticides, DDT, chemical fertilizers etc , I am sure such vegetables are not suitable for offering to Krsna. They will fall in the same category as milk produced in modern farms by torturing cows.

Hence I feel offering milk and vegetables to Krsna , before consumption is the only option left for us.

Nothing in this modern world is pure.

Dandavats,

Partha Das

Partha Das, 28 April 2020

Hare Krsna Paramhamsa Prabhu,

Thanks for your guidance. I am already offering the milk to Krsna before consumption. 

Hope to be part of the Ahimsa farm community in the near future.

Dandavats,

Partha Das

Priya Sundari devi dasi, 28 April 2020

Hare Krishna Prabhus. 

Please accept my humble obeisances. 

All glories to Srila Prabhupada. 

In my recent years of doing some research and talking to farm devotees as well as non-devotees, this is what I have concluded with the help of some senior Vaishnava inputs: 

1. If you have access to ahimsa milk then that is best. Drinking even 1 cup of ahimsa milk is better than loads of non ahimsa milk. Some devotees get raw milk delivered in bulk and freeze this and use this as needed. 

There are different degrees to the meaning of Ahimsa in this context. 

a. Where a cow is left free to graze and the calf is allowed to freely feed and then what remains is consumed….to…. 

b. Where cows are tied in a farm and allowed to graze for a bit and calves are allowed to feed limited. 

c. Of course the idea is that at the end of Mother Cow’s life, she is not slaughtered and the male calves are not sent away to be killed. 

2. If you don’t have access to ahimsa milk, then the next best option is Raw + Organic whole Milk. You can check with your local farm suppliers. 

a. This ensures that we are not ingested the various antibiotics and other medications that mother cow is subject to 

b. Also organic milk = mother cow is fed a better diet 

c. Raw because is it best to not have milk that has been treated (pasteurized and homogenized) 

*** Please note raw milk will need to be gently boiled before consuming to ensure that any other harmful bacteria have been eliminated***

3. If you don’t have access to raw milk, then the next option is Pasteurized + Organic + Unhomogenized Whole Milk. 

This can be bought locally in many supermarket chains. 

This follows the order of best, better and good. If you are able to afford / have access to ahimsa milk then that’s best. If that’s not an option then the next so on and so forth. 

In the least, the milk that we consume should be Organic and unhomogenized and always whole milk. 

Dr. Marianne Teitlebaum who is a renowned Ayurvedic practitioner talks more about that in her book: 

The demonization of milk

— Dr Marianne Teitelbaum

“Almost every blog or nutritional book I read calls milk a poison. Ayurveda considers milk a nectar and perhaps the most important food we can give to our body. Why the disconnect? There are several factors to consider here, all of which I discuss in my new book “Healing the Thyroid With Ayurveda.”

When you milk a cow and let the milk sit, the cream will rise to the top. This is called unhomogenized milk. Nowadays most of the milk is homogenized so you don’t see that layer of cream at the top anymore. But homogenized milk isn’t as nourishing and can contribute to heart disease and clogged arteries due to this processing of the fat molecules. So strive to get unhomogenized milk.

Get the full fat milk as it is the fat in the milk which delivers the calcium into your bones. If the milk is low-fat your bones will suffer as the calcium is now excreted out of your body contributing to the epidemic levels of osteoporosis we are currently experiencing. 

Many people cannot digest milk due to faulty digestion so it is imperative that you fix your digestion in order to receive milk’s health benefits. 

Some people cannot digest the protein in A1 milk, however numerous small dairies are springing up around the country which supply A2 milk which is lacking that hard to digest protein (see my book or previous posts about A2 milk). 

You must boil the milk to melt down the fat globules for best absorption into your cells, otherwise it will clog your throat and sinuses. 

If cow’s milk bothers you, try goat’s milk which is much lighter and easier to digest, and is similar to Mother’s milk. It is good for losing weight, congestion in the lungs and infections in the gut. 

Simmering the milk for a few minutes with 2-3 cardamom pods helps you digest the protein in the milk. And add a cinnamon stick to help you digest the sugar in the milk. Always add a few pinches of turmeric when simmering milk as the fat will deliver the turmeric into your cells. 

Milk is the only food that instantly absorbs into your cells to nourish all 7 tissues (blood plasma, blood, muscle, fat, bone, bone marrow and reproductive fluids). within one day of ingesting whereas any other food can take up to a month to assimilate into the body. 

And boiling the milk forms tryptophan which helps you make more serotonin which makes you both happy and calm. 

This is why drinking warm milk before bed can contribute to a deep restful sleep. 

Many of our thousands of patients have reincorporated milk back into their diets and have experienced the strength, stamina and radiant health that warm whole milk can bring back to our depleted bodies. 

Don’t buy into the argument that we should avoid milk. It’s one of THE most nourishing foods if taken in the correct way.”

follow Dr Teitelbaum’s posts on Facebook. 

If there’s a large group of devotees in your area OR you have consumers who are favorable to not slaughtering cows / calves then you can talk to local farmers and request milk to be delivered for a higher price so that the cow is not harmed and to help the farmer not sell the cow at the end of her life to a slaughter house.  This has worked in some communities in the past. This also means that if people are interested then there is scope for preaching. 

I hope this has helped shed some light on the milk topic. 

your servant 

Priya Sundari devi dasi.

*Kṛṣṇe matir astu*

Partha Das, 29 April 2020

Hare Krsna Mataji,

Thanks for your elaborate explanation.

Partha Das

Rahul Prasad, 30 April 2020

Hare Krishna

Dandvat Pranam

Please accept my obeisances 

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada 

All Glories to Srila Gurudev, 

I do agree that if we offer the Milk (commercial or other type) it will be freed from all 3 modes.

But if we/vegetarian people will avoid consumption of Milk and Milk products then the demand of Milk will fall and the Milk industry will not (will reduce) production of new cows.

As most of the cows are first subjected to the Milk industry and later on moved to Meat industry.

So for the benefit of cows we can move to a (no milk product) vegetarian diet.

I request you to please advise me.

your servant

Rahul

Dr.Reena bhardwaj, 30 April 2020

Hare Krishna    

Milk products like curd are good for health , increase immunity, and provide relief for gastrointestinal infections. So, milk in moderate amounts is good for health. 

Dr.Reena Bhardwaj 

Sailesh, 30 April 2020

Hare Krishna:

With my limited knowledge, I share the following facts that I am aware of:

 Milk bearing cows are slaughtered once their calf bearing days and milk giving days are done.  It is better in my humble opinion that we be intellectually honest with ourselves, that by supporting milk industry we support the beef industry as well. PETA has a campaign about it as well ( Are you drinking beef?)

 Yes, we can say offer the milk to Krishna , by saying “Krishna Arpana” and then all consequences including the slaughter of the Cows go to Lords feet. But let us be very clear that there is a direct connect between us drinking milk and the end result of what happens to the Cow.

This happens in India as well. The moment a Cow stops giving milk and cannot produce calves, they are released on to the streets. The Cows eat from garbage bins for a while, eventually they are captured and slaughtered . No doubt many are taken to Gau Rakshak sheds, but that is not always the case.

If I have offended anyone, I beg forgiveness. If any feel these are not the facts, I would be grateful if I could be corrected.

Sincerely,

Sailesh

Kumar shivam, 30 April 2020

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and matajis.

Is there any evidence that if we stop consuming milk then that cow will not yet be slaughtered? Maybe,it might then be used solely for meat purposes and get cultivated as a meat machine as the economic value of milk will go down..

Can’t we promote cow dung for biogas plants, manure and it’s urine for medicinal purposes(as many brands are marketing now itself) so that slaughtering becomes a less viable option.

your servant,

Shivam

Harold Meier, 1 May 2020

Hare Krishna

The only real solution to this matter is to have your own farm and your own cow.  Not very practical.  However you decide to act, act for the sake of Krishna.  If you decide to give up drinking milk, do that for Krishna.  If you decide to continue drinking milk, do that for Krishna.  Either way, don’t be attached to the result and be grateful for each step you take towards Him.

Hare Krishna

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Bhakti Philosophy for the mind and Krishna’s Pastimes for the Heart?

How does Bhakti/Devotional Service deal with the intellectual / logical / analytical side of us as well as the emotional/feeling side of us? Does catering to one mean neglecting the other?

Brajanath Das, 02 November 2016

Hare Krishna Dear Devotees,

Please accept my humble obeisances!

All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu!

All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

Please help me to understand the following phrase – 

“Pastimes of the Lord are for the heart and philosophy is for the mind.”

your servant,

Brajanath Das

Bhakta Sunil, 09 November 2016

Hare Krishna Prabhu

Dandavats!

The pastimes of the Lord help to easily realize the impurities in hearts by direct perception in story formats and reading philosophy engages the mind

Inversely , the reading of philosophy purifies the heart too and pastimes of the Lord engage the mind too

For example if we read this pastime of Lord Nrsimhadeva , not only we get moral by mind but also purifies our Hearts irrespective of how many times we read this, this transcendental literature is ever fresh contrary to mundane literature in news media and magazines :

THE PASTIMES OF LORD NRSIMHADEVA

There was once a great demon who was overwhelmed with rage: his brother Hiranyaksa had just been killed by the incarnation of Vishnu known as Lord Varaha. Thus he became very determined to become the emperor of the entire universe. In order to increase his power, he performed very powerful austerities. This penance was so severe that it disturbed the demigods. In fact, the demigods requested Lord Brahma to stop him. The chief of the demigods, Lord Brahma, therefore descended to pacify him by granting him a wish.

“Please grant that I not be killed by any created living being,” commanded Hiranyakasipu, “that I not die inside or outside any residence, during the daytime or night, nor on the ground or in the sky; that I not be killed by any being created by you, nor by any weapon, nor by any human being or animal indeed that I not meet death from any entity, either living or non-living; that I have no competitor; that I have sole lordship over all living entities and presiding deities, and that I acquire all mystic powers.”

After Brahma had granted him all these requests, Hiranyakasipu very swiftly conquered all the planets in the universe, took up residence in the lavish palace of King Indra, and forced the demigods to bow down to his feet. He even stole the sacrificial oblations meant for the demigods. Intoxicated physically by wine and mentally by power, Hiranyakasipu ruled the universe very severely.

During this time his queen, Kayadhu, returned to the palace of her husband and bore him a son, Prahlada. He was a reservoir of all transcendental qualities because he was a pure devotee of Lord Visnu. Determined to understand the Absolute Truth, he had full control over his senses and mind. He was kind to all living creatures and the best friend of everyone. Toward respectable persons he behaved just like a menial servant, to the poor he was like a father, and to his equals he was always like a sympathetic brother. Always very humble, he considered his teachers and spiritual masters to be as good as the Lord Himself. Indeed, he was completely free of any pride that might have arisen from his good education, riches, beauty, and aristocratic birth.

Hiranyakasipu wanted to raise his son to be a powerful demon, but Prahlada only wanted to learn about devotional service to Lord Visnu. After Prahlada attended school for some time, Hiranyakasipu took him on his lap and affectionately inquired, “My dear son, please tell me about your favorite subject in school.”

Fearlessly, Prahlada said, “Hearing (sravanam) and chanting (kirtanam) about the holy name, form, qualities, paraphernalia, and pastimes of the Supreme Lord; remembering (smaranam) them; serving the lotus feet of the Lord (pada-sevanam); offering the Lord respectful worship with sixteen types of paraphernalia (arcanam); offering prayers to the Lord (vandanam); becoming His servant (dasyam); considering the Lord one’s best friend (sakhyam); and surrendering to Him (atma-nivedanam, in other words, serving Him with body, mind and words); these nine processes are known as pure devotional service, and I consider anyone who has dedicated his life to service of Lord Visnu through these nine methods to be the most learned person, for he has acquired complete knowledge.”

Blinded by anger, Hiranyakasipu threw Prahlada from his lap onto the ground. “Servants! Take him away and kill him at once!” he screamed. However, Prahlada just sat silently and meditated on the Personality of Godhead, and the demons’ weapons had no effect on him. Seeing this Hiranyakasipu became fearful and contrived various ways to kill his son. His servants threw Prahlada beneath an elephant’s feet; they cast him into the midst of huge, fearful snakes; they cursed him with destructive spells; they hurled him from a hilltop; they gave him poison; they starved him; they exposed him to severe cold, winds, fire and water; they threw heavy stones to crush him. Hiranyakasipu even sent his sister Holika to burn him, but instead she herself was burned. But throughout these trials Prahlada was simply absorbed in thoughts of Lord Visnu, and thus he remained unharmed. Hiranyakasipu became very anxious about what to do next.

“You say there is a being superior to me,” said Hiranyakasipu, “but where is He? If He is present everywhere, then why is He not present in this pillar you see before you? Do you think He is in this pillar?” “Yes,” Prahlada answered, “He is there.”

Hiranyakasipu’s rage flared more and more. “Because you are speaking so much nonsense, I shall now sever your head from your body. Now let me see your most worshipable God come to protect you. I want to see it.” Cursing him again and again, Hiranyakasipu took up his sword, got up from his royal throne, and with great anger struck his fist against the column.

Then from within the very pillar that he had singled out came a wonderful half-man, half-lion form never before seen. The Lord’s form was extremely fearsome because of His angry eyes, which resembled molten gold; His shining mane, which expanded the dimensions of His fearful face; His deadly teeth; and His razor-sharp tongue. Lord Nrsimha then proceeded to battle with the wasp-like Hiranyakasipu.

Finally at twilight, Lord Nrsimha captured Hiranyakasipu and placed him in His lap on the doorway of the assembly hall. As He began ripping the demon to pieces with His many, many hands, Lord Nrsimha’s mouth and mane became sprinkled with drops of blood, and His fierce eyes, full of anger, were impossible to look at. Licking the edge of His mouth with His tongue, the Supreme Lord decorated Himself with a garland of intestines taken from Hiranyakasipu’s abdomen. Lord Nrsimha uprooted Hiranyakasipu’s heart and finally threw him aside and destroyed an army of Hiranyakasipu’s faithful followers.

By His transcendental cleverness, Lord Nrsimhadeva was able to kill Hiranyakasipu without contradicting any of Lord Brahma’s benedictions. The execution took place neither inside nor outside, but in the doorway; neither on land nor in sky, but on the Lord’s lap; neither during the day nor during the night, but at twilight; neither by man, beast, or demigod nor by any created being, but by the Personality of Godhead; and not by any weapon, but by the Lord’s own lotus hand, relieving the whole universe of Hiranyakasipu’s demonic activities.

Having been protected by the Lord, Prahlada Maharaja offered many prayers in a voice that faltered with love:

“My dear Lord Nrsimhadeva, please, therefore, allow Your angry feature to diminish, now that my evil father Hiranyakasipu has been killed . . . [The saintly persons] will always remember Your auspicious and fearsome incarnation, for it frees them from fear. In this way, my Lord, You appear in various incarnations as a human being, an animal, a great saint, a demigod, a fish or a tortoise, thus maintaining the entire creation in different planetary systems and killing the demoniac principles.”

Adapted from Srimad Bhagavatam, 7th Canto

Bhaktivedanta Book Trust. HDG A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada.

Hope this helps with your query

your insignificant servant,

Bhakta Sunil

Mahabhagavat Das, 11 November 2016

Dear Brajanath Prabhu,

Please accept my humble obeisances.

All glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

“Pastimes of the Lord are for the heart and philosophy is for the mind.”

Such questions would greatly benefit from inclusion of context. Please do this going forward. A statement out of context is a perfect recipe for misunderstanding and confusion. Who said it, who was it said to, and in what specific context was that statement made? Without context, our answers may be insufficient or cause more misunderstandings.

Bhakti Yoga is a perfect synthesis of “heart” and “mind”. Thinking, feeling, willing, words, deeds, body, and mind, fully engaged in concert in harmoniously pleasing Krishna.

Generally, Bhakti means loving devotional service, there is no intellectual analysis needed or done in such pure devotional service, pure devotees simply love Krishna and act accordingly very naturally, doing whatever is needed for Krishna’s pleasure. They know “in their heart” what pleases Krishna. In this regard, hearing or chanting the pastimes of the Lord are devotional service.

Often, arguments and logic are undesirable in relishing Krishna’s sweetness.

Srila Rupa Goswami says, and Srila Prabhupada summarizes in the Introduction to his Nectar of Devotion

“Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī prays to his spiritual master, Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī, for the protection of Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu—”The Ocean of the Pure Nectar of Devotional Service”—from the argumentative logicians who unnecessarily meddle in the science of service to the Lord. He compares their arguments and logic to volcanic eruptions in the midst of the ocean. In the midst of the ocean, volcanic eruptions can do very little harm, and similarly, those who are against devotional service to the Lord and who put forward many philosophical theses about the ultimate transcendental realization cannot disturb this great ocean of devotional service.”

But for someone who is conditioned by material energy, the mind and intelligence generally stands in the way of what is simply a matter of natural course of being true to our spiritual self. Such conditioned souls require philosophy and intellectual analysis to convince them to not do material nonsense but to render some devotional service, which, when done sincerely, gradually reawakens love of Krishna within the heart.

A pure devotee often engages in philosophizing on the pastimes, as our Acharyas, Srila Prabhupada and his disciples and grand-disciples do, but this is for our benefit, the benefit of the conditioned souls.

I hope this helps.

your servant,

Mahabhagavat Das

Dra Varni, 12 November 2016

Hare Krsna!!   This is a supreme question. While I am not a devotee I have had this experience. There are many answers, but “pastimes” and “theory” are not two separate things in this case. By this I mean one could not be without the other. And the outcome is not synthesis.  Elevation, in my experience, came from reading “pastimes” and “hearing” pastimes. Primarily, reading of Sri Caitanya Caritamrta, not all 17

Dra Varni

Dra Varni, 02 December 2016

All glories to Srila Prabhupada!, Dhruva Maharaja!

Hare Krsna!

“Bhakti Yoga is a perfect synthesis of  “heart” and “mind”. Thinking, feeling, willing, words, deeds, body, and mind, fully engaged in concert in harmoniously pleasing Krishna.”

I have taken time to respond to the above statement because its components are complicated and fragile . Above is the context of the message I received . I have a problem with the word “synthesis”. Below is my rendering to screen of why. I am sure too be only person with such thinking.

It is important to remember that the heart and mind are a continuum, not two distinct and separate energies. Given the age of Cali there is a compartmentalized effort to split everything. Objects for synthesis must be in direct opposition. Other look-a-likes are called “binary-oppositions” they just have the appearance of opposition. Used as a metaphor “Synthesis”would be fine depending on genre. And Bhakti Yoga would be the perfect synthesis of “heart”and “mind” if they were in opposition. 

Dra

Please subscribe to daily inspirational emails from His Grace Sriman Sankarshan Das Adhikari (Writings and lectures archived at www.ecstaticmedia.com ), written fresh every day from his travels around the world sharing the highest spiritual knowledge with everyone. Sign up now at www.joincourse.com

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