The Hare Krishnas are not pessimistic, optimistic, or realistic – we are simply joyful!

Are the Hare Krishnas pessmistic? Are they realistic? Why do they keep talking about death and the futility of the material pursuit? Could it be, could they be, simply… joyful?

Brajanath Das, 20th February 2017

Hare Krishna Dear Devotees,

Please accept my humble obeisances!
All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu!
All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
All glories to Srila Gurudeva!

Please help me to how to explain if someone says that the Hare Krishnas are not realistic but pessimistic

your servant
Brajanath das

Bhaktarupa Das, 21st February 2017

Dear Brajanath Prabhu,

Please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to Srila Gurudeva.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

You have asked what if someone questions why Hare Krishna’s are pessimistic. You wanted to explain to them that we are realistic and not pessimistic.

One of the dictionary meaning of “pessimistic” is
“tending to see the worst aspect of things or believe that the worst will happen”.

Dictionary meaning of “optimistic” is
“hopeful and confident about the future.”

If we introspect ourselves, as devotees we follow the regulative principles and chant at least 16 rounds of mahamantra every day.
Generally for non-devotees, following them every day is very austere and difficult. In fact even for devotees in the beginning it is very austere and difficult. But still why do we try to follow them strictly? If there is no benefit in doing so, why do we still do it? The fact is there is immense benefit.

A student who is serious to graduate from school, undergoes severe austerities in studying the subjects thoroughly by spending long hours, sacrificing other recreational activities like watching movies, TV, passing time in browsing internet, Facebook, whats-app, etc. which the student would have engaged in these recreational activities if not serious about graduating from the school. Such taking up of austerities by the student should be criticized as being pessimistic? or appreciate the student as being optimistic who spends time in recreational activities by neglecting to prepare for the graduation?

The sincere student who takes up austerities for graduating is the one who is actually optimistic about the life. The student sees a very bright future and enjoy bigger happiness by taking up these austerities. But the student who does not see the value of graduating from school and spends time in immediate recreational activities is the one who is actually pessimistic. Because the student is pessimistic, looks for all those things that can give immediate sense enjoyments rather than taking up austerities now for a bigger and lasting happiness in the future.

Similarly we “sadhakas” or practicing devotees, also take up austerities now because we are optimistic about our future. We wanted to taste lasting happiness, we realize that the happiness or pleasures provided by the immediate recreational activities did not give us lasting happiness, which every one of us are looking for. This is the exact same thing Lord Sri Krishna and the saintly devotees in the line of disciplic succession are teaching us. We are infected with the disease of ignorance, which hides our original identity, nature and relationships. They teach us on how to get rid of the disease and rise above and situate in the platform of pure last happiness. That process is called Krishna Consciousness. In the beginning these austerities might seem to be very bitter. But Krishna explains that happiness which is bitter in the beginning and becomes nectar in the end is in the mode of goodness. Scriptures explain that this is called “shreyas”, but that happiness which is like nectar in the beginning and becomes bitter in the end is in the mode of passion, called as “preyas”. The sense pleasures provided by the recreational activities are in the mode of passion. It will appear nectar in the beginning but it will turn to be bitter or even poison in the end.

Optimistic people take up austerities to obtain lasting happiness; but pessimistic people settle with immediate temporary pleasures, not seeing the optimistic future. Therefore the Hare Krishna devotees are not only realistic but in fact they are optimistic.

Hare Krishna!

your servant,
Bhaktarupa Das

Dra Varni, 21st February

Hare Krsna!!! Very optimistic, destination and a vehicle for departure. dra

Dra Varni

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 22nd February 2017

Dear Brajanath Prabhu,

Please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to Srila Gurudeva.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Thank you for the question, and a rare and wonderful response from Bhaktarupa Prabhu! Thank you!

Such questions really should be answered in the same vein as they are asked – most people asking such questions about Hare Krishnas are really not serious about understanding spiritual life – why should we justify anything to anyone? We don’t owe casual askers anything. When someone is serious, then they ask questions differently, and they accompany their question with actions too, trying to do something about their spiritual progress. So we should know when to answer and when not to answer directly.

Actually, we are truly pessimistic about anyone’s chances in the material world, everyone who was born in the material world eventually dies. And everyone who tries to make some nice situation here fails, at minimum, at death, but mostly everyone fails at other times too. We challenge anyone on this point – so many empires have come and gone, so many people have come and gone, so many great people are totally forgotten – what is the value of material efforts? Zero, it all comes to nought.

And we are immensely optimistic about Krishna’s mercy, in fact, we are not just optimistic, but we are experiencing it every day, so we have got direct confidence by personal experience.

The best answer I got to such questions was “try it and see for yourself”. If someone chants Hare Krishna even just once they will benefit more than anything I can say to them for all my lifetime:

https://www.vedabase.com/bg/9/2

rāja-vidyā rāja-guhyaṁ
pavitram idam uttamam
pratyakṣāvagamaṁ dharmyaṁ
su-sukhaṁ kartum avyayam

This knowledge is the king of education, the most secret of all secrets. It is the purest knowledge, and because it gives direct perception of the self by realization, it is the perfection of religion. It is everlasting, and it is joyfully performed. BG 9.2

Srila Prabhupada writes in the purport:

“Generally, people are not educated in this confidential knowledge; they are educated in external knowledge. As far as ordinary education is concerned, people are involved with so many departments: politics, sociology, physics, chemistry, mathematics, astronomy, engineering, etc. There are so many departments of knowledge all over the world and many huge universities, but there is, unfortunately, no university or educational institution where the science of the spirit soul is instructed. Yet the soul is the most important part of the body; without the presence of the soul, the body has no value. Still people are placing great stress on the bodily necessities of life, not caring for the vital soul.”

Then he writes: “It is said that the execution of devotional service is so perfect that one can perceive the results directly. This direct result is actually perceived, and we have practical experience that any person who is chanting the holy names of Kṛṣṇa (Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare) in course of chanting without offenses feels some transcendental pleasure and very quickly becomes purified of all material contamination. This is actually seen. Furthermore, if one engages not only in hearing but in trying to broadcast the message of devotional activities as well, or if he engages himself in helping the missionary activities of Kṛṣṇa consciousness, he gradually feels spiritual progress. This advancement in spiritual life does not depend on any kind of previous education or qualification. The method itself is so pure that by simply engaging in it one becomes pure.”

And finally, to conclude (purport continues but for this point – this is sufficient):

“The process of devotional service is a very happy one (su-sukham). Why? Devotional service consists of śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ, so one can simply hear the chanting of the glories of the Lord or can attend philosophical lectures on transcendental knowledge given by authorized ācāryas. Simply by sitting, one can learn; then one can eat the remnants of the food offered to God, nice palatable dishes. In every state devotional service is joyful. One can execute devotional service even in the most poverty-stricken condition. The Lord says, patraṁ puṣpaṁ phalaṁ toyam: He is ready to accept from the devotee any kind of offering, never mind what. Even a leaf, a flower, a bit of fruit, or a little water, which are all available in every part of the world, can be offered by any person, regardless of social position, and will be accepted if offered with love. There are many instances in history. Simply by tasting the tulasī leaves offered to the lotus feet of the Lord, great sages like Sanat-kumāra became great devotees. Therefore the devotional process is very nice, and it can be executed in a happy mood. God accepts only the love with which things are offered to Him.”

We are not even realistic, we are simply joyful! 🙂

Srila Prabhupada’s final words in that purport?

“Thus the process of devotional service, of Kṛṣṇa consciousness, is the king of all education and the king of all confidential knowledge. It is the purest form of religion, and it can be executed joyfully without difficulty. Therefore one should adopt it.”

your servant,
Mahabhagavat Das

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I am Flower Bearing Spring

Do you have trouble seeing God?

It’s a famous frequently asked question, and being the recovering atheist I am, I’ve been asked the question many times, can you show me God?

A great saint, A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, wrote this article to answer just that question… http://www.backtogodhead.in/how-to-see-god-by-his-divine-grace-a-c-bhaktivedanta-swami-prabhupada/

In the Song of God, The Bhagavad Gita, God says

ṛtūnāṁ kusumākaraḥ “, or ” of seasons I am flower-bearing spring

BG 10.35

I had that experience recently, when one night it was still winter, and seemingly, the next morning, all of a sudden, it was spring. Some trees had fresh green leaves, others had flowers in profuse numbers, some bright and colourful, some fragrant, some both… Here are some pictures so you can see God for yourself.

Apple Blossoms, still buds yet… God’s smile, about to unfold…
Wild Apple Blossoms, in full Bloom, God’s beautiful smile…
Do you have trouble seeing God? Why not see what God says about how we can see Him? Spring anyone?
More Apple Blossoms, this time against the Brilliant Sun, also the eye of God…

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How did we fall into the material world?

Rathin Mandal, 14th May 2013

Hare Krishna,

Please accept my humble obeisances,
All glories to Srila Gurudeva and Gurumataji,
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

We say that modes of material nature is there only in the material world,
But when we decided to enjoy separately from Krishna, look for our identity separate of Krishna and to lord the Manifestation ourself.
How should this nature of us be understood which is independent of modes of material nature?

your Servant
Rathin

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 15th May 2013

Dear Rathin Mandal,

Hare Krishna,

Please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to Srila Gurudeva.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Yes, it is correct that the modes of material nature do not exist in the spiritual world.
But free will, that exists in the spiritual world. The desire to enjoy separately and independently from Krishna is the root cause of the living entity’s bondage in the material world. When the living entity desires to enjoy in this way, then the living entity then comes under the modes of material nature and is transferred to the material world.

In purport to SB 4.29.65, Srila Prabhuda wrote:

kṛṣṇa-bahirmukha hañā bhoga-vāñchā kare

nikaṭa-stha māyā tāre jāpaṭiyā dhare

(Prema-vivarta)

Actually the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa, is the supreme enjoyer. When a living entity wants to imitate Him, he is given a chance to satisfy his false desire to lord it over material nature. That is the beginning of his downfall. As long as he is within this material atmosphere, he has a subtle vehicle in the form of the mind, which is the stockpile of all kinds of material desires. Such desires become manifest in different bodily forms. Śrīla Nārada Muni requests the King to accept this fact from him because Nārada is an authority. The conclusion is that the mind is the storehouse of our past desires, and we have this present body due to our past desires. Similarly, whatever we desire in this present body will be expressed in a future body. Thus the mind is the source of different kinds of bodies.

If the mind is purified by Kṛṣṇa consciousness, one will naturally in the future get a body that is spiritual and full of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Such a body is our original form, as Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu confirms, jīvera ‘svarūpa’ haya — kṛṣṇera ‘nitya-dāsa’: [Cc. Madhya 20.108] “Every living entity is constitutionally an eternal servant of Kṛṣṇa.” If a person is engaged in the devotional service of the Lord, he is to be considered a liberated soul even in this life. This is confirmed by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī:

īhā yasya harer dāsye

karmaṇā manasā girā

nikhilāsv apy avasthāsu

jīvan-muktaḥ sa ucyate

“One who engages in the transcendental service of the Lord in body, mind and words is to be considered liberated in all conditions of material existence.” (Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu 1.2.187) The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is based on this principle. We must teach people to absorb themselves always in the service of the Lord because that position is their natural position. One who is always serving the Lord is to be considered already liberated. This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā (14.26):

māḿ ca yo ‘vyabhicāreṇa

bhakti-yogena sevate

sa guṇān samatityaitān

brahma-bhuyāya kalpate

“One who always engages in the spiritual activities of unalloyed devotional service at once transcends the modes of material nature and is elevated to the spiritual platform.” The devotee is therefore above the three modes of material nature and is even transcendental to the brāhmaṇa platform. A brāhmaṇa may be infected by the two baser modes — namely rajo-guṇa and tamo-guṇa. A pure devotee, who is free from all material desires experienced on the mental platform and who is also free from empiric philosophical speculation or fruitive activity, is always above material conditioning and is always liberated.

——end purport —-
Plus, Srila Gurudeva’s answer here is very instructive, worth meditating on.

This is from TTFD dated 4th Nov 2009.
Have the category of souls known as nitya-baddha always been in the material hemisphere, hence the term “eternally conditioned”?

According to the philosophy of some Gaudiya Vaisnava groups this is the case. They say that the nitya-baddhas have never ever been in the spiritual world, thus the term “eternally conditioned” and that the nitya-siddhas have never left Krishna’s association. They say that the nitya-baddhas have been in a place known as the tatashta-shakti from where they descended into the material world of their own free choice. However, His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada states that we were once face to face with Sri Krishna in the spiritual planets, that we fell down to become little imitation lords here, and that we are then known as nitya-baddha, eternally conditioned. What is the exact situation of the living being?

Question No.2 : The jivatmas in the spiritual world decided by their own free will to depart. They were sac-cid-ananda vigraha: eternally in full knowledge and bliss. How and why could they they have decided by their own free will to leave Krishna’s association, since everything in the spiritual world is fully spiritual and the material influence of maya or illusion is conspicuous by her absence? Though he has a free choice to depart as he desires [Free-will always been the prerogative of the living being as well as his dharma- pure loving servants of the Supreme Person Krishna,], how could he have possibly been influenced to do so? For example, a split second second decision to leave due to temptation of being an enjoying over lord in the heavenly planets. Is this not some kind of material maya? Would he not have known the consequences due to his higher spiritual aware state of knowledge? Why would he have wanted to leave Krishna’s blissful association?

Answer:

The reason that many devotees get confused over the terms nitya siddha (eternally liberated) and nitya baddha (eternally conditioned) is that they consider them from within the context of time. In other words in material consciousness we are conditioned by kala or time into thinking that there are such things as past, present, and future. If we remember that in the liberated state there is no influence of time, that there is simply the eternal present with no past or future, then we can begin to understand how one can be eternally conditioned or eternally liberated and can switch from one status to the other.

To say that the conditioned souls have never been in the spiritual world with Krishna is anti-sastric and absurd when we consider that Lord Caitanya states that the constitutional nature of every living being is that he is the eternal servant of Krishna.

The eternally liberated souls in the spiritual existence have the independence to either love Krishna or leave Krishna. There has to be a choice. Otherwise love cannot exist, because love is voluntary. As long as the independence of free choice is there, there has to be a possibility of misusing that free choice. And possibility means that there must be certain degree of probability as well. Of course in this case the probability would be smallest possible percentage of 1 divided by infinity (1/?). But if we apply this infinitesimal percentage against the infinite number of living beings who inhabit the spiritual world, guess what we get. We get an infinite number of living beings who misuse their free will and give up the Lord’s association. (1/? x ? = ?)

At the boundary between the spiritual and material worlds time does not exist. Therefore the crossing of the living being over this boundary cannot be measured in time. This means that there is no moment in time when he entered the material world. In other words, if he is in the material world there is no moment in time when he entered it and he has therefore been there eternally. Hence, the term “eternally conditioned”. And when he chooses to surrender to Krishna and go back to Godhead he enters into that realm where there is no past or future. Therefore when he goes back to Godhead, he was always there. Hence the term “eternally liberated”.

Of course, as long as our thought patterns are conditioned by time we cannot fully comprehend these things. But if you will chant Hare Krishna regularly with love and devotion your consciousness will be liberated from the constraints of time, and you will be able to gradually realize these things in full.

And another answer from TTFD dated 29 July 2012:

“In this regard it is confirmed by Srila Prabhupada in a lecture he gave in Mayapur on 11 February 1976 that every living entity is originally nitya-siddha or eternally liberated. But sometimes just as a king may fall asleep and dream that he is a pauper, the eternally liberated soul, because of his marginal nature, may fall into the illusion that he can enjoy separately from Krishna or God. And just as a dream of only a few seconds can appear to be going on forever, when the soul forgets his identity, his illusioned dream-like state seemingly goes on forever and he is thus designated as nitya-baddha or eternally conditioned. Therefore when the living being does not misuse his free will he is known as nitya-siddha and when he misuses his free will he is known as nitya-baddha. ”

Sincerely,
Mahabhagavat Das

Rathin Mandal, 15th May 2013

Hare Krishna,

Please accept my humble obeisances,
All glories to Srila Gurudeva and Gurumataji,
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Thank you very much for the answer Prabhuji. This helps me to understand the subject more clearly.

your Servant
Rathin

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Scriptural basis for Chanting Hare Krishna Mahamantra

Janardan Mali, 24th September 2013

I had said that I am chanting Hare Krishna mantra every day 1600 times without the help of japamala.

You say ‘so thank you for that, please keep it up’.I do not know  why are you thanking me.

I also follow the  other methods prescribed by Shri Krishna in Srimad Bhagavad Gita for self realization.
You say that Chanting Hare Krishna is  the general easiest method of self realization for this age, and is the fastest path to spiritual perfection
given in the scriptures, it is not invented by anyone, it is specified as so in the Vedic literature.

I am eager to know the scriptures and the Vedic literature. Srimad Bhagavad-Gita  is timeless spiritual knowledge.

You also say that ‘in fact, the Hare Krishna Mahamantra includes ALL other Vedic mantras and is the origin of all Vedic traditions,
including the sacred syllable “Om” which is an impersonal expansion of Krishna of the all-pervading transcendence.

I know you could speak with greater authority and refute any  arguments. But sometimes scholars in response to the requirements of expediency
preach doctrines opposed to the dictates of their conscience and reflects clearly hypocrisy, mendacity and lack of religiosity, pride erroneously
exuding from intoxication of position. Supreme Lord Krishna describes the science of self-realization and the exact processes by which a
human being can establish their eternal relationship with God. In terms of pure, spiritual knowledge the Bhagavad- Gita is incomparable.
Its intrinsic beauty is that its knowledge applies to all human beings and does not postulate any sectarian ideology or secular view.

I am really sorry if I sound harsh.

Yours in Krishna Consciousness

Janardan Mali

Jagannatha dasa, 24th September 2013

My Dear Bhakta Janardan,

Please accept my respectful greetings.
All glories to Srila Gurudeva!
All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

I’ve read with pleasure that you are enjoying the chanting of Hare Krishna so much.  By doing this you are following in the footsteps of the six gosvamis of Vrindavan, headed by Srila Rupa Gosvami, who would dedicate their time to chanting a fixed number of Krishna’s holy names.  The followers of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu are generally known as Rupanugas because they follow the example of Srila Rupa Gosvami.  Our particular branch of the Caitanya tree is headed by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the founder-acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness.

The teachings of Krishna are eternally sweet, and become even sweeter by coming down to the present moment through Krishna’s pure devotees.  This is confirmed in Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.1.3:

nigama-kalpa-taror galitaṁ phalaṁ
 śuka-mukhād amṛta-drava-saṁyutam
pibata bhāgavataṁ rasam ālayam
 muhur aho rasikā bhuvi bhāvukāḥ

Translation:

O expert and thoughtful men, relish Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, the mature fruit of the desire tree of Vedic literatures. It emanated from the lips of Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī. Therefore this fruit has become even more tasteful, although its nectarean juice was already relishable for all, including liberated souls.

We receive these teachings of Srila Prabhupada through His Grace, Sriman Sankarshan Das Adhikari prabhu’s Ultimate Self-Realization course, of which this e-group is an adjunct.  He is a bona fide spiritual master, who helps countless souls understand and apply the teachings of Lord Sri Krishna.

In Padma-Purana, it is said:

sampradaya-vihina ye mantras te nisphala matah
SrI-brahma-rudra-sanaka-vaisnava ksiti-pavanah

“Within the Vedas there are crores of perfected mantras. However, outside of the supervision of the guru in an actual sampradaya, one will only become confused and eventually fall into a dark well full of Mayavada philosophies. Under proper direction, the same mantra will deliver the highest achievements.”

Furthermore, Srila Prabhupada’s dedication to presenting his books in such a scholarly and authoritative way, making thousands of sincere disciples and grand-disciples, establishing centers etc. at such an advanced age, dealing with heartless drug-addicts and meat-eaters and empowering them to revive their original enlightened state of Krishna consciousness —- All of this, is testiment that he is free from hypocrisy, mendacity and pride.

Therefore, we follow Srila Prabhupada.

Srila Prabhupada instructs us to chant on japa mala.  As you come from a very respectable background, I’m sure you know that chanting on japa malas is nothing new, but a prominent feature of our sacrosanct Vedic tradition.

Now, one may not be able to take up all of Srila Prabhupada’s teachings just yet, but at least the principle of accepting Srila Prabhupada’s authority should not be resented, this includes his teachings on how to dress, chant, offer prasadam, and all other aspects of Vaisnava culture.

My dear sir, please excuse me for any pain I may have caused with my words, unintentionally.  I pray to please my beloved Spiritual master, and all devotees, including your good self.

your servant,
Jagannatha Dasa Brahmacari

Harish, 25th September 2013

Hare Krsna Dear Janardan Mali pr !

All glories to Srila Gurudeva !
All glories to Srila Prabhupada !
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

The Hare Krsna mahamantra is mentioned in various scriptures as the only means of deliverance in this dark age of Kali.

Chaitanya-bhagavata 1.14, Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu speaking to Tapana Misra
“Listen my dear Misra, in Kali-yuga there is no need for severe penances or performance of opulent sacrifices; whoever worships the Supreme Lord Krsna he be crowned with fortune and success. So go back to your home and worship Lord Krsna with undeviating faith and attention, giving up falsehood and pretensions. By chanting the holy name of Lord Hari, Krsna, you will simultaneously obtain both the proper spiritual practice and the ultimate goal. In this age of quarrel and hypocrisy the only means of deliverance is chanting the holy name of the Lord. There is no other way. There is no other way. There is no other way. I am repeating this great chant for deliverance to you. This consists of sixteen names of the Supreme Lord with thirty two syllables: Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare. By constantly chanting and worshiping this Maha Mantra, your heart will feel the first blossoming of love and God; then gradually you will understand the truth about the proper spiritual path and the ultimate spiritual goal.”

Kali-santarana Upanisad from Krsna Yajur Veda
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
iti sodasakam namnam kali-kalmasa-nasanam
natah parataropayah sarva-vedesu drsyate

The sixteen names of the Hare Krsna mahamantra “Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare” destroy all the inauspiciousness of the age of Kali.  This is the conclusion of all the Vedas.

Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura says in his song Sri Nama from Gitavali
gay gora madhur sware
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

Lord Gaurasundara sings in a very sweet voice, Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare ; Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare

Agni Purana
hare Krsna hare Krsna Krsna Krsna hare hare
ratanti halaya vapi te krtartha na samsayah

Hare Krsna hare Krsna Krsna Krsna hare hare: Whoever chants this mantra, even neglectfully, will attain the supreme goal of life. Of this there is no doubt.

Brahmanda Purana 6.59-60
nama sankirtana deva tarakam brahma drsyate
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

The nama sankirtana(public chanting) of Hare Krsna maha-mantra delivers a complete revelation of all of spiritual reality.

Padma Purana, Svarga Khanda 50.6
harir eva samaradhyah sarva deve suresvarah
hari nama maha mantrair nasyatpapa pisacakam

All the grievous sins of one who worships Lord Sri Hari, the Lord of all lords, and chants the holy name, the maha-mantra, are removed.

Ananta-samhita (which is part of the Narada Pancaratra)
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
sodasaitani namani dvatrimsad varnakani hi
kalau yuge maha-mantrah sammato jivatarane
varjayitva tu namaitad durjanaih parikalpitam
chandobaddham susiddhanta viruddham nabhyaset padam
tarakam brahma-namaitad brahmana gurunadina
kalisantaranadyasu sruti-svadhigatam hareh
praptam sri brahma-sisyena sri naradena dhimata
namaitad-uttamam srauta-paramparyena brahmanah
utsrjyaitan-maha-mantram ye tvanyat kalpitam padam
mahanameti gayanti te sastra-guru langhanah
tattva-virodha-sanprktam tadrsam daurjanam matam
sravatha pariharyam syadatma-hitarthina sada
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

“Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare: This sixteen-name, thirty-two syllable mantra is the maha-mantra in the age of Kali by which all living beings can be delivered. One should never abandon chanting this maha-mantra and take to other so-called purificatory processes which are practiced by rascals, or engage in chanting other metrical compositions of the name of Krsna that are against the pure conclusions of the scriptures, or are filled with rasabhasa. About this divinely spiritual maha-mantra, which delivers one from material existence, the original guru, Lord Brahma, has said, kali-santararadi srutite, “The srutis have declared this mantra to be the best means of deliverance in the age of Kali”. Having all heard this from Brahma, the sons and disciples of Brahma, beginning with Narada, all accepted the Hare Krsna maha-mantra and, having meditated on it, attained perfection.”

Thank you

your servant,
Haladhar Das

SUPARTHA RUDRA, 25th September 2013

Hare Krishna,

Respected Janardan Prabhuji,

Please accept my pranam.

In addition to HG Jagannath Prabhuji’s wonderful answer, please find the following link for scriptural reference of chanting Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare as the only way to be delivered in this kali yuga:

http://www.krishna.com/some-scriptural-references-hare-krishna-maha-mantra

your servant,
supartha

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 25th September 2013

Dear Bhakta Janardan,

Hare Krishna!

Since the wonderful responses have given most of the information you had requested, I can now answer why I am thanking you for chanting, even though you are not yet chanting according to the spiritual master’s instructions.

This is because any chanting of

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

is better than no chanting of
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare.

By chanting
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

you are not only benefiting yourself, but the living entities in the entire universe, including myself.

So thank you once again, for daily chanting

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

Finally, Srimad Bhagavad Gita is ONLY accessible and understandable truly to those who are in disciplic succession from Krishna. So therefore, unless you are reading Bhagavad Gita As It Is by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada or another bona fide Acharya in disciplic succession who presents the knowledge As It Is, you haven’t gotten the point. Even though the Bhagavad Gita is open, it is an open secret. 🙂

I quote:
tad viddhi praṇipātena

paripraśnena sevayā

upadekṣyanti te jñānaḿ

jñāninas tattva-darśinaḥ

Translation: Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Inquire from him submissively and render service unto him. The self-realized souls can impart knowledge unto you because they have seen the truth. BG 4.34

Purport

The path of spiritual realization is undoubtedly difficult. The Lord therefore advises us to approach a bona fide spiritual master in the line of disciplic succession from the Lord Himself. No one can be a bona fide spiritual master without following this principle of disciplic succession. The Lord is the original spiritual master, and a person in the disciplic succession can convey the message of the Lord as it is to his disciple. No one can be spiritually realized by manufacturing his own process, as is the fashion of the foolish pretenders. The Bhāgavatam (6.3.19) says, dharmaḿ tu sākṣād bhagavat-praṇītam: the path of religion is directly enunciated by the Lord. Therefore, mental speculation or dry arguments cannot help lead one to the right path. Nor by independent study of books of knowledge can one progress in spiritual life. One has to approach a bona fide spiritual master to receive the knowledge. Such a spiritual master should be accepted in full surrender, and one should serve the spiritual master like a menial servant, without false prestige. Satisfaction of the self-realized spiritual master is the secret of advancement in spiritual life. Inquiries and submission constitute the proper combination for spiritual understanding. Unless there is submission and service, inquiries from the learned spiritual master will not be effective. One must be able to pass the test of the spiritual master, and when he sees the genuine desire of the disciple, he automatically blesses the disciple with genuine spiritual understanding. In this verse, both blind following and absurd inquiries are condemned. Not only should one hear submissively from the spiritual master, but one must also get a clear understanding from him, in submission and service and inquiries. A bona fide spiritual master is by nature very kind toward the disciple. Therefore when the student is submissive and is always ready to render service, the reciprocation of knowledge and inquiries becomes perfect. unquote

So kindly do not try to manufacture your own process, please follow the Acharyas in disciplic succession, and their direct instructions given according to time, place, and circumstance.

Hare Krishna!

Sincerely,
Mahabhagavat Das

Neelam sharma, 30th September 2013

Hare Krishna
Please accept my humble obeisance.

All glories to srila gurudeva and srimati gurumata.
All glories to srila Prabhupada.

Scriptural references on the Hare Krishna Maha-mantra

The Hare Krishna maha-mantra is mentioned in various scriptures as the only
means of deliverance in this age of Kali:

hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare
hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare

iti sodasakam namnam kali-kalmasa-nasanam
natah parataropayah sarva-vedesu drsyate
The sixteen names of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra: hare krishna hare krishna
krishna krishna hare hare, hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare destroy all the inauspiciousness of the age of Kali. This is the conclusion of all
the Vedas. (Kali-santarana Upanisad from Krishna Yajur Veda)

hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare

ratanti halaya vapi te krtartha na samsayah
Hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare: Whoever chants this mantra, even neglectfully, will attain the supreme goal of life. Of this
there is no doubt. (Agni Purana)
nama sankirtana deva tarakam brahma drsyate
hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare
hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare
The nama sankirtana(public chanting) of Hare Krishna maha-mantra delivers a complete revelation of all of spiritual reality. (Brahmanda Purana 6.59-60)

mukti-hetuka taraka haya ‘rama-nama’
‘krishna-nama’ paraka haña kare prema-dana

“The holy name of Lord Rama certainly gives liberation, but the holy name of
Krishna transports one to the other side of the ocean of nescience and at last
gives one ecstatic love of Krishna.” (Chaitanya-charitamrita, Antya-lila 3.257

harir eva samaradhyah sarva deve suresvarah
hari nama maha mantrair nasyatpapa pisacakam
All the grievous sins of one who worships Lord Sri Hari, the Lord of all
lords, and chants the holy name, the maha-mantra, are removed. (Padma
Purana, Svarga Khanda 50.6)

hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare
hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare

sodasaitani namani dvatrimsad varnakani hi
kalau yuge maha-mantrah sammato jivatarane
varjayitva tu namaitad durjanaih parikalpitam
chandobaddham susiddhanta viruddham nabhyaset padam
tarakam brahma-namaitad brahmana gurunadina
kalisantaranadyasu sruti-svadhigatam hareh
praptam sri brahma-sisyena sri naradena dhimata
namaitad-uttamam srauta-paramparyena brahmanah
utsrjyaitan-maha-mantram ye tvanyat kalpitam padam
mahanameti gayanti te sastra-guru langhanah
tattva-virodha-sanprktam tadrsam daurjanam matam
sravatha pariharyam syadatma-hitarthina sada
hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare
hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare
“Hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare, hare rama hare rama
rama rama hare hare: This sixteen-name, thirty-two syllable mantra is the maha-mantra in the age of Kali by which all living beings can be delivered.
One should never abandon chanting this maha-mantra and take to other so-called purificatory processes which are practiced by rascals, or engage
in chanting other metrical compositions of the name of Krishna that are against the pure conclusions of the scriptures, or are filled with
rasabhasa. About this divinely spiritual maha-mantra, which delivers one from material existence, the original guru, Lord Brahma, has said,
kali-santararadi srutite, “The srutis have declared this mantra to be the best means of deliverance in the age of Kali”. Having all heard this from
Brahma, the sons and disciples of Brahma, beginning with Narada, all accepted the Hare Krishna maha-mantra and, having meditated on it, attained
perfection.” (Ananta-samhita)
Ananta-samhita is part of the Narada Pancaratra”)

The maha-mantra is further mentioned in Chaitanya Charitamrita 1.7.83
(krishna-nama maha-mantrera), Chaitanya-charitamrita 3.9.56 (‘hare krishna,
hare krishna’ kahe avisrama), Narada Pancaratra, etc.

hare krishna krsneti krsneti mukhyan
mahascarya-namavali-siddha-mantran
krpa-murti-caitanya-deva upagitan
kadabhyasya vrndavane syan krtarth
“When will my heart become satiated by perfecting the chanting of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra in Sri Vrndavana Dhama, which the most merciful Sri
Caitanyadeva personally chanted and distributed to the fallen souls out of compassion? This wonderful maha-mantra is mixed with the mellows of love and
is the chief and the perfection of all other mantras. They are full of spiritual energies and glories.” (Sri Vrindavana Mahimamrta by Srila
Prabodhananda Sarasvati 17.89)

hare krishna rama nama gana dana karinim
soka moha lobha tapa sarva vigna nasinim
pada padma lubdha bhakta vrnda bhakti dayinim
gaura murtim asu naumi nama sutra dharinim
“He makes the gift of the song of the names ‘Hare, Krishna and Rama’, and destroys all obstacles such as sorrow, delusion, greed and suffering. He
gives the devotional service of Lord Krishna to the multitude of devotees who are eager for the shelter of His lotus feet. I fall down swiftly to
offer my prostrated obeisances to the Lord in His golden form, who holds a string of meditation beads.” (Srila Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, Susloka-Satakam
23)

sri-radhar bhave ebe gora avatar
hare krishna nam gaura korila pracar
(Vasudev Ghosh’s bhajan “Jaya Jagannatha Sacira-nandana”, text 4)

Chaitanya-bhagavata Madhya-khanda 23.75-80: (trans. Kusakratha Das)
. The Lord personally taught them, “Please happily hear from Me the maha-mantra of Lord Krishna’s names. It is:

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare
The Lord said, “Regularly chant japa of this maha-mantra.

In this way you will attain all perfections. Chant at any time and in any circumstance. There are no other rules for chanting.

Gather together, five or ten, in your own homes, clap hands and sing kirtana of these holy names.

You may also sing these words:
haraye namah krishna yadavaya namah gopala govinda rama sri-madhusudana
(‘I offer my respectful obeisances unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna. He is the descendant of the Yadu family. Let me offer my respectful
obeisances unto Gopala, Govinda, Rama and Sri Madhusudana.’ Also see
Chaitanya-charitamrita 2.26.64)

Gathering at home with parents, wife, and children, please sing kirtana in this way.”

japato hari namani sthane sata-gunadhikah
atmanam ca punaty-uccair-japan srotrn-punati ca
“Compared to that person who is attached to chanting japa, the person who performs loud chanting of the holy name of Sri Hari is one hundred times
better. This is because the person who chants japa purifies himself, whereas the person who chants the holy name loudly in kirtana purifies himself, all
those who are with him, and everyone else who hear the holy vibration.”
(Naradiya Purana, Prahlada-vakya)

pasu-paksi-krma-adi balite na pare
sunile se harinama ta’ra saba tare
japile se krishna-nama apani se tare
ucca-sankirtane para-upakare kare
ata eva ucca kari’ kirtana karile
sata-guna phala haya sarva-sastre bole
“The animals, birds, and insects cannot chant the holy name, but by hearing the holy name chanted they can benefit. Chanting the japa of the holy name
of Krishna purifies oneself, but the loud sankirtana of the holy name of Krishna benefits all living beings. Therefore, loudly chant the holy name of
Krishna in kirtana, and you will get one hundred times the benefit of chanting japa. This is the verdict of all the sastras.” (
Chaitanya-bhagavata 1.16, Haridasa Thakura speaking)

“Listen my dear Misra, in Kali-yuga there is no need for severe penances or performance of opulent sacrifices; whoever worships the Supreme Lord Krishna

he be crowned with fortune and success. So go back to your home and worship Lord Krishna with undeviating faith and attention, giving up falsehood and
pretensions. By chanting the holy name of Lord Hari, Krishna, you will simultaneously obtain both the proper spiritual practice and the ultimate
goal. In this age of quarrel and hypocrisy the only means of deliverance is chanting the holy name of the Lord. There is no other way. There is no other
way. There is no other way. I am repeating this great chant for deliverance to you. This consists of sixteen names of the Supreme Lord with thirty two
syllables: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama

Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare. By constantly chanting and worshiping this
Maha Mantra, your heart will feel the first blossoming of love and God; then
gradually you will understand the truth about the proper spiritual path and
the ultimate spiritual goal.” ( Chaitanya-bhagavata 1.14, Lord Caitanya
Mahaprabhu speaking to Tapana Misra)

In his purport to Caitanya-bhagavata Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati says very
clearly that Haridasa Thakura chanted either loudly or softly and that is
why his cave became Vaikuntha.
Chaitanya-bhagavata 1.16.172:
tabe haridasa ganga-tire gopha kari’
thakena virale ahar-nisa krishna smari’
“Then Haridasa went and found a cave on the bank of the Ganges. He remembered Krishna day and night as he resided alone in the cave.”

Purport: “While remaining in a solitary cave on the bank of the Ganges at Phuliya, Srila Thakura Mahasaya loudly chanted the names of Krishna and
passed his days and night remembering the pastimes of the Lord. Sometimes he would chant the sixteen name, thirty-two syllable, maha-mantra loudly
(uccaihsvare), and sometimes he would chant softly (mrdusvare). Every day he would complete the chanting of three hundred thousand holy names, or in a
year he would chant one hundred million names of Hari. Some people consider that chanting the names of Krishna in a solitary place is in the category of
“upamsu-japa,” or “chanting very mildly.” They say that this maha-mantra, or chanting the holy names of the Lord, should not be heard by others; only the
person who is chanting should hear. If the lips move, or if the holy names are recited, then they will automatically be heard by others. But if such
persons lack faith in the Vaisnavas who chant the holy names of the Lord, then by the influence of Kali they dare to quarrel with those Vaisnava
chanters.”
Bhaktivinoda Thakura says in his song Sri Nama from Gitavali:

gay gora madhur sware
hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare
hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare
Lord Gaurasundara sings in a very sweet voice, Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna,
Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.
——————————————————————–
your servant,
Nand Priya Devi Dasi

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When did the Vedic period end?

Janardan Mali, 25th August 2013 

Hare Krsna !

It is said that all the Vedic knowledge is apaurusheya  i.e. not given by mortal human beings. What period is considered as Vedic Period?

What is really Vedic Version? Can it be extended upto 20th century?

Yours in Krishna Consciousness
Janardan Mali

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 26th August 2013

Dear Bhakta Janardan,

Hare Krishna!

Yes, it is true that all genuine Vedic knowledge is coming from Krishna. If someone hears carefully and attentively, absorbs fully, follows, and then repeats without addition or subtraction, then that knowledge is still as pure as it was when it came from Krishna, without any contamination. So why 20th century, even 21st century, 22nd century, and 52nd century can be considered Vedic period IF we are hearing the knowledge through bona fide authorized disciplic succession.

In this connection, we are all fortunate that Srila Prabhupada A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada heard and brought us this knowledge, and that his determined and sincere servitors such as Srila Gurudeva Srila Sankarshan Das Adhikari are daily repeating this “apaurusheya” knowledge to us. Now it is our duty to hear carefully, follow, and spread without contamination.

Sincerely,
Mahabhagavat Das

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

Dealing with Doubt

Jessica M, 05th November 2012

What should one do when they begin to experience doubts while on the path to Krishna consciousness?
I have been chanting for five months now and reading the Gita As It Is as well. I don’t know any devotees in my area though and have a lot of curiosity and begin to find myself reading material that endorses a more impersonalistic viewpoint from which I first came from before learning about and accepting Krishna consciousness. I feel a bit torn…At first I felt so convicted, while chanting, and now I’m doubting things.
I would love to feel that sense of conviction, faith, again. Any advice?

Thank you. Hare Krishna!

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 05th November 2012

Jessica,

Hare Krishna!

Thank you so much for writing in!

We welcome encouragement and support for Jessica from the global community here! Please don’t let her think that she is all alone on this path of Bhakti. This community is especially for those who live far from association of devotees, but of course, anyone who is genuinely desirous of spiritual advancement can benefit from this.

What you are going through is natural. I also came from a phase in life where impersonalistic philosophy dominated. As long as we are not fixed up in devotional service, this comes back again and again. It is a very seductive philosophy, because it encourages the material mind to remain as it is today, the undisputed master of the soul.

Whenever we think about something, one pragmatic thing to do is to assess who is to gain from a course of action. For example politicians push projects where they or their close circle will gain… actors promote goods which increase their own wealth, and so on, the world is full of such examples.

Impersonalistic philosophy does not have any genuine element of surrender to God… so that means the mind remains the master – the mind chooses what to do and what not to do, the mind disguises actions and thoughts and words as “realizations from the impersonal oneness”, but if we see carefully it is just rantings of the mind.

You should ask your doubts, specific individual doubts, the questions should be asked submissively so that those who have the knowledge are inclined and encouraged and pleased to share with you. When you get the answers, do your best to act on them. If you don’t act on the answers received, then they will remain mere theories.

Bhakti Yoga is very very personal, and it is experiential… what is involved for an experience to occur? Some effort! 🙂

So, why don’t you wholeheartedly participate in the activities of this group – this question is surely a start!

Sincerely,
Mahabhagavat Das

Virendra Trivedi, 06th November 2012

Dear Jessica,

Hare Krsna.

I asked similar question many years back to a senior devotee in a public forum and he gravely replied: “If you have doubt then come out challenging; willing to be defeated by authoritative reference and ready to be convinced by logical reasoning. This doubting phase is a dangerous situation. Don’t you know what Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita? Samsayatma vinashyati: The doubting soul is ruined. So don’t delay it. Act fast.”

So that is all I can advice you.

But here is something more I can tell you from my personal experience: I acted on his advice and I was saved from being ruined. To be defeated or corrected by devotees is also a very very good fortune which most people in this world do not have.

Just expose your doubts in this transcendental e-association of devotees as HG Mahabhagavat prabhu has suggested and see them replaced with your previous sense of conviction and faith once again. Participate in the association of devotees more often and their love will not let you feel torn anymore. You will certainly keep going higher and higher in spiritual life 🙂

Sincerely,
Virendra

Rahul Mangla, 06th November 2012

Hare Krishna,

Welcome to this wonderful group of devotees Jessica mataji. Please share your doubts in this group and I am sure your lost conviction and faith will return.

your servant,
Rahul

Rupa Manjari devi dasi, 06th November 2012

Hare Krishna

Dear Jessica

Please accept my humble obeisances,
All glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga!
All glories to Srila Prahbupada!

Doubts are natural on this process of devotional service and are nothing to be ashamed of.  When we first come to Krsna consciousness there is some faith called Sraddha, due to the association of some devotees or the holy named that incites are to take up the process, then there is a long process before we get to
nistha (firm unflinching faith).  We first have to go through the stage of sadhu sanga (associating with the devotees) bajana kriya, (we start taking up the process, taking shelter of a bona fide spiritual master), and the long desert of anartha avritti, the clearing of the unwanted things within the heart).  So during this stage doubts are natural, and clearing these doubts by making humble inquiries are all about  the process.

This Krishna conciousness process does not require blind – faith, in fact blind fact is actually discouraged, that is why the faith you see in advanced devotees are strong, it is based on realization through pratical experience. But I assure you they also had to go through the stage which we all are going through, the doubting stage. Even my beloved Spiritual master his Grace Srimad Sankarshana das Adhikari often speaks of the time he first came to Krsna consciousness – he was also influenced by the impersonal Mayavadi philosophy, and was reluctant at first to surrender to his now beloved Spirtual master  His divine grace A.C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.

But through association, he especially mentions the association Visnujana Swami his faith increased to the stage he had firm faith in Srila Prahbupada and now look at him now!  Complete faith, no doubts to the point his only desire is to serve Srila Praahbupada, by bringing and guiding everyone to Krsna consciousness.  Every minute, every second, he is engaged in answering e-mails,  because his only desire is to clear up the doubts of all those who inquire from him so they can too progess and experience the sublime existence of being pure Krsna conscious.

Thus my spiritual master is constantly encouraging me to bring all my doubts to him.  Sometimes I brings my doubts up with other devotees  other devotees, and other times to my spiritual master. My spiritual master has a wondeful way of eradicating my doubts immediately but  some times it takes time, and it comes down to “lets just continue this process and then wait for Krsna to revealed the answers because this process is so potent and real, and tangible, and though sometimes the mind may decieve you to think otherwise, once someone begins they develop a higher taste, and so once they begin they can never fully go back to there original mindset, in other words, they  can not actually fully enter material existence again.  Many times I felt like running back to my christian ways going back to church, because of some aspects I could not yet understand, but it would take me only one hour in the church to realize they were missing the missing link which Krsna Consciousness has.  I see proof of this all the time when I am distributing books or prasadam on the street.  I meet many people who
have taken up the process before me, and for some reason or other, they stop, but the faith doesn’t go. They are so convinced of the authenticisty of Krsna consciousness, they still read Bhagavad-gita, or at least revere it, and tell others about Krsna consciousness, in contrast to those who leave other systems of religious practice which is based on blind faith,  often become athiests.

Personally I dabled a little bit in the impersonal philosphy, and my first doubt was, “This world is real but  temporary “I was convinced it was unreal, but inquires eradicated that doubt.  But the strongest doubts I had to deal with was my christian conditioning.  And with Krsna consciousness there is a lot of doubts that can come if you are from Christian background  the first of course being the deity form of the Lord which to a condition Christian is “idol worship”, and of course Krsna lets Maya test you a bit, to see where you go for shelter, whether you take shelter of your mind, or his devotees.  On this point though I inquired and I could therotically understand the post box anology, (as you send a letter through the post box, the Lord allows us to worship him through his  authorised diety form, it  is the Lord’s mercy because he appears to us in material form, because our eyes to not have the spiritual vision to see him),  but still some doubt was lingering but then one day nine months after I started taking up the process Krsna did something wonderful.  One of the devotees in my community was going to India and wanted me to take care of her Radha Krsna dieties.  She asked me to do arti everyday for them, offer, flower, ghee lamp and insense and of course offering of food.  They at first appeared just like statues but I stared doing arti for them and offerings, and by the end of the month I could actually realize the mercy of Krsna through his diety.  Through this intimate service I could experience a attraction for Radha and Krsna devoloping and so felt reciporaction from them.

The process of Krsna consciousness can sometimes be diffcult to understand intellectually but without a doubt if you give it some time you will understand it practically through experience, as Krsna says in Bhagavad-gita 9.2

raja-vidya raja-ghuyam
pavitram idam uttamam
pratyaksavagamam dharmyam
su–sukham kartum avayayam

“This knowledge is the king of education, the most secret of all secrets.  It is the purest knowledge, and because it gives direct perception of the self by realization, it is the perfection of religion.  It is everlasting, and it
is joyfully performed.”

So I wish to encourage you Jessica, we have all been there and are still there to various degrees, but if you inquire from devotees in this forum, and inquire from senior devotees.  I especially reccommend to humbly inquire from pure devotee becasue they can impart knowledge unto you because they have seen the truth.  BG 4.34, “Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master.  Inquire from him submissively and render service unto him.  The self-realized souls can  impart knowledge unto you because they have seen the truth.”  So I especially enccourage you to bring you doubts to His Grace Srimad Sankarshan das Adhikari, with which you are already his student on his e- course.

You can e-mail him at sda@backtohome.com and I can guarantee he will be delighted to answer you inquiries.  Of course we are also happy to answer your inquiries to the best of our abilities.  Many of my doubts were cleared up just through inquring from devottees in my community, and a lot of mine are getting cleared up through this forum.
Some through direct inquiry and others through the inquiries of others.  And finally just keep with the process, eventually, everything will become revealed,

BG 10.10

tesam satata-yuktanam
bhajatam priti-purvakam
dadmi buddhi-yogam tam
yena mam upayanti ti

“To all those who are constantly devoted to serving me with love I give the understanding by which they can come to me.”

your servant
Rupa Manjari devi dasi

Shobha, 07th November 2012

Hare Krishna
Please accept my humble obeisances,
All glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga!
All glories to Srila Prahbupada!

Very nice answer. Thank you for sharing your realization.

your humble servant,
Shobha

Hemanga Das, 08th November 2012

Hare Krishna Devotees,

Please kindly accept my humble obeisances
All glories to Srila Gurudeva
All glories to Srila Prabhupada

It’s so enlivening to read devotee emails who are always up to guide others in spiritual path. Thank you Rupa Manjari Devi Dasi Mataji for sharing your experience.
This present Karthik month is like a Mega Sale.Any effort to chant more rounds or read Srila Prabhupada books will definitely help in spiritual advancement.Let’s all utilize this wonderful opportunity.

your servant,
Hemanth

Rahul Mangla, 10th November 2012

Hare Krishna to all devotees,

Please accept my humble obeisances!
All glories to Srila Gurudev & Srimati Gurumata.
All glories to Srila Prabhupad.

Please find below link which focuses on the detrimental effects of doubt in the path of devotion.

http://archive.org/stream/SriKrishnaKathamritaBinduIssue288/bindu288#page/n0/mode/2up

Hare Krishna,

your servant,
Rahul

Tirtharaja Dasa, 15th November 2012

Hare Krishna Jessicca,

When one starts experiencing doubts, that is a sign of making spiritual progress for the faith we have on Krishna is not blind faith but is faith with a purpose that is backed by Shastra (Krishnas own words or descriptions of
Krishna and the like) and emulated by great saintly personalities down the ions of time.

There is a very nice book on this matter and I advise that if you can gret a copy then get a copy immediately for it deals with this matter of doubt precisely. Conclusively we have to practically read all of Srila Prabhpuadas books but for starters this is a good starting point. The book is entitled Obstacles on the Path of Devotional Service by Srila Satsvarupa dasa Gosvami.

Just to give you a test, He writes quoting from Bhagavad-gita (7.27 purport) p. 2 “…Due to desire and hte, the ignorant person wants to come one with the supreme Lord (impersonalism) and envies Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead” One form this rebellion takes is doubts towards the teachings of the revealed scriptures and on the same page…Ignorant and faithless persons who doubt the revealed scriptures do not attain God consciousness; they fall down. For the doubting soul there is happiness neither in this life nor the next..”. further, “…The doubts that have arisen in your heart because of ignorance should be slashed with the weapon of knowledge. Armed with yoga, arise and fight.” and He concludes, … Meditation on these verses has been helpful in curing my doubt.

In his own words he advises…” Until one reaches the liberated stage, doubts will continue to come. They may not be serious, or they can become so grave that they can impede our progress. We should not hide the fact and bluff as if we are perfect. We have to learn how to deal with the obstacles on the path.

I hope this helps

your lowly servant,
Tirtharaja Dasa.

Sunil, 15th November 2012

Hare Krishna

Please accept my humble obeisances
All Glories to Srila Prabhupada

Respected Jessica I have read your question. I humbly suggest to you that you try to chant as attentively and sincerely as you can. Process of Chanting is like meeting with God through transcendental sound vibrations

And when you are free please give as much time as you can , to reading Srila Prabhupada’s books. If any question or doubt comes
to your mind while reading Srila Prabhupada’s books , please post them here

Regards,
Sunil Vaswani

Sanil, 17th November 2012

Hare Krishna Mataji,

Kindly accept my humble obeisances,

All glories to Srila Gurudeva

Following understanding helped me a lot:

o  Srila Prabhupada says in the purport of Bhagavad-gita that one with the conviction that Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead will receive the maximum benefit of reading Bhagavad-gita.  So, I wanted to be convinced

o   When I searched, I found out that the acharyas in the disciplic succession, pray to Lord and also spread Krishna Consciousness not for any material achievement or sense enjoyment. In fact they have rejected all material
benefits on their path of spiritual progress.

o   Srila Gurudeva sacrificed everything material he had except a guitar, with which he had a strong attachment.  Later on Srila Gurudeva said that he even sold that guitar for paying the rent of the temple.  I just heard a seminar
of Srila Gurudeva in the net http://www.theultimateselfrealization.com in which he says the following in between the seminar:

“I have been married and my wife is sitting here now, Vishnupriya Devi Dasi. We married since 1984. That means almost 29 years married. We remain brahmachari the whole time, strict brahmachari. I am not saying that every householder should do that, because householder life is meant for producing children. But Prabhupada said if a householder does not want to have sex life, which is very good. They can remain brahmachari. They can do that. There is a very nice verse in Srimad Bhagavatam, 7th canto (SB 7.12.11). Srila Prabhupada talks about the rules and regulations for the householders and sanyasis. I recommend that all householders should study this verse very carefully.” So, I realised that they are selfless people; they are not interested in any material achievement or sense enjoyment. Hence, I did not find any reason why I should not believe them. I feel and understand the unlimited mercy and
blessings they shower when I associate with them.

o   I also noted that associating with devotees help me lot to be focused.  By this virtual network, it is very easy for me to have association all the time.

o  Also, I realized the importance to finalize what I need at the end. So, I came to following conclusion:

o   I don’t want to be a miser – since, miser is satisfied only when he satisfy himself.  The miserly satisfaction is incomplete and temporary and doesn’t provide any real satisfaction.

o   I wanted to be a selfless lover.  So, in that process, I understood and convinced that only Srila Prabhupada’s teaching can guide me to realize these goals.

o   I wanted to achieve perfection:  To achieve perfection, I am convinced about Srila Prabhupada’s teaching that:
v  I should fully surrender to a bona-fide spiritual master who is perfectly situated, so that I can get proper guidance.
v  I should offer everything to Krishna, and my only aim should be to satisfy the senses of Krishna.  So, I need to do everything very carefully and lovingly before I offer it to Krishna and I should not do anything which Krishna
doesn’t like.  And at the end, when I achieve this, I am convinced that it will help me in the following:

o   I will be in perfect love relationship with Krishna, since I am serving Him unconditionally.

o   I will love everybody and everything (and I will not hate anybody or anything) since I know that everything is Krishna’s energy and Krishna’s arrangement.

o   With Krishna’s mercy, I will be able to transcend all dualities.

o   I will achieve spiritual perfection and unlimited bliss, since I am doing everything perfectly and unconditionally and there is no sin associated with it, and lastly,

o   I am protected, since Krishna had declared it through Arjuna that my devotee will never perish.

your servant,
Sanil kumar
“Please subscribe to daily inspirational emails from His Grace Sriman Sankarshan Das Adhikari, written fresh every day from his travels around the world sharing the highest spiritual knowledge with everyone. Sign up now at http://www.backtohome.com”

Why Krishna likes Raas leela?

Pradnya, 15th September 2011

Hare Krishna,

Why Krishna likes Raass Leela?

Pradnya

Ashutosh pandey, 15th September 2011

Hare Krsna!

All glories to Srila Prabhupada

Krsna likes Rasa Leela because it gives pleasure to His devotees which is perhaps the source of Krsna’s pleasure Himself.

your servant,
Ashutosh

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 15th September 2011

Hare Krishna Mataji,

Please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to Srila Gurudeva.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Why does anyone like anything? Because it gives them pleasure. Every thing, for example, the color of clothes they wear on a given day, has an element of personal choice involved.

Krishna is the Supreme Enjoyer, Raas Leela is Supreme Enjoyment, therefore Krishna likes Raas Leela. But don’t think that any mundane person can enjoy this pleasure… Even though Krishna enjoys this pleasure, still He is always fully renounced, always Brahmachari. There is no mention of breakups and divorces and unwanted pregnancies and abortions and custody rights in the spiritual world. The attraction between boy and girl, man and woman in this material world is a perverted reflection of the pure unadulterated Love between Krishna and Radha, Krishna and the Gopis.

No mundane materialistic person can ever understand Rasa Leela, they can only misunderstand and they do. To understand Rasa Leela as interactions between ordinary boys and girls is the worst mistake one can make.

On a humble note, Srila Vyasadeva did not in fact consider Himself qualified to discuss Rasa Leela very much in detail, and Chaitanya Mahaprabhu only discussed Rasa Leela in the private company of pure devotees like Raya Ramananda.

Sometimes the spiritual masters give us a glimpse into this rare and mystical spiritual experience, for example, Srila Prabhupada has described this in his Krishna book, but it is an undeserved gift, and must be gratefully accepted with great endeavor for purification by trying to chant attentively and hearing the sound of the Mahamantra, following the regulative principles and hearing the vani of the spiritual master and following the spiritual master’s instructions carefully.

your servant,
Mahabhagavat Das

Ikshvaku das, 23rd September 2011

Hare Krishna , Prabhu, to you and all other revered devotees on this group , or anywhere else,
All Glories to Shri Shri Guru and Gauranga!
All Glories to Srila Prabhupada!
Please accept my humble obeisances

I am very pleased that I could participate in this group and reading discussions here really makes my day, and want to thank to all participating devotees.

Just 2 minutes ago , I sent one letter to another group of devotees dedicated to studying Bhagavad Gita As It Is
Few hours before , I read the your question thread here and wanted to say something , but was not sure what it was.

And it is this : the essence of Rasa Leela is hearing about Krishna in the company of devotees – just like this group offers. Or any other group of pure devotees offers. These groups are not something material that ends with death. The
friendship established here goes on eternally , ever sweeter , ever increasing Ocean Of the Transcendental Bliss of Sankirtana , As Lord Chaitanya describes in His Sikshastika.

Now to mundane eyes, the Rasa Leela appears like young boy dancing with young girls. But what mundane eyes fail to see is – what is THE BOY discussing with the girls. In the material universe , discussion during the dance is sex. But what
about Krishna and the Gopis discussing while they dance and kiss and hug each other : Sankirtan – Pure devotional Service. The essence of every kiss or hug between them , you also get in the gathering of devotees who engage in pure
hearing of Krishna. As Bhaktivinoda Thakura describes the development of Pure Bhakti from Shraddha to Prema, compared to sugar candy production : 1st it is molasses and in the end after several processes , it’s very concentrated sweetness.

Or the other example , The wings of Garuda. The sound of his wings is vedic hymns. In the same way , every Kiss of Krishna is very concentrated Sankirtan topics and emotions connected with the service which the Pure Devotees
render to Him. And who are the Gopis – The Gopis are the highest pure devotees.

Srila Prabhupada describes in Krishna Book that that night of Rasa Lila was the duration of Lord Brahma’s night – 4320000000 earthly years. But the topics the Gopis discussed with Krishna during this night of dance, the
hugs and the kisses between them were so sweet  , that to them , it felt just like an ordinary night. Does the mondane sex possesses such sweetness? no it ends in just few feeble seconds – Like Srila prabhupada said – Psh, psh, psh.

Srila Prabhupada further explains that there is original taste of Sex – Adirasa , which comes from the Spiritual world.
But in the spiritual world the nasty mundane process of sex is completely absent , although there are hugs and kisses.

Of course how can I disscuss the Rassa lila Dace properly , but but somehow your question evoked in me , a systematic picture , from what I have heard from the Guru Prampara so far. Although information given from them is surely unique , it’s
highly possible that due to my own missunderstanding , I’m not able to present it correctly. That’s why ,  that’s why- this is not directly an attempt to answer question ,
but it’s an attempt to present what I have understood this far , which may be be corrected or further described

your servant
Ikshvaku das
Sofia , Bulgaria

“Please subscribe to daily inspirational emails from His Grace Sriman Sankarshan Das Adhikari, written fresh every day from his travels around the world sharing the highest spiritual knowledge with everyone. Sign up now at www.backtohome.com