Are there many Gods? Who is Krishna? Who is Vishnu? Who is Shiva? And who are the others?

How are they all related? Who should we worship?

Jayakrishna, 25 June 2018

I have the following doubt and i think you devotees can give the right answer:

In the Bhagavad Gita As It Is (BG 4.12 purport), it is stated that, “Actually, the demigods are not different forms of God, but they are God’s different parts and parcels. God is one, and the parts and parcels are many”,

then, in Brahma Samhita(5.32) it is stated that “Limbed though Kṛṣṇa is, His every limb is the whole entity. He performs all varieties of divine spiritual functions with every one of His limbs. Hence He is an indivisible whole and a perfect transcendental entity. ” this sounds confusing (If Demi Gods are parts of Krishna, and Krishna can take the offerings given to him by any parts, what wrong is there in Demigod worship? especially if it is to get extra strength in our devotion to Krishna?)

again, related with the above doubt,

In Srimad Bhagavatam (9.4.63) “The Supreme Personality of Godhead said to the brāhmaṇa: I am completely under the control of My devotees. Indeed, I am not at all independent. Because My devotees are completely devoid of material desires, I sit only within the cores of their hearts. What to speak of My devotee, even those who are devotees of My devotee are very dear to Me” So worshiping Demi Gods is justified because they, especially Lord Siva are Vaishnavas and hence Demi God worshiping is an easy method to please Krishna or get taste in Krishna? ( meanings and purports to srimad Bhagavatam 10.22.4 & 10.53.46 are also giving this confusion).

My understanding is that it is Ok to worship DemiGods if the aim is Krishna? am I right in this conclusion,Kindly clarify,

Bhakta Jayakrishna

Bhakta Sunil, 25 June 2018

*Question: Why not pray to the Demigods?*

Hare Krishna Srila Gurudeva

Please accept my humble obeisances.

All glories to You!

All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

I have understood that there is no separate need to pray to demigods as Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead and by simply serving Him under Your guidance I can achieve the topmost perfection. How should I respond to people who argue that one should pray to demigods for assisting us in our service to Krishna because the demigods are Vaisnavas and the scriptures reveal that service to Vaisnavas is even higher than direct service to Krishna? I understand that you are Krishna’s servant and that I need to serve you and the Vaisnavas, the ISKCON devotees. So please guide me how to understand and respond to this argument for praying to the demigods.

Hare Krishna

Your insignificant servant

Syama Kunda das 

*Answer: Guru is Sum Total of All the Demigods*

The spiritual master is the sum total of all the demigods. So by praying for his mercy you get even the more than the benefit of praying 33 million different prayers to the 33 million different demigods. And besides this, how long would it take you to pray to each of the 33 million demigods? If you made a one minute prayer to each of them, and you did nothing but pray to them 24 hours a day without sleeping, eating, or doing anything else, it would take you more than 60 years to pray to all of them. Compare that with saying a simple one minute prayer to your spiritual master, which yields more benefit. Now intelligently analyze what makes more sense: praying to your spiritual master or praying to the demigods.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

http://www.joincourse.com

www.sda-archives.com Thought for the Day 2 Oct 20216

your insignificant servant,

Bhakta Sunil

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 26 June 2018

Dear Sriman Jayakrishna,

Hare Krishna!

Please accept my humble obeisances.

All glories to Srila Gurudeva.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

It is possible to take one point from the Vedic scriptures and use that to justify practically anything. History is strewn with examples of people quoting scriptures to suit their own needs. But our path is “mahajana yena gatah sa panthah” – follow in the footsteps of the great souls who have “made it”. Just like soldiers walking behind the lead in a single file in a minefield. We put our footstep exactly where the previous footstep was.

As a principle, yes, one can ask for help in devotional service to Krishna from anyone who is capable of giving us that help. So, the gopis, topmost devotees, do this by worshipping Mother Katyayani, or the consort of Lord Shiva. Similarly, Srila Rupa Goswami has written about the worship of Lord Ganesha prior to beginning of our service to Sri Krishna.

However, Krishna, our Acharyas, Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva give us clear context and the means how to attain the final goal. With this context it can be seen that demigod worship for any reason is not really required.

Krishna has said

” ye ’py anya-devatā-bhaktā

yajante śraddhayānvitāḥ

te ’pi mām eva kaunteya

yajanty avidhi-pūrvakam “

” Those who are devotees of other gods and who worship them with faith actually worship only Me, O son of Kuntī, but they do so in a wrong way. ”

https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/9/23

and even more strongly:

kāmais tais tair hrta-jñānāḥ

prapadyante ’nya-devatāḥ

taṁ taṁ niyamam āsthāya

prakrtyā niyatāḥ svayā

“Those whose intelligence has been stolen by material desires surrender unto demigods and follow the particular rules and regulations of worship according to their own natures. ”

https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/7/20

I have an instructing spiritual master in Toronto, Rupanuga Prabhu, who gave me a simple way to satisfy the demigods consistent with our understanding of the demigods as “karma mishra bhaktas” (devotees tinged with some sense of material contamination) of Krishna. He said that after we pick up the Prasada from Krishna’s altar, we can mentally put the Krishna Prasada into other plates and offer the Maha Prasada of the Lord to the demigods mentally. They actually hanker for Krishna Prasada. Then, similarly, the Krishna Prasada can also be mentally offered to the ancestors. This is not contrary to what our gurus have instructed us.

As Srila Gurudeva has said in many ways (quote by Sriman Sunil before), including today’s thought for the day:

Worshipping Krishna Only

Srila Prabhupada very nicely mentions as follows in his introduction to the Bhagavad-gita As It Is:

“The Lord descends to this mortal world to show His pastimes in Vrindavana, which are full of happiness. When Lord Sri Krishna was in Vrindavana, His activities with His cowherd boyfriends, with His damsel friends, with the other inhabitants of Vrindavana and with the cows were all full of happiness. The total population of Vrindavana knew nothing but Krishna. But Lord Krishna even discouraged His father Nanda Maharaja from worshiping the demigod Indra, because He wanted to establish the fact that people need not worship any demigod. They need only worship the Supreme Lord, because their ultimate goal is to return to His abode.”

Our perfection of happiness will be to follow the example of the inhabitants of Vrindavana by making Krishna the only object of our worship.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari TTFD 26 Jun 2018

Therefore, instead of trying to extract meanings from the scripture that are not specifically given to us by Sri Guru, instead, we should strive to figure out how to align with Sri Guru and follow in his footsteps, starting with aligning our routine and how we live our life in the footsteps of a person who is already expert in following the previous Acharyas.

I hope this makes sense.

your servant,

Mahabhagavat Das

Chandrika, 26 June 2018

Sitaram

Can you please tell me if Lord Shiva is a demigod  or one part of the Trinity?

Regards

Chandrika

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 27 June 2018

Hare Krishna!

The concept of “the Trinity” is somewhat contrived in it that it is assumed that all three members, Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu, and Lord Shiva are somehow equal but this is  not so.

Lord Brahma of our Universe is currently a jiva, and hence a demigod, however, when no jiva is qualified to act as Brahma, then Lord Vishnu Himself expands Himself as Brahma.

Lord Shiva is certainly an exalted personality, and plays the role of demigod (father of the material world) as “Shiva” and is a separated expansion of Sri Mahavishnu as “Shambhu” – the glance of Mahavishnu to impregnate the conditioned spirit souls into the womb of material nature.

But Lord Shiva is hard to understand, he is a special “tattva” a category between that of jiva (little spirit soul) and Vishnu tattva (God category).

Bhakti Charu Swami Maharaja once explained that Lord Shiva is Vishnu in contact with the material energy, like how milk, once it comes in contact with a sour substance is no longer milk. He was using the analogy of the verse in the Brahma Samhita:

https://www.vedabase.com/en/bs/5/45

(the purport by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur, the spiritual master of our Srila Prabhupada is pretty comprehensive, please do read)

But especially relevant to this conversation “So Śambhu cannot be called a jīva. He is the lord of jīva but yet partakes of the nature of a separated portion of Govinda. “

For more information on the topic of Lord Shiva, as discussed in previous conversations on this group, please refer to:

https://www.dasadas.com/tag/shiva/

Sincerely,

Mahabhagavat Das

Chandrika, 27 June 2018

Hare Krishna

So if Lord Shiva and Lord Brahma are demigods , are you saying that Lord Vishnu, and by his incarnation as Krishna, is the only God (as opposed to demigod)?

Regards

Chandrika

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 27 June 2018

Dear Mother Chandrika,

Hare Krishna!

Lord Shiva is extremely special, as mentioned before 🙂

Yes, Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead

ekale īśvara kṛṣṇa, āra saba bhṛtya

yāre yaiche nācāya, se taiche kare nṛtya

Lord Kṛṣṇa alone is the supreme controller, and all others are His servants. They dance as He makes them do so. CC Adi 5.142

Krishna is the original Vishnu.

ete cāṁśa-kalāḥ puṁsaḥ

 krṣṇas tu bhagavān svayam

indrāri-vyākulaṁ lokaṁ

 mrḍayanti yuge yuge

All of the above-mentioned incarnations are either plenary portions or portions of the plenary portions of the Lord, but Lord Śrī Krṣṇa is the original Personality of Godhead. All of them appear on planets whenever there is a disturbance created by the atheists. The Lord incarnates to protect the theists  SB 1.3.28

https://www.vedabase.com/en/sb/1/3/28

Please do kindly read Srila Prabhupada’s purport: https://www.vedabase.com/en/sb/1/3/28

Yes, without a doubt, Krishna is the Supreme Master, everyone else is His servitor in one way or another.

Sincerely,

Mahabhagavat Das

J. Raul C, 27 June 2018

Hare Krishna!!

 Why when I ask people from India who is Krishna, their answer is an incarnation of Vishnu?

I understood Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the source from everything emanates!!!

Haribol Krishna devotees!! 

J. Raul C.

Kardama Muni Das, 27 June 2018

Hare Krishna 

Please accept my humble obeisances

All glories to Srila Prabhupada

All glories to Gurudev and Gurumataji

Raul prabhu, this is a very common question. I had this misunderstanding my self when I came to Krishna Consciousness. What I realized was that most people who speak of Lord Krishna as an incarnation of Visnu refer to Ksirodakshayi Visnu as the source of all incarnations. They are limited in their understanding that Ksirodakshayi Visnu comes from Garbhodakshati Visnu, who comes from Karanodakshayi Vishnu, who is an expansion of an expansion of Krishna. 

Srila Prabhupada explains that all the incarnations in the material universes come through Ksirodakshayi Vishnu. So for someone whose knowledge is limited to the material universe only, it is natural to think that all the Visnu-tattvas that appear here are incarnations of Ksirodakshayi Visnu. But someone who can see beyond the material world through the eyes of sastra, specifically Srimad Bhagavatam, it is not very difficult to understand that all the Visnu-tattvas are expansions of Krishna and are only appearing in this universe through Ksirodakshayi Visnu. 

I hope that what I have spoken is correct and helpful. If there is something that does not seen to to be in line with Srila Prabhupada, please correct me.

In your service,

Kardama Muni Das

Jayakrishna, 27 June 2018

Hare Krishna! Thank you Prabhujis and Matajis for your replies. Yes, from Srila Gurudevas message it is clearly explained and the doubt ends there. It seems not a coincidence as i have the same experience of getting my doubt answered by his daily messages, it seems that when we are strictly following Sri Guru, he will answer our doubts even without getting asked! such is the power of a Guru! Jaya Srila Gurudeva! we are all blessed to be here as his disciples or students and very very fortunate to have a pure Krishna devotee as our Siksha Guru or Diksha Guru.

Regarding Lord Vishnu, my understanding is that the original form of Vishnu is Krishna with his two hand form, and hence we may say that Krishna who appeared 5000 years ago is an incarnation of Krishna ( two handed Vishnu) himself, the proper word however is not incarnation, it may be described as a descending of Krishna, and this continues in every chaturyugas but each of the past times of Krishna are eternal and is happening somewhere in this universe, as there are many many universes existing and developing. for better understanding we may explain it(though not in the strict sense) to our seeing some stars which are no more there, from some billions of light years.

I have read Devi Bhagavata, there also we can see Krishna and Radha as the supreme authority!, though these Puranas are rajasik or tamasik, there too, the glory of Sri Krishna and Srimati Radha devi is mentioned elaborately! My personal experience is that when we worship Lord Siva faithfully and whole heartedly, we will get directed to Vaishnava devotee association. This is because, as it is mentioned in Brahma Samhita,  Lord Siva is our father,  father of the mundane world and also is the greatest Vaishnava and very much merciful..

your humble servant

Bhakta Jayakrishna

Jayakrishna

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Vishnu & Shiva, who is the Supreme?

Who is Supreme, Shiva or Vishnu/Krishna? The discussion rages on, and some will never accept. But what do the authoritative sources say?

Harish V, 28 Nov 2018

Hare Krishna !
Please accept my humble obeisances!

All Glories to Sri Sri Guru & Gauranga!

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada!

I would like to know, how the incarnation of Lord Narasimha came to an end after slaying Hiranyakashipu. I read in SB 7.10.31 that the Lord disappeared after being worshipped by Brahmā,

SB 7.10.31 — Nārada Muni continued: O King Yudhiṣṭhira, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is not visible to an ordinary human being, spoke in this way, instructing Lord Brahmā. Then, being worshiped by Brahmā, the Lord disappeared from that place.

This query was asked by my friend who came across an article which describes the story of Sharabha (Shiva’s form), GandaBerunda (Vishnu’s form) and Pratyankira (Durga’s form). Apparently Lord Narasimha was calmed down by defeat, by Sharabha (Shiva’s form) and Pratyankira (Durga’s form). It is stated that Lord Narasimha became the devotee of Shiva after the fight.

These incidents are described in the literatures relating to Lord Shiva.

He questioned me about the supremacy of Krishna based on this story which I could not effectively answer.

Request your guidance.

your servant,
Harish V

Filip Misic, 29 Nov 2018

Dear Harish,

Your question is very intellectually satisfying and is one worth asking. Even though I myself am not very learned in all the scriptures, especially those relating to the devatas, I shall make an attempt to shed some light into this topic and thus make a ground from which devotees may also further elaborate on the subject.

This story of Lord Nrisimhadeva, becoming calmed down by defeat from Lord Siva and Durga and then praising Lord Siva, is indeed a remarkable story, considering that we as devotees of Sri Krishna worship Sri Nrisimhadeva as the Supreme Lord. But in order to analyse this narration (which will be incomplete because we would have to read the full story to get the full picture), we have to state the facts that we already know from shastras, and in this light observe this narration of Lord Shiva.

Actually, from the narrations of the Bhagavat-Purana, Lord Shiva is known as a pure devotee of Lord Krishna, if not the purest. Just like Srila Prabhupada is a pure devotee of Krishna, and could hereby produce millions of Vaishnavas by his presence, similarly Lord Shiva is a pure Vaishnava. So just see how devoted Shiva must be to Lord Vishnu; in fact, Lord Shiva is often depicted as being fixed in samadhi, meditation. But who or what is he meditating on? He is meditating on Lord Narayana, paramesvara, the Supreme Controller.

We may refer to the prayers given by Lord Shiva to Krishna in the 8th Canto of the Bhagavatam to support these statements. When Lord Shiva heard of the pastimes of Hari where He appered as a woman to captivate the demons and enable the devatas to drink the nectar, he went to meet Lord Hari. After arriving, Shiva offered respect to Vishnu and spoke as follows:
śrī-mahādeva uvāca
deva-deva jagad-vyāpiñ
jagad-īśa jagan-maya
sarveṣām api bhāvānāṁ
tvam ātmā hetur īśvaraḥ
“Lord Mahādeva said: O chief demigod among the demigods, O all-pervading Lord, master of the universe, by Your energy You are transformed into the creation. You are the root and efficient cause of everything. You are not material. Indeed, You are the Supersoul or supreme living force of everything. Therefore, You are Parameśvara, the supreme controller of all controllers.”
This is very remarkable, because Shiva is himself addressing the Lord as the Supreme (sarvesam api bhavanam tvam atma hetur isvaraha): “You are the supreme living force of everything and therefore you may be called isvara.” In a following verse, Shiva also states: (ananda-matram avikaram ananyad anyat) “You are always in transcendental bliss, You are changeless, You are seperated from everything but yet You are everything.” These statements given by Shiva are very significant. Also, it is not that he is speaking allegorically or that there is some hidden meaning to this. No. He is addressing the Lord like this in order to show his position as subordinare to Lord Hari. Remarkably enough, soon after this, wishing to see the beautiful female form of the Lord that he had heard of, Shiva becomes captivated by Mohini-murti. It is actually narrated s follows: “His sense became agitated, Lord Shiva, victimized by lusty desires, began to follow Her, just as a lusty elephant follows a she-elephant.” (SB.8.1.27) How could it be that if Shiva was the source of all material and spiritual, that he becomes captivated by his own energy? This is actually not possible for the Supreme Lord. Shiva was running like a dog after Mohini-murti and he even discharged semen uncontrollably due to the amazing features of Srimati Mohini. Actually it is not that Siva was covered by maha maya, the material energy, because being a pure devotee of Krishna he is firmly fixed in transcendence. Rather, this was a show of Krishna´s yoga-maya, internal energy, which so captivated Siva. After this event Lord Siva understood his position and that of Lord Vishnu completely, and after circumambulating the Lord, Siva took permission and returned to his abode. So there is not really anything unclear about this, Shiva is subordinate to Krishna, who is the source of all that exists.

However, now one may question why this narration of Nrisimhadeva being defeated by Shiva is at all there? If Krishna is the Supreme Lord, how can His expansion become defeated by a jiva? It is actually very simple. Lord Siva is not just any ordinary jiva, but he is a pure Krishna-bhakta. And because Krishna is so pleased by the devotional service of His pure devotees, He is owned by these devotees. Just like in the First Canto Krishna wishes to glorify His devotee Bhishma by allowing Yudhisthira to be perplexed just so he can hear the council of Bhishmadeva and become relieved. In fact, when Krishna arrived at Bhishma´s deathbed with arrows in him, He even bowed down to Him (SB 1.9.4). So Krishna will sometimes allow Himself to be seemingly degraded in order to glorify His pure devotee. So similarly, this narration of Sri Nrisimhadeva and Lord Siva can be examined in this light. Nrisimhadeva put himself in a low position and allowed Siva to conquer Him just in order to glorify Siva. Lord Siva is a greta mahatma and he is know to be the destroyer of cosmic manifestation at the time of annihilation. So his strength is truly remarkable. But even though Sri Nrisimhadeva allowed Hiself to be beaten by Shiva, it does not mean that therefore Siva is higher than Narayana. This would be a conclusion made by somebody who is not receiving the Vedas from a bona fide authority and is concocting his on mental speculations about the narrations of the shastras, while not even studying the Srimad Bhagavatam and Srimad Bhagavad-gita. This is a very intimate topic, and we as sadhikas cannot really understand the transcendental relationships between Krishna and his devotees. We have the tendency to analyse stories from a material perspective, when in fact the narrations of the Vedas are transcendental.

Narrations like this are not so much read by Vaishnavaas, but they are very pleasing to devotees of Lord Shiva. Vaishnavas do not read stories like this, beacause they wish to rather read narrations which glorify the Lord. Just like the compiler of the Vedas Sri Vyasadeva arranged the Srimad Bhagavatam, which is filled with topics related to Lord Hari and His devotees. Bhagavatam is considered to be the ripended fruit of Vedic literature. This is the opinion of the great devotee Suta Goswami (nigama kalpa-taror galitam phalam (SB 1.1.3)) and all the acharyas like Ramanujacharya, Vishnu Swami, Madhvcarya, coming down from the disciplic succession started by Krishna Himself. These personalities were situated on the highest platform of transcendence, namely love of God, and therefore we choose to follow in their footsteps. And as for the converstaion you had with your friend, we should be aware with whom we have philosophical discussions. Just like Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu advised that we should not associate with mayavadis, because they can illusion our intelligence by their false conclusion of the Vedas. So similarly we should not associate, or at least consult, with people who are not performing sravanam kirtanam (unless we are very learned in shastra and can defeat their arguments). Because without the regulatory chanting of the Lords Holy Names a person should be known to possess a demoniac mentality. In this mentality nobody can come to the perfect conclusion of the Vedic literature (vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyo (BG 15.15)), which is to surrender ones life to Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead (aham adir hi devanam (BG 10.2)).

I hope my explanation and my view of this matter has not been expressed in too much length. I hold this subject a very important topic amongst devotees of Krishna and therefore have chosen to speak on this matter. I encourage anybody to further elaborate on this.

Hoping this proves to be helpful to you,

your servant, Filip

Harish V Menon, 30 Nov 2018

Hare Krishna Filip Prabhuji,

Please accept my humble obeisances!

Thank you so much for your enlightening explanation !

your servant,
Harish V

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 01 Dec 2018
Hare Krishna!

Thank you for the question and the heartfelt answer.

Here is my (short) response:

  1. Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead per Bhagavad Gita and Srimad Bhagavatam
  2. Sri Veda Vyasa composed 18 Puranas, 6 are in mode of ignorance, 6 in the mode of passion, and 6 in the mode of goodness
  3. Of the 6 in the mode of goodness, 1, Srimad Bhagavatam is in the mode of pure goodness
  4. Bhagavad Gita is regarded even by Adi Shankara (widely accepted as an incarnation of Lord Shiva, and also with scriptural evidence) as the topmost Upanishad – please read the introduction of Bhagavad Gita As It Is.
  5. Something beneficial can certainly be learned from all Puranas and all Vedic literature, but not the Supreme Absolute Truth, which is available perfectly only in Srimad Bhagavatam
  6. In the Bhagavad gita, it is clearly mentioned about faith in the various modes, how faith in the mode of ignorance accepts religion to be irreligion and irreligion to be religion.

But we don’t want to argue anything with anyone – we follow the authority of the disciplic succession – we are like the soldiers in a minefield walking behind the minesweeper, we step exactly where the soldier in front of us has stepped, we don’t deviate from the realized Acharyas in our disciplic succession. If someone wants to follow, good, otherwise they are welcome to stay in the material world until they come to their senses.

In general, there is one saying I heard from one of our spiritual masters in ISKCON…
“you can lead the horse to the water, you can’t make him drink,
you can lead a man to wisdom, you can’t make him think”.

Urging everyone to please carefully read the Bhagavad Gita As It Is and Srimad Bhagavatam ourselves. Or at least this article http://www.krishna.com/brahma-vishnu-shiva

your servant,
Mahabhagavat Das
dasadas.com

Filip Misic, 01 Dec 2018
Yes, this is nicely said.

your servant, Filip

Priya Harinath, 01 Dec 2018


Jaya!! Thank you Harish Prabhuji for the wonderful question and thank you Filip Prabhu and Mahabhagavat Das Prabhu for the enlightening and amazing answers. We are really fortunate to be part of this wonderful Vaisnava sanga.

your humble servant
Priya Harinath

Nikhil Mishra, 02 Dec 2018

Hare Krsna
All glories to Srila Guru and vaishnava devotees

It was wonderful to read conversations over this topic. I am unable to stop myself to put my points also here, which are not directly from Srimad Bhagavatam, but somehow I loved them while I researched this topic during my own dilemma.

Kindly forgive me and correct me if you find any discrepancy or offensive here.

Indeed relation between Lord Hari and Lord Shiva is very sweet. Both try to belittle themselves in order to glorify other. And I thoroughly love reading such kathaa/stories.

I see Adi shankaracharya (incarnation of Lord Shiva) saying
“bhaja govindam bhaja govindam govindam bhaja mudha mate”
I.e.
Worship Govinda, worship Govinda,
Worship Govinda, oh fool

And in in another revered scripture “Ram Charit Manas” by Goswami Tulsidas , i read Lord Ram proclaiming
“shiva darohi mama bhagata kahava so nara sapanehu mohi na pava
sankar bimukh bhagati chaha mori so naraki mudha mati thori”

Summary Translation :
one who consider himself/herself devotee of Mine but have repellency from Lord Shiva, such person can not find Me even in his/her dreams. If a person insult Shiva and desires My devotion , then he is a fool and worth going to hell.

So I bow down to Lord Hari and Lord Shiva who play Lila’s which are inconceivable by my little intellect.

Hari bol
Nikhil


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Lord Shiva’s statement about Lord Vishnu

Who is the giver of Liberation? What does Lord Shiva say about this?

Bhakta Sunil, 01 November 2017

Hare Krishna

Please accept my humble obeisances
All Glories to Srila Gurudeva
All Glories to Srila Prabhupada

While finding for Lord Shiva’s statements about worshiping Lord Vishnu i came across the following lines :

The Vedas (Svetasvatara Upanishad 3.8) confirm this in the phrase tam eva viditva. or “Freedom is possible only by understanding Krishna.” Even Lord Siva affirms that liberation can be achieved only by the mercy of Vishnu. Lord Siva says, mukti-pradata sarvesham vishnur eva na samsayah: “There is no doubt that Vishnu is the deliverer of liberation for everyone.” — 3-80-30

Please tell whether 3-80-30 is also from Svetasvatara Upanishad or another Scripture?

Thanks in anticipation

your insignificant servant,
Bhakta Sunil

Bhakta Nashvin, 01 November 2017

Hare Krsna Sunil Prabhu

This reference seems to be to:
Harivamsa
Bhaviṣya parva
Chapter 80
(Verse 30)

your servant,
Nashvin

Bhakta Sunil, 11 Nov 2017

Thank You Nashvin Prabhu

All glories to your response

Sincerely,
Bhakta Sunil

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Is Krishna an expansion of Lord Vishnu?

B.shahvir balaporia, 12th November 2013

Hare Krishna!

Pardon me for my dearth of knowledge in putting forth this question.
I just needed to understand whether lord Vishnu is the plenary expansion of Lord Krishna or is it the other way round? I ask this since, as per popular Hindu belief, Lord Krishna is considered to be an avatar/expansion of Lord Vishnu. Hence, Lord Vishnu is considered as Supreme Personality of Godhead as per popular belief.

My apologies again if the context of my question is inappropriate.

regards,
Shahvir

Sudeep Manchanda, 13th November 2013

Hare Krishna,

We have had wonderful discussion on the topic in the past. Sharing a few answers:

By Harish Prabhu:

1) BG 10.21
adityanam aham visnur
jyotisam ravir amsuman
maricir marutam asmi
naksatranam aham sasi

“Of the Adityas I am Visnu, of lights I am the radiant sun, of the Maruts I am Marici, and among the stars I am the moon.”

2) Brahma Samhita 5.48:
yasyaika-nisvasita-kalam athavalambya
jivanti loma-vila-ja jagad-anda-nathah
visnur mahan sa iha yasya kala-viseso
govindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami

Brahma and other lords of the mundane worlds, appearing from the pores of hair of Maha-Visnu, remain alive as long as the duration of one exhalation of the latter (Maha-Visnu).  I adore the primeval Lord Govinda of whose subjective personality Maha-Visnu is the portion of portion.

3) In Srimad Bhagvatam, there is a list of many incarnations of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but Krsna is described as the original Personality of Godhead, from whom many, many incarnations and Personalities of Godhead expand.

SB 1.3.28
ete camsa-kalah pumsah
Krsnas tu bhagavan svayam
Indrari-vyakulam lokam
mrdayanti yuge yuge

“All the lists of the incarnations of Godhead submitted herewith are either plenary expansions or parts of the plenary expansions of the Supreme Godhead, but Krsna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself.”

In many of his purports also, Srila Prabhupada has quoted Visnu or Lord Krsna as same:

(BG 1.14) – Victory is always with persons like the sons of Pandu because Lord Krsna is associated with them. And whenever and wherever the Lord is present, the goddess of fortune is also there because the goddess of fortune never lives alone without her husband. Therefore, victory and fortune were awaiting Arjuna, as indicated by the transcendental sound produced by the conchshell of Visnu, or Lord Krsna.

(BG 2.2) – Persons who are led by the material conception of life do not know that the aim of life is realization of the Absolute Truth, Visnu or Bhagavan (Krsna), and they are captivated by the external features of the material world, and therefore they do not know what liberation is.

(BG 9.13) – The mahatma or great souls does not divert his attention to anything outside Krsna, because he knows perfectly well that Krishna is the original Supreme Person, the cause of all causes. There is no doubt about it. Such a mahatma, or great soul, develops through association with other mahatmas, pure devotees. Pure devotees are not even attracted by Krsna’s other features, such as the four-armed Maha-Vishnu. They are simply attracted by the two-armed form of Krsna. They are not attracted to other features of Krsna, nor are they concerned with any form of a demigod or of a human being. They meditate only upon Krsna in Krsna consciousness.  They are always engaged in the unswerving service of the Lord in Krsna consciousness.”

Even if we observe during the Tulasi aarti we perform every day morning and evening, both Lord Visnu and Krsna names are used.  Moreover it is often observed that even during chanting the first mantra for offering obeisances while bowing down (pancanga pranam) some say Visnu bhakti prade devi and some say Krsna bhaktiprade devi but anyhow later on we only chant Krsna as given below :

vrindaai tulasi devyai priyaai kesavasya ca,
visnubhaktiprade / krsnabhaktiprade devi satyavatyai namo namah
 
namo namah tulasi krsna-preyasi namo namah
radha-krsna-seva pabo ei abilasi
 
ye tomara sarana loy, tara vancha purna hoy
krpa kori koro tare vrndavana-vasi
 
mora ei abhilasa, vilasa kunje dio vasa
nayana heribo sada yugala-rupa-rasi
 
ei nivedana dhara, sakhira anugata koro
seva-adhikara diye koro nija dasi
 
dina krsna-dase koy, ei yena mora hoy
sri-radha-govinda-preme sada yena bhasi

There must be much more verses or quotes too.  But hope the above may help a bit.

By Jaya Krishna Prabhu:

Please refer previous lessons of our course.i remember once our gurudeva explained it like this,
‘vishnu is god in office and krishna is god in home’

By Sanil Prabhu:

The mentioned reply by Srila Gurudeva is pasted below:

Answers by Citing the Vedic Version:
Question: Difference Between Krishna and Narayana

Dear Gurudeva,

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

I read Lesson C9: Transcending the Dualities of Material Existence, which I received on Sunday 29th July 2012. Well, it is so beautifully explained and full of knowledge.

I have some questions where even devotees are quite confused at times. I have read that Krishna resides in Goloka as a cowherd boy while Narayana resides in Vaikuntha.

My questions:
1. Is Krishna different from Maha-Vishnu? How?
2. Who is Narayana? Is Narayana and Maha-Vishnu same?
3. Is Maha-Vishnu an incarnation or expansion of Krishna?

I understand that they are all one and the same, i.e. the Supreme Personality of Godhead. But, can you please tell how they (Krishna, Narayana, Maha-Vishnu) are different and at the same time the same Supreme Personality of Godhead?

Thanking you.
yours humbly

Kesaven

Answer: God at Home and God at the Office

The answer is very simple.  In His original form the Supreme Lord is two-handed and is called Krishna. In His expanded four-armed forms, of which there are many, He is known as Narayana. All the forms are Krishna Himself. Simply He is acting in different capacities. When God is at home enjoying life with His intimate associates He is known as Krishna. When is at the office engaged in managing cosmic affairs He manifests form arms and is known as Narayana.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

your Servant,
Sudeep Manchanda
B.shahvir balaporia, 13th November 2013

Hare Krishna,

Thank you

Regards,
Shahvir

Shreyas, 19th November 2013

Hare Krsna Prabhujis
Dandavat Pranam.

I hope this helps as well. Following is the conversation which is a part of the lecture Srila Gurudev delivered. I pray that this helps as well:

Q: I am still confused with Visnu and Krsna.

SDA: Visnu and Krsna. Of course we are called Vaisnavas. You know what Vaisnava mean? It means devotees of Visnu. Actually Prabhupada explained this with one gentleman he met him in NY. I have heard the tape conversation, so I am basing my answer what Prabhupada told this Indian gentleman who also had a similar confusion as you. Krsna is the original Visnu. Visnu is the category. There are thousands of millions of Visnus and most of them have four arms also. But Krsna is the original form of Lord Visnu. So Visnu and Krsna are same. But there is one Visnu from whom all the other Visnus have come and that is Krsna. Visnu is the Personality of the Godhead category. In other words Rama is Visnu, Nrsmhadeva is Visnu, Vamana is Visnu, all the avataras they are all Visnu. Sometimes the jiva is empowered to act as an incarnation but in most cases the incarnations of God, they are Visnus and it is mentioned in the Srimad Bhagvatam.

ete camsa-kalah pumsah
krishnas tu bhagavan svayam
(SB 1.3.28)

That all those Bhagawans, all those Visnus, the original one is Krsna. So Krsna is the original form of Lord Visnu. And the other Visnus are the emanations from Krsna. Just like I can have one candle flame burning very nicely I can have many other candles that are not lit. I can take that one original candle flame and I can transfer it to the second candle. The first candle is still just as powerful but now that flame is also in another candle which can be transferred to the third, fourth, the fifth candle, pretty soon  there are  hundreds  of thousands of candles, all burning with equal power but one flame is different than the others and that is the original flame. The others are simply the expansions from that. So, all the different candles they are all Visnu but the one Visnu from which all the other candles  has come, that Visnu is known as Krsna. He is the original Visnu.

your servant
Hare Krsna
B.shahvir balaporia, 19th November 2013

Hare Krishna,

Thank you… very informative!

regards,
Shahvir

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Who holds the position of Lord Brahma and other major Demigods?

Neelam sharma, 30th January 2013

Hare krsna.

Please accept my humble obeisances.

All glories to Srila Gurudeva and srimati Gurumata.
All glories to srila Prabhupada.

Here is a question : Who holds the position of Lord Brahma and other major Demigods?…..
is the position attained by devotee from the spiritual world? , if yes then why are they subject to birth,death,old age and diseases

your servant
Neelam
Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 05th February 2013

Hare Krishna Neelam Mataji,

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

Yes, all entities originally situated in the spiritual world come to the material world out of the desire to enjoy separately from Krishna, but some realize very quickly that material world is troublesome, and some don’t realize even after trillions of years due to stubbornness. Our Lord Brahma in our Universe is the first link in the Sampradaya, he is a devotee, he is our Acharya, our spiritual master, but not all are like him.

Anyone who realizes, they are on the way back home to Godhead. Anyone who does not realize, they are going up and down.

Anyone who desires to enjoy separately from Krishna is subject to birth, death, old age, and disease.

BUT, there is another category of persons who are in the material world due to Krishna’s desire. These are Krishna’s eternal associates, who come with Krishna wherever He goes, and another class are the devotees who are instructed by Krishna to go to material world and please bring back the lost souls, these are our spiritual masters. So, even though our spiritual masters are apparently subjected to birth, death, old age, and disease, actually they are taking all this trouble just for our sake, because they have no desire to enjoy separately from Krishna.

That is why, Vaishnavas are praised as “patitaanaam paavanebhyo” or “uplifters of the fallen conditioned souls” and “krpa sindhu” or “ocean of mercy”. Even though birth, death, old age, and disease are very unpleasant, our of love for Krishna, and our of love for the jivas who are part-and-parcel of Krishna, these souls come here to material world.

I hope this helps.

Sincerely,
Mahabhagavat Das
Neelam sharma, 08th February 2013

Hare krsna Mahabhagavat Prabhu. Pls kindly accept my humble obeisances.   Thankyou for the answer but i had one more question that the Lord Brahma is a jiva i.e. One of the jiva in the spiritual world who is qualified is given the position of the Brahma and if there is no jiva who is qualified for this position then Lord Vishnu himself plays the role of Brahma. And if Lord Vishnu the supreme takes the
position of Lord Brahma then how He is subjected to birth,death,oldage and disease?

2nd question is what about Lord Shiva? who holds the position of Lord Shiva as He is not a jiva tattva. Pls correct me if I am wrong.

your servant,
Neelam
Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 8th February 2013

Hare Krishna Neelam Mataji,

Thank you.

Where did you read/hear that “One of the jiva in the spiritual world who is qualified is given the position of the Brahma”? Please give us more context to be able to understand and discuss better.

Material birth and death apply to jivas only. If Lord Himself plays the role of Brahma then obviously there is no question of birth or death, “sambhavamy atma mayaya” Krishna is not born, He appears according to His own will. But this is getting too theoretical… are we in a universe where Lord has expanded as Brahma? No, we are in a universe where our Brahma deva is a jiva. Do we really need to discuss for our spiritual success what is happening in other universes and at other times when so-and-so-special-cases happen? Srila Prabhupada used to say “so now you qualify yourself to see Krishna face-to-face” and if you still have all these questions when you are pure devotee and you are seeing Krishna face-to-face, then you can ask Him directly. 🙂

We are small, tiny, insignificant, and our job is to go back to serving Krishna 100%. But we may think we are something big big, actually we are weak little insignificant rebellious nonsense. I need to internalize that. Then the questioning becomes “My Dear Sri Guru, how may I serve you?”

About Lord Shiva, we do know that there are 2 main categories of Shiva. There is Sadashiva also called Shambhu, who is the glance of Mahavishnu when the Lord impregnates the living entities into the womb of material nature. Then the other Shiva (and the Rudras) are born of Lord Brahma within this universe.

A universe is created when Maha  Vishnu exhales, and destroyed when Maha Vishnu inhales. It can be understood that Sadashiva is a plenary expansion of Krishna. The specific Shiva/Rudra who is in every universe and who destroys the universe by Tandava Nritya, the dance of destruction, also merges back into the body of Maha Vishnu when the Universe is un-manifested when Maha Vishnu starts to breathe in.

Neelam Mataji, please immediately or as soon as possible get a full set of Srimad Bhagavatam all 12 Cantos from any source that distributes BBT books, and begin your study now. Until then, you can begin your study online every day study, http://www.vedabase.net/sb/

Sincerely,
Mahabhagavat Das
Neelam sharma, 08th February 2013

Hare Krishna Mahabhagavat Prabhu.

Please accept my humble obeisances. Thankyou for giving more understanding .

Actually before forwarding this question to you I discussed it with my friend who after asking the same to some senior devotee replied me as follows: “usually the Demigods are jivas , same for Lord Brahma. Lord shiva is not a jiva. He is a special tattva…above jiva.  Sometimes Lord Vishnu may take the position of Brahma if a qualified soul is not available. It is not
necessary that they are from the spiritual world unless they have come for some special services. In which case they never suffer.

It is said that initally everyone came from the spiritual world to experiment with this world. Once we practice spiritual life in this world then the benefit is not lost. If we fail to achieve perfection
in this life. We get a chance to improve in the next. …the credit is there.. ”

but I didn’t understand it clearly there remains some doubts in mind therefore i asked to you.

your servent
Neelam
Mahabhagavat Das SDA 11th Feb 2013

Hare Krishna Mataji,

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

Yes, you heard correctly that Lord Shiva is not a jiva. He is “shiva tattva”. Yes, you heard correctly that Lord Vishnu may take the post of Lord Brahma if a qualified soul is not available. But the key thing to note is that the “qualified soul” referred to here in this context is from the material pool, not the spiritual world. The qualification, for anyone interested in being qualified for the post of Lord Brahma, is to pass 100 consecutive lifetimes without committing a single sinful action. But it is not a mindless mechanical system, Krishna may not choose a person even if they have the sufficient condition. The necessary condition is Krishna’s approval.

Re how is it possible that soul from spiritual world comes to material world, that is a separate matter answered by Srila Gurudeva so many times that free will and infinite number of souls with infinitesimal probability that someone will misuse their free will, equals to infinite number of souls who come to material world, but once bitten twice shy, so once these souls wake up from the nightmare, they will never go back there again. So yes, a person in spiritual world who desires to enjoy separately from Krishna, inspite of Krishna’s loving guidance, is impure, even if that person starts out as Brahma. So surely some fortunate Brahmas can realize this within one lifetime, and some others can take a little longer to surrender. The time scales are just beyond my comprehension, to be honest. Beyond this, I would be speculating, and I do not wish to speculate.

Have you now understood clearly? Really, the only way to understand 100% clearly some things is to become a pure devotee and then everything will be revealed… the example is that a teacher may know advanced calculus in mathematics, but if student is not capable of understanding because they need preparation in basic algebra and basic trigonometry, then student first has to learn those things before attempting calculus… this does not mean that the teacher does not know how to teach, but it means that some basic preparation is needed.

So in this way, Srila Prabhupada has given all the knowledge in his books, and Srila Gurudeva writes that in his daily emails and lectures, but I understand to the extent I am capable of understanding. Anyway, in due course of time, whatever I need to know would be revealed to me.

Sincerely,
Mahabhagavat Das
Neelam sharma, 11th February 2013

Hare Krishna Mahabhagavat Prabhu.

Please kindly accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to srila gurudeva and srimati gurumata.
All glories to srila Prabhupada.

Thankyou Prabhu for answers, now my doubts are clear.
Your answers really helps me a lot to understand any subject matter.

your servant,
Neelam
Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 13th February 2013

More transcendental nectar from His Grace Sriman Jagannatha Prabhu…

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Jagannatha Dasa

Hare Krishna dear prabhus,

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

In his purport to Srimad-Bhagavatamam 1.3.5, Srila Prabhupada discusses this matter:

“Lord Vishnu is nondifferent from the Personality of Godhead. Lord Siva is in the marginal position between the Personality of Godhead and the living entities, or jivas. Brahma is always a jiva-tattva. The highest pious living being, or the greatest devotee of the Lord, is empowered with the potency of the Lord for creation, and he is called Brahmä. His power is like the power of the sun reflected in valuable stones and jewels. When there is no such living being to take charge of the post of Brahma, the Lord Himself becomes a Brahma and takes charge of the post.”

And later in the same chapter 1.3.12, the basic principle of the Lord taking over any position needed is given:

“The administrative posts occupied by the demigods for maintaining the regulations of the material world are offered to the highly elevated pious living beings. When there is a scarcity of such pious living beings, the Lord incarnates Himself as Brahma, Prajapati, Indra, etc., and takes up the charge. During the period of Svayambhuva Manu (the present period is of Vaivasvata Manu) there was no suitable living being who could occupy the post of Indra, the King of the Indraloka (heaven) planet. The Lord Himself at that time became Indra. Assisted by His own sons like Yama and other demigods, Lord Yajna ruled the administration of the universal affairs.”

The same point is mentioned in the purport to 4.4.16, 4.8.6 (Where Lord Brahma is even referred to as a plenary expansion!)

Also there are cases where the Lord Brahma of a particular universe is not a devotee. (cf. SB. 11.3.12 purport)  But our universe is governed by a topmost pure devotee as Lord Brahma, who is our Sampradaya Acarya.

I mention this because I have already heard it; “vox siksa guru” works for me too. 🙂

I hope it is useful.

your servant,
Jagannatha dasa

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