sábado, 3 de abril de 2010

Mukunda Charan das, SA: Chanting Hare Krishna On Beads, Part 1


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"Planet ISKCON" - 41 new articles

  1. H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Monday, March 29th, 2010
  2. H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Sunday, March 28th, 2010
  3. H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Saturday, March 27th, 2010
  4. ISKCON Brisbane, AU: Krishna Kids Sunday School Awards Night
  5. Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Sri Rupa das - 4/22
  6. ISKCON Melbourne, AU: Daily Class - Aniruddha Prabhu
  7. Mukunda Charan das, SA: Chanting Hare Krishna On Beads, Part 1
  8. Ananda Subramanian, Iowa, USA: Albert Einstein's Letter - A Critique
  9. ISKCON Toronto, Canada: Five Days of Celebrating Ramacandra!
  10. Bharatavarsa.net: Bhakti Vikasa Swami: =?Windows-1252?Q?=93Are_you_reading_my_books=3F=94?=
  11. Gaura Nitai das, Mayapura, IN: new links of interest
  12. Bhakti Lata, Alachua, USA: Japaholics Anonymous
  13. ISKCON News.com: ISKCON Vrindavana Celebrates Its 35th Anniversary
  14. ISKCON News.com: Devamrita Dasa Becomes Bhakti Rasamrita Swami
  15. HH. Satsvarupa das Goswami: '394' from The Yellow Submarine
  16. HH. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'New Dvaraka Morning with Prabhupada' from The Yellow Submarine
  17. HH. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'Chasing the Train' from The Yellow Submarine
  18. HH. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'In Guyana' from The Yellow Submarine
  19. ISKCON News.com: Lord Jagannatha Glances Over Tallahassee
  20. Nityananda Chandra Das, Dallas TX: Ramayana – the drama - performed at Kalachandji’s
  21. Kaunteya das, Mayapura: If you are afraid of thinking, think again
  22. David Haslam, UK: Recent visit to The Manor
  23. ISKCON News.com: Students Sing, Dance to Exercise Soul
  24. ISKCON News.com: Thousands celebrate Hari Krishna Color Festival
  25. ISKCON News.com: Bright Colors Fill the Sky for Holi Festival in Spanish Fork
  26. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  27. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  28. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  29. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  30. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  31. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  32. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  33. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  34. ISKCON News.com: Holi: Festival of Colors Bring Utahns Out From Hibernation
  35. ISKCON News.com: Mayapur Welcomes Newest Resident
  36. ISKCON News.com: Visual Feast in Florida
  37. Madhava Ghosh dasa, New Vrndavan, USA: What is Higgs boson – and will CERN scientists find the ‘God particle’?
  38. Japa Group: Japa Workshop #6 of 6
  39. Gouranga TV: Bhajan – New Year’s Eve 2010 – Gopal das
  40. Namahatta.org: THE LAST CONVERSATION:Srila Prabhupada and H.H. Narayana Maharaja - Vrindavana, October 8, 1977
  41. Gaura Sakti das & Adi Radhika dd, New Vraja Dham, Hungary: Organic vegetable seedling cultivation
  42. More Recent Articles
  43. Search Planet ISKCON

H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Monday, March 29th, 2010

“Dharma Lives Forever”

Durban, South Africa

Durban has a vibrant community of devotees, yet when it is Monday morning, the day after the weekend, the temple, like almost any place in this world, gets hit by that start-up weekly blues. The previous evening’s Sunday open house, attracting hundreds of people, knocks the wind out of almost everyone. The energy is low. Things move a little slow. You sometimes don’t know how things will go.

Those few stalwarts that made their way to the temple for morning sadhana (spiritual workout) pushed themselves to be the day’s heroes. I call them heroes because despite the fatigue they have, the power invested in them to follow dharma, which in itself gives power of strength.

Dharma is just a magical principle. It protects. And when you protect it, it will protect you. Dharma is defined in so many ways such as, “duty”, “obligation”, “principle” or in a plain, simple expression, “doing what should be done.” It always places the practitioner above the realm of duality.

The emblem of dharma can be seen in the lives of Yudhisthira, Vidura, Draupadi, Hanuman, Pariksit, Prabhupada- all Vedic personalities. When dharma is followed, things run generally smooth. However, because it is the material world, nothing moves without road bumps.

To stick to my dharma for the day, I chanted 16 rounds of the maha-mantra, “Hare Krsna”, on my meditation beads and that, by circumambulating the temple on bush-lined walkway the whole time.

9 KM

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H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Sunday, March 28th, 2010

“Not Square”

Durban, South Africa

It is my good fortune to engage in this bhakti yoga process with members of our youth. After arriving from another long plane ride, I was able to dive right into an orientation with potential actors, dancers and teckies for two drama presentations to be staged in less than a week at the Durban’s annual Chariot Festival. For a full day we rehearsed after sorting out from volunteers who will do what. My physical body was tired but my attention was strong because of the excitement in the air.

I’m anticipating a great show this year, my 11th year in attendance. We will promise a new piece, “The three lives of Bharat.” Laghu Hari, a monk in vibrant saffron from Cape Town, came early to assemble these animal marionettes for the drama. Not only is he a good brahmacari, he’s a professional at puppet-making. In brief, the story of Bharat is about a king who while in his maturing asceticism, becomes fond of a deer. It is a strong attachment he has for the creature. By providence he goes through transmigration to the form of a deer in his next life.

Anyways, I’m having a ball, or a riot, or a blast (whatever is the most suitable word!). I can be a monk and express creativity to no limit. Like I mentioned to the crowd in Dubai one day earlier, “The average person lives in a square, goes to work in a square, while wearing a suit that’s square. He/she sits by a square desk, with a square laptop. When you open it up, it is two squares and one is proud that, ‘Here I am king of squares!’ (Laughter)

I expressed that I feel satisfied being in a monks sandal’s. I don’t feel square at all.

9 KM

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H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Saturday, March 27th, 2010

“Some good signs”

Dubai, U.A.E

Dharmendra, a member of the local community, took me to Jumeirah Beach, a really clean place off the Arabian Sea. It’s a haven for walkers and joggers. From there we scooted back to the guest house for a change to devotional clothes and a drive to the local Nathaji Temple. Apparently the country donated a hall to the Pusti Marg Society, a Hindu organization hailing from West India. It’s the only temple in the country that’s approved apart from the next door Shiva Mandira, which is situated next to a Sikh Gurudvara. So there is some level of tolerance demonstrated by the Islamic dominated area.

By spending two brief days in Dubai I got the sense that there is law and order in this rather modern city, which recently declared bankruptcy due to the current recession. I had asked Dharmendra at the beach about the sign that read, “No cameras allowed.” His response was that it’s a safeguard for someone who might photograph a woman. There are people who take advantage. It’s to protect women. I thought that was not a bad restriction. I went to a flashback…on my second cross Canada walk, a young woman walked next to me in Victoria. She asked, “Are you a monk or something?” My brother who was just in front turned around and flashed a photograph of me and the pretty young woman. She became highly defensive. She explained that she was photographed some time in public and before she knew it her face was all over the internet with a digitally affixed torso (in the nude). Needless to say she was upset with my brother’s flash. He apologized and expressed he had no such intention.

Now, a little more about the tolerance level in Dubai. On our sixth floor guest house facility, the Arabic neighbour has a five year old autistic boy who comes to our door clapping hands in response to the kirtan. We met her in the elevator where she wore her traditional Islamic garb, and she referred to her boy as, ‘my Krsna.” She had heard of Krsna’s childhood antics and she has become totally charmed. It appears she has no qualms with exploring outside her own culture. This was a good sign.

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ISKCON Brisbane, AU: Krishna Kids Sunday School Awards Night

Saturday 10th April, 2010


Program: 5.00pm Bhajans by children
5.30pm Children sing Sri Gurv-ashtaka
5.45pm Toddlers sing Hari Haribol!
5.50pm Awards presentation
6.10pm Class

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Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Sri Rupa das - 4/22

Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Hari Smith - 1/22

Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Hari Smith - 1/22

Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Gopal das - 2/22

Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Gopal das - 2/22

Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Kapil das - 3/22

Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Kapil das - 3/22

Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Sri Rupa das - 4/22

Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Sri Rupa das - 4/22

Sri Rupa das singing a Hare Krishna bhajan during the New Year's Eve bhajan.

Dallas, TX

2010-01-01 - New Year Eve Bhajans - 04 - Sri Rupa das

Download: 2010-01-01 - New Year Eve Bhajans - 04 - Sri Rupa das.mp3

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ISKCON Melbourne, AU: Daily Class - Aniruddha Prabhu

Srimad Bhagavatam 11.18.45 - The exalted devotees purify entire nations by spreading Lord's mercy.

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Mukunda Charan das, SA: Chanting Hare Krishna On Beads, Part 1

This article is dedicated to Inno, Emina, Simone, Wepener, Ingrid, the BYS students at Wits and UJ and all those who want to know the techniques of mantra meditation.

I first spoke to Hare Krishna devotees in Cape Town in February 1997. Most of them were in their early twenties. They wore eastern clothes. They were happy. They were always chanting on beads. This sometimes frustrated me because I wanted to speak to them. I had so many questions.

I soon discovered the devotees had something I had been ardently looking for – a method of self-realization that connected them to God twenty-four hours a day. What was this? The chanting of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. Yes, it was that simple. Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna/Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/Hare Rama, Hare Rama/Rama Rama, Hare Hare. I also discovered that their spiritual lifestyle complemented their constant chanting of the mantra. One of my other first impressions of this interesting group was that everything they seemed to know – this deep and ancient philosophy and wisdom – was credited to a teacher called A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.

Aside from the obvious pleasure they seemed to derive from chanting, the devotees substantiated their practices with quotes from the Vedas. My second or third meeting with the devotees took place amidst the Parthenon-like architecture of the University of Cape Town (UCT). I decided to approach a scholarly-looking girl called Rati. A strange situation: asking a western girl, in a sari, questions about the Ancient Indian spiritual culture. The Romanesque architecture of the UCT campus – situated on African soil – compounded the strangeness of this encounter.

Rati launched into an explanation of the chanting. After some time I asked her, ‘How long should we chant?’ Rati answered matter-of-factly, ‘Twenty-four hours a day’. Her eyes were distant. She prompty qualified her words, however, with a quote from a Vedic text called the Brihad-aranyika Purana: harer nama harer nama/harer nama eva kevalam/kalau nasty eva nasty/eva nasty gatir anyatha. In this age of Kali the method for self-realization is the chanting of the holy names, the chanting of the holy names, the chanting of the holy names. There is no other way, there is no other way, there is no other way’.

I had read Juan Mascaro’s Bhagavad-gita and was convinced that I could become ‘enlightened’ or ’self-realized’ through knowledge. Rati was impressed by my interest in Hinduism and the Vedas and encouraged me to read Prabhupada’s Bhagavad-gita As It Is. A few days later she asked me if I had learnt anything significant from the book. I replied, ‘Determination’. It seemed to me that Prabhupada was repeating the same thing all the time in his commentaries to the Gita – chant Hare Krishna Hare Krishna/Krishna Krishna Hare Hare/Hare Rama Hare Rama/Rama Rama Hare Hare. Rati then pulled some wooden prayer beads from a cloth bag and, very gently, extolled the glories of chanting the Hare Krishna mantra. I did not need to chant: the Bhagavad-gita’s knowledge was sufficient for me. ‘Just try’, she said. ‘Okay’, I relented. Rati then gave a set of chanting beads and a small cloth bag to keep them in. She politely asked for a donation, which I gave, and showed me how to use chant on the beads.

The chanting had a profound effect on me. I felt everything slow down. The mantra seemed to open my perceptions and my ability to see the unity of God’s creation. All the knowledge in the Bhagavad-gita assumed a tangible form in the chanting of Hare Krishna. When I saw Rati again I said to her, ‘After chanting, I feel as if I don’t have to read the Bhagavad-gita. The chanting seems to encapsulate everything that the Gita is trying to say’.

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Ananda Subramanian, Iowa, USA: Albert Einstein's Letter - A Critique

My previous post was a letter Albert Einstein wrote to a sixth grade student. In it, he gives a simplistic explanation of scientific research. He explains that research or science is based on the idea that everything that takes place is determined by the Laws of Nature.

A law implies systematic function over time.
A systematic function indicates a system.
A system indicates structure among others.
A structure indicates hierarchy of order or cross-functioning relationships.
Order and functions operate on intelligence.

Therefore, by Einstein’s own words, he implies that there is a higher order or higher intelligence governing the systematic laws of nature. The scientists, however, are only interested in understanding how the laws function and not so much the system behind the law.

To give a crude analogy, it is like someone is interested in the laws concerning driving but not so much interested with the department of transportation that creates and implements the law. In one sense, one does not need to know the department to understand the law. However, this type of understanding is incomplete.

Unless one understands the functions and systems of a body of governance, it is very difficult to interpret and manipulate the laws completely and perfectly. In other words, incomplete and imperfect understanding of a law can lead to ultimate systems malfunction (disorder) thus defeating the original purpose of a law (that is to create order).

Einstein in his letter admits to the imperfect and fragmentary knowledge base of the scientific community. What he does not say is that this imperfect learning can do more harm than good. This we are realizing today. The issues of global warming, environmental pollution (air, water etc), species extinction, cross pollination of diseases between man and animal, gradual degradation of social and cultural ethos of man devolving him/her to mere animal propensities etc etc the list can go on all indicate disorder or systems malfunction. The very laws that were created to help mankind is actually causing harm.

Einstein out of humility thus revealing his true intellectual genius admits the limitations and also writes that one who is serious about scientific knowledge is convinced of a Great Spirit above the laws. He is indirectly indicating about intelligence beyond our own. This is the beginning of Vedic studies. Where Einstein ends, the saints of the Vedic school begin that the intelligence of the universe is beyond our own and that our understanding is negligible in comparison.

Therefore, to actually be religious and scientific means to make this shift in paradigm. That is to scientifically study and admit our own infinitesimal position in relation to the infinite and religiously approach the Great Spirit (the Infinite) in a mood of humility and devotion to reveal the system, its laws and our relationship with it.

Then, our knowledge becomes perfect and complete.

Hare Krishna

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ISKCON Toronto, Canada: Five Days of Celebrating Ramacandra!

The great story of Ramacandra can be found in both the Ramayana and the Srimad Bhagavatam, two very revered scriptures. In those descriptions, one can read about how the citizens of Ayodhya, where Lord Ramacandra reigned as king, celebrated in grand fashion when He appeared. We can only imagine how grand those festivities must have been!

Well, Toronto's Hare Krishna Centre had our very own humble celebrations, compared to Ayodhya, in honour of the appearance of Lord Rama on His birthday... and by humble, we mean that we had five days of celebrations!!!

It all began on Wednesday, March 24th, which was the actual day (as per lunar calendar calculations) that Lord Ramacandra appeared! Celebrations included wonderful kirtan, a class by Rupanuga das and more. One very interesting thing happened, though. During the festival, Laksmana, Lord Ramacandra's younger brother, magically appeared! He was in the middle of a battle with one of evil Ravana's demonic followers, Indrajit who suddenly appeared on the temple balcony! After an evil cackle, Indrajit shot an arrow and Laksmana fell unconscious!!! (For our unfamiliar blog readers, please do not be alarmed. This was simply a reenactment of the famous battle; nobody will shoot arrows at you if you visit our temple.) In the Ramayana, it is described that Hanuman then flew far away to retrieve herbs that eventually saved Laksmana! As some monkey warriors took the unconscious Laksmana off stage, it was announced that Hanuman would come to save him on Sunday, four days later!

As festivities wound down after lots of kirtan, devotees sat in rows and created a "bridge" as they passed plates of prasadam to each other, just like how the monkeys built the bridge of boulders for Lord Rama!

Between Wednesday and Sunday, devotees could watch the unconscious Laksmana via a live webcast feed on our blog! But there was a whole lot more happening during those days. For the first time, the Toronto Hare Krishna Centre hosted conference calls on each day with a theme of Rama-Lila. Mahatma das from Alachua, FL and Krsnanandini devi dasi from Cleveland, OH joined us for these calls and spoke about wonderful topics related to Lord Rama. During the calls, we hosted a chat window on our blog for teleconference attendees to interact with both the facilitators and each other.

This led us to Sunday's festivities. The evening began with a great kirtan at 6pm and led into a class by Sita Thakurani devi dasi. After that, the conlusion to "Laksmana Watch" took place. An unconscious Laksmana was brought out and after heartfelt cries of "Jaya Sri Rama" (meaning "victory to Lord Rama") by the audience, Hanumana came with a grand entrance. Much to the delight of our community, dressed as Hanuman was his namesake, Hanuman das who is known for his tireless efforts of managing the team of volunteers who serve the vegetarian feast and clean the temple every Sunday! He won the heart of the crowd and left the stage to thunderous applause. (check out the video of his grand entrance by clicking here)

While there was a hint of a comedic element to the drama, the mood then certainly became meditative as an enrapturing Nama-Yajna then took place. In a Nama-Yajna, spiritualists collectively chant in a kirtan in an especially-meditative fashion! Led by Dhira Grahi das, the kirtan had the assembled devotees swimming in thoughts of Lord Ramacandra! After a rousing 8pm kirtan, devotees were then served a vegetarian feast by cardboard-crown-wearing servers who became Lord Rama's monkey army!

All in all, Toronto's Hare Krishna Centre presented five days of festivities to mark the appearance of Lord Ramacandra! We're positive that this paled in comparison to the celebrations that must have taken place in Ayodhya ages ago when Lord Rama actually appeared... but in our happy little way, we certainly seemed to bring the spirit of Ayodhya to Toronto!

View the Festival Recording by Clicking Here.

View the Festival Gallery Below:

Click HERE for simple gallery!
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Bharatavarsa.net: Bhakti Vikasa Swami: =?Windows-1252?Q?=93Are_you_reading_my_books=3F=94?=

Adisekar das: He had the sankirtan leaders of that time from Bhagavan’s zone a little meeting with us. First he congratulated the devotees for the results. And he asked the first question, I think the only question he asked us, and he said, “Are you reading my books?” Then Brighupati said, “You know, Prabhupada, we don’t have much time, we don’t have time to read.” Then I heard, I was near, Prabhupada said, “What is the use?” I could see he was deeply hurt. It was a major priority. Our life was to be used to investigate this message, these books, these thousands of hours of work. So, of course, we were distributing, but then Prabhupada was more interested whether we were reading his books.

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Gaura Nitai das, Mayapura, IN: new links of interest

I have posted links to new websites of interest on the blog: Truth and Beauty through Bhakti

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Bhakti Lata, Alachua, USA: Japaholics Anonymous

Manu wrote this blog post several weeks ago (you can read it here) about an alcoholic who falls to his knees every morning to pray to God to give him the strength to be sober for that day.

This man has fallen to his knees for forty years. He's been sober for forty years.

In connection with japa, I realize that I'm that alcoholic. I've been in a space where I haven't chanted japa, and I never want to go back. So I need to fall to my knees. I need to BEG God every single morning to please allow me to chant His name sincerely for that day, for every day, for all of my life.

Some people can be sober their whole life with no problem, just like there are people who can chant their rounds every day on the simple merit of regularity. It's a non-issue.

But I'm like the alcoholic. I am in danger of falling away every single day, and I need to pray every single day for God's grace to allow me to even wake up in the morning, to even pick up my beads, to even utter one syllable.

And every morning, before I chant, I fall to the floor in obeisance and I pray to Krishna: Please allow me to chant Your name today. Give me the strength to make it through this one day.

Just this one day.
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ISKCON News.com: ISKCON Vrindavana Celebrates Its 35th Anniversary

By Madhavendu Dasa on 2 Apr 2010
ISKCON’s Krishna-Balarama temple in Vrindavana, India celebrated its 35th anniversary with a two-day festival this March 23rd and 24th.
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ISKCON News.com: Devamrita Dasa Becomes Bhakti Rasamrita Swami

By Devakinandana Dasa on 2 Apr 2010
Former ISKCON Vrindavana temple president Devamrita Dasa was initiated into Sannyasa, the renounced order of life, this March 24th and given the new name Bhakti Rasamrita Swami by his guru Radhanath Swami.
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HH. Satsvarupa das Goswami: '394' from The Yellow Submarine

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

4:10 A.M.

Two more days in Guyana. Travel is becoming increasingly difficult for me and I prefer to settle down. I’m looking forward to living in the new house in New York. There I’ll be able to broadcast my daily journal without difficulty of a slow internet. And I’ll have readers all over the world. I hope to increase my readers and grow interest in the web site. And I hope to be able to rise early enough. I’m rising at 2:00 and 2:30 now and getting a good start on my chanting. This morning has been difficult however because of the headache.

Please don’t expect me
to travel far distances
to your countries. I
prefer to stay in one place
and quietly chant the
maha-mantras and write
my daily journal. My
energy for far–
flung travels is ebbing,
and I cannot imitate
Prabhupada. But I will
be enlivened if I can just
chant japa and write
to friends and broadcast
videos to them over the
high-tech computers.
Thus I will take advantage
of yukta-vairagya into
old age.

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HH. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'New Dvaraka Morning with Prabhupada' from The Yellow Submarine

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

Prabhupada Smaranam

Long shot of many devotees standing before Srila Prabhupada’s vyasasana in the LA temple.

This picture shows the pageantry of the New Dvaraka morning program when Prabhupada was present. In the 1970s it was the most opulent temple in the world and his western world headquarters. The devotees owned many apartment buildings on the same block as the temple and many householders with children lived there. The temple room was large and hundreds of devotees would gather for Prabhupada’s appearance. Here the devotees are standing during the greeting of the Deities and the guru-puja kirtana. Prabhupada liked the spaciousness and opulence of the Los Angeles center and that is why he called it New Dvaraka, after Krishna’s kingdom as a prince living in luxury. The devotees in New Dvaraka were very hardworking and busy in devotional activities, distributing books, working on the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust and worshiping the Deities. Prabhupada stayed there often for months at a time and the devotees had the privilege of hearing him give many lectures over first class sound equipment, and just living in the same presence as he did so that they might catch a glimpse of him at any time of the day.

The best singers would lead the kirtanas and Prabhupada himself took part, singing and playing the karatalas or metal gong. He would stay there long enough to give lectures on whole sections of the Bhagavatam such as “The Prayers of Queen Kunti” or the prayers of Prahlada Maharaja. How fortunate to be young and living at New Dvaraka at that time with Srila Prabhupada as your spiritual master!

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HH. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'Chasing the Train' from The Yellow Submarine

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

Oh Krishna, You are my
main object of meditation.
I run after You like
a boy trying to chase a train.

I don’t know if I will catch
You. But I like the fast
beat of chasing the train.
You make me cry out to
You, “Please wait! Please
don’t escape me! Please
don’t delude me and leave me
behind birth after birth!”

Chasing Krishna is the purpose
of life. It is the most exciting
adventure and the highest
stakes are up for grabs—
because if I miss Him I
am lost.

I try to preserve and use up the
energy in my very last days
of old age in keeping fixed
on the Lord. I recite to
the devotees pastimes of the
Lord which I read in
the scripture.

Yesterday I told them how the
old man made a vow before
Saksi Gopala that he would
give his daughter in charity
to the young man who served him
so well.

The old man’s family was
against it because the young
man was poor and the
Deity of Saksi had to
personally walk hundreds
of miles to bear witness
to the vow made before

Lord Nityananda told the
story. He was not interested
in talking about marriage
arrangements, but it is
actually a true story of two maha-bhagavat
devotees and the miraculous
walking of the Deity. So it is certainly
, not mundane topics.

I have to come up with
several more of lila
and readings from my
own books, and I sing
bhajanas with the devotees.
To prepare myself, I
have to chase the train
and read material in
advance so I’ll be ready
to make a cogent presentation.

Please let me chant my rounds
my Lord, and prepare the books
and entertain the devotees
in my days in Guyana.
Let me not be restless
or bored or agitated
that I have to perform as a speaker
of sastra and give an entertaining
story for them to
pay attention to and not look off or close their

Last night they asked me
to speak of 1966, and I got
into it, telling how I left
my old East Side friends
in exchange for the
friendship of the devotees
and how I gradually
transformed myself
into an obedient sisya
of my Guru Maharaja.

Oh, those were happy
days, and I moved quickly
and without deterrent,
making up for the lost
first twenty-six years of my life.
Now let me finish up
these last years with an
obedient pace that allows
me to catch on to that
train that’s going back
to Godhead.
Is that too much to ask?
Is it not possible
for this old man? He’s got a limp and
headaches, and he’s lazy
but he’s trying
his best to not miss grabbing
on to the caboose, get
his hand on the rail just
in time.

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HH. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'In Guyana' from The Yellow Submarine

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Free write

I am trying to keep my eyes open to make a free write early in the morning. Last night I read excerpts from Nimai and Gurudeva Struggling for Survival and Canakya–slokas. The Struggling for Survival novel is full of exiting adventures of the guru and his disciple lost in the wilderness of Canada with no food and little hope of being found by rescuers. It also has in them about a disciple’s doubt that a disciple of Prabhupada can himself be a bonafide spiritual master for his disciples. It was written at a time when these were more doubts in ISKCON in the spiritual master disciple succession. And it was a little uncomfortable reading it now. But I’m glad, as I always am, that I wrote the truth of the situation. Gurudeva and Nimai share hair-raising adventures living on raw food and being afraid of bears, wolves and even fears of rumors of the Sasquatch (the abominable snowman). Gurudeva tells Nimai we have nothing to be afraid of compared to the twelve miles long Putana witch or the gigantic duck Bakasura who had to attack Krishna. Devotees bought copies of the book, and I signed them.

The Niti-sastras or Canakya–slokas are written in a solid sastric format with lots of quotations from Srila Prabhupada’s lectures, books and conversations.’

The days are passing slowly here, and I’m eager to leave, but I am kept very busy preaching day and night.

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ISKCON News.com: Lord Jagannatha Glances Over Tallahassee

By Kelly Sweet on 2 Apr 2010
Devotees tow the Lord through the 42nd Springtime Tallahassee Festival
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Nityananda Chandra Das, Dallas TX: Ramayana – the drama - performed at Kalachandji’s

Everyone together

Mother Gopi Gita and Gopi Krishna got to few weeks ago brainstorming about doing a drama. They wanted to do something that incorporated all the different elements of our temple. This the Gurukula youth, Gurukula alumni, temple staff, and congregation. Spring break was coming up so they thought lets give it a shot. Gopi Krishna suggested Ramayana because it had not been done at the Dallas temple before.

However this was done without some serious challenges. Krishna likes His devotees working hard in spiritual endeavors. They had two weeks, just two weeks to get everything together, despite having so many other priorities to manage. They had to write the script, pick all the sound and music, they had to direct and at the same time act in the play! An inspiration of the play was Bhaktimarga Swami. One of the ideas was to develop all the characters individually.

The production turned out wonderful, and sparked a passion in many to continue to share Krishna & Rama with the public in this fashion. Plans are now being made to bring our plays to other venues reaching a wider audience.

here great excerpt from Gopi Gita letter to all the actors:

I'm sooo buzzed/jaaazzzed/pumped... It was such an excellent endeavor!!
From this little play, we accomplished soo much. Four things come to mind.
1. the MOST IMPORTANT: camaraderie and devotee friendships and vaishnava relationships.
- How to work together, even in high stress environments and continue on towards one goal, serving alongside each other, even if communication styles and personalities clash. The more we work together with people we may generally not be able to do so, the more we are able to serve all together under Srila Prabhupada's roof.
- Finding lasting and deep friendships, based on serving Krishna, not based on temporary things as who gives you more attention, or who praises you the most, but based on our service and common goal.
- these friendships are what bring us to the temple again and again and what will inspire us to continue to serve.

2. The Gurukuli Youth working together with the Temple Devotees with the gurukula children and with the Plano kids. Somehow there are so many devotees in their groups working separately, and this drama service was able to combine all of those different types of devotees, which gives a major sense of Group Identity and helps in morale and sense of belonging. The more we feel we belong to the temple and the devotees, the less our desire to belong to those who may not be good for our spiritual lives.

3. Preaching! We were able to glorify the Supreme Lord Shri Rama and share His wonderful activities with all of those who watched!! And even for ourselves, those of us who were continuously at the play practices for the past two weeks have been living, breathing, I'm sure even dreaming the pastimes of Lord Rama and in doing so purifying our hearts in unimaginable ways. The Supreme Lord's pastimes are so POWERFUL!! We have to have the faith, that just by enveloping ourselves in them, we can get soo much spiritual advancement! and give it to others!! Someone might have a hard time going to a Bhagavatam class, but a drama... for sure they'll sit there and watch gladly, for upto two hours.

4. Of course, hopefully by this drama, aalll of us, individually, pleased Srila Prabhupada and HH Tamal Krishna Maharaj. We pray that they are smiling down on us and giving us all their blessings.


umm... Hanuman on a cell phone?




Radha Kalachandji on Rama Navami




Nama Ruchi and Chaitanya Chandra made an awesome bow


Nitai ready to get made into a monkey


Golden deer

Ravan kidnaping Sita

Hanuman carrying the mountain

Final battle between Ravan and Ram


Nitai, Chetan, and Kap


Hare Krishna

Your humble servant,

Nityananda Chandra Das

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Kaunteya das, Mayapura: If you are afraid of thinking, think again

I was reading an article, in Italian, on the intellectuals of Iraq, of how the country has a great tradition of history and art that some, despite the recent and present political and social challenges, are trying to conserve and revitalize. I read a sentence by Nassir Al Ubaidi, "There are 80 children per classroom. We need to be careful; a country to be free has to be educated."

This phrase made me to stop in my tracks. It gave me a jolti what does it mean for ISKCON? We are not concerned with political freedomi Or, are we? Or, perhaps more accurately, as a group we may not be as concerned or focused on encouraging internal freedom of expression - as our tradition *apparently* stresses submission to authority over personal opinion, but that's only because "the authorities" of the tradition are assumed to be well-meaning, deeper in their absorption in God consciousness, and interested in their interlocutor's ultimate good.

The assumption works; or should work; or could worki But it's an intrinsically dangerous one: What if "the authority" isn't as steeped in the proper socio-theological understanding as we assume? What if "the authority" isn't as detached as expected? What if "the authority" is still struggling with fundamental anarthas?

Therefore Srila Prabhupada wrote (on 22 Dec 1972) to his disciple Karandhara Das - and, by extension, implication and context, to all his future followers: "Krishna Consciousness Movement is for training men to be independently thoughtful and competent in all types of departments of knowledge and action."

But can one be independently "thoughtful" without being educated, and being educated not only in the sense of data-collection but in the skill of thinking? Hardly a chance.

There are at least two things here: 1. the knowledge, the information, the facts revealed and explained in the tradition; 2. the capacity of remembering and processing that information, cross-referencing it appropriately, and applying it to different circumstances. Srila Prabhupada also said (on 26 April 1973):

"You have got mind. Therefore you must think. . . . Why do you go to school, college to learn psychology? To learn how to think. How thinking process is going on. There is education required, how to think correctly. . . . The child is sent to school just for teaching him how to think correctly. Otherwise, what is the use of sending him to school? He can think at home. Why they are sent to school? To learn how to think."

Learning how to think. Contents can always be added, processed and utilized, if the thinking capacity is there, if the values and character are solidly established. Srila Prabhupada personally showed this even in his early life. The Lilamrita tells how Srila Prabhupada (then known as Abhay) refused his Bachelor of Arts degree as a political protest, and how his father, Gour Mohan De, arranged Abhay's employment with his friend Dr. Kartick Chandra Bose, who accepted Abhay as a department manager at his pharmaceutical laboratory. The Lilamrita reveals that, "Although Abhay knew little of the pharmaceutical industry or of management, he felt confident that by reading a few related books he could learn what he needed to know."

Who knows how to think, can think of anything. He can feel free and move freely; he has his options opens.

So, back to the original point of education and freedom: We should encourage devotees to become deep thinker and view situations and solutions with an open mind, from different perspectives. In the words of Srila Prabhupada to a GBC (letter of 22 June 1972):

"So I want you leaders especially to become very much absorbed in the philosophy of Bhagavad-gita, Srimad-Bhagavatam, and become yourselves completely convinced and free from all doubt. On this platform you shall be able to carry on the work satisfactorily, but if there is lack of knowledge, or if there is forgetfulness, everything will be spoiled in time. So especially you must encourage the students to read our books throughout the day as much as possible, and give them all good advice how to understand the books, and inspire them to study the things from every point of view."

Of course it would be hard to turn this kind of devotees - who analyze things from every angle - into yes-men and yes-women. They might become "independently thoughtful" and that might not be as welcome by some "authority" as it was welcomed and desired by Srila Prabhupada. Srila Prabhupada wanted thinkers and doers; people who could gain freedom of thought by imbibing and dialoguing upon sastric perspectives and who could then translate those realizations into the world of action.

The letter goes on: "So let us concentrate on training our devotees very thoroughly in the knowledge of Krishna Consciousness from our books, from tapes, by discussing always, and in so many ways instruct them in the right propositions."

Nassir Al Ubaidi is right, "A country to be free has to be educated," and ISKCON, to be the home of "independently thoughtful" citizens, should teach devotees how to think.

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Another wonderful weekend was had at the Manor, and again I have recorded the classes attended. After some pondering I have decided not to post one of them as there was some personal realizations from not only the speaker but members of the audience. It was a powerful class and very inspiring and by Krishna’s mercy [...]

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ISKCON News.com: Students Sing, Dance to Exercise Soul

By Prathusha Maduri for The Daily Targum (New Jersey, USA) on 28 Mar 2010
More than 220 people experienced a night dedicated to musical meditation, cultural singing and dancing Thursday, as they listened to world-famous, Indian-style kirtan bands As Kindred Spirits and Mayapuris while performing Bhakti yoga.
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If the selection above is hosted by YouTube then after the video plays there will be several links presented to other videos. ISKCON News Weekly has no control over the selections presented and is not responsible for their contents.
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Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Sri Rupa das - 4/22

Bright Colors Fill the Sky for Holi Festival in Spanish Fork

If the selection above is hosted by YouTube then after the video plays there will be several links presented to other videos. ISKCON News Weekly has no control over the selections presented and is not responsible for their contents.
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1968 April 2: "So far my name is concerned, there is no need of adding Tridandi Goswami, but simply have it as A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, as it is already done in my other books, it will be continued. I do not like for Sri Bhaktivedanta Swami, A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami is shorter, and nicer."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1968

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1969 April 2: "The present issue is excellently done. People in your country are very much receptive to new things so we must go on presenting these completely novel spiritual ideas. Reprint another 10,000 copies minimum."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1969

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1970 April 2: "I want just that my books may be printed somehow, somewhere; that is all. So far the preface, dedication, acknowledgement, I shall supply you with these in due course of time. I do not think they are immediately required since you can print the other parts of the book first."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1970

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1972 April 2: "These fair-skinned Americans and Europeans are like angels coming to Krishna Consciousness and very soon the whole world will become filled with such angels. So continue sticking very tightly to our pure standards then Lord Caitanya's prediction will very soon be realized."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1972

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1972 April 2: "Guided tours for tourists is nice but sight-seeing is secondary. We may advertise sightseeing to attract them, but main thing is to give them nice prasadam and instruction, then sell them our Krishna Book. Then you will be successful with this program."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1972

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1972 April 2: "You all should be very active to increase. It is the best field in the world for distributing our books, as good or better than America. So preach wherever you go and make this traveling sankirtan a great success, a greater success, than in America."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1972

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1972 April 2: "You Western boys and girls are becoming angels but if we are not very careful to always stick to the point of regulative principles and purest standards of high living, then everything will spoil very quickly and the whole show will be a farce."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1972

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1975 April 2: "You are executing the duty of a sannyasi and you have taken my request to heart and you are now preaching in so many nice ways. This is very satisfying to me. Now continue and become more and more expert. Thank you for your donation of $1,000."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1975

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By N.L. Thi for Globe (Utah, USA) on 31 Mar 2010
Spanish Fork houses the biggest Holi celebration in the U.S. where people from California, Nevada, Texas even the U.K. and China came to celebrate.
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ISKCON News.com: Mayapur Welcomes Newest Resident

By Hari Sauri Dasa for Lotus Imprints on 31 Mar 2010
At about 8.00 AM on March 30 2010 Mayapur received its newest resident– Vishnu-priya the baby elephant.
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By Kara Pound for Folio Weekly on 2 Apr 2010
On March 20, Hare Krishnas took to the narrow streets of the Nation’s Oldest City for the fifth annual Festival of the Chariots — a celebration of love, life and God.
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Madhava Ghosh dasa, New Vrndavan, USA: What is Higgs boson – and will CERN scientists find the ‘God particle’?

From The Christian Science Monitor

Like followers of God, followers of the Higgs boson act on faith. The Higgs boson has never been observed, and some physicists doubt it even exists.

In an attempt to prove the particle’s existence, physicists at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) rammed protons together today at an energy level of about 7 trillion electron volts at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), which straddles the border of Switzerland and France.

Type Higgs boson into Google and you get the search option ‘Higgs boson for dummies’ as well as ‘Higgs boson time travel’ and ‘Higgs boson doesn’t want to be found.’

Here’s a run-down about the so-called ‘God particle.’

What is a boson?

A boson is a sub-atomic particle. The atomic particles are protons, neutrons, and electrons. While the Greek word atom means indivisible, modern scientists found atomic particles divisible into sub-atomic particles. These include quarks, leptons, and bosons. They were only hypothesized and observed in the last century.

This is according to the Standard Model of physics, the most accepted universal theory of everything. (The string theory is a strong contender.)

What is the Higgs boson?

But scientists aren’t entirely sure how these subatomic particles gained mass. They speculate that another boson (or bosons), named after scientist Peter Higgs who helped come up with the idea, imparts mass on other bosons and all quarks and leptons.

Observing the Higgs boson would give credence to the Standard Model and help explain the origin of mass and the four forces of nature – (1) electromagnetism, (2) the strong force (which binds atomic nuclei), (3) the weak force (which governs radioactive decay and some fusion reactions), and (4) gravity. Observing the Higgs boson may also unleash a black hole or anti-matter that will annihilate us all, say a few.

What does this have to do with the Large Hadron Collider?

Scientists at CERN hope to observe the Higgs boson.

The LHC accelerates two particle beams, called hadrons, around a 17-mile ring in opposite directions. The goal is to get the two beams to collide at nearly the speed of light. But that’s hard because the beams are so small, and the scientists don’t expect a collision every time.

If a collision does occur, it could create smaller pieces of matter –particles – a scenario similar to that at the beginning of the universe, giving scientists a unique look at the universe’s origins and at particles never before observed. Particles such as the Higgs boson.

Why is the Higgs boson to hard to detect?

The Higgs boson, however, only exists at high energies – and only lasts for fractions of a second, then decays into other particles. Scientists will be looking for trace patterns of decay that indicate the Higgs has made an appearance.

Einstein famously said E = mc2. If CERN scientists can accelerate particles to the speed of light, they will observe the highest recorded energies, which should allow a look at the Higgs boson.

Back in 2001, CERN’s Large Electron Positron (LEP), the precursor to the LHC, found what it believed to be evidence of the elusive particle. Without conclusive data, however, CERN scientists worried the Fermilab collider in the US, just outside Chicago, would observe the particle first. Fermilab got close, but no quantum cigar.

Will the Higgs boson allow time travel?

The Higgs boson itself won’t allow time travel. But the LHC may, say some scientists.

Remember String Theory, the contending grand theory of the universe? It claims that the world is made of tiny vibrating strings. It also claims that there exist 10 dimensions to space time (we currently observe only four: think of a point, a square, a box, and time).

If true, then the LHC may create the high-energy environments that enable particles to jump in and out of these six hidden dimensions.

A recent essay in The New York Times suggests that the Higgs boson itself may be using time travel to prevent itself from being discovered: hence all the delays at Fermilab and CERN.

A pair of otherwise distinguished physicists have suggested that the hypothesized Higgs boson, which physicists hope to produce with the collider, might be so abhorrent to nature that its creation would ripple backward through time and stop the collider before it could make one, like a time traveler who goes back in time to kill his grandfather.

What does this have to do with God?

Leon Lederman, the 1988 Nobel prize winner in physics and former director of Fermilab, coined the phrase “the God particle” for the Higgs boson because it would explain what gives nature’s fundamental particles mass. But Mr. Lederman wasn’t religious. He also famously joked: “Physics isn’t a religion. If it were, we’d have a much easier time raising money.”

When Moses saw God, according to the Bible’s Book of Numbers, his face was radiant for days. Scientists at CERN eagerly await their own sighting of the so-called God particle.

“Imagine a house with a lot of children on Christmas Eve, and you’ve pretty much captured the mood,” Thomas LeCompte told the Monitor in an email exchange from the lab in Geneva.

Filed under: Science
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In this final session of the japa workshop featuring Mahatma dasa, Badahari dasa and Harinama Cintamani dasi - participants share their realisations and describe the progress that they have made.

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Gouranga TV: Bhajan – New Year’s Eve 2010 – Gopal das

Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Hari Smith - 1/22

Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Hari Smith - 1/22

Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Gopal das - 2/22

Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Gopal das - 2/22

Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Kapil das - 3/22

Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Kapil das - 3/22

Rupa Madhurya das, TX, USA: Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Sri Rupa das - 4/22

Bhajan - New Year's Eve 2010 - Sri Rupa das - 4/22

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Namahatta.org: THE LAST CONVERSATION:Srila Prabhupada and H.H. Narayana Maharaja - Vrindavana, October 8, 1977

Issued by the Governing Body Commission of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness

The following link contains a letter from the Executive Committee, a transcription of the conversation of 8 October 1977 between Srila Prabhupada and Narayana Maharaja (Bengali with English translation), and an analysis.

The Last Conversation

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With the arrival of spring, our gardeners in Krishna-valley became more active. In our self-sufficiently developing village only our own productions of vegetables and fruits are consumed during most of the year.

Here, vegetable sowing is done. Nearly all kinds of vegetables are coming to life in this simple wood stove heated greenhouse.


Our dear gardeners keeping diary on the growth of little seedlings! :)

And this is our flower house, soon these small seedlings will be transplanted to outside gardens.

Flower garlands which are offered to Radhe Shyama from our garden are taking care of new seedlings.

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