sábado, 22 de mayo de 2010

Planet ISKCON - 48 new articles


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"Planet ISKCON" - 48 new articles

  1. H.G. Sankarshan das Adhikari, USA: Saturday 22 May 2010--Why Do I Keep Circling the Globe?--and--Terrorist Suicide Bombers Liberated?
  2. Japa Group: Invoking The Lord's Mercy
  3. ISKCON Melbourne, AU: Daily Class - Adi Purusa Prabhu
  4. Ekendra dasa, AU: Hide Your Guru
  5. ISKCON News.com: ISKCON South India to Restore Ancient Kondaveedu Fort
  6. ISKCON News.com: Hare Krishna Cook Plans Fast Food Chain With A Difference
  7. Sutapa das, BV Manor, UK: Chapter Two - G.I.T.A
  8. Sita-pati dasa, AU: A modern ISKCON Constitution
  9. ISKCON News.com: Dublin Govinda's Apply for Continued Use of Raw Milk
  10. Kurma dasa, AU: Memory Lane - Adelaide 1972
  11. ISKCON News.com: Jayapataka Swami's Recovery "Slow Yet Steady"
  12. Bharatavarsa.net: Bhakti Vikasa Swami: GBC should be above suspicion
  13. Gaura Vani, USA: 24 Hour Kirtan – Summer 2010
  14. H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: '443' from The Yellow Submarine
  15. H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'He appears to be in a trance…' from The Yellow Submarine
  16. H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'Writing with A Headache' from The Yellow Submarine
  17. H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'Sisyphus's Ceaseless Toil' from The Yellow Submarine
  18. ISKCON News.com: Largest ISKCON School in US Meets With Support
  19. ISKCON News.com: 'Ecstatic Chant' Fills the Hills of Upstate New York
  20. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  21. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  22. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  23. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  24. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  25. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  26. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  27. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  28. ISKCON News.com: Growing a Library at the Mayapur Academy
  29. ISKCON News.com: North America Conference Focuses on Tomorrow's Torchbearers
  30. ISKCON News.com: Spanish Version of Lord Nrsimhadeva's Pastimes Now Available
  31. Madhava Ghosh dasa, New Vrndavan, USA: Purple Pokeberries Could Unlock Affordable Solar Power Worldwide
  32. H.H. Sivarama Swami: Program at a music school
  33. Dandavats.com: Arca-vigraha's Saintly Vision
  34. H.H. Sivarama Swami: Q&A: The meaning of synthetic life
  35. H.H. Sivarama Swami
  36. Mayapur Online: Making of the Nrsimhadeva Video!
  37. Dandavats.com: In Memory of Amekhala
  38. Dandavats.com: Amekhala, Departure Of A Pure Devotee
  39. Dandavats.com: Importance of the Yuga-Dharma Nama-Sankirtana
  40. Dandavats.com: Man plays God, really?
  41. Dandavats.com: Growing a library at the Mayapur Academy
  42. Dandavats.com: Serbian Narasimhalila appears
  43. Dandavats.com: Eco-community and cooperative farm starting up at ISKCON New Talavan
  44. Yoga of Ecology, Bhakta Chris, USA: Scaling Up Renewables And The Smart Grid
  45. H.H. Sivarama Swami: Gauraraya dasa asks about yukta-vairagya:
  46. David Haslam, UK: My donkey mentality
  47. Gouranga TV: ISKCON COVENTRY Sankirtan Deities
  48. Japa Group: I Have To Concentrate
  49. More Recent Articles
  50. Search Planet ISKCON

H.G. Sankarshan das Adhikari, USA: Saturday 22 May 2010--Why Do I Keep Circling the Globe?--and--Terrorist Suicide Bombers Liberated?

Sometimes I wonder why I take so much time and trouble for repeatedly circling the globe for spreading Krishna consciousness. There are so many difficulties that I must regularly face in the course of traveling like this for Krishna. Sometimes I become sick, which is more difficult to deal with when traveling. Sometimes my travel plans are disrupted...

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Japa Group: Invoking The Lord's Mercy

When we chant with devotion, we invoke the mercy. How is that? When we chant nicely, we get the purification that allows us to think of Krsna in any situation and it then allows us to depend on the Lord to give us protection. This feeling of dependence on the Lord is our expression of devotion and it's what the Lord likes to feel from His devotee. By chanting with strength we invoke the Lord as we would catch the attention of someone when we call his or her name.
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ISKCON Melbourne, AU: Daily Class - Adi Purusa Prabhu

Srimad Bhagavatam 11.20.34 - The standard of an unalloyed devotional service.

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Ekendra dasa, AU: Hide Your Guru

This article, written by Madhavananda Dasa, appeared in issue number 17 of Sri Krishna Kathamrita Bindu.

In Hari-bhakti-vilasa, verse 2.147, Srila Sanatan Goswami quotes Sammohana-tantra:

gopayed devatam istam gopayed gurum atmanah
gopayec ca nijam mantram gopayen nija-malikam

One should hide one's ista-deva, one should hide one's guru, one should hide one's mantra, and one should hide one's japa-mala.

Wise persons keep their valuables in a confidential place. Similarly, an intelligent sadhaka does not advertise his or her guru, nor do they broadcast themselves as disciples of their guru. Considering themselves as low, fallen, and unfit to be considered disciples, sincere devotees do not want to advertise who their guru is.

Srila Krishnadas Kaviraj Goswami has illustrated the mood of a devotee and disciple:

jagai madhai haite muni se papistha
purisera kita haite muni se laghistha

I am more sinful than Jagai and Madhai and even lower than the worms in stool. (Cc. adi 5.205)

Similarly, Thakur Bhaktivinode has stated:

garhita acare, rahilama maji',
na karinu sadhu-sanga
laye sadhu-vesa,ane upadesi,
e bada mayara ranga

Remaining absorbed in abominable activities, I never kept company with sadhus. Now I adopt the garb of a sadhu and act out the role of instructing others. This is maya's big joke. (Saranagati 7.3)

Although Thakur Bhaktivinode had so much association with elevated vaisnavas, including his siksa-guru Jagannath Das Babaji Maharaja, he did not flaunt that. Rather, he considered that, na karinu sadhu-sanga - "I have never had association with sadhus".

The essential principle in being a disciple is to follow the order of the guru. Srila Krishnadas Kaviraj Goswami has described:

acaryera mata yei, sei mata sara
tanra ajna langhi' cale, sei ta' asara

The order of the spiritual master is the active principle in spiritual life.

Anyone who disobeys the order of the spiritual master immediately becomes useless. (Cc. adi 12.10)

Similarly, it is stated in the Raghu-vamsa:

sa susruvan matari bhargavena
pitur niyogat prahrtam dvisad-vat
pratyagrhid agraja-sasanam tad
ajna gurunam hy avicaraniya

Being ordered by his father, Parasuram killed his mother, Renuka, just as if she were an enemy. When Lakshman, the younger brother of Lord Ramachandra, heard of this, He immediately engaged Himself in the service of His elder brother and accepted His orders. The order of the spiritual master must be obeyed without consideration. (verse 14.46, quoted in Cc. madhya 10.145)

Srila Thakur Bhaktivinode has described that there are two types of disciples, the antarmukha-sisyas and the bahirmukha-sisyas. Antarmukha literally means "inward-facing". It refers to someone who is introspective.

Bahirmukha literally means "outward-facing", and refers to someone who is absorbed in external things.

Antarmukha-sisyas are desirous of bringing pleasure to their guru. Their focus is on following the guru's instructions. The antarmukha-sisyas practice gopayed gurum atmanah. They keep their guru and their relationship with him confidential. An antarmukha-sisya is not interested in advertising himself as a disciple of his guru, but prefers to follow the guru's instructions. His meditation is to try to understand what will please his guru. The antarmukha-sisya is anartha-mukta-avastha, he is free from anarthas. His vision of guru is known as sevya-darsana. He sees that guru should be served and pleased.

Bahirmukha-sisyas are disciples who practice the opposite of gopayed gurum atmanah. They are absorbed in advertising their guru and in making a show of themselves as being big or intimate disciples. Such a disciple is also known as guru-giri, or one who makes a business out of guru and one's relationship with guru. They are not absorbed in the inner intention of guru. Srila Bhaktivinode Thakur has described persons who act on such an external platform as dharmadhvajis ("religion flag-wavers"), meaning those who make a hypocritical or pretentious show of religiosity.

Following the logic of atmavan manyate jagat (everyone thinks like I do), the bahirmukha-sisyas consider that their guru thinks like they do. Because they are motivated by the desires for fame and adoration they think that their guru also wants such things. The bahirmukha-sisyas are anartha-yukta-avastha, they have anarthas, material desires, in their hearts. Because of those anarthas they only see guru in terms of their own pleasure. This vision is known as bhogya-darsana. They think that making a big show of devotion will impress their guru and enable them to come close to their guru. Their idea of guru-bhakti is to loudly proclaim to the world, amar guru jagad-guru - "My guru is the best or the only one and any other guru is lesser." They think that such publicizing will please their guru.

Neglecting or minimizing their guru's instruction regarding the worship of Krishna, the bahirmukha-sisyas place more emphasis on worshiping their spiritual master.

In the histories of all the major religions of the world it is commonly seen that the followers prefer to worship the guru, prophet, or founder rather than follow the instructions of that prophet to worship the Lord (who is unseen and unknown to them). Srila Prabhupada addressed this topic on a morning walk in Bombay on 29 March 1974 when some devotees mentioned to him that some of the followers of Swami Narayan were chanting the name of their guru instead of Krishna's name:

Devotee: In England they are chanting, "Swami Narayan," not "Krishna".

Prabhupada: Just see.

Indian man (1): No, they are also krsna-bhaktas.

Devotee: How are they, if they are chanting Swami Narayan's name?

Indian man (1): They actually work for the Krishna only, and they...

Prabhupada: No, no. Krishna recommends sastra, harer nama, harer nama, harer namaiva kevalam. So why they should chant "Swami Narayan"? ... In the Bhagavad-gita it is said, satatam kirtayanto mam - Krishna. Why should one chant any other name? Krishna says satatam kirtayanto mam. Hare Krishna. Not any other name.... But they are chanting "Swami Narayan." They're saying Swami Narayan is better than Krishna. What kind of preaching is this? ...

This is nonsense. People will go to the temple and the preacher will say that Swami Narayan's name should be chanted....

Indian man (2): Swami is their guru and Narayan is God, so both, Prabhupada and Krishna, Prabhupada and Krishna, Prabhupada Krishna...

Prabhupada: But that does not mean they should chant [like that]. Just like, we are not instructing our disciples to chant my name, "Bhaktivedanta Swami, Bhaktivedanta Swami." No. They're chanting Hare Krishna. hari-tvena samasta-sastrair uktah - "Guru is respected as good as Krishna." But that does not mean I shall teach them to go and chant my name, "Bhaktivedanta Swami, Bhaktivedanta Swami, Bhaktivedanta Swami." What is this? We are teaching, "Chant Hare Krishna." Harer nama, harer nama...

- Srila Prabhupada morning walk, 29 March 1974, Bombay.

Although the antarmukha-sisyas, who follow the instructions of guru, get the full blessings of guru, the bahirmukha-sisyas do not get the proper result.

In this connection Srila Jagadananda Pandit has written:

gorara ami gorara ami mukhe balile na cale
torara acara gorara vicara laile phala phale

It is not enough to repeatedly advertise that one is a devotee of Mahaprabhu by saying, "I am Gaura's! I am Gaura's!" Rather, those who follow the practices taught by Mahaprabhu are understood to get the results of being the Lord's follower. - Prema-vivarta 8.6

Sometimes we see that bona fide spiritual masters allow themselves to be advertised in order to preach. However, this is done in service to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Such personalities are not materially desirous of receiving prestige from their disciples. The daksina, gift, that the guru wants is jnana-sandesah - the sincere search for spiritual knowledge (Bhag. 11.19.39).

As the ideal guru, Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu has taught us how to please the spiritual master. Mahaprabhu instructed His followers:

yadi ama prati sneha thake sabakara
tabe krsna-vyatirikta na gaibe ara

If you really love me, then you should love My instructions: Don't think of anything but Krishna. Don't utter any name but Krishna. (Caitanya-bhagavat madhya 8.27)

Understanding that his spiritual master is always with Krishna, the antarmukha-sisya knows that by chanting Krishna's name he will come closer to his guru. In the Vamana-kalpa, Lord Brahma explains:

yo mantrah sa guruh saksad yo guruh sa harih svayam

One should understand that the mantra one has received from the guru is identical with the guru and that the guru is identical with Lord Hari.

(cited in Srila Jiva Goswami's Bhakti-sandarbha, anuccheda 237.8)

Srila Rupa Goswami has described:

atha guroh sri-pada-dvandva-bhaktim

The holy name gives devotion to the guru. (Padyavali text 24)

Historically, the sadhu-samaja, the society of saintly vaisnavas, has never been impressed with mere external shows of devotion. They are moved, however, when they see the genuine vaisnava humility and other good qualities that have manifest in a devotee due to that devotee's dedication to the instructions and bhajan given by guru (guru-nistha). Hence, introspective devotees prefer to keep their guru hidden and glorify him by exhibiting exemplary behavior.

For some devotees, pushing their guru is an easy way to avoid facing the reality of their own lack of advancement. They want respect, and they think it is easier for them to get it by broadcasting themselves as a disciple of a great personality than for themselves to manifest the qualities of a vaisnava. However, this kind of cheating mentality will never attract the attention of saintly persons. They are not impressed with whom we have taken initiation or instructions from. Rather, they want to see what is our own level of realization.

Since such neophytes equate the showing of respect to themselves with the showing of respect to their guru, when they become chastised or fail to receive the honor and recognition they want, they accuse the devotees, "You have offended my guru!" In this way, Kali, the personification of this age of quarrel and hypocrisy, is able to enter the movement of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and cause dissension, distracting them from their real business of chanting and distributing the holy names.

So Srila Sanatan Goswami's instruction gopayed gurum atmanah - "One should hide one's guru" - is advising devotees to go deeper in their relationship with guru by basing that relationship on following the instructions about service and bhajan that their guru has given.

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ISKCON News.com: ISKCON South India to Restore Ancient Kondaveedu Fort

By Madhava Smullen for ISKCON News on 21 May 2010
ISKCON of Andhra Pradesh, South India is to begin work on a Spiritual Heritage Revival Project at the historical Kondaveedu Fort in Guntur District this year, starting with a beautiful new temple for the ancient Venna Gopal deity at the foot of the Kondaveedu Hills.
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ISKCON News.com: Hare Krishna Cook Plans Fast Food Chain With A Difference

By Madhava Smullen on 21 May 2010
Adiraja Dasa, author of 1989's The Hare Krishna Book of Vegetarian Cooking, is planning to launch the first in a nationwide chain of healthy vegan fast food restaurants called "Peacemakers" in summer 2011.
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Sutapa das, BV Manor, UK: Chapter Two - G.I.T.A

The second chapter, entitled "Contents of the Gita summarised", is a concise preview of the entire philosophy. Krishna starts by explaining the first principle of spirituality, and then moves on to present of the most fundamental aspect of spiritual wisdom. He then explains the practical application of such wisdom, and concludes by explaining the symptoms of one who has fully realised these truths. In this way Krishna summarises the entire spiritual journey, from beginning to end. In the highest sense, however, there is no 'end' to the spiritual journey, because it is at this point that real life begins.

G – Guru (Verses 1-10) - Determined not to fight, but simultaneously frustrated and confused, Arjuna approaches Krishna. "I am in dire need of guidance" he humbly submits, "please enlighten me so I can mitigate my miserable condition." Through Arjuna's example, we learn the first principle of spirituality. One must approach a guru who has mastered the spiritual art. Most things in life require a program of training under a qualified teacher, and the spiritual discipline is no different. One may feel that everything they require for spirituality is contained within, but a teacher helps to awaken that pure inner consciousness. As the famous saying goes, "one who accepts himself as a guru, accepts a fool for a disciple!"

I - Identity (11-30) - Krishna subsequently imparts Arjuna with the most fundamental understanding of spirituality. As the driver operates a car, as the bird lives in a cage, we, the spirit soul, are simply utilising this body. While living within the body, we are simultaneously different, temporarily manipulating it to perform activities and fulfil our desires. Until we understand our true identity, we continue to reincarnate into unnatural material bodies, and suffer the inevitable trials and tribulations of life in this material world. This is the first teaching that the guru will impart - knowledge of who we really are. While it may seem basic, it is knowledge that many have not understood, and knowledge that even fewer have realised in a deep and profound way. The answer to the question "who am I?" is an answer that can set the soul free. It's an answer that's worth hearing again and again.

T - Two dharma's (31-53) - One may then question, 'how does this knowledge affect me?' Surely I still have to get on with my life and do the same things. Krishna delineates how the soul has two essential dharma's in this world. Dharma loosely defines as 'duty', but in a deeper sense refers to essential characteristics and qualities that cannot be avoided. Krishna explains that the soul has a sva-dharma, a worldly duty, which consists of responsibilities towards family, friends and society. Krishna further explains that we also have a sanatana-dharma, an eternal spiritual duty, which comprises of our relationship with God. One must execute such dharma's side-by-side. Some individual overlook their sanatana-dharma and become immersed in their sva-dharma. That is incomplete and will not yield spiritual benefit. On the other extreme, some will immaturely and prematurely reject their sva-dharma and try to absorb themselves in sanatana-dharma. Krishna explains, however, that the most progressive path is to be fully alert to both duties, and by doing so one can lead a happy, balanced, spiritual life.

A - Atmarama (54-72) - What is the result for someone who performs such duties perfectly and becomes 'self-realised'? Krishna goes on to explain the qualities of an atmarama. Atmarama refers to a spiritually realised soul, or more specifically, one who finds pleasure in the self. Krishna explains how the atmarama is unaffected by happiness, distress, gain, loss, honour or dishonour. Transcending the dualities of this world, the spiritualist frees himself of qualities such as fear, attachment and anger, and remains absorbed in spiritual delight. He is able to experience that special happiness that everyone in this world is so anxiously searching after.

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Sita-pati dasa, AU: A modern ISKCON Constitution

Public discussion of ISKCON Constitution has dropped recently. The ISKCON GBC Constitutional Committee disbanded without producing any public output, which was a little disappointing.

Anyway, I've been thinking a lot about the topic recently.

David Jorm and I discussed this topic in a recent podcast [1].

One thing that came out was the idea that ISKCON membership needs to be at the local level.

Here is what I currently consider to be a healthy basis for a local ISKCON constitution/membership:

  • A legally incorporated not-for-profit ISKCON association in the local state or county
  • Definition of membership levels, including one for initiated and uninitiated members, and one for the local GBCs
  • Election of executive board
  • Provision for automatic appointment of the GBC to the board
  • Some structure for power of veto for the GBC
  • Appointment of the Temple President by the board
  • Review of staff strategic objectives performance, and contracts by the board

What you will have in this scenario is a fully volunteer, unpaid community board, with a mandate from the membership, who can employ executive staff for the local ISKCON projects.

I envison the board acting like a corporate board, meeting with the executive to jointly form the broad strategic direction, while the executive (Temple President) is on the ground making the tactical decisions, including hiring and managing paid and unpaid staff (such as monks, etc).

The Temple President's remuneration would be set by the board, and the Temple President's contract would be of a fixed term, for example two years, and reviewed with an option to renew at the end of that period.

The Temple President would be paid superannuation and so forth, and if it didn't work out, for whatever reason, then they can just get on with their life, and the board can find someone else for the service. If it did work out, and continued to work out for a long time, then when it eventually became time for the Temple President to retire, there would be no issues about them having to stay in the job to stay alive. Superannuation exists for a reason - protection of the elderly.

Local ISKCON entities could be affiliated with a national umbrella ISKCON organisation, and this would be their "authorisation".

So there you have - the rough outlines of a modern local ISKCON constitution.

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ISKCON News.com: Dublin Govinda's Apply for Continued Use of Raw Milk

By Madhava Smullen on 21 May 2010
Dublin's three branches of Govinda's vegetarian restaurants are negotiating to be allowed continued use of raw milk directly from a farm, after receiving prohibition orders from Irish government agencies on April 21st.
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Kurma dasa, AU: Memory Lane - Adelaide 1972

Kurma Adelaide 1972:

My dear old friend and Godbrother Rama Dasa sent me this photo yesterday. The place is Adelaide, it's 1972, and I'm 19 years old. I am 'doing time' in the early Adelaide branch of the Hare Krishna Movement in South Australia.

This period of my life, albeit only a few months, was very ecstatic. We lived in a little cottage on the outskirts of the Adelaide Hills; number 1 Rossington Avenue, Myrtle Bank to be precise. For some reason I'm able to remember all the addresses of the places I stayed in those wonderful pioneering days.

The garden - the whole neighbourhood, in fact - was full of amazingly aromatic rose bushes. Our tiny temple would be constantly adorned with vases full of them. Dipak, the head-priest and my old mentor (pictured below) was a professional florist before becoming a Hare Krishna. In fact he still is a professional florist - 'to the stars' - and well-known throughout North America.

Dipak in prayer:

We would rise early, way before dawn, and chant on our prayer beads. That's me, top picture, pacing in the garden as the sun rose. After a simple breakfast cooked by Dipak, we would venture out into the streets of Adelaide chanting on musical instruments and distributing Back to Godhead magazines.

After a fruit-break lunch (Dipak gave us each an allowance of 5 cents to buy whatever fruit we liked - 'knock yourselves out fellas') we'd chant and distribute again, all afternoon. Then we'd return to the temple for a shower, dinner, more chanting, an evening class, hot milk and early rest. The monastic life agreed with me.

I especially loved those Adelaide days - my health was excellent, I had loads of energy, and I developed a real taste for the austerity of early rising, which I still maintain today. What an auspicious and edifying way to spend one's youth. I don't regret a second of it.

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ISKCON News.com: Jayapataka Swami's Recovery "Slow Yet Steady"

By Madhava Smullen on 21 May 2010
Doctors have told ISKCON guru and GBC Jayapataka Swami, who suffered two brain hemorrhages on October 23rd 2008, that he is making steady progress in his rehabilitation.
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Bharatavarsa.net: Bhakti Vikasa Swami: GBC should be above suspicion

He said, concerning the GBC being criticized, that it's not that a resolution should be passed that they should not be criticized but they should be above it: Caesar's wife should be above suspicion.

>From ISKCON in the '70s by SDG

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Gaura Vani, USA: 24 Hour Kirtan – Summer 2010

The 24 Hour Kirtan is June 19th – 20th, 2010.

Register Now | Accommodations | Directions | Schedule

Each year the 24 Hour Kirtan gets bigger and better. The first 24 Hour Kirtan in 2007 was just a group of friends coming together to celebrate the chanting of the Maha Mantra. Now in it’s fourth year, the 24 Hour Kirtan has become one of the largest kirtan events on the East Coast.

Visit Mantralogy.com/24 for all the details.

Register Now!

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H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: '443' from The Yellow Submarine

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

3:45 A.M.

I slept well last night without a headache. I woke up at 1:30 A.M. Baladeva came up early and woke the Deities. I began chanting, and it went well. In recent months I have been severely criticizing my chanting. But I don't think it has actually been getting worse. What's happening is that I am applying more stark criticism. When I notice that I am not experiencing ecstatic bodily symptoms and that I am not deeply immersed in Radha-Krishna in the yugala-mantra I say it's bad chanting. But for many years I have been satisfied to say I've done good chanting if I have simply been attentive and concentrated. I've been satisfied with that in a humble way. "Thinking oneself lower than the straw in the street, more tolerant than the tree, devoid of all sense of false prestige and ready to offer all respect to others; in such a state of mind, one can chant the holy name of the Lord constantly." I've been chanting like that rather than thinking I have to come up to the last verse in the Siksastakam before I say my chanting is "good." In the absolute sense it's not wrong to say that my chanting is poor, but in a relative sense I've been bashing myself so much for falling short. Anyway, today the mechanics were quite good, I wasn't sleepy, I experienced no pain, and I kept up at quick pace. I chant in my mind because I'm afraid if I chant out loud I'll get a headache. So that's a handicap. But I live with that, just as I live with my ankle or my chronic headaches. Chanting silently is just what I do in recent years, and I have to accept it. At least I don't think I can do more. So I want to say this morning that I had a good chanting session. I've done thirteen rounds, and I'm stopping now so that I can give myself a little time for writing. But you can give yourself a "B" and not a "C-."  Don't give up your aspirations. Don't berate the act of chanting itself.

He wants to say he
chanted alright
according to his scale
from one to ten.
At the doctor's they
had me judge myself
by a scale of tiredness
and pain before and
after I did a walking
exercise. After the exercise
I said I felt slightly tired
and a little pain. In other
words, I didn't tear myself
down. So I'm doing that today
in japa. The pace was
good, the attention was all
right. But what about your
devotion to the Divine Couple?
I cannot lie. I was not
in madhurya mood. But
you know you want that.
The Deities were out for me to see.
The name of Krishna is as good
as He Himself, as good as
Radha Herself. The names are
full of power. Even when
you are not fully aware.
I am saying "Hare Krishna,"
"Hare Rama".

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H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'He appears to be in a trance…' from The Yellow Submarine

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

Prabhupada Smaranam


He appears to be in a trance. His eyes are closed, and his fingers are clasped. He appears to be meditating on Krishna. This is the highest form of meditation. In Bhagavad-gita Krishna says, "And of all yogis, he who worships Me and abides in Me is the most intimately united with Me in yoga and is the highest of all" (Bg. 6.47). To think of Krishna in His two-armed form is the best. Bhakti-yoga is supreme. "The ideal yogi concentrates his attention on Krishna, who is called Syamasundara, who is as beautifully colored as a cloud, whose lotus-like face is a effulgent as the sun, whose dress is brilliant with jewels and whose body is flower-garlanded. Illuminating all sides is His gorgeous luster, which is called the brahmajyoti" (Bg. 6.47, purport). Prabhupada is thinking of Krishna, and therefore he is the highest yogi.

I can't see Krishna as Prabhupada sees Him because my vision is imperfect. It is as if I had cataracts over my eyes. My eyes have to be anointed with the salve of love (krishna-prema) and then I can see Krishna. Prabhupada can see Krishna and I cannot, because I have impure vision. It is said that we should not try to see Krishna but act in such a way that Krishna sees us. If we perform devotional service selflessly, Krishna will be pleased with us and He will appear before us. The example can be given that if a man works very hard at his job his boss will recognize his performance, and he will come before the worker and praise him and perhaps give him a raise. The main thing is to serve Krishna as Prabhupada does, and then Krishna will manifest Himself to us. He will take us to the spiritual world and introduce us to all the wonders there.

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H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'Writing with A Headache' from The Yellow Submarine

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

You start a poem with a
headache and hope it goes
away halfway through or
you just endure it.

My Godbrother read "Soul Eyes."
Interrogating me, how was it a
poem and not prose. What's
the difference. Couldn't get him
to understand.

You took your pills. You are
supposed to kick back and
rest and not attempt a poem,
but my schedule calls for
poem writing now.

Don't play music. Things
to do in the Yellow Submarine.
Read the Yamadutas' inquiry
to Yamaraja about who is the
highest authority. He
asked me what I'm reading.
I said Caitanya-caritamrta,
and it's a fact. Baladeva
is reading to me at mealtimes.
All the devotees are coming
to see Caitanya Mahaprabhu
on His return to Jagannatha Puri.

Special attention is given
to Svarupa Damodara. Whenever
Caitanya speaks of Ramandanda Raya
He uses the highest praise.
The devotees find some service
to do for the fallen Krishna
dasa. They are more kind than
the Lord.

He reads books in the
mood of goodness like
Covey's Seven Effective
Ways for Something or
and a book on
non-complaining relationships
by a man named Bowen.
He says these books help us
apply Krishna consciousness
although they may not be
very deep. I'm not against

Wrote a poem about
the Simpsons attending
a gathering for the end
of the world. Said we
don't do that in ISKCON.
All our meetings are praise
of Krishna the eternal.
We've got a long time before
the end of the world. But
the end of our life can come
soon, it will.

No, that was not a poem
about the Simpsons, it was
a free write. It accompanied
a cartoon of cultists gathered
on the hill in their robes

Gary Snyder's poems tell
you what he does. "Fell
in love twenty times.
Got divorced." He is
like a seagull, a hitchhiker.

Where is Krishna in this poem?
He's on the altar with Radha.
He's in the Supersoul within
the heart. He's in my
headache. He's in the
desire to write the poem.
Krishna is in the Sanskrit slokas,
krishnas tu bhagavan svayam.

Krishna is in your ink.
He's in the breakfast.
He can't be reached because
I'm too impure
and inconvenienced.
He fell from the three story
building with me. We
survived, and we walked into
the storefront on that first
night and immediately
stopped all our bad
habits. You started writing Krishna
poems, straight propaganda,
He stole my heart just like
He stole milk from Yasoda.
She punished Him, and
He punishes me.
But He's my best friend,
He is God almighty.
It's best you stop.

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H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 'Sisyphus's Ceaseless Toil' from The Yellow Submarine

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

Free write

This is the myth of Sisyphus. Sisyphus was cursed to roll a boulder up the side of the mountain, and when it got to the top it would roll down again. He perpetually, futilely toiled at pushing the rock up the hill only to have it roll back down again. The twentieth century French writer,  Albert Camus, used the myth of Sisyphus as an analogy for the faith of humankind in a purposeless, godless universe. According to Camus, this is every person's predicament. But the Vedic knowledge doesn't accept this fable as the actual condition for all souls. With the help of guru and the Supreme Lord, a conditioned soul can roll his rock to the top of the hill and not have it slide down again.

Without God it may not be possible, but with God all things are possible. We are not alone in the universe trying to push a gigantic boulder up a mountainside. God is in the picture also, and by His supreme might the boulder becomes like a pebble, and we can roll it to the top of the mountain. It does not roll down again, and we can go on with our lives unrestricted. If you do not believe in God, and if you do not take His help, you may be doomed like Sisyphus to toil alone at an impossible task.

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ISKCON News.com: Largest ISKCON School in US Meets With Support

By Navina-Shyama Dasa for ISKCON News on 21 May 2010
Bhaktivedanta Academy, a devotional primary school located in Alachua, Florida, hosted its third annual spring fundraising event on Friday, April 23rd.
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ISKCON News.com: 'Ecstatic Chant' Fills the Hills of Upstate New York

By Jahnavi Harrison on 21 May 2010
Yogis and kirtan enthusiasts congregated at the Omega Institute in upstate New York as it held its 'Ecstatic Chant' festival from May 7th to 9th.
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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1966 May 21:
"Dwitiya. In the afternoon there was Sanskrit class. The attendance was ten, the collection was $4.00. One boy paid for the books (partly) $6.00. At 5/30 P.M. we started for Ananda Ashram. In the evening there was Keertan at Ashram. It was nice as usual. There was dance of Balirama."
Prabhupada Journal :: 1966

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1967 May 21: "It is clear the young people of this country are very much eager to have spiritual enlightenment and as such this sankirtan movement is just suitable. Let us convince them this movement - very simple and universal - is the only means for spiritual realization."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1967

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1967 May 21: "This movement is universal. Let the leaders be open minded and not biased by any sectarian thoughts. Convince them to accept this common formula, chanting Hare Krishna, dancing, hearing Bhagavad-gita directly from the representative of Krishna, and eating Krishna Prasada."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1967

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1967 May 21: "Convince them this Krishna Consciousness movement is the approved method for reviving God consciousness and the only remedy for human society's diseased condition. Let the leaders take this movement seriously. If they patiently hear me I am sure they will be convinced as you have been."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1967

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1970 May 21: "We begin Srimad Bhagavatam by offering obeisances to the Supreme Truth, Satyam Param Dhimahi. So those who are strictly following the Bhagavat line they are living in Satya Yuga. And our Temples are a replica of Vaikuntha, so live there peacefully, chant the regular beads, and follow the regulative principles."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1970

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1972 May 21: "You just try your best to serve Krishna and if any perplexing circumstances arise, just pray to Krishna to give you strength. These bodily relationships are only temporary. Our real relationship is with Krishna. Try to cultivate that."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1972

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1972 May 21: "Even a few of these words if propagated widely can have a tremendous effect on millions of people. So my Guru Maharaja used to say these literatures are the Brhat Mrdanga - the big mrdanga which can be heard from a long distance. Therefore above all it is our duty to print these words for the benefit of all mankind."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1972

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1972 May 21: "I shall be very glad to attend your Janmastami and I am pleased that you have consented to give me the 50% of your profits on that night. But I will have no objection if you consider giving me 100%."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1972

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ISKCON News.com: Growing a Library at the Mayapur Academy

By Antony Brennan on 21 May 2010
Recent expansions of the facilities and collection at the Mayapur Academy library are bringing it closer to Srila Prabhupada's vision.
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ISKCON News.com: North America Conference Focuses on Tomorrow's Torchbearers

By New Vrindaban Communications on 21 May 2010
Nearly forty-five years after ISKCON's founding, its first generation of leaders are reaching retirement age, and the organization is planning a smooth transfer of power to the next generation.
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ISKCON News.com: Spanish Version of Lord Nrsimhadeva's Pastimes Now Available

By Rasa Sundari Dasi (Malaga, Spain) on 21 May 2010
Just in time for Nrsimhadeva's Appearance Day...
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Madhava Ghosh dasa, New Vrndavan, USA: Purple Pokeberries Could Unlock Affordable Solar Power Worldwide

by Alicia W. Roberts, Wake Forest University

South Carolina, United States — Pokeberries – the weeds that children smash to stain their cheeks purple-red and that Civil War soldiers used to write letters home – could be the key to spreading solar power across the globe, according to researchers at Wake Forest University’s Center for Nanotechnology and Molecular Materials.

Nanotech Center scientists have used the red dye made from pokeberries to coat their efficient and inexpensive fiber-based solar cells. The dye acts as an absorber, helping the cell’s tiny fibers trap more sunlight to convert into power.

Pokeberries proliferate even during drought and in rocky, infertile soil. That means residents of rural Africa, for instance, could raise the plants for pennies. Then they could make the dye absorber for the extremely efficient fiber cells and provide energy where power lines don’t run, said David Carroll, Ph.D., the center’s director.

“They’re weeds,” Carroll said. “They grow on every continent but Antarctica.”

Wake Forest University holds the first patent for fiber-based photovoltaic, or solar, cells, granted by the European Patent Office in November. A spinoff company called FiberCell Inc. has received the license to develop manufacturing methods for the new solar cell.

The fiber cells can produce as much as twice the power that current flat-cell technology can produce. That’s because they are composed of millions of tiny, plastic “cans” that trap light until most of it is absorbed. Since the fibers create much more surface area, the fiber solar cells can collect light at any angle — from the time the sun rises until it sets.

To make the cells, the plastic fibers are stamped onto plastic sheets, with the same technology used to attach the tops of soft-drink cans. The absorber — either a polymer or a less-expensive dye — is sprayed on. The plastic makes the cells lightweight and flexible, so a manufacturer could roll them up and ship them cheaply to developing countries — to power a medical clinic, for instance.

Once the primary manufacturer ships the cells, workers at local plants would spray them with the dye and prepare them for installation. Carroll estimates it would cost about $5 million to set up a finishing plant — about $15 million less than it could cost to set up a similar plant for flat cells.

“We could provide the substrate,” he said. “If Africa grows the pokeberries, they could take it home.

“It’s a low-cost solar cell that can be made to work with local, low-cost agricultural crops like pokeberries and with a means of production that emerging economies can afford.”

Alicia W. Roberts is a research writer at Wake Forest University.

Filed under: Cows and Environment
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H.H. Sivarama Swami: Program at a music school

last week in Marcali

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Dandavats.com: Arca-vigraha's Saintly Vision

By Giriraja Swami

About this time, Jhanu Saptami, in 1994, Arca-vigraha dasi, a renown artist from South Africa, left her cancer-ridden body in Vrndavana. Her desire that other devotees also have a proper facility to spend their last days in the beautiful spiritual atmosphere of the dhama inspired the creation of the Bhaktivedanta Hospice.

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H.H. Sivarama Swami: Q&A: The meaning of synthetic life

SRS: Here is the latest illusion that life can be created, instead of understanding that only conditions for life can be brought about.


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H.H. Sivarama Swami

If one is in full Krsna consciousness and his life is devoted to the Lord’s transcendental service, he is perfect.

- Srila Prabhupada

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Mayapur Online: Making of the Nrsimhadeva Video!

At first it was experimentation with long, slow zooms and dissolves, using digital photos of Lord Nrsimhadev from visits to Mayapur. The Lord seemed to get closer and closer until it was almost frightening, and the closeups tranformed into various views of His beautiful face, covered with sandalwood paste.I completed synchronizing the medium-paced first musical section—Nrsimha prayers sung by Krsna Prema Prabhu.

read more

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Dandavats.com: In Memory of Amekhala

Giribaradhari das (Smara Hari's brother): With tears in my eyes, I laugh and I cry, When I think of all you have done. This body you have lost At such a great cost, But your battle has been won.

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Dandavats.com: Amekhala, Departure Of A Pure Devotee

Subhangi devi dasi: I first met Amekhala when I was pregnant with my daughter Lila in 1990. I took a side trip to England to avoid Indian summer and meet my Jordy relatives. I was really struck by how nice the English matajis were.

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Dandavats.com: Importance of the Yuga-Dharma Nama-Sankirtana

By Aindra Dasa

The best sadhu-sanga is when you come into the association of pure devotees, who are engaging in the performance of nama-sankirtana, who are absorbed in the yuga-dharma - that is the best sadhu-sanga, that is real sadhu-sanga.

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Dandavats.com: Man plays God, really?

Partha prana govinda das: Washington: Scientists announced a bold step on Thursday in the enduring quest to create artificial life. They've produced a living cell powered by manmade DNA

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Dandavats.com: Growing a library at the Mayapur Academy

Antony Brennan: Expanding the library at the Mayapur Academy has been an ongoing project. Most recently, additional shelves were installed to cater for new books being sourced by the Academy and donated by devotees.

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Dandavats.com: Serbian Narasimhalila appears

Amogha das: In a continuing downpour of mercy leading up to His appearance day, the Lord's loving devotees have sent the Serbian translation of Lord Nrsimhadeva's pastimes

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Dandavats.com: Eco-community and cooperative farm starting up at ISKCON New Talavan

Bhakta Blake: We have a lease on 35 acres of fertile pasture and forest land and are hoping to develop a small 4-8 person cooperative organic farm, orchard, and dairy operation to support the local New Talavan congregation of about 50 people.

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Yoga of Ecology, Bhakta Chris, USA: Scaling Up Renewables And The Smart Grid

From our friend Madhava Ghosh

Posted on March 30, 2010 by Alison Wise, National Renewable Energy Lab

There are many experts who feel that the market potential of renewable energy will only be fully realized if smart grid technologies and services are successful. But first, we need to define the smart grid.

In the broadest sense, "smart" refers to a kind of reactive and interactive capability of the energy transmission and distribution infrastructure that is driven both by the generators of electrons and the demands for those electrons. So, the smart grid is defined as "digital energy" by those that focus on the information and communications technologies that will help build the interactive capability of its promise.

For the utility stakeholders, the smart grid is an "intelligent utility infrastructure." And because of that, utilities with have to change their business model (and sometimes the regulatory context in which that model functions) as well as make changes to their entire operations to encompass the commodity aspect of energy and step up their customer interactions.

Finally, some refer to it as the "modern grid," recognizing that this new infrastructure represents a 21st century approach to retrofitting a 19th century understanding of energy flows.

I will be referring to the interaction between technologies and services in this space as the "smart grid," since it seems that is becoming the dominant way to describe this new system.

Late last year, the DOE awarded $435 million to sixteen different smart grid pilot projects in the U.S. A map of pilot projects can be found on OpenEI's Smart Grid Gateway. In addition, the DOE organized a "smart grid task force," whose activities and resources can be found here. These projects represent field research on how all the different stakeholders and technologies will combine to expand these projects into a smart grid that will transform our infrastructure.

When awarding these funds, the DOE focused on these critical goals for the grid:

  • Increased reliability
  • Increased security
  • Greater economic efficiency
  • Greater energy efficiency
  • Improvements to the environment
  • Increased safety
  • Utilizing a vision; not randomly implementing technologies

You may note that in this list, better integration of distributed renewable generation is not made distinct, though one could back into it through diversification of energy resources as increasing reliability and security. Interestingly, just like the many definitions for the smart grid, there are many opinions about the need for renewable energy in the smart grid, with some feeling that renewables are central and others feeling renewables are irrelevant.

The DOE funded nine demonstration projects to specifically address the issue of renewable integration into the grid. In these projects, it is looking for a 15% peak load reduction on a distribution feeder through both renewable and efficiency technologies.

Pilot Project in Boulder

Right in NREL's backyard, a community scale "demonstration" smart grid project is underway in Boulder, CO. The first in the U.S. the Denver smart grid demonstration project preceded those that are now in development as a result of the recent funding from DOE. This initial experiment has had mixed reviews.

The success of the smart grid depends on the private and public sector's stakeholder involvement with systemic issues of transparency versus security. According to many businesses that are building smart grid "solutions," there are two aspects to the way that energy should be thought of in terms of efficiency. Adrian Tuck, the CEO of Boulder-based smart grid company Tendril, recently gave testimony to Congress on the matter.

He said, "Energy efficiency is best measured across at least two dimensions. On the one hand, we can and must focus on improving the throughput efficiency of the electric system and the buildings it serves, including programs to fund improvements in insulation, caulking and replacing appliances. On the other hand, we must also consider the real-time market and environmental information that can drive true transactional and behavior changes. The impacts of these changes can drive tangible energy efficiency and environmental benefits."

In other words, consumers will (hopefully) make better energy choices if they have access to energy information in their homes and/or businesses. "Smart" in the smart grid lexicon then also refers to smarter consumer choices. It is this access to information that has some Boulder residents grumbling; the smart meters exist in their homes, but the information that these meters are collecting in this program is not shared with the homeowner.

The utilities involved in Boulder were not able to provide energy information to the homeowners for a few reasons, most of which stem from their not being equipped to handle the onslaught of customer questions that they feared would come as a result. In addition, a case can be made that consumer behavior would be even more changed if customers were billed based on time-of-use (TOU) pricing. Since the utilities involved in this program didn't have TOU pricing for residential customers in place, it could be argued that customer usage data wouldn't have much value for the customers anyway.

Building customer information systems that are capable of accepting detailed demand data and displaying it for customers and customer service representatives who accept calls from customers will require massive utility investment. Investing in and implementing this type of infrastructure and implementing TOU pricing requires approval by utility commissions, which can take years.

The challenge for all of us will be to align the right incentives for existing energy providers with the right mechanisms for sharing energy information with energy users.

Smart Grid and Renewables

Why is the smart grid so important to renewable energy generation, and specifically distributed renewable energy generation? If smart grid is done correctly, information in the electricity infrastructure will allow the grid to "intelligently" accept more energy from intermittent sources like solar and wind. Without this intelligence, the existing grid will have difficulty incorporating larger amounts of intermittent renewable energy.

Think of the situation as analogous to the interaction between automobiles, roads and traffic lights. If we were to introduce ever-increasing numbers of vehicles to our roads with no signals to direct the flow of traffic, the whole system would collapse quickly into accidents and blockages. It is this "intelligence" – the signals that direct the traffic – that enables vehicles to move through the system relatively seamlessly. Since the roads need to be accessible by the vehicles being introduced to the system, potentially more roads will need to be built to accommodate these new vehicles from wherever they originate.

Similarly, power generated from sustainable sources like wind and solar pose problems in terms of controlling how and when this power is generated and introduced into the grid. Energy from these intermittent sources needs to be matched intelligently to the needs of the end user in order to be able to integrate these newer renewable resources as an asset to our energy infrastructure as opposed to a liability. Without these measures, renewables may never penetrate markets beyond niche applications.

Those of us who have been working in renewables for years (and my own organization having a 30 year track record), may bristle at the idea that we are "new" but if we are to become the status quo, smart grid may be an important element to how we get there.

For more information about where Smart Meter Pilot Projects are taking place in the U.S. and beyond, check out the Clean Energy Infrastructure section of the Clean Energy Economy, developed by NREL.

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H.H. Sivarama Swami: Gauraraya dasa asks about yukta-vairagya:

Is it bona fide to offer to the Deities or the spiritual master bhoga/prasadam, that has slokas written on them, like on a cake, or in the shape of Govardhana, or animals, people, etc. This offering is later cut up, distributed and eaten?

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David Haslam, UK: My donkey mentality

Last year I got asked about the number of hours worked and if this was normal as the person was just leaving the temple ashram, I became defensive and justified myself stating that the hours had to be worked in order to pay for the house, car, bills and tax requirements. But on reflection they were [...]

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Gouranga TV: ISKCON COVENTRY Sankirtan Deities

ISKCON COVENTRY Sankirtan Deities

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Japa Group: I Have To Concentrate

I have to concentrate and think of Krishna and think of Krishna's names as I utter them, or my chanting will be offensive.

From Bhajan Kutir #441
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