martes, 24 de agosto de 2010

Australian News: Amala Kirtan Dasa doing his thing down under



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  1. Dandavats.com: Sri Mayapur Gaura Purnima 2011 Festival Schedule
  2. Japa Group: I Managed To Chant All Sixteen
  3. ISKCON Melbourne, AU: Seminars with Dina Sarana Mataji
  4. New Vrndavan, USA: Lord Balarama Appearance Day Program
  5. Australian News: Amala Kirtan Dasa doing his thing down under
  6. ISKCON Toronto, Canada: Lord Balarama's Appearance Day!
  7. Kurma dasa, AU: The Ones That Got Away: Part Three
  8. Kurma dasa, AU: The Ones That Got Away: Part Two
  9. Bharatavarsa.net: Bhakti Vikasa Swami: pray to Lord Balarama
  10. Akrura das, Gita Coaching: WHY QUESTIONS?
  11. H.H. Prahladananda Swami: Lecture – SB 1.2.16 How do you know Srila Prabhupada's a pure devotee? – Video
  12. H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 49
  13. H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: Prabhupada Smaranam
  14. H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: Poem From Under Dark Stars
  15. H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: Clean Record
  16. Kirtan Australia.com: Sydney Kirtans at the Harmony Centre
  17. Maddy Jean-claude Durr, New Govardhana, AU: As On BDN: kindness conquers the heart
  18. H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Tuesday, August 17th, 2010
  19. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  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. H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Monday, August 16th, 2010
  28. H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Sunday, August 15th, 2010
  29. H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Saturday, August 14th, 2010
  30. Japa Group: Chant 16 Rounds Regularly
  31. H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Tuesday, August 10th, 2010
  32. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  33. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  34. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  35. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  36. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  37. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  38. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  39. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  40. H.H. Sivarama Swami: Preparing for Lord Balarama’s appearance day tomorrow
  41. ISKCON Brisbane, AU: *GRASS ROOTS HARINAMA REVOLUTION!*
  42. Gouranga TV: KIRTAN 1 – WOODSTOCK 2010
  43. H.H. Sivarama Swami
  44. Bharatavarsa.net: Book distribution seminar: kindness conquers the heart
  45. More Recent Articles
  46. Search Planet ISKCON

Dandavats.com: Sri Mayapur Gaura Purnima 2011 Festival Schedule

By Bhakti Purusottama Swami

With great pleasure, ISKCON Mayapur invites devotees worldwide to celebrate the Gaura Purnima festival 2011 at Sri dham Mayapur. On 5th of March 2011, the festival inauguration will take place, followed by various festivities, Navadwipa Mandala Parikrama and the grand celebration of Gaura Purnima on 19th March. Please find below the detailed festival schedule

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Japa Group: I Managed To Chant All Sixteen


This morning I woke at 1:30 A.M. and began chanting my rounds. They were some what mechanical, but I strung them all together with out becoming sleepy or greatly distracted. It was a typical decent session for me. I managed to chant all sixteen rounds by 3:40 A.M.

From Bhajan Kutir #49
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ISKCON Melbourne, AU: Seminars with Dina Sarana Mataji

dina1
We have a most enlightened guest in Melbourne at the moment: Dina Sarana Mataji. She is Srila Prabhupada's disciple and has been in Krishna Consciousness for nearly 40 years. Dina Sarana Dasi is the GBC representative for Germany, Austria, Liechtenstein and Switzerland and is based in Germany.

Her current main service is to help the German yatra to get back on its feet. Her future plans are to visit yatras on invitation even though she is already well engaged with her GBC duties.

Dina Sarana Mataji will be conducting a 2-day seminar entitled 'Women in Krishna Consciousness'; Wednesday and Friday from 10am to 1pm. She will also have a seminar on 'Grihastha life' with our congregational members on Friday from 6.30 to 8pm.

Please take this golden opportunity to associate with such an experienced Vaisnavi and attend the seminars that will be held in the Theatre Room.

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New Vrndavan, USA: Lord Balarama Appearance Day Program

TUESDAY 24 AUG. 2010

5:00PM___5:15PM :Welcome

5:15PM___5:30PM: Special dance performances by devotee children!

5:30PM___6:00PM: Balarama Quiz – special surprises for winners!

6:00PM___7:00PM : Class by Malati Devi Dasi

7:00PM___7:30PM : Artik

7:30PM___Feast in Honor of Lord Balarama’s Appearance Day

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Australian News: Amala Kirtan Dasa doing his thing down under

Amala Kirtana Dasa lives in Dallas and is active in chanting Hare Krsna there. For a breif period in time earlier this year he chanted Hare Krishna here in Australia. Born in Brazil, Amala has been performing kirtan for over 20 years. As a young man he spent a great deal of time in Bengal, India, studying the Bengali style of singing.

Raised in a family of kirtaniyas Amala, who has been called the "Pavarotti of Kirtan," has fused the Brazilian sound with the traditional Bengali kirtan to produce something unique.

On his Australian tour Amala, who is based in Dallas, Texas, was supported by the "World Sankirtan Party", the same kirtan band who supported Dave Stringer, Jai Uttal, and Madhava on their recent Australian tours.

Click here to go to www.kirtanaustralia.com where you can see the cool videos of Amala Kirtan Dasa doing his thing down under.

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ISKCON Toronto, Canada: Lord Balarama's Appearance Day!

Tomorrow (Tuesday, August 24, 2010) marks the auspicious appearance day (birthday) of Lord Balarama, Lord Krishna's older brother! Lord Balarama symbolizes strength and compassion and we invite you to take part in the celebrations at the Hare Krishna Temple. Our schedule for the evening will be:

6:00 pm - 6:30 pm - Arati
6:30 pm - 6:35 pm - Welcome and Announcements
6:35 pm - 7:25 pm - Class by HH Bhaktimarga Swami
7:25 pm - 8:00 pm - Lord Balarama's Cooking Contest!
8:00 pm - 8:30 pm - Arati
8:30 pm - Free Prasadam (Vegetarian Feast) for All!

This year's festivities have a bit of a twist with "Lord Balarama's Cooking Contest". Some of our community's most talented cooks have volunteered to make sweet preparations dedicated to Lord Balarama. On Sunday the cooks choose their mystery ingredients as well as a name of Lord Balarama they need to express through their dish. The results will be presented during tomorrows program, this new feature is something you don't want to miss!

After Lord Balarama's appearance day, the countdown for Sri Krishna Janmashtami starts, the biggest birthday bash in town for Lord Krishna. This year, Janmashtami falls on September 1st. As always, we will be having exciting activities on September 1st from 6:00 pm to midnight! More information about what to expect will be coming your way soon!

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Kurma dasa, AU: The Ones That Got Away: Part Three

This report finally brings us up to date with all things bloggy.

We held our first Cookery Retreat at Krishna Valley, in country Victoria, two weekends ago. Krishna Valley, surrounded by State Forest, is 200 acres of beautiful rolling countryside a couple hours outside of Melbourne, Australia. Here are some images:

Our Winter Cooking Retreat at Krishna Valley:

This is us, in our great farm kitchen, the 'action-central' for all things culinary over the weekend. We had loads of fun.

another panir steak on the barbie:

We made our cheese from scratch, pressed it, and fried it on our giant red-hot smokin' griddle, splashing it with tamari and home-made sweet chili sauce in it's final moments of basting glory.

Watch out for Mr Teddles:

The oldest member of our group, who wished to be known only as Teddles (to his friends) had a great deal of fun blending our heavenly carrot and ginger soup to a creamy puree. He said he would like to take the giant Professional Bamix home to his 'shed', but alas, he had to hand it in at the door. (Teddles also won the 'silliest bandana of the weekend' prize).

lunch, Krishna Valley:

Our next and final retreat for this year will be in October 2010, but alas that is fully booked out. Stay tuned for the opening of enrolments for 2011. Better still, contact Veda on the number below and book ahead. (Pssst...rumour has it that there will be one at the beginning of April...ssshhh...)

Bhakti Yoga Cookery Retreat, Hare Krishna Valley, Bambra, Victoria, A weekend of cooking, learning and eating! 2011 dates to be announced, Bookings/reservations/enquiries call Veda 0405 577 453.

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Kurma dasa, AU: The Ones That Got Away: Part Two

It was my Dad's 86th birthday a few weeks ago. I cooked a bit of a feast for the close family. Notable was the cake. Here's a few images.

WARNING: do not cast thy glances upon them on an empty stomach, for ye shall be smitten with a cake-lust that cannot be fulfilled. Look away, look awaaaayyyy...

yes it's home-made:

Yes, it's home made. By me.

an imitation carob cake:

Whichever way you look at it, it looks good.

looks good from all angles:

There's none left, sorry. All that remains of this cake are the memories, and these electronic images. Life is cruel.

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Bharatavarsa.net: Bhakti Vikasa Swami: pray to Lord Balarama

There was another particular significance in Prabhupada's choosing Krsna and Balarama as the central object of worship in his Vrndavana temple. Lord Balarama is the first expansion from Lord Krsna, and in His incarnation of Sankarsana, He upholds all the universes. The Vaisnavas, therefore, worship Balarama for spiritual strength. "You can pray to Lord Balarama," Prabhupada said, "to help you in your deficiency." As the source of spiritual strength, Lord Balarama is also known as the original spiritual master.

>>> Ref. VedaBase => SPL 43: Beginning the Temple of Krsna-Balarama

Balarama Purnima, His appearance day, is upcoming

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Akrura das, Gita Coaching: WHY QUESTIONS?

Asking relevant questions is important to help us:

• Gather information
• Create understanding and learning
• Build, improve, and sustain relationships
• Clarify and confirm listening
• Stimulate creativity and innovation
• Resolve conflicts
• Create collaboration
• Set goals and create action plans
• Explore, discover, and create new possibilities

Not every question applies to every situation.

That's why we need to develop a collection of our favorite questions and work with them on a regular basis, daily.

These questions can open and change our mind. They allow us to unveil new choices, options, opportunities, advantages and possibilities.

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H.H. Prahladananda Swami: Lecture – SB 1.2.16 How do you know Srila Prabhupada's a pure devotee? – Video

Lecture on Srimad Bhagavatam, Canto 1, Chapter 2, Text 16 by Prahladananda Swami.

Ljublijana, Slovenia

2010-08-19

Srimad Bhagavatam 1.2.16

TRANSLATION

O twice-born sages, by serving those devotees who are completely freed from all vice, great service is done. By such service, one gains affinity for hearing the messages of V?sudeva.

PURPORT

The conditioned life of a living being is caused by his revolting against the Lord. There are men called deva, or godly living beings, and there are men called asuras, or demons, who are against the authority of the Supreme Lord. In the Bhagavad-g?t? (Sixteenth Chapter) a vivid description of the asuras is given in which it is said that the asuras are put into lower and lower states of ignorance life after life and so sink to the lower animal forms and have no information of the Absolute Truth, the Personality of Godhead. These asuras are gradually rectified to God consciousness by the mercy of the Lord’s liberated servitors in different countries according to the supreme will. Such devotees of God are very confidential associates of the Lord, and when they come to save human society from the dangers of godlessness, they are known as the powerful incarnations of the Lord, as sons of the Lord, as servants of the Lord or as associates of the Lord. But none of them falsely claim to be God themselves. This is a blasphemy declared by the asuras, and the demoniac followers of such asuras also accept pretenders as God or His incarnation. In the revealed scriptures there is definite information of the incarnation of God. No one should be accepted as God or an incarnation of God unless he is confirmed by the revealed scriptures.

The servants of God are to be respected as God by the devotees who actually want to go back to Godhead. Such servants of God are called mah?tm?s, or t?rthas, and they preach according to particular time and place. The servants of God urge people to become devotees of the Lord. They never tolerate being called God. ?r? Caitanya Mah?prabhu was God Himself according to the indication of the revealed scriptures, but He played the part of a devotee. People who knew Him to be God addressed Him as God, but He used to block His ears with His hands and chant the name of Lord Vis?n?u. He strongly protested against being called God, although undoubtedly He was God Himself. The Lord behaves so to warn us against unscrupulous men who take pleasure in being addressed as God.

The servants of God come to propagate God consciousness, and intelligent people should cooperate with them in every respect. By serving the servant of God, one can please God more than by directly serving the Lord. The Lord is more pleased when He sees that His servants are properly respected because such servants risk everything for the service of the Lord and so are very dear to the Lord. The Lord declares in the Bhagavad-g?t? (18.69) that no one is dearer to Him than one who risks everything to preach His glory. By serving the servants of the Lord, one gradually gets the quality of such servants, and thus one becomes qualified to hear the glories of God. The eagerness to hear about God is the first qualification of a devotee eligible for entering the kingdom of God.

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H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: 49

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

3:40 A.M.

From Namamrta by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada:

“Sankirtana-yajna
is the only recommended yajna for this age.”

“Lord Caitanya introduced the sankirtana-yajna for the deliverance of all men in this age of Kali:

"[Lord Krishna to Arjuna] In the beginning of creation, the Lord of all creatures sent forth generations of men and demigods, along with sacrifices for Vishnu, and blessed them by saying, "Be thou happy by this yajna [sacrifice] because its performance will bestow upon you all desirable things."

"The Lord created this material world for the conditioned souls to learn how to perform yajnas for the satisfaction of Vishnu, so that while in the material world they can live very comfortably without anxiety. Then after finishing the present material body they can enter into the kingdom of God. That is the whole program for the conditioned soul. By performance of yajna, the conditioned souls gradually become Krishna conscious and become godly in all respects. In this age of Kali, the sankirtana-yajna (the chanting of the names of God) is recommended by the Vedic scriptures, and this transcendental system was introduced by Lord Caitanya for the deliverance of all men in this age. Sankirtana-yajna and Krishna consciousness go well together. Lord Krishna in His devotional form (as Lord Caitanya) is mentioned in the Srimad-Bhagavatam as follows, with special reference to the sankirtana-yajna:

"’In this age of Kali, people who are endowed with sufficient intelligence will worship the Lord, who is accompanied by His associates, by performance of sankirtana-yajna.‘ (Srimad Bhagavatam 11.5.32)

“‘Other yajnas prescribed in the Vedic literatures are not easy to perform in this age of Kali but the sankirtana-yajna is easy and sublime for all purposes.’” (Bhagavad-gita As It Is 3.10)

So yajnas are to be performed that people can live comfortably and then go back to Godhead. They were introduced personally by Krishna at the beginning of creation. But there are different yajnas for different ages. In Kali-yuga the only yajna that is possible is sankirtana. "Sankirtana-yajna and Krishna consciousness go well together." Lord Caitanya personally introduced it in Kali-yuga, and this is stated in the 11th Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam. It is stated that people who are sufficiently intelligent will worship Lord Caitanya by sankirtana. They are sufficiently intelligent because they know that other yajnas are not possible and so they don't attempt them. It is intelligent to take the easy system and not the impossible, difficult system. Prabhupada has referred to "lazy intelligence" by which a person does the possible thing and does not exert himself in things that are impossible to do.

I must always remember that I am rightly situated when I am chanting the names of Krishna and that it is the prescribed yajna. This morning I woke at 1:30 A.M. and began chanting my rounds. They were somewhat mechanical, but I strung them all together without becoming sleepy or greatly distracted. It was a typical decent session for me. I managed to chant all sixteen rounds by 3:40 A.M. It was easy to do, but I did not reach a sublime condition which is the possibility of chanting when it is done without any offenses and is done in full devotion. My chanting was done counting the mantras and getting them done, but not crying to Krishna for reinstatement in my eternal position or crying for my lack of greed. There is that certain complacency which is part of my japa, part of my routine. We call it mechanical chanting, and it is something to go beyond.

The prescribed yajna
for Kali-yuga is
the one I am doing,
so I am rightly situated
in religious practice.
I have the gift of
Lord Caitanya and
am most fortunate
among yogis and jnanis.
But within this best chance I struggle to
keep it live. If you chant mechanically it
is on the outer form.
The essence is a genuine
cry for Krishna for
eternal service in the eternal
kingdom. When you do not even
cry that you do not cry,
you are outside the
circle of harinama.

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H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: Prabhupada Smaranam

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

From One Hundred Prabhupada Poems:

6.
A brother wrote to me about reading your book,
Srila Prabhupada. He said reading was not enough, but
deep study. I wrote back and said I am not a scholar
who can analyze so well.
I read to be with Prabhupada and Krishna.

You as the teacher, the explainer . . .
I don't think much of biographical details
or my memories of you, when I read.
I don't try to fix your photo image in my mind.
But I am very dependent on your purport.
It's the nicest kind of intimacy,
listening to your teachings.

Read carefully and underline in pencil.
Take it seriously, tenderly.
I don't need to immediately apply it;
it's already applied when we are open to your words.
It will come out in other action,
that we will see with time.
I read every day, and even
if nothing else is done by me,
this is the way to the Kingdom of God.

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H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: Poem From Under Dark Stars

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

1.
I'm continuing this series
because I like the vintage
poems and because it unlocks
secrets from the past. Because
they are like the poems in Alice in
Wonderland
, nonsensical and unknown
but with a Krishna conscious message
woven through. There was a time
when I wrote that way and it
intrigues me today and I
want to explain them as far as
I am able because they contain
raw energy and an honest voice
although admittedly written
askew.

read more from SDGonline - daily updates Viraha Bhavan journal 

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H.H. Satsvarupa das Goswami: Clean Record

www.sdgonline.org. SDGonline Daily updates

Free Write

It is chilly now in the morning. Upstate New York. We have New York State license plates, but there is still a lot more paperwork before we get social services. I'm wearing a hoodie, and Baladeva is wearing a V-neck sweater which he stole from me. He said he will have to come back in his next life for taking the guru's clothes. He just had his blood tests and his B12 level is up, so he says his memory will get better and he has given me a list of twenty-one meals to choose from. Today I chose spinach and panir and rice and dhal and puris. "This I can do," he said. Narayana does not eat at lunch when we do. He sits at the table and reads Caitanya-bhagavata. He has unusual regulated eating habits. I'm very happy to be living in the Viraha Bhavan with these inmates.

There is a fat groundhog living under our porch. He roams and eats in the yards of Saci's and Kaulini's houses. Mother Kaulini recently had her eye on a big tomato that was ripening in her garden. She is fond of tomato sandwiches. Yesterday she went to collect it and saw the groundhog run away. He had eaten half the tomato. She took the remaining half and made a sandwich. Baladeva told me farmers shoot groundhogs or keep dogs to kill them because cows and horses can easily break their legs in groundhog's holes. But this groundhog has no predators above it. Saci's cat just attacked it and ran away screaming, while the groundhog just grunted after defending itself. He's fat and happy and dangerous if attacked. There is no danger at every step for him.

(Baladeva saw my written reference to his stealing my sweater, and he showed me it has a hole in the collar—but then he returned it. He also dared me to confess how many sweaters I own, but I'll just say "a lot." I've collected them as gifts over many years and use only a very few of them. I also had more than my present collection but gave many away.)

Prabhupada wanted his disciples to become "regular gurus." Many had trouble and couldn't do it. I had trouble. I recovered and was accepted back by the society and some of my disciples. Some of them rejected me. I am performing this service. To those who accept me I offer them guidance, and I set a good example of regulative  sannyasi. I'm finishing up with a clean record. Some are too disappointed and have accepted others to lead them, or they just follow Prabhupada. I offer a “virtual relationship” via the journal. And in person. But mainly my words, as always, in books of honest record and instruction. I pray to cover the last years in good order.

We just had all of Saci's family, except for Laksmana, over for Saturday lunch. They enjoyed Baladeva's excellent cooking. It included a dessert of banana bread with iced topping and a choice of three kinds of ice cream. Everyone's tummy was filled, and we saw a slide show of their Cape Cod vacation. They are already planning other outings today and tomorrow–a very active family.

Butterflies are out. Walnuts in green shells on the trees and on the ground in Saci's yard. This morning I saw the groundhog foraging around. He wanders freely in all the yards here. But he is not aggressive like a monkey. He runs away when you come by. If you attack him he'll fight back, and he's got good bulk and claws and teeth. Some big dogs are trained to run after an animal, but until they are grown up they don't know how to fight. Big German Shepherd puppies ran after the groundhog, but when he turned around, they fled. They know only the chase, not the follow-through. Garuda and Hanuman were not bluffing. They were great fighters. They fought against the enemies of Vishnu.

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Kirtan Australia.com: Sydney Kirtans at the Harmony Centre

Shanti Music Monthly Kirtan

Let music, rhythm, melody and mantra transport you into a state of peace, bliss  and tranquility. Experience healing through sound. Explore the essence of the divine spark  within you as your heart chakra expands, through this ancient practice made magical by some wonderful musicians and kirtanists.

August 21 – Sushumna and Shankara
September 18 – Radha Shakti – Album Launch
September 25 – Shankara and Durga Devi
October 16 – Sri Prahlad Kirtan Band
October 30 – Sushumna

WHERE: Shanti Mission Harmony Centre Sydney
www.shantimission.org
176 Parramatta Rd
TIME: Camperdown NSW 2050
7pm till late
Ph: 02 9550 5449
COST: By Donation
Sri Prahlad

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Maddy Jean-claude Durr, New Govardhana, AU: As On BDN: kindness conquers the heart

I was on my first day of book distribution with HG Navina Nirada Prabhu. We headed down to our local spot, Byron Bay. We did a harinam, sought the blessings of the ocean and then purified ourselves with some Prasadam. Now that we felt sufficiently purified we were ready to engage in the sankirtana yajna of book distribution.

I stopped one young woman. She seemed very interested in the concept of Krsna consciousness but didn't seem totally inclined to take for some mysterious reason. She held onto the book for the whole time we talked and then handed it back. She moved on down the street where I saw Ekendra, ready to stop her again. I tried to signal that I had already stopped her but he just couldn't see me. I wandered over to see what he had to say. He showed her another Krsna book. She was still very interested in holding the book but revealed she was very financially down. She had a few more weeks of her vacation and she was only sure she could afford a potato for lunch.

She seemed a bit down and we wanted to give her some of Krsna's mercy in any shape or form. I wrote a note to Dhruva (Veteran book distributor in Australia). He was working in the local Hare Krsna restaurant. I gave the note to the young woman and pointed her toward the restaurant. The note was asking Dhruva to give her a free meal.

We kept distributing. It was a little slow. Half an hour later the same woman came back. She said the Prasadam was the best meal she had ever had. She asked me for a flyer to our local temple, New Govardhana.

We returned to New Govardhana for a book distribution class by HG Navina Nirada. He was talking about utility being the principle. "Sometimes you have to do something out of the ordinary. Like today the boys gave a young women a free meal of Prasadam." Ekendra, who was sitting in the audience, shot up his hand and informed us that the same women, who's name was Elana, had called the temple and was coming to stay on the New Govardhana farm for a few days. Elana thoroughly enjoyed her stay in New Govardhana. On her first day she asked for some japa beads. She came to the Sunday feast in a sari and tilak. On her last day on the farm she took a few more books. After this she flew back home.

Months later, 1000 km away, in Sydney, we were doing books with HH Devamrita Swami's squad. We had just finished our last day of a mid year marathon before I was flying off to Europe. We went to Govindas for a celebratory Prasadam feast. We were in a massive line up for the Prasadam, behind many guests. I was curious why it was such a busy night. I anxiously looked ahead to see if any devotees were in the line ahead of us, hoping to catch some sat sanga. The women in front of me turned around and it was Elana! She was there for her birthday and had brought thirty of her friends. This explained the big line. It was good to see Elana was still attracted to Krsna, the kind devotees, and still hooked on Prasadam.

Your servant, Madhavendra Puri Dasa.

 

[http://maddmonk.wordpress.com/2010/08/23/kindness-conquers-the-heart]

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H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

From bears to Monks

Venables Valley, British Columbia

There they were-three little bears-doing their mischief. The nursery story had come to life.

While waiting for brunch to be completed in the rustic mountain home of friend, Yoginath, us guests peered out the large window over looking the well-prepared garden to see two baby and one adolescent bears helping themselves to carrots and lettuce. Yoginath showed no patience as his hard horticultural labour was about to vanish. He dashed out of the house and saw them on their way with his aging dog barking loud enough to support his cause.

It was a delight to see. Our camera was not triggered on time though. You have to admire these wild creatures of the forest. Their freedom is enviable.

I felt the same way for the ants in the bush. I had been trekking in the valley and had just visited Yamuna, singer of "Govinda Adi Purusham", and companion Dina Tarine. When I greeted fatigued to the point of having to surrender to the forest floor for a nap. It was great for fifteen minutes until the creepy crawlies came around. They were fond of my arms just as much as I was fond of their carefree nature. I persisted in flicking them off but I'm afraid that habit came natural to them. They were determined not to "bug off" . Such is life in the wilderness.

Our drama troupe with Nitai, Gaura, and Nitai Priya had rested after an energetic performance from the night before. It seems that the drama, "Lonely People" is making a splash wherever we go.

Our drive back to Vancouver was a long one-but landscape perfect. Upon our arrival to great joy two more young men from Victoria joined our team of monks visiting from Halifax. That brings us to the number nine. We are growing.

10 KM

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1965 August 23: "Today Annada Ekadashi. We are floating now on the Arabian sea. My sea sickness again began. Headache, vomiting tendency, no hunger, dizziness and no energy to work. It is continuing."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1965

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1968 August 23: "The sound of press goes long long distance, long distant places, so the organization of press and literature and public sales, should be our main business. Pondicherry was made famous on account of press work."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1968

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1968 August 23: "I have decided to print Srimad-Bhagavatam in 12 volumes, naming them differently; 1st vol., Creation; 2nd vol., Cosmic Manifestation; 3rd vol., Status quo; 4th vol., Mercy of God; 5th vol., Creative Energy; 6th vol., The Rulers of the Universe; 7th vol., Activities of God; 8th vol., Dissolution; 9th vol., Liberation; 10th vol., Ultimate Goal; 11th vol., General History; 12th vol., The Age of Deterioration."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1968

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1970 August 23: "I am the Spiritual Father of you both and I have prayed all along to Krsna for bringing you back to your good conscience. Your service to Krsna will never go in vain even though accidentally something contrary has been done."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1970

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1970 August 23: "We have a great task before us to preach this Krsna Consciousness all over the world and for this purpose you have to gather sufficient spiritual strength. Without being empowered by Krsna nobody can preach and the only means for acquiring this spiritual strength is to abide by the orders of the bona fide Spiritual Master."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1970

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1971 August 23: "Regarding Indira Gandhi there is no hope. The high commissioner has informed. So it is Lord Caitanya's desire that a Vaisnava shall lay down the cornerstone instead."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1971

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1972 August 23: "Yes, President Giri can open the foundation ceremony. Let us invite many responsible persons - the Prime Minister, Governors. Let us place our philosophy before a very respectable assembly. People have not yet understood how glorious is our philosophy."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1972

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1973 Auugst 23: "We recruit a person to join us after spending gallons of blood. It should be our definite policy that nobody is ill treated that he may go away. Whoever joins us they are not under any obligation - our only tie is Love of Godhead."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1973

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H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Monday, August 16th, 2010

How Much Sleep?

Venables, British Columbia

The routine continued- a daily trek along the blackberry patches and today was no exception. Then a stopover to the temple to hear from a god-brother, Sruta Kirti, wrapped up the morning program. He was speaking about his personal time with our Guru, Srila Prabhupada. One of the principal topics here was the guru's disapproval of the excess sleep by his students.

"it was the middle of the day", Sruta explained, "when Prabhupada rang the bell to call his traveling students in for an explanation on the sleeping that was going on". Of course no one had a genuine excuse so all felt somewhat guilty.

It is generally understood that if one wants to take spiritual life seriously then you sleep enough to keep body and soul together. The same thing holds true for eating.

The stories told by Sruta Kirti were sheer reminders of our need to be moderate in certain habits. To quote the Bhagavad-Gita from chapter 6, text 17:

"He who is temperate in habits of eating, sleeping, working, and recreation can mitigate all material pains by practicing the yoga system".

On the way out to the Saranagti farm in Venable Valley I was handed a complimentary copy of the Bhagavad-Gita. "A Photographic essay by Vishaka, the author. " She graciously signed her new book offering thanks for the service of being a good example of walking for Krishna.

Thank-you, Vishaka, for your new book.

6 KM

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H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Sunday, August 15th, 2010

Big Yawn

Vancouver, British Columbia

"You were yawning." He said, but not in a defiant way. He was referring to my mouth widening when he was singing. In the midst of our conversation, this remark skipped out of his mouth which drew some embarrassment from me. It was mutual though. As I was talking to Gaura Vani, the walla (guy) who made the remark, he yawned himself, which triggered the statement in the first place.

Gaura Vani, a master of kirtan, has always been respectful to me. He reminds me that I used to babysit his wife when she was a baby. The reminder makes me feel a bit older than I feel. Again, no disrespect is intended on his part.

Why was I yawning? "I had no sleep the night before. Too much excitement in the air." I explained.

Truly the relationship between Gaura Vani, and I is devotional. And when he sings, he does so with devotion. In fact, "devotion" became the theme of our topic. He has been contemplating on producing music not limited to traditional mantras, but also remaking famous devotional songs that are mainstream but are devotional. He asked my opinion and I concurred that it was a great idea.

There is a shortage of devotion, or bhakti in the world. To define it could be "spiritual love". After all, it is universally appealing, but it is so lacking.

In fact, the vacuum of spiritual love is such that we have a big hole in our world. So whatever can be done to wholesomely fill that hole should be done. This hole is so huge that it is like a "big yawn" that is hoping to close.

12 KM

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H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Saturday, August 14th, 2010

Move to Encourage

Vancouver, British Columbia

In the lower mainland near the Fraser River's delta, you have this shifting land dynamic. The current temple in Burnaby was built on a bog. When the new temple will be constructed to accommodate a growing community, many pilings will be set deep in the ground to create a floating foundation. It is in this area of moving soil that I like to move. Just east of the temple you find an area of farms where I like to trek when I come to Vancouver. It's peaceful there even though the ground may be moving under your feet.

It was me, the monk, who moved out of duty and love, once I arrived from the morning walk, to go from person to person, pilgrim to pilgrim. It was one day before the Rathayatra (Festival of Chariots) soon to be hosted at Stanley Park. People oozing with bhakti (devotion), have come from various parts of North America to partake in the event.

You might call it the one minute management approach, or a kind of schmoozing, a sharing of ideas with peers. It was a time for hearing and giving suggestions for learning and educating.

Time efficiency was the key word (or words) to make a formula that worked. There was little time for everyone but there was enough time. When you are recognized as a leader in your community, the communication has to be relevant, warm, concise and meaningful. At these occasions of intensity, one is forced to use time wisely. You are dealing with future plans and people's lives, and responding to their needs and wants, their traumas, and their dreams; both physical and spiritual.

My moving was continued at Stanley Park, where the evening's kirtan was held. It was the same scenario for me. If I was to dub my service for the day, I would call it: "Encouragement!"

7 KM

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Japa Group: Chant 16 Rounds Regularly


There is no question of your falldown. Chant 16 rounds regularly and no power in all three worlds will make you fall down. Krishna will save you always.

Letter to Himavati - 19 August, 1971
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H.H. Bhaktimarg Swami: Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

Okanagan Okay!

Kelowna, British Columbia

I`m in the heart of the Okanagan Valley, the heart of BC fruit-land keeping myself open for the miracles of the day. I`m here with our acting troupe for a devotional performance of kirtan chanting and drama, `Lonely People`.

The venue was Okanagan College Theatre. There was not an overwhelming turn out but the quality of people made the show all worth while.

And so what was the miracle... Nothing extraordinary but a small occurance that you could not classify as cooincidence. With us came Gillian, a volunteer sound person for this weeks performances. She appears happy to take a week off from work from selling tires (as she hopes to get into studying medicine) and agreed to hit all our sound cues with appropriate volume levels.

She was only given an hour to learn everything from the script and use a CD which we found had cues mixed up - a difficult task. At practice time enough mistakes were there, and yours truly was convinced that flaws would haunt us at performance time. I prayed.

Patiently, Gillian applied herself and a perfect job was rendered.

That was the miracle. It was enough to reinforce faith. it wasn't an extraordinary situation, but you felt that an extra hand had entered in backstage to help the situation - a hand that could not be seen but sensed. It happened in the night and perhaps because the bulk of our crew which was Goura, Nitai and I were faithful to sadhana in the early morning. Yes, we trekked Byrne Creek trail in Burnaby before leaving for Kelowna, chanting on our beads and sticking to this principle.

The only deviation was Nitai, who left the path for a bit - to explore - or as Goura put it, "He`s having his Tarzan moment" to which I responded, "He`s only 18..."

"Right, Maharaj," said Goura.

"Okay!" I thought.

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1965 August 22 : "At about 10 a.m. we are now in the dockyard of Cochin. I saw my books from Bombay arrived in five cases and the agents loaded them on the ship at 4 p.m. on 22/8/65."
Prabhupada Journal :: 1965

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1967 August 22 : "It is very good news that you are going to have $5,300 soon, and I thank you very much for offering the entire amount to me. I think the whole amount should be utilized for further publication of my books."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1967

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1968 August 22 : "I must offer you my heartiest blessing because it is due to your endeavor that we are finding our Bhagavad-gita to be published by a great publisher and through your grace also we are going to publish Teachings of Lord Caitanya."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1968

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1968 August 22 : "We the Krishna Conscious people are soldiers of the Lord, Arms of the Lord, and because all living entities are energy of the Lord, so energy is always kept on the left side. Radharani is also on the left side of the Lord."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1968

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1970 August 22 : "My Spiritual Master, Sarasvati Gosvami Thakura, may appear to be physically not present, but still, because I try to serve His instruction, I never feel separated from Him. I expect that all of you should follow these instructions."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1970

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1972 August 22 : "You get the seed of devotion through the mercy of the Spiritual Master and Krishna. And upon your surrender, They take responsibility for your sins. Therefore, it is the disciple's duty not to commit sin again."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1972

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1975 August 22: "The purpose of sannyasa is that now one has no hindrances for preaching work. The purpose is to increase preaching. So if one takes sannyasa and does not increase preaching, then there is no value."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1975

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1975 August 22: "Do not waste any time, but work always to please Krishna within your heart. He is witnessing everything. He only wants us to constantly remember Him. Is it very difficult?"
Prabhupada Letters :: 1975

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H.H. Sivarama Swami: Preparing for Lord Balarama’s appearance day tomorrow

Remembering He who is the source of unlimited strength.

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ISKCON Brisbane, AU: *GRASS ROOTS HARINAMA REVOLUTION!*

27th August, 2010

Time: Friday · 7:00pm - 8:30pm

Location:Harinama Party will leave from Govinda's Restaurant - Friday Night @ 7pm

99 Elizabeth Street Brisbane, Australia

"We need grass roots revolution. That means YOU and ME. I'm part of the grass roots...For years and years and years, at least 21 years, I've personally been here trying to somehow or other bring it to the attention of the lay devotees... Nama Sankirtana will come back, I guarantee it, with the co-operation of a few good people who are willing to step forward in their various localities all over the world and help to generate tha...t faith, that consciousness in the Holy Name. So please help, wherever you may go and do the real thing, to actually implement the Yuga Dharma." - Aindra Dasa.

*PLEASE INVITE MORE PEOPLE!*

*Myer Centre Parking - $15 maximum after 4pm.

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Gouranga TV: KIRTAN 1 – WOODSTOCK 2010

KIRTAN 1 – WOODSTOCK 2010

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H.H. Sivarama Swami

God loves each of us as if there were only one of us.

- St. Augustine

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Bharatavarsa.net: Book distribution seminar: kindness conquers the heart

I was on my first day of book distribution with HG Navina Nirada Prabhu. We headed down to our local spot, Byron Bay. We did a harinam, sought the blessings of the ocean and then purified ourselves with some Prasadam. Now that we felt sufficiently purified we were ready to engage in the sankirtana yajna of book distribution. I stopped one young woman. She seemed very interested in the concept of Krsna consciousness but didn't seem totally inclined to take for some mysterious reason. She held onto the book for the whole time we talked and then handed it back. She moved on down the street where I saw Ekendra, ready to stop her again. I tried to signal that I had already stopped her but he just couldn't see me. I wandered over to see what he had to say. He showed her another Krsna book. She was still very interested in holding the book but revealed she was very financially down. She had a few more weeks of her vacation and she was only sure she could afford a potato for lunch. She seemed a bit down and we wanted to give her some of Krsna's mercy in any shape or form. I wrote a note to Dhruva (Veteran book distributor in Australia). He was working in the local Hare Krsna restaurant. I gave the note to the young woman and pointed her toward the restaurant. The note was asking Dhruva to give her a free meal. We kept distributing. It was a little slow. Half an hour later the same woman came back. She said the Prasadam was the best meal she had ever had. She asked me for a flyer to our local temple, New Govardhana. We returned to New Govardhana for a book distribution class by HG Navina Nirada. He was talking about utility being the principle. "Sometimes you have to do something out of the ordinary. Like today the boys gave a young women a free meal of Prasadam." Ekendra, who was sitting in the audience, shot up his hand and informed us that the same women, who's name was Elana, had called the temple and was coming to stay on the New Govardhana farm for a few days. Elana thoroughly enjoyed her stay in New Govardhana. On her first day she asked for some japa beads. She came to the Sunday feast in a sari and tilak. On her last day on the farm she took a few more books. After this she flew back home. Months later, 1000 km away, in Sydney, we were doing books with HH Devamrita Swami's squad. We had just finished our last day of a mid year marathon before I was flying off to Europe. We went to Govindas for a celebratory Prasadam feast. We were in a massive line up for the Prasadam, behind many guests. I was curious why it was such a busy night. I anxiously looked ahead to see if any devotees were in the line ahead of us, hoping to catch some sat sanga. The women in front of me turned around and it was Elana! She was there for her birthday and had brought thirty of her friends. This explained the big line. It was good to see Elana was still attracted to Krsna, the kind devotees, and still hooked on Prasadam.

Your servant, Madhavendra Puri Dasa.

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