viernes, 18 de marzo de 2011

Pensamiento-del-dia - Mes de March 2011






Pensamiento-del-dia
Sankarshana Das Adhikari

Thursday 17 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

How to Get Out of the Dream?

The unreality of this material existence becomes so complicated that it is very difficult to get out of it. It is something like having a dream within a dream, within a dream, within a dream, within a dream. In other words, even if you realize you are dreaming, it becomes inextricably confusing when you realize that you are dreaming that you are dreaming that you are dreaming, that you are dreaming. How to wake up and get out? This is why a bona fide spiritual master is required. With one full swoop he immediately cuts completely through the hard knot of the million-layered phantasmagoria and brings you back to the reality of who you really are.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Srila Prabhupada Cuts Through Illusion


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why the Supreme Personality?

Please advise why you refer to Lord Krishna as the “Supreme Personality” of Godhead. We could just say Lord Krishna or the Supreme Lord Krishna. So why is it that many ISKCON books and devotees refer to Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

Jay

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Answer: He's Not the Impersonal Oneness

This is to make it very clear that God is a person. He's not the impersonal oneness as the Mayavadis claim.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Wednesday 16 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Always Remain Alert

Just as in wartime the front line soldiers remain constantly vigilant guarding against an enemy attack, which can occur at any moment, in a similar way the fixed up devotee of the Lord is always on guard against the attack of maya. He knows that he must always take shelter of Krishna at every moment and that even a slight amount of inattention can prove to be disastrous.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Srila Prabhupada is Always Alert

in Krishna Consciousness


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Can We Change the Rules of ISKCON?

Dear Spiritual Master,

You are a person with lot of spiritual knowledge and years of dedication to ISKCON, and I am simple person who is worshipping Krishna and has spiritual knowledge gained after listening to saints in and reading books. Please forgive me if I am writing anything wrong but I need your point of view on these points. That's why I am writing this e-mail to you.

Times has changed a lot. We are now in 21st Century. But ISKCON is not changing. It is still very rigid and orthodox on its rules. Some rules seem very rigid and demanding, but at the same time these can be changed to suit present time scenario.

Rule No. 1: Not to eat onion or garlic.
These are not animal products, but are plant products and carry many nutritious benefit for human body. Why ISKCON is banning these for human consumption?

Rule No. 2: Tea and coffee is banned.
I agree that these products carry caffeine which is a stimulant for mind. But still tea and coffee are useful while doing work in office and while preparing for examination.

Rule No. 3: No illicit sex.
Krishna has not said anywhere in the Bhagavad-gita that there should not be any sex between wife and husband except when there is a desire for a Krishna conscious child. Krishna has himself said that He is sex which is not going against dharma, He has not banned sex between wife and husband because sex between wife and husband is not against dharma. Only extra-marital affairs and sex without marriage is sex against dharma.

Now one more thing. Krishna has said in the Bhagavad-gita that this knowledge, which is the king of all knowledge, should not be given to persons who are not interested in Krishna consciousness or those persons who have no interest or faith in Krishna. So then why are ISKCON devotees going to these kind of people, who are deeply rooted materialists and do not even think about God, to distribute books? Isn't this a violation of the instruction of Krishna?

Now the final thing. One round of japa mala takes 10-15 minutes. So a total 16 round takes from 2 hrs 40 minutes to 4 Hrs. In this age where people spend more time in the office than at home, how is this possible to spent 2 hrs 40 minutes-4 Hrs on japa meditation? There should not be under any compulsion to do 16 rounds daily.

There is a requirement of fresh discussion/review of these rules by a committee of the spiritual masters of ISKCON. ISKCON has many spiritual masters, but has no central command after the demise of Founder-Acharya his Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Is there any committee of spiritual masters in ISKCON who reviews rules and regulations and suggest modifications or deletion/addition of rules and regulations?

I request you to answer my queries.

Hare Krishna,

Pankaj M.

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Answer: Do Not Destroy Krishna Consciousness

Thank you very much for concern that ISKCON shall remain relevant in a constantly changing world. However, kindly note that in spite of so many changes the world is basically in the same consciousness as it was when Srila Prabhupada established our movement in 1966 and introduced the regulative principles of freedom to save us from birth and death. The world population was strongly addicted to material sense gratification then, and they still are.

But in spite of that we have hundreds and thousands of people who are strictly following these principles and deriving great benefit. Why should we deny them the benefits they are receiving by abandoning the principles established by our Founder-Acharya? Your idea does not make any sense. Actually we have only one rule, and that is to always be Krishna conscious. Other rules are accepted only if they help us to be Krishna conscious.

We take only the remnants of Krishna's eatables. Since He does not take onions and garlic, we naturally avoid these stinky foods, which are only dear to those in the lower modes of nature.

Krishna bhakti is the ultimate stimulant. If one is Krishna conscious he has no need of artificial, harmful stimulants.

Sex brings us down to bodily consciousness. Therefore anyone who is serious to become self-realized will naturally want to use sex only for procreation.

Because the devotees understand the innermost desire of the Lord to save the fallen souls, they engage themselves in the ultimate welfare activity of telling everyone about Krishna. This is confirmed by Krishna Himself, who appeared as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and ordered us to tell everyone about Krishna. The prohibition against preaching means not to try to preach to those who are hostile. It does not apply to approaching those who are innocent.

With a little practice mala can nicely be chanted in 1.5 to 2 hours day max. Anyone who says that they do not have 1.5 hours a day for japa should send me their daily schedule for analysis.

We cannot change the instructions of ISKCON's Founder-Acharya, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. If you do not like his instructions, you do not have to follow them. But we are finding great unlimited happiness in strictly following Srila Prabhupada's instructions. If you do not share our enthusiasm, you are still welcome to attend our programs, take prasadam, and be a member of our loving family; however, you will not be qualified to take initiation.

ISKCON does have a central governing body created by Srila Prabhupada to manage its affairs on the global level. That body is called the Governing Body Commission or GBC. They are fully dedicated to maintaining the standards established by Srila Prabhupada and will not change them upon your request because Srila Prabhupada's standards are not whimsical. They are all solidly based on that greatest of all wisdom which is emanating at every minute from the Vedic literatures.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Tuesday 15 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Clear Away the Clutter

There is nothing worse than a cluttered brain because in such a confused state one cannot properly focus on anything, especially on life's ultimate goal of realizing God. Therefore the intelligent person regularly cleanses his mind by chanting God's holy names. Such regular chanting gradually clears away all the mental clutter and the devotee becomes solidly fixed in blissful, wise, and compassionate one-pointed Krishna consciousness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Srila Prabhupada Deeply Absorbed in Japa


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How You Say Krishna is the Only God?

Jesus Christ is the real truth. How do you say that Krishna is the only God? Where is the proof of His existence? Could God be dual characterized?

Servant of God

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Answer: We Only Say to Purely Love God

We are not trying to prove to you that Krishna is God. We simply desire that everyone should purely love God. That's all. There is a Supreme Being who is the source of all existence. This we can prove. That Supreme Being is known by different names in different languages. You may address God according to your English language. That is very nice. But please try to understand that God is multilingual. He accepts us no matter what language we use to approach Him, as long we approach Him with love.

Whether we address Him in English, Latin, Sanskrit, Spanish, or whatever is not important. What is important is addressing Him with love. God is not particular about which language we use to address Him. He simply desires our love. Of course, if we truly love Him, we will obey His Biblical injunction against killing and stop eating the flesh of slaughtered animals. There is no reason to torture our innocent brothers and sisters, who have feelings and emotions just like we do, just for the sake of enjoying the taste of some bloody flesh in our mouths.

You asked if God can be dual. The answer is that He must be one. He cannot be two. Just as a nation has only one supreme court; there cannot be two supreme courts.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Monday 14 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Don't Be A Dumb Animal in a Slaughterhouse

Don't be like a dumb animal in a slaughter house complacently accepting birth, death, old age, and disease, blindly accepting them as unavoidable, unchangeable aspects of existence. You can easily and permanently conquer over them if you will simply revive your lost loving relationship with Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. If you do so, you will enter into an eternal, all-blissful, all-wise existence. So instead of blaming God for these miseries, be intelligent and blame yourself for foolishly accepting these miseries. In this way if you will take proper guidance from the bona fide spiritual master, you will conquer over them.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Can You Request Prayer for Japan?

Respected Gurudeva,

I hope you must be aware of the misery in Japan. I am praying to the Lord that the nuclear reactor should not burst. Can you kindly request all the devotees to pray for the people of Japan?

S. Kumar

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Answer: Why Only Japan?

I share your feelings of compassion for the horrible suffering of the people of Japan. There is one horror story after another. In the city of Minamisoma with a population of 70,000 practically every building was washed away by the tsunami and there was not a sign of even one survivor. What a hellish nightmare this is! Not only in Japan, but in every country and every city throughout world people are suffering horrible miseries every day. This is why I feel very sorry for the suffering humanity and like to often recite this prayer of the great mahajana, Sri Prahlada Maharaja:

svasty astu viśvasya khalaḥ prasīdatāṁ
dhyāyantu bhūtāni śivaṁ mitho dhiyā
manaś ca bhadraṁ bhajatād adhokṣaje
āveśyatāṁ no matir apy ahaitukī

"May there be good fortune throughout the universe, and may all envious persons be pacified. May all living entities become calm by practicing bhakti-yoga, for by accepting devotional service they will think of each other's welfare. Therefore let us all engage in the service of the supreme transcendence, Lord Sri Krishna, and always remain absorbed in thought of Him."
--Srimad Bhagavatam 5.18.9

If we can teach the people to live in perfect harmony with the laws of God, the ever-increasingly hellish atmosphere of this planet can be wonderfully transformed into heaven on earth. This is why we must now more than ever accept the duty given to us by Lord Caitanya to enlighten everyone, especially the leading members of the human society, in the all perfect science of Krishna consciousness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Sunday 13 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Attaining Immunity from Death

On Friday March 11, 2011 one of the the most ferocious earthquakes in recorded history slammed Japan triggering a 30 foot high tsunami wreaking inconceivable devastation on many Japanese towns and villages and sweeping all the way across the Pacific causing substantial damage and even death on the west coast of the USA. Where is the security in this world? There is none. This is why there is a saying, "As sure as death." Therefore the only way to obtain true and lasting peace of mind is become immune from death by awakening your dormant Krishna consciousness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Earthquake Triggered Tsunami Devastates Japan


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: How We Fell from the Spiritual World?

I find it hard to understand the fact that we are originally part and parcel of Krishna but we have fallen from the spiritual world. My question is: Who would get distracted or attracted towards material world when Krishna is all-attractive, all powerful and the source of all happiness? One can only think of leaving Krishna when there is something better and more powerful than Him. Also, even if there is a slightest chance of returning to this material world, what is the point in trying to reach the spiritual world, Goloka Vrindavana? Please help me understand this better.

Thanks.
Narayanan

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Answer: Incomprehensible Free Will Abuse

You are finding it hard to understand how we fell from the spiritual world because it is incomprehensible. Why would a child stick his hand in the fire after his parents warned him not to? A foolish child out of curiosity may stick his hand in the fire once, but he will not do it a second time. Therefore, now after you have foolishly burned yourself in this material existence, if you will make your determination to go back to Godhead, once achieving that most sublime deathless realm, you will not stick your hand in the fire again.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Saturday 12 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Human Civilization or Ant Civilization?

Human civilization devoid of God consciousness is an ant civilization. The ants are running this way and that way simply to get food to take back to their anthill. A human civilization whose only focus is material sense gratification is no more of a civilization than an anthill. Real human civilization means self-realization civilization, not ant civilization. As long as they remain like ants simply pursuing material sense gratification, the stringent laws of material nature will dictate that they take birth again as ants.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Human Highway



Less Congested Ant Highway


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Can't Krishna Save A Fallen Devotee?

It is stated that Krishna is merciful and very kind. Krishna is very dear to His devotees. And those who glorify Krishna are very much dear to Him. So my question is: If someone renders service to Krishna, feels attachment to Him, and gradually become purified, why does he fall down and forget Krishna? Why can't Krishna save him from falling down?

Mittal

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Answer: Why Does He Embrace Maya?

This reminds me of the story of the disciple who told his spiritual master, "Guru Maharaja, maya will not let go of me." The spiritual master then hugged a tree tightly crying out, "Let go of me. Let go of me."

Krishna is giving us all facility to be saved. It is simply up to us to take advantage of it.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Friday 11 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Pure Devotees Don't Fall Down

One who is solidly fixed in Krishna consciousness never falls down because he is constantly relishing within his heart a sweetness which surpasses by millions, billions, and even trillions of times the happiness derived from material sense gratification. Even if he were offered heavenly enjoyment in the upper planetary systems where the pleasure is thousands of times greater than the pleasure on this planet, he would still not be allured because even one drop of the ocean of transcendental bliss is more satisfying and uplifting than unlimited oceans of sensual pleasure.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




The Pure Devotee Relishes Unlimited Transcendental Bliss


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Are Indian Gurus Superior?

There are some devotees in ISKCON saying that the Indian gurus are more bona fide than the Western gurus. So can you please give some sastric proof that this is not a correct statement?

Your servant,
Gopati Krishna Dasa

Seremban, Malaysia

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Answer: Hell's Residents Make Such Distinctions

Anyone who judges the authenticity of a spiritual master based of his body type has a hellish, racist mentality and is completely unqualified to understand who is a bona fide spiritual master and who is not.

This is confirmed as follows in the Padma Purana:

"One who thinks that the worshipable Deity in the temple is made of wood or stone, one who sees a Vaisnava guru as an ordinary human being, or one who materially conceives of a Vaisnava as belonging to a particular caste is naraki, a resident of hell."

Since the first principle of spiritual knowledge is that we are not these bodies, it is unthinkable that any members of ISKCON could be thinking this way. Kindly report this matter to the local ISKCON authorities where this misconception is going on so that these misinformed persons can be brought to the proper standard of spiritual knowledge. Otherwise there is no question of their being able to make any spiritual advancement.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Thursday 10 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Steady Through Happiness and Distress

Just as the seasons regularly change, in this material world we are regularly faced with the dualities of happiness and distress. Just as the seasons cannot be changed, the happiness and distress of this material existence will continue to go on in a cyclical fashion. Therefore we should not allow ourselves to be disturbed in any situation and should continue to execute the duties given to us by our spiritual master in all circumstances.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Krishna Consciousness on the Job

Gurudeva, many of Krishna’s devotees have normal everyday jobs. Therefore, can you please explain how the devotees transform their mundane employment into a Krishna conscious activity?

Your humble servant,
Li Di

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Answer: Offer the Results to Krishna

The devotee makes his job Krishna conscious by engaging the income derived from it in Krishna's service. In this way his job becomes perfectly dovetailed in Krishna's service. In other words, he spends his income in a manner that is pleasing to Krishna. In this way just as Arjuna engaged his job in Krishna's service and became fully satisfied, the devotee also engages his job in the service of Krishna and becomes fully satisfied.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Wednesday 9 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

A Devotee is Kind

The first qualification for a being a devotee of Krishna is to be kind. If a person is actually Krishna conscious, his heart will bleed with compassion to see the suffering condition of the human society, and he will fully dedicate his life to saving them in spite of all the criticism that he receives for doing so. Jesus Christ did not let anything stand in the way of the execution of his mission to save the people from their suffering. He was undaunted even in the face of crucifixion.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Srila Prabhupada is Unlimitedly Kind


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Who Can Become the Next Acharya?

Do you deliver your disciple personally or does Srila Prabhupada deliver him? Did Srila Prabhupada give you the order to be the next acharya? I know he said for all his disciple to be guru. Of course, that does not mean acharya.

You said "I was blessed with the greatest mercy of being accepted as a disciple of such an uttama-adhikari, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. And now on his order I have fully absorbed my life in pushing forward this Krishna consciousness movement all over the world for the deliverance of all living beings. Even though he has departed from this world, it is not that he is dead and gone. He lives forever in my heart and in the hearts of all those who follow his instructions." (dated Aug 1st, 2010)

I recently read the Direction of Management, which was signed by Srila Prabhupada. He never appointed any acharya. He told this to many of his top Sannyasis and disciples, but they assumed their new position after he left this world without his order.

My question is "Did Srila Prabhupada directly appoint you as the next acharya as you stated above in your e-mail?

Pushpendra dasa

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Answer: Whoever Strictly Follows His Acharya

The answer to your first question is: No bona fide spiritual master considers himself to be the deliverer of his disciples. Rather he simply considers himself to be a humble messenger on behalf the previous acharyas and Lord Sri Krishna.

The answer to your second question is that Srila Prabhupada did not appoint me to be the next acharya, because acharya is not by appointment; it is by qualification. But he did instruct all of his disciples that we should become qualified acharyas and initiate disciples.

You are making an artificial distinction between guru and acharya. Srila Prabhupada says, "A guru is called also an acharya, or a person who has personally assimilated all the essence of sastras and has helped his disciples to adopt the ways."

It never ceases to amaze when people who never met Srila Prabhupada or even saw him from a distance, who were never personally instructed by him think that they understand his instructions better than those of us who were personally trained by him. This is the one of the symptoms of the present age of Kali that people become easily illusioned.

Srila Prabhupada did not appoint any disciple as the one next acharya. His said that he wanted all of his disciples to be acharyas as defined in his purport to the Caitanya Caritamrita as follows:

"One who knows the conclusion of the sastras, follows in the footsteps of his predecessors and endeavors to preach the bhakti cult all over the world is to be considered an acharya." ---Antya 3.223

I have also read Srila Prabhupada's Direction of Management, which he wrote in 1970 for the purpose of establishing ISKCON's Governing Body Commission. This document has nothing to do with who initiates disciples after Srila Prabhupada's departure. Regarding this, he told us in Vrindavan in May of 1977 that the new devotees would become the disciples of his disciples.

Srila Prabhupada instructed his disciples in Mayapura on 6 April 1975 that when they become mature they should become acharyas and initiate disciples. We do not have to guess what is that maturity qualification. Srila Prabhupada gave us this verse from Srila Rupa Goswami which clearly states the qualification for being able to initiate disciples all over the world:

vāco vegaṁ manasaḥ krodha-vegaṁ
jihvā-vegam udaropastha-vegam
etān vegān yo viṣaheta dhīraḥ
sarvām apīmāṁ pṛthivīṁ sa śiṣyāt

"A sober person who can tolerate the urge to speak, the mind's demands,
the actions of anger and the urges of the tongue, belly and genitals
is qualified to make disciples all over the world."

---Nectar of Instruction, Verse 1

It's a fact that nobody can become an acharya simply by being nominated. There is only one way for a disciple of an acharya to also become an acharya. Srila Prabhupada describes that way as follows in a lecture in gave in New York City on 1 December 1966:

"Acharya means one who has become a rigid disciple of his acharya."

You say that I said that Srila Prabhupada appointed me as the next acharya. But I have never said that. You are simply fabricating this out of the air. You quoted me as follows:

"And now on his order I have fully absorbed my life in pushing forward this Krishna consciousness movement all over the world for the deliverance of all living beings."

Nowhere in the above quote do I state that Srila Prabhupada appointed me to become the next acharya. I clearly did not make such a statement.

Srila Prabhupada repeatedly ordered his disciples to push this Krishna consciousness movement all over the world for the deliverance of the illusioned souls of this age. For example, he ordered us on 17 December 1973 in Los Angeles, California, USA at the conclusion of his lecture on the Srimad Bhagavatam:

"Become guru and deliver the whole world."

We are sometimes criticized by naysayers for our sincere endeavor to follow the instructions of our spiritual master, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. But what can we do? According to Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Authority, as Prabhupada's disciples it is our duty to serve his orders. Srila Prabhupada taught us that the disciple should take the order received from his spiritual master as his very life and soul. So we have to do that. We have no other option.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Tuesday 8 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Don't Be a Slave of the Box

Even in material life we see that thinking outside of the box, in other words thinking beyond the mental stereotypes imposed upon us by the material society, has its distinct advantages. For example, normally it is considered that the road to material success is to get a college degree. But two of the most successful paradigm-shifting innovators in today's society, Bill Gates-the founder of Microsoft and Steven Jobs-the co-founder of Apple Computers, were both college dropouts. The point is that that we should not be blind followers of the material civilization. We should use our own intelligence to see that because every machine has an operator the gigantic cosmic machine must therefore also have an operator. We should not be blindly swept away by Darwinian atheism, even though it is being taught in the universities and regularly promoted in the mass media as gospel. Don't be a slave of the box. Use your intelligence, see things as they are, and act in full accordance and harmony with the sublime reality of which you are a part.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Don't Think Inside the Box



Think Outside of the Box



Srila Prabhupada Launches the Hare Krishna Movement in 1966
in New York City's Tompkins Square Park


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Mayavadi and Krishna Consciousness

My question is: What is the major difference between Mayavadi philosophy and Krishna conscious philosophy? Why did Srila Prabhupada always advise us not to hear Mayavadi philosophy?

Your Servant
Mittal K.

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Answer: God is Person, Not an Imperson

Mayavadis consider that all persons including Krishna are actually illusions and the only reality is God, the unmanifested, impersonal oneness. In other words they consider the form of Krishna to be maya or an illusion. This is why they are called Mayavadis, because they consider the form of Krishna to be maya. If a devotee becomes attracted to hearing Mayavadi philosophy, he will naturally give up devotion to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, because he will think that ultimately there is no person named Krishna. Mayavadism is especially dangerous because it is derived from a twisted misinterpretation of the Vedic scriptures, especially the Vedanta Sutra.

Mayavadi philosophy attracts the foolish class of men because it teaches them that they are God, that all they have to do is wake up and realize that they are God. But we are not fooled by it. If I am actually God, how could I have ever forgotten it? This would mean that forgetfulness is greater than God and that therefore forgetfulness is actually God, not me.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Monday 7 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Warning: Do Not Look at Govinda

As quoted by Srila Rupa Goswami, one gopi warned her gopi girlfriend:

"My dear friend, if you still have any inclination to enjoy material society, friendship, and love, then please do not look at the smiling face of Govinda as He stands on the bank of the Yamuna at Kesighat. Casting sidelong glances, He places His flute to His lips, which seem like newly blossomed twigs. His transcendental body, bending in three places, appears very bright in the moonlight."

This is reverse psychology. This gopi is giving the greatest encouragement to her gopi friend to go and behold the most beautiful smiling face of Govinda by advising her not to go. It is a fact that once we get a taste of Krishna's sublime beauty we will never again be attracted to or satisfied by the so-called attractive things of this world.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Govinda on the Bank of the Yamuna River


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Survival Without Making Money?

I totally agree that this material world is a place of bad association and that our consciousness is affected by our many hours of daily association at our jobs with the materialists.

You said, "Your life should not be centered around earning your livelihood. It must be centered instead on awakening the dormant Krishna consciousness, which is currently sound asleep within your heart. This will give you a life of unbelievably stimulating happiness."

I am earning my livelihood by working, but my mornings and evenings are spent at least in doing some devotional services like chanting, taking care of the altar, cooking prasadam and offering it to the Supreme Lord etc. My question is: If we give up the aspect of earning money for our livelihood, how can we survive?

Your servant,

Lakshmi

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Answer: Survival Depends on God, Not Money

I do not say that you should give up making money. Money is a necessary medium of exchange in today's society. I simply say that making money should not be the center or purpose of your life. Rather, your life should be centered on life's ultimate goal, namely to go back to home, back to Godhead. It is only by seriously adopting this purpose that you will attain genuine happiness. This is the only lifestyle that makes sense, because God is the actual provider of all your necessities, not your job. If there were no food, air, and water supplied by God, do you think that you could survive even for one moment by the money you earn at your job? We cannot breathe money, drink money, or eat money. Therefore money is always of secondary importance, while serving God is of primary importance.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Sunday 6 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

That Wondrous Spiritual Sky

Why settle for ever-increasing chaos and confusion in this material world's cycle of birth and death when you can instead taste ever-increasing bliss by reviving the dormant love of God within you heart? While suffering is the pastime of the ignorant, those who are wise move up to a higher level of consciousness beyond the three modes of material nature and qualify themselves to regain their eternal identities in that wondrous spiritual sky where people never die.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




The Amazing Spiritual Sky, Land of Immortality


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Godhead and Mayavadis

My dear Srila Gurudeva,

Why do we call God "Godhead"? And why does Your Grace talk about Mayavadi followers as people who do not worship well and do not understand, while we are asked to accept all religions and their way of expressing themselves?

J.

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Answer: Head God and Formlessness Advocates

The word "god" can refer to any controller such as the moon god, the sun god, etc. But when we say Godhead we are referring to the Supreme God, the supreme controller, the source of all existence.

A Mayavadi is someone who says that the form and personality of God is maya or an illusion. Religion means to give loving service to God. But if there is no person there to accept our loving service, there is no question of religion. One may approach God as Krishna, Allah, or Jehovah. That is alright. But if we deny that He is person, as the Mayavadis do, there is no question of religion. In other words, Mayavadi philosophy is a covered form of atheism. They say that they accept God, but then they say that He has no form and no personality. It is better to come out honestly and declare oneself to be an atheist, than to say "I am a theist" and then deny God's form and personality, as the Mayavadis do.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Saturday 5 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Unbelievably Stimulating Happiness

This material world is a place of bad association. This is why you need the association of Krishna's devotees as much as possible. And this is why it is imperative that you take shelter of a bona fide spiritual master for being expertly guided along the pathway of self-realization. In other words, your consciousness is a mirror of those with whom you associate. By associating with materialists you become a materialist. And by associating with spiritualists you become a spiritualist. Since earning a livelihood means associating with materialists for many hours a day, your life should not be centered around earning your livelihood. It must be centered instead on awakening the dormant Krishna consciousness, which is currently sound asleep within your heart. This will give you a life of unbelievably stimulating happiness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Great Saint's Association Gives Unlimited Benefit


Srila Prabhupada Walks With His Disciple


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Is Jesus the Only Way?

Dear Gurudeva,

Please guide me out from the confusion that I have in my mind. At the moment I am in a relationship with a girl who accepts Lord Jesus Christ as her savior and her only Lord. I really wish to get married and have a Krishna conscious family with her in the future. But anytime we talk about it she always argues that only by accepting Lord Jesus can we save our lives and be together. I try to explain all I know about Lord Sri Krishna and teach her to chant the mahamantra. But when she is chanting the mahamantra she always remembers the words of Lord Jesus and she becomes sad and feels that she is making a big sin.

Gurudeva, please enlighten me about this matter. Is there any information about Lord Jesus in the Vedas?

W.

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Answer: The Way of Jesus is the Only Way

Since Jesus is teaching the path of exclusive devotion to the Supreme Lord, we accept that his way is the only way. This is confirmed in the Bhagavad-gita in which Krishna states that we should abandon all other duties and simply surrender to Him. Therefore we have no problem or disagreement with the teachings of Jesus. The only problem is that the so-called Christians do not understand the teachings of Jesus.

It does not make any sense for this girl to be so disturbed. Nicely explain to her that since, according to the revealed scriptures, Jesus is the son of God and Krishna is God the Father, there cannot be any disagreement between them. Therefore whether we chant Christ or Krishna, in either case we awaken the feelings of love of God within our hearts. If we accept the son, we cannot reject the father. And if we accept the father, we cannot reject the son. So, those who are learned in the science of devotion accept with loving gratitude both Lord Jesus and Lord Krishna.

Christ was predicted 3,000 years before his appearance by Srila Vyasadeva in the Bhavisya Purana, as Jesus--the Messiah, who would establish religious principles among the mlecchas.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Friday 4 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

If You Want to Taste the Real Nectar

If you want to taste the real nectar of Krishna consciousness, you must master the art of regularly diving deeply into the sweet, nectarean ocean of Lord Sri Krishna's holy names. The deeper you go, the sweeter it gets. And all the miseries of material existence will gradually fade away into non-existence. In other words you will no longer be touched by them. You will awaken to your eternal, pure identity as a servant of Krishna, the most munificent, beautiful person, who is ever inviting the fallen conditioned souls to associate with Him in the ever-expandingly sublime rasa of devotion, the eternal serving mood.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




The Most Munificent, Beautiful Krishna


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Suicide and Abortion?

I would like to know your opinion about suicide. It's a very low act, but it is not like harming other creatures. After committing this act, after leaving the body and that particular unwanted life, where does the soul of the doer go? How about abortion? How about the soul that has already resided in the developing embryo?

K.L.

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Answer: Ghost Life and Being Aborted

It is not a matter of opinion. According to the stringent laws of material nature if one commits suicide, in his next life he will not be granted a gross body. He will exist simply in a subtle body as a ghost. In other words, the karmic reaction for destroying his gross body is to not be granted another gross body in his next life.

If one is so frustrated and miserable that he wants to end his life, he should instead put an end to his miserable material life by taking to Krishna consciousness. In this way he will enter into an eternal, blissful life even while continuing in this body. And upon leaving his body, he will enter the spiritual world.

A soul who is aborted is undergoing the karmic reaction for having aborted a child in his previous life time. If he was responsible for multiple abortions, he will again and again appear in a mother's womb and be aborted for each of the abortions.

This is why we oppose abortion and recommend that those who do not want to take the responsibility of raising a child should completely restrain themselves from sex indulgence. The child enters the mother's womb at the moment of conception, and to kill a child at any stage of his development is greatly sinful. Therefore, instead of trying to find some happiness through some temporary sense pleasure such as sex, one should move up to a higher level of pleasure on the transcendental self-realization platform of Krishna consciousness, where life is eternal and full of unlimited bliss.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Thursday 3 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

There's Nothing Like Krishna Consciousness

There's nothing like Krishna consciousness throughout the three worlds. Indeed, it is unsurpassable with no rival throughout the entirety of existence. It is the quintessence of sweetness, the epitome of knowledge, as well as the topmost perfection of love. And most wonderfully, it is readily available right now for all those who ardently desire it.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Lord Shiva Smokes Marijuana?

My dear Gurudeva,

I beg to clarify a doubt. A Muslim friend of mine argued that Lord Shiva is considered as the greatest Vaishnava, but yet he contradicts Vaishnava principles by smoking marijuana. Why does Lord Shiva smoke marijuana, even though he is considered to be the greatest Vaishnava?

Surender K.

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Answer: He Can Smoke It, While We Cannot.

Just as the sun is so powerful it can extract water from urine without being polluted, Lord Shiva is so powerful that he can swallow an ocean of poison without being harmed. Similarly, he can smoke marijuana without losing his stature as the greatest of Vaishnavas. Those who want to smoke marijuana, justifying this by Shiva's smoking it, will first have to prove their prowess by drinking an ocean of poison without being harmed.

I have not read anywhere where our acharyas have explained why he smokes marijuana. To know why he smokes it is not very important. The important thing to know is that he can smoke it, while we cannot.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari



Lord Shiva Drinks an Ocean of Poison

Wednesday 2 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Hare Krishna World Mission

The Hare Krishna movement was started to save the world from degradation and devastation. We are requesting therefore that all thoughtful and sensitive persons throughout the world should now seriously investigate this movement to see how it can save the world and then join forces with this movement for bringing in a new age of peace and prosperity for all. Since, at least for now, this world is the home that we all share, we should make it the best place possible by flooding it with Krishna consciousness.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari




Devotees Singing and Dancing in Boston


Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Rama and Hare in the Mahamantra

My questions are this:

In the mahamantra does the name 'Rama' refer to Lord Balarama, to Sri Ramachandra, the son of King Dasarath, or to Parsurama, who killed many ksatriya kings?

Does the name 'Hare' in the same mahamantra refer to Radharani, the personified energy of pleasure of Lord Sri Krishna?

Dev

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Answer: Any and All and Radharani

Rama in the Hare Krishna mantra can refer to all three of them. It also refers to Krishna Himself, because as the Supreme Enjoyer He is also called Rama. Hare is the vocative form of calling out to Mother Hara, who is Srimati Radharani.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari

Tuesday 1 March 2011

from Bhaktivedanta Ashram--Austin, Texas USA
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Today's Thought:

Unstable, Artificial Economy

Presently the world economy is based on oil, which is in limited supply and will eventually run out. Therefore to base the global economy on oil is artificial and not a very intelligent way of organizing the human society. We are told that there will be alternative sources of energy such as solar power to take the place of oil before it is gone. But where is the proof that alternative sources of energy can sustain the human civilization? We already have the time-proven Vedic economic system that is based on the land, cows and bulls. Why are the current world leaders not encouraging these natural energy sources for economic stability in this time of an ever-increasingly unstable global economy? It's time they wake up and start doing their jobs properly before it's too late.


Sankarshan Das Adhikari


Which is Better for Long Run Economic Stability?


Ox Power



or Oil Power?



Answers According to the Vedic Version:

Question: Why Preference to Krishna?

Please accept my humble obeisances

I have a question: We chant the mahamantra giving preference to Krishna more than Rama. Why?

O.M.

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Answer: Krishna is the Original Supreme Person

Krishna is naturally preferred because, according to the Vedic scriptures and the great acharyas who guided the Vedic civilization for thousands of years, He is the original Supreme Personality of Godhead.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari



















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