domingo, 3 de julio de 2011

H.H. Sivarama Swami: Varsana dd asks


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"Planet ISKCON" - 34 new articles

  1. H.G. Sankarshan das Adhikari, USA: Sunday 3 July 2011--Unscientific Science--and--How to Read Bhagavad-gita?
  2. ISKCON Melbourne, AU: Today's Darsana
  3. Madhavendra Puri, New Govardhana, AU: Won-Durr Boiz in Belgium (Part 1) – Radhadesh
  4. H.H. Prahladananda Swami: Lecture–CC Adi 4.171 Super Santa Claus 6-11-2011
  5. Japa Group: Good Questions In The Japa Room
  6. Bhakti Lata, Alachua, USA: A Graveyard Scene
  8. Bhakti Vikasa Swami: The effect of Ratha-yatra
  9. Kurma dasa, AU: Kurma's Online Recipe Archives
  10. Subhavilasa das ACBSP, Toronto, CA: Today is Ratha Yatra!
  11. Akrura das, Gita Coaching: ISSUES AND OBSTACLES
  12. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  13. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  14. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  15. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  16. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  17. Srila Prabhupada's Letters
  18. Akrura das, Gita Coaching: AND THE TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE
  19. H.H. Sivarama Swami: Varsana dd asks
  20. Jahnavi, UK: Put on your overcoat, look to the sky.
  21. Subhavilasa das ACBSP, Toronto, CA: Sri Svarupa Damodara Gosvami's Disappearance in seperation of Mahaprabhu on Ratha Yatra Day
  22. Subhavilasa das ACBSP, Toronto, CA: Honouring the disappearnce day of Sri Sivananda Sena
  23. Devadeva Mirel, Alachua, USA: Mood Board : Yes You Can!
  24. Japa Group: Follow By Example
  25. Akrura das, Gita Coaching: LIVE GITA COACHING WORLDWIDE
  26. Manoj, Melbourne, AU: 215. Srila Prabhupad Lecture 9 : Kama to Prema
  27. Mayapur Online: Gundica Marjanam
  28. Akrura das, Gita Coaching: HOW GITA COACHING WORKS?
  29. Akrura das, Gita Coaching: HOW TO BE A COACH?
  30. Mayapur Online: Sri Gadadhara Pandit & Bhaktivinoda Thankur's Disappearance Day
  31. Mukunda Charan das, SA: What Is The Essence Of Deity Worship?
  32. Akrura das, Gita Coaching: THE GOAL OF LIFE IS LAZINESS
  33. Gouranga TV: Kirtan by Vedavyasa Priya Maharaj
  34. Akrura das, Gita Coaching: GITA COACHING FOR YOUR ACHIEVEMENT
  35. More Recent Articles
  36. Search Planet ISKCON
  37. Prior Mailing Archive

H.G. Sankarshan das Adhikari, USA: Sunday 3 July 2011--Unscientific Science--and--How to Read Bhagavad-gita?

A daily broadcast of the Ultimate Self Realization Course Sunday 3 July 2011 The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Sri Krishna, and His eternal consort, Srimati Radharani are enjoying transcendental pastimes in the topmost planet of the spiritual world, Sri Goloka Vrindavan. They are beckoning us to rejoin them. (Click on photo to see a larger image.) Our Mission: To help everyone awaken their original Krishna consciousness, which is eternal, full of knowledge and full of bliss. Such a global awakening will, in one stroke, solve all the problems of the world society bringing in a new era of unprecedented peace and prosperity for all. May that day, which the world so desperately needs, come very soon. We request you to participate in this mission by reviving your dormant Krishna consciousness and assisting us in spreading this science all over the world. Dedicated with love to ISKCON Founder-Acharya: His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, our beloved spiritual master, and to you, our dear readers. Today's Thought: Unscientific Science Uploaded from Melbourne, Australia Scientists enjoy denigrating religionists comparing them to little children who believe in outrageous fairytales. But if we take a close look at what the scientists are asking us to blindly accept on faith from them, we will see that is is unscientific dogma. They want us to accept that the universe came out of absolutely nothing, but there is not even one shred of scientific evidence to support that anything can came out nothing, what to speak of the entire cosmic manifestation coming out of nothing. Sankarshan Das Adhikari Exposing the Unscientific Nature of Modern Science Melbourne, Australia--1 July 2011 We Do Not Accept Their Absurd Fairytales Answers According to the Vedic Version: Question: How to Read Bhagavad-gita? Hare Krishna, Gurudeva. I just started to read Bhagavad-gita but I do not really understand what is the essence of the Gita. Please tell how to read and understand it. Is there any procedure to read it? Rubina Answer: Cover to Cover With Questions The essence of the Bhagavad-gita is to fully surrender unto Lord Sri Krishna under the guidance of the bona fide spiritual master. You should carefully read the Bhagavad-gita As It Is by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada cover to cover and keep a notebook for writing down the questions that come to mind while you are reading it. Then you should attend classes on the Bhagavad-gita at your nearest ISKCON center and inquire from the local devotees to get your questions answered. You may also write me with your questions. Also our Ultimate Self Realization Course features a weekly lesson on the Bhagavad-gita. Kindly dutifully complete the lesson and send in your answer each week. Sankarshan Das Adhikari Transcendental Resources: Receive the Special Blessings of Krishna Now you too can render the greatest service to the suffering humanity and attract the all-auspicious blessings of Lord Sri Krishna upon yourself and your family by assisting our mission. Lectures and Kirtans in Audio and Video: Link to High Definition Videos Link to Over 1,000 Lecture Audios Lecture-Travel Schedule for 2011 Have Questions or Need Further Guidance? Check out the resources at: or write Sankarshan Das Adhikari at: Get your copy today of the world's greatest self-realization guide book, Bhagavad-gita As It Is available at: Know someone who could benefit from this? Forward it to them. Searchable archives of all of course material: Receive Thought for the Day as an RSS feed: Unsubscribe or change your email address Follow us on Twitter: Sankarshan Das Adhikari on Facebook: Thought for the Day on Facebook: Copyright 2005-2011 by Ultimate Self Realization.Com Distribution of this material is encouraged. Simply we request you to acknowledge where it is coming from with a link to our sign up page: Our records indicate that at requested to be enrolled to receive e-mails from the Ultimate Self Realization Course at: This request was made on: From the following IP address:

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ISKCON Melbourne, AU: Today's Darsana



Srila Sanatana Goswami prays to Sri Krishna in Sri Krsna-lila-stava:

"Seeing Your divine lotus face makes having eyes worthwhile..."

Isn't it so true: seeing His glorious darsana everyday makes having eyes worthwhile indeed!

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Madhavendra Puri, New Govardhana, AU: Won-Durr Boiz in Belgium (Part 1) – Radhadesh

[The Won-Durr Boiz diary series is based on four ex-gurukuli brothers (surname: Durr) coming together for the first time to share Krsna consciousness with the outside world.  Madhavendra Puri (the author and middle elder) has been waiting in Radhadesh (Belgium) for his brothers to arrive.  Nitai Canda (the eldest) and Rupa Gosvami (the youngest) arrive first, and Bhisma Deva (the middle younger) is scheduled to come half way through.  Their adventure takes them through Belgium, Germany and Poland, for rathayatras, festival tours and kirtana events.  These diaries aim to bring inspiration and joy to the readers, and hopefully encourage others to entangle themselves in Lord Caitanya’s Sankirtana movement – whether for the spiritual benefits or simply for the fun.]




Wednesday 15th, June 2011.

It seemed like another usual day in the Desh (Radhadesh) but it was obviously something special.  In the middle of the day there was a surprise feast for Nadia Bihari Prabhu (father of Manu, husband of Syamalika Mataji) and two of my brothers were due to arrive almost simultaneously.  Manoj, Manu, Santusha and I rolled out hundreds of puris for the feast.  I left in the midst of the puri making to fetch the College car and pick up my brothers from Marloie, a local train station.  I waited with full anticipation for the train.  It bustled in and crowds came out in very directions.  Sure enough, my brothers were not on the train so disaster seemed to strike from the very start.  I waited for some time until I had to return to Radhadesh to re-think the plans.

I sat down for the feast and the message was soon passed on; my brothers were back in the station, waiting to be picked up (having caught the next hour’s train).  Manu jumped to the call and we made our way there in a hasty spree.  We found the brothers collapsed (Nitai and Rupa) on their bags, waiting for their ride.  It was a joyful reunion, as we had not seen each other in over a year.  It was also going to be the first time that the Durr brothers were propagating Krsna consciousness together.  Manu’s French-European characteristics seemed to make him look like another of the family, which just added that little bit of comical addition to the piece.

We soon arrived at Radhadesh.  I showed my brothers the joy of stairs, taking them to my room at the top of the tower.  It was nonstop from there, showing them all over Radhadesh and introducing them to countless people.  They were in a haze of jetlag, thus it was hard to take it all in.  We quickly filled the afternoon and time seemed to fly by.

We found ourselves at Malati Mataji’s house (mother of Santusha and Shyamali) for Manoj’s farewell party.  The brothers were overloaded with succulent prasadam and they were introduced to all of my friends still present in Radhadesh.  Stuffed and exhausted, I took them back up the tower for their day’s overdue sleep.


Thursday 16th, June 2011.

Nitai represented the Durr boys in mangala arati, while I loaded a car of my college friends and made the drive to the airport.  I waved off Manoj, Maha Laksmi, Radha Seva and Unica, as they flew their way to New Vrndavana (America) for their summer break.

When I returned, I was approached by many of the local devotees.  Word was already out that Nitai was playing some serious mrdanga in the kirtana.  It was only breakfast and he had already made his mark.  For the rest of the morning, I brought the boys over to the College library and engaged them in sweet, sweat brimming labour.  We worked all day and were rewarded with a brand new library layout, ready for the coming years of studies.  We celebrated our successes in Radhadesh’s restaurant.


Friday 17th, June 2011.

We packed all morning, ready to jump off yet again on the coming Sunday.  Tomorrow was going to be Antwerp Rathayatra so we needed to make good use of our time and pack early.  We decided to celebrate my birthday (normally on the 18th of June) today, because the Rathayatra was going to take up all of our attention the coming day.  We started with pizza and then moved onto ice-cream (the usual evolution).

I was about to stick my stick into my little bowl of coconut ice-cream when Vrindi called me down to the back of the Castle, telling me there was some emergency with the transport arrangements for the Rathayatra.  I followed along on the confusing expedition.  All of a sudden, I was forced to realize what was going on.  From the kitchen rolled out a cake with the number 23 in candles on the top.  A few tried to make a spontaneous birthday chant and then I found myself cutting cake for the Radhadesh devotees.  Kumari Kunti soon joined us, along with her cake labelled 25 (her birthday was also on the 18th).

Visvambara had already arranged some events to finish off the day so we were rolling off as soon as the cutting was over.  We had one van and another car, both full of devotee youth, heading off for the Durbuy Adventure Park.  We played human Foosball, which was a mad experience, and also went for a long kayaking ride.  The rain did not let up and we were shivering by the end but it was worth it.  I had managed to accidentally leave some of my things on the bank of the river, after I capsized, but by Krsna’s amazing arrangement, and by the help of Visvambara and Kumari Kunti, I was able to be reunited with my valuables.  We continued the party indoors when we returned, feasting off into the night.  It had to be one of the top birthdays to date, despite it not actually being on date.  The Durr boys were finished but would be up again, ready for another day.



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H.H. Prahladananda Swami: Lecture–CC Adi 4.171 Super Santa Claus 6-11-2011



Mp3 of this video can be found here at Bhaktivedanta Manor

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Japa Group: Good Questions In The Japa Room

We had a very successful opening of the Japa Room one stage 26 devotees were in attendance and many good questions and comments were made in the chat room. One very good question was about the time when we should chant - someone asked is it OK to make up our rounds the next day if we had a busy day?....and another about chanting half our Japa quota before going to work and chanting the rest when returning home.

It got me thinking about the importance of rising as early as possible and chanting as many rounds a possible before doing anything else. Sometimes we are in a very tight schedule, but within that schedule we should make Japa our number one priority in the morning.
Here is a nice quote from Srila Prabhupada that I used in the Japa Room about this subject.

Chanting japa should be done early in the morning with full concentration preferably during the Brahma Muhurta time. Concentrate fully on the sound vibration of the mantra, pronouncing each name distinctly and gradually your speed in chanting will increase naturally. Do not worry so much about chanting fast, most important is the hearing.

Letter to Radhaballabah das - 6 January, 1972
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Bhakti Lata, Alachua, USA: A Graveyard Scene

I love to give homework to my writing students. (At last I can give homework instead of receive it, ha HA!!) We're studying ancient Greek literary devices, so I assigned them the task of looking up famous quotations that utilize these devices.

One student, Bali, has a tendency toward the dark and brooding, so he brought in: "To be or not to be, that is the question."

I laughed in recognition of the famous line from Hamlet. "A famous quotation indeed, Bali," I said. "Do you all know of this play?" I described my favorite part of the whole play: the graveyard scene. Hamlet picks up a skull, and the gravedigger lets Hamlet know that he's holding the skull of a jester. With shock Hamlet realizes that as a little boy, he used to ride upon the shoulders of this very same jester.

And yet what remains? A skull.

Indeed: "To be or not to be, that is the question."

What is the point of life?

We then continued on with our writing class, and that discussion about Hamlet evaporated from my mind. Or so I thought.

When driving home, I passed a graveyard - a graveyard I have passed literally hundreds of times - and I felt this powerful urge to go inside.

The urge mystified me. I even passed the graveyard, shaking it off as silly. But then I slowed my car to a halt and turned around.

I pulled into the cemetery slowly.

I randomly stopped my car in the bright afternoon sun. I felt this sensation of surrender: "Krishna, please give me whatever realizations you want to give me."

I got out of my car. Immediately I was greeted by one very broad gravestone, which marked the graves of a husband and wife. The wife had died over ten years ago. But curiously enough, the husband's name was imprinted upon the gravestone with his birthdate, but the death date was still blank.

I realized that his grave was empty. This man was still alive, simply waiting to die to join his wife... wherever her soul had taken her.

I sat there for a long while in the sun, meditating on the connection of these two souls.

I wandered through other graves. I saw one of a 9-month-old baby girl - such a little gravestone. But she had died in 1932. Maybe old age would've claimed her by now anyway if she had lived.

What struck me the most was that husbands and wives were buried side-by-side, even if the husband or wife had died 20 or 30  years later. Not friend next to friend, or even parent next to child. Yes, families were buried together, but not side-by-side. Not with the same gravestone.

As I left the graveyard, the thought settled over me - life comes. Death comes. And all that matters, what most people in this world will boil down their entire existence to, is a relationship with their husband or wife.

But ultimately, I won't be buried in the ground next to my husband. My body shall be burnt to ashes and cast to the wind or the ocean or a river. I shall not even have a gravestone to mark my birth and my death, and who I shared that birth and death with.

All that shall remain of me is memories within the hearts of my loved ones, but even those shall fade with time.

So what is the essence? Why am I alive?

Only when I was leaving the graveyard did I remember the conversation with my students from this morning: To be or not to be?

That is the question.

I found the answer in a poem my father once wrote:

So far away
I am still so far away
I need to cross the ocean
walk millions of miles
and fly through the sky
until one day
tired of this body
I will lay down
and pray
and remember
who I am
where I came from
My body is dust
but my soul
is the light of the sun
the flame that burns incessantly
inside my heart.
Only Your name will be left
upon my lips
like a kiss
like a blossom
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Gita Coaching is the new standard for spiritual, personal and professional communication, understanding, and helping people. Whether you're a devotee, a life coach, a helping professional, or simply seeking to communicate with and help people on the highest possible level, you're about to offer a whole new way to create value for anyone you meet.

We train devotees in advanced strategies for resolving the whole range of human challenges in a way that redefines problems so that they can be solved and that leads to greater spiritual advancement, growth, contribution, and common good.

Gita Coach navigates a variety of scenarios ranging from individual problems to those of the couple, the family, the peer group, the organization, and the larger social system. Gita Coaching is open-ended: by using the Bhagavad-gita As It Is success principles you can strengthen your spiritual muscles and your professional skills, whatever they may be.

We have students from a variety of backgrounds applying GC to their spiritual lives, private lives, workplace and careers. Our students also become skilled at working with others to produce positive change on every level.

We believe in the importance of understanding a person's relationships, stage in life, cultural influences, and beliefs before they can be transformed by means of a skillfully planned strategy, all based on the Bhagavad-gita As It is.

Email to a friend Bhakti Vikasa Swami: The effect of Ratha-yatra

If we introduce this Ratha-yatra in every city, all other religions will be finished.

Srila Prabhupada, Room Conversation July 5, 1977, Vrndavana.

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Kurma dasa, AU: Kurma's Online Recipe Archives

I spent most of yesterday updating my Recipe Archives. Just for you.

baked cheesecake:

This is Baked Cheesecake and you'll find the recipe here. Any recipe that I've ever published online, either on my website or blog, should now be in my archives. If you find something that isn't, let me know.

very creamy hummus:

You'll find the recipe for this very creamy Hummus here.

vegie barbecue:

That's a slab of barbecued Haloumi cheese. What? You'd like the recipe as well?!! Well you'll have to to scroll down the list of archived recipes and click on Vegie Xmas Barbie for that one. My goodness, I can't do everything for you!

potato and cauliflower curry:

Of course you'd like the recipe for this delicious Cauliflower Curry. Ok then, here it is.

eggplant panir:

This is Eggplant & Panir Cheese in Spicy Tomato Glaze. You know what to do.

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Subhavilasa das ACBSP, Toronto, CA: Today is Ratha Yatra!

Today is Ratha Yatra in Jagannath Puri! Of course the Ratha Yatra at your local ISKCON centre may have already happened or may be coming in Toronto it is 2 weeks from today!!!  So in our locale this weekend is Snana Yatra which we posted about a couple of weeks ago (click here)

So to honour this special weekend we have posted a melodious video of Jangannathastakam which consists of 8 beautiful verses which are included in this post just below the video complete with translation.
Jaya Jagannatha!
kadacit kalindi-tata-vipina-sangita-taralo
jagannatha svami nayana-patha-gami bhavatu me

Who sometimes fervently plays His flute on the banks of the Yamuna river in Sri Vrindavana, who is like a bumblebee that blissfully tastes the lotus faces of the Vraja-gopis, and whose feet are worshipped by great personalities such as Laksmi, Shiva, Brahma, Indra, and Ganesha -- may that Sri Jagannatha-deva be the object of my vision.

bhuje savye venum shirasi shikhi-piccham katitate
dukulam netrante sahacara-kataksham ca vidadhat
sada srimad-vrindavana vasati-lila-paricayo
jagannatha svami nayana-patha-gami bhavatu me

Who holds a flute in His left hand, who wears a peacock feather on His head and a fine yellow silken cloth around His hips, who from the corners of His eyes bestows loving sidelong glances upon His companions, and who is forever known as the one who performs wondrous pastimes in the divine abode of Sri Vrindavana -- may that Sri Jagannatha-deva be the object of my vision.

mahambhodhes-tire kanaka-rucire nila-shikhare
vasan prasadantah sahaja-valabhadrena balina
subhadra-madhyasthah sakala-sura-sevavasara-do
jagannatha svami nayana-patha-gami bhavatu me

Who on the shore of the great ocean resides in a palace situated on the gold-like crest of Nilachala Hill accompanied by His powerful brother Baladevaji and between Them, His sister Subhadra, and who bestows the opportunity to serve Him upon all the demigods -- may that Sri Jagannatha-deva be the object of my vision.

kripa-paravarah sajala-jalada-shreni-ruciro
rama-vani-ramah sphurad-amala-pankeruha-mukhah
surendrair-aradhyah shruti-gana-sikha-gita-carito
jagannatha svami nayana-patha-gami bhavatu me

Who is an ocean of mercy, whose bodily complexion is as beautiful as a row of blackish rainclouds, who sports with Laksmi-devi and Sarasvati, whose face is like a spotless fully-blossomed lotus, who is worshipped by the foremost demigods, and whose transcendental glories have been sung in the topmost scriptures -- may that Sri Jagannatha-deva be the object of my vision.

ratharudho gacchan pathi milita-bhudeva patalaih
stuti-pradurbhavam prati-padam-upakarnya shadayah
daya-sindhur-bandhuh sakala-jagatam sindhu-sutaya
jagannatha svami nayana-patha-gami bhavatu me

When Jagannatha's Ratha-yatra cart is moving along the road, at every step assemblies of brahmanas sing His praises. Upon hearing them, Jagannatha, being an ocean of mercy and the true friend of all the worlds, becomes favourably disposed towards them -- may that Sri Jagannatha-deva be the object of my vision.

param-brahmapidah kuvalaya-dalotphulla-nayano
nivasi niladrau nihita-carano ananta-shirasi
rasanandi radha-sarasa-vapur-alingana-sukho
jagannatha svami nayana-patha-gami bhavatu me

Who is the crown-jewel of transcendence, whose eyes are like the petals of a fully-opened blue lotus, who resides at Nilachala, whose feet are placed on the head of Sesa, who is blissfully immersed in bhakti-rasa, and who derives happiness from embracing the rasa-laden body of Srimati Radhika -- may that Sri Jagannatha-deva be the object of my vision.

na vai yace rajyam na ca kanaka-manikya-vibhavam
na yace 'ham ramyam sakala-jana-kamyam vara-vadhum
sada kale kale pramatha-patina gita-carito
jagannatha svami nayana-patha-gami bhavatu me

I do not pray to Jagannatha for a kingdom, nor for gold, jewels, wealth, or even for a beautiful wife as desired by all men. My only prayer is that Sri Jagannatha-deva, whose splendid glories are always sung by Shiva, be the constant object of my vision.

hara tvam samsaram drutataram-asaram sura-pate!
hara tvam papanam vitatim-aparam yadava-pate!
aho dine 'nathe nihita-carano nishcitam-idam
jagannatha svami nayana-patha-gami bhavatu me

O master of the demigods! Quickly deliver me from this worthless worldly existence. O Lord of the Yadus! Purge me of my limitless host of sins. Aho! You have promised to bestow Your feet upon the fallen and shelterless -- O Jagannatha Swami, please be the object of my vision.

jagannathastakam punyam yah pathet prayatah shuci
sarva-papa-vishuddha-atma vishnulokam sa gacchati

One who carefully recites this sacred Jagannathastakam, upon becoming sinless and purehearted, will attain entrance into Vishnuloka.
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Akrura das, Gita Coaching: ISSUES AND OBSTACLES

Based on my 10-year experience, here are the issues we encounter with devotees and the obstacles to setting and achieving goals:


Expanding options
Life direction (Personal Mission Statement, Personal Strategy)
Not sure what I want
Relationships (guru, spouse, children, parents, friends, authorities ...)
Success foundation


Lack of clarity
Lack of discipline
"I am the doer"
"I know that"
Limiting beliefs
Too many goals
Too much concern about what others think

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1969 July 2: "During my Guru Maharaja's days, thousands of Rupees were being dispatched from Calcutta to London. While under foreign control, Hindustan had the liberty to preach in foreign countries but now being independent, they are prohibiting to send some Murtis and mrdangas."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1969

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1969 July 2: "If the Beatles are chanting, give them all facilities. We want only that Hare Krishna may be very popular all over the world. But we should not try to make a profit out of Hare Krishna Mantra; then our spiritual enlightenment will be hampered."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1969

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1969 July 2: "We should not try to become a very popular musical party. Music is one of our items for chanting, but we are not musicians. We should always remember this fact. We take advantage of the typewriter but that doesn't mean we are professional typists."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1969

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1969 July 2: "She has no knowledge of Krishna Consciousness philosophy. She is interested in Hindus only and otherwise is useless. We require space for so many other purposes. So don't commit any word that she may live there."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1969

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1969 July 2: "It is simply high-sounding words. There is no substance or practical program. So forget about his hallucinations. He has no money, and he wants to take from others, and others wish to sign papers only. So it is a will-o'-the-wisp."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1969

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Srila Prabhupada's Letters

1968 July 2: "By denying my application injustice has been done to me. Please try to convince him that my presence is essential. I am qualified Religious Minister. I have got sufficient money to maintain myself."
Prabhupada Letters :: 1968

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Akrura das, Gita Coaching: AND THE TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE

My own understanding of Gita Coaching is becoming deeper and more connected with the Gita. I use the success principles from the Gita more and more. I have a folder "Gita Coaching Toolbox" on my desktop where I collect and sort out the BG success principles, and use them in helping devotees succeed.

What is now happening in most of my Gita Coaching sessions s what I would describe with a Bible quote:

"And the truth will set you free."

Many devotees are stuck in the past, or cannot forgive, or blame others, or have a negative self-perception or self-attitude. I encourage them to stop that self-sabotage. I am very straightforward and tell them the truth about their karma and their responsibility.

I never know what I will tell them in the session. It is quite intuitive. But ... I realize that preparation brings inspiration. The more I know, the more success ideas and tools I have, both sastric and professional, the more I get guidance from within what to say, when to say it, and how to say it.

I coach men, women, teens, even kids. Devotees sometimes have great challenges, which we don't consider to be problems but opportunities.

It is amazing to see what is happening in sessions. Devotees come from frustration, resentment, blame, stress, or fear - to hope, courage, pride, sense of humor, laughter, and an impetus for positive action.

I often challenge them, because devotees know a lot but they don't use it, or they don't know how to use it, or what to use. This is where I jump in and provide guidance, reassurance, support, encouragement, cheer-leading, and very clear direction or instructions.

And most of them take the challenge positively - thanks to Krsna.

Somehow by Krsna's mercy the process liberates their mind. I see all my "patients" as soon-to-be "doctors". They are capable, they have many spiritual credits, and some of them are slowly picking up the momentum in helping themselves and helping others.

It is an unbelievable process. I am just watching and feeling so grateful to Krsna to engage me in helping devotees succeed and to guide me in this delicate service to His devotees.

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H.H. Sivarama Swami: Varsana dd asks

Why the transforming power of Krsna’s glance didn’t transform the demons of His time into devotees.

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Jahnavi, UK: Put on your overcoat, look to the sky.

In the city I’m staying a few streets away from Penn Station – one of the busiest, most densely populated areas. Any time of day or night, there is a continuous roar of activity, sirens and hydraulic drills. Even with the windows closed, the buildings emit a subtle hum that acts like a constant drip on the mind.

In this environment it becomes all the more urgent to try and protect your consciousness; to nourish those practices that keep you sane. I’m really not a city girl, but I appreciate the challenge to strengthen natural areas of weakness that feel even more strain in such an intense environment.

It’s become habitual to chant to myself as I walk in the streets. I visualize it as armour, or a vast overcoat that I wear as I enter the mayhem. It does help. I feel so protected in every situation. Getting up early and seeing the first rays of sun helps too – bringing timelessness and a sense of perspective on the frenetic rush to come.

Sometimes though, it’s all too much and I just have to imagine myself somewhere else, like the other day – walking through Times Square. I looked up at the square of blue sky and saw the buildings melt away – the square expanding to the edges of the horizon. I felt the wind blow stronger, over waves of grass, carrying the green tang of the trees.

There’s ways of creating sacred space anywhere if you want to.


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Subhavilasa das ACBSP, Toronto, CA: Sri Svarupa Damodara Gosvami's Disappearance in seperation of Mahaprabhu on Ratha Yatra Day

Today is Lord Jagannatha's Ratha Yatra in Puri on this very same day Sri Svarupa Damodara Gosvami joined the Lord in eternal pastimes. His disappearance was shortly after Mahaprabhu completed His earthly pastimes and Sri Svarupa Damodara Gowvami felt deep seperation.

As decribed in the Chaitanya Bhagavata, Sri Svarupa Damodara was an enternal associate of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabu and at times His assistant but he was more than this, he was also Mahaprabhu's friend!

Yesterday's post described Gundica Marjanam and Sri Svarupa Damodara is decribed as one of the chief participants in the cleaning of the Gundica temple. Also, Sri Svarupa Damodara participated with Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhupu in Lord Jagannatha's Ratha Yatra in Puri (see next post.)

In Caitanya Caritamrta Madhya-lila Chapter 10 it describes some of the inerations between Svarupa Damodara and Mahaprabhu. Svarupa Damodara had taken sanyas and was in was in Jagannatha Puri when he once again saw Chaitanya Mahaprabhu...
"One day, Svarupa Damodara arrived. His mystic awareness of the Lord's inner purpose was deep and unfathomable. He was an ocean ofrasa...."
"Sri Svarupa Damodara was the limit of scholarship, still, he did not generally converse with anyone. He kept to himself.He liked to remain alone, and did not see others. He was the very embodiment of Krsna-prema. He was like a second Mahaprabhu, in the sense that he fully understood the Lord's conclusions on Krsna-tattvaand Krsna-bhakti, and could fully represent them. As such, whoever wanted to bring before the Lord a book, poem, or song would first bring it to Svarupa Damodara, who would examine it before the Lord would hear it.  The Lord did not delight in hearing literature and song which was opposed to the conclusions of bhakti (bhaktisiddhanta-viruddha), or which contained rasabhasa, conflicting devotional mellows. Therefore, Svarupa Damodara would examine these things, and if he decided that they were pure, then he would arrange for the Lord to hear them"

Sri Svarupa Damodora Gosvami presented the following offering to Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu...

heloddhunita khedaya vishadaya pronmila-damodarau
samyacchastra vivadaya rasadaya cittarpitonmadaya
sasvad-bhaktivinodaya sa-madaya madhurya-maryadaya
Sri Caitanya dayanidhe tava daya bhuyadamandodaya

"O Ocean of Mercy, Sri Caitanya! Let that which easily drives away whatever pain we have been experiencing in this material world; that which is all-purifying, that which manifests the greatest transcendental bliss; that which by its sunrise casts away all the doubtful conclusions of the sastra; that which rains rasa on our hearts and minds, rules our consciousness and thus causes jubilation; that all-liberating, all-auspiciousness-giving, the limit of madhurya-rasa mercy of yours...let it arise within our hearts."

Gauranga! Gauranga!
Jaya Svarupa Damodara Gosvami!
Lord Jagannatha's Ratha Yatra ki Jaya!
All glories to Srila Prabhupada who opened our eyes with the torch of knowledge!
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Subhavilasa das ACBSP, Toronto, CA: Honouring the disappearnce day of Sri Sivananda Sena

Today marks the disappearance day of Sri Sivananda Sena.

Who is this great Vaishnava personality?
 Sena, the twenty-fourth branch of the tree, was an extremely confidential servant of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Everyone who went to Jagannātha Purī to visit Lord Caitanya took shelter and guidance from Śrī Śivānanda Sena. (CC Adi-lila 10.54)

There are 3 events on today's vaishnava calendar and in an attempt to keep the posts shorter, instead of sharing an historical account, here is some nectar. Caitanya Caritmrta Antya-lila (chapter 12 verses 24 to 31) describes a sweet pastime between Lordy Nityananda and Sri Sivananda Sena. 

Sivananda Sena went to Nityananda Prabhu, who then stood up and kicked him.

Very pleased at being kicked,
Sivananda Sena quickly arranged for a milkman's house to be the Lord's residence.

Sivananda Sena touched the lotus feet of Nityananda Prabhu and led Him to His residence. After giving the Lord His quarters, Sivananda Sena, being very pleased, spoke as follows."Today You have accepted me as Your servant and have properly punished me for my offense.

"My dear Lord, Your chastising me is Your causeless mercy. Who within the three worlds can understand Your real character?

"The dust of Your lotus feet is not attainable even by Lord
Brahma, yet Your lotus feet have touched my wretched body

"Today my birth, my family and my activities have all become successful. Today I have achieved the fulfillment of religious principles, economic development, satisfaction of the senses and ultimately devotional service to Lord

When Lord
Nityananda heard this, He was very happy. He rose and embraced Sivananda Sena in great love.

Jaya Sri Sivananda Sena
Nitai! Nitai!
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Devadeva Mirel, Alachua, USA: Mood Board : Yes You Can!

Yes You Can


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Japa Group: Follow By Example

Hare Krsna my dear devotees. I hope your week has been blessed and your chanting focused on the mantra. Today we had our first session of the Japa Room on We had nice devotees coming and sharing their realisations, some of the questions were how can we make children chant and I gave a quick word about that.

I said that the kids at our home chant everyday with us and the main thing is giving them proper association, if we concentrate and chant loudly enough so we can hear, also if we can just chant without talking or being distracted they will at a certain stage follow our example and efforts of having a good japa.

Helping others to chant is also one of the goals in chanting and we discussed about that. Helping others helps us in our spiritual life and make our Spiritual Master and Krsna happy and satisfied as well.

I wish you can have a nice weekend of japa and your realisations increase on a daily basis. Please come to the second session of the Japa Room on Saturday July 2nd - Sat. 1.30pm GMT / 8.30am EST - To see the time in your city visit - the Japa Room is a weekly broadcast on

your servant,

Aruna devi
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Dear Friends,

Success is not for the faint of heart. To achieve your dreams, you'll have to overcome obstacles and conquer fear, self-doubt, and worry. You'll have to undo negative childhood programming ... and contend with criticism, nay-saying and perhaps even sabotage from others.

You may contend with financial pressures or even bankruptcy. You may face legal challenges. You may be blindsided by illness or tragedy.

The deciding factor in whether you give up or succeed in the face of these challenges is the level of your determination and understanding the success principles given in the Bhagavad-gita As It Is.

Average people have a limit to how much they want to commit to achieving their goals. When the journey becomes too hard, they give up their dreams and settle for a smaller level of success than they deserve.

High achievers are relentless. They are determined to succeed, no matter what it takes.

In our Live Gita Coaching Course, I'll share ways to cultivate that level of 108% commitment in your own life.

Join me at the Live Gita Coaching Course to discover:

- Tips for releasing the pain, hurt and fear of the past ... all of which serves as an anchor to slow your progress
- Ways to keep your attention focused on achieving your goals when crises, challenges and other people threaten to distract you
- Suggestions for reaching deep within yourself to find the faith and determination to keep going when all outward signs are telling you to stop
- How to identify and root out the negative self-talk that can derail your dreams
- Powerful examples of what relentless determination looks like

And much more!

We cover the full spectrum of challenges you'll face when cultivating relentless determination.

My friends, there's no doubt you'll face challenges on the path to success. But whether challenges become roadblocks or solid stepping stones is up to you. Join me at the Live Gita Coaching Course for inspiration and practical strategies for cultivating an attitude of relentless determination.

While having a lot of fun, humor, singing and dancing together, we learn powerful success principles from the Bhagavad-gita As It Is, and, most importantly, learn and practice how to apply them to your own life - every single day!

I look forward to seeing you at the Live Gita Coaching Course.

Sincerely dedicated to your success,
Akrura dasa - Gita Coaching Courses Worldwide

Gita Coaching Courses may be held at any location worldwide. They are usually free. I just need to get to you somehow.

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Manoj, Melbourne, AU: 215. Srila Prabhupad Lecture 9 : Kama to Prema

SB 5.6.5
Vrindhavan, 27 Nov 1976

The mind is the root cause of lust, anger, pride, greed, lamentation, illusion and fear. Combined, these constitute bondage to fruitive activity. What learned man would put faith in the mind?

A “BUDHA” is someone who is aware of everything. An intelligent person will not accept greediness, lust, madness, pride, lamentation, illusion, fear etc. When we are too materially absorbed, then there is fear. As long as we are interested in the bodily concept of life, these base qualities are present. But when we are spiritually placed, these things do not exist. These are the symptons of Karma bhandha.

If we devot ourselves in the service of God, the face of these problems will change. Kama (desire) will be transformed into how to serve Krishna. So, this sense gratification or fruitive activities can now be used for Krishna’s service. We wanted to build a very beautiful temple for Sri Krishna Balaram whereas someone else may want to build a skyscraper. Both the groups of people want an expensive beautiful building. The difference is that one is acting is Prema and the other in Kama.

Everyone has desires and one cannot be desireless. We do not surpress our desires by force. So, one must use their desires in Krishna’s service. This is Prema. Similiraly the affairs of Krishna with Gopis were on the level of Prema and not Kama. In the material world, no one wants to please anyone but himself. This is Kama. Prema is pleasing Krishna. This is the difference.

When desire is not fulfilled, then there is anger. So, the root cause is Karma kanda. I get a body with a varieties of desires, anger, madness etc based on my previous activities. When you get a spiritual body, the desires will be different. Right now, the desires are designated. In the spiritual world, the only desire is to satisfy Krishna. Material world means to forget Krishna and satisfy oneself. Those who have anger can also utilize this quality in Krishna’s service. Use your anger against people who attack the mission of Krishna Consciousness.

When a material person cannot see something they like they get angry. But a devotee, even though he cannot see Krishna, he still does not change his love for Krishna although he is disappointed. Renouncing means to give up the mentality of sense gratification. Whatever you do , do it for Krishna. Otherwise you will be bound up in reactions. Don’t accept this Karma bhanda. We must purify our desires. When you serve Krishna, don’t come back into the mentality of being an Indian or American etc. This is not a stage of being a devotee. Only remember that we are all eternally a servant of Krishna. This is the pure stage.

Unless you are an expert in devotional service through practical application and you are qualified then maybe someday you may be able to understand the love between Krishna and Radha. You should see how much you are free from the pollution in your mind regarding lust, anger etc. We must not manufacture our own way of satisfying Krishna. But we must follow the orders of Guru and follow the regulative principles.

“The Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa-praṇaya, loving affairs of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa, this is not ordinary thing. When you worship Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa, we are not fit for that…..we shall think ourself as servant of Kṛṣṇa, eternal servant of Kṛṣṇa, under the guidance, ādau gurvāśrayam. So if we want to do something, we must inquire from guru, sad dharma….. We must follow.” – SP

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Mayapur Online: Gundica Marjanam

The day prior to Ratha Yatra is Gundica Marjana, the cleaning of Gundica temple takes place to welcome Lord Jagannath, Baladeva and Subhadra. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu performed Gundica Marjana with great jubilation. By cleaning the Lord’s temple, one’s mind becomes purified. “In this way all the quarters of the Gundica temple were completely cleansed and cleared.

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Akrura das, Gita Coaching: HOW GITA COACHING WORKS?

Conversation between Mahatma dasa and Akrura dasa about Gita Coaching in June 2009 in Alachua, Florida

Mahatma dasa: What is coaching and how do you distinguish it between consulting, teaching, mantoring, counseling and therapy?

Akrura dasa: Coaching is more about facilitating your learning and drawing forth from you (knowledge, realizations, understandings, goals, solutions), while teaching is putting in information, giving people information about different things. Therapy deals with emotional scars from the past. Counseling is a similar thing, just milder. Consulting is giving solutions, giving advice. And coaching helps you find your own solutions and become more self-reliant.

M: One of my understandings of coaching that distinguishes it from therapy is that person who wants coaching has definite goals they want to achieve. And often in therapy people have specific issues they are dealing with and they are not goals of achieving something in terms of so-called success and something tangible, as opposed to resolving an internal problem. "I have this issue from the past that is affecting me today and I need to deal with it." Would that be correct assumtion of the differences?

A: Yes.

M: Then my next question would be – Vaisnava philosophy, we know, teaches, and we know by experience, that we are in ignorance, and we need a guru to show us the path. Now you seem to be saying that coaching allows you to become your own guru, so wouldn't that create just even a greater problem? Or you are saying that once you have a guru you have knowledge, and at that point coaching facilitates the application of that knowledge?

A: The specific coaching I do is Gita Coaching, which is spiritual coaching, and basically I help people follow the instructions of the Bhagavad-gita As It Is, Srila Prabhupada and their current guru, so it's all based around our philosophy. It's not that you become your own guru but you take more responsibility and learn and find out ways how to effectively apply the knowledge that is already there in the scriptures.

M: So it's bridging the gap between what you've got in your head and perhaps what has gone to your heart that you want and practically achieving it step by step through implementation and empowering the person you're coaching to come up with their own decisions on how to do that and helping them see ways of how to do that.

A: It is not I who empower them. They empower themselves or Krsna empowers them.

M: You facilitate them.

A: Yes. I try to create an environment where they can think more effectively and clarify what they want. This is very important. Until they know what they want they are more or less stuck. But when they clarify what they want we can work on creating their goals and achieving them.

M: I was assuming that when people want a coach they already know what they want. Are you saying that sometimes people want a coach because they don't know what they want – they want to become clear about that?

A: Yes. It is easier to work with people who know what they want. But if they don't know what they want or it's too vague – they want something too general – then coaching helps to become more specific.

M: Some devotees may say it's not about what I want, it's about what my guru wants. How you deal with that in a coaching situation? Or is that a problem for someone?

A: As far as I have seen, very few people can just follow what guru tells them, so I have seen some gurus ask disciples "What do you want to do for Krsna?" And they may say, "I want to make money and give half to the temple or for printing Prabhupada's books or something similar." And th guru says, "Then do that." He encourages them to do that. Very few people can just do the needful. And also in few letters Srila Prabhupada mentions that it is advantageous, it is favorable to do something you are inspired to do, you like to do, then even it will be easier to follow the principles.

M: So for the person who is not clear what they want to do you might have to facilitate helping them find, within the parameters of the instructions of guru and sastra, what enthuses them, what inspires them, and clarify the vision of what they would like to achieve, let's say, within this year or six months or within five years or all of that? And then you would start to help them discover ways in which they can do that?

A: Yes.

M: Do you ever run into situations where that's all done but the person has a major fear or obstacle or blockage in doing that? If so, how do you help them?

A: It depends how this block is severe. Sometimes these blocks come from some past traumas, or emotional scars, or abuse. This is not my area. I don't deal with that. I send them to other professionals or other devotees. If block is less severe and it has to do with their misconceptions, then we can work on removing them. Usually the main obstacle to do anything is fear, some kind of fear. Either fear of success or fear of failure or something else.

M: There may be people who might be thinking that having a coach could be good but they are not sure if they maybe need a therapist. Maybe their issue is too deep or troublesome. So how can they distinguish what they need?

A: That's a very important question. Usually, through my experience, I am able to see whether I can help them as a coach or not. People may show symtoms that they are emotionally disturbed. They might become extremely mental or thoughtful when they speak about something. And you can see that their feeling is very deep. They were maybe abused in the past, or they cannot forgive someone, and it's very deep.

M: In other words, you can't move forward because that problem keeps coming up, can't get passed it?

A: Yes, like a major inner obstacle.

M: And then you realize this person needs other kinds of professional help to resolve that particular issue. Another thing you mentioned is that it's common even for successful people to have some fear, of doing something they haven't done, taking on a new occupation or a new service. I don't know if people consciously think about the fear of being successful. I think most devotees come to Krsna consciousness with a strong desire to be appreciated (our conditioned side) or recognized. That's what we bring in when we come to devotional service, unless we've practiced Krsna consciousness very deeply in the past or during many lifetimes. And when we come to Krsna consciousness we realize that it's supposed to be the exact opposite. We should offer recognition to others. And there may be a fear that if we become successful, along with that success will come recognition, honor, followers, wealth, so many things. On one side, we are attached to it, on another side we may be afraid that if we have it we may misuse it. For us as devotees it could be a common problem. How would you help someone with that?

A: We have to understand our philosophy. We have to understand that the credit goes to Krsna for our achievements. We shouldn't be proud of borrowed plums. There is no limit to how much you can achieve if you don't care who takes the credit. We know that Krsna has given us intelligence, physical strength, mental power, and that it is thanks to Him that we can achieve anything. So it's His credit. And it's better to do something and become proud than sit and lament and do nothing, just sink into the mode of ignorance. I heard that Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati said that he wanted his disciples to come to the mode of passion. And so called goodness I call tamo-goodness. We think we are in the mode of goodness but we are actually in the mode of ignorance. We are afraid to do anything, out of fear of failure or fear of mistakes, or sometimes fear of success. And Bhagavad-gita says you should be equal in fame and infamy, so if we don't experience both in our lives, how we will practice it?

M: I remeber when Prabhupada first asked us, his disciples, to go to India. He called us - his dancing white elephants. And he wanted to show us off. He said, "Your behavior will glorify me, because you are my disciples. And when people see that you are sadhus, they will ask who is your guru, your guru must be wonderful, because you are wonderful." Just like when you see children who are well-behaved and intelligent, you naturally think they must have a very good parents. So I think that's very helpful, that we want to glorify Krsna and Srila Prabhupada, our spiritual master, and if we become successful, that will glorify them. And as Prabhupada showed, he always gave the credit to his spiritual master. The anartha of wanting to be recognized is there. We have to transfer that to wanting Krsna to be recognized. And Prabhupada even in a letter to me he wrote the same thing. He said, "Don't try to become famous. Try to make Krsna famous." If I become famous, that can make Krsna famous, but my motive is not to become famous. My motive is to introduce people to Krsna. Can you describe some typical situations or common situations that people come to you for coaching and how you help them get passed or get beyond where they are now? Because coaching is meant to take someone further, and they need a coach because they are not getting there on their own. If they would be getting there on their own they wouldn't want a coach. They wouldn't feel a need for a coach. So, let's say you are coaching me and I'm doing something that I want to do more and I'm stuck. I cannot get beyond this point. What are some of the things that you would ask me? Or how would you deal with me?

A: People come to me because they have either a problem to solve or a result to achieve. First thing I do is increase awareness. By asking questions I help them become more aware of what's going on or what they are thinking, what they are feeling, what they want, what other people are doing, what is the situation. I also help them to be more objective, rather than just subjective, and to try to see things from a side. Try to be neutral or objective. Once they become more aware of what's going on and what they want, then we can take more concrete steps.

M: You say they become more aware. Are you talking about giving them more objectivity about their situation and/or awareness of options that they didn't see before? And more aware of what else?

A: First see where they are now, what's the situation. For example, if someone says,
"I have so many problems in my life."
"What problems do you have?" And they name 10 problems.
"Which one would you like to work on now? Which one is the most pressing or the most important? Or which one would you like to work on now?"
Thus we take one thing and we work on that. By working on one thing we cover many things or get into other things. So we thouroughly look into that one thing.

M: Is it because the mentality or the activity that created one problem usually is the one that creates other problems?

A: Yes. Like a habit. A bad habit influenced all his problems. One bad habit. Like, for example, not getting up early, not chanting your rounds. This influences everything. It influences your consciousness and everything you do. So we look into one thing. We do one thing at a time. We don't do ten things at once. And then we do it very thoroughly. And this gives so much insight. They become more aware. They discover things. They say, "Oh my God, I didn't realize I have this." Or, "I have this thing within me that is holding me back." Or, "I have this talent." We work on discovering positive things: talents, skills, strengths. And discovering more options. They become aware that there is many more options than they see at the moment. And they become more hopefull and inspired to work on their goals.

M: You mentioned about discovering their talents or maybe getting more in touch, maximizing their talents. Some people could think that coaching is actually really suited for people who are not successful, who are losers. Persons who have never really done much. They are very simple person and they need a coach, someone to push them, someone to help them be successful. Whereas a person who is successful may think, "I don't really need a coach because I've been successful ever since I've been a teenager. I was a president of my class. I achieved this. I started this when I was 22, etc. So how do you address that? Does a person who's successful benefit from coaching or it's just for people who have trouble being successful?

A: This is a great misconception. One of my mentor-coaches, Marshall Goldsmith, who is a behavioral coach, coaches only successful people. Only great achievers, super-sharp, intelligent, educated, capable. So, coaching is for everyone.

M: He's coaching CEO's of some of the biggest companies in the world. Is that correct?

A: Yes.

M: These guys are the most successful people out there. So why are they needing coaches?

A: He coaches people on behavior. Sometimes they have a blindspot in their behavior. He helps them improve that. But, for example, in sports situation, top performers also have coaches, top coaches. Whether you are a poor performer or top performer, you need a coach in order to be able to achieve more, to achieve better results, higher results.

M: You are saying that coaching can help everybody achieve something more, even if you are really successful. Maybe you're not going to go a 100 miles with coaching, like a person who's not been a success. But you'll go further. You'll go somewhere you could not go on your own.

A: More quickly and more efficiently than you would go on your own.

M: Or even get there on your own.

A: Yes.

M: So, just putting this all in perspective, it seems to me that if a person says "I don't need a coach" we can translate that to mean "I don't really need help or want help in going forward," or "I feel I don't need to go forward". Maybe this could be due to ignorance, or due to pride. Some people say "I don't need a coach" because they are satisfied where they are at and they don't want to see other possibilities or options or go further. Or some say "I don't need a coach because I'm happy where I'm at". If that were the case, would you try to encourage those people or would you just say it's better that I don't encourage them because coaching wouldn't work well for them because they don't really want it?

A: Well, everybody wants something that they don't have. Even most devotees, they don't have pure love of God yet. So if you don't have something you want but you don't have it, you need some assistance to achieve it. Or if you already have all the tools and you have become like a super self-coach, in that case you are already working hard on yourself. Often this fresh, objective, outside perspective helps. Because we can't see what other people can see. And they can give us ideas, they can give us feedback, they can give us feedforward. So it's always good to do this. It's always adventageous. One way to do it is peer coaching. People who are equal they can help each other. Ocassionally they can discuss. It's always good. Because we are not God. We don't know everything. So if you want to achieve anything it's good to speak about it with somebody.

M: Do coaches have coaches?

A: Yes, or they have mentor-coaches, or they have friends who act like coaches in their lives.

M: It's really the objectivity that someone else brings to your subjective world.

A: Yes.

M: And even if the coach is not fantastic, even if the coach is just your spouse or friend, asking a few questions or even in a consultant format, they are bringing in points of view you may not be able to see.

A: Or asking good questions. One way to do peer coaching is that I give you a set of questions that I want you to ask me every day, and these questions cover the most important aspects and activities of my life. Then you ask me those questions, and you can ask me some subquestions. Some people do it daily, some people do it weekly. For example, you ask me "How is your chanting?". That's very important to me, and I say "Oh, I haven't thought about that. I was just chanting mechanically for the past week. Honestly, my chanting is not where I want it to be." And immediately my awareness increases and the likelihood of improving my chanting also increases, because you asked me that question.

M: And you are the one who told me to ask you that question.

A: Yes, I gave you that question.

M: Because that's important to you so you want to be reminded, otherwise you would not remind yourself.

A: Yes, reminded, and discuss about it, become more aware, and ultimately take action to improve it.

M: What's that called – peer coaching?

A: Yes, peer coaching, when equals help each other, or they don't even have to be equals. We can just call them success partners. They can exchange a set of personal questions and then just discuss, but with a genuine interest.

M: So if we are going to do peer coaching I would come up with a set of questions. I want to work on a particular project, so you would ask me "Did you work on this project?" or "How much time did you put in this project this week?"

A: Yes.

M: I want to chant on a certain level. On a scale of 1 to 10 I want to chant my rounds on level 6. So you would ask me "Did you chant your rounds on a level 6 or better?" Or "I want to go to bed before 9 o'clock." "Did you go to bed before 9?" Each week you ask me these questions and you said something really important, that the person is not just reading the questions you have given them, but you have to show concern. Because the concern is what helps the other person be self-reflective and helps them talk and open up. And if you are not concerned, you just read the questions mechanically, like you are totally bored and uninterested, and you are doing it because I asked you.

A: Genuine interest motivates people. It is inspiring to see that someone is interested in what I do. Yesterday we had a Gita Coaching training and I gave devotees the question "How can I help you succeed?" This is a very powerful question. You can have someone ask you that question every day or whenever you meet. Or you can ask "What else could help you succeed?" Or "What other options do you have?" So these are questions that expand your thinking. You start thinking "outside the box". You broaden your horizons. And you get more ideas how to achieve what you want to achieve.

M: Are you saying is that when you have a coach, your coach is exclusively interested in your success? Perhaps even more interested in your success than you are.

A: Yes.

M: Sometimes we see that we want things but we don't really work for them because we don't want them that much, or maybe we do want them but we're lazy.

A: Lazy or fearful.

M: Or we're just overworked or burned out. And you have another person who wants it equally as much or even more than you, who's not encumbered by obstacles that are preventing you from being as focused on it as apparently you want to be. So that's a very interesting dynamic that you have someone in your life who wants something as much as or even more tha you want it. And who's maybe even more committed to you achieving it than you are. It's seems that's also a position of a spiritual master. He's giving you Krsna consciousness. He's your coach. He's praying for you. And he wants you to have it maybe even more than you want it.

A: Yes. That's really giving life, inspiring, to have someone like this. I think all preachers, teachers and brahmanas and all the devotees who assist others in ISKCON should have this goal – sarve sukhino bhavantu. Srila Prabhupada gave this point for leaders, as one of the instructions. Make everyone happy, everyone that you are leading. Coaching helps you become happy and successful in all areas of your life. Thus there is nothing lacking in your life. And then you can help others. For me, success of my coaching is when my coachees become preachers, leaders, coaches, or responsible parents. Some responsibility should be there. Because when you accept responsibility it means you are following your dharma and you are connected to God.

M: Do you find that when you coach someone it naturally helps them become more responsible because you're not telling them what to do but you're asking them to find answers, options, and to deal with whatever they want to achieve, so when you finish with the coaching they are in a different mindset because they have discovered so much on their own already?

A: Exactly. One of the main goals of my coaching is to help people take 108 percent responsibility for their lives. I have seen in working with over 300 devotees over the past 5-6 years that those who take responsibility start moving forward toward success. Those who don't, they remain stuck.

M: Are you saying that some people become dependent on a coach and they can't continue without him? When the coaching should be finished or staggered over long periods of time, they are just not taking responsibility and therefore they dont really achieve as much as they could. Is that like an artificial dependency, like they need that person (a coach) always there because they are weak and that's not healthy?

A: We are talking about two diffeent things. One is becoming self-sufficient and independent of the coach, and another is taking responsibility for some or all aspects of your life. If someone remains in the coaching relationship it doesn't mean they don't take responsibility for their lives. It may be they still need help. So it can last 3 months, 6 months, a year. I sometimes coach people for years – monthly or every two months, or whenever they need assistance. Some people I coach once or twice and they are ready to go. They know what needs to be done. They just clarify certain things and get going again. Ocassionally I might ask them how are you doing, and they say I am doing well. In that case, either they are really doing well or they are afraid, because they know if they come back to me we will be confronting all the obstacles, I will ask them what do you want ... and sometimes they do not want to hear that.

M: Someone might think, "I know what the obstacles are, both internally and externally, but I don't know if I am really ready to deal with them. So would you say that even if they think that way the coaching will empower them or facilitate them or enable them in some way to deal with that, to deal with those doubts?

A: If they continue with a coaching relationship then it will become obvious that they have to make their own choices. They have to take responsibility. They have to work on removing obstacles. And it's very simple – go forward and be happy.

M: Is your experience that there is actually more pain in not dealing with it?

A: Yes. Exactly.

M: Even if there is this big fear "oh, I can't deal with this", that it's more painful not to deal with it and just avoid it?

A: It eats you up. It just eats you up. Krsna wants us to be conscious. Very rarely things happen automatically. You have to be either very lucky or very pure that things will happen automatcally. Krsna wants us to be aware. Why do we have consciousness? To be conscious. And especially to be Krsna conscious. But we also have consciousness to be conscious of how to proceed, how to advance, how to remove obstacles, how to recognize our strengths, and how to appreciate what God has given us.

M: What I've noticed in all the workshops that I've done, if you just give people time to reflect on whatever it is we're teaching at that moment (like japa, forgiveness, vows, prayer), give them time to reflect – where you stand, where would you like to go, what are the obstacles, where are your strengths, where are your weaknesses - it helps them so much. Because we don't do that enough. We're busy. We just don't think about these things enough. And than these things remain there. And also, with having another person assisting us, we come up with new options. When we speak about forgiveness, some people say I can't forgive, and there may be many reasons for that. But one of the reasons is you just don't know how. You think my only response to what happened to me is to be angry. You don't understand there can be other responses, other ways to deal with it. And by having another person helping you, you realize, "Oh, I never thought I could deal with it this way. I never thought I could be involved in taking this person to court but at the same time forgiving them for what they have done." So you see more options.

A: Yes, with a coach, options increase, choices increase. Three basic principles of coaching are awareness, choice and responsibility.

M: When you have more choices you become aware you have more choices?

A: Yes, and you are responsible for your choices. And also, you choose what you want. People say they don't know what they want, and I tell them you can choose what you want. If I give you a bag of apples and a bag of mangoes, you will choose what you want. If you have to choose one of them, you will choose either apples or mangoes. So it is our responsibility to choose responsibly, to choose to the best of our ability according to what we know is right.

M: When you are talking about choice, are you confronting people who think they don't have a choice?

A: Yes, and I just tell them, "You have a choice."

M: So in other words, they are in the situation where they don't think there is a choice. "This is the way it is, I'm doing what I'm doing. My life is the way it is. My spiritual life is the way it is" ...

A: "... and my karma is set. It can't be any different. It's pre-destined, preordained." But it's not exactly like that. There is a destiny, but you can affect your life. You are the most creative force in your life, along with Krsna.

M: I was told that Prabhupada said 50 percent of karma you're creating, you're getting in this life, not the next life. We're sometimes thinking whatever is happening in this life is totally because of what happened in the last life. He said – no. 50 percent has been created in this life, which helps us with those who think that things are totally written in stone and there's very little I can do about it.

A: This is one big area I am dealing in coaching - excuses. Our philosophy you can use for so many excuses. "This is my karma. This is Krsna." You just blame it on somebody else. And you are not taking responsibility. That's a tough thing. Many people are very sophisticated in how they make excuses, but I don't buy into it.

M: Very deep, philosophically articulated, profound excuses.

A: Yes.

M: Is that common with people when you begin talking, that most of them will give you the reasons why they cannot move forward? I mean amongst devotees. Is that common or is it just individual case?

A: Most people tend to give reasons or excuses, and I just ask them "What do you want to have in your life – excuses or results?" And they say – results. So then you have to give up this habit of trying to convince me why you cannot do something. And they can give me reasons why something is possible. Because with Krsna, anything is possible.

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Akrura das, Gita Coaching: HOW TO BE A COACH?

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Mayapur Online: Sri Gadadhara Pandit & Bhaktivinoda Thankur's Disappearance Day

In the Pancha-Tattva Mandir, a murti of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura adorned the altar platform blessing the devotees with an opportunity to chant their rounds in front of the great Acarya of our parampara. On this auspicious day, pushpanjali and maha arotik was offered to Thakura Bhaktivinoda and Sri Gadadhara Pandit, followed by distribution of maha-prasadam.

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Mukunda Charan das, SA: What Is The Essence Of Deity Worship?

Pankajanghri prabhu taking us on a tour of Mayapur

18 March 2001, ISKCON Mayapur

Pankajanghri prabhu gave Bhagavad-gita class in the evening.  His words were simple, but profound: ‘There is the theoretical understanding, ‘I am eternal servant of Krishna’; and  there is the practical application based on sadhu, sastra and guru.  Many cannot put this into practice.  Then, there are those who put this into practice but cannot practice for long.  And there are those who practice for long, but who still fall away.  Devotional service can be quite testing‘.

I met Pankajanghri some hours later behind Radha-Madhava’s kitchen.  He was pacing up and down in the darkness, chanting his japa.  I offered him my obeisances.  I was surprised when he did the same back.  Senior devotees normally just fold their palms and say, ‘Hare Krishna!’  He reminded me of a schoolboy.  Youthful, despite his age.  He was very humble.  I asked him about the wooden Deity of Lord Chaitanya in Prabhupada’s rooms.  He dead-panned, ‘Clay’.  The Deity was made from clay.  I had some pictures of Radha-Madhava which I had bought at one of the gift shop booths on the Campus.  I asked him to write something at the back of one of the photos.  He asked me what I should write.  I said, ‘I just want your blessings, prabhu’.  He wrote, ‘May you always think of Radha-Madhava’.

Pankajanghri prabhu changed track and said, ‘It’s my birthday today’.  I said, ‘But I thought it was at your birthday the other day’.  He replied, ‘Yesterday.  That was our tithi.  Tithi is the according to the moon.  Today is our actual birthday’.  He went on, ‘One Vaisnava near here from the Gaudiya Math is a hundred years old.  He says, ‘Trees live to be a hundred’.  So, what’s the big deal about having a birthday?’.  I said, ‘It is different.  You are a Vaishnava’.  Pankajanghri then asked, ‘What is your name?’  ’Michael’.  ’How long have you been at the Temple?’ I said, ‘Here?’ ‘No.  In ISKCON’.  ’Four years’.  ’And you are uninitiated?’  I told him about my meeting with Radhanath Maharaja and he said, ‘He’s accepted you.  That’s real initiation.  You are fortunate to have a Spiritual Master!’

Since Pankajanghri prabhu is such a revered pujari (priest of the Deity), I wanted to ask him a pertinent question.  So I asked,’What is the essence of Deity worship?’  He replied, ‘You have to understand who you’re dealing with.   The Deity is not just wood or stone.  If you think like that, it’s because you think you are made of blood and marrow.  The Deity is spiritual.  Krishna mercifully comes in the form of the Deity for our benefit.  We should always have the consciousness that the Lord is sentient.  The Lord can, of course, alternate between matter and spirit, spirit and matter’.  His words shed new light on Deity worship for me.  He continued, ‘We have to be careful of offences.  In the beginning we are absent-minded.  We have bad thoughts and commit seva-aparadhas [offences while serving the Deity].  As we progress, there is improvement.  Everntually, after some years, our consciousness develops by serving the Deity.  We can take that consciousness outside the Temple and see the Lord everywhere’.

I thanked Pankajanghri prabhu, and took his leave.

Filed under: Arcanam, India, ISKCON, Realizations, Spiritual Life Tagged: deity worship, ISKCON Mayapur, mayapur, pankajanghri prabhu, postaweek2011, seeing the deity as god, seva aparadhas, the essence of deity worship
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Akrura das, Gita Coaching: THE GOAL OF LIFE IS LAZINESS

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Gouranga TV: Kirtan by Vedavyasa Priya Maharaj

Kirtan by Vedavyasa Priya Maharaj

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Dear Spiritual Receiver and Achiever,

Have you read a ton of books, listened to hundreds of audio programs, and taken seminars full of great information, but still not been able to implement the information? Maybe you’re not certain where to start when it comes to making the major changes in your life you’d like to make?

If your answer is yes, I think you’ll be interested in Gita Coaching.

Bhagavad Gita As It Is Success Principles are so universal that they will help you achieve your goals – whether it’s to be a happy and productive devotee, the top book distributor in your yatra, a leading temple architect, score high in devotional courses, get rid off limiting beliefs, build your dream temple, or make millions of dollars for Krsna. No matter what your goal is, the Bhagavad Gita As It Is Success Principles will work for you, if you work the principles.

Gita Coaching process coaches you through the most essential Success Principles, and helps you create step-by-step action plans for implementing them in your life.

I’m really excited about your potential with this program. It’s because I know that if you use and apply what you learn, your chances of success are HUGE!

Here's just a sample of what we'll work on together ...
• Where to start on your journey to a more successful spiritual life.
• How to stay focused on your goals, when everyday stresses at work and home take away your best time and energy.
• How to prepare for an opportunity that would skyrocket your success.
• How to have fun and fulfillment in virtually everything you do.
• How to delegate the work activities that rob you of your time ... and what’s the best leverage of your time and talent.
• PLUS more Bhagavad Gita lessons that can easily help you catapult yourself to the pinnacle of your spiritual career ... stay on track with your life’s goals ... achieve more, faster ... attract greater opportunities into your life... have more vibrant and higher quality relationships ... have more time for hearing and chanting ... be more productive ... build a better team if you are a leader ... and realize all your God-given potential.

As you can see, the Gita Coaching program is all-encompassing, and when you pursue Gita Coaching, you’ll become a master at defining you’re life purpose, planning for success, assembling a team so others can help you, and taking action on any goal.

Gita Coaching will help you take your life to the next level by keeping you focused on applying the information.

Imagine six months from now, you'll have the Bhagavad Gita Success Principles fresh in your mind and ready to be applied to any challenge life may send your way!

Simply put, Gita Coaching will help you turn your new knowledge into decisive action!

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