WHAT IS YAGNA AND WHICH PROCESS IS MORE EFFECTIVE THAN A YAGNA?


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

According to Vedic injunctions, a fire sacrifice is held in order to give food to the Supreme Personality of Godhead in the names of the different demigods. While performing a fire sacrifice, one pronounces the word svāhā in mantras such as indrāya svāhā and ādityāya svāhā. These mantras are uttered to satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead through demigods such as Indra and Āditya, for the Supreme Personality of Godhead says: Continue reading

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Would you accept Arjuna as God just because Krishna says “I am Arjuna”???


By Niraj Bidawatka

One argument that people very often put forward is that Krishna Himself says in the tenth and eleventh chapter that “I am Shiva”, “I am the sun among all planets”, “I am this demigod”, “I am that demigod “, Therefore, they conclude that by worshiping these demigods (devatā), we are worshiping Krishna.

Krishna says, “I am the taste of water.” So why don’t you worship the taste of water as God? Krishna says so many things. But without understanding the purport they misinterpret as they like. This is called the half-hen logic.

Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead

The uniqueness of water is its taste. The uniqueness of the sun is its ability to illuminate. Thus, the ability in any thing or person, is coming from Krishna. Similarly, the demigods also have unique qualities, which are actually bestowed by Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Krishna also says that “among the Pandavas, I am Arjuna. (Bg. 10.37)” So, does it mean that Arjuna is God? No. Arjuna was the most able warrior among the Pandavas. Therefore, Krishna says that “whatever unique qualities that you observe in anybody, know that they are emanating from Me.” This is stated at the end of the tenth chapter of the Bhagavad-Gita (10.41). The verse is as follows: Continue reading

FEEDING A PURE DEVOTEE OF KRISHNA IS THOUSAND TIMES GREATER THAN FEEDING ORDINARY BRAHMANAS


By Niraj Bidawatka

In the current fortnight, people, especially in India, are engaged in offering oblations to their forefathers as per the custom called “shrāddha.” It is a ceremony wherein one offers Vishnu prasāda, or sanctified foodstuffs to the forefathers (pitrs) through the brāhmanas. The Brāhmanas are considered the most intelligent class of men because they possess knowledge about God. Thus, through the aegis of such pure souls, the ancestors are fed.

The definition of a brāhmana is – “brahma jānāti iti brāhmana” – One who knows “brahma” (God), is called a brāhmana. But, now people are mostly inviting hereditary brāhmanas, who have no knowledge about God. No one cares to ensure whether the person, who is being invited, is a real brāhmana or not. People don’t care to test this essential ingredient of being a brahmana – whether he possesses knowledge about God or not.

Simply taking birth in the family of a brāhmana does not ensure that one is brāhmana. He should be trained up as a brāhmana. On the other hand, even if one is born in a family of dog-eaters, but still undergoes proper training about the science of God and thus attains and realizes genuine knowledge of God, then such a person is considered to be a true brāhmana. Simply taking birth in a lawyer’s family, does not make one a lawyer. He has to undergo proper training and only then will he be recognized as a lawyer. Similarly taking birth in a brahmin’s family does not make one a brahmin. He has to undergo proper training as a brahmin, says Prabhupada.

na me ‘bhaktaś catur-vedī mad-bhaktah śva-pacah priyah

tasmai deyam tato grāhyam sa ca pūjyo yathā hy aham

Lord Krishna says, “Even if a nondevotee comes from a brāhmaṇa family and is expert in studying the Vedas, he is not very dear to Me, whereas even if a sincere devotee comes from a low family of meat-eaters, he is very dear to Me. Such a sincere pure devotee should be given charity, for he is as worshipable as I.”

[Quoted from Srila Prabhupada’s Purport to CC Antya 3.222]

Srila Haridas Thakur, who was born in a Muslim meat-eater family, was a great devotee of Krishna. By dint of his exalted devotion, he was conferred the title of nāmāchārya by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Nāmāchārya means “the teacher of the Holy Name.” Continue reading

WHENEVER THERE IS NEW BRANCH OF OUR KRISHNA CONSCIOUSNESS SOCIETY, I BECOME VERY VERY HAPPY


Letters of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

 

Delhi

3 October, 1967

 

My Dear Nandarani, Krishna devi, Subala das, and Uddhava,

The Western World Headquarters of ISKCON at Los Angeles, California, USA

Please accept my blessings. I am very glad to know that you are now in Los Angeles & organizing the most important temple. I had great desire to have our center in L.A. & by grace of Krishna you have fulfilled my desire. I had another great desire to open a temple in London and hoped also that Kirtanananda after accepting sannyasa would do this job. For this purpose he was given an introductory letter to a London lady along with expenses. However out of his whim he did not go to London but went directly to New York. This is a terrible example and it has shocked me. Continue reading

Bhagavad Gita Tutorial: Chapter 2 verse 2 – The significance of the specific words “Bhagavan Uvaca”


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

śrī bhagavān uvāca

kutas tvā kaśmalam idam

visame samupasthitam

anārya-justam asvargyam

akīrti-karam arjuna

[Bg. 2.2]

Translation

“The Supreme Person, Bhagavān, said: My dear Arjuna, how have these impurities come upon you? They are not at all befitting a man who knows the progressive values of life. They do not lead to higher planets, but to infamy.”

So in this verse Vyāsadeva is writing. Of course, the speaking is through Sanjaya, but the original writer is Vyāsadeva. In other ślokas he writes “arjuna uvāca”, “sanjaya uvāca”, like that. Similarly, he could write here “krishna uvāca”. He could write. But, he’s writing bhagavān uvāca. So by this writing, it is established that Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Śrī-bhagavān uvāca. He cannot be equal with Arjuna or Sanjaya or anybody else. Asammaurdhva. Bhagavān, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is supreme. Nobody is equal to Him, nobody is higher than Him. Everyone is lower. That is the meaning of Bhagavān. Nobody can claim “I am Bhagavān.” But nowadays there are so many rascals, they are claiming that everyone is Bhagavān. So is Vyāsadeva mistaken?

Indra, the king of Heaven, worshiping Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead

Continue reading

That’s a fact – Nobody is interested in Krishna


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

manusyānām sahasresu kaścid yayati siddhaye

yatatām api siddhānām kaścid vetti mām tattvatah

 [Bg. 7.3]

To understand God, to understand Krishna, is not a very easy job; it is a very, very difficult job. Therefore we don’t find anyone interested in Krishna. Anywhere you go, all over the world, you make a statistical study: nobody is interested in Krishna. Is it not a fact? Out of millions.

Krishna drives the chariot of Arjuna in the war of Mahabharata

Krishna says, manusyānām sahasresu, “Out of millions…” That’s a fact. Nobody is interested in Krishna. Manusyānām sahasresu. So therefore, to understand Krishna is not very easy job. But by the grace of Krishna, you can understand Krishna. Krishna is explaining Himself. That is Krishna – Great. You take.

And again, Krishna is coming as Caitanya Mahaprabhu to show us the way how to understand Krishna. Caitanya Mahaprabhu means Krishna Himself, present to teach us how to understand Krishna. So Krishna is so kind: He is coming Himself. He’s teaching Bhagavad-gétā. Again He is coming as Caitanya Mahaprabhu, as devotee, to become a devotee of Krishna. Krishna-prema-pradāya te [Cc. Madhya 19.53]. He’s not only teaching Krishna but love of Krishna.

Krishna, when He personally came, He did not teach how to love Him. He simply asked, “You rascal, surrender to Me.” That’s all. “You are all rascals. You have Continue reading

KILLING THE COWS AND SPOILING THE LAND WILL NOT SOLVE THE PROBLEM OF FOOD


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

The most important word in these verses is mahā-gunam, indicating that the brāhmanas were offered very palatable food of exalted quality. Such palatable dishes were generally prepared with two things, namely food grains and milk products. Bhagavad-gIta (18.44) therefore enjoins that human society must give protection to the cows and encourage agriculture (krsi-go-raksya-vānijyam vaiśya-karma svabhāvajam). Simply by expert cooking, hundreds and thousands of palatable dishes can be prepared from agricultural produce and milk products. This is indicated here by the words annam mahā-gunam.

Prasadam of Lord Jagannatha at Puri Temple

Still today in India, from these two things, namely food grains and milk, hundreds and thousands of varieties of food are prepared, and then they are offered to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. (Catur-vidha-śrī-bhagavat-prasāda. patram puspam phalam toyam yo me bhaktyā prayacchati [Bg. 9.26].) Then the prasāda is distributed. Even today in Jagannātha-ksetra and other big temples, very palatable dishes are offered to the Deity, and prasāda is distributed profusely. Cooked by first-class brāhmanas with expert knowledge and then distributed to the public, this prasāda is also a blessing from the brāhmanas or Vaisnavas.

There are four kinds of prasāda (catur-vidha). Continue reading

ONE GETS LIBERATED WHEN ONE IS FREE FROM SENSE GRATIFICATION


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

If you come here and dance and chant or ring the bell or anything about the ārātrika, if you see  anything you do, that is your permanent credit. Therefore, for the common man, this chance is given. This temple is meant for that purpose – that people will come to see the Deity.

Srila Prabhupada offering “aratrika”, a ceremony for showing respect and veneration to the Supreme Lord  

The Deity is Krishna. Don’t think otherwise. Krishna has agreed to be dressed by you. If you think of Krishna, about His virāt-rūpa (universal form), you will fail to Continue reading

OFFERING NICE FOOD STUFFS TO KRISHNA IS FOR YOUR BENEFIT


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

You must have sense gratification, eating, sleeping, mating—but as far as you can maintain your body very nicely. Not that voluntarily you shall starve. No.

Just like these boys and girls, we are not starving. But our eating krsna-prasādam means just to live nicely for executing Krishna consciousness. We are not meant for going to the cinema or for other sense gratification purposes, but because we have got this body, there is no question that we shall stop eating.

Hare Krishna devotees honouring prasadam, food which is first offered to Krishna

We eat prasādam, krsna -prasādam, and that is very palatable. Krishna should be offered first class preparations because Krishna is the Supreme Lord. But if we don’t have money to supply Him nice things, then Krishna will be satisfied, as Krishna says, patram puspam phalam toyam yo me bhaktyā prayacchati. Krishna wants that you offer Him something with devotional love, that’s all.

Krishna is not hungry. Krishna is ātmārāma. He is self-sufficient. He does not require (anything from us). He is producing food for us. That’s a fact. We get so many fruits and flowers. We don’t manufacture it in the factory; neither it is possible. It is manufactured by Krishna. Raso ‘ham apsu kaunteya prabhāsmi śaśi-sūryayoh [Bg. 7.8]. By the action of His different energies these things are produced. For whom are these things are produced? “For Krishna?” No. “For us.” Continue reading

USE YOUR MONEY PROPERLY – Part II: DON’T BUILD A SKYSCRAPER, BUILD A TEMPLE INSTEAD


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

CLICK HERE TO READ THE FIRST PART 

That is Vedic civilization – if money comes, you don’t hate it. Welcome it. But it should be used properly. That is proper use. If you use your money properly, then you make your path parapavarga, clear. And if you misuse your money, then you become again entangled in the 8,400,000’s of species of life. Therefore, as recommended here: nārthasya dharmai-kāntasya. [This recommendation is for the] dharmaikāntasya – not for the irreligious demons, but for those, who are actually religious, dharmaikāntasya. Your money should not be free, should not be spent unnecessarily for sense gratification. Formerly, this was the civilization in India.

The Radha Madan-mohan Temple in Vrindavana. It was established 500 years ago by Srila Sanatana Goswa

We see so many big, big temples in South India, and in other places also, such as Vrindavana, but especially in South India. At the present moment, it is not possible to construct such huge, expensive temples. But actually, they were done by rich kings, rich mercantile people. That Madana-mohana temple (in Vrindavana) was constructed by a Sindhi merchant. He approached Sanātana Goswāmi, who was sitting underneath the tree, and his Madana-mohana was hanging in the tree. Continue reading