Sunday, March 18, 2018

Travel Journal#14.5: North Florida

Diary of a Traveling Sadhaka, Vol. 14, No. 5 
By Krishna-kripa das 
(March 2018, part one) 
North Florida 
(Sent from Gainesville, Florida, on March 18, 2017)

Where I Went and What I Did

March stated with Gaura Purnima, which I celebrated in Tallahassee because I could not convince my friends with vehicles to drive to Alachua for the evening part of the festival there. Satyaraj Govinda Prabhu kindly arranged a program at his house to celebrate, and many people attended. The feast was beyond my expections. I continued chanting Hare Krishna in Tallahassee through March 12, at Florida State University on school days and at Lake Ella on the weekends and on the first day of spring break. The rest of spring break I chanted at Krishna Lunch in Gainesville except for Thursday, when I chanted at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville for the last time this year. On Friday we did three harinamas in Gainesville, at Krishna Lunch, at the University of Florida entrance, and in downtown Gainesville.

I share many, many notes on books and lectures by Srila Prabhupada. I share notes on lectures by visiting sannyasis, Bhakti Charu Swami and Bhaktimarga Swami, and notes on a recorded Gaura Purnima lecture by Niranjana Swami. I share notes on lectures by Adikarta Prabhu, Madhava Prabhu of Alachua, Vrajendra Kumar Prabhu of Russia, Nandanandana Devi Dasi, and Tulasirani Devi Dasi. I share excerpts from a book on Vedic cosmology by Murali Gopal Prabhu. I share a comment from Nama Kirtan Prabhu.

Thanks to Kadamba Kanana Prabhu for the ride he gave me from Alachua to Jacksonville and back. Thanks to Mother Mukhya for letting me stay at the Alachua temple ashram. Thanks to Animesh Prabhu for lending me his phone to take videos of himself, Shruti Sagar and Abhimanyu Prabhus chanting Hare Krishna at Krishna Lunch in Gainesville. Thanks to Kira for singing with me at the University of North Florida.


March 19–March 23: Tallahassee (FSU)
March 23: Gainesville Krishna House Friday Night – Talk on Ratha-yatra
March 24: St. Augustine Ratha-yatra
March 25: Gainesville Krishna House
March 26–April 5: Tallahassee (FSU on weekdays, Lake Ella on weekends)
April 6: Tallahassee First Friday
April 7: Tallahassee Ratha-yatra
April 8: Gainesville Krishna House / Alachua Sunday Feast
April 9: Albany
April 10: Philadelphia
April 11–13: Washington, D.C.
April 14: New York City
April 15–19: Dublin
April 19–23: Newcastle
April 24: Edinburgh
April 25: London
April 26: Radhadesh
April 27: Amsterdam (King’s Day)
April 28: Radhadesh (Nrsimha Caturdasi)
April 29–May 1: Antwerp
May 2–3: Brussels
May 4: London
May 5–6: Birmingham 24-Hour Kirtan
May 7: Newcastle
May 8: Edinburgh
May 9: Edinburgh and Newcastle
May 10: Sheffield
May 11: Leeds
May 12: Manchester, Chester, or Liverpool
May 13: Manchester
May 14: London
May 15–July 22?: Paris
July 24–27: Vaishnava Summer Festival in Lithuania
July 28–30: Berlin Ratha-yatra and harinamas
July 31–August 4: Polish Woodstock
August 5: Berlin
August 6: Dublin
August 713: Vaishnava Sanga Festival in Canada
August 14–September 2: North UK
September 3–28: Mayapur
September 29: Newcastle
September 30: Dublin
October 1–January 5, 2019: New York City Yuga Dharma Harinama Party

Chanting Hare Krishna at Lake Ella in Tallahassee

Bhaktin Aris chants Hare Krishna at Lake Ella, our weekend venue for sharing Krishna consciousness in Tallahassee (

This week, one friendly man named Donny, who talked to us and accepted cookies for himself and a friend, actually came to the temple for the Sunday feast program that very afternoon along with his friend, Debra. He recalled the Hare Krishnas from when he lived in Gainesville and was happy to encounter Krishna prasadam again. That was the second week in a row that someone came to the Sunday feast from Lake Ella.

The next Saturday while Bhakta Daniel was leading the Hare Krishna chant at Lake Ella in Tallahassee, a variety of kids of a variety of races delighted in playing a variety of instruments (

Satyaraj Govinda Prabhu chants Hare Krishna (

The wife of Satyaraj Govinda Prabhu chants Hare Krishna (

Chanting at Krishna Lunch at Florida State University in Tallahassee

I decided I would chant during the Krishna Lunch at FSU one day a week and chant elsewhere on the campus to advertise it the other four. Because the devotees serve lunch indoors, the best day to chant there is when the weather is bad and it is not practical to chant outside. When I checked the weather on Sunday, all the days were expected to be free of rain, but because the student activities organization got three complaints about us the previous week, I decided to chant at Krishna Lunch on Monday and let the situation cool down.

We had some leftover garlands from the Sunday feast program and the Krishna Lunch serve out was coming to an end. I asked one girl who was waiting in line for lunch if she liked flowers, and she said she liked flowers very much, and in fact, her middle name was Rose. I asked Nama Kirtan Prabhu to give her a garland, and he gave her the garland worn by Sri Sri Gaura Nitai, which was big enough to wear around her neck, and she immediately put it on. 

She was a senior from the Miami area, and to continue her relationship with Krishna prasadam after graduation, I told her we had a temple there with a free Krishna dinner on Sundays. I searched through the dozens of invitation cards in my money belt, and found the one for Miami and she took a picture of it.

That day one lady thanked me for chanting, saying that she was stressed out and that it made her feel a lot better.

The next day, as it turned out, rain was now predicted, so I chanted indoors at Krishna Lunch again. Nama Kirtan introduced me to a lady from Germany, who is teaching German at FSU for the semester. I told her I had been to Germany several times, to Berlin, Cologne, Munich, and Leipzig, and I mentioned our farms near Trier and Passau. She was from near Heidelberg. I recalled being surprised to see an invitation to the Heidelberg temple when I was searching for the Miami one the previous day, so I found it for her, and she happily took a picture of it.

That day one older man, perhaps in his seventies, told me after his Krishna Lunch that he liked my chanting and said that it added authenticity to the program.

Chanting Near the Student Union at Florida State University in Tallahassee

Back on the campus at the free speech area on Wednesday, a sweet philosophy major who had previously received a Bhagavad-gita from “one of the monks” stopped to talk. He appreciated different parts of the philosophy such as reincarnation, and he gave his email, a five dollar donation, and said he would definitely come to our programs next time he does not have to work. I sent him an email offering him a book to read during the break, and he replied, “Thank you for reaching out to me. Unfortunately I left for home for spring break yesterday and did not see your email until now. I am always happy to donate, the calmness I feel from your chanting and discussion is well worth it even when there is not a new book to add to my collection. Also, that was the best cookie I have ever had (and I have tasted other monks recipes as well over the past semesters). It is always a pleasure to get to talk with you, I will stop by every time. Have a fulfilling week and safe travels, I will see you again once the break is over.”

The day before spring break Nama Kirtan Prabhu did not do Krishna Lunch as there would be too few students, and so I had his servers, Bhakta Daniel and Bhaktin Aris, to sing with me.

Here Bhaktin Aris chants two Hare Krishna tunes near the Florida State University Student Union (

Here I chanted while Aris played drum (

Chanting Hare Krishna at the Second Tallahassee Wednesday Two-Hour Kirtan

I was so happy that at our second ever Wednesday evening two-hour kirtan, we had nine devotees who participated at least for some of the time, and much of the time we had seven chanting at once.

Shastra Krit Prabhu invited to the temple a sweet boy named Jack who is a music major from Tallahassee Community College, and he came for the whole time, greatly enjoying it.

Here Shastra Krit Prabhu chants Hare Krishna, and devotees dance (

Bhaktin Aris chants Hare Krishna (

Krishna-kripa Das chants Hare Krishna (

Hearing the enthusiasm in Bhakta Daniel’s spontaneous Hare Krishna kirtan the next evening, I came over from the apartment next to the Tallahassee temple to join in (

Chanting Hare Krishna at Krishna House

Abhimanyu Prabhu chants Hare Krishna at the Gainesville Krishna House outreach program called Taco Tuesdays (

Adikarta Prabhu chants Hare Krishna at the Krishna House Friday evening program in Gainesville (

Chanting Hare Krishna at Krishna Lunch in Gainesville

Shruti Sagar Prabhu chants Hare Krishna at Krishna Lunch at the University of Florida in Gainesville (

Shruti Sagar Prabhu chants Hare Krishna, and an African man dances with pleasure to the sound (

Animesh Prabhu chants Hare Krishna (

Abhimanyu Prabhu chants Hare Krishna (

Here Lucy, one of the new devotees at Krishna House who is very musical and who loves kirtan, sings at Krishna Lunch, as she does almost every day (

Chanting Hare Krishna at University of North Florida in Jacksonville

Kira chants Hare Krishna on the University of North Florida green in Jacksonville, and Marissa, who had met Adikarta Prabhu a couple times and got books from him, learns the mantra and chants with us for half an hour. Afterward I told Marissa that the Beatles once chanted Hare Krishna on a boat for six hours. She replied, “I can see that you could chant this for six hours. I felt I was floating!” (

Turns out the next day, Marissa came to the Krishna House Friday program in Gainesville with her best friend from her hometown, who lives near Krishna House and is a regular attendee. She had a great time chanting with the devotees again and even attended the harinama afterward.

Chanting Hare Krishna in Alachua

To catch a ride to and from Jacksonville with Kadamba Kanana Prabhu to chant at a campus there, I stayed in Alachua where he lives. Thus I got to go to the morning program at New Raman Reti for two days. The first day I played the drum for Adikarta Prabhu’s kirtan for guru-puja, so I could not film it, but the next day I filmed Bhaktin Christiana chanting Hare Krishna and devotees dancing (

Chanting Hare Krishna at the University of Florida Entrance in Gainesville

Here Rishimurti Prabhu, an Alachua pujari, chants Hare Krishna at University of Florida entrance during the weekly Friday evening harinama organized by Alachua devotees (

Nagaraja Prabhu chants Hare Krishna (

Kaliyaphani Prabhu chants Hare Krishna (

Adikarta Prabhu chants Hare Krishna (

Jai Nitai Prabhu chants Hare Krishna (

Chanting Hare Krishna in Downtown Gainesville

After an ecstatic Friday evening program, sixteen devotees mostly from Krishna House went on harinama in downtown Gainesville for over an hour. Four people who had never chanted with us in public joined us.

One was Marissa (front right), who had chanted with Kira and me at University of North Florida in Jacksonville the day before. It was impressive to see her joy and enthusiam for dancing in kirtan.

Another was Jeff (with the blue shirt and yellow fan), who often attends the Taco Tuesdays.

Then there was Caroline (with the blue fan), who comes to the Krishna House programs and who went to the Alachua temple on Gaura Purnima.

The other (in the red shirt) works with a devotee, Bhakta Bill, who has been attending programs in Gainesville and Alachua and who invited him to come to Krishna House for the Friday program.

Here Shruti Sagar Prabhu chants Hare Krishna in downtown Gainesville on the Krishna House Friday evening harinama, and several people dance (

Here Abhimanyu Prabhu chants Hare Krishna, and several people move with music (https://youtu.bhe/pwga5XdBqdU):

Finally Animesh Prabhu chants Hare Krishna, and several people dance (


Srila Prabhupada:

From a lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.15.41 in Los Angeles on December 19, 1973:

So actually, if you are serious to know God, so God is within yourself. He can understand, “Now this living entity is serious to know about Me.” So He will help you, immediately. That is stated in Bhagavad-gita, tesam satata-yuktanam bhajatam priti-purvakam dadami buddhi-yogam tam yena mam upayanti te [Bg. 10.10] Tesam, “such persons,” satata-yuktanam, “always very much anxious to know about God.” So God can understand. God is omnipotent. He can understand that “This living entity is now serious. He wants to hear about God.

“So this inquisitiveness is very good. My Guru Maharaja accepted me as a disciple because he saw in the beginning I was very inquisitive to hear him. So in the beginning, when many gentleman. . . . I was one of them, was introduced to my Guru Maharaja, that ‘They are to be initiated. They want to be initiated, to become your disciple.’ So when my turn came, he immediately said, ‘Yes, I will accept this boy as disciple because he is very inquisitive to hear.’ That was my recommendation. And actually, I was very inquisitive. I could not follow what Guru Maharaja was speaking, but still, I was asking others, that ‘When Guru Maharaja will speak? I will hear.’ I could not follow. He was speaking in a very high philosophical term. So at that time I had no capacity to under . . . Still, I wanted to hear him, I understand or not understand.”

From a class on Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.15.42 in Los Angeles on December 20, 1973:

A kripana has money but does not spend it. A brahmana has knowledge and distributes it.

We can know God because God speaks about Himself in Bhagavad-gita.

One should learn what is God and teach others to trust in God. If you do not know the meaning of God, what is the meaning of your trust?

The soul is permanent. That is where there is a conservation of energy.

“Just like a rich man, if his son goes out of home, he is suffering. His father knows that rascal boy is suffering. He is very anxious to get him back. ‘Bring this rascal at home.’ That is father’s concern, naturally. Similarly, Krishna is more eager to take you back. Therefore He comes. He comes. He has got his agent, the guru. He has got His instruction, the Bhagavad-gita. The whole concern is that God is so anxious, Krishna is anxious, to call back these rascals, back to home, back to Godhead. So sometimes He is so eager that He comes Himself. Just like I have sent some my agent to do something. I am seeing that it is being delayed, so I go there: ‘What you are doing? Why it is so delayed?’”

“As Yudhisthira Maharaja . . . now he is closing the business. The business is that ‘I am creating this body.’ Just like a businessman opens a business house. Sometimes when the business is simply troublesome, he liquidates. Similarly, we should come into the understanding that our material business is always troublesome.”

“In Paris I saw some statue of Napoleon. There is written, ‘Napoleon is France; France is Napoleon.’ But I inquired that ‘Where is Mr. Napoleon? The France is there, but where is Napoleon?’ Just see. This is called ignorance, maya. When Napoleon was very victorious, he might think that ‘I am making my France very strong, very powerful,’ but that’s all right. But you are not powerful. You have to go away. By one kick of nature, go away. That they do not see. This is called ignorance.”

From The Nectar of Devotion, Chapter 24:

“Any person who is reliable in all circumstances is called dependable. In this connection Rupa Gosvami says that even the demons were relying upon the dependability of Krishna, because they were confident that Krishna would never attack them without due cause. Therefore, with faith and confidence, they used to live with their doors wide open. And the demigods, although afraid of the demons, were confident of the protection of Krishna. Therefore, even in the midst of danger they were engaged in sportive activities. Persons who had never undergone the reformatory ritualistic ceremonies of the Vedas were confident that Krishna would accept only faith and devotion, and so they were engaged in Krishna consciousness and were freed from all anxieties. In other words, all kinds of men, from the demigods down to the uncultured, can rely on the causeless mercy of the Supreme Lord.”

From The Nectar of Devotion, Chapter 25:

“Anyone who becomes exhilarated by hearing of the pastimes of Lord Krishna when He was present on this earth with His associates is to be understood as nitya-siddha, eternally perfect.”

From Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.5.15–16, purport:

“The ultimate goal of life is to please Lord Vishnu, the Supreme Lord. The uncivilized man or materialistic person, however, does not know this aim of life. Na te viduh svartha-gatim hi vishnum (Bhag. 7.5.31). One’s real self-interest lies in satisfying Lord Vishnu. Not satisfying Lord Vishnu but instead attempting to become happy through material adjustments (bahir-artha-maninah) is the wrong way for happiness. Because Vishnu is the root of everything, if Vishnu is pleased, everyone is pleased; in particular, one’s children and family members become happy in all respects.”

From Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.5.20, purport:

“Vasudeva and Nanda Maharaja were so intimately connected that they lived like brothers. Furthermore, it is learned from the notes of Sripada Madhvacarya that Vasudeva and Nanda Maharaja were stepbrothers. Vasudeva’s father, Surasena, married a vaisya girl, and from her Nanda Maharaja was born. Later, Nanda Maharaja himself married a vaisya girl, Yashoda. Therefore his family is celebrated as a vaisya family, and Krishna, identifying Himself as their son, took charge of vaisya activities (krishi-go-rakshya-vanijyam). Balarama represents plowing the land for agriculture and therefore always carries in His hand a plow, whereas Krishna tends cows and therefore carries a flute in His hand. Thus the two brothers represent krishi-rakshya and go-rakshya.

From Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.5.25:

[Vasudeva says to Nanda Maharaja:] “Many planks and sticks, unable to stay together, are carried away by the force of a river’s waves. Similarly, although we are intimately related with friends and family members, we are unable to stay together because of our varied past deeds and the waves of time.”

From Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.6.3, purport:

“Even from a material point of view, everyone should take to chanting the Hare Krishna mantra to be saved from all kinds of danger. This world is full of danger (padam padam yad vipadam). Therefore we should be encouraged to chant the Hare Krishna maha-mantra so that in our family, society, neighborhood and nation, everything will be smooth and free from danger.”

From Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.6.27–29:

“If one remembers Vishnu always, even though one is disturbed by many bad elements, one can be protected without a doubt. The Ayurveda-sastra recommends, aushadhi cintayet vishnum: even while taking medicine, one should remember Vishnu, because the medicine is not all and all and Lord Vishnu is the real protector. The material world is full of danger (padam padam yad vipadam). Therefore one must become a Vaishnava and think of Vishnu constantly. This is made easier by the chanting of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. Therefore Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has recommended, kirtaniyah sada harih param vijayate sri-krishna-sankirtanam, and kirtanad eva krishnasya mukta-sangah param vrajet.”

From The Nectar of Devotion, Chapter 30:

“Even if devotees are illusioned by some ghastly scene or by any accidental occurrence, they never forget Krishna. Even in the greatest danger they can remember Krishna. This is the benefit of Krishna consciousness: even at the time of death, when all the functions of the body become dislocated, the devotee can remember Krishna in his innermost consciousness, and this saves him from falling down into material existence. In this way Krishna consciousness immediately takes one from the material platform to the spiritual world.”

“In the Tenth Canto, Sixtieth Chapter, verse 39, of Srimad-Bhagavatam, there is an account of Rukminidevi’s writing a letter to Krishna requesting Him to kidnap her before her marriage to another person. At that time the specific attachment of Rukmini for Krishna was expressed by Rukmini as follows: ‘My dear Lord Krishna, Your transcendental glories are chanted by great sages who are free from material contamination, and in exchange for such glorification You are so kind that You freely distribute Yourself to such devotees. As one can elevate oneself simply by Your grace, so also by Your direction alone one may be lost to all benedictions, under the influence of eternal time. Therefore I have selected Your Lordship as my husband, brushing aside personalities like Brahma and Indra—not to mention others.’ Rukmini enhanced her love for Krishna simply by thinking of Him. This is an instance of thoughtfulness in ecstatic love.”

From Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.7.1–2, purport:

“We have no attraction for hearing about Krishna, and this is the root cause of our suffering.”

From Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.7.4, purport:

“There is no question of overpopulation or of children’s being a burden for their parents in a Vedic society. Such a society is so well organized and people are so advanced in spiritual consciousness that childbirth is never regarded as a burden or a botheration.”

From Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.7.9, purport:

“Those who enjoy the activities of Krishna are also on the platform of ananda-cinmaya-rasa; they are liberated from the material platform. When one develops the practice of hearing krishna-katha, he is certainly transcendental to material existence, as confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (sa gunan samatityaitan brahma-bhuyaya kalpate). Unless one is on the spiritual platform, one cannot enjoy the transcendental activities of Krishna; or in other words, whoever engages in hearing the transcendental activities of Krishna is not on the material platform, but on the transcendental, spiritual platform.”

Bhakti Charu Swami:

Knowledge of the body and soul enables us to transcend matter.

Matter is dead. The presence of the soul makes the body appear alive. When the soul leaves the body it is dead. The body is born and dies, but the soul has no birth or death.

The body is always changing, but although the body is always changing we do not change.

Thus the question, is who are we, who does not change. We are the soul.

The soul is immortal, and because I am the soul, I am immortal. Thus we can achieve immortality very easily.

The pharmaceutical industry is trying to keep the body from dying, but that is not possible. We can attain immortality by understanding this knowledge that we are spiritual souls.

Even Brahma was born into ignorance, what to speak of everyone else.

The Vedic knowledge is the most profound spiritual knowledge.

People have difficulty understanding that animals have souls. It took me half an hour to convince one judge, the grandfather of a devotee in South Africa.

If we are spiritual, how have we forgotten our spiritual nature? We are like sparks that have left the fire, have fallen into ash, and have become ash. By losing our connection with the Supreme Lord, we fall into matter, and we identify with that matter. To regain the firey quality, we have to reenter the fire. Similarly by reviving our relationship with the Supreme Lord, we regain our spiritual nature. The spark cannot go back to the fire itself, but someone has to put the spark back in the fire. Similarly we need someone already in contact with the Supreme Lord to bring us back to His service.

If you have not read the account of Srila Prabhupada’s life, I request you to do so. We all tend to worship a hero. Srila Prabhupada at the age of seventy came to the west alone, with practically no money and no resources, and within ten years time spread this movement all over the world. Would you go to a country with no money and without knowing anyone? And on top of that start a multi-national corporation in ten years?

Once Srila Prabhupada told me he was richest man in the world. His reasoning was that he had 10,000 followers who work for him without salary and give him all the money.

Who wants to be immortal? Let me put that in another way. Who wants to die?

You are immortal. You simply have to realize your identity.

Love is the impetus to develop a relationship.

Love unites. Hatred separates.

I happen to know you have an abundance of love in your heart, and you just have to offer it to Krishna.

Is it difficult for us to love someone? No. Especially not, if the person loves us so much.

Krishna has given us the apple tree, with wonderful apples, and these apples contain seeds to produce more apple trees with more fruit.

Our bodies breathe in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide, and thus after some time the atmosphere would be filled with carbon dioxide and devoid of oxygen. But this does not happen because Krishna made plants which take in carbon dioxide and give out oxygen.

We can understand that Krishna loves us by all the arrangements he has made for our survival.

If we love someone, but they do not love us, how does it make us feel? Sad.
Krishna loves us, but we do not love Krishna. How does that make Krishna feel? Sad. But if we love Krishna. How will that make Krishna feel? Happy.
We can show Krishna we love Him, but simply saying, “I love you, Krishna.” But better than that is to follow Krishna’s recommendation to chant Hare Krishna Hare Krishna . . .

Because we are doing so many things with this body, we should do them for Krishna to spiritualize them.

When we are awake the soul, the subtle body, and the body are awake, but when we are asleep the soul and the subtle body are awake, but the body is asleep.

Sometimes we say someone is just like angel, while we may say someone else is just like an animal. We say that because of their activities which are created by the subtle body, and thus the condition of the subtle body determines our next destination.

We never leave the subtle body, but our mind, intelligence, and ego become transformed into spirit by being engaged in Krishna’s service.

Bhaktimarga Swami:

You cannot have a good drama without conflict, and thus in the pastimes of the Lord you also find conflict.

Even brahmanas and rabbis love to argue, and if they are fortunate, they will come to the conclusion that they should do some service.

Sacrifice for Krishna frees us from karmic bondage and gives us knowledge that everything is within the Lord.

I hear people grumbling about the political situation in America, but we have to see it as Krishna’s will. In the 1960s people were grumbling about the political situation, and some them, the youthful flowers of their nation, as a consequence, took shelter of Srila Prabhupada and that was a very good thing.

With the Battle of Kurukshetra, the evil was flushed out.

Bad things will come to an end.

Restlessness is the nature of the mind.

When novelty of the chanting wears off, the mind begins its activities. One revelation from the chanting is that we realize how completely crazy our minds are.

How can we control the mind? How can we fix it on our chanting? That was asked in the 1960s, and that is asked today. When we see the uselessness of the mind’s contemplations, we can stop listening to it.

We survive the challenges of life by taking shelter of the Personality of Godhead.

This age of Kali has this good feature. It is easy to think “the world is so disgusting I am not going to submit to it.” Beyond it is Krishna, so let me do as He wishes. Surrender to the body and mind is not working out.

Submit to Krishna’s will and not your own stupid will.

A good thing about competition is that you do not always win, and so you learn to become to humble. Yay!

The kirtan was always Srila Prabhupada’s formula. At John Lennon’s estate when the hired hand wanted a solution for his ghost problem, Srila Prabhupada sent the devotees to do kirtan at his place, and things quieted down.

How do you deal with passion? Pick up a drum, and chant loudly.

If there is a little conflict, do not worry about it too much and go on chanting.

Krishna is always there in our lives through His representatives. The worst thing is to do spiritual life on your own. Most of us cannot detect the indications of caitya-guru, the Lord of the heart, from within.

Sometimes the elderly people are seen to have no value, but their great value is in their wisdom.

The traumas of Kali-yuga are to shake us up so we take action.

Arjuna wanted to leave the battlefied and just be, but Krishna wanted him to take action.

If you have a heart you will do something. If you do not have a heart, you will not do anything. That is the mode of ignorance.

Niranjana Swami:

From a lecture on Gaura Purnima 2012 in Bali:

Whenever Krishna comes, He comes to teach.

In Bg. 18.66 Krishna advises to surrender to Him, and how to surrender is explained in the previous verse Bg. 18.65.

Krishna taught theoretically that one must surrender to Him, but He came as Lord Caitanya to demonstrate that surrender practically by His example. Especially in this age of Kali, example is very important.

In fact, to teach devotional service, one must practice it. All the acaryas in our line taught in that way.

Although Krishna is omniscient, Krishna wanted to know, “What is it in Me that causes My devotee, Radharani, to experience more joy than I do by serving Me?”

Lord Caitanya gives the holy name without discrimination. Our only qualification to receive Lord Caitanya’s mercy is to be fallen, or rather, to realize our fallen condition.

Without sincere devotional service, everything else is a show.

We should not think we are so qualified. What attracts Krishna, what attracts Lord Caitanya, is genuine humility.

Lord Caitanya teaches detachment by making the taste of bhakti so accessible that one can easily give up other things.

Adikarta Prabhu:

All the ancient cultures used to worship the sun, the Greeks, the Romans, etc.

Scientists are now thinking levitation was used in assembling the pyramids because otherwise moving the stones would not be possible.

It is amazing that although there are unlimited living entities, Krishna has a personal relationship with each.

An ordinary person, like Elvis Presley, is so popular that people all over world offer cakes to him on his birthday. How much more popular is Krishna, and how much more lovable!

You have to make your own decision to love someone. You cannot be forced to love someone.

We come here to try to become happy without Krishna, but Krishna is so kind He comes here to teach us the real platform of happiness.

Although the Lord is in the heart as caitya-guru, but because we do not listen to Him very well, we need other gurus.

Sometimes people claim that God told them to go around killing people, but that is not God. That is their minds. We have to learn to discriminate between the Lord in the heart and our mind on order to progress spiritually.

If you have knowledge, you can be happy and joke when you are old and leaving your body, but not otherwise.

In modern society old people tend to be considered a burden because their bodies are wasted by a life of sense enjoyment, but previously older people were valued because of the knowledge they acquired throughout their lives.

Madhava Prabhu from Alachua:

Although the title of Canto 1, Chapter 14 is “The Disappearance of Lord Krishna” the actual disappearance of Lord Krishna is not described. What is described is the effect of His disappearance on others.

Comment by someone: It is important that we have feelings for Krishna for then we can be completely absorbed in Him.

We have feelings for Krishna, it will be more real for us.

If we have no feeling of separation from Krishna there will be no impetus for going to Krishna.

As Arjuna saw Krishna in everything he did, we can learn how to see Krishna in everything we do.

In Brhad-Bhagavatamrita, it is said Arjuna and the Pandavas thought of performing a sacrifice or wishing for a calamity to gain Krishna’s association when He was in Dvaraka and absent from Hastinapura.

To establish righteousness, Krishna needed righteous leadership, and Arjuna and the Pandavas played that role.

Krishna says in Bhagavad-gita that He is ability in man, and here Arjuna remembers the abilities that Krishna had given him.

Krishna wanted to glorify Bhima’s strength, and so He arranged that Bhima kill the powerful Jarasandha.

Yudhisthira was worried about not being able to properly serve the brahmanas, and they advised him to perform a sacrifice to Surya who would help him. He did so, and Surya gave him a pot that would supply food unlimitedly until Draupadi had eaten.

Each of the demigods has their own personal weapon.

I went home to see my parents on New Years Day. My brother was still intoxicated from New Years Eve, and my parents were at church. I saw in their mail correspondence with deprogrammers, and so I got out of there fast. At the next Sunday feast, devotees saw suspicious looking men in the crowd. I was on the third floor of the temple and had to pass through the first floor, where they were, in order to leave. Niranjana Swami, then a brahmacari, dressed as the best of grhasthas, and I dressed as his good wife, borrowing a sari from one of the ladies, and we escaped unsuspected. Then I went to Puerto Rico, where I stayed for four years after that.

The world maya, or illusion, does not mean this world is not here, but our identifying with it is an illusion, thinking “I am a man,” “I am a woman,” “I am an American,” etc.

Vrajendra Kumar Prabhu [visiting Alachua from Russia]:

When Srila Prabhupada said that in ideal household life, the couple has sex once a month for the begetting of child, one of his young disciples said, “Better to forget the whole thing.” Everyone once laughed, but Srila Prabhupada accepted that point, taking it seriously.

Ayurveda says that if a man discharges semen more than one a month, he destroys his health. The immune system becomes weak, and one becomes more susceptible to disease, and his body becomes weaker.

We are meant to decrease our attachment to our body and increase our attachment to Krishna. Thus unnecessary sex life is not conducive to spiritual development.

In the mode of passion sex life is a necessity, but in the mode of goodness sex life can be controlled.

In Bg. 9.14, Krishna first says “satatam kirtanayanto mam – always chanting My glories,” then he says “yatantas ca drdha-vrata – endeavoring to execute vows steadily.” This indicates that from the chanting one gets the power to become steady in one’s vows.

The Gaudiya Math devotees in the 1930s tried to engage Western people in following principles of detachment before they introduced the chanting, but they were largely unsuccessful. Srila Prabhupada engaged people in chanting Hare Krishna first, and thus they got the strength to follow the principles, and so he was successful.

Truthfulness is more important, because if we maintain it, then all the other principles
can become reintroduced if they become lost.

There are ten ways we can become associated in the modes [these are listed in the Srimad-Bhagavatam, somewhere in the beginning of the Eleventh Canto]:
(1) food and drink
(2) our place of residence
(3) time
(4) our occupation
(5) our association
(6) literature
(7) mantras
(8) ceremonies
(9) meditation
(10) birth

If we do not get up early in the morning when goodness is prominent, we will miss this goodness in our life.

In one lecture Srila Prabhupada explained sato-vrtte [Upadesamrita 3] as meaning our means of livelihood must be clean.

On many holidays, we are glorifying an ordinary man and not the Supreme Lord. That is not in the mode of goodness.

We purify our birth by accepting a spiritual master.

Comment by Prana Govinda Prabhu: Prabhupada was upset that one devotee had gone to a prostitute. The devotee confessed, and explained he could not follow the principle of having sex with his wife just once a month for having a child. Srila Prabhupada told him if he could not follow, it was still better to have sex with his wife rather than to see a prostitute.

Nandanadana Devi Dasi:

Thoughts on war:

Krishna House student 1: War stems from the individual consciousness.
Krishna House student 2: It is evidence of the polluted consciousness of the people.
Me: I can see there has to be a class of powerful righteous people to protect innocent people from the class of powerful unrighteous people.

Hitler had a propaganda minister to convince the German people that Jews were evil.

Comment by Richie: Often we fight to protect our resources and not to protect our people.

Comment by Seth: If America only got involved in war if someone directly attacked America, there would be a lot less war.

Comment by Murali Gopal Prabhu: Sometimes people use war to build economies, but Switzerland has a position of neutrality and their economy is doing really well.

How can you be greedy and teach people spiritual life?

Even in Japanese culture, in a war, at the end of the day the opponents would sit and have tea together.

If I know that a powerful personality will protect me if others attack me, that is a more desirable situation for me than a situation where such protection is not there.

Krishna describes in Bhagavad-gita that there are three forces of nature, goodness, passion, and ignorance, and those in ignorance and passion always make bad decisions, and thus although we wish everyone could be nice and pursue the spiritual, that is never the case.

Nama Kirtan Prabhu:

Comment during Gaura Purnima festival:

When I was becoming a new devotee, the philosophy seemed lofty, and I thought it was too much for me. Hearing the pastime of Jagai and Madhai [the two drunken criminals who were delivered by Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityananda] gave me hope.

Tulasirani Devi Dasi:

What do we wear tilaka?
To remind ourselves we are devotees of Krishna and to remind others we are devotees of Krishna.

When answering the question “Why do we wear tilaka?” we can inject some of the philosophy of Krishna consciousness into our answer such are our being souls and our being servants of the Lord.

Tulasi is a pure devotee of the Lord who gives bhakti, and thus her presence on our neck beads is a great blessing.

Peaceful and ecstatic seem like opposing qualities but both are present in a devotee.

Being responsible is an important quality for devotees to develop, as are integrity and good character.

In the course of time, people appreciate other people sticking to their values, even if at first they do not appreciate those values themselves.

Radhanath Swami said that if a person, after speaking with a devotee, thinks “that person was so kind,” then their path back to Godhead is set.

Murali Gopal Prabhu:

From his cosmology book, soon to be published by the North European BBT:

Nobel Prize-winning Austrian physicist, Erwin Schrödinger, writes in his book Mind and Matter (1956): “Consciousness cannot be accounted for in physical terms. For consciousness is absolutely fundamental. It cannot be accounted for in terms of anything else.”

“There are many enigmas when trying match science with the ancient Indian scriptures, but given my own personal realizations, which I have gained through years of practice and study, as well as the affirmation from great saints and scientists throughout history, it is clear to me that there is an overlapping truth in both of these world views that is waiting there for us to tap into. A truth that is personal and that must be approached with the simple and eager heart of a child in wonder, without arrogance or desire to control. A truth that encompasses the full range of experiences that make up our embodied reality, not just the physical. This, to me, is the real grand unified theory of everything.”


This verse is one of my favorites in all the books of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. It informs us that love of God, the supreme goal of life, already exists in our hearts, and it tells that process by which our hearts can be cleansed so that we might attain it. The Bible also promotes purification of the heart, “Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.” (Matthew 5:8) The purifying process given is universal, beyond sectarian dogma: devotional service to the Lord, beginning with hearing about Him.

nitya-siddha krishna-prema ‘sadhya’ kabhu naya
sravanadi-suddha-citte karaye udaya

“Pure love for Krishna is eternally established in the hearts of the living entities. It is not something to be gained from another source. When the heart is purified by hearing and chanting, this love naturally awakens.” (Sri Caitanya-caritamrita, Madhya 22.107)