Thursday, October 19, 2006

Tapas Dasa from Norway living in Stockholm, Sweden, Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.9.47

"All the great sages then glorified Lord Sri Krishna, who was present there, by confidential Vedic hymns. Then all of them returned to their respective hermitages, bearing always Lord Krishna within their hearts."
Lord Caitanya can be pleased by one who is simply eager to accept His mercy. Lord Caitanya is freely giving His mercy, but even if something is given for free, one must still come forward to receive the gift.
Krishna is very kind to create this variegated world for us who have rejected His spiritual world. He also gives the Vedas and the sages to help the people get out of this miserable place. Normally to experience an intimate relationship with Krishna, one first as to surrender, but Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityananda would freely mix with everyone to inspire them in devotional service.
Kadamba Karana Swami used to make a yearly pilgrimage to India before becoming a devotee. He once met a Buddhist master and asked him some questions but he didn't answer, and Maharaja decided that it wasn't for him.
Students had to dress up as members of a certain religion for their religion class. Some of them dressed up as Hare Krishna devotees, to ridicule them and joined the harinama party. Later one of them went through a period of depression and came across a Hare Krishna book. At first, he didn't read it because he had ridiculed the devotees, but as his depression got worse, it read it, and ultimately joined the brahmacarya-asrama.
The maha-mantra is given in the Kali-santaranya Upanisad and the brahmanas' objected to Lord Caitanya's program of allowing the people in general to chant because they considered it was an Upanisadic mantra meant to be chanted by brahmanas. However, it is written there with the Hare Rama first, so Lord Caitanya chanted it in the reverse order, so the brahmanas couldn't complain about His teaching it to the masses.
Some Kali worshipers didn't like that Lord Nityananda's consort, Jahnava, was promoting Vishnu worship, so they decided to kill her and her followers. They armed themselves with weapons and ran toward Jahnava Mata's camp, but although they ran the whole night, they remained the same distance from the camp. They decided they failed because they did not worship Kali enough, so they performed more worship. That night Goddess Kali appeared to them in a dream and chastised them for offending Mother Jahnava who is her master and promised to kill them all if they did not surrender to Mother Jahnava and become her disciples, which they then did. This story shows how Goddess Kali sometimes directly promotes devotional service to Lord Vishnu in addition to fulfilling material desires and punishing rebellious souls.
His fifteen years on book distribution convinced him of the mercy of Lord Nityananda, and he recommends that those engaged in book distribution continue to be so as long as they can.
Srila Prabhupada says in Nectar of Instruction that if we remember three things we can always be enthusiastic in spiritual life:
1 we are conditioned souls
2 we are searching for material happiness in vain
3 through Krishna consciousness we can attain eternal happiness

We had a wonderful harinama today in downtown Kiev for an hour and a half or so. There were about ten male and ten female devotees. The venue was a street that was blocked off from traffic. We set down a piece of carpet right on the street and four and five men sat on it, including the singer who played the harmonium, two drummers, and karatala players. We had a microphone and sound system. The ladies danced nicely in patterns on the left side. The rest of the men danced on the right side. I danced with the men, until I became frustrated that their steps were sometimes so hard to follow it took my concentration away from the chanting. Then I decided to dance my own dance in the middle, behind the kirtana party. I also passed out invitations three times during the kirtana to onlookers, 70% of whom took the invitations, including one guy who told me he was from Chicago and was aware of our temple there.
I was amazed to see a crowd beginning to gather as the devotees were setting up, and by the time we were playing, until the end, we always had at least a hundred people in a semicircle in front of us watching. It was so nice to see so many people interested in watching and hearing the kirtana. We are hoping we can go out again tomorrow, after the Sunday feast.
Later a devotee told me four or five people came to the feast because of the harinama.

Niranjana Swami, evening class
Krishna displays His pastimes to show His external devotees like Brahma, etc., their reality.
When we hear of Krishna pastimes we are reminded there is a whole transcendental world beyond this one and an attachment for it gradually awakens within us.
In the spiritual world, sleeping is dreaming, and the dreams are about Krishna. And Krishna dreams of His devotees.
When Uddhava told Maharaja Nanda that is son is God, Nanda Maharaja argued with him, saying "God is self-satisfied, but Krishna steals butter. God is the Supreme Worshipable Deity, but Krishna carries my shoes on his head."
When Narada was looking for the devotee that had the most mercy from Krishna, each devotee he was recommended to see spoke convincingly that he actually had not attained Krishna's mercy, but he, in turn, convincingly recommended another devotee as the true recipient of Krishna's mercy.
Visvakarma created a replica of Vrindavana near Dvaraka called Nava Vrindavana where there were images of the residents of Vrindavana, such a Nanda and Yasoda, etc. Brahma brought Krishna there from Dvaraka when He was feeling separation from Vrindvana. Radharani was there in Nava Vrindavana, and when She did not move when Krishna spoke to Her, He figured that She was upset because She knew what He had been dreaming. Krishna had been dreaming that He was the husband of many wives in Dvaraka where He had been performing duties to please the demigods. He told Her it was only a dream, and went to play with the cowherd boys. When he was taken to the Yamuna, which turned out to be the limitless sea, He began to doubt if he really was in Vrindavana. At that point, Balarama reminded Him that His devotees were being unnecessarily harassed and that He should come to Dvaraka to protect them. As soon as He heard His devotees were in danger and needed protection He hurried back to Dvaraka.
Krishna told Narada that actually all the devotees, who he met during his search for the devotee who had received the most mercy, had received His mercy in the way they had desired it.
Narada asked Krishna for the benediction, "Let the nature of Your pastimes be such that anyone who hears them and understands them can enter into them." Krishna said, "So be it."

Quote from Best of Niranjana Swami, Lecture 8:
The goal of all of one's work for maintaining this body is to have a body to hear about Krishna.

Niranjana Swami gave me a task to put a book of his in digital form so he can read it during his travels without having to carry it around. I will see if a digital camera has enough resolution.