Thursday, February 18, 2016

Travel Journal#12.1: New York City Harinam, Atlanta, and North Florida

Diary of a Traveling Sadhaka, Vol. 12, No. 1
By Krishna-kripa das
(January 2016, part one)
New York, Atlanta, North Florida
(Sent from University of South Florida, Tampa, on February 18, 2016)

The first four days of 2016, I continued chanting with the New York City Harinam party in the subway stations. The next day I chanted in Atlanta for almost two hours between my flight from LaGuardia and my Megabus to Gainesville. The next day I chanted at Krishna Lunch and with my Krishna House friends at the Farmers Market. The next two days I chanted at University of North Florida in Jacksonville, and I attended their Friday Krishna Club meeting. Then I went to Orlando at the request of Trivikrama Swami, who wanted me to keep the Hare Krishna presence on the University of Central Florida campus alive while he was in Eastern Europe for two weeks at the beginning of the spring semester. The first day in Orlando, a Saturday, I chanted in public for two hours with devotees in Winter Park. The following week I took a day off my daily UCF campus chanting to attend a meeting of Bhaktivedanta Institute devotees in Gainesville, and I chanted at Krishna Lunch in Gainesville instead. The next Saturday, three other Orlando devotees joined me chanting for two hours in front the Patel Brothers, a popular Indian store.

I share many insights from Srila Prabhupada’s books and lectures. I include a beautiful poem about the holy name by Bhaktivinoda Thakura called Sri Nama Mahatmya. I share an excerpt about the public chanting of the holy name from the daily journal of Satsvarupa Dasa Goswami. I include notes on interesting lectures by Amala Bhakti Swami. There are notes on a recorded lecture by Radhanath Swami. Many nice realizations from Madhava Prabhu from New Raman Reti, speaking in Gainesville and Deva Madhava Prabhu, who runs a Krishna House near Ann Arbor, speaking at the Harinam Ashram in New York City. I also include realizations from newer devotees in Gainesville and Jacksonville.


February 18–24: Gainesville area (and UNF and USF campuses)
February 25: New York City
February 26–28: Dublin, Ireland
March 1–3: Mumbai
March 5–10: Mayapur Kirtan Mela
March 12–21: Rishikesh Harinama
March 22–April 11: Vrindavan
April 13: Mumbai
April 14–: Dublin, Ireland
April 27: King’s Day, Amsterdam
April 28–29: Holland
April 30–May 1: Birmingham 24-hour kirtana
May 2–: The North of England and Scotland
July 12–16: Polish Woodstock
September 13–: New York City Harinam

New York City Harinam

As I mentioned in the previous journal we chanted in Bryant Park on New Years Eve. I forgot to include the above pictures Stella took of us there.

The Times Square subway station is one of the busiest in New York City, although perhaps the coldest of the ones we regularly perform in.

Not only did we chant there on New Years Eve, but on New Years Day as well (

Grand Central subway station is one of the warmer ones but the weather was so cold that even the subway station was too cold for me. 

Still Deva Madhava Prabhu chanted a very fired-up kirtana getting the devotees dancing (

Nihal was among the best dancers.

Chanting in Atlanta

After my direct flight from Laguardia in New York to Atlanta, I chanted for almost two hours across the street from the Megabus stop in Atlanta, the Civic Center stop on the MARTA train. It was sunny, but windy and in the 40s (between 5 and 10 degrees C). One guy who passed by, stopped and sat cross-legged in front of me and listened for 5 or 10 minutes. That does not happen every day!

Krishna House Evening Kirtana

Ever since I moved into the temple on 55th Street in Manhattan back in 1979, I have loved the evening kirtana. After serving Krishna all day, it is wonderful to come back to the temple, and sing and dance for Him in the evening. Every time I return to Gainesville’s Krishna House, the evening kirtana is more ecstatic, and that makes me so happy. You can see some of the excitement in this video (

Thanks to Vanna for her enthusiastic singing!

Farmers Market Harinama

Ecstatic Krishna House devotees chanted at the Gainesville Farmers Market the first Wednesday in January.

It was wonderful how many devotees came out.

One young couple donated some organic carrots, and accepted a Beyond Birth and Death book and my invitation to chant with us. They ended up chanting until we left an hour later, and their faces were smiling!

Audrey took this video you can see if you are her Facebook friend, or perhaps, mine:

All glories to the congregational chanting of the holy name!

University of North Florida

One day I chanted my last 12 rounds in a study carrel on the topmost of the quiet floors in the University of North Florida library, looking at this picture of Radha and Krishna, and meditating on how They are nondifferent from Their names and that the mantra awakens love for Them. It was one of my better japa sessions recently. Certainly a lot better than chanting on the New York City subway!

Youssef Benbrahim led a great kirtana at Krishna Club on Friday night, with Richie on the harmonium. Madison, playing the karatalas, Tyrell, playing the drum, and Marie, on Tyrell’s right all came for the first time, having met us singing on the green in the afternoon. They all stayed to the end and had a great time. Laura Jayne and Amrita Keli danced. I love University of North Florida Krishna Club. Thanks to Amrita Keli and Lovelesh Chawla for maintaining this ecstatic program! (

Winter Park Harinama in Orlando

I was happy to learn that the one day a month when the devotees do harinama, public congregational chanting of the holy name of the Lord, in Orlando, was the day I arrived. Unfortunately, most of the congregation lives away from the temple, so Dorian and I could not get a ride, and we had to ride the bus for almost two hours to get to Winter Park, the site of the harinama. Although we arrived twenty minutes late, still we were the second and third persons to arrive. I started singing the lead, and then Dorian. Later on Rasikananda Prabhu arrived, and also took a turn leading. He has lots of musical talent and some natural devotion from being raised in a Hare Krishna family. You can see a little of our joy in this video (

We had a small book table between the sidewalk and the park behind us.

Chanting at the University of Central Florida in Orlando

The University of Central Florida has the largest undergraduate enrollment of all the colleges in the United States (52,539 students). The Hare Krishna temple is just two miles from the campus, and they say a fifteen-minute walk from the college’s free shuttle bus.

When I was in Orlando I chanted there for three hours every day classes were in session. Often I had a book table in front of the student union. When I did not have that, I would chant in the free speech area behind the library with the books spread out on a cloth. 

I was so pleased that two devotees who are students joined me for some time almost every day, and they also helped set up the table and carry the books and instruments. 

They were Dorian (left), who I knew from when he attended the University of North Florida and later lived in Krishna House, and Naman (right), a Ph.D. in optics who is the president of our club on the UCF campus.  

Harinama at Patel Brothers in Orlando

I hoped to convince the leaders of the Winter Park harinama to come out again the next Saturday, but I was unsuccessful.

Sravan Ananda Prabhu saw my enthusiasm for more harinama, and he decided we could go to an Indian store named Patel Brothers and chant, collect donations and sell books. 

He came out, along with his wife, and Naman, and myself.

He was very happy we distributed some books and collected $60.

During the evening, a couple Indian girls delighted in playing the tambourine and even chanting while the rest of their families shopped. The manager of the store donated ingredients so I could make coconut burfi for the Orlando temple’s Sunday Feast.

To see pictures I took but did not include click on the link below:

Notes on a Bhaktivedanta Institute Meeting in Gainesville

Prishni Devi Dasi:

Janaki Ram Prabhu’s Hindu Theology and Biology elevates the Srimad-Bhagavatam to the level of the best literature that deals with the question of biology and religion.

Brahma Tirtha Prabhu:

A serious problem in our movement is that a lot of people know the philosophy but they do not know philosophy.

Janaki Ram Prabhu:

Pradyumna Prabhu is a real untapped resource in our movement having knowledge about practically everything.

Murli Gopala Prabhu:

In Quantum Mechanics the math works perfectly, but the interpretation runs into difficulties such as Schrödinger’s cat paradox.

When the system is observed and measurement is taken, only the one of the many possibilities happens, and the equations cannot tell you which one. Wigner and Von Neumann argue that the consciousness of observer is the cause of the collapse of the wave function and the selection of a single possibility. Multiple observers are hard to deal with in this interpretation.

Rasaraja Prabhu interprets it in different way. He made the point that we are not here so matter can become actualized. Matter is a conduit is for one to exchange information with others. He argues that there is a universal observer and multiple observers.

Comment by Sthita-muni Prabhu: Rasaraja got published in Philosophy of Science and that means that among those people his ideas were worth considering.



From a lecture on The Nectar of Devotion, in Vrindavan, on November 4, 1972:

Krodha, anger, is not good, but anger also can be utilized for Krishna’s service. Just like Hanuman, he became angry upon Ravana for the sake of Lord Ramacandra, and he set fire in the golden city of Ravana, Lanka. So that anger was utilized for Lord Ramacandra’s service. He never utilized anger for his personal sense gratification. In this way, everything can be dovetailed in the service of the Lord.”

“We can know also from the direction of the spiritual master how Krishna will be pleased.”

“You cannot avoid the miserable condition of this body. That is not possible. So we have to tolerate. There is no other excuse. But do not create another body. That is devotional service. . . . That is the aim of human life. . . . As soon as you get a material body, you are put into the miserable condition of material nature. So we should not create another body so that we shall be put into, under tribulation again. That is intelligence. So if we put ourself in the activities of devotional service, we save that risk. Not to create another body.”

From a lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam 3.26.47, January 22, 1975, in Bombay:

There is spiritual sound, and therefore, there is spiritual sky. There cannot be sound without sky.

This sky is temporary, but the spiritual sky is eternal.

Omkara and Hare Krishna are sound vibrations from the spiritual sky.

If you chant material sound more and more, you will feel is disgusted, but if you chant spiritual sound you will feel transcendental bliss.

How to transfer to the spiritual world, the eternal world, is our only business in our human life.

You can be immediately in touch with Krishna by vibrating Hare Krishna.

“If you want water, if you chant only ‘water, water, water, water,’ you will not get water, because it is material sound. The water substance is different from the word water. Therefore, simply by chanting ‘water, water,’ you cannot quench your thirst.”

“But in the spiritual world, the name and the person or the substance is the same. There is no difference. Krishna and Krishna’s name is the same. There is no difference. Therefore, those who are chanting ‘Krishna, Krishna, Krishna,’ they are becoming more and more engladdened, enthusiastic to chant.”

“By chanting Hare Krishna vibration, the sound, you gradually become cleansed.”

“As soon as you begin chanting Hare Krishna maha-mantra, you gradually become self-realized, aham brahmasmi, simply by chanting. Aham brahmasmi [I am spirit], you can understand.”

“So ceto-darpaṇa-marjanam (Sri Caitanya-caritamrita, Antya 20.12) means you’ll be freed from this ignorance that ‘I am something of this material world.’ This is wanted. So long we are not realized, self-realized, then we are no better than these cats and dogs, because they do not know that they are not the body.”

“If you are embarrassed with these four things, ahara-nidra-bhaya-maithunam ca [eating, sleeping, fearing and mating], then you are not making progress in spiritual life.”

“Some actress, some cinema artist, singing, and people are so fond of hearing that singing that the artist is paid fifteen thousand rupees for one song. There are many here in Bombay. So just see how much attraction we have got for the material sound vibration. Similarly, the same attachment, if we turn to hear about Hare Krishna maha-mantra, then we become liberated. The same sound. One is material; one is spiritual. So you practice to be attached by this spiritual sound vibration, then your life will be successful.”

“So this Krishna consciousness movement is meant for this purpose, that you have already attachment for sound. Now just transfer this attachment for spiritual sound. Then your life will be successful.”

“Don’t be very much happy when you are in [a] happy condition of life; neither you become mad in [a] miserable condition of life. Chant Hare Krishna and make your life [a] success. That is required. This is the propaganda of this Hare Krishna movement, or Krishna consciousness.”

From a lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam 3.28.17 in Nairobi, Kenya, on Oct. 26, 1975:

“Just like the father wants to favor the son always. Father wants that ‘My son may become very fit, competent, to take all my favors.’ This is father’s wish. Every father, even in this material world, if father is very big man, great man, he wants that ‘My son also, let him become bigger than me.’ Is it not, practical?”

“[Krishna says:] ‘I am the seed-giving father of all living entities.’ It doesn't matter in different forms. He does not say that ‘I am the father only of the white, not of the black.’ He never says. He has no such distinction: white, black, European, American, or poor, rich, bird, beast, human being. No. He does not make any discrimination. He is always ready to bestow favor as the original father. That is God.”

“You have to give up this designation that ‘I am Hindu,’ ‘I am Muslim,’ ‘I am Christian,’ ‘I am African.’ No. No designation. Simply become pure Brahman. Then aham brahmasmi. That is called aham brahmasmi, not that ‘I remain a Christian,’ ‘I remain a Hindu,’ ‘I remain black,’ ‘I am white,’ and ‘I am Brahman.’ No, not that. You have to give up your designation. That requires practice. And that practice means this param vijayate sri-krishna-sankirtanam [the supremely victorious congregational chanting of the holy name of Krishna]. Simply by chanting, you’ll be purified.”

“When you think like that, that ‘I am eternal servant of Krishna,’ then all these dirty things will automatically vanish.”

“Why you are trying to preach Krishna consciousness all over the world? Because we have accepted this principle, that ‘I am Krishna’s servant. Krishna wants to deliver these rascals from this misconception of life, so let me do something for Krishna.’ This is Krishna consciousness.”

“Whole world is servant of somebody, but he declines to become servant of Krishna. This is the disease, material disease. He will remain servant of thousands and millions of establishment and person, but he will disagree. As soon as Krishna says that ‘You give up. You become My servant,’ ‘No, no. Why can I? Why shall I do it?’ This is materialist.”

From a lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam 6.1.31 in Honolulu on May 30, 1976:

We learn from the Vedic literature, the soul resides in the heart of the body.

The Vedas say we have to see through the revealed literature as our senses are imperfect.

We cannot see the closest thing, the eyelid, nor can we see what is most far away. Neither can we see at night. Our vision is subjected to so many conditions.

We cannot create earth, water, fire, air, and ether, only Krishna can. Thus our body composed of these elements is Krishna’s creation.

The yogis think “God is sitting with me, let me see.” Thus they engage in meditation to see God.

The devotee knows that everything belongs to Krishna and thus it must be used for Krishna. That is Krishna consciousness.

Everything is a fact, not mithya, false, as the Mayavadis say.

The princesses imprisoned by Bhaumasura could not find husbands because they had been taken by another man and had lost their respectability, thus they feelingly appealed to Krishna, who kindly agreed to marry all of them. We can learn from this if we take shelter of Krishna, whatever our position in society, He will take care of us. Therefore, we should be eager to take shelter of Him.

From a class on Srimad-Bhagavatam 6.1.32 in San Francisco on July 17, 1975:

“Here you can understand that in the Vaikuntha planets, as the Lord Vishnu is four-handed, similarly, all the inhabitants there, they are also four-handed and equally dressed. Just like here, if your President Ford comes, he also dressed like a nice gentleman. And there are many others also, equally nicely dressed. You cannot distinguish who is president and who is ordinary man.”

“But the Vishnudutas [servants of the Supreme Lord] have come there because although he was sinful, although he was most impious, although he was a prostitute-hunter and cheater and so many good qualities, still, he has chanted the holy name of Narayana at the end of his life. . . . Whole life sinful—ante narayana-smritih [Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.1.6], but he has remembered Narayana at the end of his life.”

Bhaktivinoda Thakura:

From Sri Nama Mahatmya [The Glories of the Holy Name]:

Verse 1

What power does the Name
of Krishna possess?
My heart constantly burns
in the fire of worldly desires
just like a desert scorched
by the rays of the sun.
The holy name, entering the core
of my heart through
the holes of my ears
showers unparalleled nectar upon my soul

Verse 2

The holy name speaks from
within my heart,
moves onto the tip of my tongue
and constantly dances
on it in the form of transcendental sound.
My throat becomes choked up
my body shivers again
and again and my feet cannot remain still.

Verse 3

Rivers of tears flow through my eyes;
perspiration completely soaks
my body. All my skin thrills with rapture,
my hairs stand on end
and my complexion turns pale
and discolored. My mind grows faint.
I begin to experience devastation
and my entire body is shattered in
a flood of ecstatic emotions.

Verse 4

While causing such an ecstatic disturbance,
the holy name showers
nectar on my heart
and drowns me in the ocean
of divine love of Godhead.
He does not allow me to understand anything
for He has made me truly mad
by having stolen away my mind and all my resources.

Verse 5:

Such is the behavior of Him
in whom I have taken shelter.
I am not capable of describing all of this
the Holy Name is independent
and thus acts on its own sweet will.
In whatever way He becomes
happy that is also my
way of happiness.

Verse 6:

The Holy Name is the bud
of the flower of Divine Love
and is the very abode of the
astonishing mellows.
Such is the power He manifests
that when the Holy Name starts
to blossom a little further
that reveals its own divine form
and qualities. Thus my heart is abducted
and taken directly to Krishna.

Verse 7:

Blossoming fully the flower
of the Holy Name takes
me to Braja and reveals to me His own love-dalliance.
This Name gives to me my
own eternal spiritual body, keeps me right by Krishna’s side,
and completely destroys
everything related to this mortal frame of mine.

Verse 8:

The name of Krishna
is a transcendental touchstone, a mine of all devotional mellows
is eternally liberated
and the embodiment of pure rasa.
When all impediments in pure chanting
of the Holy Name are taken away
and destroyed then my happiness will know its true

Satsvarupa Dasa Goswami:

From “Poem for January 16” in Vihara Bhavan:

Harinama devotees
bring relief to people
with disturbed minds.
They have appeared at
scenes of recent disasters
or riots and spread
a calming influence.
The positive-mindedness
of the chanters offsets
the gloom and depression
present in intense situations.
God’s holy names have
the power to calm
agitated minds. Even in intense scenes
of material enjoyment,
at gatherings before
rock concerts or
sporting events, it
is good to share
harinama to bring
a level of sanity
and spiritual presence.”

Amala Bhakta Swami:

If we really desire something from the heart, Krishna will reciprocate by sending whatever is required.

Bhagavad-gita 2.66 is a very important verse because it talks about peace of mind, something universally sought, but rarely found.

Everything is connected with Krishna but not everyone is in consciousness of this connection.

Lord Krishna’s maya makes us think we are making things happen when in reality Krishna is behind the scenes making everything happen.

If we do not think of Krishna, we will not fall in love with Him.

Srila Prabhupada wrote the Krishna book because he wanted to make sure that we had the Tenth Canto of the Srimad-Bhagavatam in an authorized way, in a sober way, according to the line of spiritual teachers.

When you are ready for Lord Krishna’s rasa dance, you will be invited. You do not have to invite yourself. It is like in this world, if you crash a party you are not invited to, you will not be appreciated.

In Ratha-yatra, we are pulling Krishna back to Vrindavan.

We must desire to go back to Godhead, while at the same time being aware that we may not be yet qualified to go there.

By reading about Krishna’s pastimes, you will become attached to Him.

The spiritual sex of the Tenth Canto takes place in the heart region not the genital region. It is a completely different experience from the material experience.

I try to listen to Krishna book and Sri Caitanya-caritamrita every day to increase my attachment for Krishna.

Reading Krishna’s pastimes to the devotees in New Dvaraka for 23 years during meals helped me to develop whatever attachment I do have for Him.

When I die, I lose everything, so why should I envy those who have more than I do.

Freedom from sin is not the end, but it is just the beginning [love of God is the goal].

If we give the best to Krishna, He will give the best to us.

Q: How do deal with the gopis?
A: We try to understand they are the perfection of devotion. We aspire for such devotion. We pray for their mercy.

Rather than cause to distress to others, a humble devotee desires to tolerate distress himself. This is the example of Sanatana Goswami who tolerated the pain of the hot sand to avoid paining the brahmanas by possibly contaminating them.

Radhanath Swami:

From a recorded lecture:

It appears that the intimate talks between Krishna and the gopis are imitations of the romantic talks between boys and girls of this world, but actually just the opposite is true. The romantic relationships of this world are perverted intimations of the pristine pastimes of Lord Krishna and His pure devotees.

People say we assign human qualities to God to make Him appear more human, when in reality it is the opposite. We have different emotions because God Himself has emotions.

The impersonalist philosophers want us to annihilate our desires, but the devotees want to infinitely increase their desires to serve Krishna.

Madhava Prabhu [from New Raman Reti]:

The Ninth Canto has a lot of bewildering stories of how different people are allured by material distractions. The purpose of this to keep materially motivated people from reaching the Tenth Canto, the essence of Srimad-Bhagavatam.

Also in the Ninth Canto you see lists of names spanning millennia.

“To show causeless mercy to the devotees who would take birth in the future in this Age of Kali, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, acted in such a way that simply by remembering Him one will be freed from all the lamentation and unhappiness of material existence.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 9.24.61)

This especially appropriate because there is a lot of suffering in the Ninth Canto.

“Simply by receiving the glories of the Lord through purified transcendental ears, the devotees of the Lord are immediately freed from strong material desires and engagement in fruitive activities.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 9.24.62)

At the end of the Ninth Canto, it is as if Sukadeva is asking King Pariksit, “What do you really want to hear about Urvasi or Krishna?”

The sands of Vrindavan are special because Krishna goes barefoot there.

It is described the different notes that Krishna plays have special effects:
1st  note: Bewilders the demigods and Ananta-sesa sways to the melody.
2nd note: Yamuna flows backwards.
3rd note: Makes the moon stop in orbit.
4th note: Makes the cows run to Krishna. Krishna calls the cows on the 4th note.
5th note: Attracts the gopis and makes them come running to Him.
6th note: Melts stones and manifests the autumn season.
7th note: Manifests all seasons.
8th note: Exclusively for Srimati Radharani. The flute takes Her name and calls for Her directly.

Seeing Krishna steals our sight away from all other attractions.

“Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, is the reservoir of all beauty. All beautiful things emanate from Him, and His personal form is so attractive that it steals the eyes away from all other objects, which then seem devoid of beauty in comparison to Him. When Lord Krishna was on the earth, He attracted the eyes of all people. When Krishna spoke, His words attracted the minds of all who remembered them. By seeing the footsteps of Lord Krishna, people became attracted to Him, and thus they wanted to offer their bodily activities to the Lord as His followers. In this way Krishna very easily spread His glories, which are sung throughout the world by the most sublime and essential Vedic verses. Lord Krishna considered that simply by hearing and chanting those glories, conditioned souls born in the future would cross beyond the darkness of ignorance. Being satisfied with this arrangement, He left for His desired destination.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 11.1.6–7)

Bhagavat Purana Prabhu:

If you sing from the diaphragm then you can sing louder and longer and not destroy your voice.

Deva Madhava Prabhu:

If you can take one soul back to Godhead, you are actually the best doctor. Otherwise the poor soul will take many births and suffer AIDS, cancer, heart disease, etc., in many lives.

Advaita Acarya is the incarnation of Maha-Vishnu and Sadashiva. He is a combination of multiple personalities like many persons in Lord Caitanya’s pastimes, including Lord Caitanya Himself.

Srila Prabhupada went to Shantipur to call out for Advaita Acarya’s mercy to distribute Krishna consciousness in the West, even as Advaita Acarya called out for Krishna to descend.

Lord Vishnu said he could not protect Durvasa from the Sudarsana cakra because that cakra was meant to protect His devotees.

In our college days, when we heard there was a party, our first question would be “Who is going to be there?” If our friends were not going to be there, it would not be worth going to. Krishna has a similar psychology. Krishna sends His associates to the material world before coming.

Sri Caitanya-caritamrita is the living manual for Vaishnava etiquette.

The practice that we are following is the process that Lord Caitanya taught to realize the highest truths about Himself.

Jayapataka Swami tells how Srila Prabhupada was paralyzed from the neck down from a stroke and yet was still preaching to the nurses and doctors in the hospital.

Jayapataka Swami says that amanina manadena, expecting not respect for oneself but willing to respect others, is the essence of all advice for self-improvement.

If we remember that all our abilities were given to us by others, then we can remain humble.

Lord Caitanya send His associates first so He would have others to serve with.

Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura says that sacrificing one life in the fire of the sacrifice of the congregational chanting of the holy name yields one two spiritual bodies, one in the Goloka Vrindavan and one in the Navadvipa section of the same.

On harinama we are not trying to sing beautifully or collect money, but we are trying to engage the people we encounter in a loving exchange. If we treat people as their external designations, we may sell some literature, as professional salesmen do, but that exchange will not change their hearts.

To think that Krishna does not want us to be with those devotees who are presently around us is to doubt His love for us.

It is not what they can do for you but what you can do for them that will help you advance.

Comment by me: In Bhagavad-gita 2.44, the word prasaktanam means “too much attached.” It is natural that we may have some attachment for sense enjoyment and material opulence, but when we are too much attached then we cannot attain samadhi, the perfection of yoga.

Natabara Gauranga Prabhu:

Chanting six hours a day increases vata, and if you do not have a program for balancing that, in the course of time, it will adversely affect your health.

Amrita Keli Devi Dasi:

From a University of North Florida Krishna Club meeting:

Along with chanting, we are advised to associate with devotees. We are not meant to practice spiritual life alone.


From a University of North Florida Krishna Club meeting:

I find my spiritual practice has really helped me in relationships with people. I analyze how I react and try to understand it.  I do not know how I could do marriage if I was not Krishna conscious.

Abhimanyu Prabhu:

Aham brahmasmi [I am spirit] is just half it. The rest of it is jivera svarupa haya krishnera dasa [I am by constitution a servant of Krishna].

Seeing the happiness of the people engaged in devotional service inspired me to take it seriously.

It is a science of self-realization, so if you practice it you will get some experience of it.

My father [Dhira Govinda Prabhu] said regarding his mantra study, “I am sure I am going to be punished terribly for creating a bogus mantra, but it was for science.”


What is the value of all this public chanting of Hare Krishna?
People advance spiritually, even without their knowledge!

ajnanad athava jnanad
uttamasloka-nama yat
sankirtitam agham pumso
dahed edho yathanalah

yathagadam viryatamam
upayuktam yadricchaya
ajanato ’py atma-gunam
kuryan mantro ’py udahrtah

“Fire will act, regardless of whether handled by an innocent child or by someone well aware of its power. For example, if a field of straw or dry grass is set afire, either by an elderly man who knows the power of fire or by a child who does not, the grass will be burned to ashes. Similarly, one may or may not know the power of chanting the Hare Krishna mantra, but if one chants the holy name he will become free from all sinful reactions.

“If a person unaware of the effective potency of a certain medicine takes that medicine or is forced to take it, it will act even without his knowledge because its potency does not depend on the patient’s understanding. Similarly, even though one does not know the value of chanting the holy name of the Lord, if one chants knowingly or unknowingly, the chanting will be very effective.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 6.2.18–19)