Monday, August 29, 2016

Travel Journal#12.14: Berlin Harinamas, Czech Padayatra, Leipzig Harinamas, Berlin Ratha-yatra

Diary of a Traveling Sadhaka, Vol. 12, No. 14
By Krishna-kripa das
(July 2016, part two)
Berlin Harinamas, Czech Padayatra, Leipzig Harinamas, Berlin Ratha-yatra
 (Sent from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England, on August 30, 2016)

Where I Went and What I Did

The day after chanting with my friends to the homebound Polish Woodstock attendees at the Kostrzyn train station, I went to Berlin with Chandrashekhara Acarya Prabhu, and we did harinama with Gadadhara Priya Prabhu and Sara, who we had chanted Hare Krishna on the Paris metro with years ago, as part of a program called Metro Yoga. I chanted three more days in Berlin, advertising the upcoming Ratha-yatra, the first two days with Gadadhara Priya Prabhu and Sara and the last alone, and then I took eleven hours of trains across Poland and into Czech Republic to join the Czech Padayatra for three days. The day I returned from Czech, I chanted about an hour and a half in Berlin and then for about as long in Leipzig. Then Gadadhara Priya Prabhu, Sara, and I chanted in Leipzig for two days, the second joined by six Leipzig devotees after their midweek kirtana. Then we returned to Berlin and Chandrashekhara Prabhu joined us again, and we chanted Hare Krishna two more days to promote the Berlin Ratha-yatra. The Berlin Ratha-yatra was in a new venue, Brandenburger Tor, which proved successful, with lots of people, both Berliners and tourists seeing and taking part. Then on the last day of the month of July, Chandrashekhara and I returned to Poland, driven by two Ukrainian book distributors, for a few days on the Polish Festival Tour.

I share notes on Srila Prabhupada’s lectures, a quote by Krishna from Srimad-Bhagavatam, an insight from Madhvacarya mentioned in a Bhagavatam purport, verses from Rupa Goswami’s Padyavali, and quotes from writings by Bhaktivinoda Thakura and Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati. I also share excerpts from the writings of Satsvarupa Dasa Goswami. I include as well notes on lectures by Bada Haridas Prabhu, Manidhara Prabhu, and Sadaputa Prabhu.

I would like to thank Chandrashekhara Acarya Prabhu for his very generous donation for my travels. Thanks also to Arjun Raja of the UK and his friend who gave me the rest of their Polish money when they left Poland. Thanks to the devotee on the Polish tour who gave me his British coins in excess of the £10 which I converted to a £10 note for him. Thanks to the Czech Padayatra devotees for the opportunity to join their program and for their pictures of me on padayatra. Thanks to Sara for the video of the Swedish musicians chanting with us on Berlin harinama.


August 30: Edinburgh
August 31: Newcastle
September 1: Hull
September 2: Sheffield
September 3: York
September 4: Scarborough / Newcastle
September 5–12: Ireland
September 13–mid November: New York City Harinam (except Philly RY)

Chanting in Berlin

I was happy to be chanting with Chandrashekhara Prabhu, Gadadhara Priya Prabhu and Sara in Berlin and promoting the upcoming Ratha-yatra.

We chanted at Alexanderplatz, a central location always full of people. Sara was happy to find a few people interested in buying books. The four of us had chanted in Paris on the metros a few years back. There Gadadhara Priya Prabhu would play the harmonium and sing, Chandrashekhara Acharya Prabhu would play the drum and speak to the passengers, I would play karatalas, and Sara would distribute prasadam. In Berlin we sang some of the same tunes we had in Paris. Before chanting with Gadadhara Priya Prabhu in Paris, I chanted with him on the plaza of the University of Florida in Gainesville over ten years ago. It is great knowing people from all over the world who like to do harinama.

The next day Gadadhara Priya Prabhu, Sara, and I chanted at the Turkish Market. The most striking thing about the experience for me was several vendors would chant some or all of the mantra along with us. I usually consider that people who chant the mantra along with us have some interest, and I offer them invitations, but the vendors were not at all interested in invitations. Because the devotees chant their regularly, they knew the mantra and were saying it as if teasing. Fortunately, the chanting is so powerful, even in that consciousness, it frees the chanter from his bad karma as confirmed in Srimad-Bhagavatam 6.2.14: “One who chants the holy name of the Lord is immediately freed from the reactions of unlimited sins, even if he chants indirectly [to indicate something else], jokingly, for musical entertainment, or even neglectfully. This is accepted by all the learned scholars of the scriptures.” Once I understood the chanting vendors were not candidates for invitations, I could appreciate their good fortune in somehow or other uttering the holy names, and felt better about the experience. The devotees are so much appreciated in Poland, where 80% or 90% of the people take invitations, so I had to get accustomed to fact that it was not to be like that in Berlin. If 20% would take invitations, that would be amazing. 

One time Gadadhara Priya Prabhu and I chanted in a park near his residence, and we met a lady who knew the whole Panca-tattva mantra from when she spent time with the devotees years ago.

Sara is from Italy and loves to cook, and thus I had pizza more than usual when I visited Gadadhara Priya Prabhu and Sara in Berlin.

Czech Padayatra

I love the Czech Padayatra, but as it is a little physically austere for me, staying in a different school gymnasium each night, some with sparse facilities, I do not go for more than three or four days. It has many nice elements, a beautiful cart, pulled by two large and peaceful bulls, with beautiful Gaura-Nitai deities, and a full-sized Prabhupada murti. The Czech devotees are good cooks, and there is always plenty of prasadam.

Muni Priya Prabhu, here leading the chanting, has been doing this Czech Padayatra for around twenty years. His son, Nrsimha Caitanya Prabhu (not pictured here), assists him greatly now. 

Before breakfast, we would have our morning program.

After breakfast we would chant with the bulls and our cart for about three hours:

Then after lunch we would chant around the town where the evening festival was to be, this time without the cart.

This is from our after lunch harinama in Prerov, the first and the biggest of the three towns I went to.

I would contribute to the harinamas by chanting the response and dancing.

Once we chanted in the parking lot of a LiDL shop as the town itself was more or less dead. I was surprised we lasted over an hour without the shop security stopping us.

In that town there was a meditation garden by a church that attracted the devotees.

The evening cultural programs in the little towns they visit include lots of kirtana. 

We had a couple Bharat Natyam dances.

There were a couple dancers, one who is a young girl.

There was also a drama, and of course, prasadam.

The drama is based on the “Truth and Beauty” story Srila Prabhupada told about the beautiful girl who arranged to extract the essence of her beauty to enlighten a lusty suitor. 

They do it in a very humorous way, with Muni Priya Prabhu being the suitor, and his son, decked out in a sari, being the beautiful girl.

One evening there was even a bullock cart ride for kids. 

The bulls were almost always on hand for the evening programs, along with the cart, Srila Prabhupada, and the attractive Gaura Nitai deities, and they all attracted attention, with people petting the bulls. 

There are several kirtanas during the program, and attendees are encouraged to chant and dance.

The best performers receive rewards such as garlands, pictures, books, and incense.

  Here a girl chooses Bhagavad-gita.

I would sing the response and dance during the kirtanas.

In Prerov, twenty minutes after the program started I counted about 65 people, but by 7:00 p.m., the middle of the two-hour program, there were almost one hundred.

During the program, bananas are offered on the altar of Gaura-Nitai, and at the end of the program they are thrown to the crowd, an event advertised on their invitations as “flying bananas.”

During the program itself, a simple meal of pakoras, raita, and cherry tomatoes is served to the audience and the devotees.

Besides three enthusiastic kids, one young man and a woman a little older chanted the response to the kirtana very nicely at the first program I attended in Přerov.

Here is some video from that Přerov evening program at 

In the much smaller Čekyně we had only 14 guests. 

A couple of sisters stayed the entire time and the elder, Elena, who was adept in English, just from school and hearing a few YouTube videos, talked with me for 15 minutes afterward. She had doubts about being vegetarian. I stressed that it was not hard. At least she could start by giving up beef. In India they have such gratitude for the cow from drinking her milk, they would never think of killing her. Indeed, in India you see cows loitering in the streets. She said she was Catholic, and I told her that Jesus Christ’s two great commandments were the essence of his teachings. She wondered what God we worship, and I made the point that God is one. He is unlimited, and the scriptures of the different religions tell more or less about Him. In the Vedas, He is described as the one supreme being, who is fulfilling the desires of all others. That is the one God. I told her of the Catholic saint named Francis, who loved the animals and who was my favorite of the Christian saints. I told her how he once preached in the name of Lord Jesus Christ to a wolf, who was terrorizing a village, and the animal became like a puppy dog, and I encouraged her to look up the story on the internet []. I gave her my card and encouraged her to write about her success in moving toward vegetarianism.

In addition to those sisters, the devotees said there was a whole family who was very attracted by our program in Čekyně.

Here is some video of the next day’s padayatra to Tršice (

In Tršice, we had twenty-three guests at the beginning, despite the fact a little rain had begun to fall.

There one girl really loved to chant and dance, although it was all completely new to her. 

 She befriended a younger devotee girl, and they would dance together.

 At the end, that new girl was the only dancer left.

Here is some video from the evening program at Tršice (

Leipzig Harinamas

The place Gadadhara Priya Prabhu and Sara had been staying in Berlin was rented out for a week, so they stayed in Leipzig at the home of Narottama Prabhu, whose family was conveniently on vacation for week. After three days on the Czech Padayatra, I joined them in Leipzig and we did daily  harinamas and passed out invitations for the temple and the Leipzig Ratha-yatra.

Sara talked to one young lady who had been smiling and glancing at our party. Turns out she had danced in our kirtana tent at the Polish Woodstock and had a great time. She planned to spend an hour in our tent, but came out five hours later. She is a resident of Leipzig, and we were happy to connect her with the Leipzig temple and its Ratha-yatra so she can continue to develop her attraction to Krishna consciousness.

Both days we went on harinama in Leipzig we met an Indian man named Jaya from Mathura, who was happy to learn of the temple and Ratha-yatra, and who gave five euros each time. When I attended the Leipzig Sunday feast two and a half weeks later, I saw him at the temple. He loved the program and stayed after most of the devotees had left.

The Leipzig devotees have a Wednesday afternoon kirtana program at their temple, and Sadbhuja Prabhu, Sangita Devi Dasi, and Pradyumna Prabhu and his family joined us for harinama afterwards, making for a nice way to end our pleasant stay in Leipzig.

We met one devotee family while chanting in the city, and the father, Krishna Dasa, really got dancing, as you can see in this video in which Sangita Devi Dasi, who has a powerful voice, is leading (

More Berlin Harinamas

When we returned to Berlin, Gadadhara Priya Prabhu and Sara wanted to get their stuff situated and Chandrashekhara Prabhu wanted to hear Vaiyasaki Prabhu sing, so I chanted by myself for an hour and a half, and then Gadadhara Priya Prabhu and Sara joined me for another hour.

Four friends from Sweden liked Gadadhara Priya Prabhu’s singing and asked if they could play with us. He agreed, and they got out their instruments. They had a great time playing with us as you can see in this video (

We gave them mantra cards and an invitation to Saturday’s Berlin Ratha-yatra. Sara gave one who was interested a Beyond Birth and Death.

Berlin Ratha-yatra

The devotees were given a better venue for Berlin Ratha-yatra this year, Brandenburger Tor, a place frequented both by locals and by tourists. Speaking to the crowd, Sacinandana Swami said that the place is a place of unification in the history of Germany, and it is appropriate that we have Ratha-yatra here because Lord Jagannatha desires to bring us all together on the spiritual plane. He also told an amazing story about a Muslim poet, whose poetry glorified the Lord for being within everything and at the same time beyond everything. That poet wanted to see Lord Jagannatha, but the priests would not allow him to because he was Muslim. To show His displeasure Lord Jagannatha performed a miracle, adjusting the vision of the priests so that everyone they saw entering and leaving His temple was wearing those hats that the Muslims wear.

Devotees came from the Polish tour to participate, including their leader, Indradyumna Swami, and kirtana leader, Bada Haridas Prabhu. When Bada Haridas led the Ratha-yatra kirtana, Indradyumna Swami and Sacinandana Swami danced (

Vaiyasaki Prabhu, who was visiting  Berlin for a few days, true to form, led a very dynamic kirtana (

Sacinandana Swami also led a joyful kirtana during Ratha-yatra (

The procession was so striking that even policemen took pictures of it!

The Harinama Ruci party encouraged devotees to do harinama after the Berlin Ratha-yatra. Sadbhuja Prabhu led a great kirtana

Three guys from Holland, who danced with us during Ratha-yatra, joined us again during the harinama (

Sacinandana Swami, led kirtana during the stage show, including the lively final kirtana (

It was Ekadasi, and the devotees had great Ekadasi prasadam, including srikhand, which I had thirds of.

Sara saw at least one person we had invited who came to the Ratha-yatra, and several days later on harinama, she met another lady who had come to Ratha-yatra and bought books and was enjoying reading them.

I was happy to both promote and participate in Berlin Ratha-yatra, and I hope I can again next year.

Funny Pictures

These pictures are all from Berlin:

Often people sit on the sidewalk with a cup and beg for money. 

This couple had six cups, for donations for different purposes!

I have always liked this comment below, which I see as both protesting sectarian religion and reminding us of the unlimited greatness of God:

This quote from an ad for a meditation course reminds me of Krishnas statement in Bhagavad-gita 5.24, One whose happiness is within, who is active and rejoices within, and whose aim is inward is actually the perfect mystic. He is liberated in the Supreme, and ultimately he attains the Supreme:

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


Srila Prabhupada:

From a class on Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.8.36 in Los Angeles on April 28, 1973:

Why do you pay the college fee? Simply to hear from the learned professor. Similarly our process is simply hearing.

The Mayavadis also hear, but because they falsely interpret, their hearing is spoiled. They are covering the real meaning. That is all. They will never accept the real meaning.

Vishnu should be heard as He is.  

From a class on Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.8.36 in Mayapur on October 16, 1974:

People are working hard, but they do not know why they are working so hard.

We are also working hard, but we know if we can please Krishna there is hope.

They do not know that without Krishna consciousness no one can be happy. Thus our struggle is different. We are working so that everyone can be happy.

Our process is to simply hearing. You do not have to change your position.

The leader says “Hare Krishna,” and we repeat “Hare Krishna.” We must do it seriously and continually. By this process we can see Krishna, and we can thus end this business of working hard for no purpose.

When immediately you can see the lotus feet of Krishna when you close your eyes, you can begin to meditate on the other parts of His form.

From a class on Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.8.37 in Los Angeles on April 29, 1973:

We should not eat more or less than we need. But better to eat less than more. No one dies from eating less, but people die from eating more.

Those who have dedicated their bodies to Krishna, should take care of them, just as we take care of the temple because it is Krishna’s.

We should always consider without Krishna’s protection we are unsafe. We should not think, “Now I have done my duty, I can take rest.”

We cannot imitate Rupa Goswami, but at least we should be very vigilant to chant our 16 rounds.

Because we cannot see spirit, Krishna has kindly appeared in a manner in which we can see Him.

Without Krishna my life is useless. Without Krishna I am in a dangerous position.

From a conversation between His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and some of his disciples at New Vrindaban, ISKCON’s farming village in West Virginia, on June 24, 1976:

Srila Prabhupada: But killing is sinful. You have no right to kill any creature – even an ant – because you cannot give that creature back his life. So killing is against the law of nature, the law of God. In the scriptures the Lord warns us, “Killing is an infringement on nature’s law, My law. Killing innocent creatures is the most sinful activity. If you use your human resourcefulness to perform this most sinful activity, then you must suffer in your next life.”

Disciple:  But we modern men don’t believe our slaughterhouses are sinful.

Srila Prabhupada: These nonsensical statements – “We believe . . .” “We don’t believe . . .” If you are breaking God’s most basic law – “Thou shalt not kill” – then you are a rascal. So what difference does it make, what you believe or don’t believe? You are, after all, a rascal. Anyway, you are going to have a next life. Now, suppose that by your present actions, in your next life you have to accept the form of a dog. Is that success? So you must learn the real science: How, instead of becoming an associate of dogs, you can become an associate of God. That is intelligence. That is success.


From Srimad-Bhagavatam 11.21.18:

“By refraining from a particular sinful or materialistic activity, one becomes freed from its bondage. Such renunciation is the basis of religious and auspicious life for human beings and drives away all suffering, illusion and fear.”


From Srimad-Bhagavatam 11.21.16 purport:

“Persons above the age of fourteen are considered capable of distinguishing between good and bad and are thus responsible for their pious and sinful activities.”

Rupa Goswami:

From Padyavali:

Verse 41:

Shri Krishna-katha-mahatmya
The Glory of the Description of Shri Krishna

“One who daily sings the glories of Yashoda’s son, Krishna, which are cooling as sandalwood and camphor, is not troubled by the days of Kali-yuga. For him at every step there is a torrential flood of the sweetest nectar.”

—Shri Kaviratna

Verse 45 

“May Lord Madhava’s pastimes, which bring a sense-pleasure stronger than that experienced by the hedonists, a liberation more real than that felt by the yogis in their hearts, and a bliss more intense than that tasted by the most experts drinkers of nectar, protect you.” 

—Shri Shankara

Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura:

From Sri Govinda-virudavali 7:

“O Lord [Krishna], O killer of the Agha demon,
may we find happiness in the deep ocean of Your
transcendental pastimes, where the great waves
of Your smiles and laughter rock the universes,
where the center is always crowded with many
dolphins of the surrendered souls, and where the
swans of the great devotees drink to their full

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura:

From Amrta-vani, Chapter: “Spiritual Life”:

One hundred generations forward and one hundred generations backward of a family in which a maha-bhagavata [topmost devotee] appears are
automatically delivered. Fourteen generations forward and fourteen generations backward of a family in which a madhyama-adhikari [intermediate devotee] appears are automatically delivered. Three generations forward and three generations backward of a family in which a kanistha-adhikari [neophyte devotee] appears are delivered.”

Satsvarupa dasa Goswami:

From Begging for the Nectar of the Holy Name:

 “It is a challenge.  The spiritual master is the eternal guide.  We should never minimize his place in our lives.  What he has already given us is enough for us to be eternally grateful.  We can never think that we will ever be more advanced than he is, more advanced than he was.  And we should not find fault with him.  Fault-finding is called kuti-nati, and the worst kind of fault-finding is criticizing the guru.  What is the worst form of sadhu-ninda but guru-aparadha?

“There are all kinds of guru-aparadha.  A subtle offense is to superficially praise Prabhupada while giving a speech about how everyone should follow him, but to be dead underneath, to not read his books, to not study his life, to not write about him, to not have an ongoing, developing love.  Dead ritual.  The guru-disciple relationship needs constant work.  Part of that work is to sometimes go through difficult stages, awkward stages, questioning stages, stages of having to have the answers revealed to us over time.  All questions will be answered, but sometimes the asking of them is itself painful.  We have to do the necessary work, go through doubts, and come to resolutions.”


I again state the importance
of the relationship
with the spiritual master.
We should always
be on guard
against guru-aparadha.
There are subtle forms of it.
The relationship requires
constant work. 
We have to go through awkward stages.
Sometimes we have to wait for the answers
to our questions.  We need to do the work
and we will come to the resolution.

Badahari Das Prabhu:

When I joined the Hare Krishna movement I felt joy from the freedom of abandoning my previous identity and accepting the position of a devotee. Then I noticed in time I created a whole new false ego of myself as “a devotee.”

Once a devotee told me, “I am a brahmana. I don’t do dishes.” Yet Lord Caitanya said, “I am not brahmana. I am not a sudra, etc.

By continuing in devotional service, we will find as Lord Kapila says, that devotional service dissolves our subtle body, of mind, intelligence, and false ego. This does not mean we do not have a mind or intelligence, but rather we do not have the materially covered mind and intelligence, only the mind and intelligence of the pure soul, the eternal servant of Krishna.

It takes a lot of work to become fully self-realized, but even a little advancement on this path gives great satisfaction.

It is our practical experience that by chanting Hare Krishna we experience a greater pleasure than any material pleasure.

Manidhara Prabhu:

It is the blessing of the 1960s and 1970s that people were doubting everything.

Srila Prabhupada challenged and debated with his disciples. He did not like them to accept things blindly.

When asked about to what say to Christians, Srila Prabhupada would make the point that they are not following the Bible. The Bible says ‘thou shall not kill’ but the Christians are killing so many animals.

We have answers for all questions in Krishna consciousness.

In Sweden, schools would visit the temple because they have a conception that people should be informed about everything. So we would sometimes have three schools a day. I would always ask them for questions. It was a challenge for them because they are not taught to inquire.

When people understand that we are not escapists but are providing a viable alternative, they will take it seriously.

I was talking to a lady who was suffering very much. I said to her, “Suppose you are not your body?” She was happy just to consider that. We cannot eliminate suffering but we can understand the reason for suffering, and we can elevate our consciousness so we can tolerate the suffering.

Srila Prabhupada told a paralyzed person that his condition was a blessing as another person may be in illusion thinking he can enjoy, but being paralyzed he could very soon understand this is an illusion.

Every second must be used in Krishna consciousness.

People say that I have to do this and that, and I have no time to hear about Krishna. But whatever our situation, we can try to always increase our hearing.

Srila Prabhupada said we do not need temples. We must simply create a situation for people to hear and chant of Krishna.

Taking care of cows is hard work, but it also provides facility to remember Krishna.

We have hard work in Krishna consciousness, but it is work that benefits. We are not working to produce useless products.

In Germany the philosophy is that you have to work. Why? To eat. And why to eat? So you can work.

They took people from the villages to work in the city so they could make money to go to the villages for vacation.

We go from village to village and chant Hare Krishna on padayatra. What do we do for vacation? This is our vacation.

In Slovenia devotees would use motorbikes to go to remote regions of the country. People would buy whole sets of books because they were so impressed people came to visit them. That developed into padayatra. On the padayatra, people would use bicycles to visit remotely located people, and they were so happy to encounter the devotees again.

Padayatra gets devotees together. That is an important part of it.

One devotee said I did 15 years of book distribution and 25 years of management. What can I do now? You could do padayatra. Even on wheelchairs, you could do padayatra.

The spirit of this movement is: “I got something. I should give it to others.”

We know people are not interested in philosophy. On padayatra, they see the oxen and chanting and the dancing. We give people a visual presentation, and they wonder, “What is this?”

We should not be old devotees who are sour. This means something is wrong. We are identifying with our body. Srila Prabhupada was the most old and the most poor, but he was the most ecstatic.

We have to accept Krishna consciousness as it is and share it with others.

As the Bhagavad-gita says this process is “su-sukham” (very joyful). If it is not that way for us, then we are doing something wrong.

One devotee told me that after being Srila Prabhupada’s servant for three months, he slept for three weeks.

Srila Prabhupada once said, “Don’t ask if I am sick. I am always sick.”

Srila Prabhupada was so transcendental, he extracted his own tooth once in a airplane.

A body is like a time bomb. It is just a matter of time before it will explode.

We have a padayatra calendar with photos of people enjoying our festivals. We should not lose this spirit.

We may not consider ourselves preachers, but our lifestyle is itself preaching.

My former artist friends were so shocked that I became a devotee that they began chanting Hare Krishna.

In Germany our opponents would have different mantras, “Get a job.” And we would come up with responses, “But I am working.”

We can practice Krishna consciousness in different situations. Our only obstacle is ourselves.

As devotees we have to be introspective and be situated properly. If we are not situated properly, if other things are there, we still will not be satisfied.

Sometimes we are so absorbed in this body, we are not aware of how to best operate this body.

As a youth I was so conscious of death that I had very few friends because no one wanted to talk about it. When I met the devotees, they would talk about death, which I appreciated. Although they talked of death, they were happy. Thus I was very curious.

Vedic culture means to be satisfied with what you have. Village life in the West was closer to Vedic culture. People had problems, but they were local problems. Previously people in general did not travel. Only the sannyasis and the brahmacaris traveled. Now we have global problems. In my own life, I experienced as I moved from the city to the village, my mind became more peaceful.

Sometimes people challenge the widespread distribution of Bhagavad-gita because Krishna says it is not for nondevotees, but we should not question Srila Prabhupada’s order.

Srila Prabhupada was proud that people could no longer identify his disciples as Americans.

Things seem to be miracles to us, but they are not miracles to Krishna.

There are three types of people. Innocent people have nothing against Krishna consciousness. They simply have not heard. Then there are others who are spontaneously inimical. We tried to hide by wearing wigs, but people could identify us anyway. The German police advised people to capture Hare Krishnas. They could be identified by their bright countenance.

Krishna promises to preserve what we have and supply what we lack. What insurance company can promise that?

We have to engage our body, mind, and words in Krishna’s service.

Srila Prabhupada did not want us to tell new people about Krishna’s pastimes. We should simply explain how the soul is different than the body and about reincarnation.

It is Krishna’s mercy we do not remember all our frustration in previous lives. We would commit suicide as children otherwise. We take birth as optimistic babies.

We should give Bhagavad-gita only as far they can understand.

Once Srila Prabhupada said to a reporter, “We will not discuss God [a surprise for the reporter]. We will only talk about how we are not the body.”

Krishna spoke Bhagavad-gita on the battlefield to Arjuna, a professional soldier, while he spoke Uddhava-gita to Uddhava, a brahmana in the forest.

Sometimes people ask who forbade us to engage in intoxication, but no one forbade us. I can go into a pub and drink anytime I want, but I do not want to.

If we explain the combination of man and women is simply meant for insemination, the women understand it but the men don’t.

They are many problems caused by illicit sex, like AIDS, fear, lamentation, but how many problems are caused by celibacy? Still because people are lusty they cannot give up the habit.

After the revolution, there was propaganda against vegetarianism but not now.

When discussing vegetarianism, I offer to a meat-eater, “Here is a knife. Chase after an animal. Kill it. Take out the intestines.” But they would never do it.

In my town, there was riot, but the people would not have rioted unless they were intoxicated.

People worry how they will live without meat, but I never saw devotees dying of starvation. More likely there is the opposite problem.

We should never stop giving Krishna consciousness to others, in any circumstances, following Srila Prabhupada’s example.

We do not have to worry about renunciation. By nature’s way, as we age, we naturally become more renounced. We just have to be determined not to become more foolish.

The worries of old age and death are minimized for the devotee who has given up trying to enjoy the material world.

For the materialists to do the equivalent of padayatra would be very difficult. The people are not fully trained, they come and go, they have primitive facilities, etc.

If someone asks how do you organize ISKCON, the actual answer is no one knows. Krishna is in the heart of everyone, and He is the main manager. Krishna inspires people in the heart. If we were completely in Krishna consciousness, our activities would be completely harmonized.

I was too sick to distribute books, and Bhakti Bhusana Swami invited me to travel with him. We would go door-to-door, open the door, and say, “We are here,” and we would come in and present Bhagavad-gita. People were shocked. Our tour ended in Berlin, where we had a hundred and twenty guests at the Sunday feast. There was just Maharaja, me, and two brahmacaris. We would alternate between lecture and prasadam till 4 a.m. During the year we were there, thirteen new people became devotees due to Bhakti Bhusana Swami’s expert preaching.

Krishna consciousness is never static. If we do not endeavor, we will go backward. It starts by preaching to yourself to get up in the morning.

I lived in a temple where the temple president removed the hot water tap. This is external. We have to understand the meaning of our austerities. If we have warm feet and we can distribute more books, then it is better.

Even if people are crazy we do not hold that against them, because if they remain engaged in the practice seriously, they will ultimately attain perfection.

I was given the craziest people on my book distribution party. They would get in fights in the van, and I would alternate speeding and breaking to get them to stop.

One devotee was so crazy they told me to take him and not bring him back. He could not even chant the Hare Krishna properly. He had the good quality of being willing to hear. By distributing the books, he came to the point of being almost normal on the streets, and he could eventually chant the mantra properly.

Srila Prabhupada stressed that purity and simplicity were our qualifications.

The devotee has nothing to lose. He has lost everything already. We just have Krishna to give. Simple people can understand.

If someone begins the practice of Krishna consciousness, that is really quite high. We prepare the people for that point. That is also preaching.

People see we are not acting in the standard way, and they begin to ask questions of their own accord.

It is good we were not blackmailed in the media in Czech as we experienced in Germany.

We give people a practical alternative way to live.

Srila Prabhupada was happy seeing the next generation coming because with each succeeding generation, Krishna consciousness is more natural.

In Moravia, the devotees bought a pub and turned it into a temple. This is happening and will happen more and more.

When the switch is turned off on our technology, we will still have the cart and cows.

We have good cooks here in Czech. Srila Prabhupada liked to encourage local talent.

At the last visit to Bhaktivedanta Manor, it was guru puja, and Srila Prabhupada raised his hands indicating to speed up the kirtana, and in seconds it became most ecstatic.

Srila Prabhupada did not criticize the conditioning of his students but engaged them for their purification.

Our German book distribution party was number one, and we were told Srila Prabhupada wanted to see us. We had two groups the Nrsimha group, who was very heavy, and the Govinda group, who was more peaceful.
Sadaputa Prabhu:

From “Vedic Cosmology Seminar 3” in Philadelphia on July 3, 1986:

The statement here is that all of these universes are within the transcendental body of the Supreme Lord.  But then the statement is also made that the transcendental form of the Supreme Lord is contained within every atom within each of these universes.  So the idea of an atom is there in the Vedic literature.  And the word for an atom is paramanu.  Actually that’s from parama and anu.  Anu means something small and paramanu means the very smallest possible thing.  It is stated that the Supreme Lord is present in His fullness within every atom. Now if you think about that, you can see that if you take a given atom, like the one I have here, then Krishna must be fully present within that atom; that means all the universes, including this universe and that atom, are within Krishna. Then within Krishna that atom must be there, and within that is Krishna, and then within that there are all the universes again, and also that atom is there, and so you can go on like that. 

The main point to make here is that, first of all, this is not possible if you require all forms to exist within three-dimensional space. 

“. . . quantum mechanics has introduced infinite-dimensional space to define atoms. To describe, say, a carbon atom in quantum mechanics, you need at least 18 dimensions; and to describe two carbon atoms you need at least 36 dimensions.  So even modern physics has gone beyond the idea of everything having a position in three-dimensional space.  Actually in modern physics the idea now is that everything is existing in an inconceivable infinite-dimensional space and what we perceive are projections, so to speak, into three dimensions.  That’s actually the situation in modern physics, and it’s all expressed in a very abstract way.” 


mahambhodhes tire kanaka-rucire nila-sikhare
vasan prasadantah sahaja-balabhadrena balina
subhadra-madhya-sthah sakala-sura-sevavasara-do
jagannathah svami nayana-patha-gami bhavatu me

“On the shore of the great ocean, within a large palace atop the brilliant, golden Nilacala Hill, Lord Jagannatha resides with His powerful brother Balabhadra and His sister Subhadra, who sits between Them. May that Jagannatha Svami, who bestows the opportunity for devotional service upon all godly souls, be the object of my vision.” (“Jagannathasktam”, verse 3)