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Please accept my humble obeicances, All Glories to Srila Prabhupada.
I have a question about surrender...
It seems to me personally that I have stages in which I want to surrender completely,
give up my non-devotee connections, give up my desires and lusts for wordly things,
give up everything that is not Krishna Concious (which is a lot).
In those days I only listen to bhajans, kirtans, Krishna stories, lectures and I chant my rounds, dream of Krishna, do service in the temple etc.
I feel like I'm going somewhere with my Krishna Conciousness, feeling like I start to understand the bliss of real devotees, feel protected and loved.
But then it happens just one day later, first I just feel blend, sleepy, not inspired to chant or listen/read/etc, I feel a bit punished by Krishna by which I mean not allowed to have what I want besides KC. I want to go to normal parties, buy pretty clothes which I dont wear to the temple, have a relationship with my non-devotee boyfriend who will probably never be a devotee, eat chocolate, dont be difficult about everything. Form my own opinions and not always follow sastra all the time.
At the same time I still want to do all the Krishna conciouss service, but I know by now from experience that its very hard, if not impossible to have them both. You cannot get spiritual bliss if you want material bliss aswell. I know. You cant have 2 masters.
I wonder at what point other devotees make the choice and stick with it to become completely Krishna Conciouss. I know you won't make progress if you just do it half heartedly and probably will fall down and leave it all together. After all the mind follows the strongest desire.
When and how do you become completely detached ? I have the feeling I have to start living like a sanyasi but with a household ( 1 person) if I really want to be KC. How is that possible for a woman alone in the mecca of maya ? (Amsterdam) I can tell you its very hard.
The problem is my desire seems to go two ways very much one side and very much the other side.
Its very confusing. I know this is a very common thing for devotees but hardly ever spoken off. It should not be such a taboo because it isolates people.
The moment I drop my 100% commitment to a 50% commitment is the moment I can't fall back on anything anymore. Especially being alone in KC in my family and the friends I do have in KC are not very close, its all on my shoulders.
I get pulled from two sides and almost feel my mind splitting.
I heared it happens a lot that devotees become splitted in the mind, having one side thats a perfect devotee and the other side is demoniac. I see that it used to be longer periods where I chose one or the other side, its getting closer now, like minutes... one minute I think this, the other I want that.
You will probably tell me just chant and desires will go away but maya pulls so hard that I cant/wont chant my rounds. Its confusing.
Am I too hard or to soft on myself ? Too impatient or does it stay difficult like this?
Sorry for typing such a long story but I had to get it off my chest and I am sure that I am not the only one who struggles with these feelings. Again; it fluctuates some days I am surrendered and other days I like to take that back and start at neophyte again and again and again.. ( ofcourse I never leave neophyte stage like that I know but sometimes it doesn feel like I am more advanced and just lazy to go on or scared.)
I would like advice from your own experience because I do know what the sciptures say:
follow 4 regulated principles, chant, offer everything to Krishna etc. ( I try to but thats exactly where maya starts to pull me away at times )
Hari bol and thank you in advance.
Hare Krsna Mataji,
First of all, thank you for bringing up this topic. A lot of people have this doubt and hesitate to voice it.
We all know the ideal situation is that we should always be in Krsna Consciousness, but due to material contamination, we are unable to do so.
For you, first of all, I think there is a pattern. Would you note down on a diary what you do in details for say 2 months, everyday, mentioning how much in KC your thoughts were that day and how your sadhana was. Write ind etails mataji - like ate .... for braekfast/ lunch/ dinner (made it myself or ate at a friend's), chanted no of rounds - at what time, watched a movie, ate some processed food (Maybe)... anything else, had a fight at work/ home/ boy friend... whatever.
I am sure once you do this, you will see a pattern emerging. What I am trying to arrive at is the trigger points for you - what triggers a KC day and what triggers a maya day. That is the solution. Maybe after a good day of devotional service, you need a break and want to do other things. Maybe that is the day you schedule only chanting as devotional activity or keep yourself in the company of devotees so taht the trigger doesnt get a chance at all.
YOu need to understand what is making you go towards maya and how far do you go - some people are happy to watch a movie, some to go on a picnic...how long till you come back to KC? Then what happens - are you consumed by guilt and end up chanting better (so in your mind, you forgive yourself for your maya sojourn, saying it helped you chant better). Since you are not fully into KC, you may need to take your breaks, but there are no breaks from certain things - like chanting.
From your name (its beautiful, incidentally), it appears that you are initiated. Then all the more reason for you to chant everyday mataji.
You are the best person to analyse your trigger points and once you do that, the solution will be obvious to you. I hope I have been able to help you.
Hare Krishna Rashmi mataji,
Thank you for your quick answer, what a lovely answer it is, that I can work with.
I will actively start today with a devotional diary !
Yes I do chant every day but after a long break I am still not on 16 rounds daily, I am sure that I wouldnt have this problem if I did ! (Just so stubborn)
I was initiated very quick after I found Krishna by the mercy of my guru marahaj but I fell down for years after that, not chanting at all. So I am crawling back now and thats a struggle I can't reccomend.
I do feel like my (fallen) path might be an example to other to not make the same mistake and also to others who are there allready and also crawling back. Start a diary ! Its brilliant.
Thank you for the compliment on my name, I don't want to shame my guru marahaj :( but I got this beautifull name from HH Jayapataka Swami.
Again thank you very much for your advice and I will take it to heart and mind and action.
Forever indebted to you mataji,
Subhadra prema dd
Dear Subhadra prema prabhu,
Please review these Bhakti-levels which were designed for a devotee in your position.
Pick a level to live at for some time steadily, and move on up-the-line when you are ready!
Hari bol Rankin prabhu,
Thank you for your suggestion but I am allready initiated and took shelter and surpass these levels more often then not. I have weekly and if I have time more then once a week temple service and I have a home altar, follow morning program online, i read and listen a lot and have been vegetarian from the moment I could talk and make my decision heard to my meat eater family. I might have to explain I quit for a couple of years and just started chanting again since end of november last year, so thats not even 3 months ago.
At that time I quit a variety of hard and soft drugs and alcohol. I can tell you the effect of those substances are still coming out of my body daily and makes me very tired. I think that adds to the pull of maya , being tired does not help one to chant, which also makes one sleepy because of the anarthas coming out.
I started chanting 16 or more right away last november but then last month I went back to 4 a day and I felt all that I described in my opening post. Last days I am back to 16 and feel very good about it. I have to get ready now for temple service for which I am very excited. I pray I can stick to 16 rounds with taste, its almost Gaura Purnima and that would be a great gift to give Gauranga (in my mind its a gift, Im sorry if that is offensive but that is my level at the moment)
I think even initiated devotees go trough cycles of loosing taste, I tried to make that discussable.
Thank you for your effort to help me trough,
Hare Krishna dear mataji Rashmi,
(one day later)
I started the diary yesterday and chanted 16 again, I felt very empowered by the handle of a diary which you suggested. Thank you again !
Hundreds of obeicances to you.
establishing personal intimate relationship with god is one of essential things in bhakty yoga.
talking with him, remembering him, dancing and singing for him, praying to him,thinking on him, asking for his protection,...
you dont need to be perfect bhakty yogi who controlling his senses in bhakti yoga to reach gods association and abode,
instead you can occupy your mind with god, like vraja villagers.
anyway , those who took the path of sadhana bhakty and cant follow principles and rules of that path,
is recommending only one medicine- fasting.
hari bol dean prabhu,
Thank you for your reply, I dont know what you mean by fasting... I need prasadam very much !
Do you mean fasting from certain food ?
If anything I love to cook for Krishna and have prasadam. I can't imagine fasting for a longer period of time.
I fast on ekadashi from grains and on holy-days I fast as subscribed.
Occupying the mind with God can be tricky if maya thoughts set in, remember even demons have their minds occupied by God, not with love but hate but occupied however.
I know myself to sometimes think of Krishna all day and still be in maya, thinking myself to be poor (poor me cant eternally enjoy maya activities ;) ) while actually I am spoiled by Krishna, he makes it easy on us, but I think in kali-yuga we are too egocentric to notice.
Also I can not be expected to be like Vrajabasi's, they are allready pure and live in the holy dham.
Perfection should be the aim in my humble opinion, knowing It might not be reachable for a common jiva like me.
yes for me its best to establish and keep going this personal relationship which I have been blessed with and not look at the mundane when I loose taste for a moment.
Please pray for me to stay in this mindset and never let go again of the mercy of devotees like yourself.
fasting means no food , but any way,
SB 10.29.24 — The highest religious duty for a woman is to sincerely serve her husband, behave well toward her husband’s family and take good care of her children.
prabhuji, I am single since last week :( allthough still friends with my former boyfriend who is not a devotee. Doesn't seem wise to follow him as he will lead me straight into maya as all he wants to do is enjoy material life. I dont have any children so I have to be my own husband and child.
I guess that goes for a lot of people who live outside the temple, man or woman.
No food is not possible in this age, it wouldnt be a medicine but certain death from starvation!?
i didnt said fasting till death, but fasting one day in the week will be nice.
reading srimad bhagavatam and singing holy names will give you blessings.
association with vaishnavas will keep you away from demon kali .
hare Krishna prabhu,
I am pretty sure that for my worn out body fasting one day a week would not be a good idea.
I am allready depleted of vitamins and feeling very tired as I just explained in another reply here above. It might work for some but for me cooking is a great way to engage me in KC and having prasadam makes me feel very connected to the spiritual world. Thank you however for your input.
I have to disagree strongly on calling the Kali devi a demoness, she is not a demon ! Here it is explained http://www.iskcondesiretree.com/forum/topics/is-lord-krishna-kali-mata
when I was in Bangladesh a young devotee told me when we visited a village that had a very large Kali deity that you could even pray to her for protecting you against her material energy so you could serve Krishna better.
i was not talking about mother durga, i was talking about demon kali,
this kali yuga get the name from this demon.
where ever is killing animals, gamblings, intoxication, illicit sex and money ,
powerful demon kali is there.
SB 1.17.40 — Thus the personality of Kali, by the directions of Mahārāja Parīkṣit, the son of Uttarā, was allowed to live in those five places.