When to call somebody Prabu

Hi I have noticed fellow devotees call each other Prabhu.

I am just wondering when it is ok to use this term of endearment and perhaps somebody could explain what it actually means?

Thank you as I am very new to the Movement :)

Hare Krishna!

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  • Thank you for your kind words Gayatri. It is most encouraging.

    Yes I have committed to not eating eggs now for almost 4 weeks. It hasn't been hard really at all :)

    The more I learn from Srila Prabhupada's books and from fellow devotees like yourself the easier it all becomes. I guess I am trying to be on the path of Self Realization however it is a slow process.

    Hare Krishna! 

  • Volunteer

    Hare krsna,

    Most of the responses already answer your question but I would like to add few more points.

    In Krsna consciousness, one should be aware that krsna is the ultimate enjoyer and we living beings are to be enjoyed. When this concept is understood, we become the most dearest servant of krsna. Being servant spiritually is not the same as being servant in the material world. As mahaprabhu highlighted, we have to be dasanudas which means we should be a servant of the servant of Lord Sri Krsna. And who is a servant? One who is surrendered to Sri krsna.

    So, because each devotee has to cultivate this mood of servancy, we refer to one another as "Prabhu". Yes, it is a respectful word but we are not using the term just to respect the other person but we are positioning ourselves to be the servant of the servant. Prabhu means master, das means servant. Serving and respecting a devotee pleases the lord much more than trying to please the lord directly.

    Hope my response was helpful prabhuji.

    All glories to Srila Prabhupad!!

    Hare krsna.

    • Thank you kindly for your response. It was helpful.

      And if we hold that all souls (the supersoul?) is part of Krishna then is it ok to call even non devotees Prabu in the right context or moment? (Perhaps even animals?).

      • Volunteer

        And if we hold that all souls (the supersoul?) is part of Krishna then 

        Firstly, we are not supersouls, krsna resides in us as supersoul. we all are individual spirit souls who are part of krsna (bg 15.7)

        is it ok to call even non devotees Prabu in the right context or moment? (Perhaps even animals?).

        An elevated soul or uttama adhikari (very realised devotee) does indeed respect every living being even animals as he/she sees only krsna in everyone. So, it doesnt matter if it is prabhu or mataji or whatever term is used to respect as when one understands the individual soul's position as a servant, then he/she respects and offers dandvats even to an ant.

        But for us practising devotees, we need to first cultivate the mood of serving other vaishnavas and vaishanvis first. There is nothing wrong in calling even non-devotees as prabhu because as I said it is more of how you perceive yourself in progressing spiritually. Hence Sriman Mahaprabhu has outlined the spirit with which one needs to chant Krsna's holy names in the Shikshashtakam.

        The 3rd verse states:

        trinad api sunicena

        taror api sahishnuna

        amanina manadena

        kirtaniyah sada harihi

        One should chant the holy name of the Lord in a humble state of mind, thinking oneself lower than the straw in the street; one should be more tolerant than a tree, devoid of all sense of false prestige, and should be ready to offer all respect to others. In such a state of mind one can chant the holy name of the Lord constantly.

        The reason I have highlighted the above line is: a straw on the street is actually useless and worthless. This line states we need to feel lower than the straw. Mahaprabhu wants us to be in total submission in order to chant the holy names purely. Until we reach this point, we need to serve and surrender to guru and other devotees to qualify ourselves to receive the mercy to chant without any offence.

        Hope it makes sense.

        All glories to Srila Prabhupad!!!

        Hare krsna.

        Bg 15.7
        In this verse the identity of the living being is clearly given. The living entity is the fragmental part and parcel of the Supreme Lord – eternally.…
        • Thanks  kŗşņa dasa that is most helpful.

          I appreciate everybody taking the time to explain these things.

          Humility seems to be the key indeed and perhaps my first stepping stone on my journey inward...

          Hare Krishna

          kŗşņa dasa's Questions
          kŗşņa dasa's Questions | Multimedia social network of The International Society for Krishna Consciousness or The Hare Krishna Movement devotees (Gaud…
  • Thanks again for everybody's comments.

    It has helped greatly in my quest to awaken Krishna Consciousness within.

    Hare Krishna!

  • Beautiful. These thoughts and words I will treasure.

    Thank you for taking the time to explain this :)

  • Hare Krishna prabhu

    Prabhu means "master" or "sir". we call each other prabhu : "my dear sir" - this is a culture of respect among devotees where the males are called "prabhu" and women are called "mataji" meaning "mother." This is as  established & explained by Srila Prabhupad, Founder Acharya of ISKCON. basically we consider ourselves as servants of other devotees. i hope this answers your question . . . 


    your humble servant, 

    das anu das 

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