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Introduction


Even a person with no knowledge can immediately acquire all knowledge simply by the benediction of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Therefore I am praying to the Lord for His causeless mercy upon me.



I offer my respectful obeisances unto Sri Krishna Caitanya and Lord Nityananda, who are like the sun and moon. They have arisen simultaneously on the horizon of Gauda to dissipate the darkness of ignorance and thus wonderfully bestow benediction upon all.

Glory to the all-merciful Radha and Madana-Mohana! I am lame and ill-advised, yet They are my directors, and Their lotus feet are everything to me.

In a temple of jewels in Vrndavana, underneath a desire tree, Sri Sri Radha Govinda, served by Their most confidential associates, sit upon an effulgent throne. I offer my humble obeisances to Them.

May Gopinathaji, who attracts all the gopis with the songs of His flute and who has begun the most melodious rasa dance on the bank of the Yamuna in Vamsivata, be merciful upon us. (Srila Krishnadas Kaviraja CC Mad 1.1-5)

Krishna consciousness is not a new creation. Krishna consciousness has always existed. It is our original pure consciousness. While we are in contaminated consciousness here in the material world we are in material consciousness, but if that material consciousness is purified our original consciousness, Krishna consciousness, is revived. There are different processes for reviving our original Krishna consciousness, basically divided into three: mental speculation, meditation yoga and devotional service. There are different ages, or yugas, which this universe passes through on a cycle lasting for 4,300,000 years. This cycle is similar to the changing seasons we see every year. We know that after winter there will be spring and after spring there will be summer. Similarly, on a larger scale, there are four ages, Satya-yuga, Tretya-yuga, Dvarpa-yuga and Kali-yuga. Satya-yuga is called the golden age because in this age everyone is pure and spiritually advanced. The conditions in the Satya Yuga are particularly suitable for the practice of meditational yoga as people have long lifetimes and are undisturbed. The conditions degrade until Kali Yuga, the present age, which is the most degraded age, people being short-lived, always disturbed, very sinful and not at all intelligent. Because in this age we are very unfortunate there is no chance for us to practice either meditational yoga or mental speculation. The only practical option open to us is devotional service, Krishna consciousness.

The Krishna consciousness movement of congregational chanting of the holy names of God actually began in full force five hundred years ago. At this time Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who was none other than Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself, took mercy on us, the fallen souls in Kali-yuga by flooding the subcontinent of India with the chanting of the maha mantra Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare / Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. Lord Caitanya was delivering pure love of God, the topmost spiritual achievement, freely to everyone without consideration of their qualifications. No other incarnation of God has ever been so merciful. To reveal the secret of what real love is, Krishna came to earth in the guise of His own devotee - as Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. With his chief associates - Nityananda, Advaita, Gadadhara and Srivasa - He taught how to develop love of Godhead simply by chanting Hare Krishna and dancing in ecstasy.

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