giriraj swami (45)


“Lord Nityananda was by nature very merciful and funny. Being merciful, He spoke to Raghunatha dasa as follows. ‘You are just like a thief, for instead of coming near, you stay away at a distant place. Now that I have captured you, I shall punish you. Make a festival and feed all My associates yogurt and chipped rice.’ Hearing this, Raghunatha dasa was greatly pleased.” —Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Antya 6.49–51



06.16.18 IDS  PanihatiLaguna (Right click to download)

06.16.18 GRS Panihati Laguna 

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We shall read from Srimad-Bhagavatam, Canto Five, Chapter Eighteen: “The Residents of Jambudvipa Offer Prayers,” from the series of prayers recited by Prahlada Maharaja to Lord Nrsimhadeva. Text 8 is a very important prayer, or mantra, and in it many words are repeated, which gives them great emphasis.


om namo bhagavate narasimhaya namas tejas-tejase avir-avirbhava vajra-nakha vajra-damstra karmasayan randhaya randhaya tamo grasa grasa om svaha; abhayam abhayam atmani bhuyistha om ksraum

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By Giriraj Swami

As long as we are in the material world, we must suffer–pain caused by others, pain caused by our own bodies and minds, pain caused by acts of nature. And unless we can tolerate, we cannot live in this world.

But how much can a person tolerate? Should we not, on occasion, resist? Why, then, should we tolerate? And if we must, what will enable us to endure the difficulty without being disturbed.

Srila Prabhupada told the story of a young boy who tolerated more than I can imagine

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Sri Hanuman Jayanti by Giriraj Swami


For Sri Hanuman Jayanti, I quote Sri Prahlada’s glorification of Hanuman from Sri Brhad-bhagavatamrta (1.4.40–52):

“Hanuman is much more fortunate. For many thousands of years he has enjoyed serving the Lord constantly, without obstruction.

“He is the most powerful person. When he was just a child, the demigods favored him with several wonderful benedictions. Thus he became immune to old age and death.

“He is free of all fear, he maintains great vows, and he performs auspicious deeds. Outstandi

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Hearing His Holiness Niranjana Swami’s wonderful talk, I felt we were being elevated to the spiritual world. He quoted from Visnujana Maharaja. Visnujana had a program in which he went by boat along the Ganges River, in Bengal, and chanted the holy names all day, stopping at villages along the way and chanting and speaking and distributing books about Krsna. Once, when I was in Los Angeles recovering from being sick in India, Srila Prabhupada received an issue of Back to Godhead with an artic

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Srimad-Bhagavatam, Canto 8, Chapter 7 (texts 36-42) describes the benevolent activities of Lord Siva when the living entities were threatened by the deadliest poison (halahala):

“Srila Sukadeva Gosvami said: ‘Lord Siva is always benevolent toward all living entities. When he saw that the living entities were very much disturbed by the poison, which was spreading everywhere, he was very compassionate. Thus he spoke to his eternal consort, Sati, as follows.

“ ‘Lord Siva said: “My dear Bhavani, ju

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Today, February 14, , I was struck when Srila Prabhupada, at the conclusion of his class on Sri Isopanisad, spoke about love—the love that Krishna wants and the love that will satisfy us:

“Any religion—it doesn’t matter whether Hindu religion, Muslim religion, Christian religion—if you are developing love of God, then you are perfect in your religion. . . .

And what kind of love? Ahaituki: without any cause. ‘O Lord, I love You, God, because You supply me so many nice things. You are order-supp

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8346586301?profile=RESIZE_400xBy Giriraj Swami

Fifty-one years ago, on December 26, 1969, in Boston, Srila Prabhupada awarded me second initiation. He said, “Sucih means purified. And another meaning of sucih is brahman. A brahman means purified. Those who are going to be sacred-threaded today should remember that they are being accepted as sucih, as brahman. After chanting for six months or one year, it is supposed that he has already become purified. Now he should be recognized that he is purified. So this sacred thread me

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By Kulavati Krishnapriya Devi Dasi

His Holiness Giriraj Swami has unveiled his latest book, Dancing White Elephants: Traveling with Srila Prabhupada in India, August 1970–March 1972, published by BBT Australia and launched in Vrindavan on November 14 during the auspicious Govardhana-puja celebrations. 

Based in Carpinteria, California, Giriraj Swami is one of the most senior sannyasis in ISKCON—and a dear disciple of Srila Prabhupada, who, having read an article by him in Back to Godhead in Gor

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Sri Govardhana Puja by Giriraj Swami


We shall read from Srimad-Bhagavatam, Canto Two, Chapter Seven: “Scheduled Incarnations.”


gopair makhe pratihate vraja-viplavaya
  deve ’bhivarsati pasun krpaya riraksuh
dhartocchilindhram iva sapta-dinani sapta-
  varso mahidhram anaghaika-kare salilam


When the cowherd men of Vrndavana, under instruction of Krsna, stopped offering sacrifice to the heavenly king, Indra, the whole tract of land known as Vraja was threatened with being washed away by constant heavy rains for s

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A Mother’s Love by Giriraj Swami


“There are very exalted spiritual understandings in Krishna consciousness. They are not fictional, imaginary, or concocted. They are facts, and every devotee can have the privilege to understand and indeed take part in Krishna’s pastimes if he is actually advanced. We should not think that the privilege given to Mother Yasoda is not available to us. Everyone can have a similar privilege. If one loves Krishna as one’s child, then one will have such a privilege, because the mother has the most lo

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Akshaya Tritiya by Giriraj Swami


The day known as Aksaya-tritiya occurs on the third (tritiya) day of the waxing moon in the month of Vaisakha. Every second of this blessed day is completely auspicious, and so there is no consideration of any one period (muhurta) being better than another. Aksaya means “inexhaustible”; anything a person undertakes on the day of Aksaya-tritiya is bound to succeed, especially the performance of devotional activities, which guarantee inexhaustible benefit.

It is said that Aksaya-tritiya is the

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Sri Rama Navami by Giriraj Swami


Sri Rama-navami
A Talk by Giriraj Swami
April 6, 2001
Ojai, California

The original Personality of Godhead is Krishna, and He manifests Himself in different forms. One such manifestation is Lord Ramachandra. When Krishna appeared in His original form He acted as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, whereas when He appeared as Rama He acted as the ideal king. In fact, the pastimes of Lord Rama display ideals in many ways. Lord Rama appeared as the son of King Dasaratha, and Dasaratha acted as the

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Sri Hanuman, a great devotee in the form of a monkey, prays, “Since Lord Sri Ramacandra is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vasudeva, He is not attached to anything in this material world. He is the most beloved Supersoul of all self-realized souls, and He is their very intimate friend. He is full of all opulences. . . .

“One cannot establish a friendship with the Supreme Lord Ramacandra on the basis of material qualities such as one’s birth in an aristocratic family, one’s personal beauty,

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I met with the President of the Republic of Mauritius, His Excellency Sri Prithvirajsing Roopun, G.C.S.K, at the State House, Le Reduit. He was pleased to accept from me Srila Prabhupada’s Bhagavad-gita As It Is and my I’ll Build You a Temple: The Juhu Story and Life’s Final Exam: Death and Dying from the Vedic Perspective. He is a pious man, is very encouraging and supportive of ISKCON, and has taken darshan of Sri Sri Radha-Rasabihari in Juhu and Sri Sri Radha-Radhanath in Durban. He wished m

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By Giriraj Swami 

Last night I was blessed to visit with my dear godbrother His Holiness Partha Sarathi Das Goswami at his residence at Govardhana. Upon my arrival, he graciously greeted me with the verse from Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.13.10)

bhavad-vidha bhagavatas
  tirtha-bhutaù svayam vibho
tirthi-kurvanti tirthani
  svantah-sthena gadabhrta

“My Lord, devotees like your good self are verily holy places personified. Because you carry the Personality of Godhead within your heart, you turn all plac

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End of life care and bhakti wisdom – Interview with HH Giriraj Swami 

HH Giriraj Swami was born Glenn Phillip Teton, the only son of a respected Chicago lawyer who was later appointed judge. In March of 1969, while studying at Brandeis University in Boston, he met His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the founder-acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), from whom, he felt, he learned more in one brief exchange than he had learned in his many year

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Today, on Father’s Day, some devotees thought of me and wrote to me. I thought of Srila Prabhupada and a letter he wrote to a disciple: “You have accepted me as father, so I have also accepted you as my dear and real son. Relationship of father and son on spiritual platform is real and eternal; on the material platform such relationship is ephemeral and temporary. Although I cannot give you anything as father, still I can pray to Krishna for your more and more advancement in Krishna consciousne

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Yamuna-devi — Serving Vani and Vapuh


By Giriraj Swami

Srila Prabhupada’s beloved disciple Yamuna-devi dasi passed away on Saphala-ekadasi.

There is so much to be said about Srimati Yamuna-devi dasi.

In October of 1970 I was one of a group of Srila Prabhupada’s disciples from America going to join him in India. On the way, we stopped in Brussels, and it was there, in an apartment, that I first met Yamuna-devi—and Malati and Syamasundara (I had met Gurudas before that, in Boston). Upon entering, I could immediately feel their intens

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8521990900?profile=RESIZE_584xThe book being offered to Sri Sri Radha-Rasabihari in Juhu on the temple opening's 43rd anniversary

By Nanda Kishor Das

On January 14, 2021, the much-awaited book I’ll Build You a Temple: The Juhu Story by Giriraj Swami was launched. This landmark book stands as a historical document of the blood, sweat, tears, love, and devotion that went into building the Juhu temple under Srila Prabhupada’s guidance in the 1970s. The celebration of the book’s advent coincided with the 43rd anniversary of the

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