latest blog (36)

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From Back to Godhead

In many places in his books Srila Prabhupada describes the wonders of prasadam, food prepared with devotion and offered to Krishna. Prabhupada discusses such merits of prasadam as how it effectively immunizes one against the contamination of the material nature, how it frees one from becoming a ghost after death, and even how it is considered ecstatic nectar from the lips of Lord Krishna. In the Chaitanya-charitamrita (Madhya-lila, 4.93, purport) Srila Prabhupada writes:

Th

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In the 1960s, literary and media critic Marshall McLuhan coined the phrase “global village” to describe the extension of people’s frames of reference and sense of responsibility beyond their immediate surroundings, or “village.” This growing sense of connectedness, McLuhan proposed, is the natural result of a world in which electronics enable our senses (at least the senses of sight and hearing—for now) to immediately experience that which is taking place across the globe, just as we would in o

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From Back to Godhead

Sri Brahma-samhita is one of the oldest Vedic scriptures, and it is accepted by Lord Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu (an incarnation of Krsna Himself who appeared 484 years ago) as the essence of Vaisnava (Krsna conscious) philosophy. The first verse of the Fifth Chapter of Sri Brahma-samhita reads: “Krsna, who is known as Govinda, is the Supreme Godhead. He has an eternal, blissful spiritual body. He is the origin of all. He has no other origin, and He is the Prime Cause of

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The Supreme Mercy of The two Lords

In Vedanta Sutra there is a famous – “anandamyo bhyasat”. This sloka explains the constitutional position of every living being. Everyone is looking for pleasure. The soul and it’s natural condition is Sachidananda, eternal, full of knowledge, and full of bliss, full of ecstasy. Therefore the heart of every living being is constantly seeking beauty, charm, and ecstasy. Therefore the Lord descends into this world to distribute prema bhakti divine love. Becaus

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There are various kinds of yoga; such as karma-yoga, based on purifying our activities; Jnana-yoga, based on acquiring spiritual knowledge and insight; Raja-yoga, the mystical yoga system; and Bhakti-yoga, attaining union with God through love and devotion. From these yoga systems, additional systems have also developed. But these four basic forms of yoga are all discussed in the primary and essential Vedic text of the Bhagavad-gita. But out of all of them, Lord Krishna specifically directs u

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Any Colour You Like by Jagabandhu das

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My earliest memories of religion in this life are of my father (my first guru) teaching me about the Great Spirit worshiped by American Indians (“Wakan-Tanka” Who also undergoes quadruple expansion just like the all pervading yet personal Vasudev). He also taught me that I should be respectful of other people’s beliefs irrespective of race and creed. And never look down upon anyone. Ever.

Even though his mother, my paternal grandmother was a devout Baptist (my maternal grandmother was a devout

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From Back to Godhead

Academic knowledge provides information of the world, but spiritual knowledge awards us eternal liberation

One of my friends in college was known for his immense general knowledge. He knew the names of all recent Hollywood and Bollywood movies, the actors, directors, and producers of each movie, and the winners of Oscar and Filmfare awards from every year. In sports, he knew the winners of each Grand Slam tennis tournament from every year as well as similar information abou

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From Back to Godhead 

For anyone interested in spiritual progress,
gambling is more than just a harmless amusement.

High’s convenience store is bustling with last-minute shoppers picking up odds and ends for a holiday dinner. Having run out of milk, I find myself in the crowded store, standing in a line that wraps around the food aisle. I resign myself to the waiting, and chant the Hare Krsna mantra softly to myself.

An elderly shabbily dressed woman at the counter draws my attention. She’s frant

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We all have heard Srila Prabhupada warn us that television and media strengthen our materialistic mentality and divert us from service to Krishna—our consciousness being formed largely by our association. However, it is often difficult to keep our children away from the influences that are so pervasive in our culture.

Aggression and Television Viewing: The problems associated with children watching TV go beyond moral and spiritual concerns. There is mounting evidence of the many negative psycho

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We Do Not Tell Lies Do We?

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By Kesava Krsna dasa

Have we ever embellished a telling of a lie with an assortment of trivial details to disguise the actual truth? Have we ever pretended to be someone we never were, by exuding a persona larger than ourselves? Are there any angels among us who can boldly claim to have never fibbed; ever – even to get out of an awkward situation?

The truth is out; there are no foolproof ways of telling if someone is lying or not. Shifty eyes, truth drugs and lie detectors can provide clues bu

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Don’t we just delight in books and movies wherein destruction wreaks havoc in one form or other, be it by nuclear bombs, disease, twisters, volcanic eruptions, giant creatures or alien invaders. If you do, then you’ll love The World Without Us, authored by Alan Weisman. Reviewed by Janet Maslin in The Arts section of the August 13th NYT, the book is a “what if” account of what would happen to the world if mankind would suddenly disappear.

How long would our cities and achievements last without

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The Brain As Holodeck

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The spiritual or eternal self is not the sensations which the soul experiences within and from the body. “yantra rudrani mayaya”. What we directly experience is not actually the external hard physical material world, but a REPRESENTATION built by the mind, within the networks of the body’s brain, nervous and glandular systems, life air, etc., but primarily the brain, of the occupied body, exactly like a person experiencing the holo-deck from Star Trek fame. Subject, also, to defects.

By Tamoha

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Saradiya: Swamiji? When we go to Krsnaloka to be with Krsna…

Prabhupada: Just see this girl, little girl, is aiming for going back to Krsnaloka. Just see.

(Srila Prabhupada lecture, Montreal, June 16, 1968)

Prabhupada: How you are feeling, Saradiya? Nice?

Saradiya: I’m fine.

Prabhupada: You are going to Europe? No? You have got to attend your school? That’s nice.

(Srila Prabhupada conversation, Montreal, October 27, 1968)

Saradiya: Simply by Your Divine Grace, on Krsna’s appearance day in S

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The opening salvo of the preface for The Nectar of Instruction begins thus: “The Krsna consciousness movement is conducted under the supervision of Srila Rupa Goswami.” What does it mean to have this role? How actively involved is Srila Rupa Goswami in our everyday lives? Is he literally supervising all of us?

Before understanding this supervisory function, we need to know who Srila Rupa Goswami is in relation to ourselves, our spiritual masters, and the previous acaryas going back to the time

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If You Only Live Once by Kesava Krsna Dasa

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Many people in the world think they live only once. With only one life, how does this affect lives and society? How is a one-life concept going to affects ambitions, goals and outlook? There is one-life spirituality and multi-birth spirituality – which of these enable a full understanding of the soul, and why good or bad things happen? Is God to blame, or us? If there is no God, why do people lament the loss of loved ones if they are simply bags of chemicals?

With only one life, there must be a

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A long, long time ago when I was not an ISKCON devotee I developed a growing interest in spiritual life. After many years of taking drugs and attending rock concerts I had become sick of life.

I had been manager in several companies I worked for, most of the time I had more money than I needed and I had freedom and independence. Somehow I was not satisfied. I started wondering if real happiness existed. I discovered that no matter how hard I tried I just could not break free from certain activi

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The Heart of a Vaishnava

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Back to Godhead March/April 2012

By Vishakha Devi Dasi

An appreciation of the extraordinarily devoted life of Srila Prabhupada’s beloved disciple Yamuna Devi Dasi (1942–2011).

Sitting on the front porch of her Oregon home, Joan Campanella was delighting in the Pacific thunderstorm drenching the coastline when, with surprise, she noted the mailman on his rounds despite the foul weather. Bent against the wind, rain dripping from his long hair, the mailman walked up her porch steps, reached i

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Westerners, in general, take too much for granted and are not careful enough in social dealings.
Modern Western society conditions one to artificially come too close, too soon without respect for one another. 
Modern Western society respects nothing beyond fame, money and sexual prowess; it is the antithesis of Vaishnava culture.
Prematurely judging others and jumping to conclusions are other negative traits found almost everywhere, which most of us must admit. These traits, born of the mode

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We all know about avoiding prohibited foods, but may not know why, or what effects they produce. Becoming aware of such bad effects will cause us to think extra before eating more “delicious” sin.

We understand that there are difficulties faced by certain householders, especially if both husband and wife work, or are being surrounded by indifferent family members. Whatever the situation, it is worth trying to place oneself in an advantageous eating situation with what “little time” we have.

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The Special Kindness of Lord Caitanya

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By Krishna Dasa Kaviraja Goswami

From Back to Godhead

Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, an incarnation of the Supreme Lord, appeared in India in the fifteenth century. His mission was to freely distribute pure love of God to everyone without considering who was qualified or unqualified. He predicted that the whole world would one day hear the chanting of the Lord’s holy names. The first of the following three narratives is excerpted from Srila Prabhupada’s introduction to Srimad-Bhagavatam. The fina

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