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Introductory Handbook For Krsna Consciousness

Wednesday, 13 November 2019 / Published in Articles / 3,539 views

INTRODUCTORY HANDBOOK FOR KRSNA CONSCIOUSNESS

This handbook and accompanying curriculum, which are to be used en
jointly, have been compiled under the direct order of the Governing
Body Commission of the International Society for Krsna Consciousness.
Their contents are based wholely on the inspiration, guidance and wis-
dom of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, the founder acarya
of ISKCON. This humble attempt has been made in the service of any
aspiring devotee and future disciple of the authorised ISKCON Acaryas.
We pray to Srila Prabhupada, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta and Srila Rupa Go-
svami that this work may be strictly in the line of the parampara and
full of transcendental potency for the eternal benefit of one who ma-
kes use of it.
Your humble servant, Rohininandana das Adhikari
(May 14th 1984/498 Caitanya Era, Appearance Day of Lord Nrsimhadeva)

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Part I Introduction Page 1
Part II Daily Life
(1) Awakening Page 2
(2) Applying Tilak Page 2
(3) Japa Meditation Pages 2-3
(4) Offering obeisances to Vaisnavas Page 3
(5) Entering the Temple Pages 3-4
(6) Mangala Arati and Temple Programme Pages 4-5
(7) Prasada Page 5
(8) Service in the Temple Pages 5-6
(9) The Bhakta Class Page 6
(10) Harinam Samkirtan Pages 6-7
Part III Appendix
(1) Faith and Discrimination Page 7
(2) Casual becomes Casualty Page 7
(3) Idle Talking Page 7
(4) Mundane Friendships Pages 7-8
(5) Answering the telephone Page 8
(6) Istaghosti Page 8
(7) Vaisnava Etiquette Page 8

Part I Introduction

We would like to welcome you to the Introductory Cours for Krsna
Consciousness and suggest that you study this handbook which is supp-
lementary to the daily curriculum and which we hope you will find use-
ful.
The purpose of this course is basically four-fold:
(1) To give you an idea what Krsna conscious life is, so that you can
decide if and how you want to commit yourself further
(2) To teach you the correct attitude and approach to Krsna Conscious-
ness
(3) To help you make strong and swift progress in spiritual life
(4) To give fundamental procedures and regulations, thus creating a
firm basis for the future

Generally the course lasts three months and during that time one can
attain a fairly thorough understanding of the following: cleanliness,
harinam samkirtan, preaching, rules and regulations, Vedic philosophy,
Vaisnava behaviour, devotional service, Krsna meditation etc.
We have a very structured daily schedule, which, although regulated,
embodies the actual principle of freedom from material existence. Eve-
rything is completely in accordance with the ancient scriptural (sa-
stric) tradition of Vedic India. The more diligently one applies one-
self to this process the more benefit and realisation one will attain.

We should try to mould the activities of our lives in such a way that
we remember Krsna at all times. This is Krsna Consciousness. Therefore
the all-inclusive principle is, “always think of Krsna and never for-
get Him”. Within this one principle is contained all other principles
of devotional service.
Actually, devotional service or “bhakti-yoga” is the eternal way of
life of every living entity, presently lying dormant in the heart. In
the scriptures there is the statement: “it is the prime duty of per-
sons who want to become fearless, to hear, chant and remember the Su-
preme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, Who is to be remembered and never
forgotten, not even for a single moment.”
Therefore, if the devotee is desirous of associating with the Lord,
Who is the Supreme Pure, he has to undergo the process of purifica-
tion. One who strictly adheres to the Lord’s instructions as outlined
in the Vedic scriptures becomes very dear to Him. Lord Krsna says
” As they surrender unto Me I reward them accordingly.” The devotee
tries his best to follow these instructions. To assist him in the pro-
cess of purification, it is essential that he follow the following
regulative principles:
1. No illicit sex life
2. No gambling, including idle sporting and speculative pursuits
3. No intoxicants, which includes no tea, coffee, etc.
4. No meat eating, which includes no fish, eggs, etc.
5. The chanting of the Lord’s Holy Name, the Hare-Krsna-Maha-
Mantra: Hare Krsna Hare Krsna/ Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rame/ Rama Rama Hare Hare
At least 16 rounds a day.

The underlying principle of all one’s activities is the chanting of
the Holy Name. This is specifically recommended by Lord Caitanya Him-
self – “in this age of Kali there is no other way, no other way, no
other way of making spiritual advancement than chanting the Holy Names
of the Lord.”
A Krsna conscious person, even if he is not educated by the university
standard, can immediately give up illicit sex life, gambling, meat
eating and intoxication whereas those who are not in Krsna conscious-
ness, although very highly educated materially, are often drunkards,
meat eaters, sex mongers and gamblers. These are practical proofs of
how a Krsna conscious person becomes highly elevated in good quali-
ties, whereas a person not in Krsna consciousness, cannot attain the
same perfection.
What follows may seem at first too much to learn and practice all at
once! So don’t worry because it always becomes clear for someone in
the course of time, and please feel free to ask any questions you may
have. (Any word that you don’t know can be found in the Vedic dictio-
nary in Week 11 of the curriculum).

Part II Daily Life
(1) Upon awaking, devotees immediately like to remember their real
spiritual position as a servant of the spiritual master and Lord
Krsna. Due to the ignorance of sleep the mind has been roaming in il-
lusion so now it should be firmly brought back into Krsna conscious-
ness. Devotees therefore pay their obeisances to their spiritual ma-
ster, and next remember the Presiding Deities of the Temple, by enthu-
siastically chanting Their Names. As one proceeds to the bathroom it
is very helpful and blissful for yourself and others, to loudly chant
the Panca-Tattva-maha-mantra and the Hare-Krsna-maha-mantra (as long
as everyone else around you is also meant to be rising at the same
time!)
(2) After showering and partially dressing oneself, one applies
tilak which decorates the body as a Temple of the Lord. The mark on
the forehead from the root of the nose to the hairline represents the
foot- print of the Lotus Foot of the Lord and the leaf shape extending
about three quarters down the nose represents Tulasi Devi. One should
mix tilak in the palm of one’s left hand (or premix it in a small con-
tainer) and apply it with the ring finger of the right hand to make
markings on 12 parts of the body, whilst chanting the following man-
tras:
(* when applying tilak on the right side of the body transfer it from
the ball of the right finger onto the ball of the left ring finger. *)

THE FOREHEAD……………..OM KESAVAYA NAMAH
THE BELLY………………..OM NARAYANAYA NAMAH
THE CHEST………………..OM MADHAVAYA NAMAH
THE THROAT……………….OM GOVINDAYA NAMAH
RIGHT WAIST………………OM VISNAVE NAMAH
RIGHT ARM………………..OM MADHUSUDANAYA NAMAH
RIGHT SHOULDER……………OM TRIVIKRAMAYA NAMAH
LEFT WAIST……………….OM VAMANAYA NAMAH
LEFT ARM…………………OM SRIDHARAYA NAMAH
LEFT SHOULDER…………….OM HRSIKESAYA NAMAH
UPPER BACK……………….OM PADMANABHAYA NAMAH
LOWER BACK……………….OM DAMODARAYA NAMAH

Whatever tilak is left over should be wiped in the region of the sikha
with the mantra “OM VASUDEVAYA NAMAH” (a large excess can be returned
to the pot or block of tilak). You can read more about tilak on pages
54 and 73f of the Nectar of Devotion.
Footnote: if one takes rest for more than an hour during the day, upon
rising one should shower and reapply tilak. If one rests for less time
one can simply wash one’s face and mouth etc.

(3) Japa Meditation
If we hear the Holy Name of the Lord with great attention then the
rest of the day will go very nicely, our minds being spiritually sur-
charged, purified by the Name. If one is serious about becoming spiri-
tually advanced and pure he will be serious about daily japa. Devotees
like to chant all their rounds with as little interruption as possible
from sleeping, talking or a wandering mind. To use the japa beads hold
them in your right hand between the thumb and upper side of the middle
finger (overleap). Chanting is began on the nearest bead to the “Krs-
na” bead. Chant the complete maha-mantra aloud:”Hare Krsna, Hare Krs-
na, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Ha-
re”, making sure to pronounce each word distinctly.
Then with your thumb, pull your beads through your hand to the next
bead and again chant the maha-mantra. Now move to the next bead and
the fourth and fifth etc. chanting the complete mantra on each bead.
Continue in this way until you have chanted on all 108 beads and have
come again to the Krsna bead. Now stop! The Krishna bead should not be
chanted on or crossed over. You have just chanted one round!
Next, turn your beads around so that you are prepared to chant in the
opposite direction. Once again begin chanting on the next bead to the
Krishna bead and then proceed as before into the second round. As a
devotee chants the mantra on each bead he slightly moves the bead from
side to side with the thumb. When you become more experienced in chan-
ting it will take you about 7 or 8 minutes to complete a round. There
is no limit to the number of rounds you can chant on your beads, but
devotees in the temple chant a minimum of 16 rounds a day. This fixing
of the mind upon God is the basic principle of all meditation, and
therefore vibration of the transcendental sound of Hare Krishna maha
mantra is a simple, authorised, and effective method of transcendental
meditation.
Although the Vedic scriptures mention many different forms of yoga,
such as hatha yoga, raja-yoga, and jnana-yoga, they also conclusively
state:
harer nama harer nama
harer namaiva kevalam
kalau nasty eva nasty eva
nasty eva gatir anyatha

“In this age of Kali there is no other way, no other way, no other way
to achieve liberation than to chant the Holy Name of God” (Brihan Na-
radiya Purana). “Hare” means unto Mother “Hara” or Lord Krsna’s perso-
nal pleasure potency, Srimati Radharani. “Krsna” means the all-attrac-
tive Lord, or one who stops (“na”) the repitition or cultivation
(“Krsi”) of birth and death. Or: “Krs” also refers to the highest ple-
asure and “na” (with point under the ‘n’) means ?????????????????????
“Rama” means the source of all enjoyment. When we chant Hare Krsna we
are praying ” O energy of the Lord (Hare), o Lord (Krsna and Rama)
please engage me in Your service!”.
Devotees feel very humble when they chant, realising their insignifi-
cant spiritual identity, their fallen position in the material world,
and Lord Krsna’s wonderful kindness upon them; and therefore they fee-
lingly address the Lord, begging Him to once again be allowed into the
realm of His service. Lord Krsna is nondifferent from His Holy Name
and hence great care and attention should be given by one who is try-
ing to chant.

(4) Offering Obeisances to Other Devotees
One should always be prepared to offer one’s obeisances to any ot-
her devotee. One’s devotional service cannot mature without the asso-
ciation of devotees. One should deal with other devotees in a humble
state of mind and with some service attitude. When we say “Prabhu” we
should mean it! One can say “please accept my humble obeisances” and
bow down, say the prayer to the Vaisnavas (see song sheet). If there
is some quarrel with another devotee always try to resolve it by ta-
king a humble position, and paying obeisances to each other — if done
properly this simple action will always completely clear the air. In
order to avoid any unnecessary friction the best rule of thumb is that
new bhaktas should not give any practical instruction to each other at
all. If you notice someone doing something you consider incorrect you
cah always inform the bhakta director, who is especially qualified to
give proper guidance and correction etc. This is not being a “tell-
tale” of a “sneak” but rather the proper attitude for one who really
cares about his own advancement and the spiritual advancement of ot-
hers.

(5) Entering the Temple
First remove your shoes and either ring the bell or knock on
Krsna’s door loudly chanting the names of the respective Deities. Upon
entering the temple leave one’s book bag (containing your Bhagavad-
gita, pen and note pad, which you should take to every class) on one
side. Then pay obeisances at the feet of the founder acarya of ISKCON,
Srila Prabhupada (Of course in the beginning you can read your song
sheet as you bow down).

(6) Mangala Arati and Temple Programme
After paying our obeisances in this way we carry on chanting japa
until it is time for Mangala Arati when a conchshell is blown, the
curtains open, and you can see the beautiful form of the Lord dressed
in His night attire. The pujari or priest the offers various parapher-
nalia: incense, a lamp, water, a handkerchief, a flower, a whisk and a
fan. Just before this ceremony the Lord has been offered some milk
sweet delicacies, so when He has eaten to His satisfaction (although
of course He does not need to eat, but accepts the love and devotion
of His devotees) the arati ceremony is performed and all the devotees
sing, play various instruments, clap and dance jubilantly, with arms
raised like Lord Caitanya, for His further pleasure. In trying to
please Lord Krsna by enthusiastic worship, the soul, or in other words
one’s self becomes satisfied. Sometimes we may not feel like dancing
so exuberantly early in the morning but if we do it anyway for His
happiness then we will make great advancement and also share in the
Lord’s unlimited spiritual bliss.
Of course, you will also be trying to follow what’s going on by using
your song sheet! It may be difficult to do everything at once. Occa-
sionally a new devotee will feel bewildered by seeing all the strange
words and may prefer just to listen and then join in with the chanting
of Hare Krsna, which always forms at least part, if not the major part
of our chanting. One can actually become a pure devotee of Lord Krsna
simply by chanting Hare Krsna aloud, in the company of devotees. All
the other songs and prayers are expansions of the Hare Krsna mantra.
If you find the words difficult to follow, don’t worry – we sing the
same songs every day in the same order and also you can read through
the song sheet in your own time and study it more thoroughly when we
discuss it during our bhakta classes. We find the daily repetition of
these spiritual songs becomes more and more relishable as the years go
by – that is the nature of anything which is actually spiritual. Devo-
tees accept the offered lamp, the good flavour of the incense, the
flowers, and the garlands and caranamrta, as extremely auspicious
items because they are prasada, or the mercy of the Lord.
Next we sing a prayer to Lord Nrsimhadeva, a loving but fierce incar-
nation of the Lord, for the protection of the spiritual master and our
ISKCON Movement. And then we attend Tulasi arati. Tulasi Devi is a
small tree. Usually a plant body is a low, ignorant birth for the soul
to take. But not so with Tulasi – she is a pure devotee of Krsna who
has taken this form for the pleasure of the Lord (her leaves are an
important part of Deity worship) and for our spiritual benefit. She is
far more conscious than you are! When she leaves her body, devotees
use her twigs and trunk to make neck beads and japa beads (see Nectar
of Devotion page 101 for more about her). After the more senior devo-
tees have offered a few drops of water to the Tulasi plant, you may
also take your turn. Purify your right hand, take up the spoon from
the small brass pot and pour a little water on the soil, being very
careful not TO TOUCH or KNOCK her. After replacing the spoon you can
touch her base and then touch your head out of respect for a wonderful
devotee of the Lord. In the spiritual world everyone, in every form,
is completely absorbed in the loving service of the Lord! How much can
we really know by speculating with our paltry material brains?
After you have completed all or most of your rounds (at least 14) if
there is still time you can do some reading. After the japa period we
greet the Deities, Who have been bathed, dressed and offered fresh
garlands. Simply hear the wonderful Govindam prayers and let your eyes
gaze at the Lord’s form, from the feet upwards, and so become puri-
fied. During this time we also separately pay our respectful obeisan-
ces to each set of the Deities.
Also we worship the spiritual master, and founder of ISKCON, Srila
Prabhupada. The spiritual master is the representative of God and is
therefore offered the same worship as God, which he accepts as his
duty on behalf of the Lord so we can advance in Krsna Consciousness.
You can also offer a flower, after the other devotees, and then bow
down at his lotus feet.
At some point the scores of the devotees efforts on Sankirtan are usu-
ally announced.
When the devotees render service in the temple or outside by distribu-
ting books or collecting money (Laksmi) they are working for the plea-
sure of the Deity, on the order of the Deity’s representative. There-
fore the results of their efforts are made known to the Deities, and
all the devotees also like to hear and glorify the devotee’s preaching
endeveavors, however materially small or big they may appear.
Before class we always chant a favourite bhajan of Srila Prabhupada’s
called Jaya Radha Madhava. Then the devotees will begin chanting the
sanskrit text written on the black board. Try to follow as best as you
can. Some of the older devotees will lead the chanting of the verse
and if there is opportunity afterwards you may also attempt to chant
it on your own, if you feel able.
During class try to sit up straight and be as attentive as possible;
it is also a good practice to take notes. If you feel sleepy it is
best to stand up. With a little practice and self discipline one can
learn to be awake and bright in the class even if one does feel tired.
Hearing means straining to understand and absorb what is being said,
not simply listening. After class is over we pay obeisances once again
before leaving the temple room.

(7) Prasada
Prasada is very special; it is nondifferent from Krsna. Therefore
devotees don’t just “eat” it, they honour or respect it. Of course
devotees enjoy eating prasada, like anything, but they do it in the
consciousness that “How wonderful Krsna is for appearing before me in
this way, He is so kind” – Before respecting prasada we should chant
the prayer “Sarira avidya jal” (see song sheet). Then say the obeisan-
ces prayer to the spiritual master.
ISKCON is sometimes called the “kitchen” religion because of our great
stress on prasada for both eating and distributing. Just by taking
prasada in the right meditative way on can make unlimited spiritual
advancement! Eat as much as you like and then more if you want – Srila
Prabhupada used to make his disciples eat up to the neck when he first
started the movement, which you can read about in the “Srila Prabhupa-
da Lilamrta” Volume 2.
Be careful though, that you don’t put too much on your plate so that
there is something left at the end – if there is you should still try
to eat it anyway. We don’t like to waste even one grain of rice! Anot-
her point is that devotees completely depend on Lord Krsna for their
maintenance – so there is never a need for us to “hide” prasada. We
can always be confident that He will provide for us amply every day.
So don’t keep any prasada in your locker etc, which may also attract
mice and insects, because this does not show much faith in Krsna.
We should only keep things which we are currently using, without wor-
rying for the future. Lord Krsna is the Supreme Personality of Godhe-
ad, the Supreme Maintainer of everyone, even the animals and insects,
so surely He will take care of someone who is trying to become His
devotee! To experience that Krsna is trustworthy you have to put your
trust in Him!
Prasada should be served – devotees like to serve each other and are
not very enthusiastic to serve themselves. If you want some more and
there is no one to serve you you should go and wash your hands before
using the serving utensils, which should also not be touched to anyo-
ne’s eating plate. Always use your right hand for both serving and
eating. (If you want to break a capati in two, for instance, it can be
done by using the right hand only).
If one has a regulated diet of Krsna prasada (not eating between the
meals etc.) one will be healthy, peaceful, full of energy, and happy
to know that one is gradually conquering over the material energy.
Wash your hands before and after eating and don’t forget to rinse your
mouthe and clean your teeth after meals! When you finish prasada once
again chant the prayer to the spiritual master.

(8) Service in the Temple
If your service is cleaning, practice keeping your mind absorbed on
the spiritual platform by chanting or thinking of the class in the
morning, or planning ways you can do the cleaning job better and bet-
ter every day. If you are cutting vegetables in the kitchen remember
that Krsna’s kitchen is meant to be clean like the Deity room, so make
sure that your clothes are also very clean. The cooks are preparing
varieties of dishes for Lord Krsna’s pleasure and therefore no one
enjoys the food in any way, even by smelling, before it is offered to
Him.
Any service you may be given is actually very special. Srila Prabhupa-
da writes in “Teachings of Queen Kunti” that the devotee who cleans
anywhere in the temple, even the bathroom, is as good as the pujari
who bathes the Deities. This is because every square inch of the
Lord’s temple is non-different from Him. Your service is given to you
by the arrangement of Lord Krsna as a result of your sincere request
to the Lord to be engaged once again in His service, and therefore
when Krsna’s representatives such as the Temple Commander or the Bhak-
ta Director comes to you requesting something to be done you should
think “I am being requested to do this personally by Lord Krsna Him-
self.” This understanding is further explained in the purport to
Chapter 18 Text 57 of the Gita. You must be sure that the person re-
questing you to do something is really authorised to instruct you. If
you are not sure you can say something like “prabhu, I’m perfectly
willing to do what you request but at present I’ve been asked to do
this, so could you check with the Bhakta Director first?” Of course a
small thing, that takes only one or two minutes to help someone out,
is another matter!

(9) The Bhakta Class
Please be at class on time. Be early if possible. There is so litt-
le time and so much to learn in only three months! During the classes
one is encouraged to enquire very thoroughly, in an all-round way
about the subject matter under discussion.
Srila Prabhupada used to say that we should discuss the philosophy
until it is threadbare and Lord Krsna also says in the Gita “paripras-
nena”, one should enquire all around” (Bg 4.34).
In order to become a little familiar with the Sanskrit, the depth of
the philosophy of the Gita and to enhance your own future preaching,
we have selected some verses for you to try and memorise, either Sans-
krit or English, or both, at the rate of one per week. Try and under-
stand exactly what the verse is about by studying the meaning of each
word, and repeat the whole verse … there are many opportunities
throughout the day when you can practice. These verses are like
friends who are always with us – sometimes the remembrance of a verse
when there is difficulty can save the entire the situation! Written
work may also be set, to help you further assimilate the philosophy,
with occasional essays and tests.

(10) Harinam Samkirtan
If you get ready quickly it’s a good time to fit in a little extra
reading in the van before everyone gets in and we drive off. However,
make sure that your clothes look neat and clean, you have fresh tilak
on and your shoes are also clean and smart.
Going out to chant on the streets, distributing magazines, leaflets
and prasada, and talking to someone who is a little interested is a
very good opportunity to see clearly the difference between material
and spiritual life. The things we hear about in the classes and read
in the books become ‘alive’ when we go out to preach. We have to be
careful though that our mind doesn’t become distracted by the tempora-
ry facade of the material energy. If you notice your mind wandering,
simply look at the devotee in front and pray to Krsna to help you re-
member Him. Sometimes you can tell if someone is losing concentra-
tion – if he is playing the karatals they inadvertantly begin to speed
up! Besides your own benefit, if you try very sincerely to concentrate
purely on the Holy Name, along with the other devotees, then the po-
tency of the chanting party will radically increase and all the condi-
tioned souls will be benefitted. They may not intellectually realise
what is happening, but the Holy Name is reaching their souls and awa-
king them spiritually. Once a person told us, “in the morning the city
corporation come and clean the streets and in the afternoon you people
come and clean the atmosphere!” Many people very much appreciate the
chanting party and if we don’t go to a particular place for a while
they begin to miss us, and when we return, ask where we’ve been. Actu-
ally, the chanting party is a very important part of our Introductory
Course and by understanding samkirtan you can understand the entire
Krsna Consciousness movement.
In the evening we shower, attend sundara arati, Bhagavad Gita class
etc. before taking rest. As you can see and experience, the day is
very regulated indeed. This is called ‘sadhana’ bhakti – following the
rules and regulations of Bhakti yoga so that one can come to the plat-
form of spontaneous enthusiasm to serve Krsna 24 hours a day (This is
explained in Nectar of Devotion pages 20-22). As a child’s ability to
walk is inherent within her and simply takes practice to become mani-
fest, similarly our love for Krsna is already there within us.

Part III Appendix
(1) Faith and Discrimination
Sometimes a person visiting the temple may think that everyone li-
ving there is a pure devotee of Lord Krsna and consequently he is ne-
glectful of taking care of his money, etc. and if something disappears
or is stolen he becomes very upset and loses his faith in Krsna cons-
ciousness. However, this shows a very shallow unerstanding of our
Krsna consciousness movement. Firstly, we are a preaching movement and
we have an open house for anyone who is a little sincere and inter-
ested. Of course, most of the time the people who come are sincere,
but sometimes someone will come, take advantage of our hospitality and
try to steal something. We try our best to guard against this sort of
thing by carefully screening our guests, but occasionally something
does mysteriously ‘disappear’. Therefore we always recommend that all
guests and new bhaktas hand in all valuable things like money and pas-
sport, cameras etc., to be locked away or else to always keep these
items on their person. Also, another point is that the temple is a
spiritual hospital for people who are contaminated by the material
influences of lust, greed, anger, illusion, etc. and consequently the
devotees living in the temple are at various stages of purificationl
Everyone who is serious in taking up Krsna consciousness is approa-
ching perfection, but someone may have a long way to go and someone
else may not be undergoing the process so seriously. Therefore, it is
sometimes apparent that a person who has been living in the temple for
just a few months is more advanced in spiritual life than someone who
has been there a few years. We should therefore be both intelligent
and broadminded when viewing the activities of other devotees.

(2) Casual becomes Casualty
If someone is not very serious in the following the principles of
Krsna consciousness, or in the beginning follows them seriously but
later becomes slack and whimsical, he is placing himself in great dan-
ger of slipping away from spiritual life. If you want to follow the
sun you have to keep moving. Similarly, in spiritual life you must
keep advancing enthusiastically, otherwise one may again become at-
tracted by the darkness of Maya. On a practical level, don’t be lazy
or casual in your application of the principles you are learning and
you will never become a ‘casualty’ again, lost in the material world.

(3) Idle Talking
Try to inspire yourself and the other new bhaktas by the quality of
your speech. This is explained in the 17th chapter of Bhagavad Gita.
Try to make your speech spiritual and not mundane. Sometimes new bhak-
tas have a habit of gradually slipping into mundane conversation,
starting by talking ‘shop talk’ or talk which is not directly related
to Krsna, such as all the details of the sankirtan van’s engine, or
about all one’s previous medical history, etc., etc. Srila Bhakti-
siddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Maharaj, the spiritual master of Srila
Prabhupada, used to say, “Idle words breed idle thoughts; idle action
breeds birth, old age, disease and death!”

(4) Mundane Friendships
Sometimes two of the members of the Introductory Course who are a
little weak and casual about Krsna consciousness tend to separate
themselves from others and are often seeing talking together. Such
people cannot help themselves in spiritual life, what to speak of each
other. They may think they are ‘friends’ and that their relationship
is beneficial, but undoubtedly they are feeding each other’s attach-
ment to the material world, trying to please their material minds by
talking all about past activities in the material life. If I offer you
a cigarette am I your friend or your enemy? Similarly, if I offer you
my material vision in mundane friendship, am I actually a friend to
you or an enemy? Your real friend is that person who can put you in
touch with the Supreme Friend, Lord Krsna, and help you advance to
perfection.
So it is most important that one is careful with whom one associates
and how one associates, if one actually wants to become Krsna conscio-
us.

(5) Answering the telephone
Should be done sensibly. Not everyone phoning the temple will ap-
preciate “Haribol” or even “Hare Krsna”. Make sure you have the time
to find someone before answering the phone and try not to keep the
caller waiting for too long. Telephone conversations amongst devotees
should be businesslike, and to the point in order to save Krsna’s
laksmi. One should also try to place one’s calls at the cheap rate
times.

(6) Istaghosthi (see Vedic dictionary)
Is held weekly and at this time we can reflect on the progress we
have made so far and what is still to be accomplished. Any questions,
philosophical or practical which come up during the week and remain
unanswered, can be brought up at this time for the benefit of all the
other new bhaktas as well. The bhakta director will discuss many
points and one should try to seriously implement them and in this way
improving one’s all-round standing in devotional service.

(7) Vaisnava Etiquette
The Introductory Course is mainly concerned with Vaisnava etiquet-
te, or the behaviour of a devotee, particularly in one’s dealings with
others. Bhakti yoga is an all-inclusive science and culture, and so
there are even detailed codes of conduct that devotees have between
each other. The proper understanding may take some time to develop,
but, like everything else is revealed to one who chants Hare Krsna
sincerely, who hears and enquires attentively and who has a nice ser-
vice attitude. This will be more thoroughly discussed in Week 9 and
there is a small book called “Vaisnava behaviour” by Srila Satsvarupa
das Gosvami which may be read later on.

“T H E I N T R O D U C T O R Y C U R R I C U L U M”
INDEX

Week 1 The Spiritual Master and Disciple

1. The process of acquiring knowledge
2. The need to approach a Spiritual Master
3. The qualifications of a Spiritual Master including the symptomes of
one on the transcendental platform
4. The qualifications of a disciple
5. The parampara system
6. Initiation

Week 2 Recent and Present Acaryas

1. Srila Vyasadeva 7. Srila Gaurakisora
2. Narada Muni 8. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta
3. Maharaj Pariksit & 9. Srila Prabhupada
Sukadeva Gosvami 10. The present spiritual master
4. Srila Madhvacarya 11. Jayananda Prabhu
5. The Six Gosvamis 12. The meaning of Vyasa-puja
6. Srila Bhaktivinoda (worshipping the guru)

Week 3 Sadhana Bhakti

1. Sadhana Bhakti 6. The Ten Offences
2. The steps of bhakti yoga 7. The importance of strict
leading to pure love attendance at the morning and
3. Cleanliness, personal behavior evening programme
regulation, sleeping etc. 8. Deity worship
4. The Maha Mantra 9. The Glories of Prasada and
5. Japa Eating in Krsna Consciousness

Week 4 Krsna the Absolute Truth

1. Brahman, Paramatma and Bhagavan 4. Yajna (sacrifice)
(including opulences of Krsna) 5. Demigods including Lord Siva
2. The Descent of the Lord 6. Impersonalism
3. Expansions and Incarnations

Week 5 Vedic Knowledge

1. Origin and Characteristics 4. Philosophies
2. Karma 5. Mahabharata and Bhagavad-gita
3. The time of death 6. Srimad Bhagavatam
7. Isopanisad

Week 6 Matter and Spirit

1. Sankhya Yoga 7. Universal Time (incl. 4 ages)
2. The Mind 8. Creation, Maintenance and de-
3. The Intelligence struction of the material world
4. The False Ego 9. The Three Modes
5. The Soul 10. The Spiritual World
11. Evolution and Modern Science
12. Life in the womb (and hellish
regions

Week 7 Bhakti Yoga

1. Bhakti Yoga and other Yoga systems
2. Karma Yoga and Bhakti Yoga
3. Six characteristics of devotional service
4. The nine devotional activities
5. The six divisions of surrender
6. The six favourable principles of devotional service and the obsta-
cles to devotional service
7. The importance of hearing
8. The importance of faith

Week 8 Samkirtan

1. Panca tattva and other associates of Lord Caitanya
2. The historical background of appearance and mission of Lord
Caitanya and a brief history of Vaisnavism (incl. 4 Vaisnava sam-
pradayas)
3. Lord Caitanya’s teachings
4. Welfare work
5. Preaching

Week 9 The Devotees

1. Types of Devotees 6. Parents
2. Qualities of Devotees 7. Distress and the Devotee
3. Association of Devotees (incl. 8. Health
six symptoms of love shared 9. The Fallen Devotee
by devotees) 10. How to Avoid falling down
4. Krsna Consciousness, a natural method
5. Structure of ISKCON

Week 10 The Vedic Culture

1. Religion – real or cheating 6. Four Asramas
2. The pillars of Religion 7. Women
3. Responsibility of Human Life 8. Children and education
4. Varnasrama-dharma 9. Four Ages and Yuga Dharma
5. Four Varnas

Week 11 Temple Programme

1. Songs and prayers in our 3. Vedic Dictionary
daily life
2. Prema Dhyani

Week 12 Miscellaneous

1. Four kinds of pious people 7. Love
2. Four kinds of impious people 8. Peace
(incl. mentality of a demon) 9. Honesty
3. Vegetarianism and cow pro- 10. Violence and Non-Violence
tection 11. Morality
4. Christ and Christianity 12. Cults and Culture
5. Forgetfullness and fall-down 13. ISKCON and India
6. Freedom (liberation)

GENERAL READING LIST

(Completion of this list will depend upon how many books a new bhakta
has read bofore joining the program)

First three Month Preliminary Course Secondary Course

Perfect Questions Perfect Answers Srimad Bhagavatam 1st Canto
Bhagavad-gita Teachings of Lord Caitanya
Coming Back Life Comes from Life
Isopanisad Perfection of Yoga
Science of Self-Realization Krsna Book
Nectar of Instruction (1st 7 verses) Easy Journey to Other Planets
Nectar of Devotion (1st wave) Path of Perfection
“Prabhupada” (biography)
Chant and Be Happy
“T H E I N T R O D U C T O R Y C U R R I C U L U M”

(The Preliminary Twelve Week Study Course)

WEEK1 THE SPIRITUAL MASTER AND DISCIPLE

1) The Process of Acquiring knowledge (to learn: Bg 4.34)

The Three Main Ways (Iso, Intro 9th para) – other methods include tra-
dition,history, guessing, comparison, probability and logic.

a) PRATYAKSA “occular” or direct perception (Iso, Intro 9th para)

b) ANUMANA – “to follow (anu) the mind (mana)”, inference, hypothesis
or speculation. Induction, the ascending method.

c) SABDA – “sound”, or sruti — “Vedic knowledge that is directly
heard”. Deduction, the descending method. (Iso, Intro 7th-9th pa-
ras/ Bg 2.25p/Bg 4.34 +p)

* Induction and Deduction –Iso Intro, end of 10th para
* Speculation will never help one understand the Absolute Truth even
if one makes an attempt for millions of years (Bg 10.11p 3rd para)
* The four defects of the conditioned soul which invalidate the me-
thods of pratyaksa and anumana (Iso Intro 1st-4th paras/ Bg Intro page
15)
* Mundane scholarship cannot help — one must be endowed with realized
knowledge by the grace of Krsna (Bg 6.8 +p)
* The existence of the soul must be understood by sruti, or Vedic wis-
dom (Bg 2.25 +p)
* Philosophical speculation is only useful when applied to authorized
scripture (Bg 14.1p)
* Krsna can only be understood by a pure, unmotivated presentation of
disciplic succession (Bg Preface 3rd para)
* Knowledge must be received by the descending system of disciplic
succession (Bg Intro page 15)
* Vedic knowledge is apauruseya “not made by man”, but revealed by
God, therefore without defect (Bg 4.1p, last para)
* The Descending method contains all the advantages of the ascending
method such as logic (Bg 2.26 +p, 2nd para), direct perception (Bg 9.2
+p, 6th para), reason (Bg 2.56+p) etc.

2) The Need to Approach a Spiritual Master

* To Drive away all nescience (Bg 5.16p/ Bg 18.72+p)
* If one is perplexed (Bg 2.7+p)
* To extinguish the fire of conditioned life (Guruvastaka verse 1)
* To be liberated from maya (Bg 4.35p, 2nd para/ Bg 4.10p end of first
para/ Bg 17.6 last sentence)
* To be released from bondage (Bg 7.14p 2nd para)
* To actually solve the problems of life (where other means prove to
be useless) (Bg 2.8p, 1st para)
* To become free from all lamentation (Bg 2.22p 2nd half of 2nd para)
* To begin one’s transcendental life (Bg 13.8-12p, last half 1st para)
* Otherwise one cannot progress in the spiritual science (Bg 13.8-12p,
5th para)
* For complete knowledge (Bg 7.2p)
* To understand the transcendental science (NOI page 29/ Bg 14.19+p)
* To attain actual education etc. (Iso 10, 6th para until the end)
* To make progress towards one’s desired destination (Guruvastaka ver-
se 8)
* To understand the real position of all living beings (Bg 4.35)
* To begin one’s devotional service (Bg 12.20p)
* To distinguish between matter and spirit (Bg 13.35p 1st para)
* The secret to advancement in spiritual life (Bg 4.34p)
* To understand the imports of Vedic knowledge (Bg 6.47p, near the
end)
* To properly understand the difficult passages in the Vedic literatu-
re (Bg 16.1-3p, 14th para)
* Because different scriptures and different sages recommend different
things (Bg 18.3+4 +p’s)
* Because it is enjoined in the sastra for everyone who wants to ad-
vance in life (Bg 4.34/Iso 6+p 5th para/ Bg 2.7p 1st para)
* To find out what Krsna practically wants us to do (Bg 18.57+p)
* To know Krsna (Bg 2.29p 2nd half or 3rd para)
* Otherwise it is impossible ever to begin to understand Krsna (Bg 11-
.54 2nd para)

3) The Qualifications of the Spiritual Master

Teachings

* He speaks only of Krsna and matters related to Him (Bg 2.54+p)
* He never presents anything not to be found in Vedic literature (Iso
13p, 1st para)
* He never contradicts sadhus (saintly persons) or sastra (scriptures)
(Bg 10.3p last para)
* He does not manufacture rules against the principles of the revealed
scriptures (Bg 3.21p/Bg 4.34p)
* He is able to answer any question on spiritual life without hesita-
tion, having understood all Vedic knowledge (Bg 15.19+p, 3rd paraP/Bg
2.7p 1st para)
* He never says “I am God” (Bg 5.16p)
* He must be a master of the science of Krsna (Bg 2.8p 1st para)

Realization

* He must be fixed in the Absolute Truth (Iso Intro 11th para)
* He must have the symptoms of one on the transcendental platform (Bg
18.51-53+p, 54+p 2nd para/Bg 14.22-25+p, 2nd para/ Bg 2.55-57, 58+p/
Bg 5.20+p, 21+p)

* He must be 100% Krsna Conscious (Bg 2.8p 1st para)
* He should have attained the platform of uttama adhikari (NOI 5)
* He knows the science of Krsna (Bg 2.8p 1st para)

Disciplic Succession

* He comes in the disciplic succession (Bg 4.34p)
* And therefore does not deviate from instruction imparted millions of
years ago (Bg 4.42p last part)
* He must have heard the Vedic knowledge from the right source (Iso
Intro 11th para)
* The importance of the disciplic succession . . . (Bg 18.75+p)

Character

* He must be a perfect devotee (PQPA page 27-28)
* He must be fully in control of the six pushing senses (agents) (NOI
1)
* He strictly practices what he preaches (Bg 3.21+p)
* He is an “acarya”, one who teaches by example (Bg 3.20+p)
* because even Krsna Himself acted to set an example (Bg 3.22, 23+p)
* He is by nature very kind and compassionate to the disciple and ti-
relessly instructs him (Bg 4.34p end/Bg 18.72+p)

Ability to Liberate Others

* Krsna or His bonafide representative are the only persons who can
release a conditioned soul from bondage (Bg 7.14p 3rd para)
* The spiritul master knows the nature of his students and is thus
able to guide them to act in Krsna Consciousness (Bg 2.41 3rd para)
* He can change the materially conditioned nature of a person, gra-
dually elevating him to the perfectional stage (Bg 17.2p)

Activities

* He is always gloryfying Krsna (Bg 9.13+14)
* He never tries to imitate the Lord but always follows in His foot-
steps (Bg 3.24p)

IF . . .

a teacher (guru) loses his sense of discrimination and engages in abo-
minable actions he can be abandoned (Bg 2.5p)

The Qualification of a Disciple

* One must be awakened to one’s suffering in the material world and
one must desire to find out the ultimate solution (Bg Intro page 7)
* One must have firm faith in the Supreme Personality of Godhead (Bg
Intro page 7)
* One must have faith in the guru and Krsna (Bg 6.47p 5th para)
* One must be submissive (Bg 4.34+p/Bg Intro page 6f)
* One must be fully obedient (NOI 4 page 46)
* One must be humble (Bg 13.8-12p 5th para)
* One must have a serving mood (dto)
* One must be anxious to satisfy the guru (Bg 4.34p)
* One should consider the order of the guru as one’s prime duty in
life (Bg 18.67p last two lines/Bg 2.41p 3rd para/Bg 2.53p last line/Bg
3.35p 1st part)
* One must respect the guru as God (PQPA pages 26f/Bg 5.16p)
* One must serve the other disciples of one’s guru:
“Regarding serving your Godbrothers, this is a very good practice.
Serve the spiritual master also means to be servant of his disciples.
When you want to serve the king, you must also serve his minister, se-
cretary and everyone who serves him. And to serve his servants may
please him more than to serve the king personally. So the spiritual
master is not alone. He is always with his entourage. We are not im-
personalists. We take care of every part of the whole, as well as one
should take care of his hat as well as his shoes. Both are equally im-
portant for the upkeep of the body. I hope you will understand this
rightly.” (Letter from Srila Prabhupada in 1969)

The Parampara System

* explained . . . (PQPA pages 28-30/ Bg 4.1-3)

* If one hears Bhagavad-gita from a pure soul in disciplic succession
he surpasses all studies of Vedic wisdom and all scriptures of the
world (Bg 1.1p 1st para)
* The humble realized devotee recognises that all credit goes through
the parampara to Lord Krsna (Bg Preface, 2nd and 3rd paras)
* List of the members of our disciplic succession (Bg Intro page 34)
* How the Vedic knowledge comes to us out of motherly affection (Iso
Intro 7th and 8th paras)

6) Initiation

* Qualifications for described (NOI 5 pages 51-53)
* Establishes one’s relationship with Krsna (NOD Intro 11th para)
* An essential step towards love of God (Bg 4.10p 2nd para)
* When one is seen to be gradually serious (NOI 5 page 50)
* An example of preparation for, and acceptance of initiation (PQPA
pages 97-99)

WEEK 2 PAST AND PRESENT ACARYAS (to learn: Bg 3.21)

1) Srila Vyasadeva
* son of Parasara Muni and Satyavati (Bg 15.17p last line of last pa-
ra)
* a great devotee of the Lord and a powerful incarnation (Bg 18.77p)
* disciple of Narada Muni (Bg 18.75p 2nd para)
* How he gave us the Vedic literatures (Bg Intro p.27)
* the Srimad Bhagavatam is Vyasadeva’s own natural commentary on the
Vedanta- sutra (the “final stalk of knowledge” –Bg 18.13p/ Bg 15.15p
1st para)
* Spiritual master of Sanjaya (Bg 18.75 +p)
* the appearance day of the spiritual master is called “Vyasa puja”
(puja means worship) because he represents Vyasadeva (Bg 18.75 1st
para)
* the spiritual master’s seat in the temple is called “Vyasasana” (as-
ana means seat) for the same reason
* father of Dhrtarastra, Pandu and Vidura, and also Sukadeva Goswami

2) Narada Muni
* the greatest devotee in the universe (Bg 10.26p)
* the direct disciple of Krsna (Bg 18.75p 2nd para)
* His entry into devotional service (Bg 9.2p 7th and 8th para)
* More about him . . . (SB 1.9.7 2nd para)
* “Nara” –the Supreme Lord, “da” –one who can give

3) Maharaj Pariksit and Sukadeva Goswami
* Son of Abhimanyu, who was the son of Arjuna and Subhadra
* How the Srimad Bhagavatam came to be spoken (SB 1.18.25 +p 26-50 and
SB 1.1.1-40)
* Sukadeva Goswami was the son of Vyasadeva and he heard the Bhagavat-
am from his father whilst he was in the womb of his mother

4) The Six Gosvamis of Vrndavana
Read and discuss the “Prayers to the Six Goswamis” by Srinivasa Acarya
(Blue Song Book, pages 19-22)

5) Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur
Read “A Glimpse into the life of Thakura Bhaktivinoda” (Blue song
book, Intro. pages 12-18 and Hare Krsna Hare Krsna pages 120-124

6) Srila Gaurakisora dasa Babaji
Read and discuss the “Srila Gaurakisora Pranati” (Blue Song Book p. 6-

7) Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati
Read Srila Prabhupada Lilamrta Vol.1 Ch.3, pages 37-47 and Ch. 4 pages
61-78, and “Hare Krsna Hare Krsna” pages 124-126

8) Srila Prabhupada
Read “Prabhupada” and Section about “The Author” at the end of the
Gita and learn the dates of the principal events in his life.

9) Jayananda Prabhu
Read printed sheets about him and see BTG Vol 12/6 pages 10ff

10) The Meaning of Vyasa Puja
Read the lecture given by Srila Prabhupada in 1936 in Bombay, the ot-
her short essays called “the Meaning of Vyasa Puja” to be found in the
beginning of Srila Prabhupada’s and the present spiritual master’s
Vyasa Puja books.

W E E K 3 SADHANA BHAKTI (to learn: Bg 9.26)

* “sadhana — the means by which one can achieve something” (tape Lon-
don 73-74)
* to perform sadhana bhakti necessities a radical change in one’s va-
lues (Bg 2.69 +p)
* sadhana bhakti explained (Bg 12.9 +p)
* one should never give up one’s initial spirit of carefully following
all the rules and regulations of bhakti yoga (Bg 18.5 and 6 +p) other-
wise one is to be understood to be influenced by the modes of passion
or ignorance (Bg 18.7 and 8 +p’s) and liable to fall down (SB 5.8.8
+p)
* the steps of bhakti leading to pure love (Bg 4.10p last para):

1) Preliminary faith or desire for self-realization which leads one
to
2) The association of spiritually advanced persons
3) and so one becomes initiated by a bonafide spiritual master and
begins the process of devotional service under his direction
4) then one diminishes all unwanted habits and material attachments
5) becomes steady in self-realization due to firm faith
6) and acquires a taste for hearing about Krsna
7) which leads one further forward to attachment for Krsna Con-
sciousness
8) and this is further matured into genuine affection for Krsna,
the preliminary stage of
9) real love of God, the highest perfectional stage of life.

* Cleanliness, is essential for making advancement in spiritual life
(Bg 13.8-12p, 6th para)
* the following is a quotation from Srila Prabhupada (Hyderabad 24/8/-
76):
“… If one doesn’t practice brahminical life he is not to be called a
‘brahmana’. You may be the son of a high court judge but if you do not
have the qualifications you cannot be called a high court judge…
There must be an educational institution for training brahmanas espe-
cially. One is judged by education, quality and training. One of the
brahmana’s two main qualities is ‘saucam’, cleanliness and truthful-
ness… In Bombay even the poorest man is clean. I have been to a
‘Parsee’ kitchen. So nasty, all the pots are black, nothing is clean.
For eating they use china — clean or unclean cannot be understood.
Even our pots, handled by our European devotees, underneath it is
black. You should not even be able to see a black spot. It is not cle-
an. A single black spot and it is not clean. Before taking water, if
the water pot is clean, you like taking water. In our school days the
seats were so clean, you liked to sit down. This is Hindu culture.
Cleanliness is essential. In English also cleanliness is next to God-
liness. Sri-vigraharadhana-nitya-nana-srngara-tan-mandira-marjanadau
(Guruvastaka verse 3). ‘Marjana’ means ‘cleansing’. The spiritual ma-
ster is always engaged along with his disciples in cleaning the temple
of Sri Sri Radha and Krsna. Want of cleanliness means laziness. If you
are lazy you can’t keep clean. Let me sleep for the time being. This
is the mode of ignorance, tamo-guna. We have to conquer over rajo-guna
and tamo-guna!”

* General rules of cleanliness (Bg 16.7p 2nd half of the 1st para)

Cleanliness and Other Standards
1) Never enter the kitchen or the temple in an unclean state.
2) The mouth is a dirty place (being positioned at one end of the in-
testines, it is a place where many germs are found) and therefore one
should not suck one’s fingers or pen, or bite one’s nails, etc. If one
does touch one’s mouth then the hands should be washed. Don’t lick
things like stamps and don’t blow out candles, incense sticks, etc.
Also it is a good practice to learn to pour water/juice into your
mouth when you drink, then the cup remains clean, not having touched
one’s lips.
3) If you make a mess clean it up, especially in the toilet or washba-
sin etc. A place should always be as clean, if not cleaner, after it
has been visited by a devotee.
4) Your locker should always be neat and clean (Don’t leave prasada in
it or even bring prasada to your room).
5) When you clean anywhere in the temple building try to make the pla-
ce as clean as glass (see TQK p.143)
6) Do not leave clothing lying around.
7) If someone else leaves a mess then you can clean it up, seeing that
in actuality everything is the personal property of the representative
of Krsna, the spiritual master. Once Srila Prabhupada inspected one of
our many toilets in our Mayapura property and upon finding a cigarret-
te he exclaimed “Who has been smoking in my bathroom?”
8) Nails should always be clipped short. This should not be done in
one’s bedroom but in the bathroom and the clippings should be flushed
away down the toilet or sink, or thrown in the rubbish bin provided.
Evacuating, nail cutting, teeth brushing, shaving, etc., should be
done before showering.
9) Take at least two showers a day (or more if you have to pass stool
at another time) — the early morning shower can be cool to help ivi-
gorate the system and should be efficient but quick (a warm shower
should be taken if one is sick). It is also important to take a “men-
tal bath” by chanting Hare Krsna as one takes one’s physical bath.
10) Srub and file feet whenever necessary (which avoids painful cracks
in the heel developing)
11) Use the right hand only for eating, chanting rounds, offering and
accepting things to and from others, turning on communal switches,
opening doors and using the toilet flush etc. (the left hand is reser-
ved for cleansing oneself upon passing stool).
12) Do not touch your foot to anything sacred or use your foot to do
something which can be done with one’s hand.
13) Do not walk over books, devotees, prasada or any sacred articles.
To touch someone with one’s foot is considered offensive. For instan-
ce, if you have to walk past seated devotees in the temple room at
class time, extend your right hand to indicate you wish to go by and
they will move their knees to let you pass. If you happen to touch a
devotee with your foot you can touch his body gently with your hand
and then touch your hand to your head.
14) Books, beads, karatalas, etc. should not go on the ground or on
one’s seat or bed, nor should things be put on books (like alarm
clocks, karatalas, etc.).
15) If a sacred object falls to the floor pick it up and touch it to
your head.
16) If your Japa beads are out of your bag, keep them in a clean place
but do not hang them on a hook.
17) Do not take sacred items into the stoolroom, e.g. beads, books,
Harinam chuddar.
18) Do not take other’s possessions thinking that everything is Krsn-
a’s and therefore everything is one. This is not our philosophy!
19) Do not sleep on your stomach. When sleeping try to face South-
East.
20) Do not talk informally, read or write personal letters in front of
the Deities — only devotional activities such as hearing, chanting,
reading and praying, or some important matter related to the service
of the Deity should be carried on in the temple room.
21) While sitting do not expose your feet to the Deities or point them
at the spiritual master, or Tulasi devi, etc. Always try to keep them
covered.
22) Tilak should be applied in all 12 places after showering.
23) Single men and women should only converse together when it’s ne-
cessary for particular devotional service.
24) Do not stand in one’s underwear in front of Vaisnavas, or pictures
of Krsna or the Guru. The Lord and His devotee are priesent in Their
pictures and so should be respected accordingly.
25) Don’t pass air in the temple room.
26) Try to avoid turning your back on, or sitting with your back to
the Deities or Vyasasana.
27) Do not waste Krsna’s energies such as toothpaste, electricity,
water, etc. In fact, if you see a light or fire left on somewhere turn
it off. Once on a morning walk, Srila Prabhupada turned off a running
tap in someone’s garden. Another time when he was ill in Mayapur he
rose especially from his bed to chastise a disciple for leaving a fan
on when she left a room for only 5 minutes.

Do not worry unduly about all these rules and regulations, soon they
will be your second nature. We all make mistakes in the beginning.
Most of what we do is simply common sense. If anything is not clear or
confuses you, please don’t hesitate to ask.

The Maha-Mantra:

* is the easy process recommended by Lord Caitanya especially for us
(Bg 16.24 1st para)
* is the correct means of deliverance for people in this age (Bg 3.10
last half/ Bg 6.12 last half)
* is the only possible process in this age (Bg 8.11 last para)
* is the easiest and purest of all yajnas (sacrifices) (Bg 3.12p last
sentence/ Bg 10.25+p)
* is the best and most inexpensive sacrifice (Bg 16.1-3p 9th para)
* is the easiest and best way to control the mind (Bg 6.34p last part)
* is the means to control the tongue (Bg13.8-12p 7th para)
* is the sublime method for reviving our original pure consciousness
(SSR p. 146)
* cleanses and purifies one’s own heart and anyone else who hears (NOI
4 41-43)
* for internal cleanliness (Bg 13.8-12p 6th para)
* cleanses the heart of all material dirt (Bg 4.39p)
* so that one can attain life’s ultimate goal (Bg 10.11p 4th para)
* is transcendentally sweet but this is not appreciated by a diseased
person (NOI 7 pages 66-67)
* is enacted on the spiritual platform, above all lower strata of con-
sciousness (SSR p. 147)
* relieves one from all misconception (NOI 7 p. 69)
* is the only remedy for setting the world right (NOI 7 p. 69)
* is the best process for successfully changing one’s state of con-
sciousness at the end of life (Bg 8.6p, end)
* purifies one and enables one to go back to Godhead (Bg 8.19p/Bg 8.8-
+p)
* is mystic meditation (Bg 8.8 +p)
* enables one to easily and happily approach the supreme destination
(Bg 12.6-7p 5th para)
* attracts one to Krsna (Bg 12.6-7p end of 2nd para) and is the means
of pleasing Him
* When a devotee chants Hare Krsna, the Lord, being non-different from
His name, dances with Srimati Radharani on the devotee’s tongue (Bg-
12.8p)
* By chanting you can understand everything of God (PQPA p. 25)
* waters the seed of love of God, which fructifies as a spiritual
plant growing as far as Goloka Vrndavana (Bg 10.9p 2nd para)
* (when chanted inoffensively) is the highest perfectional stage of
Vedic knowledge (Bg 2.46 +p) (so the best purpose of Vedic culture is
served to even the fallen souls of this age)
* is chanted by someone who has been previously purified by passing
through the tenets of the Vedas (Bg 6.44+p/ 16.24p 1st para)
* gives direct perception of spiritual pleasure and purification (Bg
9.2p 6th para)
* situates even a fallen devotee on the transcendental platform when
chanted with determination (Bg 9.30p 2nd para)
* and protects a devotee from all accidental falldowns (Bg 9.31 p end)
* is the means of understanding Krsna (Bg 7.24p 3rd para)
* to attain actual education etc. (Iso 10, 6th para–>end)
* to make progress towards one’s desired destination (Guruvastaka 8)
* to understand the real position of all living beings (Bg 4.35)
* to begin one’s devotional service (Bg 12.20p)
* to distinguish between matter and spirit (Bg 13.35 1st para)
* the secret to advancement in spiritual life (Bg 4.34p)
* to understand the imports of Vedic knowledge (Bg 6.47p, near the
end)
* to properly understand the difficult passages in the Vedic litera-
ture (Bg 16.1-3p, 14th para)
* because different scriptures and different sages recommend different
things (Bg 18.3+4 +p’s)
* because it is enjoined in the sastra for everyone who wants to ad-
vance in life (Bg 4.34/Iso 6+p, 5th para/ Bg 2.7p 1st para)
* to find out what Krsna practically wants us to do (Bg 18.57+p)
* to know Krsna (Bg 2.29p 2nd half)
* otherwise it is impossible ever to begin to understand Krsna (Bg
11.54p 2nd para)

3) The Qualifications of the Spiritual Master

Teachings
*He speaks only of Krsna and matters related to Him (Bg 2.54 +p)
*He never presents anything not to be found in Vedic literature (Iso 13p,
1st para)
*He never contradicts sadhus (saintly persons) or scriptures (sastra) (Bg
10.3p last para)
*He does not manufacture rules against the principles of the revealed
scriptures (Bg 3.21p/Bg 4.34p)
*He is able to answer any question on spiritual life without hesitation,
having understood all Vedic knowledge (Bg 15.19 +p, 3rd para/Bg 2.7p 1st
para)
*He never says “I am God” (Bg 5.16p)
*He must be a master of the science of Krsna (Bg 2.8p 1st para)

Realization
*He must be fixed in the Absolute Truth (Iso Intro 11th para)
*He must have the symptoms of one on the transcendental platform (Bg
18.51-53 +p, 54 +p 2nd para/Bg 14.22-25 +p, 2nd para/Bg 2.55-57, 58 +p/Bg
5.20 +p, 21 +p)
*He must be 100% Krsna Conscious (Bg 2.8p 1st para)
*He should have attained the platform of uttama adhikari (NOI 5)
*He knows the science of Krsna (Bg 2.8p 1st para)

Disciplic Succession
*He comes in the disciplic succession (Bg 4.34p)
*And therefore does not deviate from instruction imparted millions of
years ago (Bg 4.42p last part)
*He must have heard the Vedic knowledge from the right source (Iso Intro
11th para)
*The importance of the disciplic succession … (Bg 18.75 +p)

Character
*He must be a perfect devotee (PQPA page 27-28)
*He must be fully in control of the six pushing senses (agents) (NOI 1)
*He strictly practices what he preaches (Bg 3.21 +p)
*He is an “acarya”, one who teaches by example (Bg 3.20 +p)
*because even Krsna Himself acted to set an example (Bg 3.22,23 +p)
*He is by nature very kind and compassionate to the disciple and
tirelessly instructs him (Bg 4.34p end/Bg 18.72 +p)

Ability to liberate others
*Krsna or His bona fide representative are the only persons who can
release a conditioned soul from bondage (Bg 7.14p 3rd para)
*The spiritual master knows the nature of his students and is thus able to
guide them to act in Krsna Consciousness (Bg 2.41 3rd para)
*He can change the materially conditioned nature of a person, gradually
elevating him to the perfectional stage (Bg 17.2p)

Activities
*He is always glorifying Krsna (Bg 9.13 +14)
*He never tries to imitate the Lord but always follows in His footsteps
(Bg 3.24p)

If…
a teacher (guru) loses his sense of discrimination and engages in
abominable actions he can be abandoned (Bg 2.5p)

4) The Qualification of a Disciple

*One must be awakened to one’s position of suffering in the material world
and one must desire to find the ultimate solution (Bg Intro page 7 or 6
Macmillan version)
*One must have a firm respect for the Supreme Personality of Godhead (Bg
Intro page 7 or 6 Macmillan version)
*One must have faith in the guru and Krsna (Bg 6.47p 5th para)
*One must be submissive (Bg 4.34 +p/Bg Intro page 6-7 or 6 Mac)
*One must be fully obedient (NOI 4 page 46)
*One must be humble (Bg 13.8-12p 5th para)
*One must have a serving mood (Bg 13.8-12p 5th para)
*One must be anxious to satisfy the guru (Bg 4.34p)
*One should consider the order of the guru as one’s prime duty in life (Bg
18.67p, last 2 lines/Bg 2.41p 3rd para/Bg 2.53p last line/Bg 3.35p 1st
part)
*One must respect the guru as God (PQPA pages 26-27/Bg 5.16p)
*One must serve the other disciples of one’s guru
“Regarding serving your Godbrothers, this is a very good practice. The
spiritual master is never without his followers so to serve the spiritual
master also means to be the servant of his disciples. When you want to
serve the king, you must also serve his minister, secretary and everyone
who serves him. And to serve his servants may please him more than to
serve the king personally. So the spiritual master is not alone. He is
always with his entourage. We are not impersonalists. We take care of
every part of the whole, as much as one should take care of his hat as
well as his shoes. Both are equally important for the upkeep of the body.
I hope you will understand this rightly.” (Letter to a disciple, from
Srila Prabhupada in 1969)

5) The Parampara System

*explained… (PQPA pages 28-30/Bg 4.1-3)
*If one hears Bhagavad Gita from a pure soul in disciplic succession he
surpasses all studies of Vedic visdom and all scriptures of the world (Bg
1.1p 1st para)
*the humble realized devotee recognises that all credit goes through the
parampara to Lord Krsna (Bg Preface, 2nd +3rd paras)
*List of the members of our disciplic succession (Bg Intro Page 34, or 29
Macmillan version)
*How the Vedic knowledge comes to us out of motherly affection (Iso Intro
7th and 8th paras)

6) Initiation

*Qualifications for described (NOI 5 pages 51-53)
*Establishes one’s relationship with Krsna (NOD Intro 11th para)
*An essential step towards love of God (Bg 4.10p 2nd para)
*When one is seen to be actually serious (NOI 5 page 50)
*An example of preparation for, and acceptance of, initiation (PQPA pages
97-99)

WEEK 2
PAST AND PRESENT ACARYAS (Verse to learn, Bg 3.21)

(1) Srila Vyasadev
*son of Parasara Muni and Satyavati (Bg 15.17p last line of last para
[Mac], or Bg 15.18p end)
*a great devotee of the Lord and a powerful incarnation (Bg 18.77p)
*disciple of Narada Muni (Bg 18.75p 2nd para)
*How he gave us the Vedic literatures (Bg Intro p.27 or 34 Mac)
*the Srimad Bhagavatam is Vyasadev’s own natural commentary on the
Vedanta-Sutra (the “final stalk of knowledge”–Bg 18.13p) (Bg 15.15p 1st
para)
*Spiritual master of Sanjaya (Bg 18.75 +p)
*the appearance day of the guru is called “Vyasa puja” (puja means
worship) because he represents Vyasadev (Bg 18.75 1st para)
*the spiritual master’s seat in the temple is called the “Vyasasana”
(asana means seat) for the same reason
*father of Dhrtarastra, Pandu and Vidura, and also Sukadev Gosvami

(2) Narada Muni
*the greatest devotee in the universe (Bg 10.26p)
*the direct disciple of Krsna (Bg 18.75p 2nd para)
*His entry into devotional service (Bg 9.2p 7th and 8th paras)
*More about him… (SB 1.9.7 2nd para)
*”Nara”–the Supreme Lord, “da”–one who can give

(3) Maharaja Pariksit and Sukadev Gosvami
*Son of Abhimanyu, who was the son of Arjuna and Subhadra
*How the Srimad Bhagavatam came to be spoken (SB 1.18.25 +p 26-50 and SB
1.1.1-40)
*Sukadev Gosvami was the son of Vyasadev and he heard the Bhagavatam from
his father whilst he was in the womb of his mother

(4) The Six Gosvamis of Vrndavana
Read and discuss the “Prayers to the Six Gosvamis” by Srinivasa Acarya
(Blue Song Book, pages 19-22)

(5) Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur
Read “A Glimpse into the life of Thakura Bhaktivinoda (Blue song book,
Intro. pages xii-xviii and Hare Krsna Hare Krsna pages 120-124)

(6) Srila Gaurakisora dasa Babaji
Read and discuss the “Srila Gaurakisora Pranati” (Blue Song Book pages
6-7)

(7)Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati
Read Srila Prabhupada Lilamrta Vol. 1 Ch. 3, pages 37-47 and Ch. 4 pages
61-78, and “Hare Krsna Hare Krsna” pages 124-126)

(8) Srila Prabhupada
Read “Prabhupada” and section about “the Author” at the end of the Gita
and learn the dates of the principal events in his life.

(9) Jayananda prabhu
Read printed sheets about him and see BTG Vol 12/6 pages 10-14&17.

(10) The Meaning of Vyasa Puja (SSR p. 70)
Read the lecture given by Srila Prabhupada in 1936 in Bombay, the other
short essays called “the Meaning of Vyasa Puja” to be found at the
beginning of Srila Prabhupada’s and the present spiritual master’s Vyasa
Puja books.

WEEK 3
SADHANA BHAKTI (verse 9.26)

*”sadhana”–the means by which one can achieve something (Tape Lon 73-34)
*to perform sadhana bhakti necessitates a radical change in one’s values
(Bg 2.69 +p)
*sadhana bhakti explained (Bg 12.9 +p)
*one should never give up one’s initial spirit of carefully following all
the rules and regulations of bhakti yoga (Bg 18.5 and 6 +p) otherwise one
is understood to be influenced by the modes of passion or ignorance (Bg
18.7 and 8 +p’s) and liable to fall down (SB 5.8.8 +p)
*the steps of bhakti leading to pure love (Bg 4.10p last para):
(1) Preliminary faith or desire for self-realization which leads one to
(2) The association of spiritually advanced persons
(3) and so one becomes initiated by a bona fide spiritual master and
begins the process of devotional service (sadhana bhakti) under his
direction
(4) then one diminishes all unwanted habits and material attachments
(5) becomes steady in self-realization due to firm faith
(6) and acquires a taste for hearing about Krsna
(7) which leads one further forward to attachment for Krsna Consciousness
(8) and this is further matured into genuine affection for Krsna, the
preliminary stage of
(9) real love of God, the highest perfectional stage of life
*Cleanliness, is essential for making advancement in spiritual life (Bg
13.8-12p, 6th para)
*the following is a quotation from Srila Prabhupada (Hyderabad 24/8/76):
“… If one doesn’t practice brahminical life he is not to be called a
‘brahmana’. You may be the son of a high court judge but if you do not
have the qualifications you cannot be called a high court judge… There
must be an educational institution for training brahmanas especially. One
is judged by education, quality and training. One of the brahmana’s two
main qualities is ‘saucam’, cleanliness and truthfulness… In Bombay
even the poorest man is clean. I have been to a ‘Parsee’ kitchen. So
nasty, all the pots are black, nothing is clean. For eating they use
china–clean or unclean cannot be understood. Even our pots, handled by
our European devotees, underneath it is black. You should not even be
able to see a black spot. It is not clean. A single black spot and it is
not clean. Before taking water, if the water pot is clean, you like
taking water. In our school days the seats were so clean, you liked to
sit down. This is Hindu culture. Cleanliness is essential. In English
also- cleanliness is next to Godliness.
Sri-vigraharadhana-nitya-nana-srngara-tan-mandira-marjanadau (Guruvastaka
verse 3). ‘Marjana’ means ‘cleansing’. The spiritual master is always
engaged along with his disciples in cleaning the temple of Sri Sri Radha
and Krsna. Want of cleanliness means laziness. If you are lazy you can’t
keep clean. Let me sleep for the time being. That is the mode of
ignorance, tamo-guna. We have to conquer over rajo-guna and tamo-guna!”

*General rules of cleanliness (Bg 16.7p 2nd half of the 1st para)

Cleanliness and Other Standards
(1) Never enter the kitchen or the temple in an unclean state.
(2) The mouth is a dirty place (being positioned at one end of the
intestines, it is a place where many germs are found) and therefore
one should not suck one’s fingers or pen, or bite one’s nails, etc.
If one does touch one’s mouth, then the hands should be washed. Don’t
lick things like stamps and don’t blow out candles, incense sticks,
etc. Also it is a good practice to learn to pour water/juice into
your mouth when you drink, then the cup remains clean, not having
touched one’s lips.
(3) If you make a mess clean it up, especially in the toilet or getting
into the plane. You have to believe that the aeroplane will take you
to the other side. You are already doing that, there is no argument.
So, similarly, you have to believe, you must have faith. And we see
that many faithful great-acaryas and devotees of the Lord have
achieved success by this faith. Why shall I not follow them?
Therefore the Vedic literature says that you have to follow the
footprints of the great acaryas.”

WEEK 4
KRSNA, THE ABSOLUTE TRUTH
(Verse to learn Bg 4.9 +read the purport)

*Lord Krsna’s Supreme position (Bg 3.22/Bg 4.5+p/Bg 4.6+p/Bg 4.13)
*as God, confirmed by all great sages (Bg 10.12-13/Bg Intro page 3)
*being transcendental to both fallible and infallible beings. He maintains
everything and is glorified in the Vedas as the greatest personality (Bg
15.17+18+p’s)
*as ultimate goal of the Vedas (Bg 2.46+p/Bg 15.15+p)
*as the cause of everything (Bg 7.16+p/Iso 13p 7th and 8th paras)
*as the maintainer of everything (Bg 7.10+p)
*as the destroyer of everything (Bg 11.32)
*as the essence of everything (Bg 7.9+p)
*as everything (through His different energies) (Bg 9.16-19)
*as everywhere (exemplified by Lord Narasimhadev’s presence) (Iso 5p 8th
para)
*like the sky–in which everything exists (Bg 9.6+p)
*not perceivable through mind and senses (Bg 9.4p 1st para)
*Krsna’s inconceivability certifies His supremacy (Iso 5p 1st para)
*no difference between His body and soul (Iso 8+p 1st para)
*no difference between His mind, body and senses (Bg 9.34p 1st para)
*Krsna is perfect and complete (Iso Invocation +p)
*Krsna is purifying whilst always uncontaminated Himself (Iso 8+p last
para)
*although in one place He is simultaneously all pervading (Iso 4+p 1st
para)
*He is outside and inside, faraway, but near (Bg 13.16+p)
*because of Krsna’s absolute position, His senses are interchangeable (Bg
9.26+p last para/Bg 11.43p 2nd para)
*Krsna’s supremely transcendental position (Bg 4.14+p, 1st part/Bg 7.12+p/Bg
9.9+p)
*although He directly superintends everything (Bg 9.10+p/Bg 13.15+p)
*the transcendental position of one who is conscious of Krsna’s
transcendental position (Bg 4.13p last para/ Bg 4.14+p, 2nd part/Bg 9.28p
2nd and 3rd paras)
*Krsna is rarely known (Bg 7.3+p/Bg 9.3+p/Bg 11.53+p)
*He can only be seen and understood by undivided devotional service (Bg
11.54+p, 1st part of 1st para)
*He is not manifest to fools (Bg 7.25+p)
*Krsna is the original Personality of Godhead and all other forms are
expansions from Him (Bg 11.54p 4th-7th paras)
*Krsna is equal to all, whilst making an individual arrangement for
everyone (Bg 5.15+p)

(2) Brahman, Paramatma, and Bhagavan
*explained (Bg 2.2p all but last para/Bg Intro page 14 or 12-13 Mac)
*three different transcendentalists and their respective destinations
explained (Bg Intro page 25, or 22-23 Mac)

(a) Brahman “spirit”
*meaning of (Bg 8.3+p 1st and 5th paras)
*When Brahman is covered by illusion or “maya” it is called “material”,
otherwise everything is really spiritual or Brahman (Bg 4.24+p)
*Material nature is also sometimes referred to as Brahman (Bg 14.3+p 1st
para)
*Krsna is the Supreme Brahman (Bg 10.12)
*Krsna is the basis of Brahman (Bg 14.27)
*Brahman realization explained in relationship to Paramatma and Bhagavan
realization (Bg 14.27p 1st para)
*Brahman vision explained (Bg 13.31+p)

(b) Paramatma–“the Supreme Soul” or the Supersoul residing in everyone’s
heart along with the individual soul.
*Atma means the individual atomic soul (although sometimes the word atma
or “self” can also refer to the body, mind or even the senses–(Bg 8.1p/Bg
6.5p beginning)
*Difference between individual soul and Paramatma described (Bg 13.3+p)
*Two functions of the Supersoul (Bg 13.23+p 1st para)
(i) Overseer or witness
(ii) Permitter or sanctioning agent of the living entities innumerable
desires (see also Bg 18.14+p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*The function of the Supersoul explained (Bg 15.15+p 1st para)
*the source of all light and knowledge etc (Bg 13.18+p)
*the source of all memory, knowledge and forgetfulness (Bg 15.15+p 1st
para)
*compared to a friendly bird (Bg 2.22p)
*the friend of the conditioned soul (Bg 13.23p 2nd para)
*by the association of a self-realized soul one who is able to see the
friendly Supersoul accompanying the individual soul in all bodies,
actually sees (Bg 13.28+p)
*the Lord experiences everything from His vantage point as the Supersoul
(Bg 13.14+p)
*the Supersoul hears everything (PQPA page 30-31)
*the Supersoul is directing the wanderings of all living entities (Bg
18.61+p)
*and therefore one should surrender to Him (Bg 18.62+p 1st para)
*which is one’s best interest (Bg 18.63p 2nd para)
*the Supersoul is one yet all pervading, as perceived by the yogi or
devotee (Bg 13.17+p/Bg 6.29-31+p’s)
*is not eternal in the spiritual world (Bg 7.4p end of 2nd para)

(c) Bhagavan
Bhaga–opulences explained by Parasara Muni in the Visnu Purana
van–one who possesses where he categorizes the Lord’s opulences into 6
main divisions:- (i) wealth (ii) strength (iii)
fame (iv) beauty (v) knowledge and (vi)
renunciation (Bg 2.2p)
*another meaning of Bhagavan–(Iso 16p 4th para)
*Bhagavad Gita–the song of Bhagavan Sri Krsna
*Bhagavan realization is the only full conception of the Absolute, and
includes both Brahman and Paramatma realizations (Iso 15p last but one
para)

(3) Why Krsna descends
*to establish religious principles (Bg 3.23p, 24+p 1st part/Bg 4.7+p)
*to appease His devotees (Bg 4.8+p)
*to attract the jnanis and yogis etc (Iso 15p 3rd and 4th paras)
*Six types of avatars (“one who descends”) (Bg 4.8p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*What is an avatar? (Bg 4.9p 2nd para)
*Krsna is the avatari or source of all incarnations (Bg 2.2p 3rd para/Bg 4.9p
3rd para)

(4) The Six Types of Incarnations (listed Bg 4.8p 3rd para)

The Purusa Avatars
*the 3 Visnu incarnations (Bg 7.4p 1st para/Bg 9.8p 1st para)
*described (Bg 10.20p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*who do all the managing so that Krsna can stay in Vrndavan and enjoy (Iso
15p 6th para)

Leela (pastime) Avatars
*innumerable, however 10 prominent leela avatars are described in song
called “Das Avatar Stotra” on pages 97-99 of the Blue Song Book.
*Lord Buddha also mentioned (Bg 4.7p last 1/2 of 1st para)

Guna Avatars (see also Week 6)

Guna means material quality or mode, also rope (Bg 7.14p 2nd para)
(i) Brahma–the Lord of the mode of passion, the creator of the structure
of the universe
(ii) Visnu–the Lord of the mode of goodness, the maintainer of the
universal affairs
(iii) Siva–the Lord of the mode of ignorance or darkness, the destroyer
of the universe
*Only Visnu can release the conditioned soul from these ropes of maya (Bg
7.14p last para)

Manvantara Avatars
*Manu, the father of mankind, hence “man”
*the current Manu is called Vaivasvata Manu, the son of Vivasvan, who
spoke Bhagavad Gita to his own son and disciple, Maharaja Iksvaku, the
King of this planet earth 2,005,000 years ago (Bg 4.1+p 3rd and 4th paras)

Yuga Avatars (Incarnations for a particular yuga or age)
Lord Caitanya is the yugavatara for the age of Kali (Bg 4.8p last para)

Saktyavesa Avatars
Directly empowered jivasouls such as Narada who is empowered with the
particular potency of devotional service.

Three Standard Ways of Identifying a Genuine Incarnation of the Lord
(see also video called “God’s Competitor”)

(i) personal characteristics–particular bodily features, and nature,
place, time and circumstance of birth–all described in sastra.
(ii) marginal characteristics–exceptional, superhuman activities, all
extraordinary and also mentioned in sastra.
(iii) The conclusion of the greatest contemporary personalities of the
time, such as Arjuna’s reference to Narada and Vyasa etc (Bg 10.13)

(5) What is Yajna, or Sacrifice?
*the purpose of the material creation (Bg 3.10+p)
*the ultimate cause of everything (Bg 3.14)
*means Visnu (Bg 3.9p) and He is the actual beneficiary of all yajnas (Bg
3.11p)
*different kinds of (Bg 3.12+p/Bg 4.28+p)
*transcendental yajnas (bg 3.13+p)
*yajnas for materialists and transcendentalists (Bg 3.16-19 +p’s)
*a devotee’s saccrifice is the most complete (Bg 4.25+p)
*the necessity of sacrifice for everyone (Bg 4.31+p)
*ultimately the best kind of sacrifice is:- (Bg 4.33+p, 34)
*and so one attains transcendental knowledge (Bg 4.35)
*which destroys one’s material life (Bg 4.36+37+p)
*and is the highest attainment (Bg 4.38+p)
*summary study of sacrifice and it’s ultimate purpose (Bg 4.42p)

(6) The Demigods
*supplying agents of the Lord (Bg 3.12+p)
*description of nature and function of (Bg 3.11+p/3.14+p, 1st part of 1st
para)
*there are 33 million demigods to supervise every aspect of universal
affairs. They include:-
Brahma, Siva (note: Lord Siva himself recommends one to worship Visnu and
His servants, PQPA page 95-96), Vayu (air), Indra (the chief of the
administrative demigods–Bg 8.2p, King of Heaven, and controller of the
rain–Bg 3.14), Agni (fire), Varuna (water–Bg 3.14p), Durga (the wife of
Lord Siva and the personification of the material energy (Bg 3.12p 1st
para), Sarasvati (Goddess of learning, Bg 7.21p 2nd para), Surya (sun,
present sun god also called Vivasvan, Bg 4.1+p 2nd and 3rd paras),
Yamaraja (Lord of death), Candra (moon–Bg 3.14p), Mitra (bowel
movements), Sitala (small pox)

*cannot give one liberation (Bg 7.14p last para)
*why someone approaches the demigods (and why a devotee of Krsna doesn’t)
(Bg 7.20+p)
*Why and how Krsna inspires one to worship them (Bg 7.21+p)
*in actuality it is Krsna alone who satisfies the desires of the
worshiper through the agency of the demigod (Bg 7.22+p)
*the result of such worship is only a temporary, paltry, futile gain,
aspired after by less intelligent people (Bg 7.23+p/Bg Intro page 20-21 or
18 Mac/Bg 4.12+p/Bg 9.20+21)
*Krsna is the real object of worship (Bg 9.23+p and 24+p) because He is
the only one capable of actually satisfying the needs of the soul and
freeing him from birth and death (Bg 9.25+p)
*Srila Prabhupada compares demigod worship to the attempt of a shady
businessman to bribe a government department, like the police, instead of
honestly and faithfully paying his taxes to the government (referred to Bg
9.23p)
*He has also mentioned that the demigods just give benedictions according
to the level of worship they receive without considering the ultimate
benefit of the worshiper; as a shopkeeper will sell anyone a knife,
without consideration of the future result. Lord Krsna, however takes care
for the actual well-being of His worshipers and may or may not give
benedictions etc.

(2) Brahman, Paramatma, and Bhagavan
*explained (Bg 2.2p all but last para/Bg Intro page 14 or 12-13 Mac)
*three different transcendentalists and their respective destinations
explained (Bg Intro page 25, or 22-23 Mac)

(a) Brahman “spirit”
*meaning of (Bg 8.3+p 1st and 5th paras)
*When Brahman is covered by illusion or “maya” it is called “material”,
otherwise everything is really spiritual or Brahman (Bg 4.24+p)
*Material nature is also sometimes referred to as Brahman (Bg 14.3+p 1st
para)
*Krsna is the Supreme Brahman (Bg 10.12)
*Krsna is the basis of Brahman (Bg 14.27)
*Brahman realization explained in relationship to Paramatma and Bhagavan
realization (Bg 14.27p 1st para)
*Brahman vision explained (Bg 13.31+p)

(b) Paramatma–“the Supreme Soul” or the Supersoul residing in everyone’s
heart along with the individual soul.
*Atma means the individual atomic soul (although sometimes the word atma
or “self” can also refer to the body, mind or even the senses–(Bg 8.1p/Bg
6.5p beginning)
*Difference between individual soul and Paramatma described (Bg 13.3+p)
*Two functions of the Supersoul (Bg 13.23+p 1st para)
(i) Overseer or witness
(ii) Permitter or sanctioning agent of the living entities innumerable
desires (see also Bg 18.14+p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*The function of the Supersoul explained (Bg 15.15+p 1st para)
*the source of all light and knowledge etc (Bg 13.18+p)
*the source of all memory, knowledge and forgetfulness (Bg 15.15+p 1st
para)
*compared to a friendly bird (Bg 2.22p)
*the friend of the conditioned soul (Bg 13.23p 2nd para)
*by the association of a self-realized soul one who is able to see the
friendly Supersoul accompanying the individual soul in all bodies,
actually sees (Bg 13.28+p)
*the Lord experiences everything from His vantage point as the Supersoul
(Bg 13.14+p)
*the Supersoul hears everything (PQPA page 30-31)
*the Supersoul is directing the wanderings of all living entities (Bg
18.61+p)
*and therefore one should surrender to Him (Bg 18.62+p 1st para)
*which is one’s best interest (Bg 18.63p 2nd para)
*the Supersoul is one yet all pervading, as perceived by the yogi or
devotee (Bg 13.17+p/Bg 6.29-31+p’s)
*is not eternal in the spiritual world (Bg 7.4p end of 2nd para)

(c) Bhagavan
Bhaga–opulences explained by Parasara Muni in the Visnu Purana
van–one who possesses where he categorizes the Lord’s opulences into 6
main divisions:- (i) wealth (ii) strength (iii)
fame (iv) beauty (v) knowledge and (vi)
renunciation (Bg 2.2p)
*another meaning of Bhagavan–(Iso 16p 4th para)
*Bhagavad Gita–the song of Bhagavan Sri Krsna
*Bhagavan realization is the only full conception of the Absolute, and
includes both Brahman and Paramatma realizations (Iso 15p last but one
para)

(3) Why Krsna descends
*to establish religious principles (Bg 3.23p, 24+p 1st part/Bg 4.7+p)
*to appease His devotees (Bg 4.8+p)
*to attract the jnanis and yogis etc (Iso 15p 3rd and 4th paras)
*Six types of avatars (“one who descends”) (Bg 4.8p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*What is an avatar? (Bg 4.9p 2nd para)
*Krsna is the avatari or source of all incarnations (Bg 2.2p 3rd para/Bg 4.9p
3rd para)

(4) The Six Types of Incarnations (listed Bg 4.8p 3rd para)

The Purusa Avatars
*the 3 Visnu incarnations (Bg 7.4p 1st para/Bg 9.8p 1st para)
*described (Bg 10.20p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*who do all the managing so that Krsna can stay in Vrndavan and enjoy (Iso
15p 6th para)

Leela (pastime) Avatars
*innumerable, however 10 prominent leela avatars are described in song
called “Das Avatar Stotra” on pages 97-99 of the Blue Song Book.
*Lord Buddha also mentioned (Bg 4.7p last 1/2 of 1st para)

Guna Avatars (see also Week 6)

Guna means material quality or mode, also rope (Bg 7.14p 2nd para)
(i) Brahma–the Lord of the mode of passion, the creator of the structure
of the universe
(ii) Visnu–the Lord of the mode of goodness, the maintainer of the
universal affairs
(iii) Siva–the Lord of the mode of ignorance or darkness, the destroyer
of the universe
*Only Visnu can release the conditioned soul from these ropes of maya (Bg
7.14p last para)

Manvantara Avatars
*Manu, the father of mankind, hence “man”
*the current Manu is called Vaivasvata Manu, the son of Vivasvan, who
spoke Bhagavad Gita to his own son and disciple, Maharaja Iksvaku, the
King of this planet earth 2,005,000 years ago (Bg 4.1+p 3rd and 4th paras)

Yuga Avatars (Incarnations for a particular yuga or age)
Lord Caitanya is the yugavatara for the age of Kali (Bg 4.8p last para)

Saktyavesa Avatars
Directly empowered jivasouls such as Narada who is empowered with the
particular potency of devotional service.

Three Standard Ways of Identifying a Genuine Incarnation of the Lord
(see also video called “God’s Competitor”)

(i) personal characteristics–particular bodily features, and nature,
place, time and circumstance of birth–all described in sastra.
(ii) marginal characteristics–exceptional, superhuman activities, all
extraordinary and also mentioned in sastra.
(iii) The conclusion of the greatest contemporary personalities of the
time, such as Arjuna’s reference to Narada and Vyasa etc (Bg 10.13)

(5) What is Yajna, or Sacrifice?
*the purpose of the material creation (Bg 3.10+p)
*the ultimate cause of everything (Bg 3.14)
*means Visnu (Bg 3.9p) and He is the actual beneficiary of all yajnas (Bg
3.11p)
*different kinds of (Bg 3.12+p/Bg 4.28+p)
*transcendental yajnas (bg 3.13+p)
*yajnas for materialists and transcendentalists (Bg 3.16-19 +p’s)
*a devotee’s saccrifice is the most complete (Bg 4.25+p)
*the necessity of sacrifice for everyone (Bg 4.31+p)
*ultimately the best kind of sacrifice is:- (Bg 4.33+p, 34)
*and so one attains transcendental knowledge (Bg 4.35)
*which destroys one’s material life (Bg 4.36+37+p)
*and is the highest attainment (Bg 4.38+p)
*summary study of sacrifice and it’s ultimate purpose (Bg 4.42p)

(6) The Demigods
*supplying agents of the Lord (Bg 3.12+p)
*description of nature and function of (Bg 3.11+p/3.14+p, 1st part of 1st
para)
*there are 33 million demigods to supervise every aspect of universal
affairs. They include:-
Brahma, Siva (note: Lord Siva himself recommends one to worship Visnu and
His servants, PQPA page 95-96), Vayu (air), Indra (the chief of the
administrative demigods–Bg 8.2p, King of Heaven, and controller of the
rain–Bg 3.14), Agni (fire), Varuna (water–Bg 3.14p), Durga (the wife of
Lord Siva and the personification of the material energy (Bg 3.12p 1st
para), Sarasvati (Goddess of learning, Bg 7.21p 2nd para), Surya (sun,
present sun god also called Vivasvan, Bg 4.1+p 2nd and 3rd paras),
Yamaraja (Lord of death), Candra (moon–Bg 3.14p), Mitra (bowel
movements), Sitala (small pox)

*cannot give one liberation (Bg 7.14p last para)
*why someone approaches the demigods (and why a devotee of Krsna doesn’t)
(Bg 7.20+p)
*Why and how Krsna inspires one to worship them (Bg 7.21+p)
*in actuality it is Krsna alone who satisfies the desires of the
worshiper through the agency of the demigod (Bg 7.22+p)
*the result of such worship is only a temporary, paltry, futile gain,
aspired after by less intelligent people (Bg 7.23+p/Bg Intro page 20-21 or
18 Mac/Bg 4.12+p/Bg 9.20+21)
*Krsna is the real object of worship (Bg 9.23+p and 24+p) because He is
the only one capable of actually satisfying the needs of the soul and
freeing him from birth and death (Bg 9.25+p)
*Srila Prabhupada compares demigod worship to the attempt of a shady
businessman to bribe a government department, like the police, instead of
honestly and faithfully paying his taxes to the government (referred to Bg
9.23p)
*He has also mentioned that the demigods just give benedictions according
to the level of worship they receive without considering the ultimate
benefit of the worshiper; as a shopkeeper will sell anyone a knife,
without consideration of the future result. Lord Krsna, however takes care
for the actual well-being of His worshipers and may or may not give
benedictions etc.

WEEK 5
VEDIC KNOWLEDGE (Verse to learn Bg 15.15)

(1) Veda means knowledge (Iso Intro 1st para)
*knowledge means to understand what is spirit and what is matter (Bg 10.4p
2nd para)
*who actually has knowledge, or can be called learned (Bg 2.11p)
*the result of knowledge (Bg 13.24+p)
*jnana–phenomenal knowledge
vijnana–transcendental, or realized knowledge (Bg 7.2+p)
*actual jnana described as opposed to ajnana (ignorance) (Bg 13.8-12)
*real jnana and vijnana described (Bg 13.19+p 1st para)
*vidya and avidya or knowledge and nescience described (Iso 9+p 1st 4
paras/Iso 10+p 2nd-5th paras)
*vidya and avidya should be clearly understood (Iso 11+14)
*how to cultivate knowledge (Iso 10p 1st para)
*Hiranyakasipu, an example of the best of the cultivators of avidya (Iso
11p 2nd-4th paras)
*transcendental knowledge is not contaminated by the three modes of
material nature (Bg 14.2p 2nd para)

(2) Vedic knowledge originated from Lord Krsna to Brahma to Narada/to
Vyasadev and was thus expanded and distributed (SB 1.4.19-23+p’s
+24,25/Iso Intro last para)
*the Upanisads mark the beginning of transcendental life (Bg 2.45p end of
1st para)
*Vedic knowledge is compared to our mother (Bg 2.25p/Iso Intro 7th and 8th
paras)
*Vedic principles are accepted as axiomatic truth (Iso Intro 5th-6th
paras)
*Vedic knowledge is infallible (Iso 1p 1st para)
*although sometimes it may appear contradictory (Bg Intro page 15, or 13
Mac)
*the purpose of the Vedas (Bg 3.15+p/Bg 15.1p 1st para/Bg 15.15+p)
*the most important instruction in all Vedic literature (Bg
18.64p/18.65+p/18.66+p 1st and last paras)
*two kinds of Vedic knowledge
(a) sruti–that which is directly heard/Vedic injunctions
(b) smrti–that which is remembered by great sages/supplementary
presentations of the Vedic principles.
*sastra means to be controlled by reason, the direction of revealed
scriptures, whereas sastra means to be controlled by force (“astra” means
weapon)
*sastra is without the 4 defects of the conditioned soul (Bg 16.24p, last
1/2 of 1st para)
*everyone must follow the sastra, and why (Bg 16.23,24+p’s)
*the perfection of following the sastra means that one becomes a devotee
(Bg 16.23p 1st para, 24p 1st 1/2 of 1st para) otherwise all ones knowledge
by sastra is ultimately spoiled.
*one who knows the rules and regulations of the sastra but does not follow
them must be governed by the modes of material nature (Bg 17.2p)
*The Vedas mainly deal with material life (Bg 2.42-43+p, 45+p 1st para)
*ultimately leading to self-realization (Bg 2.46+p)
*and when one attains self-realization or Krsna Consciousness one becomes
completely indifferent to the Vedic rites and rituals (Bg 2.52+p/Bg
3.18+p)
*although one still follows the principles of sastra to set an example
(like Krsna Himself) (Bg 3.21+p, 22+p, last para, 23+p)
*Vedic knowledge is eternal and includes information not only of spiritual
philosophy but also of sociology, astronomy, astrology, history, medicine
(ayurveda), architecture, warfare (dhanur veda) etc.
*the “veda-vada-rata people”, or the supposed followers of the Vedas (Iso
9+p paras 5-9/Bg 2.42-43+p)

(3) Karma (see Beginners Vedic Dictionary, Week 11 +Bg 4.17,18+p’s)

Vikarma–karmic action performed without regard for scriptures (Bg 3.15p)
*karmic action which even slightly deviates from the regulative
principles of the Vedas (Iso 18p 1st para)
*forbidden work (Bg 4.17+p)
*kama-karatah–acting whimsically in lust (Bg 16.23+p)
Ugrakarma–ugly, painful vikarmic work (Bg 16.9+p)
Akarma–inaction or action which does not produce a reaction or action in
Krsna Consciousness (Bg 4.18+p/Bg 4.20+p/Iso 2+p 2nd and 3rd
paras)
*even killing can be akarma (Bg 18.17+p)
*no reaction, all responsibilities taken care of (Bg 2.38+p)
*action in Krsna Consciousness also rids one of all bad and good
reactions to previous karmic activities (Bg 2.50+p)
*how one is freed from both inauspicious and auspicious results (Bg
9.27+p) (either a good reaction or bad reaction is binding, but the
devotee becomes freed of both, Bg 9.28+p 1st para)
*although there is actually nothing auspicious in the material world (Bg
10.3p 7th para)

Naiskarma–(another name for akarma)
*purpose of…(Bg 6.47p at end)
*prescribed duties (in 3 divisions), capricious work and inaction
explained (Bg 2.47+p)

Reaction
*of sinful activities develops as a seed becomes a tree which produces
more seeds (Bg 9.2p 4th para)
*devotees are released from all these stages of sinful reaction (Bg 9.2p
5th para/10.3+p 1st para)
*one cannot be disinfected from sinful activities unless he surrenders to
the Supreme Lord (Bg 10.13p 3rd para)
*unless one works for the satisfaction of Krsna any work binds one to
matter (Bg 3.9+p)
*devotees are automatically freed from all sinful reactions by the grace
of the Lord (Bg 18.66+p)
*one on the transcendental platform, or in full Krsna Consciousness, can
act in anyway and not become implicated (Bg 3.35+p)
*on the path of bhakti yoga there is practically no chance of incurring
sinful reactions unlike all other paths (Iso 18p 4th para)
*even if one is vegeterian one is sinful (Bg 3.13+p)
*no karmic reaction for killing one of the six types of aggressors (Bg
1.36p)
*the effects of karma are temporary (Bg Intro page 10, or 9 Mac)
*to one giving charity–Srila Prabhupada explained in New York 1966 (Tape
No.49) that, according to the law of karma, if I give you some money
now, in the future you must repay me 4x the amount I gave to you. Also
you must share in my sinful reaction if I acquired the money by sinful
means.
*reaction to one if the money given in charity is used for pious or
transcendental activities (SB 2.3.17p page 159)
*conversely if the money given is used for sinful purposes then one is
implicated in sinful reactions.
*Money given for Krsna benefits everyone, no matter what the material
circumstances. In fact money given to a devotee saves one from going to
hell (PQPA page 75-76)
*But if a so-called devotee takes money and uses it for sense
gratification everyone goes to hell (PQPA page 76)
*If money is misused by a preacher he will fall down and the result will
be distress (SB 7.13.32p)

(4) The Time of Death (see also “the Soul” Week 6)
*what is one’s duty at the time of death? (Iso 17+p 13th para)
*one can attain the kingdom of God (Bg 2.72/Bg 8.5+p, 7+8 p’s)
*and never return to this temporary, miserable world (Bg 8.15+16+p’s)
*or one can attain another destination (Bg 8.6+p/Bg 14.14+15+p/Bg 15.9+p)
*qualifications for one going back to Godhead (Bg 15.5+p)
*one must have practiced some yoga system to remember Krsna at the time of
death (Bg 8.10+p)
*other yogis must leave their bodies at a suitable time, but the bhakti
yogis have no such concern (Bg 8.23+24+p’s, 27+p)
*sometimes a devotee may even wish to die immediately (but he always
leaves everything up to Krsna’s will) (Bg 8.2p last para)
*the Lord does not forget a devotee at the time of death (Iso 17+p 6th and
7th paras)

(5)Impersonalism
An impersonalist is someone who has realized brahman; that he, everyone
and everything else is spirit, but has not yet realized the personal
presence of Paramatma or Bhagavan. Sometimes the impersonalists are also
mayavadis (“those who see only maya”) who say that everything we can
perceive is false (does not exist) and that in Absolute state of existence
there is nothing perceivable (i.e. no form, no personality, no activity,
etc.) We, the living beings, and everything else, are part of, or “one
with” that Absolute, because there is nothing apart from or separate from
that Absolute, and therefore they conclude that we are all God. These
people further say that when the Absolute manifests a form (such as Lord
Krsna’s appearance) He takes a material body. So they conclude that, as
Krsna is Lord Narayana, we can also become Narayana, and they therefore
address each other “om namo narayana”. Being one with God is tantamount to
being God Himself. However the dictionary definition of God is “Supreme
Being”. So if the mayavadi is now in ignorance, having forgotten that he
is God and is therefore meditating to remember his supremacy, that means
illusion is greater than God. There is no meaning to being that kind of
God. Krsna never had to meditate to become Supreme–even as a baby He
killed Putana, and as a child He lifted Govardhana Hill. Lord Caitanya
advises that the mayavadis should be avoided because they are offenders.
*the living entities are one in quality with the Lord but not in quantity
(Iso 7+p 1st and 2nd paras)
*the world is not “false”, but it is temporary (Bg 9.33+p 1st para)
*material nature is eternal, it is not false (Bg Intro page 10, or 9 Mac)
*in the spiritual world there is actually variegatedness and the liberated
souls who go there retain their individuality (Bg 14.2+p)
*If the Absolute Truth is formless He could not be the complete whole (Bg
Intro page 14 or 13 Mac/Iso Invocation+p, end of 1st para)
*imagining the Supreme to be impersonal is not an Absolute conception (Iso
12+p 2nd para)
*Krsna is one and different from His energies like a king (Bg 9.4+p 2nd
para)
*oneness and difference explained (PQPA pages 10-14)
*the living entity is eternally a fragmental portion of the Supreme Lord
(Bg 15.7+p 1st and 3rd paras)
*there is no merging! (Bg 18.55p 2nd para)
*the brahmajyoti is the ultimate goal of the impersonalists (Bg 7.4+p 2nd
para)
*the brahmajyoti or divine light is simply a dazzling covering restricting
one’s complete realization of the Absolute Truth (Iso 15+p 7th para)
*the impersonalist is blinded by the brahmajyoti and cannot realize the
factual abode of the Lord or His transcendental form (Iso 16+p 1st two
paras)
*a devotee is not interested in the Brahman effulgence, or divine light,
but wants to see Lord Krsna’s beautiful smiling face (Iso 15+16)
*impersonalism or thinking oneself to be God is the last snare of
maya–actually we are all eternally individuals (Bg 2.39p end of 1st
para/Bg 5.16p)
*according to the Gita the soul always has his individuality (Bg 2.12+p)
*all paths do not reach the same goal! (Iso 13p 3rd para/Bg 9.25)
*real oneness explained (Bg 5.4p)
*how personalism and impersonalism are different features of the same
thing (Bg 7.8+p)
*impersonalism refuted by the Gita (Bg 7.7+p)
*in the darkness of ignorance the mayavadis see everything as one (Bg
5.16)
*How Krsna is covered by the mayavadis:-
“Accepting that Krsna is everything, what is aimed by the Ram Krsna
Mission or the Maharishi group is also Krsna; but Krsna says that
although everything is an expansion of Himself He is not in everything.
Exactly like in our material experience we can understand that everything
is ultimately a product of sunshine, but that does not mean that
everything is sunshine. Rather, other things cover the sunshine and
create a shadow. The Ram Krsna Mission, or the Maharishi’s activities are
nothing but expanded energy of Krsna, but by such work Krsna is
covered-therefore it is called maya! Maya has no separate existence
beyond Krsna, but when there is Maya, Krsna is covered. Exactly like a
cloud is nothing but a creation of sunshine…so although water is
generated from fire, we cannot pour on water while the fire is blazing.”
(Letter to disciple 1969)
“God appears, and God is light
To those poor souls who dwell in night
But does a human form display
To those who dwell in realm of day” (William Blake)
*Krsna states in His Gita that He is also individually residing in the
body with the living entity (Bg 13.3)
*Mayavadis have no business quoting from Bhagavad Gita–either it is
perfect knowledge, in which case they cannot establish their theory, or
it is the work of an imperfect person and therefore has no importance (Bg
2.11+p)
*Krsna does not take birth or accept a material body but He comes in His
original spiritual body (Bg 4.6+p)
*those who approach Krsna in an impersonal way are similarly treated (Bg
4.11+p)
*How can the soul be less active after liberation? (Bg 9.2p 3rd para)
*If the living entity is actually God how can he be in doubt? (Bg
18.73p–end of 1st para)
*the difference between impersonalism and personalism explained (Bg
12.1+p)
*and which is the most perfect process (Bg 12.2+p)
*to practice impersonalism is helpful as long as one does not have the
association of a pure devotee (Bg 12.20p)
*eventually the sincere impersonalist achieves devotion to Krsna (Bg
12.3-4+p)
*but it is difficult for him to give up his impersonal conception (Bg
12.5p last para)
*impersonalism or the path of jnana yoga is both very troublesome and
uncertain, (Bg 12.5+p 1st and 2nd paras) whereas the path of bhakti is
both easy and secure
*how the Vaisnavas are more firmly situated on the transcendental platform
than the mayavadi sannyasis (Bg 5.6+p)
*impersonalism is refuted by a proper understanding of the sastras (Bg
9.11+p)
*devotional service is eternal so where is the question of oneness? (Bg
9.2p 10th para/Bg 9.14)
*devotional service begins after liberation (Bg 9.2p 11th para/Bg 18.54)
*the nature of the impersonalist’s worship (Bg 17.4p, last para)
*monists are counted amongst the atheists (Bg 13.25p)
*pure devotees are not confused by foolish mayavadi commentators (Bg
11.51+p)
*Mayavadis do not know Lord Krsna’s absolute nature (Bg 4.35p 1st para)
*impersonalists are also unintelligent (like the demigod worshipers) for
they do not know that they can never understand Krsna without devoting
themselves to Him and thus obtain His mercy (Bg 7.24+p)
*Mayavadis are actually fools (Bg 9.11+p/Bg 7.24+25+p’s)
*Why someone becomes a mayavadi (Bg 4.10p)
*the fate of the unfortunate mayavadi (Bg 9.12+p)
*Lord Caitanya’s warning (Bg Preface 3rd para)

(6) The Bhagavad Gita (for the Mahabharata see chart, and also read
“Setting the scene” in the forward to the Bhagavad
Gita)
*the advantages of reading the Gita (Bg Intro page 31-33 or 27-28 Mac/Bg
8.28p last para)
*the history of the speaking of the Gita (Bg 4.1+p/4.2+p, last 2 paras)
*qualifications for hearing the Gita (Bg 4.3+p/Bg 9.1/Bg 18.64/Bg
18.67+p/Bg 18.68p)
*one should accept Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead at least
theoretically before one attempts to read His Gita (Bg Intro page 6-7, or
6 Mac)
*qualifications for speaking the Gita (Bg 9.1p, last para)
*one should learn the Bhagavad Gita from a devotee (Bg 8.28 last para)
*anyone who hears the Gita will be freed from the darkness of ignorance
(Bg 18.72p/18.73)
*the essence of studying the Gita (Bg 10.11p 4th para/Bg 18.78p 4th para)
*devotional service is the objective of the Bhagavad Gita and all Vedic
literature (Bg 18.1p 1st para)
*the “Gita teaches us how to absorb the mind and intelligence in the
thought of the Lord”. (Bg Intro page 29-30 or 26 Mac)
*the three subjects of the Gita (Bg Intro page 8-14 or 7-12 Mac)
*Summary by Srila Prabhupada (Bg 18.78p)

Ch 1 Observing the armies-Sanjaya describes the battlefield and Arjuna
decides not to fight
Ch 2 Contents of the Gita summarized-the soul, ksatriya duty, karma yoga
and the transcendental position
Ch 3 Karma yoga-prescribed duties according to varnasrama explained and
sacrifice, and lust and the means of conquering it
Ch 4 Transcendental knowledge-Krsna’s position as the Supreme
Personality of Godhead, the importance of guru and disciplic
succession and how sacrificial work culminates in jnana yoga
Ch 5 Karma yoga-action in Krsna Consciousness-characteristics of a karma
yogi or a detached worker
Ch 6 Dhyana yoga-controlling the mind, astanga yoga, the fallen yogi, the
best yogi
Ch 7 Knowledge of the Absolute-Krsna and His energies, and theists,
atheists and materialists
Ch 8 Attaining the Supreme-moment of death for bhakti yogi and others
Ch 9 Most Confidential knowledge-Krsna’s position, different types of
worship and His devotees (Bg 9.1p 1st part of 3rd para)
Ch 10 Opulence of the Absolute-Krsna’s specific opulences manifest in
this world
Ch 11 Universal Form-a challenge to the “pseudo-Gods”, and the importance
of the Lord’s original form
Ch 12 Devotional Service-the various practitioners of yoga culminating
with the bhakti yoga, whose characteristics are described
Ch 13 Nature, the Enjoyer and Consciousness-distinction and
interrelationship of the body (matter), soul and Supersoul
Ch 14 Three Modes of Nature-how they act, bind and how one is freed
Ch 15 Yoga of the Supreme Person-how to break attachment to the material
world and attain union with the Supreme Person who is the goal of
all the Vedas
Ch 16 Divine and Demoniac natures-explained
Ch 17 Divisions of faith-conditioned in food, sacrifice, austerity, and
charity by the 3 modes, and transcendental faith and worship
explained
Ch 18 Conclusion, Perfection of Renunciation-synopsis and conclusion of
the Gita. Purpose of renunciation, akarma, analysis of effects of
3 modes, 4 varnas, transcendence, surrender, devotion, preaching,
Arjuna’s decision and Sanjaya’s final conclusion

*the three parts of the Gita explained (Bg 13.1p 2nd para)

Chapters 1-6 deal with the distinction between the material body and the
non-material, eternal living entity and how he can become liberated
through various types of yoga culminating in bhakti yoga or Krsna
Consciousness (Ch 6.47)

Chapters 7-12 introduce the Supreme Lord, His different opulences and
energies, and the Lord’s relationship, particularly through bhakti yoga,
with His superior energy, the individual soul. These middle chapters are
the essence of the Gita. (Bg 8.28p 4th para)

Chapters 13-18 describe how the living entity comes in contact with the
material energy, how he is conditioned by it and how he is delivered
through various means such as jnana, karma and finally bhakti,
conclusively the only feasible means.

*The Gita should be accepted in the spirit of one taking medicine (Bg
Intro page 3)
*Five basic truths of the Gita: (i) isvara (ii) jiva (iii) prakrti (iv)
kala (v) karma (Bg Intro Page 8-11 or 7-10 Mac)
*the content and benefits of reading the Bhagavad Gita (SB 1.15.27+p)

(7) The Srimad Bhagavatam (The beautiful story of the Supreme Personality
of Godhead)
*is Vyasadev’s own commentary on his Vedanta Sutra (Bg 15.15p half way
through first para)
*is very dear to the devotees (Bg 10.9p 3rd para)
*see also week 2–Maharaja Pariksit and Sukadev Gosvami
*story of how the Bhagavatam came to be written (SB 1.4.26-1.5.21/SB
1.7.1-11)
*read the Preface to the Bhagavatam and the first 3 pages of the
Introduction.

(6) The Bhagavad Gita (for the Mahabharata see chart, and also read
“Setting the scene” in the forward to the Bhagavad
Gita)
*the advantages of reading the Gita (Bg Intro page 31-33 or 27-28 Mac/Bg
8.28p last para)
*the history of the speaking of the Gita (Bg 4.1+p/4.2+p, last 2 paras)
*qualifications for hearing the Gita (Bg 4.3+p/Bg 9.1/Bg 18.64/Bg
18.67+p/Bg 18.68p)
*one should accept Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead at least
theoretically before one attempts to read His Gita (Bg Intro page 6-7, or
6 Mac)
*qualifications for speaking the Gita (Bg 9.1p, last para)
*one should learn the Bhagavad Gita from a devotee (Bg 8.28 last para)
*anyone who hears the Gita will be freed from the darkness of ignorance
(Bg 18.72p/18.73)
*the essence of studying the Gita (Bg 10.11p 4th para/Bg 18.78p 4th para)
*devotional service is the objective of the Bhagavad Gita and all Vedic
literature (Bg 18.1p 1st para)
*the “Gita teaches us how to absorb the mind and intelligence in the
thought of the Lord”. (Bg Intro page 29-30 or 26 Mac)
*the three subjects of the Gita (Bg Intro page 8-14 or 7-12 Mac)
*Summary by Srila Prabhupada (Bg 18.78p)

Ch 1 Observing the armies-Sanjaya describes the battlefield and Arjuna
decides not to fight
Ch 2 Contents of the Gita summarized-the soul, ksatriya duty, karma yoga
and the transcendental position
Ch 3 Karma yoga-prescribed duties according to varnasrama explained and
sacrifice, and lust and the means of conquering it
Ch 4 Transcendental knowledge-Krsna’s position as the Supreme
Personality of Godhead, the importance of guru and disciplic
succession and how sacrificial work culminates in jnana yoga
Ch 5 Karma yoga-action in Krsna Consciousness-characteristics of a karma
yogi or a detached worker
Ch 6 Dhyana yoga-controlling the mind, astanga yoga, the fallen yogi, the
best yogi
Ch 7 Knowledge of the Absolute-Krsna and His energies, and theists,
atheists and materialists
Ch 8 Attaining the Supreme-moment of death for bhakti yogi and others
Ch 9 Most Confidential knowledge-Krsna’s position, different types of
worship and His devotees (Bg 9.1p 1st part of 3rd para)
Ch 10 Opulence of the Absolute-Krsna’s specific opulences manifest in
this world
Ch 11 Universal Form-a challenge to the “pseudo-Gods”, and the importance
of the Lord’s original form
Ch 12 Devotional Service-the various practitioners of yoga culminating
with the bhakti yoga, whose characteristics are described
Ch 13 Nature, the Enjoyer and Consciousness-distinction and
interrelationship of the body (matter), soul and Supersoul
Ch 14 Three Modes of Nature-how they act, bind and how one is freed
Ch 15 Yoga of the Supreme Person-how to break attachment to the material
world and attain union with the Supreme Person who is the goal of
all the Vedas
Ch 16 Divine and Demoniac natures-explained
Ch 17 Divisions of faith-conditioned in food, sacrifice, austerity, and
charity by the 3 modes, and transcendental faith and worship
explained
Ch 18 Conclusion, Perfection of Renunciation-synopsis and conclusion of
the Gita. Purpose of renunciation, akarma, analysis of effects of
3 modes, 4 varnas, transcendence, surrender, devotion, preaching,
Arjuna’s decision and Sanjaya’s final conclusion

*the three parts of the Gita explained (Bg 13.1p 2nd para)

Chapters 1-6 deal with the distinction between the material body and the
non-material, eternal living entity and how he can become liberated
through various types of yoga culminating in bhakti yoga or Krsna
Consciousness (Ch 6.47)

Chapters 7-12 introduce the Supreme Lord, His different opulences and
energies, and the Lord’s relationship, particularly through bhakti yoga,
with His superior energy, the individual soul. These middle chapters are
the essence of the Gita. (Bg 8.28p 4th para)

Chapters 13-18 describe how the living entity comes in contact with the
material energy, how he is conditioned by it and how he is delivered
through various means such as jnana, karma and finally bhakti,
conclusively the only feasible means.

*The Gita should be accepted in the spirit of one taking medicine (Bg
Intro page 3)
*Five basic truths of the Gita: (i) isvara (ii) jiva (iii) prakrti (iv)
kala (v) karma (Bg Intro Page 8-11 or 7-10 Mac)
*the content and benefits of reading the Bhagavad Gita (SB 1.15.27+p)

(7) The Srimad Bhagavatam (The beautiful story of the Supreme Personality
of Godhead)
*is Vyasadev’s own commentary on his Vedanta Sutra (Bg 15.15p half way
through first para)
*is very dear to the devotees (Bg 10.9p 3rd para)
*see also week 2–Maharaja Pariksit and Sukadev Gosvami
*story of how the Bhagavatam came to be written (SB 1.4.26-1.5.21/SB
1.7.1-11)
*read the Preface to the Bhagavatam and the first 3 pages of the
Introduction.

WEEK 6
MATTER AND SPIRIT
(Verse lo learn Bg 7.14)

(1) Sankhya Yoga
*to find the soul of existence, whereas bhakti yoga or karma yoga means to
serve the soul of all (Bg 5.4+p)
*the essence of both sankhya yoga, karma yoga, and bhakti yoga is the same
(Bg 5.4+p, 5+p)
*the analytical study of the nature of spirit and matter–an indirect,
speculative process (Bg 3.3p)

The Twenty-Four Elements (Bg 13.6-7+p)
(1) earth
(2) water
(3) fire –5 great elements (Bg 7.4+p, last para)
(4) air
(5) ether

(6) eyes
(7) ears
(8) nose –5 knowledge acquiring senses
(9) tongue
(10) touch

(11) voice–speaking
(12) hands–working
(13) legs–travelling –5 working senses
(14) genitals–generating
(15) anus–evacuating

(16) smell
(17) taste
(18) form (or colour) –5 sense objects
(19) touch
(20) sound

(21) mind
(22) intelligence three subtle elements (Bg 7.4+p last para)
(23) false ego

(24) pradhana–the unmanifested stage of the 3 modes of material nature

*sometimes time, the powerful representation of the Supreme Lord is
described as the mixing element, giving facility for all the interactions
of material nature and is therefore called the 25th element
*sometimes the soul is described as the 25th element, and sometimes the
Supersoul as the 26th element (Bg 13.25p middle)
*the five factors of action, and the significance of the Supersoul in
relation to action (Bg 18.14+p)
*and so it is only the fool who considers himself the only doer (Bg
18.15+16+p’s)
*but he is responsible for his suffering and enjoyment (Bg 13.21+p)
*the 3 motivating factors for action and the 3 constituents of action (Bg
18.18+p)

The Senses
*are strong and impetuous (Bg 2.60+p)
*and influential if not controlled in the proper manner (Bg 2.61+p/Bg
2.67+p)
*cannot be controlled by any human endeavour, but by keeping them engaged
in the service of the Lord (Bg 2.68+p)

The Mind
*is the driving instrument (the reins) in the car of the material body (Bg
6.34p)
*is higher than the senses and lower than the intelligence (Bg 3.42+p)
*is one of the sitting places of lust (Bg 3.40+p)
*the materialist is riding on the chariot of the mind (Bg 2.55+p)
*the conditioned soul is struggling with the senses, especially the mind
(Bg 15.7)
*should be used to understand the prime necessity of human life (Bg 10.4p
4th para)
*one can deliver oneself with the help of the mind (Bg 6.5+p)
*which can be our best friend or worst enemy (Bg 6.5+p)
*depending if we conquer it or not (Bg 6.6+p/Bg 6.7+p/Bg 6.36+p)
*should be controlled (Bg 6.26+p)
*is very difficult to control (Bg 6.33,34+p)
*but it is possible by (Bg 6.35+p/17.16+p)
*should be turned towards the Supersoul to avoid causing oneself
degradation (Bg 13.29+p)

Intelligence
*is the driver of the car of the material body (Bg 6.34p)
*is the power to analyse things in the proper perspective (Bg 10.4p, 2nd
para)
*means the ability to comprehend what is real and what is temporary, or
what is spirit and what is matter and who is controlling both
*is meant to direct the mind (Bg 3.42+p)
*is the immediate next door neighbour of the soul (Bg 3.40p)
*is one of Krsna’s separated material energies (Bg 7.4)
*is one of the sitting places of lust (Bg 3.40)
*is lost by someone affected by lust (Bg 2.62+63)
*Krsna is the intelligence of the intelligent (Bg 7.10)
*and He awards one transcendental intelligence (Bg 2.65+66)

False Ego
*explained (along with real ego) (Bg 13.8-12p 8th para)
*means thinking that I am a product of material nature (Bg Intro page 12
or 11 Mac)
*how the illusory energy acts on the conditioned soul (Bg 7.27+p/Bg
3.27+p)

(2) The Soul
*is a minute spiritual particle (anu-atma) in contrast to the Supersoul
(vibhu-atma) (Bg 2.20p last para)
*Qualities of: -(Bg 2.16+p 1st para/17+p/18+p/20+p/23+p/24+p/25+p/ 29+p
1st para)
*does not mix with anything, like the sky (Bg 13.33+p)
*illuminates the body with consciousness as the sun illuminates the
universe (Bg 13.34+p)
*is eternally a fragmental particle, an individual (Bg 2.13p 3rd para/Bg
15.7+p 1st para/PQPA pages 23-29)
*belongs to Krsna’s Superior nature (Bg 7.5)
*and is always controlled by Him (Bg 7.5+p)
*and is the energy of the Lord (Bg 13.20p 1st para)
*has nothing to do with the actions of the machine-like body (Bg
13.30+p/Bg 18.61+p)
*higher than, and transcendental to the intelligence, mind and senses (Bg
3.42+p 1st para)
*is not the doer (Bg 5.8-9+p)
*although, when bewildered he thinks he is (Bg 3.27+p)
*whilst living in the city of 9 gates (Bg 5.13+p, 14+p)
*is the knower of the field of activities (Bg 13.1+2+p 1st para)
*is impregnated into matter by the glance of the Supreme Lord (Bg 2.39p
last part of first para)
*how the soul changes bodies (Bg 2.22+p/Bg 15.8+p/Bg 2.13+p 1st para)
*which is perceived by one trained in knowledge and not understood by the
foolish (Bg 15.10+p)
*or by someone not following an authorized system of yoga (Bg 15.11+p)

(3) Three Energies (Bg Intro page 26 or 23 Mac/NOI page 15)

Lord Krsna possesses innumerable energies which can basically be
categorised into three:-
(a) internal, spiritual energy which comprises the spiritual world
(b) external, material energy
(c) marginal energy (the jiva)

(4) Material Life

The material energy causes the conditioned soul misery:
*as certified by Lord Krsna Himself (Bg 8.15+16/Bg 9.22+33+p 1st para)
*one should thoroughly understand this, because a pessimistic view of
material life gives one impetus to advance in spiritual life (Bg 13.9-12p
9th para)
*the threefold miseries etc (NOI page 17)
*Different realizations achieved in the material world:-annamoya,
pranamoya, jnanamoya, vijnanamoya and anandamoya (Bg 13.5p 3rd para)
*different species of life:-
*numbering 8,400,000 (Bg 8.3p 2nd para), 900,000 aquatics/ 2,000,000
plants and trees/ 1,100,000 insects/ 1,000,000 birds/ 3,000,000 beasts/
400,000 humans.
*which the soul evolves through (Iso 17p 1st 1/2 of 3rd para)
*6 changes each material body goes through (thus indicating the presence
of the soul) (Bg 8.4p, beginning)

(5) The Three Modes of Material Nature
*see chart
*conditioning of (Bg 14.5+p/14.9+p)
*competition between… (Bg 14.10+p)
*force one to act (Bg 3.5)
*are the actual performers of activity (Bg 3.27)
*one who can see this and knows Krsna goes back to Godhead (Bg 14.19+p)
*and he also enjoys happiness even in this life (Bg 14.20+p)
*the total influence of the modes on all conditioned souls (Bg 18.40+p)
*force one to transmigrate from body to body (Bg 14.22+p)
*guna or “mode”/”quality”, also means “rope” (Bg 7.14p 2nd para)
*influence one’s particular kind of faith (Bg 17.3+p)
*one who does not follow Krsna’s direction (or the guidance of His
representative) must be dictated by the modes of nature (Bg 18.59+60+p’s)
*one influenced by the modes cannot know Krsna (even if one is in the mode
of goodness) (Bg 7.13 2nd para)
*unless he surrenders to Him (Bg 7.14)
*it is, however, necessary for society to cultivate the mode of goodness
(Bg 14.17+p)
*by serving Lord Krsna one automatically becomes free from the modes of
nature (Bg 14.22-25p 1st para/Bg 14.26+p)

(6) Time

*is the ultimate killer (Bg 10.33p 2nd para)
*even a moment may be enough for one to attain Krsna Consciousness (Bg
2.72p 1st para)
*Lord Krsna as … (Bg 10.30, 33+p/Bg 11.32)
*as one of the five subjects of the Gita (Bg Intro 8, or 7 Mac)

Universal Time

Satya Yuga (40% of a yuga cycle) 1,728,000 years
Treta Yuga (30% ” ) 1,296,000 ” 3/4 length of Satya yuga
Dvapara Yuga (20% ” ) 864,000 ” 1/2 ”
Kali Yuga (10% ” ) 432,000 ” 1/4 ”

Divya Yuga (a cycle of 4 yugas)—–4,320,000 years ”
Kalpa (a day of Brahma, a 1000 yuga cycles/4,320,000,000 years
Lord Brahma lives for 100 of his years, each year consisting of 12 months
of 30 days, and his night is the same length as his day, thus:-
4,320,000,000 x 2 x 30 x 12 x 100 =
Vikalpa (or life of Brahma) 311,40,000,000,000 (311 Trillion 40 Billion
earth years)
*Lord Krsna in His original form appears once in a day of Brahma or every
8,640,000,000 years (Bg Preface 4th para) which was only 5000 years ago!
Lord Caitanya also appears once in a day of Brahma, following Lord
Krsna’s appearance, and He appeared exactly 500 years ago!!

(7) The Spiritual World and the Creation of the Material World

*for a brief explanation see the inside flap of the cover to any volume of
the 1st Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam
*how one is entangled in the banyan tree of the material world, how one is
freed and how one attains the eternal kingdom of God (Bg 15.1-5+p’s)
*the spiritual world does not neeed artificial lighting (Bg 15.6)
*and once going there one does not return (Bg 15.6+p 2nd para/Bg 8.21+p)
*the spiritual world is attained by Krsna Consciousness (Bg Intro page
23-25 or 21-22 Mac/Bg 2.51+p/Bg 4.24/Bg 8.13+p/Bg 8.28/Bg 11.55+p/Bg
12.6-7+p)
*and is inhabited with infallible beings, as opposed to the fallible
beings of the material world (Bg 15.16+p)
*when the soul enters the spiritual world he revives his spiritual body
(Bg 15.7p 2nd para)
*the spiritual world remains when the material world is annihilated (Bg
8.20+p)
*and is thus called Vaikuntha (Vai-free from, Kuntha-enxiety)
*description of the spiritual world (Bg Intro 21-22, or 19 Mac/Bg 8.21+p)
*forms of Krsna in the spiritual world (Bg 11.45,46+p’s)

(8) Evolution and Modern Science

*Read Introduction to “Mechanistic and Non Mechanistic Science”
*The Bhaktivedanta Institute was formed by Srila Prabhupada in 1974 in
order that Krsna Consciousness may be demonstrated scientifically and the
nonscientific mechanistic science of the day be soundly defeated. Srila
Prabhupada gave the framework of argumentation as can be seen, for
instance, in “Life Comes From Life” and he wanted his expert Phd.
scientist disciples to expound all these theistic principles in the
language of contemporary science, and further prove that the solution to
all social, economic and personal problems is found in Bhagavad Gita.
*see film “Spark of Life”
*modern mechanistic thinking is not a new phenomena (Bg 2.26+p)
*Definition of a scientist: “one who knows things as they are” (PQPA
page 1)
*principle of knowledge: “some knowledge will not do, one must have
perfect knowledge” (PQPA page 22-23)
*unless you have perfect knowledge how can you teach? (PQPA pages 5-10)
*”Knowledge is information gathered from the scriptures (the authoritative
source), and science is practical realization of that knowledge.
Knowledge is scientific when it is gathered from the scriptures, through
the bona fide spiritual master, but when it is interpreted by speculation
it is mental concoction” (TLC Ch.23)
*why don’t the “scientists” etc. surrender to Krsna? (Bg 7.15p 1st para)
*all creatures are simultaneously created (to facilitate the multifarious
desires of the living entities from the last manifestation) (Bg 9.8p 2nd
para)
WEEK 7
BHAKTI YOGA (and other yoga systems)
(Verse to learn Bg 6.47)

*”Yoga”–to “link”, “join” or have “union” with the Supreme Personality
of Godhead
*the meaning of yoga and the difference between specific types of yoga (Bg
6.46+47+p’s)
*on what or who one should meditate (Bg 8.9+p)
*real yoga means to follow Krsna’s direction (Bg 2.48+p 1st para)
*one must close all the doors of sense enjoyment (Bg 8.12+p)
*the yoga ladder (Bg 6.3+p)
*preliminary description of astanga yoga (Bg 5.28+p)
*a yogi should live alone in a sacred place etc. (Bg 6.10,11+12+p)
*and should be celibate and fearless etc (Bg 6.13-14+p)
*how a perfect yogi can transfer himself to any desired planet (Bg Iso
17+p, 2nd and 3 rd paras)
*and thus he returns home to Godhead (Bg 6.15+p)
*The steps of the astanga yoga system (the 8 fold or “limbed” path):
(1) yama-sense control
(2) niyama-strictly following rules and regulative principles
(3) asana-practicing sitting postures (hatha yoga)
(4) pranayama-breath control
(5) pratyahara-sense withdrawal (lit:’just the opposite’–from
extrospection to introspection
(6) dharana-concentration of the mind (Bg 6.25+p)
(7) dhyana-meditation
(8) samadhi-self-realization (Bg 6.19-23)

*without Krsna Consciousness a mechanical attempt at this yoga system
cannot help one to spiritual life (Bg 3.43p, last 2 sentences)
*astanga yoga is not practical in this age (Bg 6.33+p)
*Patanjali’s yoga system further described (Bg 4.27+p)
*and how a devotee naturally achieves all the benefits of the yoga system,
and more (Bg 4.29+p)
*mechanical sense restriction is only recommended for persons who have no
higher knowledge of the higher taste of Krsna Consciousness (Bg 2.59+p)
*what that higher taste means (Bg 2.60p)
*and how to attain it (Bg 2.61+p)
*How Krsna emphasizes the importance of karma yoga above other forms of
yoga (Bg 6.1+p)
*pure bhakti is the highest form of yoga and is top of the yoga ladder (Bg
6.1+p)
*only the bhakti yogi can understand Krsna in truth and go back to Godhead
(Bg 18.55+p, 1st para/18.16+p/8.22+p, 2nd para)
*even if he is initially immature in his yoga practice (Bg 9.34+p last
para)
*the Lord Himself takes the devotee back to Godhead (Bg 12.6-7+p 3rd para)
*how bhakti yoga is recommended throughout the Gita, in the conclusion of
each chapter:-(Bg 18.1p, start of 1st para/Bg
2.71+72/5.29/6.47/7.30/8.28/9.34/11.55/12.20/14.26/15.19+20/18.66)
*bhakti yoga includes the results of all other Vedic processes (Bg 8.28+p
3rd+4th paras/Bg 18.66p end of 3rd para)
*the bhakti yogi, knowing Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead,
without doubting, has come to the conclusion of the Vedas and knows
everything (Bg 15.19+p)
*it is understood that someone engaged in devotional service is Brahman
realized (PQPA page 54)
*the bhakti yogi is the most perfect transcendentalist (Bg 18.66p last
para)
*the bhakti yogi is superior to karmis, jnanis and mystic yogis (Iso 15p
last para)
*how a bhakti yogi is situated in the transcendental platform (Bg 5.7+p/Bg
13.8-12p, 2nd para)
*bhakti yoga is the only means to make one pure and sinless so that we can
understand Krsna (Bg 15.20p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*bhakti yoga and Krsna are one and the same because they are both
spiritual (Bg 15.20p 1st para)
*when the bhakti yogi attains the brahma-bhuta stage he has to go still
further (unlike the impersonalist) (Bg 18.54+p 1st para/18.55p, last
para)
*bhakti yoga is the direct path and other processes are step by step
towards bhakti (Bg 12.12+p last para)
*devotees are best situated in spiritual understanding (over sankhya
philosophers & meditators etc.) (Bg 13.25+p)
*sankhya yoga and buddhi yoga in relationship to bhakti (Bg 2.39+p/Bg
5.4+p/Bg 10.10p 2nd para)
*a “karma yogi is generally a merchant doing business with Krsna.
Eventually he may come to offer everything to Krsna, almost like bhakti,
but because he is not following the regulative principles of bhakti yoga,
he can easily fall down.” (1974 Bombay)
*and if one cannot take to Karma yoga (Bg 12.11+p) and if one cannot give
up the result of one’s work (Bg 12.12+p 1st para)
*qualifications of one to render devotional service to Krsna (Bg 7.28+p/Bg
8.14+p)
*pure devotion defined (Bg 7.16p 1st para/Bg 11.55p 4th para, 3rd para
Mac)
*Bhakti yoga or spiritual life means simply to please Krsna (PQPA page
46-48)
*bhakti yoga is a very happy process (Bg 9.2p 9th para/Bg 10.9p 2nd para)
*bhakti yoga is a very simple process (Bg 9.26+p 1st and 3rd paras/Bg
14.27p 1/2 way through 2nd para)
*everyone can take to bhakti yoga! (Bg 9.32+p)
*although pure devotional service is rarely achieved (Bg 6.40p last 2
paras)
*by performing bhakti yoga everyone and everything is satisfied (NOD
preface 11th para)
*Read Introduction to Nectar of Devotion, the science of bhakti yoga
*Thoughts about Krsna’s greatness and mercy to help one in the beginning
stage of Krsna consciousness or bhakti yoga (Bg 15.12-14+p’s)
*How a devotee is practically surrendered to Krsna regarding his
maintainance and possessions (Bg 4.20-23+p’s)
*the 9 devotional activities (Bg Intro page 30 or 26 Mac/NOI page
28-29/Iso 17p 11th para)
(1) hearing (first and foremost of 9 engagements Bg 6.35p)–Maharaj
Pariksit
(2) chanting–Sukadev Gosvami
(3) remembering–Prahlad Maharaja
(4) serving the Lord’s feet–Laksmi, the goddess of fortune
(5) worshiping the Deity–king Prthu
(6) offering prayers–Akrura
(7) becoming a servant–Hanuman
(8) becoming the best friend–Arjuna
(9) surrendering everything–Bali Maharaja
*Maharaja Ambarisa attained perfection by performing all of these
activities (Bg 6.18p)

*Six divisions of surrender: (Bg 18.66p 3rd para)
The devotee:-
(1) accepts everything that is favourable for the rendering of
transcendental loving service to the Lord
(2) and rejects everything unfavourable (Bg 6.10p 4th para)
(3) is firmly convinced that Krsna will give him protection
(4) accepts Krsna as his supreme maintainer and master
(5) remembers that his activities and desires are never independent of
Krsna. He depends completely on Krsna for everything and he acts and
thinks as Krsna desires.
(6) is always meek and humble

*Six favourable principles for the execution of devotional service (NOI 3)

(1) being enthusiastic (NOI page 30&33/Bg 6.24+p)
(2) endeavouring with confidence (& determination) (NOI page 32,35)
(3) patience (NOI page 32)
(4) acting according to regulative principles (ie. the 9 devotional
activities)
(5) abandoning the association of non devotees (Bg 11.55p beginning of
4th para/NOI page 33-34)
(6) following in the footsteps of the previous acaryas (NOI page 34)

*Six obstacles to pure devotional service (NOI 2)
(1) eating more than necessary or collecting more funds than required
(NOI pages 17,18,21,22)
(2) over-endeavouring for mundane things that are difficult to obtain
(NOI pages 18,19/Bg 12.16p)
(3) talking unnecessarily about mundane subjects (NOI pages 20,21/Bg
12.18-19p)
(4) practicing the scriptural rules and regulations for some purpose
other than spiritual advancement/or whimsically rejecting the rules
and regulations (NOI 22,23/Bg 7.3p, end of 2nd para)
(5) associating with worldly minded people who are not interested in
Krsna consciousness (NOI page 21/Bg 13.8-12p 12th para)
(6) being greedy for mundane achievements

*Six urges that a devotee controls:-
(1) speech–(NOI pages 4,5,7-9)
(2) mind–(NOI pages 5&9)
(3) anger–(NOI pages 5&6)
(4) tongue and belly–(NOI pages 6,9-11)
(5)
(6) genitals–(NOI pages 6,7,12,13)
Conclusion:- (NOI page 13-14)

The Importance of Hearing

*hearing is the most important of the 9 devotional activities (Bg 7.1+p,
3rd para onwards/Bg 6.35+p)
*hearing and explaining is more important than reading (SB 1.1.6p)
*hearing is more important than seeing (NOI page 2)
*the more one hears about Krsna in association of devotees the more one is
fixed in devotional service (Bg 10.1 last para)
*hearing about Krsna is ever fresh and relishable (Bg 10.18+p)
*hearing from authoritative sources is the only process that enables one
to change one’s consciousness from material to spiritual (Bg 13.22p 2nd
para)
*hearing is especially important for the modern age (Bg 13.26+p)
*the importance of reading Srila Prabhupada’s books and discussing them
from different angles of vision (PQPA page 85)
*devotees are not interested in hearing about mundane topics (Bg Intro
page 27 or 23-24 Mac/TLK pages 78-79)

The Importance of Faith

*Faith means “unflinching trust in something sublime” (Bg 2.41p 1st para)
*undeviating determination (Bg 6.24+p)
*faith means strong faith (NOI page 56)
*faith means confidence that simply by serving Krsna all other duties,
responsibilities and interests are fulfilled and one will attain the
highest perfection (CC Mad 22.62/Bg 4.39+p/Bg 9.3p 1st para)
*faith means being calmly convinced of the efficacy of Krsna consciousness
(NOI 3+p, page 35)
*faith is a preliminary requisite for tapasya, knowledge and wisdom (PQPA
pages 84-85)
*it is only by faith that one can advance in Krsna consciousness (Bg 9.3p
2nd para)
*faith is necessary to understand the essence of the Gita (Bg 10.14+p)
*possessing faith can promote one to the highest stage even if one is
initially lacking something (Bg 3.31+p)
*faith is developed in the association of devotees (Bg 9.3p 1st para)
*however “nothing should be accepted blindly” (Bg 10.4p 3rd para)
*doubting in the beginning is a sign of intelligence but doubting is
foolish if it is unreasonable (SB 3.26.30p)
*to accomplish anything requires faith, which solidifies as one
progressively achieves one’s desired goal. If one, for instance, follows
the directions of a map and as one proceeds one finds that all
intermediary points coincide exactly with the actual terrain, one will be
increasingly convinced that by faithfully applying the directions of the
map one will achieve one’s destination. In fact one will be convinced of
the existence of that place well before actually seeing it. No one would
claim this to be “blind faith”. Similarly, the Vedic literature is a
navigational chart guiding one across the ocean of material existence. The
various steps of bhakti yoga (Bg 4.10p last para) can be experienced
scientifically.
*faithlessness and doubt cause failure in everything (Bg 4.40p/Bg 9.3+p/Bg
17.28+p 1st para) including happiness
*doubts and faithlessness because of ignorance should be slashed by the
weapon of knowledge (Bg 4.42)
*following the instructions of the Bhagavad Gita frees one from all doubts
(Bg 4.41+p)

WEEK 8
SANKIRTANA (Verse to learn Bg 5.29)

(1) Panca-Tattva–(Panca-5, tattva-truths) The Absolute Truth in 5
features

(a) Lord Sri Krsna Caitanya

*Krsna Himself appearing in the form of a devotee of Krsna:
*to teach by example how to be a devotee (To personally demonstrate the
practice of the conclusion of Bhagavad Gita (SB Intro page 8)
*To inaugurate the yuga dharma, the sankirtana yajna which indisriminately
gives everyone the opportunity to perfect their lives, whether pious or
impious
*To answer the powerful sincere calls of His devotee and incarnation
Advaita Acarya
*To destroy the demoniac mentality of the atheists or Mayavadis
*For various internal, personal reasons in connection with His eternal
consort, Srimati Radharani. Hence Lord Krsna’s natural blackish colour is
hidden by Radharani’s golden hue and so He is called Gaura Hari (the
golden Lord) or Gauranga (one who possesses a golden-limbed form)
*He is the son of Saci devi–hence He is called Sacinandan. His name
Mahaprabhu means the greatest master

(b) Lord Nityananda

*Lord Balaram Himself (the 1st expansion of Krsna) appearing as an
expansion of a devotee. Nityananda Prabhu gives us strength (bala) to make
spiritual advancement–without His grace this is not possible. Therefore,
we always chant Nitai Gaura, addressing both transcendental brothers.
Nityananda is also the original spiritual master. Our present spiritual
master, as a manifestation of the Lord, represents Lord Nityananda–“one
who is eternally full of bliss”.

(c) Advaita Acarya–“incarnation of a devotee” Advaita–“non-dual”, He is
nondifferent from the Lord because He is an incarnation of Maha Visnu
Acarya-He is teaching us devotional service by His own personal example.

(d) Gadadhar Pandit–“energy of a devotee”, or devotional energy–a
manifestation of Srimati Radharani.

(e) Srivasa Thakura–a “pure devotee”, an incarnation of Narada Muni. In
the Panca Tattva maha mantra, adi means etc; referring to all the other
great devotees of Lord Caitanya, and gaura bhakta vrnda refers to the
present, assembled devotees of the Lord.

Lord Caitanya Gadadhara Pandit–Sakti Tattva
Lord Nityananda –Visnu Tattva Srivas Thakur–Jiva Tattva
Srila Advaita Acarya

(2) The Four Ages

Satya yuga–100,000 years, religious principles fully manifest, yuga
dharma–silent meditation
Treta yuga–10,000 years, religious principles diminish by 25%, yuga
dharma–costly, intricate sacrifices
Dvapara yuga–1000 years, religious principles diminish by 50%, yuga
dharma–gorgeous temple worship
Kali yuga–100 years (diminishing to the point where 25 years will be
considered old age), religious principles diminish from 25%-0,
yuga dharma–sankirtana yajna. (Read BTG Vol 13, No.5 for a
lecture on the symptoms of the Kali yuga.)

*Lord Caitanya’s mission is to deliver everyone in the Kali yuga by
introducing His method of sankirtana (Bg 3.10p last 1/2)
*He accepted anyone who qualified himself (NOD preface, 2nd para)
*without performing sankirtan there can be no peace or happiness in the
world (see also week 4–“yajna”)
*Krsna made certain conditions for someone to achieve perfection in
self-realization (see Bg 4.3/7.28/15.26/18.54,66,67) but Lord Caitanya
freely distributed love of Godhead (see Blue Song book page 8)

(3) Welfare Work

*actual welfare work explained (Bg 5.25+p)
*any other benefit is only a great harm (SPL Vol 11. page 41)
*mundane welfare work is extended selfishness (Iso 2p, 4th para)
*Real welfare work must benefit everyone (NOD page 8)
*What is the highest benefit? (Bg 11.55+p)
*the devotee is the best friend of everyone (Bg 6.32+p)

(4) Preaching

*a preacher must be convinced (PQPA page 38)
*and humble (NOD Intro 5th para)
*he goes as a beggar to save people from going to hell (PQPA page 75-76)
*he is always daring and active, not influenced by attachment or aversion
and steady in his determination amidst apparent success or failure (Bg
2.56p, near the end)
*preaching means teaching people how to act properly (Bg 3.25+p)
*without unnecessarily disturbing them (Bg 3.26+p)
*but a preacher takes risks, out of kindness (Bg 3.29p last para)
*and so is very dear to Lord Krsna (Bg 11.55p 5th para)
*a preacher is most dear to Krsna, who accepts him back home to Godhead
(Bg 18.68+p,69)
*a preacher is able, and does give evidence from previous authorities and
scripture (Bg 13.5+p 1st para)
*a preacher traverses the earth for the benefit of others (Bg 7.28p 2nd
para)
*preaching is the way to experience spiritual progress directly (Bg 9.2p
6th para)
*charity should only be given to the preachers of Krsna Consciousness (Bg
11.54p, 1/2 way through 1st para)

WEEK 9
THE DEVOTEES (Verse to learn Bg 2.14)

(1) Devotees…
*always think about, discuss and glorify Krsna (Bg 10.9+p 1st para)
*are not philosophically naive sentimentalists (Bg 10.11+p 1st & 2nd
paras)
*the best devotee is one who serves Krsna in full knowledge (Bg 7.17p
18+p)
*a devotee must make sure that he clearly understands and accepts Krsna’s
position as God if he wants to be fixed in sincere devotional service and
advance back to Godhead (Bg 9.12+p, 1st 2 sentences/Bg 10.7+p 1st & 3rd
paras/Bg 10.8+p)
*a mahatma described (Bg 9.13+p, 14+p)
*and three other kinds of worshipers (Bg 9.15+p)
*although engaged very busily in all kinds of activities and sometimes
undergoing great difficulty a devotee is guaranteed entrance into Krsna’s
abode
*a devotee wants to go to the higher spiritual planet, disregarding
everything else (Bg 11.55p 3rd para/Bg 15.6p 1st and 3rd paras)
*although he just wants to serve and please Krsna unconditionally (Bg
11.55p end of 4th para/Bg 12.6-7p 2nd para)
*a devotee is fearless (Bg 10.4p 5th para)
*and develops all good qualities (Bg 10.4-5p 11th para/Bg 12.18-19p,
end/Bg 13.8-12p 1st para/PQPA page 64)
*the transcendental qualifications of a pure devotee described (Bg
12.13-19+p’s)
*how a devotee has all the symptoms of one situated on the transcendental
platform (Bg 18.51-53, 54p 2nd para)
*Krsna belongs to the devotee and the devotee belongs to Krsna (PQPA page
39)
*Krsna’s appreciation of His devotees (Bg 9.33+p, 2nd para)
*Krsna is so friendly to His devotee that the devotee is always free from
all anxiety except to increase his service to please the Lord (Bg 18.58p)
*Krsna reciprocates with the mood of approach of His devotees (Bg 2.10p/Bg
4.11+p)
*How Krsna likes to reciprocate the service of His devotees (Bg 1.22p 1st
para)
*How Krsna takes care of His devotees (Bg 9.22+p/Bg 10.10+p 3rd para)
*even though He remains forever impartial (Bg 9.29+p)
*5 different ways devotees relate to Lord Krsna (Bg Intro page 5 or 4
Mac/Bg 8.14p last para)
*Krsna is the reservoir of all relationships (Bg 11.14+p)
*We all eternally have a particular relationship with Him (Bg Intro page
5) called Svarupa-siddhi, or the perfection of one’s constitutional
position

(2) Types of Devotees

*three levels of advancement described (Iso 6+p 1st 3 paras)
*three kinds of devotees in relationship to faith (Bg 9.3p 2nd para/NOI
page 55)
*and in relation to the Holy Name (NOI page 54-57)
*and in relation to preaching (NOI text 5 page 48-51, 57)
*and in relation to a devotee’s vision (PQPA page 55-56)

(3) Association of Devotees

*Direct perception of spiritual advancement comes as a result of
associating with devotees (Bg 9.2p 7th para)
*the value of associating with devotees (PQPA page 40-46)
*one of the spiritual master’s prime instructions (PQPA page 98)
*association is the most important factor, therefore Srila Prabhupada
created ISKCON (PQPA page 103)
*in the association of devotees one practically learns how to surrender to
Krsna and give up one’s false independence:-
“…so this Krsna Consciousness Society is especially meant to give
people the opportunity to associate with devotees… One cannot be
independent and at the same time become a devotee, because all devotional
activities are based on surrender. So, in the association of devotees, we
learn this important item–how to surrender–but if we keep our
independence and try to become devotees, that is not possible…To
associate with me you are always welcome but not with your independence.
That will not help me or you” (Letter to a disciple 1972)

(4) Krsna Consciousness is a Natural Process

*a false renunciate is a pretender (Bg 3.6+p)
*repression cannot accomplish anything (Bg 3.33+p)
*a devotee automatically loses his taste for pale things (Bg 2.59+p)
*love of Krsna is lying dormant within everyone’s heart (CC Madhya 22,107)
*one does not artificially lose one’s individuality but one surrenders
one’s individuality (PQPA pages 61-62)

(5) ISKCON and It’s Structure

Iskcon is based on the Bhagavad-Gita (Bg Preface 1st & 2nd paras)
*and is established to facilitate 6 kinds of loving exchanges between
devotees (NOI 4 pages 40-41,43)
In order to manage a world wide society considerable organisation is
required. Srila Rupa Goswami, a great acarya in our disciplic succession
and a direct disciple of Lord Caitanya stated:
“One is said to be situated in the fully renounced order of life in
accordance with Krsna Consciousness when one is without attachment for
sense enjoyment, accepting only what is necessary for the upkeep of the
body and one simply engages in these services connected with Krsna. On the
other hand, one who renounces things that could be used in the service of
Krsna, under the pretext that such things are material does not practice
complete renunciation.” (Bg 6.10p 3rd para)
This concept of “utility is the principle” is an intrinsic part of both
our philosophy and mission of spreading Krsna consciousness all over the
world. It is also mentioned in the Vedic literature that one should
“remove a thorn with a thorn”–the very things which cause the conditioned
soul’s entanglement in the material world can be used to free him. Srila
Prabhupada taught us how to use a multiplicity of modern technology,
business, architecture, computers, communication systems etc. in the
service of Lord Krsna and we have found that these things far from hinder
our own spiritual development and ability to spread Krsna consciousness,
but are extremely helpful.

In 1971 Srila Prabhupada formed the Governing Body Commission (G.B.C.) as
a body of 12 senior disciples to manage the affairs of his growing
society. This was in continuity with the desire and order of Srila
Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, his own spiritual master. In fact just before
departing from this mortal world Srila Bhaktisiddhanta requested that his
disciples all work co-operatively together under a Governing Body
Commission, which they failed to do, with the result that their spiritual
master’s entire mission became a failure. Srila Prabhupada wanted to
preach in the West, together with his Godbrothers, but none of them showed
any interest, nor even gave him any help. Therefore he was forced by Lord
Krsna’s desire, to preach alone, and set up his mission single-handedly.
As soon as the opportunity arose, however, Srila Prabhupada, always
meditating with fixed concentration on the order of his guru, established
a Governing Body Commission for Iskcon, and then proceeded to train it’s
members very thoroughly over the years. He finally declared in his will
that the G.B.C. be the “ultimate managing authority of the entire
International Society for Krsna Consciousness” so that even the
newly-appointed gurus be directed by the combined will of the G.B.C.
members, which represents Srila Prabhupada’s ultimate decision-making
capacity. In this way a unified world-wide society could continue to
flourish, providing that all the members co-operate together–in fact Srila
Prabhupada declared: “Your love for me will be tested by how much you
co-operate together after I pass away”. You can study all this history in
the Srila Prabhupada Lilamrta and also the book called “Hare Krsna, Hare
Krsna” pages 82-84.

At the annual 1984 meetings in Mayapur, West Bengal (the birth place of
Lord Caitanya) the G.B.C. resolved that there should also be a horizontal
structure in our society as well as the present vertical structure of the
G.B.C, gurus, zonal secretaries, regional secretaries, temple presidents,
department heads, temple commanders etc. As the Society has continued to
expand there has been an increasing amount of speciallization in various
fields such as:
(1) Agriculture
(2) Architecture and Construction
(3) Bhaktivedanta Book Trust
(4) College preaching
(5) Deities
(6) Education
(7) Festivals
(8) Finance
(9) Folk
(10) Introductory Course for New Devotees
(11) Legal
(12) Public Affairs
(13) Sankirtan
(14) Audiovisual
(15) Standards

and so now is a similar manner in which the G.B.C. are linked together by
regular meetings and loving Vaisnava exchanges, the members of the various
departments are in regular communication. This will obviously increase
everyone’s efficiency and further strengthen the world wide unity and
development of ISKCON, so that Krsna Consciousness may be spread to every
town and village even more effectively.

(6) Parents and Family

Krsna Consciousness is very much a “family affair” in the sense that
Srimati Radharani (Hare) and Lord Krsna are the eternal Mother and Father
for all of us–“pitaham asya jagato mata dhata pitamah” “I am the father,
the mother, the maintainer and provider of everyone in the universe” (Bg
9.17)
We have all, therefore, strayed away from our real parents and accepted
illusory, temporary situations as reality. (This understanding is also
explained in the Bible).

Although we are eternal we have become foolishly attached to false
designations such as “my country”, “my family”, “my religion” etc. The
soul is passing through different bodies and species. Sometimes we have a
cat for a mother, sometimes a giraffe, a snake or a peacock, sometimes a
human being. Sometimes we are a mother and sometimes a father, and
sometimes our present mother or father will become our child in the future
or any other kind of relationship. All this is going on like musical
chairs, although the materialists are blind to the actual situation. Only
when we finally arrive at Lord Krsna’s lotus feet will we finally achieve
a proper resting place and will everything else fall into proper
perspective.

Human life is different from animal life in the sense that human beings
have the ability to inquire into the nature of the absolute, and also the
ability to abide by the laws of God. Therefore human parenthood has a
different purpose than animal parenthood. Human beings are not meant to
reproduce simply to “carry on the species” (which will always happen
anyway) but to end one’s confinement in that particular species, or in
other words to free one from having to be once more incarcerated in a
material body.

“One who cannot deliver his dependents from the path of repeated birth
and death should never become a spiritual master, a father, a husband, a
mother or a worshipable demigod.” (SB 5.5.18)

People today generally have children as by-product of sex-life and even if
the child is “wanted” from conception, they have no knowledge of what it
is to be a proper parent. Therefore we find young people are becoming more
and more mistrustful and disrespectful to parents, teachers, leaders etc.
because they have a strong sense that these people are not qualified to
care for them properly. In Krsna Consciousness however, the children
respect their parents, teacher and leaders very much due to their spotless
character as can easily be seen in our community.

Having clearly understood all these points, a devotee is not a fanatic who
completely rejects his parents as “maya”. No, a devotee is compassionate
and gentle, knowing how and when to preach to help elevate everyone,
including his parents. We have been in this material world for millions
and millions of births, and finally, in this life, in this particular body
we have been able to take proper advantage. Our parents are obviously,
even unknowingly, something to do with this, and therefore they are very
respectable indeed (see S.P.Lilamrta vol 6 page 225-226 for how a devotee
is respectful to his parents).

They may be attached to this body, but if we use our body in the service
of the Lord and thus spiritualize it, then their attachment will also
become spiritualized, as is mentioned by Mother Devahuti: “Every learned
man knows very well that attachment fo the material is the greatest
entanglement of the spirit soul. But that same attachment, when applied to
the self-realized devotees opens the door of liberation.” (SB 3.25.20)

We should not do anything, therefore, too abruptly, and roughly sever that
attachment, but rather gradually try to help them become attached to us
spiritually and to Krsna. Coming to Krsna Consciousness means to realise,
that we did not really “love” anyone before, in the proper sense of the
term, and now, as we awaken our real love for Krsna, we naturally love all
His parts and parcels, our parents included. So it’s not that we love our
parents any less now, but actually much more because we care for the real
person, the soul, and we also care for everyone else more and more. Our
love has only increased.

There is a natural bond of affection between parent and child and so
devotees should keep in regular touch with parents by letter, telephone,
and visits, and remember them on birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas, etc.
We should not be afraid to chat a little bit with them about their own
mundane affairs. At least in the beginning it’s quite enough preaching for
them to accept the fact that now we are getting up early to pray, we’ve
shaved our heads and become vegetarians – without even saying anything our
very presence reminds them of Krsna and they often feel quite embarrassed
to smoke, eat meat, etc. in front of their devotee-child. We can bide our
time in preaching to them, because, after all, they are stuck with us, and
us with them, for a very long time to come!

Sometimes parents happen to be unreasonably inimical which makes for
difficulties for them and for their child. A devotee should be tolerant
and not take their illogical criticism too seriously, just like you don’t
take the comments of an intoxicated person too seriously. Generally, such
parents calm down and begin to like Krsna Consciousness very much after a
year or so. In the initial stages try to avoid situations that will cause
them to blaspheme and don’t commit the ninth offence against the Holy Name
(see Nectar of Devotion) causing them to be more blasphemous still.

In the beginning the most important thing is for you to become fixed up
and strong in spiritual life without unnecessary distractions, and
therefore it’s recommended that for three months one should stay in the
temple and follow the Introductory Course. Rather than visiting relatives
during this time it’s best to keep in touch by telephone or letter. They
are also most welcome to visit you at the temple. If you suddenly turned
up on the doorstep with a shaved head, robes, and bead bag, after a couple
of weeks, it’s obviously a great shock to them and hard for them to adjust
to. Therefore the more gradual approach is preferred. If you just let your
parents know that you are trying this out for a while to see if you like
it before making any final decisions or commitments, much unnecessary
worry and grief can be prevented.

A mother of a devotee called Mrs Rose Forscythe has started an association
called “Friends of Krsna” for devotees parents, and, if your parents would
like, she would be pleased to correspond with them. See also “Hare Krsna,
Hare Krsna” pages 88-93. See also statements of parents in notes of week
12.

Krsna Consciousness, being absolutely complete includes the best interests
of everyone especially one’s parents and other family members who are also
all delivered from material life (B.G. 1.41p). (In other places it is
similarly described how a devotee purifies and liberates family members
(S.B. 1.12.17p-SB 7.10.18&19+p’s). In fact a son who is a devotee is
called “putra” because he can deliver (tra) his parents from a hell called
“put” (a devotee daughter is called a putri)–in the past people would
sometimes have children and train them in religious life with this purpose
in mind. It is not difficult to understand how people benefit by their
child becoming a devotee–if I am the trusted servant of a good-hearted
millionaire, what to speak of Lord Krsna, he will obviously make sure my
nearest and dearest ones are provided for. Or even if I win the pools, all
the family benefits, what to speak of the transcendental value of Krsna
Consciousness. Also, if a tree in the forest becomes especially fragrant
then the whole area is pervaded by it’s aroma, so one pure devotee in a
family purifies all it’s members. Therefore it is clear that in actuality
a devotee serves the interest of his family more dexterously than others.
(SB 1.19.35p).

(7) Distress and the Devotee

A devotee tolerates all dualities thus becoming free from all anxiety for
gain or loss (Bg 2.45p last para)

A devotee is never disturbed by any kind of trying circumstances (SP
Lilamrta Vol 3 page 75)

Distress is only temporary and should be tolerated without being disturbed
(Bg 2.14&15 p’s)

*Tolerance is defined as being practiced to bear insult and dishonour from
others (Bg 13.8-12p 4th para)
*One should be detached and equiposed in happiness and distress (Bg
13.8-12p 11th para)
*a devotee is so practiced that he is not disturbed by any outward
disturbances (Bg 12.15p)
*a devoteee thinks that his suffering should actually be greater because
of his past sinful activities and so he is undisturbed (Bg 12.13-14p/Bg
2.56p/SB 1.17.18p)
*Suffering will be there as long as we are in the material world so we
have to tolerate it, even welcome it, and not be disturbed or let our
devotional service be interrupted, understanding that Krsna will always
protect us, minimising the reactions to our past sinful activities (T. of
QK pages 43-51)
*Disturbances are a test by Maya to see if our intention is to serve Krsna
or disturb Him (T of QK pages 8-9)
*Suffering is an attack by Maya

*A devotee tolerates difficulties without becoming disturbed, angry or
deviated from his service (Bg 2.14p)
*A devotee is callous to all incidental occurences such as accidents,
disease, scarcity and bereavement, which never deviate him from his duty
(Bg 6.23+p, last para)
*A devotee accepts all miseries as the mercy of the Lord, considering
himself to be worthy of more distress (Bg 2.56+p)
*one who receives the mercy of the Lord becomes free from the influence of
the three fold miseries (which are caused by: (1) natural disturbances
(the influence of the demigods) (2) one’s own body and mind (3) other
living beings (Bg 2.64+p)

(8) Health

Of all priorities regarding health, we regard our spiritual health as the
most important. The soul is undeniably more important than the body.
However it is often found that spiritual health denotes intellectual,
mental and physical health as a natural sequence. A devotee’s tendency for
illness is reduced in this way (PQPA page 53)

The following are seven ways which enable a person to maintain good
health.

(1) Cleanliness If you are scrupulously clean in body, mind, clothes and
living space, dirt and disease will tend to stay far away.
(2) Regulation The body is a highly complex machine and so one’s sleep,
diet, recreation, exercise etc. should be sensible and regulated.
(3) Eating Some people “live to eat”, but devotees “eat to live”. They
like to eat a simple, balanced diet which is in the mode of goodness (see
Bg 17.8-10)

Devotees eat “prasada” which is beneficial spiritually because it has been
offered to Lord Krsna; mentally, because it has been cooked with love and
devotion and then offered to the Lord; and physically, because wholesome,
natural ingredients are used. Artificial colourings, preservatives,
chemical and tinned or frozen foods are avoided. Lord Krsna, playing the
part of a cowherd boy, likes many types of milk sweets etc. and so, often
His devotees like to eat such homemade sweets. By working hard afterwards
they soon burn up the extra energy. Usually devotees eat fairly simply,
but on festival days they sometimes consume huge feasts, which, if
understood properly are highly transcendental, spiritual events.
Sometimes people mistakenly think that devotees eat the processed white
rice, found in the West. In actuality we principally eat “basmati” rice
which is a whole-rice and one of India’s finest. It is highly nutritious,
especially when combined with beans such as dahl. It also has an advantage
over brown rice since it is very fine and easy to digest. (You can read
BTG Vol 15 No. 1-2 “Diet for a Spiritual Planet” for more information)

*As a general rule it is best to avoid eating grains after 6:00 pm, so
that one can rise easily the next morning. Also it is best not to drink
yoghurt or eat preparations containing yoghurt after 4:00 pm because it
has a tendency to disturb one’s sound sleep.
*It is also best to be feeling hungry before eating because this means the
fire of digestion is working properly. If you don’t have much appetite eat
less!

(4) Drinking–for the healthy, regular functioning of all the bodily
organs and the correct expulsion of waste matter and poisons, your body
needs a considerable intake of liquid, preferably water. It is therefore
recommended to drink a few glasses of water daily. One should not drink
anything one hour or less before eating the main meal of the day, and for
2 hours afterwards, as this drastically affects one’s digestive ability.
Undigested food causes pain, gas and illness.

(5) Exercise–There is no lack of this in our Krsna Consciousness movement
as you have probably experienced! If one does need some special exercise
to help keep fit, sometimes devotees practice a little hatha yoga.

(6) Dressing correctly–Although we know we are not the body, we should
nevertheless look after it, because good health is so useful to us. As the
body belongs to Lord Krsna it should be well looked after just like
anything else belonging to Him. Therefore, make sure you keep warm and dry
when the weather is cold and wet. Especially the feet should be kept
warm-wear socks when standing or walking on cold floors. After lively
kirtans or other exercise when you perspire, put warm clothes on to go out
in the cold.

(7) Peace of Mind–Worry, anxiety, insomnia etc. cause all kinds of
illness, but devotees who thoroughly understand the “peace formula” (see
Week 11) are free from these problems. Being anxious to help others become
Krsna conscious is completely different from mundane anxiety about
material things and this anxiety actually brings the greatest
satisfaction.

*A devotee tries to take care of his health as far as possible (PQPA pages
60-61)
*If you do feel unwell please don’t hesitate to mention it to one of the
bhakta leaders.

Footnote: Srila Prabhupada always used to be concerned about his
disciple’s health. He would always sign his letters “hoping this finds you
in good health” and would often personally advise devotees about
individual health problems as can be seen in the following portion of one
such letter, specifically advising a sick boy in 1967: “My first concern
is that you are not eating well. It is a case of great anxiety. Please
don’t eat dahl and spices. Simply boiled vegetables, rice and a few
chapatis. Take butter separately and eat only as much as you require for
taste. Drink milk twice, morning and evening. Don’t eat at night. Eat some
fruits in the evening. Use some digestive pill after each principle meal.
I think soda-mint tablets will help. Be careful about your health first.
This information is not only for you, but for all my noble sons and
daughters. I am an old man, I may live or die, it doesn’t matter. But you
must live for a long time to push on this Krsna Consciousness movement. So
far as my health is concerned, you should know that it is a broken old
house. You cannot expect it to be as good as yours. So my future hope is
for all of you good spiritual children…”

(9) A Fallen Devotee

*is not disqualified by an inadvertent, temporary falldown (Bg 9.30+p)
*and must quickly pick himself up and carry on (Bg 9.31+p)
*Krsna consciousnee means declaring war against the illusory energy, so a
temporary setback is not completely surprising (Bg 6.37+p)
*What happens to a fallen transcendentalist? (Bg 6.37,38+p’s)
*Two destinations:-(Bg 6.41-43+p’s, 44,45+p)
*How an aspiring devotee may fall down (Bg 2.62,63)
*…because of lack of sincerity and faith (Bg 9.3+p)
*but why fall down? “Just go on practicing… ” (Srila Prabhupada in New
Vrindavan 1976) (See Quote 1 on next page)
*an accidental falldown, due to previous habit may be excused but a
willful falldown is not excused (PQPA pages 81-82)
*”sinful” means that one promises to follow the regulative principles and
then one breaks them (PQPA page 81)
*apparent “loose character” of a devotee explained (ISO 17p 8th and 9th
paras)
*the Lord helps a devotee from within if he makes a mistake (ISO 18p
5th & 6th paras)
*a fallen devotee does not loose everything, contrary to the idea that “a
miss is as good as a mile” (Bg 2.40+p/Bg 6.40+p, 1st para)

How to Avoid Falling down from the Spiritual Platform

*understanding Mr. Lust (Bg 3.37-40+p’s)
*how to conquer him (Bg 3.37+p, 41-43+p’s)
*lust, anger and greed should be given up (Bg 16.21,22+p’s)
*understanding the temporary nature of sense gratification (Bg 5.22+p)
*…by tolerating the urges of the senses (Bg 5.23+p)
*…by surmounting the weakness of the heart (Bg 15.20p last para)
*…by acting in Krsna Consciousness (Bg 18.58+p)
*…by not being proud and foolishly criticising a Vaisnava (NOI Text 6
page 59-65)
*…by chanting Hare Krsna constantly (Bg 9.31p end)
*…by having some genuine affection for the guru and knowing “for my
sinful activities my spiritual master will be inconvenienced” (PQPA page
59)

Quotes:

Quote 1: “Just go on practicing and you will become perfect. But why make
a farce, why accept initiation unless you intend to practice?” A devotee
asked if the determination to practice developed gradually, Prabhupada
roared like a lion “Why gradually? You have already made a promise before
the spiritual master, before the Deity, before the fire, before the
Vaisnavas–why make such a promise unless you intend to keep it? That is a
gentleman’s determination” When someone began to ask about fall down,
Prabhupada quickly interrupted and said “Why fall down? You have promised
to follow these principles so why fall down?” (Srila Prabhupada–New
Vrindaban 1976)

Quote 2: “Don’t wait for another life thinking that I have got so much
devotional service to my credit, now again go out and enjoy the material
world. No, finish this business immediately in this life. Do not wait.
Fully become detached from this material enjoyment. Simply become engaged
in Krsna’s service and your life will become successful. Thank you very
much.” (lecture on SB 7.6.17-18)

Quote 3: “basically religion means to follow the orders of the Lord. Krsna
is the supreme law maker and religion means to be obedient to those laws
just as a “good” citizen can only be that person who implicitly follows
all the laws of the state, therefore a religious man is one who follows
all the laws of God. (LON ’73-53B)

Quote 4: “…if one is active in Krsna consciousness he cannot have any
enemies. Since his only engagement is to induce others to surrender to
Krsna, or God, how can he have enemies? If one advocates the Hindu
religion, the Muslim religion, the Christian religion, this religion or
that religion, there will be conflicts. History shows that the followers
of religious systems without a clear conception of God have fought with
one another. There are many instances of this in human history, but
systems of religion that do not concentrate on service to the Supreme are
temporary and cannot last long because they are full of envy. There are
many activities directed against such religiouos systems, and therefore
one must give up the idea of “your belief” and “my belief”. Everyone
should believe in God and surrender unto Him. That’s Bhagavata-dharma.”
(See also SB 1.1.2+p)

WEEK 10
THE VEDIC CULTURE (Verse to learn Bg 18.66)

(1) Religion

Dictionary definition–“obligation”, “bond” or, in other words “to relink
with God”–the same meaning as “yoga”.

Srila Prabhupada explains that religion means the following:
(i) to know who I am
(ii) to know who God is
(iii) to know my relationship with Him
(iv) to know and to carry out my duty to Him
(v) to know my destination after leaving this body (SB 1.3.43p)

or “basically……….of God” (Tape-London ’73-53B)
(See Quote 3 on page 46)

*Religion must have philosophy; for religion without philosophy is
sentiment and sometimes fanaticism, on the other hand philosophy without
religion is simply mental speculation (Bg 3.3p)
*the highest perfection of religion is the attainment of devotional
service in the association of great acaryas (Bg 9.2p, 8th para)
*the principles of religion can only be laid down by the Lord Himself (Bg
4.16p last para)
*and cannot be manufactured by man (SB 6.3.19/SB 9.3.10p 2nd para onwards)
*the twelve authorities on religion (Bg 4.16p last para)
*Lord Krsna’s mission is to establish real religion (Bg 4.8) as opposed to
mundane sectarianism in the name of religion which He rejects (Bg 18.66)

Dharma

*”that which is constantly existing with a particular object”
*or/”service” (Bg Intro pages 19-20, or 17 Mac)
*”occupation” or/ “that which sustains one’s existence” (SB 1.2.6p)
*the dharma or function of salt is saltiness, the dharma of fire is heat
(if salt has no saltiness, fire no heat, they are counterfeit). Similarly
the dharma, or inseparable quality, of the living entity is to serve, and
if he thinks his position is anything else then he is in illusion.

Sanatana-dharma

*explained (Bg Intro pages 17-19, or 15-17 Mac)
*the “eternal function of the living being”–to serve Krsna
*the real meaning of religion, the idea of a “kind of faith or belief”
that we have in the West is inadequate and material
*Srila Prabhupada writes: “…if one is…That is Bhagavata-dharma” (See
Quote 4 on page 46)

Mundane Religions

*a “kind of faith” that may change (Bg Intro page 19 or 17 Mac)
*involves 4 principles: (i) Dharma-religious rituals and prayers (ii)
artha-economic development (iii) kama-sense gratification (iv) moksa-the
desire for liberation from distress.
*Bhagavata dharma (the transcendental or real religion of service to
Bhagavan), or Krsna consciousness, rejects these 4 mundane principles (Bg
18.66) but still a devotee automatically achieves the benefits of them all
without separate endeavour (Bg 9.22)

The Pillars of Religion

(1) cleanliness (2) mercifulness (3) truthfulness (4) austerity. These
four principles are universally applicable to any religious system. They
are destroyed by the following irreligious activities which form the basis
of all sinful life:-
(1) illicit sex (as opposed to sex according to religious principles–Bg
7.11+p/NOI page 12)
(2) intoxication (Bg 3.24p last para/PQPA page 95)
(3) meat eating (foods and intoxicants which should be given up-NOI page
10) Note: the underlying cause of meat eating is pride, or the desire
to dominate and subjugate others (see SB 1.17.24&25p)
(4) gambling, including lying, propaganda, idle sporting and speculation

*by following the four prohibitive principles of Krsna Consciousness and
serving the Supreme Lord under the direction of the spiritual master one
can easily surpass all other systems of tapasya (NOI page 4 1st half)
*to follow religious principles is the responsibility of human life (Iso
3+p)
*the principle of isavasya or God-centered society (Iso 1+p, paras 5-7)

(2) Varnasrama Dharma

Four Varnas: (a) brahmana (b) ksatriya (c) vaisya (d) sudra (Bg 4.13+p/see
also BTG Vol 14 No. 11 “The Anatomy of the Social Body”)

Four Asramas: (e) brahmacari (celibate student) (f) grhastha (householder)
(g) vanaprastha (retired from material duties) (h) sannyasa (renounced
preacher or monk)

*the aim of all individual orders and corporate systems is to satisfy
Krsna (Bg 2.48p, last para/Bg 3.9p)
*and in this way reach the ultimate goal of life (Bg 3.7p)
*Duty must be executed by everyone (materially as a brahmana, ksatriya
etc. and spiritually as a disciple) (Bg 3.35+p)
*the varnasrama system as a stepping stone from material to spiritual (Bg
2.31p last para)
*as a means to perfection (Bg 18.45,46)
*by serving the Lord according to one’s nature (as a brahmana, ksatriya,
vaisya or sudra) or the duties assigned to him any person can achieve
perfection, even if there appears to be some fault (Bg 18.46,47+p’s) for
every endeavour is covered by some sort of fault, as fire is covered by
smoke (Bg 18.48+p)
*is not meant to divide society by birth (the present caste system is a
fabrication of the real concept of the classification of human society by
qualities (guna) and work (karma)–not birth (janma)) (Bg 16.1-3p 3rd
para/ Bg 4.13)
*duties of members (Bg 18.47,48+p’s)
*better to perform one’s prescribed duty according to the system of
varnasrama Dharma than to falsely renounce action (Bg 3.4-8)
*Devotees not required to perform the rituals of family tradition because
they are above social divisions etc. (however, they can, and do act in any
capacity for the sake of preaching) (Bg 1.41p)
*transcendental qualities that should be cultivated by the different
members of the varnasrama institution (Bg 16.1-3p 15th para)
*simplicity should be manifested by every member of the varnasrama system
(Bg 16.1-3p 12th para)
*Aryan–those who know the value of life and form a civilization based on
spiritual realization (Bg 2.2p last para)

(a) The Brahmana

*qualifications (Bg 18.42)
*anyone and everyone can qualify as a brahmana (Iso 13p last 2 paras)
*a “krpana” is the opposite of a brahmana (Bg 2.7p 2nd&3rd paras)
*is situated in the mode of goodness (Bg 4.13p)
*is the spiritual master of the other three sections of society (Bg
16.1-3p 4th para)
*only a devotee can factually be called a Brahmana, knowing fully what is
Brahman (Bg 7.29+p)
*is unfit to be a spiritual master unless he is a Vaisnava (Bg 2.8p 1st
para)
*must always be truthful, presenting the facts as they are for the benefit
of others (Bg 10.4-5 3rd para)
*receives charity (Bg 10.4-5p 9th para)
*chants the gayatri mantra (Bg 10.35p 2nd para)

(b) The Ksatriya

*meaning of the word (Bg 2.31p beginning)
*training of (Bg 2.31+p)
*qualities of work (Bg 18.43)
*in mode of passion (Bg 4.13p)
*duty of (Bg 2.3p/Bg 2.32+p)
*sinful reaction for not killing (Bg 2.27p/Bg 2.31,32+p’s 1st paras/Bg
2.33)
*for a ksatriya to kill an enemy is transcendental and to refrain from
duty is demoniac (Bg 16.5p)
*although the Vedic injunction is that one should never commit violence
(Bg 2.19p)
*must be unflinchingly strong (Bg 16.1-3p 16th para)
*must not attack an unarmed or unwilling foe (Bg 1.45p)
*must not refuse a challenge (if the effect is good) (Bg 1.38p)
*should be saintly but not cowardly (Bg 1.36p)

(c) The Vaisya

*qualities of work (Bg 18.44)
*in mixed modes of passion and ignorance (Bg 4.13p)
*should be clean in his dealings (Bg 16.1-3p 17th para))

(d) The Sudra

*qualities of work (Bg 18.44)
*in mode of ignorance and therefore laments unnecessarily (Bg 4.13p/Bg
2.1p)
*should not expect honour but should give respect to the higher classes
(Bg 16.1-3p 17th para)
*mass of peole in the kali yuga (“Kalau sudra sambhavat”) (SB 1.9.49p)

Women

*Feminine qualities (Bg 10.34+p 2nd para)
*should be protected (Bg 1.40+p)
*and why (Bg 16.7p 2nd para)

(e) The Brahmacari

*duties of…(Bg 8.28p 1st para/Bg 16.1-3p 10th para)
*training of…(SSR page 187/Bg 6.13-14p)
*the vow of brahmacarya (Bg 6.14p)
*should become a man of perfect character (Bg 8.28p 2nd para)
*takes food only on the spiritual master’s order (Bg 8.28p 1st para)
*the sacrifice of the brahmacari (Bg 4.26+p)
*unless one practices celibacy (Brahmacarya) advancement in spiritual life
is difficult (Bg 8.11p last para)

(f) The Grhastha

*duties of (Bg 8.28p 2nd para)
*allowed after proper training as brahmacari (Bg 8.28p 2nd para)
*can also be called a brahmacari (&why) (Bg 6.14p middle)
*celibacy of the brahmacari and grhastha (Bg 6.13-14p, middle)
*should also control their sex desire (Bg 16.3p 8th para)
*should not beget children like cats and dogs (Bg 16.1-2p 2nd para)
*must give charity and perform sacrifice (Bg 16.1-3p 7th and 9th paras)
*should not become attached to regulated sense gratification otherwise one
may fall down (Bg 3.34+p)
*sex is the shackle of the conditioned soul (Bg 3.39p)
*sex and attachment to the opposite sex should be reduced to nil (PQPA
pages 15-20)
*sex should only be for procreation (Bg 7.11+p)
*family life in Krsna consciousness–when to accept, how to practice and
when to reject (Bg 13.8-12p 10th para)

(g) The Vanaprastha

*marriage, vanaprastha and sannyasa briefly explained (PQPA pages 35-36)
*should practice austerity (Bg 16.1-3p 11th para)

(h) The Sannyasi

*after one has purified his heart (Bg 3.4p)
*definition of (Bg 18.2+p)
*first qualification is fearlessness (Bg 16.1-3p 4th para)
*then he has to purify his existence (especially in relation to women) (Bg
16.1-3p 4th para)
*and he must cultivate knowledge by hearing and preaching (Bg 16.1-3p 5th
para)
*spiritual master of the brahmana also (Bg 16.1-3p 4th para)
*charity to… (Bg 10.4-5p 9th para)

WEEK 11
TEMPLE PROGRAMME (Verse to learn Bg 18.65)

As we have discussed in the third week, the temple programme is essential
for our proper spiritual development. Srila Prabhupada did not want us to
do things mechanically but rather everything, such as paying obeisances,
seeing the arati and singing the songs, should be done with knowledge in a
proper meditative way. To learn everything of course takes time but if you
begin now trying to understand what you are saying and singing, you will
make swift and steady advancement, and your devotional life will always be
rich with enthusiasm, never a dry ritual. Srila Prabhupada also wanted us
to pronounce the words correctly. Good habits are best picked up in the
beginning, so begin now and later, when you lead kirtans yourself the
future new bhaktas will have a good example to follow.

*the following word for word translations should be studied accompained by
a song sheet or book; the verses accompained by asterisks should be gone
over this week, the remainder during the 23rd week.

Srila Prabhupada Pranati (Sanskrit)

namah-obeisances; om-address; visnu-padaya-unto him who is at the feet of
Lord Visnu; krsna-presthaya-who is very dear to Lord Krsna; bhu-tale-on
the earth; srimate-all beautiful; bhaktivedanta-swamin-A.C. Bhaktivedanta
Swami; iti-thus; namine-who is named

namah-obeisances; te-unto you; sarasvate deve-servant of Bhaktisiddhanta
Sarasvati; gaura-vani-the message of Lord Caitanya; pracarine-who are
preaching; nirvisesa-(from) impersonalism; sunya-vadi-(from) voidism;
pascatya-Western; desa-countries; tarine-who are delivering.

Sri Sri Gurv-astaka (Sanskrit)

(1) samsara-(of) material existence; dava-anala-(by) the forest fire;
lidha-afflicted; loka-the people; tranaya-to deliver; karunya-of mercy;
ghanaghana-tvam-the quality of a cloud; praptasya-who has obtained;
kalyana-auspicious; guna-(of) qualities; arnavasya-of the ocean; vande-I
offer obeisances; guroh-of my spiritual master; sri-auspicious;
caranaravindam-unto the lotus feet

(2) mahaprabhoh-of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu; kirtana-(by) chanting;
nrtya-dancing; gita-singing; vaditra-playing musical instruments;
madyat-gladdened; manasah-whose mind; rasena-due to the mellows of pure
devotion; roma-anca-standing of the hair; kampa-quivering of the body;
asru-taranga-torrents of tears; bhajah-who feels

(3) sri-vigraha-(of) the arca-vigraha (Deities); aradhana-the worship;
nitya-daily; nana-(with) various; srngara-clothing and ornaments; tat-of
the Lord; mandira-(of) the temple; marjana-adau-in the cleaning etc.;
yuktasya-who is engaged; bhaktan-his disciples; ca-and; niyunjatah-who
engages; api-also

(4) catuh-four; vidha-kinds; sri-holy; bhagavat-prasada-which have been
offered to Krsna; svadu-palatable; anna-(by) foods; trptan-spiritually
satisfied; hari-(of) Krsna; bhakta-sanghan-the devotees; krtva-having
made; eva-thus; trptim-satisfaction; bhajatah-who feels; sada-always;
eva-certainly

(5) sri-radhika-(of) Srimati Radharani; madhavayoh-of Lord Madhava
(Krsna); apara-unlimited; madhurya-conjugal; lila-pastimes;
guna-qualities; rupa-forms; namnam-of the holy names; prati-ksana-at every
moment; asvadana-relishing; lolupasya-who aspires after

(6) nikunja-yunah-of Radha and Krsna; rati-(of) conjugal love; keli-(of)
pastimes; siddhyai-for the perfection; ya ya-whatever; alibhih-by the
gopis; yuktih-arrangements; apeksaniya-desirable; tatra-in that
connection; ati-daksyat-because of being very expert; ati-vallabhasya-who
is very dear

(7) saksat-directly; hari-tvena-with the quality of Hari; samasta-all;
sastraih-by scriptures; uktah-acknowledged; tatha-thus; bhavyata-is
considered; eva-also; sadbhih-by great saintly persons; kintu-however;
prabhoh-to the Lord; yah-who; priyah-dear; eva-certainly; tasya-of him
(the guru)

(8) yasya-of whom (the spiritual master); prasadat-by the grace;
bhagavat-(of) Krsna; prasadah-the mercy; yasya-of whom; aprasadat-without
the grace; na-not; gatih-means of advancement; kutah api-where is?;
dhyayan-meditating upon; stuvan-praising; tasya-of him (the spiritual
master); yasah-the glory; tri-sandhyam-three times a day (sunrise, noon,
and sunset)

Sri Vaisnava Pranama (Sanskrit)

vancha-kalpa-tarubhyah-who are desire trees; ca-and; krpa-(of) mercy;
sindhubhyah-who are oceans; eva-certainly; ca-and; patitanam-of the fallen
souls; pavanebhyah-who are the purifiers; vaisnavebhyah-unto the
Vaisnavas; namah-repeated obeisances

Sri Nrsimha Pranama (Sanskrit)

namah-obeisances; te-unto you; nara-simhaya-unto Lord Narasimha;
prahlada-(to) Prahlada Maharaja; ahlada-(of) joy; dayine-the giver;
hiranyakasipoh-of Hiranyakasipu; vaksah-chest; sila-(on) the stonelike;
tanka-chisels; nakha-alaye-whose nails; itah-here; nrsimhah-Lord Nrsimha;
paratah-there; yatah yatah-wherever; yami-I go; tatah-there;
bahih-externally; hrdaye-in the heart; nrsimham-to Lord Nrsimha; adim-the
origin; saranam-the supreme refuge; prapadye-I surrender

Prayer to Lord Nrsimha (Sanskrit)

tava-your; kara-hands; kamala-lotus; vare-benedictory; nakham-nails;
adbhuta-wonderful; srngam-beautiful; dalita-bifurcated; tanu-body;
bhrngam-like a wasp; Kesava-a name of Visnu “the Lord of Brahma and Siva”;
dhrta-appeared; narahari-1/2 man 1/2 God; rupa-form; jagadisa-Lord of the
Universe; Hari-the Lord who takes away all material suffering

Sri Tulasi-kirtana (Bengali)

vrndayai-unto Vrnda; tulasi-devyai-unto Tulasi Devi; priyayai-who is dear;
kesavasya-to Lord Kesava; ca-and; krsna-bhakti-devotional service to Lord
Krsna; prade-who bestows; devi-O goddess; satya-vatyai-unto Satyavati;
namah namah-repeated obeisances

(1) radha-krsna-seva-the service of Radha & Krsna; pabo-I shall obtain;
ei-this (is); abhilasi-(my) desire

(2) je-whoever; tomara-your; sarana-shelter; loy-takes; tara-his;
vancha-wishes; purna-fulfilled; hoy-are; krpa kori-being merciful (to)
him; koro-you make; tare-him; vrndavana-vasi-a resident of Vrndavana

(3) mora-My; ei-this (is); abhilasa-desire; vilas kunje-in the pleasure
groves; dio-you may give; vas-residence; nayane-in my vision; heribo-I
shall behold; sada-always; yugala-rupa-rasi-the many beautiful pastimes of
the divine couple; (yugala-(divine) couple; rupa-beautiful (pastimes);
rasi-large quantity of)

(4) ei-this; nivedana-humble petition; dharo-please accept; sakhira-of the
sakhis (attendants of Radha); anugata-a follower; koro-make (me);
seva-adhikara diye-making (me) a candidate for devotional service;
(seva-service; adhikara-suitability; diye-giving) koro-make (me);
nija-(your) own/personal; dasi-maidservant

(5) dina-wretched; krsna-dase-Krsnadasa (name of poet); koy-says; ei yena
mora hoy-this is my prayer (ei-this; yena-thus; mora-My; hoy-is);
sri-radha-govinda-preme-in the extatic love of Sri radha-govinda;
sad-always; yena-thus; bhasi-(that) I swim

yani-kani-whatever; ca-and; papani-sins; brahma-hatya-killing of a
brahmana; adikani-and so on; ca-also; tani tani-all of them;
pranasyanti-are destroyed; pradaksinah-(by) the circumambulation (of
Tulasi Devi); pade pade-at every step

Sri Guru-vandana (Bengali)

(1) Sri-guru-carana-padma-the lotus feet of the spiritual master;
kevala-only; bhakti-sadma-repositories of devotion; bando-bow down; mui-I;
savadhana mate-carefully; jahara-whose; prasade-by grace; bhai-O brothers;
ei-this; bhava-ocean of material existence; toriya jai-we cross over;
krsna prapti-realization of Krsna; hoy-is; jaha-whom; hoite-from

(2) guru-mukha-padma-vakya-the instructions emanating from the lotus lips
of the spiritual master; cittete-in the consciousness; koriya aikya-making
exclusively established; ara-anything else; na-not; koriho mane asa-do
aspire for; sri-guru-carane-to the feet of the spiritual master;
rati-attachment; ei-this (is); se-the; uttama-highest; gati-course of
action; je prasada-by which grace; pure-are fulfilled; sarva asa-all
(spiritual) aspirations

(3) cakkhu-dan-the gift of spiritual vision; dilo-gave; yei-he who; janme
janme-birth after birth; prabhu-master; sei-(he)is;
divya-jnan-transcendental knowledge; hrde-in the heart; prakasito-is
revealed; prema-bhakti-ecstatic devotional love; jaha-whom; hoite-from;
avidya-nescience; vinasa jate-being destroyed; vede-the Vedas; gay-sing;
jahara-his; carito-characteristics

(4) sri guru karuna sindhu-the spiritual master is an ocean of mercy;
adhama janara-of the fallen conditioned souls; bandhu-friend; lokanath-the
Lord of the world; lokera-of the world; jivana-life; ha ha prabhu- O
master!; koro doya-be merciful; deho-give; more-unto me; pada chaya- the
shade of (your) feet; ebe-now; yasa-(your) fame; ghusuk tribhuvana-be
spread throughout the three worlds

Govindam Prayers (sanskrit)

(1) venum-the flute;kvanantam-adept in playing; aravinda-dala-like lotus
petals; ayata-blooming (extending); aksam-whose eyes; barhavatamsam-head
bedecked with peacock feather; asita-as of dark blue; ambuda-clouds;
sundara-beautiful; angam-whose figure; kandarpa-of cupids; koti-by
millions; kamaniya-to be desired; visesa-unique; sobham-whose brilliance;
govindam-Lord Govinda; adi-purusam-the original Personality; tam-Him;
aham-I; bhajami-worship

(2) angani-the limbs; yasya-of Whom; sakala-all; indriya-as the sense
organs; vrttimanti-function; pasyanti-see; panti-maintain;
kalayanti-regulate; ciram-for a long time; jaganti-the universes;
ananda-bliss; cit-truth (knowledge); maya-full of; sat-substantiality;
ujjvala-dazzling splendour; vigrahasya-Whose form

Prasada-sevaya (Bengali)

(1) bhai-re-O brothers; sarira-the material body; avidya-jala-a network of
ignorance; jada-indriya-the dull material senses; tahe-in that (material
body); kala-cruel enemies; jive-the living being; phele-throw;
visaya-sagore-into the ocean of material sense objects; ta’re madhye-among
them (the senses); jihva-the tongue; ati-very much; lobha-maya-voracious
and greedy; su-durmati-very obstinate and wicked; ta’ke-that (tongue);
jeta-to conquer; kathina-very difficult; samsare-in this material world

(2) krsna-Lord Krsna; bara-extremely; dayamay-merciful; karibare-in order
to do; jihva-the tongue; jaya-conquer; sva-prasada-anna-the remnants of
His own food; dila-gave; bhai-O brothers; sei-that; anna-amrta-nectarean
food stuff; khao-you should eat (sometimes “pao”- take);
radha-krsna-guna-the glories of Radha and Krsna; gao-sing; preme-in love;
daka-call out; caitanya-nitai-O Lord Caitanya, O Lord Nityananda

Gaura-arati (Bengali)

(1) jaya-all glories; goracander-of Lord Caitanya; aratiko-to the arati
ceremony; sobha-(to) the splendour; jahnavi-(of) the Ganges; tata-(on) the
bank; vane-in a grove; jaga-(of) all the living beings in the universe;
mano-(of) the minds; lobha-the eager desire or attraction

(2) dakhine-on the right side; nitaicanda-Lord Nityananda; bame-on the
left side; gadadhara-Gadadhar Pandit; nikate-close by;
advaita-Advaitacarya; srinivasa-Srivas Thakur; chatra-(of) the umbrella;
dhara-the holder

(3) basiyache-has sat; goracanda-Lord Caitanya; ratna-simhasane-on a
jewelled throne; arati karen-perform the arati; brahma-adi-headed by Lord
Brahma; deva-gane-all the demigods

(4) narahari-adi-Narakari Sarakar Thakur and others; kori-doing; camara-the
yak-tail fan; dhulaya-wave; sanjaya-Sanjaya Pandit; mukunda-Mukunda Dutt;
vasu-ghosa-Vasu Ghose; adi-and others; gay-sing

(5) sankha-conchshells; baje-play; ghanta-bells; baje-play; karatal-the
hand cymbals; madhura-sweet; mrdanga-clay mrdanga drums; parama-supremely;
rasala-sweet, melodic and very pleasurable

(6) bahu-many; koti-millions; candra-moons; jini-conquering; vadana-of His
face; ujjvala-the brilliance; gala-dese-around His neck; vana-mala-the
garland of forest flowers; kare jhalamala-sparkles

(7) siva-Lord Siva; suka-Sukadev Gosvami; narada-Narada Muni; preme-in the
ecstasy of love of God; gada-gada-voices stuttering with emotion;
bhaktivinoda-Thakur Bhaktivinode; dekhe-sees; gorara-of Lord Caitanya;
sampada-the glory and excellence

BEGINNERS VEDIC DICTIONARY
(See the back of your Gita for pronunciation guide)

ATMA – “self”–can refer to the body, mind or the soul
ACARYA – A spiritual master who teaches by his own example
ARATI – Greeting ceremony for the pleasure of the Deities
ARYAN – A member of a spiritually advanced civilization
ASHRAM – A place of residence for those engaged in the strict practice of
spiritual life
ASURA – The opposite of a godly person (sura), in other words demoniac
person
AVATAR – One who descends, an incarnation of the Lord
AUSTERITY – (i) To voluntarily accept conditions which may not be very
comfortable for the body but are conducive for spiritual
life.
(ii) To accept the order of the spiritual master
unconditionally.
(iii) To do something for the pleasure of Krsna which we may not
be inclined to do, or not to do something which we may
feel inclined to do under the guidance of the spiritual
master (see also Bhagavad Gita chapter 17, texts 14-17)
BHAGAVAD GITA – The song of God (BHAGAVAN)
BHAKTIVEDANTA – “The end (anta) of all knowledge (veda) is devotion to
Krsna.” (Bhakti) or/”the conclusion of the Vedas is
bhakti.”
BHAJAN – Singing a song glorifying Krsna, usually done whilst sitting
BHAKTA – A devotee or one who practices devotion
BHOGA – Foodstuffs or prepared food before being offered to Krsna for His
enjoyment
BRAHMACARI – Celibate student or monk (he wears saffron-coloured cloth)
BRAHMAN – Spirit
BRAHMANA – A priest-like teacher in spiritual life
BRAHMA MUHURTA – The auspicious time about 1 1/2 hours before dawn, that
is especially conducive for spiritual practices
BURFI – A sweet made of condensed milk
CADAR – A cloth shawl
CAPATI – A flat, dry cooked bread
CARANAMRTA – The nectar from the lotus feet of the Lord which cures one’s
material disease (see Nectar of Devotion page 84)
DAHL – A nutritious soup made from lentils (very good for you!)
DANDAVATS – To bow down lying flat like a stick (danda) with hands fully
outstretched at the feet of a superior Vaisnava
DARSHAN – (lit: “to see”) when a devotee comes before the Guru or the
Deities, is seen by Them, and is blessed with spiritual
understanding and advancement
DHARMA – The capacity to render service which is the common denominator of
every living being
DEVA – Demigod or godly person (lit: “div”- to shine, therefore “deva”
means “shining one”)
DHOTI – The robe that a male devotee wears
ECSTASY – A transcendental happiness that comes from a genuine spiritual
affection for the Lord and His devotees
EKADASI – A special day for increased rememberance of Lord Krsna, which we
observe twice monthly (11 days after the new moon and 11 days
after the full moon). We fast from all grains and beans on this
day.
GAYATRI MANTRA – A special mantra that a devotee murmurs silently,
morning, noon and evening after he/she has received
second initiation. The BRAHMANA THREAD is a thread
awarded to a male devotee which he uses when chanting his
gayatri mantra. A devotee saying this mantra should not
be interrupted.
GHEE – Purified or clarified butter used for frying
GODBROTHER/SISTER – When one is initiated one accepts a spiritual master
as one’s spiritual father who represents the Supreme
Father. Therefore, any of his disciples become your
Godbrother or Godsister. His own Godbrothers are your
God uncles and they are described in the sastras to be
as worshipable as your spiritual master and so one
should be very respectful to them.
GOPI – Transcendental cowherd girl or milkmaid, exemplifying the highest
devotion for Krsna
GOPA – Transcendental cowherd boy friend of Krsna
GRHASTHA – Married devotee (he wears white clothes)
GULAB – A round, fried sweet made of powdered milk soaked in thick syrup
that used to be called an “Iskcon bullet” when the movement was
first started
GURU – A bona fide spiritual master (lit: guru means “heavy” with
spiritual knowledge)
GURUDEV – The spiritual master, who represents God, the demigods and all
the godly persons.
GURUKULA – The “place of the guru” or school
HALAVA – A sweet preparation made from semlina roasted in butter
HARI NAM SANKIRTAN – congregational chanting of the holy name in a public
place for the benefit of everyone
INITIATION – The formal ceremony of accepting the spiritual master as
one’s lifelong friend and master and at this time one vows to
follow the 4 regulative principles (which anyone, even
staying as a guest in our temples is supposed to maintain)
for the rest of one’s life; to chant at least 16
rounds, and to rise early every day for mangala arati. In
ISKCON one does not generally take this 1st initiation for at
least one year after joining, so that a candidate for
initiation can be sure to clearly understand exactly what he
is doing.
ISTAGHOSTI – (lit: “talking about Krsna”) A discussion amongst devotees
for the purpose of helping one another along the path of
spiritual understanding.
JAGAT GURU – Guru for the whole world
JAPA – Chanting the Holy Names on beads
“JAYA!” – “All Glories!” (to Lord Krsna and the spiritual master) or all
“victory!”
JNANA – Knowledge of the distinction between the body, soul and Supreme
Soul
KACORI – A vegetable delicacy that was a favourite of Srila Prabhupada’s
throughout his life
KALA – Eternal time
KALI – Goddess of the material energy
KALI-YUGA – Age of quarrel, the last in the cycle of four ages
KARMA – (i) Material action performed according to scriptural regulations
(ii) Action pertaining to the development of the material body;
(iii) Any material action which will incur a subsequent reaction;
(iv) The material reaction one incurs due to fruitive activity
KARMI – One who is engaged in the above process of fruitive work
KHIR – Sweet rice
KARATALS – Small cymbals made of bell metal (lit: “kara”-hand “tal”-bell)
KIRTAN – Singing the Holy Name and dancing
KURTA – A shirt that a male devotee wears
LADDU – A sweet made of gram flour and butter
LAKSMI – Goddess of fortune, or money when used for Krsna
LILA – Pastime of the Lord or His pure devotee
LOTUS FEET – This term is often used in reference to Lord Krsna, and
Krsna’s pure devotee. Lord Krsna is so beautiful that by
looking at the most beautiful aspects of the creation only
can we get an idea of what He is like. The lotus is such an
object. We start looking at Krsna beginning at His feet
because Krsna never leaves there, His feet always rest
on that lotus. Similarly, Krsna’s pure devotee enjoys the
same freedom and stance on the lotus of the spiritual
kingdom. In the Bhagavad Gita Lord Krsna gives the example of
how a lotus is not touched by the water in which it stands.
Similarly, the self realized soul is not touched by the
material energy although he is acting within it.
MAHA MAHA PRASADA – That prasada which comes directly from the plate of
the Guru – it is the most purifying of all
MAHAPRABHU – A name for Lord Caitanya, the greatest (maha-great) of all
masters
MAHA PRASADA – That prasada that has been offered directly on the altar to
the Deities
MANGALA – auspicious
MANTRA – A hymn or pure sound vibration that delivers (“tra”) the mind
(“mana”) from material conditioning
MAHA MANTRA – The “greatest” mantra
MAYA – (“ma”-not, “ya”-this illusion) an energy of Krsna’s which deludes
the living entity into forgetfulness of the Supreme Lord
MAYAPUR – The transcendental abode (“dhama”) where Lord Caitanya appeared
and eternally resides
MAYAVADI – Impersonalist or voidist adhering to the belief that ultimately
God is formless and without personality, and that he is also God
MODES – 3 qualities of this material world; sattva-goodness,
rajas-passion, tamas-ignorance
MRDANGA – Special double-headed drum, very sweet to hear, used in kirtana
MUKTI – The liberated stage–ultimate liberation means to be situated in
one’s original position as the eternal servant of the Supreme
Personality of Godhead, this is known as ‘vimukti’
NARAYANA – A name for Krsna in His four-armed form as the Lord of
Vaikkuntha, the spiritual world
OBEISANCES – Bowing respectfully to a Superior Vaisnava or Krsna
OMKARA – OM, the transcendental syllable which represents Krsna and which
is vibrated by transcendentalists for attainment of the Supreme
when undertaking sacrifices, charities and penances
PAKORA – A vegetable delicacy coated in batter and fried
PANDAVAS – The five sons of King Pandu; Yudhisthira, Bhima, Arjuna, Nakula
and Sahadeva
PARABRAHMAN – The Supreme Spirit
PARAMATMA – The Supersoul (“param”-Supreme, “atma”-soul). The localised
form of the Lord within the heart of every living entity
PARAMPARA – Disciplic succession through which spiritual knowledge is
transmitted
POURI – A flat bread fried in ghee
PRABHU – “Master”. A devotee, although he naturally considers himself the
humble servant of everyone, represents the Supreme Master,
Mahaprabhu, and so is adressed as prabhu. Devotees respectfully
adress each other as prabhu, always prepared to serve each other
in loving exchanges.
PRABHUPADA – (1) The master (“Prabhu”) at whose feet (“pada”) all other
masters sit (BTG no.64)
(2) The spiritual master who occupies the post or position
(“pada”) of the representative of the Lord
(3) “Prabhu” also means ‘master of the senses’ like ‘svami’
(4) “Prabhu” – “Lord”, “pada” – position = “He who has taken
the position of the Lord” (22/8/73)
PRAJALPA – Useless, inconsequential, mundane talking that benefits no-one
PRASADA – “Mercy”, or a term used for food or anything else after it has
been offered to the Lord
PREMA – Real love of God
PUJA – A ceremony for the worshipping of the Guru or the Deity, the person
offering the worship called the PUJARI
RADHARANI/SRIMATI – (a respectful address to a female person)
RADHARANI is Lord Krsna’s personal pleasure potency.
She is Krsna’s personal energy and is therefore
non-different from Him. Her name comes from the word
“aradhana”, to ‘give worship’ – She is the best
worshipper or devotee of Krsna.
RAMA – (1) Name of the Absolute Truth as the source of unlimited pleasure
(2) Incarnation of the Lord as a perfect King (Lord Ramacandra)
(3) A shortening of the Lord’s name “Balarama”
RASA – Relationship between the Supreme Lord and the living entities (5
principal varieties)
RASAGULLA – A round cheeseball boiled in a light syrup (it makes a
squeaking sound when you eat)
SAKABDA – a dating system often used in India – (to make it a.d. simply
add 79 yrs.
SADHU – Holy man, devotee
SAMADHI – Trance or absorbtion in Krsna consciousness
SAMOSA – A delicacy, enveloped in pastry and fried (similar looking to a
small pastry)
SANATANA-DHARMA – The eternal religion of a living being, which is to
render service unto the Lord
SANDESH – A sweet made of curd cheese
SANKIRTAN – The congregational glorification of the Lord by singing, and
dancing or, a term used for the propagation of the Lord’s
glories
SANNYASI – A teacher in the renounced order (lifelong monk) respectfully
addressed as “maharaja”
SAREE – The dress that is worn by the feminine sex
SASTRA – Revealed scripture (“sastra”-to rule by weapons)
SASTRIC – To rule by scripture
SIKHA – traditional tuft or lock of hair retained at the back of the head
which differentiates a vaisnava “personalist” from the other
“impersonalists” (such as shaven-headed Buddhist monks). Devotees
usually tie it a slip knot after bathing
SIMPLY WONDERFUL – A sweet, given this name by Srila Prabhupada, which is
made of powdered milk, icing sugar and butter
SLOKA – Verse
SRILA – A respectful term which shouold be used when addressing the Guru,
ie. Srila Prabhupada
SRIMAD BHAGAVATAM – The beautiful story of the Supreme Personality of
Godhead
SUNDARA – beautiful
SUBJI – vegetable preparation
SWAMI – Or Goswami – one who can control the mind and senses
TAPASYA – Voluntary acceptance of some material trouble for progress in
spiritual life
TILAK – A special clay, like “fuller’s earth” that a devotee annoints the
body with as a temple of the Lord
TRANSCENDENTAL – A state which is above the material modes of nature, on
the platform of eternity
TRIDANDA – The rod (danda) that a Sannyasi carries signifying that three
items, body, mind and words are all exclusively dedicated to
the service of the Lord. The small curved piece at the top of
the danda indicates that also his soul is surrendered to Lord
Krsna.
TRIDANDI SANNYASI – a devotee who has accepted the Tridanda or sannyasa
initiation
TURMERIC – The powdered spice which has a strong colour and purifies the
blood
VASUDEV – Father of Krsna
VASUDEVA – Lord Krsna the son of Vasudev
VAISNAVA – Devotee of Visnu (or God)
VEDAS – Scriptures coming from God (lit: “veda” means knowledge)
VIJNANA – The science of devotional service whereby one realises oneself
to be the eternal servant of Krsna
VISNU – A name for Krsna as the creator, maintainer and destroyer of the
material worlds
VRINDAVAN – The site of Lord Krsna’s transcendental village pastimes,
exhibited when He was present on earth about 5,000 years ago;
Lit: “Forest” (vana) of Tulasi trees (Vrnda)
VYASASANA – The seat (asana) of Vyasa or one representing Vyasa. Only a
bonafide Guru is allowed to sit on the Vyasasana
VYASADEVA – The greatest philosopher of ancient times, who, as an
empowered incarnation of the Lord compiled the Vedic
literatures
YAJNA – Sacrifice (pronounced Jagya)
YOGA – (lit: “plus”) to link, join, connect, yoke, etc with the Lord

WEEK 12
MISCELLANEOUS (Verse to learn Bg 2.13)

(1) People in the material world

*Two kinds of beings in this world (Bg 16.6+p)
*Four kinds of impious people (Bg 7.15+p/Iso 9p last para)
*The mentality of a demon (Bg 16.4+p,7+p 1st 1/2 of 1st para,8-18)
Arrogance, pride, anger, conceit, ignorance, lack of knowledge of correct
course of action, uncleanliness, misbehaviour, untruthfulness,
faithlessness, atheism, lust, destructive work, false prestige, illusion,
anxiety, cheating, no vision of a goal in life except sense gratification
(see also SB 7.5.30 and 31), cruelty, self-complacence, impudence,
delusion (caused by wealth), ritualistic sacrifices, pride in bodily
strength, blasphemy and mischievousness
*Envious people become ruined (Bg 3.32+p)
*Four kinds of pious people (Bg 7.16+p)
*The best of the pious (Bg 7.17,18+p’s)
*How a jnani actually becomes a great soul (Bg 7.19+p)
*The nature of a godly person (Bg 16.1-3)

(2) Food, Vegetarianism and Cow Protection

*Slaughtering animals, especially cows, is due to the mode of ignorance
and so society becomes condemned (Bg 14.16p 2nd para)
*Karmic reaction for one transgressing the law of God (Iso 1p 8th&9th
paras)
*Human bodies are not designed for flesh eating (though a human being is
able to eat meat if he wants) (Iso 17p 2nd para)
*Krsna wants us to be vegetarians (or rather “Krsnatarians”) (Bg 9.26+p
1st&2nd paras/Bg 3.13+p)
*In times of emergency only, when there is no alternative meat eating may
be allowed (Bg 16.1-3p 13th para 10th para Mac)
*The slaughtered animal has to come back again to complete his allotted
time in that species (Bg 16.1-3p 13th para)
*Even meat-eaters must depend on the production of vegetation (Bg 3.14p
last para)
*The foolishness of animal protection societies (PQPA page 79-80)
*Read book called the “Higher Taste”

(3) Christ and Christianity

*Lord Jesus as a saktyavesa avatar (Tape NY ’66-47)
*Read SSR pages 112-125 (we should not imitate a great personality but
follow his instructions)
*Miracles are for the ignorant (PQPA page 5-6)
*Christ and the sins of his followers (PQPA pages 58-59)
*Jesus is guiding the Christians but they are not taking His guidance
seriously (PQPA pages 93-94)
*If you want to imitate Jesus Christ by eating meat why not imitate him by
sacrificing your life for spreading God Consciousness? (PQPA page 95)

Possible answers to some popular questions

*”Only one way” “Alright, so follow it properly! In Krsna Consciousness we
are! “Yes, one can only approach God through the principle of guru and
disciplic succession. The guru is the representative of God and although
the person may change, the principle of only approaching the Lord through
the bona fide guru remains the same. Similarly, the Prime Minister may
have different secretaries at different times but each one will say to you
“I am the only way you can approach the Prime Minister”.
*Jesus eating meat–most unlikely, (see Vegetarian society booklet and
Higher Taste) even if he did, because of the situation he was preaching in
(practically a desert by the sea) we should not try to imitate such a
great personality as him but rather simply follow his instructions:-
*”Thou shalt not kill” should be taken literally. If I love you I would
not kill even your dog. Similarly if you actually love God how can you
even kill an ant what to speak of a cow? If Jesus did actually intend his
followers not to kill only other human beings, this shows that by saying
“Thou shalt not murder” he had to draw their attention to an obvious fact.
If you preach to murderers the first achievement is to stop their killing
of other humans–one has to start somewhere.
*”Plants also have souls”–yes, but there is a difference in the
development of consciousness, the animal feels practically the same pain
as human being. Most people are reluctant to personally kill an animal and
would not relish eating their own dog (or even budgerigar) for supper, but
would quite happily pull up a carrot. Killing one’s own child and eating
him has a much closer correlation to eating an animal, than does killing a
plant. Also, food such as fruit, milk and many vegetables and nuts involve
no killing at all. And if there is some sin in this type of killing it is
completely absolved by Lord Krsna (BG 3.13) and He also clearly tells us
what He wants us to offer Him (Bg 9.26).
*Srila Prabhupada also explained that sometimes plants become ripened
after the soul has already left the body–that is the process of ripening.
*Why can’t the meat eaters wait until the animal dies naturally?–they
already do this in other countries sometimes.
*If meat eating is so wonderful, why don’t they slaughter the animal in
church on Sundays in front of the whole congregation and decorate the
altar with the innards? Why only vegetables and fruits at harvest thanks
giving?

(3) Independence, Forgetfulness and Falldown

*It does not matter how the living entity originally came into contact
with the material world (Bg 13.20p 1/2way through 2nd para)
*”Dear Swami, why do some people neglect the Lord, if He is the centre of
everything?” “Dear Mr. Jones, why do some men lie down on the Bowery
Street? There is independence, and independence means that one can choose
wisely or foolishly”. Ever your well-wisher, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami (BTG
No 14)
*Minute independence (Bg 15.8+p)
*One’s freedom consists of acting according to Lord Krsna’s direction or
according to the direction of the modes of nature (Bg 18.63+p, 2nd
para/18.59&60)
*The living entity falls to the material world because of the desire to
lord it over the material nature and so he becomes the cause of his own
suffering and enjoyment (Bg 13.21+p)
*The living entity generates his own position by association with the
three modes (Bg 17.3P, middle of 1st para)

(4) Freedom (Liberation)

*No question while one is still influenced by the material energy. So many
miseries forced upon one:- repeated birth, death, old age and disease (Bg
13.9)/the six whips of material life:- lust, anger, greed, illusion,
madness and envy/ the three kinds of misery:- (1) caused by demigods,
(2) one’s own mind and body, (3) other living entities/innumerable other
miseries:- (SB 5.14.27)
*One is also forced to act by the modes (Bg. 18.59),, by one’s
uncontrolled mind (Bg 6.5+p end), by one’s senses (Bg 2.60/Bg 2.67) by the
government and even by one’s pet dog (PQPA pages 90-91)
*Everyone is always a servant (Bg Intro page 19, or 17 Mac)/PQPA page 92)
*Why are we in this situation? Because we have misused our freedom, which
is similar to that of a free citizen controlled by the government. (PQPA
page 90, bottom). If he correctly uses his freedom to obey the laws of the
state he is as free as the next man to travel all over and to use all the
facilities open to a good citizen. However if he rebelliously misuses his
freedom and breaks the laws he finds himself restricted by the government;
to a greater and greater degree the more rebellious he is. Similarly it is
possible for a living entity to take the body of a tree in consequence of
a great exhibition of rebelliousness. Apart from being a free citizen, if
one is a trusted servant of the government one may enjoy even greater
freedom, similarly Narada Muni can travel anywhere in the material and
spiritual worlds, like a good son enjoying to the extent of his father’s
estate–Krsna’s estate is unlimited!
*One may not appreciate the above analogy due to pride and illusion, like
Satan who says in Paradise Lost “Better to rule in hell than serve in
heaven”, but who is completely wrong because there are not actual kings in
the material world except the modes of nature and the senses (KB Vol.2 Ch
5 Page 40 or/Vol.2 p.182 of the 3 Volume Set). Although the rebellious
living entity wants to rule and dominate others he is ever dominated,
whilst in the illusion that he is in fact the dominator (Bg 16.14)
*Another example Srila Prabhupada gives (Bg Intro page 13 11-12 Mac)
states that as a finger is free to move in co-operation with the rest of
the body we are also free–but as soon as the finger detaches itself from
the body in an attempt to become free of it’s obligation it becomes
useless to itself and also the rest of the body, and immediately it’s
conditions of distress begin (SB 6.16.57+p). Similarly an individual or
society without a sense of obligation and affiliation to God, is useless
and dead (SB 2.3.23), although initially there may appear to be freedom
but it is simply the so-called freedom of the finger separating itself
from the body. Lord Krsna is represented in this analogy as the complete
body of which we are a tiny part. The part of the body enjoys freedom to
the extent that the body possesses it–as Krsna is unlimitedly free we can
also share in His unlimited freedom if we are attached and surrendered to
Him.
*Yet another example Srila Prabhupada gives (Tape–Lon 73,60 Side B) is
that of a street dog who is apparently running very freely but who is
actually restricted by hunger, disease, loneliness, fear, mistreatment and
many other impediments that the jolly, confident dog who serves a master
does not have. In fact, such a street dog will often try to find a master
to give him shelter, and fawning, attempt to follow someone back home.
Krsna and Krsna’s devotee, however, will never kick one away however mangy
and flea-bitten one is!
*Krsna controls one out of love, and maya by force (PQPA page 89). Srila
Prabhupada once gave the example that one can either be controlled by a
policeman and kicked into submission or one can rectify one’s bad habits
by the kind association of the devotees–the result is ultimately the
same. Similarly, by maya’s kicking, the proud so-called fredom-fighter
will eventually come to Lord Krsna’a lotus feet and find real freedom.
*one can try to interfere with destiny and commit suicide but one must
come back and continue one’s sentence in that particular prison situation
(PQPA pages 89-90). Similarly the impersonalists try to commit spiritual
suicide in an attempt to avoid serving Krsna but actual liberation means
real life, not destruction (Bg 6.23p 3rd para). A hospital patient will
think himself factually liberated from his disease when he recovers, not
if he dies from the treatment.
*A devotee surrenders to Krsna (Bg 7.14+p/Bg 15.5), follows the regulative
principles of freedom (Bg 2.64) and thus becomes freed from the enforced
conditions of material nature. Sometimes when ignorant people see the
discipline of the practitioners of sadhana-bhakti, they think this
regimented existence to be horrible, not being able to comprehend how the
devotees are becoming freed from the bodily concept of life and fixed up
in the complete freedom of the soul, which lies beyond the covered regions
of this world. And even within the apparent confines of material existence
a surrendered soul is in fact completely free of it’s influence and
factually liberated (Bg 5.11p)
*A devotee is not controlled by false thoughts (PQPA page 92) because he
knows that his constitutional position is that of the eternal servant of
Krsna (Bg 4.35p, last 2 lines). Freedom therefore means to be situated in
one’s eternal, constitutional position.
*A devotee does not separately endeavour for liberation because he is
already liberated (PQPA pages 92-93). In fact all the benefits that
liberation have to offer stand at the door of the devotee waiting to serve
Him.

(5) Violence and Non-violence

*should be properly understood because sometimes apparent violence is
actually non-violence and vice-versa. A policeman may be considered
violent, or even criminal himself, if, in a particular situation he
refrains from violence. A doctor is considered non-violent even though he
cuts off your arm. A so-called friend is violent if he gives you a
cigarette, meat etc. (see also Bg 2.21+p)
*Violence and non-violence are not always physical concepts–a father is
considered violent if he denies his child certain rights, an advertisement
is considered violent because it violates one’s sensibilities etc.
*Generally violence is taken as the application of unlawful force.
“Unlawful!” ultimately must mean “against the laws of God”, which, being
absolute, are designed for the progressive path of everyone. Therefore
violence means to transgress the laws of God.
*Violence further means to put someone to distress, misery or confusion.
Therefore to be non-violent one must have knowledge, otherwise unwittingly
one may be causing violence to someone–“the path to hell is paved with
good intentions”. (see Bg 10.4-5p 6th para/Bg 13.8-12p 3rd para)
*Violence also means to obstruct someone’s progress. “Progress” can be
understood from authoritative scripture to be the evolution of the soul to
his natural state of Krsna consciousness. The worst form of violence
therefore is to interfere with someone’s spiritual life.
*Animals too are evolving progressively. To unnecessarily kill an animal
is also violence (Bg 16.1-3p 13th para)

(6) Morality

*means to surrender to Krsna (Bg 18.78+p 3rd para)
*Krsna, being absolute, knows precisely what is right and wrong, correct
and incorrect. Anyone surrendering to Krsna is no longer subject to the
“mental platform” where there can be no factual good qualities (Bg
2.55+p), acts for the well being of every living entity (NOD preface, 3rd
para before the last one), has a perfect character and is dear to everyone
(Bg 5.7)
*sometimes rascals accuse Krsna of being immoral–one such rascal
challenged: “If Krsna is actually moral why do we find Him cavorting with
other men’s wives?” Srila Prabhupada immediately replied, “You are
immoral. Krsna is God, everything belongs to Him, and you are thinking
that your so-called wife belongs to you.” Krsna is the Supreme emblem of
morality and Gita is the Supreme instruction on morality.

(7) Honesty

*explained (PQPA pages 70 near the bottom)–74 (?down), 76 (1/2 way)–78
(bottom))

(8) Peace

*means–real desirelessness or to be free of the desire for
sense-gratification, over-Lordship, false ego etc. (Bg 2.71+p). To desire
everything for Krsna knowing Him to be the real enjoyer, master and friend
(Bg 5.29+p, 1st para). To be sure and certain of one’s ultimate goal (Bg
2.66+p)
*is achieved–by restraining oneself from the urges of the senses (a
devotee is full in himself, like the ocean, and is never disturbed by the
incessant river-like flows of desires–therefore he is peaceful) (Bg
2.70+p)
-by giving up all personal desire (CC Madhya 19.149)
-by being faithful (Bg 4.39)
-by offering the result of one’s work to Krsna (Bg 5.12+p/Bg 12.12)
-by conquering the mind (Bg 6.7)
-by surrendering to Krsna (Bg 18.62)
-by even a fallen devotee who always tries to serve Krsna (Bg 9.31)
*the Peace Formula (SSR page 192-3)

(9) Love

*is transformed into lust on contact with the material energy, however,
this lust can be transformed back into love again (Bg 3.37p)

(10) Cults and Culture

*Read booklet entitled, “Please don’t Lump Us In”.

INTRODUCTORY HANDBOOK FOR KRSNA CONSCIOUSNESS

This handbook and accompanying curriculum, which are to be used en
jointly, have been compiled under the direct order of the Governing
Body Commission of the International Society for Krsna Consciousness.
Their contents are based wholely on the inspiration, guidance and wis-
dom of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, the founder acarya
of ISKCON. This humble attempt has been made in the service of any
aspiring devotee and future disciple of the authorised ISKCON Acaryas.
We pray to Srila Prabhupada, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta and Srila Rupa Go-
svami that this work may be strictly in the line of the parampara and
full of transcendental potency for the eternal benefit of one who ma-
kes use of it.
Your humble servant, Rohininandana das Adhikari
(May 14th 1984/498 Caitanya Era, Appearance Day of Lord Nrsimhadeva)

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Part I Introduction Page 1
Part II Daily Life
(1) Awakening Page 2
(2) Applying Tilak Page 2
(3) Japa Meditation Pages 2-3
(4) Offering obeisances to Vaisnavas Page 3
(5) Entering the Temple Pages 3-4
(6) Mangala Arati and Temple Programme Pages 4-5
(7) Prasada Page 5
(8) Service in the Temple Pages 5-6
(9) The Bhakta Class Page 6
(10) Harinam Samkirtan Pages 6-7
Part III Appendix
(1) Faith and Discrimination Page 7
(2) Casual becomes Casualty Page 7
(3) Idle Talking Page 7
(4) Mundane Friendships Pages 7-8
(5) Answering the telephone Page 8
(6) Istaghosti Page 8
(7) Vaisnava Etiquette Page 8

Part I Introduction

We would like to welcome you to the Introductory Cours for Krsna
Consciousness and suggest that you study this handbook which is supp-
lementary to the daily curriculum and which we hope you will find use-
ful.
The purpose of this course is basically four-fold:
(1) To give you an idea what Krsna conscious life is, so that you can
decide if and how you want to commit yourself further
(2) To teach you the correct attitude and approach to Krsna Conscious-
ness
(3) To help you make strong and swift progress in spiritual life
(4) To give fundamental procedures and regulations, thus creating a
firm basis for the future

Generally the course lasts three months and during that time one can
attain a fairly thorough understanding of the following: cleanliness,
harinam samkirtan, preaching, rules and regulations, Vedic philosophy,
Vaisnava behaviour, devotional service, Krsna meditation etc.
We have a very structured daily schedule, which, although regulated,
embodies the actual principle of freedom from material existence. Eve-
rything is completely in accordance with the ancient scriptural (sa-
stric) tradition of Vedic India. The more diligently one applies one-
self to this process the more benefit and realisation one will attain.

We should try to mould the activities of our lives in such a way that
we remember Krsna at all times. This is Krsna Consciousness. Therefore
the all-inclusive principle is, “always think of Krsna and never for-
get Him”. Within this one principle is contained all other principles
of devotional service.
Actually, devotional service or “bhakti-yoga” is the eternal way of
life of every living entity, presently lying dormant in the heart. In
the scriptures there is the statement: “it is the prime duty of per-
sons who want to become fearless, to hear, chant and remember the Su-
preme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, Who is to be remembered and never
forgotten, not even for a single moment.”
Therefore, if the devotee is desirous of associating with the Lord,
Who is the Supreme Pure, he has to undergo the process of purifica-
tion. One who strictly adheres to the Lord’s instructions as outlined
in the Vedic scriptures becomes very dear to Him. Lord Krsna says
” As they surrender unto Me I reward them accordingly.” The devotee
tries his best to follow these instructions. To assist him in the pro-
cess of purification, it is essential that he follow the following
regulative principles:
1. No illicit sex life
2. No gambling, including idle sporting and speculative pursuits
3. No intoxicants, which includes no tea, coffee, etc.
4. No meat eating, which includes no fish, eggs, etc.
5. The chanting of the Lord’s Holy Name, the Hare-Krsna-Maha-
Mantra: Hare Krsna Hare Krsna/ Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rame/ Rama Rama Hare Hare
At least 16 rounds a day.

The underlying principle of all one’s activities is the chanting of
the Holy Name. This is specifically recommended by Lord Caitanya Him-
self – “in this age of Kali there is no other way, no other way, no
other way of making spiritual advancement than chanting the Holy Names
of the Lord.”
A Krsna conscious person, even if he is not educated by the university
standard, can immediately give up illicit sex life, gambling, meat
eating and intoxication whereas those who are not in Krsna conscious-
ness, although very highly educated materially, are often drunkards,
meat eaters, sex mongers and gamblers. These are practical proofs of
how a Krsna conscious person becomes highly elevated in good quali-
ties, whereas a person not in Krsna consciousness, cannot attain the
same perfection.
What follows may seem at first too much to learn and practice all at
once! So don’t worry because it always becomes clear for someone in
the course of time, and please feel free to ask any questions you may
have. (Any word that you don’t know can be found in the Vedic dictio-
nary in Week 11 of the curriculum).

Part II Daily Life
(1) Upon awaking, devotees immediately like to remember their real
spiritual position as a servant of the spiritual master and Lord
Krsna. Due to the ignorance of sleep the mind has been roaming in il-
lusion so now it should be firmly brought back into Krsna conscious-
ness. Devotees therefore pay their obeisances to their spiritual ma-
ster, and next remember the Presiding Deities of the Temple, by enthu-
siastically chanting Their Names. As one proceeds to the bathroom it
is very helpful and blissful for yourself and others, to loudly chant
the Panca-Tattva-maha-mantra and the Hare-Krsna-maha-mantra (as long
as everyone else around you is also meant to be rising at the same
time!)
(2) After showering and partially dressing oneself, one applies
tilak which decorates the body as a Temple of the Lord. The mark on
the forehead from the root of the nose to the hairline represents the
foot- print of the Lotus Foot of the Lord and the leaf shape extending
about three quarters down the nose represents Tulasi Devi. One should
mix tilak in the palm of one’s left hand (or premix it in a small con-
tainer) and apply it with the ring finger of the right hand to make
markings on 12 parts of the body, whilst chanting the following man-
tras:
(* when applying tilak on the right side of the body transfer it from
the ball of the right finger onto the ball of the left ring finger. *)

THE FOREHEAD……………..OM KESAVAYA NAMAH
THE BELLY………………..OM NARAYANAYA NAMAH
THE CHEST………………..OM MADHAVAYA NAMAH
THE THROAT……………….OM GOVINDAYA NAMAH
RIGHT WAIST………………OM VISNAVE NAMAH
RIGHT ARM………………..OM MADHUSUDANAYA NAMAH
RIGHT SHOULDER……………OM TRIVIKRAMAYA NAMAH
LEFT WAIST……………….OM VAMANAYA NAMAH
LEFT ARM…………………OM SRIDHARAYA NAMAH
LEFT SHOULDER…………….OM HRSIKESAYA NAMAH
UPPER BACK……………….OM PADMANABHAYA NAMAH
LOWER BACK……………….OM DAMODARAYA NAMAH

Whatever tilak is left over should be wiped in the region of the sikha
with the mantra “OM VASUDEVAYA NAMAH” (a large excess can be returned
to the pot or block of tilak). You can read more about tilak on pages
54 and 73f of the Nectar of Devotion.
Footnote: if one takes rest for more than an hour during the day, upon
rising one should shower and reapply tilak. If one rests for less time
one can simply wash one’s face and mouth etc.

(3) Japa Meditation
If we hear the Holy Name of the Lord with great attention then the
rest of the day will go very nicely, our minds being spiritually sur-
charged, purified by the Name. If one is serious about becoming spiri-
tually advanced and pure he will be serious about daily japa. Devotees
like to chant all their rounds with as little interruption as possible
from sleeping, talking or a wandering mind. To use the japa beads hold
them in your right hand between the thumb and upper side of the middle
finger (overleap). Chanting is began on the nearest bead to the “Krs-
na” bead. Chant the complete maha-mantra aloud:”Hare Krsna, Hare Krs-
na, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Ha-
re”, making sure to pronounce each word distinctly.
Then with your thumb, pull your beads through your hand to the next
bead and again chant the maha-mantra. Now move to the next bead and
the fourth and fifth etc. chanting the complete mantra on each bead.
Continue in this way until you have chanted on all 108 beads and have
come again to the Krsna bead. Now stop! The Krishna bead should not be
chanted on or crossed over. You have just chanted one round!
Next, turn your beads around so that you are prepared to chant in the
opposite direction. Once again begin chanting on the next bead to the
Krishna bead and then proceed as before into the second round. As a
devotee chants the mantra on each bead he slightly moves the bead from
side to side with the thumb. When you become more experienced in chan-
ting it will take you about 7 or 8 minutes to complete a round. There
is no limit to the number of rounds you can chant on your beads, but
devotees in the temple chant a minimum of 16 rounds a day. This fixing
of the mind upon God is the basic principle of all meditation, and
therefore vibration of the transcendental sound of Hare Krishna maha
mantra is a simple, authorised, and effective method of transcendental
meditation.
Although the Vedic scriptures mention many different forms of yoga,
such as hatha yoga, raja-yoga, and jnana-yoga, they also conclusively
state:
harer nama harer nama
harer namaiva kevalam
kalau nasty eva nasty eva
nasty eva gatir anyatha

“In this age of Kali there is no other way, no other way, no other way
to achieve liberation than to chant the Holy Name of God” (Brihan Na-
radiya Purana). “Hare” means unto Mother “Hara” or Lord Krsna’s perso-
nal pleasure potency, Srimati Radharani. “Krsna” means the all-attrac-
tive Lord, or one who stops (“na”) the repitition or cultivation
(“Krsi”) of birth and death. Or: “Krs” also refers to the highest ple-
asure and “na” (with point under the ‘n’) means ?????????????????????
“Rama” means the source of all enjoyment. When we chant Hare Krsna we
are praying ” O energy of the Lord (Hare), o Lord (Krsna and Rama)
please engage me in Your service!”.
Devotees feel very humble when they chant, realising their insignifi-
cant spiritual identity, their fallen position in the material world,
and Lord Krsna’s wonderful kindness upon them; and therefore they fee-
lingly address the Lord, begging Him to once again be allowed into the
realm of His service. Lord Krsna is nondifferent from His Holy Name
and hence great care and attention should be given by one who is try-
ing to chant.

(4) Offering Obeisances to Other Devotees
One should always be prepared to offer one’s obeisances to any ot-
her devotee. One’s devotional service cannot mature without the asso-
ciation of devotees. One should deal with other devotees in a humble
state of mind and with some service attitude. When we say “Prabhu” we
should mean it! One can say “please accept my humble obeisances” and
bow down, say the prayer to the Vaisnavas (see song sheet). If there
is some quarrel with another devotee always try to resolve it by ta-
king a humble position, and paying obeisances to each other — if done
properly this simple action will always completely clear the air. In
order to avoid any unnecessary friction the best rule of thumb is that
new bhaktas should not give any practical instruction to each other at
all. If you notice someone doing something you consider incorrect you
cah always inform the bhakta director, who is especially qualified to
give proper guidance and correction etc. This is not being a “tell-
tale” of a “sneak” but rather the proper attitude for one who really
cares about his own advancement and the spiritual advancement of ot-
hers.

(5) Entering the Temple
First remove your shoes and either ring the bell or knock on
Krsna’s door loudly chanting the names of the respective Deities. Upon
entering the temple leave one’s book bag (containing your Bhagavad-
gita, pen and note pad, which you should take to every class) on one
side. Then pay obeisances at the feet of the founder acarya of ISKCON,
Srila Prabhupada (Of course in the beginning you can read your song
sheet as you bow down).

(6) Mangala Arati and Temple Programme
After paying our obeisances in this way we carry on chanting japa
until it is time for Mangala Arati when a conchshell is blown, the
curtains open, and you can see the beautiful form of the Lord dressed
in His night attire. The pujari or priest the offers various parapher-
nalia: incense, a lamp, water, a handkerchief, a flower, a whisk and a
fan. Just before this ceremony the Lord has been offered some milk
sweet delicacies, so when He has eaten to His satisfaction (although
of course He does not need to eat, but accepts the love and devotion
of His devotees) the arati ceremony is performed and all the devotees
sing, play various instruments, clap and dance jubilantly, with arms
raised like Lord Caitanya, for His further pleasure. In trying to
please Lord Krsna by enthusiastic worship, the soul, or in other words
one’s self becomes satisfied. Sometimes we may not feel like dancing
so exuberantly early in the morning but if we do it anyway for His
happiness then we will make great advancement and also share in the
Lord’s unlimited spiritual bliss.
Of course, you will also be trying to follow what’s going on by using
your song sheet! It may be difficult to do everything at once. Occa-
sionally a new devotee will feel bewildered by seeing all the strange
words and may prefer just to listen and then join in with the chanting
of Hare Krsna, which always forms at least part, if not the major part
of our chanting. One can actually become a pure devotee of Lord Krsna
simply by chanting Hare Krsna aloud, in the company of devotees. All
the other songs and prayers are expansions of the Hare Krsna mantra.
If you find the words difficult to follow, don’t worry – we sing the
same songs every day in the same order and also you can read through
the song sheet in your own time and study it more thoroughly when we
discuss it during our bhakta classes. We find the daily repetition of
these spiritual songs becomes more and more relishable as the years go
by – that is the nature of anything which is actually spiritual. Devo-
tees accept the offered lamp, the good flavour of the incense, the
flowers, and the garlands and caranamrta, as extremely auspicious
items because they are prasada, or the mercy of the Lord.
Next we sing a prayer to Lord Nrsimhadeva, a loving but fierce incar-
nation of the Lord, for the protection of the spiritual master and our
ISKCON Movement. And then we attend Tulasi arati. Tulasi Devi is a
small tree. Usually a plant body is a low, ignorant birth for the soul
to take. But not so with Tulasi – she is a pure devotee of Krsna who
has taken this form for the pleasure of the Lord (her leaves are an
important part of Deity worship) and for our spiritual benefit. She is
far more conscious than you are! When she leaves her body, devotees
use her twigs and trunk to make neck beads and japa beads (see Nectar
of Devotion page 101 for more about her). After the more senior devo-
tees have offered a few drops of water to the Tulasi plant, you may
also take your turn. Purify your right hand, take up the spoon from
the small brass pot and pour a little water on the soil, being very
careful not TO TOUCH or KNOCK her. After replacing the spoon you can
touch her base and then touch your head out of respect for a wonderful
devotee of the Lord. In the spiritual world everyone, in every form,
is completely absorbed in the loving service of the Lord! How much can
we really know by speculating with our paltry material brains?
After you have completed all or most of your rounds (at least 14) if
there is still time you can do some reading. After the japa period we
greet the Deities, Who have been bathed, dressed and offered fresh
garlands. Simply hear the wonderful Govindam prayers and let your eyes
gaze at the Lord’s form, from the feet upwards, and so become puri-
fied. During this time we also separately pay our respectful obeisan-
ces to each set of the Deities.
Also we worship the spiritual master, and founder of ISKCON, Srila
Prabhupada. The spiritual master is the representative of God and is
therefore offered the same worship as God, which he accepts as his
duty on behalf of the Lord so we can advance in Krsna Consciousness.
You can also offer a flower, after the other devotees, and then bow
down at his lotus feet.
At some point the scores of the devotees efforts on Sankirtan are usu-
ally announced.
When the devotees render service in the temple or outside by distribu-
ting books or collecting money (Laksmi) they are working for the plea-
sure of the Deity, on the order of the Deity’s representative. There-
fore the results of their efforts are made known to the Deities, and
all the devotees also like to hear and glorify the devotee’s preaching
endeveavors, however materially small or big they may appear.
Before class we always chant a favourite bhajan of Srila Prabhupada’s
called Jaya Radha Madhava. Then the devotees will begin chanting the
sanskrit text written on the black board. Try to follow as best as you
can. Some of the older devotees will lead the chanting of the verse
and if there is opportunity afterwards you may also attempt to chant
it on your own, if you feel able.
During class try to sit up straight and be as attentive as possible;
it is also a good practice to take notes. If you feel sleepy it is
best to stand up. With a little practice and self discipline one can
learn to be awake and bright in the class even if one does feel tired.
Hearing means straining to understand and absorb what is being said,
not simply listening. After class is over we pay obeisances once again
before leaving the temple room.

(7) Prasada
Prasada is very special; it is nondifferent from Krsna. Therefore
devotees don’t just “eat” it, they honour or respect it. Of course
devotees enjoy eating prasada, like anything, but they do it in the
consciousness that “How wonderful Krsna is for appearing before me in
this way, He is so kind” – Before respecting prasada we should chant
the prayer “Sarira avidya jal” (see song sheet). Then say the obeisan-
ces prayer to the spiritual master.
ISKCON is sometimes called the “kitchen” religion because of our great
stress on prasada for both eating and distributing. Just by taking
prasada in the right meditative way on can make unlimited spiritual
advancement! Eat as much as you like and then more if you want – Srila
Prabhupada used to make his disciples eat up to the neck when he first
started the movement, which you can read about in the “Srila Prabhupa-
da Lilamrta” Volume 2.
Be careful though, that you don’t put too much on your plate so that
there is something left at the end – if there is you should still try
to eat it anyway. We don’t like to waste even one grain of rice! Anot-
her point is that devotees completely depend on Lord Krsna for their
maintenance – so there is never a need for us to “hide” prasada. We
can always be confident that He will provide for us amply every day.
So don’t keep any prasada in your locker etc, which may also attract
mice and insects, because this does not show much faith in Krsna.
We should only keep things which we are currently using, without wor-
rying for the future. Lord Krsna is the Supreme Personality of Godhe-
ad, the Supreme Maintainer of everyone, even the animals and insects,
so surely He will take care of someone who is trying to become His
devotee! To experience that Krsna is trustworthy you have to put your
trust in Him!
Prasada should be served – devotees like to serve each other and are
not very enthusiastic to serve themselves. If you want some more and
there is no one to serve you you should go and wash your hands before
using the serving utensils, which should also not be touched to anyo-
ne’s eating plate. Always use your right hand for both serving and
eating. (If you want to break a capati in two, for instance, it can be
done by using the right hand only).
If one has a regulated diet of Krsna prasada (not eating between the
meals etc.) one will be healthy, peaceful, full of energy, and happy
to know that one is gradually conquering over the material energy.
Wash your hands before and after eating and don’t forget to rinse your
mouthe and clean your teeth after meals! When you finish prasada once
again chant the prayer to the spiritual master.

(8) Service in the Temple
If your service is cleaning, practice keeping your mind absorbed on
the spiritual platform by chanting or thinking of the class in the
morning, or planning ways you can do the cleaning job better and bet-
ter every day. If you are cutting vegetables in the kitchen remember
that Krsna’s kitchen is meant to be clean like the Deity room, so make
sure that your clothes are also very clean. The cooks are preparing
varieties of dishes for Lord Krsna’s pleasure and therefore no one
enjoys the food in any way, even by smelling, before it is offered to
Him.
Any service you may be given is actually very special. Srila Prabhupa-
da writes in “Teachings of Queen Kunti” that the devotee who cleans
anywhere in the temple, even the bathroom, is as good as the pujari
who bathes the Deities. This is because every square inch of the
Lord’s temple is non-different from Him. Your service is given to you
by the arrangement of Lord Krsna as a result of your sincere request
to the Lord to be engaged once again in His service, and therefore
when Krsna’s representatives such as the Temple Commander or the Bhak-
ta Director comes to you requesting something to be done you should
think “I am being requested to do this personally by Lord Krsna Him-
self.” This understanding is further explained in the purport to
Chapter 18 Text 57 of the Gita. You must be sure that the person re-
questing you to do something is really authorised to instruct you. If
you are not sure you can say something like “prabhu, I’m perfectly
willing to do what you request but at present I’ve been asked to do
this, so could you check with the Bhakta Director first?” Of course a
small thing, that takes only one or two minutes to help someone out,
is another matter!

(9) The Bhakta Class
Please be at class on time. Be early if possible. There is so litt-
le time and so much to learn in only three months! During the classes
one is encouraged to enquire very thoroughly, in an all-round way
about the subject matter under discussion.
Srila Prabhupada used to say that we should discuss the philosophy
until it is threadbare and Lord Krsna also says in the Gita “paripras-
nena”, one should enquire all around” (Bg 4.34).
In order to become a little familiar with the Sanskrit, the depth of
the philosophy of the Gita and to enhance your own future preaching,
we have selected some verses for you to try and memorise, either Sans-
krit or English, or both, at the rate of one per week. Try and under-
stand exactly what the verse is about by studying the meaning of each
word, and repeat the whole verse … there are many opportunities
throughout the day when you can practice. These verses are like
friends who are always with us – sometimes the remembrance of a verse
when there is difficulty can save the entire the situation! Written
work may also be set, to help you further assimilate the philosophy,
with occasional essays and tests.

(10) Harinam Samkirtan
If you get ready quickly it’s a good time to fit in a little extra
reading in the van before everyone gets in and we drive off. However,
make sure that your clothes look neat and clean, you have fresh tilak
on and your shoes are also clean and smart.
Going out to chant on the streets, distributing magazines, leaflets
and prasada, and talking to someone who is a little interested is a
very good opportunity to see clearly the difference between material
and spiritual life. The things we hear about in the classes and read
in the books become ‘alive’ when we go out to preach. We have to be
careful though that our mind doesn’t become distracted by the tempora-
ry facade of the material energy. If you notice your mind wandering,
simply look at the devotee in front and pray to Krsna to help you re-
member Him. Sometimes you can tell if someone is losing concentra-
tion – if he is playing the karatals they inadvertantly begin to speed
up! Besides your own benefit, if you try very sincerely to concentrate
purely on the Holy Name, along with the other devotees, then the po-
tency of the chanting party will radically increase and all the condi-
tioned souls will be benefitted. They may not intellectually realise
what is happening, but the Holy Name is reaching their souls and awa-
king them spiritually. Once a person told us, “in the morning the city
corporation come and clean the streets and in the afternoon you people
come and clean the atmosphere!” Many people very much appreciate the
chanting party and if we don’t go to a particular place for a while
they begin to miss us, and when we return, ask where we’ve been. Actu-
ally, the chanting party is a very important part of our Introductory
Course and by understanding samkirtan you can understand the entire
Krsna Consciousness movement.
In the evening we shower, attend sundara arati, Bhagavad Gita class
etc. before taking rest. As you can see and experience, the day is
very regulated indeed. This is called ‘sadhana’ bhakti – following the
rules and regulations of Bhakti yoga so that one can come to the plat-
form of spontaneous enthusiasm to serve Krsna 24 hours a day (This is
explained in Nectar of Devotion pages 20-22). As a child’s ability to
walk is inherent within her and simply takes practice to become mani-
fest, similarly our love for Krsna is already there within us.

Part III Appendix
(1) Faith and Discrimination
Sometimes a person visiting the temple may think that everyone li-
ving there is a pure devotee of Lord Krsna and consequently he is ne-
glectful of taking care of his money, etc. and if something disappears
or is stolen he becomes very upset and loses his faith in Krsna cons-
ciousness. However, this shows a very shallow unerstanding of our
Krsna consciousness movement. Firstly, we are a preaching movement and
we have an open house for anyone who is a little sincere and inter-
ested. Of course, most of the time the people who come are sincere,
but sometimes someone will come, take advantage of our hospitality and
try to steal something. We try our best to guard against this sort of
thing by carefully screening our guests, but occasionally something
does mysteriously ‘disappear’. Therefore we always recommend that all
guests and new bhaktas hand in all valuable things like money and pas-
sport, cameras etc., to be locked away or else to always keep these
items on their person. Also, another point is that the temple is a
spiritual hospital for people who are contaminated by the material
influences of lust, greed, anger, illusion, etc. and consequently the
devotees living in the temple are at various stages of purificationl
Everyone who is serious in taking up Krsna consciousness is approa-
ching perfection, but someone may have a long way to go and someone
else may not be undergoing the process so seriously. Therefore, it is
sometimes apparent that a person who has been living in the temple for
just a few months is more advanced in spiritual life than someone who
has been there a few years. We should therefore be both intelligent
and broadminded when viewing the activities of other devotees.

(2) Casual becomes Casualty
If someone is not very serious in the following the principles of
Krsna consciousness, or in the beginning follows them seriously but
later becomes slack and whimsical, he is placing himself in great dan-
ger of slipping away from spiritual life. If you want to follow the
sun you have to keep moving. Similarly, in spiritual life you must
keep advancing enthusiastically, otherwise one may again become at-
tracted by the darkness of Maya. On a practical level, don’t be lazy
or casual in your application of the principles you are learning and
you will never become a ‘casualty’ again, lost in the material world.

(3) Idle Talking
Try to inspire yourself and the other new bhaktas by the quality of
your speech. This is explained in the 17th chapter of Bhagavad Gita.
Try to make your speech spiritual and not mundane. Sometimes new bhak-
tas have a habit of gradually slipping into mundane conversation,
starting by talking ‘shop talk’ or talk which is not directly related
to Krsna, such as all the details of the sankirtan van’s engine, or
about all one’s previous medical history, etc., etc. Srila Bhakti-
siddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Maharaj, the spiritual master of Srila
Prabhupada, used to say, “Idle words breed idle thoughts; idle action
breeds birth, old age, disease and death!”

(4) Mundane Friendships
Sometimes two of the members of the Introductory Course who are a
little weak and casual about Krsna consciousness tend to separate
themselves from others and are often seeing talking together. Such
people cannot help themselves in spiritual life, what to speak of each
other. They may think they are ‘friends’ and that their relationship
is beneficial, but undoubtedly they are feeding each other’s attach-
ment to the material world, trying to please their material minds by
talking all about past activities in the material life. If I offer you
a cigarette am I your friend or your enemy? Similarly, if I offer you
my material vision in mundane friendship, am I actually a friend to
you or an enemy? Your real friend is that person who can put you in
touch with the Supreme Friend, Lord Krsna, and help you advance to
perfection.
So it is most important that one is careful with whom one associates
and how one associates, if one actually wants to become Krsna conscio-
us.

(5) Answering the telephone
Should be done sensibly. Not everyone phoning the temple will ap-
preciate “Haribol” or even “Hare Krsna”. Make sure you have the time
to find someone before answering the phone and try not to keep the
caller waiting for too long. Telephone conversations amongst devotees
should be businesslike, and to the point in order to save Krsna’s
laksmi. One should also try to place one’s calls at the cheap rate
times.

(6) Istaghosthi (see Vedic dictionary)
Is held weekly and at this time we can reflect on the progress we
have made so far and what is still to be accomplished. Any questions,
philosophical or practical which come up during the week and remain
unanswered, can be brought up at this time for the benefit of all the
other new bhaktas as well. The bhakta director will discuss many
points and one should try to seriously implement them and in this way
improving one’s all-round standing in devotional service.

(7) Vaisnava Etiquette
The Introductory Course is mainly concerned with Vaisnava etiquet-
te, or the behaviour of a devotee, particularly in one’s dealings with
others. Bhakti yoga is an all-inclusive science and culture, and so
there are even detailed codes of conduct that devotees have between
each other. The proper understanding may take some time to develop,
but, like everything else is revealed to one who chants Hare Krsna
sincerely, who hears and enquires attentively and who has a nice ser-
vice attitude. This will be more thoroughly discussed in Week 9 and
there is a small book called “Vaisnava behaviour” by Srila Satsvarupa
das Gosvami which may be read later on.

“T H E I N T R O D U C T O R Y C U R R I C U L U M”
INDEX

Week 1 The Spiritual Master and Disciple

1. The process of acquiring knowledge
2. The need to approach a Spiritual Master
3. The qualifications of a Spiritual Master including the symptomes of
one on the transcendental platform
4. The qualifications of a disciple
5. The parampara system
6. Initiation

Week 2 Recent and Present Acaryas

1. Srila Vyasadeva 7. Srila Gaurakisora
2. Narada Muni 8. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta
3. Maharaj Pariksit & 9. Srila Prabhupada
Sukadeva Gosvami 10. The present spiritual master
4. Srila Madhvacarya 11. Jayananda Prabhu
5. The Six Gosvamis 12. The meaning of Vyasa-puja
6. Srila Bhaktivinoda (worshipping the guru)

Week 3 Sadhana Bhakti

1. Sadhana Bhakti 6. The Ten Offences
2. The steps of bhakti yoga 7. The importance of strict
leading to pure love attendance at the morning and
3. Cleanliness, personal behavior evening programme
regulation, sleeping etc. 8. Deity worship
4. The Maha Mantra 9. The Glories of Prasada and
5. Japa Eating in Krsna Consciousness

Week 4 Krsna the Absolute Truth

1. Brahman, Paramatma and Bhagavan 4. Yajna (sacrifice)
(including opulences of Krsna) 5. Demigods including Lord Siva
2. The Descent of the Lord 6. Impersonalism
3. Expansions and Incarnations

Week 5 Vedic Knowledge

1. Origin and Characteristics 4. Philosophies
2. Karma 5. Mahabharata and Bhagavad-gita
3. The time of death 6. Srimad Bhagavatam
7. Isopanisad

Week 6 Matter and Spirit

1. Sankhya Yoga 7. Universal Time (incl. 4 ages)
2. The Mind 8. Creation, Maintenance and de-
3. The Intelligence struction of the material world
4. The False Ego 9. The Three Modes
5. The Soul 10. The Spiritual World
11. Evolution and Modern Science
12. Life in the womb (and hellish
regions

Week 7 Bhakti Yoga

1. Bhakti Yoga and other Yoga systems
2. Karma Yoga and Bhakti Yoga
3. Six characteristics of devotional service
4. The nine devotional activities
5. The six divisions of surrender
6. The six favourable principles of devotional service and the obsta-
cles to devotional service
7. The importance of hearing
8. The importance of faith

Week 8 Samkirtan

1. Panca tattva and other associates of Lord Caitanya
2. The historical background of appearance and mission of Lord
Caitanya and a brief history of Vaisnavism (incl. 4 Vaisnava sam-
pradayas)
3. Lord Caitanya’s teachings
4. Welfare work
5. Preaching

Week 9 The Devotees

1. Types of Devotees 6. Parents
2. Qualities of Devotees 7. Distress and the Devotee
3. Association of Devotees (incl. 8. Health
six symptoms of love shared 9. The Fallen Devotee
by devotees) 10. How to Avoid falling down
4. Krsna Consciousness, a natural method
5. Structure of ISKCON

Week 10 The Vedic Culture

1. Religion – real or cheating 6. Four Asramas
2. The pillars of Religion 7. Women
3. Responsibility of Human Life 8. Children and education
4. Varnasrama-dharma 9. Four Ages and Yuga Dharma
5. Four Varnas

Week 11 Temple Programme

1. Songs and prayers in our 3. Vedic Dictionary
daily life
2. Prema Dhyani

Week 12 Miscellaneous

1. Four kinds of pious people 7. Love
2. Four kinds of impious people 8. Peace
(incl. mentality of a demon) 9. Honesty
3. Vegetarianism and cow pro- 10. Violence and Non-Violence
tection 11. Morality
4. Christ and Christianity 12. Cults and Culture
5. Forgetfullness and fall-down 13. ISKCON and India
6. Freedom (liberation)

GENERAL READING LIST

(Completion of this list will depend upon how many books a new bhakta
has read bofore joining the program)

First three Month Preliminary Course Secondary Course

Perfect Questions Perfect Answers Srimad Bhagavatam 1st Canto
Bhagavad-gita Teachings of Lord Caitanya
Coming Back Life Comes from Life
Isopanisad Perfection of Yoga
Science of Self-Realization Krsna Book
Nectar of Instruction (1st 7 verses) Easy Journey to Other Planets
Nectar of Devotion (1st wave) Path of Perfection
“Prabhupada” (biography)
Chant and Be Happy
“T H E I N T R O D U C T O R Y C U R R I C U L U M”

(The Preliminary Twelve Week Study Course)

WEEK1 THE SPIRITUAL MASTER AND DISCIPLE

1) The Process of Acquiring knowledge (to learn: Bg 4.34)

The Three Main Ways (Iso, Intro 9th para) – other methods include tra-
dition,history, guessing, comparison, probability and logic.

a) PRATYAKSA “occular” or direct perception (Iso, Intro 9th para)

b) ANUMANA – “to follow (anu) the mind (mana)”, inference, hypothesis
or speculation. Induction, the ascending method.

c) SABDA – “sound”, or sruti — “Vedic knowledge that is directly
heard”. Deduction, the descending method. (Iso, Intro 7th-9th pa-
ras/ Bg 2.25p/Bg 4.34 +p)

* Induction and Deduction –Iso Intro, end of 10th para
* Speculation will never help one understand the Absolute Truth even
if one makes an attempt for millions of years (Bg 10.11p 3rd para)
* The four defects of the conditioned soul which invalidate the me-
thods of pratyaksa and anumana (Iso Intro 1st-4th paras/ Bg Intro page
15)
* Mundane scholarship cannot help — one must be endowed with realized
knowledge by the grace of Krsna (Bg 6.8 +p)
* The existence of the soul must be understood by sruti, or Vedic wis-
dom (Bg 2.25 +p)
* Philosophical speculation is only useful when applied to authorized
scripture (Bg 14.1p)
* Krsna can only be understood by a pure, unmotivated presentation of
disciplic succession (Bg Preface 3rd para)
* Knowledge must be received by the descending system of disciplic
succession (Bg Intro page 15)
* Vedic knowledge is apauruseya “not made by man”, but revealed by
God, therefore without defect (Bg 4.1p, last para)
* The Descending method contains all the advantages of the ascending
method such as logic (Bg 2.26 +p, 2nd para), direct perception (Bg 9.2
+p, 6th para), reason (Bg 2.56+p) etc.

2) The Need to Approach a Spiritual Master

* To Drive away all nescience (Bg 5.16p/ Bg 18.72+p)
* If one is perplexed (Bg 2.7+p)
* To extinguish the fire of conditioned life (Guruvastaka verse 1)
* To be liberated from maya (Bg 4.35p, 2nd para/ Bg 4.10p end of first
para/ Bg 17.6 last sentence)
* To be released from bondage (Bg 7.14p 2nd para)
* To actually solve the problems of life (where other means prove to
be useless) (Bg 2.8p, 1st para)
* To become free from all lamentation (Bg 2.22p 2nd half of 2nd para)
* To begin one’s transcendental life (Bg 13.8-12p, last half 1st para)
* Otherwise one cannot progress in the spiritual science (Bg 13.8-12p,
5th para)
* For complete knowledge (Bg 7.2p)
* To understand the transcendental science (NOI page 29/ Bg 14.19+p)
* To attain actual education etc. (Iso 10, 6th para until the end)
* To make progress towards one’s desired destination (Guruvastaka ver-
se 8)
* To understand the real position of all living beings (Bg 4.35)
* To begin one’s devotional service (Bg 12.20p)
* To distinguish between matter and spirit (Bg 13.35p 1st para)
* The secret to advancement in spiritual life (Bg 4.34p)
* To understand the imports of Vedic knowledge (Bg 6.47p, near the
end)
* To properly understand the difficult passages in the Vedic literatu-
re (Bg 16.1-3p, 14th para)
* Because different scriptures and different sages recommend different
things (Bg 18.3+4 +p’s)
* Because it is enjoined in the sastra for everyone who wants to ad-
vance in life (Bg 4.34/Iso 6+p 5th para/ Bg 2.7p 1st para)
* To find out what Krsna practically wants us to do (Bg 18.57+p)
* To know Krsna (Bg 2.29p 2nd half or 3rd para)
* Otherwise it is impossible ever to begin to understand Krsna (Bg 11-
.54 2nd para)

3) The Qualifications of the Spiritual Master

Teachings

* He speaks only of Krsna and matters related to Him (Bg 2.54+p)
* He never presents anything not to be found in Vedic literature (Iso
13p, 1st para)
* He never contradicts sadhus (saintly persons) or sastra (scriptures)
(Bg 10.3p last para)
* He does not manufacture rules against the principles of the revealed
scriptures (Bg 3.21p/Bg 4.34p)
* He is able to answer any question on spiritual life without hesita-
tion, having understood all Vedic knowledge (Bg 15.19+p, 3rd paraP/Bg
2.7p 1st para)
* He never says “I am God” (Bg 5.16p)
* He must be a master of the science of Krsna (Bg 2.8p 1st para)

Realization

* He must be fixed in the Absolute Truth (Iso Intro 11th para)
* He must have the symptoms of one on the transcendental platform (Bg
18.51-53+p, 54+p 2nd para/Bg 14.22-25+p, 2nd para/ Bg 2.55-57, 58+p/
Bg 5.20+p, 21+p)

* He must be 100% Krsna Conscious (Bg 2.8p 1st para)
* He should have attained the platform of uttama adhikari (NOI 5)
* He knows the science of Krsna (Bg 2.8p 1st para)

Disciplic Succession

* He comes in the disciplic succession (Bg 4.34p)
* And therefore does not deviate from instruction imparted millions of
years ago (Bg 4.42p last part)
* He must have heard the Vedic knowledge from the right source (Iso
Intro 11th para)
* The importance of the disciplic succession . . . (Bg 18.75+p)

Character

* He must be a perfect devotee (PQPA page 27-28)
* He must be fully in control of the six pushing senses (agents) (NOI
1)
* He strictly practices what he preaches (Bg 3.21+p)
* He is an “acarya”, one who teaches by example (Bg 3.20+p)
* because even Krsna Himself acted to set an example (Bg 3.22, 23+p)
* He is by nature very kind and compassionate to the disciple and ti-
relessly instructs him (Bg 4.34p end/Bg 18.72+p)

Ability to Liberate Others

* Krsna or His bonafide representative are the only persons who can
release a conditioned soul from bondage (Bg 7.14p 3rd para)
* The spiritul master knows the nature of his students and is thus
able to guide them to act in Krsna Consciousness (Bg 2.41 3rd para)
* He can change the materially conditioned nature of a person, gra-
dually elevating him to the perfectional stage (Bg 17.2p)

Activities

* He is always gloryfying Krsna (Bg 9.13+14)
* He never tries to imitate the Lord but always follows in His foot-
steps (Bg 3.24p)

IF . . .

a teacher (guru) loses his sense of discrimination and engages in abo-
minable actions he can be abandoned (Bg 2.5p)

The Qualification of a Disciple

* One must be awakened to one’s suffering in the material world and
one must desire to find out the ultimate solution (Bg Intro page 7)
* One must have firm faith in the Supreme Personality of Godhead (Bg
Intro page 7)
* One must have faith in the guru and Krsna (Bg 6.47p 5th para)
* One must be submissive (Bg 4.34+p/Bg Intro page 6f)
* One must be fully obedient (NOI 4 page 46)
* One must be humble (Bg 13.8-12p 5th para)
* One must have a serving mood (dto)
* One must be anxious to satisfy the guru (Bg 4.34p)
* One should consider the order of the guru as one’s prime duty in
life (Bg 18.67p last two lines/Bg 2.41p 3rd para/Bg 2.53p last line/Bg
3.35p 1st part)
* One must respect the guru as God (PQPA pages 26f/Bg 5.16p)
* One must serve the other disciples of one’s guru:
“Regarding serving your Godbrothers, this is a very good practice.
Serve the spiritual master also means to be servant of his disciples.
When you want to serve the king, you must also serve his minister, se-
cretary and everyone who serves him. And to serve his servants may
please him more than to serve the king personally. So the spiritual
master is not alone. He is always with his entourage. We are not im-
personalists. We take care of every part of the whole, as well as one
should take care of his hat as well as his shoes. Both are equally im-
portant for the upkeep of the body. I hope you will understand this
rightly.” (Letter from Srila Prabhupada in 1969)

The Parampara System

* explained . . . (PQPA pages 28-30/ Bg 4.1-3)

* If one hears Bhagavad-gita from a pure soul in disciplic succession
he surpasses all studies of Vedic wisdom and all scriptures of the
world (Bg 1.1p 1st para)
* The humble realized devotee recognises that all credit goes through
the parampara to Lord Krsna (Bg Preface, 2nd and 3rd paras)
* List of the members of our disciplic succession (Bg Intro page 34)
* How the Vedic knowledge comes to us out of motherly affection (Iso
Intro 7th and 8th paras)

6) Initiation

* Qualifications for described (NOI 5 pages 51-53)
* Establishes one’s relationship with Krsna (NOD Intro 11th para)
* An essential step towards love of God (Bg 4.10p 2nd para)
* When one is seen to be gradually serious (NOI 5 page 50)
* An example of preparation for, and acceptance of initiation (PQPA
pages 97-99)

WEEK 2 PAST AND PRESENT ACARYAS (to learn: Bg 3.21)

1) Srila Vyasadeva
* son of Parasara Muni and Satyavati (Bg 15.17p last line of last pa-
ra)
* a great devotee of the Lord and a powerful incarnation (Bg 18.77p)
* disciple of Narada Muni (Bg 18.75p 2nd para)
* How he gave us the Vedic literatures (Bg Intro p.27)
* the Srimad Bhagavatam is Vyasadeva’s own natural commentary on the
Vedanta- sutra (the “final stalk of knowledge” –Bg 18.13p/ Bg 15.15p
1st para)
* Spiritual master of Sanjaya (Bg 18.75 +p)
* the appearance day of the spiritual master is called “Vyasa puja”
(puja means worship) because he represents Vyasadeva (Bg 18.75 1st
para)
* the spiritual master’s seat in the temple is called “Vyasasana” (as-
ana means seat) for the same reason
* father of Dhrtarastra, Pandu and Vidura, and also Sukadeva Goswami

2) Narada Muni
* the greatest devotee in the universe (Bg 10.26p)
* the direct disciple of Krsna (Bg 18.75p 2nd para)
* His entry into devotional service (Bg 9.2p 7th and 8th para)
* More about him . . . (SB 1.9.7 2nd para)
* “Nara” –the Supreme Lord, “da” –one who can give

3) Maharaj Pariksit and Sukadeva Goswami
* Son of Abhimanyu, who was the son of Arjuna and Subhadra
* How the Srimad Bhagavatam came to be spoken (SB 1.18.25 +p 26-50 and
SB 1.1.1-40)
* Sukadeva Goswami was the son of Vyasadeva and he heard the Bhagavat-
am from his father whilst he was in the womb of his mother

4) The Six Gosvamis of Vrndavana
Read and discuss the “Prayers to the Six Goswamis” by Srinivasa Acarya
(Blue Song Book, pages 19-22)

5) Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur
Read “A Glimpse into the life of Thakura Bhaktivinoda” (Blue song
book, Intro. pages 12-18 and Hare Krsna Hare Krsna pages 120-124

6) Srila Gaurakisora dasa Babaji
Read and discuss the “Srila Gaurakisora Pranati” (Blue Song Book p. 6-

7) Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati
Read Srila Prabhupada Lilamrta Vol.1 Ch.3, pages 37-47 and Ch. 4 pages
61-78, and “Hare Krsna Hare Krsna” pages 124-126

8) Srila Prabhupada
Read “Prabhupada” and Section about “The Author” at the end of the
Gita and learn the dates of the principal events in his life.

9) Jayananda Prabhu
Read printed sheets about him and see BTG Vol 12/6 pages 10ff

10) The Meaning of Vyasa Puja
Read the lecture given by Srila Prabhupada in 1936 in Bombay, the ot-
her short essays called “the Meaning of Vyasa Puja” to be found in the
beginning of Srila Prabhupada’s and the present spiritual master’s
Vyasa Puja books.

W E E K 3 SADHANA BHAKTI (to learn: Bg 9.26)

* “sadhana — the means by which one can achieve something” (tape Lon-
don 73-74)
* to perform sadhana bhakti necessities a radical change in one’s va-
lues (Bg 2.69 +p)
* sadhana bhakti explained (Bg 12.9 +p)
* one should never give up one’s initial spirit of carefully following
all the rules and regulations of bhakti yoga (Bg 18.5 and 6 +p) other-
wise one is to be understood to be influenced by the modes of passion
or ignorance (Bg 18.7 and 8 +p’s) and liable to fall down (SB 5.8.8
+p)
* the steps of bhakti leading to pure love (Bg 4.10p last para):

1) Preliminary faith or desire for self-realization which leads one
to
2) The association of spiritually advanced persons
3) and so one becomes initiated by a bonafide spiritual master and
begins the process of devotional service under his direction
4) then one diminishes all unwanted habits and material attachments
5) becomes steady in self-realization due to firm faith
6) and acquires a taste for hearing about Krsna
7) which leads one further forward to attachment for Krsna Con-
sciousness
8) and this is further matured into genuine affection for Krsna,
the preliminary stage of
9) real love of God, the highest perfectional stage of life.

* Cleanliness, is essential for making advancement in spiritual life
(Bg 13.8-12p, 6th para)
* the following is a quotation from Srila Prabhupada (Hyderabad 24/8/-
76):
“… If one doesn’t practice brahminical life he is not to be called a
‘brahmana’. You may be the son of a high court judge but if you do not
have the qualifications you cannot be called a high court judge…
There must be an educational institution for training brahmanas espe-
cially. One is judged by education, quality and training. One of the
brahmana’s two main qualities is ‘saucam’, cleanliness and truthful-
ness… In Bombay even the poorest man is clean. I have been to a
‘Parsee’ kitchen. So nasty, all the pots are black, nothing is clean.
For eating they use china — clean or unclean cannot be understood.
Even our pots, handled by our European devotees, underneath it is
black. You should not even be able to see a black spot. It is not cle-
an. A single black spot and it is not clean. Before taking water, if
the water pot is clean, you like taking water. In our school days the
seats were so clean, you liked to sit down. This is Hindu culture.
Cleanliness is essential. In English also cleanliness is next to God-
liness. Sri-vigraharadhana-nitya-nana-srngara-tan-mandira-marjanadau
(Guruvastaka verse 3). ‘Marjana’ means ‘cleansing’. The spiritual ma-
ster is always engaged along with his disciples in cleaning the temple
of Sri Sri Radha and Krsna. Want of cleanliness means laziness. If you
are lazy you can’t keep clean. Let me sleep for the time being. This
is the mode of ignorance, tamo-guna. We have to conquer over rajo-guna
and tamo-guna!”

* General rules of cleanliness (Bg 16.7p 2nd half of the 1st para)

Cleanliness and Other Standards
1) Never enter the kitchen or the temple in an unclean state.
2) The mouth is a dirty place (being positioned at one end of the in-
testines, it is a place where many germs are found) and therefore one
should not suck one’s fingers or pen, or bite one’s nails, etc. If one
does touch one’s mouth then the hands should be washed. Don’t lick
things like stamps and don’t blow out candles, incense sticks, etc.
Also it is a good practice to learn to pour water/juice into your
mouth when you drink, then the cup remains clean, not having touched
one’s lips.
3) If you make a mess clean it up, especially in the toilet or washba-
sin etc. A place should always be as clean, if not cleaner, after it
has been visited by a devotee.
4) Your locker should always be neat and clean (Don’t leave prasada in
it or even bring prasada to your room).
5) When you clean anywhere in the temple building try to make the pla-
ce as clean as glass (see TQK p.143)
6) Do not leave clothing lying around.
7) If someone else leaves a mess then you can clean it up, seeing that
in actuality everything is the personal property of the representative
of Krsna, the spiritual master. Once Srila Prabhupada inspected one of
our many toilets in our Mayapura property and upon finding a cigarret-
te he exclaimed “Who has been smoking in my bathroom?”
8) Nails should always be clipped short. This should not be done in
one’s bedroom but in the bathroom and the clippings should be flushed
away down the toilet or sink, or thrown in the rubbish bin provided.
Evacuating, nail cutting, teeth brushing, shaving, etc., should be
done before showering.
9) Take at least two showers a day (or more if you have to pass stool
at another time) — the early morning shower can be cool to help ivi-
gorate the system and should be efficient but quick (a warm shower
should be taken if one is sick). It is also important to take a “men-
tal bath” by chanting Hare Krsna as one takes one’s physical bath.
10) Srub and file feet whenever necessary (which avoids painful cracks
in the heel developing)
11) Use the right hand only for eating, chanting rounds, offering and
accepting things to and from others, turning on communal switches,
opening doors and using the toilet flush etc. (the left hand is reser-
ved for cleansing oneself upon passing stool).
12) Do not touch your foot to anything sacred or use your foot to do
something which can be done with one’s hand.
13) Do not walk over books, devotees, prasada or any sacred articles.
To touch someone with one’s foot is considered offensive. For instan-
ce, if you have to walk past seated devotees in the temple room at
class time, extend your right hand to indicate you wish to go by and
they will move their knees to let you pass. If you happen to touch a
devotee with your foot you can touch his body gently with your hand
and then touch your hand to your head.
14) Books, beads, karatalas, etc. should not go on the ground or on
one’s seat or bed, nor should things be put on books (like alarm
clocks, karatalas, etc.).
15) If a sacred object falls to the floor pick it up and touch it to
your head.
16) If your Japa beads are out of your bag, keep them in a clean place
but do not hang them on a hook.
17) Do not take sacred items into the stoolroom, e.g. beads, books,
Harinam chuddar.
18) Do not take other’s possessions thinking that everything is Krsn-
a’s and therefore everything is one. This is not our philosophy!
19) Do not sleep on your stomach. When sleeping try to face South-
East.
20) Do not talk informally, read or write personal letters in front of
the Deities — only devotional activities such as hearing, chanting,
reading and praying, or some important matter related to the service
of the Deity should be carried on in the temple room.
21) While sitting do not expose your feet to the Deities or point them
at the spiritual master, or Tulasi devi, etc. Always try to keep them
covered.
22) Tilak should be applied in all 12 places after showering.
23) Single men and women should only converse together when it’s ne-
cessary for particular devotional service.
24) Do not stand in one’s underwear in front of Vaisnavas, or pictures
of Krsna or the Guru. The Lord and His devotee are priesent in Their
pictures and so should be respected accordingly.
25) Don’t pass air in the temple room.
26) Try to avoid turning your back on, or sitting with your back to
the Deities or Vyasasana.
27) Do not waste Krsna’s energies such as toothpaste, electricity,
water, etc. In fact, if you see a light or fire left on somewhere turn
it off. Once on a morning walk, Srila Prabhupada turned off a running
tap in someone’s garden. Another time when he was ill in Mayapur he
rose especially from his bed to chastise a disciple for leaving a fan
on when she left a room for only 5 minutes.

Do not worry unduly about all these rules and regulations, soon they
will be your second nature. We all make mistakes in the beginning.
Most of what we do is simply common sense. If anything is not clear or
confuses you, please don’t hesitate to ask.

The Maha-Mantra:

* is the easy process recommended by Lord Caitanya especially for us
(Bg 16.24 1st para)
* is the correct means of deliverance for people in this age (Bg 3.10
last half/ Bg 6.12 last half)
* is the only possible process in this age (Bg 8.11 last para)
* is the easiest and purest of all yajnas (sacrifices) (Bg 3.12p last
sentence/ Bg 10.25+p)
* is the best and most inexpensive sacrifice (Bg 16.1-3p 9th para)
* is the easiest and best way to control the mind (Bg 6.34p last part)
* is the means to control the tongue (Bg13.8-12p 7th para)
* is the sublime method for reviving our original pure consciousness
(SSR p. 146)
* cleanses and purifies one’s own heart and anyone else who hears (NOI
4 41-43)
* for internal cleanliness (Bg 13.8-12p 6th para)
* cleanses the heart of all material dirt (Bg 4.39p)
* so that one can attain life’s ultimate goal (Bg 10.11p 4th para)
* is transcendentally sweet but this is not appreciated by a diseased
person (NOI 7 pages 66-67)
* is enacted on the spiritual platform, above all lower strata of con-
sciousness (SSR p. 147)
* relieves one from all misconception (NOI 7 p. 69)
* is the only remedy for setting the world right (NOI 7 p. 69)
* is the best process for successfully changing one’s state of con-
sciousness at the end of life (Bg 8.6p, end)
* purifies one and enables one to go back to Godhead (Bg 8.19p/Bg 8.8-
+p)
* is mystic meditation (Bg 8.8 +p)
* enables one to easily and happily approach the supreme destination
(Bg 12.6-7p 5th para)
* attracts one to Krsna (Bg 12.6-7p end of 2nd para) and is the means
of pleasing Him
* When a devotee chants Hare Krsna, the Lord, being non-different from
His name, dances with Srimati Radharani on the devotee’s tongue (Bg-
12.8p)
* By chanting you can understand everything of God (PQPA p. 25)
* waters the seed of love of God, which fructifies as a spiritual
plant growing as far as Goloka Vrndavana (Bg 10.9p 2nd para)
* (when chanted inoffensively) is the highest perfectional stage of
Vedic knowledge (Bg 2.46 +p) (so the best purpose of Vedic culture is
served to even the fallen souls of this age)
* is chanted by someone who has been previously purified by passing
through the tenets of the Vedas (Bg 6.44+p/ 16.24p 1st para)
* gives direct perception of spiritual pleasure and purification (Bg
9.2p 6th para)
* situates even a fallen devotee on the transcendental platform when
chanted with determination (Bg 9.30p 2nd para)
* and protects a devotee from all accidental falldowns (Bg 9.31 p end)
* is the means of understanding Krsna (Bg 7.24p 3rd para)
* to attain actual education etc. (Iso 10, 6th para–>end)
* to make progress towards one’s desired destination (Guruvastaka 8)
* to understand the real position of all living beings (Bg 4.35)
* to begin one’s devotional service (Bg 12.20p)
* to distinguish between matter and spirit (Bg 13.35 1st para)
* the secret to advancement in spiritual life (Bg 4.34p)
* to understand the imports of Vedic knowledge (Bg 6.47p, near the
end)
* to properly understand the difficult passages in the Vedic litera-
ture (Bg 16.1-3p, 14th para)
* because different scriptures and different sages recommend different
things (Bg 18.3+4 +p’s)
* because it is enjoined in the sastra for everyone who wants to ad-
vance in life (Bg 4.34/Iso 6+p, 5th para/ Bg 2.7p 1st para)
* to find out what Krsna practically wants us to do (Bg 18.57+p)
* to know Krsna (Bg 2.29p 2nd half)
* otherwise it is impossible ever to begin to understand Krsna (Bg
11.54p 2nd para)

3) The Qualifications of the Spiritual Master

Teachings
*He speaks only of Krsna and matters related to Him (Bg 2.54 +p)
*He never presents anything not to be found in Vedic literature (Iso 13p,
1st para)
*He never contradicts sadhus (saintly persons) or scriptures (sastra) (Bg
10.3p last para)
*He does not manufacture rules against the principles of the revealed
scriptures (Bg 3.21p/Bg 4.34p)
*He is able to answer any question on spiritual life without hesitation,
having understood all Vedic knowledge (Bg 15.19 +p, 3rd para/Bg 2.7p 1st
para)
*He never says “I am God” (Bg 5.16p)
*He must be a master of the science of Krsna (Bg 2.8p 1st para)

Realization
*He must be fixed in the Absolute Truth (Iso Intro 11th para)
*He must have the symptoms of one on the transcendental platform (Bg
18.51-53 +p, 54 +p 2nd para/Bg 14.22-25 +p, 2nd para/Bg 2.55-57, 58 +p/Bg
5.20 +p, 21 +p)
*He must be 100% Krsna Conscious (Bg 2.8p 1st para)
*He should have attained the platform of uttama adhikari (NOI 5)
*He knows the science of Krsna (Bg 2.8p 1st para)

Disciplic Succession
*He comes in the disciplic succession (Bg 4.34p)
*And therefore does not deviate from instruction imparted millions of
years ago (Bg 4.42p last part)
*He must have heard the Vedic knowledge from the right source (Iso Intro
11th para)
*The importance of the disciplic succession … (Bg 18.75 +p)

Character
*He must be a perfect devotee (PQPA page 27-28)
*He must be fully in control of the six pushing senses (agents) (NOI 1)
*He strictly practices what he preaches (Bg 3.21 +p)
*He is an “acarya”, one who teaches by example (Bg 3.20 +p)
*because even Krsna Himself acted to set an example (Bg 3.22,23 +p)
*He is by nature very kind and compassionate to the disciple and
tirelessly instructs him (Bg 4.34p end/Bg 18.72 +p)

Ability to liberate others
*Krsna or His bona fide representative are the only persons who can
release a conditioned soul from bondage (Bg 7.14p 3rd para)
*The spiritual master knows the nature of his students and is thus able to
guide them to act in Krsna Consciousness (Bg 2.41 3rd para)
*He can change the materially conditioned nature of a person, gradually
elevating him to the perfectional stage (Bg 17.2p)

Activities
*He is always glorifying Krsna (Bg 9.13 +14)
*He never tries to imitate the Lord but always follows in His footsteps
(Bg 3.24p)

If…
a teacher (guru) loses his sense of discrimination and engages in
abominable actions he can be abandoned (Bg 2.5p)

4) The Qualification of a Disciple

*One must be awakened to one’s position of suffering in the material world
and one must desire to find the ultimate solution (Bg Intro page 7 or 6
Macmillan version)
*One must have a firm respect for the Supreme Personality of Godhead (Bg
Intro page 7 or 6 Macmillan version)
*One must have faith in the guru and Krsna (Bg 6.47p 5th para)
*One must be submissive (Bg 4.34 +p/Bg Intro page 6-7 or 6 Mac)
*One must be fully obedient (NOI 4 page 46)
*One must be humble (Bg 13.8-12p 5th para)
*One must have a serving mood (Bg 13.8-12p 5th para)
*One must be anxious to satisfy the guru (Bg 4.34p)
*One should consider the order of the guru as one’s prime duty in life (Bg
18.67p, last 2 lines/Bg 2.41p 3rd para/Bg 2.53p last line/Bg 3.35p 1st
part)
*One must respect the guru as God (PQPA pages 26-27/Bg 5.16p)
*One must serve the other disciples of one’s guru
“Regarding serving your Godbrothers, this is a very good practice. The
spiritual master is never without his followers so to serve the spiritual
master also means to be the servant of his disciples. When you want to
serve the king, you must also serve his minister, secretary and everyone
who serves him. And to serve his servants may please him more than to
serve the king personally. So the spiritual master is not alone. He is
always with his entourage. We are not impersonalists. We take care of
every part of the whole, as much as one should take care of his hat as
well as his shoes. Both are equally important for the upkeep of the body.
I hope you will understand this rightly.” (Letter to a disciple, from
Srila Prabhupada in 1969)

5) The Parampara System

*explained… (PQPA pages 28-30/Bg 4.1-3)
*If one hears Bhagavad Gita from a pure soul in disciplic succession he
surpasses all studies of Vedic visdom and all scriptures of the world (Bg
1.1p 1st para)
*the humble realized devotee recognises that all credit goes through the
parampara to Lord Krsna (Bg Preface, 2nd +3rd paras)
*List of the members of our disciplic succession (Bg Intro Page 34, or 29
Macmillan version)
*How the Vedic knowledge comes to us out of motherly affection (Iso Intro
7th and 8th paras)

6) Initiation

*Qualifications for described (NOI 5 pages 51-53)
*Establishes one’s relationship with Krsna (NOD Intro 11th para)
*An essential step towards love of God (Bg 4.10p 2nd para)
*When one is seen to be actually serious (NOI 5 page 50)
*An example of preparation for, and acceptance of, initiation (PQPA pages
97-99)

WEEK 2
PAST AND PRESENT ACARYAS (Verse to learn, Bg 3.21)

(1) Srila Vyasadev
*son of Parasara Muni and Satyavati (Bg 15.17p last line of last para
[Mac], or Bg 15.18p end)
*a great devotee of the Lord and a powerful incarnation (Bg 18.77p)
*disciple of Narada Muni (Bg 18.75p 2nd para)
*How he gave us the Vedic literatures (Bg Intro p.27 or 34 Mac)
*the Srimad Bhagavatam is Vyasadev’s own natural commentary on the
Vedanta-Sutra (the “final stalk of knowledge”–Bg 18.13p) (Bg 15.15p 1st
para)
*Spiritual master of Sanjaya (Bg 18.75 +p)
*the appearance day of the guru is called “Vyasa puja” (puja means
worship) because he represents Vyasadev (Bg 18.75 1st para)
*the spiritual master’s seat in the temple is called the “Vyasasana”
(asana means seat) for the same reason
*father of Dhrtarastra, Pandu and Vidura, and also Sukadev Gosvami

(2) Narada Muni
*the greatest devotee in the universe (Bg 10.26p)
*the direct disciple of Krsna (Bg 18.75p 2nd para)
*His entry into devotional service (Bg 9.2p 7th and 8th paras)
*More about him… (SB 1.9.7 2nd para)
*”Nara”–the Supreme Lord, “da”–one who can give

(3) Maharaja Pariksit and Sukadev Gosvami
*Son of Abhimanyu, who was the son of Arjuna and Subhadra
*How the Srimad Bhagavatam came to be spoken (SB 1.18.25 +p 26-50 and SB
1.1.1-40)
*Sukadev Gosvami was the son of Vyasadev and he heard the Bhagavatam from
his father whilst he was in the womb of his mother

(4) The Six Gosvamis of Vrndavana
Read and discuss the “Prayers to the Six Gosvamis” by Srinivasa Acarya
(Blue Song Book, pages 19-22)

(5) Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur
Read “A Glimpse into the life of Thakura Bhaktivinoda (Blue song book,
Intro. pages xii-xviii and Hare Krsna Hare Krsna pages 120-124)

(6) Srila Gaurakisora dasa Babaji
Read and discuss the “Srila Gaurakisora Pranati” (Blue Song Book pages
6-7)

(7)Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati
Read Srila Prabhupada Lilamrta Vol. 1 Ch. 3, pages 37-47 and Ch. 4 pages
61-78, and “Hare Krsna Hare Krsna” pages 124-126)

(8) Srila Prabhupada
Read “Prabhupada” and section about “the Author” at the end of the Gita
and learn the dates of the principal events in his life.

(9) Jayananda prabhu
Read printed sheets about him and see BTG Vol 12/6 pages 10-14&17.

(10) The Meaning of Vyasa Puja (SSR p. 70)
Read the lecture given by Srila Prabhupada in 1936 in Bombay, the other
short essays called “the Meaning of Vyasa Puja” to be found at the
beginning of Srila Prabhupada’s and the present spiritual master’s Vyasa
Puja books.

WEEK 3
SADHANA BHAKTI (verse 9.26)

*”sadhana”–the means by which one can achieve something (Tape Lon 73-34)
*to perform sadhana bhakti necessitates a radical change in one’s values
(Bg 2.69 +p)
*sadhana bhakti explained (Bg 12.9 +p)
*one should never give up one’s initial spirit of carefully following all
the rules and regulations of bhakti yoga (Bg 18.5 and 6 +p) otherwise one
is understood to be influenced by the modes of passion or ignorance (Bg
18.7 and 8 +p’s) and liable to fall down (SB 5.8.8 +p)
*the steps of bhakti leading to pure love (Bg 4.10p last para):
(1) Preliminary faith or desire for self-realization which leads one to
(2) The association of spiritually advanced persons
(3) and so one becomes initiated by a bona fide spiritual master and
begins the process of devotional service (sadhana bhakti) under his
direction
(4) then one diminishes all unwanted habits and material attachments
(5) becomes steady in self-realization due to firm faith
(6) and acquires a taste for hearing about Krsna
(7) which leads one further forward to attachment for Krsna Consciousness
(8) and this is further matured into genuine affection for Krsna, the
preliminary stage of
(9) real love of God, the highest perfectional stage of life
*Cleanliness, is essential for making advancement in spiritual life (Bg
13.8-12p, 6th para)
*the following is a quotation from Srila Prabhupada (Hyderabad 24/8/76):
“… If one doesn’t practice brahminical life he is not to be called a
‘brahmana’. You may be the son of a high court judge but if you do not
have the qualifications you cannot be called a high court judge… There
must be an educational institution for training brahmanas especially. One
is judged by education, quality and training. One of the brahmana’s two
main qualities is ‘saucam’, cleanliness and truthfulness… In Bombay
even the poorest man is clean. I have been to a ‘Parsee’ kitchen. So
nasty, all the pots are black, nothing is clean. For eating they use
china–clean or unclean cannot be understood. Even our pots, handled by
our European devotees, underneath it is black. You should not even be
able to see a black spot. It is not clean. A single black spot and it is
not clean. Before taking water, if the water pot is clean, you like
taking water. In our school days the seats were so clean, you liked to
sit down. This is Hindu culture. Cleanliness is essential. In English
also- cleanliness is next to Godliness.
Sri-vigraharadhana-nitya-nana-srngara-tan-mandira-marjanadau (Guruvastaka
verse 3). ‘Marjana’ means ‘cleansing’. The spiritual master is always
engaged along with his disciples in cleaning the temple of Sri Sri Radha
and Krsna. Want of cleanliness means laziness. If you are lazy you can’t
keep clean. Let me sleep for the time being. That is the mode of
ignorance, tamo-guna. We have to conquer over rajo-guna and tamo-guna!”

*General rules of cleanliness (Bg 16.7p 2nd half of the 1st para)

Cleanliness and Other Standards
(1) Never enter the kitchen or the temple in an unclean state.
(2) The mouth is a dirty place (being positioned at one end of the
intestines, it is a place where many germs are found) and therefore
one should not suck one’s fingers or pen, or bite one’s nails, etc.
If one does touch one’s mouth, then the hands should be washed. Don’t
lick things like stamps and don’t blow out candles, incense sticks,
etc. Also it is a good practice to learn to pour water/juice into
your mouth when you drink, then the cup remains clean, not having
touched one’s lips.
(3) If you make a mess clean it up, especially in the toilet or getting
into the plane. You have to believe that the aeroplane will take you
to the other side. You are already doing that, there is no argument.
So, similarly, you have to believe, you must have faith. And we see
that many faithful great-acaryas and devotees of the Lord have
achieved success by this faith. Why shall I not follow them?
Therefore the Vedic literature says that you have to follow the
footprints of the great acaryas.”

WEEK 4
KRSNA, THE ABSOLUTE TRUTH
(Verse to learn Bg 4.9 +read the purport)

*Lord Krsna’s Supreme position (Bg 3.22/Bg 4.5+p/Bg 4.6+p/Bg 4.13)
*as God, confirmed by all great sages (Bg 10.12-13/Bg Intro page 3)
*being transcendental to both fallible and infallible beings. He maintains
everything and is glorified in the Vedas as the greatest personality (Bg
15.17+18+p’s)
*as ultimate goal of the Vedas (Bg 2.46+p/Bg 15.15+p)
*as the cause of everything (Bg 7.16+p/Iso 13p 7th and 8th paras)
*as the maintainer of everything (Bg 7.10+p)
*as the destroyer of everything (Bg 11.32)
*as the essence of everything (Bg 7.9+p)
*as everything (through His different energies) (Bg 9.16-19)
*as everywhere (exemplified by Lord Narasimhadev’s presence) (Iso 5p 8th
para)
*like the sky–in which everything exists (Bg 9.6+p)
*not perceivable through mind and senses (Bg 9.4p 1st para)
*Krsna’s inconceivability certifies His supremacy (Iso 5p 1st para)
*no difference between His body and soul (Iso 8+p 1st para)
*no difference between His mind, body and senses (Bg 9.34p 1st para)
*Krsna is perfect and complete (Iso Invocation +p)
*Krsna is purifying whilst always uncontaminated Himself (Iso 8+p last
para)
*although in one place He is simultaneously all pervading (Iso 4+p 1st
para)
*He is outside and inside, faraway, but near (Bg 13.16+p)
*because of Krsna’s absolute position, His senses are interchangeable (Bg
9.26+p last para/Bg 11.43p 2nd para)
*Krsna’s supremely transcendental position (Bg 4.14+p, 1st part/Bg 7.12+p/Bg
9.9+p)
*although He directly superintends everything (Bg 9.10+p/Bg 13.15+p)
*the transcendental position of one who is conscious of Krsna’s
transcendental position (Bg 4.13p last para/ Bg 4.14+p, 2nd part/Bg 9.28p
2nd and 3rd paras)
*Krsna is rarely known (Bg 7.3+p/Bg 9.3+p/Bg 11.53+p)
*He can only be seen and understood by undivided devotional service (Bg
11.54+p, 1st part of 1st para)
*He is not manifest to fools (Bg 7.25+p)
*Krsna is the original Personality of Godhead and all other forms are
expansions from Him (Bg 11.54p 4th-7th paras)
*Krsna is equal to all, whilst making an individual arrangement for
everyone (Bg 5.15+p)

(2) Brahman, Paramatma, and Bhagavan
*explained (Bg 2.2p all but last para/Bg Intro page 14 or 12-13 Mac)
*three different transcendentalists and their respective destinations
explained (Bg Intro page 25, or 22-23 Mac)

(a) Brahman “spirit”
*meaning of (Bg 8.3+p 1st and 5th paras)
*When Brahman is covered by illusion or “maya” it is called “material”,
otherwise everything is really spiritual or Brahman (Bg 4.24+p)
*Material nature is also sometimes referred to as Brahman (Bg 14.3+p 1st
para)
*Krsna is the Supreme Brahman (Bg 10.12)
*Krsna is the basis of Brahman (Bg 14.27)
*Brahman realization explained in relationship to Paramatma and Bhagavan
realization (Bg 14.27p 1st para)
*Brahman vision explained (Bg 13.31+p)

(b) Paramatma–“the Supreme Soul” or the Supersoul residing in everyone’s
heart along with the individual soul.
*Atma means the individual atomic soul (although sometimes the word atma
or “self” can also refer to the body, mind or even the senses–(Bg 8.1p/Bg
6.5p beginning)
*Difference between individual soul and Paramatma described (Bg 13.3+p)
*Two functions of the Supersoul (Bg 13.23+p 1st para)
(i) Overseer or witness
(ii) Permitter or sanctioning agent of the living entities innumerable
desires (see also Bg 18.14+p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*The function of the Supersoul explained (Bg 15.15+p 1st para)
*the source of all light and knowledge etc (Bg 13.18+p)
*the source of all memory, knowledge and forgetfulness (Bg 15.15+p 1st
para)
*compared to a friendly bird (Bg 2.22p)
*the friend of the conditioned soul (Bg 13.23p 2nd para)
*by the association of a self-realized soul one who is able to see the
friendly Supersoul accompanying the individual soul in all bodies,
actually sees (Bg 13.28+p)
*the Lord experiences everything from His vantage point as the Supersoul
(Bg 13.14+p)
*the Supersoul hears everything (PQPA page 30-31)
*the Supersoul is directing the wanderings of all living entities (Bg
18.61+p)
*and therefore one should surrender to Him (Bg 18.62+p 1st para)
*which is one’s best interest (Bg 18.63p 2nd para)
*the Supersoul is one yet all pervading, as perceived by the yogi or
devotee (Bg 13.17+p/Bg 6.29-31+p’s)
*is not eternal in the spiritual world (Bg 7.4p end of 2nd para)

(c) Bhagavan
Bhaga–opulences explained by Parasara Muni in the Visnu Purana
van–one who possesses where he categorizes the Lord’s opulences into 6
main divisions:- (i) wealth (ii) strength (iii)
fame (iv) beauty (v) knowledge and (vi)
renunciation (Bg 2.2p)
*another meaning of Bhagavan–(Iso 16p 4th para)
*Bhagavad Gita–the song of Bhagavan Sri Krsna
*Bhagavan realization is the only full conception of the Absolute, and
includes both Brahman and Paramatma realizations (Iso 15p last but one
para)

(3) Why Krsna descends
*to establish religious principles (Bg 3.23p, 24+p 1st part/Bg 4.7+p)
*to appease His devotees (Bg 4.8+p)
*to attract the jnanis and yogis etc (Iso 15p 3rd and 4th paras)
*Six types of avatars (“one who descends”) (Bg 4.8p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*What is an avatar? (Bg 4.9p 2nd para)
*Krsna is the avatari or source of all incarnations (Bg 2.2p 3rd para/Bg 4.9p
3rd para)

(4) The Six Types of Incarnations (listed Bg 4.8p 3rd para)

The Purusa Avatars
*the 3 Visnu incarnations (Bg 7.4p 1st para/Bg 9.8p 1st para)
*described (Bg 10.20p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*who do all the managing so that Krsna can stay in Vrndavan and enjoy (Iso
15p 6th para)

Leela (pastime) Avatars
*innumerable, however 10 prominent leela avatars are described in song
called “Das Avatar Stotra” on pages 97-99 of the Blue Song Book.
*Lord Buddha also mentioned (Bg 4.7p last 1/2 of 1st para)

Guna Avatars (see also Week 6)

Guna means material quality or mode, also rope (Bg 7.14p 2nd para)
(i) Brahma–the Lord of the mode of passion, the creator of the structure
of the universe
(ii) Visnu–the Lord of the mode of goodness, the maintainer of the
universal affairs
(iii) Siva–the Lord of the mode of ignorance or darkness, the destroyer
of the universe
*Only Visnu can release the conditioned soul from these ropes of maya (Bg
7.14p last para)

Manvantara Avatars
*Manu, the father of mankind, hence “man”
*the current Manu is called Vaivasvata Manu, the son of Vivasvan, who
spoke Bhagavad Gita to his own son and disciple, Maharaja Iksvaku, the
King of this planet earth 2,005,000 years ago (Bg 4.1+p 3rd and 4th paras)

Yuga Avatars (Incarnations for a particular yuga or age)
Lord Caitanya is the yugavatara for the age of Kali (Bg 4.8p last para)

Saktyavesa Avatars
Directly empowered jivasouls such as Narada who is empowered with the
particular potency of devotional service.

Three Standard Ways of Identifying a Genuine Incarnation of the Lord
(see also video called “God’s Competitor”)

(i) personal characteristics–particular bodily features, and nature,
place, time and circumstance of birth–all described in sastra.
(ii) marginal characteristics–exceptional, superhuman activities, all
extraordinary and also mentioned in sastra.
(iii) The conclusion of the greatest contemporary personalities of the
time, such as Arjuna’s reference to Narada and Vyasa etc (Bg 10.13)

(5) What is Yajna, or Sacrifice?
*the purpose of the material creation (Bg 3.10+p)
*the ultimate cause of everything (Bg 3.14)
*means Visnu (Bg 3.9p) and He is the actual beneficiary of all yajnas (Bg
3.11p)
*different kinds of (Bg 3.12+p/Bg 4.28+p)
*transcendental yajnas (bg 3.13+p)
*yajnas for materialists and transcendentalists (Bg 3.16-19 +p’s)
*a devotee’s saccrifice is the most complete (Bg 4.25+p)
*the necessity of sacrifice for everyone (Bg 4.31+p)
*ultimately the best kind of sacrifice is:- (Bg 4.33+p, 34)
*and so one attains transcendental knowledge (Bg 4.35)
*which destroys one’s material life (Bg 4.36+37+p)
*and is the highest attainment (Bg 4.38+p)
*summary study of sacrifice and it’s ultimate purpose (Bg 4.42p)

(6) The Demigods
*supplying agents of the Lord (Bg 3.12+p)
*description of nature and function of (Bg 3.11+p/3.14+p, 1st part of 1st
para)
*there are 33 million demigods to supervise every aspect of universal
affairs. They include:-
Brahma, Siva (note: Lord Siva himself recommends one to worship Visnu and
His servants, PQPA page 95-96), Vayu (air), Indra (the chief of the
administrative demigods–Bg 8.2p, King of Heaven, and controller of the
rain–Bg 3.14), Agni (fire), Varuna (water–Bg 3.14p), Durga (the wife of
Lord Siva and the personification of the material energy (Bg 3.12p 1st
para), Sarasvati (Goddess of learning, Bg 7.21p 2nd para), Surya (sun,
present sun god also called Vivasvan, Bg 4.1+p 2nd and 3rd paras),
Yamaraja (Lord of death), Candra (moon–Bg 3.14p), Mitra (bowel
movements), Sitala (small pox)

*cannot give one liberation (Bg 7.14p last para)
*why someone approaches the demigods (and why a devotee of Krsna doesn’t)
(Bg 7.20+p)
*Why and how Krsna inspires one to worship them (Bg 7.21+p)
*in actuality it is Krsna alone who satisfies the desires of the
worshiper through the agency of the demigod (Bg 7.22+p)
*the result of such worship is only a temporary, paltry, futile gain,
aspired after by less intelligent people (Bg 7.23+p/Bg Intro page 20-21 or
18 Mac/Bg 4.12+p/Bg 9.20+21)
*Krsna is the real object of worship (Bg 9.23+p and 24+p) because He is
the only one capable of actually satisfying the needs of the soul and
freeing him from birth and death (Bg 9.25+p)
*Srila Prabhupada compares demigod worship to the attempt of a shady
businessman to bribe a government department, like the police, instead of
honestly and faithfully paying his taxes to the government (referred to Bg
9.23p)
*He has also mentioned that the demigods just give benedictions according
to the level of worship they receive without considering the ultimate
benefit of the worshiper; as a shopkeeper will sell anyone a knife,
without consideration of the future result. Lord Krsna, however takes care
for the actual well-being of His worshipers and may or may not give
benedictions etc.

(2) Brahman, Paramatma, and Bhagavan
*explained (Bg 2.2p all but last para/Bg Intro page 14 or 12-13 Mac)
*three different transcendentalists and their respective destinations
explained (Bg Intro page 25, or 22-23 Mac)

(a) Brahman “spirit”
*meaning of (Bg 8.3+p 1st and 5th paras)
*When Brahman is covered by illusion or “maya” it is called “material”,
otherwise everything is really spiritual or Brahman (Bg 4.24+p)
*Material nature is also sometimes referred to as Brahman (Bg 14.3+p 1st
para)
*Krsna is the Supreme Brahman (Bg 10.12)
*Krsna is the basis of Brahman (Bg 14.27)
*Brahman realization explained in relationship to Paramatma and Bhagavan
realization (Bg 14.27p 1st para)
*Brahman vision explained (Bg 13.31+p)

(b) Paramatma–“the Supreme Soul” or the Supersoul residing in everyone’s
heart along with the individual soul.
*Atma means the individual atomic soul (although sometimes the word atma
or “self” can also refer to the body, mind or even the senses–(Bg 8.1p/Bg
6.5p beginning)
*Difference between individual soul and Paramatma described (Bg 13.3+p)
*Two functions of the Supersoul (Bg 13.23+p 1st para)
(i) Overseer or witness
(ii) Permitter or sanctioning agent of the living entities innumerable
desires (see also Bg 18.14+p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*The function of the Supersoul explained (Bg 15.15+p 1st para)
*the source of all light and knowledge etc (Bg 13.18+p)
*the source of all memory, knowledge and forgetfulness (Bg 15.15+p 1st
para)
*compared to a friendly bird (Bg 2.22p)
*the friend of the conditioned soul (Bg 13.23p 2nd para)
*by the association of a self-realized soul one who is able to see the
friendly Supersoul accompanying the individual soul in all bodies,
actually sees (Bg 13.28+p)
*the Lord experiences everything from His vantage point as the Supersoul
(Bg 13.14+p)
*the Supersoul hears everything (PQPA page 30-31)
*the Supersoul is directing the wanderings of all living entities (Bg
18.61+p)
*and therefore one should surrender to Him (Bg 18.62+p 1st para)
*which is one’s best interest (Bg 18.63p 2nd para)
*the Supersoul is one yet all pervading, as perceived by the yogi or
devotee (Bg 13.17+p/Bg 6.29-31+p’s)
*is not eternal in the spiritual world (Bg 7.4p end of 2nd para)

(c) Bhagavan
Bhaga–opulences explained by Parasara Muni in the Visnu Purana
van–one who possesses where he categorizes the Lord’s opulences into 6
main divisions:- (i) wealth (ii) strength (iii)
fame (iv) beauty (v) knowledge and (vi)
renunciation (Bg 2.2p)
*another meaning of Bhagavan–(Iso 16p 4th para)
*Bhagavad Gita–the song of Bhagavan Sri Krsna
*Bhagavan realization is the only full conception of the Absolute, and
includes both Brahman and Paramatma realizations (Iso 15p last but one
para)

(3) Why Krsna descends
*to establish religious principles (Bg 3.23p, 24+p 1st part/Bg 4.7+p)
*to appease His devotees (Bg 4.8+p)
*to attract the jnanis and yogis etc (Iso 15p 3rd and 4th paras)
*Six types of avatars (“one who descends”) (Bg 4.8p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*What is an avatar? (Bg 4.9p 2nd para)
*Krsna is the avatari or source of all incarnations (Bg 2.2p 3rd para/Bg 4.9p
3rd para)

(4) The Six Types of Incarnations (listed Bg 4.8p 3rd para)

The Purusa Avatars
*the 3 Visnu incarnations (Bg 7.4p 1st para/Bg 9.8p 1st para)
*described (Bg 10.20p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*who do all the managing so that Krsna can stay in Vrndavan and enjoy (Iso
15p 6th para)

Leela (pastime) Avatars
*innumerable, however 10 prominent leela avatars are described in song
called “Das Avatar Stotra” on pages 97-99 of the Blue Song Book.
*Lord Buddha also mentioned (Bg 4.7p last 1/2 of 1st para)

Guna Avatars (see also Week 6)

Guna means material quality or mode, also rope (Bg 7.14p 2nd para)
(i) Brahma–the Lord of the mode of passion, the creator of the structure
of the universe
(ii) Visnu–the Lord of the mode of goodness, the maintainer of the
universal affairs
(iii) Siva–the Lord of the mode of ignorance or darkness, the destroyer
of the universe
*Only Visnu can release the conditioned soul from these ropes of maya (Bg
7.14p last para)

Manvantara Avatars
*Manu, the father of mankind, hence “man”
*the current Manu is called Vaivasvata Manu, the son of Vivasvan, who
spoke Bhagavad Gita to his own son and disciple, Maharaja Iksvaku, the
King of this planet earth 2,005,000 years ago (Bg 4.1+p 3rd and 4th paras)

Yuga Avatars (Incarnations for a particular yuga or age)
Lord Caitanya is the yugavatara for the age of Kali (Bg 4.8p last para)

Saktyavesa Avatars
Directly empowered jivasouls such as Narada who is empowered with the
particular potency of devotional service.

Three Standard Ways of Identifying a Genuine Incarnation of the Lord
(see also video called “God’s Competitor”)

(i) personal characteristics–particular bodily features, and nature,
place, time and circumstance of birth–all described in sastra.
(ii) marginal characteristics–exceptional, superhuman activities, all
extraordinary and also mentioned in sastra.
(iii) The conclusion of the greatest contemporary personalities of the
time, such as Arjuna’s reference to Narada and Vyasa etc (Bg 10.13)

(5) What is Yajna, or Sacrifice?
*the purpose of the material creation (Bg 3.10+p)
*the ultimate cause of everything (Bg 3.14)
*means Visnu (Bg 3.9p) and He is the actual beneficiary of all yajnas (Bg
3.11p)
*different kinds of (Bg 3.12+p/Bg 4.28+p)
*transcendental yajnas (bg 3.13+p)
*yajnas for materialists and transcendentalists (Bg 3.16-19 +p’s)
*a devotee’s saccrifice is the most complete (Bg 4.25+p)
*the necessity of sacrifice for everyone (Bg 4.31+p)
*ultimately the best kind of sacrifice is:- (Bg 4.33+p, 34)
*and so one attains transcendental knowledge (Bg 4.35)
*which destroys one’s material life (Bg 4.36+37+p)
*and is the highest attainment (Bg 4.38+p)
*summary study of sacrifice and it’s ultimate purpose (Bg 4.42p)

(6) The Demigods
*supplying agents of the Lord (Bg 3.12+p)
*description of nature and function of (Bg 3.11+p/3.14+p, 1st part of 1st
para)
*there are 33 million demigods to supervise every aspect of universal
affairs. They include:-
Brahma, Siva (note: Lord Siva himself recommends one to worship Visnu and
His servants, PQPA page 95-96), Vayu (air), Indra (the chief of the
administrative demigods–Bg 8.2p, King of Heaven, and controller of the
rain–Bg 3.14), Agni (fire), Varuna (water–Bg 3.14p), Durga (the wife of
Lord Siva and the personification of the material energy (Bg 3.12p 1st
para), Sarasvati (Goddess of learning, Bg 7.21p 2nd para), Surya (sun,
present sun god also called Vivasvan, Bg 4.1+p 2nd and 3rd paras),
Yamaraja (Lord of death), Candra (moon–Bg 3.14p), Mitra (bowel
movements), Sitala (small pox)

*cannot give one liberation (Bg 7.14p last para)
*why someone approaches the demigods (and why a devotee of Krsna doesn’t)
(Bg 7.20+p)
*Why and how Krsna inspires one to worship them (Bg 7.21+p)
*in actuality it is Krsna alone who satisfies the desires of the
worshiper through the agency of the demigod (Bg 7.22+p)
*the result of such worship is only a temporary, paltry, futile gain,
aspired after by less intelligent people (Bg 7.23+p/Bg Intro page 20-21 or
18 Mac/Bg 4.12+p/Bg 9.20+21)
*Krsna is the real object of worship (Bg 9.23+p and 24+p) because He is
the only one capable of actually satisfying the needs of the soul and
freeing him from birth and death (Bg 9.25+p)
*Srila Prabhupada compares demigod worship to the attempt of a shady
businessman to bribe a government department, like the police, instead of
honestly and faithfully paying his taxes to the government (referred to Bg
9.23p)
*He has also mentioned that the demigods just give benedictions according
to the level of worship they receive without considering the ultimate
benefit of the worshiper; as a shopkeeper will sell anyone a knife,
without consideration of the future result. Lord Krsna, however takes care
for the actual well-being of His worshipers and may or may not give
benedictions etc.

WEEK 5
VEDIC KNOWLEDGE (Verse to learn Bg 15.15)

(1) Veda means knowledge (Iso Intro 1st para)
*knowledge means to understand what is spirit and what is matter (Bg 10.4p
2nd para)
*who actually has knowledge, or can be called learned (Bg 2.11p)
*the result of knowledge (Bg 13.24+p)
*jnana–phenomenal knowledge
vijnana–transcendental, or realized knowledge (Bg 7.2+p)
*actual jnana described as opposed to ajnana (ignorance) (Bg 13.8-12)
*real jnana and vijnana described (Bg 13.19+p 1st para)
*vidya and avidya or knowledge and nescience described (Iso 9+p 1st 4
paras/Iso 10+p 2nd-5th paras)
*vidya and avidya should be clearly understood (Iso 11+14)
*how to cultivate knowledge (Iso 10p 1st para)
*Hiranyakasipu, an example of the best of the cultivators of avidya (Iso
11p 2nd-4th paras)
*transcendental knowledge is not contaminated by the three modes of
material nature (Bg 14.2p 2nd para)

(2) Vedic knowledge originated from Lord Krsna to Brahma to Narada/to
Vyasadev and was thus expanded and distributed (SB 1.4.19-23+p’s
+24,25/Iso Intro last para)
*the Upanisads mark the beginning of transcendental life (Bg 2.45p end of
1st para)
*Vedic knowledge is compared to our mother (Bg 2.25p/Iso Intro 7th and 8th
paras)
*Vedic principles are accepted as axiomatic truth (Iso Intro 5th-6th
paras)
*Vedic knowledge is infallible (Iso 1p 1st para)
*although sometimes it may appear contradictory (Bg Intro page 15, or 13
Mac)
*the purpose of the Vedas (Bg 3.15+p/Bg 15.1p 1st para/Bg 15.15+p)
*the most important instruction in all Vedic literature (Bg
18.64p/18.65+p/18.66+p 1st and last paras)
*two kinds of Vedic knowledge
(a) sruti–that which is directly heard/Vedic injunctions
(b) smrti–that which is remembered by great sages/supplementary
presentations of the Vedic principles.
*sastra means to be controlled by reason, the direction of revealed
scriptures, whereas sastra means to be controlled by force (“astra” means
weapon)
*sastra is without the 4 defects of the conditioned soul (Bg 16.24p, last
1/2 of 1st para)
*everyone must follow the sastra, and why (Bg 16.23,24+p’s)
*the perfection of following the sastra means that one becomes a devotee
(Bg 16.23p 1st para, 24p 1st 1/2 of 1st para) otherwise all ones knowledge
by sastra is ultimately spoiled.
*one who knows the rules and regulations of the sastra but does not follow
them must be governed by the modes of material nature (Bg 17.2p)
*The Vedas mainly deal with material life (Bg 2.42-43+p, 45+p 1st para)
*ultimately leading to self-realization (Bg 2.46+p)
*and when one attains self-realization or Krsna Consciousness one becomes
completely indifferent to the Vedic rites and rituals (Bg 2.52+p/Bg
3.18+p)
*although one still follows the principles of sastra to set an example
(like Krsna Himself) (Bg 3.21+p, 22+p, last para, 23+p)
*Vedic knowledge is eternal and includes information not only of spiritual
philosophy but also of sociology, astronomy, astrology, history, medicine
(ayurveda), architecture, warfare (dhanur veda) etc.
*the “veda-vada-rata people”, or the supposed followers of the Vedas (Iso
9+p paras 5-9/Bg 2.42-43+p)

(3) Karma (see Beginners Vedic Dictionary, Week 11 +Bg 4.17,18+p’s)

Vikarma–karmic action performed without regard for scriptures (Bg 3.15p)
*karmic action which even slightly deviates from the regulative
principles of the Vedas (Iso 18p 1st para)
*forbidden work (Bg 4.17+p)
*kama-karatah–acting whimsically in lust (Bg 16.23+p)
Ugrakarma–ugly, painful vikarmic work (Bg 16.9+p)
Akarma–inaction or action which does not produce a reaction or action in
Krsna Consciousness (Bg 4.18+p/Bg 4.20+p/Iso 2+p 2nd and 3rd
paras)
*even killing can be akarma (Bg 18.17+p)
*no reaction, all responsibilities taken care of (Bg 2.38+p)
*action in Krsna Consciousness also rids one of all bad and good
reactions to previous karmic activities (Bg 2.50+p)
*how one is freed from both inauspicious and auspicious results (Bg
9.27+p) (either a good reaction or bad reaction is binding, but the
devotee becomes freed of both, Bg 9.28+p 1st para)
*although there is actually nothing auspicious in the material world (Bg
10.3p 7th para)

Naiskarma–(another name for akarma)
*purpose of…(Bg 6.47p at end)
*prescribed duties (in 3 divisions), capricious work and inaction
explained (Bg 2.47+p)

Reaction
*of sinful activities develops as a seed becomes a tree which produces
more seeds (Bg 9.2p 4th para)
*devotees are released from all these stages of sinful reaction (Bg 9.2p
5th para/10.3+p 1st para)
*one cannot be disinfected from sinful activities unless he surrenders to
the Supreme Lord (Bg 10.13p 3rd para)
*unless one works for the satisfaction of Krsna any work binds one to
matter (Bg 3.9+p)
*devotees are automatically freed from all sinful reactions by the grace
of the Lord (Bg 18.66+p)
*one on the transcendental platform, or in full Krsna Consciousness, can
act in anyway and not become implicated (Bg 3.35+p)
*on the path of bhakti yoga there is practically no chance of incurring
sinful reactions unlike all other paths (Iso 18p 4th para)
*even if one is vegeterian one is sinful (Bg 3.13+p)
*no karmic reaction for killing one of the six types of aggressors (Bg
1.36p)
*the effects of karma are temporary (Bg Intro page 10, or 9 Mac)
*to one giving charity–Srila Prabhupada explained in New York 1966 (Tape
No.49) that, according to the law of karma, if I give you some money
now, in the future you must repay me 4x the amount I gave to you. Also
you must share in my sinful reaction if I acquired the money by sinful
means.
*reaction to one if the money given in charity is used for pious or
transcendental activities (SB 2.3.17p page 159)
*conversely if the money given is used for sinful purposes then one is
implicated in sinful reactions.
*Money given for Krsna benefits everyone, no matter what the material
circumstances. In fact money given to a devotee saves one from going to
hell (PQPA page 75-76)
*But if a so-called devotee takes money and uses it for sense
gratification everyone goes to hell (PQPA page 76)
*If money is misused by a preacher he will fall down and the result will
be distress (SB 7.13.32p)

(4) The Time of Death (see also “the Soul” Week 6)
*what is one’s duty at the time of death? (Iso 17+p 13th para)
*one can attain the kingdom of God (Bg 2.72/Bg 8.5+p, 7+8 p’s)
*and never return to this temporary, miserable world (Bg 8.15+16+p’s)
*or one can attain another destination (Bg 8.6+p/Bg 14.14+15+p/Bg 15.9+p)
*qualifications for one going back to Godhead (Bg 15.5+p)
*one must have practiced some yoga system to remember Krsna at the time of
death (Bg 8.10+p)
*other yogis must leave their bodies at a suitable time, but the bhakti
yogis have no such concern (Bg 8.23+24+p’s, 27+p)
*sometimes a devotee may even wish to die immediately (but he always
leaves everything up to Krsna’s will) (Bg 8.2p last para)
*the Lord does not forget a devotee at the time of death (Iso 17+p 6th and
7th paras)

(5)Impersonalism
An impersonalist is someone who has realized brahman; that he, everyone
and everything else is spirit, but has not yet realized the personal
presence of Paramatma or Bhagavan. Sometimes the impersonalists are also
mayavadis (“those who see only maya”) who say that everything we can
perceive is false (does not exist) and that in Absolute state of existence
there is nothing perceivable (i.e. no form, no personality, no activity,
etc.) We, the living beings, and everything else, are part of, or “one
with” that Absolute, because there is nothing apart from or separate from
that Absolute, and therefore they conclude that we are all God. These
people further say that when the Absolute manifests a form (such as Lord
Krsna’s appearance) He takes a material body. So they conclude that, as
Krsna is Lord Narayana, we can also become Narayana, and they therefore
address each other “om namo narayana”. Being one with God is tantamount to
being God Himself. However the dictionary definition of God is “Supreme
Being”. So if the mayavadi is now in ignorance, having forgotten that he
is God and is therefore meditating to remember his supremacy, that means
illusion is greater than God. There is no meaning to being that kind of
God. Krsna never had to meditate to become Supreme–even as a baby He
killed Putana, and as a child He lifted Govardhana Hill. Lord Caitanya
advises that the mayavadis should be avoided because they are offenders.
*the living entities are one in quality with the Lord but not in quantity
(Iso 7+p 1st and 2nd paras)
*the world is not “false”, but it is temporary (Bg 9.33+p 1st para)
*material nature is eternal, it is not false (Bg Intro page 10, or 9 Mac)
*in the spiritual world there is actually variegatedness and the liberated
souls who go there retain their individuality (Bg 14.2+p)
*If the Absolute Truth is formless He could not be the complete whole (Bg
Intro page 14 or 13 Mac/Iso Invocation+p, end of 1st para)
*imagining the Supreme to be impersonal is not an Absolute conception (Iso
12+p 2nd para)
*Krsna is one and different from His energies like a king (Bg 9.4+p 2nd
para)
*oneness and difference explained (PQPA pages 10-14)
*the living entity is eternally a fragmental portion of the Supreme Lord
(Bg 15.7+p 1st and 3rd paras)
*there is no merging! (Bg 18.55p 2nd para)
*the brahmajyoti is the ultimate goal of the impersonalists (Bg 7.4+p 2nd
para)
*the brahmajyoti or divine light is simply a dazzling covering restricting
one’s complete realization of the Absolute Truth (Iso 15+p 7th para)
*the impersonalist is blinded by the brahmajyoti and cannot realize the
factual abode of the Lord or His transcendental form (Iso 16+p 1st two
paras)
*a devotee is not interested in the Brahman effulgence, or divine light,
but wants to see Lord Krsna’s beautiful smiling face (Iso 15+16)
*impersonalism or thinking oneself to be God is the last snare of
maya–actually we are all eternally individuals (Bg 2.39p end of 1st
para/Bg 5.16p)
*according to the Gita the soul always has his individuality (Bg 2.12+p)
*all paths do not reach the same goal! (Iso 13p 3rd para/Bg 9.25)
*real oneness explained (Bg 5.4p)
*how personalism and impersonalism are different features of the same
thing (Bg 7.8+p)
*impersonalism refuted by the Gita (Bg 7.7+p)
*in the darkness of ignorance the mayavadis see everything as one (Bg
5.16)
*How Krsna is covered by the mayavadis:-
“Accepting that Krsna is everything, what is aimed by the Ram Krsna
Mission or the Maharishi group is also Krsna; but Krsna says that
although everything is an expansion of Himself He is not in everything.
Exactly like in our material experience we can understand that everything
is ultimately a product of sunshine, but that does not mean that
everything is sunshine. Rather, other things cover the sunshine and
create a shadow. The Ram Krsna Mission, or the Maharishi’s activities are
nothing but expanded energy of Krsna, but by such work Krsna is
covered-therefore it is called maya! Maya has no separate existence
beyond Krsna, but when there is Maya, Krsna is covered. Exactly like a
cloud is nothing but a creation of sunshine…so although water is
generated from fire, we cannot pour on water while the fire is blazing.”
(Letter to disciple 1969)
“God appears, and God is light
To those poor souls who dwell in night
But does a human form display
To those who dwell in realm of day” (William Blake)
*Krsna states in His Gita that He is also individually residing in the
body with the living entity (Bg 13.3)
*Mayavadis have no business quoting from Bhagavad Gita–either it is
perfect knowledge, in which case they cannot establish their theory, or
it is the work of an imperfect person and therefore has no importance (Bg
2.11+p)
*Krsna does not take birth or accept a material body but He comes in His
original spiritual body (Bg 4.6+p)
*those who approach Krsna in an impersonal way are similarly treated (Bg
4.11+p)
*How can the soul be less active after liberation? (Bg 9.2p 3rd para)
*If the living entity is actually God how can he be in doubt? (Bg
18.73p–end of 1st para)
*the difference between impersonalism and personalism explained (Bg
12.1+p)
*and which is the most perfect process (Bg 12.2+p)
*to practice impersonalism is helpful as long as one does not have the
association of a pure devotee (Bg 12.20p)
*eventually the sincere impersonalist achieves devotion to Krsna (Bg
12.3-4+p)
*but it is difficult for him to give up his impersonal conception (Bg
12.5p last para)
*impersonalism or the path of jnana yoga is both very troublesome and
uncertain, (Bg 12.5+p 1st and 2nd paras) whereas the path of bhakti is
both easy and secure
*how the Vaisnavas are more firmly situated on the transcendental platform
than the mayavadi sannyasis (Bg 5.6+p)
*impersonalism is refuted by a proper understanding of the sastras (Bg
9.11+p)
*devotional service is eternal so where is the question of oneness? (Bg
9.2p 10th para/Bg 9.14)
*devotional service begins after liberation (Bg 9.2p 11th para/Bg 18.54)
*the nature of the impersonalist’s worship (Bg 17.4p, last para)
*monists are counted amongst the atheists (Bg 13.25p)
*pure devotees are not confused by foolish mayavadi commentators (Bg
11.51+p)
*Mayavadis do not know Lord Krsna’s absolute nature (Bg 4.35p 1st para)
*impersonalists are also unintelligent (like the demigod worshipers) for
they do not know that they can never understand Krsna without devoting
themselves to Him and thus obtain His mercy (Bg 7.24+p)
*Mayavadis are actually fools (Bg 9.11+p/Bg 7.24+25+p’s)
*Why someone becomes a mayavadi (Bg 4.10p)
*the fate of the unfortunate mayavadi (Bg 9.12+p)
*Lord Caitanya’s warning (Bg Preface 3rd para)

(6) The Bhagavad Gita (for the Mahabharata see chart, and also read
“Setting the scene” in the forward to the Bhagavad
Gita)
*the advantages of reading the Gita (Bg Intro page 31-33 or 27-28 Mac/Bg
8.28p last para)
*the history of the speaking of the Gita (Bg 4.1+p/4.2+p, last 2 paras)
*qualifications for hearing the Gita (Bg 4.3+p/Bg 9.1/Bg 18.64/Bg
18.67+p/Bg 18.68p)
*one should accept Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead at least
theoretically before one attempts to read His Gita (Bg Intro page 6-7, or
6 Mac)
*qualifications for speaking the Gita (Bg 9.1p, last para)
*one should learn the Bhagavad Gita from a devotee (Bg 8.28 last para)
*anyone who hears the Gita will be freed from the darkness of ignorance
(Bg 18.72p/18.73)
*the essence of studying the Gita (Bg 10.11p 4th para/Bg 18.78p 4th para)
*devotional service is the objective of the Bhagavad Gita and all Vedic
literature (Bg 18.1p 1st para)
*the “Gita teaches us how to absorb the mind and intelligence in the
thought of the Lord”. (Bg Intro page 29-30 or 26 Mac)
*the three subjects of the Gita (Bg Intro page 8-14 or 7-12 Mac)
*Summary by Srila Prabhupada (Bg 18.78p)

Ch 1 Observing the armies-Sanjaya describes the battlefield and Arjuna
decides not to fight
Ch 2 Contents of the Gita summarized-the soul, ksatriya duty, karma yoga
and the transcendental position
Ch 3 Karma yoga-prescribed duties according to varnasrama explained and
sacrifice, and lust and the means of conquering it
Ch 4 Transcendental knowledge-Krsna’s position as the Supreme
Personality of Godhead, the importance of guru and disciplic
succession and how sacrificial work culminates in jnana yoga
Ch 5 Karma yoga-action in Krsna Consciousness-characteristics of a karma
yogi or a detached worker
Ch 6 Dhyana yoga-controlling the mind, astanga yoga, the fallen yogi, the
best yogi
Ch 7 Knowledge of the Absolute-Krsna and His energies, and theists,
atheists and materialists
Ch 8 Attaining the Supreme-moment of death for bhakti yogi and others
Ch 9 Most Confidential knowledge-Krsna’s position, different types of
worship and His devotees (Bg 9.1p 1st part of 3rd para)
Ch 10 Opulence of the Absolute-Krsna’s specific opulences manifest in
this world
Ch 11 Universal Form-a challenge to the “pseudo-Gods”, and the importance
of the Lord’s original form
Ch 12 Devotional Service-the various practitioners of yoga culminating
with the bhakti yoga, whose characteristics are described
Ch 13 Nature, the Enjoyer and Consciousness-distinction and
interrelationship of the body (matter), soul and Supersoul
Ch 14 Three Modes of Nature-how they act, bind and how one is freed
Ch 15 Yoga of the Supreme Person-how to break attachment to the material
world and attain union with the Supreme Person who is the goal of
all the Vedas
Ch 16 Divine and Demoniac natures-explained
Ch 17 Divisions of faith-conditioned in food, sacrifice, austerity, and
charity by the 3 modes, and transcendental faith and worship
explained
Ch 18 Conclusion, Perfection of Renunciation-synopsis and conclusion of
the Gita. Purpose of renunciation, akarma, analysis of effects of
3 modes, 4 varnas, transcendence, surrender, devotion, preaching,
Arjuna’s decision and Sanjaya’s final conclusion

*the three parts of the Gita explained (Bg 13.1p 2nd para)

Chapters 1-6 deal with the distinction between the material body and the
non-material, eternal living entity and how he can become liberated
through various types of yoga culminating in bhakti yoga or Krsna
Consciousness (Ch 6.47)

Chapters 7-12 introduce the Supreme Lord, His different opulences and
energies, and the Lord’s relationship, particularly through bhakti yoga,
with His superior energy, the individual soul. These middle chapters are
the essence of the Gita. (Bg 8.28p 4th para)

Chapters 13-18 describe how the living entity comes in contact with the
material energy, how he is conditioned by it and how he is delivered
through various means such as jnana, karma and finally bhakti,
conclusively the only feasible means.

*The Gita should be accepted in the spirit of one taking medicine (Bg
Intro page 3)
*Five basic truths of the Gita: (i) isvara (ii) jiva (iii) prakrti (iv)
kala (v) karma (Bg Intro Page 8-11 or 7-10 Mac)
*the content and benefits of reading the Bhagavad Gita (SB 1.15.27+p)

(7) The Srimad Bhagavatam (The beautiful story of the Supreme Personality
of Godhead)
*is Vyasadev’s own commentary on his Vedanta Sutra (Bg 15.15p half way
through first para)
*is very dear to the devotees (Bg 10.9p 3rd para)
*see also week 2–Maharaja Pariksit and Sukadev Gosvami
*story of how the Bhagavatam came to be written (SB 1.4.26-1.5.21/SB
1.7.1-11)
*read the Preface to the Bhagavatam and the first 3 pages of the
Introduction.

(6) The Bhagavad Gita (for the Mahabharata see chart, and also read
“Setting the scene” in the forward to the Bhagavad
Gita)
*the advantages of reading the Gita (Bg Intro page 31-33 or 27-28 Mac/Bg
8.28p last para)
*the history of the speaking of the Gita (Bg 4.1+p/4.2+p, last 2 paras)
*qualifications for hearing the Gita (Bg 4.3+p/Bg 9.1/Bg 18.64/Bg
18.67+p/Bg 18.68p)
*one should accept Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead at least
theoretically before one attempts to read His Gita (Bg Intro page 6-7, or
6 Mac)
*qualifications for speaking the Gita (Bg 9.1p, last para)
*one should learn the Bhagavad Gita from a devotee (Bg 8.28 last para)
*anyone who hears the Gita will be freed from the darkness of ignorance
(Bg 18.72p/18.73)
*the essence of studying the Gita (Bg 10.11p 4th para/Bg 18.78p 4th para)
*devotional service is the objective of the Bhagavad Gita and all Vedic
literature (Bg 18.1p 1st para)
*the “Gita teaches us how to absorb the mind and intelligence in the
thought of the Lord”. (Bg Intro page 29-30 or 26 Mac)
*the three subjects of the Gita (Bg Intro page 8-14 or 7-12 Mac)
*Summary by Srila Prabhupada (Bg 18.78p)

Ch 1 Observing the armies-Sanjaya describes the battlefield and Arjuna
decides not to fight
Ch 2 Contents of the Gita summarized-the soul, ksatriya duty, karma yoga
and the transcendental position
Ch 3 Karma yoga-prescribed duties according to varnasrama explained and
sacrifice, and lust and the means of conquering it
Ch 4 Transcendental knowledge-Krsna’s position as the Supreme
Personality of Godhead, the importance of guru and disciplic
succession and how sacrificial work culminates in jnana yoga
Ch 5 Karma yoga-action in Krsna Consciousness-characteristics of a karma
yogi or a detached worker
Ch 6 Dhyana yoga-controlling the mind, astanga yoga, the fallen yogi, the
best yogi
Ch 7 Knowledge of the Absolute-Krsna and His energies, and theists,
atheists and materialists
Ch 8 Attaining the Supreme-moment of death for bhakti yogi and others
Ch 9 Most Confidential knowledge-Krsna’s position, different types of
worship and His devotees (Bg 9.1p 1st part of 3rd para)
Ch 10 Opulence of the Absolute-Krsna’s specific opulences manifest in
this world
Ch 11 Universal Form-a challenge to the “pseudo-Gods”, and the importance
of the Lord’s original form
Ch 12 Devotional Service-the various practitioners of yoga culminating
with the bhakti yoga, whose characteristics are described
Ch 13 Nature, the Enjoyer and Consciousness-distinction and
interrelationship of the body (matter), soul and Supersoul
Ch 14 Three Modes of Nature-how they act, bind and how one is freed
Ch 15 Yoga of the Supreme Person-how to break attachment to the material
world and attain union with the Supreme Person who is the goal of
all the Vedas
Ch 16 Divine and Demoniac natures-explained
Ch 17 Divisions of faith-conditioned in food, sacrifice, austerity, and
charity by the 3 modes, and transcendental faith and worship
explained
Ch 18 Conclusion, Perfection of Renunciation-synopsis and conclusion of
the Gita. Purpose of renunciation, akarma, analysis of effects of
3 modes, 4 varnas, transcendence, surrender, devotion, preaching,
Arjuna’s decision and Sanjaya’s final conclusion

*the three parts of the Gita explained (Bg 13.1p 2nd para)

Chapters 1-6 deal with the distinction between the material body and the
non-material, eternal living entity and how he can become liberated
through various types of yoga culminating in bhakti yoga or Krsna
Consciousness (Ch 6.47)

Chapters 7-12 introduce the Supreme Lord, His different opulences and
energies, and the Lord’s relationship, particularly through bhakti yoga,
with His superior energy, the individual soul. These middle chapters are
the essence of the Gita. (Bg 8.28p 4th para)

Chapters 13-18 describe how the living entity comes in contact with the
material energy, how he is conditioned by it and how he is delivered
through various means such as jnana, karma and finally bhakti,
conclusively the only feasible means.

*The Gita should be accepted in the spirit of one taking medicine (Bg
Intro page 3)
*Five basic truths of the Gita: (i) isvara (ii) jiva (iii) prakrti (iv)
kala (v) karma (Bg Intro Page 8-11 or 7-10 Mac)
*the content and benefits of reading the Bhagavad Gita (SB 1.15.27+p)

(7) The Srimad Bhagavatam (The beautiful story of the Supreme Personality
of Godhead)
*is Vyasadev’s own commentary on his Vedanta Sutra (Bg 15.15p half way
through first para)
*is very dear to the devotees (Bg 10.9p 3rd para)
*see also week 2–Maharaja Pariksit and Sukadev Gosvami
*story of how the Bhagavatam came to be written (SB 1.4.26-1.5.21/SB
1.7.1-11)
*read the Preface to the Bhagavatam and the first 3 pages of the
Introduction.

WEEK 6
MATTER AND SPIRIT
(Verse lo learn Bg 7.14)

(1) Sankhya Yoga
*to find the soul of existence, whereas bhakti yoga or karma yoga means to
serve the soul of all (Bg 5.4+p)
*the essence of both sankhya yoga, karma yoga, and bhakti yoga is the same
(Bg 5.4+p, 5+p)
*the analytical study of the nature of spirit and matter–an indirect,
speculative process (Bg 3.3p)

The Twenty-Four Elements (Bg 13.6-7+p)
(1) earth
(2) water
(3) fire –5 great elements (Bg 7.4+p, last para)
(4) air
(5) ether

(6) eyes
(7) ears
(8) nose –5 knowledge acquiring senses
(9) tongue
(10) touch

(11) voice–speaking
(12) hands–working
(13) legs–travelling –5 working senses
(14) genitals–generating
(15) anus–evacuating

(16) smell
(17) taste
(18) form (or colour) –5 sense objects
(19) touch
(20) sound

(21) mind
(22) intelligence three subtle elements (Bg 7.4+p last para)
(23) false ego

(24) pradhana–the unmanifested stage of the 3 modes of material nature

*sometimes time, the powerful representation of the Supreme Lord is
described as the mixing element, giving facility for all the interactions
of material nature and is therefore called the 25th element
*sometimes the soul is described as the 25th element, and sometimes the
Supersoul as the 26th element (Bg 13.25p middle)
*the five factors of action, and the significance of the Supersoul in
relation to action (Bg 18.14+p)
*and so it is only the fool who considers himself the only doer (Bg
18.15+16+p’s)
*but he is responsible for his suffering and enjoyment (Bg 13.21+p)
*the 3 motivating factors for action and the 3 constituents of action (Bg
18.18+p)

The Senses
*are strong and impetuous (Bg 2.60+p)
*and influential if not controlled in the proper manner (Bg 2.61+p/Bg
2.67+p)
*cannot be controlled by any human endeavour, but by keeping them engaged
in the service of the Lord (Bg 2.68+p)

The Mind
*is the driving instrument (the reins) in the car of the material body (Bg
6.34p)
*is higher than the senses and lower than the intelligence (Bg 3.42+p)
*is one of the sitting places of lust (Bg 3.40+p)
*the materialist is riding on the chariot of the mind (Bg 2.55+p)
*the conditioned soul is struggling with the senses, especially the mind
(Bg 15.7)
*should be used to understand the prime necessity of human life (Bg 10.4p
4th para)
*one can deliver oneself with the help of the mind (Bg 6.5+p)
*which can be our best friend or worst enemy (Bg 6.5+p)
*depending if we conquer it or not (Bg 6.6+p/Bg 6.7+p/Bg 6.36+p)
*should be controlled (Bg 6.26+p)
*is very difficult to control (Bg 6.33,34+p)
*but it is possible by (Bg 6.35+p/17.16+p)
*should be turned towards the Supersoul to avoid causing oneself
degradation (Bg 13.29+p)

Intelligence
*is the driver of the car of the material body (Bg 6.34p)
*is the power to analyse things in the proper perspective (Bg 10.4p, 2nd
para)
*means the ability to comprehend what is real and what is temporary, or
what is spirit and what is matter and who is controlling both
*is meant to direct the mind (Bg 3.42+p)
*is the immediate next door neighbour of the soul (Bg 3.40p)
*is one of Krsna’s separated material energies (Bg 7.4)
*is one of the sitting places of lust (Bg 3.40)
*is lost by someone affected by lust (Bg 2.62+63)
*Krsna is the intelligence of the intelligent (Bg 7.10)
*and He awards one transcendental intelligence (Bg 2.65+66)

False Ego
*explained (along with real ego) (Bg 13.8-12p 8th para)
*means thinking that I am a product of material nature (Bg Intro page 12
or 11 Mac)
*how the illusory energy acts on the conditioned soul (Bg 7.27+p/Bg
3.27+p)

(2) The Soul
*is a minute spiritual particle (anu-atma) in contrast to the Supersoul
(vibhu-atma) (Bg 2.20p last para)
*Qualities of: -(Bg 2.16+p 1st para/17+p/18+p/20+p/23+p/24+p/25+p/ 29+p
1st para)
*does not mix with anything, like the sky (Bg 13.33+p)
*illuminates the body with consciousness as the sun illuminates the
universe (Bg 13.34+p)
*is eternally a fragmental particle, an individual (Bg 2.13p 3rd para/Bg
15.7+p 1st para/PQPA pages 23-29)
*belongs to Krsna’s Superior nature (Bg 7.5)
*and is always controlled by Him (Bg 7.5+p)
*and is the energy of the Lord (Bg 13.20p 1st para)
*has nothing to do with the actions of the machine-like body (Bg
13.30+p/Bg 18.61+p)
*higher than, and transcendental to the intelligence, mind and senses (Bg
3.42+p 1st para)
*is not the doer (Bg 5.8-9+p)
*although, when bewildered he thinks he is (Bg 3.27+p)
*whilst living in the city of 9 gates (Bg 5.13+p, 14+p)
*is the knower of the field of activities (Bg 13.1+2+p 1st para)
*is impregnated into matter by the glance of the Supreme Lord (Bg 2.39p
last part of first para)
*how the soul changes bodies (Bg 2.22+p/Bg 15.8+p/Bg 2.13+p 1st para)
*which is perceived by one trained in knowledge and not understood by the
foolish (Bg 15.10+p)
*or by someone not following an authorized system of yoga (Bg 15.11+p)

(3) Three Energies (Bg Intro page 26 or 23 Mac/NOI page 15)

Lord Krsna possesses innumerable energies which can basically be
categorised into three:-
(a) internal, spiritual energy which comprises the spiritual world
(b) external, material energy
(c) marginal energy (the jiva)

(4) Material Life

The material energy causes the conditioned soul misery:
*as certified by Lord Krsna Himself (Bg 8.15+16/Bg 9.22+33+p 1st para)
*one should thoroughly understand this, because a pessimistic view of
material life gives one impetus to advance in spiritual life (Bg 13.9-12p
9th para)
*the threefold miseries etc (NOI page 17)
*Different realizations achieved in the material world:-annamoya,
pranamoya, jnanamoya, vijnanamoya and anandamoya (Bg 13.5p 3rd para)
*different species of life:-
*numbering 8,400,000 (Bg 8.3p 2nd para), 900,000 aquatics/ 2,000,000
plants and trees/ 1,100,000 insects/ 1,000,000 birds/ 3,000,000 beasts/
400,000 humans.
*which the soul evolves through (Iso 17p 1st 1/2 of 3rd para)
*6 changes each material body goes through (thus indicating the presence
of the soul) (Bg 8.4p, beginning)

(5) The Three Modes of Material Nature
*see chart
*conditioning of (Bg 14.5+p/14.9+p)
*competition between… (Bg 14.10+p)
*force one to act (Bg 3.5)
*are the actual performers of activity (Bg 3.27)
*one who can see this and knows Krsna goes back to Godhead (Bg 14.19+p)
*and he also enjoys happiness even in this life (Bg 14.20+p)
*the total influence of the modes on all conditioned souls (Bg 18.40+p)
*force one to transmigrate from body to body (Bg 14.22+p)
*guna or “mode”/”quality”, also means “rope” (Bg 7.14p 2nd para)
*influence one’s particular kind of faith (Bg 17.3+p)
*one who does not follow Krsna’s direction (or the guidance of His
representative) must be dictated by the modes of nature (Bg 18.59+60+p’s)
*one influenced by the modes cannot know Krsna (even if one is in the mode
of goodness) (Bg 7.13 2nd para)
*unless he surrenders to Him (Bg 7.14)
*it is, however, necessary for society to cultivate the mode of goodness
(Bg 14.17+p)
*by serving Lord Krsna one automatically becomes free from the modes of
nature (Bg 14.22-25p 1st para/Bg 14.26+p)

(6) Time

*is the ultimate killer (Bg 10.33p 2nd para)
*even a moment may be enough for one to attain Krsna Consciousness (Bg
2.72p 1st para)
*Lord Krsna as … (Bg 10.30, 33+p/Bg 11.32)
*as one of the five subjects of the Gita (Bg Intro 8, or 7 Mac)

Universal Time

Satya Yuga (40% of a yuga cycle) 1,728,000 years
Treta Yuga (30% ” ) 1,296,000 ” 3/4 length of Satya yuga
Dvapara Yuga (20% ” ) 864,000 ” 1/2 ”
Kali Yuga (10% ” ) 432,000 ” 1/4 ”

Divya Yuga (a cycle of 4 yugas)—–4,320,000 years ”
Kalpa (a day of Brahma, a 1000 yuga cycles/4,320,000,000 years
Lord Brahma lives for 100 of his years, each year consisting of 12 months
of 30 days, and his night is the same length as his day, thus:-
4,320,000,000 x 2 x 30 x 12 x 100 =
Vikalpa (or life of Brahma) 311,40,000,000,000 (311 Trillion 40 Billion
earth years)
*Lord Krsna in His original form appears once in a day of Brahma or every
8,640,000,000 years (Bg Preface 4th para) which was only 5000 years ago!
Lord Caitanya also appears once in a day of Brahma, following Lord
Krsna’s appearance, and He appeared exactly 500 years ago!!

(7) The Spiritual World and the Creation of the Material World

*for a brief explanation see the inside flap of the cover to any volume of
the 1st Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam
*how one is entangled in the banyan tree of the material world, how one is
freed and how one attains the eternal kingdom of God (Bg 15.1-5+p’s)
*the spiritual world does not neeed artificial lighting (Bg 15.6)
*and once going there one does not return (Bg 15.6+p 2nd para/Bg 8.21+p)
*the spiritual world is attained by Krsna Consciousness (Bg Intro page
23-25 or 21-22 Mac/Bg 2.51+p/Bg 4.24/Bg 8.13+p/Bg 8.28/Bg 11.55+p/Bg
12.6-7+p)
*and is inhabited with infallible beings, as opposed to the fallible
beings of the material world (Bg 15.16+p)
*when the soul enters the spiritual world he revives his spiritual body
(Bg 15.7p 2nd para)
*the spiritual world remains when the material world is annihilated (Bg
8.20+p)
*and is thus called Vaikuntha (Vai-free from, Kuntha-enxiety)
*description of the spiritual world (Bg Intro 21-22, or 19 Mac/Bg 8.21+p)
*forms of Krsna in the spiritual world (Bg 11.45,46+p’s)

(8) Evolution and Modern Science

*Read Introduction to “Mechanistic and Non Mechanistic Science”
*The Bhaktivedanta Institute was formed by Srila Prabhupada in 1974 in
order that Krsna Consciousness may be demonstrated scientifically and the
nonscientific mechanistic science of the day be soundly defeated. Srila
Prabhupada gave the framework of argumentation as can be seen, for
instance, in “Life Comes From Life” and he wanted his expert Phd.
scientist disciples to expound all these theistic principles in the
language of contemporary science, and further prove that the solution to
all social, economic and personal problems is found in Bhagavad Gita.
*see film “Spark of Life”
*modern mechanistic thinking is not a new phenomena (Bg 2.26+p)
*Definition of a scientist: “one who knows things as they are” (PQPA
page 1)
*principle of knowledge: “some knowledge will not do, one must have
perfect knowledge” (PQPA page 22-23)
*unless you have perfect knowledge how can you teach? (PQPA pages 5-10)
*”Knowledge is information gathered from the scriptures (the authoritative
source), and science is practical realization of that knowledge.
Knowledge is scientific when it is gathered from the scriptures, through
the bona fide spiritual master, but when it is interpreted by speculation
it is mental concoction” (TLC Ch.23)
*why don’t the “scientists” etc. surrender to Krsna? (Bg 7.15p 1st para)
*all creatures are simultaneously created (to facilitate the multifarious
desires of the living entities from the last manifestation) (Bg 9.8p 2nd
para)
WEEK 7
BHAKTI YOGA (and other yoga systems)
(Verse to learn Bg 6.47)

*”Yoga”–to “link”, “join” or have “union” with the Supreme Personality
of Godhead
*the meaning of yoga and the difference between specific types of yoga (Bg
6.46+47+p’s)
*on what or who one should meditate (Bg 8.9+p)
*real yoga means to follow Krsna’s direction (Bg 2.48+p 1st para)
*one must close all the doors of sense enjoyment (Bg 8.12+p)
*the yoga ladder (Bg 6.3+p)
*preliminary description of astanga yoga (Bg 5.28+p)
*a yogi should live alone in a sacred place etc. (Bg 6.10,11+12+p)
*and should be celibate and fearless etc (Bg 6.13-14+p)
*how a perfect yogi can transfer himself to any desired planet (Bg Iso
17+p, 2nd and 3 rd paras)
*and thus he returns home to Godhead (Bg 6.15+p)
*The steps of the astanga yoga system (the 8 fold or “limbed” path):
(1) yama-sense control
(2) niyama-strictly following rules and regulative principles
(3) asana-practicing sitting postures (hatha yoga)
(4) pranayama-breath control
(5) pratyahara-sense withdrawal (lit:’just the opposite’–from
extrospection to introspection
(6) dharana-concentration of the mind (Bg 6.25+p)
(7) dhyana-meditation
(8) samadhi-self-realization (Bg 6.19-23)

*without Krsna Consciousness a mechanical attempt at this yoga system
cannot help one to spiritual life (Bg 3.43p, last 2 sentences)
*astanga yoga is not practical in this age (Bg 6.33+p)
*Patanjali’s yoga system further described (Bg 4.27+p)
*and how a devotee naturally achieves all the benefits of the yoga system,
and more (Bg 4.29+p)
*mechanical sense restriction is only recommended for persons who have no
higher knowledge of the higher taste of Krsna Consciousness (Bg 2.59+p)
*what that higher taste means (Bg 2.60p)
*and how to attain it (Bg 2.61+p)
*How Krsna emphasizes the importance of karma yoga above other forms of
yoga (Bg 6.1+p)
*pure bhakti is the highest form of yoga and is top of the yoga ladder (Bg
6.1+p)
*only the bhakti yogi can understand Krsna in truth and go back to Godhead
(Bg 18.55+p, 1st para/18.16+p/8.22+p, 2nd para)
*even if he is initially immature in his yoga practice (Bg 9.34+p last
para)
*the Lord Himself takes the devotee back to Godhead (Bg 12.6-7+p 3rd para)
*how bhakti yoga is recommended throughout the Gita, in the conclusion of
each chapter:-(Bg 18.1p, start of 1st para/Bg
2.71+72/5.29/6.47/7.30/8.28/9.34/11.55/12.20/14.26/15.19+20/18.66)
*bhakti yoga includes the results of all other Vedic processes (Bg 8.28+p
3rd+4th paras/Bg 18.66p end of 3rd para)
*the bhakti yogi, knowing Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead,
without doubting, has come to the conclusion of the Vedas and knows
everything (Bg 15.19+p)
*it is understood that someone engaged in devotional service is Brahman
realized (PQPA page 54)
*the bhakti yogi is the most perfect transcendentalist (Bg 18.66p last
para)
*the bhakti yogi is superior to karmis, jnanis and mystic yogis (Iso 15p
last para)
*how a bhakti yogi is situated in the transcendental platform (Bg 5.7+p/Bg
13.8-12p, 2nd para)
*bhakti yoga is the only means to make one pure and sinless so that we can
understand Krsna (Bg 15.20p 2nd and 3rd paras)
*bhakti yoga and Krsna are one and the same because they are both
spiritual (Bg 15.20p 1st para)
*when the bhakti yogi attains the brahma-bhuta stage he has to go still
further (unlike the impersonalist) (Bg 18.54+p 1st para/18.55p, last
para)
*bhakti yoga is the direct path and other processes are step by step
towards bhakti (Bg 12.12+p last para)
*devotees are best situated in spiritual understanding (over sankhya
philosophers & meditators etc.) (Bg 13.25+p)
*sankhya yoga and buddhi yoga in relationship to bhakti (Bg 2.39+p/Bg
5.4+p/Bg 10.10p 2nd para)
*a “karma yogi is generally a merchant doing business with Krsna.
Eventually he may come to offer everything to Krsna, almost like bhakti,
but because he is not following the regulative principles of bhakti yoga,
he can easily fall down.” (1974 Bombay)
*and if one cannot take to Karma yoga (Bg 12.11+p) and if one cannot give
up the result of one’s work (Bg 12.12+p 1st para)
*qualifications of one to render devotional service to Krsna (Bg 7.28+p/Bg
8.14+p)
*pure devotion defined (Bg 7.16p 1st para/Bg 11.55p 4th para, 3rd para
Mac)
*Bhakti yoga or spiritual life means simply to please Krsna (PQPA page
46-48)
*bhakti yoga is a very happy process (Bg 9.2p 9th para/Bg 10.9p 2nd para)
*bhakti yoga is a very simple process (Bg 9.26+p 1st and 3rd paras/Bg
14.27p 1/2 way through 2nd para)
*everyone can take to bhakti yoga! (Bg 9.32+p)
*although pure devotional service is rarely achieved (Bg 6.40p last 2
paras)
*by performing bhakti yoga everyone and everything is satisfied (NOD
preface 11th para)
*Read Introduction to Nectar of Devotion, the science of bhakti yoga
*Thoughts about Krsna’s greatness and mercy to help one in the beginning
stage of Krsna consciousness or bhakti yoga (Bg 15.12-14+p’s)
*How a devotee is practically surrendered to Krsna regarding his
maintainance and possessions (Bg 4.20-23+p’s)
*the 9 devotional activities (Bg Intro page 30 or 26 Mac/NOI page
28-29/Iso 17p 11th para)
(1) hearing (first and foremost of 9 engagements Bg 6.35p)–Maharaj
Pariksit
(2) chanting–Sukadev Gosvami
(3) remembering–Prahlad Maharaja
(4) serving the Lord’s feet–Laksmi, the goddess of fortune
(5) worshiping the Deity–king Prthu
(6) offering prayers–Akrura
(7) becoming a servant–Hanuman
(8) becoming the best friend–Arjuna
(9) surrendering everything–Bali Maharaja
*Maharaja Ambarisa attained perfection by performing all of these
activities (Bg 6.18p)

*Six divisions of surrender: (Bg 18.66p 3rd para)
The devotee:-
(1) accepts everything that is favourable for the rendering of
transcendental loving service to the Lord
(2) and rejects everything unfavourable (Bg 6.10p 4th para)
(3) is firmly convinced that Krsna will give him protection
(4) accepts Krsna as his supreme maintainer and master
(5) remembers that his activities and desires are never independent of
Krsna. He depends completely on Krsna for everything and he acts and
thinks as Krsna desires.
(6) is always meek and humble

*Six favourable principles for the execution of devotional service (NOI 3)

(1) being enthusiastic (NOI page 30&33/Bg 6.24+p)
(2) endeavouring with confidence (& determination) (NOI page 32,35)
(3) patience (NOI page 32)
(4) acting according to regulative principles (ie. the 9 devotional
activities)
(5) abandoning the association of non devotees (Bg 11.55p beginning of
4th para/NOI page 33-34)
(6) following in the footsteps of the previous acaryas (NOI page 34)

*Six obstacles to pure devotional service (NOI 2)
(1) eating more than necessary or collecting more funds than required
(NOI pages 17,18,21,22)
(2) over-endeavouring for mundane things that are difficult to obtain
(NOI pages 18,19/Bg 12.16p)
(3) talking unnecessarily about mundane subjects (NOI pages 20,21/Bg
12.18-19p)
(4) practicing the scriptural rules and regulations for some purpose
other than spiritual advancement/or whimsically rejecting the rules
and regulations (NOI 22,23/Bg 7.3p, end of 2nd para)
(5) associating with worldly minded people who are not interested in
Krsna consciousness (NOI page 21/Bg 13.8-12p 12th para)
(6) being greedy for mundane achievements

*Six urges that a devotee controls:-
(1) speech–(NOI pages 4,5,7-9)
(2) mind–(NOI pages 5&9)
(3) anger–(NOI pages 5&6)
(4) tongue and belly–(NOI pages 6,9-11)
(5)
(6) genitals–(NOI pages 6,7,12,13)
Conclusion:- (NOI page 13-14)

The Importance of Hearing

*hearing is the most important of the 9 devotional activities (Bg 7.1+p,
3rd para onwards/Bg 6.35+p)
*hearing and explaining is more important than reading (SB 1.1.6p)
*hearing is more important than seeing (NOI page 2)
*the more one hears about Krsna in association of devotees the more one is
fixed in devotional service (Bg 10.1 last para)
*hearing about Krsna is ever fresh and relishable (Bg 10.18+p)
*hearing from authoritative sources is the only process that enables one
to change one’s consciousness from material to spiritual (Bg 13.22p 2nd
para)
*hearing is especially important for the modern age (Bg 13.26+p)
*the importance of reading Srila Prabhupada’s books and discussing them
from different angles of vision (PQPA page 85)
*devotees are not interested in hearing about mundane topics (Bg Intro
page 27 or 23-24 Mac/TLK pages 78-79)

The Importance of Faith

*Faith means “unflinching trust in something sublime” (Bg 2.41p 1st para)
*undeviating determination (Bg 6.24+p)
*faith means strong faith (NOI page 56)
*faith means confidence that simply by serving Krsna all other duties,
responsibilities and interests are fulfilled and one will attain the
highest perfection (CC Mad 22.62/Bg 4.39+p/Bg 9.3p 1st para)
*faith means being calmly convinced of the efficacy of Krsna consciousness
(NOI 3+p, page 35)
*faith is a preliminary requisite for tapasya, knowledge and wisdom (PQPA
pages 84-85)
*it is only by faith that one can advance in Krsna consciousness (Bg 9.3p
2nd para)
*faith is necessary to understand the essence of the Gita (Bg 10.14+p)
*possessing faith can promote one to the highest stage even if one is
initially lacking something (Bg 3.31+p)
*faith is developed in the association of devotees (Bg 9.3p 1st para)
*however “nothing should be accepted blindly” (Bg 10.4p 3rd para)
*doubting in the beginning is a sign of intelligence but doubting is
foolish if it is unreasonable (SB 3.26.30p)
*to accomplish anything requires faith, which solidifies as one
progressively achieves one’s desired goal. If one, for instance, follows
the directions of a map and as one proceeds one finds that all
intermediary points coincide exactly with the actual terrain, one will be
increasingly convinced that by faithfully applying the directions of the
map one will achieve one’s destination. In fact one will be convinced of
the existence of that place well before actually seeing it. No one would
claim this to be “blind faith”. Similarly, the Vedic literature is a
navigational chart guiding one across the ocean of material existence. The
various steps of bhakti yoga (Bg 4.10p last para) can be experienced
scientifically.
*faithlessness and doubt cause failure in everything (Bg 4.40p/Bg 9.3+p/Bg
17.28+p 1st para) including happiness
*doubts and faithlessness because of ignorance should be slashed by the
weapon of knowledge (Bg 4.42)
*following the instructions of the Bhagavad Gita frees one from all doubts
(Bg 4.41+p)

WEEK 8
SANKIRTANA (Verse to learn Bg 5.29)

(1) Panca-Tattva–(Panca-5, tattva-truths) The Absolute Truth in 5
features

(a) Lord Sri Krsna Caitanya

*Krsna Himself appearing in the form of a devotee of Krsna:
*to teach by example how to be a devotee (To personally demonstrate the
practice of the conclusion of Bhagavad Gita (SB Intro page 8)
*To inaugurate the yuga dharma, the sankirtana yajna which indisriminately
gives everyone the opportunity to perfect their lives, whether pious or
impious
*To answer the powerful sincere calls of His devotee and incarnation
Advaita Acarya
*To destroy the demoniac mentality of the atheists or Mayavadis
*For various internal, personal reasons in connection with His eternal
consort, Srimati Radharani. Hence Lord Krsna’s natural blackish colour is
hidden by Radharani’s golden hue and so He is called Gaura Hari (the
golden Lord) or Gauranga (one who possesses a golden-limbed form)
*He is the son of Saci devi–hence He is called Sacinandan. His name
Mahaprabhu means the greatest master

(b) Lord Nityananda

*Lord Balaram Himself (the 1st expansion of Krsna) appearing as an
expansion of a devotee. Nityananda Prabhu gives us strength (bala) to make
spiritual advancement–without His grace this is not possible. Therefore,
we always chant Nitai Gaura, addressing both transcendental brothers.
Nityananda is also the original spiritual master. Our present spiritual
master, as a manifestation of the Lord, represents Lord Nityananda–“one
who is eternally full of bliss”.

(c) Advaita Acarya–“incarnation of a devotee” Advaita–“non-dual”, He is
nondifferent from the Lord because He is an incarnation of Maha Visnu
Acarya-He is teaching us devotional service by His own personal example.

(d) Gadadhar Pandit–“energy of a devotee”, or devotional energy–a
manifestation of Srimati Radharani.

(e) Srivasa Thakura–a “pure devotee”, an incarnation of Narada Muni. In
the Panca Tattva maha mantra, adi means etc; referring to all the other
great devotees of Lord Caitanya, and gaura bhakta vrnda refers to the
present, assembled devotees of the Lord.

Lord Caitanya Gadadhara Pandit–Sakti Tattva
Lord Nityananda –Visnu Tattva Srivas Thakur–Jiva Tattva
Srila Advaita Acarya

(2) The Four Ages

Satya yuga–100,000 years, religious principles fully manifest, yuga
dharma–silent meditation
Treta yuga–10,000 years, religious principles diminish by 25%, yuga
dharma–costly, intricate sacrifices
Dvapara yuga–1000 years, religious principles diminish by 50%, yuga
dharma–gorgeous temple worship
Kali yuga–100 years (diminishing to the point where 25 years will be
considered old age), religious principles diminish from 25%-0,
yuga dharma–sankirtana yajna. (Read BTG Vol 13, No.5 for a
lecture on the symptoms of the Kali yuga.)

*Lord Caitanya’s mission is to deliver everyone in the Kali yuga by
introducing His method of sankirtana (Bg 3.10p last 1/2)
*He accepted anyone who qualified himself (NOD preface, 2nd para)
*without performing sankirtan there can be no peace or happiness in the
world (see also week 4–“yajna”)
*Krsna made certain conditions for someone to achieve perfection in
self-realization (see Bg 4.3/7.28/15.26/18.54,66,67) but Lord Caitanya
freely distributed love of Godhead (see Blue Song book page 8)

(3) Welfare Work

*actual welfare work explained (Bg 5.25+p)
*any other benefit is only a great harm (SPL Vol 11. page 41)
*mundane welfare work is extended selfishness (Iso 2p, 4th para)
*Real welfare work must benefit everyone (NOD page 8)
*What is the highest benefit? (Bg 11.55+p)
*the devotee is the best friend of everyone (Bg 6.32+p)

(4) Preaching

*a preacher must be convinced (PQPA page 38)
*and humble (NOD Intro 5th para)
*he goes as a beggar to save people from going to hell (PQPA page 75-76)
*he is always daring and active, not influenced by attachment or aversion
and steady in his determination amidst apparent success or failure (Bg
2.56p, near the end)
*preaching means teaching people how to act properly (Bg 3.25+p)
*without unnecessarily disturbing them (Bg 3.26+p)
*but a preacher takes risks, out of kindness (Bg 3.29p last para)
*and so is very dear to Lord Krsna (Bg 11.55p 5th para)
*a preacher is most dear to Krsna, who accepts him back home to Godhead
(Bg 18.68+p,69)
*a preacher is able, and does give evidence from previous authorities and
scripture (Bg 13.5+p 1st para)
*a preacher traverses the earth for the benefit of others (Bg 7.28p 2nd
para)
*preaching is the way to experience spiritual progress directly (Bg 9.2p
6th para)
*charity should only be given to the preachers of Krsna Consciousness (Bg
11.54p, 1/2 way through 1st para)

WEEK 9
THE DEVOTEES (Verse to learn Bg 2.14)

(1) Devotees…
*always think about, discuss and glorify Krsna (Bg 10.9+p 1st para)
*are not philosophically naive sentimentalists (Bg 10.11+p 1st & 2nd
paras)
*the best devotee is one who serves Krsna in full knowledge (Bg 7.17p
18+p)
*a devotee must make sure that he clearly understands and accepts Krsna’s
position as God if he wants to be fixed in sincere devotional service and
advance back to Godhead (Bg 9.12+p, 1st 2 sentences/Bg 10.7+p 1st & 3rd
paras/Bg 10.8+p)
*a mahatma described (Bg 9.13+p, 14+p)
*and three other kinds of worshipers (Bg 9.15+p)
*although engaged very busily in all kinds of activities and sometimes
undergoing great difficulty a devotee is guaranteed entrance into Krsna’s
abode
*a devotee wants to go to the higher spiritual planet, disregarding
everything else (Bg 11.55p 3rd para/Bg 15.6p 1st and 3rd paras)
*although he just wants to serve and please Krsna unconditionally (Bg
11.55p end of 4th para/Bg 12.6-7p 2nd para)
*a devotee is fearless (Bg 10.4p 5th para)
*and develops all good qualities (Bg 10.4-5p 11th para/Bg 12.18-19p,
end/Bg 13.8-12p 1st para/PQPA page 64)
*the transcendental qualifications of a pure devotee described (Bg
12.13-19+p’s)
*how a devotee has all the symptoms of one situated on the transcendental
platform (Bg 18.51-53, 54p 2nd para)
*Krsna belongs to the devotee and the devotee belongs to Krsna (PQPA page
39)
*Krsna’s appreciation of His devotees (Bg 9.33+p, 2nd para)
*Krsna is so friendly to His devotee that the devotee is always free from
all anxiety except to increase his service to please the Lord (Bg 18.58p)
*Krsna reciprocates with the mood of approach of His devotees (Bg 2.10p/Bg
4.11+p)
*How Krsna likes to reciprocate the service of His devotees (Bg 1.22p 1st
para)
*How Krsna takes care of His devotees (Bg 9.22+p/Bg 10.10+p 3rd para)
*even though He remains forever impartial (Bg 9.29+p)
*5 different ways devotees relate to Lord Krsna (Bg Intro page 5 or 4
Mac/Bg 8.14p last para)
*Krsna is the reservoir of all relationships (Bg 11.14+p)
*We all eternally have a particular relationship with Him (Bg Intro page
5) called Svarupa-siddhi, or the perfection of one’s constitutional
position

(2) Types of Devotees

*three levels of advancement described (Iso 6+p 1st 3 paras)
*three kinds of devotees in relationship to faith (Bg 9.3p 2nd para/NOI
page 55)
*and in relation to the Holy Name (NOI page 54-57)
*and in relation to preaching (NOI text 5 page 48-51, 57)
*and in relation to a devotee’s vision (PQPA page 55-56)

(3) Association of Devotees

*Direct perception of spiritual advancement comes as a result of
associating with devotees (Bg 9.2p 7th para)
*the value of associating with devotees (PQPA page 40-46)
*one of the spiritual master’s prime instructions (PQPA page 98)
*association is the most important factor, therefore Srila Prabhupada
created ISKCON (PQPA page 103)
*in the association of devotees one practically learns how to surrender to
Krsna and give up one’s false independence:-
“…so this Krsna Consciousness Society is especially meant to give
people the opportunity to associate with devotees… One cannot be
independent and at the same time become a devotee, because all devotional
activities are based on surrender. So, in the association of devotees, we
learn this important item–how to surrender–but if we keep our
independence and try to become devotees, that is not possible…To
associate with me you are always welcome but not with your independence.
That will not help me or you” (Letter to a disciple 1972)

(4) Krsna Consciousness is a Natural Process

*a false renunciate is a pretender (Bg 3.6+p)
*repression cannot accomplish anything (Bg 3.33+p)
*a devotee automatically loses his taste for pale things (Bg 2.59+p)
*love of Krsna is lying dormant within everyone’s heart (CC Madhya 22,107)
*one does not artificially lose one’s individuality but one surrenders
one’s individuality (PQPA pages 61-62)

(5) ISKCON and It’s Structure

Iskcon is based on the Bhagavad-Gita (Bg Preface 1st & 2nd paras)
*and is established to facilitate 6 kinds of loving exchanges between
devotees (NOI 4 pages 40-41,43)
In order to manage a world wide society considerable organisation is
required. Srila Rupa Goswami, a great acarya in our disciplic succession
and a direct disciple of Lord Caitanya stated:
“One is said to be situated in the fully renounced order of life in
accordance with Krsna Consciousness when one is without attachment for
sense enjoyment, accepting only what is necessary for the upkeep of the
body and one simply engages in these services connected with Krsna. On the
other hand, one who renounces things that could be used in the service of
Krsna, under the pretext that such things are material does not practice
complete renunciation.” (Bg 6.10p 3rd para)
This concept of “utility is the principle” is an intrinsic part of both
our philosophy and mission of spreading Krsna consciousness all over the
world. It is also mentioned in the Vedic literature that one should
“remove a thorn with a thorn”–the very things which cause the conditioned
soul’s entanglement in the material world can be used to free him. Srila
Prabhupada taught us how to use a multiplicity of modern technology,
business, architecture, computers, communication systems etc. in the
service of Lord Krsna and we have found that these things far from hinder
our own spiritual development and ability to spread Krsna consciousness,
but are extremely helpful.

In 1971 Srila Prabhupada formed the Governing Body Commission (G.B.C.) as
a body of 12 senior disciples to manage the affairs of his growing
society. This was in continuity with the desire and order of Srila
Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, his own spiritual master. In fact just before
departing from this mortal world Srila Bhaktisiddhanta requested that his
disciples all work co-operatively together under a Governing Body
Commission, which they failed to do, with the result that their spiritual
master’s entire mission became a failure. Srila Prabhupada wanted to
preach in the West, together with his Godbrothers, but none of them showed
any interest, nor even gave him any help. Therefore he was forced by Lord
Krsna’s desire, to preach alone, and set up his mission single-handedly.
As soon as the opportunity arose, however, Srila Prabhupada, always
meditating with fixed concentration on the order of his guru, established
a Governing Body Commission for Iskcon, and then proceeded to train it’s
members very thoroughly over the years. He finally declared in his will
that the G.B.C. be the “ultimate managing authority of the entire
International Society for Krsna Consciousness” so that even the
newly-appointed gurus be directed by the combined will of the G.B.C.
members, which represents Srila Prabhupada’s ultimate decision-making
capacity. In this way a unified world-wide society could continue to
flourish, providing that all the members co-operate together–in fact Srila
Prabhupada declared: “Your love for me will be tested by how much you
co-operate together after I pass away”. You can study all this history in
the Srila Prabhupada Lilamrta and also the book called “Hare Krsna, Hare
Krsna” pages 82-84.

At the annual 1984 meetings in Mayapur, West Bengal (the birth place of
Lord Caitanya) the G.B.C. resolved that there should also be a horizontal
structure in our society as well as the present vertical structure of the
G.B.C, gurus, zonal secretaries, regional secretaries, temple presidents,
department heads, temple commanders etc. As the Society has continued to
expand there has been an increasing amount of speciallization in various
fields such as:
(1) Agriculture
(2) Architecture and Construction
(3) Bhaktivedanta Book Trust
(4) College preaching
(5) Deities
(6) Education
(7) Festivals
(8) Finance
(9) Folk
(10) Introductory Course for New Devotees
(11) Legal
(12) Public Affairs
(13) Sankirtan
(14) Audiovisual
(15) Standards

and so now is a similar manner in which the G.B.C. are linked together by
regular meetings and loving Vaisnava exchanges, the members of the various
departments are in regular communication. This will obviously increase
everyone’s efficiency and further strengthen the world wide unity and
development of ISKCON, so that Krsna Consciousness may be spread to every
town and village even more effectively.

(6) Parents and Family

Krsna Consciousness is very much a “family affair” in the sense that
Srimati Radharani (Hare) and Lord Krsna are the eternal Mother and Father
for all of us–“pitaham asya jagato mata dhata pitamah” “I am the father,
the mother, the maintainer and provider of everyone in the universe” (Bg
9.17)
We have all, therefore, strayed away from our real parents and accepted
illusory, temporary situations as reality. (This understanding is also
explained in the Bible).

Although we are eternal we have become foolishly attached to false
designations such as “my country”, “my family”, “my religion” etc. The
soul is passing through different bodies and species. Sometimes we have a
cat for a mother, sometimes a giraffe, a snake or a peacock, sometimes a
human being. Sometimes we are a mother and sometimes a father, and
sometimes our present mother or father will become our child in the future
or any other kind of relationship. All this is going on like musical
chairs, although the materialists are blind to the actual situation. Only
when we finally arrive at Lord Krsna’s lotus feet will we finally achieve
a proper resting place and will everything else fall into proper
perspective.

Human life is different from animal life in the sense that human beings
have the ability to inquire into the nature of the absolute, and also the
ability to abide by the laws of God. Therefore human parenthood has a
different purpose than animal parenthood. Human beings are not meant to
reproduce simply to “carry on the species” (which will always happen
anyway) but to end one’s confinement in that particular species, or in
other words to free one from having to be once more incarcerated in a
material body.

“One who cannot deliver his dependents from the path of repeated birth
and death should never become a spiritual master, a father, a husband, a
mother or a worshipable demigod.” (SB 5.5.18)

People today generally have children as by-product of sex-life and even if
the child is “wanted” from conception, they have no knowledge of what it
is to be a proper parent. Therefore we find young people are becoming more
and more mistrustful and disrespectful to parents, teachers, leaders etc.
because they have a strong sense that these people are not qualified to
care for them properly. In Krsna Consciousness however, the children
respect their parents, teacher and leaders very much due to their spotless
character as can easily be seen in our community.

Having clearly understood all these points, a devotee is not a fanatic who
completely rejects his parents as “maya”. No, a devotee is compassionate
and gentle, knowing how and when to preach to help elevate everyone,
including his parents. We have been in this material world for millions
and millions of births, and finally, in this life, in this particular body
we have been able to take proper advantage. Our parents are obviously,
even unknowingly, something to do with this, and therefore they are very
respectable indeed (see S.P.Lilamrta vol 6 page 225-226 for how a devotee
is respectful to his parents).

They may be attached to this body, but if we use our body in the service
of the Lord and thus spiritualize it, then their attachment will also
become spiritualized, as is mentioned by Mother Devahuti: “Every learned
man knows very well that attachment fo the material is the greatest
entanglement of the spirit soul. But that same attachment, when applied to
the self-realized devotees opens the door of liberation.” (SB 3.25.20)

We should not do anything, therefore, too abruptly, and roughly sever that
attachment, but rather gradually try to help them become attached to us
spiritually and to Krsna. Coming to Krsna Consciousness means to realise,
that we did not really “love” anyone before, in the proper sense of the
term, and now, as we awaken our real love for Krsna, we naturally love all
His parts and parcels, our parents included. So it’s not that we love our
parents any less now, but actually much more because we care for the real
person, the soul, and we also care for everyone else more and more. Our
love has only increased.

There is a natural bond of affection between parent and child and so
devotees should keep in regular touch with parents by letter, telephone,
and visits, and remember them on birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas, etc.
We should not be afraid to chat a little bit with them about their own
mundane affairs. At least in the beginning it’s quite enough preaching for
them to accept the fact that now we are getting up early to pray, we’ve
shaved our heads and become vegetarians – without even saying anything our
very presence reminds them of Krsna and they often feel quite embarrassed
to smoke, eat meat, etc. in front of their devotee-child. We can bide our
time in preaching to them, because, after all, they are stuck with us, and
us with them, for a very long time to come!

Sometimes parents happen to be unreasonably inimical which makes for
difficulties for them and for their child. A devotee should be tolerant
and not take their illogical criticism too seriously, just like you don’t
take the comments of an intoxicated person too seriously. Generally, such
parents calm down and begin to like Krsna Consciousness very much after a
year or so. In the initial stages try to avoid situations that will cause
them to blaspheme and don’t commit the ninth offence against the Holy Name
(see Nectar of Devotion) causing them to be more blasphemous still.

In the beginning the most important thing is for you to become fixed up
and strong in spiritual life without unnecessary distractions, and
therefore it’s recommended that for three months one should stay in the
temple and follow the Introductory Course. Rather than visiting relatives
during this time it’s best to keep in touch by telephone or letter. They
are also most welcome to visit you at the temple. If you suddenly turned
up on the doorstep with a shaved head, robes, and bead bag, after a couple
of weeks, it’s obviously a great shock to them and hard for them to adjust
to. Therefore the more gradual approach is preferred. If you just let your
parents know that you are trying this out for a while to see if you like
it before making any final decisions or commitments, much unnecessary
worry and grief can be prevented.

A mother of a devotee called Mrs Rose Forscythe has started an association
called “Friends of Krsna” for devotees parents, and, if your parents would
like, she would be pleased to correspond with them. See also “Hare Krsna,
Hare Krsna” pages 88-93. See also statements of parents in notes of week
12.

Krsna Consciousness, being absolutely complete includes the best interests
of everyone especially one’s parents and other family members who are also
all delivered from material life (B.G. 1.41p). (In other places it is
similarly described how a devotee purifies and liberates family members
(S.B. 1.12.17p-SB 7.10.18&19+p’s). In fact a son who is a devotee is
called “putra” because he can deliver (tra) his parents from a hell called
“put” (a devotee daughter is called a putri)–in the past people would
sometimes have children and train them in religious life with this purpose
in mind. It is not difficult to understand how people benefit by their
child becoming a devotee–if I am the trusted servant of a good-hearted
millionaire, what to speak of Lord Krsna, he will obviously make sure my
nearest and dearest ones are provided for. Or even if I win the pools, all
the family benefits, what to speak of the transcendental value of Krsna
Consciousness. Also, if a tree in the forest becomes especially fragrant
then the whole area is pervaded by it’s aroma, so one pure devotee in a
family purifies all it’s members. Therefore it is clear that in actuality
a devotee serves the interest of his family more dexterously than others.
(SB 1.19.35p).

(7) Distress and the Devotee

A devotee tolerates all dualities thus becoming free from all anxiety for
gain or loss (Bg 2.45p last para)

A devotee is never disturbed by any kind of trying circumstances (SP
Lilamrta Vol 3 page 75)

Distress is only temporary and should be tolerated without being disturbed
(Bg 2.14&15 p’s)

*Tolerance is defined as being practiced to bear insult and dishonour from
others (Bg 13.8-12p 4th para)
*One should be detached and equiposed in happiness and distress (Bg
13.8-12p 11th para)
*a devotee is so practiced that he is not disturbed by any outward
disturbances (Bg 12.15p)
*a devoteee thinks that his suffering should actually be greater because
of his past sinful activities and so he is undisturbed (Bg 12.13-14p/Bg
2.56p/SB 1.17.18p)
*Suffering will be there as long as we are in the material world so we
have to tolerate it, even welcome it, and not be disturbed or let our
devotional service be interrupted, understanding that Krsna will always
protect us, minimising the reactions to our past sinful activities (T. of
QK pages 43-51)
*Disturbances are a test by Maya to see if our intention is to serve Krsna
or disturb Him (T of QK pages 8-9)
*Suffering is an attack by Maya

*A devotee tolerates difficulties without becoming disturbed, angry or
deviated from his service (Bg 2.14p)
*A devotee is callous to all incidental occurences such as accidents,
disease, scarcity and bereavement, which never deviate him from his duty
(Bg 6.23+p, last para)
*A devotee accepts all miseries as the mercy of the Lord, considering
himself to be worthy of more distress (Bg 2.56+p)
*one who receives the mercy of the Lord becomes free from the influence of
the three fold miseries (which are caused by: (1) natural disturbances
(the influence of the demigods) (2) one’s own body and mind (3) other
living beings (Bg 2.64+p)

(8) Health

Of all priorities regarding health, we regard our spiritual health as the
most important. The soul is undeniably more important than the body.
However it is often found that spiritual health denotes intellectual,
mental and physical health as a natural sequence. A devotee’s tendency for
illness is reduced in this way (PQPA page 53)

The following are seven ways which enable a person to maintain good
health.

(1) Cleanliness If you are scrupulously clean in body, mind, clothes and
living space, dirt and disease will tend to stay far away.
(2) Regulation The body is a highly complex machine and so one’s sleep,
diet, recreation, exercise etc. should be sensible and regulated.
(3) Eating Some people “live to eat”, but devotees “eat to live”. They
like to eat a simple, balanced diet which is in the mode of goodness (see
Bg 17.8-10)

Devotees eat “prasada” which is beneficial spiritually because it has been
offered to Lord Krsna; mentally, because it has been cooked with love and
devotion and then offered to the Lord; and physically, because wholesome,
natural ingredients are used. Artificial colourings, preservatives,
chemical and tinned or frozen foods are avoided. Lord Krsna, playing the
part of a cowherd boy, likes many types of milk sweets etc. and so, often
His devotees like to eat such homemade sweets. By working hard afterwards
they soon burn up the extra energy. Usually devotees eat fairly simply,
but on festival days they sometimes consume huge feasts, which, if
understood properly are highly transcendental, spiritual events.
Sometimes people mistakenly think that devotees eat the processed white
rice, found in the West. In actuality we principally eat “basmati” rice
which is a whole-rice and one of India’s finest. It is highly nutritious,
especially when combined with beans such as dahl. It also has an advantage
over brown rice since it is very fine and easy to digest. (You can read
BTG Vol 15 No. 1-2 “Diet for a Spiritual Planet” for more information)

*As a general rule it is best to avoid eating grains after 6:00 pm, so
that one can rise easily the next morning. Also it is best not to drink
yoghurt or eat preparations containing yoghurt after 4:00 pm because it
has a tendency to disturb one’s sound sleep.
*It is also best to be feeling hungry before eating because this means the
fire of digestion is working properly. If you don’t have much appetite eat
less!

(4) Drinking–for the healthy, regular functioning of all the bodily
organs and the correct expulsion of waste matter and poisons, your body
needs a considerable intake of liquid, preferably water. It is therefore
recommended to drink a few glasses of water daily. One should not drink
anything one hour or less before eating the main meal of the day, and for
2 hours afterwards, as this drastically affects one’s digestive ability.
Undigested food causes pain, gas and illness.

(5) Exercise–There is no lack of this in our Krsna Consciousness movement
as you have probably experienced! If one does need some special exercise
to help keep fit, sometimes devotees practice a little hatha yoga.

(6) Dressing correctly–Although we know we are not the body, we should
nevertheless look after it, because good health is so useful to us. As the
body belongs to Lord Krsna it should be well looked after just like
anything else belonging to Him. Therefore, make sure you keep warm and dry
when the weather is cold and wet. Especially the feet should be kept
warm-wear socks when standing or walking on cold floors. After lively
kirtans or other exercise when you perspire, put warm clothes on to go out
in the cold.

(7) Peace of Mind–Worry, anxiety, insomnia etc. cause all kinds of
illness, but devotees who thoroughly understand the “peace formula” (see
Week 11) are free from these problems. Being anxious to help others become
Krsna conscious is completely different from mundane anxiety about
material things and this anxiety actually brings the greatest
satisfaction.

*A devotee tries to take care of his health as far as possible (PQPA pages
60-61)
*If you do feel unwell please don’t hesitate to mention it to one of the
bhakta leaders.

Footnote: Srila Prabhupada always used to be concerned about his
disciple’s health. He would always sign his letters “hoping this finds you
in good health” and would often personally advise devotees about
individual health problems as can be seen in the following portion of one
such letter, specifically advising a sick boy in 1967: “My first concern
is that you are not eating well. It is a case of great anxiety. Please
don’t eat dahl and spices. Simply boiled vegetables, rice and a few
chapatis. Take butter separately and eat only as much as you require for
taste. Drink milk twice, morning and evening. Don’t eat at night. Eat some
fruits in the evening. Use some digestive pill after each principle meal.
I think soda-mint tablets will help. Be careful about your health first.
This information is not only for you, but for all my noble sons and
daughters. I am an old man, I may live or die, it doesn’t matter. But you
must live for a long time to push on this Krsna Consciousness movement. So
far as my health is concerned, you should know that it is a broken old
house. You cannot expect it to be as good as yours. So my future hope is
for all of you good spiritual children…”

(9) A Fallen Devotee

*is not disqualified by an inadvertent, temporary falldown (Bg 9.30+p)
*and must quickly pick himself up and carry on (Bg 9.31+p)
*Krsna consciousnee means declaring war against the illusory energy, so a
temporary setback is not completely surprising (Bg 6.37+p)
*What happens to a fallen transcendentalist? (Bg 6.37,38+p’s)
*Two destinations:-(Bg 6.41-43+p’s, 44,45+p)
*How an aspiring devotee may fall down (Bg 2.62,63)
*…because of lack of sincerity and faith (Bg 9.3+p)
*but why fall down? “Just go on practicing… ” (Srila Prabhupada in New
Vrindavan 1976) (See Quote 1 on next page)
*an accidental falldown, due to previous habit may be excused but a
willful falldown is not excused (PQPA pages 81-82)
*”sinful” means that one promises to follow the regulative principles and
then one breaks them (PQPA page 81)
*apparent “loose character” of a devotee explained (ISO 17p 8th and 9th
paras)
*the Lord helps a devotee from within if he makes a mistake (ISO 18p
5th & 6th paras)
*a fallen devotee does not loose everything, contrary to the idea that “a
miss is as good as a mile” (Bg 2.40+p/Bg 6.40+p, 1st para)

How to Avoid Falling down from the Spiritual Platform

*understanding Mr. Lust (Bg 3.37-40+p’s)
*how to conquer him (Bg 3.37+p, 41-43+p’s)
*lust, anger and greed should be given up (Bg 16.21,22+p’s)
*understanding the temporary nature of sense gratification (Bg 5.22+p)
*…by tolerating the urges of the senses (Bg 5.23+p)
*…by surmounting the weakness of the heart (Bg 15.20p last para)
*…by acting in Krsna Consciousness (Bg 18.58+p)
*…by not being proud and foolishly criticising a Vaisnava (NOI Text 6
page 59-65)
*…by chanting Hare Krsna constantly (Bg 9.31p end)
*…by having some genuine affection for the guru and knowing “for my
sinful activities my spiritual master will be inconvenienced” (PQPA page
59)

Quotes:

Quote 1: “Just go on practicing and you will become perfect. But why make
a farce, why accept initiation unless you intend to practice?” A devotee
asked if the determination to practice developed gradually, Prabhupada
roared like a lion “Why gradually? You have already made a promise before
the spiritual master, before the Deity, before the fire, before the
Vaisnavas–why make such a promise unless you intend to keep it? That is a
gentleman’s determination” When someone began to ask about fall down,
Prabhupada quickly interrupted and said “Why fall down? You have promised
to follow these principles so why fall down?” (Srila Prabhupada–New
Vrindaban 1976)

Quote 2: “Don’t wait for another life thinking that I have got so much
devotional service to my credit, now again go out and enjoy the material
world. No, finish this business immediately in this life. Do not wait.
Fully become detached from this material enjoyment. Simply become engaged
in Krsna’s service and your life will become successful. Thank you very
much.” (lecture on SB 7.6.17-18)

Quote 3: “basically religion means to follow the orders of the Lord. Krsna
is the supreme law maker and religion means to be obedient to those laws
just as a “good” citizen can only be that person who implicitly follows
all the laws of the state, therefore a religious man is one who follows
all the laws of God. (LON ’73-53B)

Quote 4: “…if one is active in Krsna consciousness he cannot have any
enemies. Since his only engagement is to induce others to surrender to
Krsna, or God, how can he have enemies? If one advocates the Hindu
religion, the Muslim religion, the Christian religion, this religion or
that religion, there will be conflicts. History shows that the followers
of religious systems without a clear conception of God have fought with
one another. There are many instances of this in human history, but
systems of religion that do not concentrate on service to the Supreme are
temporary and cannot last long because they are full of envy. There are
many activities directed against such religiouos systems, and therefore
one must give up the idea of “your belief” and “my belief”. Everyone
should believe in God and surrender unto Him. That’s Bhagavata-dharma.”
(See also SB 1.1.2+p)

WEEK 10
THE VEDIC CULTURE (Verse to learn Bg 18.66)

(1) Religion

Dictionary definition–“obligation”, “bond” or, in other words “to relink
with God”–the same meaning as “yoga”.

Srila Prabhupada explains that religion means the following:
(i) to know who I am
(ii) to know who God is
(iii) to know my relationship with Him
(iv) to know and to carry out my duty to Him
(v) to know my destination after leaving this body (SB 1.3.43p)

or “basically……….of God” (Tape-London ’73-53B)
(See Quote 3 on page 46)

*Religion must have philosophy; for religion without philosophy is
sentiment and sometimes fanaticism, on the other hand philosophy without
religion is simply mental speculation (Bg 3.3p)
*the highest perfection of religion is the attainment of devotional
service in the association of great acaryas (Bg 9.2p, 8th para)
*the principles of religion can only be laid down by the Lord Himself (Bg
4.16p last para)
*and cannot be manufactured by man (SB 6.3.19/SB 9.3.10p 2nd para onwards)
*the twelve authorities on religion (Bg 4.16p last para)
*Lord Krsna’s mission is to establish real religion (Bg 4.8) as opposed to
mundane sectarianism in the name of religion which He rejects (Bg 18.66)

Dharma

*”that which is constantly existing with a particular object”
*or/”service” (Bg Intro pages 19-20, or 17 Mac)
*”occupation” or/ “that which sustains one’s existence” (SB 1.2.6p)
*the dharma or function of salt is saltiness, the dharma of fire is heat
(if salt has no saltiness, fire no heat, they are counterfeit). Similarly
the dharma, or inseparable quality, of the living entity is to serve, and
if he thinks his position is anything else then he is in illusion.

Sanatana-dharma

*explained (Bg Intro pages 17-19, or 15-17 Mac)
*the “eternal function of the living being”–to serve Krsna
*the real meaning of religion, the idea of a “kind of faith or belief”
that we have in the West is inadequate and material
*Srila Prabhupada writes: “…if one is…That is Bhagavata-dharma” (See
Quote 4 on page 46)

Mundane Religions

*a “kind of faith” that may change (Bg Intro page 19 or 17 Mac)
*involves 4 principles: (i) Dharma-religious rituals and prayers (ii)
artha-economic development (iii) kama-sense gratification (iv) moksa-the
desire for liberation from distress.
*Bhagavata dharma (the transcendental or real religion of service to
Bhagavan), or Krsna consciousness, rejects these 4 mundane principles (Bg
18.66) but still a devotee automatically achieves the benefits of them all
without separate endeavour (Bg 9.22)

The Pillars of Religion

(1) cleanliness (2) mercifulness (3) truthfulness (4) austerity. These
four principles are universally applicable to any religious system. They
are destroyed by the following irreligious activities which form the basis
of all sinful life:-
(1) illicit sex (as opposed to sex according to religious principles–Bg
7.11+p/NOI page 12)
(2) intoxication (Bg 3.24p last para/PQPA page 95)
(3) meat eating (foods and intoxicants which should be given up-NOI page
10) Note: the underlying cause of meat eating is pride, or the desire
to dominate and subjugate others (see SB 1.17.24&25p)
(4) gambling, including lying, propaganda, idle sporting and speculation

*by following the four prohibitive principles of Krsna Consciousness and
serving the Supreme Lord under the direction of the spiritual master one
can easily surpass all other systems of tapasya (NOI page 4 1st half)
*to follow religious principles is the responsibility of human life (Iso
3+p)
*the principle of isavasya or God-centered society (Iso 1+p, paras 5-7)

(2) Varnasrama Dharma

Four Varnas: (a) brahmana (b) ksatriya (c) vaisya (d) sudra (Bg 4.13+p/see
also BTG Vol 14 No. 11 “The Anatomy of the Social Body”)

Four Asramas: (e) brahmacari (celibate student) (f) grhastha (householder)
(g) vanaprastha (retired from material duties) (h) sannyasa (renounced
preacher or monk)

*the aim of all individual orders and corporate systems is to satisfy
Krsna (Bg 2.48p, last para/Bg 3.9p)
*and in this way reach the ultimate goal of life (Bg 3.7p)
*Duty must be executed by everyone (materially as a brahmana, ksatriya
etc. and spiritually as a disciple) (Bg 3.35+p)
*the varnasrama system as a stepping stone from material to spiritual (Bg
2.31p last para)
*as a means to perfection (Bg 18.45,46)
*by serving the Lord according to one’s nature (as a brahmana, ksatriya,
vaisya or sudra) or the duties assigned to him any person can achieve
perfection, even if there appears to be some fault (Bg 18.46,47+p’s) for
every endeavour is covered by some sort of fault, as fire is covered by
smoke (Bg 18.48+p)
*is not meant to divide society by birth (the present caste system is a
fabrication of the real concept of the classification of human society by
qualities (guna) and work (karma)–not birth (janma)) (Bg 16.1-3p 3rd
para/ Bg 4.13)
*duties of members (Bg 18.47,48+p’s)
*better to perform one’s prescribed duty according to the system of
varnasrama Dharma than to falsely renounce action (Bg 3.4-8)
*Devotees not required to perform the rituals of family tradition because
they are above social divisions etc. (however, they can, and do act in any
capacity for the sake of preaching) (Bg 1.41p)
*transcendental qualities that should be cultivated by the different
members of the varnasrama institution (Bg 16.1-3p 15th para)
*simplicity should be manifested by every member of the varnasrama system
(Bg 16.1-3p 12th para)
*Aryan–those who know the value of life and form a civilization based on
spiritual realization (Bg 2.2p last para)

(a) The Brahmana

*qualifications (Bg 18.42)
*anyone and everyone can qualify as a brahmana (Iso 13p last 2 paras)
*a “krpana” is the opposite of a brahmana (Bg 2.7p 2nd&3rd paras)
*is situated in the mode of goodness (Bg 4.13p)
*is the spiritual master of the other three sections of society (Bg
16.1-3p 4th para)
*only a devotee can factually be called a Brahmana, knowing fully what is
Brahman (Bg 7.29+p)
*is unfit to be a spiritual master unless he is a Vaisnava (Bg 2.8p 1st
para)
*must always be truthful, presenting the facts as they are for the benefit
of others (Bg 10.4-5 3rd para)
*receives charity (Bg 10.4-5p 9th para)
*chants the gayatri mantra (Bg 10.35p 2nd para)

(b) The Ksatriya

*meaning of the word (Bg 2.31p beginning)
*training of (Bg 2.31+p)
*qualities of work (Bg 18.43)
*in mode of passion (Bg 4.13p)
*duty of (Bg 2.3p/Bg 2.32+p)
*sinful reaction for not killing (Bg 2.27p/Bg 2.31,32+p’s 1st paras/Bg
2.33)
*for a ksatriya to kill an enemy is transcendental and to refrain from
duty is demoniac (Bg 16.5p)
*although the Vedic injunction is that one should never commit violence
(Bg 2.19p)
*must be unflinchingly strong (Bg 16.1-3p 16th para)
*must not attack an unarmed or unwilling foe (Bg 1.45p)
*must not refuse a challenge (if the effect is good) (Bg 1.38p)
*should be saintly but not cowardly (Bg 1.36p)

(c) The Vaisya

*qualities of work (Bg 18.44)
*in mixed modes of passion and ignorance (Bg 4.13p)
*should be clean in his dealings (Bg 16.1-3p 17th para))

(d) The Sudra

*qualities of work (Bg 18.44)
*in mode of ignorance and therefore laments unnecessarily (Bg 4.13p/Bg
2.1p)
*should not expect honour but should give respect to the higher classes
(Bg 16.1-3p 17th para)
*mass of peole in the kali yuga (“Kalau sudra sambhavat”) (SB 1.9.49p)

Women

*Feminine qualities (Bg 10.34+p 2nd para)
*should be protected (Bg 1.40+p)
*and why (Bg 16.7p 2nd para)

(e) The Brahmacari

*duties of…(Bg 8.28p 1st para/Bg 16.1-3p 10th para)
*training of…(SSR page 187/Bg 6.13-14p)
*the vow of brahmacarya (Bg 6.14p)
*should become a man of perfect character (Bg 8.28p 2nd para)
*takes food only on the spiritual master’s order (Bg 8.28p 1st para)
*the sacrifice of the brahmacari (Bg 4.26+p)
*unless one practices celibacy (Brahmacarya) advancement in spiritual life
is difficult (Bg 8.11p last para)

(f) The Grhastha

*duties of (Bg 8.28p 2nd para)
*allowed after proper training as brahmacari (Bg 8.28p 2nd para)
*can also be called a brahmacari (&why) (Bg 6.14p middle)
*celibacy of the brahmacari and grhastha (Bg 6.13-14p, middle)
*should also control their sex desire (Bg 16.3p 8th para)
*should not beget children like cats and dogs (Bg 16.1-2p 2nd para)
*must give charity and perform sacrifice (Bg 16.1-3p 7th and 9th paras)
*should not become attached to regulated sense gratification otherwise one
may fall down (Bg 3.34+p)
*sex is the shackle of the conditioned soul (Bg 3.39p)
*sex and attachment to the opposite sex should be reduced to nil (PQPA
pages 15-20)
*sex should only be for procreation (Bg 7.11+p)
*family life in Krsna consciousness–when to accept, how to practice and
when to reject (Bg 13.8-12p 10th para)

(g) The Vanaprastha

*marriage, vanaprastha and sannyasa briefly explained (PQPA pages 35-36)
*should practice austerity (Bg 16.1-3p 11th para)

(h) The Sannyasi

*after one has purified his heart (Bg 3.4p)
*definition of (Bg 18.2+p)
*first qualification is fearlessness (Bg 16.1-3p 4th para)
*then he has to purify his existence (especially in relation to women) (Bg
16.1-3p 4th para)
*and he must cultivate knowledge by hearing and preaching (Bg 16.1-3p 5th
para)
*spiritual master of the brahmana also (Bg 16.1-3p 4th para)
*charity to… (Bg 10.4-5p 9th para)

WEEK 11
TEMPLE PROGRAMME (Verse to learn Bg 18.65)

As we have discussed in the third week, the temple programme is essential
for our proper spiritual development. Srila Prabhupada did not want us to
do things mechanically but rather everything, such as paying obeisances,
seeing the arati and singing the songs, should be done with knowledge in a
proper meditative way. To learn everything of course takes time but if you
begin now trying to understand what you are saying and singing, you will
make swift and steady advancement, and your devotional life will always be
rich with enthusiasm, never a dry ritual. Srila Prabhupada also wanted us
to pronounce the words correctly. Good habits are best picked up in the
beginning, so begin now and later, when you lead kirtans yourself the
future new bhaktas will have a good example to follow.

*the following word for word translations should be studied accompained by
a song sheet or book; the verses accompained by asterisks should be gone
over this week, the remainder during the 23rd week.

Srila Prabhupada Pranati (Sanskrit)

namah-obeisances; om-address; visnu-padaya-unto him who is at the feet of
Lord Visnu; krsna-presthaya-who is very dear to Lord Krsna; bhu-tale-on
the earth; srimate-all beautiful; bhaktivedanta-swamin-A.C. Bhaktivedanta
Swami; iti-thus; namine-who is named

namah-obeisances; te-unto you; sarasvate deve-servant of Bhaktisiddhanta
Sarasvati; gaura-vani-the message of Lord Caitanya; pracarine-who are
preaching; nirvisesa-(from) impersonalism; sunya-vadi-(from) voidism;
pascatya-Western; desa-countries; tarine-who are delivering.

Sri Sri Gurv-astaka (Sanskrit)

(1) samsara-(of) material existence; dava-anala-(by) the forest fire;
lidha-afflicted; loka-the people; tranaya-to deliver; karunya-of mercy;
ghanaghana-tvam-the quality of a cloud; praptasya-who has obtained;
kalyana-auspicious; guna-(of) qualities; arnavasya-of the ocean; vande-I
offer obeisances; guroh-of my spiritual master; sri-auspicious;
caranaravindam-unto the lotus feet

(2) mahaprabhoh-of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu; kirtana-(by) chanting;
nrtya-dancing; gita-singing; vaditra-playing musical instruments;
madyat-gladdened; manasah-whose mind; rasena-due to the mellows of pure
devotion; roma-anca-standing of the hair; kampa-quivering of the body;
asru-taranga-torrents of tears; bhajah-who feels

(3) sri-vigraha-(of) the arca-vigraha (Deities); aradhana-the worship;
nitya-daily; nana-(with) various; srngara-clothing and ornaments; tat-of
the Lord; mandira-(of) the temple; marjana-adau-in the cleaning etc.;
yuktasya-who is engaged; bhaktan-his disciples; ca-and; niyunjatah-who
engages; api-also

(4) catuh-four; vidha-kinds; sri-holy; bhagavat-prasada-which have been
offered to Krsna; svadu-palatable; anna-(by) foods; trptan-spiritually
satisfied; hari-(of) Krsna; bhakta-sanghan-the devotees; krtva-having
made; eva-thus; trptim-satisfaction; bhajatah-who feels; sada-always;
eva-certainly

(5) sri-radhika-(of) Srimati Radharani; madhavayoh-of Lord Madhava
(Krsna); apara-unlimited; madhurya-conjugal; lila-pastimes;
guna-qualities; rupa-forms; namnam-of the holy names; prati-ksana-at every
moment; asvadana-relishing; lolupasya-who aspires after

(6) nikunja-yunah-of Radha and Krsna; rati-(of) conjugal love; keli-(of)
pastimes; siddhyai-for the perfection; ya ya-whatever; alibhih-by the
gopis; yuktih-arrangements; apeksaniya-desirable; tatra-in that
connection; ati-daksyat-because of being very expert; ati-vallabhasya-who
is very dear

(7) saksat-directly; hari-tvena-with the quality of Hari; samasta-all;
sastraih-by scriptures; uktah-acknowledged; tatha-thus; bhavyata-is
considered; eva-also; sadbhih-by great saintly persons; kintu-however;
prabhoh-to the Lord; yah-who; priyah-dear; eva-certainly; tasya-of him
(the guru)

(8) yasya-of whom (the spiritual master); prasadat-by the grace;
bhagavat-(of) Krsna; prasadah-the mercy; yasya-of whom; aprasadat-without
the grace; na-not; gatih-means of advancement; kutah api-where is?;
dhyayan-meditating upon; stuvan-praising; tasya-of him (the spiritual
master); yasah-the glory; tri-sandhyam-three times a day (sunrise, noon,
and sunset)

Sri Vaisnava Pranama (Sanskrit)

vancha-kalpa-tarubhyah-who are desire trees; ca-and; krpa-(of) mercy;
sindhubhyah-who are oceans; eva-certainly; ca-and; patitanam-of the fallen
souls; pavanebhyah-who are the purifiers; vaisnavebhyah-unto the
Vaisnavas; namah-repeated obeisances

Sri Nrsimha Pranama (Sanskrit)

namah-obeisances; te-unto you; nara-simhaya-unto Lord Narasimha;
prahlada-(to) Prahlada Maharaja; ahlada-(of) joy; dayine-the giver;
hiranyakasipoh-of Hiranyakasipu; vaksah-chest; sila-(on) the stonelike;
tanka-chisels; nakha-alaye-whose nails; itah-here; nrsimhah-Lord Nrsimha;
paratah-there; yatah yatah-wherever; yami-I go; tatah-there;
bahih-externally; hrdaye-in the heart; nrsimham-to Lord Nrsimha; adim-the
origin; saranam-the supreme refuge; prapadye-I surrender

Prayer to Lord Nrsimha (Sanskrit)

tava-your; kara-hands; kamala-lotus; vare-benedictory; nakham-nails;
adbhuta-wonderful; srngam-beautiful; dalita-bifurcated; tanu-body;
bhrngam-like a wasp; Kesava-a name of Visnu “the Lord of Brahma and Siva”;
dhrta-appeared; narahari-1/2 man 1/2 God; rupa-form; jagadisa-Lord of the
Universe; Hari-the Lord who takes away all material suffering

Sri Tulasi-kirtana (Bengali)

vrndayai-unto Vrnda; tulasi-devyai-unto Tulasi Devi; priyayai-who is dear;
kesavasya-to Lord Kesava; ca-and; krsna-bhakti-devotional service to Lord
Krsna; prade-who bestows; devi-O goddess; satya-vatyai-unto Satyavati;
namah namah-repeated obeisances

(1) radha-krsna-seva-the service of Radha & Krsna; pabo-I shall obtain;
ei-this (is); abhilasi-(my) desire

(2) je-whoever; tomara-your; sarana-shelter; loy-takes; tara-his;
vancha-wishes; purna-fulfilled; hoy-are; krpa kori-being merciful (to)
him; koro-you make; tare-him; vrndavana-vasi-a resident of Vrndavana

(3) mora-My; ei-this (is); abhilasa-desire; vilas kunje-in the pleasure
groves; dio-you may give; vas-residence; nayane-in my vision; heribo-I
shall behold; sada-always; yugala-rupa-rasi-the many beautiful pastimes of
the divine couple; (yugala-(divine) couple; rupa-beautiful (pastimes);
rasi-large quantity of)

(4) ei-this; nivedana-humble petition; dharo-please accept; sakhira-of the
sakhis (attendants of Radha); anugata-a follower; koro-make (me);
seva-adhikara diye-making (me) a candidate for devotional service;
(seva-service; adhikara-suitability; diye-giving) koro-make (me);
nija-(your) own/personal; dasi-maidservant

(5) dina-wretched; krsna-dase-Krsnadasa (name of poet); koy-says; ei yena
mora hoy-this is my prayer (ei-this; yena-thus; mora-My; hoy-is);
sri-radha-govinda-preme-in the extatic love of Sri radha-govinda;
sad-always; yena-thus; bhasi-(that) I swim

yani-kani-whatever; ca-and; papani-sins; brahma-hatya-killing of a
brahmana; adikani-and so on; ca-also; tani tani-all of them;
pranasyanti-are destroyed; pradaksinah-(by) the circumambulation (of
Tulasi Devi); pade pade-at every step

Sri Guru-vandana (Bengali)

(1) Sri-guru-carana-padma-the lotus feet of the spiritual master;
kevala-only; bhakti-sadma-repositories of devotion; bando-bow down; mui-I;
savadhana mate-carefully; jahara-whose; prasade-by grace; bhai-O brothers;
ei-this; bhava-ocean of material existence; toriya jai-we cross over;
krsna prapti-realization of Krsna; hoy-is; jaha-whom; hoite-from

(2) guru-mukha-padma-vakya-the instructions emanating from the lotus lips
of the spiritual master; cittete-in the consciousness; koriya aikya-making
exclusively established; ara-anything else; na-not; koriho mane asa-do
aspire for; sri-guru-carane-to the feet of the spiritual master;
rati-attachment; ei-this (is); se-the; uttama-highest; gati-course of
action; je prasada-by which grace; pure-are fulfilled; sarva asa-all
(spiritual) aspirations

(3) cakkhu-dan-the gift of spiritual vision; dilo-gave; yei-he who; janme
janme-birth after birth; prabhu-master; sei-(he)is;
divya-jnan-transcendental knowledge; hrde-in the heart; prakasito-is
revealed; prema-bhakti-ecstatic devotional love; jaha-whom; hoite-from;
avidya-nescience; vinasa jate-being destroyed; vede-the Vedas; gay-sing;
jahara-his; carito-characteristics

(4) sri guru karuna sindhu-the spiritual master is an ocean of mercy;
adhama janara-of the fallen conditioned souls; bandhu-friend; lokanath-the
Lord of the world; lokera-of the world; jivana-life; ha ha prabhu- O
master!; koro doya-be merciful; deho-give; more-unto me; pada chaya- the
shade of (your) feet; ebe-now; yasa-(your) fame; ghusuk tribhuvana-be
spread throughout the three worlds

Govindam Prayers (sanskrit)

(1) venum-the flute;kvanantam-adept in playing; aravinda-dala-like lotus
petals; ayata-blooming (extending); aksam-whose eyes; barhavatamsam-head
bedecked with peacock feather; asita-as of dark blue; ambuda-clouds;
sundara-beautiful; angam-whose figure; kandarpa-of cupids; koti-by
millions; kamaniya-to be desired; visesa-unique; sobham-whose brilliance;
govindam-Lord Govinda; adi-purusam-the original Personality; tam-Him;
aham-I; bhajami-worship

(2) angani-the limbs; yasya-of Whom; sakala-all; indriya-as the sense
organs; vrttimanti-function; pasyanti-see; panti-maintain;
kalayanti-regulate; ciram-for a long time; jaganti-the universes;
ananda-bliss; cit-truth (knowledge); maya-full of; sat-substantiality;
ujjvala-dazzling splendour; vigrahasya-Whose form

Prasada-sevaya (Bengali)

(1) bhai-re-O brothers; sarira-the material body; avidya-jala-a network of
ignorance; jada-indriya-the dull material senses; tahe-in that (material
body); kala-cruel enemies; jive-the living being; phele-throw;
visaya-sagore-into the ocean of material sense objects; ta’re madhye-among
them (the senses); jihva-the tongue; ati-very much; lobha-maya-voracious
and greedy; su-durmati-very obstinate and wicked; ta’ke-that (tongue);
jeta-to conquer; kathina-very difficult; samsare-in this material world

(2) krsna-Lord Krsna; bara-extremely; dayamay-merciful; karibare-in order
to do; jihva-the tongue; jaya-conquer; sva-prasada-anna-the remnants of
His own food; dila-gave; bhai-O brothers; sei-that; anna-amrta-nectarean
food stuff; khao-you should eat (sometimes “pao”- take);
radha-krsna-guna-the glories of Radha and Krsna; gao-sing; preme-in love;
daka-call out; caitanya-nitai-O Lord Caitanya, O Lord Nityananda

Gaura-arati (Bengali)

(1) jaya-all glories; goracander-of Lord Caitanya; aratiko-to the arati
ceremony; sobha-(to) the splendour; jahnavi-(of) the Ganges; tata-(on) the
bank; vane-in a grove; jaga-(of) all the living beings in the universe;
mano-(of) the minds; lobha-the eager desire or attraction

(2) dakhine-on the right side; nitaicanda-Lord Nityananda; bame-on the
left side; gadadhara-Gadadhar Pandit; nikate-close by;
advaita-Advaitacarya; srinivasa-Srivas Thakur; chatra-(of) the umbrella;
dhara-the holder

(3) basiyache-has sat; goracanda-Lord Caitanya; ratna-simhasane-on a
jewelled throne; arati karen-perform the arati; brahma-adi-headed by Lord
Brahma; deva-gane-all the demigods

(4) narahari-adi-Narakari Sarakar Thakur and others; kori-doing; camara-the
yak-tail fan; dhulaya-wave; sanjaya-Sanjaya Pandit; mukunda-Mukunda Dutt;
vasu-ghosa-Vasu Ghose; adi-and others; gay-sing

(5) sankha-conchshells; baje-play; ghanta-bells; baje-play; karatal-the
hand cymbals; madhura-sweet; mrdanga-clay mrdanga drums; parama-supremely;
rasala-sweet, melodic and very pleasurable

(6) bahu-many; koti-millions; candra-moons; jini-conquering; vadana-of His
face; ujjvala-the brilliance; gala-dese-around His neck; vana-mala-the
garland of forest flowers; kare jhalamala-sparkles

(7) siva-Lord Siva; suka-Sukadev Gosvami; narada-Narada Muni; preme-in the
ecstasy of love of God; gada-gada-voices stuttering with emotion;
bhaktivinoda-Thakur Bhaktivinode; dekhe-sees; gorara-of Lord Caitanya;
sampada-the glory and excellence

BEGINNERS VEDIC DICTIONARY
(See the back of your Gita for pronunciation guide)

ATMA – “self”–can refer to the body, mind or the soul
ACARYA – A spiritual master who teaches by his own example
ARATI – Greeting ceremony for the pleasure of the Deities
ARYAN – A member of a spiritually advanced civilization
ASHRAM – A place of residence for those engaged in the strict practice of
spiritual life
ASURA – The opposite of a godly person (sura), in other words demoniac
person
AVATAR – One who descends, an incarnation of the Lord
AUSTERITY – (i) To voluntarily accept conditions which may not be very
comfortable for the body but are conducive for spiritual
life.
(ii) To accept the order of the spiritual master
unconditionally.
(iii) To do something for the pleasure of Krsna which we may not
be inclined to do, or not to do something which we may
feel inclined to do under the guidance of the spiritual
master (see also Bhagavad Gita chapter 17, texts 14-17)
BHAGAVAD GITA – The song of God (BHAGAVAN)
BHAKTIVEDANTA – “The end (anta) of all knowledge (veda) is devotion to
Krsna.” (Bhakti) or/”the conclusion of the Vedas is
bhakti.”
BHAJAN – Singing a song glorifying Krsna, usually done whilst sitting
BHAKTA – A devotee or one who practices devotion
BHOGA – Foodstuffs or prepared food before being offered to Krsna for His
enjoyment
BRAHMACARI – Celibate student or monk (he wears saffron-coloured cloth)
BRAHMAN – Spirit
BRAHMANA – A priest-like teacher in spiritual life
BRAHMA MUHURTA – The auspicious time about 1 1/2 hours before dawn, that
is especially conducive for spiritual practices
BURFI – A sweet made of condensed milk
CADAR – A cloth shawl
CAPATI – A flat, dry cooked bread
CARANAMRTA – The nectar from the lotus feet of the Lord which cures one’s
material disease (see Nectar of Devotion page 84)
DAHL – A nutritious soup made from lentils (very good for you!)
DANDAVATS – To bow down lying flat like a stick (danda) with hands fully
outstretched at the feet of a superior Vaisnava
DARSHAN – (lit: “to see”) when a devotee comes before the Guru or the
Deities, is seen by Them, and is blessed with spiritual
understanding and advancement
DHARMA – The capacity to render service which is the common denominator of
every living being
DEVA – Demigod or godly person (lit: “div”- to shine, therefore “deva”
means “shining one”)
DHOTI – The robe that a male devotee wears
ECSTASY – A transcendental happiness that comes from a genuine spiritual
affection for the Lord and His devotees
EKADASI – A special day for increased rememberance of Lord Krsna, which we
observe twice monthly (11 days after the new moon and 11 days
after the full moon). We fast from all grains and beans on this
day.
GAYATRI MANTRA – A special mantra that a devotee murmurs silently,
morning, noon and evening after he/she has received
second initiation. The BRAHMANA THREAD is a thread
awarded to a male devotee which he uses when chanting his
gayatri mantra. A devotee saying this mantra should not
be interrupted.
GHEE – Purified or clarified butter used for frying
GODBROTHER/SISTER – When one is initiated one accepts a spiritual master
as one’s spiritual father who represents the Supreme
Father. Therefore, any of his disciples become your
Godbrother or Godsister. His own Godbrothers are your
God uncles and they are described in the sastras to be
as worshipable as your spiritual master and so one
should be very respectful to them.
GOPI – Transcendental cowherd girl or milkmaid, exemplifying the highest
devotion for Krsna
GOPA – Transcendental cowherd boy friend of Krsna
GRHASTHA – Married devotee (he wears white clothes)
GULAB – A round, fried sweet made of powdered milk soaked in thick syrup
that used to be called an “Iskcon bullet” when the movement was
first started
GURU – A bona fide spiritual master (lit: guru means “heavy” with
spiritual knowledge)
GURUDEV – The spiritual master, who represents God, the demigods and all
the godly persons.
GURUKULA – The “place of the guru” or school
HALAVA – A sweet preparation made from semlina roasted in butter
HARI NAM SANKIRTAN – congregational chanting of the holy name in a public
place for the benefit of everyone
INITIATION – The formal ceremony of accepting the spiritual master as
one’s lifelong friend and master and at this time one vows to
follow the 4 regulative principles (which anyone, even
staying as a guest in our temples is supposed to maintain)
for the rest of one’s life; to chant at least 16
rounds, and to rise early every day for mangala arati. In
ISKCON one does not generally take this 1st initiation for at
least one year after joining, so that a candidate for
initiation can be sure to clearly understand exactly what he
is doing.
ISTAGHOSTI – (lit: “talking about Krsna”) A discussion amongst devotees
for the purpose of helping one another along the path of
spiritual understanding.
JAGAT GURU – Guru for the whole world
JAPA – Chanting the Holy Names on beads
“JAYA!” – “All Glories!” (to Lord Krsna and the spiritual master) or all
“victory!”
JNANA – Knowledge of the distinction between the body, soul and Supreme
Soul
KACORI – A vegetable delicacy that was a favourite of Srila Prabhupada’s
throughout his life
KALA – Eternal time
KALI – Goddess of the material energy
KALI-YUGA – Age of quarrel, the last in the cycle of four ages
KARMA – (i) Material action performed according to scriptural regulations
(ii) Action pertaining to the development of the material body;
(iii) Any material action which will incur a subsequent reaction;
(iv) The material reaction one incurs due to fruitive activity
KARMI – One who is engaged in the above process of fruitive work
KHIR – Sweet rice
KARATALS – Small cymbals made of bell metal (lit: “kara”-hand “tal”-bell)
KIRTAN – Singing the Holy Name and dancing
KURTA – A shirt that a male devotee wears
LADDU – A sweet made of gram flour and butter
LAKSMI – Goddess of fortune, or money when used for Krsna
LILA – Pastime of the Lord or His pure devotee
LOTUS FEET – This term is often used in reference to Lord Krsna, and
Krsna’s pure devotee. Lord Krsna is so beautiful that by
looking at the most beautiful aspects of the creation only
can we get an idea of what He is like. The lotus is such an
object. We start looking at Krsna beginning at His feet
because Krsna never leaves there, His feet always rest
on that lotus. Similarly, Krsna’s pure devotee enjoys the
same freedom and stance on the lotus of the spiritual
kingdom. In the Bhagavad Gita Lord Krsna gives the example of
how a lotus is not touched by the water in which it stands.
Similarly, the self realized soul is not touched by the
material energy although he is acting within it.
MAHA MAHA PRASADA – That prasada which comes directly from the plate of
the Guru – it is the most purifying of all
MAHAPRABHU – A name for Lord Caitanya, the greatest (maha-great) of all
masters
MAHA PRASADA – That prasada that has been offered directly on the altar to
the Deities
MANGALA – auspicious
MANTRA – A hymn or pure sound vibration that delivers (“tra”) the mind
(“mana”) from material conditioning
MAHA MANTRA – The “greatest” mantra
MAYA – (“ma”-not, “ya”-this illusion) an energy of Krsna’s which deludes
the living entity into forgetfulness of the Supreme Lord
MAYAPUR – The transcendental abode (“dhama”) where Lord Caitanya appeared
and eternally resides
MAYAVADI – Impersonalist or voidist adhering to the belief that ultimately
God is formless and without personality, and that he is also God
MODES – 3 qualities of this material world; sattva-goodness,
rajas-passion, tamas-ignorance
MRDANGA – Special double-headed drum, very sweet to hear, used in kirtana
MUKTI – The liberated stage–ultimate liberation means to be situated in
one’s original position as the eternal servant of the Supreme
Personality of Godhead, this is known as ‘vimukti’
NARAYANA – A name for Krsna in His four-armed form as the Lord of
Vaikkuntha, the spiritual world
OBEISANCES – Bowing respectfully to a Superior Vaisnava or Krsna
OMKARA – OM, the transcendental syllable which represents Krsna and which
is vibrated by transcendentalists for attainment of the Supreme
when undertaking sacrifices, charities and penances
PAKORA – A vegetable delicacy coated in batter and fried
PANDAVAS – The five sons of King Pandu; Yudhisthira, Bhima, Arjuna, Nakula
and Sahadeva
PARABRAHMAN – The Supreme Spirit
PARAMATMA – The Supersoul (“param”-Supreme, “atma”-soul). The localised
form of the Lord within the heart of every living entity
PARAMPARA – Disciplic succession through which spiritual knowledge is
transmitted
POURI – A flat bread fried in ghee
PRABHU – “Master”. A devotee, although he naturally considers himself the
humble servant of everyone, represents the Supreme Master,
Mahaprabhu, and so is adressed as prabhu. Devotees respectfully
adress each other as prabhu, always prepared to serve each other
in loving exchanges.
PRABHUPADA – (1) The master (“Prabhu”) at whose feet (“pada”) all other
masters sit (BTG no.64)
(2) The spiritual master who occupies the post or position
(“pada”) of the representative of the Lord
(3) “Prabhu” also means ‘master of the senses’ like ‘svami’
(4) “Prabhu” – “Lord”, “pada” – position = “He who has taken
the position of the Lord” (22/8/73)
PRAJALPA – Useless, inconsequential, mundane talking that benefits no-one
PRASADA – “Mercy”, or a term used for food or anything else after it has
been offered to the Lord
PREMA – Real love of God
PUJA – A ceremony for the worshipping of the Guru or the Deity, the person
offering the worship called the PUJARI
RADHARANI/SRIMATI – (a respectful address to a female person)
RADHARANI is Lord Krsna’s personal pleasure potency.
She is Krsna’s personal energy and is therefore
non-different from Him. Her name comes from the word
“aradhana”, to ‘give worship’ – She is the best
worshipper or devotee of Krsna.
RAMA – (1) Name of the Absolute Truth as the source of unlimited pleasure
(2) Incarnation of the Lord as a perfect King (Lord Ramacandra)
(3) A shortening of the Lord’s name “Balarama”
RASA – Relationship between the Supreme Lord and the living entities (5
principal varieties)
RASAGULLA – A round cheeseball boiled in a light syrup (it makes a
squeaking sound when you eat)
SAKABDA – a dating system often used in India – (to make it a.d. simply
add 79 yrs.
SADHU – Holy man, devotee
SAMADHI – Trance or absorbtion in Krsna consciousness
SAMOSA – A delicacy, enveloped in pastry and fried (similar looking to a
small pastry)
SANATANA-DHARMA – The eternal religion of a living being, which is to
render service unto the Lord
SANDESH – A sweet made of curd cheese
SANKIRTAN – The congregational glorification of the Lord by singing, and
dancing or, a term used for the propagation of the Lord’s
glories
SANNYASI – A teacher in the renounced order (lifelong monk) respectfully
addressed as “maharaja”
SAREE – The dress that is worn by the feminine sex
SASTRA – Revealed scripture (“sastra”-to rule by weapons)
SASTRIC – To rule by scripture
SIKHA – traditional tuft or lock of hair retained at the back of the head
which differentiates a vaisnava “personalist” from the other
“impersonalists” (such as shaven-headed Buddhist monks). Devotees
usually tie it a slip knot after bathing
SIMPLY WONDERFUL – A sweet, given this name by Srila Prabhupada, which is
made of powdered milk, icing sugar and butter
SLOKA – Verse
SRILA – A respectful term which shouold be used when addressing the Guru,
ie. Srila Prabhupada
SRIMAD BHAGAVATAM – The beautiful story of the Supreme Personality of
Godhead
SUNDARA – beautiful
SUBJI – vegetable preparation
SWAMI – Or Goswami – one who can control the mind and senses
TAPASYA – Voluntary acceptance of some material trouble for progress in
spiritual life
TILAK – A special clay, like “fuller’s earth” that a devotee annoints the
body with as a temple of the Lord
TRANSCENDENTAL – A state which is above the material modes of nature, on
the platform of eternity
TRIDANDA – The rod (danda) that a Sannyasi carries signifying that three
items, body, mind and words are all exclusively dedicated to
the service of the Lord. The small curved piece at the top of
the danda indicates that also his soul is surrendered to Lord
Krsna.
TRIDANDI SANNYASI – a devotee who has accepted the Tridanda or sannyasa
initiation
TURMERIC – The powdered spice which has a strong colour and purifies the
blood
VASUDEV – Father of Krsna
VASUDEVA – Lord Krsna the son of Vasudev
VAISNAVA – Devotee of Visnu (or God)
VEDAS – Scriptures coming from God (lit: “veda” means knowledge)
VIJNANA – The science of devotional service whereby one realises oneself
to be the eternal servant of Krsna
VISNU – A name for Krsna as the creator, maintainer and destroyer of the
material worlds
VRINDAVAN – The site of Lord Krsna’s transcendental village pastimes,
exhibited when He was present on earth about 5,000 years ago;
Lit: “Forest” (vana) of Tulasi trees (Vrnda)
VYASASANA – The seat (asana) of Vyasa or one representing Vyasa. Only a
bonafide Guru is allowed to sit on the Vyasasana
VYASADEVA – The greatest philosopher of ancient times, who, as an
empowered incarnation of the Lord compiled the Vedic
literatures
YAJNA – Sacrifice (pronounced Jagya)
YOGA – (lit: “plus”) to link, join, connect, yoke, etc with the Lord

WEEK 12
MISCELLANEOUS (Verse to learn Bg 2.13)

(1) People in the material world

*Two kinds of beings in this world (Bg 16.6+p)
*Four kinds of impious people (Bg 7.15+p/Iso 9p last para)
*The mentality of a demon (Bg 16.4+p,7+p 1st 1/2 of 1st para,8-18)
Arrogance, pride, anger, conceit, ignorance, lack of knowledge of correct
course of action, uncleanliness, misbehaviour, untruthfulness,
faithlessness, atheism, lust, destructive work, false prestige, illusion,
anxiety, cheating, no vision of a goal in life except sense gratification
(see also SB 7.5.30 and 31), cruelty, self-complacence, impudence,
delusion (caused by wealth), ritualistic sacrifices, pride in bodily
strength, blasphemy and mischievousness
*Envious people become ruined (Bg 3.32+p)
*Four kinds of pious people (Bg 7.16+p)
*The best of the pious (Bg 7.17,18+p’s)
*How a jnani actually becomes a great soul (Bg 7.19+p)
*The nature of a godly person (Bg 16.1-3)

(2) Food, Vegetarianism and Cow Protection

*Slaughtering animals, especially cows, is due to the mode of ignorance
and so society becomes condemned (Bg 14.16p 2nd para)
*Karmic reaction for one transgressing the law of God (Iso 1p 8th&9th
paras)
*Human bodies are not designed for flesh eating (though a human being is
able to eat meat if he wants) (Iso 17p 2nd para)
*Krsna wants us to be vegetarians (or rather “Krsnatarians”) (Bg 9.26+p
1st&2nd paras/Bg 3.13+p)
*In times of emergency only, when there is no alternative meat eating may
be allowed (Bg 16.1-3p 13th para 10th para Mac)
*The slaughtered animal has to come back again to complete his allotted
time in that species (Bg 16.1-3p 13th para)
*Even meat-eaters must depend on the production of vegetation (Bg 3.14p
last para)
*The foolishness of animal protection societies (PQPA page 79-80)
*Read book called the “Higher Taste”

(3) Christ and Christianity

*Lord Jesus as a saktyavesa avatar (Tape NY ’66-47)
*Read SSR pages 112-125 (we should not imitate a great personality but
follow his instructions)
*Miracles are for the ignorant (PQPA page 5-6)
*Christ and the sins of his followers (PQPA pages 58-59)
*Jesus is guiding the Christians but they are not taking His guidance
seriously (PQPA pages 93-94)
*If you want to imitate Jesus Christ by eating meat why not imitate him by
sacrificing your life for spreading God Consciousness? (PQPA page 95)

Possible answers to some popular questions

*”Only one way” “Alright, so follow it properly! In Krsna Consciousness we
are! “Yes, one can only approach God through the principle of guru and
disciplic succession. The guru is the representative of God and although
the person may change, the principle of only approaching the Lord through
the bona fide guru remains the same. Similarly, the Prime Minister may
have different secretaries at different times but each one will say to you
“I am the only way you can approach the Prime Minister”.
*Jesus eating meat–most unlikely, (see Vegetarian society booklet and
Higher Taste) even if he did, because of the situation he was preaching in
(practically a desert by the sea) we should not try to imitate such a
great personality as him but rather simply follow his instructions:-
*”Thou shalt not kill” should be taken literally. If I love you I would
not kill even your dog. Similarly if you actually love God how can you
even kill an ant what to speak of a cow? If Jesus did actually intend his
followers not to kill only other human beings, this shows that by saying
“Thou shalt not murder” he had to draw their attention to an obvious fact.
If you preach to murderers the first achievement is to stop their killing
of other humans–one has to start somewhere.
*”Plants also have souls”–yes, but there is a difference in the
development of consciousness, the animal feels practically the same pain
as human being. Most people are reluctant to personally kill an animal and
would not relish eating their own dog (or even budgerigar) for supper, but
would quite happily pull up a carrot. Killing one’s own child and eating
him has a much closer correlation to eating an animal, than does killing a
plant. Also, food such as fruit, milk and many vegetables and nuts involve
no killing at all. And if there is some sin in this type of killing it is
completely absolved by Lord Krsna (BG 3.13) and He also clearly tells us
what He wants us to offer Him (Bg 9.26).
*Srila Prabhupada also explained that sometimes plants become ripened
after the soul has already left the body–that is the process of ripening.
*Why can’t the meat eaters wait until the animal dies naturally?–they
already do this in other countries sometimes.
*If meat eating is so wonderful, why don’t they slaughter the animal in
church on Sundays in front of the whole congregation and decorate the
altar with the innards? Why only vegetables and fruits at harvest thanks
giving?

(3) Independence, Forgetfulness and Falldown

*It does not matter how the living entity originally came into contact
with the material world (Bg 13.20p 1/2way through 2nd para)
*”Dear Swami, why do some people neglect the Lord, if He is the centre of
everything?” “Dear Mr. Jones, why do some men lie down on the Bowery
Street? There is independence, and independence means that one can choose
wisely or foolishly”. Ever your well-wisher, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami (BTG
No 14)
*Minute independence (Bg 15.8+p)
*One’s freedom consists of acting according to Lord Krsna’s direction or
according to the direction of the modes of nature (Bg 18.63+p, 2nd
para/18.59&60)
*The living entity falls to the material world because of the desire to
lord it over the material nature and so he becomes the cause of his own
suffering and enjoyment (Bg 13.21+p)
*The living entity generates his own position by association with the
three modes (Bg 17.3P, middle of 1st para)

(4) Freedom (Liberation)

*No question while one is still influenced by the material energy. So many
miseries forced upon one:- repeated birth, death, old age and disease (Bg
13.9)/the six whips of material life:- lust, anger, greed, illusion,
madness and envy/ the three kinds of misery:- (1) caused by demigods,
(2) one’s own mind and body, (3) other living entities/innumerable other
miseries:- (SB 5.14.27)
*One is also forced to act by the modes (Bg. 18.59),, by one’s
uncontrolled mind (Bg 6.5+p end), by one’s senses (Bg 2.60/Bg 2.67) by the
government and even by one’s pet dog (PQPA pages 90-91)
*Everyone is always a servant (Bg Intro page 19, or 17 Mac)/PQPA page 92)
*Why are we in this situation? Because we have misused our freedom, which
is similar to that of a free citizen controlled by the government. (PQPA
page 90, bottom). If he correctly uses his freedom to obey the laws of the
state he is as free as the next man to travel all over and to use all the
facilities open to a good citizen. However if he rebelliously misuses his
freedom and breaks the laws he finds himself restricted by the government;
to a greater and greater degree the more rebellious he is. Similarly it is
possible for a living entity to take the body of a tree in consequence of
a great exhibition of rebelliousness. Apart from being a free citizen, if
one is a trusted servant of the government one may enjoy even greater
freedom, similarly Narada Muni can travel anywhere in the material and
spiritual worlds, like a good son enjoying to the extent of his father’s
estate–Krsna’s estate is unlimited!
*One may not appreciate the above analogy due to pride and illusion, like
Satan who says in Paradise Lost “Better to rule in hell than serve in
heaven”, but who is completely wrong because there are not actual kings in
the material world except the modes of nature and the senses (KB Vol.2 Ch
5 Page 40 or/Vol.2 p.182 of the 3 Volume Set). Although the rebellious
living entity wants to rule and dominate others he is ever dominated,
whilst in the illusion that he is in fact the dominator (Bg 16.14)
*Another example Srila Prabhupada gives (Bg Intro page 13 11-12 Mac)
states that as a finger is free to move in co-operation with the rest of
the body we are also free–but as soon as the finger detaches itself from
the body in an attempt to become free of it’s obligation it becomes
useless to itself and also the rest of the body, and immediately it’s
conditions of distress begin (SB 6.16.57+p). Similarly an individual or
society without a sense of obligation and affiliation to God, is useless
and dead (SB 2.3.23), although initially there may appear to be freedom
but it is simply the so-called freedom of the finger separating itself
from the body. Lord Krsna is represented in this analogy as the complete
body of which we are a tiny part. The part of the body enjoys freedom to
the extent that the body possesses it–as Krsna is unlimitedly free we can
also share in His unlimited freedom if we are attached and surrendered to
Him.
*Yet another example Srila Prabhupada gives (Tape–Lon 73,60 Side B) is
that of a street dog who is apparently running very freely but who is
actually restricted by hunger, disease, loneliness, fear, mistreatment and
many other impediments that the jolly, confident dog who serves a master
does not have. In fact, such a street dog will often try to find a master
to give him shelter, and fawning, attempt to follow someone back home.
Krsna and Krsna’s devotee, however, will never kick one away however mangy
and flea-bitten one is!
*Krsna controls one out of love, and maya by force (PQPA page 89). Srila
Prabhupada once gave the example that one can either be controlled by a
policeman and kicked into submission or one can rectify one’s bad habits
by the kind association of the devotees–the result is ultimately the
same. Similarly, by maya’s kicking, the proud so-called fredom-fighter
will eventually come to Lord Krsna’a lotus feet and find real freedom.
*one can try to interfere with destiny and commit suicide but one must
come back and continue one’s sentence in that particular prison situation
(PQPA pages 89-90). Similarly the impersonalists try to commit spiritual
suicide in an attempt to avoid serving Krsna but actual liberation means
real life, not destruction (Bg 6.23p 3rd para). A hospital patient will
think himself factually liberated from his disease when he recovers, not
if he dies from the treatment.
*A devotee surrenders to Krsna (Bg 7.14+p/Bg 15.5), follows the regulative
principles of freedom (Bg 2.64) and thus becomes freed from the enforced
conditions of material nature. Sometimes when ignorant people see the
discipline of the practitioners of sadhana-bhakti, they think this
regimented existence to be horrible, not being able to comprehend how the
devotees are becoming freed from the bodily concept of life and fixed up
in the complete freedom of the soul, which lies beyond the covered regions
of this world. And even within the apparent confines of material existence
a surrendered soul is in fact completely free of it’s influence and
factually liberated (Bg 5.11p)
*A devotee is not controlled by false thoughts (PQPA page 92) because he
knows that his constitutional position is that of the eternal servant of
Krsna (Bg 4.35p, last 2 lines). Freedom therefore means to be situated in
one’s eternal, constitutional position.
*A devotee does not separately endeavour for liberation because he is
already liberated (PQPA pages 92-93). In fact all the benefits that
liberation have to offer stand at the door of the devotee waiting to serve
Him.

(5) Violence and Non-violence

*should be properly understood because sometimes apparent violence is
actually non-violence and vice-versa. A policeman may be considered
violent, or even criminal himself, if, in a particular situation he
refrains from violence. A doctor is considered non-violent even though he
cuts off your arm. A so-called friend is violent if he gives you a
cigarette, meat etc. (see also Bg 2.21+p)
*Violence and non-violence are not always physical concepts–a father is
considered violent if he denies his child certain rights, an advertisement
is considered violent because it violates one’s sensibilities etc.
*Generally violence is taken as the application of unlawful force.
“Unlawful!” ultimately must mean “against the laws of God”, which, being
absolute, are designed for the progressive path of everyone. Therefore
violence means to transgress the laws of God.
*Violence further means to put someone to distress, misery or confusion.
Therefore to be non-violent one must have knowledge, otherwise unwittingly
one may be causing violence to someone–“the path to hell is paved with
good intentions”. (see Bg 10.4-5p 6th para/Bg 13.8-12p 3rd para)
*Violence also means to obstruct someone’s progress. “Progress” can be
understood from authoritative scripture to be the evolution of the soul to
his natural state of Krsna consciousness. The worst form of violence
therefore is to interfere with someone’s spiritual life.
*Animals too are evolving progressively. To unnecessarily kill an animal
is also violence (Bg 16.1-3p 13th para)

(6) Morality

*means to surrender to Krsna (Bg 18.78+p 3rd para)
*Krsna, being absolute, knows precisely what is right and wrong, correct
and incorrect. Anyone surrendering to Krsna is no longer subject to the
“mental platform” where there can be no factual good qualities (Bg
2.55+p), acts for the well being of every living entity (NOD preface, 3rd
para before the last one), has a perfect character and is dear to everyone
(Bg 5.7)
*sometimes rascals accuse Krsna of being immoral–one such rascal
challenged: “If Krsna is actually moral why do we find Him cavorting with
other men’s wives?” Srila Prabhupada immediately replied, “You are
immoral. Krsna is God, everything belongs to Him, and you are thinking
that your so-called wife belongs to you.” Krsna is the Supreme emblem of
morality and Gita is the Supreme instruction on morality.

(7) Honesty

*explained (PQPA pages 70 near the bottom)–74 (?down), 76 (1/2 way)–78
(bottom))

(8) Peace

*means–real desirelessness or to be free of the desire for
sense-gratification, over-Lordship, false ego etc. (Bg 2.71+p). To desire
everything for Krsna knowing Him to be the real enjoyer, master and friend
(Bg 5.29+p, 1st para). To be sure and certain of one’s ultimate goal (Bg
2.66+p)
*is achieved–by restraining oneself from the urges of the senses (a
devotee is full in himself, like the ocean, and is never disturbed by the
incessant river-like flows of desires–therefore he is peaceful) (Bg
2.70+p)
-by giving up all personal desire (CC Madhya 19.149)
-by being faithful (Bg 4.39)
-by offering the result of one’s work to Krsna (Bg 5.12+p/Bg 12.12)
-by conquering the mind (Bg 6.7)
-by surrendering to Krsna (Bg 18.62)
-by even a fallen devotee who always tries to serve Krsna (Bg 9.31)
*the Peace Formula (SSR page 192-3)

(9) Love

*is transformed into lust on contact with the material energy, however,
this lust can be transformed back into love again (Bg 3.37p)

(10) Cults and Culture

*Read booklet entitled, “Please don’t Lump Us In”.

INTRODUCTORY HANDBOOK FOR KRSNA CONSCIOUSNESS

This handbook and accompanying curriculum, which are to be used en
jointly, have been compiled under the direct order of the Governing
Body Commission of the International Society for Krsna Co

J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League (Just Uniquely Spread The Instructions of Caitanyadeva Everywhere)
The Unbroken Chain

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