Comments Posted By Amara_dasa
Displaying 1 To 10 Of 21 Comments
Dear Rupanuga Prabhu,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
I was very sorry to hear about the passing of your wife, Krsna-krpa dasi. I remember her quite fondly from New Hastinapura in Potomac and how eager she always was to dress Sri Sri Radha-madana-mohana and chant japa in the morning. What a special soul she was and also very blessed to have your association in matrimony. That you both remained together for such a long time in faithful service to Krsna says a lot.
I hope you are feeling better now. What is your son, Ekendra, doing these days? I remember you both from time to time and always feel grateful for the guidance you gave me during my early years in Krsna consciousness during the 1970s.
Your humble servant,
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 02.01.2009 @ 19:46
Hare Krishna! No one is suggesting teaching higher qualities such as love, self-sacrifice, kindness, etc. without bhakti-seva. They must go hand in hand. But if bhakti-seva is executed without any human kindness, love or respect, then what kind of bhakti-seva is that? Devotees are only fooling themselves if they think they can execute bhakti-yoga while at the same time being cruel, unkind, unaccepting or neglectful toward others.
Srila Prabhupada actually demonstrated for us how to practice both devotional service and basic human kindness simultaneously. He was both a great devotee and perfect gentleman, always devoted in his service to Krsna but never failing to show other people love, kindness, respect and friendship–even when he had philosophical disagreements with them. He taught by example, which is the best kind of teaching and especially important for impressionable young children and new devotees to receive.
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 24.11.2008 @ 21:47
Hare Krsna! This is an interesting discussion and I’m glad it is being raised. Srila Prabhupada mentions in many places that all members of society must be respected, cared for and appropriately engaged. There is an especially nice quote in “Krsna Book”:
“In all communities in human society–including the brahmanas, ksatriyas, vaishyas, sudras, candalas, etc.–and in the animal kingdom–including the cows, dogs, goats, etc.–everyone has his part to play. Each is to work in cooperation for the total benefit of all society, which includes not only animate objects but also inanimate objects like hills and land….Another hint we get from this statement is that the candalas, or the untouchables, are also not to be neglected by the higher classes and should be given necessary protection. Everyone is important, but some are directly responsible for the advancement of human society, and some are only indirectly responsible. However, when Krsna consciousness is there, then eveyone’s total benefit is taken care of.”
(”Krsna Book,” Vol I, pp. 245-246)
There is also a nice Srimad Bhagavatam purport (SB 1.11.19) wherein Srila Prabhupada states that even “prostitutes are necessary for the proper upkeep of society” and that they should be “maintained.” Thus we see that Vedic civilization was accommodating of all types of people whether fallen or renounced, outcaste or brahmana, etc.
One statement I do not agree with from the original posting concerns that made by Nelson Mandela, wherein he states that no one is born hating and that people must be taught to hate. Rather, we see that as soon as small children become aware of the world around them they immediately begin to pick on the “different” kids–the fat kid, the effeminate boy, the lone black kid in the class, etc. Hatred, envy, intolerance, prejudice, cruelty, etc. are all natural animal instincts that every conditioned soul is born with to various degrees. What needs to be taught–particularly by social leaders and religious groups–are the higher qualities of love, self-sacrifice, acceptance, fairness, spiritual vision, kindness and so on. Without the strong propagation of these higher principles in human society there will always be discord, even among those who are otherwise apparently religious.
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 21.11.2008 @ 22:03
Hare Krishna! These quotes from Srila Prabhupada were very interesting to read. It has always been my understanding that brahmacaris, vanaprasthas and sannyasis don’t vote since they are disconnected from worldly affairs, but that grhasthas may or may not vote according to their involvement in society. In one sense, the Vaishnava and brahmana (grhasthas) are the ones who should be voting since their opinions are spiritually enlightened and it is their duty to help guide society. As with Akruranatha Prabhu, I will be voting for Barack Obama this November and just about all of the devotees I’ve spoken with are doing the same, for various reasons.
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 18.10.2008 @ 21:21
Hare Krsna! What a beautifully recounted story of Sudama Prabhu’s passing. Thanks so much for sharing it with us!
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 06.08.2008 @ 22:19
Hare Krishna! I appreciated this article by Karnamrita Prabhu very much. There are so many wonderful, positive things about Krsna consciousness that it’s a shame when devotees focus only on the negative prohibitions. It is quite often the difference between good and bad preaching.
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 10.07.2008 @ 21:25
Hare Krsna! This was a wonderful article and so inspiring to read…exactly the kind of encouraging, positive preaching I like to see among our ISKCON leaders.
How many times do we have to listen to “fire and brimstone” lectures or be called dogs, demons, “less-than-human,” unintelligent, etc., before the negative impact sets in? In another nice article recently posted by Mahatma dasa, he tells a story in which a group of friends called another friend a ghost so many times that the friend actually began to wonder whether or not he might actually be a ghost!
Of course, we must always encourage humility and remember our minute position in relation to Krsna and His pure devotees–but let’s not overdue it. Devotees should first and foremost encourage, support and love one another; it is not our job to humiliate, beat upon or put each other down. When Chota Haridasa fell down and was neglected by the Lord, the Vaishnavas proved themselves even more merciful by continuing to support and encourage poor Haridasa. May same loving mood always be within us.
Vaishnava das anudas,
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 18.06.2007 @ 20:02
This was a thoughtful article and fair enough. I’m glad to see that devotees are beginning to contemplate the nuances of sin and virtue. For too many years we have just been dismissing and condemning the fallen rather than trying to help, advise and encourage them.
Tamohara Prabhu’s point that no material sex life is ultimately acceptable is a good one. We should not be attached or falsely proud of any sex life in this world. One time an Indian man proudly paraded all of his many children before Srila Prabhupada. Srila Prabhupada, however, was not particularly impressed and even told one of his disciples, “He is simply showing me his sex life.” We should not be falsely proud of ourselves as great progenitors and “pro-creationists.” Nor should we belittle or ridicule those who do not have children or big, big families. In truth, procreation and pregnancy are affairs of this material world. Srila Prabhupada explains this as follows:
“In all eight of the heavenly varsas [planetary islands], although men and women enjoy sex pleasure, there is no pregnancy. Pregnancy only takes place in lower-grade life. For example, animals like dogs and hogs become pregnant twice a year, and each time they beget at least half a dozen offspring. Even lower species of life such as snakes give birth to hundreds of young at one time. This verse informs us that in grades of life higher than ours, pregnancy occurs once in a lifetime. People still have sex, but there is no pregnancy. In the spiritual world, people are not very attracted to sex life, due to their exalted devotional attitude. Practically speaking, there is no sex life in the spiritual world, but even if sometimes it does occur, there is no pregnancy at all.”
(Srimad Bhagavatam 5.17.12, purport)
This is just a side point, however. I appreciate Urmila’s article and especially commend the last paragraph.
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 16.04.2007 @ 19:54
Dear Krsna-kirti Prabhu,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.
My basic disagreements with your article are as follows:
1) You don’t seem to understand or even define homosexual orientation properly,
2) I don’t get any sense or true feeling of compassion for homosexual people and devotees, and
3) You can’t seem to differentiate between Srila Prabhupada’s standards and preaching to the fallen. For instance, Srila Prabhupada often instructed fallen meat-eaters to at least refrain from cow meat and instead only eat the meat of lesser animals such as fish or goat. Only a foolish person would consider that Srila Prabhupada was thus encouraging meat-eating. Rather, he was merely trying to limit it as far as possible. Similarly, when your Guru Maharaja Hridayananda Goswami instructs fallen homosexuals to at least limit themselves to a single partner (in faithful monogamy), only a foolish person will consider that he is therefore encouraging homosexuality. Rather, he is merely trying to limit the illicit behavior as far as possible.
The practice of limiting illicit activities as far as possible among the fallen is a regular preaching tool used by devotees outside temple walls. Only in regard to homosexuality does there appear to be some outcry to this application, and this is what leads me and others to suspect that personal prejudices are coming into play.
Why is it such a concern to you if fallen homosexuals are encouraged to become monogamous rather than promiscuous? My personal suggestion is that you abandon this topic of preaching. It does not become you, in my humble opinion. I say this as a concerned God-uncle.
Vaishnava das anudas,
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 10.04.2007 @ 20:18
Shyamasundara dasa wrote: “Sudras followed brahminical principles as do all members of Varna Ashrama dharma.”
Do you have any scriptural references for this statement? Otherwise, I’ve never heard such a position before and it is contradicted in the Dharma Shastra.
“Manu-samhita,” for instance, states that only the brahmanas, as well as ksatriyas and vaishyas that were twice-born, were expected to follow brahminical principles. Sudras and ordinary vaishyas and ksatriyas were not.
According to “Manu-samhita,” sudras were not permitted to hear, learn, recite or instruct Vedic knowledge (MS 3.156, 4.99, 10.127), what to speak of being expected to follow brahminical principles! Text 10.126 states that a sudra “has no right to fulfill the sacred law of the Aryans, although there is no prohibition against his fulfilling certain portions of the law.”
In regard to homosexual behavior, “Manu-samhita” only prohibits it for brahmanas and twice-born men (MS 11.68, 175). If such men engaged in male-to-male copulation they were required to take a ritualistic bath or lose their brahminical, twice-born status. There are otherwise no laws prohibiting homosexual behavior among the ordinary, lower classes.
Pure Vaishnavas, of course, are expected to follow all brahminical principles as Srila Prabhupada instructed us.
Comment Posted By Amara_dasa On 10.04.2007 @ 19:49