Comments Posted By Puskaraksa das

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How to address a woman?

If I may, I would like to emphasise the fact that we shouldn’t view the respective position of man and woman in terms of competition (which is not completely absent in the approach of the above article), but in terms of being complementary to each other.

By doing so, we will by-pass the ego problem, which often ends up being the main issue!

Nevertheless, I would agree with the gist of this article, about the fact that being called “Mother”, ‘Mataji” or “Ma” is a very honorific title. As it is, each and every man starts his life, being dependant on a woman for his survival, may it be in the womb only.

Moreover, small children embodied as girls tend to play with dolls and seem to naturally prepare themselves for this inbuilt role they are likely to play in the future. So, to even call a child or one’s daughter “Ma”, is not far-fetched…!

Yet, in our society of devotees, as a result of having imbibed some higher knowledge, I do not think we should over emphasise, nor minimise, the respective position of each gender, in the sense that we should not identify ourselves with the body we are temporarily inhabiting.

Hence, out of etiquette and respect for the laws of God and nature, we may behave accordingly, but what we cherish above all, is spiritual advancement and spiritual qualities, which are the ornaments of a saintly person, saddhu bhusana.

In that regard, it is no more a matter of gender.

Both men and women and particularly husband and wife, are there to help each other make progress on the spiritual path, as loving and caring brothers and sisters ought to, in a pacified and unified spiritual family, under the loving care of Srila Prabhupada and our Parampara.

Thus, we are mutually serving each other, don’t we…?

When the cook cooks for the temple devotees, does he or she cook for men or women only…?

When the pujari dresses and decorates beautifully the Deities, is it not for the pleasure of Their Lordships and for the whole assembly, or is it for the pleasure of men or women only…?

In this way, we should be careful not to promote, directly or indirectly, a rivalry in between men and women.

Men are meant to protect women when they’re grown up and women are meant to protect men till then.

Yet, through their love and devotion and spiritual qualities, both genders keep assisting and protecting each other throughout their lives, be it in running society, families or temples.

Jaya Sacinandana…!

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 27.07.2014 @ 15:58

Krishna Consciousness in Iceland

Dear Sarvabhauma Prabhu

Thank you very much for this enlivening presentation !

I am so happy to get to know you, as well as discover more about the background of Gaura Bhagavan and Prema Bhakti Prabhus, whom I have heard a lot about, during this past year.

As a matter of fact, by Guru and Krishna’s transcendental arrangements, I happened to be instrumental in connecting Praghosa Prabhu with both the Indian Ambassador to Iceland and this Anglo-Icelandic Indian born gentleman, which led to the January visit to Iceland and first meetings.

What happened is that I had been instructed by my Guru Maharaja to stay back at the temple near Paris last Janmasthami and not go on Harinam with the other devotees, during Janmasthami Festival and the celebration of the 40th anniversary of the installation of Sri-Sri Radha-Paris-Ishvara.

I understood later that it was so that I could greet His Excellency the Ambassador of India to Iceland along with his wife and two children, who happened to be visiting the temple prior to their flying back to Iceland.

Besides, offering them some maha-prasadam and some spiritual gifts, we had a good contact, and shared a special connection with Odisha (Orissa) where they took birth, alike my Guru Maharaja.

It is at that time that they expressed their desire to have an ISKCON temple open in Iceland, while telling me about their earlier connections with ISKCON, during his previous assignments, especially with the Toronto and Chicago Temples.

Thus, I decided to investigate who was the GBC for Iceland and found out that it was my friend Praghosa.

The rest is history, in the course of being written, by the mercy of all of you.

Hare Krishna

Affectionately yours in the service of Sri Guru & Sri Gauranga

Das dasanudasa
Puskaraksa das - GGS

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 20.07.2014 @ 12:05

Lost paradise football

Harikeśa: If a neophyte devotee is with determination endeavoring for purification but he were to meet with death as he is still influenced by the lower modes, although he is seriously trying, then does he take another birth or does he go to Kṛṣṇa?

Prabhupāda: No, he has to take another birth. If he is not completely purified, he has to suffer another birth. Nobody is allowed to enter into the spiritual realm unless he is cent percent pure.

Harikeśa: So if a devotee dies and remembers Kṛṣṇa, although he is not perfect…

Prabhupāda: Unless he is perfect, he cannot remember Kṛṣṇa. That is not possible.

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 20.07.2014 @ 17:05

Japa Affirmations

Note: Mahatma das answers my first comment and this comes before #4:

As one gradually realises the nature of Krishna Nama, who is apauruseya, rather than being in a mood of being the doer, one will witness how the Holy Name appears by His own sweet will and what He is capable of doing to us.

The following is the translation of a song from Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura’s Sharanagati:

“My heart is just like a desert, hot with the rays of the sun. This is my internal mental condition. The desire for mortal things cannot satisfy me because by nature they are death-producing. And not one or two, but thousands of such death-producing desires have taken shelter in my mind. So, my subconscious region is always burning. This is my condition.

But somehow, by the grace of the sadhu and guru, the Hare Krishna maha-mantra with its infinite prospect has entered through the holes of my ears and reached the plane of my heart. And there, with some peculiar hope, with infinite, auspicious possibilities, it touched my heart with a new kind of nectar.

New hope is aroused by that sound of the maha-mantra. Then by force it comes form the heart towards the tongue. Not that by the endeavor of my tongue I am producing that sound. No. What came from the heart of a pure saint through my ear, entered my heart, and that forcibly appeared on my tongue, and began to dance.

That is the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. It descends from above. It cannot be produced by the material tongue. It’s source is above. And through an agent of the absolute it comes through the ear to the heart. From the heart it gathers some sympathy, then the maha-mantra forcibly appears upon the tongue and begins to dance. With great force it comes to the end of the tongue, and that sweet sound begins its dancing.”

Sometimes the devotee thinks: I am beside myself. I can’t understand where I am. Where am I? What is this? What is all about me? It has almost made me mad. Am I a madman? Where is my past experience, my seriousness, my gravity, where are they? What am I? I have been converted wholesale by a foreign thing. I am a doll in the hands of a great force, which is also so affectionate to me. I can’t ascertain how it is possible that by my faith I have entered this great, unknown environment, not experienced before. And at last I find that I am captivated. My entire being, within and without, has been captured by a particularly sweet force. I can’t help being prey to such a sweet power.

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 06.07.2014 @ 11:29

nama smarile rupa aise sange sange

rupa nama bhinna naya nace nana range

“When one remembers the Hare Krishna maha-mantra, the transcendental form of the Lord Krishna appears in the heart and mind along with the chanting. When one realizes that the Hare Krishna maha-mantra and Krishna’s form are non-different, then the maha-mantra dances on the tongue enabling the chanter to taste a variety of ecstatic mellows at every second.”

(Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura - Hari-nama-cintamani, Chapter 15)

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 05.07.2014 @ 10:44


“I can’t give any proper description of this. I came to take shelter of Him (maha-mantra) and accept Him as my guardian; now at His hand I am being dealt with in such a merciless and despotic way.

Still, I feel that everything is very pleasing, beyond my experience. What is this? I can’t resist anymore. I am fully captured. Let my fate go anywhere. I can’t come out. I am a captive in the hand of a sweet friend (maha-mantra); my whole independence is gone. There is no way left to me but to surrender. I am unable to describe my real position.

I find that He’s (Krishna in the form of the maha-mantra) an autocrat. Whatever He likes, He will do. Since it is not possible for me to give any resistance, I must surrender. Let me also cooperate with whatever He is pleased to do. Otherwise I find that the sweetness of the maha-mantra is condensed like a blossoming flower, and very wonderful streams of sweet current are flowing from it. The maha-mantra contains so many sweet variegated forms of current within Him, and He is wonderfully expressing Himself in different ways. Sometimes He emanates a peculiar type of color and figure, and disappears.

So many charming aspects are shown as if to my eyes within, and He (maha-mantra) forcibly takes me to surrender at the foot of that altar.

Then I find that chanting the maha-mantra gives me new encouragement, a new prospect, and new hope. Whatever we want, whatever is our internal demand, it is supplied by the maha-mantra. If we take the maha-mantra, all our internal hankerings will be fulfilled. It is eternal, it is the purest of the pure, and it is full of ecstasy.”

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 05.07.2014 @ 10:33

Thank you Mahatma Prabhu for your good will and endeavours to help and assist devotees, as per their individual need, so that they may keep making further progress along the spiritual path, and not feel discouraged, especially while facing obstacles and internal difficulties.

This is much needed, especially in a benevolent spirit and in a personal way, as philosophy also needs to be translated into merciful concern and kind words of support.

In regards to the above japa affirmations, we appreciate your wishful thinking and desire to develop a positive attitude towards “performing” japa…

However, I would personally not encourage you, if I may (being your junior), to overly use psychological techniques, such as the autosuggestion method.

Indeed, it is symptomatic that every above line starts with “I”.

Thus, these positive affirmations still draw a limit to how much “I” can think and feel that “I” am the doer…!

Hence, in a deeper sense, we should beware the misunderstanding according to which we can manipulate and be in control of the Holy Name…!

“I” think that and “I” will do like this, …!

Rather, with all humility at our command, we should prepare ourselves to hopefully become appropriate recipients of Krishna’s mercy so that the Holy Name may manifest Himself through us.

In that regard, let us not forget that the Holy Name descends from the spiritual world:

Golokera prema dhana, Harinama Sankirtana

The Holy Name is Krishna Himself.

So, in my menial experience, it is more a matter of getting ready to welcome the Holy Names and have Them manifest on our tongue and in our heart, rather than being in control.

In that regard, Srila Prabhupada refers to Krishna dancing on our tongue in the form of His Holy Name!

Kali-yuge Nama rupa, Krishna Avatara

In the Kali-yuga, Krishna descends in the form of His Holy Name

prabhu tumi jivera mangala cinta kori
kali-yuge nama-sange svayam avatari

“Thus the Lord, considering the welfare of the living entities, descended in Kali-yuga as Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu along with the Hare Krishna maha mantra to propagate the yuga-dharma. (Harinama cintamani)

So, in the footsteps of Srila Haridasa Thakur and our Acaryas, isn’t it more a matter of becoming proper recipients of Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga’s mercy, so that we may properly welcome Sri-Sri Radha-Krishna Nama and allow them to manifest within us and express Themselves purely in the form of suddha Nama…?

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 01.07.2014 @ 07:17

Back to Godhead means…

From a Harinam Cintamani - Chapter 15:

“Two types of jiva-sakti

The marginal region (tatastha) of the para-sakti manifests the jiva-sakti.

The jiva is eternal, inconceivably and simultaneously one with, yet different from, the Supreme Lord. He is Lord Krishna’s energy and is therefore counted among the paraphernalia of the Lord’s service.

There are two categories of jivas: nitya-baddha and nitya-mukta, or eternally conditioned and eternally liberated souls.

The eternally liberated jiva is entitled to render eternal devotional service.

The eternally conditioned jiva is engrossed in material activities.
He can be said to be of two types: extroverted and introspective.

The introspective nitya-baddha jivas are endeavoring to reach out to Lord Krishna.

The extroverted jivas are totally absorbed in gross matter and thus are far removed from Krishna; they simply want to exploit things originally meant for Lord Krishna’s service for their own enjoyment.

The more fortunate and pious jivas amongst the introspective ones come into contact with sadhus, and in their association take to chanting the Lord’s holy name, which ultimately transports them to the portals of the spiritual sky.

The less fortunate introspective jivas are attracted to the paths of karma and jnana, by which they worship many demigods or finally merge into the impersonal brahman.

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 06.07.2014 @ 09:35

From Radha-Syama to Maya-devi Dhama

In 1985, by the merciful arrangement of the Supreme Lord, I was assigned to serve Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja during a fortnight in France, on the occasion of his first preaching tour outside India. As I had recognised my eternal saviour and well-wisher, whom I had been longing for during my first five years in ISKCON, on his side, he had mercifully accepted me as his disciple and had started to teach me as my eternal Gurudeva.

So, once, he told me the following:

Guru tells you: “Take it, it’s a rope”, so you naturally bend down to take it. Then, Guru tells you “No, don’t take it. It’s a snake !”. So, you stop. Then again, Guru says “Take it, it’s a rope”, and again “No, don’t take it, it’s a snake…!”

So, which instruction will you follow ?

Logically speaking, you will follow the last one. That is the one that stands!

Similarly, since Srila Prabhupada spoke in different ways, at different times, what stands as final is his conclusion. In this way, Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja mercifully gives us the clue:

“Srila Prabhupada has on many occasions made different statements about this subject matter.

He has also himself drawn the conclusion.

When the conclusion is given, it is to be understood that whatever might have been said before, if it may appear to be different from that conclusion, for what ever reason, is now cancelled.

The conclusion is what stands.”

Nevertheless, dear Svarup Prabhu, you seem to indicate that, as individuals, we are entitled to have our own opinion.

I would agree about the fact that we are eternally different individual jivas and thus can exchange different rasas both with the Supreme Lord and His eternal entourage.

Yet, as far as Tattvas go, we shall probably agree on the fact that Tattva has to be accepted and presented, as it is. So, it is not a matter of trying to become a muni and propose one’s own opinion.

Rather, we shall try and serve the Absolute Truth, Vraje Vrajendra Nandana and His pure devotee, Sri Guru:

evaṁ janaṁ nipatitaṁ prabhavāhi-kūpe
kāmābhikāmam anu yaḥ prapatan prasaṅgāt
kṛtvātmasāt surarṣiṇā bhagavan gṛhītaḥ
so’haṁ kathaṁ nu visṛje tava bhṛtya-sevām

I was fallen into the darkened well of material life, where I was engaged in seeking sense enjoyment after sense enjoyment in bad association. The rishi of the gods, Narada, took me, O Lord, and made me his own. So how could I ever abandon the service of your servant?
(Prahlad to Lord Nrisinghadeva, 7.9.28)

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 19.07.2014 @ 09:35

Dear Svarup Prabhu,

Thank you for your kind words and the humble stand you took, as well as for becoming more introspective.

Indeed, concerning these topics, we ought to be humble, as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself, stated:

ayi nanda-tanuja kiṅkaraṁ
patitaṁ māṁ viṣame bhavāmbudhau
kṛpayā tava pāda-paṅkaja-
sthita-dhūlī-sadṛśaṁ vicintaya

“My dear Lord, I am Your eternal servant, but SOMEHOW OR OTHER I have fallen into the ocean of this material world. Kindly pick me up and fix me as a speck of dust at Your lotus feet.” (Śikṣāṣṭaka 5)

This certainly implies that the explanation of the cause is beyond the reach and cognition of a conditioned soul.

As a matter of fact,

“Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī states in his Bhagavat-sandarbha (16) that by His potencies, which act in natural sequences beyond the scope of the speculative human mind, the Supreme Transcendence, the summum bonum, eternally and simultaneously exists in four transcendental features: His personality, His impersonal effulgence, particles of His potency (the living beings), and the principal cause of all causes. The Supreme Whole is compared to the sun, which also exists in four features, namely the personality of the sun-god, the glare of his glowing sphere, the sun rays inside the sun planet, and the sun’s reflections in many other objects. The ambition to corroborate the existence of the transcendental Absolute Truth by limited conjectural endeavors cannot be fulfilled, because He is beyond the scope of our limited speculative minds. In an honest search for truth, we must admit that His powers are inconceivable to our tiny brains. Material knowledge is far removed from the spiritual nature, and therefore the acts and arrangements of the Absolute Truth are, beyond all doubts, inconceivable.” (Purport to C.c. Adi-lila 2.96)

This being said, concerning some apparent contradictions, interestingly enough, Srila Prabhupada, after having made in the course of his preaching different statements, drew himself his own conclusion.

So, rather than accepting what could be some circumstantial anti-thesis only, we might as well accept Srila Prabhupada’s thesis which happens to be in accordance with his own conclusion, as well as with Krishna’s teachings and the siddantha commonly accepted by our Vaishnava Sadhus and Gurus.

Thus, rather than isolating oneself, a safer stand would be to accept the conclusion, while admitting the inconceivable aspect of this topic…!

Comment Posted By Puskaraksa das On 16.07.2014 @ 22:53


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