Comments Posted By Visakha Priya dasi
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Sitalatma Prabhu, Hare Krsna. Are you not aware, or do you not believe, that the appearance of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu inaugurates a ten thousand golden years period? Lord Caitanya appeared in 1486 and we are now in 2013, so we already have progressed 527 years into the golden age. Jaya!
I was not aware that this golden age refers to a period of hedonistic delights as you seem to indicate. As far as I know the golden age refers to the flood of love of God emanating from the pure chanting of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra, which our parched souls sorely need.
To answer your question more directly, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has said that when the high court judges will be wearing tilak on the bench it will indicate that Krsna consciousness is successful. The fact that His Holiness Radhanath Swami could address–in full Vaisnava attire– a gathering of influential mlecchas and yavanas (in the legendary House of Lords of all places) and draw a favorable response is a sure sign that Krsna consciousness is infiltrating the mundane sphere. All glories to Srila Prabhupada, who asked his disciples to rack their brains in order to find novel ways of presenting Krsna consciousness. May he bless you with such consciousness.
Visakha Priya dasi
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 11.05.2013 @ 07:36
Wow! That’s wonderful! The Golden Age is on its way. All glories to the British Yatra and its congregation! All glories to His Holiness Radhanath Swami! All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
Your unworthy servant,
Visakha Priya dasi
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 08.05.2013 @ 12:03
Thank you, bbd Prabhu, for setting the record straight about how karma is acquired. Sometimes, we hear things so often that we become brainwashed. One time, when he was the TP in Vrindavan, H. H. Bhakti-rasamrta Swami asked me to do some research on whether a fast (including on days like Janmastami and Gaura Purnima) should be broken with grains or not. I did extensive research–in Folio, emails to senior devotees like Hari-sauri Prabhu, Yamuna Devi, H. H. Bhanu Swami, etc… I also visited some Gaudiya Mathas. The conclusion of all that inquest was that there is absolutely no sastric injunction (Bhanu Swami) regarding breaking a fast with Ekadasi prasada. It is purely a matter of proper hygiene. Especially in India, where it gets very hot, it is quite risky to break a fast with heavy grains. Srila Prabhupada, of course, gives both points of view–interestingly enough, in the earlier years he seemed to favor breaking fasts with Ekadasi prasada, and later on he said “full feast” could be taken.
So I gave my report to our TP and he accepted it. Then, as I was mentioning how devotees in Vrindavan had become so adamant that breaking fast with grains was tantamount to breaking Ekadasi, I foolishly mentioned that, “Yes, on Ekadasi, sinful reactions get into the grains, but not on other days.” Maharaja, Prabhu at the time, looked at me with a mixture of astonishment and perhaps even slight indignation and said, “This is not why we fast on Ekadasi! There are no sinful reactions stored in prasadam! We fast from grains only because grains are so nice and we want to give up sense gratification on Ekadasi. We do not follow karma-kanda!” Immediately I felt ashamed of having been so foolish and faithless and brainwashed by ignorant propaganda.
That being said, I broke my Gaura Purnima fast with some grain mahaprasada that year–and sure enough, I got sick.
Visakha Priya dasi
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 21.04.2013 @ 12:25
Kesava Krsna, Prabhu, I am sure Lord Krsna would bathe their feet. But He is like the powerful sun who can burn up all impurities. We have been advised not to imitate Lord Siva’s drinking an ocean of poison. Following in the footsteps of the acaryas will liberate us, imitating them will destroy us.
There is a story of devotees eating the guests’ remnants of the Sunday feast because it was prasada and should not be thrown away. But Srila Prabhupada is said to have instructed that unless we are powerful enough to absorb the sinful reactions sitting side by side with the prasada, we should not eat it. The prasada cannot be contaminated by the karmis’ touch but we can. Does anyone remember that episode?
Visakha Priya dasi
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 16.04.2013 @ 10:16
â€śI have already written to Hayagriva that the instructions which I impart are not dogmas. Our instructions are all based on sufficient logic and philosophy.â€ť (SP letter 67-11-05)
I always found this statement fascinating. Many of Srila Prabhupadaâ€™s instructions are based on time, place, and circumstances, and I do not find it contradictory or mutually exclusive that he should have at one time instructed all of his disciples to call each other â€śPrabhuâ€ťâ€”to implant upon our conditioned souls the idea that each one of us is the servant of the servant of the other servants, regardless of gender — and that he instructed at another time that the men should call the women â€śMatajiâ€ť and threat them as such, which of course implies that they should behave as suchâ€”as Devaki devi has so nicely explained. The women, on the other hand, have no reason to see the other women as mothers, unless those women they call â€śMatajiâ€ť are old enough to be treated as such. â€śDidiâ€ť means older sister, a term which is not suitable to address a woman younger than oneself. But, just as in ISKCON we made do with â€śPrabhuâ€ť, regardless of gender, for quite some time, in the Gaudiya Matha they are making do with â€śDidiâ€ť, regardless of who calls who like that. It is not satisfactory, but what to do? My personal objection to what I call the â€śPrabhu/Mataji syndromeâ€ť is that it is not a balanced pair and also doesnâ€™t properly reflect our ontological nature. We usually speak of men and women, demons and demigods, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, and fathers and mothers –pitajis and matajis. But this Prabhu/Mataji appellation implies that the conditioned souls in male forms are superior to the conditioned souls in female forms. And guess what? I do AGREE that the conditioned female form is meant to be subordinate to the conditioned male form for the purpose of peaceful enjoyment in the material world. But this is not what the Krsna consciousness movement is about. The first teaching is that we are not these bodies, and unless we train ourselves to speak the proper language that reflects proper thoughts, we are not going get out of the material world.
(Personally, I quite like â€śsakhi.â€ť It is soft and gentle and personal. But again, what is wrong with calling our godsisters by their glorious spiritual names and perhaps add â€śDeviâ€ť as an extra mark of respect for our god-aunties?)
Visakha Priya dasi
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 19.04.2013 @ 12:31
His Holiness Giriraj Swami describes an incident in which the Boston devotees were attacked one night by hooligans. Somehow they were caught and brought to justice and their attorney was bent on discrediting the Hare Krishnas. The main witness, His Grace Nanda-Kumara Prabhu, was very young, shy, and inexperienced in worldly dealings, and when he got to the witness stand, the lawyer was ready to tear into him. He began his investigation by asking: â€śWho was there on the night of the alleged attack?â€ť Nanda Kumara Prabhu replied, â€śSatsvarupa was there, Murari was there,â€ť and a host of other names of Krsna. And as he was reciting these powerful names of the Lord, his spiritual strength increased and he was able to hold his ground and ultimately the devotees won the case.
So, when devotees, especially women, thoughtlessly call each other â€śMataji,â€ť regardless of whether they are older or younger than the person they call in this wayâ€”instead of instead of calling them by the glorious names they were given by their spiritual masters, I deplore it.
I heardâ€”and I donâ€™t know if itâ€™s true or notâ€”that His Holiness Sivarama Swami forbade his disciples to call women â€śPrabhu.â€ť Perhaps there are some varnasrama considerations that need to be applied in developing varnasrama communities, and I accept that. But Srila Prabhupada gave us the choice: the elevator (lift) or the staircase. So we have to be careful to validate and respect those choices since the International Society for Krishna Consciousness is meant to give shelter to everyoneâ€”including the minorities.
Thank you for reading this. Hare Krsna!
Visakha Priya dasi
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 16.04.2013 @ 09:04
Actually, the word â€śsakhiâ€ť means â€śfriend.â€ť It is used throughout the Bhagavatam, not just in connection with the gopis, but in many different contexts. For example, in SB 9-18-6, it is stated: ekada danavendrasya/sarmistha nama kanyaka/sakhi-sahasra-samyukta: â€śOne day Vrsaparvaâ€™s daughter Sarmistha, who was innocent but angry by nature, was walking with Devayani, the daughter of Sukracarya, and with thousands of friends (sakhi-sahasra-samyukta), in the palace garden.â€ť Somehow, in the late nineteen eighties, the â€śPrabhu/Matajiâ€ť syndrome developed, probably as the result of many disgruntled ISKCON devotees taking shelter of India after their gurusâ€™ falldowns. Previous to that, most devotees would only visit India at Gaura Purnima time and we would call one another â€śPrabhu,â€ť regardless of gender consideration, because we were trying to act in our dasa dasanudasa position outside the bodily platform. I am confident that anyone in good faith who joined ISKCON before 1985 can testify that women didnâ€™t call each other â€śMatajiâ€ť but either â€śPrabhuâ€ť or their given spiritual name and that most men did call us â€śPrabhuâ€ť too rather than â€śMataji.â€ť In those days, we were not so Sanskrit â€“oriented and didnâ€™t even know that grammatically the appellation was no correct in connection with the female gender. We simply followed the ISKCON tradition and Srila Prabhupadaâ€™s instruction to see everybody else as master and ourselves as servants.
The large influx of devotees visiting India for extended periods of time and their exposure to various Gaudiya institutions seems to have caused this dramatic switch to the gender-based â€śPrabhu/Matajiâ€ť appellation never instituted by Srila Prabhupada. I am not inclined to make an issue of it. But Pusta-Krsna Prabhu mentioned recently on one thread that we need to tell the truth, not for the sake of winning an argument but simply out of duty. And frankly, at this stage of my life, I have no taste for controversy. I am tired. But duty calls and we have to answer the call.
Continued in next post…
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 16.04.2013 @ 09:03
The last paragraph of post 36, continued on page 37, states exactly what I meant to say. But now, Krishna-kirti is putting other words in my mouth, namely that I have “stated in no uncertain terms that she thinks it’s ethical to use another person’s words to construe some meaning clearly not intended by that person, and the rest of us are supposed to think that we can hold a rational conversation with someone who believes that?” Are my words and intent not blatantly misconstrued? But anyway, I have no taste for bickering. My only request is that the readers of this thread should personally read Kaunteya’s book before forming an opinion about the author and his motivations. I know that devotees are busy and the book is a little lengthy, but before risking committing an injustice and perhaps worse, an offense, one should certainly make the effort to read through the book before endorsing someone else’s point of view–which may or may not conform to the absolute truth.
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 12.03.2013 @ 05:57
Sankarsana dasa Prabhu, it certainly is easy to misunderstand people’s intentions, especially in the age of Kali. Your saying that my resorting to the remark that Krishna-kirti showed his true colors came after his comment that Akruranath Prabhu and I were both “disingenuous”. I felt quite hurt by such a sweeping statement, because actually I am only trying to understand Srila Prabhupada’s siksa and the role of ISKCON in ushering the ten thousand golden years. I asked some questions which Krishna-kirti didn’t answer. Rather, he pressed his point about the email, and when I tried to explain how I understood Kaunteya’s rephrasing of the email, I was branded as “disingenuous.” My conclusion is that he doesn’t want to answer my questions–just like (so far) the rest of the devotees espousing his point of view–and took the first opportunity to end the dialogue because he doesn’t want a dialogue. Of course, my conclusion is mine only. But please remember that Srila Prabhupada, while representing the tradition in this age, is not just acarya. He is the founder-acarya of a movement that is meant to spiritualize the world for ten thousand years–in Kali-yuga of all ages! And as such, he has to make the necessary adjustments, which includes accommodating the women of this age, who simply cannot function like Draupadi, Kunti, and other illustrious women of bygone ages when virtue, rather than vice, predominated. It will take time to reestablish varnasrama. In fact, it will only shine in all its glory in the next Satya-yuga. In this age, harinama is the fastest way.
I totally agree that I am not suitable for guruship, but I do not agree that there aren’t even one or two ISKCON ladies on this planet who cannot fulfill that role. Srila Prabhupada said, “not so many.” But even if you take a percentage of 0.5 % for women gurus, in a society of, say 50,000, it still amounts to quite a few, doesn’t it?
Visakha Priya dasi
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 11.03.2013 @ 14:21
Answer to posts 40 and 41.
Hare Krsna. I am disappointed with your replies, but since you have shown your true colors I am also relieved. I fully agree there is no further need for discussion. May Krsna help you. (I am sure He will.)
Visakha Priya dasi
Comment Posted By Visakha Priya dasi On 10.03.2013 @ 07:01