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Reforming the reformer

Part 3

Similarly a person who can understand the above verse is eligible to see Krsna everywhere.

Bhagavad-gita 6.30

yo mam pasyati sarvatra
sarvam ca mayi pasyati
tasyaham na pranasyami
sa ca me na pranasyati

For one who sees Me everywhere and sees everything in Me, I am never lost, nor is he ever lost to Me.


A person in Krsna consciousness certainly sees Lord Krsna everywhere, and he sees everything in Krsna. Such a person may appear to see all separate manifestations of the material nature, but in each and every instance he is conscious of Krsna, knowing that everything is a manifestation of Krsna’s energy. Nothing can exist without Krsna, and Krsna is the Lord of everything — this is the basic principle of Krsna consciousness. Krsna consciousness is the development of love of Krsna — a position transcendental even to material liberation. At this stage of Krsna consciousness, beyond self-realization, the devotee becomes one with Krsna in the sense that Krsna becomes everything for the devotee and the devotee becomes full in loving Krsna. An intimate relationship between the Lord and the devotee then exists. In that stage, the living entity can never be annihilated, nor is the Personality of Godhead ever out of the sight of the devotee. To merge in Krsna is spiritual annihilation. A devotee takes no such risk. It is stated in the Brahma-samhita (5.38):

santah sadaiva hrdayesu vilokayanti
yam syamasundaram acintya-guna-svarupam
govindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami

“I worship the primeval Lord, Govinda, who is always seen by the devotee whose eyes are anointed with the pulp of love. He is seen in His eternal form of Syamasundara, situated within the heart of the devotee.”

At this stage, Lord Krsna never disappears from the sight of the devotee, nor does the devotee ever lose sight of the Lord. In the case of a yogi who sees the Lord as Paramatma within the heart, the same applies. Such a yogi turns into a pure devotee and cannot bear to live for a moment without seeing the Lord within himself.

Comment Posted By shiva On 30.05.2008 @ 22:47

Part 2

From the purport to Srimad Bhagavatam 2.3.21

As stated hereinbefore, there are three kinds of devotees of the Lord. The first-class devotee does not at all see anyone who is not in the service of the Lord, but the second-class devotee makes distinctions between devotees and nondevotees. The second-class devotees are therefore meant for preaching work, and as referred to in the above verse, they must loudly preach the glories of the Lord. The second-class devotee accepts disciples from the section of third-class devotees or nondevotees. Sometimes the first-class devotee also comes down to the category of the second-class devotee for preaching work.

If you can rise to the platform of uttama vision, then due to that understanding of seeing everything under the direction of the Lord, the Lord becomes revealed through seeing that direction.

Krsna says in Srimad Bhagavatam 11.13.24

manasa vacasa drstya
grhyate ‘nyair apindriyaih
aham eva na matto ‘nyad
iti budhyadhvam anjasa

Within this world, whatever is perceived by the mind, speech, eyes or other senses is Me alone and nothing besides Me. All of you please understand this by a straightforward analysis of the facts.

Because Krsna is controlling everything as Paramatma, then we can see Krsna through the actions of everyone. In a film whatever appears on the screen is meant to appear there due to the control over the film by the writer, director and editor. Because of that control they can if they desire include a message for one or more people that will only be recognizable to the people the message is meant for. Those people can only see the message if they know the creators of the film have inserted a message just for them.

Comment Posted By shiva On 30.05.2008 @ 22:45

Part 1

Akruranath you wrote

This is a sobering bit of information. I guess this means all of my criticism and anger about how other people are doing (or neglecting) their service is totally misguided?

Well, yes and no, it depends. Criticism is alright under the right circumstances, anger is a sign of ignorance (There is divine anger, but that is something else). Srila Saraswati Thakura words can be seen as explaining this verse from the Gita

ye yatha mam prapadyante
tams tathaiva bhajamy aham
mama vartmanuvartante
manusyah partha sarvasah

As all surrender unto Me, I reward them accordingly. Everyone follows My path in all respects, O son of Prtha.

Srila Prabhupada would say or write often

“Mahatma Gandhi he used to say that “Not a blade of grass moves without the
sanction of God.” It is a fact. It is a fact. Nothing can be done without His sanction.”
(Bhagavad-gita 5.7-13 — New York, August 27, 1966)

Whatever anyone is doing is being done under the guidance of the Lord. Everyone follows the path of the Lord in all respects. The point Srila Bhaktisiddhanta is making is that we should try and understand what is reality and what is illusion. Reality is: everything that is going on is being directed to happen by Paramatma. We should understand that we nor anyone else can affect the course of reality because we are all under the same controlling agent. Does knowing this mean that we shouldn’t criticize what anyone is doing because we know they are being sanctioned by the will of God in their actions? No, we can criticize, but we should try and understand what is reality and what is illusion.

The vision of seeing everything as the will of the Lord is the vision of the uttama adhikari bhakta. No one else can see with that vision at all times. Other people may see with that vision occasionally, but due to not being on the higher level they cannot maintain that vision. They will generally see everyone and everything acting under their own will and direction. The uttama adhikari always sees everyone serving Krsna. In order to preach he has to tell people to change what they are doing, he has to ignore that he sees everyone serving the will of the Lord, so he takes on a lower vision. Not that he stops seeing everyone doing the will of the Lord, he just disregards that vision when he acts to change the direction of peoples lives.

Comment Posted By shiva On 30.05.2008 @ 22:39

The Brain As Holodeck

part 2

If your life is not lived as an offering to the Lord then you exist in the “material world”, like food not offered to the Lord remains “material”, but when offered becomes “spiritual”.

C.C. 189

manuṣyāṇāḿ sahasreṣu kaścid yatati siddhaye
yatatām api siddhānāḿ kaścin māḿ vetti tattvatah

“Out of many thousands among men, one may endeavor for perfection, and of those who have achieved perfection, hardly one knows Me in truth.”

The word siddhaye indicates liberation. Only after being liberated from material conditioning can one understand Kṛṣṇa. When one can understand Kṛṣṇa as He is (tattvataḥ), one actually lives in the spiritual world, although apparently living within the material body. This technical science can be understood when one is actually spiritually advanced.

In his Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu (1.2.187), Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī says:

īhā yasya harer dāsye karmaṇā manasā girā
nikhilāsv apy avasthāsu jīvan-muktaḥ sa ucyate

When a person in this material world desires only to serve Kṛṣṇa with love and devotion, he is liberated, even though functioning within this material world. As the Bhagavad-gītā (14.26) confirms:

māḿ ca yo ‘vyabhicāreṇa bhakti-yogena sevate
sa guṇān samatītyaitān brahma-bhūyāya kalpate

“One who engages in full devotional service, unfailing in all circumstances, at once transcends the modes of material nature and thus comes to the level of Brahman.”

Simply by engaging in the loving service of the Lord one can attain liberation. As stated in the Bhagavad-gītā (18.54), brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā na śocati na kāńkṣati. A person who is highly advanced in spiritual knowledge and who has attained the brahma-bhūta stage neither laments nor hankers for anything material. That is the stage of spiritual realization.

Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura considers the brahma-bhūta stage in two divisions — svarūpa-gata and vastu-gata. One who has understood Kṛṣṇa in truth but is still maintaining some material connection is known to be situated in his svarūpa, his original consciousness. When that original consciousness is completely spiritual, it is called Kṛṣṇa consciousness. One who lives in such consciousness is actually living in Vṛndāvana. He may live anywhere; material location doesn’t mat ter. When by the grace of Kṛṣṇa one thus advances, he becomes completely uncontaminated by the material body and mind and at that time factually lives in Vṛndāvana.

Comment Posted By shiva On 04.01.2008 @ 08:26

part 1

Akruranath prabhu, what Kapiladev is refering to is a very deep understanding concerning the nature of perception. Srila Prabhupada wrote the following in a purport to the Bhagavatam (verse 4.9.7 ) which may illuminate what Kapiladev is trying to convey:

Dhruva Maharaja realized that the Supreme Absolute Truth, the Personality of Godhead, acts through His different energies, not that He becomes void or impersonal and thus becomes all-pervading. The Mayavadi philosopher thinks that the Absolute Truth, being spread throughout the cosmic manifestation, has no personal form. But here Dhruva Maharaja, upon realization of the Vedic conclusion, says, “You are spread all over the cosmic manifestation by Your energy.” This energy is basically spiritual, but because it acts in the material world temporarily, it is called maya, or illusory energy. In other words, for everyone but the devotees the Lord’s energy acts as external energy. Dhruva Maharaja could understand this fact very nicely, and he could understand also that the energy and the energetic are one and the same. The energy cannot be separated from the energetic

The basic idea which Kapiladev is trying to impart is that the “material” world exists for those whose consciousness is affected by ahankara. What he is saying is what Srila Prabhupada mentions in the above i.e. that the “material world” exists as a condition of the conditioned soul. For the person who is free from illusion, or the enlightened devotee, for them, the external energy of the Lord, or the “material” world, no longer exists. They exist in the spiritual world no matter where they are. An example would be the concept of prasadam. If we take an item which may seem to be comprised of material energy, like an apple, then offer that apple to the Lord, it becomes spiritual energy. The apple does not change it’s actual composition, it is still comprised of the same substance, what changes is the consciousness of the those who see the apple as transcendental after it is offered to the Lord. So what Kapila is saying is that the material world is “caused” by ahankara, or the world exists as such by the perception of those under the influence of ahanakra. Those who are free from ahankara understand that because everything is the energy of the Lord, and that the energy and the energetic are one, that they are “one and the same”, therefore the “material energy” no longer exists for them.

Comment Posted By shiva On 04.01.2008 @ 08:15

part 4

When the jiva is free from ahankara then he finds the Lord existing at the heart of the mind.

santaḥ sadaiva hṛdayeṣu vilokayanti
yaḿ śyāmasundaram acintya-guṇa-svarūpam
govindam ādi-puruṣaḿ tam ahaḿ bhajāmi

I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who is Śyāmasundara, Kṛṣṇa Himself with inconceivable innumerable attributes, whom the pure devotees see in their heart of hearts with the eye of devotion tinged with the salve of love

Therefore Kapila says

muktāśrayaḿ yarhi nirviṣayaḿ viraktam
nirvāṇam ṛcchati manaḥ sahasā yathārcih
ātmānam atra puruṣo ‘vyavadhānam ekam
anvīkṣate pratinivṛtta-guṇa-pravāhah

When the mind is thus completely freed from all material contamination and detached from material objectives, it is just like the flame of a lamp. At that time the mind is actually dovetailed with that of the Supreme Lord and is experienced as one with Him because it is freed from the interactive flow of the material qualities

so ‘py etayā caramayā manaso nivṛttyā
tasmin mahimny avasitaḥ sukha-duḥkha-bāhye
hetutvam apy asati kartari duḥkhayor yat
svātman vidhatta upalabdha-parātma-kāṣṭhah

Thus situated in the highest transcendental stage, the mind ceases from all material reaction and becomes situated in its own glory, transcendental to all material conceptions of happiness and distress. At that time the yogī realizes the truth of his relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He discovers that pleasure and pain as well as their interactions, which he attributed to his own self, are actually due to the false ego, which is a product of ignorance.

Comment Posted By shiva On 31.12.2007 @ 21:45

part 3

The mind is not a machine which is dependent on the chemical interactions of the brain. The mind works under God’s direction because there is really only one mind, God’s mind, which is all pervading and which we are all dependent on for our intellectual ability to understand anything.

sarvasya caham hrdi sannivisto
mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca

I am seated in everyone’s heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness.

In the conditioned state the jiva is affected by ahankara, and by that, the true reality of the mind is obscured, and the conditioned mind, which is illusory, is what arises. Kapila tells us

vaikārikād vikurvāṇān
manas-tattvam ajāyata
vartate kāma-sambhavah

From the false ego of goodness, another transformation takes place. From this evolves the mind, whose thoughts and reflections give rise to desire.

Here Kapila is talking about the material mind, or the illusory mind, which is created when the jiva identifies the mind as himself or under his control. Kapila goes on to say

sahasra-śirasaḿ sākṣād
yam anantaḿ pracakṣate
sańkarṣaṇākhyaḿ puruṣam

The threefold ahańkāra, the source of the gross elements, the senses and the mind, is identical with them because it is their cause. It is known by the name of Sańkarṣaṇa, who is directly Lord Ananta with a thousand heads.

Here we are told that ahankara is essentially creating our material existence. When one is under the influence of ahankara one misidentifies reality, thus creating the material world, material senses, and material mind. But in reality it is all directly the Lord. Therefore the material existence we experience is really only tentative for the jiva, it is contingent upon our perception. The mind is seen in one way when you are conditioned, but in a different way when you are liberated. Therefore Kapila says

yad vidur hy aniruddhakhyam
hrsikanam adhisvaram
samradhyam yogibhih sanaih

The mind of the living entity is known by the name of Lord Aniruddha, the supreme ruler of the senses. He possesses a bluish-black form resembling a lotus flower growing in the autumn. He is found slowly by the yogīs.

Comment Posted By shiva On 31.12.2007 @ 21:44

part 2

In the Bhagavatam Kapiladev states

yad vidur hy aniruddhakhyam
hrsikanam adhisvaram
samradhyam yogibhih sanaih

The mind of the living entity is known by the name of Lord Aniruddha, the supreme ruler of the senses. He possesses a bluish-black form resembling a lotus flower growing in the autumn. He is found slowly by the yogīs.

The reality is that the mind is God. The Lord is all pervading, the mind of every jiva is a manifestation of the Lord’s mind. In the conditioned state the jiva identifies with the mind, seeing the mind as either himself or under his control. But in reality the mind is the Lord. We do not experience reality through the brain. A material body needs some brain substance in order for the jiva to function properly in the body, but the world is not being experienced by the brain, nor is what we experience of the world a “REPRESENTATION built by the mind”. The materialists have to believe that what we experience is a “representation built by the mind” because the basis of the function of the mind to them is the chemical interactions going on in the brain. Therefore they think the world we experience has to be something created by the brain because they think our mind is created by the brain and that we experience the world through our mind. In truth we experience the world through our consciousness, which is different from the mind. The materialists either deny that consciousness exists, or they consider it as a function of the mind.

The mind is not the product of chemical interactions in the brain, but is rather transcendent to the brain and existing in it’s own dimension, it is a “ghost in the machine”. It functions in a way which has nothing to do with “building a representation” of reality, except when you are asleep and experience dreams. When you look at these words your brain is not creating these words in your mind, you are actually seeing these words through your consciousness, you understand what you see through the mind. We do experience the world through the mind in the sense of the understanding of what we experience through our cosnciousness, is dependent on the mind informing our consciousness. Without a mind we wouldn’t understand what we perceive, we would be like some lower life form.

Comment Posted By shiva On 31.12.2007 @ 21:43

Part 1

I agree with most of what you wrote, but I feel there was a mistake in the beginning where you wrote:

What we directly experience is not actually the external hard physical material world, but a REPRESENTATION built by the mind, within the networks of the body’s brain, nervous and glandular systems, life air, etc., but primarily the brain, of the occupied body, exactly like a person experiencing the holo-deck from Star Trek fame. Subject, also, to defects.

The current trend in explaining the mind-brain relationship in the various scientific fields associated with that is in agreement with the above. But they are wrong, as is the above. They see the mind as a product of the brain. They cannot explain how the mind works nor how the brain-mind connection works, but because they start from a platform of metaphysical naturalism, they can only speculate within the confines of those intellectual borders. Therefore to their way of looking at the mind they can only explain how the mind works in reference to the material goings on within the brain e.g. chemicals in the brain are responsible for the existence of the mind, and the mind works on a chemical or material basis.

The reality is that the mind is not the product of, nor dependent on, nor functions, based upon the brain. Some people have almost no brain at all yet have highly developed minds ( )

Comment Posted By shiva On 31.12.2007 @ 21:41

The Meaning of Enthusiasm and Its Possible Misuse

part 2

The problematic part is where you introduce the idea that the enthusiasm spoken of as being an essential aspect of bhakti, is what needs to be tempered in order to counsel people in crisis. I know what you are meaning to say, but from my perspective I feel that the relationship you write about between devotional enthusiasm and it’s possible leading to improper counseling, is not quite the proper way to put it. The literal meaning of enthusiasm really captures the essence of what it entails, it is something which is coming from God. Bhakti is ultimately experienced as something which is bestowed on us. We are the recipients of divine grace. The realization of our being recipients of divine grace manifests in various ways, one of which is enthusiasm for saranagati, enthusiasm for pleasing the Lord. That enthusiasm is a reciprocal part of a person’s relationship with the Lord. When a devotee is free from all conditioning and misconception, then that natural enthusiasm becomes prema. What you describe as being enthusiasm wrongly applied, is not what is meant by enthusiasm for bhakti. What you are describing is simply immaturity or improper action due to a lack of empathy or sensitivity. Enthusiasm for bhakti should not be mistaken to be a cause of unwanted things. What may appear to be over enthusiasm for bhakti which may appear to cause improper action, is in reality something else.

Comment Posted By shiva On 03.01.2008 @ 10:21


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