Monthly Archives: November 2016

Five Hallmarks Of A True Saint

Krishna's Mercy

[Gosvamis writing]“Prahlada Maharaja continued: My dear father, please give up your demoniac mentality. Do not discriminate in your heart between enemies and friends; make your mind equipoised toward everyone. Except for the uncontrolled and misguided mind, there is no enemy within this world. When one sees everyone on the platform of equality, one then comes to the position of worshiping the Lord perfectly.” (Shrimad Bhagavatam, 7.8.9)

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The Rakshasas from the time of the Ramayana had special abilities. One of them is the kama-rupa siddhi. Take any form you choose. Become invisible when you want. It’s a neat trick to pull every now and then, but the Rakshasas were of bad character, too. They used the ability to change shape at will to attack innocent people, kill them, and then eat their flesh.

Rakshasas are a cannibalistic, human-like species. Another ability they had during…

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Rama Navami 2015

Krishna's Mercy

[Building bridge to Lanka]“Describing how material nature works, the Brahma-samhita says that the sun moves as desired by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Consequently, for Lord Ramachandra to construct a bridge over the Indian Ocean with the help of monkey soldiers who threw great mountain peaks into the water is not at all wonderful; it is wonderful only in the sense that it has kept the name and fame of Lord Ramachandra eternally celebrated.” (Shrila Prabhupada, Shrimad Bhagavatam, 9.10.16 Purport)

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How do you define the indefinable? That which is the source of everything, the only being who is timeless in both spirit and body, who effortlessly causes the creation and then just as easily destroys everything – is there any one word that suffices? Is there a specific form or name that encompasses all aspects? The descents of the Divine provide clarity. Like having a number…

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The Meenakshi Amman Kovil at Madurai — My Favourite Things

The door to the garbha griha (sanctum sanctorum) is closed when our group files into the antarala or the outer chamber. We arrange ourselves around the barriers placed there and wait expectantly for the door to open and for the deity to give us darshan or audience. One of the priests goes around the group […]

via The Meenakshi Amman Kovil at Madurai — My Favourite Things

Five Ways To Assess Losing Your Temper While Practicing Bhakti

Krishna's Mercy

[Hanuman burning Lanka]“While contemplating the objects of the senses, a person develops attachment for them, and from such attachment lust develops, and from lust anger arises.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 2.62)

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What a wonderful program. Rip-roaring kirtanas, soul-inspiring katha, food that tasted like it was prepared by God’s eternal consort Herself. If only every day could be like this. If only every moment of life were as blissful, in the association of the Divine.

On the way home, however, things quickly changed. While crossing the street, where the signal said it was okay to proceed, a car almost hit you. Not only was there the chance to get hurt, but the meditation was broken. Your reaction? You instantly started screaming and yelling. Anger got the best of you. You slammed your hand down on the front of the car.

“Don’t you know where you…

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When The Questions Continue

Krishna's Mercy

[Vishnu lying down]“The Lord [Maha-Vishnu], although lying in the Causal Ocean, came out of it, and dividing Himself as Hiranyagarbha, He entered into each universe and assumed the virat-rupa, with thousands of legs, arms, mouths, heads, etc.” (Shrimad Bhagavatam, 2.5.35)

sa eva puruṣas tasmād

aṇḍaṁ nirbhidya nirgataḥ



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The journalist’s mission is straightforward. Get answers to five key questions. Ask about who, what, where, when, why and how. If those questions get satisfactorily answered in a story, the journalist has done their job. It is the nature of the human being to be inquisitive. This inquisitiveness is addressed in Vedanta philosophy with the aphorism athato brahma-jijnasa. This means that the human birth is the wakeup call to the living entity. After having spent so much time in various other species, in this human life there is an urgency to be inquisitive. Ask about…

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Krishna's Mercy

Vishnu avataras “Hearing and chanting about the transcendental holy name, form, qualities, paraphernalia and pastimes of Lord Vishnu, remembering them, serving the lotus feet of the Lord, offering the Lord respectful worship with sixteen types of paraphernalia, offering prayers to the Lord, becoming His servant, considering the Lord one’s best friend, and surrendering everything unto Him—these nine processes are accepted as pure devotional service…” (Prahlada Maharaja, Shrimad Bhagavatam, 7.5.23-24)

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Question: “Does it matter whether you are a servant of Bhagavan Shri Rama or Bhagavan Shri Krishna or any other avatara of Vishnu?”

Answer: Most of us understand the concept of God, how He is the creator and the Supreme Lord, and that He has dominion over all that be. But what exactly is the difference between human beings and God? What about the animal kingdom? What is their relationship to the Supreme Lord and to…

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Karma Phalam

Krishna's Mercy

Sita Rama “This divine energy of Mine, consisting of the three modes of material nature, is difficult to overcome. But those who have surrendered unto Me can easily cross beyond it.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 7.14)

On a material level, every living entity has certain qualities that they inherit at the time of birth. There are generalities that are attached to each body type, but pure devotees of God transcend these qualities.

At its core, the living entity is a spirit soul, or jivatma. The jivatma is equal in quality to God, but different in quantity. For example, the jivatma can only exist inside one body at a time, while God exists everywhere in His impersonal Brahman expansion. Higher than Brahman is Paramatma; this is God’s expansion as the Supersoul residing in the heart of every living entity. Thus God is conscious of the activities of every living entity, whereas we are only…

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Tagging Along

Krishna's Mercy

Sita Devi “It does not behoove you to repair to the forest without taking me along with you. Be it the austerity of an ascetic, the forest or heaven, with you will I be everywhere.” (Sita Devi speaking to Lord Rama, Valmiki Ramayana, Ayodhya Kand, Sec 29)

Most of us don’t like doing things alone. Whether it’s going shopping, dining out at a restaurant, or even watching a movie, we tend to prefer the company of others. We like having other people around with whom we can share our experiences. As the saying goes, “The more the merrier”.

If we find ourselves in situations where we are by ourselves, we try to reach our friends through indirect means such as the telephone, text messaging, or internet chatting. As a last resort, we’ll turn on the radio or television to act as our companion. We don’t like to be alone because it…

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Five Questions About Heaven And The Answers The Vedas Give

Krishna's Mercy

[Krishnaloka]“Whatever state of being one remembers when he quits his body, that state he will attain without fail.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 8.6)

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To the atheists the afterlife is a fairytale, a concoction of the human mind used as a coping mechanism for the unknown. To the believers, heaven is everything. It is the promise of happiness never to be found on earth. This is the general dividing line, what separates the believers and the non-believers.

The Vedas provide the most clarity on the issue. There is the time factor to consider. There is the identity of the individual. There are many aspects to heavenly life about which to inquire, questions that go beyond behaving piously and being rewarded at the time of death.

1. When do I go there?

Since it is the afterlife, the obvious answer is after death. You can’t go…

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