Monthly Archives: November 2016

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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A Pinjra Tod Winter Afternoon In Jamia Millia Islamia, November 17, 2016

KAFILA - 12 YEARS OF A COMMON JOURNEY

Statement by Pinjra Tod on November 19, 2016

A fiery anonymous open letter by a women resident of Jamia Millia Islamia to the VC on the arbitrary cancellation of late nights in August last year, marks the inception of Pinjra Tod as a movement. It has been an incredible year of reaching out to each other, connecting, discussing and collectivising in Jamia. Overcoming our anxieties of a repressive state machinery intent on criminalising minority voices and institutions, conquering our fear of an administration that has repeatedly targeted students (especially women) for raising their voices, we came together in Jamia last Thursday (17th Nov), drawing confidence from our collective strength, to hold our first ‘public’ event: an exhibition celebrating the struggle of women for education, and a session of poetry, songs and sharing of experiences.

Women students reiterated that the UGC circular issued on 2nd May’16 is being shamelessly flouted by…

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Five Things That God Is Not Doing In Heaven

Krishna's Mercy

[Krishna with friends]“Krishna sometimes played with His intimate friends by engaging in fighting or wrestling with their arms, sometimes by playing ball, sometimes by playing chess, sometimes by carrying one another on the shoulders, and sometimes by exhibiting their expertness at whirling logs.” (The Nectar of Devotion, Ch 42)

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Be good. Don’t sin. Don’t steal. Don’t go after your neighbor’s wife. Be a “God-fearing” person. Following the generally accepted principles of piety gets you to heaven. This is the standard promise found in practically every religious tradition. One group has a certain language, another group wears a certain outfit, and another prays a certain number of times a day. Despite the variation, they each have their belief in the Divine, something bigger than this world.

But who is God really? What is going on in the heavenly realm? It is supposed that He lives there…

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Difficult To Be Known

Krishna's Mercy

[Lord Rama]“The Supreme Lord, who is difficult to know by even the Vedas, can become known easily when there is sincere desire for Rama, just as water and food come easily for those living in this world.” (Dohavali, 80)

nigama agama sāheba sugama rāma sām̐cilī cāha |
ambu asana avaloki’ata sulabha sabai jaga mām̐ha ||80||

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Is water easy to get? What about food? In the present age of Kali, which features quarrel, hypocrisy and an overall inversion of right and wrong, simple things like food and water appear difficult to procure. There is mass starvation in one land, while another produces enough to feed the entire world. In one land there is drought and in another it rains so much that people can’t leave the house.

[tree with fruits]Still, in the general case it’s not that difficult to find water. One has to go looking for…

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