This is a festival that is celebrated with overflowing joy and happiness. There is so much enjoyment all day, exchanging warm wishes, lots of sweets, full of lights, fire crackers and so much more. Infact, this is one festival in a year that people look forward to celebrate very eagerly.
All of us somehow have experienced the meaning of phrase "Material world is place of constant danger" but as soon as the danger is over we especially I, tend to forget that dangerous situation and move on with the material life.
We always find that the material world is full of dangers at every step. Srimad Bhagavatam, Fifth canto, 14th chapter compares the material world to a forest. Merchants sometimes enter the forest to collect many rare things and sell them at a good profit in the city, but the forest path is always bedecked with dangers.
In the above verse, the word "dirgha sutri" means procrastinating. We must always be conscious of our duties and should keep doing them as and when we find time. Opportunities knock our doors only once. So when we get a chance we should work on it right away.
Ever since the Sunami disaster by the end of last year, there has been so many natural and man-invented disasters that claimed thousands and thousands of lives in various parts of the world. All of us naturally get a shock on hearing the count of the dead and the bereaved families.
The normal question comes to us when we are engaged in devotional service for few years of chanting and reading Srimad Bhagavatam, is that we expect reciprocation from the Lord in the form of material benefits and spiritual bliss.
This often takes the form of clinical anxiety or so-called "panic attacks", which are uncontrollable, spontaneously occuring episodes of anxiety with real and observable effects on heart rate, sweating and sundry other physical symptoms
Chanting is one subject which needs constant revision as the subject matter is eternal. Here I am asking Krishna to engage me in His loving devotional service but forgetting this extreme mercy, I am considering it to be a duty which I have to finish it somehow, either by hook or crook.
Long ago, there lived a King. This King should have been content with his life, given all the riches and luxuries he had. However, this was not the case! The King always found himself wondering why he just never seemed content with his life.
Promise means commitment to do something and following the same. In other words even when faced with complicated situations or times when there are obstacles one should sincerely endeavor to keep up his vows. In our day to day life, we hate to see duplicity and hypocrisy.
In Bhagavat gita, Lord Krishna gives a summary of the different types of yoga such as karma yoga, jnana yoga and bhakti yoga (buddhi yoga). While talking about karma yoga, the Lord differentiates it from karma kanda activities (ie., working for fruitive results)
Once there were 3 men who, while passing by a fruit tree, looked up and realised that the fruit hanging on the branch looked very ripe and juicy. They were hungry and thirsty and they desired very much to taste the fruit.
The inclination to enjoy the senses is very deep and difficult to suppress. In the purport Srila Prabhupada refers to the falldown of the powerful sage Vishvamitra muni which was due to the lustful desire that arose in him when he saw the beautiful Menakaa.
A very common situation we all would have come across in our lives - when we meet with somebody new and strike a nice conversation, we feel enlivened and feel that we should spend more time with them. Gradually we tend to know each other more and the relationship gets much closer.
A poor villager was not having enough money even to buy a bicycle and whenever he used to see people cycling and reaching their destination very fast he kept yearning for a bicycle of his own thinking he will become very comfortable.
Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati has said "Let me not desire anything but the highest good for my worst enemies." H.H. Mahavishnu Maharajji has advised to tolerate. "The best retaliation is no retaliation."
We all embodied souls think that we are the protector of our loved ones. For eg, as a parent we may think that we are the only one to take care of our kids in the best possible way, which really holds to be a false claim.
It is said in the beginning of Bhagavatam that this great literature is relished and appreciated only by those who are thoroughly honest. It is because Bhagavatam itself is very honest and straight-forward in revealing the naked truths of this material world and the functioning of our minds and the senses.
Srila Vyasadev had a great parentage being born as the son of the great sage Parashara muni. He is the author of hundreds of great vedic literatures including the four vedas, vedanta sutra, upanishads, Mahabharata and 18 puranas which is a humanly impossible achievement.
Everybody has got the propensity to hear and thus we are hearing the histories and narrations of many people performing mundane activities. But this is simply a waste of time and we can attain spiritual success by attentively hearing to the transcendental pastimes of the Lord.
After clarifying all the doubts of Arjuna, Krishna says that Arjuna can do whatever he wishes after deliberating nicely on what the Lord told him. There are always two choices provided by Krishna - either to serve Him or serve Maya. But Krishna never forces anyone.
This month is very auspicious for Lord Balaji situated in the world famous Tirumala temple. Everyday there is gorgeous festival conducted in the name of Brahmotsava. Balaji is Krishna Himself, in the form of cow-herd boy. He is the richest diety in the world and the greatest crowd-puller.
Lord knows our needs and wants and we should be thankful to the Lord for whatever gifts he has blessed with. For those who have taken complete shelter of Supreme Lord there is no necessity to worry about material benefits for the Lord would supply what is required.
While explaining the word vraja-jana ranjana in the jaya radha madhava song, H.H.Mahavishnu Goswami Maharaj, very nicely explained about the word "vraja" - "Vraja jana refers to people of Vraja Bhumi. Vraja also means to walk.
Restrictions like yama, niyama etc as prescribed in astanga-yoga are for the less intelligent neophytes in spiritual advancement. They are only good until one actually has a taste for Krishna consciousness.
Prescribed duties should be carried out as per varnashram-dharma i.e. the duties mentioned in four social orders should be carried out. The four social orders are Brahmana, Ksatriya, Vaisya and Sudra. The duties of each social order is mentioned in sastras and specifically in Bhagavadgita.
If the tenant misuses the apartment, the proprietor vacates him out. Similarly, if we misuse our body by engaing in material enjoyment, then we would have to vacate our current body, by the will of our Supreme proprietor Krishna.
Today I came across a very favourite verse of my spiritual master H H Mahavishnu Goswami Maharaj, from Srimad Bhagavatam 11th Canto where the Avaduta Brahmana describes the qualities he learnt from the 24 gurus of nature. He starts with the quality of tolerance that he learned from Mother Earth