If we look very carefully, our Supreme Father Sri Krishna has already provided for each of us the qualities requested by Hiranyakashipu to Sri Brahmaji. We are all constitutionally eternal and we do not need tapasya to achieve this.
If you are grahastha you should complete your family responsibilities and then take up to vana-prastha and sannyasa. You should leave house when the people will be asking - "why are you leaving ?". Otherwise a day will come when they will ask - "When are you leaving ?".
As time goes on and Gurudev's health and age is there, it becomes a real challenge for each of us to intensify our relationship with Gurudev - the platform for this will undoubtedly be our serious study of Srimad Bhagavatam and chanting and loving dealings with each other.
Chanting is the beginning of our spiritual life. To remain in the path of devotional service - chanting is a must and chanting is what we need to do at the end of our lives as well. Still our faith in holy names is very weak.
Devotees all over the world offer these four items by keeping them in front of the Lord's picture/deity form and chanting the offering prayers. However offering these four items to the Lord does not end with this alone. By performing sincere devotional service we can offer these four items to the Lord always in our lives.
We can test the quality of devotee association by how much attraction we have developed for hearing more and more krishna katha and how much we develop our compassion towards other living entities and want to help them. But rather on the practical field, there is always some dissensions and misunderstandings even among the devotees.
The bhaktivedantas are pure devotees. As a boy Naradji was infected with their qualities of purity by associating with them. He was already self-controlled and had no attachment for sports even though it is common for the boys of his age. Also he was not naughty and did not speak more than what is required.
A person once visited a temple under construction where he saw a sculptor making an Archavigraha of Krishna. Suddenly he noticed a similar Archavigraha kept nearby. Surprised, he asked the sculptor, "Do you need two statues of the same Deity?"
. Regarding the austerity of the body, Srila Prabhupada writes that one should not do anything which is not sanctioned by the scriptural injunctions. So it becomes very clear that in order to follow the austerities of the body, knowledge of the scriptural injunctions is essential.
It is all clearly laid out in the shastras, explained by all the acaryas and personally spoken by Krishna too, that whatever position we may be in, we just do our duty and offer the results to Him. Our Guru Maharaj always makes this punching statement, "Honest endeavors always gives a peaceful life and sound health."
He is Rathaanga paaneh - the Supreme Lord who took the wheel of chariot in His hands - inspite of taking a vow that He will never lift any weapon in the battle of Kurukshetra. The Lord is Supreme Truth -
Every day in Vrindavan after grazing cows and calves all the gopas used to take prasadam together and before that they use to offer the prasadam to Krishna. Krishna then distributed the prasadam to everybody. But there was one poor gopa who used to just take prasadam from others
. In the Battlefield of Kuruksetra, Krishna has already decided who is going to be killed and who is not going to be killed. The question is, if Krishna has already arranged these things, what is the purpose of Arjuna being there? Our question in our lives is that if everything happens according to Krishna’s plan, then what purpose are we to serve on His behalf?
"Krishna has no need of food, since He already possesses everything that be, yet He will accept the offering of one who desires to please Him in that way. The important element, in preparation, in serving and in offering, is to act with love for Krishna."
"To hear and explain them is more important than reading them. One can assimilate the knowledge of the revealed scriptures only by hearing and explaining. Hearing is called shravana, and explaining is called kirtana.
In our spiritual life we have some commitment for our daily sadhana and we always tends to discuss with devotees for increasing our committment. Those who are not really suhrt (well-wishers) would try to discourage us and say that you should not put too much commitment for devotional service and we should relax a little bit and be practical.
o counteract the distress of this material body, one has to take on another distressed condition. Both situations are only illusion. There is no gain in taking on one trouble to counteract another trouble.
The Lord instructs that one has to become fully Krishna conscious to discharge duties, as if in military discipline. Such an injunction may make things a little difficult; nevertheless duties must be carried out, with dependence on Krishna, because that is the constitutional position of the living entity.
The key is that if we are attracted to Krishna, then we must be attracted to Krishna’s instructions. Here we find that Arjuna was completely pacified and relieved of all his distress by being deeply absorbed in thinking of the instructions of the Lord in the form of Bhagavad Gita.
We all struggle so much in this material world to gain a little happiness. But throughout our life we only struggle and forget to enjoy the real happiness, we are in so much anxiety and worried always for the future that we forget to live today.
With the fully developed taste to hear and relish Krsna-katha, he ultimately realized that it is only in ignorance that he accepted this gross body as self and that actually the Soul and the Supersoul are transcendental. This way Narada muni's flow of devotional service began.
People neglect us, insult us, make fun of us, envy us. Though it will be difficult for us to accept - the truth is that we very much deserve whatever insults we are facing now. If we tolerate the insults and remain calm - then by the mercy of Krishna we will be able to understand what lesson He wants us to understand from that particular incident.
Bhakti or devotional service is so potent like fire that its capable of burning out the impurities of people who simply hear about the service and appreciate the same. What more can we expect from the Lord ?
When we go to some one's house as a guest - we really don't mind if things don't get arranged in the way we want. If we are received nicely, we are happy. But if the situations are not favourable - then we don't make it a big issue. For we know that we are going to stay in that place only for a short time and so we habituate ourselves to over-look the shortcomings of others and just leave the place when our time of stay comes to an end.
Krishna’s devotees relate to Krishna in various relationships; one might treat Krishna as a son, or one might treat Krishna as a husband, as a friend, or as a master. Krishna and Arjuna are related in friendship. As the father tolerates, or the husband or a master tolerates, so Krishna tolerates.
If we don't study and relish the message ourselves, we cannot expect the listeners to relish as well. Without proper preparation, if we were to take a class then we land up gossiping or talking everything other than Krishna.
Obedience is the first law of discipline. If there is no obedience, there cannot be any discipline. And if there is no discipline you cannot manage anything. That is not possible. Therefore this is very essential, that the students should be very disciplined. Disciple means one who follows discipline. This is disciple, shishya.
Just as the sun evaporates large quantities of water by its potent rays and later returns the water to the earth in the form of rain, similarly, a saintly person accepts all types of material objects with his material senses, and at the appropriate time, when the proper person has approached him to request them, he returns such material objects. Thus, both in accepting and giving up the objects of the senses, he is not entangled.
Bhishmadeva, in his previous life was one of the eight Vasus by the name of Dyo. His wife happened to see the sacrificial cow (Kamadhenu) of the sage Vasishta and she wished to have it. Dyo, along with the other seven Vasus went and took away the cow of Vasishta by force.