PLEASE NOTE, *THIS DOCUMENT IS AT DRAFT (NOT PERFECT) STAGE. IT IS RECOMMENDED TO READ WITH GM’S VIDEO IN BACKGROUND. *
Mukham karoti vacalam pangum langayate girim
Yat kripa tam aham vande sri gurum dina tarinam
Paramananda Madhavam Sri Caitanya Isvaram
All glories to His Divine Grace Abhaycaran Bhakti Vedanta Swami Prabhupada! We would like to welcome all the devotees who have come here tonight, and all those devotees who are watching on Facebook JPS page! Haribol! Today I went to the hospital, Raila Institute of Medical Science. I had most of my checkups. Still have one or two pending which will be done at some nearby hospital. So far the reports are good! So I came back a little late. We will have a short class and some questions and answers. So you can think of your questions now.
Now is the caturmasya, if you follow starting on Ekadasi. Some people start on the full moon day. So I usually start on Ekadasi since I know what day is Ekadasi, that we have to observe it. But the full moon day is not so easy to find out! Also, I end on the last day before Ekadasi, in the month of Damodara. So I can observe the Bhisma Pancaka fully. And not as part of the caturmasya. Five days from Ekadasi, Dvadasi, Trayodasi, Caturdasi, and ending on Purnima. That will be after four months. So since that includes bathing in the Ganges, and since the Ganges flows through Mayapur, it is very convenient to observe the Bhisma Pancaka in Mayapur. But when you go anywhere, if you take bath, you can say Ganga three times, Ganga, Ganga, Ganga, and you get the benefit of bathing in the Ganges. So here in Chennai you can take your bath every day in the Ganges! Whether in New Talavan or anywhere in the world, within 80,000 yojanas, you chant Ganga three times and get the benefit of bathing in the Ganges. So this is a great facility offered by Lord Visnu, that we can chant Ganga and bathe in the Ganges. So like this there are many facilities given in the Vedas that one can do and get spiritual credit. If you read the pastime of Prtu maharaj, three times, then you will be victorious in dominating your political opponents. So there are different verses and different glories given in the Vedas. There is a Mahatmaya for each of the chapters of the Bhagavad-gita. If you want to get rid of some curse or black magic, then it is 9th chapter of Bhagavad-gita. Like that, there is different glories for each chapter. So if one is facing some problem, there is probably some part of the puranas or Bhagavad-gita, that can counteract that. There was an apsara who made a rishi fall down and he cursed her. But the rishi had lost all his power by falling down with the apsara. So the apsara asked how she could regain her positon and be freed of the curse. And she was told to observe the Ekadasi fast. And then the rishi, he went back to his father and he had lost his luster and mystic powers. So he asked his father, how he could regain his position? The father also said he should observe this Ekadasi fast. So the apsara and the rishi, not knowing that they had the same advice, they observed the Ekadasi fast and the apsara could go back to the heave planets and the rishi got back his mystical powers and effulgence. So like this there are different glories of Ekadasi chapters of Bhagavad-gita, chapters of Srimad Bhagavatam, and simply by studying the Bhagavatam, reading the Bhagavad-gita, one gest so much spiritual benefits. So Srila Prabhupada had made great personal endeavors, and he translated the whole Bhagavad-gitar and most of the Srimad Bhagavatam. And his disciples finished the remaining three cantos of the Srimad Bhagavatam. So one should read the Bhagavatam again and again. To get initiation in 1968, Prabhupada said we had to read Bhagavad-gita ten times. Bhagavad-gita, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, strike, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, strike when I finished ten times then I was ready for initiation! Now I request disciples to read Bhagavad-gita at least twice. There was a devotee who said I was a devotee for eight years and have no time to read the Bhagavad-gita, but if you give me initiation, I promise I will read the Bhagavad-gita in two months. What they couldn’t read in eight years, what is the guarantee they will read in two months? If they read in two months, then I will give them initiation two months later! I was being very lenient previously but now I am thinking that it is of no use. So these are the standards, you know it, you get ready for it and take initiation. So we put these standards on the checklist on the website of JPS office and anybody can download that and get ready for initiation. Haribol! Questions. Is this from the internet?
Question: Which chapter of Bhagavad-gita would you recommend to chant every day? Vijayaradha devi dasi
Guru maharaj: Hard for me to say. Each of the chapters is glorious So you can read in the Padma Purana, what the glories are of each chapter, and you can decide which chapter you want to read. Or you can read Bhagavad-gita from begin to end, again and again and get all the chapters’ glories. Some chapters have 20 verses. Like there is a chapter on Purushotama yoga. And some like also 12th chapter on bhakti-yoga. If you want a short chapter you can pick one with 20 verses. If you don’t mind you can take a longer chapter. 11th chapter saves one from the curse of being a raksasa, of eating human beings – cannibals. So one raksasa ate a son of a villager. And the villager requested the person who read the 11th chapter and he was the only one which the raksasa, the cannibal did not eat. Because he chanted the 11th chapter, so the cannibal, the raksasa could not touch him. So the person said, please save my son. So that devotee he went and chanted the 11th chapter over a glass of water. And he poured it on the head of the raksasa and the raksasa was liberated from his curse, and the son he had consumed came out of the raksasa. So the father told the son that he can come now. But the son was dead and said he was going back to Godhead. So 11th chapter of Bhagavad-gita blessed me so that I can go back to Godhead. And he was looking to the Visnudutas who had come to take him back to the spiritual world. But the father said, no, no, your mother wants to see you at home. What is going to happen to your cat, your dog, they will miss you! But dad, look, I am going back to the spiritual world! I will never have to take birth again. No but your pet parrot! Father was in total maya! He should have seen his son was going back to Godhead, it was a glorious thing. Instead he was trying to attract him to stay in the material world. This is the danger. But the son said, look dad, I will see you in the spiritual world! Jai! Ho! Read the 11th chapter of Bhagavad-gita. Haribol! Haribol! Haribol!
Question: Hare Krsna guru maharaj: When chanting on mala how do we start Panca Tattva mantra? In big bead and proceed or chant Panca Tattva next to head bead and start Hare Krsna mantra on the same bead? Please instruct.
Guru maharaj: We start chanting from the large bead and go to the smaller side. Then you turn back small bead to the larger side. To get the special mercy of Lord Caitanya we chant the Panca Tattva mantra before each round. So I guess you can chant two mantras on the first bead. Or actually chanting before we do the 108, we chant Sri Krsna Caitanya Prabhu Nityananda Sri Advaita Gadadhara Srivas Adi Gaura Bhakta Vrnda. Then we chant Hare Krsna on each of the 108 beads. And before we return we again chant the Panca Tattva mantra and chant Hare Krsna on each of the 108 beads. Hare Krsna.
Question: Hare Krsna gurudev: Could you please explain the difference between Ramanujacarya’s visista advaita philosophy and Lord Caitanya’s acintya beda beda tattva. Both the philosophies say that the Lord and the jiva are same in quality but different in quantity. What is the difference between the two? Paridi Rati.
Guru maharaj: This is high philosophy. Visista advaita and acintya beda beda tattva. There is a subtle difference between each of the four sampradayas. And Lord Caitanya’s explanation of the Vedanta sutras, Lord Caitanya’s acintya beda beda tattva is simultaneously one and different, inconceivably. And at the same time, Krsna is one with His energies. But His energies are not the same as Krsna. How this is possible, is inconceivable. Now visista advaita means that they are all one, but there is some difference. So Madhvacarya was saying that oh, this is a kind of mayawada because it is saying advaita but visista advaita. So in all this there is a subtle difference. And we think that Lord Caitanya’s acintya beda beda tattva is more comprehensive. To say visista advaita, means almost the same. By saying that there is oneness but there is visista, there is some specialty. So it is not as clear as acintya beda beda tattva. But we accept all the four vaisnava philosophies. But we think that Lord Caitanya’s presentation of acintya beda beda tattva is more exact.
Question: Saurav Sarkar: How to have a constant sadhana?
Guru maharaj: Establish a routine that you can follow every day. We have a daily routine which works for the temple devotees, but if that doesn’t work for you, then discuss with spiritual master or some senior devotee, what program, what schedule works for you. You can chant your rounds every day, attend different spiritual programs, because it may be different for different people. Some people may live close to the temple, so they can attend the temple programs. Some people don’t live close to the temple, you can attend the bhakti vrksa or namahatta program or some people, they can also listen to some class of the temple over the internet. So it needs to be adjusted according to your situation. Some people work in the IT industry in the night, some people work in the day. So the main thing is to make a schedule that you can follow regularly, and it includes the essential items of sadhana bhakti.
Question: Dear guru maharaj: PAMHO: Please tell me what are the four principles adapted by Lord Caitanya from the four sampradayas? Jagatpalika Radha devi dasi.
Guru maharaj: That is mentioned in the Navadvip Parikrama Kanda by Bhakti Vinod Thakur. I don’t remember exactly. I don’t have that book handy. There Lord Caitanya met each of the heads of the four sampradayas, and took two items from each sampradaya and combined in His parampara. So this is a very nice question but in order to answer that, I have to have the book handy.
Question: PAMRO: What should be our mood when we are praying for the devotees who are suffering physically or due to other circumstances? Sometimes the devotees are cured and sometimes they leave their bodies. We understand that Krsna is the ultimate friend and controller. What should be our mood in accepting, whatever the result is? Lalitangi Radha devi dasi.
Guru maharaj: We always pray to Krsna, “if it pleases You”, because if Krsna has a different plan for the devotee, we don’t want to impose our idea. But if it pleases the Lord, we pray what we would like. Like, if we want the spiritual master to regain his health, or we want some devotee to regain his or her health, then we pray, ‘oh Krsna if it so pleases You, give this devotee good health.’ But if the devotee leaves the body we also play that ‘Krsna, please take this devotee back to You in the spiritual world, if it so pleases You. Or otherwise, let the devotee take birth in the family of devotees, so that devotee can take up from where he left off.’ So we know that everybody has to leave the world at some time and I was told by one disciple that he talked to his friend that he would like to go to Mayapur and go on some safari to Nepal or something. That night he laid down and in his sleep, his heart failed and he left his body. So I also prayed for that devotee. Otherwise he was healthy. So we never know how long we live. Today may be the last day or we may live for twenty years, thirty years, fifty years, we never know. So we have to be ready to go any time! And we try to help any devotee living, with our prayers.
Question: Hare Krsna guru maharaj: PAMRO: How to overcome vaisnava aparadh? Purna Bhagavan Shyam das
Guru maharaj: Purna Bhagavan Shyam das! Haribol! Try to avoid committing any vaisnava aparadhs. If you commit a vaisnava aparadh and you know whom you have offended, you can ask that devotee for forgiveness. But if the devotee does not want to forgive you, you can somehow get the dust from his feet and that way you will be forgiven.
Transcribed by Jayaraseshwari devi dasi
15 July 2019