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Question: Sometimes during Kartik masa the devotees chant 64 rounds, but there are so many other activities which they don’t do as well then just concentration on their sadhana, their 64 rounds, going on extremes. How to balance it?

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Jayapataka Swami: I was chanting 32 rounds. Srila Prabhupada asked me, ‘what are you doing?’ ‘I AM CHANTING 32 ROUNDS!’ ‘If you are going to do that, who is going to go out and preach? Chant 16 rounds and go out and preach.’ That is what Srila Prabhupada told me. Now when I was in Mayapur, one year we decided to follow the catur masa. And in the month of Damodara we would eat off the floor like a cow with hands behind our back. It is weird. We were enjoying it, what to do? Like that, I went to see Srila Prabhupada in Vrndavana. Tamal Krsna Maharaj he said that Srila Prabhupada said to shave up. I don’t know, if Srila Prabhupada really said that or he was just envious, but anyway I shaved up. So it is not, we have to be in some holy place but if we are in some city and we have some preaching opportunity there, then preaching is more important. The things that are mentioned cannot be generally… Srila Prabhupada said if we don’t do any spiritual austerity, don’t grow a beard. If you are doing an austerity then it is alright. Most of them they don’t do any special austerity.  If you want to do something special it is not necessary but then you should at least talk to your president, or talk to your guru and see if you can do that. It is one thing if you are a pujari and you are all day in the temple, but if you are going out and preaching, then that is more important. Haribol!