It is said that the mind is the cause of suffering and happiness. The mind absorbed on mundane objects leads to suffering, whereas the same mind engaged in Krishna consciousness leads one to happiness.

"Meditations on Krishna" is an invitation from Srila Romapada Swami to direct our mind's thinking, feeling and willing capacities to various aspects of Krishna consciousness. Each meditation includes some reading material, a short essay based on the material followed by questions, tailored to help us understand and apply the principles of Krishna consciousness.

Advaita Acarya
February 13, 2008

In honor of Advaita Acarya's appearance day

(from Bhakti-ratnakara, Fifth Wave, by Sri Narahari Cakravarti Thakura)

Raghava Pandita continued: "A wise person once told me that Advaita Gosvami stayed in Mathura during His pilgrimage because of the beauty here. At that time there was a worthless brahmana in Mathura who invariably spoke ill of the Vaisnavas. That was his worst habit. He was a proud scholar and a wicked man, so the inhabitants of Mathura feared him."

Krishna in Mahabharat
February 12, 2008

Summary

Application of one's life energy to fulfill the desire of Krishna,by the grace of guru, is our means of  spiritual elevation and is a manifestation of our love for Krishna.

"Bringing our aspirations and convictions into the world of action" is the contemporary phrase.

Srila Prabhupada comments that if we strive to always consider the ways and means of expanding the flow of Lord Caitanya's mercy, there is no better way of controling the mind!

Below is a passage from Mahabharata, in which Krishna confirms the importance of acting with sincere effort to fulfill a spiritual mission in life.

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati
January 19, 2008

Our stalwart uncompromising "Simha-guru" Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur speaks out on the true qualifications of a guru. As strongly as are Srila Bhaktisiddhanta's directives regarding who is a true guru, the converse is also there: what is the result of guru-avajna, neglecting or ignoring the instructions of the guru (below).

Both are very heavy quotes, but both are sound, with foundation in the scriptures. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur's words very much mirror Rupa Goswami's Upadeshamrta (Nectar of Instruction) Texts 1 and 8. "A sober person who can tolerate the urge to speak, the mind's demands, the actions of anger and the urges of the tongue, belly and genitals is qualified to make disciples all over the world."

Prahlad Nrisimha.JPG
December 26, 2007

Summary: We will soon be greeting a new year. With what resolve should we move forward, towards reaching Krishna? Let us follow in the footsteps of Prahlad Maharaja. As exalted as he was, his humility was the crown on his head. Like Prahlad, let us strive to become moved by such a humble mood of service, eschewing all other aspirations for acquiring any of the named false shelters, so-called opulences and misleading so-called qualifications. Let us move further on the path of ever-increasing humble service, striving to somehow satisfy Krishna in this way.
Reading Assignment: a) Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.8, and b) Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.9
a) Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.8

haridas thakur.JPG
November 19, 2006

Below you will find an interesting exchange with Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur Prabhupada, when questioned about the effects of vaisnava association upon non-devotees, and in general on the apparent relationship between "Devotees and Karma". Very interesting!

Reading Assignment a) by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur Prabhupada

Question: When a devotee is born in a family, does that family benefit from his or her birth?

Raghunath das Goswami.JPG
September 10, 2006

Summary: In the ordinary course of executing devotional service, one should strictly follow the codes of theistic conduct. Are there exceptions to this rule? The classic case of "not speaking the truth, under the order of Krishna" is of course the request made by Krishna of Maharaja Yudhisthira to inform Dronacarya that Asvatthama was dead. Of course, the under-the-breath statement that the elephant name Asvatthama was being referred to was intended to protect Yudhisthira's religious principle of truthfulness. However, the outstanding transcendental lesson of this episode, according to our acaryas is twofold:

1) Whatever Krishna declares, *THAT* is one's duty, THAT is dharma!

tulasi.JPG

Generally, the tulasi beads we use are made from commercially grown Tulasis, grown using intensive farming techniques by Indian standards, and then they are "harvested" when they reach a commercially viable size. They are not allowed to pass away when they're old. What an offense against Tulasi devi! Read what Srila Prabhupada instructs in this regard.

Reading Assignment

a) Letter to: VARIOUS --

Srila Prabhupada

From reading Srila Prabhupada's comments on leather we can see his mood was that only if it was absolutely necessary could we use leather or other products that came from violence, but otherwise to not use them even if given to us. His instruction was to search for a nonviolent alternative.

Reading Assignment

a) Room Conversation and Interview with Ian Polsen -- July 31, 1972, London

Ian Polsen: There is another question, Your Grace. I wear leather shoes, and I know they come from animals...

Prabhupada: Huh?

Ian Polsen: ...which have been slaughtered for this. Should I stop wearing leather shoes?

Krishna and Balaram stealing butter

Reading assignment  (From Garga Samhita, Canto One, Chapter Seventeen; Translated by Sri Kusakratha Das. The Krishna Institute)

Lord Siva drinking poison

Summary: Several points are noteworthy in this section from Srimad Bhagavatam.

1) Cultural: Although her master, Lord Siva sought the well-wishes of Bhavani by explaining to her his purpose before drinking the ocean of poison.

2) How to be recognized by Krishna is clearly explained.

3) One's own comforts are not the consideration of a great soul. However, we cannot imitate the particular activities of a great soul. One must make sacrifices for the well-being of others according to our capacity.

Question: 1) Describe two ways in which the message of this Srimad Bhagavatam section can be personally applied to your life in Krishna Consciousness.