Attributes of Krishna: All-merciful Krishna

                                                                  Q. Does the all-merciful God punish me for my wrong deeds?

                                                                  Krishna never punishes anyone. But out of foolishness, the living entity places himself in trouble, by neglecting the loving guidelines and warnings that the Lord is constantly giving us.

                                                                  Q. When we come to spiritual life and understand that we have many bad habits due to being conditioning in the material world for long time, we try to over come the habits by knowledge of shastras, hearing lectures from devotees, by performing service to Vaishnavas and the Lord etc. Some habits are easy to give up, some take little endeavor to overcome and some habits are really very hard to give up. We try our best to overcome these anarthas, but these deeply rooted anarthas seem impossible to overcome. For some time it seems that we have overcome the habits, but after some time they come back to haunt us again and become stumbling block on path of devotion. How do we deal with these kind of Bad Habits or anarthas?

                                                                  Q. I am a very sinful soul, I cannot follow very strict laws as other devotees always do. All I can do is share some simple information with other interested people. Otherwise I am the worst among devotees.

                                                                  I know that assocication with sadhus is the cure for my depleted condition, but I feel intimidated by their strictness. What to do?

                                                                  I would like to respond to your question in two parts.

                                                                  1. The Strictness of a Sadhu

                                                                  You have the impression that a sadhu is a strict personality, perhaps so strict that their presence is intimidating.

                                                                  Q. In one of your instructions posted under obstacles (choosing Krishna), you have very rightly warned as to how vigilant we must be in executing our devotional service. That which may look innocent at the beginning could soon turn into an attachment and a problem very difficult to manage later. But what does one do to rectify this if the situation has indeed gone out of hand? One might feel extremely repentant of the choice he made but now that choice has become an attachment. Will Krishna still accept and forgive and give him a chance to choose Him again?

                                                                  Your question was in two parts. I will address them one by one.

                                                                  Q. Is guilt for past deeds a good thing? I feel guilty of past mistakes done when there was no knowledge of Krishna Consciousness; however, that guilt makes me sad and dejected. How to counteract feeling low out of guilt and rather use that realization to become more determined and enthusiastic for Krishna Consciousness.

                                                                   
                                                                  Since Bhaktivinoda Thakur uses the term 'regret' instead of guilt, I am going to respond to your question using the term 'regret'