King Ambarisha showed how to use purified senses in service to the Supreme Lord

Summary: Krsna Consciousness is to be understood by careful application of reason and logic, both from the side of the presenter of Krsna Consciousness, as well as by the receiver. Srila Prabhupada underscores this point in his purport to Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.3.20. This is to be received and applied most carefully, however. Whether East or West, mal-interpretation results in polluted conceptions, and consequent degradation is sure to follow.

Reading Assignment

a) Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.3.20 purport

Intimate relationship between the Supreme Lord and His pure devotee like Maharaja Ambarisha
November 11, 2008

Summary: This very famous verse is spoken by Lord Visnu to Durvasa Muni, who was pleading with Him to remove the influence of the Sudarshan Chakra, in hot pursuit of Durvasa for his offense to Ambarisa Maharaja. It reveals the intensity of love the Lord has for his pure devotee. Srila Prabhupada's purport is followed by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur's comments on this verse.

Reading Assignment

Srimad Bhagavatam 9.4.68

Even a reflection of devotional service is powerful as is seen in Ajamila's pastime
December 8, 2008

Over the Thanksgiving weekend I gave an extensive seminar on Harinama Cintamini. The central topic was how to improve and get the full effect of chanting Harinama. One chapter discusses Namabhasa, a stage of chanting that is less than pure and perfect, and how to go beyond it. There are different categories of Namabhasa, but they amount to the same: a glimmer, or a mere reflection of the Holy Name. Below is a description of Bhakti-abhasa. How powerful! What to speak of Suddha-bhakti!

Festival of Holy Name
January 13, 2009

A core theme in Srimad Bhagavatam is its distinction as para dharma, i.e. *NOT* executed from the platform of the material world, nor targeted towards temporary (insignificant) worldly gains. One is an offender who thinks otherwise, who utilizes bhakti for material gain. The same is said regarding the chanting of the holy name, namely "considering the chanting of the Holy Name to be on the same platform as a karma-kanda ritual."

Our devotional service in today's real time, as well as Srimad Bhagavatam's devotional service described in this verse, begins with chanting. When we strive for unalloyed service unto Krishna, joined with chanting the Holy Name -- this is para dharma!

The Lord is pleased with pure love of His devotee
October 30, 2009

Krishna is only pleased with love
Reading Assignment
After receiving initiation at Gaya from Srila Iswara Puri, Sri Gaurasundar, the son of Mother Sachi, returned to Nadiya with a happy heart. One day, Vishwambhar gave transcendental knowledge to some pure brahmin boys of Nabadwip who were his students. Lord Gaura Hari said: pana eka satya vastu - krsnera carana sei vidya - yathe hari-bhaktira laksana
You should study only the one truth - Krishna's feet. One who knows that truth has the ornament of devotion for the Lord. (Text 11)
The sastras describe that anything other than this is ignorance. Do not study anything other than devotion to Sri Sri Radha-Krishna! (Text 12)

Lord Caitanya instructs Sanatana Goswami

Summary: This section of Caitanya Caritamrta is taken from the instructions of Lord Caitanya to Sanatan Goswami re. the process of devotional service. This is a lesson in how powerful devotional service is, ie. it can transform a sakama devotee into a pure devotee. In the purport to Srimad Bhagavatam 5.19.27, Srila Prabhupada writes "One who engages in the service of the Lord with some motive is called a sakama-bhakta, and one who serves the Lord without any motives is called an akama-bhakta. Krishna is so merciful that He turns a sakama-bhakta into an akama-bhakta. A pure devotee, an akama-bhakta, who has no material motives, is satisfied simply to serve the lotus feet of the Lord. This is confirmed in BHAGAVAD-GITA (6.22).