by KHD

Arati Changes in ISKCON

January 29, 2014 in Srivas Thakur Dasa, Yasoda nandana Dasa by KHD

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FROM ARATIS TO BOLLYWOOD TUNES!

Arati Changes in ISKCON 
BY:    SRIVAS THAKUR DASA
Sampradaya Sun
Jun 01, INDIA (SUN) —
It was interesting to read Locanananda prabhu’s article, “Kirtana Guidelines“, about the changes in kirtan in ISKCON. Often times when we go to visit ISKCON temples in India, I am just amazed how devotees sing the Hare Krishna Maha Mantra in all different Bollywood Hindi tunes – so much so that instead of remembering Krishna, we are remembering the Hindi songs of yesteryear before we came to Krishna consciousness.
Apart from kirtan tunes, book changes and a whole lot of other changes since 1977, let’s now add a new change—that is in the way arati is performed in ISKCON temples. At present, pujaris seek the permission of their gurus on the altar and then go to offer it to Radha Krishna, Gaur Nitai, then to the Guru parampara, and then to Srila Prabhupada and their respective guru.
This was not the system taught by Srila Prabhupada, and represents a whole concoction made cleverly after 1977. 
Srila Prabhupada taught us how to offer aratis. We are to offer aratis first to Srila Prabhupada and then all the way up to Gaur Nitai and Radha Krishna. Srila Prabhupada emphatically warned us not to make changes after his physical disappearance, but we have boldly made all the changes disregarding His Divine Grace, and are on the threshold to make more changes.
Here are citations from Srila Prabhupada’s letters and lectures, showing what he taught: Read the rest of this entry →

FROM ARATIS TO BOLLYWOOD TUNES!

January 6, 2014 in Articles, Srivas Thakur Dasa by Nityananda Rama dasa

**newrule

FROM ARATIS TO BOLLYWOOD TUNES!

Arati Changes in ISKCON 
BY:    SRIVAS THAKUR DASA
Sampradaya Sun
Jun 01, INDIA (SUN) —
It was interesting to read Locanananda prabhu’s article, “Kirtana Guidelines“, about the changes in kirtan in ISKCON. Often times when we go to visit ISKCON temples in India, I am just amazed how devotees sing the Hare Krishna Maha Mantra in all different Bollywood Hindi tunes – so much so that instead of remembering Krishna, we are remembering the Hindi songs of yesteryear before we came to Krishna consciousness.
Apart from kirtan tunes, book changes and a whole lot of other changes since 1977, let’s now add a new change—that is in the way arati is performed in ISKCON temples. At present, pujaris seek the permission of their gurus on the altar and then go to offer it to Radha Krishna, Gaur Nitai, then to the Guru parampara, and then to Srila Prabhupada and their respective guru.
This was not the system taught by Srila Prabhupada, and represents a whole concoction made cleverly after 1977. 
Srila Prabhupada taught us how to offer aratis. We are to offer aratis first to Srila Prabhupada and then all the way up to Gaur Nitai and Radha Krishna. Srila Prabhupada emphatically warned us not to make changes after his physical disappearance, but we have boldly made all the changes disregarding His Divine Grace, and are on the threshold to make more changes.
Here are citations from Srila Prabhupada’s letters and lectures, showing what he taught:
Letter to Tamal Krsna, Los Angeles, 15 May 1970:
“So Krsna when He is with His brother and sister, He is Jagannatha, and when He is with His village girl-friends that is Radha-Krsna with Gopis. So Whomever you worship, it is the same, but if you like to worship Jagannanth you can continue it and it is as good as worshiping Radha-Krsna. Krsna has so many forms, and which ever form you worship it is all the same, but you should worship that form which you like most. Regarding the means of worship, our Vaisnava process is first offer respects to the Spiritual Master, then Lord Caitanya, and then Lord Krsna. Vyasa is the Spiritual Master, therefore the Spiritual Master is the representative of Vyasa. Therefore the Spiritual Master’s seat is called “Vyasasana.”
Letter to Himavati, Los Angeles, 1 April 1970:
“Regarding taking Lord Jagannatha to your next center, that will not be very good because you already do not have enough devotees to engage in Arcana. Unless there is a Deity worshipper available, we may worship Panca-tattva and Guru. That can be done by all initiated students whether they are once or twice initiated. Before an altar with pictures of Lord Caitanya, Pancatattva and Acaryas, everyone can offer Aratrik and Bhoga.
Yes, it is nice that you are worshiping Lord Caitanya along with Radha Krsna. That is alright. Lord Caitanya should be placed to the right side of Krsna. There is nothing special for His worship, but you may continue as you are doing now. The order of worshiping is first Spiritual Master, and then Lord Caitanya, then Radha Krsna (as in the mantras or Bunde aham prayer).
Your confidence to do whatever you are instructed by the Spiritual Master is very encouraging. Yes, this is the method of the Vedic injunction, staunch faith in Spiritual Master and Krsna makes one perfect in spiritual understanding.”
Lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam 6.1.10, Los Angeles, Jun 23, 1975:
“Therefore our first duty is to worship Caitanya Mahaprabhu. We keep the Deity. In the first we offer our obeisances to Caitanya Mahaprabhu along with His associate, and then, Guru-Gauranga, then we offer Radha-Krishna or Jagannatha.”
Lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.2.2, London, Aug 10, 1971:
“We begin from our first disciplic succession. Vande ‘ham sri-guroh sri-yuta-pada-kamalam sri-gurun vaishnavamsh cha. Vande ‘ham sri-guroh sri-yuta-pada-kamalam. “I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of my guru, spiritual master.” Vande ‘ham sri-guroh sri-yuta-pada-kamalam sri-gurun vaishnavamsh cha. And then, his guru, his guru, his guru, they’re all Vaishnavas. Vande ‘ham sri-guroh sri-yuta-pada-kamalam sri-gurun vaishnavamsh cha. Sri-rupam. Then we offer respect to Sri Rupa Gosvami. Rupa Gosvami. Vande rupa-sanatanau raghu-yugau sri-jiva-gopalakau. All the Gosvamis, six Gosvamins. Vande rupa-sanatana… Sagraja. Sa agraja. Agraja means elder brother. Sanatana Gosvami was the elder brother of Rupa Gosvami, and Rupa Gosvami accepted him as his spiritual master. Sri-rupam sagrajatam saha-gana-raghunathanvitam. Associated by Raghunatha. There are two Raghunathas: Raghunatha dasa Gosvami and Raghunatha Bhatta Gosvami. Sa-jivam, with Jiva Gosvami. This is the process. Vande ‘ham sri-guroh sri-yuta-pada-kamalam sri-gurun vaishnavamsh cha sri-rupam sagrajatam saha-gana-raghunathanvitam tam sa-jivam. Then we go to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s status: sadvaitam savadhutam. That is also… First of all, Advaita Gosañi, then Nityananda Mahaprabhu, Prabhu. Mahaprabhu is applicable only to Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Others, all prabhus. Ekale ishvara krishna ara saba bhritya [Chaitanya-charitamrita Adi 5.142]. Krishna, and He has got innumerable servants. Krishna is Mahaprabhu, and all others, they are prabhus. And the spiritual master who has got many prabhus to abide by his order, he is addressed as Prabhupada. This is the system. So sadvaitam savadhutam parijana-sahitam krishna-chaitanya-devam. After offering all these obeisances to Gosvamis, to guru, and Advaita, Nityananda, then you come to Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Then Sri Radha. Not Krishna directly. Sri-radha-krishna-padan saha-gana-lalita-sri-vishakhanvitamsh cha. Radha-Krishna means they are always associated by the gopis, of whom Lalita-Vishakha are the chief out of the ashta-sakhis. So this is the parampara system.” Read the rest of this entry →