3 very heavy quotes by Srila Prabhupada

November 27, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

May 31 1975 letter Kirtanananda– European and American civilization will be finished on account of this sinful activity of killing the cows.
May 15 1973 LA Cheviot hills conversations
Umāpati: It has been going on from time immemorial
 I guess they figure they can just keep going on for time immemorial.
Prabhupāda: No time immemorial. You are being cheated for two hundred, three hundred years, that’s all. Not before that. All these scientists, rascals, have come out within two hundred years. That’s all. So you are being cheated for the last two hundred years, not for thousands of years. So it will be finished. Within another fifty years, everything will be finished.
(Give or take a year, this prediction would mean— 2023)

April 29 1977 letter to Brahmananda–A living entity gets millions of opportunities to get a type of body, but hardly he gets opportunity to serve Krishna. The service of Krishna must be executed at all risks…

Garden video

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Arati procedures letters by

November 26, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

ARATI PROCEDURES LETTERS GIVEN BY SRILA PRABHUPADA

Nov 18 1968 letter Hayagriva
Arati is performed at 1 1/2 hour before sunrise to awaken the Deities. Each offering is made by moving it in 7 big circles, starting at the Lotus Feet of the Lord, and going clockwise round. First of all, burning camphor or ghee (5 fires if possible) is offered in this way, slowly circling them before the Lord. With left hand bell is being rung, and with right hand the offerings are made by circling. Next burning dhupa is offered. Then water is offered in a conchshell. Then a nice handkerchief is offered. Then a nice flower, as a rose. Then the Deities are offered a fan, nice peacock feather fan. And the last item is the blowing of the conch shell three times. Throughout arati” arati there is bell ringing, cymbals, mrdanga, gong, harmonium, etc.
Hope you are all well, and please keep me informed on the progress of the temple there.
Jan 25 1969 letter Kirtananda
You have asked some questions, and I will answer them herewith. The first question is, “When making arati offerings, is it proper to meditate on the different parts of the Lord’s Body?” The answer is that there is no need to meditate in that way. The Lord is actually there with you, and you are seeing all of His parts of the Body, so there is no need to meditate in that way. In regard to the other questions, food should be offered before arati . In the morning, after arati” you can offer some food and then perform kirtana.
Regarding your question about the disciplic succession coming down from Arjuna, it is just like I have got my disciples, so in the future these many disciples may have many branches of disciplic succession. So in one line of disciples we may not see another name coming from a different line. But this does not mean that person whose name does not appear was not in the disciplic succession. Narada was the Spiritual Master of Vyasadeva, and Arjuna was Vyasadeva’s disciple, not as initiated disciple but there was some blood relation between them. So there is connection in this way, and it is not possible to list all such relationships in the short description given in Bhagavad-gita As It Is. Another point is that disciplic succession does not mean one has to be directly a disciple of a particular person. The conclusions which we have tried to explain in our Bhagavad-gita As It Is is the same as those conclusions of Arjuna. Arjuna accepted Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and we also accept the same truth under the disciplic succession of Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Things equal to the same thing are equal to one another. This is an axiomatic truth. So there is no difference of opinion of understanding Krishna between ourselves and Arjuna. Another example is that a tree has many branches, and you will find one leaf here and another leaf there. But if you take this leaf and the other leaf and you press them both, you will see that the taste is the same. The taste is the conclusion, and from the taste you can understand that both leaves are from the same tree.
 
Jully 20 1969 letter Gajendra
. So as you will be having several new men there to help you after the Rathayatra Festival, Sankirtana Party will be the better way of distributing BTG. Regarding your question about offering camphor in aratrik, I do not know why you should be having trouble with smoke and soot by this offering. If you use smaller pieces of camphor this may alleviate the problem, or perhaps you are not using the right kind of camphor. Here we are using camphor for aratrik twice daily and there is no such problem. Of course, if it is too inconvenient, there does not have to be a camphor offering, but I do not know why this should be so. I hope this will meet you in good health.

Feb 5 1970 letter Hanuman Prasad Poddar
Regarding the number of asramas, our Temples are already listed above. The Deity worshiped in the Temples are Jagannatha Swami with Balarama and Subhadra, and Radha Krishna. When we first start a Temple, we start with Jagannatha Swami. My Guru Maharaja recommended Temples of Jagannatha in these countries, so I was inspired to establish first of all Jagannatha Swami because He is kind even to the mlecchas. Then, when there is opportunity, I establish Radha Krishna Murti. So generally in all our Temples, Jagannatha Swami and Lord Caitanya Sankirtana pictures are invariably there, and gradually we are installing Radha Krishna Murtis in each and every center. The program of the Temple worship is as follows: Early in the morning, before sunrise, there is Mangala Aratrik. At 8:00 a.m. there is dressing and decorating of the altar daily. Then, between 11:30 and 12:00 N., Bhoga Aratrik. At 5:00 p.m., opening of the door and Dhoop Aratrik as well as Boikalik Bhoga offering. In the morning we offer fruits and milk to the Deities, and at noon we offer rice, dal, capatis, vegetable, milk, sweet rice, and many other varieties. In the Boikalik Bhoga Aratrik we offer fruits again. Then there is Sandhya Aratrik after dusk; and at 9:00 p.m. we offer Bhoga of Puri, vegetable, milk, sweetmeats, etc. Then there is Sandhya Aratrik after which the Deity rests. This is the general program of worship. We decorate the thrones with profuse flowers, changing the dress and ornaments daily, and as far as possible the Deity platform and the Temple room are kept neat and clean always.

April 17 1970 letter Guru das & Yamuna
You were very much anxious to worship Radha Krsna Deity and you took one pair from Mataji. At that time I advised you to wait. Now when the pair of Deities were taken by Mataji again and you were little bit sorry, but Krsna is so kind upon you that He has come to you again in a better position and now you can engage yourself in His service heart and soul.
Both mangal aratrik and sundar aratrik can be changed according with sunrise and sunset. We are not concerned with the time, but with the sun’s movement. Sundar aratrik may be performed one half to one hour after sunset. So the decoration of the temple room and offering Bhoga to the Deities should be done as nicely as possible as it is within our capacity. This is the sign of love. So I am confident of your love for Krsna and do everything nicely for His pleasure. Whenever it is necessary you are quite at liberty to ask me for direction.
These classes of Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam as you are now holding must be continued very rigidlyAbout holding Sanskrit classes, the special stress should be given to chanting the mantras in our books. I have given specific instructions in this connection to your husband, and if Sanskrit class is to be held, it should be mainly for this purpose. We should simply expend our time for development of Krishna Consciousness. To become a scholar of Sanskrit is not our business.

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dressing and bathing deities-continued letters by SP

November 26, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

Dressing bathing arcana

Jan 16 1970 letter Yamuna
So far colors that may be offered to the Deities, all colors may be utilized just suitable to your scheme. But black should not be used for the Deities dresses or for Temple decorations.
Krishna as He is appearing in our Temples is in the Kisora age, and the dress which I have introduced is His dress of Kisora age. In our Temples the Deities, Radha and Krishna are worshiped as Laksmi-Narayana with all the opulences of Their Majestic Lordship in Dvaraka. The worship of Radha-Krishna as They appear in Vrndavana is a very advanced stage, so we worship Them in the Temples as Laksmi-Narayana. Actually there is no difference because Laksmi-Narayana is directly the expansion of Radha-Krishna. We are following the prescribed method of Temple worship as it is the effective program for developing the highest perfection of pure love of Krishna.
The arati articles may be returned to the same places, especially the conch shell, but the deeps, lamps, should be set down from their places because they must be washed.
March 16 1970 letter Satsvarupa
When the large Deities are installed, the small Deities should be worshiped as Vijaya Vigraha which means this pair of Deities may go outside the Temple in a small car as they have made in L.A. This car was made by Nara Narayana, so he can give the idea. This Vijaya Vigraha may be taken out with Sankirtana Party, not always, but conveniently. In due course of time, I shall let you know the details.
April 1 1970 letter Himavati
I am very, very glad that you are taking care of the Deities with great attention and enthusiasm. Regarding your questions: the Deities should be polished before Their morning bath. Make a thin paste of fuller’s earth and lime juice and rub this mixture on Their bodies and then bathe them and then dry and buff Them with a small towel for the purpose. You can make one very nice bed and place it to the backside of the throne, and you can make night clothes. So after the last Aratrik at night, you can change to Their night clothes for taking rest. Because They are small Deities, They may be lain on the bed with some pillows (because the base may raise Their feet up); if this can be arranged it will be nice.
Yes, Their crowns and jewelry should be removed both at night and while resting at noon, but wigs may stay on and Krsna should always hold His flute. It is nice if you can provide some heating arrangement for cold weather. Also different weight clothes for warmer or colder weather is good. Your idea for a thin curtain around the throne is very good. Regarding Radharani’s smiling, that is not imagination—so she must smile. Let this be an impetus to your increased service.
Radha Krsna topics are for both liberated and conditioned souls, but conditioned souls should not much discuss about the loving affairs between Radha and Krsna because sometimes they misunderstand Radha and Krsna as ordinary boy and girl. So this should be discussed with advanced students, not with ordinary men.
May 3 1970 letter Ekayani
Regarding the color of Balaramaji, He is colored like milk white with little bluish tint and rosy luster. Our idea of whiteness is of the milk foam. Regarding whether ivory is offerable to Krsna, yes, ivory is pure. Although it is a bone of an animal, still it is as pure as the conchshell which is also the bone of an animal.
The six armed form which Lord Caitanya disclosed to Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya had two hands of Lord Ramacandra, two hands of Krsna and two hands of Lord Caitanya. Perhaps you have seen the picture in our New York temple which was brought from India by Kirtanananda Swami.
May 1 1971 letter Laksmimoni
So far as touching the Deity, this is possible only in a big temple with big Deities, not in a small temple. In big temples like Jagannatha Puri the devotees circumambulate and sometimes touch the Lotus Feet of the Lord, but in a small temple that is not possible. If you need help in caring for Tulsi devi, you can write Govinda Dasi in Hawaii for instruction.
Deity worship can be learned at not less than ten years by children. Before that they can assist. They can learn how to bow down, how to dance and chant, how to make garlands, clean arati utensils, etc. In this way they can be engaged. These are also different parts of Deity worship.
Regarding Satyaloka, one is in the material world and one is in the spiritual world. The spiritual Satyaloka is eternal; the material Satyaloka is not, although it is so-called. Satyaloka is another name for Vaikuntha.
 
May 28 1971 letter Govinda dasi
The jewelry offered to Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Lord Nityananda should be very carefully set and kept in a secure place. There is no question of animal bone. As I have already told you, Ivory Jewels, conchshell and cow dung are all pure. Everything is pure when employed in the service of the Lord. Just like the mrdanga kohl is made of skin and still it is held as pure. If you want more karatalas and mrdangas, you can contact Jayapataka Swami here in Calcutta (3, Albert Road; Calcutta-17, INDIA). So coral and mother of pearl are all right. Many Deities are made of coral.
Nov 6 1971 letter Kirtanananda
And Krishna has made himself available in the form of very nice brass Murtis from Washington D.C. It is not necessary also that Lord Jagannatha come along. Sometimes He is misunderstood also. The Deities can be installed in a temple and then taken for travelling. That will be best. So far Silavati’s other questions: The large brass Deities can be bathed the same as the small ones if they can be handled easily; Cooking can go on after the Deities’ plate is made. Without offering to the Deity nobody can be supplied, but after the offering if there are so many men and more is required then how can it be stopped?In Vrindaban dhupa is offered without a flower sometimes, but either way is all right. If a flower can be offered, then that is nice; generally sandalwood paste is offered on the forehead, but on other parts of the body is all right; Kumkum powder should be offered on the feet.

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How to install Radha Krsna deities-letter by SP

November 26, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

Feb 18 1973 letter Kirtananda
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated January 20th. and February first along with your enclosed plans of the Radha Govindaji Temple in New Vrindaban. From these plans everything seems to be in order except the domes are making the temple look like a mosque. Therefore you please eliminate these domes and consult the Mayapur plan which can be obtained by writing Calcutta for design of the domes. The Deities should be facing East. If you are laying the foundation stone to this temple there is a ceremony which you can observe. First you may have one fire ceremony with four Brahmins surrounding the fire, reading from Bhagavad-gita, Nectar of Devotion, Srimad-Bhagavatam and Teachings of Lord Caitanya. This reading should go on during the entire ceremony. You may also dig one pit about 15 feet deep and have one golden Ananta form prepared, about two inches, put at the bottom of the pit. All during this, Kirtana should be going on. And then five types of various items should be placed in the pit, 5 types of jewels, 5 types of metals, 5 types of fruit, 5 types of grains, 5 types of amrta, like this different panca. These all should be carried down the ladder by the various Brahmins, and as they put each one at the bottom of the pit, the various fruits, flowers, etc. all of the Brahmins should one by one climb to the bottom of the pit and make their offering and chant the first verse of Gayatri Mantra. After this, you may lay some bricks down on top of everything and then begin to fill up the pit with dirt again. When the pit is filled up with dirt again you may put one foundation stone on top of the pit and this pit should be located at the exact corner of the Temple building. The idea of this is that the entire building will be resting on the hoods of the Ananta snake, and this is very auspicious. After this program you may have several days of Kirtana and feasting.

dressing, bathing, decorating the deities-letters by SP

November 26, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

DRESSING BATHING DECORATING AND WORSHIPING DEITIES
 
Dec 7 1967 letter Brahmananda
Regarding books I’ve already consigned along with mrdangams harmoniums karatalas and beads & bags. I have arranged for supplying incense with a gentleman here and I’m taking samples with me. Similarly I’ve arranged for sending spices and frankincense. The contact with MacMillan should be finished before you leave. Your journey, as you have suggested is important for your touring in Europe. We cannot expect any tangible help from Miss Bowtell. She is not my godsister but a disciple of my godbrother. The best thing will be to start a center independently.
Regarding beautifying the temple, we should always know that every place is temporary, but wherever we live we should decorate and beautify it for Krishna, so go on decorating our temple as nicely as possible. Hope you are well
Dec 30 1967 letter Madhusudana
Regarding smearing on the Body of Lord Jagannatha: You should always know that the Body of Lord Jagannatha is spiritual. We are given the chance of serving the Spiritual Body and according to Revealed Scriptures, we should serve the Transcendental Body of the Deity just as we try to serve our worshipable personalities. To continue a sense of devotion, it is better to wash the Body of Lord Jagannatha with hot water so that we may have the feeling that Lord Jagannatha is more comfortable. We should offer foodstuffs to the Deity and allow enough time to eat them. These are all transcendental sentiments. At Vrindaban, the Deities are offered foodstuffs and time is allowed as in the case of others. Yes, before offering anything to the Deity you must be satisfied that it is a first class offering and there is no objection if you taste it by smelling. But you should not smell for other purposes. The whole idea is that devotional service should always be immune from sense gratification.
Jan 24 1969 letter Madhusudana
Please accept my blessings. I thank you for your letter brought to me by Rayarama. Yes, 15 minutes is sufficient time for the offering to remain on the altar. You do not need to lay down Lord Jagannatha on a bed, by mantra you say my dear Lord please take rest. In temples, there are two sets of deities, the big set is always on the throne, and the smaller set is handled, taken out for a stroll, laid to bed, etc. There is no difference in the small and large set, of course.
The prayer means: I offer my respectful obeisances to my Spiritual Master who has opened my eyes by the torch of knowledge, while I was in the darkness of ignorance.
That book of speeches by Bhaktisaranga Goswami may be kept carefully. It has to be returned. In meantime, if you like, you can copy it by typewriter.
My dear boy, lecturing for Krishna has nothing to do with this body. If I would not have lectured, how you would have come? So as far as possible I am taking care of my health, but Krishna’s service must be executed, even at the risk of life. A living entity gets millions of opportunities to get a type of body, but hardly he gets opportunity to serve Krishna. The service of Krishna must be executed at all risks, but do not worry; I am taking care of my health by the help of Gaurasundara. Hope you are well.
Feb 10 1970 letter Ekayani
Go means cow and kula means flocks. Vraja is not different from Vrndavana. Vraja means the pasturing grounds and Vrndavana is the woods where there are many Tulsi leaves. We do not find who is the mother of Subhadra, but she was one of Vasudeva’s wives. So far putting kohl on the eyes of the Deities, that is not required. The Madhu demon was killed a very long time ago, in the beginning of the creation. The story may be found in one of the Puranas.
Oct 3 1971 letter Karandhara
Please accept my blessings. Enclosed you will find one photograph of the Deities there in L.A. recently sent to me. Why is Krishna without a flute? What is the difficulty to make for Krishna a flute? You can take a twig and wrap it in golden lace with a pearl drop hanging. That is a flute; how long it takes to make? Nothing should be concocted; not that a flower in place of a flute.
I think you have already advised N.Y. to send the full manuscript for Bhagavad-gita As It Is to Dai Nippon. If not you can advise them immediately.
Enclosed also you will find one letter from Kunjabihari das Brahmacari. So four times he has left the society; that is not very good record. So he is asking for second initiation. Let him stick to L.A. temple under your care for at least six months and then he will be eligible. Piece of Govardhana Hill cannot be taken from Vrindaban.
Sept 2 1972 letter Lalitananda
Yes, if there is arrangement for swinging the deities sometimes, that is all right. Anything may be done which will be pleasing to the Lord, and He is often fond of swinging motions. You may place cows and peacocks on the altar at Montreal, that will be nice. So far I am concerned, I have no objection if there is carved form of guru on the Guru-Gauranga altar, but one thing, is unless that sculptor is very excellent, it should not be attempted. How will you get photos from all angles of vision for the carving process? Unless it can be done very nicely, just perfectly realistic, he should not do it. Yes, God is always there in His Arca Vigraha form, either as Krishna or Rama or Caitanya, whatever. So He must be offered all respects as if He is there personally present, and if you are always sincerely chanting and following our Krishna Consciousness programme of chanting and other things you will very quickly develop the eyes to see Krishna there.

june 7 1968 letter Yamuna
The decoration should be so attractive that people when seeing Jagannatha will forget all attractiveness of Maya. Then it will be successful, and actually, this is the process of decorating Jagannatha. Our eyes are attracted by the beauty of Maya, but if our eyes are attracted by the beauty of Krishna, the Jagannatha, then there is no more chance of our being attracted by Maya. In other words, when seeing Jagannatha nicely decorated, we become freed from the clutches of Maya.
I am sure if you and your husband, Mukunda and Janaki, and Syamasundara. and Malati join, certainly the London program will be a grand success. I have already written about this to your husband, and you can know from him about this program.
Aug 24 19687 letter Nandarani
Regarding immigration: I have already received immigration in Canada, so there is no difficulty for my going to USA, but still I am trying to get immigration of religious minister into the USA, and it is progressing well. I think there will be no difficulty in coming and going to USA, either from Canada or anywhere, so don’t be worried about it. Krishna will help us. Now, regarding your question: “What is the difference between Jagannatha deities and Krishna Murti and why is the latter not fed and cared for as well as the former and why are Jagannathas more tolerant?” Krishna means Himself and all His expansions, different expansions. So sometimes, Krishna appears as Vasudeva, sometimes as Sankarsana, sometimes as Jagannatha, sometimes as Lord Caitanya, sometimes as Rama, so all such different incarnations includes the Name Krishna. So Jagannatha is another feature of Krishna, and He is especially favorable to the people who are not strictly advanced to the Brahminical culture of Vedic rituals. Lord Jagannatha is situated in India, at Puri; this place is one of the towns of Orissa province. And the people of Orissa and Bengal, they are sometimes fish-eaters, why sometimes—about 90% population they are fish-eaters. But Jagannatha Swami in Puri, He accepts service from these people although they are sometimes fish-eaters. So in the Kali yuga, the people are supposed to be not so clean, and therefore, service to Jagannatha Swami is preferred.
So far service to Laksmi-Narayana, and Radha Krishna, it requires highly elevated position, transcendental to Brahmins. But still, either we serve Jagannatha or Radha Krishna, the effect is the same. But to facilitate the worship of the Lord in the Form of Jagannatha is more congenial than others. But when anything is offered to Jagannatha, it does not mean that it is not taken by Krishna. So in the temple, although we offer to Jagannatha, it is also accepted by Krishna. Be rest assured of this fact.
Nov 14 1968 letter Satsvarupa
The clothing is already painted on the Jagannathas, even there is no cloth. And even Krishna is naked, that does not make any difference. But when we dress Him, our service is appreciated. From Krishna’s side, naked or dressed, He is Krishna. And from our side, if we nicely dress Krishna and nicely feed Him, He is appreciating our service and we are certainly benefited. Krishna is the same; He does not require us to dress Him, or feed him, etc., but the more I serve by dressing, feeding and caring for Him, He appreciates the service, and I become more Krishna Conscious.
Yes, it is all right to continue painting Lord Caitanya and the Gopis as you have been, in flesh tone.
Nov 30 1968 letter Himavati
Please accept my blessings. Yesterday my deities were dressed with the clothing you made and it appears so nice. I do not know whether you have time to make similarly a few other sets. It will be very nice. I know that you are the most expert in making dresses than all others so therefore I request you that you may make at least two or three sets of dresses as you have already made.I hope that everything is well with you.

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cleanliness and punctuality-letters by SP for arcana

November 26, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

Dec 9 1971 letter Mohanananda
Karandhara and you are sincere workers, so Krishna will give you intelligence. So go on with your program nicely. In every case always remember Krishna so intelligence will come from within. I am very glad the deity worship is going so nicely. They look very glowing, and that is very satisfying to me. When I shall go to Los Angeles very soon, I shall take transcendental pleasure in offering my obeisances to Them.
April 22 1972 letter Labangaltika
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated March 4 and I have noted the contents. Upon inquiring from Hayagriva prabhu regarding the deity worship program at New Vrindaban, I have been assured that everything is going on nicely now, and that Radha and Krishna are receiving proper care and service. It is very good that you are feeling so much responsibility for the welfare of Their Lordships, and I hope that you will very enthusiastically engage yourself in tending to Their needs. Always remember that cleanliness and promptness are two very important requirements in Deity worship.
Jan 31 1973 letter Sri govinda
I am glad to hear that you are taking up the program of deity worship very seriously. This is required. So everything should be first class as you have got full facility, just to the standard of Los Angeles. In Los Angeles I personally advised them in all the different aspects of deity worship, so you may consult, especially with Silavati Prabhu (now in Dallas) and do the needful. One thing though, the deity worship must be completely pure in terms of cleanliness and punctuality, otherwise there will be some offense. Regarding the Radha-Krsna Deities for Chicago, I believe that Syamasundara. Prabhu is taking care of this matter so you may consult with him about the shipping date of the deities, etc.
Aug 13 1974 letter Amsu
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated July 23, 1974 and have noted the contents. Regarding the worship of our Gaura Nitai by women pujaris, we worship Lord Caitanya in His householder life when He was with His wife, and not as a sannyasi. So, it is alright for women to do this service. But, besides this, service is spiritual and there can be no material designation. In Bhagavad-gita it is stated by Lord Krishna: striyo vaisyas tatha sudras te’pi yanti param gatim. The principle is that everyone who is properly initiated and following the rules and regulations can worship. This activity can not on the material platform.
According to the smarta vidhi, women cannot touch deity during menstrual period but the goswami viddhi allows. But it is better not to do it. One thing is that the seva can never be stopped for any reason. This also for the cooking.
May 31 1975 letter Kirtananda
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated May 23, 1975 and have noted the contents. Your report is very nice to hear. If you give the right protection to the cows, then they will give so much milk, that the ground of New Vrndavana will be muddy with milk. European and American civilization will be finished on account of this sinful activity of killing the cows. Actually, one should not circumambulate when the Deity is open. It is stated in the Nectar of Devotion. I think you can close the doors to the Deity room during Tulasi puja and then open them again afterwards.

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Deity installation letters by Srila Prabhupada

November 23, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

Deity Installation Letters

Feb 12 1969 letter Sastvarupa
Regarding your idea of having an installation ceremony for the Deities, it is very good suggestion, and you may also have the sacrificial fire. The Deities should be bathed with milk, and while bathing, They must have covering of thin cotton cloth, and the whole Body and the clothing should be wet by pouring the milk. You can see the picture of this in the new Back To Godhead, and perhaps you saw the ceremony when it was held in New York. The Deities should be decorated with sufficient flowers and nice gorgeous dresses and ornaments. Beforehand, you should polish the Bodies with a mixture of tamorind pulp and fullers earth. Apply the pulp on the Bodies, then rub it and then polish nicely with tissue paper. This will gave a very good shine. Then bath the Deities with milk, and dress very nicely with ornaments, and place Them on the throne with flowers, candles, etc. The throne, if possible, should be coated with silver sheets, and the canopy should be red velvet with gold embroidered work. Before the Deities, on the staircase, there may be some silver polished cups, pitchers, etc. I think the Deities have already helmets and peacock feathers and hair to be dressed with. If not, make arrangements for this also. I do not know how big is the throne, but if it is very big, then within the throne there may be a raised seat to accommodate the Deities. On the whole, everything should be very gorgeous; then it will be successful.
Actually, although Radha-Krishna is worshiped in Vrindaban which is like a simple village, but we worship Laksmi-Narayana, and the worship is accepted by the Radha-Krishna Deity. Actually, in our present status, we can not worship Radha-Krishna. But as all the Visnu Murtis are situated in Krishna, therefore, our Radha-Krishna worship is transferred to Visnu, Lord Narayana. Visnu worship is the regulative devotional principles, and Radha-Krishna worship is spontaneous service of eternal feelings. Therefore, as Laksmi-Narayana is the Deity of great opulences, similarly our Radha-Krishna Murtis also should be worshiped with great pomp and dignity. Krishna will give you the proper intelligence to do this very nicely. So far as prayers, you may sing Hare Krishna, Govinda Jaya Jaya, and Govindam Ādi purusam.

Sept 5 1969 letter Hamsadutta
It has very good potency, and I am very glad to learn that you have got a nice house also and the rent is also not very high. But unfortunately you have only one year’s lease, so how you can install a lifesize Deity there? Therefore, for the time being to install a lifesize Deity may not be feasible; but if you can pay 250 dollars, I will get for you from India 24″ high brass Radha-Krishna Deities, one pair, for installing in Berkeley. In the mean time, I may remind you to fix up the altar exactly like Los Angeles. You have seen it personally, and I am also enclosing herewith a picture of the Los Angeles altar. I wish that this design of the altar should be followed by everyone. This Los Angeles altar has been erected under my supervision, especially the Radha-Krishna throne, and I would very much like to follow this idea everywhere. Get for your temple nice devotees and monetary help. I hope you will stick to this center organizing, husband and wife, and in the very near future it will be as good as our Los Angeles temple.
Regarding your question about rasa with the Spiritual Master, I do not know who is the someone who has said this, but it is a most unauthorized statement. Better you should stick to hearing from authorized persons, like your Spiritual Master or experienced Godbrothers. But never try to hear someone who is not in our line. It is simply a waste of time to hear and then again have to rectify the mistake. Regarding your question about my never returning to Spiritual Sky, that is possible simultaneously. So far as the quotation from Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura you have cited, that is quite all right. Hare Krsna-Harinama In this age, chanting of Hare Krishna Mantra is the prime business of the devotee, and preaching of this Hare Krishna Mantra by outdoor Sankirtana and propagation of literature is our more important business. Side by side, Deity worship is recommended, but when there is a question of accepting one of them, we shall prefer to accept chanting of Hare Krishna Mantra first.
 
Nov 11 1969 letter Srimati
Regarding worshiping uninstalled Deities, generally this is not done. But you can aratis with Lord Jagannatha. He is very kind. I hope you are all chanting regularly and keeping in good spirits. I hope this will meet you in good health.
June 13 1970 letter Revatinanada
Regarding your question whether you may go to Rathayatra festival, yes, you may go because in your present temple the Deities are not regularly installed. So you can close the temple for a few days keeping in front of the Deities some dried fruits and a tumbler of water. When the Deity is installed it is called niyama seva. That means the routine seva prescribed after installation you cannot stop. But Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu is very kind to the fallen souls of the Kali Yuga and He is satisfied with chanting of Hare Krsna mantra. And for chanting the Hare Krsna mantra there is no hard and fast rules and regulations, so if you are absent for chanting Hare Krsna mantra somewhere else, it is as good as to chant the Hare Krsna mantra in the temple. Your chanting may not be stopped; it does not matter where you chant.
The next question, about the living entities falling down in this material world are not from the impersonal brahman. Existence in the impersonal brahma is also within the category of non-Krsna consciousness. Those who are in the brahman effulgence they are also in the fallen condition, so there is no question of falling down from a fallen condition. When fall takes place, it means falling down from the non-fallen condition.
The non-fallen condition is Krsna consciousness. So long one can maintain pure Krsna consciousness he is not fallen down. As soon as he becomes out of Krsna consciousness immediately he is fallen down. It does not matter where a living entity stays. In the material world also there are different stages of living conditions, and to remain in the brahman effulgence is also another phase of that fallen condition. Just like in the Bhagavad-gita it is stated that conditioned souls by their pious activities are elevated to the higher planetary system, but as soon as the stock of pious activities is finished he again comes down on the earthly planet. Similarly those who are elevated beyond the planetary system to the brahma effulgence, they are also prone to fall down as much as a living entity from the higher planetary system.
As such those who are thinking that they are liberated by being situated in brahman effulgence are described in the Srimad-Bhagavatam as impurely intelligent. In other words, they are actually not liberated, and because they are not actually liberated they again come down to the material world as much as a living entity elevated to the higher planetary system comes down to this earthly planet. So we do not accept anyone elevated to the brahman effulgence as actually liberated
July 1 1970 letter Damodara
I do not know what Kirtanananda Maharaja has told you, but where there is want of pujaris only Panca Tattva picture should be worshiped by performance of Kirtana and as soon as Jagannatha or Radha Krsna Deities are installed you will require some qualified pujaris immediately. If there is scarcity of such qualifies pujaris, each center should be satisfied only by worshiping Panca Tattva of Lord Caitanya by performance of Sankirtana.
I learn that your marriage is already arranged, so I have no objection.
I am glad to learn that you are continuing your mahasankirtana., that is very nice. This is our main business. Temple worship is not so important as Sankirtana on the public roads and selling our literatures. Your class schedule is also very nice.
 

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“bhakti means you utilize your energy for Kṛṣṇa”

November 19, 2021 in Articles by Laksman dasa



From:
Balarama dasa [Australia]

bhakti means you utilize your energy for Kṛṣṇa”

EXCERPT:

“…In the Upaniṣads it is said that God is also a person like me, you. Nityo nityānāṁ cetanaś cetanānām [Kaṭha Upaniṣad 2.2.13]. But His personality is different from your personality, from my personality. What is that difference? Eko yo bahūnāṁ vidadhāti kāmān: “He supplies all the necessities of all other personalities.” That is the difference. God is supplying us food. This conception is there in the Bible = “God, give us our daily bread.” This is nice. Accepting that you are getting all supplies from God, this is sukṛti, this is puṇyavat.

If one, anyone says, “Oh, what God? We are creating our own food”—just like the Communist says—they are duṣkṛtina, rascals. But if anyone even goes to the church and temple for asking something to God, he is pious. At least, he has approached God. So one day, when he will be advanced devotee, he will not ask anymore. He knows that “Why shall I bother God? He is supplying everyone food, so why shall I ask Him food? My food is also there. Let me serve me [Him].” That is his higher intelligence….

….. So how the energy should be utilized? For the master, not for his sense gratification.

This is perfection of life. You produce anything by your energy, but you cannot use it for your sense gratification. Then you become perfect. And if you want to do it, then Hṛṣīkeśa, the master of the senses, will give you intelligence how to do it. Just like He is giving Arjuna intelligence; therefore He is mentioned as Hṛṣīkeśa. How to win victory. How to utilize his energy for Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa wanted the battle. Arjuna was a military man. He utilized his military strength for Kṛṣṇa’s purposes. That is the perfection of life.

So whatever you have got, if you utilize it for Kṛṣṇa’s sake, hṛṣīkeṇa hṛṣīkeśa-sevanaṁ bhakti [Cc. Madhya 19.170], that is bhakti. Even by fighting, you can be a great devotee, just like Arjuna. He was not chanting on the beads, but he was fighting. But still, bhakto ‘si priyo ‘si me [Bg. 4.3], Kṛṣṇa says. “Oh, you are My great devotee.”

Now people may say that “He was not chanting. He was fighting. How he became a great devotee?” But Kṛṣṇa says, bhakto ‘si priyo ‘si me: “You are My dear friend. You are My devotee. Because you are utilizing your energy for Me.” So bhakti means you utilize your energy for Kṛṣṇa. Then your life is perfect.

Thank you very much.”

Devotees: All glories to Śrīla Prabhupāda. [end]

Bhagavad-gītā 1.15

London, July 15, 1973

Audio for this lecture: https://prabhupadavani.org/transcriptions/730715bglon/

Srila Gaura Kishora dasa Babaji Tirobhava tithi – Monday, November 15, 2021 [Mayapura, West Bengal]

November 19, 2021 in Articles by Laksman dasa

Inline imageInline imageInline image

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Srila Prabhupada’s Murti takes away all our suffering

November 19, 2021 in Articles by Laksman dasa

Srila Prabhupada’s Murti takes away all our suffering

This is an inspirational, and as far as I know, previously untold story about a private conversation between Srila Prabhupada and a Pancaratriki Pandit named Sampat Kumar Bhattacarya.

The story is told by HG Atma Tattva Das in a Bhagavad Gita class on 9.34 in Los Angeles on the 20th of March 1993. I found it in our old tape collection.

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Sri Dhananjaya Pandita tirobhava tithi (disappearance day) Sri Gadadhara dasa Goswami tIrobhava tithi Sri Srinivasa acarya tirobhava tithi

November 19, 2021 in Articles by Laksman dasa

Sri Dhananjaya Pandita tirobhava tithi (disappearance day) Sri Gadadhara dasa Goswami tIrobhava tithi Sri Srinivasa acarya tirobhava tithi

Friday, November 12, 2021.

Sri Dhananjaya Pandita tirobhava tithi (disappearance day)

Sri Gadadhara dasa Goswami tIrobhava tithi

Sri Srinivasa acarya tirobhava tithi

Srila Prabhupada glorifies these exalted acaryas

Sri Srinivasa acarya

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Srila Prabhupada explains the real meaning of association and ISKCON

November 19, 2021 in Articles by Laksman dasa

Srila Prabhupada explains the real meaning of association and ISKCON – Padmagarbha Das


Yamuna: Srila Prabhupada, although we are very happy where we are, we are prepared to go wherever you would like to send us in order to have your blessings.Srila Prabhupada: You westerners are always so restless. Why can’t you stay where you are?Yamuna: But we have been told that because we don’t have the association of devotees, we cannot make any advancement.Srila Prabhupada: Association can be two or two hundred. But you must be compatible. If you are two and are compatible, you can go back to Godhead. But if you are two hundred and not compatible [his eyes open widely], then no one will make any advancement.Yamuna: But Srila Prabhupada, some of the leaders are saying that we have lost your mercy because we left ISKCON and without your mercy there is no meaning to our lives.Srila Prabhupada: ISKCON is where you are chanting the Holy Names of Krsna. That is ISKCON.(Yamuna Devi, A Life of Unalloyed Devotion).

That’s Your Interpretation Prabhu

November 19, 2021 in Articles by Laksman dasa

That’s Your Interpretation Prabhu

Krsnacandra Dasa – Vrndavan: How many times have we heard this come back? It makes me wonder if we are all reading and following the same Srila Prabhupada. Srila Prabhupada’s absolute genius was to take the highly sophisticated and spiritually elevated subject matter of the Vedic Shastra and condense it down to very simple terms for the degraded, fallen and ‘dumbed down’ people of the Kali yuga.

The language that Srila Prabhupada has chosen to convey these esoteric facts is very simple and must be taken ‘as it is’ in order to understand and appreciate the ideas that he is conveying to us. The words and terms he uses are not cryptic nor do they possess some esoteric or hidden meaning, thus his instructions are clear, concise and very nicely illuminate the high and otherwise bewildering Vedic injunctions.

There isn’t the question of; importation or the ‘eisegesis’ of other meanings into the text, nor is there the question of seeking a meaning that underlies the text. The text is to be taken ‘as it is’ without interpretation or bias.

When Srila Prabhupada states ‘first you become pure’ it is self-explanatory. It is not up to anyone to break that text down in an attempt to illicit another hidden or esoteric meaning or inference. His words are to be understood on their own terms, nothing more or nothing less. Nothing added or nothing taken away.

Of course in a mind polluted with impersonalist thought; that has been trained and subsequently attached to religious hermeneutics or their religious background, may not be able to appreciate or accept the simple truth. For example; in the attempts of the Abrahamic religious denominations to explain various inconsistencies and lack of clarity of their text there has arisen a science of ‘Hermeneutics’ which is a text analysis system for those who believe text has the ability to reveal or conceal the truth and cannot accept the text at face value.

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Deity worship and the results–letters by SP-part 2

November 16, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

Part 2—letters on Deity worship continued
 
Dec 27 letter Satyabhama
I shall give you some facts about Lord Jagannatha also. I am very glad to learn the practical result of deity worship in your behavior. I am so glad to learn that you are feeling development of a bit of affection for Jagannatha by personal taking care, and that is the way of increasing our love of Godhead. Deity worship is the practical demonstration and hearing from the Spiritual Master is the nourishment of the idea. Krishna Consciousness is so nice that anyone who has a little taste of it must feel a distinction between his past and present life. It is not only the case with you but it is the case for everyone who has the fortunate opportunity for coming into contact with Krishna.
I thank you very much for your taking my time in this way. May Krishna be pleased upon you; both you and your good husband will be more and more spiritually happy by your nice service attitude in Krishna Consciousness.
Actually, I have no desire to start the school in any city. City life, especially in this age of kali yuga, is very much polluted. Poet Cowper stated that the city is made by man and the village is made by God.
 
Nov 4 1971 letter Vishnujana
It is very encouraging for me to hear that my Sannyasis are traveling and preaching. Regarding keeping our temples clean, this is essential. Unless we can maintain the temples we presently have superexcellently clean, we should not open new centers.
Two men may remain at the temple and clean thoroughly every day and the rest should go to the streets for sankirtana. For Spiritual life chanting Hare Krishna is sufficient but because we are habituated to unclean habits we must have temple worship. Sankirtana will keep everyone’s mind clean and surely this quarreling will cease.
 
Nov 17 1971 letter Himavati
I am especially pleased that you are finding great pleasure in serving Their Lordships in Hamburg Temple as pujari. I think that under your care They have become very gorgeous and satisfied. It is the sole aim of life to be constantly absorbed in thoughts about Radharani and Krishna, and because you are so determined to become fully Krishna Conscious, Krishna has given you this opportunity to realize that aim by serving Him directly. I have always instructed that the standard of arcana worship must be kept very high, because this will insure that every other temple activity will also flourish. So I am relieved to know that now the Deities are in your care. Thank you for this.
If one simply deposits all of his or her loving propensity onto the Deity of Krishna, immediately they are relieved of anxiety due to material sense agitation. This is Krishna Consciousness.
 
Nov 17 1971 letter Himavati
Because mushrooms grow in a filthy place, they are not usually offered to Krishna. It is very nice that all the men should participate in deity-worship, this will sanctify their all other work. I think you are the most clever manager, better than your husband, because you are organizing temple routine very nicely for serving the deities and this will have very good results for everyone.
 
July 30 1972 letter Arundhati
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated July 19, 1972, and I am simply surprised that you want to give up your child to some other persons, even they are also devoteesFor you, child-worship is more important than deity-worship. If you cannot spend time with him, then stop the duties of pujari. At least you must take good care of your son until he is four years old, and if after that time you are unable any more to take care of him then I shall take care. These children are given to us by Krishna, they are Vaisnavas and we must be very careful to protect them. These are not ordinary children, they are Vaikuntha children, and we are very fortunate we can give them chance to advance further in Krishna Consciousness. That is very great responsibility, do not neglect it or be confused. Your duty is very clear.
 
Oct 7 1974 letter Vrajesvari devi
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated August 11, 1974 (sic.) I have noted in your letter that you want to serve me. I only want that all you my disciples always think of Krishna and never forget Him for a moment. In this way you can conquer Krishna. He becomes so attracted by pure devotion that He gives Himself to His devotee. And if you get Krishna, then what you want more?
How to think of Krishna that I have given, following the devotional practices and chanting 16 rounds minimum. We have also established worship of the Deity in our temple so that all day long one will automatically think of Krishna, He is so kind.
 
Nov 5 1974 letter Lilasakti
I am glad to see that you are advancing in Krishna consciousness by this worship of the Deity. This is the practical application to what we find stated in the Bhagavad-gita, man manah bhava mad bhakto, mad yaji mam namaskuru. We do not speculate on what Krishna says but we follow whatever He says implicitly. I also follow this process. Every morning I go to the temple and see the Deity and offer obeisances, so I expect each and every one of my disciples should also follow what I have given in this connection, arising early, taking bath, attending mangal arati. yuktasya bhaktams ca niyunjato ‘pi **. The Deity is non-different from Krishna Himself. This we have to understand
 
Jan 29 1976 letter Dr Wolfe
In India the system is that people go to see the Jagannatha Deity. The Deity is not very beautiful from the artistic point of view, but still people attend by the thousands. That sentiment is required. Similarly with our kirtana we are only using drums and karatalas, but people come to the point of ecstasy. It is not the ornamentation, it is the ecstasy. This ecstasy is awakened by sravanam kirtanam by devotees. I hope this makes everything clear.
 
RESULTS OF PERFORMING DEITY WORSHIP

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If your heart is pure-everything depends upon purity–SP

November 16, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

May 13 1973 LA morning walk
May 13 1973 LA morning walk conversations
Paramahaṁsa: Śrīla Prabhupāda, when you are not present with us, how is it possible to receive instructions, for example, on questions that may arise?
Prabhupāda: Well, the questions…Answers are there in my books.
Paramahaṁsa: Other than that, for example, that we would ask you in…
Prabhupāda: Yes.
Paramahaṁsa: Do you direct us also through the heartBesides the Paramātmā?
Prabhupāda: If your heart is pure. Everything depends on purity.Whether there. 
 
SvarūpaDāmodara: So they were saying thateverything in the universe is just happening by chance.
Prabhupāda: So you are writing book by chance. Then what is the value of your book?
Karandhara: The book is also by chance.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Everyone can write chance,so what is your credit? Anything nonsense can be written.
SvarūpaDāmodara: Monod is his name. He got Nobel Prize in 1965 from… He is Frenchman, physiologist. And his, chance and necessity about life, he said everything started by chance.So he is saying that by chance these chemicals combined together, forming these molecules, the basic molecules…
Prabhupāda: But wherefrom the molecules came?
SvarūpaDāmodara: According to him it is simply by chance.
Prabhupāda: Chance. So everything is chance.So what is the necessity of your writing book?
SvarūpaDāmodara: Then necessity arises, so these molecules re-orient, change as a fashion because of necessity.
Prabhupāda: Why? If everything is by chance, where is the necessity? What isthe meaning? Let the chance take place. Why necessity?
Paramahaṁsa: He is hoping for another Nobel Prize by his chance.
Prabhupāda: All fools’ paradise. That’s all.Why do they send their children to school? Why not let them grow by chance? Is there any excuse if I say, “By chance I have violated this rule?” Is that the cause of excuse?
SvarūpaDāmodara: That’s because of my ignorance.
Prabhupāda: That is chance. That is chance. Because I am ignorant, therefore there is chance.
Paramahaṁsa: It would be just as stupid as saying a beautiful instrument like a car was made by chance.
Prabhupāda: Yes.Yes. That is the most regrettable condition, that these rascals are getting recognition; talking all foolish, and they are getting recognition.
SvarūpaDāmodara: It’s so strange. When I read that book. He defines the difference between the living and the non-living by a term called teleonomy.I tried to find out in the dictionary and I couldn’t find any word like that. But I understood that what he meant was…
Prabhupāda: Hyerpolosvel. (Prabhupāda’s mythical scientific word) (laughter)
Kṛṣṇakāntī: He invents his own word jugglery.
SvarūpaDāmodara: He was trying to present the difference between organic beings and the non-organic beings. So he goes in such a round about fashion just to differentiate.
Prabhupāda: Petitio principii. This logic is called petitio principii. He has to prove something, but he is taking his premises from that something. (end)
 
Some Conclusions–This business of proposing that chance determines everything is foolish. Prabhupada gives the nice example of why send your kids to school when just by “chance” they will become educated? And why if everything is run by chance then where does the word “necessity” come into play if everything is run by chance?  Or if I just throw my shovel out into the back gardens then by chance everything will just grow so nicely? 
I wish it were so but unfortunately work is involved and without work we get nothing because that is how this material world is set up. And Krsna tells us in His BG that work done as a sacrifice for Lord Vishnu must be doneotherwise all our work binds us to karma.
So there are two points in this conversation the first one is the most important that Supersoul and Srila Prabhupada will guide us and our actions-if we are pure. 
How to become pure? Chant Hare Krsna and follow the 4 regulative principles under the directions of Krsna’s pure representative Srila Prabhupada.
Hare Krsna
damaghosa das
 
Note-as a side note–why  does nobody in iskcon understand Guru tattva? And by their own admission? After 40 years???