Congregationally chanting Hare Krsna-otherwise we become complicated with details only-SP

June 26, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

Hare Krsna-below is just one point taken out in a 1974 LA lecture by Srila Prabhupada

summer 1974 LA temple lecture by SP
 
Truthfulness, cleanliness, and forgiveness are also decreasing. Formerly, if someone did something wrong, the other party would forgive him.For example, Arjuna was tortured by his enemies, yet still, on the Battlefield of Kurukṣetra he said, “Kṛṣṇa, let me leave. I don’t want to kill them.”This is forgiveness.But now, even for a small insult people will kill.This is going on. Also, there is now no mercifulness (dayā). Even if you see someone being killed in front of you, you will not take interest. These things are happening already. So, religion, truthfulness, cleanliness, forgiveness, mercifulness, duration of life, bodily strength, and memory—these eight things will decrease, decrease, decrease, decrease. When you see these symptoms, you should know the age of Kali is making progress.
 
Some conclusions—When I was reading the lecture Prabhupada gave in LA and he was taking all the elements of one verse in SB about the actual human characteristics predicted to manifest later in kali yuga (we are now 5000 yrs into it),  I was thinking in particular about this one element of tolerance or forgiveness.
Over the years of hosting hundreds of Krsna conscious programs at our home ashram/temple, I have seen that many devotees become irritated quite easily over trifles if someone  irritates them or says something they don’t like. Even sometimes if you try to sugar coat a certain point of the philosophy, somebody will get angry or mad at you. And then they just leave the devotees association altogether, and where they go most don’t know. I imagine that some of them try to find another “devotee group” where their feelings wont get ruffled. And some of them just leave devotee association for good, thinking who knows what?

So thisattitude of non forgivenessmeans when we do that, it means kali yuga has infected us ourselves. When one leaves a certain group of devotees  because he or she got his feathers ruffled for some reason, it means we are not quite yet “there” in terms of humility and forgiveness , tolerance and understanding.
One of the first things I learned when regularly visiting India was that you have to become tolerant, or you just cant stay there. Its that simple really. Because things don’t work smoothly in India like they do in most western countries, the devotees can become irritated very easily. So preparing oneself for a life of tolerance means spiritual  life will become much easier.
 
 If one wants to become a “preacher” on a regular basis, he or she must become so tolerant of others habits and ways of thinking. I remember, when we were living in Seattle, doing our sunday feast programs for 5 straight years and doing Hari nama each Saturday prior to those feasts.. Some days in the rain or blowing snow we went out on Hari nama sankirtan.  it was tough. Then back at our temple the next day  lots of devotees would come and chant and dance with us. Then afterwards I got the service of cleaning up the nasty bathroom mess.
Nobody wants to clean bathrooms, but if you want to dance and chant with devotees and try to preach this sankirtan movement and get others to do likewise, one has to  learn to become servant of the servant. Despite what’s left in the bathroom after they leave.
 
There is one incident in particular I like where Srila Prabhupada explains the attitude devotees should have for each other, especially when things get hot under the collar. This is his instructions to us all if we want to actually become what it means to be “Vaisnava”.
 
march 10 1976 Mayapur conversations
 

Bhāgavata: …a point about attraction and aversion, that there’s a complaint that sometimes there’s too much aversion on the part of the brahmacārīs. But isn’t that not a quality, to a point a brahmacārī should have a healthy contempt for sense gratification?

Prabhupāda: I do not follow.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: He’s saying that sometimes the brahmacārīs, even the sannyāsīs, they may have a very strong aversion towards association with women and/or householder life, things of this nature. And sometimes the gṛhasthas will criticize the sannyāsīs and brahmacārīs that “This is fanaticism,” or it’s, to the other end, “It’s just as bad as the enjoying spirit, because you’re meditating on the same thing, but only you’re averse to it.” So what is the…? Bhāgavata dāsa’s question is “What is the condition?” Is it better to be neutral or to be averse?

Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: Neutral.

Prabhupāda:These are all fanaticism. Real unity is in advancing Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Kalau nāsty eva nāsty eva… In Kali-yuga, you cannot strictly follow, neither I can strictly follow. If I criticize you, if you criticize me, then we go far away from our real life of Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: So is it correct to say that if we’re not Kṛṣṇa conscious, then if it’s not the gṛhastha problem, it would be some other problem?

Prabhupāda:Yes.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: We’ll find something or another to absorb our time with besides Kṛṣṇa.

Prabhupāda:No, you should always remember that either gṛhastha or brahmacārī or sannyāsī, nobody can strictly follow all the rules and regulations of them. In the Kali-yuga it is not possible. So if I find simply fault with you, and if you find fault with me, then it will be factional, and our real business will be hampered. Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu has recommended that hari-nāma, chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, should be very rigidly performed, which is common for everyone:gṛhastha, vānaprastha or sannyāsī. They should always chant Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra.Then everything will be adjusted. Otherwise it is impossible to advance. We shall be complicated with the details only. This is called niyamāgrahaḥ. I think I have explained.

Hare Krsna
damaghosa das