Expanding Our Love

Srila Prabhupada explains how our love can grow to include everyone.

ko griheshu puman saktam
atmanam ajitendriyah
sneha-pashair dridhair baddham
utsaheta vimochitum

"What person too attached to household life due to being unable to control his senses can liberate himself? An attached householder is bound very strongly by ropes of affection for his family [wife, children, and other relatives]." – Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.6.9

The Power of Intent

Some people think of karma as a blind, mechanical law, but it’s not as simple as that.

One morning I was listening to a few devotees discuss a point of philosophy when one of them emphatically said, “The reaction [karma] we receive for our activity depends entirely on the activity and not on our intent while doing it. Regardless of our intent, we’ll get a reaction based on what we do. For example, if a person knowingly kills someone, he receives the same reaction as a person who unintentionally kills.” For evidence, he read from a small book by Srila Prabhupada:

Yashoda Finds and Catches Krishna

Some details about Krishna’s endearing Damodara-lila that you’ve probably never heard before.

Yashoda wiped her hands in the folds of her sari, and, creeping like a detective on the tips of her toes, she followed the path left by her son, step by buttery step.

O great sages! O demigods! O perfected devotees! Meditate upon the ruby glow of the lotus feet of the universal mother as she balances on her soft petal toes!

The Krishna Book Miracle

Srila Prabhupada was ready to publish a book all about Krishna, and he wanted George Harrison’s help

During the spring of 1969, we kind of knew that Swamiji was writing a book called Krishna because he’d mentioned it in a letter to Gurudas, but we didn’t know much about it. Nor, I must admit, did we much care. It was the job of other godbrothers – devotees like Satsvarupa, Brahmananda, Rayarama, Adwaita – to print books. Our job was overwhelmingly clear: build a world-class center for the Swami in London.

From Osmosis to Perfection: The Importance of Sadhu-Sanga

To make steady progress in bhakti we need guidance and inspiration from those more spiritually mature.

“When the material life of a wandering soul has ceased, O Acyuta [Krishna], he may attain the association of Your devotees. And when he associates with them, there awakens in him devotion unto You, who are the goal of the devotees and the Lord of all causes and their effects.” (Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.51.53)

"Fruitive Activity": Telling Terminology in the Science of Self-Realization

Srila Prabhupada artfully enlists a rare English word for our spiritual benefit.

In his translations of Vedic scripture, Srila Prabhupada put the old, nearly retired word fruitive back to work, with new purpose. "Fruitive activity" is Srila Prabhupada’s useful way to translate the Sanskrit word karma. While he more commonly translates karma simply as "action," his use of "fruitive activity" serves to highlight karma as action not dedicated to the service of the Lord, resulting in bondage under the material energy.

Self-realization in Bhakti

To understand who we truly are, no other path described in the Gita is as effective as bhakti-yoga.

For a thoughtful person, the following question may occur: “Am I only matter, or am I something more?”

According to modern science, the answer is that each of us is a molecular machine, a three-dimensional collection of molecules, which have the properties of life owing to special three-dimensional structures (DNA, RNA, and proteins). If we pause to think about this answer, we may find it problematic.

Patisserie Divine

After finding success in selling prasadam pastries to outlets around Mauritius, Navakishora Dasa decides to start a vegetarian pastry school.

Navakishora Dasa, from Mauritius, joined ISKCON in 1985. Before coming to ISKCON, but inspired by Srila Prabhupada’s books, he became a vegetarian at the age of thirteen. While learning to cook, he used to visit ISKCON Phoenix regularly and spend most of his time in the kitchen with his notebook, collecting a variety of recipes.

Elevating Our Emotions

We can protect ourselves from emotional manipulation by learning how to activate and strengthen our higher emotions.

Our heart is capable of both noble and ignoble emotions. How we can cultivate higher emotions and curb lower emotions is demonstrated in the Ramayana through the interactions between the two pairs of inseparable brothers: Rama-Lakshmana, who are together in exile, and Bharata-Satrughna, who are together in Ayodhya. Of course, these brothers are divine and beyond lower emotions.

Vritrasura, the Godly Demon

Though cursed by Goddess Parvati to be born as a demon, the devotee Chitraketu retains his spiritual standing.

The Vedic literature contains many histories meant to enlighten us with transcendental knowledge and teach us valuable lessons so that we can progress on the spiritual path. The Srimad-Bhagavatam in particular is filled with such stories.

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