What is love of Godhead ?

Hare Krishna.

26th Feb, 2014, Gurgaon.

Q: Where and how can we get real love in our lives ?
A: Srila Prabhupada explains in the introduction of Chaitanaya Charitramrita :

Even in this material world we can have a little sense of love. How is this possible? It is due to the presence of our original love of God. Whatever we find within our experience within this conditioned life is situated in the Supreme Lord, who is the ultimate source of everything. In our original relationship with the Supreme Lord there is real love, and that love is reflected pervertedly through material conditions. Our real love is continuous and unending, but because that love is reflected pervertedly in this material world, it lacks continuity and is inebriating. If we want real, transcendental love, we have to transfer our love to the supreme lovable object-Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This is the basic principle of Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

Q: Why did Lord Kṛṣṇa assumed the form of Caitanya Mahāprabhu ?

A: To taste Radharani’s love for Himself.

Srila Prabhupada explains in the introduction of Chaitanaya Charitramrita :

Kṛṣṇa desired to know the glory of Rādhā’s love. “Why is She so much in love with Me?” Kṛṣṇa asked. “What is My special qualification that attracts Her so? And what is the actual way in which She loves Me?” It seems strange that Kṛṣṇa, as the Supreme, should be attracted by anyone’s love. A man searches after the love of a woman because he is imperfect-he lacks something. The love of a woman, that potency and pleasure, is absent in man, and therefore a man wants a woman. But this is not the case with Kṛṣṇa, who is full in Himself. Thus Kṛṣṇa expressed surprise: “Why am I attracted by Rādhārāṇī? And when Rādhārāṇī feels My love, what is She actually feeling?” To taste the essence of that loving exchange, Kṛṣṇa made His appearance in the same way that the moon appears on the horizon of the sea. Just as the moon was produced by the churning of the sea, by the churning of spiritual loving affairs the moon of Caitanya Mahāprabhu appeared.

Q: How can we learn about how to develop ‘ love of Godhead’ ?
A: We can learn it from the teachings of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

Srila Prabhupada explains in the introduction of Chaitanaya Charitramrita that

We have often heard the phrase “love of Godhead.” How far this love of Godhead can actually be developed can be learned from the Vaiṣṇava philosophy. Theoretical knowledge of love of God can be found in many places and in many scriptures, but what that love of Godhead actually is and how it is developed can be found in the Vaiṣṇava literatures. It is the unique and highest development of love of God that is given by Caitanya Mahāprabhu.

Caitanya Mahāprabhu informs us that in every country and in every scripture there is some hint of love of Godhead. But no one knows what love of Godhead actually is. The Vedic scriptures, however, are different in that they can direct the individual in the proper way to love God. Other scriptures do not give information on how one can love God, nor do they actually define or describe what or who the Godhead actually is. Although they officially promote love of Godhead, they have no idea how to execute it

Lord Caitanya, preaching as an ācārya, a great teacher, taught that we can enter into a relationship with God and actually become God’s friend, parent or lover. In the Bhagavad-gītā Kṛṣṇa showed Arjuna His universal form because Arjuna was His very dear friend. Upon seeing Kṛṣṇa as the Lord of the universes, however, Arjuna asked Kṛṣṇa to forgive the familiarity of his friendship. Lord Caitanya goes beyond this point. Through Lord Caitanya we can become friends with Kṛṣṇa, and there will be no limit to this friendship. We can become friends of Kṛṣṇa not in awe or adoration but in complete freedom. We can even relate to God as His father or mother. This is the philosophy not only of the Caitanya-caritāmṛta but of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam as well. There are no other scriptures in the world in which God is treated as the son of a devotee. Usually God is seen as the almighty father who supplies the demands of His sons. The great devotees, however, sometimes treat God as a son in their execution of devotional service. The son demands, and the father and mother supply, and in supplying Kṛṣṇa the devotee becomes like a father or mother. Instead of taking from God, we give to God. It was in this relationship that Kṛṣṇa’s mother, Yaśodā, told the Lord, “Here, eat this or You’ll die. Eat nicely.” In this way Kṛṣṇa, although the proprietor of everything, depends on the mercy of His devotee. This is a uniquely high level of friendship, in which the devotee actually believes himself to be the father or mother of Kṛṣṇa.

However, Lord Caitanya’s greatest gift was His teaching that Kṛṣṇa can be treated as one’s lover. In this relationship the Lord becomes so much attached to His devotee that He expresses His inability to reciprocate. Kṛṣṇa was so obliged to the gopīs, the cowherd girls of Vṛndāvana, that He felt unable to return their love. “I cannot repay your love,” He told them. “I have no more assets to give.” Devotional service on this highest, most excellent platform of lover and beloved, which had never been given by any previous incarnation or ācārya, was given by Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Therefore Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja, quoting Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī, writes in the fourth verse of his book, “Lord Caitanya is Kṛṣṇa in a yellow complexion, and He is Śacīnandana, the son of mother Śacī. He is the most charitable personality because He came to deliver kṛṣṇa-prema, unalloyed love for Kṛṣṇa, to everyone. May you always keep Him in your hearts. It will be easy to understand Kṛṣṇa through Him.”

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.
All glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga.

The joy of Initiation

Hare Krishna and Dandavat Pranam.

All Glories to Sri Sri Gauranga, Srila Prabhupada and Gurudev.

Please accept my humble obeisances.

It is so wonderful to receive Giriraj Prabhu’s email detailing ecstatic moments spent in Ujjain during Nityanand Tryodashi 2014. I was really touched as Prabhuji was so excited (genuinely) that 3 devotees are getting initiated from Gurgaon. With Prabhuji, I really understood the meaning of true friend…infact there is nothing in this world like devotee friend as they are friend in true sense.

I will now jump to Gurudev’s meeting with 8 of us on 11th Feb at 3pm – a day before initiation. It was so touching. Maharaj first welcomed all of us asking if we are all comfortable. Then he stated very lovingly that we have to take sadhana bhakti even more seriously and if we make any mistakes then he shall chastise us. To be honest even the word chastise felt like love. Since we have all been accustomed to Guru Maharaj’s ever smiling and loving gestures, there was a bit of question in everyone’s eyes. Guru Maharaj then explained: “When I was a young boy (10-12yrs), I had few servants and one of them was head servant (30-35yrs) who was quite strict with me. Even I was scared of him as all servants used to listen to him and he used to bossify over me too. I was scared of him as the head servant was very close to my father and he used share every detail with my father.” Then Guru Maharaj closed his eyes a bit and said: “I am like that servant who may chastise YOU – “the children of Krishna” so that u are in the right path as per instructions of Krishna. You are Krishna’s children and I am his servant. I am just doing my duty of serving Krishna so you have to listen to me.”

My heart melted and then Guru Maharaj went on: “However every evening around 7:30-8pm, the head servant would take me on his shoulder and give me a ride. I was fascinated by the moon and was bewildered that moon is walking with me. My head servant used to say – I and Moon love you a lot….wherever you will go, we will follow u. Just like that servant, I will always love you and I will be always with you as I am just a servant helping you to go back to Prabhupad who will take you to Krishna.”

Listening to this, my eyes swelled with tears. His humility, surrender and love was unparallel…I have never heard such profound statement and realization from such an example. My throat was wet and I paid my humble obeisances. I gathered myself and said: “I am such a fallen soul and you are taking my demonic karma that I am feeling downcast. You are so loving and humble and I am so sorry that I have done such bad karmas. I promise that I will never ever do it again knowingly” and begged for forgiveness. I really wanted to cry as I was filled with gratitude that such an exalted, loving and realized soul has accepted to be my Guru. I can never ever forget this incident in my life and feeling of my surrender knew no bounds.

Then on the next day, the initiation started whereby Guru Maharaj patiently made us understand the importance of Diksha and made us promise of following 4 regulative principles, 16 rounds and avoid 10 offences. Then he was about to say our initiated name. Like a small boy, I waited pressing my ears, waiting anxiously and he said: “Shyam Sunder Krishna Das”…I was thrilled. I had never imagined such a beautiful name…I could relate instantaneously to the deity “Radha Shyam sunder” of Vrindavan ISKCON temple and the main Radha Shyam sunder deity gifted by Radha Rani to Shyamsunder prabhu. Guru Maharaj then explained the meaning: “All beautiful Lord Krishna.” After sometime, I smiled because in my first meeting with Guru Maharaj (3 yrs back), when I had asked him the meaning of Bhakti Charu, he responded: “Charu=Beautiful; Bhakti=devotion, so it means beautiful in devotion.”

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When the ceremony ended, I was in pure ecstasy to get such a merciful Guru. I sat in my room and wanted to chant the rounds on beads touched by Guru Maharaj. I was inquisitive to touch the beads touched by Guru Maharaj. Like a child I could feel his touch in beads. It was so inspirational.

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After one round, my wife: Shilpi asked me how I am feeling? I said: I am feeling – joyful, ecstasy, liberated, humbled, full of gratitude and more importantly determined and resolute to succeed in spiritual life. Many devotees used to discuss before “how important it is to get initiated?” I sincerely request one must get serious in spiritual life and surely get initiated as its the best moment of one’s life…

I want to thank most profusely – HH Janananda Maharaj who taught me how to chant 16 rounds when I was not able to move beyond 10 rounds. He also taught me simplicity and servitude mood.

I also want to thank few devotees who really helped me to reach here – Ajay Prabhu (Burijana Prabhu aspiring disciple) who introduced me to Krishna Consciousness and HG Dayananda Prabhu from Australia, my loving brother – HG Vishnu Yagna Prabhu in Jaipur who introduced me to Guru Maharaj and guided me selflessly; HG Mukund Murari Prabhu who removed lot of cobwebs when my mind was cluttered how to select Guru; HG Achyut Hari Prabhu who helped me to get association in Gurgaon; HG Giriraj Prabhu who is my best friend and true love relationship and my wife Shilpi who is more pure than me and was constant companion in serving all senior Vaishnavas and Sanniyasis.

This was such powerful moment that even writing this I am feeling again very high and rejuvenated….Pls pray for me that I keep serving you all; I imbibe same love that our Guru Maharaj has for everyone, I do not offend anyone and that my attachment to Guru, His Godbrothers, Vaishnavas and eventually Lord keeps increasing..

Guru Dev ki Jai!

Samved Bhakt Vrind ki Jai…

Very fallen and menial servant,

Shyam Sunder Krishna Das

Initiation ceremony at Ujjain on Nityananda Trayodasi

Hare Krishna.

12th Feb, 2014, Ujjain.

There was an excitement in the air today morning. Today was Nityananda Trayodasi and initiations for the 8 fortunate devotees.

I got up a bit late, around 4.15am  and hurriedly got ready and was in the temple hall at 4.40am for the mangal arti. The temple hall was almost full. Guru Maharaj was singing the Guruvastakam in his ever melodious voice and devotees were in a transcendental trance completely absorb in the hearing Guru Maharaj’s voice and seeing the beautiful deities of Sri Radha Madanmohan, Sri Krishna Balram and Sri Gaur Nitai. Guru Maharaj left the temple hall after attending the Tulasi Arti. I felt cold and left for my room to chant and catch up with some sleep. I met Sumeet Prabhu on my way back to the room and we spoke for 15-20 minutes, I was as excited as prabhuji for his initiation ceremony.

I chanted my rounds for an hour and then tried to catch up with sleep. There was a knock on the door, I opened the door with half closed eyes, it was Sumeet Prabhu. He came inside and asked me if Giriraj Prabhu is here !! I told him I am his fallen servant, he laughed as he couldn’t recognise me in my night suite and without glasses. He need help to tie his Dhoti. When he left the room it was already 7.20am.

I changed and rushed back to temple to attend Guru Puja, which was half over. Everyone was waiting for the altar to open. Guru Maharaj was inside the altar room. One devotee told me that today’s darshan is going to be a special with peacock dress for the Deities.

The conch shell blew and t he altar doors opened, what a wonderful darshan. Deities seemed to be basking in their new dress !


As we started singing govindam adipurusham tam aham bhajami I suddenly heard peacocks singing in the temple. I looked back but there were no peacocks. I, then, realised that some enthusiastic devotee is mixing the sound of peacocks within the prayer and making it feel like as if peacocks are here !

After the arti everyone was waiting for the initiation ceremony to start. I chanted some more rounds basking in the bright sun in the corner of the outside verandah.

I saw Guru Maharaj going inside the temple hall. A quick dandavat and I ran inside the temple hall. Guru Maharaj gave an excellent lecture on importance of initiation. Few quick points which I was able to note on my mobile, please pardon me if there are any mistakes.

  1. Initiation means the beginning of the spiritual journey. Initiation is a formality, like we formally get admission in a school and get degree. We can study at home also but without a degree it is not recognised. Similarly without surrendering to a spiritual master the devotional journey is not recognised.

  2. The Sanskrit word diksha is a compound word and is derived from the two words ‘divya Jnana’ meaning  ‘transcendental knowledge’ and ‘kshiyate’ the verb ‘to destroy’. Hence it means that transcendental knowledge which destroy all sins.

  3. The spiritual master gives `Divya Jnana’ and the disciple goes back to the spiritual world. We need a vehicle to go to the spiritual world and that vehicle is the process of initiation.

  4. Mantra is actually the element which reveals the knowledge, by chanting the mantra and by meditating on the mantra.

  5. Earlier the mantras were kept secret and were given to the qualified disciples only. These were chanted in the ear so that others can not hear them.

  6. This was the process for mantra what to speak to Maha mantra. The difference is like machine gun and nuclear bomb, only very few add access to it. Similarly the we can take the example of diamond and Kohinoor diamond, the topmost diamond.

  7. Guru maharaj explained that beggars can never become millionaires. Only a king can make a beggar a millionaire. But kings  generally don’t do that. What if the king becomes mad, mad in Krishna Prema. So mahaPrabhu has asked Nityananda Prabhu to distribute this to everyone.

  8. Earlier only a Brahmin and that too only a qualified Brahmin could get a mantra. But MahaPrabhu kept no qualification or caste, anyone was welcome. MahaPrabhu asked Nityananda prabhu to distribute to everyone.

  9. MahaPrabhu said that `you can buy me through Mahamantra’.

  10. This way we are getting something which is not rare for even Lord Brahma and Lord Siva.

  11. Guru Maharaj then added that had Srila Prabhupada not gone to America and started ISKCON where would be all of us today ? What were we doing before joining ISKCON ? So we should realise our good fortune that we have got the top most mantra.

  12. Guru maharaj finally added that we need to take care of the offenses while chanting as offenses prevent Mahamantra to become effective. As an analogy consider what is common between a seed and a banyan tree. If the seed gets proper care then it becomes a tree. Similarly if we have faith as a fertiliser then we will see mahamantra as Krishna Himself. We need faith in our heart to make our heart fertile. Once the seed  becomes seedling then this `bhaktilata bija’ will grow and cross the material world, cross the Vraja river and then cross Vaikuntha and then land at the lotus feet of Krishna.

  13. Flower of this tree is bhava' and fruit of this tree is KrishnaPrema’.

  14. We must start our chanting with a prayer to Krishna to please protect me so that I don’t chant with offenses.


Then the initiation ceremony began with chanting of Brahma Samhita. Guru Maharaj again stressed that verses 29 to 56 are the very essence of Srimad Bhagavatam and we must understand and memorise them. All devotees were provided with printed copies of these verses and everyone recited them with Guru maharaj. The most fortunate devotees received their Hari Nama Diksha from Guru Maharaj. Guru Maharaj asked  to each of these devotees to promise him to never leave ISCKON come what may, they all promised.

And then the `Yajnana’ began.

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The ceremony  got over in next 30 minutes. Newly initiated devotees, purified and elated, came out to take blessings from everyone around them. The whole atmosphere was a mix of excitement and joy. We were all under the divine sky of Ujjain Dhama.

All glories to Nityananada Trayodasi.

All glories to the newly initiated devotees.

All glories to the Guru Parampara.

All glories to Guru Maharaj.

All Glories to Sandipani Muni.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Kirtan Mela at Ujjain

Hare Krishna.

11th Feb, 2014, Ujjain.


A trip to Ujjain is always very special. This time the trip had multiple causes. Firstly I had got initiated on Nityananda Trayodasi last year and I wanted to be with Guru Maharaj on this day. The second, far more joyous, reason was that my very dear friend, mentor and elder brother Sumeet Prabhu was going to get initiated along with two other senior devotees from Gurgaon, Pawan Prabhu and Pooja Mataji, on the same day. Thirdly there was a Kirtan mela at Ujjain temple and we would be able to attend atleast the 3rd day.

We reached Ujjain on 11th morning. I was fortunate to get a chance to travel with Sumeet Prabhu and his family and during the trip, as always, he subtly taught me many things. As a bonus HG Radhe Shyam Prabuji too travelled with us and in the morning I did chanted sitting with him for 3 hours. I was very inspired by his calm face and how he did his chanting with eyes closed and chanting softly. I tried to copy him by trying to close my eyes and chant but could not hold my eyes close for a more than few minutes before something or other will break my concentration. But I am going to try practicing it once I am back home.

Whenever I come to any ISKCON temple I feel like a girl who has come back to her parent’s home, her `mayakaa’. As soon we reached Pooja mataji called us to hurry up as HH BB Govinda Maharaj was playing for the last time before leaving Ujjain. I hurried and reached in time to hear maharaj live for the first time, HG Madhava Prabhu and his team were playing the musical instruments. The temple hall was almost full.


What a performance, it usually takes me some time to get `tuned’ into a Kirtan, especially if it is a large performance. It was within seconds that I was totally immersed in the kirtan. Maharaj has such a deep and powerful voice, after a few minutes I felt purified as if I have taken a bath in the Ganges river. The whole experience was awesome ! I sang so loudly that many a times my lungs and throat protested at such sudden enthusiasm ! It was food for my soul. After a while HH Chandramauli Swami Maharaja started dancing, he danced like a well trained dancer, dancing for the pleasure of Sri Radha Madanmohan. I felt the devdasi would similarly dance in front of Lord Jagannath. Then few more devotees followed Maharaj and then few more and in a short span the whole temple was dancing in sheer ecstasy of the Hole Name.

All glories to HH Bhakti Bhringa Govinda Swami Maharaja !

Guru Maharaj came towards the end of maharaj’s kirtan, and once the kirtan was over, Guru Maharaj glorified HH BB Govinda Maharaj profusely and praised his preaching and kirtan programs all over the world. HH BB Govinda Maharaj, who was leaving for Bangladesh, too glorified Guru Maharaj. He complimented Guru Maharaj . He complimented Guru Maharaj on the magnificent temple, beautiful Deities, top class service for the Deities and then added that he has never tasted a more delicious prasadam, as he had in last 3 days, in any temple all over the ISKCON world ! He also agreed to Guru Maharaj’s request to visit Ujjain again. They both hugged each other with such affection that it brought spontaneous clapping and Hari Bol from all devotees.


It was prasdam time and I was quite hungry. We had a sumptuous prasadam at the temple food hall with first class food and wonderful hospitality by local devotees. I also caught up with senior devotees from Jaipur Murari Prabhu and Vineet Prabhu, Mukunda Prabhu, so many Brahmachari’s from the temple and yet some more familiar devotees from all across the world. In just few hours I had completely forgotten that I even have a material life!

The next session started at 4pm. By the time I entered the temple hall it was already 5pm and  HH Chandramauli Swami Maharaja was doing the Kirtan. After his excellent Kirtan for an hour it was the turn of HG Madhav Prabhu to perform.

If HH BB Govinda Maharaj’s kirtan was like taking a dip in Ganges than Prabhuji’s kirtan was like being transported straight to Vrindavan. He sang slow, deep and with so much heart into it that I almost cried while singing in the Kirtan. Prabhuji has a special mercy of Aindra Prabhu on him.


All glories to HG Madhav Prabhu and his team members.

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I was trying to click the above picture of a devotee deep in the trance of Holy name when I heard a flurry of activity on my right side. I could see in the camera frame itself that devotees were turning to greet someone. As I hastily turned, and my phone shook to get the above hazy picture, I saw Guru Maharaj walking in with his ever enchanting smile.

Guru Maharaj was back in the temple ! After HG Madhav Prabhuji’s kirtan was over Guru Maharaj glorified and thanked him for such wonderful kirtan and how they are so popular throughout the world. They too were all praise for Guru Maharaj and the temple.

The Last session of the Kirtan Mela was led by Guru Maharaj. What can one say now! Guru Maharaj started with a slow pace and then picked up the beats. For the fourth time in the day the whole temple was again dancing jubilantly. Devotees won’t let Guru Maharaj stop the Kirtan! Children, women, elders, everyone was dancing on the tune of Guru Maharaj.


After the ecstatic kirtan Guru Maharaj gave a brief but serious lecture on the importance of Hari Nama. He said that the whole purpose of organising the Kirtan mela was to attract people to chant of the Holy name of the Lord.

By hearing just one full day of kirtana I felt as if my soul is satiated till its very core.

It was already 9.15 pm and we all had another dose of sumptuous prasadam. After spending some time with Vineet Prabhu, I retired to my room around 11.45pm.

All glories to the Kirtan mela.

All glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga.

Staying among the cows

Hare Krishna.

9th February, 2014, Vrindavan Dhama.

I had not been to Vrindavan Dhama since last Kartika, which is a shame as I live just a 2.5 hour drive away.

It was a double bonanza trip for me, first HH Janananada Maharaj was there and he had agreed to give me some time, he is a very simple, austere and humble Sanyasi. In the words of HH Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaj he is one of the hidden jewels of ISKCON. Maharaj always stay at ISKCON Goshala. The second  bonanza was that Sumeet prabhu got me a room at the same Goshala. I have no love for cows and I thought staying close to them I might inculcate some love for cows.

I left on Saturday noon and reached Goshala around 4 pm. I had planned to change, take darshan of the Deities and then meet Maharaj. As I got down from the car and turned towards the Goshala building I saw HH Janananada Maharaj walking with his assistant. I paid my obeisances, he was pleasantly surprised to see me and said that he is  going for a program and might get late so he will see me tomorrow morning. I kept on walking with Maharaj and after some time requested him if I too could attend the program. He agreed to my request, the program was at ISCKON hospice. Maharaj refused to sit in my car and chose to walk stating that it was a short distance and he always prefers to walk.

We reached the hospice and the program started Maharaj gave a very nice lecture on SB 1.7.7.


My points of learning from the lecture:

1. Srimad Bhagavatam is the fruit of vedic knowledge, we should be concerned with the fruit rather than getting lost in the vast vedic knowledge.

2. Knowledge is good but what we do with the knowledge is more important. Maharaj gave many examples from Srimad bhagavatam like Hiranyaksha, who had the knowledge about spirit soul but still utilised it for the wrong purpose.

3. False ego means false identity, we are thinking of ourselves at the bodily platform rather than as a spirit soul. Maharaj gave the example that if a person is watching TV along with his dog and is totally immersed in the TV program, laughing, crying, etc. watching it. The dog must wonder why my master is behaving in such an odd way. The dog is not connected with the TV and will wonder if his master has gone crazy! Maharaj said similarly in today’s time we identify with our wallet and now mobile phone and how badly we lament when we lose our mobile phone as if our life air is lost.

4. Maharaj concluded the session by instructing us that we to see everything in relation with Krishna and not with ourselves. This is what Guru maharaj also always teach us that Krishna should be in the centre and not us.

As maharaj was leaving and reached the main gate of the building, he turned back and asked the doctor accompanying us that he wants to see the facilities and meet the patients. We turned back and then Maharaj went through the facilities, there weren’t too many patients, and the building, though simple, was well maintained. Then we went to the top floor and met patients. We were told that they are all cancer patients, at their last stage. Srila Prabhupada’s kirtan was playing in each room and somehow the atmosphere was not that of complete gloom.

Maharaj went and met every single patient. He held their hand, consoled them not to fear and told them to chant the Holy name. Maharaj was full of compassion.

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We came back to Goshala, I took permission to get fresh and take darshan of the Deities. I checked into my room. It was a very simple room, just a bed and nothing else, the bathroom was neat and simple. Standing outside the room the air smelled fresh, though scented with cowdung, hay and other paraphernalia.

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I went to the temple and took darshan of Their Lordships. It is always a very humbling experience standing in from of Krishna & Balram and facing music in the heart that my progress in spiritual journey is negligible and no efforts in preaching. I took darshan and told Them I would try harder and begged for their mercy. I could get Mahaprasad from the counter for dinner.

I came back to Goshala. I found the ambiance here very soothing, a pleasant change from all the hustle and bustle around the temple. I felt as if I in a different Vrindavan. To my surprise I found that the geyser in my bathroom is not working and I wondered how to take a cold morning bath but then Maharaj’s assistant came to my rescue and told me that I can get warm water from Maharaj’s bathroom. I honoured the Maharaprasadam in the room and was in the bed by 9pm. It was very calm and serene barring some noises from cows and monkeys which I actually liked.

I got up without the alarm as at 3 am, I felt as if the whole place has come suddenly alive. There was some generator or machine which started with great noise and the people were moving around, cows and what not. One Brahmachari was already taking a bath my bathroom, as he came outside I asked him `Is the geyser working?’ He said the water is fine, though not hot it is not very cold also. It gave me courage to enter the washroom and I thought if he could take it then so could I. I opened the tap of the geyser and there was no difference in the temperature and water was so cold! All my thoughts and courage of taking a cold water bath got evaporated immediately and I shamelessly went toward’s Maharaj’s room to get warm water. Maharaj came out and gave me an inquiring look. I explained about the geyser and Maharaj told me to take water from his bathroom. As I came out of room after getting ready, I was not ready for the chill and it is some walk to the main temple from here. As I walked out I saw a Brahmachari starting his scooter. I requested him for a lift till the temple and I was right in time for Prabhupada arti at his samadhi.


As I stood there with darkness all around me and just the light from Samadhi illuminating I wondered if  this shows that unless I take shelter under the lotus feet of Srila Prabhupada I will remain in darkness.

Then it was time for the mangal arti and surprisingly for a Sunday it was not all packed up and I found a good place to stand in front of the altar. The Kirtan peaked at 4.30am and the altar doors opened.


Mangal arti darshan is always very very special and somehow it always reminds me of Krishna Lila. After a melodious arti and then Tulasi pooja, I went to Srila Prabhupada’s quarter to chant my rounds.  I felt too cold there and had to take shelter of the guest house reception where I paced from one side to another to keep myself warm.

It was then time for the Shringar darshan and Guru Puja.

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I wonder how the beauty of the Deities at Vrindavan always seemed to increased every time and They always look so fresh as if  They have just came out after taking a bath, Nava Yauvana.

Morning class was by HH Bhakti Marg swami Maharaj. Two lessons I learnt

1. Looking into the past is in the mode of tamoguna (ignorance), looking into the future is in the mode of rajoguna ( passion) and looking or putting our consciousness into the present is in the mode of Satoguna    (goodness).

2. Our philosophy is not so much devotion to Krishna but devotion to Krishna’s devotees.

I had a quick breakfast at Govinda’s and then came back to Goshala. There was a group of new devotees who had arrived from Punjabi Bagh temple with two Brahmacharis.

All glories to preaching !

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I met Maharaj again. He spoke about working on the `internal’ as well `external’. He explained that our internal consciousness is known only to us unless we confide in some devotee. Hence externally devotees may correct us in chanting properly, correct our pronunciation, our dress, etc. but internally we have to work ourselves very consciously as only we know this internal status.

Maharaj also advice that`Grahsthas’ must maintain at least a basic standard for Deity worship. He explained very nicely that if one learns all the rules and regulations when learning to drive a car then it may get little cumbersome in the beginning but later it will help a lot when one would drive almost without remembering but still following the rules. He said imagine a driver who learns without any rules and what kind of driver that person will turn out in the future.

I left Dhama at noon after taking darshan of Their Lordships.

All glories to Sri Radha Shyamsundar

All Glories to Sri Krishna Balram.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

The Power of Love

Hare Krishna.

1st February 2014,  Gurgaon.


I was talking to a senior devotee friend over phone. Prabhuji is a very level-headed and learned devotee. The trigger of our discussion was an impromptu warm hug I received from Prabhuji during my last visit to his home. After I said good-bye to him and had moved out his house walking towards the elevator, he came out of the front door and asked `Prabhuji, at least give me a hug.’ I was taken aback. I am a bit of a dry and reserved person, so for the first few micro seconds I thought my ears have heard something wrong, may be Prabhuji wanted to say something else and uttered these words by mistake, or he is just pulling my leg. But I saw his face and outstretched arms and I knew he mean it. I walked back and hugged him and suddenly found myself enveloped with love and affection, I was overwhelmed. Later, that too over an SMS, I thanked Prabhuji for his gesture.

He, then, shared how he had learned this from HH Bhakti Charu Swami maharaj. Guru Maharaj instructed him that we must walk an extra mile for people whom we love, similar to how we do it in the material world, the only difference being that in the spiritual world we do not expect anything back and hence it is a pure feeling. The whole narration was very inspiring for me. I requested Prabhuji to please share his particular experience with Guru Maharaj on my blog.  At first he declined politely saying that just because he shared something in private with me does not mean that he is ready to share it every one but two days later Prabhuji agreed but on the condition that I will not share his name. So here it goes, in Prabhuji’s own words:

Hare Krishna and Dandavat Pranam to everyone.

There are so many learnings when you speak and listen to MahaBhagvats. There is so much learning. I will try to capture the essence of my discussion with HH Bhakti Charu Maharaj few years (3-4 years ago).

Though usually I am quiet an extrovert and flamboyant person but somehow I am very introvert and shy person when it comes to spiritual life. The reason I feel is that it touches my heart and one can share heartful feelings only with very few selected ones. Usually when a sanniyasi comes, I am all busy preparing and doing rounds. On this particular day, everybody started goading me that I should start a kirtan and welcome Maharaj. It took some cajoling for me to finally agree and make my mind ready to do kirtan. Like my usual self, I closed my eyes and started kirtan with one of the tunes of Sri Prahalad Das. I lost the moment of time and was totally immersed into it….Didn’t realize when Guru Maharaj came and was just singing as if nobody exists. When after some time I felt nobody is singing after me, I realized something missing and I opened my eyes to see Maharaj’s beatific smiling face.

I immediately knelt down offering my dandavats. I felt stupid , a fool and absolutely downcast of not being even aware of Guru Maharaj coming. I asked for his forgiveness. He just took my hand and kind of dragged me (like father does lovingly to son) and then surprisingly hugged me. I was speechless. I felt absolutely serene as if I am in my father’s arms. When you are in father’s secured arms, you don’t want to leave him. I wanted this time to stop. I didn’t want other devotees prying eyes gawking at me, making me conscious. I just wanted to be with him. It was like “Jaadu ki jhappi” for me, making me feel elated and it was like I will do anything for Him if I get this hug again. Maharaj then just whispered “very nice” and I then disengaged and said “I just wanted to be there pointing at his heart”. He patted me and beckoned me in the room. He said, “Do any thing but with all your heart. If you feel genuinely for someone, do something that you would not do ordinarily for anyone else. Express this special feeling.” He then said, “I have nothing else to give but love and I express it by tight warm hug. ” And then he thought and said see how mothers give a tight hug to its child without hurting him. I suddenly realised he is teaching me something so profound: “How to express love. To those whom you genuinely love.” It breaks barriers, it makes you soft. Being a father myself, I could relate to what he was trying to say but still I was inhibited to express to anyone but my own kids as if Love was their right only.

I suddenly felt very comfortable and then he said, “I liked how you were singing but this is not kirtana; this is solo performance.” I was embarrassed and told him since I used to perform this is the only way I know. And he said, when leading kirtan, whilst I should be immersed in Lord’s name (as that inspire devotees) however at the same time I need to be alert whether followers are attentive or not and should change the music if devotes struggle as we are doing kirtan for them and not only for ourselves. I asked if he could clarify. He said, A mother may be cooking the prasadam but is aware all the time what her baby is doing; similarly whilst you should be immersed in holy name but aware of your surroundings so that you are not caught off-guard like this and everybody heartily laughed but it was a huge learning for me.

I then asked him, if I wanted to bhajans, can I do something different that allays feelings towards Lord. He then said in Kaliyuga Mother-child relationship is most pure so one should compare its purity with this relationship first. Mother is so selfless. Is your love so selfless. To understand Krishna Radha prema is very difficult. Why to get into something that we may not even understand. He said Bhajans should be soulful, crying to seek help like Sri Krishna Chaitanya daya karo more….begging lord / Guru for help…prayer in kirtan is very powerful….Or glorify the lord…Lord did so many things and just keep praising and u would start truly believing which may sound unbelievable initially. If u really want to do rasa then you could sing Yashoda and Kanha songs as Matajis would be able to relate a lot and help them. Then he said, You should sing with heart with Love – not sing but sing with love….I suddenly felt what powerful statements – warm hug to someone you love and sing with Love – This is what Krishna teaches – Love everyone and Love God..

I have been trying to follow these instructions diligently to the best of my understanding.

Many dandavats to Guru Maharaj….

HH Bhakti Charu Maharaj ki jai
Srila Prabhupad ki Jai

I am very thankful to Prabhuji for sharing his inner feelings with us. It shows how our spiritual journey, though solo, could be filled with so much love, not only towards Krishna but also towards everyone around us. That this journey is not a dry journey, it is a journey filled with happiness and bliss. Krishna Consciousness is all about being happy and spreading that happiness around. I remember a famous quote by Guru Maharaj

Krishna Consciousness spreads wisdom and Knowledge. The main force because of which this movement is spreading is love. 

I would like to request all the readers to kindly come forward and share your own experience/realisations of unexpected love received in our spiritual journey and help everyone by increasing their faith in the words of our Guru and previous Acharayas. Please mail your experiences to giriraj.bcs@gmail.com, it  can published under your name or as anonymous, whatever is convenient to you.

All glories to the Vaishnava devotees.

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada.

All Glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga.