Lectures

Ksema-Krt

Nov 5, 2017

English with తెలుగు translation; Bhimavaram, Andhra Pradesh, India

Viṣṇu-sahasranāma 606

A Few Memories of H.H.Jayapataka Swami

Oct 14, 2017

English; Mumbai. Maharashtra, India

Serve, Serve, Serve. Give, Give, Give

Dec 3, 2017

English; Salem, Tamil Nadu, India

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 3.27.26

Initiation Lecture

Oct 29, 2017

English; Vrindavana, Uttar Pradesh, India

Bhagavad-gītā 4.34

Recognizing the Effects of Maya

Dec 4, 2017

English; Salem, Tamil Nadu, India

Bhagavad-gītā 7.13

Be Careful in Vrndavana

Oct 28, 2017

English; Vrindavana, Uttar Pradesh, India

Nivrtatma, Samakshepta

Oct 27, 2017

English; Vrindavana, Uttar Pradesh, India

Viṣṇu-sahasranāma 604-605

इन्द्रिय सुख से आसक्ति

Oct 27, 2017

हिन्दी; Vrindavana, Uttar Pradesh, India

Srila Prabhupada and Vrindavan

Oct 26, 2017

English; Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh, India

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 7.8.43

तिरोभाव शब्द का तात्पर्य

Oct 22, 2017

हिन्दी; Vallabh Vidyanagar, Gujarat, India

Srila Prabhupada – The Missing Link

Oct 23, 2017

English; Baroda, Gujarat, India

अजामिल के जीवन से शिक्षा

Oct 22, 2017

हिन्दी; Baroda, Gujarat, India

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 6.2.33

Illicit Sex is very Bad

Dec 29, 2017

English; Salem, Tamil Nadu, India

Bhagavad-gītā 18.38

परम सत्य की व्याख्या

Oct 21, 2017

हिन्दी; Baroda, Gujarat, India

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.2.11

Overview of Upadesamrta, and the Urges of the Mind

Dec 17, 2017

English; Salem, Tamil Nadu, India

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Reader

I am a Senior Devotee

Oct 10, 2017, Articles

Sunday feast Bang that drum Have some fun I am a Senior Devotee Then the food Pure veg of course Chat with friends In shorts and sneakers Sports, jokes, light talk Don’t drink beer here – Cola is OK I am a Senior Devotee Now don’t you young guys Be judgmental Don’t try to tell me anything I was chanting When you were in diapers I’ve done… Read more…

Vyasa-puja Offering to Srila Prabhupada, 2017

Aug 20, 2017, Articles

“I have wasted my life without sense gratification.” I could think like that, but now it is too late. My body is shriveled and clearly in decline. Still I must beware. Srila Prabhupada, please save me from the maya of thinking “Enjoy now, better late than never.”… Read more…

Online Registration Portal for Sravana Kirtana Camps

Aug 9, 2017, Announcements

We are happy to announce the launch of Online Registration Portal for Sravana Kirtana Camps at http://yatra.bvks.com At this portal you can register and book accommodation for Saravan Kirtana camps and other upcoming events. Please Note: Online Registration and Booking of Accommodation for Sravana Kirtana Camp, Vrindavan from Oct 27-29 2017, will start from 08:30 am on 10 Aug 2017… Read more…

Bhaktin Laveena Madhan Kumar

Jun 1, 2017, Book Reviews

As a woman, there are 'n' number of things I have learnt by reading these two books of HH Bhakti Vikasa Swami—“Glimpses of Traditional Indian Life" and “Women: Mothers or Masters?” (now Mothers and Masters). Although I was raised in a "modern independent Indian environment” in which many things mentioned in those books are considered quite backward, after reading about exemplary women in the Bhagavatam, I feel that this is the actual (and natural) way for me to live, if at all I have any desire to go back to Godhead.… Read more…

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Video Reviews

Krishna-kirti Prabhu (BVKS)

Apr 8, 2017, Video Reviews

The first in a series of readings on the 1st edition of H.H. Bhakti Vikasa Swami's Women: Masters or Mothers? This video covers the book's introduction, read by Krishna-kirti Prabhu, who also comments on the text.…

More reviews…

ASK BVKS

Are Bas Reliefs Bona Fide?

Oct 20, 2016

Question: I wonder about the Panca Tattva bas relief that we now have here in Belfast. What is your opinion? I hesitate to get involved in the worship until I know your opinion.

Is there only one way to follow Srila Prabhupada?

Oct 20, 2016

Question: Is there only one way to follow Srila Prabhupada?… Expand>

Question:

Is there only one way to follow Srila Prabhupada?

ANSWER by HH Bhakti Vikasa Swami: 

Sridham Shyam Prabhu wrote an article which brought my attention to, in which he states that, as he understands, there are not many ways of following Śrīla Prabhupāda but there is one way to follow.

Now...in one sense it’s true. The proper way to follow Śrīla Prabhupāda is with all sincerity aspiring for pure devotional service, and following his instructions. On the other hand there is no stereotype, and Śrīla Prabhupāda gave different instructions to different devotees.

Sometimes on the same subject. For instance within his books, and repeatedly elsewhere, Śrīla Prabhupāda said that sannyāsi should be very strict in the matter of associating with women, which anyone in India up to the present day can understand, unless they are a follower of Osho, who are not much liked by Indian public.

Up to the present day the Indian public don’t like. They don’t mind to be cheated by swamis and sannyāsis, and spiritually, but they don’t like if they mix up with women...up to the present day. This Asaram Bapu Swami was finished not because of the murder cases in his āśram, but it came out about his womanizing. He is not actually a sannyāsi, but he is a holly man (supposed to be) and his illicit mixing with women is not at all appreciated. In South India this Paramahaṁsa Nityānanda was finished when it came about his womanizing, which in the West no one cares at all, but in India...

I’m just coming to the point now...

EXAMPLES
There is one Back to Godhead magazine published in Śrīla Prabhupāda’s presence, in which Sudama Swami...On the order of Śrīla Prabhupāda he led up the Vaikuṇṭha players, a drama troupe which had dance, and which was very much appreciated by Śrīla Prabhupāda, giving the teachings of Kṛṣṇa consciousness in drama form. And in that group there were women, which Śrīla Prabhupāda allow, but did not want in India. But, in the West he allowed it. Different culture. Sudama said to Śrīla Prabhupāda:“...all these women dancing...“, and Śrīla Prabhupāda said „That is your sannyās!“.

It’s right there in Back to Godhead magazine, so, he gave different...
Also, in two days in Vṛndāvan, to one sannyāsi Śrīla Prabhupāda told: „You leave Vṛndāvan! Don’t spend more than three days at any place. Sannyāsi should always be moving.“ The next day, to another sannyāsi he said: „Stay here, manage this project and never leave!“ So, to one he said „Sannyāsi always travels“, and to the other one sannyāsi „Stay here!“.

DIFFERENT EMPHASIS IN DEVOTIONAL SERVICE
So, there may be apparent contradictions. It’s not actually a contradiction, it’s specialized instruction according to service. So, one way to follow...Yes, we should know Śrīla Prabhupāda’s instructions and follow them, but we should know there is variety within that also. And, we see very exalted followers of Śrīla Prabhupāda who were...they are quite different in their emphasis in devotional service.
Two of most prominent preachers of Kṛṣṇa consciousness in the modern world, Śrīla Prabhupāda’s disciples in the Western world, one is Vaisesika Dasa Prabhu who is a grihasta. Well, he is well known, of course. He very much promotes the distribution of Śrīla Prabhupāda’s books. That’s his main focus.
Indradyumna Swami has been a sannyāsi for many years and he also promotes book distribution but within the ambit of his festive programs, which are his main preaching. Doing festivals with hāriṇams, and dances, lots of kīrtan and whole package.
So, their approach, or their life focus in Śrīla Prabhupāda’s service is very different. They are not doing exactly the same thing, but they are both undoubtedly pleasant to Śrīla Prabhupāda, and following him very much.

CONCLUSION
So, one way to follow Śrīla Prabhupāda...In one sense yes, but there may be others, there have to be, actually specializations. Different devotees have different approaches. So, what is the correct stand on this issue? 
I prefer not to take milk from „blood cows“, or sometimes devotees call it „blood milk“ because the cows are killed, but I’m not on a campaign against devotees who take that, because Śrīla Prabhupāda’s said we could take it. On the other hand, he also said we should establish our own farm communities.
So, that should be bonum.

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Is being out of Varnasrama a Disturbance to Society?

Oct 20, 2016

Question: Is varnasrama considered part of “sruti-smrti-puranadi-pancaratra-vidhim”? Speaking of myself, I really don’t fall in any asrama and of course varna is the lowest… Expand>

Question:

In the verse quoted by Rupa Gosvami,

sruti-smrti-puranadi-

pancaratra-vidhim vina

aikantiki harer bhaktir

utpatayaiva kalpate

Is varnasrama considered part of “sruti-smrti-puranadi-pancaratra-vidhim”? Speaking of myself, I really don’t fall in any asrama and of course varna is the lowest. Is any devotional service or other activities performed by me an unnecessary disturbance in society?

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BVKS Sanga

Sastra recommends to become lazy

Prabhupada: To become lazy is the recommendation of the sastra. To become lazy... It is a bad word, "lazy," but actually life means not to work very hard. That is real life. And to work hard for eating, that is animal life; that is not human life. Human life should be very peaceful, without any hard work, and cultivating spiritual knowledge. That is human life, not… Expand>

Prabhupada: To become lazy is the recommendation of the sastra. To become lazy... It is a bad word, "lazy," but actually life means not to work very hard. That is real life. And to work hard for eating, that is animal life; that is not human life. Human life should be very peaceful, without any hard work, and cultivating spiritual knowledge. That is human life, not that to work hard like hogs and dogs throughout the whole day for find out some stool, where it is. That is not human life. So people are being educated to work very hard. That is not human life. Therefore those who have got money, they build nice bungalow in a secluded place to live peacefully, to become lazy.

Perfection of life means ultimately you become lazy; you haven't got to work. That is perfection, they say. Otherwise, why they get a cottage in a secluded place and live? All these Americans, they go weekend. They leave aside all working, they become tired, hard working, and they go. That is the intention, that you should live peaceful life, not working very hard. That is human life. Otherwise why they go outside the city at the weekend? Why do they go?

Indian man: They want rest, I suppose. They want to rest.

Prabhupada: So that means lazy. Rest means lazy; you don't work.

Indian man: If one works five days a week, you rest for two...

Prabhupada: That is another thing. You have to work to become lazy. [laughter] That is another thing. But the goal is to become lazy. You work five days very hard just to become lazy for two days. That's all. So if you have got means to become seven days lazy, you'll prefer it.

Pusta Krsna: Most people would go crazy if they didn't have any work.

Prabhupada: No, that means their life is not properly conducted. And therefore the word laziness has come. Laziness is not actually the word. Laziness means minimizing the bodily labor and engaged in spiritual work. If you ask people, "Please come to our temple," who is coming? Because he says, "I have no time." But we are not working hard.

> Morning Walk — October 19, 1975, Johannesburg

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Reciting rasa-lila

Mr. Balu and his wife came to Srila Prabhupada and asked him to please speak about the rasa-lila of Radha and Krsna. Prabhupada replied that the rasa-lila, being the most exalted spiritual topic, was meant only for liberated souls. Only one completely free of material desires, Prabhupada explained, was fit to hear the rasa-lila. "No, Swamiji," Mr. Balu insisted. "My… Expand>

Mr. Balu and his wife came to Srila Prabhupada and asked him to please speak about the rasa-lila of Radha and Krsna. Prabhupada replied that the rasa-lila, being the most exalted spiritual topic, was meant only for liberated souls. Only one completely free of material desires, Prabhupada explained, was fit to hear the rasa-lila.

"No, Swamiji," Mr. Balu insisted. "My wife and I are very keen. You must recite rasa-lila."

Again Prabhupada described the exalted position of the rasa dance, repeating that only when one is completely free of all material attachments to wife, family, home, and money could he become fit to hear of Krsna's rasa dance. Mr. Balu then folded his hands and politely repeated, "Swamiji, my wife and I plead with you. Please recite rasa-lila."

Then Prabhupada replied, "Well, you may be fit to hear rasa-lila, but I do not feel that I am qualified to speak it. So kindly ask someone else."

> From Srila Prabhupada Lilamrta

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Remain under Krsna, like a wife under her husband

So we should remain tad-adhina, always under Krsna. That is our perfection. If we remain... Just like in Western countries, they rebel. If a woman is advised to remain under the control of the husband, that is insult to them. They cannot tolerate it. But actually we see in India that a wife who remains under the guidance of the husband, she is happy. That's a… Expand>

So we should remain tad-adhina, always under Krsna. That is our perfection. If we remain... Just like in Western countries, they rebel. If a woman is advised to remain under the control of the husband, that is insult to them. They cannot tolerate it. But actually we see in India that a wife who remains under the guidance of the husband, she is happy. That's a practical fact. That is a practical fact. And therefore in the Manu-samhita it is advised, na striyam svatantram arhati. Women should be always protected. Protection does not mean negligence. No. Protection means to give him [her] all facilities. That is protection. Just like father gives protection to the chil... That does not mean neglecting. Similarly, a woman should be protected. It is not that neglecting. They misunderstand. In the Western countries maybe there is misbehavior, but actually we have seen, still going on in India, the woman is... That is the ideal given by Lord Ramacandra, how woman is given protection by the husband. Sitadevi was kidnapped. Ramacandra is the Supreme Lord; He could have married many thousands of Sita. But as the dutiful husband, to rescue one wife He killed the whole family of Ravana. This is protection. He killed the whole family of him. He became... This is. So woman requires protection, and the husband is responsible to give protection, the father is responsible to give protection, and the elderly children, they are responsible to give protection.

From Srila Prabhupada's lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam 3.28.18 — October 27, 1975, Nairobi

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How to become a pure devotee

Your final question is how can you become a pure devotee, and the answer to this is given in Bhagavad-gita. Krishna instructs Arjuna that the mahatma, the pure devotee, is he who has fully surrendered himself unto the spiritual nature. And how can we tell if one is completely surrendered unto the spiritual nature? He is always fully engaged in devotional service to… Expand>

Your final question is how can you become a pure devotee, and the answer to this is given in Bhagavad-gita. Krishna instructs Arjuna that the mahatma, the pure devotee, is he who has fully surrendered himself unto the spiritual nature. And how can we tell if one is completely surrendered unto the spiritual nature? He is always fully engaged in devotional service to Krishna. So this is the process of becoming a pure devotee. We have to engage all of our words, thoughts, and activities in Krishna Consciousness under the direction of the Spiritual Master. Therefore, at every moment you should be busy in some way in serving Krishna and His pure devotees, and automatically you will become purified in Krishna Consciousness. Krishna is always willing to shower His mercy upon His devotees, so we have simply to become receptive to this mercy by devotional service, and then the path is very easy.

From Srila Prabhupada's letter to Visala — West Virginia 16 June, 1969

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If you cannot do anything, do this

Anyone in this material world who offers his obeisances before the Deity, don't think it is useless. It is taken into account. Therefore Krsna advises, if you cannot do anything, you do four things: man-mana bhava mad-bhakto mad-yaji mam namaskuru [Bg. 18.65]. "At least come before Me," just like we do. We come in the temple and offer our obeisances. It is so easy to… Expand>

Anyone in this material world who offers his obeisances before the Deity, don't think it is useless. It is taken into account. Therefore Krsna advises, if you cannot do anything, you do four things: man-mana bhava mad-bhakto mad-yaji mam namaskuru [Bg. 18.65]. "At least come before Me," just like we do. We come in the temple and offer our obeisances. It is so easy to go back to home, back to Godhead. It is not very difficult task at all. If you cannot do anything — if you cannot read books, if you cannot understand philosophy, if your behavior is not on the standard — still, if you simply offer your obeisances before the Deity, you make progress. You make progress. Undoubtedly. In the Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu you will find it that this worshiping method — come to the temple, offer obeisances, just like these boys, they are playing mrdangas, they are playing cymbals, dancing — every item is taken into account. Every item. Not that it is going futile. No. That is Krsna consciousness, that is bhakti-marga, svalpam apy asya dharmasya trayate mahato bhayat [Bg. 2.40]. Simply by playing on the cymbal, on the khol, taking little caranamrta... Everything in detail there is in the Nectar of Devotion, you have read.

>>> Ref. VedaBase => Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.9.5 — February 12, 1976, Mayapur

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Don't think these boys' life is being spoiled

Referring to gurukula boys in Mayapur, Srila Prabhupada said: So these little boys who are taking to Krsna consciousness, just like Prahlada Maharaja, maha-bhagavata, he is also playing the part of a child, immediately falling down; so these children who are here, even imitation, it will not go in vain. Krsna is so kind, as it is said here, sva-pada-mule-patitam tam… Expand>

Referring to gurukula boys in Mayapur, Srila Prabhupada said:

So these little boys who are taking to Krsna consciousness, just like Prahlada Maharaja, maha-bhagavata, he is also playing the part of a child, immediately falling down; so these children who are here, even imitation, it will not go in vain. Krsna is so kind, as it is said here, sva-pada-mule-patitam tam arbhakam. Although they are innocent children, but when they're offering obeisances to Radha-Madhava it is of value, "Yes, very good." It is going to their credit. It is not bad. Some may think that these boys are brought here and their life is being spoiled; they are not being educated in the modern way; they're simply chanting, dancing and offering... But that is the real education. Tan manye adhitam uttamam, Prahlada Maharaja. Sravanam kirtanam visnoh smaranam pada-sevanam arcanam vandanam dasyam [SB 7.5.23], the devotional service. Tan manye adhitam uttamam. They are being first-class educated, these boys, they, simply by chanting and dance. Don't be disturbed, that "My child is not being educated." What is this education? This education, this bodily concept of life, it is not education. That "I am this body," "I am Indian," "I am American," "I am brahmana," "I am ksatriya," "I am white," "I am black," this education, the whole world this education is going on, nationalism, in the name of nationalism, communism, socialism. They are all bodily concept of life. That is not education. That education is useless, because this kind of education will not stop the process of birth, death, old age and disease. They may be technical education, temporary, some bodily comfort, but this is not taken as education. Real education is brahma-jijnasa, athato brahma jijnasa. That is real education. What I am, that is brahma-jijnasa. Aham brahmasmi. When he comes to the conclusion that he is not this body, he is spirit soul, that is real education.

Lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.9.5 — February 12, 1976, Mayapur

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