Changing Our Thought Process

Bhagavad-gītā 6.36 | December 8, 2013 |

English with తెలుగు Translation; Bhimavaram, Andhra Pradesh, India

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Question:

Why is it that the cultural convention is for men to renounce and women to marry but the cultural code that it is best to renounce?

I would like to know which section of our society repels the renunciation of women in your opinion and why. Is it that the grhasta men want to keep their enjoyment guaranteed in convention?

I personally don't see how marrying can benefit anyone in this world but simply create more attachment to bags of bone and flesh. should we not be satisfying each other’s solitude in brahmacarya?

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Question: I have a problem concerning the purity and contamination of prasadam and consciousness. It began with the fact that after taking prasadam at public programs (Namahattas, Bhakti vrksas, Sunday feasts in the temple) my material desires increase – images not related with Krishna appear in my mind, and in dreams images of militants, horror and erotica appear (in dreams I sometimes was strangled, maltreated, raped etc.). Because of this I felt I had to endeavor more to follow sadhana; concentrate while chanting and reading. I was advised not to take prasadam at public programs because the standards of cleanliness are very low. Thus I visited the programs but did not take prasadam and this seemed to solve the problem.… Expand>

Question:

I have a problem concerning the purity and contamination of prasadam and consciousness.

It began with the fact that after taking prasadam at public programs (Namahattas, Bhakti vrksas, Sunday feasts in the temple) my material desires increase – images not related with Krishna appear in my mind, and in dreams images of militants, horror and erotica appear (in dreams I sometimes was strangled, maltreated, raped etc.). Because of this I felt I had to endeavor more to follow sadhana; concentrate while chanting and reading. I was advised not to take prasadam at public programs because the standards of cleanliness are very low. Thus I visited the programs but did not take prasadam and this seemed to solve the problem.

After that at some point I decided to live in the temple to dedicate more time to service, in the hope that it would be easier to practice, but it turned out to be the opposite. After one and a half months my material desires and dreams became very strong (stronger than at home). I returned home and senior devotees (brahmacaris who live outside the temple) sent me caranamrta and sent me prasadam until I recovered. I thought that this was related with aparadhas that I had unconsciously made.

Now I'm in another city, and visiting another temple, and after taking prasadam there – my bad dreams and images again manifest.

I have the understanding that this is because of the low standards of cleanliness of preparation: prasadam not being cooked by brahmanas, distributors hands dirty, dirty clothes, anyone can take a disposable plate with dirty hands or serve themselves prasadam from the vessels, also I myself need to be cleansed. Do these low standards of cleanliness in cooking and distribution of prasadam influence the enthusiasm of devotees in their service?

On the other hand, I see how many devotees live in temples and practice sadhana. And that's why I have a doubt that it could be tricks of my mind not to live in the temple? Or maybe, I should live in the temple, but cook for myself?

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Question:

What is the source and energy behind Lord Krishna? And why he will be called the Supreme Personality of Godhead?

Answer by HH Bhakti Vikāsa Swami:

The answer is that there is no source of energy behind Lord Kṛṣṇa, because He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead and He is the source of all energy. That’s why He is called the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Because He is the source of everything, there is no source behind Him. According to people who misunderstand, there is a power behind Kṛṣṇa. Just like, as I’ve several times stated, many years ago, I went to a temple at Hindustan Motors, on the other side of the Hooghly from Kolkata, Abyava (?) company, where they make ambassador car. So we had a program there. And in the temple we saw a picture of the universe, starting from the very bottom with Garbhodakaśāyī Viṣṇu, and then the ocean, and then the Garbhodaka. And then above that: the hellish planets, Pitṛloka, the different talas – Sutala, Vitala, Atala, Tala, Talātala (the lower planets). Then Bhū, Bhuvar, Svar (the higher planets). And then beyond this universe, all the universes. And then the Kāraṇodaka - the Causal Ocean, and then all the different Vaikuntha planets. And above that, Dvārakā in the spiritual world. And above that Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa at the top, Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. There was just one thing above that, a big shining light with oṁ written in it. So, their conclusion is that the Ultimate is impersonal. But actually, Kṛṣṇa is the source of everything.

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