Taste for Chanting, Struggling for Krsna

Part-1

November 7, 2015 |

English with తెలుగు Translation; Hyderabad, Telangana, India

Play (43 m 30 s)     Download (20 MB)

Part-2

November 7, 2015 |

English with తెలుగు Translation; Hyderabad, Telangana, India

Play (33 m 12 s)     Download (15.3 MB)

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Question:

  1. Few devotees would like to prepare for second initiation. How shall I prepare them? Do you have some special requirements? I am aware of those standards presented on BVKS.COM. We do not have any brahminical tests in our yatra.

  2. Common practice in CZ is to use flowers for several days as a decoration of the altar (if they still look fresh). Is that ok? I do not feel completely comfortable with it.

  3. While taking prasadam in a house of one grhastha – they were not used to close the altar of Gaura Nitai deities while honoring prasadam. They told us that there is no harm of eating in front of Gaura-Nitai, because they like to see devotees honoring prasadam. This they have supposedly heard from Salem devotees. I have never heard this. Could you please comment?

  4. If a devotee abandons his wife because he fell in love with another married woman and he starts to live with her – to which extend he shall be accepted by other devotees and community of vaisnavas? Is there any way to rectify this act? Can he lead a kirtan in the temple and so on?

  5. Is there any authorized standard of purity for cooking in the kitchen regarding our clothing. In our yatra it is usually set up as a standard to have only completely clean clothing. One is not supposed to cook in the clothes in which he ate or passed water. I didn´t see these standards so strict in India. I personally follow that – but I am not sure what to set up here as a standard. Especially when we are worshiping Guru Gauranga altar in the preaching centre.

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Recently I was shocked to learn that few of ISKCON temples around the globe celebrated Christmas by dressing Sri Sri Radha Krishna deities Santa Claus styled outfits. Is it acceptable to dress the Lord in such a non-traditional style or it is just a speculation?

 

Answer by HH Bhakti Vikasa Swami:

So, I’ve been informed that some temples in Europe in the Christmas season dress Kṛṣṇa as Santa Claus, and that one temple, ISKCON temple (we are talking about ISKCON temples here), is dressing Kṛṣṇa as Santa Claus. And one temple in India also did this. And what do I think about this? 

Unfortunate…is one word I could use. Nonsense is another.

In one letter Śrīla Prabhupāda was informed that devotees sent some Christmas cards with a picture of Krsna. Śrīla Prabhupāda wrote that we are not for Christmas greetings. In another or several times, Śrīla Prabhupāda also spoke about speculation in Deity worship… So, there may be various reasons given. In India, the reason was given that Christians come to our temple. Well, in that case you can dress Kṛṣṇa as cricket star, maybe the cricket fans would come. Or you can dress Kṛṣṇa like some famous film star, then maybe people interested in movies, they would come. 

But the whole idea…Deity worship is to dress Kṛṣṇa as Rādhā likes Him, and dress Rādhā as Kṛṣṇa likes Her, according to the directions of great ācāryas. Getting mixed up with this Western culture…as far as possible we should try to avoid that. We have our own festivals. Why adopt this Christmas, which is supposed to be a birth of Christ, although they don’t actually know when Christ was born? The main feature of Christmas in the modern world is killing lots of birds, especially turkeys in England, drinking lots of alcohol…

Especially, dressing Deities like this, all I can say is- unfortunate. My saying so won’t stop it going on. There are so many great ācāryas in our movement who are introducing things that none of our previous ācāryas was doing…So, what to say? Whether to laugh or to cry?

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