Is Prahlada a Demon or Not?

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 7.4.33 | May 17, 2016 |

English with Русский Translation; Mayapur, West Bengal, India

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Question: I am presently pestered by a question that is answered in different ways by different making conundrum more complex. Finally, I was directed to this page by Vishnujana Prabhu. I want to know if I am pursuing a career that involves investments in stocks, will my income be counted under an income that has come out of gambling?… Expand>

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I am presently pestered by a question that is answered in different ways by different making conundrum more complex. Finally, I was directed to this page by Vishnujana Prabhu.

I want to know if I am pursuing a career that involves investments in stocks, will my income be counted under an income that has come out of gambling? I am studying the scripts for days and nights and only after that I come to a decision whether to buy or sell.

What is gambling in stock market? In finance gambling can be labelled as a trade done under somebody else's recommendation or without studying the script before you enter it.

My friend once went to a casino in Singapore. He started putting money there and started earning regularly. After few days he was banned from entering that casino. The reason was he was claimed to be studying the whole game and then entering it. They said "you can only gamble here but can't study. The casino demands that you only gamble here. 

Studying before putting money is not allowed." It is quite clear that anything that takes sweat and toil cant be labelled as gambling. Are the people doing MBA in finance or the financial analysts gamblers? It is very easy to say yes for a person who dont have an inkling of what finance is but ask the person who is striving to make his bread and butter out of it.

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Question: My question is regarding deity outfits. On Nrsimha Caturdasi, at an ISKCON temple in Germany, the deity of lord Nrsimhadev was dressed/pasted with different flavours/colours of sandesh milk sweet dough instead of any sort of cloth outfit. Maharaja, my question is that is the above performed act, proper and in line with the scriptural rules of deity… Expand>

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My question is regarding deity outfits. On Nrsimha Caturdasi, at an ISKCON temple in Germany, the deity of lord Nrsimhadev was dressed/pasted with different flavours/colours of sandesh milk sweet dough instead of any sort of cloth outfit. 

Maharaja, my question is that is the above performed act, proper and in line with the scriptural rules of deity worship, just as during chandan yatra the deities are pasted with sandalwood paste or just as there are flower outfits for the deities in many temples? Or is it not to be accepted. I mean something similar to the previous incident of the deities dressed in Santa Claus outfits?

ANSWER by HH Bhakti Vikāśa Swami: 

I’m not aware of any scriptural rule that says to dress the Deities in a dress made of milk sweets. It’s the first time I ever heard about it. There are various aspects of Vaiṣṇava culture which may not be directly described in śāstra, but they may be performed in some places as a tradition. So, may be that in some traditional temple in India that there is a tradition on certain days dressing the Deities like that; although, at least in India, if you were to do so, then quite likely the Deity would be covered with ants very quickly. So, that may not be a very good idea to do that. Ants and flies would come. Probably not so much in Germany because there are not so many little living entities as there are in India. But there are some very desirable elements of Vaishnava culture which could, according to the discrimination of the devotees – that may be questionable also (the level of discrimination as to what should be accepted and what should not be accepted). But there are various items of Vaiṣṇava culture which can be adopted, but if something is not in śāstra, is not in tradition… I’d be very cautious about making innovations, especially in Deity worship. So, you probably have to ask the devotees in Germany where they got this idea from. One consideration is that it’s fairly common in India to see Deities of Hanuman covered with butter. That’s quite a common practice. I don’t know if the Deities get attacked by ants, or whatever. Flies come. I’ve seen that. It’s quite often done.

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