Why a Philosophical Camp – Part 2

February 17, 2011 |

English; Baroda, Gujarat, India

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Doomed if I do, doomed if I don't

April 20, 2014 |

Question: I am a brahmacari for more than nine years and have taken a role of guiding others. I have a problem of not being able to follow the brahmacari vows very strictly. I do not go out with women directly but every few months I just break the principle on my own. I just can't control it. It is too powerful a force. Then I somehow come to my senses again and make a firm vow to never again fall prey to my crazy mind. But then again I fell victim.… Expand>

Question:

I am a brahmacari for more than nine years and have taken a role of guiding others. I have a problem of not being able to follow the brahmacari vows very strictly. I do not go out with women directly but every few months I just break the principle on my own. I just can't control it. It is too powerful a force. Then I somehow come to my senses again and make a firm vow to never again fall prey to my crazy mind. But then again I fell victim.

I am generally a very happy person and I have no desire for home, opulence, wife, kids, etc. I just have this strong sexual impulse - occasionally. All those who know me encourage me to just continue with my preaching and not to change anything. I have crossed 30 years. According to my horoscope it will be a disaster if I enter into grhasta asrama. I know it sounds like FAQ - "brahmacari or grihasta question", but in my case it seems like a "Doomed if I do, doomed if I don't" situation. I don't like to cheat myself and others. Please kindly advise me.

Answer by HH Bhakti Vikāsa Swami:

Tough one. Uuhh. Tough one in as much as devotees are encouraging you to go on, because how many devotees are in Germany who are taking position of spiritual leadership which you are doing. Preaching, that’s spiritual leadership, but you have a weakness which is very difficult to overcome, and don’t like to cheat others. 

Well, what are the alternatives? You can go on preaching and people will be benefited by that. You can get married and it’ll be a disaster, so we learn from the horoscope. Although you could consult another astrologer, but like I say, you don’t have to consult an astrologer because in almost every case entering into the gṛhastha-āśrama is a disaster, especially in the Western world. And yeah, in Germany, as in pretty much all the Western world, there’s no idea of what married life should be like, either among the non-devotees or devotees. So entering into the gṛhastha-āśrama doesn’t sound like a good idea when no one knows what they should be doing. It’s generally a disaster. So doomed if you do, doomed if you don’t. Well, in Kṛṣṇa consciousness it’s glorious if you do and doomed if you don’t. So, despite that very severe weakness, it would seem better to take that advice just to go on. Don’t take sannyāsa. And maybe you could wear white if you don’t feel comfortable in saffron cloth. Keep strong association as far as possible. I’m assured you’re doing all the things that are required. Have to pray. 

Pray to Nṛsiṁhadeva:

oṁ namo bhagavate narasiṁhāya namas tejas-tejase āvir-āvirbhava 

vajra-nakha vajra-daṁṣṭra karmāśayān randhaya randhaya tamo grasa 

grasa om svāhā; abhayam abhayam ātmani bhūyiṣṭhā oṁ kṣraum (SB 5.18.8)

Pray to Nṛsiṁhadeva to remove the material desires from our heart. There’s no easy solution. The easy solution is take shelter of Kṛṣṇa.

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Accepting a Service in Which the Guru Doesn't Engage

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Question: Can a devotee accept service that his guru doesn't directly engage in? For instance, I am very much inspired by Indradyumna's Maharaj's festivals. I think such festivals have a broad reach to masses. I don't like the cultural part of these festivals, but the philosophy and prasadam and kirtan can really get people intrigued. Some time in the… Expand>

Question:

Can a devotee accept service that his guru doesn't directly engage in? For instance, I am very much inspired by Indradyumna's Maharaj's festivals. I think such festivals have a broad reach to masses. I don't like the cultural part of these festivals, but the philosophy and prasadam and kirtan can really get people intrigued.

Some time in the future I would like to organize such festivals and do mass book distributions. However, for that I would need a lot of training from Indradyumna Maharaj even though I am aspiring to serve you.

Answer by HH Bhakti Vikāśa Swami:

We are all supposed to be servants of Śrīla Prabhupāda in the saṅkīrtana movement. So, if you are inspired to help with some particular service which pushes forward the saṅkīrtana movement, that’s not against what I’m doing. And if at all I’m to guide you, I’m to guide you to serve in the association of devotees the bona fide activities of the saṅkīrtana movement. 

So by all means: 
nāca, gāo, bhakta-saṅge kara saṅkīrtana
kṛṣṇa-nāma upadeśi’ tāra’ sarva-jana (CC Ādi 7.92)

[‘My dear child, continue dancing, chanting and performing saṅkīrtana in association with devotees. Furthermore, go out and preach the value of chanting kṛṣṇa-nāma, for by this process You will be able to deliver all fallen souls.’]

Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself received the order to sing and dance, perform saṅkīrtana in the association of devotees and by instructing the holy name to everyone to deliver the whole world. 

So that order is coming in the paramparā, and wherever and however you get the opportunity to help the devotees in, and join with the devotees in spreading the saṅkīrtana movement, do it. It’s not that if you become my disciple, you have to be locked into a little bubble in a little corner. Let’s all be part of Śrīla Prabhupāda’s big family.

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English; Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

  • Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta 2.9.36

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Man to Renounce and Woman to Merry

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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… Expand>

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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Becoming a Business Tycoon to Serve Krishna

February 27, 2012 |

Question: If a devotee runs his business with the attitude that he wants to make millions of pounds to propogate the Hare Krishna movement, Is it Bhakti? Also, if he prays Krishna to empower him to become the world's leading business tycoon so that he will share a part of his profit to open prasadam resturants/Prabhupada bookstores (shops with… Expand>

Question:

If a devotee runs his business with the attitude that he wants to make millions of pounds to propogate the Hare Krishna movement, Is it Bhakti?

Also, if he prays Krishna to empower him to become the world's leading business tycoon so that he will share a part of his profit to open prasadam resturants/Prabhupada bookstores (shops with Prabhupada's books) etc., would it be OK to pray?

Above all, I would imagine that setting an example (simple leaving and high thinking) as a leading businessman is a good thing. Is it correct? 

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