Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Radhanath Swami on Cause for Lamentation

As the embodied soul passes in this body from boyhood to youth to old age, the soul similarly accepts another body at the time of death. It is simply another change. There are so many changes in life, and death is one of the inevitable changes. The Vedic scriptures explain that death is not to be lamented because the soul never dies. It is the bodily conception of life that is the source of all misery and suffering. The problem is not birth, old age, disease or death. The problem is that we are identifying ourselves with the body that is going through these changes. We cannot avoid it. We can at the most postpone it for a few years. Therefore Vedic scriptures like Bhagavad Gita and the other great scriptures of the world teach us how to become free form the cycle of birth and death.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Radhanath Swami on God is with us at Every Moment

When we’re making a garland, when we’re reading scriptures, when we’re chanting, when we’re cleaning the temple or whatever service we’re doing - management or book distribution or taking care of our child or our parents or studying in school with a spiritual purpose, we should have such faith that Krishna is accepting my service at every moment. Whatever service we may be doing, it’s important that we have complete faith that here and now, at this very moment, He is present. Present in my heart, present in between every atom, present in the effulgence of Brahman, present in the moon and in the sun. Krishna is watching, hearing, responding, accepting my efforts and if I’m doing it properly, Krishna at this very moment is pleased with me. That is bhakti, not that “I’ll please Krishna tomorrow, today there are some other things I have to deal within my mind”. Tomorrow never comes in that sense.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Radhanath Swami on The Foundation of Faith

A devotee has complete faith; he does not offer a prayer with a thought that “Maybe the Lord will come, I hope He comes, I hope He hears me, I hope He exists”. None of us should chant with that frame of mind. It is a very dangerous situation. While chanting the Holy Names, we may be thinking “I hope God exists, I really need Him and I hope He hears me and I hope He reciprocates". In other words, we are practicing devotional service, but we don’t have complete faith, very deep and strong faith. The preliminary requirement for love of God awakening within our hearts is to have a very strong foundation of faith in whatever we do.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Radhanath Swami on Working for Higher Principles

We have to be very enthusiastic and eager to accomplish wonderful things for God. But we shouldn’t be greedy to accomplish things if it is undermining the higher principle. That is, we should always work with a focus on the higher principles, and our work must always be harmonized with this higher principle of what will please God.

We will know what really pleases God when we are not selfish, when we don’t have ulterior motives, when we are actually in the spirit of servant of the servant of the servant, and when we are really happy to see others getting blessings and even doing better than us. This pleases God and that’s when real spiritual empowerment comes.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Radhanath Swami on What is Truth?

We may be very charitable and honest in our ordinary dealings. But everything is the property of God. If we don’t use things according to His will, we are thieves. Real truthfulness has to be based on the understanding of truth. The truth is that everything is the property of God. We are His parts, and our natural function is that we are His eternal servants. We are supposed to act in the capacity of being His eternal servants. To act on behalf of God in the service of others – that is truth.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Radhanath Swami on Food for the Driver

We are all part and parcel of the Supreme. Like the sun in the sky has many names according to the language of the people, the Lord also has many names. The Absolute Truth, God, is all-attractive, therefore, He has the name Krishna. Krishna means all-attractive. The Supreme Lord or Krishna has a body that is eternal, full of knowledge and full of bliss. He is the cause of all causes. So in the way the sun ray is related to the sun, we are qualitatively one with God. But quantitatively, always subordinate to the Supreme, as eternal servants. Therefore, the soul, the conscious force, the life within us, is sac-cid-ananda - eternal, full of knowledge and full of bliss. The soul must have bliss. It’s our nature. When we think we are this body, we will look for the bliss through the senses and through the mind. But really what gives bliss to the soul, to me? If the driver of an automobile drinks petrol, which is the nourishment for the automobile, he will not be satisfied. What is food for the driver? What is food for the soul?. It is love, the ultimate pleasure.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Radhanath Swami on Uplifting Those We Love

We should do something very practical and very positive towards uplifting our own souls and uplifting the souls of others. God has given us the greatest process, the most wonderful way to express the highest form of our love for those who are with us and those who have departed. If we chant the holy name of the God with sincerity and great attention then we amass tremendous spiritual credit. We should pray to the Lord that, “My dear Lord! Let me chant Your holy name with all sincerity. Let me engage in Your loving service with all sincerity and let me dedicate the benefits of that devotional activity in uplifting those I love.” And if we are praying sincerely, we are chanting the God’s name sincerely and we are executing the devotional service sincerely then it is guaranteed that God will fulfill our desire.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Radhanath Swami on How We Can Be Truthful

What is truth? Simply not telling lies in our practical daily affairs is important. We should be honest and straight-forward in all of our dealings in this world as far as possible. That is called morality. But Krishna says in the Bhagavad-Gita that the definition of truth is to know that all living beings are part of Him; they are in Him, and they are His. The truth is that we are all part of God, that everything is the property of God. Unless we know this truth, unless we understand this truth, how can we be truthful?

Friday, June 10, 2011

Radhanath Swami on Renunciation Through Association

If going through troubles and miseries of having a child never deters a woman from giving birth to another child, then why is it difficult to see the hollowness of the philosophy that excessive enjoyment will lead to suffering, frustration and ultimately renunciation? Some people have this philosophy - just let the fire of lust burn uncontrolled and unabated. This way when one understands that nothing quite satisfies, then one realizes that everything leads to suffering. But somehow or the other it never happens; the fire just keeps burning and burning and burning, birth after birth after birth. The only means to actually get renounced is the association of great devotees of the Lord. Through the knowledge and through the mercy they give us, we can get renounced.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Radhanath Swami on duty versus hobby

The price of Krishna consciousness is sincerity. A sincere person does not consider difficult or easy. A sincere person considers whether it is right or wrong. When a mother is sleeping, in the middle of the night when the baby is crying is it easy for her to get up and take care of the baby? Is it easy? Very difficult! But does she do it…every mother who has some sincerity to become a mother, even if it is the most difficult thing in the world, she will get up and take care of the child. There is no consideration - easy or difficult. There is only one consideration - whether it is right or wrong.

Do you go to work every day? Do you love your work every day? Is there a day sometimes where you wake up and do not want to go to work? When people you have to deal with you don’t like even to see - your boss. Sometimes it is the last thing in the world that you want to face these people. Does that mean you do not go? Do you even consider you like it or don’t like it whether it is easy or difficult. You only consider one thing it is my duty, I must do it, It is correct.

For common matters for survival we constantly do things we don’t like to do because it is correct, it is the truth. In the spiritual realm, we are not following Guru’s order because we like it or we are not following guru’s order because it is easy. We are following guru’s order because it is truth and if it is truth we must do it. As long as you are thinking I like and I don’t like or it is easy or not easy that means we are not very sincere. Sincerity means is it correct or is it not, is it the truth or is it not. Is this my duty and responsibility as a human being to follow this instruction or is it not, if it is I do it under any mind or condition of mind or senses.

Spiritual life is a responsibility. It is not a hobby. Hobby, you do when you like. Responsibility, you do it no matter what. Do you pay your taxes? Do you like to pay your taxes? Why do you do it? Why don’t you tell your government that I don’t like this, I am not going to pay. It’s difficult to pay taxes, forget it I am never going to pay again. Why do you not tell them like that? Why you tell your guru that. You won’t tell the Government that. Because it is not your hobby to pay taxes but it is your duty. Spiritual life is not a hobby it is the sacred duty of the soul. The Government does not give a damn whether you like it or not. They don’t care if it is difficult or not. It is your responsibility as a citizen of this country that you must pay. So it is our sacred duty to God to surrender to Him and we surrender by following the orders of Gurudev. It is the only way. There is no other process of surrender.

It is the duty of every human being to surrender to the order of Guru. A sincere person who accepts his responsibility does not consider easy or difficult.

-H.H.Radhanath Swami

Monday, June 6, 2011

Radhanath Swami on Donating to Spiritual Doctors

One may not be a doctor, but one may still give some donation to the medical hospital. The doctors there will utilize that donation for treating the patients. Similarly, through our words we should try to enlighten others. Through our acts, our example in life, we should try to enlighten others. And through our wealth we should keep contributing to those compassionate spiritual doctors who know how to really give the true welfare of enlightenment to others. This is the highest charity. This is the highest mercy.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Radhanath Swami on Bodily Attractions

What is physical attraction to the opposite sex? When we cut open the body, what is inside? Just mucuous, blood, stool, urine and pus. It is disgusting. All there is, is a terrible smelling substance. There is a little thin tiny layer of coating and we are mad for it and infatuated by it. It is just a matter of time that the skin is crinkled and wrinkled. What appears to be pretty now will soon become saggy and baggy in a few years. We all know this. But yet, the illusory energy of the Lord puts us - the pure eternal souls, part of God and full of bliss - in such an embarrassing situation of being attracted and attached to a lump of flesh. It is all a mental game that illusion plays on everyone. Even great ascetics undertaking severe austerities can get bewildered under the spell cast by the opposite sex unless they take to the shelter of the Lord.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Radhanath Swami on Building Character

In matters of love, people don’t really love you for what you accomplish. People love you actually for your character. If you accomplish something then people might be impressed or people might be envious of your achievements but they will not love you. If you look among your friends then you will find that you are affectionate towards people because of their character, because of their goodness and not because of what they have accomplished. There are people who create unbelievable projects in this world for their prestige and money. God will not be impressed with that. His books are all about building our character, a devotional character because ultimately that’s what He sees. So the real disease is selfishness and the real cure is selfless service, and followers of the spiritual path have to take to heart this sacred principle of the holy scriptures.