Sunday, December 29, 2013

Radhanath Swami on Developing Faith

We must know how important it is to hear from the scriptures and the great souls with a humble disposition of mind, so that we can really and truly understand spiritual principles and gradually develop faith. The whole purpose of scriptural knowledge is to give us some faith, faith in a higher principle and a faith in the truth. Knowledge is not just so that we can become a jnani and say, "Yes, I know the truth." The whole purpose of this knowledge is to change our life, to change our whole outlook on reality, to teach us how to give up sinful activities and live for a higher purpose. By hearing from the great souls, by learning how to practically understand those truths beyond our experience, we develop a faith, we develop a conviction, we develop a vision. The purpose of this vision is to change the direction of our life, to change our whole way of thinking, feeling and willing.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Radhanath Swami on A True Devotee

The fruit of spiritual knowledge is to become humble and serve the Lord and His devotees. Although very elaborately and very philosophically mentioned in the scriptures, the essence of the highest knowledge in all creation is very simple. A true devotee is one who never finds faults in others. The scriptures do not say that one who is very learned, or one who is very austere, is a good devotee. One who is a humble servant of the Lord will never find faults in others. On the other hand, he will always see a positive opportunity to bring others up in spiritual consciousness. He is so humble and soft that he doesn’t feel he is entitled to find fault in others. This is one of the essential symptoms of one who has changed his heart, and one who is actually tasting the higher principle of glorifying the Lord.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Radhanath Swami on Superficial Belief

People do not have the access to experience a realization of the knowledge of the Absolute. Because of their conditioned state of consciousness, their tendency is to try to relate everything to their own experience. That is the nature of conditioned ego, that it must comprehend something on the basis of its own relative experiences in this world. That is why so many people have such a difficult time in really, deeply & truly believing in God. Most people in religions throughout the world say yes I believe in God, because they want to believe in God for the sense of security it gives. They are afraid that life will be so utterly futile if there is no God. But deep down in their heart of hearts, they really do not know. They fail to admit it to themselves, what to speak of others in the society.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Radhanath Swami on Seeking Pleasure

Pleasure is the motivating force within everyone’s life. If we analyze scrutinizingly everything we do, the motivation is the pursuance of pleasure. The Bhagavad-Gita describes the three modes of material nature: goodness, passion, and ignorance. According to these modes, different classes of living beings seek pleasure in different ways. Those in the mode of ignorance seek pleasure through intoxication, sleep, and violent and cruel acts upon others. Those in the mode of passion seek pleasure through amassing great fortunes, getting prestige and indulging in sensual activities. And those in the mode of goodness take pleasure in doing good for others - the feeling that I am giving in charity, I have lent my helping hand for another’s benefit. But in all cases we are looking for the same elusive object - pleasure.