When the mind wants to change unchangeable circumstances, what to do?
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If we are to hate the sin, aren’t we to be averse to sin?
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Devotion in modes (3)
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The post Devotion in modes (3) appeared first on The Spiritual Scientist.

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Bhakti in three modes 3 – Bhakti in goodness brings sustainability, purity and harmony
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Making sense of life through karma and reincarnation
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What Is The Importance Of Spiritual Master
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What Is The Importance Of Spiritual Master By HH Bhakti Dhira Damodara Swami (video)

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36 religious students visited yesterday the Iskcon Farm in…
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36 religious students visited yesterday the Iskcon Farm in Sweden (Album with photos)
They were invited to lectures, Indian da...

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Harinama in Paris (Album with photos) Srila Prabhupada: This is…
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Harinama in Paris (Album with photos)
Srila Prabhupada: This is Vedic civilization, not to waste a single moment of life for useless attempt. That is Vedic civilization. Every moment should be utilized. Especially for the human being, it’s so valuable. And they are finding out sporting, swimming and surfing — simply all programs of wasting time, especially in the Western countries. How much they have invented, I see only and laugh. The elderly men of your age, of course, maybe my age also, they are swimming and surfing. (Srila Prabhupada, Morning Walk, November 11, 1975)
Find them here: https://goo.gl/GQgyP7

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Golden Age comes again? (3 min video) Well, surely at least a…
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Golden Age comes again? (3 min video)
Well, surely at least a beautiful step towards it!
Love & Peace maha-mantra flash-mob is now ON!
This special inspirational 2.5 min video features chants by:
HH Radhanath Swami, Bhakti Chaitania Swami, Indradyumna Swami, BB Govinda Swami, Bhakti Vijnana Goswami and many other Maharajas as well as respected Chaitania Chandra Charan, Yadubar, Jayadev, Malati, Mondakini, Mohanasini Prabhus and Matajis.
All that is just to kindly seek your participation in this amazing, utmost auspicious campaign!
Watch it here: https://goo.gl/1zurSv

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Tosan Krishna das remembers Yamuna devi. “When one is on…
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Tosan Krishna das remembers Yamuna devi.
“When one is on the bhakti marga everything is personal. Yamuna devi’s abundantly nutritious persona was the direct catalyst making the crucial difference between myself merely looking at the honey inside the jar and my deliberate decision to dive in.
By way of my attendance of a Srimad Bhagavatam class she gave one morning in the summer of 1968 at the Frederick Street temple in San Francisco (my first visitor’s experience of a temple morning program), I, a 17-year-old agnostic, was delightfully treated to the warm realization that Krishna Consciousness was not only a very good concept but was, in fact, a wealth of wholesome food-for-the-soul that you could practically experience, relish and be fortified with. She was the unpretentious personification of this with both heart and soul.
As an existential sojourner, I was weary of 60’s faux counter-cultural promises. Yamuna was a breath of rich nourishing reality. She was the un-hippy, the real deal, hard-core, with a soft inner-core. She delivered. I wanted what she was dishing out—shabda brahma, transcendental sound spoken with piercing intelligence, deep love and a beguiling, sparkling, playful smile—transferred from one soul to the next. Simply put, Yamuna was the key impetus for my deciding to move into the temple and then take initiation from Srila Prabhupada. She placed the kanti mala around my neck. Profoundly understood—she saved my life.”

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Food for Life program in Glasgow, Scotland
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Hare KrishnaDwaipayana das: We have a wonderful programme of giving out free prasad to students on a Wednesday at Glasgows main university we are having up to and over 60 students lining up for our nutritional vegan meals.Sundays we give out prasad to everyone students, homeless people and the general public and we are having a wonderful response from everyone there is alot of homeless people on our streets here and they really appreciate a good warm meal.

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Siberia, Novosibirsk: Just Like Vaikuntha! (Album of photos)…
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Siberia, Novosibirsk: Just Like Vaikuntha! (Album of photos)
Indradyumna Swami: As we continue our journey through Russia at winter’s end we meet devotees everywhere. In the city of Novosibirsk, in Siberia, we chanted and danced with blissful devotees for hours on end in an old hall in the city. It was just like Vaikuntha!
Find them here: https://goo.gl/UJt52Z

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Monday, April 16th, 2018
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Toronto, Ontario

New Monk

A new monk has come to town.  Dwarkanatha, 29, is from Vrndavana, India, and he recently has joined our crew to help in the cooking department.  Apart from being a chef, he also plays a lovely sitar and is quite good at the mrdungadrum.

From the musical side, it is a relief.  When here, I'm the one to play the beats, but now I can enjoy a break and have a realdrummer play away.

When weather improves, I’ll take him to the nearest ravine to experience a taste of urban-green walking.  It will be novel for him, being in a modern Canadian setting.  Even flying overseas is a first for him.

I am left to reflect on my first journey, not by plane, or by boat—when I was 5 my mother took me to Holland by one of those ocean liners—but my first experience in a temple.  It was like a foreign zone, something like church, but more.  I felt so much joy cut off from mundane-ness.

That initial journey was in Montreal, the winter of ’72, when Krishna devotees had rented a spot on the third floor of an apartment building on Park Avenue.  It was actually a former bowling alley.  The markings of the bowling parameters were still there.  In those days no one sang Bol! Or even Haribol!

A friend of mine, Durward, also had his first venture into Krishna culture in Montreal. He tells me that in that old bowling alley a person, a visitor, had set up a tent inside and had his pet iguana with him.  That was novel too.  In those days it was rather more of an open door policy.  Anyways, welcome Dwarkanatha.

May the Source be with you!
0 km



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Sunday, April 15th, 2018
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Toronto, Ontario

April 15thin Toronto

April is very deceptive.  Just when you think spring has burst through, or is about to, then a merciless storm crushes all you want to do.  They have reported over a thousand accidents in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).  There are high winds, and piercing-cold pellets of rain coming down, leaving a precarious situation at ground level. Slush!  Mush!  It’s weather that bends things out of shape—your windshield wipers, for instance.

Billie and I trudged through the mess.  Its newly-formed mountain ranges and rivers, we attempted to navigate through to get to our destination—the Convention Centre and to the ever-popular Yoga Show.

Most attendees are downtowners who braved the weather.  They are not discouraged.  They are here to see people bend, but not out of shape,rather in shape.  There was a session of ecstatic dance.  It only needed a mantra to make it complete and qualify it as kirtan.  Someone by the name of Sandeep gave a free head massage.  Oh, and I met friends I hadn’t seen in years.  It was a stupendous event lasting for three days. I like the yogis as much as they like our food (prasadam).  Many yogis also like kirtan.

Billie went around with mantra cards promoting kirtanand the monthly “Evening of Bhakti.”  Thank you Billie.  Thank you Demi, for co-ordinating the food section.  Many heroes emerged from the kitchen department of Krishna food distribution.  Thousands were fed.

May the Source be with you!
2 km



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Saturday, April 14th, 2018
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Toronto, Ontario

At the Yoga Show

We had to cancel our spring Farmer’s Conference, which was to be held in Brighton, Ontario, due to sleet and icy rain.  It is postponed until next Saturday, April 21st.  By default, I then redirected myself to the attention of the Toronto Yoga Show held at the Convention Centre.  To my delight, the attendance was great, despite the occurring weather.  Where do all these people come from? I had to ask myself.

Although the numbers of people were phenomenal and the draw to the event has much to do with wellness, simply stretching limbs in tight clothes has its limitations.  Of course there are some great products for sale by exhibitors and there is also the food court, with Govinda’s being one terrific food outlet.  The line-up is long.  Apparently people like the prasadam(blessed food).

What really made me feel complete about the event was the presence of kirtanconducted by the Gaura Shakti group.  The set-up took a while for their hour-long allotted time, but once the band began their songs, the massive hall at the convention centre, the entire place, transformed in sound.  People sang and got up to dance.

I was also pleasantly surprised by meeting Adrien, a massage therapist.  Why so?  I met him on the Trans-Canada Highway in 2012 when I was in stride, walking, and he was in a van supporting a cyclist’s club who were travelling across Canada, raising money for a charity.

“Are you The Walking Monk?” he inquired, when he met me near the food court.  From that question was triggered a recollection of the instance on the highway.  “And you had that guy with the parrot?”

“Yes, Billie, the parrot.”

May the Source be with you!
2 km

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Friday, April 13th, 2018
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Toronto, Ontario

On This Day

I never in my life held any superstitious attitudes toward Friday the 13th. However, in a Vedic context, when it is said by some astrological authority that one is under the influence of the dark planets, Rahu and Ketu, I take it a little more seriously.  I personally survived a period of my life, said to be a Rahu period.  It wasn’t nice and I won’t go into minute detail.  What is important was how I approached this negative period.  I started a long walk to the distance of 8,000-plus kilometres on Canadian soil.

That was in 1996.  I also took to a lot of chanting.  Many days, it was 64 rounds on the japabeads.  The combination of walking, chanting and some speaking opportunities/engagements kept me going.

It was this afternoon that I took a mini-walk with Dave, not to counteract any ill omens of bad fortune Friday the 13thmight bring—I already explained my position on this.  Dave and I strolled along some of the laneways of the posh shops of Yorkville, just for a break from what we were both doing.  Trying to bond a bit might be what we were trying to do.

Dave serves food at Govinda’s and does some of the dishes when needed.  I was administratively engaged.  So we walked and talked.  No chanting was done, but that’s okay.  The friendship building is what was important.

It was Dave’s idea to go for this first walk.  “I’ll take up your offer on it,” he told me.

“Really, when did I ask for the walk?” I hadn’t remembered I had done so.

“You wrote the invite to walk, on a card, and I've been keeping that card.”

“When did I leave you the card?” I asked.

“About five years ago,” he responded.

May the Source be with you!
3 km

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Giriraj Swami: My beloved spiritual son Kunjabihari dasa left…
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Giriraj Swami: My beloved spiritual son Kunjabihari dasa left this world today, on the auspicious occasion of Akshaya Tritiya, from a heart attack, in Dallas. Just last night he wrote me, “One thing I admire about you, you have so many wonderful, qualified disciples all over the world. I am not qualified in front of them. But I have true love and attachment for you. I love to talk about you. I love to glorify you to others, and when I do, I really get joy in my heart for you. I feel very much connected to you, heart-to-heart.” And this morning, just two hours before leaving this world, he forwarded me a beautiful photo of Sri Sri Radha-Kalachandji.
I feel separation from Kunjabihari Prabhu, but I take solace in the thought that he will continue his service in a better place, in a better situation, and that in time we will be together again, in service to Srila Prabhupada and Sri Sri Radha-Kalachandji and their devotees.
Please join me in praying for Kunjabihari Prabhu, for his smooth transition to an auspicious destination, where we will all meet again.
Hare Krishna.

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How to decide how much to be satisfied with?
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How are some people emotionally tough even when they don’t practice bhakti?
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Krishna Lounge 4/12/18
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Bhakti in three modes 2 – Bhakti in passion equates material success with spiritual advancement
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How to be detached without becoming irresponsible
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Krishna’s house as a paradise on this planet – Narahari Das
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Krishna’s house as a paradise on this planet - Narahari Das - Hawaii (24 min video)

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Hare Krishna! The Movie, in the biggest theatre of The Hague, Holland
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Hare Krishna Malati Dasi: Devotees in The Hague are working hard to premiere the movie in their prestiguous theatre. After being sold out for the smaller hall which we had booked first, the premiere will be now in the biggest hall on Sunday 22 April 5pm.

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New Devotee Website “Second Half” Launched into Orbit: The Fusion of Farming and Preaching
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Hare Krishna Devotees living at New Talavan Farm Community in Southern Mississippi have launched a dynamic new website called The Second Half (Second-Half.org). The name "Second Half” references Srila Prabhupada’s expressed desire for land-based preaching prototypes that make the philosophy and culture of Krishna consciousness approachable and understandable to Western people.

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Grand event hosted by ISKCON Kanpur despite thunderstorm’s destruction
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Hare Krishna As a matter of fact, the event was scheduled for the eve of 7th of April 2018, but throughout the previous night tumultuous lightning and thunderstorm reigned. Thus, all the arrangements were shattered, materials tattered and broken, sound boxes and gadgets were destroyed, basically everything collapsed. Everybody was helpless, since the Lord and nature had different plans. As the sun shined upon Kanpur on the 7th of April, the temple authorities together decided to postpone the entire event to the 14th of April. Hence re-arranging the entire event with the same impact was the biggest challenge. However, the hard-working temple devotees lead by Radha Ranjan Das, Acyuta Mohan Das and Kurma Avatar Das brilliantly planned, managed and executed the gala event, with double enthusiasm and vigour.

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Conversation with children of Ramananda and Jahnava-priya
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Practice
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Veda Course at the Manor, UK
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Veda Course at the Manor, UK
I’m Nish from the Manor temple. I’m the coordinator of the residential course at Bhaktivedanta Manor in England.
Just to let you know, there is another men’s residential course coming up and I am now looking to promote it all over Europe and UK. It’s the Veda course, it’s 3 months long and it’ll consist of a variety of things such as morning program, studying scriptures, engaging in a variety of services and projects and developing life skills to amalgamate one’s spiritual practices with living in the 21st Century.
The next Veda course will start in 7th May 2018 and finish in 7th August 2018.
Poster attached.

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Video reviews from the screening of HK! movie in Canada (14…
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Video reviews from the screening of HK! movie in Canada (14 video clips)
Hare Krishna! The movie testimonials from Kamloops, B...

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Program in Moscow (Album with photos)
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Bhakti Chaitanya Swami: We are now deep in Russia, in SIberia. On Monday we passed through Moscow and did a program in the main temp...

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“Maya Times” – The fake news agency
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Hare KrishnaBy Purushottam Nitai Das

Maya forces us to believe that happiness can be attained in this material world. Srila Prabhupada points out, “This place is miserable. But maya’s illusion, we are taking this miserable condition of life as happiness. This is called maya. There is no happiness in this material world. Everything miserable.” Lecture on BG 2.6 -- London, August 6, 1973. Read the rest of this entry »

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TOVP Euro Tour Days 2 and 3: Koln, Germany – Gauradesh
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Hare KrishnaBy TOVP staff

To everyone’s surprise, this became a miraculous visit with less than fifty devotees pledging over $150,000 U.S.! This precedent setting example shows that the hearts of the devotees and not the size of the temple is what really counts. When there is a will, there is a way. Make the commitment and the means will manifest. This was also Srila Prabhupada’s mood. Read the rest of this entry »

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Spiritually There is no Loss, April 14, Encinitas, San Diego
Giriraj Swami

Giriraj Swami read and spoke from Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.3.17.

“The appeal of  our eternal life with Krishna is like the carrot. We see that and we accelerate our spiritual endeavors. But, we also get little whips from the stick of old age and disease. Srila Prabhupada says that the old age and disease of a devotee are actually an impetus to his progressing in Krishna consciousness and achieving his eternal life with Krishna. In any case we are going to be subjected to old age and disease—janma-mrtyu-jara-vyadhi duhkha-dosanudarsanam (Bg 13.9), but for a devotee they are not impediments but are impetuses to progress further in Krishna consciousness. In fact whatever a devotee experiences should be an impetus to progress further in spiritual values.”

Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.3.17 (Right-click to download)

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If we identify that we are feeling self-pity, what do we do next?
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If we are already connected with Krishna, why do we need to chant?
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When people just don’t get it …
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ajñaḥ sukham ārādhyaḥ
sukhataram ārādhyate viśeṣajñaḥ
jñāna-lava-durvidagdhaṁ
brahmāpi taṁ naraṁ na rañjayati

ajñaḥ — the ignorant; sukham — is easily; ārādhyaḥ — convincible; sukhataram — even easier; ārādhyate — is to convince; viśeṣajñaḥ — the expert; brahmāpi — but even Lord Brahma; na rañjayati — cannot convince; tam — that; naram — person who is; jñāna-lava-durvidagdham — puffed up in the pride of a mere fraction of knowledge.

“The ignorant can be easily convinced [by explaining the truth]. The intelligent can be even more easily convinced [for they have the capacity to recognize the truth]. However, even Lord Brahma cannot convince half-baked people puffed up with their little knowledge.” (Nīti-śatakam of Bhartṛhari, Verse 3)

 

We sometimes need to confront people who hold views different from ours. If their view is incorrect, we may need to correct them. Sometimes however, they stay stuck to their opinions.

To have a better chance of changing their opinions, we need to understand how opinions are normally formed and reformed. Good opinions are usually formed based on information and reason. If we have the right information and follow the right reasoning, we have a high chance of coming to the right understanding.

Suppose we have formed an opinion in this way. If we encounter someone who has more information or better reasoning or both, then discussing with them may prompt us to change our understanding. Though we may initially feel bad that we were wrong, that feeling will soon be superseded by the joy of having gained a better understanding.

Conversely, if we hardly know anything about an issue, then we may either have no view or some casual view that we aren’t much attached to. If someone gives us a better understanding, we will happily accept it.

Some people, however, don’t form opinions based on proper information or proper reasoning – they have some partial information, do some half-baked reasoning and arrive at a stand that they then hold on to. In fact, they don’t hold opinions; their opinions hold them. Changing their understanding is well-neigh impossible. The Bhagavad-gita (18.22) indicates that such knowledge is knowledge in the mode of ignorance; it is fragmented knowledge that keeps one in ignorance, or even aggravates one’s ignorance. The philosopher-saint Srila Jiva Goswami, in his Bhakti-Sandarbha, uses the same word as in this Subhashita to refer to such people: jnava-lava durvidagdhah. It literally means those whose opinions are baked badly with a fraction of knowledge – their knowledge is minute; their obstinacy, mountainous.

Such opinionatedness doesn’t infect only some frustrating fanatics out there; it infects us too. We all have an ego that wants to prove that it is always right. Thankfully, we also have an intelligence. If we use our intelligence discerningly, we can detect when our ego is making us irrationally attached to our opinions.

Spiritual wisdom can sharpen our intelligence by changing our source of security. We are often attached to our opinions because our ego gets security in being right. But it is pseudo-security, coming as it does from the false notion that we are right when we aren’t. We can become free from the need for this pseudo-security when we get real security: security coming from love, especially spiritual love. The Gita explains that we are souls who are eternal parts of the whole, Krishna (15.07). He always loves us – his love won’t be lost to us even if we turn out to be wrong. When we are situated in the security of divine love, losing an argument no longer seems an unbearable loss.

Spiritual wisdom can do more than protect us from being irrationally attached to our own views; it can also equip us to better respond to people who are irrationally attached to theirs. Rather than futilely trying to make them see reason, we can turn prayerfully towards Krishna: “O Lord, what are you trying to teach me through this? How can I serve you now?” Such submissiveness makes us more receptive to his inner presence and voice. Connecting with him raises our intelligence above our ego – instead of trying to prove ourselves right, we try to seek the right way ahead. Our service attitude towards Krishna infuses humility into our interaction with them, thereby increasing the probability of their being more receptive. Amidst a confrontation, words coming from ego usually reach till the ego. In contrast, words coming from the heart frequently touch the heart.

What if we still don’t succeed in changing their opinion? We can let them be and move on with our life. Even through such an impasse, we can grow deeper in the most important right understanding that we are servants of Krishna, subordinate to his will. And growth in that understanding takes us closer to the only success that really matters – victory over the ignorance that keeps us bound in distressful material existence. When we appreciate that we are progressing towards that ultimate success, a stalemate in a confrontation in this temporary world pales into insignificance.

[I thank my friend and scholar, Hari Parshad Prabhu, for providing me with this verse]

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Bhakti in three modes 1 – Bhakti in ignorance is self-righteous and hurtful
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To blame is to be lame – stop seeking scapegoats
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Mayapur, Srimad Bhagavatam Class by HG Sikhi Mahiti Das
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Mayapur, Srimad Bhagavatam 8.15.18-28, Class Speaker: HG Sikhi Mahiti Das on 17/04/2018 (video)

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