Finding the Nectar in Krishna’s Names

Finding the Nectar in Krishna’s Names

By Bir Krishna Swami

The names of Krishna are the repository of all happiness and the greatest wealth. If we chant properly, we will not experience material miseries, but we may experience what the materialist might mistake as misery: the spiritual joy of intense separation from Krishna.

Since that joy comes from proper chanting, we might wonder how we can chant with attention and concentration, even if we are not yet pure devotees of Krishna. How can we control the mind? How can we keep ourselves from thinking of a million and one other things besides Krishna’s names?

Chanting properly takes practice, and the first point is to approach the practice positively. When we approach the holy names negatively, we often think more about what we should not be doing rather than what we should be doing. It is said, “You can’t do a don’t.” So, instead of thinking: “Now I have to control my mind and not think of other things,” we can think, “Now I will concentrate on Krishna’s names, which are identical to Krishna. By concentrating on Krishna’s names, Krishna will give me full intelligence, and I will love Him more and more.”

Besides a positive way of thinking, there are other ways to stay focused on Krishna’s names. We generally chant in two situations: in kirtana, or group singing, and in japa, or private soft chanting. We can approach each one somewhat differently.

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The Punishment of Yamaraja for Sinful Person

The Punishment of Yamaraja for Sinful Person

Dhirasanta Das Goswami: Yamaraja has instructed his servants the Yamadutas, “Swan-like persons are exalted persons who have no taste for material enjoyment and who drink the honey of the Lord’s lotus feet. My dear servants, bring before me for punishment only persons who are averse to the taste of that honey, who do not associate with the swan-like devotees and who are attached to family life and worldly enjoyments. 

Bring to me those persons who do not use their tongues to chant the Holy Name and qualities of Krishna, whose hearts do not remember the lotus feet of Krishna, and whose heads do not bow down even once before the Lord.”

At the moment of death, if the person is impious and quite sinful, the messengers of Yamaraja who are fierce, horrible looking persons with twisted features, copper red flaming hairs that stand on end and frightening to behold, appear at the deathbed of the person and forcibly drag him from his body with ropes. In the scriptures one may find detailed descriptions – it is said that the hounds of hell come ahead several days before to sniff out those very sinful persons about to die. Such experiences frighten the person so much that he dies of fright. Here are some accounts:

Michael who fell from a crane and hit his head was in the hospital and almost died there that night in intensive care. He explained afterwards, “I was attacked by 5 horrible-looking monsters that came in through the window. They said they had come to get me.” He even mentioned that one appeared to have a rope. He was so frightened by their appearance that he threw a chair at the window and four nurses had to restrain him.

In another encounter a devotee was looking after her father during the last moments of his life. The last day before he died, he said there were big dogs in the room and ugly persons floating outside the window. Hours before he left this world he became terrified over something he was experiencing whilst lying in his hospital bed. He was saying, “I beg you, let me loose, please let me loose.” He was “thrashing” around like a madman. I came and asked him, “What’s happening?” He said, “O Sue, I tried to get away, but they got me.” He cried out again and again, “O for God’s sake let me rest, just for ten minutes let me rest. Please, I beg you.” I said to my dad, “Do you want me to hold your hand and chant?” “Yes, yes.” he said. I held him tight for the next three hours while chanting and at one point I asked him, “Have they still got you?” “No, they have let me go.” I continued chanting until he breathed his last.

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What is Dharma?

What is Dharma?

 

What is Dharma ?

‘Dharma’ is a word that is often translated to Religion, according to the modern English dictionaries. But actually the word dharma originates from the Sanskrit word ‘dhr’ which means ‘to hold’, ‘to bear’ or ‘to support’. Dharma is incorrectly translated to ‘religion’. A religion or faith of a person might change, but Dharma,by definition, is something which cannot be separated from the entity; infact it is the characteristic of the particular entity. For example, Heat and light cannot be separated from Fire. Heat and light are the dharma or characteristics of fire. Similarly sweetness is the Dharma of sugar, and liquidity that of water.

So what is the Dharma of human beings or more correctly all living beings? The Vedic literature instruct us that we living beings(including plants and animals) are essentially spirit souls and are all eternally the servants of God. In fact, it is quite noticeable in our day-to-day life, that we are all impelled to serve someone or something. The mother serves the son, the son serves his wife and family, the employee serves his boss, the king serves his subjects and so on. If someone has none to serve, then he/she keeps a pet dog or cat in order to serve him. This service attitude, according to the Vedic scriptures, cannot be separated from the living entity and hence constitutes its Dharma.

The Predicament of the Modern world

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