"Pada Seva means to serve the lotus feet of Guru and Krishna.You cannot serve Krishna without Guru, or serve just Guru without serving Krishna. They must be served or offered pada seva simultaneously." - Srila Prabhupada

  • "A highly advanced Vaisnava lives in such a way that no one can understand what he is or what he was." (Srimad-Bhagavatam, 7.3.14, Purport)
  • "... there is nothing as profitable as the association of pure devotees." (Teachings of Lord Caitanya, Page 341)
  • "By the mercy of the spiritual master one receives the benediction of Krsna. Without the grace of the spiritual master, one cannot make any advancement." (Sri Sri Gurv-astaka, Verse 8)
  • "A pure devotee cannot forget the Supreme Lord for a moment, and similarly, the Supreme Lord cannot forget His pure devotee for a moment." (Bhagavad-gita As It Is, 8.15, Purport)
  • "The Spiritual Master is present wherever his sincere disciple is trying to serve his instructions. " (Srila Prabhupada letter, 12/01/73)
  • "I was born in the darkest ignorance, and my spiritual master opened my eyes with the torchlight of knowledge. I offer my respectful obeisances unto him." (Sri Guru Pranama)
  • "My dear Partha, one who claims to be My devotee is not so. Only a person who claims to be the devotee of My devotee is actually My devotee." (Lord Krsna, Adi Purana)
  • "Pure devotees of the Lord are more powerful than the waters of the sacred river Ganges. One can derive spiritual benefit out of prolonged use of the Ganges waters. But one can be sanctified at once by the mercy of a pure devotee of the Lord." (Srimad-Bhagavatam, 1.1.15, Purport)
  • "No one can approach the Supreme Personality of Godhead directly. One must approach Him through His pure devotees." (Nectar of Devotion, Chapter 12)
  • "Real knowledge can be obtained from a person who is in perfect Krsna consciousness. Therefore, one has to seek out such a bona fide spiritual master and, under him, learn what Krsna consciousness is. The spiritual master can drive away all nescience, as the sun drives away darkness." (Bhagavad-gita As It Is, 5.16, Purport)

Lord of the Universe - Jagannatha




Reaches heights of mercy as You come on roads,
Opening Your arms ready to embrace all of us;
With Baladeva and Subhadra on colourful chariots,
O Lord of the Universe Jagannatha, who will  not be enticed.

Devotees sing and dance in jubilation when you take grand ride,
No more fasting anymore as palatial prasadam flows for everyone;
Whoever takes Your prasadam with transcendental faith love arouses,
O Jagannatha who can be more merciful, for I the fallen soul.

On shore of ocean, You manifested in a spiritual form of wood,
Purusottama-kshetra Nilachala, Your eternal abode of pastimes;
Oh what a glory of that place, even asses attains the spiritual form,
Veda-vyasa writes even demigods faint again and again by this sight.

Your holy place never annihilates, even at dissolution of the Universe,
You showed this to your devotee Rishi Markandeya, who took shelter here;
O Lord all your devotees desire to stay here at your lotus feet,
I still fail to understand the glories, attacked by witch of material desires.

Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, initiator of congregational chanting,
Sings the holy names and dances with devotees in Ratha Yatra;
How fortunate souls are they, Your holy name entered holes of ears,
May that holy name enter ears of mine into the heart, this Ratha Yatra.

Jayadeva Goswami desires to offer Gita Govinda on a cloth,
Your devotee went in trance singing, You sung for your devotee;
Just by pure desire O my Lord you accepted the offering,
I the most fallen, desires Your Holy Name always dance on my tongue.  

Every devotee offers gifts to you as a loving exchange on Your Ratha Yatra,
O Lord your abode is bedecked of jewels with Goddess Laxmi your consort;
What can I offer you I the wretched soul, in past You stole minds of Gopis,
You being the master of all senses, I offer my mind to your lotus feet.

O Lord Jagannatha with wide open lotus eyes, with Baladeva and Subhadra,
Giving darshan to all the people, I repeatedly sing Your name and glories;
Jagannathah Svami Nayana-Patha-Gami Bhavatu Me,
Jaya Jagannatha Jaya Jagannatha Jaya Baladeva Jaya Subhadra Ki Jaya.
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How I Came to Krishna Consciousness | MBA to LBA

How I Came to Krishna Consciousness | MBA to LBA padaseva.in


It was about 5 years from now when I was desperate to proceed in my academic career. Those days, I was in a very confused state of mind regarding my career and family life. I was trapped in a tough situation in my family. To make the matter worse, the work atmosphere at the office was also not very congenial to me. I was becoming very upset and frustrated as I felt everything was slipping from my grip. I thought, pursuing higher studies might be a solution to all my problems and would give me peace of mind.

Those days, one of my friends was doing PhD, so I thought to seek her advise. She advised me to do MBA and I thought deeply over the matter. To set up my mind properly, I met some people who had pursued MBA. I noticed that although they passed management course from reputed institutes, they totally failed to manage their own life, work and business problems. So there was definitely some fault or incompleteness in the course. I gave up the thought of doing MBA.

The hollowness of our modern education system became clear to me, by which we only get the information, not the wisdom which will actually give us the strength to cope with the challenging situation of life. I was heartbroken as I couldn't find any ray of hope which will show me the right direction in my life. I bought some motivational books and also went in search of some psychological guidance.

In that scorching summer of my life when I was very thirsty to get some cold water of peace, Krishna came in my life. In May 2016, he drenched my life with the shower of hope and peace. He held my hand and dragged me to Krishna Consciousness in the form of  “Summer Camp” organized by ISKCON Kolkata.

It was like an oasis in the desert, barren struggling of my life. Krishna Consciousness which is a movement started by “Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada” gave me a strong shade over my head and a strong ground under my feet.

From my very childhood, I was familiar with the picture of Srila Prabhupada, as my father used to take us to the Rath Yatra organized by ISKCON Kolkata, yet I didn’t get a complete association then. However, Srila Prabhupada’s dedicated army with “Harinam Sankirtan” rescued me from the ditch and with the help of “Bhagavad Gita” I am trying to overcome this situation.

The lesson of Bhagavad Gita is the only knowledge through which we can set and manage all the hurdles, problems, cyclones in our life. So I think the course of Bhagavad Gita is the Real Management Course - “Life Business Administration (LBA)”.

To make our life peaceful,  successful and beautiful we must go to this “Bhagavad Gita Management Course”.

I am grateful with all my heart to Srila Prabhupada, for if it was not him, then thousands of people like me would have been bereft of this bliss of Krishna Consciousness.


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Wonderful answer to - Can we actually see God?



Have we ever paused to think who has created the wonders of nature we see every day in our lives?   - the beautiful flowers, variety of plants, so many types of birds and animals?    How is it that we have day and night, seasons, seasonal flowers and fruits, regularly with such precision?  How can water collect inside the coconut and that too at a height of about 100 feet? How can birds migrate to different lands crossing thousands of miles and return back to their homes with the change of season?  Are all these just a matter of chance?

The human body – both structure and function remain an intriguing mystery even today despite centuries of research. It is so very complex that it is not possible for one doctor to have detail knowledge of the entire human body. So today, we have specialists and super-specialists for every organ of the human body – the heart, the bones, and joints, the brain and nerves etc. Imagine someone who has complete knowledge of all the complex organ systems of the human body, as only then it could have been designed. Who is this? 

There are so many things in this world which are beyond our control. Can we choose our parents?  Why is it that someone is born in a rich family, while another is born in a poor home. Similarly; beauty, intelligence, health/disease are largely beyond our control. Who is the controller? We have all seen natural disasters - cyclones, tsunamis and earthquakes. In a matter of a few seconds, there can be such devastation that suddenly life changes permanently and irreversibly. Who is the controller………who decides?

In science we have read the Laws of motion, Law of gravity, Thermodynamics laws and in Optics there are laws of reflection/ refraction. In Physics we have studied that phenomena involving light, sound, thermodynamics, gravity are all governed by laws. So there are specific laws governing various phenomena in nature. Similarly, in our routine lives, there is a silent INVISIBLE LAW……. someone is rewarded/gifted (good health, wealth, prosperity) and someone is punished (diseased, adversity, accidents). Now if we have laws, there has to be an administrator/lawmaker.  There certainly is someone (invisible to us with material eyes) who holds the law.

In the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna clearly states that He is the controller of material nature, producing all moving and nonmoving beings.

The Lord says;

mayadhyakshena prakritih suyate sa characharam
hetunanena kaunteya jagad viparivartate.               

This material nature, which is one of My energies, is working under My direction, O son of Kunti, producing all moving and nonmoving beings. Under its rule, this manifestation is created and annihilated again and again.
Bhagavad Gita 9.10

In our scriptures, we see that one of the proofs of the existence of God is the law of karma.  During a person’s lifetime, his karmic acts (actions) result in merits and demerits.  After death, the Supreme Lord recognizes the merits and demerits which he had earned. Then when he is reborn, it is ensured that in this life he might have karmically appropriate experiences. Thus, there must be an administrator or supervisor for karma, i.e., God.

If you say can you show me, God?

In this material world, we do not have direct evidence for many things. We all know that our senses are imperfect. When I send an email, I click on a button and it is sent ….can I see it travel? –no, I have only indirect evidence. Similarly, the electromagnetic radiations have a visible wavelength range; ultra-violet (UV)light and infra-red (IR)light is invisible. There is indirect proof that IR light and UV light does exist but can we see these directly? Sound waves have an audible frequency range of 20 Hz -20,000 Hz for human beings. The range beyond 20,000 Hz is audible to certain animals but not to man………. so can we say it does not exist? Similarly, our emotion, feelings, anxiety, thoughts are all subtle, invisible but have existence without a doubt.

So we must understand and acknowledge the limitation of our material senses. With these senses, we can not see Lord, unless He wants to reveal Himself to us. This is confirmed from the following statement of Krishna to Arjuna in Bhagavad Gita

But you cannot see Me with your present eyes. Therefore I give you divine eyes. Behold My mystic opulence!
Bhagavad Gita 11.8

However, such a fortune is extremely rare when one is blessed to behold the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Yet there is another vision which helps us to see God around us. This is called the Spiritual Vision. It is derived by understanding scriptures under the supervision of a bonafide guru (Sastra Chakshu). This is the minimum qualification a human being must have.

Srila Prabhupada has explained this by quoting Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur, his spiritual master.
My spiritual master used to say that, "You do not try to see God. Just act in such a way that God will see you." Just try to understand. This is very nice. If I want to see God, and I make God as my order-supplier, that "Please come and I'll see You." So God is not so small that He, at once I call Him and He'll come. No. We have to qualify ourselves. We have to qualify ourselves. Therefore by the qualification, by your qualification, God will Himself come and see you.
Lecture on Bhagavad Gita 10.1 (New York, December 30, 1966)


My Guru Mahārāja used to say that "You don't try to see God." Just try to understand. "Just work in such a way that God may see you." This is the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. Everyone is busy to see God. Of course, it is not so easy to see God. But a devotee is not busy to see God, but he wants God to see him.
Lecture on BG 12.13-14 -- Bombay, May 12, 1974

HENCE: Behind every creation, there must be a creator. The whole world is a wonderful creation, and God is the invisible silent controller. To realize and understand and in a way see His presence, one must have minium qualification of Sastra Chakshu.


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Is Modern Science A Blind Faith?




Today we all are living in the world of science and technology and slowly everyone is getting accustomed to it without even thinking about the authenticity of it. But when it comes to the spiritual science every Tom Dick and Harry raise the question for its authenticity and also they have devised a new term called “Myth” which means a widely held but false belief or idea.

Now many would question here - can be believing in God be called spiritual science?

Actually, science is the real knowledge of the things as it is. Vedas means knowledge. The knowledge of everything in this material universe and beyond is contained in Vedas (or Vedic Scriptures). Everything a human brain can ponder upon is revealed in Vedic Scriptures. Hence Vedic Scriptures is the highest knowledge of everything. Everything has got the ultimate, the supreme summum bonum. That summum bonum of Vedic knowledge or Vedānta is Krishna, because Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita "vedaiś ca sarvair aham" which means - "By all the Vedas, I am to be known". Krishna being the summum bonum of entire knowledge, Krishna Consciousness is the topmost science.

But how many would accept this? Not many. Lord Krishna himself says in Bhagavad Gita

Out of many thousands among men, one may endeavour for perfection, and of those who have achieved perfection, hardly one knows Me in Truth. 
Bhagavad Gita 7.3

Only a person who has the intelligence and pure heart, will have faith in Bhagavad Gita and accepts it as it is without a doubt. This unflinching faith can be achieved by only by hearing from a bonafide person from a bonafide sampradaya. After hearing from a bonafide source, if the person sincerely try to regulate his life, then gradually he comes to a stage where he clearly understands that The Supreme God none other than Lord Krishna, the speaker of Bhagavad Gita, as confirmed in Brahma Samhita

isvarah paramah krsnah, sac-cid-ananda-vigrahah,anadir adir govindah, sarva-karana- karanam


Krishna who is known as Govinda is the Supreme Godhead. He has an eternal blissful spiritual body. He is the origin of all. He has no other origin and He is the prime cause of all causes.

Now after reading this who cannot understand that Krishna is God? This can be answered as there are three types of ignorant people who cannot understand it.

(1)
One who is born in the human family but leading an animal-like life, interested only in eating-sleeping-defending-mating (ahara, nidra, bhaya, maithun). These four activities are the center of focus in every species life including human. But if a human engages his entire life in doing only these activities, then he is no better than an animal. At a gross level, today's modern civilization is engaged in ONLY these activities. A real human being is one who follows a dharma - Seeking The Higher Reality, searching God, as said in Mahabharat

āhāra-nidrā-bhaya-maithunaṁ ca
sāmānyam etat paśubhir narāṇām
dharmo hi teṣām adhiko viśeṣo
dharmeṇa hīnāḥ paśubhiḥ samānāḥ

Eating, sleeping, sex, and defense—these four principles are common to both human beings and animals. The distinction between human life and animal life is that a man can search after God but an animal cannot. That is the difference. Therefore a man without that urge for searching after God is no better than an animal.
Mahabharat, Shanti Parv, 294.29

So basically without God realization, a human is just a two-legged animal. Day by day the Godless civilization is increasing and how is it? Modern education is one of the root cause of this calamity. They are giving the knowledge to earn bread but missing the important aspect, God. Problem is many parents do not know by themselves about the science of God, so what can they imbibe into their children? Ironically, especially in India, we have accepted that we are secular and no religion-based countries. Thus becoming Godless has become a sign of progressive rational modern culture. But we should know this human life is too precious to be wasted like an animal.

(2)
The second type are the ones who know the scriptures but after hearing all the scriptures, they still do not have faith and thinks it to be imaginary / mythology. Krishna says;

Some look on the soul as amazing, some describe him as amazing, and some hear of him as amazing, while others, even after hearing about him, cannot understand him at all.  
Bhagavad Gita 2.29

In fact these people have blind faith in their senses. However, the matter of fact is our senses in itself are imperfect and limited. Example: one cannot see the object very near or very far. Same is the case with all other senses. Most of the time, any speculation made based on these limited and imperfect senses becomes a fairy tale. Example the infamous Darwin’s Theory. Around 150 years ago Darwin thought about evolution and gave an atheistic explanation termed as the survival of the fittest. As per this theory one progenitor gives birth to another form of progenitor-like the future living beings are born with some new features which are different from their parents and the one who is fittest survives and life carries on and the weak perish in the span of time. In this way, Darwin thought that monkeys are the forefather of human beings and as time passed they have evolved. Similarly Darwin thought to himself and goes still backward in evolution like the scrolling animal and further, the trees, birds and aquatics should be their predecessors. Beyond that Darwin thought that single cell bacteria are the actual father of all the living entities that exist today. 

Don’t you think it is funny that when you visit a big palace you find pictures of one's forefather and slowly you can see a picture of bacteria? Ah! Here are my forefather bacteria. Darwin theory didn't stop at this, it further speculated some million of years ago some reactive materials collided amongst each other and the first life form appeared from it. Few so-called intellectuals supported this and slowly through propaganda it got accepted worldwide. Ironically even though Darwin's Theory has been scientifically proven wrong, school syllabus are still polluting the young minds with this fantasy theory

As Lord Krishna says about those who can actually accept the truth and not such propaganda.

Therefore, one who has renounced the fruits of action, whose doubts are destroyed by transcendental knowledge, and who is situated firmly in the self, is not bound by works, O conqueror of riches.   
Bhagavad Gita 4.41

People like Darwin come up with such concocted interpretation because they do not want to accept that everything is controlled by a controller. Anyone by the normal brain can understand that we are all controlled, like sleeping every day, similarly, no one likes old age but everyone is forced to become old with the time. So there should be some controller of all these and should be the Supreme among us which scriptures reveal to us.


O conquerer of wealth [Arjuna], there is no Truth superior to Me. Everything rests upon Me, as pearls are strung on a thread.
Bhagavad Gita 7.7


Neither the hosts of demigods nor the great sages know My origin, for, in every respect, I am the source of the demigods and the sages.
Bhagavad Gita 10.2


I am the source of all spiritual and material worlds. Everything emanates from Me.
Bhagavad Gita 10.8



By these statement once again a normal person can easily understand who actually God is.


(3)
Finally, the third type people are the one who says that all the things written in scriptures are impossible to follow and it cannot be achieved. This shows their lack of faith in the words of scriptures, caused by ignorance. This weak faith can be strengthened with the sword of knowledge, which can cut through this ignorance by the constant sublime touch of the nine processes of devotional service as mentioned in scriptures.

sravanam kirtanam visnoh smaranam pada-sevanamarcanam vandanam dasyam sakhyam atma-nivedanam

Hearing, chanting, remembering, serving, worship, prayers, becoming servant, becoming best friend and surrendering everything one has to Lord Krishna. This is the process explained by Prahalada Maharaj in Srimad Bhagavatam 7.5.23

So a request to every reader that please do come and associate withthe devotees nearby you and try to follow the instruction of The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, as spirituality is the science which can redefine ones way of thinking and live life happily amidst of all the hypocrisy.

With this request all readers to chant loudly with me Hare Krishna!
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Unleash The Secret of Karma Yoga | Spiritual Course | Bhagavad Gita


International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), Kolkata brings to you a course on the third Chapter of Srimad Bhagavad-gita, Karma yoga. 

Venue: CD 116, CD Block, Salt Lake City, Kolkata
Contact: 760 307 8514
Starting from: 26th May 2019






Join the course - pass the information to your loved ones.



At Your Service,
Pada Seva.





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11 Absolutely Remarkable Messages Of Prahalad Narasingha That You Need To Know




Almost every one of us has heard the Divine Pastime of Lord Narasingha Dev and His devotee Prahalad Maharaj. For the benefit of those who didn’t, let’s have a short description of the event. 

The evil king, Hiraṇyakasipu asked his Vaishnava child, Prahalad, if his God existed within the pillars of the palace. To this Prahalad Maharaja promptly acknowledged that since the Lord is present everywhere, He was likewise present within the pillars. When Hiraṇyakasipu heard this statement from his son, he criticized him and forcefully struck the pillar with his fist. Immediately there was a tumultuous sound. At first, Hiraṇyakasipu, could not see anything but the pillar, but to prove Prahalad’s statements, the Lord came out of the pillar in His brilliant manifestation as Lord Narasingha, half lion and half man. The Lord killed him by piercing his abdomen with His nails. The entire universe was thus relieved and everyone was jubilant in transcendental bliss. 

Throughout the community of devotees, Prahalad is extremely respected and he is also one amongst the 12 Mahajans. The messages we get and lessons we can learn from Lord Narasingha and His pure devotee like Prahalad is limitless. Let us see 11 such absolutely remarkable messages of Prahalad Maharaj and Narasingha Dev, which can help us in becoming a better devotee.




Message I. When to start spirituality?

Prahalad Maharaj said: One who is sufficiently intelligent should use the human form of body from the very beginning of life — in other words, from the tender age of childhood — to practice the activities of devotional service, giving up all other engagements. The human body is most rarely achieved, and although temporary like other bodies, it is meaningful because in human life one can perform devotional service. Even a slight amount of sincere devotional service can give one complete perfection.
- Srimad Bhagavatam 7.6.1

It is stated in scriptures and confirmed by Prahalad Maharaj that human birth is extremely rare and one who is intelligent must not waste even a single moment. Thus early childhood is the right time to start the devotional services. Every parent must encourage their children to Krishna Consciousness along with their mundane education. It is said in Srimad Bhagavatam that it is the responsibility of every parent to see that their children get delivered from the repeated cycle of birth and death. If not then one should not take up this responsibility of begetting children. Therefore every couple must learn the true art of Parenting.




Message II. Life in sense gratification is simply a waste of time.

Prahalad Maharaj says if we consider the maximum life span of a human is 100 years, he wastes 50 years in sleeping, 10 years in childhood, 10 years in boyhood, 20 years in old age. So effectively one is left with only 10 years [100 – (50 + 10 + 10 + 20) = 10]. But for a man whose mind and senses are not controlled, he easily gets attached to various material factors and wastes this 10 years also.

Every human being has a maximum duration of life of one hundred years, but for one who cannot control his senses, half of those years are completely lost because at night he sleeps twelve hours, being covered by ignorance. Therefore such a person has a lifetime of only fifty years.

In the tender age of childhood, when everyone is bewildered, one passes ten years. Similarly, in boyhood, engaged in sporting and playing, one passes another ten years. In this way, twenty years are wasted. Similarly, in old age, when one is an invalid, unable to perform even material activities, one passes another twenty years wastefully.

One whose mind and senses are uncontrolled becomes increasingly attached to family life because of insatiable lusty desires and very strong illusion. In such a madman’s life, the remaining years are also wasted because even during those years he cannot engage himself in devotional service.
- Srimad Bhagavatam 7.6.6 – 8

An interesting point to understand is, these were spoken during the age of Satya Yuga - an age of purity. In today’s age, thanks for modernizations and so-called advancement, our life span is extremely doubtful to reach 100 years, young people at the age of 30s are leaving their bodies due to heart diseases. And to add toppings, we are compelled to work like a slave for a minimum 12 hours a day in office, thanks to traffic jam our transportation from home to office takes 2 hours (on an average), and how can we forget the allurements like TV, innumerable channels, movies, youtube, sports, news, newspapers, fictional books, mobile, internet, social media… the list goes on. Statistically, the average person has no time left for self-discovery and deveopment shown below,



However, the fact remains that even a devotee in the age of Kaliyuga is managing his 24 hours in a similar tightly packed timetable. The only difference is he knows how to manage his time.

Effective time management is when we can manage time for our highest priority tasks - Regular Sadhana, keeping the social responsibility as it is. It is only possible when we are attentively making sure of not wasting any moment of our life. Before we came into Krishna Consciousness, after having a stressful day at the office, we used to get along with friends, at theater or cafe or restaurants or malls to waste our precious time in doing something that is known as  “Time Pass”.  Fools invented the term called “Time Pass” for they don’t realize that the time is anyways passing away and very soon in a matter of a few days or years we will be left with no time.




Message III. When the family becomes bondage.

Prahalad Maharaj compares an entangled householder is like a silkworm, which weaves a cocoon in which it becomes imprisoned, unable to get out.

Point to realize is that nothing in this temporary world belongs to us, not even our body, what to speak about our family and relatives. As long as we are in the current body, we will be illusioned with these bodily concepts and relations. The moment we leave this body and accept a new body, we will all forget everything. Just like most of us do not remember anything about anyone from our previous life. 

The way a devotee looks at his family members is that they belong to Krishna and he is a mere honest caretaker. So even though they have a sense of care and concern and emotion for others, they aren’t entangled in the illusion of "I and My".

In one of the verses, Prahalad Maharaj compares this material household life, where the householder is entangled badly, as dark well. Srila Prabhupada suggests the only solution that a householder has in order to free himself from such a deep entanglement.
... Thus the household becomes gṛham andha-kūpam, a dark well into which the man has fallen. For such a man to get out is extremely difficult unless he is helped by a strong person, the spiritual master, who helps the fallen person with the strong rope of spiritual instructions. A fallen person should take advantage of this rope, and then the spiritual master, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa, will take him out of the dark well.
Srimad Bhagavatam – 7.6.11-13 Purport 






Message IV. Position of a Devotee.

If a brāhmaṇa has all twelve of the brahminical qualifications [as they are stated in the book called Sanat-sujāta] but is not a devotee and is averse to the lotus feet of the Lord, he is certainly lower than a devotee who is a dog-eater but who has dedicated everything — mind, words, activities, wealth and life — to the Supreme Lord. Such a devotee is better than such a brāhmaṇa because the devotee can purify his whole family, whereas the so-called brāhmaṇa in a position of false prestige cannot purify even himself.
Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.10

From this verse, we understand the position of a Vaishnava or a devotee of the lord is even higher than caste brahmin who possess all the qualities but is not a devotee.

Krishna also confirms the position of a devotee in Srimad Bhagavad Gita 6.47. It is also stated in the Hari-bhakti-sudhodaya:
If one is born in a high family like that of a brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya or vaiśya but is not a devotee of the Lord, all his good qualifications as a brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya or vaiśya are null and void. Indeed, they are considered decorations of a dead body.

True spiritual progress is beyond the caste by birth. Having understood the position of a devotee, we all must aspire to be a devotee of Lord by heart and soul, as guided by proper disciplic succession, and not get trapped in rituals, like caste brahmans.




Message V. Importance of Prayers to Lord.

Therefore, although I was born in a demoniac family, I may without a doubt offer prayers to the Lord with the full endeavor, as far as my intelligence allows. Anyone who has been forced by ignorance to enter the material world may be purified of material life if he offers prayers to the Lord and hears the Lord’s glories.
Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.12

This is the reason why every religion across the world and universes recommends everyone to pray. It is only by sincere prayers that we can elevate ourselves.




Message VI. The desire of a pure devotee.

O most powerful, insurmountable Lord, who are kind to the fallen souls, I have been put into the association of demons as a result of my activities, and therefore I am very much afraid of my condition of life within this material world. When will that moment come when You will call me to the shelter of Your lotus feet, which are the ultimate goal for liberation from conditional life?
Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.16

Staying in the material world is absolutely hopeless and painful, however, when one is put into the relationship of asuras, or atheistic men, it gets even tougher. In today's world, 8 out of 10 are like Terrorists or Mafia of God Consciousness. An aspiring devotee must safeguard himself and his devotion from such people. Therefore everyone should be eager to return to their eternal home, back to Godhead, by taking to proper Krishna Consciousness and thus taking shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord.

My dear Lord, people, in general, want to be elevated to the higher planetary systems for a long duration of life, opulence and enjoyment, but I have seen all of these through the activities of my father. When my father was angry and he laughed sarcastically at the demigods, they were immediately vanquished simply by seeing the movements of his eyebrows. Yet my father, who was so powerful, has now been vanquished by You within a moment.

My dear Lord, now I have complete experience concerning the worldly opulence, mystic power, longevity and other material pleasures enjoyed by all living entities, from Lord Brahmā down to the ant. As powerful time, You destroy them all. Therefore, because of my experience, I do not wish to possess them. My dear Lord, I request You to place me in touch with Your pure devotee and let me serve him as a sincere servant.
Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.23 - 24

Within this material world, one should understand that the value of material opulence, longevity and influence is temporary. Therefore Prahalad Maharaj did not give any importance to anything in this material world.

Just like in a slaughterhouse, goats are busy chewing green leaves while in front of their eyes one by one a goat is pulled inside and slaughtered. This foolish goat is so much engrossed in the enjoyment that he doesn’t realize that all the goats are vanishing one by one. And very soon he will also be dragged in. This syndrome is called as goat syndrome. We too see that one by one our grandfather, our relatives, our parents all are leaving this world and unable to carry the material opulence but rather, has to leave them back. We must not be like the foolish goat who is busy eating leaves.

Materialistic parents who are strongly bewildered by the illusion doesn’t learn from their forefather's examples, they themselves try to lead a life of goat striving hard to gather/accumulate everything possible. When they grow old, still ignorant of reality, inspire their children to follow the same path. And this trend keeps on continuing.

While on the other hand, an intelligent person, who is a devotee, always seeks to associate with devotees of Lord and always desires to serve them. When such an intelligent class of people accepts the responsibility of parenthood, they pass down the same message to their son/daughter and they in turn pass down the same culture and the chain continues.




Message VII. Importance of Devotee Association

O my Lord Nṛsiṁhadeva, by engaging in Your transcendental loving service in the association of devotees who are liberated souls [haṁsas], I shall become completely uncontaminated by the association of the three modes of material nature and be able to chant the glories of Your Lordship, who are so dear to me. I shall chant Your glories, following exactly in the footsteps of Lord Brahmā and his disciplic succession. In this way I shall undoubtedly be able to cross the ocean of nescience.
Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.18

A true devotee’s mood is shown here. A devotee always seeks for an association of devotees where he can sing and hear the songs glorifying Lord. It is only in this association that one can become free from the material world. As soon as a devotee recites the name and wonders of the Supreme Lord, he unquestionably gets freedom from material entanglement. One should recite the true bonafide songs that are received from a bonafide sampradaya.






Message VIII. What not to ask from the Lord?

The saint Narad Muni continued: Although Prahalad Maharaj was only a boy, when he heard the benedictions offered by Lord Nṛsiṁhadeva he considered them impediments on the path of devotional service. Thus he smiled very mildly and spoke as follows.

Prahalad Maharaj said: My dear Lord, O Supreme Personality of Godhead, because I was born in an atheistic family I am naturally attached to material enjoyment. Therefore, kindly do not tempt me with these illusions. I am very much afraid of material conditions, and I desire to be liberated from materialistic life. It is for this reason that I have taken shelter of Your lotus feet.
Srimad Bhagavatam 7.10.1 – 2

This is one of the most important lessons we get to learn from Prahalad Maharaj.

Here he clearly says that material achievements and advancements are not an objective of devotional service. The only objective is attaining love of Godhead.

Hence in our glorious Vedic history, we may see numerous examples of great emperors who were also great devotees, they accepted their material extravagant life in the service of the Lord, not for their own enjoyment. Unlike a materialist, whatever such a devotee has, he uses them completely in the service of the Lord. When one is charmed by material opulence, they are viewed as given by Maya, however, when one uses material belongings completely for devotional service, they are viewed as God's blessings.

Materialistic life implies a connection to the body and everything in relationship to the body. As expressed in Bhagavad-Gita, the individuals who are entangled to material happiness are generally worshiping demigods like Durga and Lord Siva. But devotees like Prahalad, who are least interested in material opulence, take shelter of the lotus feet of Lord Nṛsiṁhadeva, and not the feet of any demigods.




Message IX. What to ask from the Lord?

O my Lord, best of the givers of benediction, if You at all want to bestow a desirable benediction upon me, then I pray from Your Lordship that within the core of my heart there be no material desires.

O my Lord, because of lusty desires from the very beginning of one’s birth, the functions of one’s senses, mind, life, body, religion, patience, intelligence, shyness, opulence, strength, memory and truthfulness are vanquished.

O my Lord, when a human being is able to give up all the material desires in his mind, he becomes eligible to possess wealth and opulence like Yours.
Srimad Bhagavatam 7.10.7 – 9

This is the mood of a devotee. In the purport, Srila Prabhupada has referred to the teachings of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, where Mahaprabhu rejects wealth, followers, beautiful wife and all kind of materialistic desires but instead desires only the causeless mercy of Krishna's devotional service in His life, birth after birth.




Message X. How to live in this material world?

It does not matter that you are in the material world. You should always, continuously, hear the instructions and messages given by Me and always be absorbed in thought of Me, for I am the Supersoul existing in the core of everyone’s heart. Therefore, give up fruitive activities and worship Me.

My dear Prahalad, while you are in this material world you will exhaust all the reactions of pious activity by feeling happiness, and by acting piously you will neutralize impious activity. Because of the powerful time factor, you will give up your body, but the glories of your activities will be sung in the upper planetary systems and being fully freed from all bondage, you will return home, back to Godhead.
Srimad Bhagvatam 7.10.12 – 13

We must understand that Karma-Kanda is meant for the less intelligent class of people. It is mentioned in scriptures and by acharyas that, people who entangle themselves in the Karma Kanda and Gyana Kanda are actually wasting their life. Thus as suggested by Lord, a devotee is only interested in performing devotional service for the pleasure of the lord. A devotee must try to give up the material desires and should try to focus on the Lord and worship Him.

Doing so in a perfect way, he gains every opulence that one can think of. Generally, materialistic people get a little envious to see material opulence in a devotee’s life. Somehow people have this notion that temple and devotees should be bereft of material opulence, if not then “they are doing business in the name of devotion”. However as Srila Prabhupada mentions in the purport, by seeing material opulence in the life of devotee we shouldn’t misunderstand that they are doing sense gratification, rather we must realize that they are utilizing this opulence in the service of the lord.

As Narasingha Dev says, we must understand, that the happy moments in our life are simply the quota of our previous pious activities, and similarly, the sorrow time indicates the quota of our previous impious activities. To leave this world and return back to the Spiritual World, we must be free of all the pious and impious reactions. Therefore understanding this a devotee is equipoised in both the state of happiness and distress for he knows in both ways his burden of reactions are getting reduced. He also makes sure he doesn't recreate any more impious reactions. The process of Krishna Consciousness with the following of four regulations and regular sadhana makes it possible to reduce the karmic reactions (both pious and impious) in one's life.




Message XI. Importance of devotee in human society

The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: My dear Prahalad, O most pure, O great saintly person, your father has been purified, along with twenty-one forefathers in your family. Because you were born in this family, the entire dynasty has been purified.

Whenever and wherever there are peaceful, equipoised devotees who are well-behaved and decorated with all good qualities, that place and the dynasties there, even if condemned, are purified.
Srimad Bhagvatam 7.10.18 – 19

Many people raise a question, what contribution are the devotees making to society. So when we look at the world using the vision of scriptures, we get answers to many such doubts and questions. We need to understand a very important point in the benediction of Lord Narasingha. 

… The Lord mentions twenty-one forefathers, this indicates that the benediction expands to other families also. Before the present family in which one has taken birth, one must have been born in other families. Thus when a Vaiṣṇava takes birth in a family, by the grace of the Lord he purifies not only that family but also the families of his previous births.

Also, we can learn from the words of Lord Narasingha that how fortunate it is to be a devotee. Among entire mankind, the most intelligent one is the one who takes up Krishna Consciousness. 

My dear Prahalad, you are very fortunate. Please know from Me that those who are very wise and highly elevated try to please Me in all different modes of mellows, for I am the only person who can fulfill all the desires of everyone.
Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.54

***





To summarize the 11 important messages of Prahlad Maharaj and Narasingha Dev:

  1. One must start spirituality at a very early stage.
  2. The goal of life must not be forgotten for sense gratification
  3. Nothing in this world is ours, not even our family. It belongs to Krishna and we are just their caretaker. We will execute our duties towards them but not get entangled.
  4. A Vaishnava or a devotee is much higher than a caste brahmana who is entangled in rituals and karma kanda
  5. Sincere prayers to lord can purify one's material existence
  6. A devotee or a Vaishnava does not desire for material opulence
  7. Associate with devotees and chant glories of the lord as received in bonafide disciplic succession
  8. Material benediction is an impediment in devotional service.
  9. All that a devotee desires, is an opportunity to serve lord birth after birth
  10. Live in this world very expertly and utilize the material opulence for the service of the lord
  11. To become a devotee is an extremely rare chance that a soul gets and a devotee purifies the existence 





Hence everyone must take up devotional service towards the Supreme Personality of Godhead seriously will full enthusiasm.



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Lord Narasingha | Drawing




ito nrisimhah parato nrisimho
yato yato yami tato nrisimhah
bahir nrisimho hrdaye nrisimho
nrisimham adim sharanam prapadye


Lord Nrsimha is here and also there. Wherever I go Lord Nrsimha is there. He is within the heart and is outside as well. I surrender to Lord Nrsimha, the origin of all things and the supreme refuge.

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His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

This website is dedicated to His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
(Founder-Acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness - ISKCON)

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