On this auspicious day of the appearance of Radha Kund, please imerse yourself in the Glory of Radha Shyam!
 
 
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The great "kata" of Radha Kund is that one demon named Aristasura, in the body of a bull, was killed by Krishna. The gopis  told Krishna that for killing a bull,  He had to purify Himself by visiting every single holy place in the three worlds. "If you take bath at all the holy places, You will be relieved of the offense of killing him.”

Krishna then said, “Why should I visit all these places, I will just bring the water from all these places here and then bathe in them.” Krishna then struck His heel on the ground and all the waters of all the holy places entered into Syama Kund. Krishna then bathed in Syama Kund.

After bathing, he said that the gopis had become impure because they had sided with a demon, even though he had been in the form of a bull. The gopis led by Radharani then dug another pond nearby with their bangles. There was no water in the hole, so the gopis formed a line to Manasa Ganga and began to fill the hole they dug by passing water from one gopi to another. Then a representative of all the sacred places told Radharani, “Our lives would be successful if we could enter Your pond.” The holy waters from Syama Kund then flowed into Radha Kund with the permission of Radha. So Radha Kunda is the holy waters from all the sacred places.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada who gave us this spirtual treasure! 

The past times of Radha & Krishna ki Jaya!
The appearance of Radha Kund ki Jaya!
 
 
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In 1975 my wife and I travelled to Vrindavan, India to be with Srila Prabhupada. During that trip we had the bright idea to go and sight seeing. So for a few days we woud head out every morning  to see other temples in Vrindavan. After doing this for 3 days in a row, we attended Srila Prabhupada's morning Srimad Bhagavatam class at Krishna Balram mandir and after the Jaya Radha Madhava prayers, Srila Prabhupada looks in my direction and asks, "Subhavilasa, where have you been for the last 3 days?". At that time I was embarassed but in retrospect it showed me how caring Srila Prabhupada was and that among hundreds of devotees he still had that personal connection and knowing who was missing. I answered that we were visiting other temples in Vrindavan. So that day in Srila Prabhupada's lecture that day he emphasized the importance of ISKCON temples first and foremost. Srila Prabhupada said that from what we collect we first take care of the Deity worship, then the temple building and if there is left over our own maintanence but most of the other temples they take care of their own maintanence and needs first, then the building and if there is left over it is used for the service of the Diety.
 
Thank you Srila Prabhupada for looking out for me...I did not miss any lectures after that!
Thank you Srila Prabhupada for establising such a high level of Deity worship which continues to be maintained in hundreds of centres around the world!
Thank you Srila Prabhupada for establishing that your ISKCON centres are first and foremost and it is our duty to respect and take care of your houses as you have instructed.
 
 
That title got your attention but that is the title of the article linked up below. 

We are fortunate that we are able to practice Krishna Conciousness in relative peace. Yes, in the early days there were struggles but it pales in comparision to what devotees in Kazakhstan and other parts of Eurasia are facing.  It is surprising in this day and age that these "authorities" choose to confiscate and burn literature and demolish homes and belongings from devotees simply trying to peacefully practice Krishna Conciousness.

We should look up to these devotees who with great struggle carry on Srila Prabhupada's movement and spread Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's glories, similar to the early  devotees in Russia/USSR.  Many years later, look at ISKCON flourishing in Russia and other parts of the fomer USSR and this will certainly eventually happen in Kazakhstan and other centers. 

During this month of Damador, let's try pray for the safety and strength of these members of  Srila Prabhupada's family.  

See the article link below.

http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report_hare-krishnas-are-bullied-across-the-globe_1455263
 
 
Thanks to the ISKCON Toronto devotees, youth and Bhaktimarga Swami a nice article appeared on the front page of the Greater Toronto section of the Toronto Star. If I am not mistaken the Toronto Star is the largest published newspaper in Canada and it is for sure the biggest newspaper in Toronto.

Check out the article by following this link:
http://www.thestar.com/news/article/880402--where-did-the-hare-krishnas-go

The actual article has a nice picture of Srila Prabhupada on his vyasasan as well as Bhaktimarga Swami next to a "bust" of Srila Prabhupada in Srila Prabhupada's room at ISKCON Toronto.    

All credit and glories go to the devotees who arranged this and we are fortunate to have a intelligent and active youth group in Toronto who bring things together nicely...
 

Damodar Astaka

10/24/2010

 
The simple act of lighting and offering a candle during Kartik brings peace and bhakti into the mind and heart. The 7 of us 2 seniors, 2 mid-age and 3 young kids stand in front of Sri Radha Shyamasundar with small candles an simple prayers knowing it brings an abundance of spirtual benefit and immediate tranquility.

During the month of Damodar not only are we supposed to offer a flame but also listen to and recite Damodar Astaka. His Grace Shabda Hari das has a beautiful and clear rendition complete with verses and translation.

Meditate, enjoy and repeat as he repeats every verse...
 
 
The holiest month of the year is upon us, the month of Kartik. This period is very dear to Lord Krishna and it gives us a chance for purification. We are fortunate that in this glorious month of Damodar we simply need to glorify Damodar and it produces abundant results.

During this month I always think of the comparision Srila Prabhupada made. That it is like a "sale" at a store where you are benefiting from a large discount. (I am paraphrasing).  Anyhow, I am a neophyte surrounded by advanced Vaishnavas but here are a few helpful e
xcerpts describing the glory of the Kartik month:

- If somebody performs even a little worship of Lord Hari in this month, He offers that devotee His own abode.

- Of all gifts, the gift of a lamp during the month of Kartik is the best. No gift is its equal.

- A person who happily reads the Bhagavad Gita in the month of Kartik does not return to the world of birth and death.

- If somebody burns a lamp in the temple of Lord Hari even for a short time (in the month of Kartik), then whatever sins, he has acquired for millions of kalpas (one kalpa equals 1000 yugas) are all destroyed.

In conclusion, have a happy and bhakti filled month of Damodar!

your servant,
Subhavilasa das
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nama om vishnu-padaya krishna-preshthaya bhu-tale shrimate bhaktivedanta- svamin iti namine namas te sarasvate deve gaura-vani-pracharine nirvishesha-shunyavadi- pashcatya-desha-tarine

shri-krishna-caitanya prabhu nityananda shri-advaita gadadhara shrivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrinda

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Kirshna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare

Jaya Srila Prabhupada! 
Jaya Sri Sri Radha Shyamasundar!

What better way to start my new blog?

Haribol! Thank you for all the positive comments and feedback since we launched the site a few months ago. We are suprised with the traffic, feedback and email.  I was asking my son to do this for a few years and he finally got around to assisting me in this effort.

I have come into the 21st century and now also have a Facebook account and it has been great to get in touch with old and new friends but I am only spending a few minutes a day on Facebook for now and I have asked my daughter to help in posting videos, pics, etc. to Facebook.

After Diwali/Goverdhan Puja I plan to start writing recollections, notes and thoughts for the blog. No promises for how regular it will be or the exact date it will get started. The posts will start with simple recollections and over time will grow to include thoughts and commentary. It will all be positive and in service to Srila Prabhupada. So stay tuned!

Thank you for taking the time to read and look at this site.
I hope this meets you well in the service of Srila Prabhupada...

Your servant,
Subhavilasa das