Category Archives: Chanting
Kirtaniya sada hari: Constantly engaged in chanting the Holy Names of Lord Hari
I just came back home after an ecstatic evening. This weekend was just so incredibly Krishna Conscious. I didn’t go for the event on Thursday, but I went yesterday and today.
Yesterday, HH Bhakti Brnga Govinda Maharaj sang such a beautiful kirtan. But my mind is foolish. I was so not into it. I was looking around me and everyone was just taken in by the kirtan. Why not me? Continue reading
I was working on two reports for university last night. They weren’t due today but I wanted to submit them as I have holidays starting tomorrow and I didn’t want to spend them stressing out about my reports that were due. So I was working late into the night. I took a shower at around 2 AM and I was absolutely planning on not chanting for the day as I was just wiped out. I was really exhausted and literally braindead. I thought that I would just go ahead and chant anyway. But I was way too sleepy. I was contemplating all this while I was in the shower. I was telling myself not to break my routine and that I should just go ahead and fight the sleepiness and chant. However I was seriously tired and didn’t feel like I had it in me to chant.
Last night, as usual, I was feeling too sleepy to chant. I was going to chant at all, but I didn’t want to break my routine again like last time. So I started chanting, feeling terribly sleepy. I thought I’d just do one round.
“Help me chant. Let me concentrate.” I said. Then I got really dramatic and for some reason, I said, “If there really is a God then help me chant!”
How absurd! I don’t know why on earth I became so dramatic like that. It’s kind of funny lol. Either way, can you guess what happened next?
My concentration level just soared. My attentiveness was much better than it was a minute ago. I was shocked myself! My sleepiness had gone. I was reciting the mantra rather fast, but that usually is what helps me concentrate better. If I chant with slow speed, I can barely follow. With Krishna’s mercy, I had chanted my 2 rounds for the day 🙂
Yesterday, I was faced with a situation that normally makes me doubt and question Krishna. But somehow, it didn’t bother me at all. This is very very rare. Usually I just lose my mind and start doubting Krishna and asking Him to prove and reveal Himself to me. Yesterday, I was just peaceful. Doubting questions did occur to me, but they didn’t get to me, if you know what I mean. The only words resonating in my ears were Lord Chaitanya’s words from the Siksastakam:
“You are my worshippable Lord.”
The Lord is being very merciful to me. Lord, I thank You for holding me firm in my faith. You promised to preserve what I have and carry what I lack. You carried me out of my doubt. You helped me to chant. Lord, give me strength, give me unflinching faith. Please keep all of us in steady faith, God. Keep us in Your love.
I joined a new Hare Krishna class this past Wednesday. It’s a Bhakti Vriksha class and each week, they teach one verse from the Bhagavad Gita and we study it in depth, and have a discussion about it. It’s really a fun class and it would be especially useful to understand the verses I don’t fully comprehend. The teacher there and the rest of the devotees were very very nice to me. They were so warm and welcoming. They were just wonderful devotees who were so inspiring. We first sang the Damodar Aarti, and then one of the devotees explained Chapter 12. Guys, I swear to you, Krishna is alive. During the group japa session, I was dazing and I was not concentrating. I was chanting rather inattentively and my faith wavered. Continue reading
Giving Up + Desire for recognition + Krishna Conscious quotes on envy & desire for recognition (and it’s remedies)
I’m feeling low because I haven’t really accomplished much. People around me are winning competitions and shows and winning all-expense-paid trips… and all I won in the last two years (and probably in the last-my-entire-life) was a marketing strategy competition. It wasn’t even inter-college. Just amongst our class. My team was the winning team and the company designated came to present us with certificates and recommendation letters. It was nice. I’m grateful that I was one of the winners. But when I see others achieving a lot more than I am, it really puts me down… Why can’t I be up there on stage, winning an award, getting some acknowledgment for my work, getting some recognition, something.
Is this envy of those who win and achieve more than I do?
“My dear sons, you should not envy any living entity — be he moving or nonmoving. Knowing that I am situated in them, you should offer respect to all of them at every moment. In this way, you offer respect to Me.”
– Srimad Bhagavatam 5.5.26
“Peacefulness, self-control, austerity, purity, tolerance, honesty, wisdom, knowledge, and religiousness–these are the qualities by which the brahmanas work.”
– Bhagavad Gita As It Is 18.42
“Generally when you have opulences you become proud. But there is one opulence that attracts Krishna, humility. All other opulences only attract Krishna when they are offered with humility.”
– H.H. Radhanatha Swami
“One who is humbler than a blade of grass, more forbearing than a tree who gives due honour to others without desiring honour for himself is qualified to always chant the Holy Name of Krishna.”
– Siksastakam Verse 3
“A faithful man who is dedicated to transcendental knowledge and who subdues his senses is eligible to achieve such knowledge, and having achieved it he quickly attains the supreme spiritual peace.”
– Bhagavad Gita 4.39
“The humble sage, by virtue of true knowledge, sees with equal vision a learned and gentle brahmana, a cow, an elephant, a dog and a dog-eater [outcaste].”
– Bhagavad Gita 5.18
So, we mustn’t envy. We mustn’t run after fame and recognition, shouldn’t desire praise. We mustn’t run after material things. Ambition is okay. That is healthy. But it shouldn’t take control of us to the extent that we lose ourselves. We must, however, be able to leave these things behind at the sound of Krishna’s flute calling us and run after Him. Our highest ambition must be this. To be detached from this world and attached to Krishna.
So what are Krishna’s recommendations in such situations?
“Everything that can be achieved by fruitive activities, penance, knowledge, detachment, mystic yoga, charity, religious duties, and all other means of perfecting life is easily achieved by My devotee through loving service unto Me. If somehow or other My devotee desires promotion to heaven, liberation, or residence in My abode, he easily achieves such benedictions.”
– Srimad Bhagavatam 11.20.32-33
“‘And of all yogis, the one with great faith who always abides in Me, thinks of Me within himself, and renders transcendental loving service to Me – he is the most intimately united with Me in yoga and is the highest of all. That is My opinion.’”
– Bhagavad Gita 6.47
“For one who worships Me, giving up all his activities unto Me and being devoted to Me without deviation, engaged in devotional service and always meditating upon Me, who has fixed his mind upon Me, O son of Pritha. for him I am the swift deliverer from the ocean of birth and death.”
– Bhagavad Gita 12. 6-7
“Always think of Me and become My devotee. Worship Me and offer your homage unto Me. Thus you will come to Me without fail. I promise you this because you are My very dear friend.”
– Bhagavad Gita 18.65
“Harer nama harer nama harer namaiva kevalam
kalau nasty eva nasti eva nasti eva gatir anyatha.”
“In this age of Kali, there is no alternative, there is no alternative, there is no alternative for spiritual progress other than the chanting of the holy name, the chanting of the holy name, the chanting of the holy name of the Lord”
– Brhan-naradiya Purana
Just chant. It will cleanse this muck that is materialism. Muck. Not dust. Thick, thick muck. But chant with heart and soul. Krishna will do the rest.
Ishavasya means everything belongs to the Lord. Nothing is ours to rule over, to own. Everything belongs to Krishna and he is the Supreme Enjoyer of everything. So let’s try not to claim possession over things that belong to Krishna. Let’s try not to feel envious of his possessions. Let’s be good children, who throw our lives into His hands in a heartbeat. All it takes is some dedication. And a lot of the mercy of Holy Name.
Today, I thought I’d write about chanting the mahamantra or the Hare Krishna mantra.
The Hare Krishna Mantra:
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
1 round of chanting means repeating the above 16 words or the mantra 108 times. This is called a japa. Continue reading