Bhakti Yoga-Devotional Service to the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna

Bhakti Yoga-Devotional Service to the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna
Gopis performing Devotional Service to the Lordships Sri Sri Radha Krishna

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THE LIGHT OF LIFE

THE LIGHT OF LIFE


By Sacinandana Swami

Once there was a guru who wanted to train his two disciples by giving them a practical task, "Take 100 Rps each of you" he said "and use it to fill up your rooms with whatever you are able to purchase. In five days´ time I will return to inspect your work."
When he returned and visited the room of the first disciple, he saw it had been filled up with rags. That disciple had thought that by hook or by crook he had to, somehow or other, fill up the room, and since rags were the cheapest items to purchase, he had chosen them. The guru was duly shocked.
When the guru came to inspect the second room, he saw that it had been filled up - not only once, but twice and his disciple returned 80 Rps back to him and said, "Guru Maharaja, I only needed 20 Rps to fill the room twice."
He had lit a ghee lamp in the middle of room, along with an incense stick. Light and fragrance were spreading everywhere, from top to bottom, from left to right, from the front to the rear.
The delighted guru said, "You have truly understood. Life is very much like an empty room. It should be filled with the light of knowledge and the fragrance of service, and not with the discarded filthy things of this world.

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THE POWER OF PRAYER - THE STORY OF JAI SINGH


THE POWER OF PRAYER - THE STORY OF JAI SINGH





By Sacinandana Swami
Once there was a King named Jai Singh, who was a great devotee of the Lord. During the reign of Jai Singh the Mongols were conquering India. One by one, they attacked the small kingdoms of the country. At the same time, even between those battles there were many other conflicts. It was a time of war and instability. Jai Singh´s kingdom was very beautiful and opulent. Being desirous of that opulence the king of the neighboring kingdom tried to conquer Jai Singh´s kingdom again and again. But whenever he met Jai Singh´s army he found it to be undefeatable. Also the Mongols tried to defeat Jai Singh many times, but they too were unsuccessful. In this way Jai Singh, who always personally led his army in battle, stayed true to his name, "victory to the lion".
One day the neighboring king thought to himself, "If I cannot conquer him by fair means, I have to employ unfair means." Thus he sent his spies to find out about Jai Singh´s habits. The spies soon returned with this message: Every morning Jai Singh personally worships his deity, Shri Radha Raman. He starts punctually at 8 a.m. and finishes the worship by 9 a.m. No one was to disturb him during that time. So the neighboring king decided to attack at this time. In this way, one morning, exactly one minute past eight he started his surprise attack.
Jai Singh was before Radha Raman. He prayed, "My Lord I have given a vow to worship you. I cannot go and defend my people now." There was a loud knock at the door. The prime minister´s voice shouted from outside, "King you have to lead your army! I brought a qualified priest with me, he can do the worship!" Jai Singh answered, "Yes, but you know that I have given this vow to Radha Raman that I will always worship him personally." "We are lost", said the distraught minister, who then went to the king´s mother for help. She came to jai Singh and said to him "My son what do you think the Lord appreciates more? - If you protect his devotees or if you dress him in a doti! As your mother I order you - lead your army!" Jai Singh said "No mother, I´ve given a promise to Radha Raman." "Is this all you have to say to your mother? Our soldier will be slaughtered. Some of the women will be violated and all the citizens will be made slaves." "I cannot break my promise," was Jai Singh´s final word. The mother said, "So be it, then we women of this palace will all burn our bodies to ashes so that the enemy will not lay his hand on us!" the king prayed, "My dear Lord, please protect me. Please protect my people. My Lord, I have said no to my mother because I want to be true to my promise to you. Now you are the only one that can save us."
At this moment something wonderful happened. Jai Singh had a war horse which was extremely powerful and almost as big as an elephant. Jai Singh was the only person who could ride it. Suddenly the servants at the barn of the king´s horses saw a warrior running up to the barn with great speed and force. He wore the armor of the king, his covered and he yelled, "Make the horse ready!!!" The warrior had a sward in both of his hands and immediately began cutting himself through the army of the enemy. However, everyone who encountered the warrior became supremely blissful, even when they fell to the ground by his sword. Jai Singh´s army enthusiastically shouted again and again, "Jai Singh ki jay! All glories to Jai Singh!" 
Meanwhile Jai Singh sat before Radha Raman, continuing his prayer for protection while he dressed the deity. When he wanted to give earrings to the Lord he saw that there was only one although he was sure that he had brought two. At that time the enemy´s army was slain. Soon the prime minister found Jai Singh in the temple and started to praise him for fighting the battle single-handedly. "I was not fighting at all", said the surprised Jai Singh. "I was doing my puja (worship) here." - When the minister finally took him to his war horse to show him that it was exhausted from the battle, Jai Singh understood: Radha Raman had fought the battle. Later, Jai Singh found the missing earring of Radha Raman on the battle grounds and built a temple at that place. The earring is still being worshiped there today. 
This is the power of prayer. The king prayed with sincerity for the Lord´s protection and the Lord took care of everything.

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Be an instrument



Kadamba Kanana Swami, Vrindavan India 4 April 2019, SB 8.17.25-27

Ekalavya, on his own, was trying to perfect the way of archery and appeared to be even better than Arjuna. But as a result his thumb was taken by Dronacarya. So we are not becoming Ekalavya – no. We cannot imitate Krsna; we can only serve Krsna. We cannot imitate Arjuna either. Arjuna is Krsna’s eternal associate, and we are simply following in the footsteps. Our path is not anukāra – imitation; it is anusārataḥ – to follow.
Anusārataḥ means to follow in the footsteps. We cannot imitate anyone; we simply have to be ourselves and follow in the footsteps of the previous Vaisnavas. We should know that every person has unique attributes, unique qualities and Krsna has a purpose with each one of us. We are instruments and each of us has a particular quality that will come out over time. So be yourself. You are valuable and you are meant to utilise what you have – everything!
What will repression accomplish? We are not going to repress our nature and imitate someone else. Be who you are but purify. Kavi Karnapura says, “Be natural, but purified nature.” Purify your nature and then the characteristics that we have, become perfect. And how do we become purified? By anusārataḥ – by following in the footsteps. 
Even Krsna is acting by example. In Chapter Seventy of The Krsna book Krsna’s daily activities are nicely described. Krsna gives charity to the brahmanas. He sees statues of cows and other auspicious things in the morning. So one can follow in the footsteps of Krsna and of the Vaisnavas.
The article " Be an instrument " was published on KKSBlog.


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