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Everything posted by Gaurasundara

  1. Is brocolli allowed to be eaten on Ekadasi? How about cauliflower?
  2. This is also a very interesting excerpt from a large verse spoken by Sri Advaita Acharya: Now He has manifest in this world the transcendental dance of His pastimes, which even I cannot understand. Some will be bewildered by His pastimes, some will debate their nature, and some will understand the secrets of His pastimes. - Sri Caitanya-Candrodaya Nataka (4.36) of Sri Kavi-Karnapura.
  3. It is not just Vaishnavas who we have to be wary of offending because, as Mahaprabhu says, we should be wary of offending anyone! ananta brahmANDa yata, saba mora dAsa eteke ye para hiMse sei yAya nAza All the residents throughout the unlimited universes are My servants, so anyone who commits violence against any of them is destroyed. (Caitanya Bhagavata 3.19.210) In the context of the dialogue, Mahaprabhu is speaking about the evils of Vaishnava-aparadha and in this verse speaks of aparadha in general, so while 'hiMsa' usually means violence, in this context it is 'aparadha' that is meant.
  4. Wonderful isn't it? And the next verse is even more astounding with it's converse nature... yathA rAdhA-padAMbhoje bhaktiH syAt prema-lakSanA tathaiva kRSNa-caitanye vardhate madhurA ratiH For he whose devotion to the lotus feet of Radha is adorned with the symptoms of love, so also his sweet love increases towards Sri Krishna Chaitanya. (Sarvabhauma Sataka 18)
  5. Sri Kavi-Karnapura is an especially praiseworthy associate of Sri Gauranga. When he was but a babe, he received the great fortune of Sriman Mahaprabhu's placing His big toe in Karnapura's mouth! This great boon enabled the child to compose lofty Sanskrit verses in praise of Krishna at such young ages, what to speak of the great literatures he penned as an adult...
  6. "As water continually falling from Brahma's kamandalu, or as the swiftly-flowing heavenly Ganges on always-flooded Mount Sumeru, the abhiseka-water flowing from Lord Gauranga's body floods the four directions of the world." - Sri Caitanya-Candrodaya Nataka (1.98) of Sri Kavi-Karnapura.
  7. "With a sidelong glance He lightens all sins and tears apart lust and all other vices in the hearts of others. How can He be overcome with anger?" - Sri Caitanya-Candrodaya Nataka (1.82) of Sri Kavi-Karnapura.
  8. Theist, I don't know why you're getting angry, abusive and defensive. I was not insulting you at all, but your own rude attacks to perceived insults are not very heartening or exemplary Vaishnava behaviour either. Come to think of it, very few people in this discussion are behaving like proper Vaishnavas anyway, which is why I decided to withdraw from this argument, which I perceive as nonsensical in it's very premise. I don't think matters of siddhanta can be properly discussed when too many people have hot tempers. My own experience with these forums is repeated endlessly with the insight that too many people are here to teach, not to learn. It's pretty easy to see the effect of Kali-yuga when people make assumptions about other people's beliefs or put words in their mouths which they never said, nor did I think that mocking someone's physical disability was a strategy of "Vaishnava" polemics or that saying things that are totally contrary to the spirit of Mahaprabhu's boundless heart were in vogue, but hey.. ---- Back to the topic matters, I thought yesterday that the dichotomy exists in understanding the difference between theology and practice. The theology of the Holy Name is that it will do everything for you. The practice, on the other hand, is something that is a requirement. Hence, we hold the theology respectfully on our heads while we humbly practice the procedures as followed by the mahajans. So while we theologically accept that the Holy Name can do everything, we practically follow in the footsteps of previous Gosvamis and Acharyas in the matter of accepting a guru, receiving his shelter, accepting diksa and siksa from him, and so on. To not do this is actually an offence unto Mahaprabhu, Gosvamis, Acharyas, and the Guru-principle. I suppose it is redundant to say that it is also an offence against the Holy Name..
  9. 'tRNAd api sunIcena taror iva sahiSNunA amAninA mAna-dena kIrtanIyAH sadA hari' Urdhva-bAhu kari' kahoG, zuna, sarva-loka nAma-sUtre gAGthi' para kaNThe ei zloka prabhu-AjJAya kare ei zloka AcaraNa avazya pAibe tabe zrI-kRSNa-caraNa 'One who thinks of himself lower than the grass, tolerant like a tree, and offers all respects to others without pride, can very easily chant the name of Hari always.' Raising my arms, I declare unto the world: 'Please listen! String this verse on a thread of the Holy Name and wear it around your neck!' One must practice the order of Prabhu [Chaitanya] in this verse, then certainly he will attain the feet of Sri Krishna. (Caitanya CaritAmRta 1.17.31-33)
  10. Actually, never mind. Forgive me please, but I find this discussion preposterous as per the thread title. I'd like to withdraw, thanks.
  11. Oh man, that whole purport ought to be read <b>in full</b> to get an understanding either of Prabhupada's views on the subject, or of the Gaudiya siddhanta on the whole in this matter. The conclusion is pretty clear. Examples of devotees who achieved perfection without undergoing "initiation" and just by the power of Harinam, are usually the exceptions that prove the rule. I think that to think of oneself as such an exception is the height of arrogance and a betrayal of the humility that Mahaprabhu expects each and every follower of His to possess and wear around his neck.
  12. Really rather the way some devotees pluck random quotes from shastra (or from the lectures/purports of individual gurus) that really act as a twist on a fundamental path of Gaudiya siddhanta. I've seen this a number of times from a number of people even from those who may not actually realise what they saying (so I tend to give them the benefit of the doubt), but you're not going to post the letter to Dinesh again, are you? Again, there are a multiplicity of quotes from Prabhupad on the importance of taking a spiritual master and also on the importance of undergoing the "ritual" initiation. Sri Jiva Gosvami is also pretty clear on what <i>exactly</i> he means by divya-jnanam, which I trust you have also read from Bhakti-sandarbha. I generally think it's easy to pick up "all-encompassing" quotes that portray a lack of need for initiation in order to justify one's uninitiated status. Nothing wrong with being uninitiated (I'm uninitiated so I'm in the same boat) but you wouldn't catch me presenting a slant on Gaudiya siddhanta that looks as if diksa is unnecessary. For me, that is a betrayal of the path that the mahajanas trod. They all took "ritual" diksa.
  13. <i>guru-padAzrayas tasmAd kRSNa-<b>dIkSAdi</b>-zikSaNam.</i> I suppose if one were to get fussy, we could observe that Sri Rupa Gosvami mentioned diksa first, implying that diksa must come before siksa. But I won't, because I know what you mean. Of course siksa comes first, that all depends on what exactly you mean by siksa. If you're talking about "basic knowledge" then that is sravanam about Krishna-katha, I suppose. The siksa mentioned by Sri Rupa Gosvami in BRS relates to instructions that can only/mostly be transmitted in relation to or with diksa. A lot of Gaudiya gurus out there may be more compassionate than you think. Srila Prabhupada had tons of disciples who did not have "proper siksha and proper training in purascharya-vidhi and sadhana". I'm not sure if Prabhupada himself would appreciate this process. Of course his teachings are preserved for posterity and can give inspiration to generations of future devotees and potential devotees, but I'm not sure if this strictly counts as "accepting Prabhupada as siksa-guru". For example, what if I have a question/problem that is not discussed in Prabhupada's books? Well this is your opinion.
  14. This is unbelievable. Taking the shelter of a guru is <b>Point 1a</b> of Gaudiya siddhanta. <i>Adau gurvashrayam...</i>
  15. I like the way you put this. It is similar to the bon between a man and a woman who love each other and desire to get married. The decision has already been made and they are very much in love with each other, and they are making all preparations to live with and love each other, but it is only until they undergo a formal wedding ceremony that their commitment becomes solemnised and solidified. And in public too. I would think that the same principles are behind spiritual initiation. The relationship between a guru and disciple is one of love - the guru promises to deliver the disciple and the disciple promises to abide by the guru's instructions - the decision has already been made, but the commitment is solidified and solemnised by the yajna. Beyond that, I can't understand the arguments of those who attempt to put down the process of diksha by some fanciful arguments. The conclusion is that Mahaprabhu <i>expects</i> it of anyone following in His tradition: <i>diksa-kale kore atma samarpana...</i>
  16. Spiritual counterpart of this universe in the spiritual sky? What?
  17. You need to understand that Sukadeva was explaining the universe/creation to Pariksit in a manner so that he could understand it as the "body of God". He did this because Pariksit asked him to. Then follows all those planetary descriptions, etc. One ought to realise that they conflict with modern science findings because they are not "modern science" in the first place. What is being described is the divinisation of the creation and how we can perceive God in it.
  18. Yes this is the general consensus in consciousness studies. However, the concept of a "user" in the brain/computer is known as Cartesian Dualism, an idea which was popular for a while but then subsequently disproved. The brain is an extremely complex (and wondrous) organ. Neurological studies have shown that it is indeed the brain that is the origin of consciousness, but no evidence points to a soul. I figured it was because the soul is supposedly made of spiritual substance and thus beyond the reach of scientific instruments (like, duh! ). But this is all very interesting, I wrote something up about "devotional neuroscience" a couple of years ago on another forum and I'm still curious about the neural processes of religion. I'm thinking of going for a qualification in neuroscience.
  19. Just an aside, but a recent issue of TIME magazine had a very good section on consciousness/neurology studies. There was a fantastic article by Steven Pinker, who is a leading author and researcher in consciousness studies. According to this, the latest research in the field of consciousness studies suggest that it's all in the brain. Here's a sample quote: <!--StartFragment --> I'm involved in consciousness studies so I found this quite astounding. The entire article is worth a read though.
  20. ei mata dine dine, svarUpa-rAmAnanda-sane, nija-bhAva karena vidita bAhye viSa-jvAlA haya, bhitare Ananda-maya, kRSNa-premAra adbhuta carita In this way day after day, He made His ecstasy known in the company of Svarupa Damodara and Ramananda Raya. Externally it was as if there was suffering due to poison, whereas internally He was in bliss. This is the wonderful quality of Krsna-prema. (Caitanya CaritAmRta 2.2)
  21. With all respects to those devotees, they should know better. I suppose it all comes down to what is written and what is not written in shastra. Since Sukadeva is explaining these things to Pariksit so that he can visualise the Lord in creation, then it is obviously metaphorical and yet "absolutely true" for the devotee. I'm not immediately familiar with whether Bhagavata actually says the moon is further from the sun (I'd appreciate a shloka) so I can't say anything at this point.Just a couple of days ago I saw a TV programme about how scientists are closer to finding out the origin of the "Big Bang" than ever before. And while they say that and if they achieve it, they will have nothing to show for it. Just as an aside, the Tattvavadis (Dvaitins) have it in their theology to "update" it when new scientific findings prove something beyond doubt. So theoretically if the shastra says that stars are hotter than the sun, and scientific findings prove that the sun is the hottest star of all, then the theology is updated. Theoretically anyway. I was present on the Dvaita List a couple of years ago when one member was urging everyone to give up the "fanciful notions" of Rahu and Ketu since their existence cannot be verified by modern astronomical science. While many of the other members were discussing it in a very reluctant manner ("I'm sure they'll find Rahu/Ketu eventually...") this guy kept banging on and on until he got banned. So in theory the Dvaitins update their theology when scientific findings prove something but it is something to chew on if or when they do it in practice.
  22. I'd like to apologise for my impetuousness and respectfully withdraw from these tedious types of discussions, which I humbly feel can lead to a serious degradation of bhakti. I think Harikatha and discussions of Krishna's glories is a much more fruitful affair. In the meantime, I came across this nice picture on the Net a few days ago. It has a good message.
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