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Posts posted by suchandra

  1. From Wikipedia, the biggest online encyclopedia cannot be wrong:





    "Jehovah's Witnesses believe the word soul (nephesh or psykhe) as used in the Bible is a person, an animal, or the life a person or animal enjoys. Hence, the soul is not part of man, but is the whole man — man as a living being. Hence, when a person or animal dies, the soul dies, and death is a state of non-existence, based on Ezekiel 18:4.[24] Hell (hades or sheol) is not a place of fiery torment, but rather the common grave of humankind, a place of unconsciousness."


    When trying to understand the bible, whatever the Jehovah's Witnesses say has to be accepted as final truth. As you see above - right - there's no such thing as soul in Christianity.

  2. Some say Fed is a state run non-profit system, others say it is a private profit oriented business. Guess we wouldn't be in the material world if first would be true.


    Banks borrow record $437.5 billion per day from Fed



    Fri Oct 17, 2008 12:38am ED

    NEW YORK (Reuters) - Financial institutions ran to their lender of last resort for record amounts of cash in the latest week, under extreme pressure from the worst global financial crisis in a generation, Federal Reserve data showed on Thursday.

    Banks and dealers' overall direct borrowings from the Fed averaged a record $437.53 billion per day in the week ended October 15, topping the previous week's $420.16 billion per day.

    Some analysts are concerned that banks' dependence on Fed lending might become long term and difficult to change.


    "We have effectively allowed the central banks to disintermediate the banking system. Why would I want to borrow from you if I could do it with the central bank, because they can always print it up and say 'here'...and they are in the business now of making sure I stay in business," Simons said.

    Primary credit discount window borrowings averaged a record $99.66 billion per day in the latest week, up from $75.0 billion per day the previous week.

    Primary dealer and other broker dealer borrowings were $133.87 billion as of October 15, versus $122.94 billion on October 8.

    "Other credit extensions", mostly reflecting loans to insurer AIG, were $82.86 billion as of October 15, versus $70.30 billion as of October 8.

    The Fed's lending to banks to enable them to purchase asset-backed commercial paper from money market mutual funds was $122.76 billion as of October 15, versus $139.48 billion on October 8.

    Proceeds from the U.S. Treasury's sales of Treasury bills in the Fed's supplementary financing account, which are helping to fund the Fed's support of financial institutions, were $499.13 billion as of October 15, versus $459.25 billion as of October 8.

    (Reporting by John Parry; Editing by Leslie Adler)


    Dear Suchandra,


    This doesnot mean that Christians do not believe in souls. That conclution does not follow from the above premise. They Verynuch believe in soul. But what they dont believe in is the Soul of Animals and Plants. ( They are created as food for Human) ( And nonchristians perhaps - due to the religious prejudices ) They verymuch believe in the Soul of a (Christian) human being.


    Perhaps the only religion that doesn't admit a soul is Buddhism ( Anatmavada) .



    How they can believe in something what is not mentioned in their law book, the bible? There is not one word explaining the soul within the whole bible.


    Soul is throughout the bible simply the equivalent of 'life' embodied in living creature.


    The present Christian conception of the soul is derived from the Greek, but not from the bible.


    Among the ancient Hebrews 'soul' was the equivalent of the principle of life as embodied in living creatures, and this meaning is continued throughout the bible.


    There're two terms in the bible nephesh and psuche, nephesh is defined as, a breathing creature, an animal; or, abstractly vitality. Psuche it likewise defined as the animal, sentient principle.


    The noted lexicographer Parkhurst, himself a believer in immortal soul says:


    "As a noun nephesh hath been supposed to signify the spiritual part of man, or what we commonly call his soul. I must for myself confess that I can find no passages where it hath undoubtedly this meaning.


    "Gen. 35:18, 1 Kings 17:21-22 and Psalms 16:10 seem fairest for this signification. But may not nephesh in the three former passages be most properly rendered 'breath,' and in the last, 'a breathing or animal frame'?"


    These quotations show clearly that the immortal soul doctrine is generally admitted by its supporters to be entirely different from the bible meaning of soul, and based mainly upon Greek philosophy.


    Nephesh occurs in the bible about 750 times. About 500 times it is translated as "soul" in the authorized version. The other 250 times it is translated by over 40 different English words.


    Psuche occurs about 100 times, and is translated similarly.


    It is quite obvious at the outset that a word of such broad application, including all the animal kingdom, all its bodily and physical aspects, cannot possibly indicate some immortal essence in man distinguishing him from the material elements.


    In sum, the bible is a literature for people who need moral instructions but doesnt contain any explanation of what is the soul.


    If you want knowledge about the soul this is only found in the Vedas but not in the bible.


    avināśi tu tad viddhi

    yena sarvam idaḿ tatam

    vināśam avyayasyāsya

    na kaścit kartum arhati




    avināśi — imperishable; tu — but; tat — that; viddhi — know it; yena — by whom; sarvam — all of the body; idam — this; tatam — pervaded; vināśam — destruction; avyayasya — of the imperishable; asya — of it; na kaścit — no one; kartum — to do; arhati — is able.




    That which pervades the entire body you should know to be indestructible. No one is able to destroy that imperishable soul.




    This verse more clearly explains the real nature of the soul, which is spread all over the body. Anyone can understand what is spread all over the body: it is consciousness. Everyone is conscious of the pains and pleasures of the body in part or as a whole. This spreading of consciousness is limited within one's own body. The pains and pleasures of one body are unknown to another. Therefore, each and every body is the embodiment of an individual soul, and the symptom of the soul's presence is perceived as individual consciousness. This soul is described as one ten-thousandth part of the upper portion of the hair point in size. The Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad (5.9) confirms this:



    śatadhā kalpitasya ca

    bhāgo jīvaḥ vijñeyaḥ

    sa cānantyāya kalpate


    "When the upper point of a hair is divided into one hundred parts and again each of such parts is further divided into one hundred parts, each such part is the measurement of the dimension of the spirit soul." Similarly the same version is stated:



    śatāḿśaḥ sādṛśātmakaḥ

    jīvaḥ sūkṣma-svarūpo 'yaḿ

    sańkhyātīto hi cit-kaṇaḥ


    [Cc. Madya 19.140]


    "There are innumerable particles of spiritual atoms, which are measured as one ten-thousandth of the upper portion of the hair."


    Therefore, the individual particle of spirit soul is a spiritual atom smaller than the material atoms, and such atoms are innumerable. This very small spiritual spark is the basic principle of the material body, and the influence of such a spiritual spark is spread all over the body as the influence of the active principle of some medicine spreads throughout the body. This current of the spirit soul is felt all over the body as consciousness, and that is the proof of the presence of the soul. Any layman can understand that the material body minus consciousness is a dead body, and this consciousness cannot be revived in the body by any means of material administration. Therefore, consciousness is not due to any amount of material combination, but to the spirit soul. In the Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad (3.1.9) the measurement of the atomic spirit soul is further explained:


    eṣo 'ṇur ātmā cetasā veditavyo

    yasmin prāṇaḥ pañcadhā saḿviveśa

    prāṇaiś cittaḿ sarvam otaḿ prajānāḿ

    yasmin viśuddhe vibhavaty eṣa ātmā


    "The soul is atomic in size and can be perceived by perfect intelligence. This atomic soul is floating in the five kinds of air (prāṇa, apāna, vyāna, samāna and udāna), is situated within the heart, and spreads its influence all over the body of the embodied living entities. When the soul is purified from the contamination of the five kinds of material air, its spiritual influence is exhibited."


    The haṭha-yoga system is meant for controlling the five kinds of air encircling the pure soul by different kinds of sitting postures — not for any material profit, but for liberation of the minute soul from the entanglement of the material atmosphere.


    So the constitution of the atomic soul is admitted in all Vedic literatures, and it is also actually felt in the practical experience of any sane man. Only the insane man can think of this atomic soul as all-pervading viṣṇu-tattva.


    The influence of the atomic soul can be spread all over a particular body. According to the Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad, this atomic soul is situated in the heart of every living entity, and because the measurement of the atomic soul is beyond the power of appreciation of the material scientists, some of them assert foolishly that there is no soul. The individual atomic soul is definitely there in the heart along with the Supersoul, and thus all the energies of bodily movement are emanating from this part of the body. The corpuscles which carry the oxygen from the lungs gather energy from the soul. When the soul passes away from this position, the activity of the blood, generating fusion, ceases. Medical science accepts the importance of the red corpuscles, but it cannot ascertain that the source of the energy is the soul. Medical science, however, does admit that the heart is the seat of all energies of the body.


    Such atomic particles of the spirit whole are compared to the sunshine molecules. In the sunshine there are innumerable radiant molecules. Similarly, the fragmental parts of the Supreme Lord are atomic sparks of the rays of the Supreme Lord, called by the name prabhā, or superior energy. So whether one follows Vedic knowledge or modern science, one cannot deny the existence of the spirit soul in the body, and the science of the soul is explicitly described in the Bhagavad-gītā by the Personality of Godhead Himself.


    somewhere you have your stories mixed up. ie... what is purgatory? Heaven and Hell?




    My point was simple, somehow you cannot understand even the simple.

    Let's say you have a box with a valuable diamond inside would you treat it the same way you treat a box with a few chemicals inside?


    Guess your gray cells say yes, it's all one. But you're wrong, not only wrong terribly stupid.

    Only a madman would throw away a box with a valuable jewel inside.


    Same what Krsna is saying, within every living entity is an eternal soul, part and parcel of God and therefore living entities have to be treated differently like the Church is teaching= there is no soul, it is all biological life=a bunch of chemicals=kill 'em.


    Real knowledge is taught by Lord Krsna, an eternal part of God is within every living entity and one should see with equal vision:




    brāhmaṇe gavi hastini

    śuni caiva śva-pāke ca

    paṇḍitāḥ sama-darśinaḥ




    vidyā — with education; vinaya — and gentleness; sampanne — fully equipped; brāhmaṇe — in the brāhmaṇa; gavi — in the cow; hastini — in the elephant; śuni — in the dog; ca — and; eva — certainly; śva-pāke — in the dog-eater (the outcaste); ca — respectively; paṇḍitāḥ — those who are wise; sama-darśinaḥ — who see with equal vision.




    The humble sages, by virtue of true knowledge, see with equal vision a learned and gentle brāhmaṇa, a cow, an elephant, a dog and a dog-eater [outcaste].




    A Kṛṣṇa conscious person does not make any distinction between species or castes. The brāhmaṇa and the outcaste may be different from the social point of view, or a dog, a cow, and an elephant may be different from the point of view of species, but these differences of body are meaningless from the viewpoint of a learned transcendentalist. This is due to their relationship to the Supreme, for the Supreme Lord, by His plenary portion as Paramātmā, is present in everyone's heart. Such an understanding of the Supreme is real knowledge. As far as the bodies are concerned in different castes or different species of life, the Lord is equally kind to everyone because He treats every living being as a friend yet maintains Himself as Paramātmā regardless of the circumstances of the living entities. The Lord as Paramātmā is present both in the outcaste and in the brāhmaṇa, although the body of a brāhmaṇa and that of an outcaste are not the same. The bodies are material productions of different modes of material nature, but the soul and the Supersoul within the body are of the same spiritual quality. The similarity in the quality of the soul and the Supersoul, however, does not make them equal in quantity, for the individual soul is present only in that particular body whereas the Paramātmā is present in each and every body. A Kṛṣṇa conscious person has full knowledge of this, and therefore he is truly learned and has equal vision. The similar characteristics of the soul and Supersoul are that they are both conscious, eternal and blissful. But the difference is that the individual soul is conscious within the limited jurisdiction of the body whereas the Supersoul is conscious of all bodies. The Supersoul is present in all bodies without distinction.


    Funny stuff…


    What decree….?


    just a crack up coming from a person suggesting cows are pure (life giving) and that <st1:place>Krishna</st1:place> is blue


    Thanx …… something to giggle about





    Ah, you come here for fun and to giggle. Why not also to get educated?

    The Vatican decree says, non-Christians, animals and plants possess a purely "material soul" which simply ceases to exist at physical death.

    In other words, you are nothing more than a plastic bag full of chemicals, worth 5 dollars. Isn't this valuable knowledge for understanding who you are?

    Ok, this is a widespread believe that cows are not pure and should be killed - because they gas us with daily 350-500 liter methane.


    When Krsna says, cows should be protected, Bishadi comments, kill the cows, thanxx - something to giggle about.

    Well, there're surely lots of forums where you don't feel bored with giggling.



    still no one has answered my question



    Since you say you're not a Hare Krsna there seems only this answer, the soul was never, ever created - spoken by Lord Krsna.


    na jāyate mriyate vā kadācin

    nāyaḿ bhūtvā bhavitā vā na bhūyaḥ

    ajo nityaḥ śāśvato 'yaḿ purāṇo

    na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre




    na — never; jāyate — takes birth; mriyate — dies; vā — either; kadācit — at any time (past, present or future); na — never; ayam — this; bhūtvā — having come into being; bhavitā — will come to be; vā — or; na — not; bhūyaḥ — or is again coming to be; ajaḥ — unborn; nityaḥ — eternal; śāśvataḥ — permanent; ayam — this; purāṇaḥ — the oldest; na — never; hanyate — is killed; hanyamāne — being killed; śarīre — the body.




    For the soul there is neither birth nor death at any time. He has not come into being, does not come into being, and will not come into being. He is unborn, eternal, ever-existing and primeval. He is not slain when the body is slain.




    Qualitatively, the small atomic fragmental part of the Supreme Spirit is one with the Supreme. He undergoes no changes like the body. Sometimes the soul is called the steady, or kūṭa-stha. The body is subject to six kinds of transformations. It takes its birth from the womb of the mother's body, remains for some time, grows, produces some effects, gradually dwindles, and at last vanishes into oblivion. The soul, however, does not go through such changes. The soul is not born, but, because he takes on a material body, the body takes its birth. The soul does not take birth there, and the soul does not die. Anything which has birth also has death. And because the soul has no birth, he therefore has no past, present or future. He is eternal, ever-existing, and primeval — that is, there is no trace in history of his coming into being. Under the impression of the body, we seek the history of birth, etc., of the soul. The soul does not at any time become old, as the body does. The so-called old man, therefore, feels himself to be in the same spirit as in his childhood or youth. The changes of the body do not affect the soul. The soul does not deteriorate like a tree, nor anything material. The soul has no by-product either. The by-products of the body, namely children, are also different individual souls; and, owing to the body, they appear as children of a particular man. The body develops because of the soul's presence, but the soul has neither offshoots nor change. Therefore, the soul is free from the six changes of the body.


    In the Kaṭha Upaniṣad (1.2.18) we also find a similar passage, which reads:


    na jāyate mriyate vā vipaścin

    nāyaḿ kutaścin na babhūva kaścit

    ajo nityaḥ śāśvato 'yaḿ purāṇo

    na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre


    The meaning and purport of this verse is the same as in the Bhagavad-gītā, but here in this verse there is one special word, vipaścit, which means learned or with knowledge.


    The soul is full of knowledge, or full always with consciousness. Therefore, consciousness is the symptom of the soul. Even if one does not find the soul within the heart, where he is situated, one can still understand the presence of the soul simply by the presence of consciousness. Sometimes we do not find the sun in the sky owing to clouds, or for some other reason, but the light of the sun is always there, and we are convinced that it is therefore daytime. As soon as there is a little light in the sky early in the morning, we can understand that the sun is in the sky. Similarly, since there is some consciousness in all bodies — whether man or animal — we can understand the presence of the soul. This consciousness of the soul is, however, different from the consciousness of the Supreme because the supreme consciousness is all-knowledge — past, present and future. The consciousness of the individual soul is prone to be forgetful. When he is forgetful of his real nature, he obtains education and enlightenment from the superior lessons of Kṛṣṇa. But Kṛṣṇa is not like the forgetful soul. If so, Kṛṣṇa's teachings of Bhagavad-gītā would be useless.


    There are two kinds of souls — namely the minute particle soul (aṇu-ātmā) and the Supersoul (vibhu-ātmā). This is also confirmed in the Kaṭha Upaniṣad (1.2.20) in this way:


    aṇor aṇīyān mahato mahīyān

    ātmāsya jantor nihito guhāyām

    tam akratuḥ paśyati vīta-śoko

    dhātuḥ prasādān mahimānam ātmanaḥ


    "Both the Supersoul [Paramātmā] and the atomic soul [jīvātmā] are situated on the same tree of the body within the same heart of the living being, and only one who has become free from all material desires as well as lamentations can, by the grace of the Supreme, understand the glories of the soul." Kṛṣṇa is the fountainhead of the Supersoul also, as it will be disclosed in the following chapters, and Arjuna is the atomic soul, forgetful of his real nature; therefore he requires to be enlightened by Kṛṣṇa, or by His bona fide representative (the spiritual master).


    In fact, it's our duty to thank you. You always provide us information in its pristine form.


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    Thanks Amlesh, ultimately, since our eternal constitution is to cooperate it is the sanga which leads to success, individuals rather become arrogant, proud, feel offended, etc etc.


    nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam

    eko bahunam yo vidadhati kaman

    tam atma-stham ye ’nupasyanti dhiras

    tesham shantih sasvati netaresam


    “The Supreme Personality of Godhead is the prime eternal among all eternals. He is the supreme conscious living entity of all conscious living entities, and He alone is maintaining all of them.”


    [Katha Upanisad 2.2.13]

  8. Govardhana-puja at ISKCON LA temple

    Tuesday, 10.14.2008, 11:51pm (GMT-7)

    India Post News



    LOS ANGELES: Govardhana-puja (also called Annakuta, the ceremony of offering grains) is widely celebrated in Krishna temples all over India. It is especially celebrated in Vrndavana, Mathura, close to Govardhana Hill. On Sunday, October 26, devotees will participate in this happy and beautiful Govardhana worship at the Los Angeles Hare Krishna Temple.




    Govardhana Hill is recreated for worship and celebration in honor of the anniversary of the day when Govardhana was lifted on the fingertip of Lord Sri Krishna. Guests will circumambulate the hill of grains which will be the resting place of a Govardhana-sila and a large murti of Sri Krishna.The festival begins with a short lecture at 4 pm. At 4:30 there will be arati and kirtan. At 5 pm circumambulation of Govardhana Hill begins along with the distribution of prasada.


    Temple brahmanas prepare over a hundred sweet or salty dishes from grains, fruits, nuts, ghee and vegetables which are carefully arranged on a platform in the center of the temple. The colorful hill is complete with terraces, lakes, trees, rivers and animals, including many cows. Cows are one of the main reasons why Krishna lifted the hill some 5,000 years ago.


    A storm was sent by god Indra who was angry that the folk of Krishna's cowherd village had failed to offer him any worship that year. They had become so enamored with the child Krishna that they let him convince them not to continue to worship Indra for their material welfare.


    This story especially suggests that our worship and prayers should be for developing pure, selfless bhakti.Child Krishna innocently suggested that the citizens of his village offer their respect and love to Govardhana Hill and not to angry Indra because it was the hill that provided their cows with a wonderful grazing area and delicate soft grasses.


    Everyone was in for a surprise! According to this quote from Srimad-Bhagavatam, "When Nanda Maharaja (Krishna's father) offered a large quantity of food to Govardhana Hill, Krishna assumed a gigantic form and eagerly invited everyone to ask boons from him.


    Then, deceiving even Radharani, he ate all the offered food. Let me take shelter of the place known as Annakuta, where Lord Krishna enjoyed these pastimes."When Indra came to know of this he was furious and he sent torrents of rain, accompanied by ice blocks and high wind. Almost drowned, the poor cowherds turned for help to Krishna who lifted the hill just as a child picks up a mushroom.


    He saved all of the residents of Vrndavana as well as their cows and other valuable possessions.In this way Krishna proves his supremacy as the God who can surpass the activities of all gods and men. He enjoyed the grain preparations that were offered at Annakuta and also saved his devotees in an uncommon, wonderful way, befitting his supreme position.




    India Post News Service



    It seems that the past acaryas have said that the jiva is not created just to stress that we have no material origin. For example the acaryas says that matter is dead but is not dead, is jut to say that the soul is different of matter in quality.

    Since Christians are forbidden to believe in a soul via Vatican decree they are always trying to challenge Vaishnavism.


    De facto Christians are told by their leaders that there's no soul but only biological life. When being asked like Prabhupada challenged the scientists, to give evidence, they have of course none.


    So they have to believe in a fiction and therefore attack the Vaishnavas that they also have to believe in a fiction.


    Ok, nobody is forced to adopt a believe, in this world everyone can believe what he likes. But is this an intelligent believe to say there's no soul, it's all biological live, interacting chemicals?


    Mother nature teaches another lesson, every little insect, every little plant has a pronounced impulse to live.


    How could possibly chemicals, biological life, could create that impulse that I want to live perpetually?

    There're old people who say, I want to die peacefully, I had a fulfilled life, I don't want anymore.


    But when death actually knocks at our door aren't we afraid?


    In sum, everybody has to decide for himself, what Christians teach, am I a bunch of temporary material chemicals or am I a different eternal energy, what Krsna Himself is saying?


    He is the creator of thousands of thousands of individual souls.







    When Krsna says the soul is ascaryavat, amazing, the soul must be realy amazing, beyond our brain substance to understand this kind of amazing.

    In other words to take the term "created" and understand it in the worldly sense, is this realy enough? Guess there must be more, created but at the same time unborn, something like this.


    āścarya-vat paśyati kaścid enam

    āścarya-vad vadati tathaiva cānyaḥ

    āścarya-vac cainam anyaḥ śṛṇoti

    śrutvāpy enaḿ veda na caiva kaścit





    āścarya-vatas amazing; paśyati — sees; kaścit — someone; enam — this soul; āścarya-vatas amazing; vadati — speaks of; tathā — thus; eva — certainly; ca — also; anyaḥ — another; āścarya-vat — similarly amazing; ca — also; enam — this soul; anyaḥ — another; śṛṇoti — hears of; śrutvā — having heard; api — even; enam — this soul; veda — knows; na — never; ca — and; eva — certainly; kaścit — someone.






    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.






    Since Gītopaniṣad is largely based on the principles of the Upaniṣads, it is not surprising to also find this passage in the Kaṭha Upaniṣad (1.2.7):

    śravaṇayāpi bahubhir yo na labhyaḥ

    śṛṇvanto 'pi bahavo yaḿ na vidyuḥ

    āścaryo vaktā kuśalo 'sya labdhā

    āścaryo 'sya jñātā kuśalānuśiṣṭaḥ

    The fact that the atomic soul is within the body of a gigantic animal, in the body of a gigantic banyan tree, and also in the microbic germs, millions and billions of which occupy only an inch of space, is certainly very amazing. Men with a poor fund of knowledge and men who are not austere cannot understand the wonders of the individual atomic spark of spirit, even though it is explained by the greatest authority of knowledge, who imparted lessons even to Brahmā, the first living being in the universe. Owing to a gross material conception of things, most men in this age cannot imagine how such a small particle can become both so great and so small. So men look at the soul proper as wonderful either by constitution or by description. Illusioned by the material energy, people are so engrossed in subject matters for sense gratification that they have very little time to understand the question of self-understanding, even though it is a fact that without this self-understanding all activities result in ultimate defeat in the struggle for existence. Perhaps they have no idea that one must think of the soul, and thus make a solution to the material miseries.

    Some people who are inclined to hear about the soul may be attending lectures, in good association, but sometimes, owing to ignorance, they are misguided by acceptance of the Supersoul and the atomic soul as one without distinction of magnitude. It is very difficult to find a man who perfectly understands the position of the Supersoul, the atomic soul, their respective functions and relationships and all other major and minor details. And it is still more difficult to find a man who has actually derived full benefit from knowledge of the soul, and who is able to describe the position of the soul in different aspects. But if, somehow or other, one is able to understand the subject matter of the soul, then one's life is successful.

    The easiest process for understanding the subject matter of self, however, is to accept the statements of the Bhagavad-gītā spoken by the greatest authority, Lord Kṛṣṇa, without being deviated by other theories. But it also requires a great deal of penance and sacrifice, either in this life or in the previous ones, before one is able to accept Kṛṣṇa as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Kṛṣṇa can, however, be known as such by the causeless mercy of the pure devotee and by no other way.


    What we need is to bring back that same old Truth which is Eternal and Perfect.


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    Thanks Amlesh - good point!


    How many people on this forum do daily sandhyavandana? There is so much argument going on this forum, sometimes I think: "Where do you get the time, don't have to do your sandhya?"




    There're worldwide 14.000 members of audarya fellowship, if they would make one post every day we could say, so much to read.

  13. Big thanks for your participation!!!


    Akshaya Patra wins $100,000 in AmEx Contest




    Akshaya Patra wins $100,000 in AmEx Contest

    <center>line.jpg</center> BY: GADADHARA DASA <center>line.jpg</center>

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      Saving the Lives of Malnourished Children and its fulfilling organization, International Medical Corps
      Feeding 1 Million Children Daily and its fulfilling organization, Akshaya Patra Foundation

    Your ideas. Your decision. Our money. membersproject.com

  14. Big thanks for your participation!!!!!!!!!


    Akshaya Patra wins $100,000 in AmEx Contest

    <center>line.jpg</center> BY: GADADHARA DASA <center>line.jpg</center>

    Oct 14, DALLAS, TEXAS, USA — Dear Friends: Thank you for your support. Akshaya Patra wins $100,000 from American Express in the Members Project '08 funding competition.

    People from across the country submitted inspiring ideas for projects that could make a positive impact in the world. Which projects will get funding from American Express? The votes are in - and it's time to name the winning projects.

    Presenting the Winning Projects

    • $1.5 million for 1st place goes to: Alzheimer's Disease: Early Detection Matters and its fulfilling organization, Alzheimer's Association
      $500,000 for 2nd place goes to: Help 100,000 children thrive in the classroom! and its fulfilling organization, DonorsChoose.org
      $300,000 for 3rd place goes to: Loans That Change Lives and its fulfilling organization, Kiva Microfunds
      $100,000 for each of the two remaining finalists goes to:
      Saving the Lives of Malnourished Children and its fulfilling organization, International Medical Corps
      Feeding 1 Million Children Daily and its fulfilling organization, Akshaya Patra Foundation

    Your ideas. Your decision. Our money. membersproject.com


    I have heard there are 56 to 62 trillion in derivatives and 200 trillion worldwide hanging over the economy like the sword of damocles. At this point everything they have done is just meant to buy them time while they suck the taxpayers dry and kill the dollar off completely.


    You mean they installed Kashkari as convenient scapegoat to put the blame on an Indian? And the banking supervision fully aware about the soon arriving fiasco?

    Well I was amazed why they took such a young unexperienced engineer, career changer.

  16. Interesting info from Max Plank Institute, neurochemical research - suicide rate among smokers is four times higher!


    Scientist Thomas Bronisch says, reason is that the soul shuts down the production of Serotonin a natural endorphin also known as hormone of happiness and fully sticks to your decision to derive well-being through something else, in case of smokers, to derive wellbeing through nicotine.


    Same can be applied to the Holy Name, the nectar of chanting the Holy Name does not unfold as long we remain attached to other sources of happiness.


    This is also mentioned by the yuga-avatar, Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu,


    etadrishi tava kripa bhagavan mamapi durdaivam idrisham ihajani nanuragaha


    "...O my Lord, out of kindness You enable us to easily approach You by Your holy names, but I am so unfortunate that I have no attraction for them."


    Sri Siksastakam




    In other words, there's intelligent design in every step, if someone makes that decision to derive happiness through a certain media, other sources of happiness are shutdown/interrupted.

    Same might be true for consumers of caffeine and alcohol.



    Is Srila Prabhupada right?

    Srila Prabhupada was surely right when he said above some 30 years ago. However, Prabhupada also expected that people would walk the talk and actually to elaborate what is being said.


    For example a professor presents the facts about the uselessness of combustion engines in numbers. His students don't only repeat what they heard from their teacher but also work on an implementation.


    In due course they develop an alternative for combustion engines and their idea is so perfect that the whole world adopts it.

    Then this question is not asked anymore, was the professor right?

    His teachings were transformed into a practical solution what people use in their daily life.


    Somehow this did not happen yet with Prabhupada's teachings. Hardly any of his concepts were implemented in large scale.


    Therefore people still have to ask this question, is Prabhupada right?

  18. Kashkari Leaps From Obscurity to Lead Role in Rescue



    Robert Schmidt and Rebecca Christie – Bloomberg October 14, 2008


    Minutes before Neel Kashkari's public debut as the chief of the U.S. Treasury's financial rescue plan, he sat in a hotel lobby in Washington, unrecognized by many of the international bankers gathering to hear him speak.





    Kashkari speaks to the Institute of International Bankers Monday night



    By the time Kashkari finished his 21-minute address yesterday, laying out Treasury's first concrete details of the $700 billion bailout, a swarm of television cameras and reporters followed him out the door.


    In less than two weeks, the 35-year-old former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. banker has risen from obscurity to center stage in the U.S. financial crisis. He has been given extraordinary latitude, and not much time, to set up an organization and procedures for carrying out the Treasury's counteroffensive on the market meltdown.


    Kashkari and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson are ``doing this on a wing and prayer, and it's all happening quickly,'' said Paul Light, a professor at New York University who studies the federal bureaucracy. ``There is such pressure to get it done that I think all rules are out.''


    <param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SdzGtdKH4Ao&hl=de&fs=1&color1=0x234900&color2=0x4e9e00"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SdzGtdKH4Ao&hl=de&fs=1&color1=0x234900&color2=0x4e9e00" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>


    Paulson today announced plans to provide $250 billion in capital injections to banks ``to restore confidence in our financial institutions'' and urged the banks to use the funds to spur economic growth.


    As head of the new Office of Financial Stability during the final months of George W. Bush's presidency, Kashkari is responsible for overseeing the selection of private contractors for Treasury's Troubled Asset Relief Program, hiring permanent government employees for the effort and setting standards that will govern how conflicts of interest are managed.




    Months or Years


    ``A program as large and complex as this would normally take months – or even years – to establish,'' Kashkari said in his speech yesterday. ``We don't have months or years.''


    Kashkari's appointment earlier this month drew comment from Wall Street veterans and industry observers because of his youth, his relative inexperience with markets and his ties to Goldman, where Paulson had been chief executive officer.


    ``It was unfortunate that it was yet another Goldman Sachs person taking the helm,'' said Michael Greenberger, a former official at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and now a professor at University of Maryland School of Law. ``Essentially it appears that he is turning to the very financial institutions that led to the problems to fix the problems.''


    Kashkari worked in Goldman's San Francisco office on mergers and acquisitions in the information-technology industry. He reported Goldman paid him $738,000 in salary and bonus before he joined Treasury in July 2006 as a senior adviser to Paulson, according to his federal financial disclosure form.




    Trained as Engineer


    Prior to landing a job on Wall Street, Kashkari was an aerospace engineer. He worked to develop technology for National Aeronautics and Space Administration missions, including the James Webb Space Telescope.


    The son of Indian immigrants, Kashkari grew up in Ohio and received bachelor's and master's degrees in engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has an MBA from University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School.


    Before taking over his current role at Treasury, Kashkari was Paulson's top aide on housing and mortgage issues.




    Decisions Are Paulson's


    While Treasury officials say Kashkari has been working long hours and weekends to get the troubled assets office established, they also note that major policy decisions are being made by Paulson. One of Kashkari's biggest challenges has been getting the program up and running as Paulson has kept shifting strategies for combating the credit crisis.


    The Treasury Department initially proposed a plan for buying toxic mortgage-backed securities from financial firms, and pushed a broad version of the proposal through Congress. Last week, Paulson said he would use his authority under the legislation to have the government take equity stakes in a wide range of banks, the action he announced today.


    ``Circumstances have changed dramatically'' since the law was signed, said Edwin Truman, former head of the Federal Reserve's international finance division and now a fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington. ``It's become more clear that the economy is headed south.''


    Stan Collender, a former analyst for the House and Senate budget committees, said that while Kashkari is well qualified for the job, whoever wins the presidency next month will ``start dealing with the economic crisis the day after election day.''


    Paulson, in a statement last week, said he was consulting with the White House, lawmakers and the presidential campaigns of John McCain and Barack Obama to find a permanent head for the troubled asset program. Paulson said he wanted the person confirmed by the Senate, as the law requires, ``as soon as possible.''


  19. The burning issue of Hindu funeral pyres




    Open-air funeral pyres have been at the heart of Hinduism for 4,000 years. Now a spiritual healer from Newcastle is battling at the High Court to lift the ban on outdoor cremations in Britain. Jerome Taylor reports<!--proximic_content_off-->

    Tuesday, 14 October 2008






    The single-storey council house in Gosforth, a suburb of Newcastle upon Tyne, looks just like any other prefab in the quiet cul-de-sac. Only when Davender Kumar Ghai's door bell is pressed and Sanskrit chants echo through the house are visitors made aware that this is not just a home, it is a living, breathing temple.

    <!--proximic_content_off--> <!--proximic_content_on--> The 69-year-old Hindu spiritual healer has remained little known outside his band of devoted Hindu and Sikh followers. But should Mr Ghai's court action prove successful he may soon be acknowledged as the man responsible for the biggest shake-up of Britain's cremations laws in more than a century.

    Mr Ghai, who was born in Uganda, will travel to the High Court next month to try to challenge a decision by Newcastle City Council denying him the right to an open-air cremation when he dies. His lawyers will argue that outdoor cremations fall outside of the 1902 Cremation Act, which regulates what goes on inside a crematorium but does not explicitly forbid outdoor burnings.

    Speaking exclusively to The independent Mr Ghai, dressed in simple woollens and sitting on a throne of sculpted skulls, explained why he felt legal action is necessary. "The Hindus of Britain have never asked for anything," he said, running his hands through a thick, white beard. "But we're not asking for much, just to cremate our loved ones in the way our religion says it must be done."

    In South Asia the vast majority of cremations for Hindus and Sikhs are held outdoors, often on the banks of a river that has been deemed holy. Although widely practised in the Sikh faith, outdoor cremations are not considered compulsory.

    In Hinduism, however, there is more widespread agreement that the 4,000-year-old practice of open-air burning is the most spiritually appropriate way to release a soul from the body following death. Many Hindus believe that mechanical cremations lead to akal mrtyu (a bad death), where the soul is forced to mingle with other souls because it has not been able to escape.

    "Open-air cremations are our birth right and our religious right," explained Mr Ghai. "The soul has to be released from the skull and allowed to go straight up into the air. Muslims and Jews have been given their own graveyards, they have been allowed to deal with their dead according to their religious needs but Hindus have been ignored." His lawyers will cite a number of precedents where outdoor cremations were either held with the support of the state or went ahead and were not prosecuted.

    On a hillside outside Brighton a marble memorial stands on a spot where 53 Hindu and Sikh soldiers who died fighting in the First World War were cremated outdoors. in 1934, the Home Office helped to organise the cremation in Woking of Shumshere Jung, a member of Nepal's royal family and wife of the Nepalese ambassador at the time. Mr Ghai's lawyers believe these examples will help show the courts that a precedent exists for open-air cremations.

    Should he prove successful, many of Britain's estimated one million Hindus and Sikhs would probably opt for an outdoor ceremony rather than a closed one, radically changing the way cremations are carried out in Britain.

    Mr Ghai's first victory came in April last year, when Justice Collins granted him permission to seek judicial review over Newcastle City Council's refusal because the issue was of "considerable importance" to Hindus and because he believed there was a chance that the burning of dead bodies in the open air was "not necessarily unlawful".

    This is not the first time that Mr Ghai and his inter-faith group, the Anglo Asian Friendship Society, has traded blows with the authorities in Newcastle. in 2006, the body of Rajpal Mehat, a 31-year-old illegal immigrant, was found in a canal outside Slough in west London. There was very little to identify the man other than a mobile phone with Mr Ghai's number in it. With his help police were able to identify the man and handed the body over to his family in India, who had been flown to the UK by the society. Unable to afford the costs of transporting the body to India, Mr Ghai decided to hold the first open-air cremation in more than 70 years on a secret location in Northumberland. "The only people left were his mother and daughter," he said. "They were deeply worried about the condition of his soul. So with the help of local Sikhs and Hindus we burned him outdoors."

    Having initially given a go-ahead to the rite police ended up investigating the cremation and passed a file to the CPS; the case was dropped because it was not in the public interest.

    Andrew Singh Dogan, a former barrister who acts as legal co-ordinator for the society, believes Mr Ghai's fight mirrors that of William Price, a Welshman who successfully campaigned for the legalisation of cremations at the end of the 19th century.

    "it took a while for Britain to accept the idea of cremations but nowadays we live in a society where more people are cremated than buried," he said. "I think once people understand what really happens during an open-air cremation they'll realise there is nothing to fear. We will come to accept them just like we learnt to accept normal cremations. it's not like we want to put some pyre on the banks of the Tyne, we'd find a space that is wholly private and away from public eyes where people who want to grieve next to the body of their loved ones can do so."

    Other supporters believe resistance to the open-air cremations is purely conceptual. "in the Abrahamic faiths fire is something you associate with hell," said Dr Anand, one of Mr Ghai's followers who recently lost his son and was deeply upset about having to cremate his body in a crematorium. "[Fire] is seen as a punishment and I think that's why many Westerners prefer not to see the actual cremation. But for us fire is something pure, it cleanses and renews. There is hardly a single Hindu ceremony that doesn't at some point use agni [sacred fire], which acts as a conduit between man and God."

    One of the difficulties Mr Ghai's followers face is resistance from leaders within their own community. Sikh and Hindu faith groups have been reluctant to show their support for his legal battle. The Hindu Academy has called open-air cremations an "antiquated practice" whilst the Hindu Council has also said that it does not support outdoor pyres. Only the Hindu Forum of Britain has made statements in support of the idea. its secretary general, Ramesh Kallidai, said: "Those who wish to exercise this choice of open-air funeral pyres in order to feel that they have done their religious obligation for their parents should be allowed, provided two conditions are fulfilled: that it does not break any law in this country and that it does not endanger anybody else in the vicinity in terms of health and safety."

    Mr Ghai said that enough Hindus and Sikhs in Britain believe that open-air cremations are a vital part of their religion. "I believe a person should be able to live according to their religious beliefs and that we should accommodate that as long as it does not harm others," he said. "I cannot see how open air cremations in a private place away from the public gaze could harm anyone."

  20. o904tc.jpg


    Prime Minister, Helmut Kohl, German Federal Chancellor was again and again elected to be the first man in the state for 16 years.

    People wonder how is this possible?



    Hemut Kohl


    During his reign the Sankirtan movement distributed every day 2000 Bhagavad-gitas and Srimad-bhagavatams.

    In this way Helmut Kohl's 12th house was linked with Lord Caitanya's Sankirtan Movement.

    Without this service he would have never had a chance to officiate as political leader with four planet in 12th house. And if you see his forehead, doesn't it look like he has a natural tilak?

  21. When you spray water on the leaves of Tulasi you find that the leaves are again dry after approx 10 Minutes. This shows clearly that Tulasi likes to absorb water through her leaves and in this way doesnt need to spent energy in transporting all the water from the roots.

  22. Kashkari comes from a small, tight-knit community of Indian Hindus in Ohio, where his parents had a high profile in the local community.


    A Portrait of the $700 Billion Man as a Young Banker



    Heidi N. Moore – The Wall Street Journal October 10, 2008


    Who is Neel Kashkari?


    We’ll get to that in a second. Here is who he is not: Neel Kashkari is not a wunderkind. He’s not an evil genius. He’s not a mastermind.


    Kashkari, the 35-year-old interim head of the Office of Financial Stability, has been the source of great worry. Many fear he’s too young and too inexperienced to handle the task of rebuilding the nation’s financial system.


    Of course, Kashkari may just have the job for a few months. Paulson made clear he will appoint somebody and try to get the new person confirmed in November, and that person would transition into the next administration.


    Forty-five days isn’t a long period in normal times, but in this crisis it’s an age. To get a better understanding of him, Deal Journal spoke to people who knew Kashkari well in his childhood and during his time at Goldman Sachs to find out the character and working style of the man who is managing the nation’s bailout.






    Neel Kashkari



    Here’s the portrait that emerged: Kashkari is smart, dutiful, detail-oriented, and takes orders well. In the parlance of investment banking, he is a good “execution guy”: He leaves strategy to the bigwigs. But if you give him a project, he will prioritize, delegate and finish it.


    These people report he has an amiable manner and is a good, intent listener. He doesn’t make waves and never dominates a discussion; he thinks before he speaks and he lets people express themselves. He is particularly good at presenting complicated ideas and leading team projects that depend on gaining cooperation from others. Those include the Sunrayce project to build a solar car as well as his work on the space telescope. “Neel is just plain good, with a high standard of ethics,” said Dr. Surinder Bhardwaj, a Hindu community priest who is a close family friend to the Kashkaris in Ohio. “This is a responsibility that requires the interest of the nation as a whole, and requires a very strong base of morality, which he has.”


    Kashkari comes from a small, tight-knit community of Indian Hindus in Ohio, where his parents had a high profile in the local community. His mother, a pathologist, was known as a community resource. “She’s a good listener and helps guide people out of stressful situations,” said Dr. Bhardwaj. “They are very compassionate people, his parents, and maybe that’s where he’s getting his value system from.” Kashkari’s father is a retired engineer with a bent to public service, particularly in West Africa, where he spearheaded efforts to bring electricity and clean water to poor villages. Kashkari met his wife, Minal, in college at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. They were married in a traditional Indian ceremony in Chicago where participants remember the bride being carried in on a festive palanquin and Kashkari, busy even then, taking the time to put each guest at ease.


    Kashkari first worked at Goldman Sachs during the summer between his two years at Wharton, and impressed well enough to get a full time job after graduation. Academically, Kashkari was not outstanding, said a person familiar with the matter, but he appealed to Goldman’s recruiters because, as a former engineer, he was different than the usual aspiring investment banker. Kashkari’s head – shaved bald even then – also differentiated him from the reigning Goldman aesthetic, sometimes mockingly referred to as “The Borg” by rivals. “Everyone at Goldman has a full head of hair and went to prep school and Dartmouth and played lacrosse. That’s not Neel,” said an investment banker who knew him.


    Goldman’s investment bankers were most impressed by Kashkari’s science background. His experience working on the James Webb Space Telescope for NASA contractor TRW gave him a comfort with technological jargon that would help Kashkari communicate with technology-company executives. Kashkari also spoke passionately of his entry in a car competition, the 1997 Sunrayce event in which Kashkari’s team built and raced a solar-powered car. His team didn’t win, but it did earn kudos. While other bankers at Goldman would often discuss their project du jour or details of a presentation even in their off-time, Kashkari often discussed cars and the Sunrayce experience.


    When Kashkari returned to Goldman Sachs after business school, he worked with senior bankers advising companies in the software sector. As a junior banker, he did not have many responsibilities of his own; it was his job to prioritize and execute on the tasks given to him by others. (In many ways, that has also been Kashkari’s job at Treasury, where the strategy has been set by Hank Paulson.)


    Kashkari did well enough that his bosses gave him an obscure sector to research and cover : information technology software, which included antivirus-program makers. The sector included many tiny companies that rarely hired or needed investment bankers, and Goldman Sachs did not have meaningful relationships with the leading companies. Kashkari impressed colleagues with his technical skill. Much of his job, however, was building relationships, a task that, in the world of investment banking, takes years. Although a few mergers and financings emerged from his work, many were not publicly disclosed because of their small size.


    After Kashkari had spent only a couple of years covering IT software, the head of Goldman Sachs’s technology group, George Lee, recommended him to Paulson, who had then moved to Treasury.


    “I never thought I’d see him in government,” said one banker who knew him. “He enjoyed being a banker and the respect that was conferred on him as being a Goldman banker.”


    The rest, as they say, is history.


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