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Everything posted by Prahlad

  1. We seem to have worn this topic out time and time again and yet it still crops up. VDas I do feel you have formed strong opinions of the Swaminarayan faith which I think are unnecessary. i have had a lot of contact with the Swaminarayan followers and was unaware of the sects within. Having read a recommended study on the following it is now clear of how distinct the divides really are. The worship of Pramukh Swami is part of the Bochasanwasi Akshar Purshottam Swaminarayan Sanstha which is a breakaway group from the original (authentic?) Swaminarayan fellowship. Many of the original Sampraday followers claim that Swaminarayan never sanctioned the worship of another being alongside God. With respect to your question surrounding 'scriptural evidence' stating Swaminarayan as an avatar, I too was corrected when given extracts from various purans stating the avatar of Swaminarayan. Whatever we beleive, I strongly feel that though our devotion is to our istadeva Krishna, I do not feel the precepts, teachings and ideals of Swaminarayan are in conflict with ours at all. For this reason I often complement my BG readings with the Shikshapatri and vachanamarita.
  2. Pranaam! I have to agree that sexual indulgence is enjoyment of the senses. It is the strengthening of kama vasana - the innate desires for sex. For all these past lives we have enjoyed the senses as donkeys, dogs and other beasts. This life, we use the opportunity of having the manushya- human body for the devotion to God. Because kama vasna (sexual desire), is the strongest of all, we have been permitted to enter marriage and lead a disciplined sexual life and not be slave to the senses. Obviously there will be occassions when we are not in control of ourselves - but through intense devotion AND regulation of our sexual instincts, the kama vasna will be destroyed. I mean think about it. Essentially it is a physical process which ultimately has a profound effect on our spiritual progress by strengthening of the kama vasna. No shastras preach indulgence OR suppression of sexual instincts for that matter. What they do teach is sublimation - we cannot possibly expect to overcome sexual desires without devotion, japa, dhyan and the grace of God....but as long as we are attached to enjoying the senses, we cannot fully experience the bliss of devotion to God. Therefore, what Abhi was practicing was suppression NOT sublimation - semen has to be sublimated by intense bhakti. Please, let us not try to deny the fact that sexual life must be regulated in grihastha ashram. There are times of the month and days (such as ekadashi) when we must adopt strict control. Do you not agree that sexual desire is the stringest of impressions/vasna (together with desire for wealth, taste and power)? If so, should we not be making every effort to sublimate it rather than let it attach us (as atman) to the body? -P
  3. Hari Bol! Thanks Sanjay. I think the book you mention is "Introduction to Swaminarayan Hinduism", I have just ordered a copy of it. Did Srila Prabhupada have any opinion on SwamiNarayana movement? Also, is there anything in their philosophies which severely contradicts our beliefs? If anything, I have found that some issues are very much in parallel to what we preach and practice apart from male and female segregation in their temples. Who is their ultimate authority, at this present time? -P
  4. Thank you Abhi. The website you showed was interesting but this represents the BAPS group which as far as I know is a split from the original Swaminarayans. Do you know of the difference between the two? I know they even say that Krishna was an incarnation of Swaminarayan rather than the other way round, and often present vedic proof of it. I dont know how to respond to this because I always beleived 'krshnastu bhagwana svayam' -P
  5. I am hearing a lot about the Swaminarayan movement - does anyone know more about them? They worship radha-krshna, nar-narayana as well as Swaminarayan himself. What is exactly their belief of Godhead? -P
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