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theist

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  1. Is human sacrifice a part of Hinduism? From the BBC Wednesday, 3 April, 2002, 11:46 GMT 12:46 UK Indian temple revives 'human sacrifice' Human sacrifice was thought to have died out By Rahul Karmakar in Guwahati, north-eastern India Followers of a Hindu cult in India's north-eastern state of Assam have revived the ancient practice of human sacrifice. A willing human being is difficult to find these days Temple researcher Dr Pradeep Sharmah But in the absence of human volunteers, devotees at the Kamakhya Temple near the state capital Guwahati are using six-foot effigies made of flour for the rite. Steeped in secrecy, human sacrifices to the Mother Goddess Shakti were thought to have died out completely. The revival of the "Nara bali" practice a few years ago would have remained under wraps had it not been for an academic researching the temple, one of India's holiest pilgrimage sites. The cult followers had apparently wanted live humans to revive the gory tradition, but opted for an effigy instead fearing a backlash. Ancient worship "A willing human being is difficult to find these days," said Dr Pradeep Sharmah, director of the Vivekananda Kendra Institute of Culture (VKIC). He said priests had already been heavily criticised by animal rights groups for their use of animals in ritual sacrifices, hence their decision to use human effigies instead of the real thing. Dr Sharmah was inducted into the inner circle of a handful of "Shakta" priests after he won their trust. "The sacrifice is made at midnight, on the day of Ashtami during the 10-day autumnal Durga Puja," said Dr Sharmah. But it can also be carried out on any day specified by divine forces. "The ancient worshippers believed that the person to be sacrificed was sent by god, and as a rule a woman would never be put to the altar," Dr Sharmah said. The Kamakhya Temple attracts some 10,000 devotees per day, but certain aspects of the temple's ceremonies - including sacrifices - have been kept closely-guarded secrets. No witnesses The administrator of the Kamakhya Trust, Bharati Prasad Sarma, said that no outsiders were ever allowed to witness a sacrifice. Thousands of devotees worship at the temple "It is believed that if anyone tries to see the act, evil is bestowed upon him by the Mother," he said. The administrator said the schoolboy son of a temple priest, or panda, fell blind last year when he tried secretly to watch a ceremony. The pandas say that only a chosen few are eligible to conduct a sacrifice. Research shows that human sacrifice at Kamakhya was first revived 75 years ago, but was discontinued a few years later. A 1933 journal of the Assam Research Society says that living people were sacrificed until the reign of King Gaurinath Singha between 1780 and 1796. Records of earlier periods at the Department of Historical and Antiquarian Studies indicate that the practice was widespread in Assam.
  2. The Intelligent Designer BY: GADADHARA DASA Oct 8, USA (SUN) — Recently there has been a debate over whether God is the creator of the universe or that the creation is formed by combination of chemicals, a chance occurrence if you will. The scientific group who supports a "theory" called Intelligent Design (ID) says that there is an intelligence behind the creation. There must be intelligence behind something so complex and intricate which works so perfectly. The anti-Intelligent Design scientific group argues that the (ID) group is pushing the old Creationist theology and that there is no science in something that requires faith. They say there is no place in science for religion. "Creationism, intelligent design and other claims of supernatural intervention in the origin of life or of species are not science because they are not testable by the methods of science," The National Academy of Sciences said in an assessment in 1999. At a news conference, president Bush commented on whether or not ID should be taught in schools, "I think that part of education is to expose people to different schools of thought," Bush said. "You're asking me whether or not people ought to be exposed to different ideas. The answer is yes." The origin of a thought? Back in the 1920s Einstein came up with this theory called "The Theory of Relativity" and it started out like any scientific theory does. It was an idea, a thought. Then he did the research and then he did experiments and math equations and came to a conclusion. "The Theory of Relativity" would not have been a theory at all if it wasn't for Einstein. The idea, the thought, originated from him. We won't look at the details of the theory, just that this theory has an origin and that origin is Einstein. This can be said of anything. Everything has an origin. Just like a automobile, someone wanted to create a certain type of automobile, so he thought about it, and then began to get people together to design it and after a while it was manufactured. The origin of anything and everything is always traced to "someone." But who is that "Someone."? It is stated in the Bhagavad-gita: aham sarvasya prabhavo mattah sarvam pravartate iti matva bhajante mam budha bhava-samanvitah TRANSLATION "I am the source of all spiritual and material worlds. Everything emanates from Me. The wise who know this perfectly engage in My devotional service and worship Me with all their hearts." What Einstein used for his "Theory of Relativity" is generally called "modern science". There are many different kinds of sciences: the science of cooking, the science of painting, the science of astrology, the science of music. The purpose of these sciences is to know the subject better, to master the subject matter. The purpose of modern science, in this case, is to understand the universe and its workings. The problem with "modern" science today is that the scientist has imperfect senses. How can they really prove anything? In the day time you can not see the stars in the sky, but at night you can see them. A small child who has never seen stars in the sky may argue in the day time, "there are no stars in the sky", but an older person with experience and knowledge will tell the child that you can only see them at night. Human eyes have imperfect vision. In a room conversation with Srila Prabhupada in New Delhi, 12-11-71, he explains this nicely. Prabhupada: (bhakti-yogena manasi) samyak pranihite ’male apasyat purusam purnam mayam ca tad-apasrayam "The materialistic person, they have only one experience: this cosmic manifestation. Beyond this they have no other vision. Their senses are imperfect. Just like the astronomers, they have got big, big telescope, many other instruments. They want to see through the eyes how many stars are there, how the planets are moving, and whatever imperfect knowledge they receive, by that little knowledge they advertise themselves as great scientists. But they do not calculate that "We are trying to see the stars and planets with powerful binoculars. That means our eyes are imperfect." And what is the guarantee that the instruments which they’re using, they are also perfect? Because that machine, that binocular, is also made by a person who is imperfect. So what is the guarantee that by seeing through binocular or microscope, the conclusion arrived, it is perfect? What is your answer? Your eyes are imperfect, that’s a fact. Otherwise, why you are using binocular, microscope? Eyes are imperfect. Originally your eyes are imperfect. Now, eyes or other senses, it does not matter. Sense is sense. So you are manufacturing a machine, some instrument, by the same imperfect senses, then what is the guarantee that this machine, this binocular, if you see through the binocular, the knowledge is perfect? What is your answer? Devotee: Can’t be perfect. Prabhupada: Answer? Any one other? Devotee (2): Perfect knowledge cannot be received with imperfect senses. Only through perfect senses can perfect knowledge be received. Prabhupada: Therefore it should be concluded that the so-called scientists, astronomers, they are all imperfect, and they are passing off the scientists as learned. So you can challenge them, "What is the guarantee that your knowledge is perfect?’’ Actually it is not. They do not know how the stars are moving. They are always imperfect. Simply putting some theories. They say all this, Darwin’s theory and this theory, that theory. They are simply speculating on imperfect senses, and therefore they’re cheating, because the conditioned soul has got a tendency to cheat others. If one can cheat others, he thinks himself as very intelligent. The conditioned souls, they commit mistake, they are illusioned, they cheat, and their senses are imperfect. This is the, the four condition. Therefore, if we receive knowledge from the conditioned soul, there is no possibility of getting perfect knowledge. If by nature you are cheater, then how I can expect fair dealings? It is to be understood that we cannot have any fair dealings with this conditioned soul. And he’ll protest. The whole world is full of conditioned living entities. They’re conditioned. Conditioned means under the control of the material nature. Gunaih karmani. There are different types of conditioned souls. Some of them are good conditioned soul, some of them are passionate conditioned soul, some of them are rascal conditioned soul. So good conditioned soul means that, er, "(indistinct) that I have become very much learned, I have studied so many books, so now I am perfect.’’ There is little goodness, because he has studied, he, he has labored, but still he’s conditioned soul, because he has no perfect vision. Vimukta-maninah. A Morning Walk With Srila Prabhupada on 12-03-73 Dr. Singh: The scientists argue that before Darwin’s biophysical type of evolution could take place, there had to be what they call prebiotic chemistry, or chemical evolution. Srila Prabhupada: Yes. And the term "chemical evolution" means that chemicals have an origin, and that origin is spirit, or life. A lemon produces citric acid, and our bodies produce many chemicals in urine, blood, and bodily secretions. This is proof that life produces chemicals, not that chemicals produce life. Dr. Singh: Scientists say that once the seed of life is present in the cells, then the living entity automatically develops and functions. Srila Prabhupada: Yes, but who gives the seed? In the Bhagavad-gita (7.10) Krsna answers this question. Bijam mam sarva-bhutanam viddhi partha sanatanam: "O son of Prtha, know that I am the original seed of all existences." And later (14.4): sarva-yonisu kaunteya murtayah sambhavanti yah tasam brahma mahad yonir aham bija-pradah pita "It should be understood that all species of life, O son of Kunti, are made possible by birth in this material nature, and that I am the seed-giving father." Giving Credit to the Primal Creator.
  3. theist

    Thanks JNdas

    It has been interesting to say the least. Hare Krishna
  4. theist

    Thank you and forgive me

    Yes mahak prabhu. It really is this simple isn't it? Why expect the Lord to forgive us if we are unwilling to forgive others? We will not be allowed to enter the Kingdom (consciousness) of God with hearts of stone.
  5. No matter how engaged in devotional practice we may think we are we should not take it for granted that we will remember Krishna at the time of death. Success in Krishna consciousness is not a mechanical thing. It is personal and is dependant on the mercy of the Lord. The priests who were conducting the sacrifice for King Nabhi to have a son like the Supreme Person prayed: TRANSLATION Srimad Bhagavatam 5.3.12 Dear Lord, we may not be able to remember Your name, form and qualities due to stumbling, hunger, falling down, yawning or being in a miserable diseased condition at the time of death when there is a high fever. We therefore pray unto You, O Lord, for You are very affectionate to Your devotees. Please help us remember You and utter Your holy names, attributes and activities, which can dispel all the reactions of our sinful lives. PURPORT The real success in life is ante nārāyaṇa-smṛti—remembering the holy name, attributes, activities and form of the Lord at the time of death. Although we may be engaged in the Lord’s devotional service in the temple, material conditions are so tough and inevitable that we may forget the Lord at the time of death due to a diseased condition or mental derangement. Therefore we should pray to the Lord to be able to remember His lotus feet without fail at the time of death, when we are in such a precarious condition. In this regard, one may also see Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (6.2.9–10 and 14–15).
  6. theist

    last words

    In the revealed scriptures, the ultimate object of knowledge is Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the Personality of Godhead. The purpose of performing sacrifice is to please Him. Yoga is for realizing Him. All fruitive activities are ultimately rewarded by Him only. He is supreme knowledge, and all severe austerities are performed to know Him. Religion [dharma] is rendering loving service unto Him. He is the supreme goal of life. SB 1.2.28-29
  7. Exactly my point which was never answered. It is the knowledge that our attachments to what we think is ours (family property ect.) and unfullfilled desires and plans for the future that will never be realized that causes us the pain. It is painful enough for those of us that have at least some philosophical realization that we are not the body what to speak of the person who thinks the body is the self and he is losing all chance to ever experience happiness. And this brings up an even more subtle point. The fear of death itself has as it's basis the fact that the soul is eternal and senses it and thus the idea of death, of non-existence causes great fear and bewilderment beyond his worldly attachments. The idea of life itself is so natural to the soul and idea of death so unnatural. This plus the process that causes death as in cancer or car wreck etc. are all that is painful about death not the actual separation of the astral body from the physical body. Just like it is not painful to take off one's coat when one is inside and no longer needs it. No difference. Simple. It is because we don't want to remember God.We simply still want material things. Right now we are talking and reading about God but our minds are only a certain small percentage upon the Lord even as we are so-called engaged in remembering Him. We are practicing remembering God. Really remembering God means being FIXED upon Him. Samadhi. Samadhi in bhakti can be samadhi in motion like doing service purely for Krishna's pleasure. If Arjuna would have suddenly been struck by an arrow and left his body in an instant while taking aim at a target and not looking at Krishna or directly even thinking of Him he still would have had a perfect death because he was purely engaged in doing his service to Krishna which is itself remembering Krishna. The word 'remember' is interesting. We are members of Krishna but have apparently dismembered ourselves to try to enjoy maya. For the jiva to remember one's self in connection with Krishna means to remember one's position as a servant of Krishna. So the word remembering is another way of saying yoga or being re-yoked to Him. So if we are smart we will try our best to live a life that leads to remembering Krishna at the time of death. But also it may be a good idea to be little greedy and ask for more than we deserve. We don't deserve to remember krishna at the time of death but let us beg for it anyway. Not on the basis of deserving it but on the basis of His mercy alone.
  8. To be blunt you take your dreams and what you think you see in these paintings all too seriously. One thing you can count on is the Lord in your heart whom at this time you may not be able to see but who can see you. Him you can pray to and try to please. He will guide you spiritually if you put your faith in Him. In sanskrit He is called Vishnu or Paramatma, the Lord in the heart. Hare Krishna
  9. theist

    Thanks JNdas

    I've been wanting to print up some basic 'we are not these bodies' flyers and pass them out at UC Berkeley campus. It's only 4 blocks away but am nervous about it. Never used to be like this. I finished high school sporting a shaved head and sikha. I've become a cyber isolated character hiding behind the face of Alfred E. I have almost forgotten what it is like to look into someone's eyes while talking to them. Almost. You are right gHari. We need to maintain some human balance.
  10. theist

    Who is a Vaishnav?

    Yes all are Vaisnava's who worship Visnu in eternity as that is the natural function of the awakened eternal soul. A self realized Vaisnava sees one type of soul (minute particles of Krishna) in two conditions of life. Awake to Krishna or asleep to Krishna. The word karmi just relates to the present predicament that the sleeping souls find themselves in. One Father and one family of life. The vaisnava feels the oneness of every living being therefore no hatred can be found in him. He who sees everything in relation to the Supreme Lord, who sees all living entities as His parts and parcels, and who sees the Supreme Lord within everything never hates anything or any being. Sri Isopanishad 6
  11. theist

    Say your goodbyes...

    Oh yeah the mailing list. I better sign up now or be lost forever.
  12. theist

    Thanks JNdas

    Yes indeed. She was always a bright spot, very intelligent devotee and always had a sweet disposition towards all. She is no doubt in a very good place chanting Hare Krishna and worshipping her deity Kanea.
  13. theist

    Thanks JNdas

    Yes a long time. It was much more fun for me in the beginning days when the place was filled mostly with frustrated ex-iskconites. The debates with Narayan Maharajas students was very stimulating. Many of those many posts of mine I would take back if possible. So much nonsense talk I have typed. Sorry about that but that's what happens when you open the door to the public. May Krishna continue to bless you abundantly in all your endeavors JNdas.
  14. theist

    Personal vs. Impersonal God

    In the past few posts I questioned hindustani's suggestion that we should drop trying to understand higher concepts and just concentrate on being good human beings. The heart of my objection is contained within the idea of being good before seeking God. This contains the inherent idea that one has to qualify himself in some way before he can approach the Lord. I vehemently reject this idea. We can never become good enough on our own merit to chant the names of God. To think so would be very arrogant on our part. No special religious rites are needed. No qualification by birth is required. All that is required to chant the holy names is the willingness to do so. As we progree in Nam Bhajan we will become good by the influence of thew Holy Names. Hare Krishna
  15. theist

    Personal vs. Impersonal God

    You think too much. God's revelations are descending in that they come to us by God's grace and not by our mind. I believe in the past I addressed the difference between philosophic speculation and mental speculation. Anyway your point is incorrect because each vortex as you call it that comes off the individual souls is NOT a person. You have no ability to create another living being. That is done by God alone. Krishna has various energies. The living entities are one such energy called marginal energy and are always subordinate to Him. Marginal entities, us, are tiny points of consciousness, localized and not omnipresent. Only Krishna is omnipresent. He also has what is called an inferior energy which is always unconscious and makes up the energies but subtle and gross that make up these manifested universes. Your vortexs would fall under this category, Inferior, non-conscious, non-living.
  16. theist

    Personal vs. Impersonal God

    The confusing thing is you are saying both things and apparently don't know it. By the way don't assume anything.
  17. theist

    Personal vs. Impersonal God

    Sorry primate, Please don't consider me rude but you are very much into the mental plane and I don't care to enter your mind along with you by analyzing one analogy of yours after another. You are not the Supreme Self. You are part of the Supreme Self. That's all.
  18. Universal or equal vision is not just recognizing everyone is spirtual soul. It is also being able to recognize the same truth when it is taught by someone outside your own religious/ cultural circle. Just as someone who cannot recognize the soul in another form different from his own can not truly recognize the soul within his own so someone who cannot recognize the truth when spoken by others from a different background than his own cannot truly understand the same truth within himself.
  19. theist

    Who is a Vaishnav?

    Sorry I am not into such 'duh' styled conversations. I'll leave you to speak to yourself on this one.
  20. theist

    Personal vs. Impersonal God

    Exactly! By respecting the the Supreme all the little nature spirit gods are respected also. No need to try to water the leaves of the tree one by one. Just water the root and the whole tree is nourished.
  21. So you are saying the pain is mental. Then that must be due to attachments as I said. The mind has no gross nervous system so what do these Yamadhutas do to create this pain? I don't believe it. I don't accept that version of the time of death. Heavenly or hellish. I accept that the departing souls are ushered in to the subtle atmosphere in a much gentler fashion then described in the Bhagavatam. The Yamadhuta story is a simplified version of the actual happenings IMO. A version for children actually. What do you mean this pain makes the body unconscious? The gross body becomes totally unconscious simply because the consciousness (atma) has left for good taking all vital force with it. What else could the body then be but unconscious? It has nothing to do with pain. Personally I don't fear death in the least. I fear rebirth a great deal. I also fear the horrible ways I may be forced to undergo death but having the gross body off my back sounds like it would be a great relief and frankly I look forward to it.
  22. theist

    Who is a Vaishnav?

    Sorry I have no interest to look up the topic on past threads. If you have anything to say on it that would be fine.
  23. This raises an interesting question. Just what exactly is painful about death? The process that causes death, like diease, gunshot, traffic accident etc., may be may be painful. Also the attahments we hold in our mind may cause us pain as they are being ripped away but what could be painful about the actual separation of the subtle body from the gross body? This is an occurence that we all have nightly according to most metaphysians. Many can astral project at will and there is never any report of pain.
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