Tuesday, 22 December 2015

How should one constantly contemplate upon God?

For this, Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj discloses a secret.  He tells us to chant the divine name of God with every breathe that we take.  Our mind needs a base to which it can get attached.  Otherwise, how will you attach your mind?  So the solution is to firstly, chant his divine name.  When you chant his name, your mind will naturally think about God.  So, chanting of God's name is a very good means of absorbing your mind in God.  Besides chanting, you can also visualize and meditate upon the divine form of God.  The third point is to think and sing the glories of God's qualities.  He is the friend of humble souls and purifier of sinners; He is the ocean of mercy and Grace, more beautiful than infinite cupids.  He is the soul of our soul.  By contemplating upon these qualities of God, we should divert our mind towards him.

You should think about the leelas (pastimes) of God - He is sitting, we are fanning him while he rests, he is sitting on a swing, etc.  You can imagine any leela of God as per your wish and meditate upon it.  In addition to the leelas, think of his divine abodes.  If you are unable to concentrate upon God then you can think about Vrindavan.  Think that the tree nearby is a divine tree from Vrindavan.  From every leaf, the sound of chanting of 'Radhey Radhey' is emanating.  Or, you can meditate on the form of the Guru.  The main point we have to remember is that God has infinite Names, infinite Forms, infinite Attributes, infinite Pastimes, and infinite Associates, and that are all one.  They all reside within each other.  Therefore, God's divine Names, Forms, Pastimes, Abodes, Qualities, and Associates, all belong to the divine realm of God.  By meditating on any of these areas, your devotion is strengthened.  This is the foundation for practicing devotion.  If you attach your mind to any of these divine attributes, it is divine and you will get the divine result. 

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Significance of Human Birth

If we could realize the significance of human birth, it would not even take a day to attain God.  The human body is so important that even Indra, the king of heaven, who is worshiped by human beings, desires to be born as a human himself.  The human body is a very complex machine and there is no other body as complex as that of a human.  We strive to maintain a very healthy body, yet suffer from many an ailment due to improper habits and the prevailing environment.  In addition, an average human suffers innumerable miseries as a result of illness and death of loved ones.  It is amazing how we humans are able to continue living.  However, there is a wonderful power that we humans possess - knowledge.
Granted that we attained human birth due to our own actions, but it was God who took note of our actions, and rewarded us by making us human.  God did all this for us.  Actions cannot yield results on their own.  Let us say you donated $100,000. This act of charity will not yield fruit by itself.  God will have to intervene and give you the fruits of your donation.  So, God is merciful in that he rewards us for our actions.  Otherwise, we would never have attained human birth.

kabahunk kari karuṇā nar dehī  | 
det īśh binu hetu sanehī ||

God has gifted us a human body due to his compassionate nature.  Reflect upon this repeatedly; reflect upon this fact thousands of times.  We are suffering because we fail to contemplate properly.  What are we thinking?  "How should I spend my time?"  We are constantly planning on how to earn more wealth, constructing a house and leaving behind a large fortune for wife and kids.  There seems to be no concern about our own spiritual upliftment.  We must think about why we have come to this world.  Our lives are wasted in planning how to make the body happy, and we work towards those plans.  Still, we fail because our desires keep tormenting us.  We may sleep on a bed of gold studded with diamonds, but we still suffer from inside.  Happiness comes from within, not from external objects. 

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Inspirational Quotes by Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj

  • The world itself is a teacher that is always teaching the individual soul by constantly showering unhappiness and pain, thereby feeding detachment. This detachment from the world constantly pushes the soul towards God.  Maya is like the loving mother who slaps her child so that the child does not walk on the wrong path, and pushes the child towards God.
  • One who aspires for divine love should aim to be more humble than a blade of grass and more forbearing than a tree.  Believe all to be superior to oneself, and believe oneself to be the most sinful of all.  This feeling will destroy the ego and give rise to true humility, only then will the mind and heart be purified.
  • Just as by watering the root of a tree, its branches, leaves, flowers and fruits etc. automatically receive water, in the same way all the various gods and goddesses are automatically worshipped when the Supreme Lord Krishna is worshipped.  But on the other hand, if one puts water on all the leaves, flowers, branches and fruits of a tree without watering the root, the tree would dry up eventually (in a very short amount of time).  Likewise, even if one worships all the heavenly gods and goddesses, this worship is absolutely useless unless and until the Supreme Lord Krishna is worshipped.
  • Do not bear ill-will toward anyone, even those who bear ill-will toward you.  Remain neutral.  Even if someone has committed sins, a true aspirant should not think or speak of them.  Prior to God-realization everyone in the world is a sinner.  It does not take more than a moment for a great aspirant to fall and for a sinner to rise.

Sunday, 27 September 2015

Meaning of the word 'Krishna' - By Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj

Let us understand the meaning of the word 'Krishna'.

kṛiṣhirbhvāchakaḥ  śhabdaḥ  ṇaṣhch  nivṛitti  vāchakaḥ tvayoraikya  parabrahm  kṛiṣhṇa  ityabhidhīyate  (gopālatāpaniyopaniṣhat)

In the Vedas, the meaning of the word "Krishna" is Satchidanand Brahman (the absolute divinity full of bliss, knowledge, and eternity).

karṣhati paramhañsānām chetañsi iti kṛiṣhṇaḥ

The one who attracts and entices everybody's heart (mind), the Supreme Soul, is Krishna. Even Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu, and Lord Shankar (Shiva), are attracted to Shree Krishna. He attracts his own Self! Is it not astonishing?

The Supreme God, Shree Krishna has three main forms -  Brahman, Paramatma and Bhagavan. Just like the three forms of water - steam, ice, and water itself (liquid). If we decrease the temperature of water it becomes ice, and if we increase the temperature, it becomes steam. Even though we have three forms, they are fundamentally the same. Similarly, there is only one God who manifests himself in three different forms.

Let us now understand the meaning and qualities of these three forms of God.

Brahman - This refers to the all-pervading form of God. Two main powers that are revealed in this form. The first is self-protection and the second is Swaroopanand (personal bliss). The other powers are present but are not manifest. Another important aspect of Brahman is that he is formless.

Paramatma - This refers to that form of God that resides in everyone's heart. The Paramatma also manifests in the personal form as Vishnu, and various avatars such as Narsingh and Varaha.  Many more powers are manifest in the Paramatma form, than in the Brahman form.

Bhagavan - God reveals all his powers in this form. This is the form of Shree Krishna, in which he manifests his divine Names, Form, Pastimes, Abodes, and Associates.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Worldly happiness is temporary

Our experience of this world has taught us that there is no real happiness in material objects.  Initially, we may derive a lot of pleasure, but with time, happiness disappears.  We might have embraced our dear ones - mother, father, son, daughter, husband or wife thousands of times and cherished our favorite Indian sweet - rasgulla thousands of times, but we still remain tensed and disturbed.  We have not achieved eternal peace or happiness from any of them. Our ultimate goal is to find happiness but our experience seems to be the opposite.

Pleasures related to the senses are present in this material world as well as in heaven.  It is a myth of this material world that we get immense happiness.  After the initial pleasure, it keeps decreasing with time and finally turns to sadness.   For example, on the arrival of a newlywed bride, we dance, sing and spend lots of money.  Extra care is taken for her.  But after a few days or weeks of association, we tend to be disappointed with her.  We think that, "may be the other bride is good ; the others person's wife is better".

Everybody wants his / her own happiness.  The way you expect to get happiness from your wife, similarly, even your wife expects to get happiness from you.  It is very obvious that there will be a conflict since both are fooling each other to get happiness, but none of them have it.  Both say that they wish for happiness to the other.  But in reality no one wants the happiness of the other.

We think that the attainment of a material object or a person will make us happy.  But when we get it, we no longer derive happiness from it.  We get disturbed because that object no longer provides the same level of happiness as before.  We have all experienced this before, across countless lifetimes.  It is the intellect that must decide that the material world has been created for the body, and not to provide happiness for the soul.

Saturday, 29 August 2015

Ananyata - Exclusive Devotion to God

One of the most important requirements for spiritual progress is single minded devotion to God, i.e. Ananyata. 'Ananya' means 'no other', exclusive, or undivided devotion.

'Ananya Prem' means to love just one - God and nobody else.  If an individual's mind is attached to anyone or anything other than God, then he will not be called as an 'Ananya' follower. Loving God alone is what ananyata means.

We are attached to this world because we have forgotten our real identity.  We are eternal souls and souls are servants of God. Just like a machine in a car's engine. If a single wire is not in its place or the battery fails, the car stops working. Similarly, if our mind gets attached to this material world even for a second then we will not achieve our goal.

Let us use another example. Our mind is like a dirty cloth that has accumulated filth since innumerable lifetimes. Our aim is to wash it and make it completely dirt free. If we wash it with fresh, dirt free water, it will become clean.  But, if we wash it with dirty water, the cloth will become dirtier. What do we mean by 'clean' or 'dirty' water? All mayic objects are considered dirty in the divine realm. Only elements related to God are considered clean. Primarily, God and Guru are the purest and divine personalities.

We have only one mind and that should be focused on the divine, and subjects related to the divine only. There should be no place for anything or anyone else related to the mayic modes of sattva, rajas, or tamas. If we detach ourselves from all of these three, then our devotion will be exclusive and will be considered as 'single minded devotion' or 'Ananya'.  Hence, God asks us to be 'Ananya'.  To love God and God alone is what 'Ananya' means.

Friday, 7 August 2015

Materialism or Spirituality - Which way to choose?

According to materialists, the creation, development and destruction of the world are according to the rules of nature and not by the rules of God. They say that everybody wants happiness and by the fulfillment of every material desire, one can be happy. They believe that we are not eternal souls but mortal bodies, and by the fulfillment of the material senses one can be happy. The sense of seeing, hear, smell, touch, taste are five senses of our body. With the help of these senses we make use of this world. So, according to the materialists the means of happiness in this material world is this corporeal body. 

On the other hand, according to spirituality, we are eternal souls and not this physical body. This body is destroyable and is made up of five structural elements (water, air, fire, ether and earth) whereas, the soul ('I') is spiritual, eternal, and is an eternal part of God. Bliss is the other name of God and being a part of "Him", we naturally desire for 

happiness -
raso vai saḥ

Now which way to choose?

This is a very difficult question for an individual to answer. Every religion claims to be perfect in its own ways. The answer to this can be explained in the following way:

We have two entities - the soul and the physical body. It is true that we will achieve our goal of attaining supreme bliss only by surrendering to God, and that the soul needs God. Similarly, we have to realize that this body requires the material world because this body is made up of five elements and this world is also comprised of these five elements. 

No spiritualist can oppose a materialist, and no materialist can oppose a spiritualist. It is only with the help of this material body that devotional practice is made possible and without God-realization, mental afflictions, i.e. material desires, anger, jealousy, ego, etc. will never go away and we cannot have peace and happiness. Therefore, with the point of view of keeping our body healthy we have to do devotion. We have to keep our body healthy with the idea of serving and worshipping God.  If we don't provide the necessary proteins, minerals, vitamins and all the required nutrients to our body, we will surely fall sick and instead of remembering God we will only remember pain and misery.

To summarize, we could say that we have to follow spirituality along with materialism. This can be explained with the help of example:  

A nurse takes care of thousands of children in a hospital over her lifetime. She feeds and cleans them, gives them medicine, etc. She performs these tasks as part of her duty and not because she is attached to them.  Her love and attachment are mostly for her children and family. She does not love the babies in the hospital as much as she does her own. The sickness of her own child brings her anxiety and pain. She will do everything possible to bring her own child back to normal health at the earliest. 

But if a child falls sick in the hospital, the nurse will tend to it immediately and perform her duties well. Her reaction to the sickness will be quite normal and not emotional. She is not emotionally attached to the sick child.  In the same way, we have to perform our material duties without any attachment for sake of duty and not being bothered of the loss or profit. This is called as Karm-yog.

man hari meṅ tan jagat meṅ, karmyog tehi jān |
tan hari meṅ man jagat meṅ, yah mahān ajñān ||

Attaching our mind to this material world and worshipping God with our body and material senses is a sign of great foolishness.

Hence, both materialism and spirituality are necessary for us because we are spiritual by nature soul and we have this material body. We need this material world for existence.

Sunday, 19 July 2015

Who can bestow divine grace upon souls?

There is no personality that can even think of showering divine grace as long as they remain under the bondage of Maya.  Why?  A soul under the control of Maya cannot grace anyone as he does not possess divine love; how will he possibly give it to someone else?  Secondly unless someone is graced by God he cannot even dream of gracing others.  All our physical relationsson, daughter, mother, father, etc. are deceiving us.  Although they are devoid of any spiritual property and are like beggars themselves, they claim to give us love.  Until such time as they receive God’s divine love, they should not even dream of helping anyone else, for they have no divine property and hence they are not authorized to bless you with love.

Therefore, all souls under Maya cannot even understand the meaning of the word GRACE or GRACE of God, what to speak of helping anyone else!

सबै भिखारी जगत के, जेतिक नातेदार |
दिव्य प्रेम आनन्द के, तुम इक साहूकार ||

“All worldly relations are beggars, begging for love from each other.  O my master! My All-in All! Only you possess this treasure of divine love.”

Thus, God and his devotees (Saint) are helpless to do anything else but shower grace upon suffering souls.

Monday, 6 July 2015

Prem Ras Madira by Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj

The pastimes of the divine couple Radha Krishna have been depicted in these 1008 padas or devotional songs, that are divided into twenty-one madhuri’s or devotional sweetnesses in accordance with narrations in the Vedas, Puranas and other scriptures and the writings of the Rasik Saints.

An extraordinarily unique range of pastimes have taken place especially during the descension of Shree Krishna. These form the basis of these blissful, devotional chants recorded here. 

In this miraculous book, Shree Maharajji succeeds in evoking intense devotional sentiments in the reader by expertly taking him through the various moods of devotional love, including the sweetness of meeting and the sweetness of separation from Shree Radha Krishna. The words and their arrangement, together with the incredibly detailed intricacy of the descriptions of Shree Radha Krishna and Their various ornamentation, natures and behaviour is simply breathtaking.

This second edition in English (Vol I - III) of Prem Ras Madira is sumptuously presented over three volumes, and also includes an elaborate and helpful Appendix Section at the back of each volume.

To purchase this book online, customers (USA) click here.

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Happy Father's Day

तू तो मेरा पिता हरि गोविन्द राधे।
एक बार मेरा सुत कहि के बुला दे।।
An individual soul says, "O Shree Krishna!  You are my real, eternal Father.  Just once call me your son."

सब जीव भाई भाई  गोविन्द राधे।
सब का है एक पिता कृष्ण बता दे ||

All individual souls are brothers and Shree Krishna is the eternal Father of all souls.
- Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj

Monday, 15 June 2015

Guidelines for Practicing Devotion by Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj

Your ultimate goal is the attainment of divine love of Shree Krishna and his eternal service.

This divine love can be attained only through the grace of your Guru.  The grace of your Guru will be attained upon complete purification of the heart.

The purification of the heart is only possible through devotional practice as instructed by your Guru.

Shed tears of longing for the divine vision and divine love of Shree Radha Krishna, singing the glories of their names, qualities, pastimes, etc. along with roopdhyan. You are free to choose any form but whatever form you meditate on you must feel that it is divine.

Always feel the presence of Shree Krishna with you.

Abandon all desires upto the desire for liberation.  Practice devotion only with the desire of attaining selfless divine love.

Develop a strong faith that Shree Krishna alone is mine and intensify your yearning for him.

Avoid spiritual transgressions such as fault findings, etc.

Consider each moment of this human life as invaluable.

I will always be there to guide you.

                                                                                                             - Yours Kripalu

Monday, 8 June 2015

Who should we meditate on, Guru or God? Explanation by Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj

It is not that the Guru will grant more power upon you if you meditate on him, or that God will bestow less if you meditate on him.  The result is exactly the same whether you meditate on the Guru or God.  However, meditating on Guru is more convenient, in the sense that everything related to him is directly perceptible, whereas we have to make use of our imagination to meditate on God's divine pastimes and actions.

For example, if the Guru has given some prasad to you from his own hand, you will certainly derive great benefit whether you accept it with full faith or not.  It will help you in your devotional practice.  Moreover, the variety of actions or leelas that the Guru performs are done right before your eyes, and so you can easily recall them for meditative purposes and derive great happiness from doing so.  Since God is not yet perceptible to you, you have to imagine his leelas in order to meditate upon him.  In truth, it is much easier to meditate on what we can directly perceive with our own eyes. 

Nevertheless, a devotee is free to meditate on either, depending on his or her personal preference.
What is proper and the best option is that you should meditate on both Guru and God, since by doing so you will not give rise to any conflict in your mind while you are practicing sadhana.

Watch this video lecture by Shree Maharajji on the topic, "Who is a Guru" with
English Subtitles: