Lecture by His Holiness Radhanath Swami
Advent of Kali Yuga
The universe is divided in regard to time. Satyayuga, the golden age religiosity and prosperity. Treat yuga- where ¾ of the population remain God conscious. Dvapar yuga in which in the beginning half is God conscious and gradually dwindles until it intersects the kali yuga. At the beginning of the age of kali not more than 1/4th of the population follow any religious principles and gradually it becomes greater and greater in degradation until at the end of kaliyuga practically 100% of the population is utterly sinful.
Nature of Saintly Devotee
In this age of Kaliyuga, it is the iron age, it is the age of darkness, it is the age of quarrel and hypocrisy, and what we find in the shastras the Bhavgavat puran, there is a beautiful verse which describes how the great saints and sages will worship kaliyuga more than any other age. Now we know that great sages by nature are paradukha dukhi. That means their only sorrow is sorrow of others. They only live for the welfare of others. They are even willing to suffer to be humiliated and sometimes even be killed for the welfare of others. Its like there is a story, a sage is sitting on the bank of the Ganges. There was a scorpion drowning. So this person picked up this scorpion and this scorpion just stung him and of course the stung of a scorpion is excruciatingly painful. So his hand bleeding and the scorpion slipped, so he picked it again and it stung. And again he dropped it and again he picked it up and again he stung. Dropped it again into water picked it again and again it stung. Somebody was watching this, and he asked this great sage what are you doing? Why do you keep picking out this poor creature? Why don’t you let it drown? Then he said it is the nature of a scorpion to sting and it’s the nature of a saintly person to be willing to endure even the greatest sufferings to help a living being in need. So this is the very nature of a great soul. We find throughout history, Srila Haridas Thakur how he was caned in twenty two market places; Lord Jesus was crucified; Shrila Prabhupada, what he went through. The follower of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu to this very day, they have given their lives and sacrifice for the benefit of others.
Characteristics and Benedictions of Kali Yuga
Not at all of us, the poverty, to imprisonment, to harassment, to other humiliation and if it comes to death they are willing to accept death, if that’s what is required to uplift those who are suffering in ignorance. So why would such compassionate persons worship the age of Kali, which is the age of the greatest suffering. mandasumandayo manda bhagya updrita.(SB 1.1.10) It is an age where the people are spiritually incredibly lazy, unlucky, unfortunate, less memory, short lives and always in anxiety.
Glories of Sankirtan
Srila Prabhupada quotes the verse in the 12th Canto of Bhagavatam in which the secret is revealed. kaler doña-nidhe räjann asti hy eko mahän guëaù kértanäd eva kåñëasya mukta-saìgaù param vrajet,the great devotees of the Lord worship the age of Kaliyuga because in this age, anyone simply by chanting the holy name of the Lord, even if they are living in an ocean of faults, by the Sankirtan movement they can attain the perfection of liberation. In no other age is the perfection of life so easily available. It is also described in one verse that what available after sixty and seventy thousand years of performing tapasya meditation in the Satya yuga, performing grand, grand, grand sacrifices in the Treta yuga, intimately worshiping the Supreme personality of God Head in Dwapara yuga, the same effect is achieved by simply chanting the Holy name of the God insanely in Kali yuga. Krishnavarnam Tvishakrishnam sangopangastra parshadam yadnaihi sankirtana prayair yajanti hi sumedhasa.First word is said in Bhagavatam, by the nine yogendras, that those who have good intelligence in the age of Kaliyuga, will worship the Supreme Lord that comes a beautiful form, although He is blackish, He comes in a non-blackish form. He comes in a form that is splendor of molten gold. Sri Gaur Sundar and in this form he appears with His divine associate and teaches the path of Yuga dharma, of Sankirthan. And one who accepts this sacrifice, is the most intelligent amongst men, in such a person if he simply takes to the process of chanting the Holy name sincerely, he is guaranteed by the mercy of the Lord Gauranga, the perfection of life, in this life. Srila Prabhupada used to say the self realization is not cheap. But Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was so merciful that he has made it cheap. You have to pay the price. But it’s a very cheap price. Just follow the four regulative principles. Humbly serve your spiritual master and chant the Holy Names and the power of the Holy names will give you the mercy of God by which you can overcome all impossible obstacles. In this way, He has given so much for so little. Therefore we read every morning,chetodarpana marjana bhava mahadavagni nirvarpanam Our glory to the Sankirtan movement what cleanses the heart which is covered by so many anarthas for millions of births.
Power of the Holy Name
The power of the holy name is inconceivable, but it must be chanted offenselessly. Shrila Prabhupada would often quote this story of a man who was a muslim. And he was being killed by a boar in the forest. Now the Muslims they eat meat but the will not eat pigs and the boar is a type of pig. Because they are considered abominable because the eat their own stool. So they will not eat it. In tha Arebic word the abominable creature pig is translated as abominable one, and abominable is haram. So by this word he was calling haram haram, you abominable one creature. And he left his body and he got liberation, because he chanted the name of Rama. But its interesting that he didn’t chant the name of Rama with any offense. He was not expecting anything any material result. He was not sinning on the strength of chanting. He was not blaspheming devotees, he was not blaspheming vedic literatures, he was chanting offenselessly. And because he chanted offenselessly the name of Rama , the power of name Rama brought him back to the state of liberation. Of course to go back to Godhead, you must go beyond just chanting offenselessly. You must chant purely. You must be chanting with attention and love. Haridas Thakur in one assembly at the home of Hirnya and Govardhan Mujumdar, he was preaching in this way that the chanting of the holy name of Krishna is the only way in kaliyuga for liberation. Harer nama harer nama harera nama eva kevalam kalu nasty eva nasty eva nasty eva gatir anyatha. And this name of Krishna is so powerful , it is so glorious, it is like coming of the sun, when the sun rises it dispels all ignorance. And he reveals itself in truth. The name of Krishna is non different than Krishna. When the name arises in your heart – Krishna, reveals Himself in you heart and the light of it dispels all darkness. And he explains that namabhas – even if you are chanting not purely but even if you are chanting offenselessly, before the name even arises in your heart and reveals itself, you attain liberation. Just like before the sun rises it becomes light, the sun is not seen, the sun is not revealed, but as it is coming closer to being revealed, all darkness is dispelled. Just like today the sun arise at 6 or 7, but if we look out the window it is light. Without the sun’s presence the light is there. So Srila Haridas Thakur is explaining before the pure chanting of the holy name takes place and God reveals himself in your heart, a mere byproduct of chanting, a subordinate principle which is automatic for chanting is Mukti- liberation . This is the glory and power of name. Then Haridas Thakur says that this liberation is insignificant and devotees care nothing for it. A devotee chants Holy Name for one purpose alone. To attract the sun of Krishna to rise in our heart when He shines, He lights our heart with pure love of God and it is only pure love that has any meaning to a devotee, who rejects even liberation, before the principle of pure love. And there was one Gyani who was a very intellectual one very handsome very young very pious, his name was Gopal Chakravarti. He was in that assembly and he was a follower of the impersonal school and therefore his life was given for the purpose of liberation. He was performing so many sacrifices and he was going to so many lectures hearing the glories of Mukti. And he became very much insulted by hearing Haridas Thakur speak like this. He stood up in assembly and chastised Srila Haridas Thakur. He said “what? This is blasphemy; this is an offense to Mukti the highest perfection of life. If you are correct, I know it is not possible; if you are wrong when you say that Mukti is nothing but an insignificant byproduct of love of God which takes place by mere reflection of the chanting of the Holy Name, then may your nose fall to the ground.” And when gopal Chakravarti spoke like this, the distinguished guests and hosts in the assembly saw that Haridas Thakur was being offended, so they stopped him but Haridas was very humble, he said “Yes, so be it. If I am wrong let my nose fall”. And shortly after that Gopal Chakravarti contacted leprosy and his nose fell to the ground and he suffered horribly. But it was a benediction. Because his false pride was crushed by that suffering and ultimately he took shelter of the Lord and was delivered. But Haridas Thakur was very strong and very uncompromising in explaining through his own realizations of the infinite power of Holy Name. And in this age of Kaliyuga specially, it is not that the name of God is more powerful in Kaliyuga. The Name of God is eternally non different than God but you see it is such a simple process. In other ages the Lord tests His devotees that they have to go through the proper expression of surrender, but in the age of kali no one can do it. It is not possible; so therefore Chaitanya Mahaprabhu came to spread the yuga dharna. That in this age of Kali just chant Holy names. Don’t worry about everything else.
Shrila Prabhupada’s Faith in Holy Names
Just have faith that Krishna is non different than his name. Srila Prabhupada used to tell us that if you simply have this faith that Krishna is non different than His name, then you are liberated from all suffering. And that was Srila prabhupad’s only weapon. He had no money. He hardly spoke understandable English, but when he came to the west, he was armed with invincible unflinching faith. That Krishna’s name is so powerful that whatever situation I am in, the name of God can bring pure love. He had that faith. Others were scholar and even pure devotees of the Lord, they were enjoying Krishna in Vrindavan, but they couldn’t figure out how possibly even the people in the west, even the people out of the holy places in India how will the ever understand these things. Even today when we go to Vrindavan, many very very great purified babajis , they cant understand – how is it that possible that your Guru maharaj, how it is possible you people are going to these horrible places these horrible people so much in the mode of passion and ignorance. Even the colleges in Bombay, they can’t. Some of these people have gone to college. How could you even attempt to preach to these people. Such a waste of time for such crazy, puffed up materialistic sense enjoyers. It’s inconceivable to them. But the devotees because they simply have that implicit faith that the name of God is so powerful , that anyone whatever their classification is however degraded they are, dina hina yata chilo, harinam udhharilo. Narottam Thakur prays that the name of Krishna is so great, that even the two most sinful of sinners, Jagai and Madhai were delivered utterly into the realm of pure devotional service simply by taking the name. That is the proof. No one in this age can be as fallen as Jagai and Madhai and they were delivered simply because one devotee, Lord Nityananda prabhu is compassionate enough to tolerate their offenses and despite all their aggressions, he was willing to administer to them the Holy name of Krishna. They became paramhansas, great saints. So Lord Ramchandra, He created the Satyayuga in Treat yuga and that the same Lord Ramchandra has appeared as Lord Gaursundar to create Kingdom of God to create the atmosphere of Satyayuga even in the Kali. You see these temples that we are living in, they are not in Kaliyuga. So long as the devotees are taking shelter of Holy name. this is Satya in this room as soon as you go out it is Kali. Why? because everyone here is simply surcharging everything with the holy name of Krishna. As soon as we forget the name, we are in Kaliyuga. As long as we are remembering, we are in spiritual world. We are liberated. Prabhuapda used to tell us in the earliest days, that all my disciples are liberated. We were just looking at each other like,we are liberated..? (laughter) we had so many horrible desires in our minds. Some devotees they are not even following the 4 regulative principles. He said all my disciples are liberated. Devotees challenged Prabhupada, we don’t want to contradict you without thinking but we don’t feel liberated. He said the fact is that you are acting on the liberated stage. The fact is that you are chanting the holy names of the Lord regularly, and humbly serving your spiritual master, following 4 regulative principles, you are acting as the liberated souls. The only thing is you haven’t yet realized the position you are on. You are on liberated position, we haven’t realized it. But gradually by associating with the liberated position, pure devotional service you will realize it. That is the gift of our Gurumaharaj. He is giving us the ways and the means by which each and every one of us,without doubt can find pure love within our own hearts.Parama karuna pahu dui jana, nitai gaurachandra . Without doubt, we can find pure love within our own hearts. They are giving us the mercy of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu who are the most merciful of all incarnations. They are the essence of all incarnations. Because they are giving us that no one else has done. They are giving pure love of God indiscriminately to anyone who simply accepts the chanting of the Hare Krishna Mahamantra.
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare |
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare ||
Simply we must chant according to their instruction, with the sincere heart.
Is there any question?
Q1. Ajamila chanted the name but he was not liberated but just 12 more years. This person got liberated, and how not Ajamila?
Ajamila because he was a humble devotee, and because he was an honest and sincere devotee, in his youth, Krishna never forgot him. Although due to certain conditioning, due to association with the low class woman he was not able to maintain his vows, he was simply overwhelmed by lust. But because he was basically was a sincere soul who couldn’t control his senses , he just fell down, now out of envy, not out of greed, but just out of uncontrolled senses due to previous conditioning. The Lord never left him. The Lord allowed him to go through all these circumstances but the Lord in his heart (the Bhagavatam says) impelled him to name his child Narayan. Knowing that it would be his greatest attachment, knowing the he will chant the name of the child at the time of death. Krishna arranged all these incidents because He explains that my devotee never perishes. He was a sincere devotee, no matter how low he falls; I am going to be there to pick him up at the right moment. And that was the right moment. So he chanted the name of Narayan which was enough to bring to the attention of Vishnudutas who came to the scene to save him save from the yamadutas. But he was conscious of that whole experience and he realized how he has wasted his life so fruitlessly and therefore they gave him another 12 years, by which he went to Haridwar and on the bank of Ganges, he completely fixed his mind on devotional service without deviation. And then he went back to Godhead. He was most fortunate, because he did not only chant offenselessly, but he also had gained spiritual credits in the past.
Q2. When we don’t have facilities we are compelled to do austerity, but how to performausterities voluntarily and willing in the service of Lord as they were performed by Bharat Maharj, who unlike Laxmana had all the facilities to enjoy?
Answer: By associating with austere people, we learn to value Krishna Consciousness is the greatest wealth. By associating with materialistic people we learn to value money and positioning as the greatest wealth. In the association of persons who are detached, we learn to find pleasure in a simple life. Simple living and high thinking. Simple means however rich you are just live a simple life. Take what you need and use the rest for the glorification of Krishna and for the upliftment of humanity. Just take what you need. There is no need for huge bank balances, just take what you need lead a simple life, if you don’t engage in vices, if you don’t engage in luxurious living, trying to show off to others then what you need to spend your money for? Get simple Prasad, have a nice but simple home, what you need money for? Use it for Krishna, use it for projects which will help others to understand Krishna. This is simple living high thinking for grihasthas. And then even in the poor of the filthy waters of this material society you could remain like a lotus flower, untouched. It is not very difficult. But people, the most difficult thing is people, they do not understand you. They will think you are crazy they will warn you against it. They will threaten you. That is maya, speaking through them. Maya is always trying to complicate your life at every step and the devotees are trying to just make it very simple. We have to ignore maya whoever she speaks through and accept the word of Krishna. Just chant Hare Krishna and e happy all you need is Holy Name, and live a simple life. You are making lots of money? Use it for Krishna. Don’t stop making it. Use it for Krishna. That is the perfection of grihatsha life. And you will have joy you will have pleasure, being free of greed in itself is such a relief. Its like a mountainous burden taken off our hearts.
Udilo aruna purab bhage dwija mani gora amani jage Lord Chatinatya Mahaprabhu and his associated every morning just as the sun is rising, this time of the day, they would call wake up wake up sleeping souls. You uselessly spend your entire day decorating your dead bodies, and your nights completely in the ignorance of sleep or in the passion of sex. Wake up wake up. Chant the Holy Names. Mukund Madhav Yadav Hari. Fill your mouth with the Holy Name of Krishna, find the true happiness and true bliss in the eternal self. That is our only business in this world, to deliver the sound, the Name of Krishna. We have no other business. Keep it simple. It is our only business. Nothing else. We always remember that our life is simple. If we have any other business our life becomes endlessly complicated.