29th June 2019
Ekadasi is review day for devotees
More than 1000 devotees form different places are chanting. We have people chanting from Canada, Australia, Russia etc. Seems like whole world is chanting with us, which is very inspirational. We can say confidently that Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s prediction has come true, the holy name has reached so many towns and villages, all over the world.
As I said today is a very special day, today is Yogini ekadasi.
Every ekadasi has a name and there is a pastime related to it. So today is Yogini ekadasi, last one was Nirjala ekadasi and next one would be Sayani Ekadasi like that very ekadasi has its own mahatmya and significance.
Bhakti janani, this ekadasi is described as mother of devotion or the giver of the devotion. Also called
madhava-tithi, bhakti-janani, prema-latikara mula
Bhakti Vinoda Thakur has sung the glories of ekadasi like this. Ekadasi is mother of devotion and gives a bhakti lata or mula, source the seed of bhakti. So vaisnavas celebrate this ekadasi always and everywhere. Especially here in Pandharpur, ekadasi is celebrated. So, like that every ekadasi is a festival or utsava. It is a special occasion. It is not only for devotees of Vithhal, Panduranga, but for everyone. Not only devotees fast on ekadasi but they do a lot of chanting and hearing all day and all night.
I remember when I was just young boy, we use to have bhajan kirtana all night long, every ekadasi and till this date this goes on. Lot of singing chanting, reading, recitation of scriptures is done on this day, satsanga etc goes on this special day.
Sri Krishna Caitanya Mahaprabhu also encouraged His mother to follow the ekadasi fasting and celebrations. I forgot every saturday we have devotees from Australia chant with us, at Prabhupada Quarters in Melbourne Australia. We also have been reminding you about what Srila Bhakti Vinoda Thakur has recommended on what to do on ekadasi. That is to review the performance of your sadhana bhakti, review from past two weeks, how did I perform? How was my chanting? How was my reading? How, were my other devotional services? So, this is time to review and make resolutions, in this area I am going to improve, this area I am going to do better. So ekadasi is that day and Bhakti Vinod Thakur wanted us to review our performance.
Avalokan and Simhavalokan, Simha means lion, the way lion reviews his performance, lion the king of the forest is going somewhere, he has some target some vision, he stops from time to time and looks around and see how far I have come and where I am right now and where I have to go. So Simha, the lion king of the forest is known for that whereas monkeys and jackals and other creatures don’t do such a thing, they go round and round up and down and here and there, they just keep wandering and jumping but the king of the forest the lion is known for his sinhavalokan. He reviews his performance so likewise we should also be following in the footsteps of the king of the forest.
So, I had been receiving communication and I know some of you are doing some sort of sinhavalokan and making decisions to improve your chanting and devotional service, which I appreciate very much. One chanter said or wrote to me, while chanting in past he use to have his mobile phone next to him and phone rang he rushed quickly to attend to that calls but now he has made up his mind not to do so anymore, not to answer the phone or may be lock it away somewhere during chanting and just concentrate on calling Krishna, this chanting of Hare Krishna is also calling Krishna, and not to interrupt this call by receiving some other calls on your mobile. So, this kind of review and decision is much appreciated.
I was in Vrindavan and I know some of you have joined Bhakti Sastri course with VIHE in Vrindavan, you should study sastra and you are taking this study of Srila Prabhupada’s books seriously. You have to improve your study of sastra, so this is also a very welcoming step. Of course, everyone may not be able to go to Vrindavan or Mayapur and do Bhakti Sastri but you could always study wherever you are, hearing and chanting has to be increased.
Two weeks from today, we will begin the Caturmasya so you can take some resolution or sankalpa to do some extra study of sastra during Caturmasya. One devotee mataji Lalita Madhava form Mayapur, she wrote to me that during chanting she use to mix her chanting with sleeping but now that is not happening more as she has taken a resolution of not sleeping while chanting. Or be attentive while chanting, so many of you or some of you can take some resolution if that applies to you, if you are too sleepy during your japa time.
Yet another devotee, Keshav prabhu’s son. He has sometime in the morning for spiritual sadhana, so he was utilising that time for deity worship or puja in his shop or his home but he has no time for chanting and he was chanting at night after closing his shop. So 9 pm he was beginning his chanting, we advised him and he has taken resolution to chant in the morning. We also told him that you don’t have to spend so much time in deity worship, this is not Dvapara yuga this is Kali yuga. In Dvapara yuga was the time for worshiping,
kalau tad dhari-kīrtanāt
In Kali yuga you have to chant Hare Krishna. So, we asked him to minimise or cut worshipping deity worship time into half and chant for the rest of the half time in the morning itself and not leave all the chanting to be done in the evening. So, some improvements like that or settling the priorities.
So, like that I am just sharing some examples of reviews and improvement that devotees are undertaking to improve their sadhana, their services and chanting. So, each one of you on the day like this ekadasi review or have istagosthi with family and devotees at temple can have istagosthi and look over your activities in past few weeks. Identify your strengths and weaknesses and make changes accordingly for betterment of your Krishna consciousness.
So, review the past and improve in the future as it is already mentioned two weeks from today it will be Sayani ekadasi and Lord Vitthal gave me birth on this day or Ekadasi so there is a festival celebration planned at Pandharpur and I am looking forward to see many of you there. Those who have not made up their mind can consider and see if they can manage to join us of Sayani ekadasi festival and also inauguration of Srila Prabhupada ghat.
Ok so see you there. We will stop here and hopefully see you all soon in person.
Gaura Premanande hari haribol.
Lord is waiting in Pandharpur, the special feature the mood of Lord of Pandharpur Lord Panduranga Vitthal is He is waiting there to see the devotees, this is meeting with His devotees, that is all of us He is eagerly waiting for us with hands on His hips.
“kara kata vari theuniya”
He is eagerly awaiting arrival of His devotees. I just wanted to let you know that Pandharpur is such a place where Lord is waiting to take darsana of His devotees. So, we are inviting you to such a place, don’t keep the Lord waiting and let us full fill His wish to see His devotees.
See you there