3rd April 2020
Lord's Katha also attracts the Lord!
Chanting is taking place from 744 places. Welcome and congratulations! Seems that you have celebrated Rama Navami with great pomp. Might be for the first time ever that you had all the time in the service of Rama, Rama Nama and Katha. Shridhar Madhava Prabhu is writing that many did Rama Katha. Jaya Pancali Mataji from Pune is reporting that there was reading from Vraja-mandala darsana for 7 days on zoom. It’s a good idea. Many wrote that they are reading Krishna book, Ramayana, Bhagavatam.
I heard that a few devotees in Pune are reading Vraja-mandala darsana. That book has pictures and the pastimes of the Lord and His pastime places. It is like an audio visual experience . As soon as you read it, realisations will take you to Vrndavana and you will become a Vraja vasi. You can read Vraja-mandala darsana during this lockdown period and take advantage of it.
The daughters of Radha Vinod Prabhu offered 56 bhoga to Lord Rama. Radhanand Prabhu from Sangli wrote that they did abhishek and offered bhoga to Jagannatha Swami and Gaura Nitai on the occasion of Rama Navami. Jagannatha is Sri Rama.
vasudeva ghosa kahe karo joda hata
ye-i gaura se-i krsna se-i jagannatha
Vasudeva Ghosa says: Folding my hands, I declare: Gauranga is Krsna and He is Jagannatha. ( 5th verse of Song 'Jay Jay Jagannath' by Vasudev Ghosh.)
Yesterday when I was describing the pastimes of Gauranga Mahaprabhu then there was an experience of one brahmana. When the Lord makes us realise, we get realisations. At one time when Gauranga Mahaprabhu was travelling in South India He was in Madurai and the other time in Siddhavat. Two brahmanas who were devotees of Lord Rama got Gauranga Mahaprabhu’s association. They offered bhoga to Gauranga Mahaprabhu. Lord was present, so there was no need of offering to his Deity. They directly offered bhoga to Gauranga Mahaprabhu. One of them said, ‘I am experiencing that You are Krsna.’ He was chanting Lord Rama’s name, but when He came in Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s association, He started to chant Hare Krishna. After seeing this transformation, Mahaprabhu asked Him, “What happened? What is the reason behind this?’ That brahmana replied, ‘ You are the reason. You are the cause of all causes and I am experiencing that You are Krsna.”
The other brahmana said, “I am experiencing that You are Rama.” One experienced that Caitanyacandra is Ramacandra and the other experienced Him as Krsnacandra.
I have seen from reports that you all have remained busy yesterday. Many chanted either 111, 64 or 32 rounds. Many have increased their chanting. The idea and expectation is that you may come out and perform Sankirtana from 5 to 5:15 pm to take part in Akhanda Harinama Sankirtana all over the world. All of you are in contact with many devotees, temple management, leaders or congregation development devotees. Inspire them to take part in this and spread this.
One Mataji said that she can’t go to the terrace to perform kirtana, so she did it at home. You may perform kirtana in any possible way. Yen Ken Prakarena. Many have reported about their Kirtana or Katha.
I remembered that when Valmiki Muni wrote Rama Katha as Ramayana, He wondered who would spread this Rama Katha. Meanwhile the doorbell rang and there were Lav and Kusha. While He was wondering then at that moment itself, Lav and Kush reached over there. That’s when He decided that these two are going to spread Rama Katha. He taught them Rama Katha and they memorised it and started to recite it along with a Veena, a musical Instrument. They started to go to various sages’ asaramas and performed Rama Katha to music. From various places sages gathered to carefully hear Rama Katha. They would comment that when they hear their Katha, all pastimes come in front of their eyes in the form of a video. What a story and the storyteller! This Katha is non different from lila. When Lav Kush recited the pastimes of Lord Rama, all the sages took darsana of such pastimes. They were Rama realised.
In Balakanda, there is a description that Lava and Kush were reflections of Lord Rama and hence they were very beautiful as they were sons of Lord Rama. Even though many didn’t know this. At the end of the katha, the sages would embrace them, smell their hair and offer gifts to them. Lav Kush went to various kingdoms to do katha and became parivrajakacaryas.
Once they reached Ayodhya. This katha is very sweet and melodious, even if there is no Veena. They performed this katha at various places in Ayodhya. This katha is all about Rama, Sita, Laksmana and Hanuman… When Lav Kush described the pastimes then all the Ayodhya vasis would hear and follow them. It had become the talk of the town that these two children were wonderfully describing Rama Katha. The story and the storyteller should be like this. This news reached Lord Rama. He became eager to hear katha from them. He called Lav and Kush in His assembly. He called all the mothers, ministers and senior people. He asked them to start Katha. Lav Kush started.
Ayodhya vasi Rama, Rama Rama
Dasaratha Nandana Rama..
Patita pavana Janaki Jivana
Sita Mohana Rama…
Lord's Ram, residing in Ayodhya, son of Dasaratha; purifier of sin, the enchanter of Seetha, the very life of Janaki.
In this way, Rama Katha started and all the listeners were absorbed in the Katha with a focused mind. Meanwhile, Lord Rama started thinking, ‘Why am I sitting on such an elevated seat? This is not right. I should sit at the feet of these storytellers. He slowly got down from His place and sat on the floor to hear further Katha. Lord Rama, all the members of His family, ministers and invited guests relished Rama Katha.
If it’s Rama Katha, Krsna or Gaur Katha, It attracts the Lord. Such are the Kathas and the reciters of the Kathas. Jai Sri Rama!
Tomorrow is Ekadasi. I am thinking on behalf of Harinama Ministry that why can’t we have a Japa Marathon and chant 64 rounds? We have time. As there is fasting, we can chant 64 rounds like many do on Nirjala Ekadasi and the World Holy Name Festival. Tomorrow’s Ekadasi is the only one which is falling under this lockdown period. Why don’t we take full advantage of it and observe Upavasa (fasting). Upa means close and vasa means to stay. Upavasa means to stay near or in association with the Lord. We will also try to do attentive chanting and get benefitted by the association of the Lord. Coronavirus is not stopping. It is increasing so we also have to increase our prayers. As I said we need 'doctors care and devotees’ prayers'. We need more prayers and more chanting.
Tomorrow we will start this session at 6 am and you can begin chanting earlier before the session and we will extend this and spend more time chanting with you. Japa talk could start at around 8 am. There would be less talk time and more chanting time. Let’s do it together. Is anybody ready? It seems that everyone is ready and responding in their respective languages.
Ok, so it is resolved that we will chant 64 rounds tomorrow. Apart from that, reading, hearing and 5pm kirtana is there. We will spread this news all over the world and request them to join. If any more special news is there, it will be sent to you. Get ready mentally and physically.
There should be harer nāmaiva kevalam and attentive chanting. We must check the quality, not only quantity.