14 May 2019
I will chant today, I will chant now
Blessings to all the chanters! Today number has gone up, 572. Congratulations to all, especially to those additional numbers and be steady during chanting. Be with us steadily! And you all have to work also to add numbers. Tell your relatives, dear ones to connect with this conference. The name of this conference is ‘let us chant together’, so more the merrier! Will you be happy? Or only I will become happy if there are more devotees chanting.
I did see a big number of boys chanting together in ISKCON Jalgaon. Looks like they are having their summer camp. Udaipur is also having big number. So when I see that big number chanting together, I become happy. Krishna becomes happy for sure and then we also become happy, so let us chant together in a bigger number and every day, day after day.
We should be in present while chanting.
adyaivameva visato manasaraj hansah, this is the prayer of king Kulashekhar, ‘Oh Lord, let my mind enter or think of Your lotus feet, now!’ so he did not want to postpone his chanting or prayers to the Lord, or thinking of the lotus feet or form of the Lord; not that I will do that later on. Now and here! Some people think I will chant later on, I will chant tomorrow. So there was a person who had made a sign ‘from tomorrow I will chant’. So whenever he would get up in the morning, he would place that sign on the wall and the first thing he could read after getting up was ‘I will chant from tomorrow’. So everyday he would read from tomorrow I will chant, from tomorrow I will chant and that tomorrow has no end and he would never chant in that mood. He thinks, ‘I will chant later on, I will chant in future, I will chant when I will be old.’ Don’t do this. The prayer of Kulashekhar is “I will chant today, I will chant now.”
I am seeing some of you elderly folks are also chanting and I am happy that you are chanting. I was thinking that you should be praying, ‘Oh Lord! Now I don’t have a big future. I don’t know how long I am going to be around. Oh Lord, please bring me, please keep my mind on Your lotus feet now.’ But this is also illusion when youngsters think, ‘No, no, I have lot of time. The old folks, they should take it seriously.’ This is not right thinking either.
One time in a press conference, Prabhupada, to one of the press person, he asked this question, ‘Swamiji, people are supposed to be getting sannyasa at the advanced age, when they are towards 70. That is when they should be taking sannyasa. But you are giving sannyasa to young disciples. They are in their 20’s and 30’s and you are giving them sannyasa. This is not fair. When they will become old, they should be given sannyasa. So Prabhupada asked him, ‘how did you find the old age? Who do you think is old?’ So they said, ‘the person who is about to die is considered old. He could die any day, any month, in one of these years, he is old. So Prabhupada said, ‘is there any guarantee that my young disciples, they would not die one of these days or one of these weeks or months or next year? There is no guarantee. Is there any guarantee?’ They said, ‘yes, Swamiji, there is no guarantee. They could also die any day in one of these years.’ So Prabhupada said, ‘so they are old, old enough to receive sannyasa.’ I am seeing that you are getting the message. So don’t postpone! We should have faith in present tense. Not in future, I will chant, I will become devotee. Who knows whether we are going to reach that future or we will stop reaching that future. So old people, either they are in the past or they are in the future mentally and as a result they do not remain in the present. In Bhagavad-Gita in one shloka Lord says, either we are thinking of the past or lamenting for the past or we are hankering for something to achieve in future and in this thought process kind of contemplation, we do not remain in the present.
So chanting is the time to chant in the present. Now I am here, I am chanting, I want to chant. Now is the time, I want to take shelter of the Lord in the form of this Holy name. Then as we chant and by chanting take shelter of the Holy name, and we are doing, mam ekam sharanam vraja (BG 18.66), then what does Lord do, aham tvam sarva papebhyo mokshayisyami ma sucah. So, whatever wrong doings we perform in the past and then reactions are awaiting us, so Krishna will stop those reactions from transpiring or taking place and as a result we have brighter future, Krishna conscious future, which we are aspiring for.
na socati na kanksati
samah sarvesu bhutesu
mad-bhaktim labhate param [BG 18.54]
na socati na kanksati, then we will become prasannatma, our atma will become prasanna,
samah sarvesu bhutesu madbhaktim labhate param
We will attain bhakti and with devotion we will perform all our activities, then no more lamentation of the past and no more mundane aspiration for the future.
So, the essence of Bhagavad Gita, or the final instructions of Bhagavad Gita or advice of Sri Krishna in Bhagavad Gita is to take shelter of Me, mam ekam saranam vraja or sarva dharman parityajya is also there. Not by karma, not by yoga, not by jnana, but only by chanting, that’s why mam ekam saranam vraja. We do this. We follow that instruction, final instruction of Bhagavad Gita, as we chant Hare Krishna. We did sarva dharman parityajya, not karmakanda dharma, jnana dharma, yoga dharma, but harer nama kevalam, mam ekam saranam vraja, we did that as we chant Hare Krishna. And then as a result, we already said, aham tvam sarva papebhyo moksayisyami ma sucah, Lord makes us mukta, liberation, Lord makes us bhakta, we become bhakta as we are chanting His Holy Name and not to worry, not to lament for the sins we had performed, the wrong doings we did.
I was remembering the prayers of queen Kunti also, some of the prayers of queen Kunti, this morning as we were chanting. Specialty of those prayers is she had offered these prayers in personal presence of the Lord. She was face to face with the Lord. They both were in Hastinapur and Lord was sitting on the chariot and this was after Kurukshetra battle and Krishna was now ready to leave for Dwaraka and Kunti has come forward and as she is seeing Lord sited on the chariot and she was praying. There is no time to share all those prayers, but I will share some.
namah pankaj nabhaya namah pankaj netraya
namah pankaj maline namaste pankajangraye (SB 1.8.22)
You have heard this prayer. So as if why there is no ifs and buts, but in fact, she is seeing the Lord and then she is informing us, broadcasting to all of us as we were not present there. She is seeing face and eyes of the Lord, Oh! namah pankaj netray, Oh lotus eyed Lord and she is seeing the garland around His neck, namah pankaj maline, Oh Lord You are wearing garland of lotus flowers.
That famous prayer is also there,
krsnaya vasudevaya devaki dandanaya ca
nandagopa kumaraya govindaya namo namah (1.8.21)
This is one of the prayers of queen Kunti. Towards the end she is also saying gangevaugham udanvantih ratim, so my thoughts that my devotion, let it flow towards You like a Ganges’ flow, like Ganges flow constantly day and night without interruption so let me devote myself unto You like that without interruption.
srnvati gayanti grinanty abhiksnasah smaranti nandanti tavehitam janah
She is encouraging, as we are in this chanting conference, srnvanti gayanti, we should do hearing, chanting, remembrance, take get pleasure in doing this. Pasyanti acirena tavakam bhava pravahoparamam padambujam, and she is also giving guarantee, okay, I am seeing Krishna is in front of me, I am seeing His lotus feet, but you could also, you will also become eligible, qualified to see these lotus feet which I am seeing if you will do srnvanti gayanti grnanty. If you will be chanting, hearing, remembering, you would also see these lotus feet of the Lord. And of course, she is adding bhava pravahoparamam, otherwise we are floating, going down the drain with the flow. This world is sansar sagar (material ocean) or sansar pravah, so this could be stopped, come ashore, come to Lord. Stop this going round and round and up and down, stop bhava pravahoparamam. Lord Vitthal, Panduranga, by placing His lotus hands on His hips, He is also giving indication, hinting at all those who come for His darshan, that water here is not that deep. You have come for My darshan, how deep is the water? Only waist deep! You could see, you have crossed this ocean and stopped the flow of going up and down and round and round. You have come to Me, now you have been saved, rescued, ma sucah, do not fear.
So keep chanting, chant and be happy!