Glories of Lord BALARAM

Lord Balaram is Lord Krishna’s beauty incarnation.

 

Three differences between Lord Krishna and Lord Balaram are.

  1. Lord Krishna is Shyama, blackish in color whereas Lord Balaram is whitish in color.
  2. Lord Krishna has flute in His hand whereas Lord BALARAM has plough and Buffalo bugle in His hands.
  3. Lord Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who takes service from everybody, whereas Lord BALARAM is Supreme in giving service.

 

 

Lord Balaram is the first expansion of Lord KRISHNA, who attracts jivas towards Lord Krishna.

 

Lord Balaram is known as servitor God, Who teaches living entities how to serve Lord Krishna.

 

Lord Balaram serves Krishna in all the five rasas..

  1. SHANTA RASA: He becomes umbrella, ornaments, dress, pillow, bed, of the Lord.
  2. DASYA RASA: Always engaged as servant of the Lord…helping Krishna to steal butter, massaging Krishna’s lotus feet when He was taking rest under a tree.
  3. VATSALYA RASA : When Krishna birthday was to be celebrated on the banks of Yamuna, Balaram warned that don’t go there is Kaliya…Balaram complained to Mother Yashoda that Krishna is eating mud…Krishna eat the mud for wanted taste the dust of the mud touched by Balaram’s body.
  4. SAKHYA RASA : Balaram used to tease Krishna by telling your father Nanda Maharaj is white, Mother Yashoda is white,…but why are you black, this is because you are adopted child:-)
  5. MADHURYA RASA: Balaram expands as sister of Radha…Anagha Manjari…and served Krishna.

 

Lord Balaram means 

  • BALA means abode of unlimited spiritual strength.
  • RAMA means abode of unlimited spiritual pleasure.

 

Without Bala from Lord Balaram it is not possible to take up spiritual life.

 

Lord Balaram had two mother’s Devaki and Rohini, because…

  1. Six children born before Balaram where marichis…who were all offenders…
  2. They were representations of Arishadvaragas, (Six enemies of the Mind) – Kama, Krodha, Lobha, Moha, Mada, Matsarya.
  3. Before Lord Krishna was to be born, Lord Balaram appeared as Seventh Child in Devaki’s womb to make ready for Krishna’s appearance.

 

Lord Balaram is called as Swayamprakash, A torchlight Who provides direction in Spiritual Life. Lord Krishna gave sword of transcendental knowledge to destroy the ignorance, the strength required to lift this sword is given by Lord Balaram, sharpening of this sword happens by engaging in service and to apply this knowledge requires Grace.

 

Lord Balaram killed various demons, which represents removal of various bad qualities.

  1. Dhenukasura killed by Balaram represents removing the burden of ignorance, concept of I and mine.
  2. Pralambasura killed by Balaram represents removing disguise..hypocrisy, egoism, lust.(enemies disguised as best friend)
  3. Romaharshana killed by Balaram represents removing Bad Character…pride.

 

Lord Balaram is called as most merciful Godhead because…

  • Came in Kali Yuga as Nityananda Prabhu…who takes people to Chaitanya…to make them receive Lord Chaitanya’s mercy.
  • Jagai and Madhai in all their previous incarnations were killed, only in Kali Yuga they were not killed, but liberated.

 

Real Raksha, protection comes from taking shelter of Lord BALARAM

Significance of the RATHA YATRA chariots in JAGANNATH PURI.

Each year in Jagannath Puri, three enormous chariots are built anew for Lord Jagannatha, Balarama and Subhardra. Over 1,000 logs are brought from the Dasapalla and Ranpur forests, and more than 100 carpenters work for two months constructing the three chariots. A local mill provides nearly 2,000 meters of cloth each year, and the chariots are radiantly draped in color. Very strong coconut fiber ropes, 8 inches in diameter, are used by the devotees to pull the chariots along the parade route. The nails, brackets and fixtures are all made locally, and the smiths work for a month on them. The ratha’s main structure (above the wheels) contains eighteen pillars and roofs. Each chariot holds nine parswadevatas (subsidiary deities), two dwarapalas (door keepers), one Sarathi (charioteer) and one presiding deity of the crest banner (dhwaja devata), and all are made of wood.

JAGANNATHBALABHADRASUBHADRA
RathaNANDIGHOSA GARUDADHWAJA KAPILDHWAJATALADHWAJADARPADALANA PADMADHWAJA
Number of wheels161412
Total number of wooden pieces832763593
Height13.5m.13.2m.12.9m.
Color of cloth wrappingsRed, YellowRed, BlueRed, Black
Guarded byGarudaVasudevJayadurga
Names of charioteersDarukaMataliArjuna
The flagTrailokyamohiniUnnaniNadambika
The horsesShankha, Balahaka, Shveta, HaridashvaTibara, Ghora, Dirghashrama, SwarnanavaRochika, Mochika, Jita, Aparajita
The ropesSankhachudaBasukiSwarnachuda
Presiding nine DeitiesVaraha, Govardhana, Krushna, Gopi – Krishna, Rama, Narayana,Trivikram, Hanuman and RudraGanesha, Kartikeya, Sarvamangala, Pralambari, Halayudha, Mrutyunjaya, Natamvara, Mukteshwar, SheshadevChandi, Chamunda, Ugratara, Vanadurga, Shulidurga, Varahi, Shyama Kali, Mangala and Vimala

 

Three great predictions of Bhaktivinoda Thakura which came True

BhaktivInoda Thakura made three predictions concerning a person and a phenomena:

His first prediction :

“A personality will soon appear,” wrote Bhaktivinoda Thakura, “and he will travel all over the world to spread the teachings of Lord Caitanya.”

His second prediction:

“Very soon the chanting of ‘Harinama sankirtana will be spread all over the world. Oh, when will that day come when people from America, England, France, Germany, Russia will take up karatals and mrdangas and chant Hare Krishna in their towns?”

The third prediction:

“When will that day come when the fair-skinned foreigners will come to Sri Mayapur-dhama and join with the Bengali Vaisnavas to chant, Jaya Sacinandana, Jaya Sacinandana. When will that day be? ”

Srila Prabhupada said it’s spiritually significant that he himself appeared in 1896, the same year Bhaktivinoda Thakura sent his book overseas. The will of Lord Caitanya, the desire of Thakura Bhaktivinoda, and the mercy of Srila Sarasvati Thakura empowered Srila A.c. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada to spread Sri Caitanya’s teachings and the chanting of Hare Krishna all over the world. Prabhupada fulfilled the Thakura’s three predictions!

Devoid of pride, full of humility, radiant with pure love for Radha-Govinda, Srila Prabhupada gave all credit to the previous acaryas. “We should take it,” said Srila Prabhupada, “that Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura was the origin of the Krishna Consciousness Movement in its pure form.”

In 1986, just one-hundred years after Bhaktivinoda Thakura’s third prediction, three-thousand “fair skinned devotees” from America, England, France, Germany, Russia, and fifty other countries gathered at the ISKCON Mayapura Chandrodaya Mandir in Sridhama Mayapur. They joined one thousand “Bengali Vaisnavas” to rock the universe by chanting Jaya Sacinandana, Jaya Sacinandana, Jaya Sacinandana, Gaura-Hari. Srila Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura ki jai!

Daily Schedule of Bhaktivinoda Thakura.

Always anxious to use every moment in loving service of Krishna, he followed a strict austere daily schedule:
Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur’s Schedule:
8 p.m.-10 p.m.             Rest (two hours)
10 p.m.-4 a.m.             Write
4 a.m.-4:30 a.m.          Rest
4:30 a.m.-7 a.m.          Chant Japa
7 a.m.-7:30 a.m.           Correspondence
7:30 a.m.-9:30 a.m.     Study sastras
9:30 a.m.-10 a.m.         Bath,prasadam (half-liter milk, fruit, 2 chapatis)
10 a.m.-1 p.m.              Court Duties
1 p.m.-2 p.m.                Refresh at home
2 p.m.-5 p.m.               Court Duties
5 p.m.-7 p.m.                Translate Sanskrit sastras to Bengali
7 p.m.-8 p.m.                Bath,prasadam (half-liter milk, rice, 2chapatis)

Summary Daily Schedule:

Sleep             3 hours
Write            8.5 hours
Japa,study   4.5 hours
Work            6 hours

LIFE IS A CHOICE : SPIRITUAL HIGHWAY OR MATERIAL DRAIN.

Excerpts from today’s Srimad Bhagavatam 7.7.39 class given by H G Jai Chaitanya Prabhu.

Translation : “One’s riches, beautiful wife and female friends, one’s sons and daughters, one’s residence, one’s domestic animals like cows, elephants and horses, one’s treasury, economic development and sense gratification indeed, even the lifetime in which one can enjoy all these material opulences—are certainly temporary and flickering. Since the opportunity of human life is temporary, what benefit can these material opulences give to a sensible man who has understood himself to be eternal? “

  1. Conclusions repeatedly said in all the Shastras – “Material life is unnecessary, useless”. But the irony is , everybody considers material life to be all in all.
  2. Situation in material world is funny. Even though body is useless and life is useless, still it has to be made useful for spiritual life.
  3. After seeing the spiritual highway and material drain, it is up to us to choose which path to choose. Having known the unnecessary path, one should choose the necessary path. Having seen the sufferings in material life, one should choose the spiritual path. Why walk in the material drain and become dirty and then complain.
  4. This choice to choose the right path is  always given to the living entities, as a mercy of the Lord. Whenever there is problem in material world, people approach Lord for help. Lord has always been kind enough and acted as the order supplier.
  5. Srimad Bhagavatam explains again and again that this material world is like chewing the chewed. This has to be reminded again and again to the living entities, so that this fact becomes deeply ingrained. For the purpose of existence of material world, material life is necessary so as to give a chance for liberation.
  6. How to convert material dirt into opportunity to advance in spiritual life? – Until one understands that we are eternal, we are a non-sense. World is a like a thorn, already a thorn has pricked us. Only way to remove the thorn is thru one more thorn. Similarly, material body is required to remove material body. This is the way to understand contradictions in the material world. Therefore, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu has given the philosophy of ” achintya bheda abheda” The principle of simultaneous one and difference.
  7. Stri means one who expands one’s attachment to material life. Therefore Shastras says that no one should become a guardian until he is in a position to deliver his dependents from the clutches of Birth & Death.
  8. One essential quality of a preacher is that, he should always secure himself first before preaching. People should feel that this devotee has got something which I don’t have.
  9. God is impartial order supplier. Just like those who pay tax for the government, enjoy the benefits. Those who don’t pay, are punished. Similarly it is the free will of living entities to decide, where he should go…
  10. If there is no spiritual satisfaction, it is very difficult to resist the temptation &  influence of Maya.
  11. Spiritualist knows that one day ultimately he has to go towards KRISHNA, therefore he immediately starts making preparations towards reaching the ultimate goal.
  12. Secret to balance in the material world –  Work for the essential requirements, and focus on actual Spiritual reality. Understanding soul and God is directly proportional to how much one has conquered Maya.
  13. Whole endeavour of humanity has been to find the known. Even physics also say that 85% of matter is dark.  But, the truth is by knowing KRISHNA, everything is known.
  14. The tendency to know something beyond matter, can come only by Spiritual Tapasya. In proportion to which we know Krishna, we get detached from Maya. Then we can experience real spiritual happiness.
  15. One price we have to pay to reach the ultimate goal is to suffer for the reactions of past sinful Karmic actions. Only way to overcome this reactions is to strengthen the kavacha and continue spiritual practices with perseverance.
  16. Little bit motivation in form of a few spiritual glimpses either through realizations, hearing Bhagavatam, Chanting Hare Krishna or through Prasadam should help one continue the journey in spiritual life.
  17. Process to handle problems in material world, is not how to avoid the problems, but learn how to touch Krishna.
  18. Biggest Tapasya in Kali-yuga is to sacrifice the hearing and talking process to hear and talk about Krishna KATHA.

All modern research finally comes back to the Vedic conclusions.

Excerpts from Srimad Bhagavatam 7.7.40 class given by H G Rasika Shekara Prabhu on 21st August, 2016
Translation : It is learned from Vedic literature that by performing great sacrifices one may elevate himself to the heavenly planets. However, although life on the heavenly planets is hundreds and thousands of times more comfortable than life on earth, the heavenly planets are not pure [nirmalam], or free from the taint of material existence. The heavenly planets are also temporary, and therefore they are not the goal of life. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, however, has never been seen or heard to possess inebriety. Consequently, for your own benefit and self-realization, you must worship the Lord with great devotion, as described in the revealed scriptures.
  1. Prahlad urging all his classmates to take up KRISHNA consciousness seriously by serving the Lord and derive the highest standard of happiness and also solve all their material problems.
  2. Everyone in the material world is trying to engage in different attempts to increase their standard of happiness, but all their attempts are resulting only in misery.
  3. All modern research finally comes back to the Vedic conclusions.. For example…Companies are now advertising customers to go back to charcoal toothbrush and toothpaste as it was used in the vedic times. Therefore Shastras should be used as manual & guiding tool for mankind.
  4. Lord appears as many incarnations to protect this knowledge of the Vedas..e.g. Lord came as Matsya avatar to protect the vedas from devastataion, Lord came as Hayagriva to bring Vedas stolen by demons madhu and kaitbha.
  5. There are certain class of people called Karma kandis..who read the Vedas, follow the Vedas to advance to heavenly planets, but miss the ultimate conclusion of Vedas of surrendering to Krishna. Even life in heavenly planets is temporary and full of miseries. All post occupied by demigods are also temporary.
  6. More a devotee sacrifices material things, more he gets mercy of the Lord. A renunciant is called Maharaj, because he has become master of his senses and has the treasure of transcendental knowledge and happiness.
  7. Tue religion doesn’t propagate violence, violence is propagated only when necessary. But, when people were killing a lot of animals based on wrong understanding of Vedas, Lord appeared as Lord Buddha and totally disregarded Vedas and preached Non-Violence as the topmost religion..
  8. But the Vedas are central to Vedic Culture, so  in order to bring back the Vedas, the Lord appeared as Shankaracharya and preached “Bhaja Govindam”.
  9. Greatest contribution of SRIMAD Bhagavatam. All kinds of tapa-trayas(three-fold miseries) will be removed and all material tribulations is ended. It takes a soul and makes him connect with KRISHNA.
  10. Dissatisfaction in life becomes of because of not being connected to Supreme Lord who is fully satisfied.
  11. Srila Prabhupada’s greatest contribution was translating the Vedic literatures to English language applicable to the current modern context.
  12. By hearing SRIMAD Bhagavatam from the mouth of pure devotee, philosophy of KRISHNA consciousness is deeply ingrained in the heart.
  13. Guru can see beyond the externals and guide the disciple about the future reality. By coming in touch with a pure devotee, one gets a clue to go back to Godhead.
  14. Nature of this world anityam asukham, dukhalaya ashashvatam.
  15. Self-realization means understanding KRISHNA and our relationship with Him.
  16. The best purpose of Vedic literature is served by chanting Hare Krishna as recommended by Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Anybody who is doing this is called a Vedantist, one who has understood the ultimate conclusion of the Vedas.
  17. Chanting and devotional service is not an option, one has to take up Krishna consciousness seriously for his own benefit to come out of the repeated cycle of birth and death.
  18. By regular hearing and focusing on the ultimate goal, one does not worry too much about day to day material disturbances.

Envious of others devotional service will dry up our devotional service.

Excerpts from Srimad Bhagavatm 3.15.19 by H G Rajiv Locan Prabhu.
“Although flowering plants like the mandära, kunda, kurabaka, utpala, campaka, arëa, punnäga, nägakeçara, bakula, lily and pärijäta are full of transcendental fragrance, they are still conscious of the austerities performed by tulasé, for tulasé is given special preference by the Lord, who garlands Himself with tulasi leaves.”
  1. In spiritual world even birds and flowers are conscious of service to KRISHNA.
  2. Service attitude is central in spiritual world. Training now in service attitude very important to go Back to Godhead.
  3. Attitude of service very important in spiritual world, when other devotees are rendering better service than me, still no enviousness and jealousy.
  4. Srila Prabhupada had to face so many envious people..American government, Indian government and his own God brothers. But, he was not envious of them.
  5. Devotees should not be envious of those who are envious towards them.
  6. “Appreciating other devotees service will flourish our devotional service.”
  7. “Envious of others devotional service will dry up our devotional service.”
  8. In spiritual world there are many fragrant and beautiful flowers, still they glorify Tulasi maharani.
  9. If living entity becomes envious, he can’t get out of this material world for millions and millions of birth.
  10. Hiranyakashipu became so envious, that he was ready to kill his own own.
  11. Krishna spoke to Arjuna because he was non-envious.(Anasuya). So, was given the most confidential knowledge that Krishna is Supreme Personality of Godhead and we have to serve Him.
  12. Mayavadi’s are envious of KRISHNA. They want to become one with God.
  13. In spiritual world there is healthy competition. Spiritual consciousness makes them feel inspired by seeing other devotees doing better service. Vaikuntha world means I should try more and more to please KRISHNA. Humility is very important and appreciated by the Lord.
  14. Envy can be used on non- devotees. When somebody criticizes KRISHNA, we have to become hard and harsh.
  15. When devotees become angry on non-devotees it for their good.
  16. A devotee should be so well versed that he should destroy all arguments, or cut off his head.
  17. In transcendental world a devotee is not envious of other devotee because of excellence.
  18. In spiritual everything is absolute, no subordination..but out of humility devotees accept subordination.
  19. When we accept our inferior position, it is not because of envy.
  20. When a disciple asked Srila Prabhupada –  Why Everybody loves Srila Prabhupada? , He replied – Because he loved everybody.
  21. A devotee can check how much he is advanced, by seeing how much he has become free from enviousness.
  22. Lord.or spiritual master doesn’t see quantity of service, but how much it was done in a pure consciousness.

Preaching is the TAPASYA for devotees

Excerpts from Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.26 class by H G Jai Chaitanya Prabhu given on 11th February 2017.
Translation : “O my Lord, O Supreme, because I was born in a family full of the hellish material qualities of passion and ignorance, what is my position? And what is to be said of Your causeless mercy, which was never offered even to Lord Brahma, Lord Shiva or the goddess of fortune, Lakshmi? You never put Your lotus hand upon their heads, but You have put it upon mine.”
  1. Prahlad offering his gratitude to Lord Narasimha for the causeless mercy bestowed upon him, which was not even offered to BRAHMA, Shiva and Lakshmi
  2. The Supreme Lord is called the original creator, because Brahma initiates only the creation process, but doesn’t know how creation is happening…Similarly, our actions in the material world are only a starter, we are not aware how results are manifesting….
  3. Mode of ignorance doesn’t kick start anything good for the body, it gives more and more foolishness and misery to the body. Ignorance cover is very thick.
  4. Only in Sattva Guna does all Godliness comes and also knowledge about something beyond the body.
  5. “Perfection” is not quality of Sattva Guna, it is born out of Rajo guna..example.. (Duryodhana was a perfect administrator, Westerner’s are good in administration and management…)
  6. For a child born from a Sattvic womb, Sattvic Brahminical family…has all the necessary facility of becoming a Good Brahmana.
  7. Prahlad telling that his body and mind is not even sattvic, but still he came a recipient of Lord’s mercy. This was because Prahlad was a preacher…
  8. Devotees go to people in Rajo and Tamo guna..and glorify the Lord…therefore devotees are given extra mercy…because they are preaching..they are given more mercy than Lakshmi, Brahma and Shiva..
  9. Narasimha is the deity of the Preachers….Lord doesn’t see the perfection in preachers,..
  10. Srila Prabhupada’ followers have special mercy, because Srila Prabhupada declared anybody chanting 16 rounds, following 4 regulative principles and staying in the movement will be taken Back to Godhead.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  11. In Gaudiya Vaishnavas.. we belong to Nityananda Parampara…the preaching Parampara…and the most merciful parampara…
  12. Difference between Chaitanya and Nityananda…One is declared Mahavadanyaya and other is undeclared Mahavadanyaya.
  13. Sometimes ISKCON is criticized for want of scholars, Vedic authorities, Deity worshippers,…that is not ISKCON is meant for…ISKCON is meant to preach the glories of the Lord.
  14. Devotees who are preaching to families,Folk, Congregation… have to deal with a lot of problems..Will get the mercy of the Lord. Because, the Lord is duty bound to honor the words of His Pure Devotees.
  15. Prahlad is not surprised with Lord’s mercy with pride, but with humility.
  16. Prahlad qualities…innocent, daring, tolerant, humility,…
  17. Material happiness is not good, because people who give this happiness are themselves not happy…example…Demigods sanctioning material opulences are themselves not happy and astrologers don’t even know about their future…
  18. Nothing is achieved without Tapasya…For Devotees preaching…is their Tapasya…Traveling, Staying in uncomfortable places,meeting with puffed up people, convincing them do something for the Lord, without getting pride, living amidst maya…Going out for preaching should be taken as Sadhana.
  19. Association with material world..is poisonous…It is very important for devotees to get purified daily by Chanting, Reading, Hearing & Serving devotees
  20. Devotees should Cultivate taste for holy name and have compassion for living entities by preaching.
  21. Devotees way of seeing Rich people…Rich person is not using the opulence provided for a a higher purpose, but will suffer in the future for his current actions.

Everybody’s CSR responsibility.. – Chanting, Service and Reading.

Excerpts from Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.20 lecture by H G Rasika Shekara Prabhu.

Translation :My dear Lord, everyone in this material world is under the modes of material nature, being influenced by goodness, passion and ignorance. Everyone—from the greatest personality, Lord Brahmä, down to the small ant—works under the influence of these modes. Therefore everyone in this material world is influenced by Your energy. The cause for which they work, the place where they work, the time when they work, the matter due to which they work, the goal of life they have considered final, and the process for obtaining this goal—all are nothing but manifestations of Your energy. Indeed, since the energy and energetic are identical, all of them are but manifestations of You.”

  1. Everybody in the material world from topmost personality Brahma to bottom most living entity ant are influenced by three modes of nature. These three modes are the energies of Lord.
  2. Vision of a devotee – Energy and Energetic are always identical. Devotee sees only the Lord in all activities of living entities.
  3. Srila Prabhupada – A class of scientists studying nature have figured out lot of natural laws. But, they have become blind to the fact that there is A Law-maker behind these laws. Scientists have captured by effects, but are unaware of the cause.
  4. No phenomenon in this world is out of control, everything is controlled by the Lord. Out of control means… out of my control, for every action happens by the inspiration of the Supreme Lord from within.
  5. Inspiration for actions are given by the Lord, in accordance to the mentality of the individual. Similarly, thoughts are also inspired by the Lord based on past desires of the individual.
  6. Based on Upadhis(designation)…mentality of the individual is cultivated.
  7. Prahlad was a Uttama adhikari class of devotee.
  8. The three classes of devotees are.
    1. Kanishta adhikari – Have Feeble faith… Komala Shraddha. Only see themselves and the Lord.
    2. Madhyama adhikari – Have Full faith in the Lord. Even though not well versed in Scriptures, but have full faith in the scriptures. They make friends only with devotees, Feel compassionate to the ignorant and preach to them. They avoid associating with those who are envious in nature.
    3. Uttama adhikari – Have firm faith in the Lord. He doesn’t discriminate, he sees everybody as serving the Lord in different capacities.He preaches vigorously to make everybody as devotee. He  comes to the platform of madhyama adhikari to preach.
  9. Specialty of an Acharya…to convert what is material into spiritual.
  10. Chanting is a process to associate with KRISHNA and allow the pure consciousness of the Lord to influence our mentality.
  11. Everybody’s CSR responsibility.. – Chanting, Service and Reading.
  12. Srila Prabhupada created ISKCON center’s to give people a glimpse of spiritual happiness.
  13. Reading Srila Prabhupada books are meant to give relief to the mind from the pains of material existence.