JKY e-Magazine, Issue No. 3                       September 2009

top design       

In This Issue
Gems of wisdom by Shree Maharajji
Special Message
Current News
The Pillars of Devotion - Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj
"Secrets of Spiritual Sadhana" - Swami Mukundananda
Gems of wisdom
by Shree Maharajji

Maharajji Smiling 2

If you desire spiritual advancement, you must trust a Guru completely, allow Him to take you by the hand and guide you to God.  You have heard that faith can move mountains.  Let these words become your own experience by trusting a Guru in the same way as you trust worldly people.
***********
We wash our clothes with clean water to rid them of impurities. If we wash them with dirty water, they will only get worse. Similarly, we have to wash our hearts clean by inviting only pure personalities in. If we let the impure into our heart, it will only get worse.
***********
The only pure personalities are God and Saints. Therefore, it is in our best interest to fill our hearts with God, His names, His forms, His pastimes, His qualities, His abodes and, most of all, His Devotees...the Saints!
***********
At the time of death, wherever your mind is attached, you will attain that object. That is why the Vedas and Saints advice us to remember God constantly. You never know when your last moment will arrive. If you remember God at that moment, you will attain Golok
***********
Devotion done only by our material senses is not admirable. This type of devotion is called as Anasang Bhakti. Anasang means without attachment of mind. This type of Bhakti will not work. True Bhakti will always involve the mind.
***********
Special Message

Check out the latest lectures, yoga and meditation videos, bhajans, subtle body relaxation and much more on our YouTube channel!

Upcoming Events

Swamiji Upcoming

Spiritual Art of Managing Your Mind
 
Sept 19th and 20th
The Hindu Temple, NY
Click for more details

Synthesis of Spirituality and Materialism
Sept 25th
Dallas, TX
An exclusive evening with Swami Mukundananda
Click here for details

Swami Mukundananda's
Last Lecture of USA Tour 2009


Topic - "Importance of Hinduism and Buddhism"
Sept 26th
Lanham, MD
Click here for details

Special Satsang Programs with Swamiji

        Sept 21st - Connecticut
        Sept 22nd - Boston
        Sept 23rd - Boston
        Sept 24th - Dallas

Click here for details

You can find more information about other programs in the events section of our website.
Click here for events
Quick Links



 Current News

radha rani

JKP News

Maharajji celebrated Radhashtami on 27th August in Rangeeli Mahal, Barsana. He then celebrated 'Chatti' (6th day of birth) in Delhi and 'Barau' (12th day of birth) in Mangarh.

Annual Sadhana Program

Mangarh village in Pratapgarh district of Uttar Pradesh, India, is Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj's chosen place of appearance.

It is here that Shree Maharajji conducts a month long intensive Sadhana program for the benefit of all devotees.

SMJI DHOLAK

This year's program will start on Sept 28th (Dushera) and will conclude on the 4th of Nov.

Sharad Poornima, the  auspicious night of Shree Maharajji's appearance is celebrated with great enthusiasm in Mangarh. This year, it will be celebrated on the 3rd of October.

Bhakti Bhavan

Bhakti Bhavan
(Artist Impression)

A new meditation hall, 'Bhakti Bhavan' is being built in Bhakti Dham, Mangarh to accommodate the increasing number of devotees yearning to attend the Sadhana camps in October and Holi in March. It is estimated to seat more than 10,000 devotees at a time and will be one of the largest prayer halls in India.

JKY News

Dallas Retreat


Dallas Retreat

A long and hard prayer was finally answered! Swamiji graced over 150 lucky devotees at the Camp Carter YMCA Retreat over the labour weekend. With Yog, Meditation, Subtle-Body Relaxation, Kirtans, Lectures and lots of activities for the kids, it was a holiday to remember!



Hindu Mandir Executive Conference

Hindu Mandir

The recently concluded Hindu Mandir Executives' 4th Annual Conference took place in Baltimore, Maryland between September 11 and September 13th, 2009. Swami Mukundananda was honored with the inaugural speech, and addressed the conference on the topic: Application of Management Science to Help Mandir Development.


Swamiji lectures at MassBay Community College


Swami Mukundananda was invited by MassBay Community College, MA as a guest speaker to share his knowledge on the topic, The Goal Of Human Birth. This special event was organized on the 17th of September. Swamiji addressed a gathering of students and academicians over a Video Conference.

Orissa Health Camp

Health Camp

A Health check up camp was held on Sept 6th in Orissa to assist the poor and needy of the villages close to Cuttack.


Radhashtami

Radhashtami

Radhashtami celebration was held in Cuttack ashram on the 27th of August.

Orissa Yog Camp

Yog Tara

Jagadguru Kripalu Yog organized Yog camps in Cuttack, Jajpur, Berhampur and other towns of Orissa. The camps were conducted over two months by our expert JKY instructors.
Forward this email to a Friend
The Editor
Jagadguru Kripalu Yog

XVII/3305, 1st Floor,
Ranjit Nagar, Near PUSA,
New Delhi - 110008
India

PO Box 4003
Santa Clara, CA 95056
USA
Welcome to the
 Jagadguru Kripalu Yog e-Magazine
The Pillars of Devotion

            SMJI Sadhana 

There are 8.4 million species on the earth planet. Amongst them, the human form of life is the only one where spiritual practice is made possible to get rid of all sorrows and attain eternal happiness. This human life is so rare that even celestial Gods long for it. This human form can only be attained by the ultimate grace of God.

We are already aware that Supreme God, Shree Krishna is synonymous with Bliss. Therefore, this proves that the attainment of God is the only goal of human life, since we all seek happiness. We also know that the only way to achieve this is to practice Bhakti (Devotion). In Bhakti, all we need to do is remember God in our mind and keep increasing our love for Him. We have to increase the longing for His Divine vision. This alone has the power to purify our hearts and when the process is complete, our guru will bestow upon us the priceless Divine love of Shree Radha Krishna.

There are many types of Bhakti, but three of them are most significant: - Shravan Bhakti, Kirtan Bhakti and Smaran Bhakti.

Shravan Bhakti means to listen to knowledge related to God, understand it and follow it. To chant, sing and immerse ourselves in the Divine names of God, His virtues, His glories and His pastimes is known as Kirtan Bhakti.

Smaran Bhakti is to deeply meditate on the form of God in your mind. This is called as Roopdhyan. Every individual is qualified and has the right to do Bhakti, unlike other paths (Gyan and Yog) where there are many rules, conditions and pre-requisites.

There are three main conditions which every follower of the path Bhakti has to fulfill.

trinādapi sunīchen tarorapi sahiṣhṇunā |
amāninā mānden kīrtanīyaḥ sadā hariḥ ||

Humility trinādapi sunīchen - A devotee must be more humble than a blade    of grass. A devotee must realize and consider oneself to be more humble than a blade of grass. When you crush grass under your feet, it never protests or complaints. It bends as directed and then becomes straight after a while. In the same way, one should always be humble in his/her behavior.

Forbearing / Tolerance tarorapi sahiṣhṇunā  - A devotee must be more forgiving/tolerant than a tree that bears fruits. When someone throws a stone at the tree, it does not get angry but in return, gives us a fruit, is it not amazing! It replies to your anger with a sweet fruit for your benefit! Svayam na khādanti phalāni vṛikṣhāḥ. The tree itself does not eat the fruits. It feeds everybody.

Respect for others - A devotee should not be looking for praise or compliments, but rather have respect for others. A devotee should always give respect to others and should not desire respect in return.
 
In this way, one should lead a life filled with humility, tolerance and respect for others. A devotee should always chant, sing and remember God, His pastimes, His grace and virtues with affinity every moment.

Having respect for others without seeking any compliments, being humble and always forgiving, all of these virtues can be expressed in one word, Humility. It is the foundation of devotion. Devotion starts, stays, and develops only on the basis of humbleness. Any touch of pride and ego spoils it, just like a pinch of salt spoils a cake. Pride or ego is an obstacle in devotion. Humbleness of a devotee develops dedication to his master and dependence on God's Grace.

We like to be appreciated by others. This is a major reason for a person's downfall spiritually. We should try to become a good person, rather than expecting others to appreciate us even though we might have ill-feelings for others. When someone criticizes or scolds us, we start feeling bad. We get angry and annoyed with that person and we sometimes turn hostile towards that person. We harbor hatred and negative feelings for others. This kind of feeling is very harmful for us.

If we continuously remember people or incidents that increase negative feelings inside us, then we are causing harm to ourselves by dirtying our mind. Our aim should be practice the art of continuously remembering God and Guru, who are pure and Divine personalities. This alone will cleanse our heart and mind. In our lives, we have developed a one-sided attitude where we only like to be appreciated and not criticized.
 
Once, a person started to abuse and criticize Lord Buddha and continued to do so for the whole day. By evening, he could hardly speak a word. Lord Buddha advised His disciple, "Give him something to eat. He has been at work since morning and he must be tired". The man abusing Lord Buddha was completely surprised. He said to Lord Buddha, "Are You made of stone? I have been humiliating you the whole day and you give me food to eat?"

Lord Buddha replied, "Tell me something my friend. If you give something to a person and he does not accept it, what will happen to that gift? It will remain with the same person who gifted it in the first place. In the same way, whatever abuse you hurled at me has remained with you since I did not accept it. If you had spoken a few words about God, His virtues, His pastimes or His abodes, I would have gladly accepted them."
 
Hence, we should aim to develop a liking for criticism and resist the temptation to be appreciated. When we reach such a stage where we like to be criticized and dislike being complimented, then we will progress at a very fast pace.

We should always remember a very important fact. Till the moment we attain God, we will be under the influence of Maya and we will continue to suffer from the diseases of the mind like desire, anger, jealousy, hatred, ego, etc. We have also accumulated innumerable sins from our past lives and all of these will be destroyed only with the attainment of God.

sarvadharmān parityajya māmekam śharaṇam vraja aham tvām sarvapāpebhyo mokṣhayiṣhyāmi mā śhuchaḥ
 
If someone calls us names or criticizes us as an angry, sinful or a bad person, then what is wrong with it?  It is a fact and we should happily accept all these faults and try to rectify them.

Here is an interesting analogy. When we introduce a policeman as a 'Policeman', he never complains or asks us to identify him as a 'Director General'. He is happy to be called as a 'Constable'. In the same way, when we people are sinners, why do we feel bad about being criticized? 

Saint Tulsidas says:

  nindak niyare rākhiye āṅgan kuṭi chhavāy

The one who points out our faults or mistakes is our well-wisher. When a snake or a scorpion creeps up our body, and someone alerts us, we call him our well wisher. 
 
There is one more point that we should remember. As long as we remember God, only that period (moment) can be considered as 'good' or 'right' deeds. The rest, we can conclude that only bad deeds are performed since that time (moments) are not dedicated to God. Have we ever realized how many hours do we think of God in a 24-hour day?
 
We must repeatedly think and resolve that even if someone criticizes us, we will not feel bad. Practice makes a man perfect. Everyday at night, before we sleep, we must recall, "How many times have I erred today? How many times did I commit the same mistake?" The next day, we will be more alert and cautious. In this way, by constant and relentless practice, we will stop feeling bad when others talk ill of us.

Shree Krishna resides in our heart and notices each and every idea of ours. We should not get hurt or feel bad or get disturbed, because His Grace is dependent on our mind being detached from worldly feelings and completely attached in Him.

Constant remembrance of this thought will lessen our faults, and at the same time, we will attempt to remember God. We should not have any ill feelings towards the one who criticizes us because Shree Krishna resides in his heart also. Be neutral with the one who finds fault in you and do not have a feeling of hatred towards anyone. 
 
Shed tears by this saying prayer again and again:
  
yadi dainyam tvatkṛipāheturnatadasti mamāṇvapi
tām kṛipām karu rādheśh! yayā te dainyamāpnuyām 

It means "O Shree Krishna! If you bestow your grace on humble ones then I am not at all humble. Therefore, grace me in such a way that I develop the feeling of being humble and shed tears." Remember that there is no way out of this and it is absolutely mandatory to practice this Sadhana, as human life is temporary and momentary.
 
Eventually by constant practice, our faults will vanish.  Hence, with practice, all our faults will slowly and gradually vanish and you will feel calm and peaceful.
Secrets of Spiritual Sadhana

 swamiji prav2

Continuing from the last issue...
 
These are the next two lines of "Sadhana Karu Pyare" series.
 
pratham śhraddhā yukt ho jā śharaṇ guru pad pyāre guru kī buddhi me.ṁ joṛ nij buddhi, hai śharaṇ yaha pyāre
 
In this verse, Shree Kripaluji Maharaj teaches us how to practice Sadhana (Devotion). He says, we should first faithfully surrender to a Guru (a God-realized Saint whom we have chosen to be our Spiritual Master). We should wholeheartedly follow His every instruction and teaching. This is the true beginning of Sadhana or spiritual practice.  By surrendering ourselves to a Guru, we begin our spiritual journey.
 
In the material world, we gain knowledge by trusting the words of people with a higher intellect. Let us suppose that a person without any knowledge of law visits an advocate. The advocate teaches him how to tackle questions in a court to escape penalties. If the person does exactly as told by his advocate, he might win the case. We see that by having faith in the advocate's words, the person overcomes his challenges. 

Similarly, when we are sick, we completely trust a doctor for our treatment without having any knowledge of medicine. We follow his instructions with full faith to get well. If we take medicine according to our wish, then it could be harmful to us. Even at school, we follow the words of people with a higher intellect (teachers), and complete our education.


We have to apply the same principle in the spiritual realm also. First, we have to search for a true Saint. Till we find a true Saint (God-realized Saint) we have to keep searching for Him. Once we find and accept such a Guru, we must stop searching and visiting other Saints. We have to surrender our mind to that Guru and do exactly as He instructs, without any questions or arguments. This is true or complete surrender - surrender of the mind.
 
Arjun committed the same mistake as above, with respect to the point of surrender of the mind. At the start of the great war (Mahabharat), Arjun said "O Shree Krishna! I do not know what I have to do. You are my Guru and my shelter." Shree Krishna said "If you consider me as your Guru, then I order you to go to war". Arjun replied "That is alright but..."

Here we see that Arjun applies his mind (intellect) against the wishes of his Guru. He is not following his Guru's instructions. Shree Krishna replies "If you use your mind then why do you consider me your Guru? Arjun says, "If I kill, it will be considered as a sin and the wives of soldiers will become widows. Their next generation will suffer." Shree Krishna replies, "If you know more than me, then why don't you become the Guru, and I will be your disciple?"

Accepting a saint as a Guru implies, "I do not know anything. You are my master (guide) and hence I am surrendering my mind (and intellect) to you."


So, in this way we have to surrender our mind to our Guru, and govern our intellect according to His teachings and instructions.

Shree Krishna said in Geeta-
 
aj˝aśhchāśhraddhdānasya sa˝śhayātmā vinashyati | nāyam lokosti na paro na sukham sa˝shayātmanaḥ |

"A sceptic or the one who doubts the authenticity of the spiritual path is bound to fall down". The one who has no faith in God or Guru is destined to fall down. That person will neither be happy in this world, nor can he aim to attain happiness in the spiritual realm. Even in this material world, we survive on the basis of faith, which is the pillar of our lives. For ex., we work all day in an office in the hope and faith that at the end of the month we will get paid. If we begin to doubt whether we will be paid or not, then we will not be able work.

Similarly, when we deposit money at the bank, the cash is presented at the counter to the cashier. The banker counts the money while you wait outside. Finally, he gives you a receipt/voucher. Now, if you begin to doubt the banker and say, "Why don't you give me receipt first, I will then give you the money"? The banker will surely be surprised and will advice you that it does not work that way. So, without faith there is no transaction.

 
Even in the spiritual realm, faith plays a very important role. It is only on the basis of faith that we can surrender to our Guru. We should have a firm faith that, whatever our Guru instructs is for our own benefit. We should have this unwavering belief that our Guru will never cheat or betray us. A Saint always wishes the best for any person, so whatever He advices or instructs is for the welfare of that person. When we gain complete faith in His words, then we will surrender to Him blind-folded and without any fear.

Ved Vyas said -
 
dhāvannimīlya vā netre, naskhalennapatediha
 
"Bhakti is such a Divine path that you can embrace  it blind folded."

God Himself protects his devotee or Bhakt in this path. If we take one step towards God, He will take many more towards us. Be faithful and you will undoubtedly receive His Grace in the form of true devotional feelings. Hence, Faith is the foundation of surrender on which we can move ahead in the spiritual path.

The Bible says:
 
We walk by faith and not by sight.

This means we move towards God on the basis of faith and not what we perceive with our material senses. In the beginning, we can only associate with a Guru and cannot meet God directly. So, we have to first build that trust in a Guru.

There is a very good story related to faith. Once upon a time a Saint and his disciple were traveling. To beat the afternoon heat, they decided to rest under a tree. It so happened that the Guru woke up in between and to his surprise, saw a vicious snake about to sting his disciple. At that very moment, Guru decided to kill the snake. Startled, the snake said "Don't kill me. I cannot rest in peace till I drink his blood to avenge his actions from a past life." The Guru replied, "If you want his blood, I will give it you, do not bite him." The snake agreed to this deal.

So the Guru held a knife at his sleeping disciple's neck, to draw blood for the snake. Meanwhile, the disciple woke up and saw his Guru sitting on his chest and cutting his neck with a knife. The disciple was not at all worried. He was completely relaxed. He closed his eyes and went back to sleep. The Guru continued to cut one of the veins and gave the snake what it asked for. 

When the disciple finally woke up, his Guru asked him "I held a knife at your neck, yet you did not doubt my intentions. Why?" The disciple answered "Guruji, I know that you are my well-wisher and you will always think of my benefit. That is why I was totally relaxed and slept peacefully."The Guru said "Very Good Son! Well done. You have made me proud today."
 
If anybody can develop such a strong faith in a Guru then God realization is not very far. But it is difficult for a disciple to have this kind of faith in the preliminary stages, even if the Guru is a God-realized Saint. This is because the disciple is under the influence of Maya (eternally existing, lifeless, cosmic power of God) and a Guru is beyond Maya. 

That is why in the beginning, a disciple tries to judge the capabilities of a Guru and starts doubting or arguing with his Guru's instructions. "Why did Guruji order me to do this job?  should I do this or not?" The disciple questions and argues in his mind, but the Guru also knows his disciple's thoughts. He knows that a child learns to walk step by step.

What is the meaning of true surrender? Shree Maharajji tells us to use our mind in accordance with the desire of our Guru (unite our mind with that of our Guru). That alone is the true surrender of the mind. If we say that "Guruji, I am your disciple and under your shelter", Guruji says "Ok then, do this task". If we reply, "No Guruji, I cannot do this", then this is not true surrender. 

King Harishchandra demonstrated true surrender to his Guru, Sage Vishvamitra, who asked him to give away all his wealth. Harishchandra surrendered all his wealth without an argument. Vishvamitra again asked for ten thousand gold coins. Harishchandra was penniless, yet he never refused. All he said was "I want some time to carry out your instruction". He worked hard but could not collect the required money. He then sold himself and started working in a cemetery. In this way he paid the money and fulfilled the desire of his Guru.

After this incident, Harishchandra's son died of a snake bite. Harishchandra's wife came to the graveyard with her son's body and said "I want to cremate the body but I do not have the money for it. Harishchandra said "I cannot disobey my master. Instead of money you can give me a part of your clothes." 
 
At that very moment God and Guru appeared in front of them. His Guru said "Stop! This is enough. You have exceeded your Guru's expectations and set the finest example of surrender to a Guru."

Therefore, Kripaluji Maharaj writes in 'Radha Govind Geet' -
 
guru āj˝ā pālan hī govind rādhe |
hariśhchandra ko golok dilā de ||
 
By faithfully obeying Guru's instructions, Harishchandra attained Golok. 

So, surrender of the mind alone is true surrender.