Lord Chaitanyas gift of love is more important than his divinity We leave it to our readers to decide how to deal with Mahaprabhu. The Vaishnavas have accepted Him as the great Lord, Shri Krishna Himself. Those who are not prepared to accept this perspective may think of Lord Chaitanya as a noble and holy teacher. That is all we want our readers to believe. We make no objection if the reader does not believe His miracles, as miracles alone never demonstrate Godhead. Demons like Ravana and others have also worked miracles and these do not prove that they were gods. It is unlimited love and its overwhelming influence that would be seen in God Himself. - Bhaktivinode Thakur, Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu: His Life and Precepts (1896; reprint, Madras: Sree Gaudiya Math, 1984), 60-61.
Lord Chaitanyas gift of love is more important than his divinity Bhaktivinoda Thakura underscores that the most important gifts of Gaudiya Vaishnavism are not so much the knowledge of the divinity of Lord Chaitanya as the love evident in his activities and accessible through his teachings.
Set consistent, logical limits and are ready to enforce them. Yet they spend time explaining reasons for the limits and teaching their children how to make good decisions on their own. Do what I do, and I explain to you why
Qualities of Authoritative Parents: Show a balance of love and discipline. When setting limits or requiring specific behavior, they take the effort to explain why. Theyre consistent in dealing with their children, and they teach by example.
Scriptural Examples Neglectful – Dhruvas father Utthanapada; Permissive – Dhritarashtra; Authoritarian – Hiranyakashipu; Authoritative – Bhaktivinoda T
Essence of leadership Balance between love & discipline Emphasize principles, not preferences
BST – SP differences No pictures in books No western dress for preaching Nityananda Prabhu on altar Reverse order of guru-parampara
Why Difficult without KC… Principles in goodness, priorities in passion, practices in ignorance
Be adept to adopt and adapt Adopt principles Adapt preferences
Be adept to adopt and adapt Devotional adepts grasp the core of the philosophy: the heart of Krishna, a heart longing to love us and be loved by us. Due to this inner harmony with Krishna, they know how to express and experience Krishnas love in all situations in a way that is practical and appealing to the emotional and intellectual ethos of the times. Thus, they become receivers and radiators of divine love, with their radiations emanating at the frequency at which the contemporary peoples hearts are vibrating.
Be adept to adopt and adapt By observing, serving and learning from such an adept, we too can gradually become adept and develop a spiritual sixth sense to know what to adopt and what to adapt.
Carrying on the legacy of a charismatic leader 1.Transfer of charisma 2.Routinization of charisma
Overpopulation - space? Every man, woman, and child (about 6 billion total) could be placed within the 210, 038 square miles of France, with each person having about 975 square feet of space.
Overpopulation - food? By practicing the best agricultural methods now in use, the world's farmers could raise enough food to provide a meat-centered diet for a population ten times greater than the present one. If people would be satisfied with an equally nourishing but mostly vegetarian diet, a population thirty times greater than the current one could be fed. - University of California's Division of Agricultural Science study
Overpopulation or mismanagement? In the early 1970s there was some famine in sub-Saharan Africa, but studies have shown that every country affected also had, within its own borders, sufficient agricultural resources to feed its own people… much of the best land was being misused for production of cash export crops. - Frances Moore Lappi in Food First
Meat-eating: From one niyamagraha to another No exception to the rule: To every rule there is an exception Eg. Apad-dharma Principles – Compass; Rules – Roads Eg. Rules about yajnas with animal sacrifices were roads to move people towards God consciousness
Different ways of looking & naming The power of Sankarshana = the power of gravitation Eg. Nobel Laureate Roger Sperry: why does a car move?
Different ways of looking & naming Krishna pushes the button of creation and starts a chain reaction Top-down causation vs bottom-up causation
The Singular Lord acts in Plural Ways Cause of malaria Level of Causality CauseRemedy ImmediateMosquito biteScience RemoteBad karmaKarma-kanda UltimateForgetfulness of Krishna Bhakti-yoga
We need food for the mind and ear If our endeavor (prayäsa) is not to inquire about the Absolute Truth, we will simply increase our endeavor to satisfy our artificial needs. Hunger vs Pseudo-hunger: Eat for nutrition vs eat for recreation All specific hunger is usually pseudo- hunger
Soma = Liquor? Western Indologists approach to Vedic culture: 1.Downsize – Not so large 2.Postdate – Not so old 3.Downgrade – Not so good Eg. Max Mueller – sannyasi should cut cows
Soul Subtle Body Gross Body Three levels of being
Soul Subtle Body Gross Body: dead on the departure of the soul Ghost: Soul with subtle body How a person becomes a ghost
Soul Gross Body Possessed person Soul Possessing ghost How possession works
Is the milking of the earth-cow figurative? Historically earth took that form at that time, so that action of milking applied literally at that time. That same action when understood figuratively reveals a principle that holds true even today.
Are all these species fictional or real? Science keeps discovering unexpected life forms eg. life-forms deep inside the earth. The orthodox magazine Scientific American admitted, "Long-standing scientific dogma held that this realm was essentially sterile. But that belief, as it turns out, was wrong."? "Microbes Inside the Earth," in Scientific American [online journal] (October 1996; available from http//www.sciam.com) Scientists have now recovered organisms from depths extending to almost two miles under Earth's surface, at temperatures as high as 75 degrees Celsius.
Are all these species fictional or real? Heat-loving microbes, called thermophiles. are the best-studied extremists. They can easily reproduce and grow in temperatures exceeding 45 degrees C. Surpassing them, however, are hyperthermophiles, which flourish above 100 degrees C and derive their nutrition from water and rock. Karl O. Setter and his colleagues at the University of Regensburg in Germany have isolated more than fifty species of these super heat-lovers, who live without oxygen or light. The current champion inhabits undersea rock chimneys called smokers. This foremost hyperthermophile, called Pyrolobus fumarii, reproduces most comfortably at 105 degrees C, but can get the job done even at 113. Below 90 degrees C, however, it can't tolerate the cold.
Are all these species fictional or real? Psychrophiles go the other way-they love cold. In July 1997 a deep-sea submarine team observed dense colonies of pinkish worms living inside mounds of methane ice on the ocean floor. The researchers, geochemists from Texas A & M University. had allowed for the possibility of bacteria colonies. But never did they expect to find animals-with a fully developed digestive tract-moving about in these icy deposits, at such high pressure and low temperatures. Then, in 1999, out from ocean dredgings in the South Atlantic, emerged the largest single-celled organism ever found. Thousands of times bigger than the usual bacteria, at 0.75 millimeters wide, it can be easily seen with the naked eye. Although most forms of life cannot live in an environ of hydrogen sulfide, this entity feasts on sulfur. The scarcity of oxygen is no obstacle-the creature "breathes" nitrates instead, and can store them in a sack.
Are all these species fictional or real? Scientists have discovered colonies of microbes 12,000 feet under the ice of Antarctica. Not only are these creatures uninhibited by the frigid tempera tures, but also they are undeterred by the complete lack of sunlight. Conventional wisdom holds that sunlight is the usual source of energy for life. "Extremophiles" are now known to flourish in the most inconceivably hot, cold, acidic, or alkaline environs.
Nature of scientific knowledge 1. The more scientists know, the more they realize how little they know – Science conquered space – and realized how little it knew about space. To the uninformed, space missions proved human greatness. To the well-informed, they showed human smallness. Space research reveals that there are more stars in the universe than all the grains of sand on all the beaches of earth, and our sun is just one of these cosmic grains. No wonder former President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science Kenneth R Boulding admitted, Cosmology… is likely to be very insecure because it studies a very large universe with a small and biased sample.
Nature of scientific knowledge 2. The more scientists know, the more they realize what they previously knew was wrong – Newton' laws were considered bedrock truths of physics till they were found inapplicable in the microscopic and the macroscopic realms. Quantum physics was developed to explain the atomic world, and relativistic physics for the cosmic. But then both of them turned out to be violently contradictory. As both have to coexist at the origin of the universe – when both the microscopic and the macroscopic were one, science had the formidable challenge of devising with a Theory of Everything (ToE) to unify these irreconcilable pillars of science.
History of Theory of Everything 1.Initial vain roar: Physicist Leon Lederman, we hope to explain the entire universe in a single, simple formula that you can wear on your T-shirt. 2.Subsequent exasperated grunt: Astrophysicist Steven Weinberg, As we make progress understanding the expanding universe, the problem itself expands, so that the solution always seems to recede from us, 3.Final concealed whimper: Theoretical physicist John Wheeler, Never run after a bus or woman or cosmological theory, because therell always be another one in a few minutes.
Nonenvy: See universe as university See competitors as fellow-students Superiors: As the same spiritual expressway that they took is open to us, we feel inspired to accelerate our journey on that way by learning from them instead of getting stuck where we are by envying them
Nonenvy: See universe as university See competitors as fellow-students Subordinates: The awareness that we too were at that level once inspires us to extend a lifting hand rather than a pushing hand
Nonenvy: See universe as university Our competition is with ourselves, not with others Scarcity mentality – limited seats vs abundance mentality – our own seat The more we win our competition against our lower self, the more we can use our god-given talents for not only fulfilling our own potentials, but also assisting others in fulfilling theirs.
4.19.22: Sin in Kali Yuga is Intellectually rationalized Culturally glamorized Technologically facilitated
4.19.23: Daridra Narayana Glamorization of social service as equivalent and even superior to devotional service misleads spiritual aspirants away from spirituality to materialism, so it deserves criticism
4.19.23: Daridra Narayana Social service is a necessary kshatriya activity. Eg. Rantideva, Shibi, Prithu M
4.19.23: Daridra Narayana Those who think that devotion to God and kindness to the jivas [souls] are mutually different from each other, and perform accordingly in their life, such persons will not be able to follow the devotional culture. Their performances are only a semblance of devotion. Therefore, all the types of beneficence to others -- like kindness, friendliness, forgiveness, charity, respect, etc., are included in bhakti. … Bhaktivinoda Thakura in Tattva-Sutra
4.19.23: Daridra Narayana …Among these, according to the triple categories of the recipients. viz., high, medium and low, the actions of respect, friendliness and kindness are the very form of love and the characteristic portion of bhakti: Charity of medicines, clothes, food, water, etc., shelter during adversities, teaching of academic and spiritual educations, etc., are the activities included in the devotional culture. - Bhaktivinoda Thakura in Tattva-Sutra
4.19.23: Daridra Narayana Mayavadis reacted to Christian conversions by glamorizing humanitarian work as if it were spiritual Eg Watering brinjal is better than watering tulasi Narayana seva is essential for all Daridra seva is a natural expression of human compassion and is expected of kshatriyas But the two are not equivalent
4.19.24: Symbolic representations of their sinful activities Sannyasis like these existed in the past Indra set the precedent for using their garbs to get away with sinful activities. So now those dresses often represent sinful activities.
4.19.34 Tolerance saves us from the darkest regions of material anxiety Accept things that are beyond human control so that mental energy freed from wastage in resentment Not passivity, but humility Not a justification for passivity in all situations eg. Vasudeva – Kamsa