Japa Workshop: Process, Techniques, and Methodology

Japa Workshop: Process, Techniques, and Methodology Chanting, while mostly devotional, is also a technical process of meditation. This section will help you to understand more of what is involved and how to improve your japa meditation. The Proper use of Beads : • Start from bead no.1; turning at bead no.108  • Turn each bead in the fingers.  • Don’t chant on or cross the larger bead where you start  Pronunciation : One should note in this connection that chanting involves the activities of the upper and lower lips as well as the tongue. All three must be engaged in chanting the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. The words “Hare Krishna” should be very distinctly pronounced and heard. Sometimes one mechanically produces a hissing sound instead of chanting with the proper pronunciation with the help of the lips and tongue. Chanting is very simple, but one must practice it seriously. (Srila Prabhupada, Cc Adi 7.32 purport) On one hand, there are different pronunciations throughout India and the sastra does state that the holy name is still effective even if improperly pronounced, but it is beneficial to concentrate and practice clear pronunciation.  Typical Faults :  ‘H’ in Hare: sometimes dropped  ‘A’ in Hare: mispron. ‘O’ as in Lorry; should be ‘uh’ as in Hurry.  ‘R’ in Hare: sometimes sounds more like ‘D’  ‘E’ in Hare: mispron. ‘I’ as in Bit; should be ‘ay’ as in Ray.  ‘K’ in Krishna: sometimes sounds more like ‘G’ in Grip.  ‘R’ in Krishna: sometimes dropped: ‘Kishna’  ‘SH’ in Krishna: ‘G’ as in Genre (French pronunc.) or ‘S’ as in Snug.  ‘N’ in Krishna: sometimes dropped: ‘Krisha’  ‘A’ in Krishna: run together with the next Hare: ‘Krishna-ray’  Rama: be careful not to call out for Rum.  Sometimes with ‘Rama Rama Rama,’ you get the ‘revving-up-the-motorbike’ effect: ‘manar-manar-manar-manarrrr!’ (trying to chant too fast)  Note: Both Ram and Rama are OK.  Chanting Speed :  • In the beginning you may be slow (around 10 minutes per round)  • It is important to practice proper pronunciation  • But in time you should naturally speed up (no more than 7 – 7½ minutes per round)  • Ultimately it is individual, but most devotees find that speeding up increases the intensity of their chanting and their concentration level  • If your rounds are taking too long, it could mean that you are distracted  • Try to maintain good, clear pronunciation with a good speed  • Some devotees can chant a round in 5 – 5½ min, but...
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The Attitude of A Devotee

The Attitude of A Devotee One’s attitude is very important in Krsna consciousness, as stated in the preface of the Nectar of Instruction: “Advancement in Krsna consciousness depends on the attitude of the follower.” (1) This attitude is described in various ways, one of which is the attitude of renunciation, by which one is given a chance to advance to the platform of devotional service. (2) and also the attitude of a devotee, who does not seek shelter in the fruits of his activities but acts as a matter of duty because he has been ordered to do so by the Supreme Lord. (1) “Those who work without fruitive results are also perfect in their attitude. They are given a chance to advance to the platform of devotional service in Krsna consciousness.” –Bg. 13.25 Purport (2) “The transcendental attitude of the devotee in the performance of activities is actually that of renunciation, and this is called sannyasa. As stated in the first verse of the Sixth Chapter of Bhagavad-gita, one who acts as a matter of duty because he has been ordered to do so by the Supreme Lord, and who does not seek shelter in the fruits of his activities (anasritah karma-phalam), is a true renouncer. Anyone acting under the direction of the Supreme Lord is actually a sannyasi and a yogi, and not the man who has simply taken the dress of the sannyasi, or a pseudo yogi.” –Bg.10.3 Purport The devotees’ attitude is that he believes in everything that Krsna says, not that he only accepts those things that tally to his imagination. (1) “Only the devotee, or he who is in personal touch with the Supreme Lord, enters into the Vaikuntha planets or the Goloka Vrndavana planet.  The Lord further adds that of this “there is no doubt.” This must be believed firmly. We should not reject that which does not tally with our imagination; our attitude should be that of Arjuna: “I believe everything that You have said.” Therefore when the Lord says that at the time of death whoever thinks of Him as Brahman or Paramatma or as the Personality of Godhead certainly enters into the spiritual sky, there is no doubt about it. There is no question of disbelieving it.” –Bg....
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Who is Krishna?

Who is Krishna? In the African countries, when someone sees the cover of a book like Krishna, he immediately asks, “Who is Krishna? Who is the girl with Krishna?” etc.  The immediate answer is that Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. How is that? Because He conforms in exact detail to descriptions of the Supreme Being, the Godhead. In other words, Krishna is the Godhead because He is all-attractive. Outside the principle of all-attraction, there is no meaning to the word Godhead. How is it one can be all-attractive? First of all, if one is very wealthy, if he has great riches, he becomes attractive to the people in general. Similarly, if someone is very powerful, he also becomes attractive, and if someone is very famous, he also becomes attractive, and if someone is very beautiful or wise or unattached to all kinds of possessions, he also becomes attractive. So from practical experience we can observe that one is attractive due to  (1) wealth, (2) power, (3) fame, (4) beauty, (5) wisdom and (6) renunciation. One who is in possession of all six of these opulences at the same time, who possesses them to an unlimited degree, is understood to be the Supreme Personality of Godhead. These opulences of the Godhead are delineated by Parashara Muni, a great Vedic authority.  We have seen many rich persons, many powerful persons, many famous persons, many beautiful persons, many learned and scholarly persons, and persons in the renounced order of life unattached to material possessions. But we have never seen any one person who is unlimitedly and simultaneously wealthy, powerful, famous, beautiful, wise and unattached as Krishna in the history of humanity. Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is a historical person who appeared on this earth 5,000 years ago. He stayed on this earth for 125 years and played exactly like a human being, but His activities were unparalleled. From the very moment of His appearance to the moment of His disappearance, every one of His activities is unparalleled in the history of the world, and therefore anyone who knows what we mean by Godhead will accept Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. No one is equal to the Godhead, and no one is greater than Him. That is the import of the familiar saying “God is great.”  There are various classes of men in the world who speak of God in...
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Following Srila Prabhupada

Following Srila Prabhupada nama om visnu-padaya krsna-presthaya bhu-tale srimate bhaktivedanta-svamin iti namine   namas te sarasvate deve gaura-vani-pracarine nirvisesa-sunyavadi-pascatya-desa-tarine   om ajnana-timirandhasya jnananjana-salakaya caksur unmilitam yena tasmai sri-gurave namah   sri-caitanya-mano-'bhistam sthapitam yena bhu-tale svayam rupah kada mahyam dadati sva-padantikam   jaya sri-krsna-caitanya prabhu nityananda sri-advaita gadadhara srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrnda   Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare   Srila Prabhupada ki Jai! Jagadguru Srila Prabhupada ki Jai!   So, today is a very auspicious day The Disappearance of His Divine Grace srila Prabhupada, Who is the founder acarya of the International Society for Krsna Consciousness, so today we are remembering srila Prabhupada and discussing "Following srila Prabhupada".   There are many spiritual organizations in this world and there are also different scriptures and different people across the world, across the globe. srila Prabhupada was sent here by The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Krsna.   So why did srila Prabhupada came to this world? Prabhupada came here just to save us. His slogan is "Going back home back to Godhead", that's Prabhupada's mission, to take us back to Godhead and for that purpose he did so many things, he gave us Bhagavad-gita, srimad-Bhagavatam, Caitanya Caritamrta, Nectar of Devotion, Nectar of Instruction, sri Isopanisad and so many other books and in all his books all acarya's are present, even Jesus is present, Prabhupada quoted him many times in his lectures and purports. So Prabhupada is a sum-total of all religious organizations put together, he didn't come here to compete with other religious organization or religious body. He is not just a Spiritual master of the Hare Krsna movement but he is the Spiritual Master for the whole world, for all living entities. To accomplish his mission he gave us so many things, so we have daily classes, study of the scriptures, we have deities, we have prasadam, we have food-for-life, we have harinama-sankirtana, book distribution, college preaching, Bhaktivrksa, we have temples, making devotees, everything. What is srila Prabhupada looking in all these activities, in all these programs? He is looking to find one pure devotee, who can send others back home back to godhead, not just one devotee but atleast that, "I did not do much", and give one percent. So Prabhupada came to get the whole world.   We are following srila Prabhupada's words theoretically and artificially. In the beginning it is very good...
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