lunes, 2 de agosto de 2010

Pure Bhakti Yoga Society

Dear Devotees and Friends,

Please accept our dandavats pranams, all glories to Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga and all glories to Sri Sri Radha Vinode Bihariji.

Srila Gurudeva has been requesting that his society is properly established and structured since some years. He has preached for last 65 years, out of which world-wide for fourteen years, since 1996, providing shelter and instruction to so many Prabhupada and ISKCON disciples, as well as new disciples.

Much thought has gone into how we carry out the above request. We are mindful of the fact that on previous occasions when a great Acarya and Guru has disappeared, schisms and fighting have ensued. While none of us like to think about when Srila Gurudeva is no longer on the planet, it is his desire that preparations are made to continue his legacy so that we will continue to serve his mission effectively for the rest of our lives, and future generations will be able to do the same.

Srila Gurudeva has repeatedly instructed that we “stay together”. This is something he often emphasizes.

When embarking on this process we have been mindful of the following principles.
First, that the world-wide sanga is actively included in formulating the design of the society. Nothing should be imposed. The structure will benefit from the legitimacy earned by airing it amongst the sanga first and incorporating valuable feedback.

Second, the purpose of the structure is to facilitate the flow and growth of our bhakti. If something does not do this or risks impeding bhakti, then it is not included.

Thirdly, we have a special respect for local initiative and service. We wish to avoid overly centralized or authoritarian set ups. Seva is rendered by inspired devotees who come together as like-minded souls to serve Radha-Krsna and Srila Gurudeva. Genuine seva is not inspired through hands on management and control.

With the above in mind we have produced a first draft of the proposed structure. It needs to be read with today in mind but also within the context of a day, hopefully in many, many years, when Srila Gurudeva is no longer with us in his physical form.

Your comments or suggestions are important!

There is nothing final about this draft. It is for your feedback, both positive and negative. You are also invited to ask questions in case something is not clear or you want to understand why we have proposed this or that.

Take part in the discussion by submitting your comments on in the comments box below this post. (Feel free to speak your mind but please refrain from any Vaisnava aparadha and observe Vaisnava etiquette for a Krishna conscious outcome.)

As your feedback comes in, by mid September we will try to adjust and update the draft structure; once more we will ask for your feedback and thus hope to present a somewhat final draft when we are at Kartik time.

We humbly offer this as our service to Srila Gurudeva. We appreciate that we are very imperfect and ask you to forgive our faults in this endeavor.

Hare Krsna,
With love and affection.

Your aspiring servants,
Brajanath das & Yasodananda das




The Presiding Board, consisting of:

  • Srila Gurudeva
  • Sripad BV Tirtha Maharaja & Sripad Premananda das Brahmacari
  • Sripad BV Madhava Maharaja & Sripad BV Vana Maharaja &
  • Sripad Rasananda das Brahmacari



Consisting primarily of our respected Sannyasis and Senior Preachers.


  • Teaching and Demonstrating Ideal Vaisnava Behaviour
  • Look After Publication and Distribution of Transcendental Literatures and Hari-katha in Organized Ways
  • Continuation of Kartik, Vraja Mandala Parikrama & Gaura Mandala Parikrama as well as Yearly Festivals




Consisting of all Types of Transcendental Seva Teams Including:

  • Book Publishing Seva Team
  • Math and Preaching Center Seva Team
  • Regional Seva Team
  • Ombuds Seva Team
  • Book Distribution Seva Team
  • Communication Seva Team
  • Education Seva Team
  • Co-ordination Seva Team
  • Finance Seva Team
  • Trust Seva Team, Etc.



Consisting of Srila Gurudeva, Respected Sannyasis, Senior Vaisnavis and Vaisnavas, as well as Representatives of the Different Seva Teams


  • Approve Methods and Guidelines to Nourish the Transcendental Life of the Society’s Members
  • Schedule and Conduct Official Meetings at the time of Kartika and Gaura Purnima


Send us your feedback and suggestions!

* Many thanks to Premananda prabhu from Italy
for using his picture in the banner above.

4 Responses to “For Your Feedback”

  1. mathuranatha das says:

    Dandavat Pranams !Srila Gurudeva Ki Jay!

    “Organisation Chart” implies the organisation of the devotees activities . First we need agree upon what the prime activities of our Organisation are actually going to be .If its congregational chanting and Hari katar on at least daily basis , transcendental literature printing and distribution , outreaching and parakrama and festival organisation, gurukula,s etc —that will require a lot of infrastructure and an economic base .We will need land and buildings to accomodate those activities and an economic base to support those activities and support , feed and cloth those full time devotes undertaking them.

    Most of our functions require infrastructure .The activities that the Society is being created to organize will have to take place somewhere .

    Organisation also implies that protocol,format , location and time of day and time of week etc be somewhat standardized for the purpose of familiarizing the new persons and general public . And also to give the members a sense of uniformity , continuity and that their society has an identifiable shared culture .

    Therefore to be effective and efficient we need a blueprint . A practical plan as to how the activities we are intending to organize will in fact be instigated , enhanced and replicated .

    The present society at large was termed by Prabhupad as an “oil based society”and He indicated it was inherently unsustainable .Prabhupads vision was for Self sufficient Vedic farming communities

    It is my humble suggestion that we embrace Srila Prabhupadas model as a stable material platform for our new society .
    To reiterate :- [1] wee need our own permanent centers where daily kirtan and pravachand go on
    [2]we need places for the travelling preachers to be accommodate and speak hari katar and train and accommodate new people ,
    [3]places for the translators and publishers and book distributors to live and work and feed them selves .
    [4]places for our own schools and for the teachers and students to live and be supported
    [5]The preachers , publishers , pujaries , book distributers, teachers ,gurukula students all need somewhere to live and be supported to do their seva
    [6]house holders need a mode of goodness livelihood [farming , cottage industries]with the scope for attending devotional programs and the ability to support the preachers and those fully engaged in seva

    It is my fervent belief that all these aims can be achieved by implementing Srila Swami Maharaja Prabhupadas blueprint for self sufficient vedic farming communities .

    Without buildings land , and infrastructure we wont have a tangible society and wont even need any organisation – there will be nothing and no one to organize .And without a stable economic base we wont be able to support the infrastructure and the full time sevaks.We also need meaningfully engagement for our children , new devotees and householders .

    To not embrace Srila Prabupadas perfect plan and blueprint for a a perfect society is to really miss a golden opportunity to establish a society that will be really sustainable .If we create a unique and distinctive , sustainable culture ,separate and superior to the mainstream it will grow like wildfire . Otherwise we will remain invisible and soon disappear.

    I believe Srila Gurudeva sees His sanga collapsing after He leaves as a distinct possibility and thats why He is pushing for a new society . That means a substantial change in direction .A few cosmetic changes and business as usual wont do it .We need a substantial change of policy throughout .An agrarian economic base , support for our members , a district cultural identity and our own rural based temple/school/communities where as many devotes as wish can live a Vedic lifestyle

    Just my humble opinion — time will tell all.

    Radhe Radhe !!

    • Dear Mathuranath prabhu,

      please accept my dandavats pranams. All glories to Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga and all glories to Sri Sri Radha Vinode Bihariji.

      Excellent point, thank you so much for your input. Your spiritual passion for developing the ideal blueprint is most welcome. I propose you form a small seva team and by your own example you establish an ideal farm community which possesses all the ingredients that you describe.

      aspiring for the service of Sri Guru and Vaisnavas

      Brajanath das

      One should understand Krishna in truth, and this one can do only by serving a pure devotee.

      Srimad Bhagavatham, 7.9.24

  2. Sacinandana Dasa says:

    Temples or Maths and Centers

    We are YET to have procedures/policies/guidelines in place as to what our Maths (if any) should actually be in the west.

    Obviously in India we see the beautiful functioning Kesavji Gaudiya Matha and others, but we don’t have any real math in the west. Why is this??

    If we don’t establish some real math’s in the West then where are the single and sincere devotees supposed to go? There are so many devotees who want to be involved full-time, and who are not grhastas, and are not able to stay in India permanently.

    As a society we should take care of these people, and not only that, but in an organized, dare I say it, controlled way.

    In Houston they are building a Temple.. but they are unsure as to which direction to take. Though they are now building and have invested over $800,000 into the structure already, they are still un-sure if Bramacaris will stay there, how many kitchens to have (one for the deities and one for devotees) etc etc and basically the whole functioning of the place.

    In Los Angeles I recently asked if I could stay there and they said “no room”. I am trying to be a bramacari. If one is a bramacari and cant stay in a temple, then where is he supposed to go? Is he to go get a house and a job etc like everyone else??.. currently he really has to.

    I know one bramacari who has been a devotee for over 40years. He was with Srila Prabhupada, then Srila Sridara Maharaja, then Srila Gurudeva from the early 90′s. He was actually asked by Srila Gurudeva to take Sanyasa way back in the 90′s. But because there is nowhere for him to go, he is in saffron but has to stay with family! This is NOT RIGHT! As we are a spiritual society we have to look after the brahmans and the senior full-time devotees.. not continue to neglect them. I think this is one of the most important things that needs to be done right now in our sanga. It is a centralized thing around which our ‘society’ can live.

    To properly develop and maintain math’s in the west some ‘control’ from above must be there (in regards to defining their roles) and also financial support from the sanga at large must be there too, to help support and maintain them. Many millions of dollars has gone into building different math’s in India… but there is nothing in the west. Shouldn’t we also look after ourselves here in the west?

    Where are YOU going to go when you are ready to leave grhasta life?… India?… Very few can do that permanently.

    • Dear Sacinanda prabhu,

      please accept my dandavats pranams. All glories to Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga and all glories to Sri Sri Radha Vinode Bihariji.

      Thank you for your excellent words, a cry out for shelter. As a reply may I suggest that we look at that what is working/functioning well and apply this in our own situation? We actually do have well functioning centers in the West where brahmacharinis and single mothers can go. In London, in Brighton, and now in Brazil, the single ladies can find shelter and be inspired in their bhakti. Srila Gurudeva is very pleased with his daughters for their selfless seva. And guess what, our sisters are also extremely eager for attending Harikatha festivals in India and other parts of the world.

      Why not follow that which is already working well? Perhaps the Gangamatas can share with us how they are performing this seva?

      aspiring for the service of Sri Guru and Vaisnavas

      Brajanath das

      One should understand Krishna in truth, and this one can do only by serving a pure devotee.

      Srimad Bhagavatham, 7.9.24



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The Harmonist Monthly On-line Edition

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sri sri guru gauranga jayatah!

Rays of The Harmonist On-Line Edition

Year-3, Issue 7
Posted: 31 July 2010

Dedicated to
nitya-lila pravista om visnupada

Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja

Inspired by and under the guidance of

Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja


by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada

(Portrait of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada)

Question 1: What is the essence of seva (devotional service)?

Answer: Seva is not an activity or dharma of the mind or body. It is the dharma of the soul. There are no business dealings in seva. Rather, when service is rendered solely to give happiness to Sri Krsna, without even slightly desiring one’s own happiness, then only is it genuine krsna-seva. So the essence of seva is this: it is the unadulterated, unmotivated and uninterrupted instinct of the soul. Unless we perform such unadulterated devotional service to the lotus feet of sri guru, it is impossible for us to comprehend the essence of Vedanta. Apart from the devotees of the Supreme Lord, none can become guru. And this is the factual truth, not merely imagination.

Bhagavan Sri Krsna has said, “In whatever manner someone serves Me, I serve Him in the same manner.” Devotees in kanta-rasa (the mood of a beloved consort) render seva to Sri Krsna by dedicating every part of their body to Him. And Sri Krsna completely immerses every part of His body in that service as well. Yet, even after giving Himself fully, He considers Himself indebted to them. Hence, the absolute completion of surrender and the pinnacle of excellence in seva exist in kanta-rasa alone.

Question 2: How will my bhakti progressively increase?

Answer: The impulse to serve (seva-pravrtti) will only awaken and swell by remaining engaged in service. If one has no desire at all to serve sri guru and Sri Krsna, then where is the question of that desire increasing any further? If our consciousness (citta-vrtti) remains absorbed in the lotus feet of sri guru, then no matter where we live, our impulse to serve will swell. Otherwise, the inclination to gratify our senses and the urge to enter into mundane life will be all that swells in us. By constantly engaging in the service of sadhu and guru, all spiritual perfections will become easily accessible to us. But if we instead remain busy in preserving our mundane existence, or serving maya, or if we are constantly preoccupied with arranging personal comforts and conveniences, then all sorts of inauspiciousness and trouble will manifest in our lives and make us restless. Apart from associating with and serving devotees, there is no other way to make our bhakti swell.

We may reflect, “I have taken shelter of sri guru and Sri Krsna, but I am not the least bit interested in serving them.” If we take refuge in the path of bhakti but do not engage in bhakti itself, if we do not submit ourselves to performing various kinds of loving service to those we have resolved to worship, then what hope can we have for attaining any true welfare?

First, we must take shelter at the lotus feet of sri guru, and consider ourselves to be laghu.* This is the sole meaning of taking shelter. The purpose of one who takes shelter is to render service by adopting the role of a servant. Yet, how have we engaged ourselves? It is only possible to reach absolute reality (purna-vastu) by offering everything we possess at the lotus feet of sri guru. But, what to speak of giving him everything, we do not even wish to give him anything. Likewise, it is only by words that we profess to want Bhagavan and His mercy. But there is no point in trying to cheat Antaryami, the Supreme Soul, who knows and dwells in the heart of all beings.

* The literal meaning of guru is ‘heavy with importance’, while laghu literally means ‘light’ or ‘insignificant’.

How will the inclination to serve Sri Krsna increase if we are unable to perceive the lotus feet of sri guru? If, even after beholding sri guru‘s sublime lotus feet, I still maintain the mood that every woman I see is an object of my enjoyment, or if my inclination to engage in worldly life has increased, then I have surely fallen down. I could not elevate myself, so I verily remained on the lower platform. If someone has truly taken shelter at the lotus feet of sri guru and is performing loving service to him, then, without doubt, he will gain the opportunity to serve Sri Krsna, he will obtain transcendental knowledge of Him, his instinctive loving service will be enhanced, and he will drown in the bliss of loving service.

We should engage in those activities that diminish our urge to accumulate material objects and minimize our desire for worldly life. If we do that, the misconception that we are doers and rightful enjoyers will no longer remain. We will then be able to see that this world is meant for Krsna’s enjoyment and that all women, whom only Krsna is meant to enjoy, are our supremely worshipful gurus. The inclination to serve Bhagavan will only awaken when our mundane ego of being the doer and the enjoyer wanes.

So the inclination to serve will not manifest as long as our desire to enjoy worldly life remains strong and we remain totally preoccupied with worldly pursuits. When someone is eager to serve Bhagavan, he will consider himself to be the son of his guru. At that time he will no longer maintain his worldly father-son relationship. Only then will he achieve true welfare, for his residence in the matha will become genuine and thus he will find real shelter.

Question 3: Is it possible to engage in serving Sri Hari by oneself?

Answer: A living being can only engage in serving Sri Hari when the Lord Himself bestows mercy upon him. If in all the generations that came before ours, no one was able to overcome all the difficulties in their lives and perform hari-seva on their own, then how can we, or any generation to come, expect such a thing? Hari-seva is not a joking matter.

The four prides of man namely high birth, great opulence, profound learning and physical beauty are like women who will surely confine us in their traps lest they are engaged in serving Sri Gopi-jana-vallabha, the beloved of all the gopis.

Instead of seeing ourselves as inseparably related with Bhagavan, we see the entire world and every pleasant thing within it as objects meant for our own enjoyment. And this mood of enjoyment causes us so many troubles. Rather than awakening the desire to become the servant of Bhagavan, this mood awakens in us the desire to become the lord of this world or to subject it to our perpetual control. Everyone here wants to become worshipful, or a master of others, but this craving alone is avaisnavata, the quality of being non-Vaisnava. There is a bond connecting the servant to the one who is served, and that bond is itself bhakti, the very service being rendered. If one harbours the false pride of being another’s master, how can he engage in service himself? Service can only be performed by a servant.

A materialist non-devotee considers, “It is I who will be the active agent as I engage in hearing, chanting, remembering and beholding the Lord.” But only when we give up the notion that we are the doer, only when we dedicate all of our endeavours to serving the Lord, shall every part of our lives become untroubled. As servants of Bhagavan, we shall constantly remain in the association of devotees and engage in serving Him twenty-four hours a day. We shall depend on the lotus feet of Bhagavan in every respect, for the conciliation of all calamities or any form of trouble is found in perfect reliance upon the arrangement of Bhagavan.

In this world, we serve each other in four kinds of relationship: the relationship between husband and wife, between parent and child, between friends, and between servant and master. These transitory relationships exist in this world because we are bereft of svarupa-jnana, knowledge of our soul’s intrinsic form. All these worldly relationships seem pleasing at first but inevitably lead to despair. O Madhava! The consequence of our mortal lives is disappointment. But by relating with Bhagavan in any one of these four kinds of relationship, we will achieve eternal welfare. Moreover, hari-seva is only possible in such a relationship.

A soul can only proceed from this mundane world to the Vaikuntha planets after he commences his service to Bhagavan. But if he hankers to be served by others, he will remain attached to this world and suffer the threefold miseries of mundane existence.

We are not Krsna. We are not the master but the servants. Sri Krsna is eternally our only worshipful master. We are His eternally purchased slaves. The moment we forget this fact and begin a campaign against serving Him, we encounter samsara, the endless, mundane cycle of repeated birth and death. Thereafter, gripped by the threefold miseries, our suffering is perpetual. This miserable cycle of repeated birth and death is the door to hell. In samsara, there is nothing but self-centredness and sense-enjoyment. Since simply forgetting Sri Krsna leads one into samsara, it is said:

cari varnasrami yadi krsna nahi bhaje
svakarma karile’u se raurave padi’ maje

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta (Madhya-lila 22.26)

If one observes his social duties according to his station in life, but does not worship Krsna, then just by carrying out his own duties he descends into hell.

Question 4: How should we perceive this world?

Answer: We should perceive this world and all the objects within it as instruments meant for serving Sri Krsna. Everything in this world is an asset meant for serving Him. When the day comes, by the mercy of sri guru and Sri Krsna, when we are allayed of our infatuation with secondary reality*, that which appears to be separate from Krsna, and we are able to see that this world is made entirely of Sri Krsna, that very day we will visualize this same world as Goloka. We should see all womenfolk as Sri Krsna’s beloved consorts (kanta), and meant only for Him to enjoy. We should never imagine that they are in any way meant for our own enjoyment, for they are krsna-bhogya (meant for Krsna’s pleasure), and never an object meant for a jiva’s enjoyment. We should see our parents as Sri Krsna’s parents, and we should not consider our son to be our own servant, but rather one of Bala Gopala’s childhood servants. In this way, we will not see this world as it outwardly appears, for we will be having darsana of Goloka.

* The phrase “infatuation with secondary reality” is derived from the Sanskrit term dvitiya-abhinivesa.

Translated by the Rays of The Harmonist team
from Srila Prabhupadera Upadesamrta
Questions re-numbered for this on-line presentation


Srila Prabhupadera Upadesamrta is a compilation of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada’s instructions in question-and-answer form.


Next Issue – Year 3, Issue 8: “Submit to Me, The Source of All Existence”, 29 August 2010
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