Initiation Class


Initiation Class
Live streaming
4th April 2021

All those getting initiated today, for your information, if you did not know that all of them were inspired and most casual to receive initiation from His Holiness Bhakti Caru Swami Maharaja but Lord had different plan. Maharaja suddenly left us behind and he has moved on to wherever Srila Prabhupada is or Radha Madhava is. Then it is our duty or his God brothers’ duty to do the needful.

We miss His Holiness very much. I do not know where we could feel in the gaps or be the substitute. But here you go. This is the best we could do or Pradyumna could do, that he has approached me and recommended these eligible and qualified candidates to be accepted as second initiates four of them and one receiving the first initiation.

Srimati Priya mataji, Rakshita Radhika mataji, Priya Darshan prabhu, Vrajaraja Krsna prabhu are the candidates receiving second initiation today. Sheetal mataji, the good wife of Priya Darshan prabhu, receiving first initiation. Thank you for that reminder, Pradyumna prabhu, all this is happening on appearance day of Srivasa Thakura.

The sankirtana movement kind of practically began there in the courtyard of Srivasa Pandit, who was non than Narada Muni who himself appeared. Why is he called Narada? Srivasa Pandit was Narada. They simultaneously exist like that. He was giver of Narayana so he is called Narada. Da means giver so Narada, as Srivasa Pandit was giving out Supreme Narayana. Supreme Narayana is Sri Krsna or Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

How was he giving Narayana or Supreme Narayana, Sri Krsna, to others? In the form of the holy name.

Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

It is certainly a very auspicious appearance of Srivasa Thakura. There are so much could be said about Srivasa Thakura, Srivasa Pandit, one of the members of the Panca Tattva. We could certainly say that by his merciful arrangement or merciful glance upon all of us, including those initiates.

They are receiving or I could say that are getting promoted today and they will be receiving yet another mantra which is Gayatri mantra. So they would be becoming brahmins, officially.

janmana jayete sudrah samskarad bhaved dwijah

When we are born we are sudras. In India we call manusya prani. Manusya is one of the pranis, or one of the creatures. As sudra we are in ignorance, as children also when we are born, we do not know what is what and our whereabouts. So in that sense also. Sudra by birth and as one undergoes samskaras, purificatory process, then one becomes dvijah, twice born or second birth. First birth parents give then spiritual master on behalf of parampara and the Supreme Lord gives the second birth we are birth within the birth.

veda pathad bhaved viprah

It also says as one studies veda patha, studies the Sastras, the Vedas, the Puranas, for us Gita, Bhagavat, then one becomes vipraha, means learned or learned brahmin or dwijah the second birth. First initiation is also kind of second birth. Then further promotion you are getting brahminical initiation. So that is you will also have to, I do not know when you will be arranging that, formalise finally with the fire sacrifice. The mantras, the fire, yajna and svaha and stamp of approval finally happens with that. I leave that up to Pradyumna prabhu to organise.

It may or may not happen today but we are initiating this second initiation process by, first of all, talking about brahminical initiation ans second initiation. What us a brahmin will have to be also stated or job description of the brahmin. Which are the qualifications of the brahmins? pathan paathan, yajan yaajan, studying and teaching and accepting dakshina and giving charities and performing yajnas and teaching others or getting others involved with the yajna. Of course, the yajna that we performed is mostly sankirtana yajna. We do swaha swaha from time to time, we are not against, it is part. But the main yajna that we do perform is sankirtana yajna. This are the six activities or qualities of a brahmin.

In 18th chapter of Bhagavad Gita, Krsna is talking about the qualities of all the members of the varana. Brahmins, ksatriya, vaisyas, sudras. Beginning with the qualities of the brahmanas in the 18th chapter, text 42,

samo damas tapah saucam
ksantir arjavam eva ca
jnanam vijnanam astikyam
brahma-karma svabhava-jam [BG 18.42]

You could go back if you have not already visited that verse or not familiar or no memorized. Not just memorization but cultivated that spirit and developed sense control and mind control, the austerities. I would just wind up saying this the knowledge and how to, practically, apply that knowledge that is called vidyan. Brahmin is quite a post and position and responsibility. He is considered as the head of the society.

In sastras, the brahmins are called the uttama anga. Uttama means the best of the topmost. Anga means the limb or part of the body. So brahmin is uttama angah, so the best. You could also say the top. The head is at the top. Another parts on the side. The arms division, they are ksatriyas, they are administrators. Then belly are vaishyas and the keg are assisting all divisions of the society. So brahmin is the head. He gives the direction to all of the parts the body or components of the society.

So, its quite a responsibility. Prabhupada would say that, “The present society is a headless society, headless society. There is no head, there is no brahmin.” Like a headless chicken. The head has to be there. It was Prabhupada’s idea that he wanted to put head on the top of the society. The society is considered the body, then the brahmin as the head. He was cultivating brahminical culture within his International Society for Krsna Consciousness. His ideas was to provide what the society was lacking. The society was lacking brahmin, knowledge.

This is the of Kali so there is a dominance of “kalau sudra sambhavah.” In Kali Yuga we find mostly the sudras and what are sudras known for? They are known for their ignorance. As brahmins are known for their knowledge, the sudras are known for their ignorance. “Kalau satva haram pumsam.” Satva means the essence and also means goodness. So, in the age of Kali, the goodness is taken away. Society is deprived goodness. Society minus goodness is ignorance. A society minus brahmanas is full of sudras.

Srila Prabhupada wanted brahmins to guide the society, to guide the human race. Qualified brahmins, not born brahmins. Krsna has different idea. Krsna says,

catur-varnyam maya srstam guna-karma-vibhagasah [BG. 4.13]

“Maya srstam”, by Me created catur, four varanas. What are those? Brahmins, ksatriyas, vaisya, sudras are the varanas. How would they be classified or distinguished or categorised, who is who, who belongs to which varanas? “Guna karma,” according to gunas, their activities and their qualities. What gunas, what qualities Lord is talking about? Basically, our foundational qualities are 3 in number: sattwa guna, rajo guna, tamo guna – goodness, passion and ignorance.

When there is predominance of goodness in our life – the goodness predominating brahmins – then goodness is minimised, it becomes ksatriya and some passion is also mixed with that. Goodness is further minimised, it become vaisya and some passion and ignorance is also there. And the most minimal amount of goodness, then you are sudra, you are ignorant. Mostly full of ignorance and passion and tiny bit of goodness, occasionally some good thing they may think or do.

So, we are happy that two matajis and two prabhus, or sometimes, two prabhus and two prabhuvis. This is a technical or official way that they could be called prabhuvi. Two prabhuvi and two prabhus. They had been cultivating Krsna consciousness and practicing Krsna consciousness for quite sometime now. So, they are found to be or authorities have found potential in them of being a brahmin, full fledged brahmins. Not that they are already full fledged brahmins but this is the meaning of initiation also: we initiate, we begin. Then we revive and finally, we thrive. Then all the qualities are fully manifested.

The potential is there so they are being awarded this brahminical initiation or the Gayatri mantras. We are happily will be offering this Gayatri mantra which is confidential. Hence, we will not say that publicly. Everybody is here, whole public is here. Of course, in India, you get to hear the public chanting or they would even write the Gayatri mantra on the wall and anybody and everybody could read. But this is supposed to be confidential.

Now on the turn to Sheetal mataji, the candidate for first initiation. After we have dealt with that, then privately, on a separate forum we will share the Gayatri mantra to those four candidates for the second initiation. Becoming brahmins, so go on studying and teaching, “pathan paathan.” Read books, read books. Then distribute books, distribute books; or distribute the knowledge in those books.

Gayatri mantras are pancaratriki vidhi mantras. This will make you eligible and qualified to worship the deities and we understand there is a demand of brahmins. Pradyumna prabhu, “brahmins wanted! Brahmins wanted!” So, as you become brahmind, qualified and duly initiated, equipped with the Gayatri mantras, you could worship the deities.

pancaratriki-vidhim vina
aikantiki harer bhaktih
utpatayaiva kalpate [Brs. 1.2.101]

Pancaratriki vidhi is essential for worshipping the deities.

Right, I was asking Sheetal mataji, “you are chanting, right? You have been chanting Hare Krsna maha mantra?”

– Yes, Hare Krsna.

– Okay, good. Because I am signing up for life here (laughter). Otherwise, there is a one way traffic going on here which is I am the one. So, you will be formally receiving this Hare Krsna maha mantra as part of your first initiation. Initiated chanting of Hare Krsna maha mantra. And you will be also taking vows. Hari bol.

The four regulative principles, you will be taking vows very soon and also on the occasion of first initiation, the ten offences against the holy name are to be remembered or recited as a reminder to the candidate that the offences are to be avoided to get a full benefit of chanting the Hare Krsna maha mantra.

This is the age of Kali. The process of Krsna realisation, I would not say God realisation because we know the name of God, so why we should we call Him God? We call Him Krsna. Krsna realisation. So the process of Krsna realisation is chanting of the holy name of the Lord.

Lord personally appeared just few days ago, on Gaura Purnima day, 5035 years ago. And what did He do? He appeared and He had come with a gift of the Holy name. Lord was personally chanting that Holy name and He declared that this is the only way.

harer nama harer nama harer namaiva kevalam kalau
nasty eva nasty eva nasty eva gatir anyata

There is no other way, there is no other way. The holy name is the way to go forward or go back to Godhead or to realise Sri Krsna. Kali Santarana Upanisad says something similar, om. This is a vedic mantra so, it begins with,

“hare krishna hare krishna
?krishna krishna hare hare
?hare rama hare rama
?rama rama hare hare
iti sodasakam namnam?kali-kalmasa-nasanam?natah parataropayah?sarva-vedesu drsyate

‘After searching through all the Vedic literature, one cannot find a method of religion more sublime for this age than the chanting of Hare Krishna.’”

This is Brahma talked and Narada heard. Same Narada again, who has appeared as Srivasa Thakur. In the beginning of the age of Kali, he goes to Bramha Loka, goes to his father and his spiritual master. He says, “now what to do? What should the people of this age of Kali do, so that they could realise Krsna, realise God. I am a preacher and as I go around I have to give them the right mantra, right process. So, please, dear father, dear spiritual master, please, tell me what should I tell others?”

So, in response to his query, Bramha said what I said earlier, (the verse om hare krsna…) These 16 names will do what? Kali kalamasa nasanam. All the kalamas, all the faults, flaws, defects of this age of Kali will be rectified or destroyed by the chanting of these 16 names.

The sastras are full of such recommendations. This Hare Krsna maha mantra is kind of custom made just for the people of the age of Kali. This is dharma, in fact. The chanting of Hare Krsna maha mantra is the dharma of this age of Kali. We, human beings, are expected to be dharmic or spiritual-religious people, accept religion. So which religion to accept? Caitanya Caritamrta says,

avatari’ caitanya kaila dharma-pracarana
kali-kale dharma – krsna-nama-sankirtana [CC Madhya 11.98]

Harinama is Kali’s dharma. Dharma in the age of Kali is chanting of Hare Krsna. I think it becomes so very easy, of course, we have to accept Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu as the original and Supreme Personality of Godhead. Okay, we do as He said or, we do as He did. And He is the supreme authority, Supreme Lord personally has come. He has taken up the role as a devotee, He has become Gaura bhakta or He has become bhakta. He is all the time just chanting and dancing. This way,

apane acari jagate siksah
siksartham ekah purusah puranah

Siksastmakan, in order to teach. The oldest and original person, Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu, He, Himself chanted and danced. And He also did japa and kirtan. He has set an example and He is also guru.

krsnam vande jagad guru

Original guru is Krsna. He had also predicted that this holy name will reach every town and every village, all over the world. Kindly, Srila Prabhupada had made that arrangement. He founded the International Society for Krsna Consciousness. He was travelling all over. He was doing global trotting and he set a team of his senior disciple to England and this is how the propagation began in England. Then spreading in London, and everywhere and had reached Leicester.

I do not know where Sheetal mataji came in contact with the holy name but it has reached you (Sheetal mataji). Just see the long journey. Holy name has been travelling and travelling and the holy name is Lord. That is something we also have to realise. This Hare Krsna mahamantra that you will be receiving is Lord Himself. During initiation as we give this mahamantra, we are giving you Lord. How Lord? In form of the holy name. “Abhinatvat namanaminau.” There is no difference between nama and nami.

So, Sheetal should be saying, “thank God for catching up with me. I had been going up and down and, round and round. But Lord has finally caught up with me with you.” And I should say the same thing as Pradyumna prabhu, as part of the introduction, was saying, “50 years ago, the holy name caught up with me also.”

Srila Prabhupada was in Mumbai, there was Hare Krsna Festival which I had joined and Prabhupada had come there with American and European sadhus. I had gone to attend that Hare Krsna Festival and that is where I came in contact or,the holy name caught up with me, 50 years ago.

Today is, in fact, the grand finale of the festival, just in few hours. At 7 PM IST, we will have a celebration. We will be sharing our memories. We will have Giriraja Maharaja and Radhanath Maharaja, Visakha mataji and Yadhuvara prabhu and Ksudhi prabhu. From Sweden we will have Vegvan prabhu and his good wife, Padmavati. In fact, Padmavati and Vegavan were married 50 years ago, on stage as I was just in the audience there.

The holy name was very kind and so now we are formalizing that communication, that connection with the Supreme Lord, in the form of the holy name. Communicating and relating with the soul, Sheetal’s soul. Sheetal is body and there is a soul. Two souls, one is anu atma and the other one is vibhu atma – the Supersoul or the holy name and then atma, the soul. They are united as one chants the holy name with devotion and this is called bhakti yoga.

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