PUNE ANNUAL KATHA DAY 1: Introduction to Srila Prabhupada (amended)


All glories to the assembled devotees.

nama om vishnu-padaya krishna-preshthaya bhu-tale
srimate bhaktivedanta-svamin iti namine

namas te sarasvate deve gaura-vani-pracarine

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare / Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.

ISKCON Pune organises a katha every year. Many devotees come every year, but this year many foreign devotees have come. This is the proof that our society is international. And this year’s katha will be different and sweeter, pyaari and nyaari.

Nityam bhagvat sevaya. Prabhupada says there are two Bhagavats- grantha bhagvat and vyakti bhagvat.

This year we are celebrating the anniversary of ISKCON’s Golden Jubilee. In 1966, Prabhupada established ISKCON in New York. And it has been a year of celebrations. This katha is purnahuti or “complete offering of oneself” to that celebration.

When we were discussing what the topic of this katha should be, we thought about ISKCON’s Golden Jubilee and thought, “Why don’t we hear about Srila Prabhupada’s caritra. The Lord’s katha is not possible without the katha of Srila Prabhupada. The Lord’s katha is always empty without the katha of his devotees. When we say the pranam mantra:

namas te sarasvate deve gaura-vani-pracarine nirvisesha-sunyavadi-pascatya-desa-tarine

We offer our respectful obeisances unto you. You are sisya (student) of Sarasvati Thakur and you are preaching Guaravani all over the world.

Prabhupada’s father would take him to Radha Govind Dev temple where he spent a lot of time. He was named Abhaya, who then became Abhayababu in Bengal and ultimately AC Bhaktivedanata Swami Srila Prabhupada. AC is not air conditioner, but Abhay Caranaravinda. We addressed him as Prabhupada, one who has taken shelter of Lotus Feet of the Lord.

His father Guarmohan De would invite sadhus to his home. After serving them, he would seek their blessings for Abhaya to become a great devotee of Radharani. Prabhupada was Lord’s krpa patra. This year we will glorify Prabhupada. This katha will fill you with happiness and inspire you so that you consider and accept Prabhupada as your spiritual hero which will lead to all auspiciousness. The Vedas say, acaryavan purusho veda: The one who has a real Master comes to know the truth. It is said that when we become acaryavan, we accept an acarya. So when we accept an acharya in our life then we will understand the Lord.

vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyo vedanta-krd veda-vid eva caham.

By all the Vedas am I to be known; indeed I am the compiler of Vedanta, and I am the knower of the Vedas.

Knowing the Lord is the goal of life. We will know the secret of the grantha. This is the Lord’s arrangement and not the arrangement of any demigod or politician.

This deity of Prabhupada is new. We will do abhishek, acharya upasana. Lord says you should do upasana (worship) of my devotees. There will be pushpanjali and at the end of the katha we will offer Guru puja. Together with the flowers, we will also offer ourselves at the lotus feet of Prabhupada. We will offer Prabhupada’s favourite kachori. He was also called kachorimukhi. There will be for you as well. And every day we will sing and dance.

bhaja gauranga kaha gauranga laha bhaja gaurangera nama re

jei jan bhaja gauranga bhaje, sei hoy amara prana re.

Worship Lord Gauranga! Chant Gauranga! Speak only about Lord Gauranga! Those who worship and serve Lord Gauranga are indeed my life and soul.

Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, “Preaching of my name will be all over the earth.” What is His name? You will say He is Krsna. My name is Krsna, mora nama radha. I have two names Radha Krsna. sri krsna caitanya radha rrsna nahi anya . That is why we say Hare Krsna. So this is mora naam, Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s name. The 16 names in the Hare Krsna mahamantra, 8 Krsna’s names and 8 Radha’s names – iti sodasakam namnam kali-kalmasa-nasanam. Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare destroy all inauspiciousness of the age of Kali.

When you chant the Lord’s name and you become dear to the Lord. On the screen you can see the lyrics.

Let’s sing,

gaurango boliya du baht tuliya,nachiya nachiya berao re

Means raising two hands in Bengali.

gaurango bhajile gaurango jopile hoy, dukhyero aboshaan re

All miseries will be over once you say Gauranga.

(Abhang of Tukaram Maharaj in marathi glorifying Lord Vitthala)

om namo bhagvate vasudevaya

Before every katha Prabhupada would always sing jaya radha madhava. As his disciples we also sing the same song before a katha. But today, here, before this katha I will not sing. Prabhupada will sing. We want to give you all Prabhupada’s sound vibration, how he would sing with complete love and affection.

On screen Prabhupada will be singing jaya radha madhava. This was followed by daily nityam bhagavata sevaya. Prabhupada would give morning class on the Bhagvatam and evening Bhagavata-Gita class. He was never tired.

vayam tu na vitrpyama uttama-sloka-vikrame, yac-chrnvatam rasa-jnanam svadu svadu pade pade

We never tire of hearing the transcendental pastimes of the Personality of Godhead, who is glorified by hymns and prayers. Those who have developed a taste for transcendental relationships with Him relish hearing of His pastimes at every moment.

Prabhupada met his Guru Maharaja in 1922. and was ordered to preach in west. It was a life long preparation and then one day he went to west. Wherever he went, he gave katha on Bhagavatam and Gita. There are two types of sevas, vyakti and svayam bhagavat seva. We hear about 12 Bhagavats in Bhagvatam.

svayambhur naradah sambhuh kumarah kapilo manuh
prahlado janako bhishmo balir vaiyasakir vayam (SB. 6.3.20)

Svayambhu, Narada, Sambhu, Kapila, Kumara, Manu, Prahlada, Janaka, Bhisma, Bali, Vaiyasaki, and Vayam. Yamraj spoke about 11 Mahabhagavats and then he said.”I am one of them. So all the Mahabhagavats make our dharma. dharma stapan hetu sadhur vyavarah and the Lord also comes.

paritranaya sadhunam vinasaya ca duskrtam
dharma-samsthapanarthaya sambhavami yuge yuge

It is the joint work of the devotees and the Lord. Prabhupada is one of the santa siromani’s of that garland of the Mahabhagavats. Many granthas and Prabhupada Lilamrita is published. I have also written a book on Prabhupada, My Prabhupada. So today we will introduce Prabhupada and his good qualities. We have amongst us Mukunda Dutta Prabhu who was initiated when he was 15 years old. People go crazy after western clothes, but he is in vaishnava poshakh, like the cowherd boy.

DAY 2 – Lifetime in preparation.

DAY 3 – Prabhupada around the world. How he brought about the revolution, how he preached all over the world and after preaching all over, he came to India.

DAY 4 – My Prabhupada, my realizations about Prabhupada. How and what I learned from him. Prabhupada had 5000 disciples; I am just one of them. Anyone of them could say my Prabhupada, Mukunda Dutta would say My Prabhupada, Radhanatha Maharaja could say my Prabhupada. So like that, I could say My Prabhupada.

DAY 5 – Challenges and struggles. Preaching is a war. We have to fight to preach. It was not all a bed of roses. He faced many problems and his life was full of struggles for Krsna.

DAY 6 – How Prabhupada established sankirtana in the world. sankirtana eka pitaro, the father of sankirtana Himself, Lord Caitanya and Nityananda Prabhu are the two Fathers of Sankirtana. yadi guaranga na hoite, like that we can sing yati Prabhupada nahi hoite.

Day 7 – Teachings of Srila Prabhupada, the original teacher is Krsna. krsnam vande jagadgurum. Prabhupada published the teachings of Krsna as it is and there was a revolution in consciousness. People would ask, “Why have you come to the West?” He had gone to revolutionize their consciousness. All those teachings he spread all over and that is what we will hear on the last day.

In 1965 Prabhupada went to the West. He was powerful and defeated all the mayavadis. A devotee since childhood, he organized Ratha-yatra. When he was in Vrndavana he wrote books. Mrs Sumati Murarjee made all arrangement for Prabhupada’s journey to the West. Prabhupada had 12 years. He organised Ratha-yatra in San Francisco. In London Prabhupada is offering arati to Radha Gokulanada. In the night Prabhupada would write books. He wrote 70 volumes. Prabhupada wrote many letters to his disciples. He established many Gurukuls. See his Gurubhakti and Krishna conscious life.

yasyasti bhaktir bhagavaty akiñcana, sarvair gunais tatra samasate surah (SB 5.18.12)

One who has unflinching devotion for the Personality of Godhead has all the good qualities of the demigods.

Atma is part of the Lord. Some degree of the Lord’s qualities are in the soul and these qualities manifest in the devotee. Vaisnavas have 26 qualities. All of those 26 qualities were there in Prabhupada. We have made a presentation displaying those qualities. You can all meditate on the pictures shown on the screen. When we hear and see that quality, then that quality will manifest in us. And that is the goal. There is a phrase in Marathi – thora mahatme hovun gele. We should read caritra of such a Mahajana and then we can also meditate on and develop that quality.

So Prabhupada had all the 26 qualities of Vaisnava which will be displayed on the screen.

(1) He is merciful to everyone. He gave us Krsna and that is the mercy of Prabhupada (2) He does not make anyone his enemy. (3) He is truthful (4) He is equal to everyone. (5) No one can find any fault in him. (6) He is magnanimous. (7) He is mild. (8) He is always clean. Cleanliness in next to Godliness. (9) He is without possessions. (10) He works for everyone’s benefit. (11) He is very peaceful. If you are in association of a peaceful person then you will also become peaceful. santakaram bhujaga-shayanam. Yoga means getting connected to the Lord. Bhakti yogis means you come in the association of the Lord and become shanta. Learn bhakti yoga and become peaceful (12) He is always surrendered to Krsna- krsneka saranam, Prabhupada was always in the shelter of the Lord. prapadyante nya devatah. Some people take shelter of demigods. ekale isvara krsna, ara saba bhrtya Prabhupada always stressed this whenever he wrote Krsna, he wrote Supreme Personality of Godhead because antigod preaching is going everywhere.(13) He has no material desires. (14) He is very meek. (15) He is steady. (16) He has cleanliness of heart and mind and thoughts. People says svachabaharat but what’s the use? Our heart is dirty. So we should start with the heart. Acharyas teach us the definition of cleanliness. cetodarpan marjana (17) He does not eat more than required. (18) He is not influenced by the Lord’s illusory energy. (19) He offers respect to everyone. (20) He does not desire any respect for himself. (21) He is very grave. (22) He is kind to everyone. (23) He is friendly. (24) He is poetic. (25) He is expert. (26) He is silent.

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