Sound has its presence in our everyday life and the absence of sound would be something “even words won’t be able to describe”, literarily. This cosmic manifestation is built on sound and sound sustains and maintains it. From childhood to old age, sound is part of communication, sound is education, sound is love, sound is fear, sound is war, sound is peace, sound is life, and sound is also death. We grow up registering different sounds in our subconscious minds, and brains and as each sound presents itself we receive, register and decipher the meaning before we react or respond. When a baby cries, the Mother hears the sound and then responds to the sound by being present to fulfill whatever need the child has.
When we hear the sound of bells as kids we know school is about to be in session, the same bell at a different time tells us it is recess and the same bell at a later time tells us it is time to go home. One sound produced three distinct times, and subsequently three different interpretations. This naturally brings us to our next point in focus, the differentiation of sound. In Calculus when the word differentiation arises immediately we know we are about to reduce a function, or in simpler words “break down”. In the same vein when we have various sounds around us it is essential to break them down to see which soothes us best. Often times as spiritualist we may find ourselves justifying various sounds we expose ourselves to by saying, they don’t really matter and thus it isn’t such a big deal. This concept is delusional and even today with secular logic it can be refuted. Let’s use music genre as a quick example, combining a saxophone, drum brush, a keyboard and we can create a simple jazz composition. If we take the same instruments, add vocals and replace the drum brush with drum sticks we can create Rhythm and Blues (RnB). Similarly when we expose ourselves to certain seemingly innocent sounds our bodies react differently because these sounds are translated differently by our subtle bodies and our subconscious mind, where majority of these sounds are stored.
The subconscious mind is so powerful that even in our semi-conscious state or our dreaming state we can still identify a sound or sounds. It is to this effect that we can see that of all our senses, only the sense of hearing remains fully active in our dream state. A sleeping man may not necessarily be able to see you walk in, or smell your perfume as you sit next to him; however the moment you mention his name, there is a high possibility that he’ll jolt out of his sleep. This is so because the sound of his name has been registered in his subconscious mind and when that fact coupled with the power in sound comes into play; his sleeping state can be altered. Not only can sound be used to alter one state of consciousness to another, it can also be used to alter the physical state of things. We have many examples of spiritualist who have developed high levels of mystic opulence that can change the physical state of matter by the simple utterance of high powerful words (mantras). If we look back into various spiritual texts or Holy Books we can see the power of sound in various aspects. In the Bible, the entire Creation starts by God saying “Let there be Light” and so it was. [Just as a quick side note it is worthy of note to see that when there is a sound there must be the origin of the sound, so if sound comes from an origin the sound cannot be the origin simultaneously. Simply put, sometimes we hear that God is sound, however many people never ask what is the source. God is all these and more.] In the Vedas we have a more detailed description of the Creation and the first thing the Creator experienced was sound. He heard a sound beckoning him to engage in austerities to give him the spiritual impetus to start the creative process.
Furthermore, sound as means of connecting with someone or a higher being is an area I’ll like to harp on a little bit. When we meet a friend we exchange words and pleasantries, when we meet a lover we also exchange words and pleasantries however the undertone is different, when we meet a superior we exchange words and maybe some pleasantries and we all know for sure the undertone and mood is different too. Similarly when we try to connect to a higher being or Personality, say the Supreme Lord or God, we do so by the utterance of sound vibrations we call prayer and there is no gainsaying the mood is also different. So in other words, sound arranged in a particular mood and with certain words directed to a specific higher energy could be a means for liberation from the entanglements of material nature. This sound can be called prayer, praise and worship, namaz, mantra; japa etc., the designation of the sound doesn’t change the function, which is to help Man connect to the absolute source of energy, sound and love, who is the Supreme personality of Godhead.
Everyone will definitely agree with me if I say that one of the most personal things anyone has is their name. If you hear someone call you by the name in a crowded place, you immediately know whomever it is that is calling me knows me, as compared to someone making sounds to beckon on you. More so, if someone calls you by a childhood nickname or a nickname only your friends knew you by in say high school, immediately even without seeing the person you immediately understand that the person calling you, knows you way more than your average circle of contacts. Similarly when we try to connect to the Absolute, the Supreme Lord by making sounds, we don’t get as much results as we might get should we call on a more personal name embedded in a transcendental sound vibration.
The topic of sound as it pertains to our spirituality is a vast topic and usually in order to keep my blogs within reading limit for most people I try not to make it too long, thus at this junction I’ll add a few closing remarks and probably do a second part of this blog. Our major life line in this material world is the sum total of what sounds we have ingested and produced during our existence here, thus if we produce sounds like a frog beckoning for a female to mate, we just might end up attracting the snake of death that traces our croaking back to us. Till we meet again for subsequent reading, do have a splendid day with lots of positive and spiritual sounds.
If this blog inspires you, or even teaches you one thing please feel free to share it with others so that they can also benefit.

Energy Depletion

Hello dear readers,
I hope you all are faring well. Today is the last day of this month and its been one month since I started this blog site and I’ld like to thank those of you who read and follow my regular updates. I hope to be able to regularly write on topics that inspire and guide those who seek some direction or just ideas on various issues.
The topic of discussion today is one many spiritualists or religious practitioners may have heard of, experienced or even dabbled with. There are so many groups and esoteric schools that speak about energy, energy levels, aura etc. These schools try to educate their adepts about the psychic nature of our energies while teaching them how to protect themselves.
As social entities we are in a constant mix with people from different walks of life, most of whom we have very little idea of whom they are in depth. We take the subway, we meet people, in the elevator we meet people, on the bus, at work, everywhere we go we are constantly surrounded by people with various energy levels and intentions. Now before delving into our topic, let’s quickly look at some very familiar instances we might have experienced at some point in time or the other during our interaction with people. Have you ever walked into a room full of people and suddenly feel as if the air was dense and something was right? Have you ever spent sometime talking with someone and walk away from the discussion feeling weak, tired and even drowsy, or having this “emptiness” inside? Have you ever been sad, down and feeling somewhat depressed only to exchange a word or two with a total stranger and suddenly feel revamp or re-energised?
Well if you have experienced one or more of these situations, there is no gain saying that you might have experienced some energy play at various level of subtlety. As spirit beings in a material body we are naturally very spiritual and psychic, however due to our association with matter we become deeply conditioned and our level of spirituality or psychic abilities drop drastically. Having this at the back of our minds we can see that in order for our psychic side or spiritual side to be dominant we need to feed that aspect of us constantly. One very sure way to do this is through sound. This is why many spiritual groups engage in either sound meditation or some sort of holy singing or chants. This enables them to raise their consciousness. ( The topic sound will be treated properly in subsequent blogs). When we engage in activities that don’t enhance our spiritual aide we fall deep into nescience and thus our energy levels deplete.
Since raising our energy levels could be difficult for some, the association we choose is very crucial and thus plays a major role in our spiritual lives. By associating with spiritually inclined individuals, with like minds and similar spiritual objectives we can harness into the “group energy” and thus raise ours by association. In gaudiya vaisnava philosophy we can directly experience this in the congregational chanting process or harinam sankirtan or group kirtans. Other esoteric groups have group meditations, divinations, circles, etc as a means of joining forces to raise their energy levels.
Substances that we ingest either as food or some sort of nourishment play a vital role in our energy balance. Those who are prone to drug abuse are more open to hallucinations and thus have an ethereal body open to all sorts of things because they have become porous. ( This is a very interesting subject where one gets to see how lower beings can manipulate our bodies if we fail to secure ourselves. Hopefully in subsequent blogs I’ll discuss this topic).
To the degree we keep our spiritual practices or sadhana in place to that degree we have our energy on the high side and to the degree we comprise our spiritual practices and sadhana to that degree we become porous to energy vampires and lower beings. The beautiful side about raising our energy levels isn’t just about having high energy level, or just about avoiding energy vampires but to be able to also help raise those who are in need of higher associations and seeking a chance to raise their energy through their consciousness.
In all fairness the topic of energy levels isn’t one to treat in a thousand words, however as usual in order to keep my messages brief and concise I try to press in as much as I can and hopefully the inner meanings can be deduced. If however there are things or points of interest my readers would like me to deliberate on, please do leave a message.
Till our next read do have a wonderful day ahead.

Time zones: Don’t compare with others

Hello and welcome to another exciting read…
Different countries around the world have different time zones and this shows in the time it takes from sunrise to sunset. Travelers moving from one place to another know very well that if they are in transit, there is no need to change their time piece or clocks if you wish, because despite the fact that the time is different their sojourn there is very short. Moreso, a traveler in a different country doesn’t worry about the difference his home time has as regards his new place, why? Because he has to function in his new environment and hence trying to function based on past time is of no use.
If we carefully extrapolate these ideas to real life and try to see things from a metaphysical perspective we can deduce a lot from these idea. Often times in life we set our lives clock based on so many time zones. These time zones include, parent time zone, friends time zone, peer time zone, society time zone, just to mention a few, however a few people, and I mean a very few people can snap out of these time zones and set their clocks according to their place, circumstance and space.
From a very early stage in our lives, we have our clocks set for us by parents and initially this is very good and usually needed. However if we do not reset this clock and keep trying to work our lives according to the clocks of our parents we begin to live their lives instead of ours. This can be seen in many choices people make just because parents insist that they should. There is a short story of a young man who spent seven years pursuing a medical degree, and on his graduation day he handed over his degrees to his parents and said ” This is the degree you wanted me to get, now am off to study Arts”. Not many people are able to actually snap out, and not many areas in life have straight forward paths like this example, hence setting our life clocks according to our time zone helps. Another interesting time zone many people set their life clocks to is the friend time zone. “Oh my friend is doing this, thus I must do it. My friend has this, I must get it, and so on and so forth.” This is a very common example and I’m pretty sure many people can relate this. Without much ado on these examples, the real question is why can’t people just set their clocks according to their own time zones?
The answer even though somewhat simple is quite branched, and the reason is because many people have identity issues. As gaudiya vaisnavas the first thing we learn is “we are not this body”. We are spirit souls who are part and parcel of the Supreme Lord. If we understand this on the surface level, we take a step forward and begin to make a lot of choices, from food to life style etc. When we understand it a little deeper we take another step forward to understanding our live’s mission and purpose and if we take a step forward we can actually get to the final point where we identify what our original identity is. However for the purpose of this blog we shall reference the second level which is beyond the physical, metaphysical we might say but not totally in the spiritual realm.
When we understand who we are as spiritual beings we understand that we are from a higher realm than the current one we are experiencing and thus when we make choices and “set our life clocks” we do so knowing fully well that we are setting our clocks according to our original home time. Now some people call this home Heaven, some call it Paradise, some call it Goloka Vrndavan, irrespective of the name ,the point is our life clocks should be set to a more eternal time. Someone who knows his identity as being an eternal citizen of such a spiritual realm can not set his or her clock according to the clocks of people on this planet, whomever they might be.
Every spiritual mentor who is bonafide will advise his students to learn every tenet of the spiritual path but ultimately acquire enough knowledge and wisdom to walk the path in their own lane, in other words set their own clocks. Now at this point, conservatives might say if we all set our clocks differently there will be chaos, etc. Truth be told, the clock of one’s life can not be set according to anything of a lower value, their will always be frustration. Real satisfaction will come only from setting this life clock according to higher spiritual values as they apply to YOU.
The ancient and the oldest scriptures known to man, the Vedas of which the Bhagavad gita is a part, clearly states that its better for one to do one’s work with fault than to do another’s perfectly.
There is only one YOU on this planet, with a specific mission and task to achieve and the moment you set your life clock according to some other values or people that are not eternal, your mission is aborted until you reset. Imagine how many missions have been terminated just because of life time zone settings.
Till the next blog, have a blissful day ahead. If this blog inspires you please feel free to share the link with family and friends. Save a life mission today.

Fasting, denying the body to help the soul.

Today been Ekadasi, a fasting day observed especially within the Vaisnava circle I decided to share some insights on deeper truths about fasting. Across various religious groups many adherents have various days that a fast is kept, sometimes to commemorate an event, sometimes to honour a saint, sometimes to seek higher spiritual guidance and direction, or even for the simple reason of reducing the pleasures of the body so as to dedicate more time to spiritual activities.
There are various types of fasts that various spiritual practitioners engage in, from reducing the amount of food intake a day, to total dry fast, however irrespective of the type involved there is a principle in mind, and that is, the practitioner knows that this action that I am about to or currently undertaking is for something higher. Sometimes we see people observe fasts to try to resolve a material problem, or to gain some mystic powers and one might ask but how is this a higher process if the end result is for self aggrandizement?
Well the answer is simply because the act itself has the ability to bestow certain results if done properly, thus the practitioner needs to be fully aware of the process and endeavor to do so under proper guide. For example in Vaisnava tradition, grains are to be avoided on every fortnight for the purpose of attracting the mercy of the Lord. The process involves increasing the recitation of the Lord’s name, avoiding grains and legumes, and engaging in more spiritual activities and even sometimes keeping awake. The end result being to please the Lord, even though the fast offers many other material results like promotion to heavenly abodes the sincere devotee of the Lord is not attracted to the fast for this purpose.
In the same vein some esoteric practices have fasts whereby the practitioner has the goal of overcoming the fear of death and following strict guidelines he is asked to remain awake in a cemetery in the dead of night all by himself. These esoteric paths are way more radical in their approach to observing fasts as the result and goal intended is for personal motives. This however doesn’t negate the fact that the practitioner involved does get some psychic boost and could even acquire powers from he process involved.
When the physical body is denied a particular pleasure or “enjoyment”, the sense involved in acquiring this pleasure becomes tamed with time and by correct practice it could be subdued. Now this in turn awards the practitioner involved with more psychic abilities drawn from energy developed as a result of less use of this particular sense. In this case of fasting, the tongue which is aligned with the belly (stomach) and genitals, also become less troubled and thus also reducing sexual agitation. When this energy is properly channeled a lot of fine psychic attributes can be obtained, all starting from the seemingly simple process of restraining the tongue by fasting.
Today science even prescribes moderate fasts as a way to detox, boost immune system and sometimes combat certain types of diseases, if all these can happen on the physical platform imagine how much more can happen subtly.
With proper aim and intention in mind, following due process under a bonafide guide and above all observing the fast with the intention to harness higher spiritual values is one way to get more benefits from fasting.
Hoping to hear from u all soon. May our fasts give pleasure to the Supreme Lord.

Surviving Dark Nights

Before commencing, I’ll like to sincerely apologize as this blog is a day late, I have been very busy of late however I’ll try to ensure that I publish them on time in the near future. With that been said let’s proceed.
There are times when everything that can go wrong seems to go absolutely wrong, weather in our spiritual lives or material lives. These periods are referred to as the dark night of the soul, or times or trials and tribulations. Interestingly enough there seems not to be a single person whom I have met who is immune to this phenomena. From the most spiritual person to the least spiritual person, everyone has these times occur in their lives, either on a periodical basis or for some almost every now and then. It would be worthy of note to mention that it seems the higher the level of spirituality the more the dark nights. For very spiritually advanced souls these dark nights tend to serve as opportunities to be elevated to higher levels in their spiritual practices and thus they have to learn from these situations, grow in these lessons, and also use their lives as a model for less spiritually advanced folks. Knowing that these situations will exist at one point in time, it is helpful to have at the back of our minds one fact: whenever they occur, just accept them. Don’t fight it.
Dark nights could vary from person to person, it could be disturbances of the mind, controlling anger, greed or sexual impulses, it could be severe or chronic diseases which could be terminal, it could be could be allegations of character defamation, etc. Irrespective of whatever these dark nights are the bottom line is that they are very trying time and in other for one to traverse them, one has to get as much support as possible. Most people however feel that hey have been abandoned during these times by family, friends or even by their worhipable Deities, which is contrary to the most important principle of support. Now support could be either physical or spiritual depending on the circumstance. Physical support from people who have been through similar dark nights or who have been close to those with such experiences, would help those who are currently going through such to learn how to respond to such situations. Spiritual support from fellow god family could help the person going through such situations to have a deeper understanding about the situation and thus empower them to take on tests that are either on going or awaiting them with a more relaxed mindset knowing that they have help from higher beings, mentors and the Supreme Lord through the mercy of his devotees.
Furthermore, for every dark night that we endure or survive or pass we are actually being prepared for a higher responsibility and thus we get the training required in order to be able to function in that capacity. Just like for students to be promoted to a higher class there has to be an examination, similarly for the soul to be awarded higher responsibilities which mostly involves taking responsibility for other souls, one has to be ready physically and spiritually. More So, the individual must have firm faith in the Lord, even when it seems like the Lord is ”slow” to respond. It is said the Lord’s mill might grind “slowly” but it does surely. In the Bhagavad gita the Lord clearly mentions that his devotees never perish, and many religious groups also share the same view. The Christian mention that the name of the Lord is a strong tower and those who mention it are saved, Muslims mention that all those who pronounce the name of the All mighty God are protected, so one can clearly see that for the soul to walk through these dark night spiritually, he/she has to have a high level of faith. The faith mentioned here is not some fanatical one but one based on proper knowledge, and firm action in the direction of such faith. Having faith here doesn’t negate action in anyway, instead it gives one’s action a proper sense of direction.
In a nut shell, every living entity in this material world will at some point in time go through some dark nights or probably a lot of dark nights. The most important factor is to accept it, learn from , grow from it, and then be a light to those who go through the same.
I hope to hear from you all soon.


Today been bright and sunny I decided to shed some light in my readers direction by sharing some positive and mind bugling thoughts as usual.
As simple as this one word question sounds, a lot of direction can be lost or gotten if answered wrongly or correctly. Many a times in our lives we seem to be on auto pilot as we make decisions or engage in activities because we have been told to do so, or because everyone is doing so, or because it “seems” we have to. The interesting thing about asking ourselves why, is that not only do we have a proper sense of direction but we also have a deep sense of fulfillment knowing fully well we are on the right track.
One good secular example is the modern educational system, many youths now choose higher education because the society says you need to have a degree to be you, a degree defines you and without it you are nothing. Now without asking the right questions many people dive head deep into acquiring degrees they don’t have an inclination for and acquire huge amounts of debts in student loans. This is not to say higher education is not useful, however know why exactly you need it. They graduate coming out almost exactly as they went in, except with a lot more frustration having to see the society lied to them, and a lot more un fulfillment. The same thing applies to spiritual life too, usually I always ask devotees the “why” question.
Why are you a devotee? Why are you coming to programs, mangala etc? Why do you attend classes? Why do you observe sacred fasts? Why do you dress as you do? Why do you chant? Why are you having this diet? Why are you going to India? Why are you keeping certain associations? Why do you have certain kind of friends? Just to mention a few. If one doesn’t have a strong enough “why” even the simplest things are difficult. However the moment you know and locate your why, you develop a strong sense of direction that most people can never understand, because they are not on the same frequency as you are. Once you identify your “why” you have a sense of fulfillment that is inexplicable to anyone and usually doesn’t make “sense” to someone who is trying to see things from their perspective. The moment you understand your “why” you are one step closer to unravelling the most complex intricacies in life.
More So, one might ask but is identifying the reason “why” the only thing we have to know, well of course not. If you identify the why and do not work in that direction it is also pointless, so in as much as we need to identify the “why” we need to work in that direction.
Furthermore, identifying one’s “why” comes with its own challenges, because usually it doesn’t fit into the society’s perception of how things should be done and you might see yourself on a one man journey or having to face opposition. The general tendency is to oppose whatever we feel is contrary to what we understand and believe in, however when you know why exactly you do whatever you do, in whatever field of your life you immediately rise above such dualities.
Thus the next time you are in any situation or about making decisions ask yourself deep down inside, why am I doing or about to do this? What does it serve in my life? Why do I feel the need to do this? Why cant I do without it? Simple as they sound, you will notice the immense power you get when these vague thoughts are addressed and begin to notice your life move as you direct and not just living as if your life is happening to you and you are just a victim in life.
In a nut shell, suffice it to say that the intention(s) behind every action is just as important as the act itself. We as Vaisnavas have one goal in mind and that is to satisfy Vrajendranandana Syam Krsna with all our activities, if your activities aren’t giving satisfaction to Krsna ultimately then we need to review our spiritual choices and decisions. In the same vein, if our material, emotional, psychological, and physical decisions aren’t meeting a particular objective that we have decided to achieve and not one dictated by crowd, vox populi, etc, then we are alive but not living.
Looking forward to hear from you all. Have a lovely day.

The living entity in Transit

Yesterday while waiting for my connecting flight at Istanbul I decided to pen down a few thoughts and realizations. Initially I had hoped I’ll be able to upload my writing after I was done typing only to notice the wifi at the Airport wasn’t free even though open and “accessible”. After spending almost half an hour trying to connect to no avail I decided to write then upload later as soon as I had internet connection. A few things crossed my mind while I was there waiting; the time it took, the constant influx of people, the change of environment, the anticipation of passengers, the frustration of some passengers, the constant announcements, just to mention a few. In that moment some very interesting facts crossed my mind and I felt it would be nice to share. Just like the passengers at the airport who are either waiting for a flight or getting off one, the jiva enters this material world, boarding one body or preparing to get off the present one. Now in the mean time while “waiting” different passengers distract themselves differently, some choose to eat, some choose to talk with family and friends, some walk around to pass time, and some just sit in front of the flight schedule patiently waiting, and maybe a few people work on important things. In the same vein, when the living entity appears in the material world, he engages in all sorts of activities while in this present body while waiting for the next body or destination. The kind of activity the living entity engages in differs from person to person and in some way reflect various aspects of their consciousness.
More So, it is worthy of note that irrespective of the activity of the passengers at the waiting terminal or at the airport, it is almost rare to see a passenger in transit decide to just stay put and say “ok now I need to settle down here and continue with my life”. Why is this so? Simply because every passenger has a destination and getting there is the most important thing on their mind at any point in time. No passenger throws away their paid tickets and ditch their flights, no passenger boards a wrong flight in full consciousness. Similarly the living entity who knows that the Human form of life is meant for enquiry about the self doesn’t spend his/her time frivolously, because there is a destination in mind, or at least there should be, weather attaining heaven, paradise or returning back home back to Godhead.
The conscious jiva, or living entity who is a passenger in this material world should not settle here, just like the passenger in transit doesn’t settle until he/she reaches their destination. Having this mindset, the living entity is conscious of their choices, day in day out as they determine their resultant destination weather long or short term. Living entities on the level of anna maya, who exist just for feeding the tongue could be compared to those who pass their time eating while waiting for the next flight (body), in the same vein we can draw many extrapolations about all other categories of passengers in transit (living entities waiting to get out of this material world). The wifi that was open but inaccessible represents various spiritual organizations, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, etc, even though open for all they remain inaccessible to those who can’t connect due to lack of an approved password. This password needs to be given to you either by an airport staff or someone who has access to it. In the same vein, access to the inner meanings of the scriptures can only be revealed to you by someone who is self realized and has seen the truth. (BG 4:34). This person is no other than a Guru, Master, Teacher or spiritual guide. Withdrawing my thoughts and coming back to my external environment I notice my flight is about to board. I hurriedly grab my carryon bags and head to the counter. I hope when the time comes for us to move on to our real eternal destination we all are able to act rapidly and consciously.
Looking forward to your feedbacks.

Sastric Praman and Common Sense: The meeting point.

In the midst of an irregular snowing day at the end of April, I have decided to pen some more thoughts on paper,or should we say on e-paper. Now before I commence, I’ll like to dispel all ambiguity the heading might raise. This article in no way claims that common sense is superior to or better than sastric praman. This is more of a methodological approach to sastric praman from a common sense approach. That been said let’s get started.
It is clearly mentioned in the scriptures and repeated by many acarya’s; saintly teachers, that one should see through the eyes of the scriptures i.e sastra caksusa. I totally accept this fact and do advocate the same, however there seems to be a blurry gap between identifying a situation requiring sastric approach and a situation requiring common sense approach. In other to look at this deeply we shall examine a couple of real life situations and then try to see what fits best. Every situation we face is usually spread across three divisions namely; physical, subtle and spiritual. Usually many people confuse the subtle for spiritual but there is a difference.
Just as we have physical bodies, subtle bodies and our spiritual bodies, different situations affect these different aspects too. Trying to administer a physical solution to a subtle problem not only compounds the problem but doesn’t yield any tangible result. In the same vein trying to solve a spiritual situation using material solutions is just as counter productive as the former. Without getting too much into logic let’s quickly look at this example. A devotee walks up to you and says “hey, I have a little problem that whenever I am chanting I fall asleep.” Now the typical scenario that occurs is this, the listener immediately starts quoting sastric reference to prove that your mind is not focused and that you are not attentive and then summarizes the whole talk by saying it’s a spiritual defect. In as much as I accept that all of these could be “possibly true”, I’ll suggest a different step by step approach.
First and foremost, ask the devotee involved “how many hours of sleep do you get a day?” If he says two hours for instance, common sense tells you that a Man sleeping two hours a day is definitely prone to fall asleep at 5:00am if he is praying. Second question that would be logical to ask is how much of physical activities do you engage in during the day? Do you eat heavy at night before bed and hence wake up feeling drowsy even though you get enough sleep?
These and many more, are physical questions one can ask first in order to see if the physical aspects are all clear. Now in a case where the devotee has about 8 hours of sleep daily, doesn’t physically exert himself, has a good diet and everything seems okay, then we can take it a little step forward and suggest doing parikrama around Tulsi while doing Japa meditation. Most people find sitting down a natural sleep inducer, and prefer to walk to keep sleep at bay. If however all physical conditions are perfect as mentioned above, and the devotee tries walking but still sleeps even while walking then now you know this is clearly beyond the physical. At this point a subtle approach could be administered.
Finding someone else who doesn’t sleep during japa, who chants audibly enough to keep one awake as a chanting partner could be a nice step to help the devotee in concern on a subtle level. Now one might ask how is this subtle? Having a friend who sits besides you, whom you know will gently tap you to wake you up whenever you dose off, is a nice reassuring manner to adress such a situation thereby giving the devotee not only physical support of keeping him awake but the subtle need for companionship and mental support, making him/her know that this problem is not peculiar to you alone and I’m here to help you provided we both agree to go through this process together.
Now if the physical approach is all clear, and the subtle remedy also isn’t providing much help then we can thus see that the problem might be more deep rooted than we envision. At this point, we might want to see how this person performs in other activities in their lives. Do they also sleep at work? Are they lackadaisical to important activities? Do they exhibit tendencies of someone in gross ignorance, like sleep, inertia, madness? If all these are checked as positive then we can at this point administer some spiritual remedy backed by sastra.
At this point some of my readers might say but why go through all these if I can see it immediately that it is a spiritual problem? Well the answer is a multiple choice one. Owning to the fact that we don’t have perfect judgement due to our imperfect senses, one can not be totally “too sure”, except if you are a Nitya siddha jiva, an eternally liberated soul, who sees beyond time, place and circumstances. If you however do not fall in this category, it is safer to try to administer “help or treatment” after proper diagnosis of the situation in depth. A good example is visiting a doctor, you might have all the symptoms of fever and the doctor could clearly see these symptoms just by looking at your eyes, mouth and asking a few questions. However a good Doctor would for the benefit of doubt and for double clarity, run a few tests either by blood or other body fluids. The reason for doing so is not only to confirm if you have fever but to see if there is more to your ailments than just the fever itself.
Why do we think that the process is any different for spiritual diagnosis? Why do we feel the need to sermonize every problem? One would agree without a doubt that His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupad was very successful in the management of “issues” while physically on the planet because He had an all round vision of everything. He could analyse things from a Father perspective, from a Family Man perspective, from a Business perspective, from a Spiritual perspective, from a Subtle perspective, and over and above all from the perspective of an eternally liberated soul. This gave his answers and decisions a very wholesome approach that defy time and space.
In conclusion, let us try to step back and double check whenever we have to administer “help”, there is always more to somethings than meets the eyes. Hope to get your feedbacks on this line of thought. Till our next read, have a blissful day ahead.

“He said that, She said that, They said that …”

It’s been an interesting week for me and during my interactions with devotees I have seen a trait which is quite disturbing and in simple words, it is Rumour mongering. (My American friends should bear with me as I do majority of my spellings in British English, hence the “u” in Rumour). That been said, Rumour mongering or spreading has no place whatsoever in any community speakless of a Vaisnava community. Now let’s look at the word itself, it simply means circulating a story or an event with “unverified” truth. You hear something, you dont double check but you jump on your social media, email, telephone, or even person to person gossip and start spreading these unverifird events, to what benefit?
One insightful factor about Rumour mongering is the way it is dessiminated. An envious person creates the rumour, an ignorant person spreads it and worse is a fool believes it. Why on earth would one take pleasure in spreading unverified events about others if not for envy? Why would you spread an event, or news you have no solid background proof for if infact you are not some ignorant fellow? And why on earth would you believe hook, line and sinker some “hearsays” without double checking if infact you are not a fool? Now one might say that sounds harsh, well brace yourself because in my humble opinion backed by sastric reference which I will give shortly, spreading rumours is not only harsh but dehumanizing. Let’s bolt back five thousand years plus, for those of you who know the story of the Syamantaka jewel. Satrajit went around defaming Lord Krsna’s name in the context of him being in possession of a jewel he didnt have, and claimed he must have killed his brother too. Now let’s backup here for a second, this is some guy defaming the Supreme personality of Godhead himself. What did Krsna do? He took it upon himself to go look for the jewel to set the record straight. Hey! He didnt have to do that, he is God, he could just say ” hey don’t you realise I’m God”. No, why because it was hurtful, embarassing, and above all a defamation of character.
I have heard some people, let me not say Vaisnava’s now, who justify their rumour mongering by saying well “you should be equipoised in the face of such dualities, Na socati Na kanksati” However these same people won’t also quote that ” Austerity of speech consists of speaking words that are truthful, pleasing, beneficial and not agitating to others and also regularly reciting the Vedic literature” (BG 17:15). How on Earth is a rumour truthful if not verified, how is a rumour pleasing, how is it beneficial, how does spreading it not agitate others?
Recently there was some friction in Mayapur and boy o boy there were a thousand versions online until the parties involved made their official statements and then intelligent people could weigh in on both statements and then draw their personal conclusions. HG Aindra das prabhu made a statement which I have taken the liberty to use as my heading, he says ” He said that, she said that, they said that, who cares who said whatever, human life is too short for all this nonsense” (I’m paraphrasing mind you).
Have you ever gone to a Temple, far away from your local yatra and you sense that people already have some pre-misconstrued ideas about you? Have you ever introduced yourself to a fellow Vaisnava and he /she says something to the effect of “O so you are so so and so prabhu” and you reply yes, is there anything and they say O nothing but you immediately see their actions change?
I really don’t want to sound anti-technology, however internet hasn’t really helped matters. With high spead wifi these days, rumours about you can be circulated around the globe faster than most people can recall where their japa bags are. Some devotees live, eat, breathe and thrive by spreading baseless, whimsical and hurtful rumours. Why? Just why?
The next time you see yourself in a situation whereby you might be hearing or reading some rumours, instead of spreading it or worse still believing it and being judgemental this is what to do.
1. Contact whomever is involved, if that person is within your reach, ask them the details of events.
2. If they are not within your circle of reach, it means most probably these people or person have little or no direct business with you, if so move on with your life. Incase you missed that, I meant ignore it.
3. When someone comes to you with a rumour about another person, don’t listen and spread it,simply nip it in the bud. If the person telling you about this rumour doesnt want to stop, ask them one simple question : “Can you repeat verbatim, that is word for word whatever you just told me to this devotee’s face if I were to bring him/her here right now? If they hesitate, mumble, keep quiet or say no, then there is a high probability it is a rumour based on litte or no facts.
4.Keep yourself busy, I mean materially and spiritually busy. In eveyday words, I mean “get a life” If you have enough time to go from person to person or online spreading rumours, I can bet you either have no material goal nor spiritual ones. That is why you have so much “free time”. High achievers do not have time to spread rumours.
4. Mind your own business. Now don’t mistake this for being impersonal, if you do not have a genuine intention to help stop the rumour, or to go to the very source to verify, or to help the person involved when you find out it is true, if it is true, then there is no point listening to or spreading it.
5. Just for a second put yourself in the shoes of whomever it is you are about to spread rumours about and ask yourself,how would I feel if someone did this to me? If your answer is negative then simple just stop. If your answer is positive which would be indeed rare then guess what not everyone likes “pain and disturbance” like you do. Quit.
I know this is quite long however do bear with me, there is a lot more I want to say about this but due to the fact that I intend to keep this within easy read I’ll draw the line here. Usually I dont request people to share only if it inspires them, however please do share this post to every vaisnava circle you know. This message needs to get out there.
Thank you, I look forward to seeing you here again for more insightful readings.

Friendship amongst Vaisnavas

Webster’s dictionary defines friendship as a state of being friends or affection arising from mutual esteem and goodwill. Please note the words mutual esteem and goodwill. Nectar of Instruction mentions six loving exchanges which should exist between or among devotees (NOI 4), and one of these is to reveal one’s mind in confidence. At this point I’ll like to take the liberty to say one doesn’t reveal one’s mind in confidence to someone who is inimical, envious or not a friend.
For those who question this statement, Lord Krsna clearly mentions that He spoke the Gita to Arjuna, basically for two reasons: He was his friend and not envious of the Lord. So where am I heading with all of these? Many a times devotees go through tough times, depressions, material setbacks like marriage issues, finances etc, spiritual setbacks such as deviations, temporary backslides (which sometimes end up in permanent backslides, by backslide I mean “bloop”), and during these times they usually say “No one even asked how I was”. Now one might say whose fault is it if people dont have friends? Instead of asking this question, the real factor here is why can’t devotees have healthy, real friendships within the movement? The answer varies, however without a doubt it is almost impossible to foster real friendship in an atmosphere where there is competition, backbitting, envy, and malice. How can there be real friendship when it almost seems like the next devotee is just trying to see you “fall down” to prove his own “advancement”.
Many vaisnavas might try to act as of this doesnt matter, and even try to justify this callousness by slinging “scripture” in your face, but do not be deceived, for if friendship wasn’t important it wont be among the five rasa’s or mood in serving the lord, if friendship wasn’t important Lord Krsna himself wouldn’t have been at grief at Sudama’s situation when they met, if friendship wasn’t important Krsna wouldn’t have spoken the Gita to Arjuna.
What is the use of trying to cultivate Sakhya rasa, or the mood of serving the Lord as a friend when you don’t have one real friend here, i.e you are not even a true friend here to a fellow vaisnava. Why do many devotees feel comfortable revealing their minds to so-called “karmi” friends instead of devotees? Why do vaisnava’s find it difficult to reveal their minds in confidence when going through spiritual setbacks? Simple, they do not feel a genuine level of trust or friendship within the community.
In brief, ask yourself today; what kind of friend am I? Do I thrive on my fellow vaisnava’s setback? Do I secretly feel happy whenever I see they are in distress? Do I reveal in public, matters revealed to me in confidence by another devotee? Most importantly, Would I want to be friends with me if I were someone else? Friends are like a real gem, hard to find but acquintances are never short in supply. I’ll love to have your feedback and insights on this, please feel welcome to leave a comment below.