Published on December 27th, 2015 | by Madhudvisa dasa | Full size image33
Always Remember Krishna, Never Forget Krishna
As we continue studying the Eighth Chapter of Srila Prabhupada’s Bhagavad-gita As It Is Krishna continues advising His friend Arjuna on the practical methods of remembering Him so that one can perfect his life by remembering Krishna at the time of death. In the ninth verse in the eighth chapter Krishna is giving practical instructions on how one can meditate on Him:
One should meditate upon the Supreme Person as the one who knows everything, as He who is the oldest, who is the controller, who is smaller than the smallest, who is the maintainer of everything, who is beyond all material conception, who is inconceivable, and who is always a person. He is luminous like the sun and, being transcendental, is beyond this material nature. (Bhagavad-gita 8.9)
The process of thinking of the Supreme is mentioned in this verse. The foremost point is that He is not impersonal or void. One cannot meditate on something impersonal or void. That is very difficult. The process of thinking of Krishna, however, is very easy and is factually stated herein.
First of all Krishna is spiritual and He knows past, present and future and therefore He knows everything. He is the oldest personality because He is the origin of everything; everything is born out of Him. He is also the supreme controller of the universe, maintainer and instructor of humanity.
Krishna is smaller than the smallest. The living entity is one 10,000th part of the tip of a hair, but the Lord is so inconceivably small that He enters into the heart of this particle. Therefore He is called smaller than the smallest. As the Supreme, He can enter into the atom and into the heart of the smallest and control him as the Supersoul.
Although so small, He is still all-pervading and is maintaining everything. By Him all these planetary systems are sustained. We often wonder how these big planets are floating in the air. It is stated here that the Supreme Lord, by His inconceivable energy, is sustaining all these big planets and systems of galaxies.
Krishna’s energy is beyond our conception, beyond our thinking jurisdiction, and is therefore called inconceivable. Who can argue this point? He pervades this material world and yet is beyond it. We cannot even comprehend this material world, which is insignificant compared to the spiritual world—so how can we comprehend what is beyond? Therefore intelligent persons, avoiding useless argument and speculation, should accept what is stated in scriptures like the Vedas, Gita, and Srimad-Bhagavatam and follow the principles they set down. This will lead one to understanding.
One who, at the time of death, fixes his life air between the eyebrows and in full devotion engages himself in remembering the Supreme Lord, will certainly attain to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. (Bhagavad-gita 8.10)
It is clearly stated here that at the time of death the mind must be fixed in devotion on the Supreme Godhead. For those practiced in yoga, it is recommended that they raise the life force between the eyebrows, but for a pure devotee who does not practice such yoga, the mind should always be engaged in Krishna consciousness so that at death he can remember the Supreme by His grace.
Without practice of yoga one cannot come to this transcendental state of being at the time of death. One cannot suddenly remember the Supreme Lord at death unless he is practiced in some yoga system, especially the system of bhakti-yoga. Since one’s mind at death is very disturbed, one should practice transcendence through yoga during one’s life.
Persons learned in the Vedas, who utter omkara and who are great sages in the renounced order, enter into Brahman. Desiring such perfection, one practices celibacy. I shall now explain to you this process by which one may attain salvation. (Bhagavad-gita 8.11)
Lord Krishna explains that Brahman, although one without a second, has different manifestations and features. For the impersonalists, the syllable om is identical with Brahman. Krishna here explains the impersonal Brahman in which the renounced order of sages enter.
In the Vedic system of knowledge, students, from the very beginning, are taught to vibrate om and learn of the ultimate impersonal Brahman by living with the spiritual master in complete celibacy. In this way they realize two of Brahman’s features. This practice is very essential for the student’s advancement in spiritual life, but at the moment such brahmacari (unmarried celibate) life is not at all possible.
The social construction of the world has changed so much that there is no possibility of one’s practicing celibacy from the beginning of student life. Throughout the world there are many institutions for different departments of knowledge, but there is no recognized institution where students can be educated in the brahmacari principles. Unless one practices celibacy, advancement in spiritual life is very difficult. Therefore Lord Caitanya has announced, according to the scriptural injunctions for this age of Kali, that no process of realizing the Supreme is possible except the chanting of the holy name of Lord Krishna:
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.
The yogic situation is that of detachment from all sensual engagements. Closing all the doors of the senses and fixing the mind on the heart and the life air at the top of the head, one establishes himself in yoga. (Bhagavad-gita 8.12)
To practice yoga, as suggested here, one first has to close the door of all sense enjoyment. Sense organs for acquiring knowledge, such as the eyes, ears, nose, tongue and touch, should be fully controlled and should not be allowed to engage in self-gratification. In this way the mind focuses on the Supersoul in the heart and the life force is raised to the top of the head. In the Sixth Chapter this process is described in detail. But as mentioned before, this practice is not practical in this age. The best process is Krishna consciousness. If one is always able to fix his mind on Krishna in devotional service, it is very easy for him to remain in an undisturbed transcendental trance, or in samadhi.
After being situated in this yoga practice and vibrating the sacred syllable om, the supreme combination of letters, if one thinks of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and quits his body, he will certainly reach the spiritual planets. (Bhagavad-gita 8.13)
It is clearly stated here that om, Brahman, and Lord Krishna are not different. The impersonal sound of Krishna is om, but the sound Hare Krishna contains om.
It is clearly recommended in this age that if one quits his body at the end of this life chanting the mahamantra, Hare Krishna, he will reach the spiritual planets. Similarly, those who are devotees of Krishna enter the Krishna planet or Goloka Vrndavana, whereas the impersonalists remain in the brahmajyoti. The personalists also enter many innumerable planets in the spiritual sky known as Vaikunthas.
For one who remembers Me without deviation, I am easy to obtain, O son of Prtha, because of his constant engagement in devotional service. (Bhagavad-gita 8.14)
In this verse the bhakti-yoga of the unalloyed devotees of the Supreme Godhead is described. The preceding verses mention four different kinds of devotees—
- the distressed,
- the inquisitive,
- those who seek material gain, and
- the speculative philosophers.
Different processes of liberation from material entanglement have also been described: karma-yoga, jnana-yoga, and hatha-yoga. But here bhakti-yoga, without any mixture of these, is mentioned.
In bhakti-yoga the devotees desire nothing but Krishna. The pure bhakti devotee does not desire promotion to heavenly planets, nor does he seek salvation or liberation from material entanglement. A pure devotee does not desire anything. In the Caitanya-caritamrta the pure devotee is called niskama, which means he has no desire for self-interest. Perfect peace belongs to him alone, not to them who strive for personal gain. The pure devotee only wants to please the Supreme Lord, and so the Lord says that for anyone who is unflinchingly devoted to Him, He is easy to attain.
The devotee can render service to any of the transcendental forms of the Supreme Lord, and he meets with none of the problems that plague the practitioners of other yogas.
Bhakti-yoga is very simple and pure and easy to perform. One can begin by simply chanting Hare Krishna. Krishna is very merciful to those who engage in His service, and He helps in various ways that devotee who is fully surrendered to Him so he can understand Him as He is.
The Lord gives such a devotee sufficient intelligence so that ultimately the devotee can attain Him in His spiritual kingdom.
The special qualification of the pure devotee is that he is always thinking of Krishna without considering the time or place. There should be no impediments. He should be able to carry out his service anywhere and at any time.
Some say that the devotee should remain in holy places like Vrndavana or some holy town where the Lord lived, but a pure devotee can live anywhere and create the atmosphere of Vrndavana by his devotional service. It was Sri Advaita who told Lord Caitanya, “Wherever You are, O Lord—there is Vrndavana.”
A pure devotee constantly remembers Krishna and meditates upon Him. These are qualifications of the pure devotee for whom the Lord is most easily attainable. Bhakti-yoga is the system that the Gita recommends above all others. Generally, the bhakti-yogis are engaged in five different ways:
- santa-bhakta, engaged in devotional service in neutrality;
- dasya-bhakta, engaged in devotional service as servant;
- sakhya-bhakta, engaged as friend;
- vatsalya-bhakta, engaged as parent; and
- madhurya-bhakta, engaged as conjugal lover of the Supreme Lord.
In any of these ways, the pure devotee is always constantly engaged in the transcendental loving service of the Supreme Lord and cannot forget the Supreme Lord, and so for him the Lord is easily attained. A pure devotee cannot forget the Supreme Lord for a moment, and similarly, the Supreme Lord cannot forget His pure devotee for a moment. This is the great blessing of the Krishna conscious process of chanting the mahamantra, Hare Krishna.
So from all these instructions from Krishna in so many verses from the eighth chapter of Bhagavad-gita we can clearly understand now how important it is to always remember Krishna. In fact it is instructed by the Vaisnava acaryas that all the regulative principles of devotional service can be summarized in just one: “Always remember Krishna and never forget Krishna.”
I have started my spiritual. Career at the age of 17. For now it’s easy for me to chant his name,but how will I do in future when material responsibilities will increase ?
I don’t want to forget Krishna even a single moment
So now it is easy, become a pure devotee of Krishna now and Krishna will give you the intelligence how to continue and advance as your responsibilities increase.
Hare Krishna Sir!!
Thanks a lot for your mails…
I am really feeling great pleasure in reading Srila Prabhupada books and trying to come closer to krishna.
Hari Bol !!
HARE. KRISHNA PRABHU. THIS IS A VERY VERY GOOD ARTICLE WHICH YOU HAVE PRESENTED TO DEVOTEES WELL DONE WHICH SAYS DO NOT FORGET KRISHNA BUT REMEMBER HIM BUT WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO CHRISTAINS AND THE MOSLEMS THAT DOE NOT KNOW THE NAME AND DOES LOVE THE NAME TOO EVEN AT THE POINT OF THEIR DEATH
Why not follow Lord Caitanya’s instructions and flood the planet with Krishna Sankirtan. Then all the Christians and Muslims will dance happily in the kirtan and forget their differences and we will be all one at the lotus feet of Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Allah is Krishna, the Christan’s ‘God the Father’ is Krishna. So there is no problem. We are all brothers and Krishna is our father.
Wonderful explanations, as usual!thanks to go on sending me those commentaries!
Since 2013, I’m fasting for Ekadasi for the pleasure of Sri Hari.
It has always been a complete fast.
But yesterday, the day of Ekadasi, I’ve total forget to fast.
That’s why I’m fasting today.
And I’ve read somewhere that :
VAISNAVO YADI BHUNJITA EKADASYAM PRAMADATAH
VISNU ARCANAM VRTHA TASYA NARAKAM GHORAM APNUYAT
(HARI BHAKTI VILASA 12/32 from GAUTAMIYA TANTRA)
” If due to bewilderment, a Vaisnava eats grains on Ekadasi day, then whatever merit has attained by worshiping Lord Sri Visnu becomes fruitless and he
falls into hell. ”
That’s why I came to you, to tell me if I have a solution to redeem my mistakes and to expiate my bad action.
Waiting for an answer from you.
Hare Krishna Jitesh
There is Bhima Ekadasi. You can fast completely then, even from water, they say it makes up for breaking the fast.
Main thing is we can’t change what we did in the past but just be careful not to forget about the ekadasis in the future.
How do I read and study Srila Prabhupada’s books systematically? I would like to preach soon.Please advise.
Hare Krishna Chetan
You need purification and purity to understand Srila Prabhupada’s books. Realization is not possible by study alone. Service and surrender is necessary. So you have to surrender to strictly following the four regulative principles: no illicit sex, no meat eating, no gambling and no intoxication and you need to chant the Hare Krishna mantra at least 16 rounds a day. Without these things it will not be possible for you to understand Srila Prabhupada’s books.
Preaching is possible when we are pure ourselves. So we need to purify ourselves, we need to be properly situated in Krishna consciousness ourselves. Devotees preach by their personal example. The life of the devotee, the way he lives, the way he acts, the way he speaks, this is the real preaching.
So we need to become transformed into Krishna conscious people and once we are transformed we can help others undergo this transformation process. If we are not pure ourselves we can not help others become pure.
Not that we should be very anxious to become big preachers. We have to become very anxious to surrender to Srila Prabhupada and become very big distributors of Srila Prabhupada’s books. That is the real preaching.
Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!
16 Jan 2016
Hare Krishna Prabhu.
Dear Sirs. Namaskarams.
I strongly believe and devote Lord Krishna by my prayers and practise spiritualism by offering small charities to deserving poor people to help their survival.
For Lord Krishna’s Grace I always pray.
Hare Krishna Prabhu.
Krishna is spiritual and He knows past, present and future and therefore He knows everything. He is the oldest personality because He is the origin of everything; everything is born out of Him. He is also the supreme controller of the universe, maintainer and instructor of humanity.
It does not matter what you believe. It matters what Krishna wants. You show me one place in Bhagavad-gita where Krishna orders us to give small charities to deserving poor people… It is not there. Your statement itself shows a gross ignorance of the nature of the universe and how things work. And also it shows a great ignorance of the knowledge of your position and power within the universe.
We are all experiencing the reactions to our past good or bad works. It is called karma. So one is poor as a result of his past bad works and one is rich as a result of his past good works. So you can in improve the position of the poor man by giving him small charities. He is in that position because of his karma. You can not change his karma. You are thinking you are greater than Krishna and with your money you have the power to change people’s destinies. It is insanity.
Actually you have no power to help the poor man with your little charity. His suffering will continue unresolved.
However if you become Krishna conscious you can teach him how to chant Hare Krishna, you can feed him Krishna prasadam. And in that way you can give him real help.
So the only way you can help people actually is by giving them Krishna consciousness. So do that.
Krishna says “Give everything to Me.” He never says “Give everything to the poor men…” That is a completely bogus philosophy. We have to give everything to Krishna and then we can distribute Krishna prasadam to the poor men.
We have to serve Krishna, not the poor…
Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!
I , Subhash Chandra Maity, as devote of Lord Krishna and want to fully join to your sangha and sacrifice of Sricharan Pravupad and Gurudev Madhudvisa Dasa.
hari bol madhudvisa dasa I;will remember krishna all the time thanks for remember me be happy in this new year 2016 namaste hare krishna.
Thanks for your email ,keep it coming ,I am free on Sundays and would like to be of help in matters of whatever needed I live in Michigan . Krishna is the Sumum Bonum for all devas as well as rakshasas as they all exist within Krishna’s orders . Thanks & fallen regards . Baldev Singh
Remembering Krishna is very important is a very good article.
Thank you so much.
Lord Krishna says you will take another birth as per your past karma or desire.but my confusion is why the soul has to punish for the karma done by the mind of that person.The soul is the part & parcel of the supreme and it is eternal then how the soul being punished by the karma done by that person
please clear my confusion.
The soul is the person. So the soul is responsible for the activities of the person. So the soul has to suffer or enjoy the karmic reactions caused by the activities of the person.
We are individuals and Krishna is the supreme individual. So we are responsible for our individual activities.
We are part and parcel of Krishna, but we are separate persons from Krishna. We have a little independence. We are the same as Krishna, but very small. Krishna is supremely independent and we are minutely independent. But our independence is there and we are responsible for our choices and the reactions to our choices.
Thank you for the wonderful articles. It is very helpful for people who can’t make it to a temple on a regular basis.
Hari bol Prabhuji,
Thank you fort this post. Very beautifully written.
dear guru ji dandvat pranam..
I have a question…i do not understand the whole article but what is my relation with Krishna above these five rasa’s and how to know that …I mean I am his friend? maybe servant maybe lover? how to know that …is there any method to know this.. I know u r too busy to answer the mails but I am requesting pls pls plssssssss answer this mail
your humble servant
Hare Krishna Ashish
In the beginning we do not know exactly what is our eternal relationship with Krishna. But as we develop in Krishna consciousness it will be revealed to us. So there is no need to bother about this. Krishna will reveal it to us at the right time. Until then we can not know it.
We can know that we are all servants of Krishna and the way to uncover our original relationship with Krishna is chanting:
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
So chant Hare Krishna and be happy. Do not worry what your original relationship with Krishna is. It will be revealed to you by Krishna at the right time and you can not know it before then.
Please advise is Bhakti Yoga better than Gyan Yoga. There are lot of Gyanis who want to preach vedas. But i personally want to dissolved in Bhakti.
Jnana yoga is also part of bhakti yoga. Bhakti yoga includes everything. So the jnana-yoga is there, it is included in bhakti-yoga.
But jnana without bhakti is pointless. Because jnana means knowledge. And if you read the Vedas, you will see the whole point of the knowledge is to develop love for Krishna, which is bhakti, love. So jnana without bhakti is pointless. These dry jnanis are just useless bookworms. They have no actual spiritual realization at all.
So just practice Krishna consciousness, bhakti-yoga, the jnana-yoga is automatically included in that. So if you become actual bhaki-yoga you will also be the best jnana-yogi.
Awesome article, Madhudvisa Prabhu! Your articles always summarize the instructions of Srila Prabhupada very nicely. Thank you so much for sharing them.
There is one more important point. In addition to chanting Hare Krishna mahamantra daily, devotees who are engaged in ordinary jobs can also think of Lord Krishna by taking directions from Bhagavad- Gita As It Is.
By following his qualities of work, every man can become perfect. Now please hear from Me how this can be done. By worship of the Lord, who is the source of all beings and who is all-pervading, a man can attain perfection through performing his own work.It is better to engage in one’s own occupation, even though one may perform it imperfectly, than to accept another’s occupation and perform it perfectly. Duties prescribed according to one’s nature are never affected by sinful reactions..Every endeavor is covered by some fault, just as ﬁre is covered by smoke. Therefore one should not give up the work born of his nature, O son of Kuntī, even if such work is full of fault. (Bg 18.45-46,48)
“Everyone should think that he is engaged in a particular type of occupation by Hṛṣīkeśa, the master of the senses. And by the result of the work in which one is engaged, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Śrī Kṛṣṇa, should be worshiped. If one thinks always in this way, in full Kṛṣṇa consciousness, then, by the grace of the Lord, he becomes fully aware of everything. That is the perfection of life. The Lord says in Bhagavad-gītā (12.7), teṣām ahaṁ samuddhartā. The Supreme Lord Himself takes charge of delivering such a devotee. That is the highest perfection of life. In whatever occupation one may be engaged, if he serves the Supreme Lord he will achieve the highest perfection.” (Srila Prabhupada, 18.46 Purport)
I always remember the above purport of HDG Srila Prabhupada and by grace of Prabhupada, I am able to think of Lord Krishna even while engaged in the so called ordinary works of this world.
Please keep the nectar coming, dear Madhudvisa Prabhu. Dandavats! All glories to Srila Prabhupada!!
Hare Krshna Prabhu! I always read your posts.
This time, I want to understand Bhagavad Gita’s verse 18.60. I request you to please explain in layman language What Supreme Personality of Godhead want to tell us here.
However, for your information, as per my understanding,
“If we don’t do our Karmas as per His directions or engage our karmas for His service, we are forced to do the same karmas under the control of nature’s three Gunas e.g.Sato, Rajo and Tamo. and compelled to face the reactions of our Karmas”
I will get there gradually, now we are on seventh chapter. So gradually we will come to eighteenth chapter…
Hare Krishna Prabhu!
Thank you for this reminder. I so needed it this morning and every morning.
Thank you for this wonderful service.
If Krishna is a supreme lord then why do people follow other religion? Talking about Hindus, why do they follow various other Gods. Even I am a Hindu I don’t know which God to follow?
Secondly, you are doing so much for supreme lord, have you ever seen him or feel a sense of him?
Hare Krishna Gaurav
Yes. I have seen Krishna and you can see Krishna also. It is not difficult. People are confused. Practically no one is following real religion now. It is all basically lost. But you will find the real thing in Srila Prabhupada’s books. So read them and chant Hare Krishna and be happy!
Thank you Prabhuji for such a nice article.
Hare Krishna. . . . .
Please accept my humble obeisances!
All glories to Srila Prabhupada! and All glories to Guru & Gauranga . . . . .
I am really blessed to receive mails from you since long time and are really enriching my devotion to SRI HARI. Wish all the devotees getting these mails take advantage of the nectar of the mails be blessed by Krishna.
I have take shelter of Guru Maharaj while in Muscat and chanting 16 rounds of HARE KRISHNA MAHAMANTRA, completed two times reading of Bhagavad Gite and at present reading Canto 11 of Srimad Bhagavatam.
HARE KRISHNA. HARI BOL.
Vijay V Bharati
it is LORD KRISHNA’S OWN GRACE that has flowed thru this article. it is his MERCY that has guided us to remember HIM always and it is MERCY that has given us the Divine BHAGAWAT GITA to the entire mankind. Hail LORD KRISHNA.
A Humble Devotee of the LORD