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Spiritual World

Published on February 22nd, 2017 | by Madhudvisa dasa


There is Another World!

There is Another World!

Yet there is another nature, which is eternal and is transcendental to this manifested and unmanifested matter. It is supreme and is never annihilated. When all in this world is annihilated, that part remains as it is.”  Bhagavad-gita (8.20)

So this is very interesting information. It means the world we find ourselves in at the moment is not the only place we can live.

There is another world that is eternal and transcendental and if we want we can go to that world and live there. It sounds like it might be a nice place to live. Bhagavad-gita (8.15) also confirms that the world we are in is not a very good place:

After attaining Me, the great souls, who are yogis in devotion, never return to this temporary world, which is full of miseries, because they have attained the highest perfection.”

Here Krishna is informing us that this eternal and transcendental world is the place mahatmas, great souls who have attained the highest perfection, go to. He is also informing us that this world is temporary and full of miseries. What does that mean? I thought this world was a wonderful place?

This World is Full of Miseries:

One of Krishna’s most powerful energies acting in this material world is maya. Maya has two functions:

  1. Covering our intelligence (Avaranatmika)
  2. Pulling us down (Praksepatmika)

We will discover this material world is a miserable place, however, because maya covers our intelligence with her avaranatmika potency we accept the miserable suffering condition as enjoyable. We don’t have a realistic view of the world we live in. We think it is a nice place…

A good example is the hogs or pigs. The pigs live by eating stool. And they see stool as being very delicious and they very much enjoy eating it.

But a person who is in higher consciousness can see that stool is a very nasty and obnoxious thing and that the life of the pig eating stool is miserable. But the pig is loving it. He is so happy when he finds some stool to eat. But eating stool is not happiness, we can understand that it is horrible. But because the living entity entrapped in the body of the pig has his intelligence covered by maya’s avaranatmika potency he accepts something which is most obnoxious as the greatest pleasure.

Sometimes we get a little realization of the miserable and painful condition we are experiencing in the material world and we become very determined to get out of material bondage. But maya is ready with her praksepatmika potency. Maya very expertly diverts us away from our attempt to escape from her clutches and throws us back down into ignorance and impels us to remain in conditioned life satisfied by sense gratification. This works very well, as soon as I become determined, “Now, in this life, I shall make spiritual advancement. Now it is decided.” Then immediately the next moment maya, or the illusory energy, says, “What nonsense spiritual life you are going to do? Just enjoy this life here. You have got so many enjoyments. Why you are thinking like that? Forget it. You have a good job, a nice girlfriend, and in the future you will get more money and a better job…”

So this is the position. Everyone is thinking they are very happy. This is maya’s influence. Unless a hog feels happy, how he can live in this abominable life? This is called praksepatmika-sakti, covering. If a man knows that “I was king in my previous life. Now I have become a poor unemployed person,” then he will become mad. So therefore he forgets.

You can test it, as soon as you start to become a little serious about becoming Krishna conscious maya will dictate to you, “Oh, why you trying to become Krishna conscious? There are so many restrictions and so rules and regulations. Better give it up.” Then your mind will confirm, “Why, yes, what is this nonsense? Give it up.” This is called prakṣepātmikā. Maya is dragging us down. Because the more one is sinful, the more one is miscreant, the more one is the lowest of the mankind, he, maya will not allow: “Oh, why this rascal is here? He must suffer more…” That is maya’s business. Thankless business. Just like police. Police is nobody’s enemy, but when they find a criminal, they punish him, they put him in the jail and beat him with a rod. That is the business of maya, thankless. Nobody will thank the police. When police beats, nobody will say, “Thank you very much.” No. Nobody is happy. Similarly, maya’s business is very thankless task, but she is engaged by the supreme authority to punish us.

We are Criminals being Punished:

So this world is not at all what it appears to be to us… Our dreams for the future, our hopes of finding our soul mate and enjoying endless bliss here are all illusions put into our minds by maya. Actually this world is a prison, we are criminals and we have been put here to suffer. If you can realize this world is not a nice place, that it is a prison, then that is the beginning of your determination to make advancement in Krishna consciousness. The thing is most people in this prison of the material world have no idea they are in prison, no idea they are suffering, they think they are happy and never even dream of trying to escape and don’t even have any idea there is another world they can escape to, and there they can enjoy an eternally youthful life with full knowledge and ever-increasing transcendental bliss…

The hog is very happy wallowing in the mud and eating stool and having sex with the other hogs. Although his actual condition of life is obnoxious and we can see that, to him he is very happy. Even if you offer the hog better food he will prefer to eat stool. He likes it… His condition of life is very horrible actually, in reality he is suffering, but because of maya’s praksepatmika-sakti covering he accepts his miserable condition of life as happiness…

The material world we are in is a prison.

We are all criminals because we are in prison an in the prison you only find criminals. Although we think this universe is very large actually it is tiny. The entire material world consisting of unlimited universes is just a small fraction of the total energy of Krishna. As we find in our experience there is a prison and there is some population of criminals in the prison, still it is only a small percentage of the total population in the prison. The majority of the population are law-abiding citizens and will never be put into the prison. So there is a spiritual world, that is where the good citizens are, and there is the material world, where we are, and that is the prison where the criminals are… But there are not many of us criminals, the vast majority of the living entities are in the spiritual world. It is only us, the criminals, who are forced to come here to the material world, and we are here to be punished and ultimately reformed.

The idea of a prison is you send the criminals there and they are punished and reformed and then released back into the society where they hopefully become honest law-abiding citizens. So that is the purpose of this material world:

“After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare.” (Bg. 7.19)

From the highest planet in the material world down to the lowest, all are places of misery wherein repeated birth and death take place. But one who attains to My abode, O son of Kuntī, never takes birth again. (Bg. 8.16)

So please try to understand these ideas and if you have any questions or comments please post a question or comment on this article.

About the Author

My first contact with a Hare Krishna was a most merciful Mataji in Oxford Street, London who sold me a "Higher Taste" cook book in 1984 while I was on holidays there. I started seriously reading Srila Prabhupada's books in Australia 1985 and by 1986 Srila Prabhupada had convinced me "Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead" and "we should surrender to Krishna." I joined the Hare Krishnas in Perth, Western Australia in 1986. Since then I have been chanting Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare, reading and distributing Srila Prabhupada's books and preaching as much as I can. That's my life and full-time occupation now really. I like it more than anything I've ever experienced before. Srila Prabhupada's books are so amazing... Even after reading them all many times they're still fresh and new. They are truly transcendental! That's it really. Now I'm just hankering to once again see the world chant Hare Krishna, dance and feast and float away in the ecstasy of Lord Caitanya's Sankirtana movement as it did in Srila Prabhupada's physical presence. Let the whole world drown in the ecstatic flood of love of Krishna!

59 Responses to There is Another World!

  1. SUSHANT says:

    Dear Madhudvisa dasa, while browsing the net I had accidentally come to ISKCON and then deeper into KC. Being a Hindu and an Indian, I was naturally connected to Bhakti, celebrations and mythologies(which actually is our great history)…but after coming to KC, I think I am coming close to the actual path of God and real meaning of life. However, there are several questions that are troubling me and not letting me reach a conclusion….

    1. ATTACK ON SCIENCE- After reading the articles here, I am a bit surprised by the criticism of science and technology. You say that everything must be done to please Krishna…Yes, agreed… But is science any different from that?? Research in agriculture to medical science…all is done for the sake of humanity, combating malnutrition and pandemics like this one…You’re writing on this platform and sharing this divine knowledge because of science!! Can you still say science promotes atheism? You may say that you oppose “speculation” but then…this is an important ingredient in becoming a scientist…Just like we take initiation steps to attain pure bhakti…”guessing and speculation” is the first step of what we call “the scientific method”…Every sane scientist would agree that science answers “how” and NOT “why”…(yes, there are some super small group of scientists who claim science can describe everything and the absolute truth but then what contributions these scientists have made in science itself is questionable). As for space missions and other things, you put the claim of “imperfect senses”…well, that view has been given a place under what we call “metaphysics”. So thinking and speculating and knowing at the back of the mind the supremacy of God is what a true scientist does…As for imperfect senses…we believe what we see and make imperfect theories, make imperfect technologies and if are able to do some welfare of the society without questioning the supremacy of god and and Vedic literature(which we are not capable of understanding)…we are happy being imperfect. This can be seen as ‘Karm Yog’ which Shri Krishna says is another means to attain Mukti. So, now tell me why such an attack on science??

    2. ALTERNATIVE CONCEPTIONS OF GOD- There are different puranas each claiming their lord to be the supreme. All puranas were written by Vyasa. It was fine if that was all but then there are huge differences in practices…Like those who worship Lord Shiva do intoxication(completely forbidden in Vaishnavism), those worshipping Goddess Kali behead goats and offer it to her(forget just “no meat eating”)…and everything was written by the same saint under the instruction of god. I know you say that it was written for beings under different “gunas”. Like only people with pure satva gun can practice Vaishnavism and those with rajas and tamas pray to their respective gods for reward in material world. The point is in previous yugas, take for example the Sat Yuga almost everyone “human” would have been a Vaishnav and “asuras” and “rakshas” mainly prayed to Shiva, Kali and others but now in Kali Yuga, humans themselves have varying proportions of all 3 gunas. So different humans pray to different lords depending on their gunas and The point is should tamasic and rajasic people be stopped and their practices be condemned?? It is this tamasic guna of which levels when start to soar in certain individuals gives rise to terrorism and then they have to be killed for the sake of dharma.

    So please prabhu answer my doubts and bless me with knowledge. I am currently in the final year of my high school and want the spiritual path clear before me. Along with Bhakti yog, I also want to practice Karm Yog for which I want to use science as well…
    Forgive me for any errors I have made…

    Hare Krishna

    • Yes. It is very difficult for Indians to understand Krishna. The problem is, in India, there are so many bogus gurus preaching so much bogus nonsense, all quoting the Bhagavad-gita and the Vedas as their authorities. All Indians will know Krishna, will know Gita, will know Bhagavatam, and have some perverted nonsense idea of what they think the teachings of the Vedas are.

      There is an example of a music teacher. He asks his prospective student if he has already got any experience with music. And the student says, “Yes sir. I am very experienced, I know so much about music.” So the teacher says, “For you, I will have to charge double fees.” So the student is confused, “Why sir? I already know so much?” So the teacher replies, “Yes. First I have to un-learn all the nonsense you have already learned, then I can start to teach you.”

      So that is the problem with the Indians. They have already learned so much bogus nonsense about Krishna and the Vedas, so practically it is almost impossible for them to understand Krishna.

      That is why Srila Prabhupada had success in preaching Krishna consciousness in the Western countries, where they knew nothing about Krishna, but no success in India.

      So for Indians, very difficult to understand Krishna.

      First you have to be prepared to forget what you have already learned and start with a blank slate.

      Then with that mood, that “Everything I have learnt from the Indian sadhus is bogus rubbish, let me hear from Srila Prabhupada,” then you will be able to understand it, Krishna consciousness.

      So get all of Srila Prabhupada’s books and read them with this submissive humble attitude, that I know nothing, I accept you [Srila Prabhupada] as my authority, as my master, and whatever you say, I know that you are the transparent via-medium to Krishna, so what you are saying, that is just as good as Krishna speaking to me directly.”

      Then when you hear Srila Prabhupada say the scientists are rascals, then you can believe it, and you can accept it as a fact, the scientists are rascals.

      So do it, accept that everything you have learned from the Indian sadhus is bogus rubbish and surrender to Srila Prabhupada, get his books, read them and become a pure devotee of Krishna, become empowered and follow in the footsteps of Srila Prabhupada and revive Lord Caitanya’s sankirtan movement all over the world.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Your servant

      Madhudvsia dasa

  2. Ishita Sharma says:

    Hare Krishna Prabhu. Please accept my humble obeisance.

    Usually when we come to Krishna Consciousness, at first (as it happened with me too), we are in full excitement of doing Bhakti. But after some time we start losing our interest, maybe due to the influence of Maya. But how to overcome this?

    Also sometimes this happens that due to material duties, spiritual life is sacrificed which is definitely not good for the upliftment of the soul towards Krishna Consciousness. How do we manage this?

    We know that we are souls, but cannot think in that way and apply shastras in our life. How to do it?

    Thank you. Hare Krishna!

    • Hare Krishna Ishita

      There is no question of loosing interest in Krishna conscious, if we are actually following the process as prescribed by Srila Prabhupada. So we have to at least read all of Srila Prabhupada’s books, and there are about 80 books, and put into practice all the things Srila Prabhuapda is teaching us as we read his books.

      Problem is “devotees” are very often not serious and do not surrender to Srila Prabhupada. So they can never understand or experience what Krishna consciousness is. Krishna consciousness can only be experienced by devotees who are fully surrendered to a pure devotee of Krishna and who are engaged 24 hours in serving guru and Krishna.

      So it is a rare soul who is prepared to surrender to Krishna, and only those few rare souls who are surrendered to Krishna, they can understand and experience what Krishna consciousness actually is. For others Krishna consciousness is unattainable.

      So become serious. Surrender to Srila Prabhupada and Krishna. Then you will get a taste of Krishna consciousness, and once you have even a small taste of Krishna consciousness there is no question, you will never be able to give up Krishna consciousness. For a devotee actually who has tasted the nectar of Krishna consciousness, it is not possible for him to actually forget Krishna. Due to the tricks of maya he may fall down and become temporarily covered by illusion. But he can never forget Krishna and will always rectify himself and again become engaged in pure devotional service.

      Krishna consciousness is so easy, so natural and so blissful, but so few are prepared to surrender, so hardly anyone even knows, in truth, what Krishna consciousness is.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  3. Tapas says:

    Hare Krishna Prabhuji
    All glories to Srila Prabhupada

    Thanks Prabhu for enlightening the concept of Maya and how we are entangled in it.
    With the advancement of science and technology with objective to make our life more meaningful, rather we are more absorbed in time and with mind that we think this is the ultimate pleasure but in reality we are drawn further into materialistic life and away from the absolute realisation of the truth of our being and search for the transcendental peace .

    Has the advancement of science and technology really helped us in our path to self realisation or entangled us into more of Maya?
    What is knowledge and how to pursue it to come out of this ignorance?

  4. tony criscuolo says:

    Tony Criscuolo
    12:42 PM (0 minutes ago)
    to madhudvisa, me

    It seems to me that the pig/stool example has been around too long. Plus, pigs like it because it is their nature; it’s not a problem for the pig.
    Some years ago in India i was sitting on an outhouse that was on a grade such that a pigpen was directly underneath. It was a bit distracting to “pass stool” with a couple pigs hanging out below, grunting in anticipation of a meal… they apparently like it best when it is still warm.
    How about a human example such as Ram Dass used in “Be Here Now” about the ice cream cone. Even while eating it we know the pleasure will soon be gone; we can’t even make it linger because it will melt all over us; and, even when it is finished there is immediately another need, like now i need some water. The whole idea is that material pleasures AT THEIR BEST are temporary and ultimately disappointing, and usually they don’t even compare favorably to their anticipation.
    Just because Srila Prabhupada used an example does not mean that for all time that is the one to use to describe the horrors of material life. Most people can easily come up with examples of their own. And it also seems that referring to material life as a punishment is overly negative and misses most people (who are not, in the West at least, favorably inclined to examine the qualities of their life) would likely respond better to saying it is a place for learning. Anyone can relate to that… then, the next question is what are we here to learn?…. which is an easy segue into why and how to escape its bondage.

    • Yes. The examples can be made according to the time and the place. But you are not doing that. You are disagreeing with the purport of the examples. That is a problem. So yes, if you can find an example that conveys the same purport you can use that in a different time/culture/circumstance. But you are taking offense at the purport. And that is wrong. The Vedic truths are absolute and eternal. And the material world is eternally a place of misery where there is repeated birth and death. You are trying to put lipstick on the pig to make it beautiful. But it is still an ugly pig with lipstick…

      • Y says:

        “ … we should lay out the subject matter as nicely as possible to our intelligence and capacity and with out any ambition that it must attract customer. They may attract or not attract, it doesn’t matter….”
        if it is so, then why problems or wrongs, ussualy they are implicit in the learning.

  5. Sreelatha Prabhakaran says:

    Hare Krishna,

    Thanks for further explanations in the subject.

    Radhe Radhe.

  6. Aman says:

    Hare Krishna Prabhu!
    Since this material world is a reform house created by Lord Krishna, is it guaranteed that everyone will be reformed at some point and go back home back to godhead?

    • No. There is no guarantee. In fact there is almost no chance of going back. Only chance is if one gets the opportunity of meeting a pure devotee of Krishna and if he surrenders to the pure devotee and serves him. So we can get the mercy of Krishna and go back home back to Godhead only by getting the mercy of Krishna’s pure devotee. That we sing every day: yasya prasadad bhagavata parasadam… You can read this prayer in Guravastaka. And there is brahmate … guru krsna prasade paya bhakti lata bija. Very rarely one gets the chance to meet a pure devotee of Krishna and by his mercy he gets the seed of the ‘bhakti-lata-bija’, the seed of the plant of bhakti or devotion, and he plants that seed in his heart and cultivates with the water of chanting and hearing, sravana kirtana jala.

      So we have got that very rare opportunity of meeting a pure devotee of Krishna, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and he has given us his mercy. It is up to us now, we have to plant that seed in our hearts and water it with chanting Hare Krishna and hearing about Krishna…

      Otherwise there is no way out of the material world, that is why there are 2 types of living entities: nitya-siddha, eternally liberated in the spiritual world and nitya-baddha, eternally conditioned in the material world. So generally the living entities are stuck here in this miserable place eternally…

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

      • Aman Pandey says:

        Hare Krishna Prabhu!
        All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

        After reading this comment I’m struck with wonder! How rare this opportunity of personally meeting Prabhupada through his books is! Those people who have met him are very fortunate and those who are taking his words of instructions seriously are the most fortunate in this material world.

        All glories to Prabhupada!

  7. Y says:

    Home – jail – school – not permanent, let us give thanks to Krsna that we have the oportunity to study the way back Om 🥴 HK

  8. shelly says:

    HK… the explaination is superb..🙏🙏🙏🙏 and please explain Bg ch 6 text 38 ..Hk

  9. kanchan kapoor says:

    Thanks Prabhuji for your valuable notes. I want to learn more pl. provide more details relates to Bhagwat Geeta .

  10. sacs says:

    Hare krsna Madudvisa prabhu,
    All glories to Srila prabhupad,Rupa Goswami and Nityananda prabhu.

    prabhu,in spiritual life one needs the authorised bonafide spiritual master and strictly follow his instructions .we are fortunate to have the association of srila prabhupada who is the very pure devotee of Lord Krsnabut to follow his instructions is very difficult.
    The thing is bad association of bad people,
    Lord chaitanya also stated that first and foremost quality of vaishnava is giving up bad association
    Srila Narottama das thakur has said that one must associate with pure vaishnavas,serve them and execute devotional service.
    Srila prabhupad always stated that krishna consciousness is possible only in the association of devotees.
    How can Neophytes expect to become krsna consciousness if they are surrounded by bad association,from all sides becoming prone to kali yugas bad influence.
    we need to have the association of devotees prabhu,who are strictly following srila prabhupadas instructions.
    chanting Hare krsna mantra,Reading sp books,hearing sp lectures we can do prabhu,but cooking prasad is becoming complicated as non devotees wont allow me to cook.

    • Hare Krishna Prabhu

      Yes. Of course you are correct. Living in the association of serious devotees who are practicing Krishna consciousness is very essential for us to help us advance in Krishna consciousness.

      But the reality is this is sometimes not available, sometimes not possible. The history is full of devotees who have been put into difficult situations without the association of pure devotees and who have nevertheless remained strong in Krishna consciousness and become great devotees. You can take Prahlada Maharaja for example. He was born in the family of the greatest demon Hiranyakasipu, and all his school friends were sons of other great demons, his teachers were great demons. So Prahlada was surrounded by demons on all sides but still he never forgot Krishna. He was always chanting Hare Krishna and when he got the opportunity always preaching about Krishna. He converted all his demonic school friends into devotees of Krishna. So we have to take inspiration from the devotees like Prahlada Maharaja who remain Krishna conscious in the most difficult circumstances and realize that it is also possible for us to become Krishna conscious. We have the chance of associating with the best pure devotee of Krishna, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, he has given us his association so extensively in his transcendental books, in his almost unlimited audio recordings of classes, conversations, morning walks, press conferences, festivals, etc., in his letters, in the many films and videos we have of him. So we have the best association of the best devotee available to us.

      You can also look in Prabhupada’s life. Many times he did not have much devotee association. Mostly he was surrounded by materialistic people in his business and family life. But in spite of this he always remained a pure devotee of Krishna.

      So we can do it also. The reality is right now the devotee association that we are quite naturally hankering for is not available. So we have to take more shelter of the association of Srila Prabhupada in his transcendental books and more shelter in seriously following the instructions of Srila Prabhupada like chanting at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day, strictly following the four regulative principles, not engaging in illicit sex and giving up eating of meat, fish and eggs, etc.

      In this way we can advance steadily in Krishna consciousness even though there are great difficulties and many obstacles put in our path by the non-devotees who are surrounding us. We can not expect becoming Krishna conscious to be easy. We have to be prepared to fight for it. And sometimes in a war we may suffer some injury. We may sometimes fall down from the path of Krishna consciousness. But we have to get back up again, and again get ourselves properly situated chanting at least 16 rounds, following the four regulative principles, reading Srila Prabhupada’s books, etc.

      There is no other purpose to our lives except becoming Krishna conscious. Nothing else is important. That is the purpose of our lives, and we have to remember that. Everything else is maya, illusion.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  11. Sumit Dadwal says:

    Hare Krishna Prabhu G

    I want to know the reason behind the material world creation.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Hare Krishna,
    I am in high school and have been reading his divine grace’s books for the past 2 years now and I used to chant 16 rounds somehow or another but for the past 6 months I have only been able to do 2 rounds a day as I have a lot of homework and am trying to get into a good college. Please help me to do something because I have no time. Will it be fine if I am multitasking my chanting and something else? Thanks
    Hare krishna

    • We have to make time to at least chant 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day, strictly follow the four regulative principles [no illicit sex, no meat eating, no gambling and no intoxication] and read Srila Prabhupada’s books at least 1-2 hours a day. Everything else is secondary. Krishna consciousness is the purpose of our lives, it is our business. Yes, we have to do something to maintain our material bodies, our families, etc, but that is secondary.

      So you have to organize your life so you can chant 16 rounds every day. Just get out of bed early in the mornings, before 4:30 AM and chant Hare Krishna and read Srila Prabhupada’s books then and then say from 10:00 AM the rest of the day you can spend on your studies. You just have to organize like this keeping Krishna consciousness as your main priority.


    • This place, the material world, was never meant to be nirvana. It was always meant to be a place of miseries where repeated birth and death take place. Our business is to get out of the material world and go back home back to Godhead, to the spiritual world. We can not make this material world a comfortable place. That is not possible. We need to chant Hare Krishna, remember Krishna at the time of death and go back home, back to Godhead.

  14. pkk says:

    Pranam Guruji
    “Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare, Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna Hare Hare.” Is there any thing more to chant, other than this 16 times a day.

    • It is not 16 times a day, it is 16 rounds a day. A round is chanting:

      Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
      Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

      108 times, that is one round, so 16 rounds is chanting the mantra 16 x 108 times = chanting the mantra 1728 times,

      It takes me about 3 hours a day, some devotees can chant 16 rounds in 2 hours. So 2 or 3 hours out of 24 is not much.

      We just have to do it.

      You can read:

      All the other mantras you need and important points are there in that article.

  15. Vishal says:

    Hare Krsna Pravu,
    If anyone is going back to Godhead, whcih part of him is actually going? Is it his memories? or attitude? feeling?

    • Hare Krishna Vishal

      Very good question.

      We have three bodies. The gross body, made of earth, water, fire, air and ether. Then we have the subtle body composed of mind, intelligence and false ego. Then we are actually the spirit soul who is currently entrapped in the gross and material bodies. So we are actually the spirit soul, we are not the material body and we are not the subtle body. So it is the spirit soul that I am. And it is me, the spirit soul who goes back home back to Godhead in my original spiritual body.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  16. Samuel Arkoh says:

    Please who is Satan

    • There is no Satan, Satan is a wrong concept.

      There is maya, Krishna’s illusory energy, it is too long to explain here, Please read Srila Prabhupada’s books and find out for yourself.

  17. Rikai says:

    Hare Krishna prabhu
    I have always wanted to ask this question…How do I really convince my mind that this world is only a temporary place for us and our souls are immortal? I want to believe in Krishna and surrender to him but how do I convince myself that he actually exists and is listening to our prayers? Everything about this world seems so real that sometimes there is a doubt that whether the soul exists or not…whether the bhagvad gita and krishna are real or not….plz guide me in the correct path

    • Hare Krishna Rikai

      Faith is the beginning of spiritual life. So if you can not get the faith that Krishna is God and Bhagavad-gita is His words and instructions and we should follow His instructions then you are very unfortunate. Without this basic faith we can not advance in Krishna consciousness.

      So by reading Srila Prabhupada’s Bhagavad-gita As It Is you should be able to understand the truth. That Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead and that we should surrender to and serve Krishna…

      So if you can not get this basic faith then you can not advance in spiritual life.

      The first step is to get a little faith, then to associate with devotees, then the impure things in our hearts start to be washed away, then we start to experience something of Krishna consciousness. So it is not immediate. Therefore faith is required because we have to have the intelligence and faith to seriously chant at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day, strictly follow the four regulative principles [no illicit sex, no meat eating, no gambling and no intoxication] and read Srila Prabhupada’s books at least 1-2 hours every day, even though we may not really be experiencing any actual taste for chanting Hare Krishna.

      So faith is required… You should be able to get faith by reading Srila Prabhupada’s books. If you can not you are very unfortunate.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

      • Carolyn Keene says:

        Even I have the same symptoms Rikai speaks about….and thus I do understand that I am very unfortunate. Still I don’t know how but I get a lot of pleasure following Srila Prabhupada’s instructions and serving him. It’s been years since I have been following all the basic rules and even the worst times, I didn’t give it up. Why ? That I don’t know…something keeps me going on. Yet to admit, unfortunately, I still do not have complete faith, in the sense that it keeps doubting whether it is all really true?

        Many wonderful things have happened with me ever since I took to Krishna consciousness and there is not a word of Srila Prabhupada that is false. Yet it is the association I am in that hinders my progress.

        Nonetheless there is no doubt that I shall keep serving Krishna because that is the only thing in the world that gives me solace and pleasure.

        • Yes. There are many obstacles put forward by maya. But we have to be determined to keep on chanting Hare Krishna and reading Srila Prabhupada’s books and if we do this we will surely be successful in the end.

          Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

          Madhudvisa dasa

  18. swapnil sahoo says:

    Hare Krishna,

    Prabhuji, could you please elaborate on the regulative practices for a new devotee of ISCKON ?

    Yours Sincerely,

    Swapnil Sahoo

    • It is very simple. Begin by chanting at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day. Strictly follow the four regulative principles [no illicit sex, no meat eating, no gambling and no intoxication] and read Srila Prabhupada’s books at least 1-2 hours a day. This is the minimum starting point. If you are not prepared to surrender to these simple points at least then you can not become Krishna conscious.

      So many people do not even follow these basic points but think they are devotees. This is nonsense. These are the minimum points for beginning.

      Then, as you read Srila Prabhupada’s books, you will find Srila Prabhupada instructing you to follow so many other points. So if you surrender to Srila Prabhupada and follow the instructions he gives you as you read his books you will make rapid advancement in Krishna consciousness.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  19. Dubravka Arbanas says:

    The very perfection of knowledge!

  20. sakthi murugan says:

    I heard that there is totally 14 world and the top most one is spiritual world where highly perfect people and paramaathma are living.Scientists found many galaxies and proof of aliens.This makes clear that there are living creatures outside this solar system and they are also suffering.Cant we do austerities nowadays.Are we not capable of doing it?

    • Hare Krishna Sakthi

      There are 14 planetary systems within this material world. Seven lower planetary systems and seven higher planetary systems and here on Earth we are in the middle planetary systems. So these 14 planetary systems are all within our universe. Beyond the walls of our universe there are many other universes also. And beyond all the material universes is the Spiritual Sky. The Vaikuntha planets and the principle planet in the spiritual world is Krishnaloka, Goloka Vrindavan, that is Krishna’s planet, where He lives as a cowherd by looking after the cows in the association of His devotees. Goloka literally means the planet of the cows.

      As far as austerities it is not possible for us now. Previously people lived for much longer. In the previous aged, people lived for 1000 years, and in the age prior to that, when the system of sacrifice was been practiced the people were living for 10,000 years and in Satya-yuga, the golden age, people were living for 100,000 years. So now we can not even live for 100 years and our intelligence and strength is very much diminished. So in this age, as confirmed by Lord Sri Krishna Caitanya Mahaprabhu in this age of Kali the only practical method for spiritual advancement is the chanting of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra;

      Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare
      Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare

      • Damien says:

        Hare Krishna, prabhu…what constitutes one planetary system? How many planets in one system?

        • Hare Krishna Damien

          There is no number of planets mentioned. But there are many. We can not see them all. So many things in the universe we can not see from earth… You can read all the details in Srimad-Bhagavatam Canto 5.

          Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

          Madhudvisa dasa

  21. Neena Choudhary says:

    Hare Krishna Prabhu,
    Please accept my humble obeisances.
    I am new to Krishna consciousness.I have been reading Srila Prabhupada’s books regularly.I wake up at 4 in the morning and do my 16 rounds of chanting and I am also following four regulative principals.The only thing that I am not able to do is make prasadam.I am a married woman and my in-laws won’t approve of it as they have their
    own deity.They also won’t allow putting Srila Prabhupada’s picture in the temple.
    What do you suggest I should do?Also, I have a few questions.
    1)How do we know that we are making progress in Krishna consciousness?
    2)Can a person with no initiation wear tulsi beads around his neck?

    • Hare Krishna Neena

      It is very good you are following the regulative principles, chanting 16 rounds every day and rising at 4AM. Now if you add in reading Srila Prabhupada’s books 1-2 hours a day that will be also very, very helpful for you. If you are married woman you are probably cooking so just when you cook cook it for Srila Prabhupada and Krishna. The thing that Krishna accepts really is the love and devotion that goes into preparing the offering. So you cook for Krishna, no one can stop you from cooking for Krishna and no one can stop you from offering it to Srila Prabhupada and Krishna. You don’t have to make a big show about it. You can have small photo of Srila Prabhupada and Panca-Tattva in the kitchen or somewhere and you can make an offering to Srila Prabhupada and Lord Caitanya there. Even if your inlaws will not allow you to put the offering on a plate and offer to Srila Prabhupada and Panca-Tattva you can offer in your mind.

      So in this way you can adjust. Without making a big disturbance in the house you can just internally prepare the offering for Srila Prabhupada and Krishna and when it is complete you can offer to Srila Prabhupada and Krishna, even in your mind if it is not possible to physically do the offering.

      As far as your questions, how do we know we are making progress in Krishna consciousness. Krishna consciousness is directly perceived. As we make advancement in Krishna consciousness we will practically feel that our material desires are decreasing and our love for Krishna is increasing. In so many ways we will feel and see that our consciousness has been transformed and we are now completely different people to what we were before coming to Krishna consciousness. The more you read Srila Prabhupada’s books also, that will help you advance in Krishna consciousness more, and the more you advance the more you will be able to perceive practically that your consciousness is now quite different from what it was before and you are happy and detached from the temporary happiness and distress of the material world. Gradually we will feel we are actually transcendental, no longer a part, of the material world. Once we are actually Krishna conscious we are no longer in the material world although externally it seems we still are. So don’t worry. Keep on practicing Krishna consciousness and you will be able to feel your practical advancement in Krishna consciousness.

      2. As far as tulsi beads, yes, you can wear tulsi beads before taking initiation. In ISKCON they have a tradition that before initiation devotees can wear one or two rounds of tulsi beads around their necks and after initiation they wear 3 rounds around their necks generally. But it does not matter really, how many rounds of tulsi beads around your neck. If you are reading Srila Prabhupada’s books, following the regulative principles and chanting at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day then you are really Prabhupada’s disciple. Disciple means the one who accepts the discipline of the spiritual master. And this is the discipline, chanting 16 rounds, reading Prabhupada’s books, following the regulative principles, getting out of bed before 4:00 AM, etc. So as you read Srila Prabhupada’s books more and more you will find he is giving you instructions through the books. So as you surrender more and more to Prabhupada’s instructions in this way you will make more and more advancement in Krishna consciousness and you will practically feel your consciousness is becoming transformed, spiritualized.

      Because it is happening gradually we may not notice so much but if you have been practicing Krishna consciousness seriously for a year or two and then if you remember back to your life before you started Krishna consciousness you will find a dramatic difference. A devotee has a completely different outlook on the world and is no longer touched or concerned by the things the materialists are bothered by.

      So I encourage you to continue your Krishna consciousness with full enthusiasm inspite of the difficulties you may face because of the in-laws not approving so much. You can try not to disturb them too much, but sometimes demons get disturbed anyhow, so just always put your faith in Srila Prabhupada and Krishna and keep on chanting Hare Krishna and following the regulative principles and reading Srila Prabhupada’s books in whatever situation you find yourself. And your life will be completely successful, you will remember Krishna at the time of death and because of this you will be transferred back home, back to Godhead, to reestablish your eternal relationship with Krishna in Goloka Vrindavan…

      Also your Krishna consciousness, the chanting, the prasadam you cook, etc, will be very beneficial to all the members of your family. So your Krishna consciousness will not only benefit you, it will benefit all the people who have the great fortune of coming into contact with you.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  22. Damien says:

    Hare Krishna, Madhudvisa!!

    Could you please tell me if this site below is a good site?

    Today, I ‘unconsciously’ did the hare Krishna chant (…and singing a tune to it) without even realizing it…I love it and somehow, I seem drawn to all that is about Krishna, and reading/studying things on

  23. Juan Carlos Troyo says:

    Dear Madhudvisa: All glories to Srila Prabhupada. I’ve always had a doubt that I hope you can clear out for me. If we all eternal spiritual souls, of the same spiritual nature as Krishna, and we have always existed as individuals, along with our Supreme Lord, then why are we presently here suffering in this place? If someone is enjoying a superior position, full of joy, knowledge and eternity (in the spiritual world) why is this person going to change his ideal situation for something evidently much lower than what he previously had? Lord Krishna indicates that if someone reaches his Supreme Abode, that person will not return to the material world. Is it then that none of us who are presently here has been before in the spiritual world? Thank you and I hope that you have a excellent day!

    • Hare Krishna Juan

      The thing is Krishna is great and we are small. Our constitutional position is to serve Krishna. But we have all the same qualities of Krishna, only in a small amount. Most living entities never come to the material world. Maybe 90% are always in the spiritual world. It is like the prison in your country. Most of the citizens of your country never go to the prison. There is only a small percentage of people who break the laws of the government and are arrested by the police and are put into the prison. Material world is like that. A small percentage of the spirit souls only are here in the material world. Vast majority never come to the material world at all.

      But we have independence. Our relationship with Krishna is that of love. So for love to exist there must be the independence to not love. And because we have the same qualities as Krishna, only in a small quantity, we also have the desire to become the master, the desire to become the controller. But in the spiritual world we are all serving Krishna. Krishna is the only master. That is our real position, we are servants of Krishna, we can only be happy serving Krishna. But sometimes some living entities have the desire to be the master like Krishna. So that is us, the inhabitants of this material world, all trying to be the master, all trying to become the controller. It creates the hellish world we are currently in…

      So we always have the independence to choose not to serve Krishna, to want to become the master like Krishna, even in the spiritual world. The tendency to fall down into the material world is there in every living entity. In the Bhagavad-gita Krishna says upon returning to the spiritual world one does not again fall down. So once a living entity falls down into the material world and then goes back home back to Godhead, then he does not fall down again. But remember the vast majority of living entities in the spiritual world have never been in the material world. And even the ones who go back could fall down again if they wanted to. It is like after you put your hand in the fire you never put your hand in the fire again. Because the first time your hand gets terribly burnt and you suffer a lot of pain. So you will not put your hand in the fire again because you remember what happened the last time you put your hand in the fire. But you could still put your hand in the fire, but you don’t. So it is like that.

  24. Damien says:

    Hare Krishna…! You wrote “One of Krishna’s most powerful energies acting in this material world is maya”. Why must Krishna’s powerful energies be exerted in this material world??? What is the purpose??? I don’t understand. It doesn’t make sense to me.

    • Yes. Many things do not make sense because we are in ignorance. I am just giving some short introductions. For the full details and full understand you need to read Srila Prabhupada’s books. You will find everything you are looking for there in Prabhupada’s books.

  25. sakthi murugan says:

    I heard that in the very beginning,God created plants,birds,animals,humans and everything in this world.These souls were provided with a ambition (free from desire,remain unattached,understand god to attain mukti)..why he created this world?u said we r particles of God supersoul.why he created our souls…u said we don’t surrender to god and that was the problem.where that happened?I am talking about the day before this universe is created by God.i agree that in this universe,we r not surrendering to him….since he put us all here and made Maya to cheat us,we r not surrendering him…if he put us in the spiritual world where there is no Maya,and guided us with love,we would be with him…

    • Everything you can not understand in the beginning. The knowledge will be revealed to you gradually as you advance in Krishna consciousness. So start at the beginning. Chant at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day, strictly follow the four regulative principles: no illicit sex, no meat eating, no gambling and no intoxication and read Srila Prabhupada’s books at least 1-2 hours every day. Then gradually you will understand everything.

  26. sakthi murugan says:

    Why God is testing us our purity…we are all children of God….why he isolated us and allowed us to stay in the material world….. please reply gurus

    • We are all children of God but we have rejected our father at the present time. We have come to this material world because we don’t want to surrender to and serve Krishna. So we are here in the material world not because God wants us to be here, but because we don’t want to be with God, we want to become God…

      It is envy of God, instead of wanting to serve Krishna, which is our natural, eternal constitutional position and the only way we can be happy, we want to become the enjoyer, the master ourselves.

      So it is Krishna’s mercy that He has created this material world for us where we can all play God. But a world in which everyone is trying to become the master is a hellish world…

      So we can not go back to the spiritual world until we get rid of this demonic mentality. So that is why maya tests us in so many ways in the material world. So we need to pass the tests and then we can go back home, back to Godhead.

      For a devotee passing the tests of maya is not very difficult. So become a devotee, pass the tests and go back home back to Godhead.

      It is in your hands, it is your decision. It is up to you. Krishna wants us to go back home, back to Him, the problem is actually we don’t want to go.. We want to stay here in the material world. That is the problem…

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  27. Nagendra says:

    Hare Krishna Prabhuji,
    Please accept my humble obesciences. Thank you for the news letter. I have questions regarding the article.
    a) As per the article this material world is a like a prison and only criminals are sent for punishment and followed by refinement. During the recent times the population of the world (as far a human beings are concerned) is increasing and every effort is made by the govt of all the places to check this. Does this mean that more people in spiritual world are sent here? Please explain.
    b) I have read in the history books that some animal species are extinct now because man have hunted them without any stoppage. Does this mean that man can control the number of species? Request you to explain.
    c) Does the material world means only Planet Earth or our solar system? Please explain.

    Yours Sincerely
    Nagendra R P
    Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
    Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

    • Hare Krishna Nagendar

      There are unlimited living entities and they are coming to the human form either after falling down from the spiritual world or from other planets or by coming up through the evolution of consciousness. There are 8,400,000 species of life and souls evolve through these species and when they get to either a lion, monkey or cow, then there next birth will be as a human being. There are so many living entities. There is no shortage of living entities. So the change in human population numbers is very small in comparison, insignificant.

      It is not just this planet, there are millions and millions of planets and living entities can come and go from any of the planets in this universe and there are unlimited other universes also. So they can come and go from other universes also, and the spiritual world. So this universe we find ourselves in is a very tiny part of the material world which is a very tiny part of the total creation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna…

      Man can not control the number of species. Man can not control anything actually. As far as the species they all exist on the subtle platform. All the species are not physically present on any particular planet at any particular time. They may come and go over time. But all the species exist eternally on the subtle platform and when there is need and when the circumstances are right for them they will be physically manifest.

      As I said material world is huge, not just this planet, not just this universe, but unlimited universes, and this is a very small universe compared to many of the other universes…

  28. Joe Milosch says:

    Greater truth than this has never been spoken.
    This is the truth all people of the world need to realize.
    Hare Krishna Hare Rama!

  29. William Rich says:

    Hare Krishna. I need you Lord to teach me. I love to learn of you. Forgive me when I become forgetful. Hare Krishna.

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