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  • arun18_1986@yahoogroups.com
    His Divine Grace His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada Founder-Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness Srila Prabhupada
    Message 1 of 232 , Aug 12, 2007
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      His Divine Grace

       

      His Divine Grace
      A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
      Founder-Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness

       

      Srila Prabhupada was born on 1st September, 1896 (day after the appearance day of Lord Krishna) in Calcutta, India. His life history has been elaborately described in his authorized biography, the Srila Prabhupada Lilamrta.

      He grew up in Calcutta, during British rule of India. He experienced good days, world war, hardships of Indian political struggle, communal riots etc,. It was a time when India was undergoing rapid change. His father Gour Mohan De, a cloth merchant, carefully raised his son to be a vaisnava devotee like himself, a servant of Lord Krishna. His father provided all his need: enrolled him to get best education locally and personally saw to his cultural and spiritual needs. Srila Prabhupada first met his spiritual master in 1922. His spiritual master, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, immediately asked him, "You are an intelligent young man. Why don't you preach the message of Lord Caitanya in English?" Being influenced by Gandhi�s nationalistic movement he argued first we need to become independent of the British. However Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura explained that Krishna consciousness was above worldly struggle of individuals and nations and on the spiritual position. This is the most urgent need of human beings or of all living beings. He understood his spiritual master�s powerful points and desire to present this message in English became the driving force in Srila Prabhupada's life.

      [Srila Prabhupada's initiation ceremony]Although Srila Prabhupada then accepted his spiritual master within his heart, it was in 1932 that he became Srila Bhaktisiddhanta's officially initiated disciple. Meanwhile, Srila Prabhupada had accepted householder life and had started a successful pharmaceutical business to maintain his family.

      Being absorbed in his business, Srila Prabhupada did not have many opportunities to be with his spiritual master. Whenever he had chance, which was only on a few occasions, Srila Prabhupada took association of his spiritual master. Once at the holy pond of Radha Kunda in Vrndavana, India, his spiritual master requested him, �Abhay, if you ever have money print books and distribute.� In 1936, prior to departure of his spiritual master from this world, Srila Prabhupada wrote to Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura asking, "Is there any particular service I can do?" Srila Bhaktisiddhanta replied, "I am fully confident that you can explain in English our thoughts and arguments. ...I have every hope that you can turn yourself into a very good English preacher." Srila Prabhupada knew this was to be his life's mission, and he began to prepare himself to write spiritual books and preach in the English speaking world.

      In 1944, during the Second World War, when paper was scarce and people were not very wealthy materially or spiritually, Srila Prabhupada began his, Back to Godhead magazine, which is still being published today. To pay for the printing, he alone collected all donations. These earlier issues were published in newspaper format and he wrote, edited, and did the full layout. He personally went to sell them and continued the difficult project to serve the order of his spiritual master. 

      In 1950, he left home and family to fully dedicate his life to preaching. In 1959, he took the order of sannyasa -- full renunciation from material life. Soon afterward he wrote three volumes of the Srimad-Bhagavatam, finishing the first of twelve cantos. Again he wrote, edited, proofread, bought the paper, and arranged the books to be printed and bound. After delivery, he sold the books through bookstores and agents in the larger cities of India.

      Now he had these three books in English. Feeling the weight of his spiritual master's order and knowing Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu's assurance that His holy name would be heard in every town and village throughout the world, Srila Prabhupada was determined to go to America and preach. He was convinced that if the Americans would take up Krishna consciousness, all the other countries in the world would follow.

      Srila Prabhupada requested for a passage to New York on the Jaladuta, a cargo carrier of the Scindia Steamship Corporation. He sailed 35 painful days across the ocean and on the way he had two severe heart attacks; he thought if I have a third one I will surely not survive. Srila Prabhupada arrived in New York City and later related, "In New York I didn't know whether to turn, left or right." After a difficult six months, living here and there, he rented a small storefront on 26 Second Avenue in New York's Lower East Side, not the best neighborhood by any estimation. It was here that some sincere seekers for spiritual knowledge gathered and gradually found shelter at the lotus feet of Srila Prabhupada, whom they affectionately called, "Swamiji."

      [Srila Prabhupada in Tompkins Square Park]Soon Srila Prabhupada gathered the most interested of these candidates and brought them to Tompkins Square Park, where they held the first outdoor chanting session (sankirtan � singing of Holy name of the Lord in the open streets) outside India. Onlookers were amazed, and the boys who had gone with him were feeling the happiness of chanting in the public. Afterwards there were regular chanting parties and more interested young men and women joined the movement. Gradually the more serious members became initiated disciples of Srila Prabhupada. In July of 1966, Srila Prabhupada officially incorporated The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) and began to develop his infrastructure for spreading the message of Krishna throughout the world. Srila Prabhupada revived his Back to Godhead magazine, which the newly-initiated devotees distributed on the streets.

      Regularly Srila Prabhupada would hold chanting sessions and give lectures to the eager groups of people who would come to his storefront apartment. He always distributed prasadam (scared food), and soon he started the first Sunday feasts.

      After the New York devotees became more steady in their spiritual practice, Srila Prabhupada went to San Francisco to establish ISKCON on the West Coast of the USA. Many hippies joined his movement and spread spiritual love and peace throughout the community. Srila Prabhupada sent his disciples to preach in other parts of the world and establish Krishna Conscious centers. They first started preaching in London, then later in Berlin, India, and many cities throughout the USA.

      Srila Prabhupada passed away from this world in 1977. After preaching for 11 years in the West, he had created 108 centers worldwide, written 51 volumes of transcendental literature, traveled around the world eight times and initiated 5,000 disciples. He had created Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, the world's largest publisher of Vedic literature, the scientific branch, Bhaktivedanta Institute and many other trusts to insure the continuity of ISKCON.


      The Books of Srila Prabhupada

      Srila Prabhupada wrote over 50 volumes of transcendental literature. From original Sanskrit or Bengali texts, he would write word-for-word and complete translations for each verse and comment on the text in his famous Bhaktivedanta purports. He called these purports "My emotional ecstasies." In clear and lucid language, he exposed the foolishness of the modern materialistic society, which often acts no different than polished animals. But merely exposing the modern society was not his main purpose. He sincerely wished the best for all living entities. Therefore he presented the vast science of spiritual knowledge in such a manner that even any slightly intelligent person could understand the truth: We are eternally parts of Krishna; we are His eternal servants.

      Srila Prabhupada's works include the Bhagavad-gita As It Is, Srimad Bhagavatam (12 Cantos), Caitanya-caritamrta (17 volumes), The Nectar of Devotion, Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Teachings of Lord Caitanya, The Teachings of Lord Kapila, The Teaching of Queen Kunti, Sri Isopanisad, The Nectar of Instruction, and dozens of smaller books.

      [Srila Prabhupada dictating Srimad Bhagavatam]Srila Prabhupada produced these books (excepting the original First Canto Bhagavatam) within a short span of 11 years, a superhuman feat unmatched in recorded history. Every day he would dictate the text, and later his devoted followers type his recorded voice and edited the copies. Srila Prabhupada slept only 3 hours a day and ate only a handful of food. The early morning hours, between 1:30 and 4:30 a.m., he spend writing, and later in the day he preached to all classes of people in public and in private. Even up to the day before his physical departure from this world he was writing the final purports to his last book. By any calculation, he was an extraordinary person.


      Here is what some scholars say
      about the Books of Srila Prabhupada

      "In this beautiful translation, Srila Prabhupada has caught the deep devotional spirit of the Gita and has supplied the text with an elaborate commentary in the truly authentic tradition of Sri Krishna Caitanya, one India's most important and influential saints."

      Dr. J. Stillson Judah
      Emeritus Professor of the History of Religions and
      Director of the Library Graduate Theological
      Union,
      Berkeley

      "Bhagavad-gita As It Is is a deeply felt, powerfully conceived and beautifully explained work... I have never seen any other work on the Gita with such an important voice and style. It is a work of undoubted integrity... It will occupy a significant place in the intellectual ethical life of modern man for a long time to come."

      Dr. S. Shukla
      Assistant Professor of Linguistics
      Georgetown University

      "This definitive edition of the Gita is, due to the extensive purports, a storehouse of ancient Vedic wisdom, poetry, politics and history. It should serve as a useful textbook for students and reference book for scholars of religion, as well as a general introduction to Vedic culture in general, not only from a scholar's point of view, but from that of a lifelong practitioner. It is this sense of devotion which Srila Prabhupada has captured in his discussion of the verses and which other commentators have failed to reveal. For this reason, Bhagavad-gita As It Is is an essential work for understanding the Indian religious tradition."

      Dr. David Herron
      Department of Religion
      Manhattan College

      These are only a small sampling of the hundreds of favorable reviews the BBT has received from scholars all over the world.

       

       

    • arun18_1986@yahoogroups.com
      His Divine Grace His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada Founder-Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness Srila Prabhupada
      Message 232 of 232 , May 24 7:23 AM
      • 0 Attachment
        His Divine Grace

         

        His Divine Grace
        A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
        Founder-Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness

         

        Srila Prabhupada was born on 1st September, 1896 (day after the appearance day of Lord Krishna) in Calcutta, India. His life history has been elaborately described in his authorized biography, the Srila Prabhupada Lilamrta.

        He grew up in Calcutta, during British rule of India. He experienced good days, world war, hardships of Indian political struggle, communal riots etc,. It was a time when India was undergoing rapid change. His father Gour Mohan De, a cloth merchant, carefully raised his son to be a vaisnava devotee like himself, a servant of Lord Krishna. His father provided all his need: enrolled him to get best education locally and personally saw to his cultural and spiritual needs. Srila Prabhupada first met his spiritual master in 1922. His spiritual master, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, immediately asked him, "You are an intelligent young man. Why don't you preach the message of Lord Caitanya in English?" Being influenced by Gandhi�s nationalistic movement he argued first we need to become independent of the British. However Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura explained that Krishna consciousness was above worldly struggle of individuals and nations and on the spiritual position. This is the most urgent need of human beings or of all living beings. He understood his spiritual master�s powerful points and desire to present this message in English became the driving force in Srila Prabhupada's life.

        [Srila Prabhupada's initiation ceremony]Although Srila Prabhupada then accepted his spiritual master within his heart, it was in 1932 that he became Srila Bhaktisiddhanta's officially initiated disciple. Meanwhile, Srila Prabhupada had accepted householder life and had started a successful pharmaceutical business to maintain his family.

        Being absorbed in his business, Srila Prabhupada did not have many opportunities to be with his spiritual master. Whenever he had chance, which was only on a few occasions, Srila Prabhupada took association of his spiritual master. Once at the holy pond of Radha Kunda in Vrndavana, India, his spiritual master requested him, �Abhay, if you ever have money print books and distribute.� In 1936, prior to departure of his spiritual master from this world, Srila Prabhupada wrote to Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura asking, "Is there any particular service I can do?" Srila Bhaktisiddhanta replied, "I am fully confident that you can explain in English our thoughts and arguments. ...I have every hope that you can turn yourself into a very good English preacher." Srila Prabhupada knew this was to be his life's mission, and he began to prepare himself to write spiritual books and preach in the English speaking world.

        In 1944, during the Second World War, when paper was scarce and people were not very wealthy materially or spiritually, Srila Prabhupada began his, Back to Godhead magazine, which is still being published today. To pay for the printing, he alone collected all donations. These earlier issues were published in newspaper format and he wrote, edited, and did the full layout. He personally went to sell them and continued the difficult project to serve the order of his spiritual master. 

        In 1950, he left home and family to fully dedicate his life to preaching. In 1959, he took the order of sannyasa -- full renunciation from material life. Soon afterward he wrote three volumes of the Srimad-Bhagavatam, finishing the first of twelve cantos. Again he wrote, edited, proofread, bought the paper, and arranged the books to be printed and bound. After delivery, he sold the books through bookstores and agents in the larger cities of India.

        Now he had these three books in English. Feeling the weight of his spiritual master's order and knowing Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu's assurance that His holy name would be heard in every town and village throughout the world, Srila Prabhupada was determined to go to America and preach. He was convinced that if the Americans would take up Krishna consciousness, all the other countries in the world would follow.

        Srila Prabhupada requested for a passage to New York on the Jaladuta, a cargo carrier of the Scindia Steamship Corporation. He sailed 35 painful days across the ocean and on the way he had two severe heart attacks; he thought if I have a third one I will surely not survive. Srila Prabhupada arrived in New York City and later related, "In New York I didn't know whether to turn, left or right." After a difficult six months, living here and there, he rented a small storefront on 26 Second Avenue in New York's Lower East Side, not the best neighborhood by any estimation. It was here that some sincere seekers for spiritual knowledge gathered and gradually found shelter at the lotus feet of Srila Prabhupada, whom they affectionately called, "Swamiji."

        [Srila Prabhupada in Tompkins Square Park]Soon Srila Prabhupada gathered the most interested of these candidates and brought them to Tompkins Square Park, where they held the first outdoor chanting session (sankirtan � singing of Holy name of the Lord in the open streets) outside India. Onlookers were amazed, and the boys who had gone with him were feeling the happiness of chanting in the public. Afterwards there were regular chanting parties and more interested young men and women joined the movement. Gradually the more serious members became initiated disciples of Srila Prabhupada. In July of 1966, Srila Prabhupada officially incorporated The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) and began to develop his infrastructure for spreading the message of Krishna throughout the world. Srila Prabhupada revived his Back to Godhead magazine, which the newly-initiated devotees distributed on the streets.

        Regularly Srila Prabhupada would hold chanting sessions and give lectures to the eager groups of people who would come to his storefront apartment. He always distributed prasadam (scared food), and soon he started the first Sunday feasts.

        After the New York devotees became more steady in their spiritual practice, Srila Prabhupada went to San Francisco to establish ISKCON on the West Coast of the USA. Many hippies joined his movement and spread spiritual love and peace throughout the community. Srila Prabhupada sent his disciples to preach in other parts of the world and establish Krishna Conscious centers. They first started preaching in London, then later in Berlin, India, and many cities throughout the USA.

        Srila Prabhupada passed away from this world in 1977. After preaching for 11 years in the West, he had created 108 centers worldwide, written 51 volumes of transcendental literature, traveled around the world eight times and initiated 5,000 disciples. He had created Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, the world's largest publisher of Vedic literature, the scientific branch, Bhaktivedanta Institute and many other trusts to insure the continuity of ISKCON.


        The Books of Srila Prabhupada

        Srila Prabhupada wrote over 50 volumes of transcendental literature. From original Sanskrit or Bengali texts, he would write word-for-word and complete translations for each verse and comment on the text in his famous Bhaktivedanta purports. He called these purports "My emotional ecstasies." In clear and lucid language, he exposed the foolishness of the modern materialistic society, which often acts no different than polished animals. But merely exposing the modern society was not his main purpose. He sincerely wished the best for all living entities. Therefore he presented the vast science of spiritual knowledge in such a manner that even any slightly intelligent person could understand the truth: We are eternally parts of Krishna; we are His eternal servants.

        Srila Prabhupada's works include the Bhagavad-gita As It Is, Srimad Bhagavatam (12 Cantos), Caitanya-caritamrta (17 volumes), The Nectar of Devotion, Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Teachings of Lord Caitanya, The Teachings of Lord Kapila, The Teaching of Queen Kunti, Sri Isopanisad, The Nectar of Instruction, and dozens of smaller books.

        [Srila Prabhupada dictating Srimad Bhagavatam]Srila Prabhupada produced these books (excepting the original First Canto Bhagavatam) within a short span of 11 years, a superhuman feat unmatched in recorded history. Every day he would dictate the text, and later his devoted followers type his recorded voice and edited the copies. Srila Prabhupada slept only 3 hours a day and ate only a handful of food. The early morning hours, between 1:30 and 4:30 a.m., he spend writing, and later in the day he preached to all classes of people in public and in private. Even up to the day before his physical departure from this world he was writing the final purports to his last book. By any calculation, he was an extraordinary person.


        Here is what some scholars say
        about the Books of Srila Prabhupada

        "In this beautiful translation, Srila Prabhupada has caught the deep devotional spirit of the Gita and has supplied the text with an elaborate commentary in the truly authentic tradition of Sri Krishna Caitanya, one India's most important and influential saints."

        Dr. J. Stillson Judah
        Emeritus Professor of the History of Religions and
        Director of the Library Graduate Theological
        Union,
        Berkeley

        "Bhagavad-gita As It Is is a deeply felt, powerfully conceived and beautifully explained work... I have never seen any other work on the Gita with such an important voice and style. It is a work of undoubted integrity... It will occupy a significant place in the intellectual ethical life of modern man for a long time to come."

        Dr. S. Shukla
        Assistant Professor of Linguistics
        Georgetown University

        "This definitive edition of the Gita is, due to the extensive purports, a storehouse of ancient Vedic wisdom, poetry, politics and history. It should serve as a useful textbook for students and reference book for scholars of religion, as well as a general introduction to Vedic culture in general, not only from a scholar's point of view, but from that of a lifelong practitioner. It is this sense of devotion which Srila Prabhupada has captured in his discussion of the verses and which other commentators have failed to reveal. For this reason, Bhagavad-gita As It Is is an essential work for understanding the Indian religious tradition."

        Dr. David Herron
        Department of Religion
        Manhattan College

        These are only a small sampling of the hundreds of favorable reviews the BBT has received from scholars all over the world.

         

         

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