Vrndavana, Krsna’s Transcendental Abode

I always enjoy going back through our collection of Back to Godhead Magazines and re-reading some of the old articles. We share with you the original article with photos just as it appeared in BTG in 1974.

Vrndavana, Krsna’s Transcendental Abode

by Visakha-devi dasi

Ninety miles southeast of New Delhi, India, is a railway station known as Mathura. From Mathura, a bumpy seven-mile ride by horse-cart brings one to a unique town called Vrndavana. This simple village is unlike all other places in the world, for when Lord Krsna, the Supreme Godhead, comes to earth with His associates to display His pastimes, He comes only to Vrndavana. Indeed, Krsna never leaves Vrndavana-and, by His grace, pure devotees can appreciate the Lord’s presence in Vrndavana even today.

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THE ESSENCE OF EVERYTHING IS THE SUPREME LORD

Sometimes when I am sitting and reading from Srila Prabhupada’s Srimad Bhagavatam, a verse or sentence from the purport just jumps out from the page almost like it is in 3D, and I catch a glimpse of what the Spiritual World must be like. It is beyond even my imagination, but sometimes I catch a glimmer of light, through a transcendental window, by the grace of my spiritual master His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.

…The transcendental abode of the Lord where the trees are all desire trees and the buildings are made of touchstone. The Lord Govinda is engaged there in herding the surabhi cows as His natural occupation.

“I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, the first progenitor who is tending the cows, yielding all desire, in abodes built with spiritual gems, surrounded by millions of purpose trees, always served with great reverence and affection by hundreds of thousands of lakṣmīs or gopīs.” (Bs 5.29)

…The Lord Govinda is engaged there in herding the surabhi cows as His natural occupation. And those who are artists, overtaken by the beautiful creation, should better see to the beautiful face of the Lord for complete satisfaction. The face of the Lord is the embodiment of beauty. What they call beautiful nature is but His smile, and what they call the sweet songs of the birds are but specimens of the whispering voice of the Lord.

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Disapearance Day of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

 Srila Prabhupada's 2014 disappearance day  Vyasasan 054

click on images to enlarge

Picture taken before Guru-puja

 Srila Prabhupada's 2014 disappearance day Vyasasan 064

Today we honored His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada’s disappearance day with a half day fast followed by a nice vegetarian feast. The beautiful Vyasasana decoration was done some years ago by Her Grace Lokadrsti devi dasi.

His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada’s Disappearance Day homage

by Vyasasan das

Dear Srila Prabhupada

Please accept my fallen obeisance’s, and my love, on this auspicious day of your disappearance. With your arrival on the shores of America, you brought with you the shinning lamp of knowledge; the wisdom on India and the Supreme Absolute Truth. You appeared on the shores of America the way the sun appears on the Eastern Horizon. Slowly revealing itself at first, then dominating the sky with its blazing effulgence. Illuminating the entire world with its golden light. Where there is light there is no darkness. And wherever your words are being sung and repeated, there is a glimmer of hope for the materially conditioned souls.

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His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda

Brief Biography

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda appeared in this world in 1896 in Calcutta, India. He first met his spiritual master, Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Gosvāmī, in Calcutta in 1922. Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī, a prominent religious scholar and the founder of sixty-four Gauḍīya Maṭhas (Vedic institutes), liked this educated young man and convinced him to dedicate his life to teaching Vedic knowledge. Śrīla Prabhupāda became his student, and eleven years later (1933) at Allahabad he became his formally initiated disciple.

At their first meeting, in 1922, Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura requested Śrīla Prabhupāda to broadcast Vedic knowledge through the English language. In the years that followed, Śrīla Prabhupāda wrote a commentary on the Bhagavad-gītā, assisted the Gauḍīya Maṭha in its work and, in 1944, without assistance, started an English fortnightly magazine, edited it, typed the manuscripts and checked the galley proofs. He even distributed the individual copies and struggled to maintain the publication. Once begun, the magazine never stopped; it is now being continued by his disciples in the West and is published in nineteen languages.

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July 9th Letter & May 28th Conversation

July 9th Letter

This is the last written instruction we have on initiations. It is a very important letter that all members of ISKCON should be familiar with, regardless of your position. It was adressed to All G.B.C., and Temple Presidents. This is where the first eleven names originated, and how initiations were to be carried out. This letter was based on the equally important May 28th Conversation between the GBC and Srila Prabhupada, as regards to how initiations in the future, will go on, particularly at that time when Srila Prabhupada is no longer with us.

It is essential for devotees to understand that all ISKCON members are first and foremost followers of Srila Prabhupada and that it is by his blessings that we advance in Krishna consciousness. The eternal spiritual master is a resident of Vaikuntha and is our ever well-wisher. It is he who is preparing a place for us in the spiritual world.

Very important history!

The full text is as follows:

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Jaya Radha-Madhava

I love all the “Songs of the Vaisnava Acaryas“, particularly the ones written by Bhaktivinoda Thakura. Śrīla Prabhupāda was also very fond of this song and sang it just before his lectures. We share it with you today.

Jaya Rādhā-Mādhava
by Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura

(jaya) rādhā-mādhava (jaya) kuñja-bihārī
(jaya) gopī-jana-vallabha (jaya) giri-vara-dhārī
(jaya) jaśodā-nandana, (jaya) braja-jana-rañjana,
(jaya) jāmuna-tīra-vana-cārī

Kṛṣṇa is the lover of Rādhā. He displays many amorous pastimes in the groves of Vṛndāvana, He is the lover of the cowherd maidens of Vraja, the holder of the great hill named Govardhana, the beloved son of mother Yaśodā, the delighter of the inhabitants of Vraja, and He wanders in the forests along the banks of the River Yamunā.

Śrīla Prabhupāda was very fond of this song and sang it just before his lectures. In Allahabad and Gorakhpur Śrīla Prabhupāda fell into a trance after singing the first two lines, and after some time he came back into external consciousness and said, “Now just chant Hare Kṛṣṇa.” Śrīla Prabhupāda said that this song is “a picture of Vṛndāvana. Everything is there—Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī, Vṛndāvana, Govardhana, Yaśodā, and all the cowherd boys.