Welcome to the KrishnaSoft's Electronic Newsletter.
This is the April 1999 issue entitled: "Nothing Unfair Ever Happens!".
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This newsletter now goes to over 1100 people who either have an interest in Vedic science and/or spiritually entertaining multimedia technology.
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
(1) An Example of a Devotee
(2) Nothing Unfair Ever Happens!
(3) Feedback: Xena-Krsna Mayavadi Serial
(4) Our Editorial Policy and Other Info
1. AN EXAMPLE OF A DEVOTEE
In the previous issue, we discussed that a devotee is one who engages in devotional service or the order of the Supreme Lord and he cannot be judged by the name, dress, or other external criterion. The goal is to be 100% engaged in devotional service to become a pure devotee:
"The pure devotee is not for a moment unengaged in the transcendental service of the Lord. Execution of the Lord's service is the main occupation of the pure devotee.... As long as one is engaged in the execution of the order of the Lord, there is no factual separation from Him." (Bhag. 3.4.21)
One nice example of a devotee is Rantideva who endured so much suffering yet never gave up his service attitude. He saw everyone in relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead:
"Once, after Rantideva spent FORTY-EIGHT days fasting, not even drinking water, excellent food made with ghee was brought to him, but when he was about to eat it a brahmana guest appeared. Rantideva, therefore did not eat the food, but instead immediately offered a portion of it to the brahmana. When the brahmana left and Rantideva was just about to eat the remnants of the food, a sudra appeared. Rantideva therefore divided the remnants between the sudra and himself. Again, when he was just about to eat the remnants of the food, another guest appeared." (Bhag. 9.21 Intro)
"...O King, I and my company of dogs are very hungry. Please give us something to eat. With great respect, King Rantideva offered the balance of the food to the dogs and the master of the dogs, who had come as guests. The King offered them all respects and obeisances. Thereafter, only the drinking water remained, and there only enough to satisfy one person, but when the King was just about to drink it, a candala appeared and said, 'O King, although I am lowborn, kindly give me some drinking water.' Aggrieved at hearing the pitiable words of the poor fatigued candala, Maharaja Rantideva spoke the following nectarean words. I do not pray to the Supreme Personality of Godhead for the eight perfections of mystic yoga, nor for salvation from repeated birth and death. I want only to stay among all the living entities and suffer all distresses on their behalf, so that they may be freed from suffering.... Having spoken thus, King Rantideva, although on the verge of death because of thirst, gave his own portion of water to the candala without hesitation, for the King was naturally very kind and sober." (Bhag. 9.21.8-14)
In this case the visitors that Rantideva received were actually demigods who were testing him and because of Rantideva's fixed mind on Lord Visnu, he surpassed all difficulties:
"This was all ordained by the Supreme Personality of Godhead just to glorify His devotee and show how tolerant a devotee is in rendering service to the Lord." (Bhag. 9.21 Intro)
We also find in the Srimad-Bhagavatam the story of Prahlada Maharaja who also tolerated the torturous treatment from his father, Hiranyakasipu, and thus set another example for us to follow. Because of the conditioned soul's tendency to envy devotional service and lord it over material nature, Lord Krsna and His material energy test the devotees or those aspiring to be devotees to see how attached they are to devotional service. These tests take place through various material or spiritual agents. Only when one becomes SOLELY attached to devotional service above everything else can one easily pass these tests.
One must remain fixed in carrying out the devotional service received from the bona-fide spiritual master in disciplic succession. One must try his best not to get distracted in wasting time blaming the immediate agents who APPEAR to be responsible for the distractions. This is because Krsna is in full control of everything and devotional service is ahaituki apratihata (unimpedable and uninterruptible) by material circumstances:
"Persons with the vision of differentiation are imbued with the material qualities lamentation, jubilation, fear, envy, greed, illusion and madness. They are influenced by the IMMEDIATE CAUSE, WHICH THEY ARE BUSY COUNTERACTING, because they have no knowledge of the remote, supreme cause, the Personality of Godhead." (Bhag. 10.4.27)
Prahlad Maharaja never gave up his devotional service to start a campaign of exposing his father's intrigues to throw him off a cliff, put him in boiling oil, etc. He remained fixed in his devotional service to Lord Krsna and was ultimately saved by Lord Nrsrimhadeva, a plenary portion of Lord Krsna. Not only that, but Hiranyakasipu himself was delivered from material nescience because of Prahlad's devotional service!
2. NOTHING UNFAIR EVER HAPPENS!
"One should understand that no one is independent, for everything is part and parcel of Krsna and is acting and moving by the supreme desire of Krsna. This understanding, this consciousness, is Krsna consciousness." (Bhag. 10.13.53)
Either one sees things in relation to Krsna and VOLUNTARILY serves Him according to His desire, or one IS FORCED to serve his own concocted desires. When one is serving his own concocted desires, he is under the laws of material nature and the laws of karma. Whatever he does has a good or bad reaction which he must undergo. For example, if the person eats meat, he is implicated in the karma of slaughtering of animals. This means he must suffer for this at some time in the future. If we kill somebody, we in-turn must be punished appropriately in the future; if we injure someone, we must suffer the appropriate reaction; etc.
For the person conscious of immediate agents and not Lord Krsna, this becomes a chain reaction because once a person is hurt by another person, he usually seeks revenge. Although the person deserved the punishment due to his past karma, he seeks revenge and hurts others in the process. This so-called "revenge" just adds to his future karmic reactions: For practical running of society, authority is vested in the king or head of state (prescribed not whimsical) to punish and reward on behalf of the Supreme Lord.
"We may superficially see that one is suffering or enjoying because of some external causes, but the real cause is one's own fruitive activities. Even when someone kills someone else, it is to be understood that the person who was killed met the fruitive results of his own work and that the man who killed him acted as the agent of material nature." (Bhag. 10.4.21)
So, the way to stop the chain reaction is devotional service. By engaging in devotional service, no further karmic reactions are produced; instead, the previous karmic reactions are gradually destroyed and one revives his original nature as a loving servant of Lord Krsna.
"We should give up all our tiny efforts to defy the arrangement of Krsna. Instead whatever arrangements He proposes, we should accept. This is always better, for this will make us happy. The more we try to defeat the arrangement of Krsna, the more we become implicated in Krsna's maya." (Bhag. 10.13.44)
Thus, we should stick to our devotional service as received from the bona-fide spiritual master. Sometimes it may be in our hands to counteract some impediments to our devotional service, but otherwise we should depend on Lord Krsna and continue to carry out our devotional service despite the difficult circumstances.
3. FEEDBACK: XENA-KRSNA MAYAVADI SERIAL
(a) Wasn't Xena calling out "Krsna" good?
No. When there is blasphemy of Lord Krsna, His name, His devotees, and His devotional service, there cannot be any good taking place. We already showed in the March '99 issue that Mayavadis have a poisonous effect on us if we hear them say the name of "Krsna". If some people experienced any good, it was because of their PRIOR association with the genuine explanations of bhakti. For example, if someone had read Srila Prabhupada's explanation of Draupadi calling out for Krsna in full devotion, this Xena-Krsna event may have triggered their remembrance of the Bhaktivedanta Purports but this is no credit to the Xena serial; it's credit to Srila Prabhupada. The Xena serial was already clear in stating that Xena was calling out for some other reason and not because of devotion (bhakti). And the other offenses in the show would have prevented any bhakti taking place anyway. Krsna is only obtained by bhakti and by no other way. I may see a slaughterhouse and this may trigger my thinking of how the spiritual literatures have saved me from being part of such ghastly activities, but this is no credit to the slaughterhouse.
(b) Wasn't the name of "Krsna" spread to millions?
If the name is chanted with blasphemy of Vaisnavas, bhakti, and Lord Krsna, there is no preaching being done. Instead, it makes the viewer more implicated in offenses and makes it harder for him to approach Lord Krsna. It's anti-preaching. If it was only nama-aparadha, it may be a different story but this serial was heavy aparadha of Vaisnavas, bhakti, Lord Krsna and His name, fame, paraphernalia, and pastimes. Preaching makes people more and more receptive to Lord Krsna's message; major offenses such as those in the Xena-serial take people further and further away from Krsna. So such offenses should be protested (where possible) and positive preaching should be encouraged.
4. OUR EDITORIAL POLICY AND OTHER INFO
"One should engage in practical service to the Lord. In our Krsna consciousness movement, *ALL* our activities are concentrated upon distributing Krsna literature. This is very important. One may approach any person and induce him to read Krsna literature so that in the future he also may become a devotee.... By fully concentrating on distributing books for Krsna, one is fully absorbed in Krsna."
Krishna Software Inc. has produced some multimedia CDROMs and all the details of these CDROMs can be found at our website http://www.krishnasoft.com. Here is our current list of products:
(a) Multimedia Bhagavad-gita As It Is CD: Lord Krsna's eternal instructions to Arjuna and the rest of the world about Isvara (Supreme Lord), jiva (the soul), karma (activities), kala (time), and prakrti (nature). This is a 30-hour audio-visual CDROM.
(b) Multimedia Bhagavad-gita As It Is Hindi CD: Same as (a) but with Hindi translations; currently available on CD-R only.
(c) Multimedia Krsna CD w/Vedic Astronomy game: This is a 51-hour audio-visual presentation of the Krsna book and a Vedic Astronomy game based on the Fifth Canto of the Srimad-Bhagavatam. All on a single CDROM. Free sample demo downloadable.
(d) Multilingual Word Processor CD [version 4.00]: Type in diacritics, Hindi, Sanskrit, Gujarati, Punjabi, Bengali, and Assamese without knowing the alphabet. Free demo downloadable.
All of the above software was tested on various Intel 486 and Pentium processors running Windows 3.1, Windows '95, Windows '98, and Windows NT (client and server). All products are in stock.
Latest pricing and ordering information is at our web site: http://www.krishnasoft.com.
Information about the entire Srimad-Bhagavatam set and other spiritual books can also be found on our website.
End of Newsletter- written and edited by KSI staff; (c) 1998-1999 Krishna Software Inc.
Our staff consists of: Hari Rama Dasa, Rajni Dayal, Virender Dayal and a few part-time volunteers.
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All glories to Lord Sri Krsna and His transcendental potencies! All glories to the Srimad-Bhagavatam, the literary incarnation of the Lord Sri Krsna!
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