26 February 2014

Disadvantages of getting up late

After six kapha domination is seen. So people who get up in kapha kala tend to be dominated by tamo guna throughout the day. Bowel movements tend to be sluggish under the influence of kapha.  

Mind and body will be inactive owing to the influence of kapha dosha. After sunrise people awake and the materialistic mental radiations are emitted through their physical senses.

The atmosphere is polluted. People will disturb each other dragging themselves to materialistic discussions. So best time for doing meditation is early morning.

Foetid smell in mouth constipation, indigestion, laziness, and many kinds of eye diseases arises just because of getting late in day.


Importance of getting up in Brahma muhurta

Early morning is vata dominating period. Vata dosha is helpful in promoting body movements both internal and external and thus helps in easy evacuation of bowel.

Physical activities such as excercise and yogasanas can be performed well in vata kala. Meditation also needs the help of undisturbed vata which can be found early in the morning.

This time is hailed as the best time to learn, especially learn and realise subtler aspects of philosophy and spiritual growth. If one tries to find out the secret underlying this then one can realise that there are probably several changes in physical chemical and biological atmosphere at around this time, which probably catalyzes spiritual blossoming of an individual.

This is indeed a rejuvenating time as the whole universe begins to wake up at around this time.

The circadian rhythms have been studied in vast details by biologists and physiologists and probably this period is associated with hormonal changes conducive to blossoming of mind. Study of variety of electromagnetic radiations ozone effects of other planets and stars and so on, on the various biological and psychological parameters reveals a lot of new insights in the interrelationship of man and the universe.


25 February 2014

Permaculture Definitions

Graham Bell, The Permaculture Way

Permaculture is the conscious design and maintenance of agriculturally productive systems which have the diversity, stability, and resilience of natural ecosystems. It is the harmonious integration of the landscape with people providing their food, energy, shelter and other material and non-material needs in a sustainable way.

Simon Henderson, Cortez IS, BC

Permaculture is the use of ecology as the basis for designing integrated systems of food production, housing appropriate technology and community development. It offers a practical, creative approach to the problems of diminishing resources and threatened life support systems now facing the world.

Dan Hemenway

Permaculture integrates people into Nature's design. A permaculture design provides us with shelter, food, water, income, community and aesthetic and spiritual fulfillment within a balanced and healthy biological community.
Permaculture is Applied Science and Ecology; Ethical design of human systems for a sustainable future. It offers practical solutions to the global environmental and cultural crises we now face.

Permaculture (Permanent Culture) is the conscious design and co-creative evolution of agriculturally productive ecosystems and cooperative and economically just social systems which have the diversity, stability and resilience of 'natural' systems. It is the harmonious integration of landscape and people providing their food, energy, shelter and other material and non-material needs in a sustainable way. The practice and development of liberating mental, emotional and spiritual ways of being. It seeks to provide a sustainable and secure place for living things on this earth.

Pat Marie Sigler, OP

“Permaculture” is a way of designing and living sustainably by cooperating with nature. It is based on one of the great principles of design -- Do something basically right & everything gets much more right of itself. Permaculture aims to create productive ecosystems that are both regenerative & self-regulating. It proceeds from commonly accepted ethical principles:P CARE FOR EARTH; CARE FOR PEOPLE; CARE FOR COMMUNITY. Permaculture helps people rethink the whole basis of how they are going to live. It requires a shift from passive learning to active participation. It requires that what is learned about energy, physics, ecosystems, water flow, climate, etc. be applied in everyday living & being. “Doing” becomes far more important than “saying”.
Permaculture can be viewed as part of the paradigm shift that all of society is experiencing. Permaculture urges complete cooperation between each & every thing, animate & inanimate. It advises people to live simply & in harmony with each other & with their surroundings.

Although it has no concise definition, permaculture is a design for living. A permaculture design provides us with shelter, energy, food, water, income, community, & aesthetic & spiritual fulfillment within a balanced & healthy biological community. Through permaculture & sustainable development we will be better able to increase the quality rather than the quantity of our lives. We can increase the quantity of our lives on our own. All we need is a shopping mall & some money. On the other hand, to increase the quality of our lives we need friendships, good health, a sense of security, a vibrant community life, opportunities to give , to cooperate & to share.

Permaculture provides these opportunities by enabling us to substitute intelligence for resources in our economy; to substitute the pursuit of wellbeing for the pursuit of wealth; to develop the wealth of the community rather than individual wealth.

Source: permaculture

Manu Smriti on Guru

2.146. Of him who gives natural birth and him who gives (the knowledge of) the Veda, the giver of the Veda is the more venerable father; for the birth for the sake of the Veda (ensures) eternal (rewards) both in this (life) and after death.

2.147. Let him consider that (he received) a (mere animal) existence, when his parents begat him through mutual affection, and when he was born from the womb (of his mother).

2.148. But that birth which a teacher acquainted with the whole Veda, in accordance with the law, procures for him through the Savitri, is real, exempt from age and death.

2.149. (The pupil) must know that that man also who benefits him by (instruction in) the Veda, be it little or much, is called in these (Institutes) his Guru, in consequence of that benefit (conferred by instruction in) the Veda.

2.150. That Brahmana who is the giver of the birth for the sake of the Veda and the teacher of the prescribed duties becomes by law the father of an aged man, even though he himself be a child.

2.151. Young Kavi, the son of Angiras, taught his (relatives who were old enough to be) fathers, and, as he excelled them in (sacred) knowledge, he called them ’Little sons.’

2.152. They, moved with resentment, asked the gods concerning that matter, and the gods, having assembled, answered, ’The child has addressed you properly.’

Manu Smriti on Respect to Elders

2.119. One must not sit down on a couch or seat which a superior occupies; and he who occupies a couch or seat shall rise to meet a (superior), and (afterwards) salute him.

2.120. For the vital airs of a young man mount upwards to leave his body when an elder approaches; but by rising to meet him and saluting he recovers them.

2.121. He who habitually salutes and constantly pays reverence to the aged obtains an increase of four (things), (viz.) length of life, knowledge, fame, (and) strength.

24 February 2014

Manu Smriti on Sense Control

2.91. Five of them, the ear and the rest according to their order, they call organs of sense, and five of them, the anus and the rest, organs of action.

2.93. Through the attachment of his organs (to sensual pleasure) a man doubtlessly will incur guilt; but if he keep them under complete control, he will obtain success (in gaining all his aims).

2.94. Desire is never extinguished by the enjoyment of desired objects; it only grows stronger like a fire (fed) with clarified butter.

2.96. Those (organs) which are strongly attached to sensual pleasures, cannot so effectually be restrained by abstinence (from enjoyments) as by a constant (pursuit of true) knowledge.

2.97. Neither (the study of) the Vedas, nor liberality, nor sacrifices, nor any (self-imposed) restraint, nor austerities, ever procure the attainment (of rewards) to a man whose heart is contaminated (by sensuality).

2.98. That man may be considered to have (really) subdued his organs, who on hearing and touching and seeing, on tasting and smelling (anything) neither rejoices nor repines.

Interesting Verses from Manu Smriti

1.64. Eighteen nimeshas (twinklings of the eye, are one kashtha), thirty kashthas one kala, thirty kalas one muhurta, and as many (muhurtas) one day and night.

1.85. One set of duties (is prescribed) for men in the Krita age, different ones in the Treta and in the Dvapara, and (again) another (set) in the Kali, in a proportion as (those) ages decrease in length.

1.86. In the Krita age the chief (virtue) is declared to be (the performance of) austerities, in the Treta (divine) knowledge, in the Dvapara (the performance of) sacrifices, in the Kali liberality alone.

2.33. The names of women should be easy to pronounce, not imply anything dreadful, possess a plain meaning, be pleasing and auspicious, end in long vowels, and contain a word of benediction.

2.55. Food, that is always worshipped, gives strength and manly vigour; but eaten irreverently, it destroys them both.

What is the necessity of pleasing Krishna?

Prabhupada: prasadad bhagavat-prasadah. By pleasing the spiritual master, you please Krsna. That's nice. But why Krsna should be pleased? Why? What is the necessity of pleasing Krsna?
Devotee (1): To please the representative of Krsna.

Prabhupada: No, no, that is all right. Guru is representative of Krsna, but why one should bother himself for pleasing Krsna? Answer this.

Devotee (1): 'Cause our real position is to serve Krsna, and because we've fallen in this illusion of the material energy, so we forgot our position.

Prabhupada: We shall do it otherwise. Why shall I please Krsna? We are making scientific progress. What is the use of bringing God?

Devotee (2): Because we shall never become perfect or see the answer.

Prabhupada: That is begging the question.

Indian man (3): For spreading the name of the Krsna, in the world.

Prabhupada: No, no. It is not the question of guru. Guru is doing all right. Why you should be so much anxious and feel obligation to please Krsna?

Indian (4): Everybody has to serve somebody, so Krsna is the reservoir of all pleasure and everything exists from Him. So instead of serving anybody, we should serve the Krsna.

Prabhupada: "That's all right. Without serving Krsna, I am getting pleasure by drinking wine. Why shall I...?"

Cyavana: That pleasure will not last. That pleasure is only temporary.

Prabhupada: "No, I will not also last. (laughter) that..."

Cyavana: But to accept such a mentality, we say that is third class. Actually our life is eternal.

Prabhupada: That is your statement, "third class," but my statement is "It is first class." (laughter)

Harikesa: Is it first class if every time you are going to eat something nice I was standing over you with a stick, and as soon as you took, I would beat you? So every time you have some enjoyment, there is some concurrent suffering. Like you enjoy the wine, but then you have a headache, hangover. You enjoy. Then you get sick.

Cyavana: Krsna says in the Bhagavad-gita in the Tenth Chapter, He says, "For those who are constantly devoted and worship Me with love, I will give the understanding by which they can come to Me." So this is our desire.

Prabhupada: "I don't want to go."

Cyavana: You don't want to go to Krsna?

Prabhupada: "Yes."

Harikesa: All right, suffer. (laughter)

Prabhupada: "I don't suffer. (laughter) I am enjoying."

Harikesa: You are enjoying death and old age?

Prabhupada: "Yes, you are putting upon me some impression, 'suffering,' but I am enjoying."

Harikesa: Your knee is hurt. Is that enjoying?

Prabhupada: "That I am curing. That is also nice." (laughter)

Harikesa: But soon the whole thing will be finished. You will not... No one enjoys death. No one will take voluntarily a death pill.

Prabhupada: Nobody of you could answer the question. Now I give you again chance to answer this question very properly. Why one should be obliged to please Krsna? Why?

Harikesa: Just like this finger. Its position is to serve the body. Just like the stomach. Everyone may be jealous of the stomach and not want to feed the stomach, but if all the hands and the legs and the mouth went on strike not to feed the stomach...

Prabhupada: This is the right answer.

Harikesa: ...they would ultimately be destroyed.

Prabhupada: This is right answer, that you cannot non-cooperate with the stomach. You must serve the stomach. Otherwise your position is very precarious. That is the answer. If the finger thinks that "I shall remain independent and be happy," that is not possible. The stomach must be supplied food, and then all the parts of the body, they'll be happy. That is the point. So you cannot non-cooperate with the stomach. Similarly, Krsna is the central enjoyer. Bhoktaram yajna-tapasam sarva-loka-mahesvaram [Bg. 5.29]. He is the center. Just like ordinarily this African state, if you do not satisfy the state or the president, then you cannot remain happy. Independently you cannot be happy. We require in every step sta... We have come to this park because state is cooperating. In the morning we shall come, and they have prepared it nicely. We are not going to the jungle. So if we actually want happiness we must cooperate with the state. This is crude example. Similarly, if our ultimate aim is to become happy, then we must cooperate with Krsna. This is obligatory. You cannot escape it. Then you'll be unhappy. This is the... Stomach. Pranopaharac ca yathendriyanam. Therefore the natural process is you pick up... A child even. He picks up some something, but he does not put anywhere -- immediately in the mouth. Why he does not bring it in the ear? Why? The child immediately takes it. He does not know what is what. But the nature is that as soon as he captures something, even he does not know... Because his position is eating, he knows this much, sense gratification. Other senses are not yet developed. So the child, he knows taste with tongue and eats. That he knows. So immediately anything he captures, he brings to the mouth, naturally. He hasn't got to be educated. So our position is like that. We being part and parcel of Krsna, our natural tendency is to serve Krsna. Natural tendency. It is not artificial. When you forget Krsna, that is artificial. So our normal life means to love Krsna, to serve Krsna. That is our normal life. Without serving Krsna our life is abnormal, madman's life. Therefore Krsna says... When you forget Krsna, He comes to preach the normal life. Sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam [Bg. 18.66]. This is normal life. So Krsna does not require your help. He can create many helpers. But for your good Krsna comes, that "If you want normal, happy life, then surrender unto Me." This is the proposal. Therefore the whole Bhagavad-gita, all Vedic knowledge, is there. We have forgotten our position. Our posit..., normal position, is to love and serve Krsna. Therefore anadi bahir mukha jiva krsna bhuli gela ataeva krsna veda purana karila. Because we do not know... From time immemorial we cannot ascertain when this incidents have happened, to forget Krsna, but it is practically... Life after life, life after life, we are changing body, but forgetting Krsna. So here, in the human form of life, there is the opportunity to revive our original position, and we require the help of knowledge, perfect knowledge. And that is there in the Vedas. Atha eva krsna veda purana karila. If we don't take advantage, although we have got... We can read Bhagavad-gita, and if we don't take advantage of Bhagavad-gita and go on whimsically, then we'll suffer. You cannot non-cooperate with Krsna as you cannot non-cooperate with the stomach. This is the... You must. There is no question of alternative. You may, may not know. It is not. You must. This is the position. Otherwise you'll never be happy. And happiness is your aim of life. Atyantika-duhkha-nivrttih. We are... I'm suffering from this knee's trouble because I am in this material world. I have got this material body. So atyantika-duhkha-nivrttih means no more material world, no more material body. And for that purpose we have to cooperate with Krsna. Otherwise it is not possible. Any question about this? Just like these African women. They are going to work. There is no question of no work. They must. Otherwise they cannot eat. Anyone, if by working his livelihood is going on, how he can non-cooperate? This is not possible.

20 February 2014

Where Cows Are Happy and Food Is Healthy

 Check out this video!

Karuna Bhavan: ISKCON Scotland Temple

We finally made it to Karuna Bhavan temple at Lesmahagow two weeks ago. Here are a few pictures:

The temple experience was good. A few points that drew me are:
  • Beautiful Sri Gaura Nitai deities.
  • A devotee gardener who thinks he needs to grow fresh flowers to make daily garlands for Their Lordships.  
  • More local western devotees compared to Indians. Prabhupada wanted to preach mostly to westerners in western countries. It pleased Prabhupada when more and more westerners took to Krishna Consciousness. In US and Australia, today we see temples are not preaching to local people anymore. It is easy to preach to Indians instead.
  • Non-stop ecstatic bhajans lead by multiple devotees giving short explanations to songs that were being sung for the pleasure of Sri Gaura Nitai. It was Sri Nityananda Triyodasi celebrations; what better time to have visited the temple than this. Hari nama for the sake of hari nama is an art lost to most of Indian ISKCON temples lately but here at Scotland it was purely ecstatic. Hours of ecstasy!
  • Beautiful Vrindadevi deity and a pool of hundreds of Salagram silas to worship.
  • Creche for kids. Yes, the temple had a well-designed creche for kids. Thoughtful!
  • Amazing prasadam that came with special srikhand at the end.
I couldn't have asked for anything better. 

About Trees from Manu-Smriti

1.47. Those trees which bear fruit without flowers are called vanaspati (lords of the forest); but those which bear both flowers and fruit are called vriksha.

1.49. These (plants) which are surrounded by multiform Darkness, the result of their acts (in former existences), possess internal consciousness and experience pleasure and pain.

1.50. The (various) conditions in this always terrible and constantly changing circle of births and deaths to which created beings are subject, are stated to begin with (that of) Brahman, and to end with (that of) these (just mentioned immovable creatures).