Daily Practice

— { Setting Up the Altar } —

 

yuktahara-viharasya, yukta-chestasya karmasu
yukta-svapnavabodhasya, yogo bhavati duhkha-ha

"For a person who eats, relaxes, and works in a regulated way, and who keeps regular hours in proper measure, his practice of yoga dispells all his suffering."

(Srimad Bhagavad-gita, 6.17)

 

 

"It is important to have an arati, bhajans, kirtan, offer the bhog. These all are very important for our spiritual life. Each of you should do this in your own house too. Make an altar at your home and practise like this every day—it is necessary. You may not be able to come every day to the centre, but you are staying in the family life in a house, and you can maintain this kind of standard there every day. It is good for you."


"I sent you or took you to many places and you saw how householder people live. Many of them are more than brahmachari—in many places, you would be still sleeping, and they are already doing mangal arati. They wake up early, do mangal arati, their wife cooks, then they offer the bhog, take some food, and go to work for the whole day. Some even go from Nabadwip to Kolkata every day, and they come back at night, sleep, and again wake up, do mangal arati, etc. and again go to Kolkata. They travel like this five days a week, or sometimes even six days a week with only Sunday off. Many live like this."


"You can serve the Lord in your house. Wake up early, do mangal arati, cook and give some food to the Deities, feed your children, then your children go to school, husband goes to work, and so on. Maintain your family like this as Krishna's family and you will be very happy."


"Gurudev said also that if you are a householder devotee, you can make your house a temple. What do we do in the temple? We wake up early in the morning, do mangal arati—you too can have an altar, do mangal arati, do kirtan, and go to your work (a devotee's work means working for Guru, for the Lord), and you must take prasadam."


"What did Prabhupad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur re-introduce saffron for? Why did Prabhupad and Mahaprabhu make tilak, kanthi-mala, following Ekadasi, and so on? It means that you must always practise properly: if you cook, offer the bhog; if you live in a house, make an altar with Gurudev's photo, Guru Maharaj's photo, and the temple photo."


"Every day when householder people wake up in the morning they pay dandavat to their Guru. Before they go to work also they pay dandavat to their Guru and the Deities in their house."


"Actually, if somebody has Gurudev's photo, the Deities' photo in their house, they can worship themselves—their house becomes a temple. Even though they cannot come to the temple, they should cook for the Deities and take prasad. Not all devotees may be doing it, but it is necessary."


"You can make your house Goloka Vrindavan if you worship every day, if you serve Krishna, do everything."


"If you practise only one or two days a month, or once every one or two months, it will not do. You must practise regularly—you eat every day, you sleep every day, so you must practise every day too. You should turn your house into a house of Krishna's family, not a mundane family. When you took initiation you left your caste and you already entered Krishna's family. You have become a member of Krishna's family and you must keep your membership through practising."


"You must maintain your family through Krishna consciousness. What is your regular duty? Wake up early in the morning, do arati, offer the bhog to your Guru at the altar in your room or house, take prasadam, chant the Holy Name, and as much as it is possible you can preach outside. You must follow a regular programme like this."


"You are not alone. Your Guru is always with you. You chant and serve the Lord, and the Lord is always with you. Who said you are alone? Do you think you are alone because you live alone? But if you serve Gaura Nitai you already have three members at your house! You think you cook for yourself, but it is not so: you have Gaura Nitai, your Guru on your altar and you cook for your Guru, for Gaura Nitai. How can you then say you are alone?!"


"If a disciple of Srila Swami Maharaj worships our Deity, he needs his Guru's photograph also, then if he has Srila Swami Maharaj's photograph on the altar, I have no objection. But in the exclusive line of Chaitanya Saraswat Math, there should not be Srila Swami Maharaj's photograph on the altar.

"They can put Srila Swami Maharaj's photo on the wall, they can make a big photograph, even as big as the whole wall, no problem, but they cannot show his photograph on the altar. The altar must be in an exclusive way, otherwise it will misguide others because this is not an ashram of Srila Swami Maharaj, this is not his disciples' succession. An altar means you are showing the disciplic succession, so you must show that which is the disciplic succession of Srila Sridhar Maharaj's Math.

"It does not mean that you cannot worship a Vaishnav—you must worship Vaishnavs, no problem. It is actually our life's goal. You can see that I always glorify others, you can look at me and follow me, then you can understand it. I always glorify our devotees, it is a part of our practising life to glorify devotees, no matter whether the devotee is little or big. Srila Swami Maharaj is an exalted Acharya in our sampradaya, why will we not glorify him? But where there is an exclusive place, there we shall show the preceptorial line, and there, there will not be Srila Swami Maharaj's photograph, otherwise it will misguide others.

"If somebody, however, worships in another way, they can do, I have no problem because I know that they are not so qualified. They are a general devotee and they are trying to practise Krishna consciousness; if they get some inspiration, it is good, it is not bad for them. This is how I look at it."

(Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj)

 

 

 

 

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BACK TO 'INTRODUCTION' ARATI

 

Introduction
Setting up the altar
Arati
Daily kirtans
Bhog, cooking, offering
Observing Ekadasi
Observing Festivals
Tulasi Devi
Four regulative principles
Scriptural regulations

 


Godbrothers' Bond
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj tells about the close and reverent relationship that Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj had with his godbrothers, Srila Bhakti Saranga Goswami Maharaj, Srila Bhakti Kamal Madhusudan Maharaj, and Srila Krishna Das Babaji Maharaj..

You chant the Holy Name, you always remember Krishna, practise properly and engage
yourself in service to the Lord, so Krishna always makes you happy.

"HUMILITY, TOLERANCE, GIVING HONOUR TO OTHERS | HUMILITY, TOLERANCE, GIVING HONOUR TO OTHERS"