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Reforming Lifestyle

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
1 July 2013


When the brain is cool, it is all right, but when the brain is hot it is a problem. If your brain is cool, problems do not come, but people are doing the opposite—too much stress, they do not sleep properly...

Why do I read the newspaper? Every day I watch what the science is saying—I am watching how people are becoming crazy... At night time they do not sleep properly—they watch video, use mobiles, etc. somebody has so many girlfriends, and this girlfriend chastises him, that girlfriend wants this, this girlfriend want that, and so on. It is a big problem. Every day scientists have some conference... Why do I look through what they say, one by one, why do I read the newspaper? I watch people going down...

Proper sleep is necessary.

"Asat-sanga sada tyaga chhada anya gita-raga" (অসৎ-সঙ্গ সদা ত্যাগ, ছাড় অন্য গীতরাগ, Sri Prema-bhakti-chandrika, 15; "give up bad association, do not listen to the material songs and music"). Avoid bad association. I always tell it to you, how many times can I tell it? My mouth has already become sore...

There was a boy here, he started doing kirtan from five-six years old, but after that he got under the influence of asat-sanga (bad association), did not control his association, did not control his eating habits, did not take prasad always, ate sometimes outside... Where there is a will, there is a way. If you do not follow the rules and regulations, then there will be neither health nor anything else.

ভক্তি-অনুকূল মাত্র কার্য্যের স্বীকার ।
ভক্তি-প্রতিকূল ভাব—বর্জ্জনাঙ্গীকার ॥

bhakti-anukula matra karyera svikara
bhakti-pratikula bhava—varjanangikara

If we know what is favourable to devotion and what is not favourable to devotion, then we will be careful—we must accept or reject.

We sing this kirtan every day early in the morning, and we do not only sing it—when we sing it we actually make a promise.

শ্রীকৃষ্ণচৈতন্য প্রভু জীবে দয়া করি' ।
স্বপার্ষদ স্বীয় ধাম সহ অবতরি ॥

sri-krsna-chaitanya prabhu jive daya kari'
svaparsada sviya dhama saha avatari

"Being merciful to the souls, Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu descends with His associates and abode."

অন্ত্যন্ত দুর্লভ প্রেম করিবারে দান ।
শিখায় শরণাগতি ভকতের প্রাণ ॥

atyanta durlabha prema karibare dana
sikhaya saranagati bhakatera prana

"To distribute the most rare form of divine love, He teaches surrender, which is the life of the devotees."

দৈন্য, আত্মনিবেদন, গোপ্তৃত্বে বরণ ॥
'অবশ্য রক্ষিবে কৃষ্ণ'—বিশ্বাস পালন ॥

dainya, atma-nivedana, goptrtve varana
'avasya raksibe krsna'—visvasa palana

"Humility, self-submission, embracing the Lord’s guardianship, maintaining the faith that 'Krishna will certainly protect me'..."

ভক্তি-অনুকূল মাত্র কার্য্যের স্বীকার ।
ভক্তি-প্রতিকূল ভাব—বর্জ্জনাঙ্গীকার ॥

bhakti-anukula matra karyera svikara
bhakti-pratikula bhava—varjanangikara

"Engaging only in activities that are favourable to devotion, rejecting everything unfavourable to devotion ..."

ষড়ঙ্গ শরণাগতি হইবে যাঁহার ।
তাঁহার প্রার্থনা শুনে শ্রীনন্দকুমার ॥

sad-anga saranagati ha-ibe yanhara
tanhara prarthana sune sri-nanda-kumara

"These are the six types of saranagati, and if you can surrender in all the six ways, Krishna will hear you."

We sing it every day, and every day we promise this. Singing means practising Krishna consciousness.

When we sing, "Thakura Vaishnava-gana, kari ei nivedana mo bada adhama durachara (O worshippable Vaisnavas, I offer you this prayer. I am very fallen and wicked!)" we actually do not think that we are durachar (dishonest, misbehaved, wicked). But we should pray, "Prabhu, I do not think that I am misbehaving, but please give me the quality, the ability to think that I am misbehaving, that I am durachar!" This is what we sing for. If you sing in this way, then humility will come.

It is necessary to listen and learn, if you do not hear the teachings, you will not get the Lord... Pariksit Maharaj listened to the teachings and in the end said, "I have all these senses—eyes, nose, ears, tongue, skin—and I can use them only for seven days now, but I will use them only for the Lord's purpose!"

If, however, you have some material desire inside, it can be dormant, but in a few days, a few years it can come out. For example, you may not see fire in some ash, but the fire is there, inside. Material desires are also like that. You have material desires inside, and if you do not practise properly, these desires can come out.

asa-pasa sata sata klesa deya avirata
pravrtti-urmira tahe khela
kama-krodha-adi chhaya batapade deya bhaya
avasana haila asi' bela

The shackles of hundreds and hundreds of desires constantly trouble me, and the waves of the tendency to enjoy play all round me. The six bandits of lust, anger, greed, pride, illusion, and envy torment me, and now the time of my death has come.

This is a song from Siksastaka. Asa-pasa—only hope, only hope, hope, hope and in the end you get so much suffering. There are six enemies, or faults—kama, krodha, lobha, etc.; they are all batpad, highway robbers, dacoits who torture you; and in the end, avasana haila asi' bela, the time ends.

There was one Lala Babu who loved fish and ate it every day. One time, he was talking to the fish seller. He had taken the fish from him but had not paid yet. The seller was waiting to get his money, but Lala Babu carried on and on. Then, the seller said, "Babu! It is getting late, the sun is setting..." Suddenly, Lala Babu got startled, "What? The sun is setting?! Oh no! I have wanted to go to Vrindavan for so long, but now my time is coming to an end... I must go there!" He left as he was and went to Vrindavan!

So, time is passing—avasana haila asi' bela, sun rises, sun sets and one day is gone from your life... In the meantime, kama, krodha, lobha, moha, etc. all these dacoits take away everything. What is the way out? You can end up in the same position as Indra—only when everything is taken away from you do you take up Hari-bhajan. At first, Indra did not listen to what Brahma was trying to tell him, Indra said, "I am too busy with my work here!" Only when his wife, children, and all relatives had died, did he listen. When everything is gone, when we have no one left, then we listen and come here...

It is necessary to teach small boys, teach new devotees, they can read one sloka from Bhagavad-gita each day, they should read—otherwise they stay here for some time and go back to their countries. I want good "cows," not naughty "cows"—it is necessary to have good cows in the goshala, not naughty cows.

It is necessary to be strict because he does not know what will be good for him, you do not know what will be good for you, even I also do not know what will be good for me—my Gurudev knows it, and my Gurudev gives me inspiration, instruction every day, day by day. But if he does not follow his Gurudev's instruction, what will he stay here for? He only goes outside, plays with the soil, etc...

It is necessary to study, to read, to have classes. There should be many classes arranged, and he must have the classes one by one during the day. You can give him some basic knowledge, somebody can teach other things to him, and so on. It is necessary. I have told many times to give a class to him, but you did not listen to me. What is now? Now it is necessary to use a stick.

It is necessary to rest also. I do not tell him to go to the goshala, I tell him to take rest. I do not tell anyone not to sleep, I do not not tell anyone not to take prasad, I do not tell anyone not to walk around the temple and not chant mala... He took gayatri initiation, but can you tell me if he does his gayatri at least once? He never does it. When I asked him, he cannot even remember the gayatri mantras... Does he chant four rounds? Sixteen rounds is a must, but does he chant at least four rounds on his mala? Ask him to tell me, he cannot tell a lie in front of me.

Be a good boy. I told him it is not necessary to go to school—if you can study properly in this school only, you will be more brilliant than any ordinary schoolboy. I came from university, I am a post-graduate, everybody knows that, but sometimes I would proofread something twenty times, and Gurudev, who did not go to any university, would look at it and tell me there is a mistake. How is it possible? Because he studied properly—he listened to his Guru! He studied Sanskrit, went to the classes, did his reading...

He too should study—he can have Bengali lessons, Bhagavad-gita lessons, some lesson on basic, fundamental knowledge. It is necessary. And he should also take some rest every day. It is necessary to change the lifestyle...


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Stick to Your Service
'If somebody speaks bad about you behind your back or in front of you, always ignore it, always go forward and do your service. If you do it in this way, you can progress in your spiritual life.'


Ye anila prema-dhana
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যে আনিল প্রেমধন

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