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Questions about the article " A grhastha should chant at least one lakh of Names"

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Ruan
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Questions about the article " A grhastha should chant at least one lakh of Names"

Postby Ruan » Tue Feb 14, 2017 7:10 pm

First of all, I would like to thank Manonatha Dasa for having invited me to publicly ask this question in this forum, as now it will reach a wider public.

Please Manonatha Dasa, please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

I have read the article " A grhastha should chant at least one lakh of Names" ( available here: http://www.vrindavana.net/academy/grhas ... akh-names/ ) and personally I have greatly appreciated it. According to my own life experience, I notice that it's very difficult for a devotee who's living outside the temple and not having daily contact with the Deities to maintain his initiation vows very strictly if he's chanting just 16 rounds, specially the fourth regulative principle which says that one should not entertain lusty thoughts and desires. So I think that saying that such devotees should chant 64 rounds is very sound advice.

However, after I shared this article with other devotees on the internet, some questions started to appear.

First question: Some devotees asked for factual references, quotes, etc. taken from Prabhupada's books, letters or recordings where he says that devotees who live outside the temple should chant 64 rounds every day. I understand their concern as I see that such standard for devotees living outside the temple is not very actively promoted in ISKCON today. To be honest, in most places I think it's not promoted at all, and that most devotees would see this preaching rather as an attempt to follow Gaudiya Math gurus and acaryas instead of Srila Prabhupada's instructions.

Second question: Some devotees told me that women were never required to chant 64 rounds by any acarya, and that they should rather be busy following stri-dharma. They told me that these standards are specifically meant for men, but never for women. Is this true that there are different sadhana-bhakti standards for each gender?

Your servant,

Ruan

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Re: Questions about the article " A grhastha should chant at least one lakh of Names"

Postby Manonatha Dasa » Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:10 pm

Dear Bhakta Ruan,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.


Thanks for asking me questions on our philosophy.

First question: Some devotees asked for factual references, quotes, etc. taken from Prabhupada's books, letters or recordings where he says that devotees who live outside the temple should chant 64 rounds every day. I understand their concern as I see that such standard for devotees living outside the temple is not very actively promoted in ISKCON today. To be honest, in most places I think it's not promoted at all, and that most devotees would see this preaching rather as an attempt to follow Gaudiya Math gurus and acaryas instead of Srila Prabhupada's instructions.

First of all you should know that our website on
http://www.vrindavana.net
is a Library. We have almost 15,000 documents there and counting. It is going to have many tens of thousands of documents.

Not all the articles I (or others) publish are written by us. Sometimes we may publish things we don't really agree on, but we think it's good if people discuss. Debating is good for intelligence.

The Vedas and its corollaries are an ocean of transcendental knowledge. They set the absolute standards. This is their role.

But, because absolute, which means also for other ages and other people, the Vedas teaches things that we can't even understand, what to speak of following.

Now what part of that knowledge it's relevant to us, in what quantity and all other details, this the role of the Guru.
Just like the medical science. If you are sick the first thing you do is to go to a doctor. You don't buy books to understand what medicine to take and how should be your diet.
Of course this analogy is not perfect, but it gives you the idea of the importance of the spiritual master.

A number of rounds is for sadhana, to give us discipline. In reality we should chant Hare Krishna 24 hours a day, even in sleep: we should dream to be in Vrindavan chanting japa.

So for sadhana, for us, in our present time, all considered, how many rounds should we chant? Those who are Srila Prabhupada's disciple, or disciples of one of Srila Prabhupada's disciples should chant a minimum of 16 rounds. Not just 16 rounds. A minimum of 16 rounds.
There is no a fixed number, that the Acarya decides.

The first thing in spiritual life is to accept a Guru and do what he says. You do not go back to Krishna with any type of discipline but by the grace of the pure devotee. If you follow his instructions you get Guru-kripa and go back to Krishna.


Second question: Some devotees told me that women were never required to chant 64 rounds by any acarya, and that they should rather be busy following stri-dharma. They told me that these standards are specifically meant for men, but never for women. Is this true that there are different sadhana-bhakti standards for each gender?

Same principle applies here: whose disciple are you? which school did you accept? If you are a disciple of Srila Prabhupada or a disciple of one of Srila Prabhupada's disciples then you follow their instructions and embrace the cultural idea.

Srila Prabhupada never distinguished between men and women in respect to numbers of rounds chanted, so we do and teach the same.

Other schools may say or do what they want but we follow our Acarya.
Mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ, one has to follow the great authorities. (CC Madhya 17.186). So the path is secure.

Your servant
Manonatha Dasa (ACBSP)


PS
Forum: http://www.isvara.org
Library: http://www.vrindavana.net


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