On the practice of Japamala

Hare Krishna Prabhu. Please accept my most humble and sincere obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.
A question about the recital of the Maha Mantra.
I chant it when I have time and often not in optimal conditions keeping in mind the number of recited Mantra. Most of the time I will close the round counting for “excess”.
Here is the question.

I know that once one is initiated receives the Japa Mala from the spiritual master, and later, in addition to reciting the Maha Mantra on it for sixteen times a day, you also need to store it in a special bag to prevent it from getting dirty or touching surfaces in order to keep it clean. For those like me who are not initiated what can I do to recite more correctly? Can one buy a Japa mala, even if it is not the one received by the Spiritual Master, and act on it? What attention must be observed? Hare Krishna



Dear Bhakta ***,
Receive my blessings. All the glories at Srila Prabhupada.

Sorry for the delay in answering you. This was a rather intense period.

One characteristic that has the philosophy of Krishna consciousness is that it is similar to a harmonica. It has a hard base, which is and must be the same for everyone and then a part that extends and retracts depending on the music you want to produce.
This exercise on the bellows must be done by an expert musician or the result can be bad.

When one looks for something different because what he sees around him is not convincing, he meets the devotees and the philosophy. After a while, he must look for someone whose instructions are perfectly satisfactory. This is the Guru, to whom ask questions (pariprasna), offers service (seva) and ask for initiation (upadesa). All this is very well explained in the Bhagavad-gita. It is a broad subject.

If one is not or does not feel ready for initiation, whatever he does, even the mistakes made, have minor reactions.

The mala (the rosary) on which to recite the maha-mantra (japa) becomes consecrated when the Guru recites on it a round before initiation. Until that moment one can receive the mala from the spiritual master or not and the value is the same. I could have sent it to you from Vrindavana but now I am not there anymore. You can buy it wherever you want, but it must be of Nim or Tulasi.

The attention to use is the same. Respect the mala, do not put it where you sit or on the ground, use it after washing your hands. Things like that.

If one has a spiritual master, attention and rules change when the time is right.
For now, follow Hare Krishna chanting as you do and take nice care of your service as you have been doing for a long time.

Hare Krishna
Manonatha Dasa (ACBSP)

THE NEW ARCHIVE: www.isvara.org

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