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utsahat nischayat dhairyat

Something has dropped in the water, in the river. You cannot see the things dropped within the water by agitating the water. Just stand still for some time. As soon as the water is settled up, you’ll see the things as they are. So as soon as our enthusiasm is agitated, it is better to sit down in any temple suitable and chant Hare Krishna. There is no question of being disappointed. After all, we commit so many mistakes. That is human nature. To err is human. That is not fault. But try to rectify with cool head – Srila Prabhupada, Calcutta, January 27, 1973

Sri Varaha Dvadasi

Shri VarAha Dvadasi________________________________________The Most Holy Appearance Day of Lord Varahadev.The pregnancy of Diti Jaya and Vijaya cursed by the four Kumaras Theappearance of Lord Varaha The victory of Hiranyaksha and his death at thehands of Lord Varaha.From: Srimad Bhagavatam, Canto 3.After describing the appearance of the white Boar Incarnation that hadappeared during the Svayambhuva devastation, Maitreya next described the redBoar Incarnation that had appeared during the Chakshusha devastation.Maitreya related these pastimes to Vidura in the same manner in which he hadheard them long ago when Lord Brahma had narrated them to the demigods.Once upon a time, at sunset, Kashyapa, the son of Marichi, was offeringoblations to Lord Vishnu into the sacrificial fire. At this time, his wife,Diti, approached him due to being greatly afflicted by sex desire. Withouttrying to attract him gradually by her bodily expressions, the beautifulDiti frankly begged her husband, "O learned one, Cupid is forciblydistressing me with his arrows, just as an elephant troubles a banana tree.I want to have sons like my co-wives and so you should be merciful to me.""My father, Daksha, had separately asked each of his daughters, whom wepreferred to marry. Then, after understanding our intentions, he handed overthirteen of his daughters to you, and we have been faithful to you eversince that time. O lotus-eyed one, when someone in distress approaches agreat person, his pleas should never go in vain."The hen-pecked Kashyapa could have strongly refused his wife, but because hewas also sexually inclined, he tried to pacify Diti, who had become verypoor-hearted and talkative, due to the contamination of lust. Kashyapa said,"O afflicted one, I shall soon gratify your desire. It is only due to havinga good wife that a man like me can cross over the great ocean of materialexistence. Indeed, a wife is so helpful that she is called the better halfof a man's body. Just as a military commander can easily conquer invaderswhile remaining protected within a fort, so a man can conquer his senses bytaking shelter of a good wife. For this reason, a man could never repay hiswife for all the benefit that he derives from her, even if he were to try todo so during his entire lifetime, or even after death.""My dear Diti, although I cannot sufficiently repay you, I will satisfy yoursex desire for the purpose of begetting children. I only request you to waitfor a few minutes so that I may not become subject to criticism. The presentmoment is most inauspicious because at this time Lord Shiva rides upon hisbull carrier, accompanied by his horrible ghostly companions. He gives suchghosts the chance of getting a gross material body by placing them into thewombs of women that indulge in sexual intercourse during this forbiddenperiod. Lord Shiva is your sister's husband, and with his three eyes, hewill see your forbidden act."In spite of receiving such good instructions from her husband, Diti was sooppressed by sex desire that she caught hold of Kashyapa's clothes just likea shameless prostitute, and thus she practically forced him to gratify herlusty urge. After offering obeisances unto worshipful fate, Kashyapa laydown with Diti in a secluded place. After finishing the forbidden act,Kashyapa purified himself by bathing and once again sat down to chant theGayatri mantra, while meditating upon the impersonal aspect of the Absolute.Meanwhile, after having gratified her lust, Diti came to her senses. Withher head lowered in shame, she approached her husband and said, "My dearbrahmana, please insure that my embryo is not killed by Lord Shiva, becauseof the great offense that I have committed against him."Diti then prayed for Lord Shiva's mercy in a very clever manner: "Let meoffer my obeisance unto the angry Lord Shiva. He is so great that he canimmediately destroy my embryo, but at the same time he is so merciful andforgiving. Lord Shiva is known as the lord of all women, who are excusedeven by uncivilized hunters, and therefore I beg him to spare me from hiswrath."As Diti stood before him, trembling due to fear of his anger, Kashyapa said,"Because of your polluted mind, the improper time, your disobedience, andyour neglect of the demigods, your conception will produce two abominablesons who will create havoc within the world by killing innocent persons,torturing women, and enraging the great souls. As a result, the Supreme Lordwill incarnate to kill them, just as Indra smashes mountains with histhunderbolt."Diti replied, "O my husband, it is a great relief for me to know that mysons will be killed by the all-merciful Supreme Lord, rather than the wrathof the brahmanas. One who offends the brahmanas or causes fear to others isso condemned that even those who are already in hell, or who are of thedegraded species in which he will later on appear, feel no compassion towardhim."Kashyapa then informed Diti, "Due to your repentance and firm faith in theSupreme Lord, as well as your adoration for Lord Shiva and myself, one ofyour grandsons will be a greatly exalted devotee whose fame will rival thatof the Lord Himself. Because of his great devotion for the SupremePersonality of Godhead, others will follow in his footsteps, and because ofhis having satisfied the Supreme Lord, everyone will become pleased withhim. As a first-class devotee, your grandson will be able to see the SupremeLord, within and without; he will be a reservoir of all good qualities; andhe will feel very pained to see the suffering of the conditioned souls inthis material world."After hearing about the glories of Prahlada, Diti became very pleased. But,because she could understand that her sons would cause great disturbances tothe demigods, she continued to bear the powerful embryos for one hundredyears without giving birth. Still, the force of Diti's pregnancy disturbedthe entire universe, and the light of sun and moon became impaired.After observing this fearful condition, the demigods approached Lord Brahmaand submitted, "O lord, just see this darkness that is expanding in alldirections. O sustainer of the universe, who knows the intentions of allliving entities, Diti's pregnancy has caused this great disturbance, andthus our work has become suspended. Please be merciful unto us, for we havefallen into a very miserable condition."In response, Lord Brahma informed the demigods of what had happened longago. After having travelled all over the material creation, the four sagesSanaka, Sanatana, Sanandana and Sanat-kumara, entered the spiritual sky,wherein the Vaikuntha planets are situated. They were able to do this due tobeing freed from all material contamination. In the abode of Lord Narayana,the residents have forms similar to that of the Supreme Lord, and everyoneis engaged in His unalloyed devotional service. There are many forests fullof desire-trees, and throughout all seasons they are filled with fruit andflowers.While flying in their airplanes, along with their consorts, the inhabitantsof Vaikuntha eternally sing of the character and pastimes of the SupremeLord. Although the consorts that crowd the airplanes have large hips andbeautifully smiling faces, they cannot stimulate the passion of theresidents of Vaikuntha. This means that in Vaikuntha there is the enjoymentof the association with the opposite sex, but there is no sexualrelationship, because everyone is fully absorbed in Krishna consciousness.When the king of bees hums in a high pitch, singing the glories of the Lord,the cuckoos, cranes, chakravakas, swans, parrots and peacocks temporarilystop their singing to listen. Although flowers, such as the champaka,bakula, parijata and lotus are transcendentally fragrant, they are stillconscious of tulasi's austerities, and of how the Lord prefers to garlandHimself with her leaves. The ladies of Vaikuntha are as beautiful as thegoddess of fortune, and yet they are sometimes seen cleaning the marblewalls, just to receive the grace of the Supreme Lord, even though there ispractically no dust.Upon reaching the outskirts of Vaikuntha, the four Kumaras felt anunprecedented transcendental happiness. Then, after easily passing throughsix gates, the sages saw two doormen at the seventh gate that had similarbodily features and carried strong maces. They were four-armed and of bluishcomplexion, and due to their arched eyebrows, discontented nostrils andreddish eyes, they appeared somewhat agitated. The four Kumaras had openeddoors everywhere without any conception of "ours" and "theirs", and so theyinnocently began to pass through the seventh gate. The sages, who hadnothing to cover their bodies but the atmosphere, looked just likefive-year-old boys, although they were the oldest created beings, next toBrahma.Due to possessing a disposition quite unpalatable to the Lord, the twogatekeepers rudely blocked the Kumaras' entrance with their staffs. The Lordis always anxious to serve great sages, and thus the Kumaras were never tobe prohibited from entering Vaikuntha. The boy-sages had been very eager tosee the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and so upon being checked by theLord's two chief doorkeepers, they immediately became agitated. Their eyesred with rage, the Kumaras exclaimed, "Who are these persons who areengaging in the Lord's service and yet have developed a discordantmentality? They must be imposters, and so they suspect others to be justlike themselves. In Vaikuntha there is perfect harmony between the SupremeLord and the other inhabitants. These two persons are dressed like theresidents of Vaikuntha, but where has this seed of disharmony come from?Because of seeing duality, they have become contaminated. Therefore, theyshould be put into the material world, where everyone is conceived of asbeing either a friend or an enemy."When the gatekeepers realized that they were being cursed by the brahmanas,they at once became very afraid. After falling down at the Kumaras' feet,they begged, "You are correct in punishing us for having neglected suchgreat souls as yourselves. Still, in consideration of our repentance, wepray that you mercifully insure that the illusion of forgetting the SupremePersonality of Godhead will not overwhelm us as we fall down."Just at that moment, the Supreme Lord, having learned of this incident, camethere on foot accompanied by the goddess of fortune. Thus, the four Kumarassaw Lord Vishnu before them, Whom they had formerly seen only within theirhearts while being absorbed in the ecstatic trance of meditation.The Lord's beautiful blackish body was dressed in bright yellow cloth, andaround His neck hung a garland of fresh flowers that was encircled byhumming bees. While resting one of His hands upon Garuda's shoulder, theLord twirled a lotus flower in another. Indeed, His beauty was so excellentthat it defeated the pride of the goddess of fortune, and thus the Kumaraslooked at Him with unsated eyes.As the Kumaras joyfully bowed their heads, the breeze that carried the aromaof tulasi leaves from the toes of the Lord's lotus feet entered theirnostrils, causing a spiritual transformation in their body and mind, eventhough they had been fully attached to the impersonal Brahman. In otherwords, the Kumaras became converted from impersonalists that had desired tomerge into the Lord's brahmajyoti, to devotees who desire to render serviceto the Lord.After seeing the Lord's transcendental body, the Kumaras advanced to thestage of constant meditation upon His personal feature. Their anger havingsubsided, the four sages prayed, "Our dear Lord, whatever we had heard aboutYou from our father, Lord Brahma, has now been confirmed by Your kindappearance before us. We now understand that the most elevatedtranscendentalists are those that constantly engage in hearing about Yourpastimes, without caring for any other benediction, including liberation.""O Lord, we don't mind being born in any hellish condition, as long as ourhearts and minds are always engaged in Your devotional service."By dint of the Lord's presence, the Kumaras realized that it had beenimproper for them to curse the doorkeepers, in spite of the offense that hadbeen committed.The Supreme Lord then said, "These attendants of Mine, Jaya and Vijaya, havecommitted a great offense against you by ignoring My desire. I approve ofthe punishment that you have awarded to My servants. Indeed, since thesedoormen are My servants, I consider Myself to be the one that has offendedyou, and for this reason, I seek your forgiveness. Whatever wrong a servantcommits causes people in general to blame the master, just as a single spotof white leprosy is considered to pollute the whole skin.""For Me, the brahmanas are the most worshipable personalities, and so I amprepared to cut off My arm if its conduct proves to be hostile toward you.Because I am the servant of My devotees, My lotus feet have become so sacredthat they immediately purify one of all sins. I do not enjoy the offeringsthat are made into the sacrificial fire with as much relish as I enjoy thedelicacies cooked in ghee that are offered to the mouths of the brahmanaswho have dedicated their lives unto Me." "The Ganga is the remnants of waterleft after washing My feet, and it sanctifies the three worlds. If I cantake the dust of the Vaishnavas' feet upon My head, then who would refuse todo the same? These servants of Mine have offended you due to not knowing Mymind. Still, I will consider it a great favor if you allow them to return toMy presence soon, after reaping the consequences of their transgression."After hearing with wide-open ears, the Lord's extremely humble and beautifulspeech, which was difficult to comprehend due to its profound import, theKumaras pondered over its meaning for some time. Although the sages couldnot understand the Lord's actual intention, a thrill passed through theirbodies due to the delight of simply beholding Him. Understanding their faultin cursing the Lord's faultless servants, the Kumaras said, "O Lord, wecannot understand Your plans, for You have spoken as if we had donesomething good for You. Your adoration of the brahmanas is meant to teachothers, for it is You who are the supreme worshipable Deity." "O Lord,whatever punishment You wish to award to these two innocent persons, or tous, we shall accept without duplicity."The Lord replied, "O brahmanas, I have already ordained the punishment thatyou inflicted upon Jaya and Vijay, and thus they will have to accept birthin a demoniac family. But, by concentration of their minds upon Me in anger,they will always remain connected with Me, and soon thereafter, they willreturn to My abode."It is to be understood that the Lord Himself engineered the cursing of Jayaand Vijaya. Ordinarily, there is no possibility that the Kumaras couldbecome so angry, that the Lord could neglect His gatekeepers, or that anyonecould return to the material world after reaching Vaikuntha. Sometimes, theLord desires to fight, and because there are no enemies in Vaikuntha, Heincarnates into the material world for this purpose. The Lord only likes toperform His pastimes along with His associates, however, and so He chooses adevotee to play the part of His enemy. Then, after making a temporary showof fighting, the Lord recalls His devotee to the spiritual world.Thereafter, the four Kumaras circumambulated the Lord, offered theirobeisances, and departed from the gates of Vaikuntha. The Lord then orderedJaya and Vijaya, "Depart from here, but do not be afraid. I could havenullified the brahmanas' curse, but I chose not to do so. Lakshmi, whom youhad once stopped at the gate while I was sleeping, already predicted yourfall. Although seven births in the material world are your designatedpunishment, I want you to accept three demoniac births instead. Bypracticing mystic yoga in anger, you will become quickly cleansed of yoursinful reactions, and thus be able to return to Me in a very short time."After saying this, the Lord departed, and Jaya and Vijaya, who had becomemorose and pale because of the brahmanas' curse, fell down from Vaikuntha.As they were falling, the Kumaras reassured them that after three demoniacbirths, they would once again return to Vaikuntha. The demigods, who wereobserving all of this from their celestial airplanes, let out a great roarof disappointment, and thereafter, Jaya and Vijaya entered Diti's womb,after being covered by Kashyapa's powerful semen.Lord Brahma then concluded by informing the demigods, "It is the prowess ofthese twin demons that has disturbed you, by minimizing your own potency. Ihave no remedy for this situation, however, for all of this is taking placeby the desire of the Lord. Rest assured that the Supreme Lord will come toour rescue, and so do not bother to speculate any longer about the densedarkness that is covering all directions."After hearing this, the demigods became relieved from their fear andreturned to their respective abodes. Meanwhile, after bearing her embryosfor one hundred years, Diti gave birth to twin sons who were great demons.At this time, there were many fearful natural disturbances, such asearthquakes, and raging fires were seen burning everywhere. The inauspiciousplanets, such as Saturn and Mars, outshone the auspicious ones like Venusand Jupiter; and comets, meteors and thunderbolts appeared in the sky.Fierce winds made a displeasing hissing noise and uprooted great trees; anddue to the covering of clouds, all became shrouded in darkness. The oceanbecame highly agitated, and all of the lotuses that grew within the riversand lakes withered.Solar and lunar eclipses occurred repeatedly, and from the mountain cavescame sounds like the rattling of chariots. She-jackals vomited fire whilecrying out ominously, and asses ran here and there in herds, striking theearth with their hard hooves and braying loudly. Being frightened by thebraying asses, birds flew shrieking from their nests, and cows passed stooland urine due to fear. Indeed, the terrified cows yielded blood instead ofmilk, and the clouds rained puss instead of water. The deities in thetemples shed tears, and trees fell down even though there were no gusts ofwind.Upon seeing all of these evil omens, everyone except the four Kumaras becameseized by fear. Not knowing about the fall of Jaya and Vijaya and theirsubsequent birth as demons, everyone thought that the dissolution of theuniverse was at hand.Kashyapa named the first-born, who was formerly Jaya, Hiranyaksha and theone who was conceived first, who was formerly Vijaya, was namedHiranyakashipu. Soon after their birth, the demoniac twins exhibiteduncommon bodily features, and their steel-like frames became so tall thatthey seemed to touch the sky. Indeed, they blocked the view in alldirections, and as they walked, the earth shook with every step.After performing great austerities, Hiranyakashipu received benedictionsfrom Lord Brahma, and as a result, he became unafraid of death and veryproud. Being most powerful, Hiranyakashipu was able to bring the entirethree worlds under his control. His brother, Hiranyaksha, had also receivedBrahma's benediction of near-immortality, and so he became similarlypowerful and conceited.To satisfy his elder brother, Hiranyaksha took his club and began to travelall over the universe, with a fighting spirit. Because no one was able tokill him due to Brahma's benediction, even the demigods fearfully hid uponseeing Hiranyaksha, just as snakes hide out of fear of Garuda.When Hiranyaksha thus saw Indraloka vacant, he roared loudly, understandingthat the demigods had admitted defeat without even fighting. After returningfrom heaven, Hiranyaksha sportingly dove deep into the ocean, and uponseeing him, all of the great aquatics panicked and fled. Finally, aftermoving about in the ocean for many years, Hiranyaksha reached Vibhavari,Varuna's capital. Just to make fun of the lord of the waters, Hiranyakshafell at his feet and smilingly begged, "Give me battle, O supreme lord!"Upon seeing Hiranyaksha's arrogance, Varuna became enraged. Still, he curbedhis anger by means of intelligence and replied, "O dear one, I have given upfighting because I am too old. You are so skilled in battle that I can seeno one else but the most ancient person, Lord Vishnu, who can satisfy you.""O chief of the Daityas, I suggest that you approach Him, and thus becomerid of your pride by lying down dead upon the battlefield, surrounded bycarnivorous animals."Without paying any more heed to Varuna, Hiranyaksha departed. Then, when hehappened to meet the great sage Narada, the demon learned the whereabouts ofthe Supreme Lord. After once again entering the depths of the ocean,Hiranyaksha saw the all-powerful Supreme Lord in His boar incarnationbearing the earth upwards, while keeping her on the ends of His tusks. Uponseeing the Lord, the demon laughingly exclaimed, "An amphibious beast! Obest of the demigods, dressed in the form of a boar, the earth belongs tous, the inhabitants of the lower regions, and so I cannot allow You to takeit away from my presence. You rascal! Today I shall enliven my kinsmen bykilling You. When You fall down dead with Your skull smashed by my mace, thedemigods and rishis who offer You oblations in sacrifice will also cease tobe, just like a tree that can no longer live without roots."Although the Lord was certainly pained to hear such abusive language, Hetolerated it so that He could continue carrying the earth, which had becomevery frightened.As Lord Varaha rose out of the water, Hiranyaksha chased Him and roared,"Are You not ashamed of Yourself for running away after being challenged byan adversary? There is nothing that is reproachable for shameless creatureslike You!"Despite these harsh words, Lord Varaha calmly placed the earth upon thesurface of the water and then empowered her with the capacity to float. Atthis time, Lord Brahma and the other demigods praised the Lord for Hiswonderful act of lifting up the earth, and they showered flowers upon Him.Then, to express His terrible anger, the Lord replied, "Indeed, We arecreatures of the jungle and are searching for hunting dogs like you. One whois freed from the entanglement of death has no fear from the loose talk inwhich you are indulging, for you are bound up by the laws of death. Now,give up your foolish talk and attempt to kill Me. One may be very proud, buthe does not deserve a seat in an assembly if he fails to fulfill hispromise."Being thus challenged, Hiranyaksha became very angry and agitated, and hiswhole body began to tremble. While hissing indignantly, the demon sprang atthe Lord and tried to strike Him with his powerful mace. By moving aside,however, the Lord dodged the blow, and then with His own mace, He attemptedto smash Hiranyaksha's forehead. Being an expert fighter, the demon blockedthe blow with his own mace, however, and thereafter, a fierce encounter tookplace.As both combatants struck one another repeatedly with their strong clubs,the smell of blood that flowed from their wounds made them more and morefurious. Being very eager for victory, both the Lord and the demon exhibitedwonderful maneuvers, so that the battle looked like a contest between twopowerful bulls for the sake of a cow.Lord Brahma had been staying in the sky, along with all of the demigods andcelestial rishis, so that he could witness the terrible fight that was beingwaged for the sake of the earth. Becoming somewhat anxious, he addressedLord Varaha, "My dear Lord, Hiranyaksha has always oppressed the demigods,brahmanas, cows and other innocent creatures. There is no need for You toplay with this serpentine demon any longer, for he is very skilled inutilizing mystic powers, and he is most arrogant and wicked." "My dearinfallible Lord, please kill him before the demoniac hour of twilightarrives and thus increases his strength. The auspicious period calledabhijit began at noon and has almost passed. Therefore, please dispose ofYour formidable enemy quickly and thus establish peace within the world."In response, the Lord heartily laughed, while at the same time He acceptedBrahma's prayers with a glance that was laden with love. Then, asHiranyaksha fearlessly stood nearby, Lord Varaha suddenly sprang at himwhile aiming His mace at the demon's chin.Hiranyaksha blocked the blow with his own mace, however, and as a result,the Lord's club slipped from His hand. That blazing mace looked splendidwhile whirling around and around as it fell, and a great cry of alarm arosefrom the onlooking demigods and rishis. Still, even though he had anexcellent opportunity to strike his unarmed foe, Hiranyaksha respected theetiquette for single-combat by refraining from doing so. This kindled theLord's fury even more, however, and He invoked His Sudarshana chakra. Asthis wonderful disc revolved in the Lord's hand, while He was at closequarters with His enemy, the demigods and rishis exclaimed, "May victory beYours!" "Dispatch him at once!" "Don't play with the demon any longer!"Seeing Lord Varaha before him with the Sudarshana chakra in His hand,Hiranyaksha resentfully bit his lip and began to hiss like a serpent. Then,that great demon with fearful tusks suddenly sprang into the air whilewielding his club, and while doing so, he shouted, "You are slain!"As Hiranyaksha tried to strike Him, Lord Varaha playfully kicked the macefrom his hand with His left foot and then said, "Pick up your weapon, sinceyou are so eager to conquer Me."Being so challenged, Hiranyaksha picked up his mace and then hurled itimpetuously while roaring loudly. Without even flinching, however, LordVaraha easily caught the mace in His hand, and so the demon felt greatlyhumiliated. Being reluctant to take back his weapon when the Lord offered itto him, Hiranyaksha instead picked up a flaming trident and violently hurledit. As the trident blazed brightly while soaring through the sky, LordVaraha tore it to pieces by releasing His Sudarshana chakra. At this, thedemon became more enraged, and while letting out a loud roar, he rushed atLord Varaha impetuously. After striking the Lord on the chest with his hardfist, Hiranyaksha immediately disappeared.The Lord was not disturbed in the least by the blow, however, any more thanan elephant would feel hurt being struck by a flower garland. Thereafter,Hiranyaksha employed many conjuring tricks against the Lord, Who isYogeshvara, and all who saw the magical display thought that the dissolutionof the universe was at hand.Fierce winds began blowing and the dust that was raised created darkness inall directions. Torrents of stones fell from the sky, along with showers ofpuss, hair, blood, stool, urine and bones- accompanied by lightning andthunder. Mountains discharged various weapons, and naked demonesses withtheir hair hanging loose suddenly appeared, carrying tridents. Hosts ofYakshas and Rakshasas were heard uttering cruel and savage slogans as theymarched on foot or rode upon horses, elephants and chariots.By releasing His Sudarshana chakra, however, the Lord was able to dispel allof these illusions, and at that moment, a shudder of terror passed throughDiti's heart. While recalling the words of her husband, blood began to flowfrom her breasts.When Hiranyaksha saw that his magical creations had been dispelled, he onceagain made himself visible. In a fit of rage, he tried to crush the Lordwithin his arms as a last resort. But, to his great surprise, after tryingto grab the Lord, the demon found that He was still outside the circle ofhis arms. Then, as Hiranyaksha angrily struck Him with his fists, LordVaraha slapped him indifferently at the root of the ear, making him staggerbackwards. With his eyeballs bulging out of their sockets, his hairscattered, and his limbs broken, the great demon fell down dead, like anuprooted tree.Lord Brahma and the other demigods quickly arrived at that spot, to see theslain body of the demon close up. Still biting his lip, Hiranyaksha's bodilyluster had not faded, in spite of the absence of the soul, because theLord's lotus foot remained touching it. Lord Brahma admiringly said, "Oh,who could meet with such a blessed death? This fortunate demon was struck bythe lotus foot of the Lord, upon Whom yogis meditate in mystic trance in thehopes of gaining liberation from their unreal, material bodies."Thereafter, the demigods expressed their great appreciation for the Lord'shaving assumed His Varaha form and relieving them of their agonizing fear ofthe demon. After receiving the demigods' praises, the Lord returned to Hisown abode in the spiritual world, where there is always an uninterruptedfestival going on.Suta Gosvami concluded his narration by saying, "O brahmanas, anyone whohears, chants, or takes pleasure in the wonderful description of LordVaraha's killing of Hiranyaksha is at once relieved from the results of allkinds of sinful activities, including the killing of a brahmana."

Ghost Versus Hare Krsna! (Rome, Italy, March 2009)

This happened in Rome, Italy (March 2009). True story of a girl haunted by a ghost and how she was eventually relieved by the powerful sound vibrations of the Hoy Names of Krishna. Long read but worth reading!
Ghost Versus Hare Krsna!
As soon as we entered the apartment we understood we were in for some excitement. We'd heard different stories of how this young woman had been terrorized by a ghost for the last nine years, of how just the other week she had been hospitalized due to a flying chair striking her in the head, and how she was now at the limit of her sanity. We'd been told of knives flying across the room, pictures leaping from the walls and levitating coffee machines. Chairs and other objects independently shaking and smashing into walls was a daily occurrence in this home."Hey, but ghosts don't exist". Well for many people and cultures they do. Ancient Indian culture explains that a ghost is someone, a soul, who, upon dying is not awarded a new physical body, but painfully lingers around in their subtle body made of mind, intelligence and false ego. Such a situation may occur due to a sudden death or extreme negative acts such as suicide, and is a position of suffering as one has a mind full of desires yet no body to enact them. Ghosts often take advantage of weak minded persons or those under intoxication, entering their physical bodies and attempt to enjoy through this borrowed facility. Many people cannot believe what they have done whilst under intoxication or depression, acts they normally would refrain from.So, such was the situation we found in a quiet village just outside Rome. The woman and her boyfriend had tried everything they knew to free themselves from this terrifying situation. On one occasion they'd lit incense and chanted prayers in order to purify the atmosphere only to find the nearby wardrobe seemingly come to life and violently vibrate, splitting into two equal pieces. Upon moving the ruptured closet they had been horrified to find a swarming mass of bleach-white worms, quite different from the indigenous species, covering the wall and floor.The woman explained that nine years before she had been the object of attraction for one boy in her school. Repeatedly denying his requests for a relationships, she had found herself cursed by the boy's satanic mother, who was well practiced in the black arts of witchcraft. She was told that she would suffer for the rest of her life for this refusal. That had been nine years before, yet with some incident every evening it already felt like a lifetime. One may ask why they stayed in the same apartment, why not move? Well, theirs was a family home for several generations, and they still lived with her parents. Whilst her mother was very sympathetic to her daughter, the father had been always skeptical. Most of the happenings had been directed only to his daughter, until he also started to experience strange things.Out of desperation, they had once invited the local Catholic monks to come and assist. The monks explained that they could perform an exorcism on the woman but they couldn't guarantee the ghost would leave the property. "Anyhow, at least let's do something", they decided, although they were not prepared for what they would witness.At one point in the ceremony with the woman white like a sheet, trembling and covered with sweat, they beheld countless 3-inch nails shooting from her mouth, followed by a deep ghastly roar clearly not from such a simple lady. Whilst the couple were completely shocked, the monks explained that it was all quite normal in these situations and that the Vatican was full of such incidents.Seeing no alternative, the boyfriend called upon his parents for help. As they were Vaisnava practitioners, Hare Krishnas, for more than twenty years, they enthusiastically seized the opportunity and organized a troop of devout spiritual followers, we were seven in total. We meditated not only on trying to help the disturbed family but also on helping the ghost who was himself imprisoned in such an agonizing situation. Our strategy would be to perform loud, intense chanting of Krishna 's names which purify everything and are feared by fear personified. It is said that all negativity flies away when one chants the holy name of Krishna .This would be a chance to see how much we believed in what we had dedicated our lives to, were we really taking our spiritual life seriously or were we just pretenders.We were not sure what to expect but we were certain that we wanted to experience something extraordinary. Were we ready for what was to come?"Oh no, it's started....it's started!"The expression on the woman's face changed rapidly as did ours. What we had been expectantly awaiting was now immediately happening. As soon as we crossed the threshold of the apartment our hearts had taken on a new gear, sensing the thick heavy atmosphere. As if to ignite fear within us, two pictures of Christian saints had sprung from the hallway wall and crashed to the floor. Was this a message from our apparently hostile poltergeist suggesting our own immanent destiny? As each devotee individually deepened their soft recital of Krishna's names, we confidently ventured forward. Within a second a dining chair in the adjoining kitchen seemingly leaped up and smashed to the ground, sending the woman into a state of hysteria, as she frantically moved from room to room. We had been in the apartment for about ten seconds and had already experienced more than we could have imagined.Standing in the centre of the main room we all looked at one another for a moment and then spontaneously erupted into kirtan, the loud calling of the names of Krishna , themselves feared by fear personified. The leader of the chanting requested we all chant in unison with full voice instead of the usual call and response style we are familiar with. What with the accordion sounding, clay drum booming and countless hand symbols chiming, along with the resounding call of a conchshell being blown, overall the effect was quite tumultuous. Placing all of our breath into the chanting we searched to find the protection promised from these all powerful names of the Supreme. What the neighbours were thinking was far from our thoughts as we absorbed our minds in the pure transcendental vibration;Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare HareOne of our party had brought several sacred Narasingha stones called Salagram, and proceeded to bath them with pure water. These transcendental manifestations offer powerful protection as well as removal of inauspicious obstacles on our spiritual path. Spraying the bathing water all around we gradually moved from one room to another ardently chanting the recommended mantra for this age, Hare Krishna.Noticing that the heavy wooden dining chairs had each begun to vibrate, the woman lay them down under the table, all the while rambling through prayers in a frenzied manner. Her mother tried to console her but had little effect. Just then a wooden drawer from a cupboard in an adjacent room came flying across the ceiling and smashed against the wall just behind the woman, spraying its contents everywhere. We instinctively moved closer to the woman and desperately called out the names. Meanwhile, in the kitchen a devotee was offering the bathing water to drink for protection to the family, when a chair rose one metre from the floor and within a split second zoomed across the room colliding with the boyfriend. Seeing no other means to assist, the devotee practically threw the liquid down the boyfriends throat only then to see the coffee machine also begin its levitation.Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare HareWe had been hoping to experience something and this local spook was certainly entertaining us. Whilst the dining chairs were continuing to vibrate we moved through to the parents bedroom all the while intensifying our chanting of the all purifying names of Krishna .Vedic scripture explains that these names, the Maha-mantra, being completely spiritual, have the unlimited power of God by which the dirt of our hearts can be cleansed. Just as the sun can cleanse urine and waste from the earth by its scorching rays yet remain unpolluted, similarly the names of Krishna can never be contaminated, yet themselves clean even the reservoir of dirt in our consciousness.As we danced to the sweet sound, the woman along with her Mother and Father was standing in the doorway, nervously chanting to herself. She appeared distant, lost in her racing thoughts. At that moment, seemingly thrust up against the wall, she was pinned by her invisible assaulter. As if held by the throat she was dragged along the wall banging into her parents. Pandemonium arose amongst them as we chased after throwing our weapon of the Maha-mantra in an act of rescue. Again she was released, although severely shaken.We had now been chanting intensely for forty minutes and still the atmosphere seemed thick and heavy with darkness. Although violent events had occurred to the family members, nothing had touched any of us who were taking refuge in the sound incarnation of Krishna's names. We all felt completely protected and fearless. With such faith in Krishna names as well as the mood of compassion to help both the family and their uninvited phantom, we courageously danced and span around the home. Gradually we managed to involve the family in dancing and chanting with us which brought unlimited heights of bliss as the father of the family smiled for the first time. Then the atmosphere lightened and everyone felt the overwhelming joy of freedom whilst chanting Hare Krishna. It felt like a wonderful sunrise clearing away the darkness and fog of the evening, whilst simultaneously eradicating fear of thieves and dacoits. Carrying on for another fifteen minutes we all tasted the true happiness of the soul as he reawakens his relationship with his long lost friend, Krishna.With the mood considerably transformed we sat together on the floor and recited the twelfth chapter of the Bhagavad Gita in both Sanskrit and Italian, entitled Devotional service. We were refreshing ourselves with knowledge of our pure loving relationship with Krishna, whilst also praying that our poltergeist friend be now fully purified and able again to reawaken his own love.We cannot be know what has happened to this ghost, although we are sure that immense purification took place not just for him but also the family and ourselves who came as menial servants of the sweet, all-powerful names of Krishna. By chanting the Maha-mantra we can purify our existence and fully reawaken our dormant love for Krishna and consequently each other. That love is within us all, even ghosts, but due to absorption in material pursuits we forget our real treasure within.Since that day there have been no further disturbances in that home. That night was there first peaceful night in nine years. All glories to the unlimited glorious names of Krishna and all glories to the pure devotee of those names who has compassionately spread them throughout the entire world, Srila Prabhupada.- Written by Sanatana Goswami dasa, Italy

Chant Hare Krishna and Be Happy

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