Archive for November, 2010

Japa Thoughts: The Key to Chanting

November 10th, 2010

November 7, 2010
Sri Govardhana

Japa Thought VI:

A breakthrough in chanting! I can think of no other reason then I went around the sacred Govardhana Hill and kicked up some dust. It’s the dust, the sacred dust. I’m thoroughly convinced of it. There is no other reason.

Japa Thought VII:

Realizations come only when there is sufficient effort and attention in chanting. A blank page is a wake up call that one’s chanting is inattentive. It’s a good reason to write after japa.

Japa Thought VIII:

The Key to Chanting:

The key to chanting is feeling mercy.

But how to feel mercy?

One way: Remember and pray to those that you appreciate and who have touched your heart, past or present.

Remembering kindness helps one to feel kindness. Kindness softens the heart and puts one in a humble mood.

Only in a humble mood can one naturally chant with feeling. And feeling is the key to taste in devotional activity, especially chanting.

Japa Thoughts: Mercy and Works in Chanting

November 2nd, 2010

October 28, 2010
Sri Govardhana

Japa Thought IV:

I try to hear the mantra
But my efforts fail
I add heart to my chant
And beg for mercy
The mantra becomes clear
Beyond my own strength
With effort I chanted
By mercy I succeed

Japa Thought V:

Mercy and Works in Chanting:

Hearing the mantra is not simply the result of our effort. It is also the reciprocation of Krishna to our effort.

Effort is needed, but only to make us realize that effort alone is not sufficient. We need Krishna's mercy and must beg for it.

Relationship between effort and mercy: Without sincere, disciplined effort how will we give our heart to the name? And without giving our heart to the name, how will we attract Krishna's mercy?

Sacinandana Swami sometimes tells a story about the advice an old sadhu gave him: The sadhu chided him, “Are you chanting the mantra, or is the mantra chanting you?” “Chanting the mantra” means hearing the mantra by the power of one's concentration alone. “The mantra chanting you” means the mantra appearing by its own will to one who calls out with dependence and humility.

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