Monday, April 14, 2014

Meditations and back to my "post"!

Dandavat pranams!  I'm taking a hike through Bhagavatam - thought maybe you'd like to join me...we're in 4th Canto and Dhruva Maharaja is going to fight with Yaksas (Srimad Bhagavatam 4:10).  The chapter's called "Dhruva Maharaja's Fight With the Yaksas".

Okay - first let's look up what a Yaksa is...
wiki :
Yaksa (ヤクシャ, Yakusha), or Yaksha, is a recurring demon in the series. History Edit. Yaksha (Sanskrit: यक्ष, yakṣa, ञक्ख, yakkha in Pāli) is the name of a broad class of nature-spirits, usually benevolent, who are caretakers of the natural treasures hidden in the earth and tree roots.n Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist texts, the yakṣa has a dual personality. On the one hand, a yakṣa may be an inoffensive nature-fairy, associated with woods and mountains; but there is also a darker version of the yakṣa, which is a kind of ghost (bhuta) that haunts the wilderness and waylays and devours travelers, similar to the rakṣasas.'s one supporting a Greek scroll, (must be one of their jobs).'s one in Bangkok, (a bit scary)!

Back to the chapter...
Dhruva is a bit grown up after his famous austerities that allowed him darshan with Vishnu on Garuda. His father, Uttanapada leaves home to find self-realization in the forest. Dhruva is installed as king, gets married, has kids and then his younger brother is killed by a powerful yaksa, while out hunting. The younger brother's mother also dies and Dhruva is furious at the yaksas.  He goes to the main yaksa city called Alakapuri in a valley of the Himalayas. There is some information that these particular yaksas are followers of Lord Siva.
Dhruva is faced in battle with 130,000 armor plated, gold studded, multi-weaponed, fierce yaksas.  Demi-god people in the sky watch on and lament thinking Dhruva will be killed. But Dhruva is really, really angry and yaksa heads and body parts soon cover the battlefield.  The yaksas run away but sling some super natural, magical illusions at him - blood and body parts falling from the clouds, snakes breathing thunderbolts and vomiting fire, herds of mad elephants and lions and tigers (all this is falling from the sky).  ((Dhruva gets a bit freaked out))!

Thankfully some sages and rishis are praying close by and they remind Dhruva that by simply remembering the Lord he will be saved (yea, rishis)! and they encourage him with this beautiful verse:
munaya ucuh
auttanapada bhagavatams tava sarngadhanva
devah ksinotv abhidhaya nisamya caddha
loko 'njasa tarati dustaram anga mrtyum

All the sages said:  Dear Dhruva, O son of King Uttanapada may the Supreme Personality of Godhead known as Sarngadhanva, who relieves the distresses of His devotees, kill all your threatening enemies.  The Holy name of the Lord is as powerful as the Lord Himself.  Therefore, simply by chanting and hearing the holy name of the Lord, many men can be fully protected from fierce death without difficulty.  Thus a devotee is saved.

Next time you meet the yaksas of your life - chant, chant chant! 
                                                                                    ys, g.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011




Srila Gurudeva told us that all of our acaryas have come to this place to pray for success in their preaching missions -Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, Parama Gurudeva and our Srila Prabhupada!

...and here in New Braja its a very long walk to our "Rama Ghata".

(this is the back valley, going up the fire road, up and over the mountain that New Braja leans against.)

                                                 it's a long and winding trail (4 miles)...
made easier by Venu Gopal's harikatha! (he told most of 6th Canto Bhagavatam!)

The walk was worth it!

Big Banyon (Buck eye) Tree!

one last straggler!

rest and Hari Katha!

alien spaceships?

Long walk home...

back at the ranch!
Their Lordships!

New Brijvasis!


Tuesday, October 18, 2011


By the mercy of Guru and Vaisnavas we have successfully completed one week of New Braja Mandala Parikrama.

We began by performing sankalpa on the Dry Creek branch of the Yamuna!

All devotees were enlivened.

Parama Gurudeva was sweetly honored with Hari Katha, Kirtana and Maha prasadam.

DAY 2 - we found Kaliya Daha

DAY 3 - we wandered in New Braja Seva kunja (across the street)!

DAY 4 - Nityananda prabhu took us on a long hike to Baelvana!

DAY 5 - We read Srila Gurudeva's beautiful Hari Katha at New Braja Nidhuvana (one of Nanda Gopal's kunjas)!

DAY 6 - We had our Sunday Feast and Venu Gopala prabhu gave a very nice class on the glories of Srila Narottama Das Thakura

DAY 6 - we went on a long hike through the 12 forests of New Braja!

TODAY is Dhira-samira, Vamsi-vata, Gopesvara Mahadeva and Sri Govindadeva Temple so we will have a BUS day to Srila Gurudeva's morning walk place!


Monday, September 5, 2011


As the scorching summer sun relents to autumnal winds and the gardens appear to be at their height of fruition, the most important day in our yearly calendar occurs, Sri Radhastami!

 Her very name means to worship.  She is devotion personified!

Famous for Her compassion, Radhastami is an early celebration so that the devotees won't have to fast but here in New Braj it seems the earlier we start the program the longer we get to hear and chant together!

Radhastami is Sri Krsna's favorite day so He will grant any wish of His followers!

     So what do we want?



 The highest aspiration in our Gaudiya line, the line of Rupa Goswami and Mahaprabhu is to desire Radha dasyam:


Govinda-anandini - She who gives pleasure to Lord Govinda
Govinda-mohini - She who mystifies Lord Govinda
Govinda-sarvasva - the all-in-all of Lord Govinda
Shiromani Sarva-kanta - the crown jewel of all the Lord's consorts
Krishnamayi - the one who sees Lord Krishna both within and without
Radhika - Her worship of the Lord consists of fulfilling His desires
Aradhana - The root name of Radharani, meaning one who excels in worshiping the Lord
Sarva-lakshmi - The original source of all the goddesses of fortune
Sarva-kanti - all beauty and luster rest in Her body & all the desires of Lord Krishna rest in Her.
Madan-Mohan-Mohini - the enchanter of the enchanter of Cupid. Lord Krishna is said to be the enchanter of, and more beautiful than Cupid, the master enchanter. But Shree Radhe is the enchanter of Lord Krishna, Madan-Mohan-Mohini.
Vrshabanu-nandini - daughter of Maharaja Vrishabhanu
Vrndavaneshvari - Queen of Vrndavana
Lalita-Sakhi - friend of the gopi (cowherd girl) Shree Lalita
Gokula-Taruni - She whom all young girls of Gokula (Vrndavana) worship
Damodara Rati - She who dresses herself to please Lord Damodara 

...the very hills have become golden.

the humble tar-uni weed!

Thursday, September 1, 2011


...months have gone by and i've had my head in a cloud!
soooooooo many cool things have happened here in New Braj - moment to moment but,
                          i just haven't written them down.
o well,
you see i blame it on the festival. And what a festival it was! Too, too wonderful. Too, too much separation. Too, too much mercy.
I felt like my heart was in a giant cake mixer at the highest speed setting! beat or whip or max mix!

 a n d  a  w o n d e r f u l  c a k e  c a m e  o u t !!

and the summer's been so cool and mild! Never before have the jasmine flowers in Gurudeva's garden bloomed until September! They ususally only bloom for the week that Gurudeva's here!

And we had this wonderful  "Ladies' Retreat" !
It was so fun!
We made many new friends!
Candrika dasi organized it all like a yogini camp counselor,

amazing kirtans with Marti Walker and our own Rasika!
                                  so many wonderful ladies! Diane, Denise, Madhumati, Lola, Carol, Christina, Kim, Babula, Candrika, Chai,  Manju, Marti...special guest star: Radha Vinodini didi!

Now they've all become New Braj family members and surely the dhama will call them back again and again.

This land called New Braj is made of sparkly mercy particles.

                                                                                                Anyone who visits here becomes attracted, but anyone who stays here for one or four nights...
New Braj becomes

signing off.

thank you Uddhava prabhu for gently getting on my case! what are friends for?

Saturday, May 28, 2011


i heard coyotes close to Gurudeva's house last night...
and in the morning these paw prints were all around my cabin!
i know these are wild dog prints:

and these are bear...

and these are deer, raccoon and maybe a fox!


                                                   but what are these tracks?

 a large bird?


...must be,

oh! here's its claws!

 It's a C.A.T.!!!

NITYANANDA! and his pet cat!

he and his crew are moving  mountains...

                                                         and preparing the samadhi site!

...right behind Gurudeva's garden!

                 it's really going to happen!



                                             12 MORE DAYS!