A Monthly e-Magazine by
Radha Krishna Temple of Dallas
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सर्वकर्माणि मनसा संन्यस्यास्ते सुखं वशी |
नवद्वारे पुरे देही नैव कुर्वन्न कारयन् ||
embodied beings who are self-controlled and detached reside happily in
the city of nine gates, free from thinking they are the doers or the
cause of anything.
Bhagavad Gita, chapter 5, verse 13
|From the Editor's Desk|
a few weeks have passed by since the Radha Krishna Temple had organized
the Diwali dinner and cultural event on October 18, 2014, the memories
of that evening still linger in our hearts. The evening was magical! We
sat back and marveled at God's work, and wondered how He brought us all
together for a noble cause. With awe, we watched how His divine power
worked through the earnest devotees, enthusiastic volunteers, and
supportive friends and family.
often tend to forget that we act because He inspires and moves us.
Instead, we think that we are the ones accomplishing noble deeds and
doing seva. It is a precarious thought, conceived by our own ego. Even
staunch devotees sometimes stumble over their ego. In the Bhakti Ras
column of this issue, you will meet such a devotee, who was initially
swayed by Maya, but with God's grace, realized that ego drives a wedge
between his soul and the Supreme Soul. That satsang helps us to break
away from the destructive power of ego and engage in bhakti is
illustrated through the story of saints in the Inspirations for Living
This month, we bring words of wisdom on ego, so read on.....
Radha Krishna Temple Update
the blessing of Radha-Krishna, the construction of underground utility
infrastructure at the temple site continues as planned. A maze of
trenches crisscrossed the 3.2-acre site when the water, sewer and storm
lines were installed. The sounds of clanking metal and stone were like
music to the ears of devotees, indicating that we are a few steps closer
to the abode of God. The last lines to be installed were the sewer and
trenches for the sewer lines are 10 to 12 feet deep. At this depth, the
utility contractors encountered dense blue shale rock, which made this
phase of construction quite laborious. Yet, it appears as if Lord is
guiding the construction process of our very own temple because the
workers skillfully and patiently excavated by working around other
existing utility lines, requiring the delicacy of a surgeon in order to
not disturb other existing lines.
utility contractors continued their work with four large backhoe-loader
machines and several crew members. Once these lines were installed and
inspected, backfilling of the trenches was initiated. The next stage of
construction will involve installation of the lines for electrical
power, natural gas, and phone and data connections. This will be
followed by more grading and excavation work prior to pouring the
concrete for parking lots, fire lanes and the building foundation. How
fortunate are the construction workers to be involved in building a
temple for the Lord and this too is a form of bhakti!
Ego Clouds Bhakti
one of the five sheaths of Maya, is the biggest hurdle on the path of
God-realization. It clouds our mind, leads to arrogance, and tricks us
into believing that "I am doing everything." This is a dangerous trend
says Saint Kabir:
मैं मैं बड़ी बलाई है, सकै तो नकसो भाजी |
कब लग राखौ है सखी, रूई लपेटी आगी ||
Mai-Mai Badi Balai Hai, Sakai To Nikso Bhaji,
Kab Lag Rakhou He Sakhi, Rui Lapeti Aagi.
other words, "My friend, it is better to put aside the ego instead of
exclaiming 'I, I' all the time. Such proclamation is as dangerous as
cotton balls surrounded by fire".
Sometimes, even an earnest devotee becomes an easy prey to his ego. King Toṇdamān,
who built the initial structure of the Lord Venkateswara temple in
Tirumala-Tirupati, was a great devotee. He was such an ardent devotee
that he used to have conversations with the Lord Himself. Folks in his
kingdom would say, "O king, you are so blessed! You
built a temple for the Lord, you offer your prayers and serve the Lord
every day, and you are in His blissful company all the time. You are a
great devotee of Vishnu, there is none like you." Hearing this day in and day out, the king was swollen with self-pride; he became a victim of his self-admiration. One day, while conversing with the Lord, Toṇdamān asked, "O Lord, I don't think there
is a devotee like me on this entire planet, is there?" The Lord smiled
at his ignorant question, and decided to teach him a lesson, as He
always protects His devotees from Maya.
|Lord Venkateswara and Toṇdamān |
After a few days passed by, Toṇdamān went
to the temple one morning for the Lord's darshan, sat down with his closed eyes and started praying. When he opened his
eyes, he saw the Lord appear in front of him, with the golden lotus
flowers that he offered at His feet. Along with the sparkling,
beautiful, golden lotus flowers, he a saw a withered, muddy, pink lotus
flower at the Lord's feet. The lotus lying at the Lord's feet surprised
the king Toṇdamān. So he asked the Lord from where that lotus emanated.
a gentle smile, the Lord answered, "My child, near the foothills, there
lives a poor villager in a hut. He loves and adores me. He carved my
image in a little piece of wood, made a niche in the mud wall of his
hut, placed it in the niche, and worships it every day. He envisages me
in this little, crudely carved wooden form. You know that I appear where
ever my devotees see me - either in animate or inanimate objects.
That's my law of love. You heard of how I manifested from a pillar for
Prahlada, did you not?
This poor villager neither knows any mantras nor performs any yagnas. He just chants my names and sings simple bhajans.
He does everything in my consciousness. Whether he is working, walking,
or eating, he always meditates on me. Every morning, he wakes up before
the Sun rises, walks two miles to get to a pond before anyone else,
gathers the lotus flowers in the pond, offers them to my wooden form in
his hut, all the while chanting my names. The withered, muddy, pink
lotus that you see here at my feet is the one that he offered me today.
I am bound by his love and devotion."
Hearing these words of the Lord, king Toṇdamān
fell at His feet. With teary eyes and choked voice, he said, "O Lord,
please forgive me. What do I know? I am such an ignorant fool to assume
that I am the best devotee. You are so compassionate; you saved my soul
and extinguished my ego. I will go to the village and meet that great
devotee of yours right now."
we need to completely strip off our ego if we wish to make our soul an
abode for God. Like the German scholar Paul Deussen said, "Egotism is
like a cloud that keeps God hidden from our sight. If egotism vanishes
by the mercy of the true Guru, then God is seen in His full Glory."
Saint Kabir has put this very nicely:
जब मैं था तब हरि नहिं, अब हरि है मैं नाहीं |
प्रेम गली अति सांकरि, या में द्वै न समाहीं ||
Jab mein tha tab Hari nahin, jab Hari hai mein nahin,
Prem gali ati saakri, ya me dwai a samaiye.
He says, "The prem gali (the path of divine love) is so narrow that there is room for only one - either God or 'I'. As long as it is all about I, Me and Mine, God will not make an appearance. The
day we annihilate our ego, the darkness within us will vanish and
we will experience devotion for God, as He enters the prem gali."
To quote Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj, "Through
His beauty, Grace, sweetness, merciful nature and loving ways, the
sweet Lord has the power to attract even the coldest heart, and lighten
even the heaviest of minds. He showers Divine love on all, without
giving any thought to whether or not the recipient is worthy of the
Inspirations for Living
Importance of Engaging in Bhakti through Satsang
are not only known by the company we keep, but our association also
molds our destiny. When we choose to be in the midst of those who have
discarded their pride, we experience God's grace along with them.
Time and again, the saints, who are God's chosen representatives,
have proved that God always graces those who have developed noble
thoughts and associated with pious souls.
the great devotees of MahaVishnu and the saints of Tamil Nadu, sang the
glory of the Lord and kept the divine nectar flowing continuously. The
first three - Poigai Azhwar, Pei Azhwar, and Boothath Azhwar -
were contemporaries that showed us how to overcome the ego and engage in
while doing penance in the forest on a stormy day, Poigai Azhwar
decided to take refuge in a cave nearby. The cave was rather small
and dark, but there was enough room for one person to lie down
comfortably. He thanked his beloved Lord and lay down, as he was
tired from the day's work, and continued chanting the Lord's names.
As coincidence would have it, Pei Azhwar, who was meditating in
the same forest, also came to the cave to take shelter from the storm.
Since there was only enough room for two to sit down comfortably,
they both sat down and continued chanting His names. Soon, Boothath
Azhwar, who was also meditating in the vicinity, came to the same cave
to seek shelter. Because there was only enough room for three
people to stand, they all stood up chanting, drawing inspiration from
one another. Their devotion intensified and their enthusiasm in
calling out to Sri Hari knew no bounds!
of a sudden, the cave felt very crowded. They felt a lot of
pushes and tugs and could not stand their ground; however, the dark cave
filled with the fragrance of Tulsi and chandan. When they opened
their eyes, to their amazement, they saw none other than the Lord
Himself, along with MahaLakshmi, Garuda, and surrounded by all the great
saints from the divine abode, trying to squeeze into the limited space
in the cave. The Lord, who is an ocean of kindness, bound by the loving
calls of His bhaktas, left His divine abode and rushed to the tiny cave
to be with them.
you ever think that you are alone in the time of stress or hardship,
please draw inspiration from the knowledge that the Lord Himself has
established the importance of Sadhana with sincere devotees in a
Satsang. Participation in Satsangs helps to abolish the ego and make
room for the Lord.
By Champa Sriram
Bal-Mukund: Playground for Vedic Wisdom
Self-Assessment Requires Courage to Face the Truth
little boy whose name was Nirmal, walked into a store to buy something
for his class project. He could not find what he was looking for and
asked a customer representative for help. While he was waiting for her
to bring the specific item he was looking for, Nirmal pulled his cell
phone out of his pocket and pressed a number on his speed dial list. The
manager of the store was walking toward Nirmal to ask if he had been
helped, but stood aside because the boy had started speaking with
someone on the phone. So, the manager waited and listened to their
Nirmal said, "Mrs. Singh, can you give me the job of cutting your lawn?" Mrs. Singh said loud
enough to be heard by others, "I already have someone cutting my lawn
and do not need anyone at this time." Nirmal persisted and
said that he would cut the lawn for half the price than what she paid
someone else. Mrs. Singh reiterated that she was very happy with the
person who was presently cutting her lawn but Nirmal did not take "no"
for an answer. He told her that he would even sweep the floor and the
stairs of her house for free if she hired him to cut her lawn. With a
little irritation, Mrs. Singh told Nirmal to stop insisting or else she
would track his number and tell his parents. Nirmal smiled and turned
off the phone.
store manager, who was waiting and listening to this exchange, walked
over to Nirmal and said that he liked his positive attitude and good
communication skills and would be happy to offer a job in the store.
Nirmal said very politely, "No thank you." The manager was taken by
surprise and asked Nirmal why he was so persistent with the lady if he
did not want a job. Nirmal replied, "I was just taking stock of my
performance at the job I already do. I am the one who cuts Mrs. Singh's
is called self-assessment because we all want to do the very best we
can with the ability that God has given to us. That said,
self-assessment requires courage to face the truth. Courage to face the
truth can sometime be difficult because it requires us to let go of our
ego (or the thought that I know everything or I know more about
something than anyone else).
We would like to hear from our Bal-Mukund friends or their parents about ways in which our
Bal-Mukunds have shown courage to face the truth or not been afraid to
risk failure for the good of someone else. Please contact us at [email protected]
We love to hear from you!
Community Event Updates
the benefit of the community, Radha Krishna temple provides
abundant opportunities to volunteer and participate in various
satsangs truly propel one in the ocean of bhakti through a combination
of prayer, singing bhajans/kirtans, viewing a video lecture, and
followed by arati, and Prasad.
For local satsang information visit:
www.radhakrishnatemple.net or [email protected].
Free Community Yoga Classes
is much more than a physical exercise - it is a unique individual
journey to inner peace that uplifts body, mind and soul and can be
deeply transformative. All mobility and experience levels are
welcome and accommodated.
will include the 5 Yogic Sciences of yogasan (yoga poses); pranayam or
breathing exercises; meditation; subtle body relaxation; and science of
proper diet. Learning of some useful mudras will also be
incorporated into sessions.
Watters Montessori Academy, 292 Bossy Boots Dr., Allen, TX 75013
Saturdays, 9:30 to 10:45 AM CST [starting November 22nd]
[email protected] 412-407-4782
For details & FREE registration visit: www.radhakrishnatemple.net
Note: Wear comfortable loose fitted clothing and bring your own yoga mat (blanket/pillow).
The Bhagavad Gita Study Group
who meditate on Gita will derive fresh joy and derive new meanings from
it everyday," said Mahatma Gandhi once. Let us come together to
comprehend this priceless gift of God, implement the knowledge in our
daily lives, and uplift ourselves.
2nd and 4th Wednesdays, 8:30 PM to 9:30 PM CST (starting December 10th)
Commentary written by Swami Mukundananda, discussion in English
Vishnu Sahashra Naam
names are no different from Himself. Every name in Vishnu Sahsranam
(thousand names of Vishnu) is a drop of nectar. Whether we chant it or
hear it, it gives an immense sense of peace and indescribable solace.
Little Hands Big Hearts
Radha Krishna Temple Supports Homeless Children in DFW Area
Through Little Hands Big Hearts,
we wish to inspire you to take to heart the plight of needy children in
our very own DFW community. Beginning November 20th,
2014 - the day designated by a United Nations Declaration to raise
awareness for children's well-being around the world - Radha Krishna
Temple will be collecting essential items for the approximately 48,000
children with nothing more than the clothes on their back. A
small act of kindness from each of us, coming together in support of
these disadvantaged children in the DFW area, can make a world of
difference in helping these little hands grab hold of a better future.
Radha Krishna Temple and JKYog volunteers welcome you to be a part of Little Hands Big Hearts and
share the warmth of our big hearts, to kindle hope for a brighter
future in the lives of homeless children. Collection of essential items
will run through January 20, 2015. All items collected will be given
to Captain Hope's Kids, which assists 46 area organizations in serving
homeless children throughout 5 counties of the DFW area.
Do something positive for a homeless child today!
We are counting on your
big hearts for support!
'Dollar A Day' - Pledge Continuous Support!
Donate a Dollar a Day towards the building and upkeep of the Radha Krishna temple! By donating just $1 everyday,
you'll help this noble cause!
How many of us have the opportunity and are fortunate enough to build a house for God?
Set up monthly contributions through credit card/debit card by calling: 860-605-3685 or by visiting temple website at Radha Krishna Temple of Dallas (click).
Wellness for Life
Thanksgiving Recipe- Cranberry Pickle
how time flies, in the wink of an eye many of us will be planning for
Thanksgiving. One popular item at Thanksgiving is cranberries.
says that Native Americans used cranberries for a variety of purposes,
including medicinal and cultural (e.g., to make dyes). Many
nutritionists have labeled cranberries as a "super food" given their
high antioxidant and low caloric content. Cranberries also help to
boost the body's immune function and are rich in Vitamins C, E and K,
fiber, and many minerals including manganese. According to the USDA
nutritional standard, ½ cup of cranberries provides 55 grams of protein
but very low amount of fat.
Cranberries are beneficial for preventing gum disease and reducing
the risk of cardiovascular disease, urinary tract infections, and
slowing the growth of tumors in the liver, prostate, breast and colon.
are typically used for making sauce, relish, homemade trail mix with
other kinds of nuts, supplemented in stuffing or breakfast muffins,
added to desserts and even for beverages and smoothies. An item that
might be appealing to those who have a spicy palate is cranberry
pickles. Here is an easy recipe for Indian-style fresh cranberry pickle
for immediate use.
- 2 cups fresh cranberries
- ¼ teaspoon red chili powder, adjust to taste
- 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds ground (rai)
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds crushed (saunf)
- 1/8 teaspoon asafetida
- 2 tablespoon mustard oil
- 2-2 ½ teaspoon salt
- Thoroughly wash the cranberries and wipe them dry on a paper towel.
- Slit the cranberries into two halves and move to a wide bowl.
- In the same bowl, mix the chili powder, ground mustard seeds, crushed fennel and salt.
- In a kadai, heat the oil, add asafetida and pour the oil over the cranberry mix, and mix it well.
into a serving bowl and eat fresh with any of your Thanksgiving
recipes. However, it does taste better if it has been marinated for a
Readers, please provide us with your feedback and requests for the type of features you would like to read at [email protected]. We really want to hear from you.
Copyright © Jagadguru Kripaluji Yog 2014. All rights reserved.