That’s wonderful! I am not a biographer, but you can read a brief summation of his story here: http://prabhupada.krishna.com/his-biography
The latter part of his life was spent spreading Krishna consciousness to hungry Western minds and lives, and at his parting from his body he was surrounded by many disciples who may never have known in this era the bliss of knowledge of and service to Krishna without Srila Prabhupada’s excellent work and mission. Hare Krishna!
Hello! I do indeed worship both Krishna and Kali. I worship Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead (meaning, there are many incarnations of God, and many forms of divinity, but Krishna is the utmost), and my primary practice of this is through the daily chanting of the maha-mantra (you can read more about this here). I worship Kali, however, as a goddess particular to my pastimes within the material plane, and my practice includes nightly puja.
I worship Kali alongside Kalki for their martial connection; in Kalki Purana the two merge into one on the battlefield. I worship Kali and Krishna in tandem as siblings. In one aspect, Jagannath as Krishna and Subhadra as Shakti along with their brother Balaram are often worshipped together. Also, in Srimad Bhagavatam, when King Kamsa attempts to kill a child of the imprisoned Devaki who he fears will fulfill the prophecy that such a child will lead to his death (this child being Krishna), the infant manifests as Durga:
Having uprooted all relationships with his sister because of intense selfishness, Kaṁsa, who was sitting on his knees, grasped the newborn child by the legs and tried to dash her against the surface of a stone.
The child, Yoga-māyā-devī, the younger sister of Lord Viṣṇu, slipped upward from Kaṁsa’s hands and appeared in the sky as Devī, the goddess Durgā, with eight arms, completely equipped with weapons.
The goddess Durgā was decorated with flower garlands, smeared with sandalwood pulp and dressed with excellent garments and ornaments made of valuable jewels. Holding in her hands a bow, a trident, arrows, a shield, a sword, a conchshell, a disc and a club, and being praised by celestial beings like Apsarās, Kinnaras, Uragas, Siddhas, Cāraṇas and Gandharvas, who worshiped her with all kinds of presentations, she spoke as follows.
O Kaṁsa, you fool, what will be the use of killing me? The Supreme Personality of Godhead, who has been your enemy from the very beginning and who will certainly kill you, has already taken His birth somewhere else. Therefore, do not unnecessarily kill other children.
After speaking to Kaṁsa in this way, the goddess Durgā, Yoga-māyā, appeared in different places, such as Vārāṇasī, and became celebrated by different names, such as Annapūrṇā, Durgā, Kālī and Bhadrā.
Purport to the last verse:
The goddess Durgā is celebrated in Calcutta as Kālī, in Bombay as Mumbādevī, in Vārāṇasī as Annapūrṇā, in Cuttack as Bhadrakālī and in Ahmedabad as Bhadrā. Thus in different places she is known by different names. Her devotees are known as śāktas, or worshipers of the energy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, whereas worshipers of the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself are called Vaiṣṇavas. Vaiṣṇavas are destined to return home, back to Godhead, in the spiritual world, whereas the śāktas are destined to live within this material world to enjoy different types of material happiness. In the material world, the living entity must accept different types of bodies. Bhrāmayan sarva-bhūtāni yantrārūḍhāni māyayā (Bg. 18.61). According to the living entity’s desire, Yoga-māyā, or Māyā, the goddess Durgā, gives him a particular type of body, which is mentioned as yantra, a machine. But the living entities who are promoted to the spiritual world do not return to the prison house of a material body (tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti so ’rjuna). The words janma na eti indicate that these living entities remain in their original, spiritual bodies to enjoy the company of the Supreme Personality of Godhead in the transcendental abodes Vaikuṇṭha and Vṛndāvana.
If you have any further questions or anything you would like to discuss, please let me know! Hare Krishna!
It is a beautiful Radhastami! One of my favorite days of the year, a wonderful and auspicious day!
Krishna likes to stir up trouble in the days leading up to and around his birthday, and Radha smooths out his mischief as her own birthday approaches. I dream of sitting at her feet, and playfully tickling her toes, and sighing to myself that I might have such a friend— she who is eternally a child, a goddess, a queen, and a simple country girl: incomparable, lovely, and sweet. My heart sings the name— Radhe! Radhe!
Happy Lalita Sasti!
The night before my Harinam initiation, I sat in my room of the ashram, and meditated on Lalita sakhi. Now, each visit I have made to a temple has been fraught with a degree of personal tumult, but this comes as no surprise, as Krishna is a mischief maker, and often makes especial mischief for those who love him. I love to visit the temple, for it is an atmosphere saturated with spiritual potency, but there are often some differences in my nature from the other devotees that cause friction for me, which is disturbing because I simultaneously have great love for the devotees. So, the night before I was to be initiated into the sampradaya, I thought of the transcendental relationships which exist in Goloka-Vrindavan, and specifically of the differences between the right-hand gopis, who are sweet and submissive, and the left-hand gopis, who are haughty and contrary. Gopis of either nature love and serve Krishna, but often disagree amongst each other as to their methods of interacting with Krishna. I thought of Lalita, and her temper, and her tendency to scold Krishna, and how this may be seen as conflicting with a loving relationship, but is in fact her own entirely fitting way of playful adoration of her Shyam. And just think of the arguments which must occur between the gopis! The fits of jealousy, of course, but also the simple conflicts of nature, though they remain dear friends in their love of Krishna. And this helped my mind rest over any of my own problems with the devotees, and I went to sleep dreaming of Lalita sakhi. My head swam with bliss when I was granted the name Jayalalita the very next day, so that I might be reminded of her every day, so that my own name might sing her praises.
The Janmashtami sale is still running at the Krishna store, and almost everything is half price, so now is a great time for any of you interested in trying mahamantram chanting for yourself to buy some useful, affordable accessories. Here’s three excellent items that can bring a lifetime of spiritual enhancement:
Tulsi wood malas beginning at $1.47, variety of shapes and sizes
Bead bags for holding a mala beginning at $1.47, variety of colors and sizes
Counter beads to keep track of rounds chanted beginning at $0.62, variety of colors
Or you can purchase a ready-to-go kit of these items and more for $6.97.
If you have any questions on how to get started on chanting, please do not hesitate to ask me! Hare Krishna!
When a person becomes attracted by Kṛṣṇa and is in full Kṛṣṇa consciousness, he does not care for any worldly duties, even though very urgent. Kṛṣṇa consciousness is so powerful that it gives everyone relief from all material activities. Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī has written a very nice verse wherein one gopī advises another, “My dear friend, if you desire to enjoy the company of material society, friendship and love, then please do not go to see that smiling boy Govinda who is standing on the bank of the Yamunā and playing His flute, His lips brightened by the beams of the full moonlight.” Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī indirectly instructs that one who has been captivated by the beautiful smiling face of Kṛṣṇa has lost all attraction for material enjoyments. This is the test of advancement in Kṛṣṇa consciousness: a person advancing in Kṛṣṇa consciousness must lose interest in material activities and personal sense gratification.
One of the gopis, namely Srimati Radharani, was so much absorbed in thoughts of Krsna by dint of Her personal touch with Him that She actually began to talk with a bumblebee which was flying there and trying to touch Her lotus feet. While another gopi was talking with Krsna’s messenger Uddhava, Srimati Radharani took that bumblebee to be a messenger from Krsna and began to talk with it as follows:
"Bumblebee, you are accustomed to drinking honey from the flowers, and therefore you have preferred to be a messenger of Krsna, who is of the same nature as you. I have seen on your mustaches the red powder of kunkuma, which was smeared on the flower garland of Krsna while
He was pressing the breast of some other girl who is My competitor. You are feeling very proud by touching that flower, and your mustaches have become reddish. You have come here carrying a message for Me. You are anxious to touch My feet. But My dear bumblebee, let Me warn you—don’t touch Me! I don’t want any messages from your unreliable master. You are the unreliable servant of an unreliable master.”
She addressed the bumblebee: “Your master Krsna is exactly of your quality. You sit down on a flower, and after taking a little honey you immediately fly away and sit in another flower and taste. You’re just like your master Krsna. He gave us the chance of tasting the touch of His lips and then left altogether. I know also that the goddess of fortune, Laksmi, who is always in the midst of the lotus flower, is constantly engaged in Krsna’s service. But I do not know why she has become so captivated by Krsna. She is attached to Him, although she knows His actual character. As far as we are concerned, we are more intelligent than that goddess of fortune. We are not going to be cheated anymore by Krsna or His messengers.”
Srimati Radharani continued: “You foolish bumblebee, you are trying to satisfy Me and get a reward by singing the glories of Krsna, but it is a useless attempt. We are bereft of all our possessions. We are away from our homes and families. We know very well about Krsna. We know even more than you. So whatever you make up about Him will be old stories to us. Krsna is now in the city and is better known as the friend of Arjuna. He now has many new girl friends, and they are no doubt very happy in association with Him. Because the lusty burning sensation of their breasts has been satisfied by Krsna, they are now happy. If you go there and glorify Krsna, they may be pleased to reward you. You are just trying to pacify Me by your behavior as a flatterer, and therefore you have put your head under My feet. But I know the trick which you are trying to play. I know that you are a messenger coming from a great trickster, Krsna. Therefore please leave Me.”