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Archive for April 29th, 2007

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Lord Nrsimha’s Pastime

There was once a great demon who was overwhelmed with rage: his
brother Hiranyaksa had just been killed by the incarnation of Vishnu
known as Lord Varaha. Thus he became very determined to become the
emperor of the entire universe. In order to increase his power, he
performed very powerful austerities. This penance was so severe that
it disturbed the demigods. In fact, the demigods requested Lord Brahma
to stop him. The chief of the demigods, Lord Brahma, therefore
descended to pacify him by granting him a wish.

“Please grant that I not be killed by any crated living being,”
commanded Hiranyakasipu, “that I not die inside or outside any
residence, during the daytime or night, nor on the ground or in the
sky; that I not be killed by any being created by you, nor by any
weapon, nor by any human being or animal indeed that I not meet death
from any entity, either living or non-living; that I have no
competitor; that I have sole lordship over all living entities and
presiding deities, and that I acquire all mystic powers.”

After Brahma had granted him all these requests, Hiranyakasipu very
swiftly conquered all the planets in the universe, took up residence
in the lavish palace of King Indra, and forced the demigods to bow
down to his feet. He even stole the sacrificial oblations meant for
the demigods. Intoxicated physically by wine and mentally by power,
Hiranyakasipu ruled the universe very severely.

During this time his queen, Kayadhu, returned to the palace of her
husband and bore him a son, Prahlada. He was a reservoir of all
transcendental qualities because he was an pure devotee of Lord Visnu.
Determined to understand the Absolute Truth, he had full control over
his senses and mind He was kind to all living creatures and the best
friend of everyone. Toward respectable persons he behaved just like a
menial servant, to the poor he was like a father, and to his equals he
was always like a sympathetic brother. Always very humble, he
considered his teachers and spiritual masters to be as good as the
Lord Himself. Indeed, he was completely free of and pride that might
have arisen from his good education, riches, beauty, and aristocratic
birth.

Hiranyakasipu wanted to raise his son to be a powerful demon, but
Prahlada only wanted to learn about devotional service to Lord Visnu.
After Prahlada attended school for some time, Hiranyakasipu took him
on his lap and affectionately inquired, “My dear son, please tell me
about your favorite subject in school.”

Fearlessly, Prahlada said, “Hearing (sravanam) and chanting (kirtanam)
about the holy name, form, qualities, paraphernalia, and pastimes of
the Supreme Lord; remembering (smaranam) them; serving the lotus feet
of the Lord (pada-sevanam) ; offering the Lord respectful worship with
sixteen types of paraphernalia (arcanam); offering prayers to the Lord
(vandanam); becoming His servant (dasyam); considering the Lord one’s
best friend (sakhyam); and surrendering to Him (atma-nivedanam, in
other words, serving Him with body, mind and words); these nine
processes are known as pure devotional service, and I consider anyone
who has dedicated his life to service of Lord Visnu through these nine
methods to be the most learned person to be the most learned person,
for he has acquired complete knowledge.”

Blinded by anger, Hiranyakasipu threw Prahlada from his lap onto the
ground. “Servants! Take him away and kill him at once!” he screamed.
However, Prahlada just sat silently and meditated on the Personality
of Godhead, and the demons’ weapons had no effect on him. Seeing this
Hiranyakasipu became fearful and contrived various ways to kill his
son. His servants threw Prahlada beneath an elephant’s feet; they cast
him into the midst of huge, fearful snakes; they cursed him with
destructive spells; they hurled him from a hilltop; they gave him
poison; they starved him; they exposed him to severe cold, winds, fire
and water; they threw heavy stones to crush him. Hiranyakasipu even
sent his sister Holika to burn him but instead she herself was burned.
But throughout these trials Prahlada was simply absorbed in thoughts
of Lord Visnu, and thus he remained unharmed. Hiranyakasipu became
very anxious about what to do next.

“You say there is a being superior to me,” said Hiranyakasipu, “but
where is He? If He is present everywhere, then why is He not present
in this pillaryou see before you? Do you think He is in this pillar?”

“Yes,” Prahlada answered, “He is there.”

Hiranyakasipu’ s rage flared more and more. “Because you are speaking
so much nonsense, I shall now sever your head from your body. Now let
me see your most worshipable God come to protect you. I want to see
it.” Cursing him again and again, Hiranyakasipu took up his sword, got
up from his royal throne, and with great anger struck his fist against
the column.

Then from within the very pillar that he had singled out came a
wonderful half-man, half-lion form never before seen. The Lord’s form
was extremely fearsome because of His angry eyes, which resembled
molten gold; His shining mane, which expanded the dimensions of His
fearful face; His deadly teeth; and His razor-sharp tongue. Lord
Nrsimha then proceeded to battle with the wasp-like Hiranyakasipu.

Finally at twilight, Lord Nrsimha captured Hiranyakasipu and placed
him in His lap on the doorway of the assembly hall. As He began
ripping the demon to pieces with His many, many hands, Lord Nrsimha’s
mouth and mane became sprinkled with drops of blood, and His fierce
eyes, full of anger, were impossible to look at. Licking the edge of
His mouth with His tongue, the Supreme Lord decorated Himself with a
garland of intestines taken from Hiranyakasipu’ s abdomen. Lord Nrsimha
uprooted Hiranyakasipu’ s heart and finally threw him aside and
destroyed an army of Hiranyakasipu’ s faithful followers.

By His transcendental cleverness, Lord Nrsimhadeva was able to kill
Hiranyakasipu without contradicting any of Lord Brahma’s benedictions.
The execution took place neither inside nor outside, but in the
doorway; neither on land nor in sky, but on the Lord’s lap; neither
during the day nor during the night, but at twilight; neither by man,
beast, or demigod nor by any created being, but by the Personality of
Godhead; and not by any weapon, but by the Lord’s own lotus hand,
relieving the whole universe of Hiranyakasipu’ s demonic activities.

Having been protected by the Lord, Prahlada Maharaja offered many
prayers in a voice that faltered with love:

“My dear Lord Nrsimhadeva, please, therefore, allow Your angry feature
to diminish, now that my evil father Hiranyakasipu has been killed . .
. [The saintly persons] will always remember Your auspicious is
fearsome incarnation, for it frees them from fear. In this way, my
Lord, You appear in various incarnations as a human being, an animal,
a great saint, a demigod, a fish or a tortoise, thus maintaining the
entire creation in different planetary systems and killing the
demoniac principles.”

Adapted from Srimad Bhagavatam (7) translated by His Divine Grace A.C.
Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
.

Credit to my godbrother Rangasara Prabhu for sharing this wonderful past time, thank you brother!

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A very intellectual lecture about reality check issues in our movement. After listening to this lectures a lot of realization bombarded myself and I was thankful.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

For more lectures visit ISKCON of Alachua archives.

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Tofu Adobo

Adobo is a very popular method of cooking in the Philippines, perhaps, it’s the most popular and most distinguished among all Filipino cuisines, unfortunately, it’s commonly associated with meat. It has simple ingredients and very flexible procedures, so I come up with my own version of vegetarian adobo. You can either cook it right away, or have it marinated and cook the next day. Either way, the result is the same, yummy!

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Tofu Adobo

Ingredients:

sliced tofu (sliced as you like but just thick enough in size; I cut mine in triangular shape)

1/2 cup lemon juice

6 pieces of slice lemon

1/2 cup of soy sauce or bragg aminos

dried bay leaves

1 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp black pepper

sliced ginger (about 1/4 cup)

1 tbsp of oil

1 tsp of sesame oil

Procedure:

1. Drained and sliced the tofu and deep fry (you can pan fry also), set aside.

2. Slice the lemon and ginger and set aside.

3. In a bowl combine the soy sauce, lemon juice, bay leaves, salt, pepper and sugar stir well, this will be our adobo sauce.

4. In a hot pot, put the oil and sauté’ the sliced lemon, ginger and about 3 pieces of bay leaves.

5. Stir in the fried tofu and let it simmer for 2 minutes.

6. Add the adobo sauce,mix well and make sure that the tofu are fully coated with the sauce, simmer for 2 -3 minutes then add the sesame oil.

7. Offer and serve with love 🙂 Hare Krishna!

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