“First-Time Visitors to this Website” are encouraged to read the contents of this About-Us-Page, that starts with this Introduction. Also, you have the option of listening to this Introduction and the 8 Home Page Segments, in the Audio Play List, which you can find on the Home Page.
Otherwise, you may proceed, to the Saragrahi.org “Website Contents” Page. The button is in “Green” colored font, has a spinning arrow rotating very fast clock-wise. It is located on all the Headers on each Web Page. It will “glow-in-green” brightly, when you hover the mouse pointer above it. The contents of this “Website Contents” Page are briefly described in About-Us “Segment 3”.
I know that for some of you, especially you “young” ladies and gentlemen; this Home-Page maybe be somewhat lengthy; but it is definitely “worth-it”.
Nevertheless, as the saying goes, “you gotta-do, what you gotta-do”. In other words, I will do whatever I have to do, even if there is some nature of difficulty for some; or I run the danger of discouraging you to investigate, consider, and contemplate the contents of this website. Moreover, it does have the element of being “essential”.
Srimad-bhagavatam 1.5.16 Purport:
“The expert devotees also can discover novel ways and means to convert the nondevotees in terms of particular “time and circumstance.
Devotional service is ‘dynamic activity’, and the expert devotees can find out competent means to inject it into the dull brains of the materialistic population. Such transcendental activities of the devotees for the service of the Lord can bring a new order of life to the foolish society of materialistic men. Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and His subsequent followers exhibited “expert dexterity”, in this connection. By following the same method, one can bring the materialistic men of this age of quarrel into order for peaceful life and transcendental realization.”
Such discrimination is the “sine qua non” of progressive spiritual life; so much so, that a saint of the highest spiritual attainment, is honored in India as a paramahamsa, which means, “supreme swan”. This site is devoted to the encouragement of the Saragrahi mentality; primarily in relation to the philosophy, theology, and sadhana of Gaudiya Vaishnavism as presented by the acharyas Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur, Srila Jiva Goswami, Srila Krishna-dasa Kaviraja, Srila Vrindavana Dasa Thakur, and the Six Goswamis of Vrindavana.
However, we also recognize that spiritual wisdom and truth, are also to be found in non-Vedic sources of knowledge, such as the Jewish, Christian, Islamic traditions; and in addition, the Western philosophical tradition, and modern psychology, among others. Integration of ideas from such sources, with the Vedic knowledge, and the teachings of the acharyas, are of great benefit to devotees living in modern society, particularly in the preaching field, and such diversity, will frequently be incorporated into these pages.
We hope to stimulate, and help develop our readers’ capacity for critical thinking, about “Spiritual Truth”; recognizing that such thinking is the means to attain a deep understanding of the essence of the teachings of shastra, sadhu, and guru.
The writings on this site have a central purpose–to foster independent thinking in the reader, within the framework of the philosophy of Krishna consciousness. Srila Prabhupada, who brought the teachings of Krishna consciousness to the West, wrote to a leading disciple,
“The Krishna consciousness movement is for teaching men to be independently thoughtful.”
However, virtually all institutions foster dependency in their members, and, sadly, the Krishna consciousness movement fell into the same hole. Today, dependency is so ingrained, it is believed to be the way, the tradition. Consequently, there is no deliberate effort to train members in independent thinking.
Indeed, such thinking has become “the enemy.” Any hint of it is to be uprooted.
Another thing Srila Prabhupada said was,
“Your love for me will be shown by how you cooperate.”
This he uttered from his deathbed; and it has been assumed, wrongly, to mean that cooperating blindly with the institutional authority figures is the only way to prove one’s appreciation and love for Srila Prabhupada, whose message of devotional service to Krishna gave meaning and purpose to our lives, meaning beyond the typical materialistic goals of get educated, make money, raise a family, grow old and die. Instead, he taught us the means to conquer repeated birth and death.
It is further assumed, again wrongly, that cooperation is only possible in a mode of dependency rather than inter-dependency, which is believed threatens the very foundations of institutional stability. Thus, true cooperating spirit means to blindly follow, although it must be admitted that sometimes the blind following is cleverly disguised as following from one’s own volition. Many think they think, when they only think with what Erich Fromm called “the voice of swallowed authority.” It’s a far cry from independent thinking, but one in that condition is not aware that one’s thoughts are “dictated” and one is in fact a blind follower. One has the illusion of being an independent thinker and an inter-dependent actor.
Actually, as the writings on this site show, the essence of cooperating is that one cooperates with those plans, ideas, and understandings that are inherently Krishna conscious. To cooperate by any other standard is to help kill the spirit and intent of the institution, even if it remains intact with buildings and other external symptoms, because Krishna consciousness is really about people, people achieving their personal power, and then using it voluntarily, joyfully, in the service of God. An institution can facilitate that, or it can come between the Deity and the devotee.
The books, assorted papers, and essays on this site are primarily concerned with achieving the capacity for independent thinking within the framework of Krishna conscious thought. While they were written with the reader already familiar with the Bhagavad-gita and other Vedic literature in mind, the completely uninitiated reader may also read them with relish.
The philosophical foundations on which the conclusions herein, are based, are the most thoroughgoing understanding of the Absolute Truth as presented in the ancient Sanskrit works known as the Vedas. Some 500 years ago, Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu and His associates revitalized those teachings by bringing out the esoteric conclusions contained therein, and explaining them with logic and reason, giving them an internal consistency that makes them peerless in the realm of religious, and philosophical thought. Those works are available elsewhere. Here we focus on the practical application of those ideas to everyday life.
Questions and/or discussion of the works are most welcome. This is facilitated via the Comment Section at the end of every Web-Page, or you can pass them on to me, Upendranath Dasa at firstname.lastname@example.org
This Website is intended to Facilitate:
A person with no prior experience in Sadhana-bhakti— the beginning phase of devotional service, consisting of regulated practice, by following the rules and regulations of devotional service.
The 3 stages, (Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced), of a Kanistha-adhikari—a neophyte devotee in the lowest stage of Vaisnava life.
The 3 stages, (Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced), of a Madhyama-adhikari—devotee who worships the Lord with firm faith, makes friends with His devotees, preaches to the innocent, and avoids atheists. The Advanced level is also known as a Madhyama-bhagavata.
 “sine qua non”: an essential condition”: a thing that is absolutely necessary; indispensable requiremen