Hare Krishna Temple of Austin



1003 Adventure Ln, Cedar Park, TX 78613 admin@harekrishnatempleofaustin.com


kūṭa-stho vijitendriyaḥ
yukta ity ucyate yogī

Translation: A person is said to be established in self-realization and is called a yogī [or mystic] when he is fully satisfied by virtue of acquired knowledge and realization. Such a person is situated in transcendence and is self-controlled. He sees everything – whether it be pebbles, stones or gold – as the same.

This verse is so deep and complete. The whole philosophy of Krishna consciousness is contained in this verse. The summary of this verse is Krishna is saying one who has transcendental knowledge (not material science), but spiritual knowledge and one who realizes that knowledge then that person is really peaceful in his mind  because he is satisfied and contended in his heart and does not anchor for anything more. Then the same person is called the real yogi. Yogi is just not a person who goes in to the forest and meditates. You can be in this world and have material things like house, family, car everything but you have to focus on spiritual life and still be yogi. Then this person is called as self-realized which means he knows who he is and his relation with the Supreme Lord.

Here Knowledge means it is actually spiritual knowledge. Spiritual knowledge has 3 foundational principles. The Scriptures or Vedas say everything is built on top of that. These principles are as follows:-

1) I am not this body but a pure spirit soul or Atma.

2) I am part and parcel of the Supreme Lord Krishna.

3) My constitutional position is to love and serve the Supreme Lord.

This can be explained by an example suppose if you are driving your car in a freeway. It is your own car, your gas, your skill to drive but you cannot do whatever you want. If you speed you will get ticket. Why is this? It is because you are a part of a big system, “The Government”. It is the Government which created the freeway for you, the rules, traffic lights etc. So when you are a part of a bigger system then you have to follow the rules and regulations. Similarly you are part and parcel of the Supreme Lord so you have to follow the rules and regulations set by him. If you do not follow the rules you will commit sin and then reactions come or bad karma. So Krishna says very clearly you should have Jnan and have realizations of it. Then the mind is satisfied. Then this chapter itself is called Dhyana Yoga or meditative process. So mind plays an important role. Before this verse Krishna was talking about how to control the mind.  Now he saying that with knowledge and realization you can completely conquer the mind. The knowledge gives you the deeper sense of purpose, or deeper sense of perspective. Purpose gives perceptive. If you know the purpose of your life you will know the perceptive of life. If you don’t know the purpose you will be lost. So knowledge gives purpose and purpose gives perspective when put in to action.

There is a beautiful verse in Srimad Bhagavatam 2.10.6 

“Muktir hitvānyathā rūpaṁ
sva-rūpeṇa vyavasthitiḥ

“Muktir” means that you give up all your material designations like I am Doctor, Engineer, Indian, American etc. and understand that you are the “Atma” because all these designations are connected to the body only. Mukti does not mean you die and go somewhere which you don’t know. Even in this life you give up all these bodily designations and then attain “sva-rūpeṇa vyavasthitiḥ”. Here “Sva-rupa “means our original position that is we all are servants of Krishna and we are meant to love and serve the Supreme Lord and attain liberation. 

Liberation is not after death. You can still be in this world and still be a liberated person. What does it practically mean to us? Practically means mind is not under the control of the senses it is the other way often time the sense control you. You see something and you want to get it. Example buying a latest model of I-phone when you already have one. Our senses dictates the mind. The real liberation means when you are not under the control of the dictations of yourself but you are under the dictations of the higher self. When you control the mind the Super soul is reached already. Mind not under the control of senses means mind is under the control of Super soul. 

Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 18: Conclusion-The perfection of Renunciation, Text 61

isvarah sarva-bhutanam
hrd-dese ‘rjuna tisthati
bhramayan sarva-bhutani
yantrarudhani mayaya

Translation: The Supreme Lord is situated in everyone’s heart, O Arjuna, and is directing the wanderings of all living entities, who are seated as on a machine, made of the material energy.

Here Krishna says that he is seated in everyone’s heart as Paramatma and telling us what is good and what is wrong. But we don’t hear him because there is static interference from mind and sense controlling you, disturbing you telling you that It knows better than Super soul and forcing us not to listen to the  voice of Super soul. When someone says that they are not under the control and got liberation means they are not under the control of senses but hear the Super soul clearly and make right actions in their life always guided by Guru, Sadhu and Shastra.

So how does this manifestation happen in our life? When we take right actions guided by Guru, Sadhu and Shasta our life style changes, we become a good person. The internal enemies or the lower qualities like the envy, arrogance, lust, greed all goes down and we start to manifest all the higher qualities. This is the stage when one who is in the path of liberation hears the super soul. You can only experience it. Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 7, Knowledge of the Absolute, Text 8

Raso ’ham apsu kaunteya
prabhāsmi śaśi-sūryayoḥ
praṇavaḥ sarva-vedeṣu
śabdaḥ khe pauruṣaṁ nṛṣu

Translation: O son of Kuntī, I am the taste of water, the light of the sun and the moon, the syllable oṁ in the Vedic mantras; I am the sound in ether and ability in man.

Here Krishna say that “I am the taste of water”. No one can tell the taste of water but experience it when it quenches your thirst. For example when you see some delicious sweet for example a laddu our mouth waters. The water in your mouth enables the saliva secreted in your mouth to taste that delicious items. So if have to taste anything in life you need water. The water gives the primary taste to taste everything in your life that is what Krishna meant by I am the taste of the water. You can only experience the taste of water. Like that way when we put in to practice what we learn, we can experience within ourselves the good qualities, the lower nature goes down and higher nature comes up. This is exactly what happens when you practice spiritual life.

We are getting knowledge by regularly attending Bhagavad Gita class and reading scriptures. But we have to put into practice, otherwise it will be like accumulating knowledge just for information. But when we put in to practice by association of likeminded people and by the guidance of an expert teacher our life will change for good. That is why spiritual masters play an important role in our life, they will tell us how to apply things in our life. Without guru nothing comes. 

Narottama Dasa Thakura recites Guru Vandana 

Guru-mukha-padma-vākya, cittete koribo aikya,
ār nā koriho mane āśādas

Here he says wish my mind is controlled or pacified by the words emanating from the lotus mouth of my guru. So it is clearly understood by association of devotees and by following the instructions of spiritual teachers and when we apply it our life we will get the realizations. It is very pretty simple.

Talking about the knowledge means Vedic knowledge which is coming from the Vedic Scriptures and it always have a purpose. If there is no purpose people won’t learn. Knowledge is learnt to solve a particular problem. For example take any branch of knowledge like medical knowledge: Here the purpose is to solve medical problems like to cure diseases. Financial knowledge: Purpose is to solve money problems. Same way the purpose of spiritual knowledge is to solve the real problem of life which is “Janma-mrtyu-jara-vyadhi-dukha-dosanudarsanam”.

There are three criteria nobody wants it but everybody gets it, and no one can escapes from it. 

1) Janma or Birth: No one want to take birth but can’t escape from it. When we are faced with severe problems in life we will think why we have to suffer like this, why did we take birth in first place? But it is not under our control.

2) Mrtyu or Death:  No one wants to die but can’t escape from it.

3) Jara or Old age: No one wants to get old and want to be always young but still we have to go through this process and old age is painful and no one can escape from it. 

4) Vyadhi or Diseases: No one wants it still we all fall sick and suffer.

So these are the real problems we all have. So spiritual knowledge is meant to solve all the problem which we all face. But we waste time by listening to various intellectual, humorous lectures gather all information but this knowledge does not really solve our problem, it is like sense gratification. Only hearing, but not applying in your life and there will be no transformation in your life. Then it is mundane knowledge. Krishna gives equal importance to Vijnana. Unless you apply there is no realization. And if there is no realization there is no happiness in life. It is pretty connected. Spiritual knowledge has to give you pure devotion to the supreme lord.  When we do various devotional service, it is like putting in to practice and we will surely see the results. 

There are beautiful examples in Srimad Bhagavatam about Narada muni and Dhruva Maharaj.

The 1st Canto of Bhagavatam Vyasa Deva wrote this big body of knowledge or Vedas and he was very dissatisfied in his heart, because there was no realization for him. At time he prayed to his Guru Maharaj Narada muni who came and asked him to write about Krishna Stu Bhagavan Swayam. Write about the ultimate purpose of human life in a scripture. Then Vyasa Deva wrote Bhagavatam and he got completely satisfied with it. During their conversation Narada muni was telling Vyasa Deva about his past life that he was son of a maid servant, a 5 year old boy, does not know who the father is. Mother loved him a lot and she used to work in an ashram where devotes come and stays. One time it was winter season Chaturmasya usually devotees’ wont travel they will stay in an Ashrama or pilgrimage and practice spirituality. Young Narada was assisting his mother in serving the devotees who discussed and practice Krishna Katha and also he was  very attentive, humble, submissive, and was doing all the service to them. And the devotees were very pleased with him and they gave him the knowledge about the ultimate purpose of life and the way to reach there. Narada was hearing all this knowledge and practiced it in the association of Bhakti Vedanta’s, and after the winter season was over they went away. Narada was left with his mother. Narada was thinking that supreme lord is the ultimate goal of life and decided to apply this knowledge by doing devotional service. He was slowly contemplating and implementing and his poor mother was taking care of him and one day by the power of the time or by the will of the providence his mother was milking the cow in the evening time a poisonous cobra came and bit her and she passed away. And Narada was searching for his mom and mom was lying dead. His only shelter was gone. He was remorseful but he remembered the devotees, that the real shelter is from the Supreme Lord, and all other shelter in this material world we get is temporary. They come and go in our life. If you rely on the temporary shelters we will be shaken up when it goes away from us. So instead of getting worried and very concerned he decided to focus on the supreme lord and follow the process by which he can achieve the Supreme Lord. So he went to the forest and meditated on the Supreme Lord and by following all the process of bhakti.

 And now practically what we can learn from Narada muni’s life is he was alone, no father, no mother. But was he lonely. Absolutely not. “Lonely” means it is a mental thing. “Alone” means it is a physical thing. You may not have the loved ones all the time with you. Kids grow up, get educated and will move out of the house or to a new city. Sometimes our loved one get old and leave us. It is a physical separation. But the loneliness is the mental thing. That is why the transcendental knowledge gives us the strength, it removes the loneliness from our mind. It give us the shelter, and you feel you are not left alone the Lord is with you all the time in your mind. Narada was missing his mother physically but mentally he was associated with the Supreme Lord. So he was never lonely. He realized that real shelter is the Supreme Lord. And he will never let us down. So he went to forest mediated on Lord and attained perfection. He is the perfect example of this verse. He used the Jnana and Vijnana to attain the ultimate realizations of Supreme Lord.

The 4th Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam tells the story of Dhruva Maharaj which is another perfect example for this verse. Dhruva mean determination.  Young Dhruva want to sit on his father Uttanapada’s lap but his step mother Suruci did not allows him to sit telling his mother Suniti is an inferior women and also said to young Dhruva to go and first worship the Supreme Personality of God head by penances and austerities, and then in his next life take birth in her womb and then it may be possible to sit on his father’s lap. It literally broke his heart and he went to his mom Suniti who said that his dad is attracted to Suruci only and at that moment Dhruva decided he wanted a bigger kingdom bigger than his father and Grandfather Svayambhuva Manu who is considered as the father of the Universe and his father is Brahma who had created multiple universes. So his mother said only Vishnu can give him bigger kingdom and he is in the forest and so Dhruva got up in the night and went to the forest. He happened to meet Narada muni on the way. It is said that if you really want to know the purpose of your life only Vaishnava gurus can give you. So Narada muni said to Dhruva that honor and dishonor, heat and cold, respect and disrespect comes and goes in life. So don’t take it seriously and just go back. Dhruva said these teachings are applicable only to Brahmana’s not for Kastriyas. Narada was surprised by the determination of Dhruva. Dhruva asked Narada muni how to attain the Supreme lord and see Vishnu face to face. So Narada muni asked him to chant Om Namo Bhagvate Vasudevaya. Narada also gave Ashtanga yoga because meditation was one of the recommended process for Satya yuga and Narada is a Vaishnava Guru so he said follow Ashtanga yoga and mixed bhakti with it, and said to Dhruva you chant the mantra with meditation and do the Ashtanga process like Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi and do deity worship. And asked him to go Maduvan forest in Vrindavan on the banks of Yamuna, make the deity of Vishnu the paramatma within your heart the 4 handed form and every day worship the deities and continue doing Ashtanga yoga and you will see the Supreme Lord face to face. Young Dhruva took it to his heart and he strictly followed the instruction of his Guru. Here he got the knowledge and he applied the knowledge. The austerities he did was as follows. He made the clay deity of Lord Narayana, the 4 handed form, and he used to offer water from Yamuna, worshipped him and meditated on this mantra Om Namo Bhagvate Vasudevaya and meditated on the Super soul. 

 First month Dhruva was eating once in 3 days only berries and fruits. 2nd month dried leaves and grass once in 6 days.3rd month water once in 9 day from Yamuna River. He used to offer water to the deities and drink charanamrit. 4th month he used to breathe once in 12 days. 5 Th month he decided to take one breath and not to breathe again for the rest of his life and went to the Samadhi state. Because of his pure yogic power and the practice of Ashtanga yoga combined with Bhakti he suffocated the entire universe. All the Devathas went to Lord Brahma who said he cannot do anything and asked them to go to Vishnu. So all the Devathas went to Vishnu. Vishnu said it is his Dhruva who is doing medication on him with powerful determination. Faith in Guru or the spiritual master and in his words will give you the strength. If spiritual teacher is happy then everything will be happy in material and spiritual life. On the 6th month Dhruva was able to see Vishnu in his heart with full glory and felt very satisfied. Then Vishnu removed that vision from his heart and Dhruva got disturbed from his pure stage of Samadhi and came back to his senses. The moment he opened his eyes the same paramatma manifested in front of him. With full glory. Vishnu was so pleased with him, and asked Dhruva what he want by touching his head with his conch shell. Vishnu asked him does he want to have a bigger kingdom to which Dhruva said no. He want to behold Vishnu form rest of his life and do service to Lord.

What we can understand from this story of Dhruva is even if we have material desires like money, want to get rid of all problems in life still we can go to Krishna actually. Krishna is like a sun and our desires are like snow. Snow will melt by the presence of Sun. Like that way Krishna will purify us from our desires. Here Krishna gave Dhruva a bigger planet than anybody called Dhruva Lokha.  The Lord said to Dhruva, you live in this word and rule this world after your father for 36,000 years. In Satya Yuga people live for 100,000 years and after the end of your life you go to Dhruva Lohka and live there for eternity. That is the benediction that Vishnu gave. Ksirodakasayi Vishnu lives in pole star. Pole star is not the part of devastation. When annihilation happens, poles star won’t get destroyed. It is a Pravachaka Vaikunta. It is the spiritual world within this material world.

The great knowledge which Dhruva Maharaj got from the spiritual teacher Narada he applied it sincerely whole heartedly, if we have doubt we don’t get the accepted results. He whole heartedly applied it and achieve the highest perfection.

How can we apply in our life? Realization means the experience, the reality spoken in scripture is accepted by your mind to meet the reality. Scriptures say you are not this body but spirit soul, so when our mind accepts it completely it is a reality then it becomes realizations or experience. In modern phycology there is a term called rationality and emotionality. If we do one to one mapping with scriptures rationality means intelligence, emotionality means mind. Until intelligence and mind are in sync you cannot focused on anything in life. Sometimes if someone presents to you a concept logically with reasons and everything what happens make sense to you. But you cannot put in to practice because mind secretly disbelieves it. For example it is like scriptures say that you are not this body but spirit soul but our mind tricks us making us believe that we are this body that is why we are not able to put things in to practice.

 In our life if mind and intelligence are not in sync, intelligence give in. Mind is very powerful. Until mind accepts it no way the realizations comes. There is no way you can put in to practice. That is why Krishna is telling any religions process you take they focus on mind only. Control the mind, conquer the mind, and cultivate the mind because mind plays an important role in the condition stage. Sometimes it said” it rings the bell “which means we all have our own world view. Your own opinion of everything. You have your own framework. If someone tell you something which does not fit that framework or world view mind won’t accept it. The good preachers or teachers they present the spiritual reality in a way you can relate to it. You can connect that with your world view. Then mind starts to feel that may be, it does not accept it but won’t reject it. Krishna says this world is full of sufferings, miseries and it is temporary. If intellectually present you will get it. But mind says you can still be happy in this world. So you won’t accept the reality of it. Some people think that only they are the ones who is suffering but the rest of the world is happy. But if we give the opportunity for few suffering people by putting them in a room and ask them to talk to each other about their suffering and in the end ask them if they are willing to take each other suffering then we can see that no one will be ready. Because people think their sufferings are big but when they come across other’s suffering they realize that their life situation is better than others. It is like the ladder of abstraction in the executive coaching. It is to priories things based on the highest level of abstraction depending on organization, like how deep you are on high level, low level and specifics. Based on that the abstraction changes

 When you reading a spiritual subject matter understand what was the original context it was spoken, what is the principle spoken in this verse regardless of any context, then think  what it means to us based on our life setting, That is actively engaging with the knowledge. That is how the spiritual knowledge come to the forefront of our consciousness. The more you engage with it what happens is you apply it and it becomes a normal activity. So when situation come to our life we apply it that is how we train our mind.  In Phycology it is said that If anyone give some good advice there is conscious resistant, it is rejected as if it is not for us because we think we know better but if you see by examples of real people and their experiences in life our mind will look at their life by analyzing their living by the way they follow the idealistic principles and the association with people whom they are associating with then the mind gets faith and confidence and that is the ladder of abstraction at the highest level.

To be continued…………..

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