22 Aug 2014

The Hanuman Chalisa Bhasya of Sri Swami Vishwananda

During the celebrations of Hanuman Jayanti 2014, at Shree Peetha Nilaya, Sri Swami Vishwananda imparted timeless wisdom on the Hanuman Chalisa, a hymn written in praise of Lord Hanuman, one of the greatest Bhaktas of the Lord. Below is an excerpt commentary by Swamiji from the Hanuman Chalisa Bhasya book, which features the full commentary. The recording is also available in the Hanuman Chalisa Bhasya (double) CD.


 Verses 25-26
Nāsai Roga Hare Saba Pīrā
Japata Nirantara Hanumata Vīrā
Sankata Ten Hanumāna Churāvai
Mana Krama Bachana Dhyāna Jo Lāvai

  
“All disease and pain is eradicated, brave Hanuman, by constant repetition of Your Name. You release from affliction those who remember You in thought, word and deed.”

“Thoughts, words and deeds. Thoughts are from the mind, words are from the body and deeds are from the soul. So, whoever remembers Him and chants His Name, even diseases and pain can’t come near.
It doesn’t mean that one will not have diseases. It doesn’t mean that one will not have pain. It doesn’t mean that one will not have affliction. They will come, but how the person will take it, will be different. If the person sits with the pain and is constantly chanting the glory of pain, the pain will become very powerful! If the person is chanting the glory of affliction or sorrow, they will never be free. Because they are feeding the mind with the same affliction. They are feeding the mind with the same pain, so the pain becomes double, from double it becomes 4 times bigger, from 4 times it becomes 6 times bigger. It will become bigger and bigger and bigger! How will the person have peace? They will not! That’s why it is said here, by chanting Your Name, by concentrating on the mantra, forgetting everything else, forgetting the pain in the outside, forgetting about the illness, forgetting about the disease or the problem. If the mind is purely focusing on the Lord’s Name or Anjaneya’s Name, there will be no space for the other things to take place or to germinate. But, if you are entertaining it, then you’ll be afflicted with pain, sorrow and diseases.
When the mind is focused on the Lord, they will not come near. Even if it comes, you will not feed it. As it comes, it will do its course of purifying and it will disappear. You will not attach yourself to it. You’ll not hang on it, you’ll not hold its leg saying, ‘Leave me, leave me, leave me!’ You cannot hold onto your problem and ask for it to leave. You cannot hold onto your pain and disease and say, ‘Let go of it! Let go of it!’ You have to see that you are hanging on it. In your mind you are hanging on it and you should hang onto the Feet of the Lord! You should hang onto the Name of the Lord! Like that, the body, mind and spirit are free! Like that the thoughts, the words and the deeds are purified!”

20 Aug 2014

Gayatri Yagna with Sri Swami Vishwananda




This last month at Shree Peetha Nilaya has been one of the most auspicious times of them all. With the eighteen day Bhagavad Gita Course, and Krishna Janmashtami, what better way to finish these celebrations than with a yagna dedicated to the Divine Mother as Gayatri Devi. From offering one’s love to the Divine, as well as surrendering the negative qualities covering the heart, the Gayatri yagna has been a truly uplifting event.


   The Gayatri yagna started at 10:00 a.m. with the chanting of the Guru Stotram. It is important to remember that the Guru is worshipped first, because with the grace of the Guru, the Divine becomes automatically accessible. There were five kunds being offered to and each was headed by a Swami or Swamini. While doing the invocation ceremonies simultaneous with Sri Swami Vishwananda, it was like watching an orchestra and their conductor. Everybody who attended made rounds of rotating between each kund, and all were able to offer at the largest kund located in front of the altar, with Sri Swami Vishwananda. The altar was decorated wonderfully. Gayatri Devi Herself was adorned with sparkling gems and vibrant hued clothes. The space around Her was also coloured with delightful flowers, such as the seasonal sunflower. Once the yagna had been going on for quite some time, the smoke started to fill the tent and different panels were opened up to help ventilate the air, but yet, even though there were clouds of smoke rolling out of the tent, the quality of the smoke purified the area and was perfectly breathable. Through out the course of the yagna, the Gayatri mantra had a life of Her own. From chanting the Maha-mantra in the traditional Vedic rhythm, and to singing in a more modern approach, never did it feel like the repetitions were becoming repetitious; the mantra stayed alive and fresh through out the whole ceremony.
 

   “There are three hundred million deities in Hinduism. And all the three hundred million deities have a bij mantra. The bij mantra is a power, Shakti, in a mantra. It’s a sacred element in the mantra that gives the energy to it. And in the Gayatri Mantra, there is a combination of all three hundred million bij mantras of all the deities.” - Sri Swami Vishwananda (Excerpt from Just Love 3).
As the gathering of devotees chanted the Gayatri Mantra in unison, it should be known that this, ‘sacrifice,’ has benefited all the people, whether present or absent. The power of the Gayatri mantra is not known to the mind of man, but only through the heart can She be experienced and known. As people leave the ashram and return home, they are carrying a great blessing that has been graced upon them from, Bhagavan Krishna, Gayatri Devi, Mahavatar Babaji, and Premavatar Sri Swami Vishwananda. As if all taking the same light from the Gayatri yagna, each ventures back into the world and blesses all those who come into contact with them, whether directly, or indirectly. Such is the nature of our own Self, we are this Light, we are this Love, and only through the longing of attaining the Divine, will our heart burn with this eternal flame. Rare is the time that one has this opportunity to forever be engulfed in ecstatic love, never ceasing, always alive and new. Open your heart to God, open your heart to Love before it’s too late, because one day, the body in which the light has been lit, will turn to ash. Jai Gurudev.
-Karan





19 Aug 2014

Krishna Janmashtami with Sri Swami Vishwananda

During the celebrations of Krishna Janmashtami at Shree Peetha Nilaya, Sri Swami Vishwananda said, “After listening to the Gita for 18 days, you have realised that Krishna is the Supreme Himself, who has manifested Himself. There was not another time when the Lord manifested Himself in His full Glory, with all His qualities. Even if many avatars had come before, yet still there was not a full manifestation of the Lord like Bhagavan Krishna, who came dressing normal like everybody, acting like a normal human being. The Bala Leela, which He has done during His childhood in Vrindavan, is the most sweetest of all. When one drinks this nectar of the Bala Leela one realises that each person has a certain connection to Him, each person's heart longs for Him. And the same way that your heart longs for Him, He also longs for you. In these 18 days of the Gita Course you have realised that He wants to have a personal relationship with each one. In the last verses of the last chapter of the Gita He explained this bhav. When Love awakens inside it's different for everybody: some will love God as a servant; some will love God as a lover; some will love God as a friend; some will love God as a parent; some will love God as the Ultimate. So each person has a certain connection with Him.
He has reminded continuously that one must love. This is the true dharma of a human being. It's not about playing the game, ‘I am superior than anybody else.’ No. Only when one has humility in the heart, then one will know what is true Love. Here, Bhagavan Krishna incarnates in your heart, doing His Leela in your life. So this is what you have to keep reminding yourself.”

Before midnight, the celebrations started with Guru puja and Paduka Abishekam followed by two plays offered at the Feet of Sri Swami Vishwananda: one was performed by a group of children and was about the manifestation of Lord Sri Krishna; the other was performed by a group of devotees  inspired by the Mahabharata.
 Swamiji said, “It was lovely to see the children and also this play of Draupadi Vastraharan (disrobing). Even if it appears very aggressive, as it truly happened, but the most beautiful moment is when she let go of her sari. Then she said, ‘Lord I surrender to you.’ This is the same as when you lift your hands chanting, ‘Nitai Gaura Premananda, Haribol! I am surrendering to You. I take shelter at Your Feet. I can't do anything by myself. I can't count on my own effort but I count on Your effort.’
For a bhakta who is surrendered to Him, the merciful Lord, – you don't need to worry about anything. Each step of your life, He looks after. The moment you let go – Saranagati, that's the word which means, to take refuge at the Lotus Feet of the Lord – He takes care of you. He looks after you. He brings you where you have to be.
When you study the Gita, you are uplifted. It awakens bhakti inside of your heart and only when bhakti is awaken inside, then faith is awaken. Arjuna asked Krishna, ‘How do I change the mind?’ Bhagavan said, ‘Well, you must have faith.’ Faith is inborn inside your heart itself. You have it, everybody has it! And counting on that faith, you'll be able to trust the Lord. You'll be able to love Him. You'll be able to do your sadhana. You'll be able to love as He Loves. So this is what Bhagavan explained in this scene that was performed right now. What do you want to become: like the Kauravas or the Pandavas? If your tamasic guna arises, pride and arrogance arise and you'll doom yourself. But if you are humble, if you are pure in your heart, if you are full of love, then you are as a bhakta, who is surrendered to the Lord. So, you trust in the Lord, you trust in His guidance, your trust that He is with you at all times. So due to that dwelling in the sattvic qualities one attains the spiritual body, one attains God-Realisation. And this is the promise that Bhagavan Himself has given by saying, ‘Whoever surrenders to Me I give Myself to them’. You just do one step, He will run to you! And there are so many bhaktas who have surrendered to the Lord knowing deeply that it is Him who does everything. By counting completely on His Grace and Love one will see the Reality.”

After midnight, Swamiji performed puja and Abishekam to Lord Sri Krishna in the form of Bala Krishna and Ladoo Gopal followed by Arati.
The celebrations ended with several hours of a bhajan&kirtan dance party full of Divine blessings and delicious prasad.
Prem Se Bolo Sri Krishna Bhagavan Ki...Jai Jai Jai!!!
Prem Se Bolo Sri Swami Vishwananda Ki...Jai Jai Jai!!!

Testimony:
“It was a very beautiful party celebrating the birthday of Krishna. There was a time to sing, a time to dance and a time to eat the delicious prasad. The energy was wonderful and intense. It touched me deeply to experience the work of Sri Swami Vishwananda and the work of people here who really serve helping to rise the energy of mankind and Mother Earth.” - Daniela, Ubatuba, São Paulo, Brazil

17 Aug 2014

Chapter 18: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


On August 16th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 18 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Moksha Sannyaasa Yoga

In Chapter 18, Krishna speaks about the path of complete surrender. The path of attaining God's grace and letting go of the past completely. Krishna explains that whatever one does with an attitude of surrender, and performs their duty with full love, they become free. 

"Focus your mind on Me, be devoted to Me, worship Me, prostrate before Me and you shall come to Me alone. I promise you this verily, for you are dear to Me." (18.65)

General topics covered in the Chapter:
  • Three types of faith
  • Five causes of an action
  • Path of surrender is the ultimate path to God
  • The highest service to God, and the best charity 
  • The grace of the Gita
  • Both knowledge and action are needed
  • Kārmic bondage and the free will
    Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

    67
    idaṃ te nātapaskāya
    nābhaktāya kadācana
    na cāśuśrūṣave vācyaṃ
    na ca māṃ yo’bhyasūyasi

    Never is this to be spoken by you to one without self discipline, not to one that is not devoted and not to him who does no service; nor yet to him who despises and belittles Me when I am lodged in the human body.

    "Here Bhagavan Krishna is saying, Don’t give this knowledge to people who don’t believe, to unbelievers, this will not make any effect. It’s no use giving this deep knowledge which will free oneself, to somebody who is not ready, who is not purified, who doesn’t have faith in God. For them, they will just hear it and it will not have any effect on them. 

    If they are not ready, they will not understand anything what Bhagavan has been saying. Not to one that is not devoted. Here Bhagavan is saying, Give it to the bhakta. This should be the main focus for a devoted soul: thinking, meditating continuously, talking about what the Lord has said. One has to study and drink this nectar. Here Bhagavan says, Not to the one who doesn’t do service, who doesn’t have these spiritual practices. They wander into the world, left-right, left-right, getting attached to everything; they take something from here, from there – for them, they will never be able to drink this nectar itself, in deepness; they will not understand anything. So why should you give pearls to the pigs? That’s what Christ said, Don’t give pearls to the pigs. What will they do? They will trample over it, not knowing the value of it. Here Bhagavan Krishna is reminding Arjuna the same, Don’t give this knowledge to anyone who is not devoted; not to the ones who don’t do service. Because here service is very important; the help that you render, what virtue one has, it is very, very important. 

    That’s why He strictly said, Give to the one which is ready. Because this knowledge frees oneself from the cycle of birth and death. Even once, if you hear the whole Gita – Bhagavan has assured that whoever hears only one time the whole Gita, and with the mind tries to understand, they will be free in this life itself. This is the secret of the Gita.  

    Here Bhagavan Krishna has told Arjuna, how important it is, this knowledge. How important it is to fully absorb into what He has said. To have devotion to Him, to serve Him, because there is no one else than Him."



    Testimony:

    "I really enjoyed the last chapter because after giving all of these instructions to Arjuna about how to reach Him, and some of the things sound quite difficult, Krishna offered this merciful final verse about all you need to do is have faith. Forget about everything else, if all else fails, just listen to the Gita and put your faith in God, and all the impurities will be washed away. This final act of God's mercy is what I took from it." - Gerald, Kenya 

    ---


    Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

    For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

    16 Aug 2014

    Chapter 17: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


    On August 15th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 17 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Shraddhaatraya Vibhaaga Yoga

    In Chapter 17, Krishna explains the three divisions of faith, thoughts, deeds, and even eating habits corresponding to the three gunas. Krishna also talks to Arjuna about "OM Tat Sat" and the importance of these three words on the spiritual path. 

    "The formula OM, Tat, Sat, is the triple definition of the Brahman, by whom the Brahmanas, the Vedas and sacrifices were created of old." (17.23)

    General topics covered in the Chapter:
    • Three types of faith
    • Three types of food
    • Three grades of Spiritual Practice
    • Three Kind of Tapas (Self-Discipline)
    • Three types of austerity
    • Three types of charity
    • ‘OM TAT SAT’ the threefold name of Brahman 
      Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

      12
      abhisandhāya tu phalaṃ
      dambhārtham api caiva yat
      ijyate bharata-śreṣṭha
      taṃ yajñāṃ viddhi rājasam

      The sacrifice offered with a view to the personal rewards, and also for ostentation, O Arjuna, know that to be of a Rajasic nature.

      "Bhagavan is saying here that when one is doing something for personal gain like, Oh, God please, give me a car! Oh, God please, give me a husband! God please, give me a wife! God give me wealth! Oh, God give me a house, give me fame, give me prestige, give me victory, give me health, give me bliss, give me joy! You know, it’s only about give me, give me, give me, give me. So, Bhagavan is saying that these are the rajasic qualities which are always based on personal gain and motive. So, one is never free into that. 

      The  person who loves the Lord does everything without a personal reward or personal gain and these people are free. Their reward is Bhagavan Himself. He will give Himself to you. This is the wonderful quality of a bhakta. A true bhakta has this deep longing, you know, and can’t stay even a moment without the beloved."


      Testimony:

      "When Swami was speaking today I could relate with many things from my own life. I also remembered many personal experiences I had with him that made more sense now. He is constantly showing us how to see life and how to live life." - Tobias, Switzerland 

      ---


      Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

      For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

      15 Aug 2014

      Chapter 16: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


      On August 14th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 16 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Daivaasurasampad Vibhaaga Yoga

      In Chapter 16, Krishna identifies Divine and demonic characteristics. He tells Arjuna in order to attain liberation one must give up the demonic traits such as lust, anger and greed. One should constantly strive to discern between right and wrong action through self analysis. 

      General topics covered in the Chapter:
      • A list of major divine qualities that should be cultivated for salvation
      • A list of demonic qualities that should be given up
      • The destiny of the ignorant
      • Lust, anger, and greed are the three gates to hell
        Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

        17
        atma-sambhavitah stabdha
        dhana-mana-madanvitah
        yahante nama yajnais-te
        dambhenavidhi purvakam

        They sacrifice and give not in the true order but from a self-regarding ostentation, from vanity and with a stiff and foolish pride.

        "Here Bhagavan Krishna is saying that they appear very polite, very respectful due to their arrogance, Excuse me, Sir [Swamiji says this in an affected voice making the people laugh]. So, all what they do is just a show, which is devout of faith, full of vanity, just to impress others. So it's just a show, just a makeup. Beautiful outside, hellish in the inside.  So it's said, this is the highway to hell.  So here for the man of tamasic qualities, they are digging the hole to hell in that way. Here it's said that they are faking themselves so much they can't perceive the truth. Foolish pride, you know. Due to their pride they become blind. They don't see the reality. 

        So this is how it is for the world. You know, this is what Bhagavan Krishna is explaining.  Due to this pride, due to this foolishness, one becomes blind.  So this is due to the egoism, due to the pride, arrogance. Due to this vanity that one appears to impress others, they will do anything. And once the desire has been fulfilled they let go and they’re finished."


        Testimony:

        "I feel amazing throughout the entire course. Swami is revealing all the glories and pastimes of Krishna. I'm very lucky to get the opportunity to listen to His words." - Marina, Russia
        ---


        Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

        For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

        14 Aug 2014

        Chapter 15: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


        On August 13th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 15 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Purushottama Yoga

        Chapter 15 deals with the yoga of unity to the Supreme Being. Krishna reveals Himself as being omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent. 

        Krishna also describes a symbolic tree (representing material existence), which has its roots in the heavens and its leaves on earth. Krishna explains that this tree should be cut with the "axe of detachment", after which one can attain liberation.  

        General topics covered in the Chapter:
        • Creation is like a tree created by the powers of Māyā
        • How to cut the tree of attachment and attain salvation
        • The embodied soul is the enjoyer
          Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

          20
          iti guhyatamaṃ śāstram
          idam uktaṃ mayā’nagha
          etad buddhvā buddhimān
          syāt kṛtakṛtyaśca bhārata

          Thus by Me the most secret shastra has been told, O sinless one. To know it absolutely is to be perfected in understanding and successful in the supreme sense, O Arjuna.

          "Here Bhagavan Krishna is saying, I don’t reveal myself to stupid people or to sinful people. Only the ones who have Divine virtues inside of them can have a glimpse of Me. They can be near to Me, they can enjoy My companionship but not everybody, only a few of them. Here Bhagavan says that it is Him, the almighty God Himself, giving the true knowledge to perfect oneself, to recognise Him everywhere and in everything that one does. Even if you are doing your normal duty which has been given to you by Himself. By realising this truth that whatever you do, wherever you are, however you are, it’s all the Lord Himself. You rise above Maya, when the true knowledge awakes, it will give you Self-Realisation, it will make you see Him at all times.


          Bhagavan says that whoever has perceived Him everywhere, He is the one who takes full control of the bhakta and through different Leelas, through different pastimes that He enacts for each individual person, each one has his own personal relationship with Him. He manifests in certain aspects for that person and that’s how He makes Love grow. Love for God and Love for all. When you Love God truly, one perceives the Lord everywhere."


          Testimony:

          "Today Swami opened up the idea of the Soul's relationship to God. He was basically saying that there is the body and the eternal soul, but beyond the soul lies Krishna himself. He explained that the Bhakta through the love he has for God can attain the ultimate which lies even beyond the soul." - Senthilnathan, Sri Lanka

          ---


          Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

          For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

          13 Aug 2014

          Chapter 14: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


          On August 12th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 14 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Guntraya Vibhaaga Yoga

          In Chapter 14, Krishna differentiates between the three gunas: Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. Krishna explains how important the good qualities are in a Bhakta. He tells Arjuna the good qualities are needed in order to advance on the spiritual path, but ultimately one has to rise above all three gunas.  

          General topics covered in the Chapter:
          • Characteristics of the three modes of nature
          • Three modes are also the vehicles of transmigration for the individual soul
          • Attain liberation after transcending three modes of material nature
          • The process of rising above the three modes
          • Bonds of the three modes can be cut by devotional love
            Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

            11
            sarva dvāreṣu dehe’smin
            prakāśa upajāyate
            jñānaṃ yadā tadā vidyād
            vivṛddhaṃ sattvam ityuta

            When into all the doors in the body there comes a flooding of light, a light of understanding, perception and knowledge, one should understand that there has been a great increase and uprising of the Sattwic Guna in the nature.

            "So here Bhagavan is saying that when you are undertaken by an irresistible happiness, sometimes you have such a deep happiness, you don't even know where this happiness comes from. You feel sublime joy inside of you, you start laughing and crying at the same time,  you feel excited all of a sudden. This is when there is a flooding of light, a light of understanding when you know you have found your way, your path in life, you have found your Guru, you are not just somebody who is walking on the street. You have a sense of belonging somewhere and then due to that sense of belonging somewhere, you feel great joy that you are not alone in that path.

            In this light one attains discernment, one attain discrimination and one understands what life itself is. What is the truth; one knows what is right and what is wrong. When the light of wisdom appears, the mind automatically is diverted from the outside world, but it is diverted inwardly. The mind starts running not outwards but inwardly. So when one starts running inwardly through your sadhana, through your meditation, automatically there will be a certain detachment to the outside world. 

            Nothing in the outside really worries you, you don’t fear anything because your trust and love, your faith is strong."


            Testimony:

            "Yesterday's course for me was the most practical. I am an ayurveda therapist, and in my job I am very much involved with the three gunas. But yesterday I realised that I also have to let go a little bit and not be so attached the three gunas, and put it in the right place, so it was extremely practical for me." - Kalavati, Switzerland

            ---


            Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

            For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

            12 Aug 2014

            The Cashless Yuga is about to arrive...

            The cashless age at Shree Peetha Nilaya is approaching fast...! Time to get detached more and more... ;)

            If you plan to visit Shree Peetha Nilaya again, which we sincerely hope you do, then you should definitely read the latest blog post on the Shree Peetha Nilaya blog.


            Chapter 13: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda



            On August 11th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 13 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Kshetrakshetrajna Yoga

            In the final 6 chapters, the topics examined in greater detail are: the essential nature of Prakrti (Material Nature) and of the Jivātman, and the basic features of the paths of Karma (Action), Jñana (Knowledge) and Bhakti (Devotion) and the ways of practicing these paths.

            In Chapter 13, Arjuna asks to know more about the Lord. Arjuna tells Krishna that now he has seen Krishna's cosmic form, he wants to go deeper into the mystery of God. Krishna then explains to Arjuna what is matter and what is the spirit, what is the body and what is the Soul. 

            General topics covered in the Chapter:
            • The theory of creation
            • God can be described by parables and not in any other way
            • Faith alone can lead to liberation
            • Attributes of the spirit
              Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

              18
              jyotiṣām api tajjyotis
              tamasaḥ param-ucyate
              jñānaṃ jñeyaṃ jñāna-gamyaṃ
              hṛdi sarvasya viṣṭhitam

              He is the light of all lights and luminous beyond all the darkness of our ignorance. He is knowledge and the object of knowledge. He is seated in the hearts of all.

              "He is showing that the duty of man is to realise the Divine within themselves and to attain Him. Which means that whatever you do in life it is only to serve Him, to attain Him. So that´s why I said, Do your dharma.’ When you do your dharma properly you embrace, you attune with that knowledge. When you learn to accept life, whatever God gives you in life whole-heartedly, this is the object of knowledge which God has given you to attain the perfection. When you embrace what He gives you in every moment you will see how easy it is.

              He is seated in the hearts of men. Even if the Lord is present everywhere, everything is His manifestation, but the heart of man is a different reality, it is more superior than any other manifestation of Him. In the heart in human beings His light is shining much more. The heart of man is the manifestation of God, it is there where one can feel Him, meet Him, speak with Him. So this means that the heart which is inside the body is unique and that’s what makes a human being unique."


              Testimony:

              "It has been great so far. Swami's message is to have a calm mind, tell yourself that you are the soul and not the body, and that God is doing everything. The repetition of this message is absolutely necessary because we need to be reminded over and over again. Our goal is to just remember and practice in our daily lives what he teaches us." - Shez, U.K.

              ---


              Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

              For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

              11 Aug 2014

              Chapter 12: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


              On August 10th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 12 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Bhakti Yoga

              In Chapter 12, Lord Krishna glorifies the path of devotion to God (Bhakti yoga). Krishna explains that Bhakti Yoga is the easiest and best path to follow. 

              "The Supreme Lord said: I consider the best yogis to be those who are (desirous for being) forever united with me, who have supreme faith, and who worship me, and who focus their minds on me." 

              General topics covered in the Chapter:
              • Should one worship a personal or an impersonal God?
              • Reasons for worshiping a personal form of God 
              • The four paths to God
              • Karma Yoga is the best way
              • The attributes of a devotee
                Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

                2
                mayyāveśya mano ye māṃ 
                nitya-yuktā upāsate 
                śraddhayā parayopetās-te 
                me yuktatamā matāḥ

                Those who found their mind in Me and by constant union,  possessed of a supreme faith, seek after Me, I hold to be the most perfectly in union of Yoga.

                "Here Bhagavan is saying, the ultimate and the most perfect form of Yoga is to have this longing for the Lord, to have this Love for the Lord, to have this reverence for Him. Through that one finds great delight in hearing the glory of Him, remembering Him through japam, continuous chanting of his Divine Names and through that faith grows. 

                It’s like the food for the faith and the mind gets dwelled and absorbed (in the Divine). You see to hold one’s own effort is very difficult, its not that easy, you have to be very strong for that. But if one dwells and surrenders to the Lord and trusts in him, He looks after the welfare of the bhakta and carries him.

                Bhagavan Krishna is saying, “I have a form and I have a name and the one who knows My name and My form by constant remembrance and chanting of My names and having My form installed deep into the mind, to him I reveal Myself. And that’s the greatest union because I reveal Myself within his own Self."


                Testimony:

                "Today Swami discussed the beauty of Bhakti Yoga. He explained that it's really simple, not easy, but simple. You don't have to know anything special, you don't have to be anything special, there is no big secret. You just have to be happy and in Love" - Pratab, Croatia

                ---


                Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

                For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

                10 Aug 2014

                A Surprise Blessing!

                Yesterday night, everybody present at Shree Peetha Nilaya rejoiced when was announced that Sri Swami Vishwananda would give an individual blessing to all. It was a wonderful surprise! Again, He showed us all that God is constantly giving, giving, giving...
                May we all be always open to receive the continuous blessings the Divine showers on us! In this way, His Divine Love will fully blossom in our hearts being spread naturally and effortless around the world.

                Chapter 11: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


                On August 9th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 11 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Vishvaroopa Darshana Yoga

                In Chapter 11, Arjuna desired to directly experience the unrestricted glory of Lord Nārāyaṇa — the Supreme Brahman, who is the ultimate goal of all who practice Bhakti Yoga. Krishna, out of his infinite mercy reveled his true form to Arjuna. 

                General topics covered in the Chapter:

                • The vision of God is the ultimate aim of a seeker
                • Lord Krishna shows His cosmic form
                • One may not be prepared or qualified to see God
                • Arjuna is frightened to see the Cosmic form
                • Arjuna’s prayers to the Cosmic form
                • God can be seen by devotional love

                Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

                25
                daṃṣṭrā-karālāni ca te mukhāni
                dṛṣṭvaiva kālānala sannibhāni
                diśo na jāne na labheca śarma
                prasīda deveśa jagannivāsa

                As I look upon Your mouths terrible with many tusks of destruction. Your faces like the fires of Death and Time, I lose sense of the directions and find no peace. Turn Your heart to grace, O God of Gods! Refuge of all the worlds!

                “Arjuna is expressing himself in the state of deep amazement and suffering, happy and confused at the same time. He implores Lord Krishna to have mercy on him. ‘Turn Your heart to Grace’, he said, ‘Have mercy on me. I can't handle this Cosmic Form of Yours which is in front of my eyes.’ By this he is asking Krishna, ‘Please my Lord, withdraw this terrible Cosmic Form from my eyes.’

                Very often people ask for things which they think it will be good for them and then when they have it they don’t know how to handle it. So like that, it happens in daily life. We ask for things without knowing what we are asking, how it will come. I remember somebody asking me, ‘Ah, you know, I want to realise myself straight away.’ And I asked the person, ‘Do you know what you are asking for?’ He said, ‘Yes, I know.’ So I said, ‘Okay, fine! When you know what you are asking for, may God bless you with it.’ And at that moment his life became upside down, everything turned, he was crying, ‘I didn’t ask for that, I am suffering.’ That´s why it's not good to ask. When you really want to ask, ask God for His Love and in that you are fully guaranteed, all guaranties are inside it."


                Testimony:

                "Each day is special in its own way and I liked today very much. When Swami was talking about the cosmic form I tried to imagine it but it was impossible." - Lilavati, Poland 

                ---


                Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

                For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

                9 Aug 2014

                The Gita & Dancing Darshan

                Well, there are many kinds of Darshans...yesterday evening the people who had registered for the cancelled Darshan and accepted Sri Swami Vishwananda's invitation to attend the Gita Course, after 19:00h, received a special blessing.
                As He has said many times, “There are no coincidences.” So, for sure there were people sincerely wishing in their hearts to have the opportunity to listen to Him explaining about the Gita, but for several reasons couldn't enrol in the course. Therefore, Sri Swami Vishwananda fulfilled their wishes and welcomed them saying, “Jai Gurudev everybody! To all who have come right now, we are on the verse 34 of the Chapter 10 of the Gita. So through the Grace of the Lord you'll have nine verses. That's good! You'll profit from these nine. Bhagavan Krishna said, ‘The one who hears even only one verse from one chapter will get good punya (merit).’ Even if it doesn't make much sense for you, just bear Lord Krishna in your mind, surrender to the Guru's Feet, feel with your heart and you'll profit from it. Even if the mind doesn't make you understand, just close your eyes and absorb it.”
                After His commentary, Sri Swami Vishwananda gave another special blessing while singing bhajans and dancing enthusiastically with everybody!

                And at the end of the event, after the Gita Arati He showered all with His countless blessings of Love and Mercy through a few minutes of silent meditation.
                Testimonies:
                “It was a wonderful night, a wonderful evening! It's the first time for me [listening to the Gita]. So, I cried for two hours [laughing]. So it is very wonderful! And tonight for sure it will be the same.” - Cliven, Cudrefin, Switzerland.
                “ When I knew that the Darshan had been cancelled and that I could come for the Bhagavad Gita, I was so happy when I arrived and saw Swami, because I wanted to see him for one month. And listening to him speaking about the Bhagavad Gita, it is a big gift that he gives to us! - Roshnee, Strasbourg, France.



                Chapter 10: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


                On August 8th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 10 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Vibhooti Yoga


                In Chapter 10, Krishna explains that He is the Over-Self of all beings. He gives a narration of His unique auspicious attributes which characterize Him as different from all other entities. 

                General topics covered in the Chapter:
                • God is the origin of everything
                • Nobody can know the real nature of Reality
                • Everything is a manifestation of the Absolute
                • The manifest creation is a very small fraction of the Absolute
                Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

                37
                vṛṣṇīnāṃ vāsudevo’smi
                pāṇḍavānāṃ dhanañjayaḥ
                munīnām apy-ahaṃ vyāsaḥ
                kavīnām uśanā kaviḥ

                I am Krishna among the Vrishnis, Arjuna among the Pandavas; I am Vyasa among the sages; I am Ushana among the seers.

                “So here Bhagavan is talking about Himself, ‘I am Krishna among the Vrishnis.’ He is talking about His own Self, the Lord who establishes the identity between the manifestation of God, and God Himself. He said, ‘I brought Myself into being, into this body as Vasudev Krishna, but I Myself am the Lord of Lords. I am Myself, Narayana Krishna.’ So the intention is to show that He’s Supreme, Supreme as Himself, more than the creator Brahma. He’s the unborn, the Immortal, the Almighty Lord Himself. Lord over all creation, He Himself is the son of Vasudev. The Lord is not just a normal ordinary person, even if He appears very human by being there among the people, by being in the battlefield, in the Kurukshetra. Everybody could see him just like normal, but in reality, He is God Himself.
                 
                He said, ‘Among the Pandavas, I am Arjuna.’ Here it’s funny, you know, to see that within the Pandavas – among the Pancha Pandava, who was the eldest? Yudhisthira was the eldest of the Pandavas. He was a very highly virtuous soul, very dharmic, a great devotee of the Lord. He was very great, but Krishna here is saying that among the Pandavas, ‘I am Arjuna’. Arjuna listening at that moment probably got shocked. So, He said, ‘Arjuna, among the Pandavas, I am you, Arjuna’. He’s declaring that there’s no difference between the Lord and Arjuna. Like I said, few days ago, here He is playing different roles: Bhagavan Himself is playing the role as the Guru and Bhagavan Himself is playing the role as the disciple."



                Testimony:

                "I found the stories amazing. He gave a story for each incarnation of the Lord and how they interact with each other. I have never heard so many nice stories before and that makes very thankful that I got the opportunity to be here." - Ivan, U.K. 

                ---


                Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

                For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

                8 Aug 2014

                Chapter 9: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


                On August 7th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 9 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Raajavidyaa Raajaguhya Yoga

                In Chapter 9, the greatness of the Supreme Being who is the focus of devotion, and the nature of meditation in the form of bhakti is covered. 

                Chapter 9 reveals the secret of all secrets and the highest knowledge. Krishna tells Arjuna focus your mind on me, be devoted to me, let your heart dwell on me, serve me, bow down to me, be humble, regard me as the supreme goal and you will attain me. 

                General topics covered in the Chapter:
                • Knowledge of the nature of the supreme is the biggest mystery
                • The theory of evolution and involution
                • The ways of the wise and of the ignorant
                • Attaining salvation by devotional love
                • The Lord accepts and eats the offering of love and devotion
                • There is no unforgivable sinner
                Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

                30
                api-cet sudurācāro
                bhajate mām-ananyabhāk
                sādhur-eva sa mantavyaḥ
                samyag-vyavasito hi saḥ

                If even the most sinful person worships Me with devotion to no other, he must be regarded as righteous, for he has rightly resolved.

                “Here the Lord is saying such a devotee, even though desiring, he is trying to detach from vices completely but find himself helplessly driven by samskaras, driven by evil nature, but if his heart is fully surrendered to the Lord, that devotee should be considered not a sinner but a saint.

                So due to that faith which that person has in the Lord it does not matter, he is trying his best and he knows that he has to let go of many things. He finds it hard like many people, when they practice they find it hard to practice, but yet he loves God even with all his negative qualities, he does his duty, he loves the Lord, he has this in the mind, he worships Him. Here Bhagavan Krishna is saying to Arjun that such a person due to his rightly resolve must be considered as a saint, he must be regarded as righteous.

                This is the story of the adulterous woman they brought to Jesus and Jesus said, “The one who has not sinned throw the first stone.” And that woman became one of the greatest devotees of Jesus, afterwards. Even at the beginning it was difficult for her to control her impulses but yet due to her mind not being attached to it, the mind was attached to the Master, she was freed, and her soul became perfectly devoted to the Lord. That’s why now everybody praises her as a saint.”


                Testimony:

                "The story of Sudama was very touching. I've never seen Swami tell a story with so much emotion. Everybody in the room was crying ... It's something that I will try to meditate on everyday." - Matthew, Switzerland  

                ---


                Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

                For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.

                7 Aug 2014

                Chapter 8: Bhagavad Gita Course with Swami Vishwananda


                On August 6th, 2014 Swamiji covered Chapter 8 of the Bhagavad Gita, titled: Aksharabrahma Yoga

                In Chapter 8,  Sri Krishna gives a detailed description of certain principles and practices that have been discussed in earlier chapters. He also talks about the different kind of devotees of the Lord. 

                General topics covered in the Chapter:
                • Theory of reincarnation and karma
                • A simple method of God-realisation
                • Attain salvation by meditating on God at the time of death
                • Everything in the creation is cyclic
                • Two basic paths of departure
                • Transcendental knowledge leads to salvation
                Excerpt commentary from Swamiji:

                27
                naite sṛtī pārtha jānan
                yogi muhyati kaścana
                tasmāt sarveṣu kāleṣu
                yoga-yukto bhavārjuna

                The Yogi who knows them is not misled into any error, therefore at all times be in Yoga, O Arjuna.

                “A bhakta doesn't get diluted in attaching themselves to limitation. Therefore at all times be in yoga, which means at all times they are constantly remembering Him, in whatever they do. They are completely immersed into his love, this yogi, this bhakta, this devotee is not attached to this worldly enjoyment, he’s completely detached. For them they dwell into the world, you know, they use what they have for the benefit and service of the Lord. But they’re completely non-attached to anything; for such a devotee they don’t get diluted.

                So for such a devotee, for such a bhakta, nothing affects them on the outside. No material possession, no obsession, no delusion, nothing. Only one thing will affect them, it’s the love of God. And when they get completely affected by that love of God, they get completely sick with his love, completely, each part of the body will be infected with His love. They will have only one virus, the ultimate virus will be with them, and that’s loving Him. By seeing him, doing everything with the attitude that He’s ever dancing in front of them, for such a bhakta, they are the true yogi.”


                Testimony:

                "Today was one of the most beautiful days because the Lord is telling us at the last moment of your life if you think about me, you will attain me. Hopefully through the Guru’s grace every one of us can achieve this.- Deep, India  

                ---


                Sri Swami Vishwananda has decided to give commentary on the Shreemad Bhagavad Gita, the eternal Word of Lord Sri Krishna. It will take place over 18 consecutive days, and each day will cover one chapter. Guruji will give his commentary with a particular Bhakti perspective.

                For now, we will provide a small portion of the commentary on this blog for those who could not attend the course. At a later stage, we will offer the full length of the Gita commentary as a book and also as CD and DVD sets.