Isolate, but don’t Stagnate

KOVIDA 2020 #2: Isolate, but don’t Stagnate Latest: Millions of people are lying low to limit the spread of COVID-19. Self-isolation and social distancing, they say, will help curb the crisis. Next problem: how do you cope with being cooped up for days on end? How do we use this time wisely? Consider the three…

COVID to Kovida

KOVIDA 2020 #1 Latest: COVID has hit 200,000 cases worldwide, triggering over 8,000 deaths. In Sanskrit, the word “Kovida” refers to one who is intelligent, wise and philosophically inclined. To appropriately respond to COVID, we each have to become Kovida. Positive affirmations, optimistic propoganda and comforting words are appreciated… but only go so far. We…

Intensity!

Lessons on the Road #6 Yesterday I parked my book box outside the festive merry-go-round. From morning to evening I heard the same 4-song playlist over and over again. These jingles hijack your mind! By the end of the day I found myself singing the line, “I wish it could be Christmas everydaaay,” in between…

Cold Showers

Lessons on the Road #5 It’s Monday morning. It’s cold, wet and windy. It’s time to face the world. It’s another day on book distribution! I remember returning from my first day on book distribution and being advised to do the unthinkable – “go and have a cold shower!” What! I’d already been standing in…

Great Expectations

Lessons on the Road #4 It’s the marathon! Scores, results, league tables and the seasonal time for (transcendental) competition. All of a sudden your performance, proficiency and position is in the spotlight, and it feels like everyone is watching, sizing you up. For some it’s entirely unnerving, for others it’s positively motivating. Some of us…

Cheaters to Teachers

Lessons on the Road #3 You have a 20-second window to make an impression – they stop, you size them up, put in a spiritual pitch, something interesting, inspirational and endearing, and wait for a reaction – hit, miss or blank… anything could happen! One thing is for sure – people are perceptive (more than…

Give me Hope

Lessons on the Road #2 Today he sits on the sidewalk, in minus degree temperatures, holding a ragged sign which reads “give me hope.” It’s a familiar sight that I’ve become somewhat desensitised to; I don’t think I can truly understand his situation. Seeing him sleeping rough, a few people throw in some coins, someone…

Bursting Bubbles

Lessons on the Road #1 It’s easy to get boxed into our own little worlds, sealed in a bubble and oblivious to reality, losing perspective and drowning in ethereal thoughts. It’s the familiar world of “I, me and mine” – a small world in which nothing very mystical, magical or memorable ever really happens. We…

Keep on Moving

Dear Srila Prabhupada Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to you! You described your spiritual master as a “Vaikuntha man,” and it’s blatantly obvious that you were no different. More specifically, a “Vrindavana man” who travelled to the end of Earth and back, shedding gallons of blood to tell the world about Krishna. “Vraja”…

New Book Release

(New Book Available at Bhaktivedanta Manor / https://krishnashopping.com/products/book-bhagavata) Time ticks by, and everything in our life changes – the place where we live, the people who surround us, the responsibilities we shoulder and the condition of the body we possess. In the material world, change is unstoppable (cannot be checked), uncontrollable (could occur in any…

The Inner Child

I’m getting old. I admit it – the hair is disappearing, the back is failing and the glasses are coming. Materially speaking, it’s a downhill story. Spiritually, however, the passing of time should deliver a range of invaluable gifts – more maturity, more experience, more knowledge and more opportunities to serve. Maybe, but in recent…

Heart Attract

People have heart attacks in Vrindavana – not just physical, but spiritual ones too. Holy places ooze with a divine influence that overthrows material consciousness and inexplicably ushers one towards transcendence. You may have seen the t-shirt – “I lost my heart in Vrindavana.” The illustrious Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakur reveals the phenomena: “Krishna instigated a…