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  1. 1. Devotee Care And Guidance
  2. 2. Upadesamrta 4 Purport The International Society for Krishna Consciousness has been established to facilitate these six kinds of loving exchanges between devotees:1. giving charity to the devotees2. accepting from the devotees whatever they may offer in return3. opening ones mind to the devotees4. inquiring from them about the confidential service of the Lord5. honoring prasada, or spiritual food, given by the devotees6. feeding the devotees with prasada.
  3. 3. Team Lessons From The GeeseAs each bird flaps its wings it creates an uplift for the bird following. By fyling in a "V" formation the whole flock provides 71% better range than flying alone. There is a power in the collective work. People who share a common direction and sense of community can reach their destination quicker and easier, travelling on the thrust of each other. Whenever a goose falls out of formation, it immediately feels the drag and quickly gets back in to the draft of the nearest goose. If we had as much sense as a goose, we would stay in formation with those who are heading where we want to go. Sometimes the leading goose gets tired and rotates back into formation for another to take over. Take turns in leadership. Share leadership.
  4. 4. Team Lessons From The GeeseBe interpendent on each others skills, knowledge, and qualities. Geese in formation honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep up the speed. Make sure your honking from behind is encouraging, not discouraging. ENCOURAGE - coeur means “heart” in French. Whenever a goose gets sick, wounded or shot, two geese fall out of the formation to go with one to protect, help it and stay it until it can fly again, or until it dies. They then launch out to join another formation or rejoin their original flock
  5. 5. PLANCommunity principlesHow does it workOne to one assistance
  6. 6. SEVEN PURPOSES OF ISKCON3. To bring the members of the Society together with each other and nearer to Krsna, the prime entity, thus to develop the idea within the members, and humanity at large, that each soul is part and parcel of the quality of Godhead (Krsna).6. To bring the members closer together for the purpose of teaching a simpler and more natural way of life. 7
  7. 7. SAVESave yourself, save others. This is our Krsna consciousness movement. First of all save yourself; then try to save others. Or both things can go on simultaneously. The same example. If you want to save somebody whos drowning you must know that I may not be washed away. I have to remain strong; then I can save him.Conversation on Roof -- February 14, 1977, Mayapura
  8. 8. SRILA PRABHUPADA Srila Prabhupada was first and foremost someone who truly cared, who completely sacrificed his own comfort to work for the good of others. - Mukunda Goswami 9
  9. 9. PRACETAS The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: My dear sons of the King, I am very much pleased by the friendly relationships among you. All of you are engaged in one occupation - devotional service. I am so pleased with your mutual friendship that I wish you all good fortune. Now you may ask a benediction of Me. SB 4.30.8
  10. 10. While the men were meeting in that way, the women were also meeting one another in the same manner. They were embracing each other in great friendship, smiling very mildly, and looking at one another with much affection. When they were embracing each other in their arms, the saffron and kunkuma spread on their breasts was exchanged from one person to another, and they all felt heavenly ecstasy. Due to such heart-to-heart embracing, torrents of tears glided down their cheeks. The juniors were offering obeisances to the elders, and the elders were offering their blessings to the juniors. They were thus welcoming one another and asking after each others welfare. Ultimately, however, all their talk was only of Krsna. All the neighbors and relatives were connected with Lord Krsnas pastimes in this world, and as such Krsna was the center of all their activities. Krsna Book - Lord Krsna and Balarama Meet the Inhabitants of Vrndavana
  11. 11. CARING COMMUNITY PRINCIPLESSarve sukhino bhavantu6 loving exchanges (dadati ... )Enlightening each other Bg 10.9“Your love for me will be shown ...” SP“Mutual consultation” SPDoing good to others Bg 17.16 PLaksmi comes when we don’t fight SB 5.14.24 PPracetas SB 4.8.30Building trust in a community
  12. 12. CARING COMMUNITY PRINCIPLESPrahlada Maharaja: May all living entities become calm by practicing bhakti-yoga, for by accepting devotional service they will think of each others welfare. SB 5.18.9Holistic care (body, mind and soul)Training is care (“Give a man a fish ...”)Regular and clear communicationSentimental or caring?
  13. 13. BUILDING TRUST WITHIN THECOMMUNITYWe keep promises and honor commitments.We acknowledge and apologize for mistakes.We are loyal to the absent.We seek to understand each other’s needs and concerns.We say what we feel in a way that shows respect for others’ opinions.We are not defensive when someone offers feedback.We share information, both positive and negative, with people who need to have it.We encourage others to openly contribute ideas and opinions.We involve people in decisions that affect them.
  14. 14. BUILDING TRUST WITHINTHE COMMUNITYWe give credit where credit is due.We share decision making with community or team members, and support collective decisions.We encourage and support community or team members taking risks.We check our information before jumping to conclusions.We behave and communicate consistently, regardless of the situation or the person’s authority and influence.We communicate clear expectations.We honour confidential and sensitive information.
  16. 16. PURPOSEEducate devotees in how to live according to the principles of their asramaTrain them in philosophy, sadhana, Vaisnava behaviour, etiquette, lifestyle and attitudesGive care and attention for all devotees to make them feel loved, wanted and part of a wonderful spiritual familyFoster warm personal relationships and a spirit of love and trust based on Krsna conscious principlesFacilitate allocation of service, organization of major events, communication of important decisionsTrain spiritual leaders and preachers
  17. 17. HOW DOES IT WORKSome experienced devotees take on the serviceAssistant GuideGeographical, linguistic, socio-economic considerationsPreference for a particular GuidePesonal touchShelter: bring as many as possibleFothnightly group meetingsOne-to-one meetings
  18. 18. HOW DOES IT WORK?Collective recommendations for initiationSpecialized teamsTemple president participatesGuide from the same asramaHusband-and-wife teamNot too many to care for and guide (5 to 15)
  19. 19. CHOOSINGSPIRITUAL GUIDESIn active Krsna consciousness within ISKCON for a fair length of timeGood understanding of the philosophy and practice of Krsna consciousnessAble to give balanced counsel based on Krsna conscious principles according to person, time, place and circumstanceNot inclined to extreme or controversial positions on issues
  20. 20. CHOOSING SPIRITUAL GIUDESWilling to extend to help and sacrifice for othersCompassionate, genuine concern for the welfare of devoteesA good listenerMature, sober, stableGood standard of sadhana, etiquette, behavior, service and commitment to the missionProperly situated in own asrama
  21. 21. DUTY OF A GUIDEProvides care, guidance and challenge in Krsna consciousnessSpiritual elder brother/sister, takes personal care of all devotees in the groupInspires and encourages them in Krsna consciousness, monitors their progressProvides Krsna conscious and general life skills trainingCounsels in spiritual and other mattersOverall welfare of the devoteesNot a full time service
  22. 22. DUTY OF A GUIDEFortnightly group meetingsRecommends for first and second initiationActively participates in meetings of the Spiritual GuidesA good standard of sadhana, behavior and serviceSarve sukhino bhavantuCaution: personal ambition, misuse ...
  23. 23. TRAINING DEVOTEES Ideal brahmacaris and grhasthas Proper devotional standards at the temple or at home (kitchen, altar, behavior, sadhana) Proper wife/husband/parent/child, according to scriptures Balance economic and social responsibilities with spiritual vows
  24. 24. TRAINING DEVOTEES Women dealing with men, particularly brahmacharis and sannyasis; men dealing with women Proper dealings between asramas Dealing with other devotees, family, public Manual of Vaisnava Etiquette and Lifestyle
  25. 25. GROUP MEETING Vaisnava bhajans One of devotees presents a text from Srila Prabhupada’s books, discussion Sharing realizations Discussion on service, sadhana, Vaisnava etiquette/behavior Issues not too personal (personal discussed in private with the Guide) Practical committments Kirtana, prasadam
  26. 26. WHAT KEEPS THE GROUPMEMBERS TOGETHER?Guide’s genuine care and loveGuide takes initiative, reaches outAn environment of love, appreciation and challengeCommitment to quality relationshipsSix symptoms of love (Upadesamrta)Benefits for those who take care of othersInteresting or exciting meetings
  27. 27. INTERESTING MEETINGSInduce creativity and innovationCreate fresh challengesConsider personal interestsBirthdays, marriages, anniversariesRegular, specific personal appreciationCatch them doing things rightFun: games, quizzes, role playsDo personal things for themDynamic action after the session
  28. 28. GUIDES MEETINGS Different Guide presents each time Discussion on the holy name and:  Sadhana (japa, waking early, morning program, etc.)  Reading (importance of philosophy and reading Prabhupada’s books)  Vaisnava Etiquette (respect to everyone, how to serve/honour prasadam, personal habits, etc.)  Exemplary Behavior (26 qualities of a Vaisnava, etc.) Reports from specilized teams Management (if needed) Prasadam
  29. 29. SUPPORT FOR GUIDESMentoringTrainingSangaCountinuous learning (skills, ideas ...)
  30. 30. DEMONSTRATIONFacilitating group discussion
  31. 31. BENEFITS OF DEVOTEE CAREDevotees ISKCONSupport Prabhupada’s mercyBetter know each other Examplary communityAccountability ManpowerStrong devotees Resources
  32. 32. DEVOTEES’ NEEDSKrsna GuidanceBody ChallengeMind ChangeHeart Faith in KrsnaSoul AppreciationCare ContributionSupport
  33. 33. ONE-TO-ONE SKILLSListeningQuestionsProblems into opportunitiesExpanding optionsChallengePromoting action
  34. 34. BHAKTISIDDHANTA One who gives personal instruction to each and everyone does more for others than the platform speakers do. Generally, whatever platform speakers say cannot solve the problem of everyone in the audience, nor can it always benefit every individual. A persons defects are better rectified in a private tutorial class or private coaching than in hearing lectures in a school or college. Therefore those who instruct particular persons separately can award them something more permanent. Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, Amrta Vani, page 315
  35. 35. ONE-TO-ONE MEETINGSCommunication skillsDiscovering devotee’s needs, interests and concernsConfidentialSupportive (believes in)Focused on a devotee being guidedPersonal issuesSharing realizations and successesNot a lectureWorking together to find solutionsEnlightening
  36. 36. LISTENFully understand the situation of the devoteeGive them the space to understand themselvesListen first and seek first to understandRemain as impartial, open and objective as you possibly canInterested and concernedTHEY are responsible for their livesClear your mind of all personal issues
  37. 37. EXERCISEListen to a devotee next to you for 3 minutes. You must not make any sound, say anything, nod, shake your head or show any other signs. Repeat back your understanding of the key points they made. Ask a devotee whether you understood him or her well.
  38. 38. ASKING EFFECTIVE QUESTIONSThe purpose of asking questions is to:1. Understand the devotee well2. Help them understand themselves3. Clarify what they want4. Discover new options, opportunities, possibilities and advantages5. Identify obstacles6. Make an action plan
  39. 39. EFFECTIVE QUESTIONSWhat are your strengths, talents, skills, good qualities?What do you want?What one great thing would you dare to dream if you knew you could not fail? (question about an exciting goal)
  40. 40. EFFECTIVE QUESTIONSWhat one thing, if you would do superbly well everyday, would make the greatest positive difference in your life? (question about personal habits / best practices)What can you learn from this?How can you turn this problem into an opportunity?What and who inspires you the most?Are you ready to pay the price?
  41. 41. NON-EFFECTIVE QUESTIONSWhy are you so bad?Why you don’t understand what’s good for you?When are you going to change / shape up / grow up?How could you do such a thing?
  42. 42. TIPAfter asking questions and listening, summarize what you have heard to be sure you have understand your devotee well.
  43. 43. POWER OF A RIGHT QUESTIONThe question that saved concentration camp prisoner’s life.
  44. 44. EXERCISE Pair up as and take turn to speak about an issue.1. Ask relevant and empowering questions until he is certain to have understood the devotee2. Paraphrase back to the devotee to determine whether he has successfully understood him. The devotee should confirm it.
  45. 45. TURNING PROBLEMS INTO OPPORTUNITIES “O Partha, happy are the ksatriyas to whom such fighting opportunities come unsought, opening for them the doors of the heavenly planets.” Bg 2.32
  46. 46. TURNING PROBLEMS INTO OPPORTUNITIESThe way you see a problem or a task powerfully influences you action and the results you will achieve.Help the devotee to see their problems differently: as a blessing in disguise.
  47. 47. A TURNAROUND EXPERTWhat is great about this problem?What can I learn from this problem?What this problem is an opportunity for?If you would be a world expert on these issues, what would you advise?If you would be super-intelligent, how would you deal with this problem?What additional skills do you need to deal with this problem?
  48. 48. A TURNAROUND EXPERTUse questions as you see fit, in any orderInduce a devotee to see themselves as expert in solving a particular problem and learn everything they can about it from various sources (spiritual, professional, etc.).
  49. 49. EXERCISEChoose one problem and turn it into an opportunity together.
  50. 50. EXPANDING OPTIONSGita CardsMindstormingBrainstormingAsking othersWhat else could I do?
  51. 51. PROMOTING ACTION“Factually, we should be engaged 24 hours in Krsnas service and everything should be done very nicely and perfectly.”Srila Prabhupada, Letter to Adi-kesava, Bombay 2 January 1975
  52. 52. ACTIONChosen areaClarifying what they want (clear written goals)Exploring options, opportunities, possibilities and advantagesOvercoming obstaclesMaking a written action planHolding them accountable by requesting weekly reports
  53. 53. HOLISTIC OR COMPLETE CAREHealthSadhanaServiceRelationshipsSelf-renewal/BalanceEtc.
  54. 54. SPIRITUAL GUIDE SESSION1. Inquire2. Listen attentively3. Reflect back4. Discover possibilities and solutions together5. Plan action together
  55. 55. RESULTSTo change their results, devotee sneed to change their perception, their thinking and their action.To achieve things you have never achieved before, you have to start doing things you have never done before.
  56. 56. ACTION SUCCESSSuccess = Personal effort + Krsna’s mercyThe place of action [the body], the performer, the various senses, the many different kinds of endeavour, and ultimately the Supersoul — these are the five factors of action. Whatever right or wrong action a man performs by body, mind or speech is caused by these five factors. Therefore one who thinks himself the only doer, not considering the five factors, is certainly not very intelligent and cannot see things as they are. Bg 18.14-16O son of Kunti, I am the taste of water, the light of the sun and the moon, the syllable om in the Vedic mantras; I am the sound in ether and ability in man. Bg 7.8
  57. 57. PRACTICEMutual assistanceShare first with your partner and then with a whole group what you have learned and experienced both as a guide and guided
  58. 58. SUMMARYAttentive to devotee’s needs, interests and concernsConfidentialSupportiveFocused on a devotee being guidedPersonal issuesSharing realizations and successesNot a lectureWorking together to find solutionsEnlightening
  59. 59. MUTUAL COACHINGWeekly questionsFeedforwardGITA Model Goals Instructions Tests Action
  60. 60. EXERCISEChoose an important goal and tell partnerParner asks you: What are the three ways I can help you succeed in this?Partner chooses one he can help you with and committs to do it next week
  61. 61. DEMONSTRATIONOne-to-one meeting/session with a GITA Model Goals Instructions Tests Action
  62. 62. ISKCON DEVOTEECAREDevotee Care Journal /