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  1. 1. Personal Excellence Zagreb, March 2008
  2. 2. Story: Eagle (guest)
  3. 3. Excellence in sadhana
  4. 4. THE BASIS OF EXCELLENCE• Chanting minimum 16 rounds of the Hare Krsna Maha Mantra• Following the 4 regulative principles (no meat eating, no intoxications, no gambling, no illicit sex)
  5. 5. RESIDENTIAL SADHANA - morning• Getting up early (4 a.m.)• Taking shower• Attending Mangala arotik• Chanting japa (preferably 16 rounds in one go)• Darshan, Guru Puja, Jay Radha Madhava• Class• Breakfast• Service
  6. 6. RESIDENTIAL SADHANA - evening• Gaura arati• Preaching programs or reading
  7. 7. CONGREGATIONAL SADHANA - morning• Getting up (between 4 a.m. and 5 a.m.)• Shower• Chanting all the morning program mantras in one go• Chanting japa (preferably 16 rounds in one go)• Reading or listening to class• Breakfast• Going to work
  8. 8. CONGREGATIONAL SADHANA - evening• Gaura arati or reading• Attending a nama hatta program or sanga
  9. 9. FURTHER DEVELOPMENT OF EXCELLENCE IN SADHANAStudying and applying ch. 8 (Offenses toBe Avoided) and ch. 9 (FurtherConsiderations of Devotional Principles)from the Nectar of Devotion
  10. 10. SRILA BHAKTIVINODA’S DAILY SCHEDULE08:00-10:00 P.M. Rest (two hours)10:00-04:00 A.M. Write04.00-04:30 A.M. Rest04:30-07:00 A.M. Chant Japa07:00-07:30 A.M. Correspondence07:30-09:30 A.M. Study sastras09:30-10:00 A.M. Bath, prasadam (half- liter milk, fruit, 2chapatis)10:00-01:00 P.M. Court Duties01:00-02:00 P.M. Refresh at home02:00-05:00 P.M. Court Duties
  11. 11. Excellence inrelationships
  12. 12. SHARING LOVE BETWEEN DEVOTEES• Offering gifts in charity• Accepting charitable gifts• Revealing one’s mind in confidence• Inquiring confidentially• Accepting prasadam• Offering prasadam Srila Rupa Goswami, Upadesamrita 4
  13. 13. RESPECTING THE DEVOTEES• One should mentally honor the devotee who chants the holy name of Lord Krsna• One should offer humble obeisances to the devotee who has undergone spiritual initiation (diksha) and is engaged in worshiping the Deity• One should associate with and faithfully serve that pure devotee who is advanced in undeviated devotional service and whose heart is completely devoid of the propensity to criticize othersSrila Rupa Goswami, Upadesamrita 5
  14. 14. PERSONAL ATTITUDE TOWARD OTHERSEvery man should act like this:• When he meets a person more quallified than himself, he should be very pleased• When he meets someone less quallified than himself, he should be compassionate toward him• When he meets someone equal to himself, he should make friendship with himIn this way one is never affected by the threefold miseries of this material worldSB 4.8.34 (Narada’s Instruction to Dhruva Maharaja)
  15. 15. BASIS FOR MATURE RELATIONSHIPSOne who works in devotion, who is a pure soul,and who controls his mind and senses is dear toeveryone, and everyone is dear to him. Thoughalways working, such a man is never entangled.BG 5.7
  16. 16. BASIS FOR MATURE RELATIONSHIPSGreat devotees seeKrsna as the reservoir ofall relationships. In thescriptures there aretwelve basic kinds ofrelationships mentioned,and all of them arepresent in Krsna. It issaid that He is the oceanof all the relationshipsexchanged between twoliving entities, betweenthe gods, or betweenthe Supreme Lord andHis devotees.BG 11.14 Purport
  17. 17. BASIS FOR MATURE RELATIONSHIPSBhismadeva advised for all human beings ninequalifications:(1) not to become angry, (2) not to lie, (3) toequally distribute wealth, (4) to forgive, (5) tobeget children only by one’s legitimate wife, (6)to be pure in mind and hygienic in body, (7) notto be inimical toward anyone, (8) to be simple,and (9) to support servants or subordinates.SB 1.9.26 Purport
  18. 18. QUALITIES OF A DEVOTEE• He is always kind to everyone, and he does not pick quarrels.• He is equal to everyone, and no one can find fault in him.• His magnanimous mind is always fresh and clean and devoid of material obsessions.• He is a benefactor to all living entities and is peaceful and always surrendered to Krsna.• He has no material desires.
  19. 19. QUALITIES OF A DEVOTEE• He is very humble and is fixed in his purpose.• He is victorious over the six material qualities such as lust and anger• He is always sane and is respectful to others, but he does not require respect for himself.• He is grave, merciful, friendly, poetic, expert and silent.TLC 12: The devotee
  20. 20. Excellence in devotional service
  21. 21. GLORIES OF DEVOTIONAL SERVICEPerfection in self-realization cannot be attained by any kindof yogi unless he engages in devotional service to theSupreme Personality of Godhead, for that is the onlyauspicious path.SB 3.25.19
  22. 22. 9 METHODS OF DEVOTIONAL SERVICE• Hearing and chanting about the transcendental holy name, form, qualities, paraphernalia and pastimes of Lord Visnu• remembering them• serving the lotus feet of the Lord• offering the Lord respectful worship with sixteen types of paraphernalia• offering prayers to the Lord• becoming His servant• considering the Lord one’s best friend• surrendering everything unto Him (in other words, serving Him with the body, mind and words) SB 7.5.23-24
  23. 23. 9 METHODS OF DEVOTIONAL SERVICE“Among the ways of executing devotional service, thenine prescribed methods are the best, for theseprocesses have great potency to deliver Krsna andecstatic love for Him.”CC Antya 4.70
  24. 24. 9 METHODS OF DEVOTIONAL SERVICE One may be able to perform one item or many items, according to one’s capacity, but it is the principal factor of complete attachment to devotional service that makes one advance on the path. There are many devotees in history who have attained perfection in devotional service simply by discharging the duties of one item, and there are many other devotees, like Maharaja Ambarisa, who executed all the items.TLC 12: The devotee
  25. 25. 9 METHODS OF DEVOTIONAL SERVICESome individual devotees who attained perfection in devotional service by executing only one item are:• Maharaja Pariksit, who was liberated and fully perfected simply by hearing;• Sukadeva Gosvami, who became liberated and attained perfection in devotional service simply by chanting;• Prahlada Maharaja, who attained perfection by remembering;• Laksmi, who attained perfection by serving the lotus feet of the Lord;
  26. 26. 9 METHODS OF DEVOTIONAL SERVICE• King Prithu, who attained perfection simply by worshiping;• Akrura, who attained perfection simply by praying;• Hanuman, who attained perfection simply by becoming the servant of Lord Rama;• Arjuna, who attained perfection simply by being a friend of Krsna’s;• Bali Maharaja who attained perfection simply by offering whatever he had in his possession.TLC 12: The devotee
  27. 27. EXAMPLE OF EXCELLENCE IN DEVOTIONAL SERVICEGovinda massaged the Lord’s legs as usual. Hepressed the Lord’s waist and back very softly,and thus all the Lord’s fatigue went away. AsGovinda stroked His body, the Lord slept verynicely for about forty-five minutes, and then Hissleep broke.CC Antya 10.82-100
  28. 28. EXAMPLE OF EXCELLENCE IN DEVOTIONAL SERVICEWhen Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu saw Govindasitting by His side, He was somewhat angry.“Why have you been sitting here for so longtoday?” the Lord asked. “Why didn’t you go totake your meal after I fell asleep?”CC Antya 10.82-100
  29. 29. EXAMPLE OF EXCELLENCE IN DEVOTIONAL SERVICEGovinda mentally replied, “My duty is to serve,even if I have to commit offenses or go to hell. Iwould not mind committing hundreds andthousands of offenses for the service of the Lord,but I greatly fear committing even a glimpse ofan offense for my own self.”CC Antya 10.82-100
  30. 30. SERVICE EXCELLENCE• To preach / approach dealings with devotees, clients, friends and others with a deep desire to really help and solve their problems• Successful devotees have an external focus of how they can serve and not an internal focus of what they can get.
  31. 31. SERVICE EXCELLENCE• Customer: A person who purchases a commodity or service• Client: A person who is under the protection of another
  32. 32. SERVICE EXCELLENCE• Become a trusted friend or advisor• Talk in the way which shows your care and concern• Focus on giving value and advice instead of manipulating• Don’t fall in love with your ideas or effort – fall in love with the people you serve; take responsibility for their well-being
  33. 33. THINK BIG Everything is possible by the grace of the Lord. SB 3.31.18 P By the blessings of a Vaisnava, everything is possible. SB 5.1.10 P By Krsnas supreme will, everything is possible. Krsna Book 50 For advanced devotee, everything is possible. Lecture 1975
  34. 34. Excellence in leadership
  35. 35. Story: Butterfly (undeveloped muscles)
  36. 36. The words nyasino ’tyartha-lolupah indicate thatcharismatic religious leaders, and even those whoare not charismatic, will proclaim themselvesprophets, saints and incarnations to cheat theinnocent public and fatten their bank accounts.Therefore the International Society for KrishnaConsciousness is working arduously to establishbona fide celibate student life, religioushouseholder life, dignified and progressiveretirement, and genuine spiritual leadership forthe entire world.SB 12.3.33 Purport
  37. 37. Story: Mango (guest)
  38. 38. Excellence in self- care
  39. 39. BASIS OF PERSONAL WELL-BEING• Body• Mind (thinking, feeling, willing)• Intelligence• Soul
  40. 40. BODY – SADHANA SARIRA• Our body is “sadhana sarira” or vehicle for performing devotional service• “Your body is My principal instrument for executing many necessary functions. By your body I shall carry out many tasks.” CC Antya 4.78• An expert horseman, desiring to tame a headstrong horse, first lets the horse have his way for a moment and then, pulling the reins, gradually places the horse on the desired path. Similarly, the supreme yoga process is that by which one carefully observes the movements and desires of the mind and gradually brings them under full control” SB 11.20.21
  41. 41. PHYSICAL WELL-BEINGA weak body means a weak mind – accept everything that is favorable for your service like• Healthy diet• Regular sleep• Exercise (e.g. 20-30 minutes of walking, swimming, etc most of the days)Learn to relax – e.g. Use pranayama or other breathing techniques, meditation, yoga exercises, massages, etc.
  42. 42. EMOTIONAL WELL-BEING• Be positive – don’t put yourself down, challenge negative thoughts that pop into your mind (I’m no good, I can’t do this) with positive ones, remind yourself of past success.• Practice gratitude everyday (beginning from small things)• Don’t identify with the 6 enemies (lust, greed, illusion, envy, anger and pride)
  43. 43. EMOTIONAL WELL-BEING• Accept the given situation as it is - Your external situation is as it is. You have to say "yes" to what Krsna has given you. You have to also say "yes" to the weakness which you feel. And then you have to go forward. Forward in a gratitude which comes from acceptance.• Have fun – schedule some ‘time out’ for yourself, pursue your hobbies or interests, spend time with friends – focussing too intensely on something can lead to ‘burnout’. ‘burnout’
  44. 44. SOCIAL WELL BEING• Cultivate devotee friendships - invest time in those relationships you care about the most. Take time for confidential talks. Share gifts. Avoid criticism• Monitor your stress – recognise your own signs of stress and identify situations you find difficult, so you can be more pro-active about managing stress at these times.
  45. 45. SOCIAL WELL BEING• Set goals and priorities – be realistic, focus on how you want to contribute rather than comparison with others, accept that circumstances are outside your control.• Manage your time – avoid procrastination, plan ahead, make a schedule and follow it, evaluate how you are spending your time.
  46. 46. YUKTA VAIRAGYA anasaktasya visayan yatharham upayunjatah nirbandhah krsna-sambandhe yuktam vairagyam ucyate prapancikataya buddhya hari-sambandhi-vastunah mumuksubhih parityago vairagyam phalgu kathyate“When one is not attached to anything but at the same time accepts everything in relation to Krsna, one is rightly situated above possessiveness. On the other hand, one who rejects everything without knowledge of its relationship to Krsna is not as complete in his renunciation.”BRS 1.2.255-256
  47. 47. Anyone can have this picture in hishome, chant this Hare Krsna mantra,and thus worship Lord Caitanya. Thatis the simple method. But who willcapture this simple method? Thosewho have good brains.Srila Prabhupada November 1969, Londons Conway Hall
  48. 48. To prosecute Krishna Consciousness there isno limitation, no material impediment can stopprogress of Krishna Consciousness. That is thesymptom of spiritual life. Spiritual life doesn’tdepend on material conditions.So it is only the question of understanding theprocess how to execute KrishnaConsciousness.(Srila Prabhupada letter, February 13, 1969)
  49. 49. Workshop“Personal Excellence Plan”
  50. 50. ISKCON Croatia ki jaya!