Sacinandana Swami has been a practicing monk of the bhakti tradition for forty-three years. He is well known for his significant contribution to the practice of con-templation and meditation for modern bhakti practitioners. Sacinandana Swami has written several books and offers an array of retreats, seminars, and workshops centered on spiritual growth. Thousands of enthusiastic singers and dancers visit his worldwide kirtana concerts. He teaches regularly at the Vrindavan Institute for Higher Education in India and at the Bhaktivedanta College in Belgium. He also serves as spiritual guide for the Veda Academy in Germany and has founded the Yoga Is Music project. Fond of India's holy places, Sacinandana Swami goes there annually to seek personal inspiration. Although his pilgrimages have taken him all over the Indian subcontinent, he's particularly fond of the sacred land of Vrndavana, the birthplace of Krsna. If he's not in the West, you can visit him there beneath a tree.
I started writing this book in November 2012, at the side of Govardhana Hill. I completed it soon after on the banks of the lake near my Western base.
Like every kartika month, I had taken shelter in Vrndavana to immerse myself in the holy names and thoughts of Krsna. And like always, I intended to write a regular diary to share with those who are close to me, and with my many friends all over the world. I wanted to share the impressions and blessings one receives while staying in a holy place. But things turned out differently.
I did not wander much through the enchanting landscape of Vraja. Instead, everything happened while I was on an inner journey. But how does one write in an interesting way, which is relevant for others, about what happens inside one's own heart? I did not want to write an egocentric book about my own little world. I am an insignificant person. I do not think it's important to write about what happens to me.
I am not a fan of social networking. So instead of ‘blogging', I decided to try to put what happened on my inner journey into a kind of novel, where I dealt with the things that were in my heart. The truth is that I still think in pictures and stories - like a child. So writing a story is natural for me.
I chose the title Broken Names because this is a book about the holy name, or more specifically, faith in the holy name. As long as our faith is broken, we can only offer broken names to Krsna. And that is painful both for us as well as him.
In the novel, Visvambhara, a devotee from Germany, goes to India to try to mend his broken faith. There he meets two exalted devotees who help him. As the characters interact they transform into what they are meant to become. Who these characters represent becomes clear in the epilogue. Visvambhara has questions which all of us have at times. The answers are taken from sacred scriptures and I hope they will help the reader so that he or she may always live in the world of living names.
I gratefully acknowledge the kind help of the following people: Srila Prabhupada - my eternal master and guide; Badrivisala Dasa, Ananda Caitanya Dasa and Rangini Dasi, the late Syam Dasa, Bhanu-nandini Dasi, Syama Sakhi Dasi, Bhavini DAM, Tusta Krsna dasa; my editors - Vraj Kisora Dasa, Kaisori Dasi, Braja Bihari Dasa, Govinda Rama Dasa and Vrnda Kumari Dasi, Bhurijana Dasa and Indradyumna Swami, and innumerable other people I have met and who inspired me to go deeper. Most importantly, I am grateful to Srimati Radharani, the Queen of Vrndavana.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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