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Reflections on Sacred Teachings: Madhurya Kadambini (Volume-II)

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Item Code: BAG101
Author: B.T Swami
Publisher: Hari Nama Press
Language: English
Edition: 2003
ISBN: 9798642502198
Pages: 172
Other Details 8.50 X 5.50 inch
Weight 220 gm
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Shipped to 153 countries
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100% Made in India
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23 years in business
Book Description
About The Book

The sweet, far-reaching fragrance of the blossoms of hava sends enchanting invitations to the Supreme Lord, gently inducing Him to appear in person before His devotee. Furthermore, when the soul's natural sentiments are even faintly scented by bhava, they melt and flow unrestrained toward the Supreme Lord, bathing His divine form with love. Bhava is self- willed and moves on its own volition." (Bhakti Trilogy. 45)

In our devotion, we receive guidance form sadhu, sastra and guru-as we honor the guidance in the right way and remove the blocks and obstacles, gradually our experiences move from the physical level to the spiritual... As we begin to reflect on our devotion more and develop a higher taste, param drstva nivartate, many of the other problems that produce anxiety and frustration are put to the side. Now the divinity begins to come forth and we begin to rediscover our natural inherent treasures that we have somehow forsaken.

"People today are profoundly skeptical about spiritual knowledge and spiritual life, and their skepticism often become reinforced by their own record of baffled and thwarted attempts, often undertaken under the misdirection of inexperienced, clueless or dishonest "guides." Madhurya-Kadambini is an antidote to such skepticism. Furthermore, we see how the project of Visvanatha Cakravarti remains alive and current when it is translated into action by an experienced practitioner in the tradition. Bhakti-Tirtha Swami has a gift for bringing the teachings alive to the contemporary ear and relevant to the preoccupations of contemporary conditioned souls. This is a result of Maharaja's personal realization. We should take full advantage of it."

About the Author

hakti Tirtha Swami was born John E. Favors in a pious, God- fearing family. As a child evangelist, he appeared regularly on television, and as a young man, he was a leader in Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s civil rights movement. At Princeton University, he became president of the student council and also served as chairman of the Third World Coalition. Although his main degree is in psychology. he has received accolades in many other fields, including politics, African studies, and international law.

Bhakti Tirtha Swami's books are used as reference texts in universities and leadership organizations throughout the world. Many of his books have been printed in English, German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Macedonian, Croatian, Russian, Hebrew, Slovenian, Balinese, and Italian.

His Holiness has served as assistant coordinator for penal reform programs in the State of New Jersey, Office of the Public Defender, and as a director of several drug abuse clinics in the United States. In addition, he has been a special consultant for Educational Testing Services in the U.S.A. and has managed campaigns for politicians. Bhakti Tirtha Swami gained international recognition as a representative of the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, particularly for his outstanding work with scholars in the former communist countries of Eastern Europe.

Bhakti Tirtha Swami directly oversaw projects in the United States (particularly Washington D.C., Potomac, Maryland, Detroit, Pennsylvania, West Virginia), West Africa, South Africa, Switzerland, France, Croatia, and Bosnia. He also served as the director of the American Federation of Vaisnava Colleges and Schools.

In the United States, Bhakti Tirtha Swami was the founder and director of the Institute for Applied Spiritual Technology, director of the International Committee for Urban Spiritual Development, and one of the international coordinators of the Seventh Pan African Congress. Reflecting his wide range of interests, he was also a member of the Institute for Noetic Sciences, the Center for Defense Information, the United Nations Association for America, the National Peace Institute Foundation, the World Future Society, and the Global Forum of Spiritual and Parliamentary Leaders.

A specialist in international relations and conflict resolution, Bhakti Tirtha Swami constantly traveled around the world and had become a spiritual consultant to many high-ranking members of the United Nations, to various celebrities, and to several chiefs, kings. and high court justices. In 1990, His Holiness was coronated as a high chief in Warri, Nigeria in recognition for his outstanding work in Africa and the world. In recent years, he met several times with then-President Nelson Mandela of South Africa to share visions and strategies for world peace.

In addition to encouraging self-sufficiency through the development of schools, clinics, farm projects, and cottage industries, Bhakti Tirtha Swami conducted seminars and workshops on principle-centered leadership, spiritual development, interpersonal relationships, stress and time management, and other pertinent topics. He was also widely acknowledged as a viable participant in the resolution of global conflict.


Recently I received a very powerful book entitled Children of the New Millennium by a pious lady, P.M.H. Atwater, LH.D, who had several near-death experiences. She interviews young children who have had near-death experiences. The book shares their many powerful reflections and thoughts in relation to their experiences. Some of them recall their previous lives, and exhibit unusual abilities and powers that will unfortunately diminish if not properly protected or nurtured. In some cases, their abilities are not really understood or encouraged because these children might seem odd due to their insights, realizations, and perceptions. These days, there are unusual types of births taking place from both polarities. On one hand, we see children who are killing other children and are filled with viciousness, greed and other negative qualities, but on the other hand we see children with divine qualities. The fact that these distinct children are taking birth at this very unusual time in world history suggests something very powerful. Obviously the divine children have a significant role in bringing in a real new age, not a so-called new age still filled with the old archetypes and paradigms.

Many of these children shared certain dreams, experiences, or reflections that dealt with visions of their futures as well as visions of their previous lives. Some of these visions of the future at first included chaos, pandemonium, and confusion on this planet. They often saw themselves helping to inaugurate an era of more God consciousness. Obviously every parent feels that their child is special and will help uplift the world-and it is true that their children are special. Every soul is special because ultimately every soul is part and parcel of Krishna. However, some souls have very special qualities for they have descended into this world to bring love and guidance. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura is one of these highly elevated beings who have come directly from the spiritual world..

Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti has not only given us this special book, Madhurya-Kadambini, for nourishing our devotional creepers, but his own life is a special gift to the world. Such great souls come into this world on a special mission. The pure devotees like Srila Visvanatha are conscious of who they really are, where they come from and where they, as well as all of us, can return to. They have some of the qualities of Krishna, for they expose the miscreants and they protect, guide and enlighten the devotees.

They reveal obstacles and give us glimpses of the ultimate goal. I am writing these brief reflections on sacred teachings as a way of helping and reminding myself and others how such mentors and their teachings, although ancient, are as relevant now as they were in the past. Let the madhurya, the sweetness of devotion, shower us all as we take shelter of Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura's unlimited mercy.


adhurya-Kadambini (Cloud Bank of Nectar), by the Mrenowned Gaudiya Vaisnava acarya Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, is a short work, and it is a commentary on an even shorter work-just two verses that appear in Srila Rupa Gosvami's Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, 1.4.15-16. Merely two verses-yet they encapsulate extraordinary spiritual knowledge and realization. They set forth the sequence of eight stages that a sincere and serious practitioner of pure bhakti will ascend before arriving at the ultimate goal, pure love of God. Here we are given a valuable record of the factual spiritual experiences-from beginning to end-of devotees who have successfully traversed the path laid out by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

The two verses in question are quoted in Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya-lila, 23.14-15:

adau sraddha tatah sadhu- sango 'tha bhajana-kriya tato 'nartha-nivrttih syat tato nistha rucis tatah athasaktis tato bhavas tatah premabhyudancati sadhakanam ayam premnah pradurbhave bhavet kramah

"In the beginning there must be faith. Then one becomes interested in associating with pure devotees. Thereafter one is initiated by the spiritual master and executes the regulative principles under his orders. Thus one is freed from all unwanted habits and becomes firmly fixed in devotional service. Thereafter, one develops taste and attachment. This is the way of sadhana-bhakti, the execution of devotional service according to the regulative principles. Gradually emotions intensify, and finally there is an awakening of love. This is the gradual development of love of Godhead for the devotee interested in Krishna consciousness.

In Madhurya-Kadambini, the knowledge encapsulated in the two verses is opened up, like a many-petaled flower blossoming from a bud. Visvanatha Cakravarti gives an articulate, deeply realized, illuminating, and inspiring description of each stage. His remarkable blend of meticulous analytical reflections with intense evocations of devotional ecstasies is a singular achievement; indeed, it is what you might call the "signature style" of the acaryas who follow Sri Caitanya. There is a great treasury of world literature, gathered from diverse traditions and cultures, that records the varieties of experiences of adepts or virtuosos on the path of transcendence; Madhurya-Kadambini will increasingly be recognized as the most rare and precious gem in that rich collection. For those who follow the path of Lord Caitanya, Madhurya- Kadambini is an immensely practical guidebook. From it we can recognize at the outset of our spiritual journey that we are under the guidance of great teachers who command an immense body of knowledge and experience. Their wisdom and skill is awesome, and we can embark on this path with confidence and faith.


efore I discuss various points from one of Srila Visvanatha Bakravarti Thakura's works, The Bhakti Trilogy: Delineations on the Esoterics of Pure Devotion, I would like to describe the extraordinary history of this great Vaisnava personality.

When there is an increase in sin, there is also a need for the presence of divinity. There is a need for more spiritual absorption and for spiritual personalities to counteract the negativity. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura's life fulfills this purpose. Rupa Goswami, Jiva Goswami and Lord Caitanya had been gone for quite some time and, as in the time of Bhaktivinoda Thakura, Vaisnava culture was externally in bad shape. Sahajiyaism was increasing and people were looking down on this so-called Vaisnava lifestyle and culture. Furthermore, Vrndavana had become a sad place due to the demonic ruler named Samrat Aurangzeb. His regime I was literally slaughtering Vaisnavas, breaking down the temples, destroying the Deities and raping the women. They even blocked passages and streets in order to monitor who entered and left. This was a very hellish period. Sometimes people think, "Just chant Hare Krishna and everything will be fine." Although this is true, it does not mean that there will not be any material difficulties for the individual, community or environment. However, the ultimate outcome is always auspicious because, although maya becomes extremely strong at specific times, maya is never stronger than Krishna.

Imagine Srila Visvanatha's devastation when he came to Vindavana. He had heard about the powerful preaching, the building of temples, the increase in Vaisnavism, and the defeat of rascals, impersonalists, mayavadis and sahajiyas but when he arrived he saw that a devastating regime had seized Vrndavana Many of the primary Deities had even been snuck out and taken to places such as Jaipur so that the regime could not destroy Them We may wonder why Krishna allows the demons to gain such strength. Other people may think, "If Krishna does not even protect His most holy place, what kind of a God is He?" We must remind ourselves that the human body is designed for escape from the material world. This material world is basically an arrangement to accommodate people who want to forget Krishna to different extents. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura explains that this is not a place for a gentleman or gentlewoman. It is not a place where one wants to linger. One should do their business and get out. As Kali-yuga becomes more and more dominant, people will become so sinful that they will even start attacking and hunting those who try to propagate spirituality. Who would want to stay in such a crazy environment?

I received a letter a year ago from a devotee trying to preach in France; both the French and Austrian governments have declared our movement to be a dangerous cult. In such a place, it is almost impossible to get licenses or normal permits. The French government has made it very hard for devotees to preach. The government even encourages the citizens to harass the devotees who go out on sankirtana. One may think, "Why won't Krishna wipe out all of these obstacles? Why won't He stop their behavior?" Of course the religionists will think in this way. For them, spiritual life means that we should be peaceful and God should provide for our material gratification.

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