Destination Varanasi
28th of February, 2008 - 13:22
Leaving within the hour. It just dawned to me that Siva-ratri is right behind the corner, and Varanasi is approximately on the way...
Bengali lessons concluded
26th of February, 2008 - 15:53
Two months of Bengali lessons with Sakhicharan and Bisakha came to a conclusion today with the last chapter of the textbook discussions finished.
New section: Downloads
26th of February, 2008 - 7:55
A new section has been opened, hosting a number of media for download.
Raganuga for grabs
25th of February, 2008 - 21:26
Raganuga.Com and Raganuga.Org are available if someone wants to take the domains over and begin something anew.
Vraja Journal Digest - Newsletter discontinued
25th of February, 2008 - 7:52
The newsletter is discontinued in favor of a RSS newsfeed. I'm also heading towards Orissa in a few days, will be away for the better part of two months.
25th of February, 2008 - 3:44
I received a letter asking about the specifics of the design Visakha-sakhi draws on Radha's forehead after her morning bath, otherwise described as kama-yantra in Govinda-lilamrita. This is the reply.
Project Index - Concluding words
23rd of February, 2008 - 19:16
The project index at Madhavananda.com is indefinitely frozen. These are the concluding words posted today in the news section in announcing the same.
Soundscapes Reloaded
22nd of February, 2008 - 14:16
This is a continuation of the earlier blog entry featuring random sounds from Radhakund.
The Eve-teasing Problem
21st of February, 2008 - 15:24
In light of the recent rape and murder of Ananda-lila, an Australian girl who was staying in Vrindavan, people have asked for my comments on the culture of sexual harassment regrettably prevalent in India, sometimes labeled "eve-teasing", a rather archaic and tidy expression for an ugly social wrong.
Project ongoings
19th of February, 2008 - 11:09
Notes on diverse projects as the show is winding up. The ongoing-section of Vraja Journal retires.
Levels of Mantra and Meditation
17th of February, 2008 - 5:22
There are different levels on which a mantra functions or may be employed. Awareness of them, along with honest assessments of one's internal mental growth and present state, can prove to be helpful. I am also contrasting them with the theology of the four common aspects we know as nama, rupa, guna and lila.
And if you want to discuss...
16th of February, 2008 - 8:49
A few days back, my friend Jijaji told me he'd like to see a feature for leaving online comments on blog entries.
Gaudiya Discussions - Archives Reloaded
16th of February, 2008 - 8:26
These are the archives of Gaudiya Discussions, the once mighty giant of online Gaudiya Vaishnava discussions, debates, history, theology, controversy and creativity...
To Russian disciples of BVNM
15th of February, 2008 - 8:57
I keep hearing from several sources that some Russian disciples of BVNM have, as I had much predicted, employed my recent writings as ammunition in their hate campaign against the babaji tradition. Since none have contacted me in person, this is my open letter to them all.
Random soundscapes from Radhakund
12th of February, 2008 - 16:23
A while back a friend asked me to record some random bits of sound at Radhakund to get a better feel of the atmosphere. Here goes.
What I really want to say
11th of February, 2008 - 16:46
I just received a comment asking: "Do you want to stop posting clarifications and disclaimers and get down to the nitty-gritty of what you want to say?" Now, what do I really want to say? <pin drop silence follows>
My insight ventures
11th of February, 2008 - 7:15
With the occasional reference to yogic or Advaitin scriptures, or Buddhist suttas for that matter, some have been wondering about my explorations of knowledge outside the classical Vaisnava canon. Let's have a brief gloss on the why and the what to give everyone a better picture of what things are all about.
For all of you who want to spread the word
5th of February, 2008 - 19:39
Today I'm writing a note to all of you there, whether you're disciples of Narayana Maharaja, gurubhais of mine, or just random folks who want to interpret what I've written and tell all about it to your pals and all. And here's what I wish to say.
When the weather report is on
4th of February, 2008 - 19:30
I'd like to put in a note to all those who would judge me for what I am as I dive into the dark depths of my heart and pull out these horrendous blog entries. And yes, also for those well-wishers who have already concluded that I am a person with zilch spiritual authority or insight and informed me of the same. As well as for anyone else who might alter their perceptions of me because of what I have written, what I am writing and what I will come to write.
TBI - Part 3 - The factors that made me credulous
4th of February, 2008 - 19:16
From my last blog in this series, you'll remember the picture of someone rather stressed out by noise and corruption, pondering his future direction. What were my inner workings in the period that immediately preceded meeting this babaji? What made me so vulnerable to being duped? That's in turn for today's blog.
The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
1st of February, 2008 - 18:13
A word of clarification is in place, as my blogs as of late seem to have created some buzz in the blogosphere. Was Bhaktisiddhanta right about those bad babajis after all? My recent blogs were briefly mentioned in Jagadananda's recent blog, and a comment popped in: "Perhaps now its understood what Bhaktisidhanta was talking about...?" This needs some attention.

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To Russian disciples of BVNM
Posted: 15th of February, 2008 - 8:57
I keep hearing from several sources that some Russian disciples of BVNM have, as I had much predicted, employed my recent writings as ammunition in their hate campaign against the babaji tradition. Since none have contacted me in person, this is my open letter to them all.

Dear Friends,

I'd like to let you know that nothing irritates me as double standards do. Your ongoing campaign stands as a good example of this, though one hopes it's more rooted in ignorance than it is in malice.

Please reconsider your position in furthering the smear propaganda you spread to validate your own group and its precepts. Your greatness should not depend on your ability to put down an imagined opponent. Of course it must bother you that people are leaving your group and finding shelter with some mahatmas at Radhakund. Rather than engaging in propaganda against the babajis, it would be prudent for you to clean your own act and by that become attractive enough that people wouldn't have the need to look around.

Remember how we talked back in the days how people keep flowing from ISKCON to BVNM, but people rarely go back? And this was so the evidence of BVNM having the mightier product for sale, yes it was indeed. And so we looked down upon ISKCON for their critique of BVNM, those poor ignorant beings who lacked the sukriti for better. Look now when the tables are turned, are you any different at all? "No, but we're different!"

There is a fair-sized population of babajis leading sub-standard lifestyles, and you have now discovered some evidence in my writings and employed it for your wicked purposes. However, people living in glass houses shouldn't be throwing them rocks around. Perhaps you've heard the old proverb?

Please consider that you are most likely isolated into a small corner of the BVNM world, and as such quite possibly rather limited in your exposure to the problems that are rampant also in your own group, or otherwise unwilling to be awake to their reality as an aspect of your fanatical faith.

In your sanga, is there no history of sannyasis flirting with girls and getting married? In your sanga, is there no history of some senior sannyasis, who charm girls with their sweet and savory rasika talks, and take sexual advantage of them? One springs to mind, who people said back in the days was surely the most advanced of them all. An abuse spanning over several years, and the abuser being protected by the leader of your group himself from disciplinary action. Curiously enough, that very same sannyasi, who is back in the preaching business as if nothing had happened, was the first one to name Sri Ananta Das Babaji in public as a sahajiya.

In your sanga, do you think it is a gem of moral beatitude that single women, who are so committed to one-pointed bhajan that they don't care to marry, have discovered an easy fix for the occasional sexual urge in having casual sex? Who do you think consumes more ganja, the folks here at Radhakund or the initiated members of your congregation? Is it not that those raganuga-festivals of yours often double as match-making fairs where feromones hum high in the stratosphere?

People who are insiders no doubt know an ocean more. I haven't been keen on tracking the scandals, abuse and misconduct of your group, as it generally doesn't interest me at all. I have nothing to win or to lose, regardless of what your group may be. No doubt the issues I mention are but a fragment of the grand total of problems breeding under the polished cover people like to project.

Considering your own embarrassing state of affairs in many respects, wouldn't it be prudent to be minding your own business rather than finding an external object to fight? A common enemy no doubt serves both as a great unifier and as a distractor from internal problems. Russia, terrorists, babajis — you name it, the strategy is well established and regrettably also quite effective among the less perceptive populace, what to speak of those whose faculties of reason have been clouded over by religious fervor.

Please, let's stop these pathetic smear campaigns and try to each clean our own houses instead. That would, I believe, be much more constructive to a great number of causes, some of which we share.

In concluding, since I am being quoted, I'd like to quote myself from an earlier blog as something I would wish would also to be quoted to keep everything in perspective.

"I would like to be very clear in saying that I do not know of any issues that would lead me to deem any of the contemporary Gaudiya Vaisnava gurus who have initiated Western disciples, whether at Radhakund or elsewhere, as someone to be classified as plain counterfeit currency."

Please also include the above in those letters of yours to ensure that no undue critique is directed to the undeserving.

I have written a pointed letter with hopes of making a point. You'll forgive me if anything in this letter has come across as unkind. I do love you all, but I get allergic reactions from some of the things you say. Wishing you a good life and smooth progress towards your spiritual ideals!

Madhavananda Das
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