Poem for Apr 24

Japa Poem

Sat on bed, kept awake one and a half hours by open window, very pleasant air outside. Long rounds, nine minutes, but I didn’t try to rush them or judge them just on that account.

I could see before me the two areas of mental choice—distraction or attentiveness. I decided to keep trying to hear. The involuntary distractions were more or less constant, but when I found myself in some protracted train of thought, I had sufficient mental awareness to regard my reverie as bizarre—after all, I am supposed to be chanting Hare Krishna, not reminiscing! So I went back to hearing. That moment of admittance and discovery of deliberate distraction is often a good time to switch to better attention than usual. And attention has come to mean thinking of Krishna, whose name I chant.

(_Begging for the Nectar of the Holy Name_)


I describe the simple method
for controlling the mind
while chanting Hare Krishna:
first, become aware
that your mind is
wandering. Then
deliberately bring it
back to attention
on the holy name. Do
this repeatedly and persistently.