Free Write Journal #286


Free Write Journal #286

March 1, 2024

Satsvarupa Maharaja’s Weekly Health Report for March 1

“Satsvarupa Maharaja had a rash of headaches which seemed to be coming from an adverse reaction to his last migraine injection—a different one than he previously had with success—but it was on back order. Now we are waiting to see what reaction he’ll have to a different one. He also had another trip to the dentist, and this time he was advised to put a small dab of goop at the end of the denture to help grip the gums. Hopefully this will work, because the options are running out. The saga continues.

“Thank you,

Japa Retreat Journal for 3/1/24

Japa Quotes from ISKCON IN THE 1970s: DIARIES

Any emotion can be purified if it is felt in relation to the Supreme Person. For instance, hankering. Hankering in material life, in forgetfulness of Krsna, is the cause for bondage, misery, but if I can hanker after my sweet, eternal relationship with Krsna, and if in that mood I chant the holy names Hare Krsna Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna Hare Hare/ Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare—then that is the perfection of existence and I will feel ecstatic bliss of love of God, just as the gopis did. Any emotion, when dovetailed in transcendental loving service to Krsna, the-Supreme Person, is pure, righteous, and eternal.


Eight minutes, forty-five seconds per round is too slow. Speed it up, Prabhu. And gently push out other thoughts. Return to hari-nama. That means you ask Krsna to please work the balm upon your heart. Please reveal to me the will of Krsna in my life. Let me come from this retreat a better man.


The local president and treasurer (of the temple) will manage. The GBC can supervise that things are going on. The first management is that each and every member is chanting sixteen rounds and following the regulations. Otherwise, where is our spiritual strength? Haridasa Thakura, such an exalted personality, so advanced in his numerical chanting (he never stopped). Therefore he was given namacarya. Even at the time of his death, three hundred thousand names daily. He is an example. Sixteen rounds is not a very large number. The lowest in India is twenty. See that the members are chanting. Then you do other things.


You are going to solve the problems of life and you want it very cheaply? No. If you want the nicest thing, then you have to pay for it. By the grace of Lord Caitanya the payment has been made easy: chant Hare Krsna. Everything becomes easy. All this controlling system becomes very easy. Chanting Hare Krsna brings all the perfection of self-realization. That is a fact. In this age when people are so fallen, nothing else is possible. It is practical and easy—one can realize one’s self. You can experience how you are making progress, just as when you eat, your hunger is satisfied.


Remember The Teachings of Lord Caitanya, page 29: “Only the bare necessities of the body should be accepted, and putting the bodily necessities second, one should primarily cultivate Krsna consciousness by chanting the holy name of God.”


Prabhupada was stressing the chanting of Hare Krsna. Simply chant Hare Krsna. We should stress this—whenever we have time, chant Hare Krsna loudly or softly, but the tongue should be moving, not officially or blurring it.


Kirtaniya-sada. Chanting is good in every age. Prahlada preached like that in Satya-yuga. The people in those ages were proud of material accomplishments, but they could have simply chanted Hare Krsna. Everything else is additional to the chanting. Gosvamis added some of the old procedures just so smarta-brahmanas wouldn’t reject it as a strange new movement. The main thing is chanting.


A boy in the hospital who is about to die is chanting. Srila Prabhupada said we have to die sooner or later in this body. This is a nice opportunity that he is chanting Hare Krsna. We should not lament.


This morning I deliberately indulged in feverish literary plan-making while chanting japa. I’m guilty of it. I saw it happening, and I said, “Well, all right, let me do it, these ideas are coming, I need to write them down. I’ve been waiting for these ideas and now they’ve finally come for a next book. Anyway, this is service too, to Krsna.” Typical rationalizations that I make. But I just wanted to admit that here on the morning walk.


 . . . The process of chanting is to hear. Thoughts may come, but the process is simply to hear and chant with the tongue. Nothing is very hard in Krsna consciousness. Just do it sincerely as the spiritual master orders. Not hard at all. Understand Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Simply admit this. Why wait for many births? “My Lord Krsna, You are supreme. For so long I have forgotten You. Now I accept You.” Accept Krsna as the Supreme Absolute Truth and your business is finished—if you stay in that position.


As for unhappiness, it lies in my lack of enthusiasm. I do not chant the holy name with dependence or even attention, just with deadened duty, as if I am stuck. The example is given of a man who falls into a covered-over well in the field. Far from any people’s hearing, he may yell, but who will hear him to help him? I have by myself gotten into these bad habits, lost the taste of enthusiasm and immersion in preaching thoughts, and so my lamentation can’t bring help.


While my Godbrothers may consider me a surrendered, humble devotee, I am falling asleep when my spiritual master speaks and more—a whole list of offenses and bad mental habits.


Not immersed in Krsna-thought. These things disqualify me as I pray to the Panca-tattva to please grant me life enough to worship at Their feet and to chant the Panca-tattva mantra and Hare Krsna with real feeling and attention. That will save me from the swarm of petty vices that have weakened me, and then I can tell the whole world how the chanting of these mantras will save them from their hell-bound path of mass forgetfulness of Krsna, which is making chaos in the world.


Prabhupada is completely convinced of Krsna. Therefore, to associate with him is the greatest assurance for a devotee. There is no question that he cannot effectively answer. He can give the solution to any anxiety or lamentation because when he says, “Chant Hare Krsna,” one is able to accept it: “Yes, if I simply chant the holy names I will be saved.”


In Srimad-Bhagavatam we find that revival of love of Krsna doesn’t depend on “the mechanical system of hearing and chanting, but it solely and wholly depends on the causeless mercy of the Lord.” Not that He is dependent like a puppet on the sound of His name uttered by anyone. He gives devotional service to the sincere devotee when He is satisfied with him. He is svarat (independent). Even mechanical chanting, however, will reduce the miseries of material desire. He will come and award bhakti certainly, but we have to be sincere. Otherwise, it is possible to chant vociferously and not get the benefit, if Krsna doesn’t care to award bhakti. If one chants with too much offense, he may not benefit. One who is desiring to serve Krsna—tesam satatam yuktanam—will be given intelligence. Real quality has to be there.


From The Journals of Satsvarupa dasa Goswami, Vol. 3: Be Prepared

pp. 124-25

April 9, 2023

4:33 A.M.

I wrote a letter to Lord Krsna and Srila Prabhupada at this time yesterday, but I can’t think of what to say today. I could try a “Morning Stream Of Consciousness,” as I did in Volume Two, but I want it to be Kṛṣṇa-conscious worthy. Today in our group reading, we started hearing Chapter Four of Bhagavad-gita As It Is. Krsna says He spoke this science of yoga to the sun god, Vivasvan, Vivasvan taught it to his son Manu, and so it was meant to be passed down through the rajarsis in disciplic succession. But in the course of time, due to unscrupulous commentaries, the message was lost. Kṛṣṇa says to Arjuna, “Today I am giving to you the same eternal teachings because you are My bhakto ‘si me sakha ceti (“you are My devotee and friend”). Kṛṣṇa tells Arjuna how the teachings are to be continued into the future:

“Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Inquire from him submissively and render service unto him. The self-realized souls can impart knowledge unto you because they have seen the truth.” (Bg. 4.34)

Prabhupada said there should be many spiritual masters, and they should spread Kṛṣṇa ‘s Bhagavad-gita unchanged all over the world. The Gita teaches what has been found in other religious scriptures, but it contains vital information not found in other scriptures. For example, the teachings of the transformation of the soul from one body to another, and so many higher instructions, lead to bhakti (devotional service), and ultimately going home, back to Godhead, never to return. All these things can be obtained in one lifetime by a determined disciple under the guidance of a bona-fide spiritual master.

Free Write

I wanted to put here something I read in Memories: Anecdotes of a Modern-Day Saint. But I couldn’t find it. From my memory, I can reconstruct what it said (approximately).

New editors were in control of Back to Godhead magazine. But there were criticisms of it. They didn’t put pictures of Krsna in the magazine. Ramesvara was defending it. Prabhupada said something to the effect that, “Give it back to Satsvarupa Maharaja. He will make it an old-fashioned Back to Godhead magazine.” That was the time when Prabhupada actually gave me back the post of chief editor of Back to Godhead. The new editors were trying to make the magazine more accessible to the nondevotees, and they were doing it by de-emphasizing pictures of Radha and Krsna and the spiritual world (and pictures of devotees on sankirtana). But Prabhupada liked the “old-fashioned” way I did it when I was the editor. He remembered that, and he called me to take back charge of the magazine and restore it to what it was like in the old days.

Ramesvara was defeated and flustered by Prabhupada’s decision. He said, “But Prabhupada ! . . .” Prabhupada replied, “Take it to the GBC.”

The Journal should just be an honest account of what’s happening, Kṛṣṇa conscious excerpts, sincere aspirations to attain a higher station.

From May Apples: Writing Sessions in Stroudsburg, PA – Queens, NY – Philadelphia, PA – Baltimore, MD (May 5-13, 1996)

pp. 31-32

Writing Session #4

Reading a little in the Namamrta with some feeling. And I think about taste. Could I discuss such a thing with R.S.? Say, “You know our philosophy has all the answers.” Steve Galeburg said to me he didn’t want all pat answers to everything . . . Say, “I believe and accept and live in Krsna conscious teachings, but what do I feel?” Or say, “I used to feel this more keenly and was more willing to tell the world with hopes of converting them to Krsna consciousness, or at least I had faith that even if they didn’t join us and become devotees, people would become greatly benefited just to hear Hare Krsna chanting or to take prasadam. Where is that fervor? Gone with the old days of the Boston temple?” Did it exist even then? I was always one who preferred to stay indoors and read . . .

You couldn’t very well discuss these things with R.S. As soon as you say, “Our philosophy has all the answers,” he’d laugh. He can take on strong attacks to faith because he’s so philosophical, sees and analyzes in that light. Things come back to brahma-sabda as the best proof, and so Krsna consciousness is the best knowledge. Epistemology.

So you can talk of other things at the Friday lunch.

Reading C.K. Williams telling of cruelty and violence and lust. Puts it on the page in his poems. Confesses, attests to it, all details of the gory and horrible. I flinch from it. Yeah. Timid soul they say, took to the Krsna conscious movement (religion) because it provided him answers to all the sufferings. He couldn’t handle it in the real world of lust and crime and injustice and competition.

So he opted for religion, like joining a monastery. Neither could he go the way of middle-class values; he’d revolted from that so much in coming of age, getting out of parents’ mode, U.S. Navy and then Lower East Side.

What are you trying to say? I know worldly people, poets like C.K. Williams and so many others, see Krsna consciousness as a—


Here we are. Leave at 4:30 this morning. M. is waiting for a mechanic to come, and he’s got washers and bolts, big ones, and they’ll tighten the parts under the van. Hope that will be good enough until the company sends us new parts in the mail. Sure hope we don’t break down on route to New York City or Philly. It’s my van, Stephen Guarino; although I don’t drive, I’m the owner.

Don’t want it that way, to be accountable. M says don’t worry, it will go all right. Whatever you own can get you into trouble, but you need to have things . . .

If R.S. asks me what are you writing, I’ll say, “I haven’t finished my memoirs with Srila Prabhupada. I’m writing comments on the letters he wrote me. Did one volume years ago and only recently continued it. It’s like a history of ISKCON for me in those years.”

But I’m not actually writing that. I could tell him, as his wife also hears, “I write poems. You know, of daily experience. I just did a first draft of one the other day which could be a series to continue during these weeks of May, where I said I have drifted away from inner core of ISKCON.”

No, I’d never say that.

Poems. He once said he’d be willing to talk with me about a poem I wrote. He meant he’d be a teacher or critic. I didn’t want that. I can’t stand that.

And so I’ll have to think of a few luncheon topics, otherwise it will flow of its own.

(May 6, 1996, indoors at Shaunaka Rsi’s house, 50 degrees, rainy day)

From Forgetting the Audience

pp. 174-76

This is not a book. But it will be sweet to write a book again. Maybe I can find new themes and a slight shift in the genre. A good way to do it is to keep pushing, keep doing this genre of free-writing with no book in mind. If you can’t stand it and want to write a book, then that will come—it will evolve and will be a different kind of book.

My little, little ventures into “absurd stories” have been sufficiently continuous, haven’t driven me to want to do them on a binge like my other fiction.

It just seems a little too much the same that every day for three, four hours I write with no theme except how I feel. That can be sufficient. But I have to listen to my inner direction, creative voice, desire to use the writing in the best way, etc. Don’t write forced or artificial, or without the love—and of course don’t write outside Krsna consciousness.

I decided that starting tomorrow, I’ll talk (think out loud) into the tape recorder as I take a morning walk in the shadow of Mount Brandon. That talking will be like these notes have been so far, not a formulated book, and not “Prabhupada recall” drafts or “Letters from a Sannyasi”—but free talk.

Thus I’m responding to a feeling for change in the writing at this retreat. That still doesn’t tell me what to do with the three or four hours of writing I’ve been doing for eleven days. . . . .

I’m going to go to the cliff right now and write there in hopes of some outdoor inspiration.

The basis for writing. Don’t give it up. Be humble, however. Don’t think you are a conqueror who shall outdo Narottama dasa Thakura. You are just a confused Westerner trying to grasp the mercy of Lord Caitanya’s culture for humans as given by Srila Prabhupada. My own “culture” is a mishmash of pop America and random academics, speculation, literary permissiveness, egotism . . .

The tide is out, black seaweed exposed on the light gray “moon” rocks. When I first got here I felt shy seeing a fishing boat moving from right to left. I persisted and sat down anyway. Now he has turned from left to right, dragging his net. He may think I’m a useless tourist wasting time on shore while he works hard. I don’t know his labors. But he doesn’t know mine either as I sit with pen, dragging my nets for fish of direction.

If my main purpose is japa, I might think how writing could support that more. Yet what can I do? When I chant, I chant. I know I should bring the mind back into prayerful hearing—that mostly I can’t do it. How can writing—a separate discipline—help japa? I’m not writing a sequel to Begging where I’m thinking of the reader

and how to help him chant.
Okay, tell yourself, “Man, why don’t you pay
attention when you chant?”

Bring yourself toward prayer. Surely writing can help with that, with a literary version. O God, O Krsna, O spiritual master, allow me to be sincere. I wish to chant with devotion. I don’t know what to do. All I know is to count and pronounce the names and surmount drowsiness and to sometimes notice what I’m thinking and then correct myself.

I read references to sannyasa, like Sarvabhauma’s concern that Lord Caitanya was such a young sannyasi and might be allured. Srila Prabhupada comments that a sannyasi should study the Vedas, be renounced, and avoid allurement. Then I heard Srila Prabhupada lecturing in 1966, Sixth chapter Bhagavad-gita As It Is, on yogabrastha. He said, “Suppose someone takes to spiritual life and falls down . . . “ He mentioned feminine allurement and gave the example of Visvamitra and Menaka. I am afraid of this. In one sense, that fear is good. I’m so afraid I don’t even dream of it—I wake up if dreams get sexy. I’m grateful for that. Please protect my sannyasa.

From Life with the Perfect Master

pp. 44-46

After the walk, there was a press conference in the reception room of the Tibetan Suite. Half a dozen reporters and TV men, mostly Britishers, came and fired questions at Srila Prabhupida in the usual manner. When Srila Prabhupada mentioned the need for renunciation, one of the men remarked, “You speak of renunciation, and here you are in the presidential suite.”

“For me,” Prabhupada replied, “I could live under a tree, but would you come to the press conference?”

One of the men asked Prabhupada his opinion of a popular, controversial guru. Prabhupada had been asked such questions before, and he would sometimes say, “I don’t know him, but in Bhagavad-gita, Krsna says . . .” or something like that—straightforward, and yet avoiding a personal criticism. But this time Prabhupada answered in an overwhelming way. “He is a cheater,” Prabhupada said. “He claims that he is God. Anyone who says that he is God is actually just the opposite. Instead of being G-O-D, he is D-O-G.” The answer caused a ripple of laughter and excitement among the reporters. They went on with further questions and then left.

I had been gradually procuring items to make Srila Prabhupada a lunch. By 11:00 A.M. I had just barely enough vegetables, rice and spices to begin. Prabhupada had noticed on the hotel menu that the restaurant supplied jallebis, and he asked that some hot jallebis be sent up to supplement his lunch. Although cooking in a hotel living room proved difficult, somehow it all came together—thanks to Prabhupada’s triple-boiler and Panditji’s strainer technique for making capatis over an electric coil—and Prabhupada had a normal lunch.

Miraculously, Srila Prabhupada had done some Caitanya-caritamrta dictation that morning after being up all night, and at the first opportunity I set up the equipment and typed out his words. He had been translating Lord Caitanya’s instructions to Rupa Gosvami and was commenting on verses dealing with the bhakti-lata-bija , the plant of devotional service. Lord Caitanya was describing to Rupa that an offense to a Vaisnava is like a mad elephant that destroys the young plant. In several of the purports Prabhupada seemed to be addressing the discrepancies and problems that he had confronted in Hawaii and Hong Kong. One purport in particular pointed out the danger of so-called advanced devotees and the danger of leaving the society of devotees. As I typed out these words, I knew that I wanted to save them and show them to Bhurijana and others.

When the bhakta-lata creeper is growing the devotee must protect it by fencing it all around. The neophyte devotee must be protected by being surrounded by pure devotees. In this way he will not give the maddened elephant a chance to uproot his bhakti-lata creeper. When one associates with nondevotees, the mad elephant is set loose. Caitanya Mahaprabhu has said: asat sanga tyaga ei vaisnava-acara. The Vaisnava is to give up the company of nondevotees. A so-called mature devotee, however, commits a great offense by giving up the company of pure devotees. The living entity is a social animal, and if one gives up the society of pure devotees, he must associate with nondevotees (asat sanga). By contacting nondevotees and engaging in nondevotional activities, a so-called mature devotee will fall victim to the mad elephant offense. Whatever growth has taken place is quickly uprooted by such an offense. One should therefore be very careful to defend the creeper by fencing it in—that is, by following the regulative principles and associating with pure devotees.

If one thinks that there are many pseudodevotees or nondevotees in the Krsna consciousness society, one can keep direct company with the spiritual master, and if there is any doubt, one should consult the spiritual master. However, unless one follows the spiritual master’s instructions and the regulative principles governing chanting and hearing the holy name of the Lord, one cannot become a pure devotee. By one’s mental concoction one falls down.

From Seeking New Land: A Story

Chapter 4: September 4

It’s a dangerous world where people will accuse you, and claim they have proof you have committed the worst crimes. You say you hope it isn’t true, but, “I don’t remember – what do they say I did?”

To such a world, attacked by dreams, the guru, Prabhupada, is our invincible protector. Stay with him, little child.

Praise him.

Who wrote this floating book? Is it true it’s floating city like that built like Kardama Muni’s? As Kardama’s flying city was built for his wife’s pleasure and was perfect in every respect, this is a rube gold bird model with additions posthumously added, according to the moments rather than built to the original plan.

The architect went out to lunch, went for a swim in the Ganges. We never saw him again.

Please protect me he said. No one will read you after that.

On the morning of the homage, people were very tired from all- night observances. But they made their way to the temple room.

Keep moving along. Nothing is more important than a good reputation? Well, Bhagavad-gita says that comes and goes in this world. Most important is to be humble at the lotus feet of guru and Krsna, know you are full of sins (aparadhas) to all creatures. And chant the holy names, beg to be engaged in his service.

When are you going to India?

When are you going to India?

When are you going to understand? When Vrndavana and Mayapur came down to this earth… He had a great attachment and similar simply wanted to give up work in Western factories, live in the East, and savor the holy names on beads.

Gymnasts. Buns. Biscuits. Avoid, avoid the bad currents. Look at a 14th-century map. You can’t avoid death. The world may not be flat, but so what?

Clever asides… and allusions. Caught in a poke. And… Let me breathe in fresh air.

They think they are sane, but I claim I am pure and don’t do wrong.

There are young men who wear yellow T-shirts and attend the temple in the morning, and they think you are all right. Now, they hear you are wrong…

Some are Catholics, people of all faiths. They may not like this Vedic religion, especially as practiced in the West. Do work to win them over. But more central is weeping. And that too is sometimes a show by show-offs. The thumb trembles, unsure what to say.

Therefore, follow your spiritual master. He knows your rebellion is not your heart. You want to be obedient again. Don’t waste time, be prideless … You know that list of bhava. You know how to study?

Any way is OK.

Just hold a book close to yourself. Be grateful, say what you can.

Definitions. Logarithms. Riskies. He writes to a pulse beat. The art press. The poems.

Dear Srila Prabhupada, A. C. Swami Bhaktivedanta Prabhupada … thank you. Please let us always engage in your service. You protect us, you give us security, you we choose. You are capable, intrepid. You spread Krsna consciousness. To you I bow, I wish to serve.

From Write and Die: A Novel

pp. 111-112

Kolaveca Sridhar, I mentioned him.
For that you get two points. If you say
Lord Caitanya or Lord Krsna
you get one hundred percent for each poem.

If you say “I must write or I
may die,” you don’t get any points
until you link it to something like, “I
must write for Krsna or the penning
will have been in vain.”
Buy two thousand dollars
from Land’s End and send them—
clothes with slight defects—
to the poor in India. Some of the shoes
are perfect but are “overstocks,” etc.
So he did it and the children seemed
as happy as they do in America
when receiving a new pair of sneakers,
and running around the parikrama
trail. Girls in Western dresses
and pretty, can’t even notice what’s
wrong with them and it doesn’t matter
compared to what they were wearing.

Two photos taken for “Food from Krsna”
propaganda so they can get
more donations. Smilingest
kids. Their inner minds would smile anyway
if they actually knew
“I’m a resident of the holy dhama”
but if a pair of Nike sneakers does it,
We Americans have the shoes and
no happiness for residing in Vraja,
no feeling except to be an outsider rain or shine.
no sense, we don’t want to leave
in any case. We talk Vraja,
we laugh and cry Vraja, we know
all the birds and seasons and we don’t
envy tourists,

We don’t really know much about
the Supreme Lord’s book
but we know He’s Krsna,
God, and Radha too—
that’s a whale of learning
and rasa. A trillion light-years away
or millions of years passed as
the astronomers claim when they
look at a planet through their
telescope, life existed on Mars
and other burnt-out planets,
but now it’s gone. This
is the only one left.

I’m like that in the distance from the dhama
In my small friendly heart
from Krsna’s heart
of love.

Lord, will you reach down to me?
I’ll ask my sports coach how I can balance my
exertion headaches with my need
for exercise.

I’ll ask my counselor how to increase.
There seems no big way
the medical doctor says you
are already chanting by whatever
you do. But none of the others
really believe that. They say
it’s too naïve. But Krsna may forgive me
or give me strength,
to revive taste
for moving those old
red cherries through my
worn fingers. Used to rip holes through
the bead bags and pronouncing clearly.

Teresa of Avila said it’s very important to have a learned director or you may indulge in “silly devotions.” She sought out learned men, even if they weren’t advanced in prayer. At least they knew theoretically the right directions and would not lead her wrong. She yearned for knowledge to give foundation to her soaring visions. This seems contrary to The Dark Cloud of Unknowing, where one is advised to put knowledge aside while in meditation and simply yearn in devout passion for one word, like “love” or “God”—yearn for lover, for penetrating through the cloud of ignorance that you have allowed to come between you and God. He is merciful and wants to come to you. Hearing your ardent, desperate, persistent thumping from beneath the cloud,

He will descend and embrace you. You need not be a scholastic. Simply a lover. An “ignorant” lover. A bulldog who won’t give up. Your prayers are imperfect. Your knuckles are bloodied, “Please Krsna, have mercy on me, a sinner.”

See how these words are serving, by imagination. Here’s a metaphor. We have a nineteen-foot boat. The water is a bit choppy, but the cork bumpers are protecting the sides of the boat when it hits the dock. All aboard, four of us. Start up the inboard engine. Hit throttles. A Johnson motor, three hundred horsepower, kicks foam. Throw the rope from the dock into the boat. Our captain starts the engine, backs up, we slowly maneuver our way through the docks and boats and into open water. The water slaps against the forward part of the hull. Is it too rough to go out? No, not so bad. We will not go speedy. Delicious spray. I wear protective mask-glasses over my prescription lenses. Put my rubber hood over my head. Smiles to one another. We are not on a killing expedition but trying to find God once again, en el alma de el querpo [in the soul of the body].


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Essays Volume 1: A Handbook for Krishna Consciousness

This collection of Satsvarūpa dāsa Goswami’s writings is comprised of essays that were originally published in Back to Godhead magazine between 1966 and 1978, and compiled in 1979 by Gita Nagari Press as the volume A Handbook for Kṛṣṇa Consciousness.

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Essays Volume 2: Notes From the Editor: Back to Godhead 1978–1989

This second volume of Satsvarūpa dāsa Goswami’s Back to Godhead essays encompasses the last 11 years of his 20-year tenure as Editor-in-Chief of Back to Godhead magazine. The essays in this book consist mostly of SDG’s ‘Notes from the Editor’ column, which was typically featured towards the end of each issue starting in 1978 and running until Mahārāja retired from his duties as editor in 1989.

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Essays Volume 3: Lessons from the Road

This collection of Satsvarupa dasa Goswami’s writings is comprised of essays that were originally published in Back to Godhead magazine between 1991 and 2002, picking up where Volume 2 leaves off. The volume is supplemented by essays about devotional service from issues of Satsvarupa dasa Goswami’s magazine, Among Friends, published in the 1990s.

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Forgetting the Audience

Writing Sessions at Castlegregory, Ireland, 1993Start slowly, start fastly, offer your obeisances to your spiritual master, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. You just drew his picture with your pencils. He appears carved out of wood…

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Last Days of the Year

I found I had hit a stride in my search for theme in writing, then began to feel the structure limiting me. After all, I had given myself precious time to write full-time; I wanted to enter the experience as fully as possible. For me, this means free-writing—writing sessions with no predetermined shape, theme, or topic…

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Daily Compositions

This volume is comprised of three parts: prose meditations, free-writes, and poems each of which will be discussed in turn. As an introduction, a brief essay by the author, On Genre, has also been included to provide contextual coordinates for the writing which follows…

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Meditations & Poems

A comprehensive retrospective of poetic achievement and prose meditations, using a new trajectory described as “free-writing”. This volume will offer to readers an experience of the creativity versatility which is a hallmark of this author’s writing.

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Stream of consciousness poetry that moves with the shifting shapes and colors characteristic of a kaleidoscope itself around the themes of authenticity. This is a book will transport you to the far reaches of the author’s heart and soul in daring ways and will move you to experience your own inner kaleidoscope.
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A narrative poem. challenging and profound, about the journey of an itinerant monk who pursues new means of self-Seeking New Land

expression.The reader is invited to discover his or her own spiritual pilgrimage within these pages as the author pushes every literary boundary to boldly create something wholly new and inspiring.

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