Srila Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja

Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
Govardhana, Vrndavana , India: November 15, 2005

You have been following some rules and regulations during the four months of Catur-masya, and especially during this one month of Kartika. This is now completed. We have also given some “wind-up,” so that you will be able to go on for the next four months. Then, after four months another winding will be given in Navadvipa-dhama. I am inviting you all. Not only should you all come, but each of you should bring ten people from your country. I want at least 15-20,000 devotees to come and perform parikrama in Navadvipa. Don’t fear that there will be no place for you. The dhama is cinmaya, transcendental. When you go there it will expand, and when you return to your countries it will contract. So don’t fear. As many devotees will come, we will be very happy to accommodate them.

Our performance of Urja-vrata, Catur-masya and Damodara-vrata were completed in such a way that there were no obstacles or disturbances at all. Sometimes there were even 1,500 devotees performing parikrama with us.

Don’t think, “Now I have finished my performance of bhajana, so now I can go and sleep.” Rather, this has been like a recharge. My Guru Maharaja, Srila Bhakti Prajnana Gosvami Maharaja, used to say, “Turn the key and give a recharge, and the next recharge will be given in Navadvipa.”

We should finish sweetly. During this month, we completed our discussions on the topics of Prema-samput and Damodarastakam. Last night we finished Madhurya-kadambini in a very sweet way, and this morning we will finish Srimad-Bhagavatam, Rasa-panchadyayi, which consists of the five chapters of the Tenth Canto on the subject of Sri Krsna's pastimes with the gopis. In the chapter called Uddhava-sandesh, Sri Uddhava thought, “I cannot understand the gopis. Let me return to Krsna in Dvaraka.”

Today, the last day of Kartika, all sannyasis and brahmacaris should shave their heads and cut their nails. This is called mundan or shaving. These days some people don’t like to perform mundan because they think, “How can I shave my head if I have to go to the office tomorrow?” Actually all should shave their hair and nails, even householders, according to their ability and faith. What is the benefit of this? All the sins, offences and anarthas in our body come out in the form of our hair and nails. By cutting them we become free from all these things. In our previous society, we used to see that at the time of births, brahminical sacrifices (any ritual for which brahmanas were invited to chant mantras and perform fire sacrifices), marriages, funerals and all other religious ceremonies people would shave their head for that reason.

There is some concession for ladies. They cannot shave their heads, so they can cook many varieties of foodstuffs and offer them to Thakurji (the Deities on the altar), and then distribute the Lord's prasadam to all. Their sins will be destroyed by that.

Translator: Sripad Damodara Maharaja
Editor: Syamarani dasi
Transcriber: Vasanti dasi
Typist: Janaki dasi