Monday, 23 August 2021

Friday, August 13, 2021

Oakville, Ontario


Temper Highs and Lows


Walking poles are what I lean on for a brief trek. I took those happy moments to use them after an evening Gita sangha at a household in Oakville.


“Are there oak trees in this town?” I asked one of its residence. They weren’t so sure. Who really knows their trees these days? But, in this Indian household, they know their different cuisine items. It’s been a year since our Oakville group physically got together. As everyone knows this virus has kept us apart.


What a great reunion it was to sit down, all together, and have that scrumptious meal! Hats off to the cooks, Prema Gaurangi and Panchami. I hope I didn’t leave anyone out.


In addition to food, we had kirtan and also Gita discussion from chapter 18. I cannot imagine a genuine spiritual gathering without illuminating any of these three items. It all started with our guru, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who, with humble beginnings, began this well-rounded program for fun. His formula was to render good, clean fun and Krishna Consciousness.


Drugs, meat, gambling and casual sex are taboo; if you want results. Those stipulations may sound rigid but it’s actually good to take some self-discipline.


Someone in the group asked about dealing with high emotions. My answer was to read chapter 6, which is all about tempering highs and lows.


May the Source be with you!

1 km

Monday, 16 August 2021

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Toronto West General


Third Visit


My third visit for Physio on my left knee went well. Adam, the trainer for today was pleased. According to him there’s still work to be done even though I walked in crutch free. After the visit I walked towards home and was feeling so much appreciation for a medical system that really does care for the individual. That’s how I feel about Adam and Kathy from the week before and also Kevin on the first visit.


And, I guess, I’ll give all the thank-you’s I can when the physician confronts my right knee. Thanks to Dr. Bakstein and the whole team at Mount Sinai Hospital. If all goes well, I’ll be back in action. We’ll see if anything turns into another marathon. For now, it’s baby steps.


Now, as the evening got serious with the darkness setting in, I had a good offer from Victor to take me to a reservoir where a running track exists. This is near Casa Loma, the famous castle, and I was equipped with two walking poles. The two of us moved into a well-maintained track. No, we didn’t run; just walked carefully and put a balanced pressure on both feet. It’s very liberating.


I want to thank Victor, and also Nanda for delivering prasad at noon. Karuna brought me to Physio and Rasesvara scooped me up part of the way over, back to the ashram. The heat is really something today.


May the Source be with you!

1 km


Please watch:


Tuesday, August 10, 2021

243 Avenue Rd., Toronto


The Real Formula


British Columbia is on fire, so is Greece. I have a formula for decent weather — three consecutive days of sunshine and then the fourth, a good rain shower. The wish is fairly futile because nature in the end does what it wants. Weather is the turbulent, unsteady thrill of nature where elements unite and collide. If you walk vast tracts of land you’ll certainly experience these freaks of nature. There is adventure in it.


In any event, three days of brightness did come our way in central Canada and by no coincidence, I’m sure, the perfect pattern I came up with actually transpired. Day number four and we got rained upon. It was not torrential but it was enough to leave a pool at the stair-landing where we sit and chant for the public and for ourselves.


Our regular crew of chanters demonstrated some apprehension about perhaps getting the buttocks soggy. But Vallabha and I were not so easily disturbed. “Let’s get a broom and sweep off the puddle, then lay out one of those Sri Lanka plastic decor mats that resemble grass mats, as ornate as they come.”


This technique worked and we were on our regimen. It was great. It’s a feel-good program — a delivery of the Name. The spirits weren’t dampened. No regrets.


It’s so easy to take a rain check on chanting but rainfall was minimal and there’s a need to share joy. Frankly there’s not too many places of worship that have people singing or reciting outside their door. We were unique. More song, more music, more dance!


May the Source be with you!

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Please watch:


Monday, August 9, 2021

243 Avenue Rd., Toronto


Getting Help From People and Sastra


Chris from Hamilton had come. “I’m dropping off some kids, including my son, at Wonderland and that gives me some time at the temple. I’m up for service.”


Such a wholesome attitude, is what I thought as I expressed the nature of helpfulness to our maintenance guy from Croatia, Vallabha Hari. Help is always needed around the ashram and the temple. So, Chris came to pitch in, with cleaning mostly. We appreciate his spirit.


The mind is at ease when all is clean and orderly and the spirit is right.


One thing I found to be very interesting in our study of sastra, The Bhagavatam, Canto 11, where the commentator delineates on concessions that were allowed within the Vedic lifestyle. For instance, those who were addicted to the habit of meat eating. Apparently, there is a bit of wiggle room for those attached to the flesh on the tongue. Here is the list of mammals, amphibians and reptiles that are permissible:


1) Rhinoceros, which are tough as hell to capture and his skin is hard and thick.

2) Rabbits, which multiple like crazy.

3) Turtles, which are not easy to penetrate.

4) Porcupine, an intimidating creature; with all its pins

5) The lizard, someone fearsome.


So, you can see sanctions are given but, in general, meat eating is discouraged. Thank God! That puts some clarity to the topic of meat eating. That was helpful.


May the Source be with you!

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