Kirtan: Ancient Medicine for Modern Man
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© 2004 - Hansadutta das

Kirtan: Ancient Medicine for Modern Man

By Hansadutta das

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Shikshastaka of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu

Five hundred years ago in Bengal, India, Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu founded the Sankirtan movement for congregational chanting of the holy names of God and predicted that one day the holy names would be sung and chanted in every town and village throughout the world. In His youth, Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu displayed extraordinary scholarship, and other scholars came from far and wide to challenge Him or become His students. Indeed, throughout His life there was no one who could defeat Him in philosophical argument. Either His opponents ran away or were won over by the wonderful explanations Lord Chaitanya presented, based on the Vedic scriptures and the Acharyas. He instructed His scholarly disciples to write numerous books on the science of Krishna consciousness, but He Himself left only eight written verses, Sri Shikshastaka, and the whole sum and substance of His mission is contained in these prayers.

1. Glory to the Sri Krishna Sankirtan, which cleanses the heart of all the dust accumulated for years and extinguishes the fire of conditional life, of repeated birth and death. This Sankirtan movement is the prime benediction for humanity at large, because it spreads the rays of the benediction moon. It is the life of all transcendental knowledge. It increases the ocean of transcendental bliss, and it enables us to fully taste the nectar for which we are always anxious.
2. O my Lord, Your holy name alone can render all benediction to living beings, and thus You have hundreds and millions of names like Krishna and Govinda. In these transcendental names You have invested all Your transcendental energies. There are not even hard and fast rules for chanting these names. O my Lord, out of kindness, You enable us to easily approach You by Your holy names, but I am so unfortunate that I have no attraction for them.
3. One should chant the holy name of the Lord in a humble state of mind, thinking one's self lower than the straw in the street; one should be more tolerant than a tree, devoid of all sense of false prestige and should be ready to offer all respects to others. In such a state of mind one can chant the holy name of the Lord constantly.
4. O almighty Lord, I have no desire to accumulate wealth, nor do I desire beautiful women, nor do I want any number of followers. I only want Your causeless devotional service birth after birth.
5. O Krishna, I am Your eternal servitor, yet somehow or other I have fallen into the ocean of birth and death. Please pick me up from this ocean of death and place me as one of the atoms at Your lotus feet.
6. O my Lord, when will my eyes be decorated with tears of love flowing constantly when I chant Your holy name? When will my voice choke up, and when will the hairs of my body stand on end at the recitation of Your name?
7. O Krishna! Feeling Your separation, I am considering a moment to be twelve years or more. Tears are flowing from my eyes like torrents of rain, and I am feeling all vacant in the world in Your absence.
8. I know no one but Krishna as my Lord, and He shall remain so even if He handles me roughly by His embrace or makes me brokenhearted by not being present before me. He is completely free to do anything and everything, for He is always my worshipful Lord unconditionally.

Contents | Foreword | Shikshastaka | Preface | Introduction | Page 1 | Page 2 | Page 3 . . . Next | Previous
About the Author | Supporting References | Glossary

Hansadutta das
Rittvik Representative of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Kirtan - Shikshastaka/ WORLD SANKIRTAN PARTY
©2004 - Hansadutta das