What Are You Praying For? Chant Hare Krsna and Connect!
HANSADUTTA: When you say “prayers”, what are you praying for? Everyone is actually praying at all times. When you go to the bank and ask for a loan, it’s a prayer. “Sir, I need that fifty thousand dolllars”—it’s a prayer. When we go to the university, we pray to the professor, “Please give me a good mark. Please give me my degree.” When we go for employment, we go to the interview, we give the person our resume and try to convince them they should hire us, we’re praying. Candidates for presidency or governor, they go to the public and plead, “Please give me your vote.” So everyone is praying.
The quality of the prayer is what we’re concerned with. And the simplest, most direct, most powerful prayer is simply to vibrate Krishna’s name. Why is that so? Because it’s pure. It’s like pure gold. If someone gives you a lump of pure gold that he found in the Sierra Mondre mountains, you don’t need to make it into any jewelry. It’s already valuable. Prabhupada gives this example. In India they have a saying that if you get gold, and it has a nice aroma, that’s an added attraction. Gold is already valuable, but if it has a pleasant aroma, that’s even better. So he says that chanting the holy name is like that, it’s so wonderful and so powerful that it’s like gold that has a pleasant aroma. Chanting the holy name is Krishna. The process of chanting and the result of chanting are the same. As soon as you chant you’ve achieved the goal of that chanting. What is that goal? To connect to Krishna. That’s all. Just to connect to Krishna. That’s all you need.
QUESTION: What is the difference between this mantra and saying, “O Krishna” or “Krishna, Krishna, be my friend” or why this “Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna…”?
HANSADUTTA: That’s a good question: Why do we chant the mantra? All Sanskrit verses, shlokas are actually mantras. Man means “mind” and tra means “to deliver”. So the Hare Krishna mantra is known as the Maha Mantra, maha meaning “great” and mantra for deliverance of the mind. It’s the greatest mantra. Of all the mantras, this is the greatest mantra. This is the epitome, this is the apex. There is nothing more powerful, nothing more pure nor direct.
And the reason we chant it is because our predecessor acharyas chanted this mantra, and the chanting of this mantra is recommended in different shastras that this is the only way. What is that verse? Kalau nasty eva nasty eva nasty eva gatir anyatha. In this age, there is no other way. So we’re simply accepting what’s been given to us by our predecessors. We don’t have to manufacture anything. But if someone thinks, “Well, I’ll just say ‘Krishna, Krishna, Krishna’,” okay, that’s nice, but those persons who are really serious will be very attuned to the instructions and the behavior and example of the previous acharyas. They will not manufacture anything.
QUESTION: So when was this mantra first chanted?
HANSADUTTA: It has always been there. It’s eternal.
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