Prasadam - Prayer: Purport by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

                                                  Prasadam - Prayer

CLICK Here To Listen - Prasadam Mantra

 Before honouring the Prasadam we say the following prayer:

                                          maha-prasade govinde
                                         nama-brahmani vaisnave
                                         svalpa-punya-vatam rajan
                                             visvaso naiva jayate
For those who have amassed very few pious activities, their faith in maha-prasad, in Sri Govinda, in the Holy Name and in the Vaishnavas is never born.

                               sarira avidya-jal, jodendriya tahe kal,
                                         jive phele visaya-sagore
                               tar' madhye jihva ati, lobhamoy sudurmati,
                                         ta ´ke jeta kathina samsare
O Lord, this material body is a place of ignorance, and the senses are a network of paths leading to death. Somehow, we have fallen into this ocean of material sense enjoyment, and of all the senses the tongue is most voracious and uncontrollable. It is very difficult to conquer the tongue in this world.

                                   krishna baro doyamoy, koribare jihva jay,
                                          sva-prasad-anna dilo bhai
                                  sei annamrita pao, radha-krishna-guna gao,
                                            preme dako chaitanya-nitai
But You, dear Krishna, are very kind to us and have given us such nice prasadam, just to control the tongue. Now we take this prasadam to our full satisfaction and glorify Their Lordships Sri Sri Radha Krishna, and in love call for the help of Lord Chaitanya and Lord Nityananda.

After cooking for krishna, the food will be offered with the following mantras:

CLICK Here To Listen - Prasadam Mantra

                                Prayer to Srila Prabhupada:

                                   nama om vishnu-padaya krishna-preshthaya bhu-tale
                                         shrimate bhaktivedanta-svamin iti namine

                                       namas te sarasvate deve gaura-vani-pracarine
"I offer my respectful obeisances unto His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who is very dear to Lord Krishna, having taken shelter at His lotus feet.

Our respectful obeisances are unto you, O spiritual master, servant of Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Goswami. You are kindly preaching the message of Lord Chaitanyadeva and delivering the Western countries, which are filled with impersonalism and voidism."

                                    Prayer to Lord Chaitanya:

                                     namo maha-vadanyaya krishna-prema-pradaya te
                                  krishnaya krishna-chaitanya-namne gaura-tvishe namah
"O most munificent incarnation! You are Krishna Himself appearing as Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. You have assumed the golden color of Srimati Radharani, and You are widely distributing pure love of Krishna. We offer our respectful obeisances unto You."

                                      Prayer to Lord Krishna:

                                     namo brahmanya-devaya go-brahmana-hitaya ca
                                      jagad-dhitaya krishnaya govindaya namo namah
"I offer my respectful obeisances unto Lord Krishna, who is the worshipable Deity for all brahmanas, the well-wisher of the cows and the brahmanas, and the benefactor of the whole world. I offer my repeated obeisances to the Personality of Godhead, known as Krishna and Govinda."

           Hare Krishna Hare Krishna - Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
                 Hare Rama Hare Rama - Rama Rama Hare Hare

Purport by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
The tongue is the most important sense within the body. Therefore it is recommended that if we want to control our senses we should first control the tongue. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has emphasized this. He describes our present conditioned state as sarira avidya-jal: we are packed up in the network of this material body, and we are just like a fish caught within a net. And not only are we caught in this body; we are also changing this "net" life after life, through 8,400,000 species. In this way we stay caught in the network of ignorance. Then, jodendriya tahe kal: our imprisonment within this network of ignorance is being continued on account of our desire for sense enjoyment. And out of all the senses, Bhaktivinoda Thakura says, the tongue is the most dangerous.

If we cannot control the tongue, then the tongue will oblige us to take different types of bodies, one after another. If a person is very much fond of satisfying his tongue by eating flesh and blood, then material nature will give him the facility to regularly taste fresh flesh and blood: he will get the body of a tiger or some other voracious meat-eating animal. And if one does not discriminate in his eating--if he eats all kinds of nonsense, everything and anything--then material nature will give him a hog's body, in which he will have to accept stool as his food. So much suffering is caused by the uncontrolled tongue.

There are six kinds of rasas (tastes), and if one is agitated by any one of them, he becomes controlled by the urges of the tongue. Some persons are attracted to the eating of meat, fish, crabs, eggs and other things produced by semina and blood and eaten in the form of dead bodies. Others are attracted by eating vegetables, creepers, spinach or milk products, but all for the satisfaction of the tongue's demands. Such eating for sense gratification-including the use of extra quantities of spices like chili and tamarind-is to be given up by Krishna conscious persons. The use of pan, haritaki, betel nuts, various spices used in pan-making, tobacco, LSD, marijuana, opium, liquor, coffee and tea is indulged in to fulfill illicit demands.

If we can practice accepting only remnants of food offered to Krishna, it is possible to get free from maya's victimization. Vegetables, grains, fruits, milk products and water are proper foods to offer to the Lord, as Lord Krishna Himself prescribes. However, if one accepts prasada only because of its palatable taste and thus eats too much, he also falls prey to trying to satisfy the demands of the tongue.

Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu taught us to avoid very palatable dishes even while eating prasada. If we offer palatable dishes to the Deity with the intention of eating such nice food, we are involved in trying to satisfy the demands of the tongue. If we accept the invitation of a rich man with the idea of receiving palatable food, we are also trying to satisfy the demands of the tongue. In Chaitanya-caritamrita (Antya 6.227) it is stated:

           jihvara lalase yei iti-uti dhaya / shishnodara-parayana krishna nahi paya
"That person who runs here and there seeking to gratify his palate and who is always attached to the desires of his stomach and genitals is unable to attain Krishna."

As stated before, the tongue, belly and genitals are all situated in a straight line, and they fall in the same category. Lord Chaitanya has said, bhala na khaibe ara bhala na paribe: "Do not dress luxuriously and do not eat delicious foodstuffs." (Cc. Antya 6.236)

Those who suffer from diseases of the stomach must be unable to control the urges of the belly, at least according to this analysis. When we desire to eat more than necessary we automatically create many inconveniences in life. However, if we observe fasting days like Ekadashi and Janmashtami, we can restrain the demands of the belly.

As far as the urges of the genitals are concerned, there are two-proper and improper, or legal and illicit sex. When a man is properly mature, he can marry according to the rules and regulations of the shastras and use his genitals for begetting nice children. That is legal and religious. Otherwise, he may adopt many artificial means to satisfy the demands of the genitals, and he may not use any restraint. When one indulges in illicit sex life, as defined by the shastras, either by thinking, planning, talking about or actually having sexual intercourse, or by satisfying the genitals by artificial means, he is caught in the clutches of maya. These instructions apply not only to householders but also to tyagis, or those who are in the renounced order of life. (Nectar of Instruction)

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