Category Archives: Vedic Education

Para Siksha – A Symposium on Vedic Education Day 1



So Srila Prabhupada in the 1960, then he envisioned this program of having a study, a systematic study of his books, going through the Bhagavad-gita, Nectar of Devotion, Isopanisad, Upadesamrta, as the fundamental course, the basis, because all the instructions are given in these books. Then Bhagavatam expands that out, gives more elaboration, and then Caitanya Caritamrta, then that gives how the Gaudiyas themselves apply these teachings that are there in the Gita, Nectar of Devotion and the Bhagavatam. And this is based on the course structure given by Srila Bhaktisidhhanta Sarasvati Thakura. Continue reading BHAKTIVEDANTA THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY GRADUATION TALK

Brihad Manu Siksha #10 Lecture Notes

Full lecture transcription [link not active yet] 

  • One who is not up to a particular standard and properly initiation, should not pronounce the Vedic mantras.
  • We should be wearing whatever is the prescribed dress of our sampradaya.


  • Maximum rules on purity is described in the section dealing with grihasthas. Everyone is dealing with purity, but rules are given in those places where it is the most relevant.
  • Brahmachari should abstain from anything that has gone sour that is not naturally sour. Excess sourness thins the semen, so it tends to go down. Semen is present in the whole body.
  • Payment for Mayapur Gurukula Education is only meant for things that students themselves use. Teachers use nothing of the money given by the parents, otherwise the teachers would be under the parents as if hired.
  • Only brahmanas are supposed to run schools, not vaishyas or kshatriyas.
  • Fines collected from people who have committed mortal sins are not used for any day-to-day purposes. They are either given to extremely qualified brahmanas, or put into water.
  • Articles meant yajna should never be placed directly on the ground.
  • Students who eat only begged food get the same benefit as always fasting.
  • Rules for respecting teacher.
  • Teacher’s name should never be pronounced without a honorary title.
  • One should never hear the censuring of the teacher, even if just.
  • If we lower our respect for guru, we will drop it for everybody else also.
  • In the 1970s devotees would deal with 2nd initiated devotees like nowadays with the most senior men. The respect for guru was great, so it was great for everybody else also.
  • Parents are not the best to properly train the children, especially in lifestyle, due to their sense of possession. Child is already part of their scene.
  • Parents add things that the teachers cannot give, but teachers are indispensable in the child’s life.
  • In the Vedic culture both parents and teachers are there. The child can choose to be more affectionate to the parents, or to the teachers, and nobody gets upset.
  • Gurukula has lost many students because the parents could not handle the children becoming more affectionate to the teachers than to them.
  • The child will be able to be raised by the whole village if they have that respect for everyone.

Brihad Manu Siksha #9 Lecture Notes


Full Lecture Transcription [Link not active yet] 


  • Acarya is one who is teaching the practical application and philosophical significance.
  • Subteacher who teaches a particular portion or aspect of the Veda is called upadhyaya (Jyotisha, music etc). Modern teachers are all upadhyayis because acarya means one who knows the connection to the Lord.
  • Guru performs family ceremonies. During sacrifices one calls for the officiating priest, who is a guru just for the duration of the sacrifice.
  • 09:20 Ritviks – officiating priests – can be utilized in certain sacrifices, but not initiation.
  • Ritviks are trying to turn our line into diksha line, which is what case goswamis do. They are our first bonafide apasampradaya.
  • Why only initiation from Prabhupada? Why not from Bhaktivinoda, why not from Lord Brahma?
  • Prabhupada authorized to initiate on his behalf, while he was still present.
  • Ramanujacarya also appointed 74 disciples to initiate on his behalf while he was still present, just to see that they can function properly.
  • Parents chose whom the children learn from, but the teacher who fills one’s ears with Vedas is even more respectable than parents.
  • One will die from the birth that one took from parents, but initiation into Vedic knowledge is eternal.
  • 18:00 A man destitute of sacred knowledge is a child, and one who teaches him the Veda becomes father.
  • Seniority among brahmanas is judged by knowledge, ksatriyas – valor, vaishyas – commodities, shudras – age.
  • Stock money is not actually real wealth.
  • Actors who came up for a short time are not considered so much of an actor by other actors.
  • Real musicians practice 10 to 12 hours a day. But to be able to do something special with one’s skill takes several lifetimes of practice.
  • 29:00 Is stock market gambling? For those who know what they are doing is just risky, educated business. For others it is gambling.
  • Owner of gambling house is not gambler; it is just a business, bad business.
  • In the casino, if you know what you are doing you are considered a cheater.
  • We are amazed by the feats of oriental martial artists, but every monkey in Vrindavana can do that. Animals can easily do things that humans do with amazing talents.
  • Unlearned brahmana is useless and is brahmana in name only.
  • Criticized person may sleep peacefully but the criticizer perishes.
  • Person who criticizes others develops the same qualities that they criticize.
  • Study of the Vedas is the highest austerity.
  • There is only the brahminical culture, there is no separate culture for kshatriyas and vaishyas.
  • Person who daily studies the Vedas obtains the benefits of thrice giving away the whole earth.
  • If devotees are looking for money – study!
  • Studying the essential scriptures of the sampradaya is equal to the study of the Veda. If devotees have no time for that, they fall to the level of shudra.
  • First birth is from mother, 2nd – upanayanam, 3rd – initiation in the Vedic sacrifices.
  • If one’s diksha guru leaves devotional service, the validity of initiation remains, but one must find siksha guru. Siksha guru may be Srila Prabhupada, but it is better to also find living siksha guru. Otherwise, why are all Prabhupada’s disciples not inspired?

Nectar of Devotion Thematic #1


  • Chronological and thematic study.
  • Vedic education and theology is always practiced. Academic and practical always go together.
  • Formerly in the West the church had to authorize teachers, even for secular subjects.
  • The rank of a teacher was formerly determined by how much they could affect the lives of their students, not simply teaching a skill.

Continue reading Nectar of Devotion Thematic #1


PHILOSOPHICAL DEFINITIONS LECTURE #4, 23rd Sep 2008, Bhaktivedanta Academy, Sridham Mayapur

HH BVPS Maharaja: Continuing 5 levels of consciousness.

Anna-maya means the senses, it is sensual perception, or engagement of the senses. Prana-maya that you are going to extend the sense gratification for others. In other words, you care about other’s sense gratification. Mana-maya will be the platform of religiosity, not even technically be your ethics, ethics would prana-maya. Where you understand the nature of something and act according to that. Vijnana-maya will be the platform of understanding the nature of the soul. Ananda-maya will be situated on that transcendental platform, so specifically for us it means devotional service Continue reading PHILOSOPHICAL DEFINITIONS #4

Philosophical Definitions #3

PHILOSOPHICAL DEFINITIONS LECTURE #3, 22nd Sep 2008, Bhaktivedanta Academy, Sridham Mayapur

HH BVPS Maharaja: One has to have an interest to know before one will be involved in the activity of learning and having been engaged in the activity of learning then one will naturally apply it. In this way you get pranipata, pariprasna, sevaya as sambandha, abhidheya and prayojana. Means you are taking the Pradyumna aspect, pranipata, you have a desire, then pariprasna is the process of interaction between teacher and student, and sevaya is the goal that you will apply it in your life, you use it, it will be yours and develop the character, the qualities necessary. Continue reading Philosophical Definitions #3

Philosophical Definitions #2

PHILOSOPHICAL DEFINITIONS LECTURE #2, 19th Sep 2008, Bhaktivedanta Academy, Sridham Mayapur

HH BVPS Maharaja:

Name, form, qualities and pastimes.

The name establishes the form, creates the attraction. Then the qualities one becomes attached to because of this one will engage in pastimes. That will bring about your sambandha, prayojana and abhidheya. Continue reading Philosophical Definitions #2

Philosophical Definitions #1

PHILOSOPHICAL DEFINITIONS LECTURE #1, 18th Sep 2008, Bhaktivedanta Academy, Sridham Mayapur

HH BVPS Maharaja: So now we will begin our study of the basic scriptures that Srila Prabhupada had mentioned, what’s known generally in ISKCON in giving a Bhakti-sastri degree. In the Academy here that will give you a different degree. Because we will be studying many, many different aspects or elements. Continue reading Philosophical Definitions #1