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Title: My Weekend

User: neilsf    Date: 2006-07-17 19:20:57


Nityananda! Gauranga! Hare Krishna!


Things are going well for me right now. I've been able to stay with my chanting over the weekend, although it was a bit of a struggle on Sunday. I kept putting it off and getting very distracted when I was chanting.


Saturday I took a train down to San Jose to see a friend of mine. It was nice to have a long stretch of time to chant. I was able to finish all my rounds early, so I had plenty of time to read some Nityananda Gauranga pastimes from the Shri Chaitanya Bhagavata.


I was especially touched with Madhya Kanda Chapter 18 where Gauranga wanted to put on a play. It is full of many descriptions of how the various disciples who took on the various roles actually became the people they were playing. The description of Haridas Thakur playing the role of a guard from Vaikuntha was particularly funny and also I delighted in reading about Shrivasa Pandit in the role of Narada Muni. He actually became Narada and no one was able to recognize him.


Of course, the best part of the chapter was when Lord Gauranga himself took on the mood of various aspects of the Divine Mother. As a former worshiper of the Mother, I am especially happy about this chapter when Lord Gauranga actually shows himself as the Divine Mother. I take that as that its ok to sometime worship Gauranga as the Mother. I miss the Mother aspect of my former worship and although I want to focus on Nityanada and Gauranga as spreading Krishna Prema all around the world, I find it comforting that Gauranga didn't hesitate to show himself as the Divine Mother.


Also, I am very thankful that Gaura and Nitai both don't hesitate to dress up in drag for the enjoyment of their devotees. As a gay man, I usually find it difficult to much of the stories in Western Traditions about God being so hyper "butch" and angry all the time. I am SO pleased that God REALLY enjoys dressing up in drag and having fun with His devotees. This is what strikes me when I read about Gauranga Lila, He and Nityananda are always HAPPY and having FUN! Even when they get angry, its always in play and Shri Vrindavan Dasa Thakur always makes a point of saying so.


I've been trying to enter into that spirit of joy when I chant my rounds. When I say "Nityananda" and "Gauranga," I've been trying to remember how fun and joyous the Lords' interactions with their devotees are. I believe that I am able to get a very very small taste of the love that Nityananda and Gauranga bring into the world. I really want to be immersed in that love and become a part of Nityananda and Gauranga's group of associates.


I really get a sense about how Nityananda and Gauranga accept everybody and are truly the most merciful forms of God. If they can take and accept Madhi and Jagai, they most certainly accept me. I am SO thankful that I have met and associated with Shri Gaurangapada. It is SO wonderful that he is working so hard to spread devotion to the Names of Nityananda and Gauranga. Hopefully all people will be able to see that joy that Nityananda and Gauranga bring.


I am determined to continue chanting my small amout of rounds and not to push myself to chant more. I REALLY want to be able to chant 16 rounds, but I'm afraid if I try to start out with too much, I'll get burned out and quit chanting again. My goal is to do 10 rounds of Nityananda and Gauranga and 4 rounds of  Hare Krishna every day for six months. Then and only then will I try to add 2 more rounds of Hare Krishna, which I will again do for 6 months. I figure that if I add 2 rounds every six months, I will be able to chant 16 rounds in about 3 years. That's not too far away. I really want to take it slow and continue over the long term.


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