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Title: Vedas on Laksha Naam

User: Swami Gaurangapada Date: 2006-07-29 08:57:05


Vedas on Laksha Naam


Translated, Commented and Compiled by

His Holiness Bhaktiratna Sadhu Swami Gaurangapada ""



Table of Contents


01. Chaitanya Bhagavata on Laksha Naam

02. Shrila Prabhupada on Laksha Naam

03. Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta on Laksha Naam

04. Shrila Bhaktivinoda on Laksha Naam

05. Hari Naam Chintamani on Laksha Naam

06. Shrila Jagannatha Dasa on Laksha Naam

07. Shrila Lokanatha dasa on Laksha Naam

08. Shrila Narottama dasa on Laksha Naam

09. Shrila Rasikananda on Laksha Naam

10. Shrila Shrinivasa Acharya on Laksha Naam

11. Mahanidhi Swami on Laksha Naam




01. Chaitanya Bhagavata on Laksha Naam




In Shri Chaitanya-bhagavata, Antya Khanda 9.121-122, Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu instructed everyone on whose worship and service He will accept:


(121) prabhu bale,-"jana, 'lakshesvara' bali kare?

prati-dina laksha-nama ye grahana kare"


"Do you know who is a laksesvara? He is someone who chants one laksa or 100,000 holy names (64 rounds of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra) everyday."


Purport by Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada:


shri gaurasundera balibena-"jini pratidina laksha-nama grahana karibena, tanharai grihe bhagavan sevita hana.


Shri Gaurasundera spoke as follows-"The Supreme Personality of Godhead accepts service only in the home of those who chant one hundred thousand names daily.


"bhagavan tanharai nikate bhoga-dravyadi grahana karena.


"The Lord accepts bhoga (foodstuffs) and other ingredients only from such personalities.


"jini laksha-nama grahana karena na, tahara nikate haite bhagavan naivedya svikara-dvara seva-saubhagya pradana karena na.


"Those who don't chant 100,000 names (64 rounds) daily, are never awarded the great fortune of rendering service to the Lord by offering Him naivedya (bhoga). This is because the Lord never accepts (svikara) their offerings.


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


This shows us that it is not a cheap thing to actually render service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Just as you require the appropriate qualification to get admission into an university, the daily chanting of 64 rounds is the qualification required to render direct, acceptable and favourable service to the most merciful Lord Gaurasundera. (End)


Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada:


"bhagavad-bhakta matrei pratyaha laksha-nama grahana karibena natuva vividha visaye asakta haiya bhagavad-seva karite asamartha haibena."


The Lord continued-"Those who consider themselves devotees of the Lord must compulsorily chant 100,000 names of Krishna everyday otherwise they will gradually but surely become attached to varieties of sense-objects and thus become incapable to rendering any kind of service to the Lord."


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


In Kali-yuga, the senses are so strong that they are constantly attracted to the sense-objects. 'Mantra' means the transcendental sound vibration which frees (trayate) the mind from its attraction towards sense-objects and fixes it on Krishna. Just like a medicine which is the cure for the disease has to be taken in a particular dosage daily to be really effective, similarly the chanting of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra has to done in a minimum of one nirbandha (100,000 names) daily to have its full effect. This is the instruction of the Supreme Lord Himself as well as His pure devotees. They have demonstrated this by their own example.


If one does not fulfill this quota of chanting daily, then there is always the possibility of the mind being overcome by the urges of the senses and make an aspirant fall down from the spiritual path at any point of time, especially in this highly degraded age. Once the devotee falls down, he becomes disqualified in the matter of rendering service to the Lord. This is also confirmed in the Gita (14.26):


mam ca yo 'vyabhicarena, bhakti-yogena sevate;

sa gunan samatityaitan, brahma-bhuyaya kalpate


"One who engages in full devotional service, without falling down in any circumstances, at once transcends the modes of material nature and thus comes to the level of realizing brahma, My spiritual nature."


An underdose of a medicine may not cure the disease completely and thus there is every possibility of relapse. This is the opinion of Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada and should be accepted at face value with great seriousness. Ofcourse if one is mechanically chanting 64 rounds daily simply to fulfill the quota without any attachment, then there is a likelihood that he may also face obstacles in his spiritual life. But there is a greater chance that he will be able to overcome the obstacles by the dint of his sincere adherence to the fixed quota of chanting 64 rounds daily.


Chanting and hearing 100,000 holy names of Gauranga daily is the minimum standard (fixed by Lord Gauranga) for hearing the spiritual sound vibration daily to counteract the evil effects of the all-pervasive material sound vibration. Any compromise on this minimum standard will surely make it more difficult for the spiritual aspirant to stay unaffected from the material sound vibration in the present age of Kali. That is why Shrila Prabhupada said that he has minimized the minimum from 64 to 16 rounds daily. Shrila Prabhupada had the choice of sticking to the 64 rounds standard which few would have been able to take up and follow immediately or to introduce many into this process of chanting by giving them a minimized quota of the minimum chanting in the form of 16 rounds (around 27,000 names) daily. Out of these 16-round chanters, sincere ones will be inspired to reach the ideal standard of 64 rounds daily. He chose the latter but he never minimized the importance of the former in any way, following in the foootsteps of his Guru Maharaja, Shrila Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada. (Purport ends)


Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada:


tajjanyai shri chaitanyadevera ashrita sakalai nyuna kalpe laksha-nama grahana kariya thakena. natuva gaurasunderera udeshya pradatta naivedya tini grahana karibena na.


(Shrila Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada continues) "Therefore all the devotees who have taken shelter of Lord Chaitanyadeva perform the chanting of a minimum of 100,000 names of Krishna daily as their first and primary duty. Because they know that if they don't do so then Lord Gaurasundera will never accept the very bhoga (naivedya) which they cook for Him daily.


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


Shrila Prabhupada has said that the most important instruction of the spiritual master to the disciple in spiritual life is to complete the prescribed amount of chanting daily. (End)


(122) "se janera nama ami bali 'lakshesvara'

tatha bhiksha amara, na yai anya ghara."


"Lord Gauranga continued-I call such a person a laksheshvara. I only accept meals in such a person's house. I never go anywhere else."


Purport by Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada:


shri chaitanya bhaktagana abhaktera sahita sambhashana karena na. jini bhaktivyatita karma, jnana o anyabhilashara kathaya pradatta tahara sahita bandhutva karibe na.


"The devotees of Lord Shri Chaitanya never talk with such non-devotees. They never do friendship with those who are engaged in the cultivation of karma, jnana or other desires which are devoid of bhakti.


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


By presenting this statement in this context, Shrila Sarasvati Thakura is indirectly hinting that those who do not chant laksha-nama daily have a good chance of getting entangled in karma (fruitive activities), jnana (speculative knowledge), and material desires and thus gradually become non-devotees. The next statement is even more clear. (End)


pratyah laksha-nama grahana na karile patita vyaktiganera visaya-bhoga pravritti vriddhi paya, takhana ara tahara shri gaurasunderarera seva karite pare na.


"Those who don't accept this vow of chanting 100,000 names daily, fall down even more although they were fallen in the first place (due to the contamination of Kali-yuga). Thus their propensity for enjoying the senses and sense-objects continually and steadily increases and ultimately they are not able to render any kind of service even to the most merciful Lord Gaurasundera.


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


Shrila Sarasvati Thakura has conclusively established again that those who don't chant laksha-nama (100,000 names) daily are sure to gradually fall down even from the service of the merciful Lord Gaurasundera. Then what to speak of being able to render service to Their Lordships Radha and Krishna, which demands even a more higher standard of purity. (End)


lakshesvara vyatita gaura-bhaktira adarsa gaudiyajana kehai svikara karena na.


"This is the precise reason why the real Gaudiya-bhaktas do not accept any other ideal (adarsa) in Gaura-bhakti or Krishna-bhakti except the process of chanting 100,000 names of the maha-mantra daily.


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


This is such a wonderful statement. The adarsha or ideal of anyone who claims to be a follower of Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu should be laksha-nama-yajna or to complete the sacrifice of chanting 100,000 holy names (64 rounds) daily. And they should teach others also to aim for that ideal. This book is precisely meant to fulfill that aim. That is why this book will remain as an unique and everlasting contribution to the Gaudiya Vaishava literature. If this book will inspire even one person to achieve the platform of chanting 100,000 names of the Holy Names daily, then the effort in writing this book will be considered successful. (End)


Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada:


adhapatita va adhapete gana eka-matra bhajana-sabda-vacya shri-nama-bhajane vimukhata-vasata laksha-nama grahana karibara parivarte anya bhajanera chalana korena, taddvara tahadera kona mangala haya na.


"Those spiritual aspirants who are already fallen or will fall down from spiritual life in the future are averse to this sole means of deliverance called nama-bhajana, which is the worship of the sound incarnation of God in the form of chanting 100,000 names of the the Holy Names daily. Coming under the sway of their averseness to chant laksha-nama daily, they duplicitously invent (chalana) other means of devotional service (bhajana) to justify their not chanting 100,000 names daily but it is to be clearly understood that by this action they will not achieve anything auspicious (mangala) in their spiritual life."


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


The conclusive statement of the Acharya in this purport is very striking, important and self-explanatory. We should be careful not to avoid the chanting of 64 rounds daily due to our averseness to the process of chanting. Sometimes maya creates an illusion by offering us so many other things to do rather than chanting 100,000 names daily. It may even be in the form of some other kind of devotional service. Maya makes the devotees think that any form of devotional service in the sadhana stage is the equal to the chanting and thus cheats them of the determination to complete the chanting of 100,000 names daily.


Maya is fully aware that if a spiritual aspirant sticks to the platform of chanting 64 rounds daily then such a person will become a pure lover of Gauranga-Krishna very soon by the dint of his constant chanting. After becoming a pure lover of Krishna, that pure devotee will start preaching very powerfully and deliver many others by giving them the pure names of Krishna. This is a big attack on Maya which makes her loose many of her victims. Thus Maya desperately creates heavy obstacles on the path of the sadhaka who is chanting or desires to chant and preach about the importance of chanting 64 rounds of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra daily. To be steadily successful in the laksha-nama-yajna, one has to be very careful to detect these tricks of Maya and completely ignore them. As Shrila Jagannatha Dasa Babaji used to say-"one should not sleep till one finishes chanting 100,000 or 200,000 names daily." And one should constantly seek association and hear about the importance of chanting from the laksesvaras (64-round chanters) so that one always stays focussed on the real goal. Then and only then complete success is assured. (End)


Shri Chaitanya-bhagavata Madhya Khanda 15.5,


ushah kale ganga-snana kariya nirjane;

dui laksha krishna-nama laya pratidine.


Purport by Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada:


kathita ache, shri haridasa thakura pratyaha tina-laksha nama grahana karitena. jagai-madhai u pratyaha dui laksha nama grahana karitena. yanhara pratyaha laksha nama grahana karena na, tanhadera nivedita kona vastui shri chaitanyadeva grahana karena na. shri caitany-carananucara-gana pratyaha atyalpa pakshe laksha-nama grahana avasyei kariya thakena, natuva shri krishna tanhadera naivedya grahana na karaya bhagavad-ucchishta praptira vicare vyaghat ghate.


"It is well-known that Namacharya Shrila Haridasa Thakura used to chant 300,000 names daily. Jagai-Madhai also used to chant 200,000 names daily after being delivered by the Lord. Lord Chaitanyadeva does not accept any kind of offering (or vastu) from those who don't chant 100,000 names of Krishna daily, The followers surrendered to the lotus of Lord Chaitanya compulsorily chant a bare minimum of 100,000 names daily. If they don't do so Lord Shri Krishna will not accept any of their offerings and thus they will be obstructed or remain unsuccessful in their attempt to obtain the transcendental remanants (prasadam) of the Lord."


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


This is a very dangerous position for a devotee. If a devotee is not able to obtain the remanants of the Lord, then his life is useless because he cannot conquer the illusory energy of the Lord (maya). According to Shri Uddhava in Shrimad-Bhagavatam 11.6.46:



ucchishta-bhojino dasas tava mayam jayema hi.


"Simply by decorating ourselves with the garlands, fragrant oils, clothes and ornaments that You have already enjoyed, and by eating the remnants of Your meals, we, Your servants, will indeed conquer Your illusory energy."


According to Shrila Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada, Lord Krishna as well as Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu will not accept any kind of offerings and devotional service including worship (puja), foodstuffs (bhoga), service (seva) etc. from a person who does not chant 64 rounds (100,000 names) of Krishna daily.


On the other hand Krishna says in the Gita (9.26):


patram pushpam phalam toyam, yo me bhaktya prayacchati;

tad aham bhakty-upahritam, asnami prayatatmanah.


"If a devotee in a purified state offers Me with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, fruit or water, I will certainly accept it."


So from the above verses and statements one can conclude that real purity and love and devotion to the Lord in Kali-yuga means to first and foremost complete the loud or soft chanting of 64 rounds (100,000 names) of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra daily. Then one will become qualified to directly offer foodstuffs or any kind of service to the Lord, with the guarantee that the Lord will accept it. This is what is takes to render pure devotional service to the Lord as per the strict instructions of the Lord Himself.


Ofcourse sometimes if a pure and dear devotee of the Lord petitions the Lord to kindly accept the service of less qualified devotees then the Lord agrees to it due to His love for His pure devotees. But still that does not minimize the original qualification required to render service to the Lord.


Similarly Shrila Prabhupada most mercifully engaged everyone in the service of Lord Gauranga and Lord Krishna with a minimum qualification of chanting 16 rounds of the maha-mantra everyday. Shrila Prabhupada always told us to chant atleast 16 rounds. The danger arises when that minimum qualification is considered the maximum and any effort to raise one's platform to the actual standard is considered a deviation or is minimized or criticized by persons who do not take note of Shrila Prabhupada's instructions on constant chanting and 64 rounds. This is indeed a very unfortunate situation and brings about great inauspiciousness in the society of devotees.


Also the less-qualified devotees (who are not able to chant 100,000 names daily) but have been engaged in the service of the Lord by the mercy of Shrila Prabhupada should be always aware of their actual position in this regard. They should feel happy and blissful at seeing some sincere devotee who manages to follow the ideal standard of 64 rounds daily & should themselves aspire to achieve that standard one day. In the Nectar of Instruction (Verse 5 purport), Shrila Prabhupada himself accepts the 'patita' (fallen) state of the people who are not able to chant 100,000 names daily. He goes on to say that:


"However, Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura used to say that unless one chants at least sixty-four rounds of japa (one hundred thousand names), he is considered fallen (patita). According to his calculation, practically every one of us is fallen, but because we are trying to serve the Supreme Lord with all seriousness and without duplicity, we can expect the mercy of Lord Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, who is famous as patita-pavana, the deliverer of the fallen."


For aspiring for the mercy of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and the holy name, each and every devotee should feel that he or she is fallen (patita). Additionally the devotees who are not able to chant 64 rounds daily should have a high degree of respect for the 64-round chanters so that a healthy atmosphere is created in the society of devotees and everyone aspires to reach that standard one day. All kinds of encouragement should be given to those devotees who are trying to reach the ideal standard while discharging one's preaching and occupational services. Shrila Prabhupada himself encouraged a new devotee Indira to increase the chanting from 48 to 64 rounds when other devotees were telling her to reduce it to 16 and do other services more. Ofcourse chanting of 64 rounds should not be an excuse for not doing anything else or becoming lazy in the name of spiritual life. Infact a sincere 64-round chanter can put in more quality and even quantity of other kinds of practical devotional service.


Especially the gurus, sannyasis, leaders, preachers etc. should very seriously aspire for the standard of chanting 64 rounds daily, so that they can give the taste which they cultivate by constant chanting to their spiritual dependants.


Shrila Prabhupada-lilamrita Chp. 49:


"Then a devotee said, 'In America they are trying to chant more, twelve hours a day, trying to get a twenty-four-hour kirtana schedule.' 'Yes, everywhere,' Shrila Prabhupada said, 'this chanting should go on. Instead of meetings, resolutions, dissolutions, revolutions, and then no solutions, there should be chanting.'"


If the leaders are immersed in the nectar of chanting the maha-mantra, it will minimize most of the problems which arise in the society of spiritual sadhakas. It will also prevent the problems from arising in the first place. Even one or a handful of preachers who have reached the platform of offenseless chanting by the process of constant chanting (minimum 64 rounds), are sufficient to flood the whole world with the pure message of Krishna consciousness as taught by Lord Shri Gauranga Mahaprabhu and Shrila Prabhupada. (Purport ends)


In Shri Chaitanya-bhagavata Madhya Khanda 23.77, Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu instructed all the people of Navadvipa:


prabhu bole,-"kahilan ei maha-mantra;

iha japa giya sabe koriya nirbandha."


"Please hear this Hare Krishna maha-mantra. Everyone please chant this maha-mantra daily in 'nirbandha'*. Then you will surely achieve all perfection."


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


*Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura explains the meaning of 'nirbandha' in his classic book Hari-nama-cintamani as follows:


caribara mala phirile eka grantha haya. eka grantha niyama kariya kramasah vriddhi karite karite 16 granthe eka laksha nama nirbandha haibe.



One grantha = 4 rounds

One nirbandha = 16 granthas = 64 rounds of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra = 100,000 Total Holy Names of the Lord.


"All the previous mahajanas (great devotees) without exception have achieved success only through this process of chanting the Hare Krishna maha-mantra in atleast one nirbandha (64 rounds) daily."


So according to Shrila Thakura Bhaktivinoda, Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu is instructing everyone to chant atleast one nirbandha (64 rounds) of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra everyday, to ensure the achievement of perfection in this harinama-sankirtana yajna in Kali-yuga. Complete perfection has been achived by all the great devotees in the past specifically by strictly following this order of Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu of completing the chanting of a minimum of 100,000 names of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra daily without fail.




02. Shrila Prabhupada on Laksha Naam


Morning Walk, May 14, 1975, Perth:


Devotee (1): Shrila Prabhupada, how can the position be reconciled if in Krishna consciousness one of the two, the husband or the wife, wants to enjoy sense gratification, but the other does not? Should there be separation then?


Prabhupada: No... They should be trained up. Sense enjoyment means not advanced in Krishna consciousness. As soon as one is advancing in Krishna consciousness, his sense enjoyment spirit will be reduced. That is the test. Bhaktih pareshanubhavo viraktir anyatra ca . The test is, how you are advancing in Krishna consciousness is the proportionate diminishing of sense enjoyment. That is the test. Just like cure of the disease means diminishing the fever, temperature. This is the test.


Devotee (1): What if that (material) fever is not being diminished?


Prabhupada: Then he should try to chant Hare Krishna mantra, instead of sixteen rounds, sixty-four rounds. That is the way. Sixteen round is the minimum. Otherwise Haridasa Thakura was 300,000. So you have to increase. That is the only remedy. If one has got determination, he will make progress without any trouble. That determination is very difficult, that determination, "I must be Krishna conscious fully." That determination. Dridha-vratah.


Letter to: Indira (Iris Mendoza), Ekayani (Esther Mendoza), San Francisco, 17 December, 1967:


"I am very glad to learn you are chanting 48 rounds. Actually it is all right that one should chant 64 rounds, even 16 rounds, so if one is able to chant more than 16 rounds up to 64, it is very good. You fix up your rounds. Try to increase it but never decrease it."


Letter to: Hamsaduta, Hawaii, 23 March, 1969


"Yes, it is very good if you can chant 64 rounds; this is very nice if you can do it."


Letter to: Bhaktijana, Los Angeles, 12/2/1968:


"I shall advise you again to chant always, increasing the counting, namely, 16 rounds is generally prescribed, but for the time being you can stop all other activities and increase the chanting to 64 rounds."


Shrimad-Bhagavatam 4.24.70 purport:


That is the instruction given by Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu in His Shikshashtaka 3. Kirtaniyah sada harih:  "The holy name of the Lord should be chanted twenty-four hours daily." Therefore in this Krishna consciousness movement we request the devotees to chant at least sixteen rounds on their beads daily. Actually one has to chant twenty-four hours daily, just like Thakura Haridasa, who was chanting the Hare Krishna mantra three hundred thousand times daily. Indeed, he had no other business.


Shri Chaitanya-caritamrita Antya-lila 3.137 purport:


Surrender is the ultimate instruction of the Bhagavad-gita, but for one who cannot surrender to the lotus feet of Krishna, it is better to chant the Hare Krishna mantra constantly, under the instruction of Haridasa Thakura.


In our Krishna consciousness movement we are teaching our followers to chant the Hare Krishna mantra continuously on beads. Even those who are not accustomed to this practice are advised to chant at least sixteen rounds on their beads so that they may be trained. Sada means "always." Haridasa Thakura says, nirantara nama lao: "Chant the Hare Krishna mantra without stopping."  One's real duty is to surrender to the lotus feet of Krishna, but if one is unable to do so, he should adopt this process, as introduced by Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and His most confidential servant, Namacarya Shrila Haridasa Thakura. This is the way to achieve success in Krishna consciousness.


The Nectar of Devotion, Vrindavana, 20/10/1972:


"Just like we have asked our students to finish sixteen rounds chanting minimum. Sixteen rounds is nothing. In Vrindavana there are many devotees, they chant 120 rounds. Like that. So sixteen rounds is the minimum. Because I know in the Western countries it is difficult job to finish sixty-four rounds or 120 rounds, like that. Minimum sixteen rounds. That must be finished."


Letter to Purusottama, Mumbai, 23/10/1973:


Because we have got many duties, minimized the amount to 16 rounds, otherwise  ...minimum is 64 rounds, but Western people cannot  ...this. So 16 rounds must be executed.


Nectar of Instruction, Verse 5, purport:


The Krishna consciousness movement prescribes sixteen rounds daily because people in the Western countries cannot concentrate for long periods while chanting on beads. Therefore the minimum number of rounds is prescribed. However, Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura used to say that unless one chants at least sixty-four rounds of japa (one hundred thousand names), he is considered fallen (patita). According to his calculation, practically every one of us is fallen, but because we are trying to serve the Supreme Lord with all seriousness and without duplicity, we can expect the mercy of Lord Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, who is famous as patita-pavana, the deliverer of the fallen.


Shrila Prabhupada on a Morning Walk, November 10, 1975, Bombay:


Lokanatha: Some devotees have fixed different number than sixteen. Some are chanting twenty minimum or twenty-five.

Prabhupada: Yes. It should be increased.

Lokanatha: Is it recommended for our...

Prabhupada: But don't decrease. Don't decrease; increase. Therefore one number is fixed. "At least this much I shall do." That is sixteen rounds.

Lokanatha: But you are recommending sixteen as a minimum, and some devotees are choosing twenty as a minimum.

Prabhupada: So who forbids? Who says that "Don't do it"?

Lokanatha: They can chant?

Prabhupada: Yes. That is wanted. But because you cannot do it, therefore we have fixed up this minimum. Sankhyata asankhyata Sankhyata means with vow, numerical strength. And asankhyata means there is no limit.


The Hare Krishna Explosion, p. 63, by Hayagriva dasa, Palace Press 1985:


"Now that you have beads," Swamiji says the next morning, "you should chant sixty-four rounds every day."

"Sixty-four rounds?" To pronounce every word of the mantra distinctly, we require five minutes to chant a round. Sixty-four rounds would take over five hours. "Impossible!" we say. "We'll never have the time."

"All right," Swamiji says. "Thirty-two rounds."

"Impossible," we say. "We'll never be able to do it. It's way too much." "All right," Swamiji says. "Sixteen rounds. No less."


TKG's Diary June 10:


Many years ago, he (Shrila Prabhupada) was chanting sixty-four rounds, then gradually less, until a number of years ago it was sixteen.


All quotes of Shrila Prabhupada are copyrighted by the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Internationa




03. Shri Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta on Laksha Naam


Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada in his final Upadesawali


22. Bhagavan will not accept anything which is offered by a person who doesn't chant Harinama one-hundred thousand times daily and such a person is considered a 'patita'.


23. By sincerely endeavoring to chant Harinama without offenses and remaining fixed in chanting constantly, one's offenses will fade and pure Harinama will arise on the tongue.


Shrila Bhakti Pramod Puri Gosvami Maharaja about his guru Om Vishnupada Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada, in his Vyasa-puja offering:


"Unfailingly as a daily vow, he used to chant one hundred thousand names of the Lord (64 rounds) and his instruction to all his disciples was to do likewise. Keeping this vow intact, he would allot his times incredibly to cover all his preaching schedules and literary work, being a source of inspiration to all who came in contact with him."


Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura in an article in The Gaudiya, 1934:


"Those who have chanted laksha harinama (100,000 Holy Names daily) for fifteen or twenty years should know such things (rasa-shastra, pastimes of Shri Shri Radha-Krishna). The beginners need not hear these topics or they will misunderstand."


Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada states as quoted in the Art of Devotion and elsewhere:


"Everyone living in Gaudiya Math must make an effort to chant one lakh (100,000) of holy names (64 rounds of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra) daily. Otherwise, different types of material attachments may creep in one's heart that will hamper one's devotional service. In fact, the Lord does not accept food offerings from one who does not chant one lakh of holy names. One should balance his time so that he can finish one lakh of holy names per day and also perform his other allotted duties."


"The name should be chanted keeping a careful count. One should try to increase this to one lakh of holy names daily. Not being able to do so means one is simply 'fallen'. One should rise up from this state by chanting seriously."


"One of the best ways to counteract bad association is to increase the chanting of the holy names. Atheists cannot present any impediments to your devotional service if you chant one lakh of nama everyday. Please try to adjust your time so you can chant one lakh (64 rounds) of holy names daily. Otherwise, one is considered fallen. One should attempt to transcend this fallen state."




04. Shrila Bhaktivinoda on Laksha Naam


Sadhu-vritti, Sajjana Toshani 11/12:


tinei sad-grihastha-jini pratyah laksha-nama grahana karena, tanhara grihei suddha-vaishnava-gana prasada grahana karibena.


"Only those devotees are sad-grihasthas (true and ideal householders) who chant 1,00,000 names of Krishna (64 rounds) daily. The pure devotees should accept prasada (foodstuffs) only in the homes of these sad-grihasthas and nowhere else.


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


Since Lord Gauranga accepts the offerings of only those householders who chant 1,00,000 names daily, the Lord's actual prasadam can only be obtained in the homes of laksheshvara householders. The pure devotees who maintain themselves by strictly eating only the pure prasada of Lord are therefore dutybound to accept prasada only in the homes of such householder devotees.


As per the ideal standard of Shri Chaitanya Charitamrita, the grains and foodstuffs purchased from the market for cooking should also be bought from the money of a householder who is absorbed in the chanting 100,000 Holy Names daily. And it should be cooked by the devotee who is chanting 100,000 Holy Names daily. Then it is the best offering to Their Lordships Shri Shri Nityananda Gauranga and Their Lordships Shri Shri Radha and Krishna and Their pure devotees. That is why Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura recommends that an advanced devotee should accept prasadam only in the home of a laksheshvara devotee who is chanting 100,000 Holy Names daily.


The Lord is accepting the bhoga offered by the devotees who are chanting 16 rounds (27,648 names) daily due to the recommendation of His most merciful pure devotee Shrila Prabhupada. But this should not be used as a license for not increasing one's chanting to the standard set by the Lord Himself.




05. Hari Naam Chintamani on Laksha Naam


In the Hari-nama-cintamani it is said:


mane habe-aja laksha nama ye kariba;

krame krame tina laksha nama ye smariba.

mahagraha habe citte namera sankhyaya;

acire jabe jadya sadhura kripaya.


"When one's mind desires to chant and remember one hundred thousand holy names (64 rounds) daily and furthur desires to slowly increase it to three hundred thousand and when one's mind becomes very attached and eager to complete the fixed number of rounds daily and pushes one to complete the sankhya everyday, then it is understood that very soon the laziness or apathy in chanting the Hare Krishna maha-mantra will vanish by the mercy of the devotees and one's chanting will bring one the desired fruit of pure love for Krishna."


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


As per the above statement, it is very clear that without gradually increasing the chanting upto the point of chanting continuously (atleast 64 rounds), the obstacles on our spiritual path will never be permanently removed.


In the book Jaiva-dharma, all the babajis residing in Navadvipa chant 2,00,000 names daily. Then they receive bhiksha, read the scriptures and preach to whoever comes to meet them. Advaita dasa babaji experiences purification of heart and freedom from anarthas (lust, anger, greed etc.) after chanting 2,00,000 names of Krishna for 3 to 4 years in the most merciful dhama of Navadvipa and in the association of pure devotees. Haridasa babaji tells Nityananda dasa that he has just crossed the kanishtha (neophyte) platform and entered the madhyama (intermediate) platform after he had chanted 64 rounds for many years in the Dhama. So constant chanting and gradually increasing the quality and quantity of our chanting is the only way for the devotees who reside outside or inside the Dhama for making spiritual advancement.




06. Shrila Jagannatha Dasa on Laksha Naam


The main teaching of Shrila Jagannatha dasa Babaji Maharaja is as follows:


"If you want to achieve perfection in Krishna consciousness, you must take a vow to chant a minimum of two hundred thousand or otherwise one hundred thousand of holy names every day, and you must execute that without fail. Before you retire at night you must finish this specific number of rounds, then you can achieve perfection in Krishna consciousness."




07. Shrila Lokanatha dasa on Laksha Naam


SHRILA LOKANATHA GOSVAMI TO HIS DISICPLE SHRILA NAROTTAMA (both are great Acharyas and followers of Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu) :


From Prema-vilasa Chapter 11:


(Note: Both Shrila Prabhupada and Shrila Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada have accepted Prema-vilasa as a bonafide scripture in their commentaries to Shri Chaitanya-charitamrita Adi-lila 13.60 purport.)


je vaishnava haibe laibe harinama;

sankhya kari nama laile, kripa karena gauradhama.


"Those who are Vaishavas must chant the Holy Names in a particular number everyday. Then Lord Gauranga, the supreme Abode of love will be merciful to them.




purva abhipraye sabe laha harinama;

keha laksha viseshatah mukhe gana.


"Everyone should specifically chant or sing the name loudly 100,000 times a day (64 rounds) with the mood I have described earlier.




narottama laksha nama laya sankhya kari;

nama laile gaurangera sarva sakti dhari.


"O my disciple, Narottama! Please chant 100,000 names everyday while maintaining their count. If you chant in this way then you will become empowered by all the potencies of Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu."


Purport by Swami Gaurangapada:


kali-kalera dharma--krishna-nama-sankirtana;

krishna-sakti vina nahe tara pravartana.

(Cc Antya-lila 7.11)


"The fundamental religious system in the Age of Kali is the chanting of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. Unless empowered by Krishna, one cannot propagate the chanting of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra.


So from the above two verses, it becomes very clear that if one has to widely propogate the glories of the Holy Names, one has to get Krishna-shakti or Gauranga-shakti which is acquired when one completes the chanting of 100,000 names daily, according to Shrila Lokanatha Goswami.




krishna pada prapti laksha laile harinama;

granthi purna haile eka karibe pranama.


"I again repeat that if you want to achieve the lotus feet of Lord Krishna, then you have to chant 100,000 names daily. After chanting four rounds (one granthi) or one round, you should offer obeisances to the Hare Krishna maha-mantra.




08. Shrila Narottama dasa on Laksha Naam


From Prema-vilasa Chapter 17: Shrila Narottama to Shrila Kaviraja on the direct process to achieve love of Krishna:


prabhura achaye sankhya tina laksha nama;

eka laksha bhaktagane kaila kripa dana.


"Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu standard was to chant 3,00,000 names everyday. But He very mercifully awarded His devotees the process of chanting a minimum of 1,00,000 names of Krishna daily.


shri rupa kaila laksha granthera varnana;

tathapiha karila laksha nama grahana.


"Shrila Rupa Goswami has explained and quoted from over 100,000 different scriptures. Even though he was such a great scholar and devotee he himself chanted 100,000 Holy Names daily.


dasa gosvamira ache laksha pramana;

ei mata sarva bhakta kare harinama.


"Shrila Raghunatha dasa Goswami also rigidly followed the instructions of Lord Gauranga by chanting 100,000 names daily. In this way all the devotees chanted the Holy Names of the Lord daily without exception.


gauranga shrimukhe rupe kahila vaishnave;

laksha nama sankhya kari avasya karibe.


"Lord Gauranga gave the following instructions to all the Vaishnavas Himself and also through Shrila Rupa Goswami: Please compulsorily chant 100,000 names of Krishna daily."




yakhana avasara takhana layena harinama;

ei mata laksha sankhya achaye pramana.


"Whenever they used to get an opportunity throughout the day, all of the devotees used to chant the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. In this way they used to complete the chanting of 100,000 Holy Names of the Lord daily.


From Prema-vilasa Chapter 18: Shrila Narottama instructs his disciples:


adhanya manaye narottama apanake;

suna sishya bandhugana kahiye tomake.


"Shrila Thakura Narottama considering himself worthless in his natural humility, called all his disciples, followers and friends, and spoke to them the following important instructions.




prathamei krshna-pada prapti laksha jara;

se laiba laksha-nama sankhya apanara.


"Those whose top priority in this life is to achieve the lotus feet of Lord Gauranga-Krishna should voluntarily chant 100,000 Holy Names of daily."


Narottama-vilasa 10th Vilasa:


Rupamala, the queen of a distant country became so happy on getting initiation from Shrila Narottama dasa Thakura that she took a vow to take 100,000 Harinama (64 rounds of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra) daily. Seeing her determination, everyone began to sing the glory of Shrila Narottama dasa Thakura Mahashaya.




09. Shrila Rasikananda on Laksha Naam


Shri Rasika-mangala, Eastern part, 6th Wave:


"When Shri Rasikananda was a child, he did not waste time playing games like other children. Rather, he would meditate on the maha-mantra. His daily practice was to chant 100,000 Holy Names (64 rounds). He would refuse to accept his mother's foodstuffs until he completed his above chanting."






10. Shrila Shrinivasa Acharya on Laksha Naam


In Karnananda, First Niryasa by Shrila Yadunandana Dasa, the glories to chanting 64 rounds of the maha-mantra (100,000 names of Krishna) have been described:


tabe sei kalanidhi chattaraja nama,

sada harinama jape ei tara kama;

prabhu kahe tumi caitanyera priyatama,

laksha-nama japa tumi kariya niyama.


"Kalanidhi Chattaraja, the disciple of Shrila Shrinivasa Acarya Thakura performed the sole activity of chanting the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. Thus Shrinivasa Acarya told him that he was the dearest devotee of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and instructed him to make a rule of chanting 100,000 names of Krishna (64 rounds) daily."


kancanagadia grame prabhura bhaktagana,

ekeka laksha harinam karena niyama;

divasa na laya nama ratrikale vasi,

kese dora cale bandhi laya nama vasi.

sabei prabhura prana sabara prana prabhu,

ati priya sthana sei na chadaye kabhu.


"Every single devotee of Shrila Shrinivasa Acarya Thakura residing in Kancanagadia used to chant 100,000 names daily. If they did not use to finish this quota of chanting in the daytime, then they would chant in the night. At night they would sit and chant and would tie up their shikhas (tuft of hair on the back of the head) to poles to ensure that they don't fall asleep. Due to such determination for chanting , they were the life and soul of their spiritual master and Shrila Acarya Thakura was life and soul for them. Thus Shrila Acarya would never leave this place and always reside there."


tahara dharani sucarita buddhimata,

shri isvarira kripapatri ati sucarita.

laksha harinama tinho karena grahana,

kshane kshane mahaprabhura caritra kathana.


"Shri Sucaritadevi, the wife of Bhavaka Cakravarti was an intelligent and qualified disciple of Shrimati Isvaridevi, the wife of Shrila Acarya Thakura. She used to chant 100,000 names daily and constantly (every second) recite the pastimes and qualities of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu."


harinama jape sada kariya niyama,

aksha harinama vina na kare bhojana.


"Shri Vallabhi Kavipati, another exalted disciple of Shri Acarya used to chant 100,000 names daily with a vow to that effect. He would not accept any kind of foodstuffs until he completed this vow daily."


Purport by BRS Swami Gaurangapada:


This is called 'dridha-vrata' or real determination in spiritual life. When determination is used to complete the chanting of a fixed number (especially 64) of rounds daily, it is the ultimate perfection of determination. If one is not able to complete the vow of chanting then one should perform some austerity (of not eating or not sleeping etc.) so that he or she will not miss fulfilling the vow again. Very sincere devotees like Shri Kavipati (in this verse) and Shri Rasikananda take the vow of not eating until they finish chanting 100,000 names. Some may take a vow of chanting 32 rounds before eating anything in the day and chanting the remaining 32 rounds before sleeping at night. Because if one is distracted and performs other activities while chanting, then it is very difficult to complete this quota of 100,000 names daily. Even the bare minimum of 16 rounds becomes a burden for such a person. Thus the 16-round chanters should try their very best to complete their chanting at one stretch in a peaceful place with full concentration preferably before beginning any other activities in the day. This concentrated effort in chanting will gradually inspire them to increase the quality and quantity of their chanting.


laksha harinama jape sankhya je kariya,

sankirtane nritya kare sukhavishta haiya.


"Nimai Kaviraja, brother of Rupa Kaviraja (disciples of Shri Acarya) would chant 100,000 names daily while maintaining a count. He would then dance in sankirtana overwhelmed with ecstatic love."


laksha nama laya name ta visvasa,

badai rasika tinho samsare udasa.


"Shrimanta Cakravarti (disciple of Shri Acarya) would chant 100,000 names daily. In this way, he developed so much faith and attraction to the holy name that he became totally indifferent to this material world."


shri syamasundera dasa sarala brahmana,

laksha harinama tinho karena grahana.


"Shri Shyamasundera dasa (disciple of Shri Acarya) was a very simple and pure brahmana. He would chant 100,000 names daily."




11. Mahanidhi Swami on Laksha Naam


"Following the perfect example of his predecessors, Shrila Prabhupada tried to introduce a daily standard of 64 rounds for his initiated disciples in the early days. The disciples responded to Prabhupada's order with silence and astonishment. They argued about the shortage of time, and some flatly rejected saying "impossible." Perhaps this is the time when Shrila Prabhupada uttered his famous quote, "Impossible is a word in a fool's dictionary." Out of compassion for his struggling followers, Shrila Prabhupada relented, and reduced the minimum daily quota to sixteen rounds. And that became the standard for initiation.


But why should we just chant sixteen rounds of japa and stop? Who wants to be considered "fallen" in the eyes of his grandfather? Stand up and fight. Maintain the high standard of our exalted spiritual tradition coming down from Lord Chaitanya. The merciful Lord of love, prema purusottama Shri Chaitanya, is so easily offering all perfections for a mere few rounds in trade. By the movement of a few fingers one can achieve the most valuable treasure in creation. The golden avatara of unlimited compassion, Lord Gauranga, is extending His soft sweet hand to eat from ours-purified by Tulasi's touch and a count of sixty-four.


Are we so lazy, fallen and foolish that we wil let the divine magic pass by us while mumbling to ourselves, "Impossible! Impossible! Impossible!" Take strength from Shri Guru and Gaurahari and kick out the word "impossible" from your dictionary. The number of rounds "should be increased" from 16 a day, to 20, to 32 and then 64 per day. But never decrease the number of rounds. Sixty-four rounds is Mahaprabhu's magic number for peace, happiness and all spiritual perfection in love of God.


We should cry out to Krishna for mercy, and with great determination try to chant more and more. The instructions of Shrila Prabhupada are eternal. At any time or place, or in any circumstance one can sincerely surender and become spiritually empowered to fulfill Prabhupada's order. "You must chant 64 rounds a day on your beads."


Here is a brief history of the transition from sixty-four rounds a day to sixteen:


"In 1967 at San Francisco, Shrila Prabhupada asked , 'What is your definition of Krishna?' I said, 'Krishna is God. he is the Supreme Being. Our duty is to worship and serve Him.' Swamiji  seemed fairly satisfied, and then he said, 'You must chant sixty-four rounds per day on you beads.'


"I was shocked at this and could not answer. I did not know if there was any need to answer. I just kept looking at Swamiji, and he looked at me. After some time he said, 'Or at least you can chant thirty-two rounds a day.' Still silence. I considered it to be very difficult to chant even sixteen rounds. I was wondering how I could possibly chant thirty-two rounds. After some time, Swamiji said, 'At the very you must chant sixteen rounds every day.'" (Shrila Prabhupada Lilamrta)


A Practical Approach to 64 Rounds


Puri Maharaja once gave Mahanidhi Swami, the following practical advice on chanting 64 rounds daily:


"It is not hard to chant a lakh (100,000 names or 64 rounds) a day. It only takes four sittings a day of two hours each! Listen, you get up at four a.m., chant till 6 a.m. and you will have done sixteen rounds. Then do whatever, like bathing, puja, reading, and taking a little prasadam. Then sit and chant 16 rounds before noon. That is 32 rounds by 12:00! Then sit down two more times and finish 32 rounds by evening. So it's easy. You only need four sittings of two hours each to finish 64 rounds a day. At most it takes only eight hours to chant 64 rounds. You still have sixteen hours left to do other things."


Mahanidhi Swami continues:


It may not be as easy as Maharaja says to chant sixty-four rounds every day. But whenever we get the time or situation in our lives where we can, then certainly we should try our best to chant sixty four rounds of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra.


Saying the Hare Krishna mantra once on each of the 108 beads of a japa mala constitutes one round. Chanting a fixed number of rounds of Hare Krishna maha-mantra japa is the most urgent necessity and important engagement of a devotee's each and every day. It should be completed before anything else. There are many Vaishnavas in Vrndavana who will not even drink a drop of water until they finish 64 rounds. Unfortunately, for many devotees this vital activity is often relegated to a secondary position while other concerns like body, family cares and tasks at hand take priority. Under illusion, one wakes up in the morning thinking, "I have many pressing things to do-E-mails, phone calls, reading the newspaper and watching televised news. What's the hurry, I have all day to chant my rounds."


Chanting Krishna's holy names, the very life breath of the soul becomes a mere trifling thing to do at some other time. Pity-how what should be done first is done last! In describing the word determination, Shrila Prabhupada said that chanting the holy names of Krishna is more important than eating and sleeping.


"You have to minimize your sleeping. If you cannot finish sixteen rounds, then you must not sleep on that day, you must not eat. Why don't you forget to eat, forget? Why do you forget chanting Hare Krishna? This is negligence, aparadha, offense. Rather, you should forget your sleeping and eating, and must finish sixteen rounds. This is called determination. This is called determined. So you are welcome to take initiation, but if you are neglectful, if you want to make it a farce, that is your business. I cannot give you any protection." (Shrila Prabhupada 28/1/74)


Although sastras and sadhus show the need for chanting a fixed number of rounds daily, sadhakas in this dismal age of Kali often lack the determination to finish their daily quota. Lack of determination is caused by residual sins, mental impurity and attachment to sense enjoyment. Incapable of maintaining a steady vow, some devotees chant whimsically-one day sixteen rounds, one day eight, one day sixty-four, one day ten and one day none!


"Chanting japa should be done early in the morning with full concentration preferably during the Brahma Muhurta time. Concentrate fully on the sound vibration of the mantra, pronouncing each name distinctly and gradually your speed in chanting will increase naturally. Do not worry so much about chanting fast, most important is the hearing." (Shrila Prabhupada 6/1/72)


Title: Re: Vedas on Laksha Naam

User: Nitaipada_Maharaja   Date: 2006-08-02 06:08:02


Nityananda!  Gauranga!  Hare Krishna!  All glories to Shrila Prabhupada!  All glories to Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Thakura!  All glories to Shrila Bhaktivinoda!  All glories to Shrila Gaurangapada!  All glories to the Vaishnavas!  Please accept my most unworthy obeisances and blessings.  I pray that this meets you well and in the service/mercy of Shri Guru and Shri Gauranga.


My Dearest Shrila Gaurangapada;


Thank you for writing such an important book explaining the importance and necessity of chanting one lakha of the Holy Names daily.  So few realize the importance of this teaching.  Everyone is so willing to accept at face value only the minimum quota daily of sixteen rounds without question. 


I bow before your lotus feet millions upon millions of time for teaching me this important truth so many years ago.  I am so happy to see this teaching go out to the community of devotees in written form so that there will be more and more who come to this simple truth as the days and weeks pass, as this important paper you have written is spread around this material world from group to group, friend to friend and blog to blog.  My heart is so happy to see this paper that it wants to jump out of my chest and dance before Their Lordships on its own!


I pray that Shri Gaurachandra blesses this paper richly!!!  That just as His sankirtan movement was spread around this world by His pure servant, Shrila Prabhupada in such a short amount of time, that this paper will fire up the community of devotees to adopt the standard of chanting one hundred thousand Names daily.  I pray that this wonderful work is downloaded to every computer on the planet, by every devotee, every individual and every government official, so that they to can receive the happiness and joy of heart that I have found in simply reading such pure nectar.


Your most humble and eternal servant;