9 THINGS TO DO IN THE MONTH OF KARTIK
- Daily offer a ghee lamp to Krishna and sing the Damodarastakam as stated below and one must also try and understand the meaning of the whole song which will thus bring the ecstatic feeling of the Brajvasis ( The top most devotees of Lord Krishna )
lasat-kundalam gokule bhrajamanam
paramrstam atyantato drutya gopya
1) To the Supreme Lord, whose form is the embodiment of eternal existence, knowledge, and bliss, whose shark-shaped earrings are swinging to and fro, who is beautifully shining in the divine realm of Gokula, who I (due to the offense of breaking the pot of yogurt that His mother was churning into butter and then stealing the butter that was kept hanging from a swing) is quickly running from the wooden grinding mortar in fear of mother Yasoda, but who has been caught from behind by her who ran after Him with greater speed–to that Supreme Lord, Sri Damodara, I offer my humble obeisances.
rudantam muhur netra-yugmam mrjantam
sthita-graivam damodaram bhakti-baddham
2) (Seeing the whipping stick in His mother’s hand) He is crying and rubbing His eyes again and again with His two lotus hands. His eyes are filled with fear, and the necklace of pearls around His neck, which is marked with three lines like a conch shell, is shaking because of His quick breathing due to crying. To this Supreme Lord, Sri Damodara, whose belly is bound not with ropes but with His mother’s pure love, I offer my humble obeisances.
itidrk sva-lilabhir ananda-kunde
sva-ghosam nimajjantam akhyapayantam
tadiyesita-jnesu bhaktair jitatvam
punah prematas tam satavrtti vande
3) By such childhood pastimes as this He is drowning the inhabitants of Gokula in pools of ecstasy, and is revealing to those devotees who are absorbed in knowledge of His supreme majesty and opulence that He is only conquered by devotees whose pure love is imbues with intimacy and is free from all conceptions of awe and reverence. With great love I again offer my obeisances to Lord Damodara hundreds and hundreds of times.
varam deva moksam na moksavadhim va
na canyam vrne ‘ham varesad apiha
idam te vapur natha gopala-balam
sada me manasy avirastam kim anyaih
4) O Lord, although You are able to give all kinds of benedictions, I do not pray to You for the boon of impersonal liberation, nor the highest liberation of eternal life in Vaikuntha, nor any other boon (which may be obtained by executing the nine processes of bhakti). O Lord, I simply wish that this form of Yours as Bala Gopala in Vrndavana may ever be manifest in my heart, for what is the use to me of any other boon besides this?
idam te mukhambhojam atyanta-nilair
vrtam kuntalaih snigdha-raktais’ ca gopya
muhus cumbitam bimba-raktadharam me
manasy avirastam alam laksa-labhaih
5) O Lord, Your lotus face, which is encircled by locks of soft black hair tinged with red, is kissed again and again by mother Yasoda, and Your lips are reddish like the bimba fruit. May this beautiful vision of Your lotus face be ever manifest in my heart. Thousands and thousands of other benedictions are of no use to me.
namo deva damodarananta visno
prasida prabho duhkha-jalabdhi-magnam
grhanesa mam ajnam edhy aksi-drsyah
6) O Supreme Godhead, I offer my obeisances unto You. O Damodara! O Ananta! O Vishnu! O master! O my Lord, be pleased upon me. By showering Your glance of mercy upon me, deliver this poor ignorant fool who is immersed in an ocean of worldly sorrows, and become visible to my eyes.
kuveratmajau baddha-murtyaiva yadvat
tvaya mocitau bhakti-bhajau krtau ca
tatha prema-bhaktim svakam me prayaccha
na mokse graho me ‘sti damodareha
7) O Lord Damodara, just as the two sons of Kuvera–Manigriva and Nalakuvara–were delivered from the curse of Narada and made into great devotees by You in Your form as a baby tied with rope to a wooden grinding mortar, in the same way, please give me Your own prema-bhakti. I only long for this and have no desire for any kind of liberation.
namas te ‘stu damne sphurad-dipti-dhamne
tvadiyodarayatha visvasya dhamne
namo radhikayai tvadiya-priyayai
namo ‘nanta-lilaya devaya tubhyam
8 ) O Lord Damodara, I first of all offer my obeisances to the brilliantly effulgent rope which binds Your belly. I then offer my obeisances to Your belly, which is the abode of the entire universe. I humbly bow down to Your most beloved Srimati Radharani, and I offer all obeisances to You, the Supreme Lord, who displays unlimited pastimes.
For reciting this song in a tune you can click on the following link
- One should always do all their daily work by keeping Krishna as the centre of attraction this will bring a different level of perfection in your work as well as in your life.Devotees should try to chant some extra rounds of the Harinam Mahamantra which is the best way to meditate and keep one’s mind focused even persons who cannot keep their mind focused and is always disturbed by their agitated mind can prefer this as the best medicine for themselves
To know in detail how to keep Krishna in the centre of all our activities one can refer to the following video link
And for those who want to know how to chant Harinam Mahamantra please refer to the following link
- Hear Srimad Bhagavatam, daily in association of exalted Vaishnavas, if possible. All other duties should be given up in favor of hearing the scriptures from sadhus during this month. It is most beneficial to recite and read Gajendra Moksha Lila-stava from 8th canto of Srimad Bhagavatam, which teaches complete surrender and dependence on Supreme Lord.
To know about the lessons we learn from Gajendra Moksha Lila please refer to the following video link
- Eat vegetarian foods without onion and garlic after offering it to Lord Krishna which becomes Mahaprasad (that is food devoid of any sinful reactions)
- Daily recite Siksastakam of Sriman Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and meditate on its meaning. Read the commentary on Siksastakam by Bhaktivinod Thakur
To hear about siksastakam in detail please refer to the two links provided below
- Daily Read the the Updeshamrita of Srila Rupa Goswami
To get an overview of this book please refer to the following audio link .
- Daily offer lamp to Tulsi devi and can chant the following song during aarti
namo namah tulasi krishna-preyasi namo namah
radha-krishna-seva pabo ei abilashi
(1) O Tulasi, beloved of Krishna, I bow before you again and again. My desire is to obtain the service of Sri Sri Radha and Krishna.
ye tomara sarana loy, tara vancha purna hoy
kripa kori’ koro tare vrindavana-vasi
(2) Whoever takes shelter of you has his wishes fulfilled. Bestowing your mercy on him, you make him a resident of Vrindavana.
mora ei abhilasha, vilasa kunje dio vasa
nayana heribo sada yugala-rupa-rasi
(3) My desire is that you will also give me a residence in the pleasure groves of Sri Vrindavana-dhama. Thus within my vision I will always behold the beautiful pastimes of Radha and Krishna.
ei nivedana dhara, sakhira anugata koro
seva-adhikara diye koro nija dasi
(4) I beg you to make me a follower of the cowherd damsels of Vraja. Please give me the privilege of devotional service and make me your own maidservant.
dina krishna-dase koy, ei yena mora hoy
sri-radha-govinda-preme sada yena bhasi
(5) This very fallen and lowly servant of Krsna prays, “May I always swim in the love of Sri Radha and Govinda.
Sri Tulasi Pranama
priyayai kesavasya ca
satya vatyai namo namah
I offer my repeated obeisances unto Vrinda, Srimati Tulasi Devi, who is very dear to Lord Kesava. O goddess, you bestow devotional service to Krishna and you possess the highest truth.
Sri Tulasi Pradakshina Mantra
yani kani ca papani
tani tani pranasyanti
pradakshinah pade pade
By the circumambulation of Srimati Tulasi Devi all the sins that one may have committed are destroyed at every step, even the sin of killing a brahmana.
- Make nice offerings for Krishna. Devotees should observe the festival of Giriraj Govardhan Puja.
For more information on Govardhan puja ritual and the reason behind it, please refer to the following link of an Article on Govardhan Puja
- Associate more with devotees
In serving the senses the living being is never tired. Even though he may be tired, the illusory energy perpetually forces him to do so without being satisfied. There is no end to such sense gratification business, and the conditioned soul becomes entangled in such servitude without hope of release. The release is only affected by association with pure devotees.
SB 1.10.11-12, : The intelligent, who have understood the Supreme Lord in association with pure devotees and have become freed from bad materialistic association, can never avoid hearing the glories of the Lord, even though they have heard them only once. How, then, could the Pāṇḍavas tolerate His separation, for they had been intimately associated with His person, seeing Him face to face, touching Him, conversing with Him, and sleeping, sitting and dining with Him?
The living being’s constitutional position is one of serving a superior. He is obliged to serve by force the dictates of illusory material energy in different phases of sense gratification. And in serving the senses he is never tired. Even though he may be tired, the illusory energy perpetually forces him to do so without being satisfied. There is no end to such sense gratification business, and the conditioned soul becomes entangled in such servitude without hope of release. The release is only affected by association with pure devotees. By such association one is gradually promoted to his transcendental consciousness. Thus he can know that his eternal position is to render service unto the Lord and not to the perverted senses in the capacity of lust, anger, desire to lord it over, etc. Material society, friendship and love are all different phases of lust. Home, country, family, society, wealth and all sorts of corollaries are all causes of bondage in the material world, where the threefold miseries of life are concomitant factors. By associating with pure devotees and by hearing them submissively, attachment for material enjoyment becomes slackened, and attraction for hearing about the transcendental activities of the Lord becomes prominent.