Thursday, June 30, 2011


United States (RNS) - Southern Baptists called hell an “eternal, conscious punishment” for those who do not accept Jesus, rebutting a controversial book from Michigan pastor Rob Bell that questions traditional views of hell.  Citing Bell’s book “Love Wins,” the resolution urges Southern Baptists “to proclaim faithfully the depth and gravity of sin against a holy God, the reality of hell, and the salvation of sinners by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone, to the glory of God alone.”  Several leaders during the Baptists’ two-day meeting in Phoenix coupled warnings about hell with pleas for evangelism - especially in areas where there are no churches or missionaries.  “Is hell real? Is hell forever? Did God really say sinners would perish in eternal torment forever and ever?” asked Pastor David Platt of Birmingham, Ala. “Oh, readers of Rob Bell and others like him, listen very carefully be very cautious, when anyone says, ‘Did God really say this?’”

Bell’s book, released in March, criticizes the “misguided” view that “select Christians” will live forever in heaven while the rest of humanity will suffer eternal torment in a punishing hell.   “At the center of the Christian tradition since the first church has been the insistence that ... hell is not forever, and love, in the end, wins,” Bell wrote in “Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Has Ever Lived.”  
Earlier this year, the Southern Baptist-affiliated Lifeway Christian Stores quietly removed warning labels from certain books - including Bell’s - that “could be considered inconsistent with historical evangelical theology.”

Rejecting Pastor Rob Bell’s view on hell, Southern Baptists affirmed the historical biblical teaching on hell as an “eternal conscious punishment” in a resolution that was passed on the last day of their annual meeting.  They denied Rob Bell’s controversial book Love Wins, which criticizes the belief that a few Christians will spend eternity in heaven while everyone else is eternally punished in hell.  Once a person has attained the reactions to his activities and lived in heaven to use up his good karma, or gone through hell to rectify himself of his bad acts, he again eventually returns to accept a human birth to try again.  

All religions indicate there is life after death. However, they normally offer only the most basic understanding that if you are good and a believer, maybe you will go to heaven. And if you are predominantly bad, you will go to hell. But only the Vedic philosophy offers detailed information on how exactly this works, and how we create our future with every thought, word and deed.  And how that future may not only be in a heavenly world or on a hellish planet, but how it can be another life similar to what we are experiencing now on this earthly globe. ... No truly loving God will cast His children into an eternal hell without the chance of correcting themselves. Therefore, the Vedic culture offers a deeper understanding of the true loving nature of God than the religions that are merely based on fear of God.

Stephen Knapp (Śrīpad Nandanandana dasa) :
Why Be A Hindu: “The Advantages of the Vedic Path”  -

Wednesday, June 29, 2011


AND LOWER RISK OF HEART DISEASE - Meditation, specifically transcendental meditation (TM), has reportedly been shown to reduce heart attack-related deaths by up to 50 percent, a new study claims.  Researchers tracked 201 people as they underwent either Transcendental Meditation or health education classes as part of a stress-reduction approach, the New Zealand Herald reports.  They found that those who meditated had lower blood pressure and a 47% reduction in strokes, deaths and heart attacks, which they calculated together as one result.  
Between 1998 and 2007, study participants either engaged in meditation techniques for 20 minutes twice per day.  Alternatively, they spent the same amount of time practicing other heart-healthy lifestyle behaviors that they were taught in a cardiovascular health education program.

The results found that TM appears to reduce the risk of death, heart attack and stroke, while also lowering blood pressure and stress levels.  TM in those subjects was found to be far more effective than the actions of the control group, which practiced heart-healthy behavior.  
According to the researchers, African Americans have higher rates of Coronary Heart Disease-related illness and death, and that psychosocial stress might be a contributing factor.  The researchers theorized that the effects of a stress reduction intervention would help reduce CHD risk factors and perhaps prevent CHD-related morbidity and mortality.

Transcendental meditation (TM) is rooted in Indian culture, founded in the 1950s. It found widespread acceptance in the 1960s and 1970s, and has since become a technique of relaxation and spirituality. As a form of mantra meditation, TM technique helps the individual calm the mind and body.  This study shows that TM reduce the risk of death, heart attack and stroke, while also lowering blood pressure and stress levels far better than the control group which practiced traditional heart-healthy behavior.  We usually see that mantra meditation is use it to cope with health problems, but its deep meaning is not clearly understood.  

In the Gayatri Mantra, we are requested, bhargo devasya dhimahi: “come meditate.”  What sort of meditation is possible in that plane of dedication? Not abstract meditation, but service cultivation, krsnanusilanamDhimahi means “to participate in the spontaneous flow, the current of devotion in Vrndavana.”  And what will be the result (dhiyo yo nah pracodayat)?  The capacity of our cultivation will be increased.  As we serve, a greater capacity and willingness to serve will be given to us in remuneration - just as interest is added to capital in the bank.  In this way, our dedicating principle will be increased again and again. Dhimahi means aradhana, worship. It cannot but be explained in terms of aradhana, puja, seva - worship, adoration, loving service.  So “dhimahi” does not mean abstract meditation, but devotional service. This is the underlying meaning of the Gayatri Mantra.

Śrīla Bhakti Raksaka Sridhara Mahārāja :
“Gayatri Mantram Revealed From the Flute Song
of Krishna to Srimad Bhagavatam to Radha Dasyam”
Bhaktivedanta Memorial Library -

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


OF THE TRAVEL GUIDE, LONELY PLANET - Smile and the world smiles with you. Test it out in these destinations, taken from Lonely Planet’s 1000 Ultimate Experiences.  Vanuatu:  Many a human’s idea of blissful living involves swinging in a palm-strung hammock while the ocean swooshes gently onto a white-sand beach nearby. Montréal, Québec, Canada:  Clean, welcoming and refreshingly multicultural, Montréal is happy enough year-round.  Happy, Texas, USA:  This is the self-proclaimed ‘town without a frown’. The tiny Lone Star State settlement of Happy is a frankly disappointing collection of silos and gridded streets.  Bhutan: Monasteries held to cliffs by the hairs of angels and a complete absence of traffic lights - what’s not to be cheerful about in Bhutan?  Colombia:  Whether it’s the coffee beans or the Carnival atmosphere, it buzzes with Latin high spirits 24/7.

Wuyi Shan, China:  The building of the Tian XingYong Le (the Ever-Happy Temple) is perpetually cheerful.  Malawi:  This is the ‘warm heart of Africa’. The country’s people are renowned for the effusive welcome they give travelers.  Andorra:  There you can enjoy outdoorsy fun: skiing in winter, hikes and off-road cycling come summer.  Hidakagwa, Wakayama, Japan:  Offers the Warai (Laughing) Festival in October when infectious good humour spilling all the way to goddess Niutsuhime no mikoto’s shrine.  Denmark:  It is the world’s most contented country.  It’s easy to see why: standards of living are sky-high.

This article from the popular travel guide "Lonely Planet" reports on sites considered the happiest in the world, for being almost unknown, small and quiet locations.  In these places the emphasis is put on social services, hospitality, friendship, solidarity and smiles.  People want to get away from the stress of big cities by traveling to remote places, thinking that there they will find the peace that can not find in their inner selves.  No material happiness or realization of Impersonal Brahman can be compared to the happiness of attain the direct vision and realization of Isvara or Personal Divinity.
So it is said in the Tantra: Exceptionally wonderful supernatural powers, long-enduring worldly and heavenly pleasures, long and lasting experiences of Mukti as Brahmasukha (felicity derived from knowledge and realization of impersonal Brahman), and eternal and ever-progressive and supreme flow of transcendental felicity (from realization of the Supreme Lord) are attainable by Bhakti in Lord Govinda (Krishna), who is the Lord of all the senses.  ... Even with the slightest awakening of Bhava-Bhakti in the heart for the Lord, the four objects of human pursuit, viz. Dharma (relative duties offering heavenly pleasures), Artha (mundane wealth), Kama (sensual pleasures or desires), and Moksa (final emancipation or realization of the self as identical with Brahman) become insignificant and as worthless as a straw.

Śrīla Bhakti Hridaya Bon (Vana) Mahārāja :
Transliteration and English Translation with Comments of
Śrī Rupa Goswami’s “Bhakti-Rasamrta-Sindu”
“Eastern Division of the Ocean:  First Wave” Texts 31 and 33 - Bhaktivedanta Memorial Library

Monday, June 27, 2011


(CNN) - One of South America's most famous football clubs, River Plate, was relegated from Argentina's top division Sunday for the first time in its 110-year history, sparking riots among supporters.  The relegation play-off against Belgrano of Cordoba had to be abandoned in the final minute of the match in the Argentine capital, as police fought back a pitch invasion by furious River fans.  Their side had gone into the match needing to overturn a 2-0 deficit from the first-leg of the play-off decider, but could only manage a 1-1 draw to seal their ignominious fate.  Both sets of players were forced off the pitch after coming under fire from a hail of missiles from the crowd, while firefighters sprayed water hoses into the stands to try to restore order.

Based in the affluent Belgrano neighborhood of Buenos Aires, the “millionaires” are the country's most successful team, having won a record 33 league titles. Their rivalry with the Boca Juniors club across the city is among the most intense in world football.  But in recent years a huge debt has forced the club to sell off its top players.  The unrest quickly spread to the streets outside the stadium, where riot police battled to contain the furious fans with horses and water cannons.  The clashes left 68 people injured, while over 50 were arrested, according to Argentina's Federal Police. Two officers were left “in a serious condition with head injuries from being hit by projectiles,” police added.

Legendary Argentine football giant River Plate were relegated from the country’s top division for the first time in their 110-year history, amid tears and scenes of violent mayhem.  River needed to win to escape dropping into the Primera “B”, but it managed only a 1-1 draw against Belgrano de Cordoba.  Being relegated to second division, the violence spread outside the stadium, where police used horses and water cannon to control furious fans.  The clashes left 68 people injured, 50 arrested and 15 vehicles destroyed.  Krsna consciousness takes us away from this kind of fanaticism and engages us in auspicious and spiritual activities.  

The material world does not offer any growth; it just keeps your body, holds the body in some way as though he is leaving us, and so it is bad business.  All we need is already here and we can discover everything in a natural way.  Krishna says that one must be very determined not to be misled by the propaganda, worldly interests, the so-called friends, television, and many items that appear to disrupt our determination.  So many people are not interested; they only think in football, in sports, in sex life, or alcohol at parties.  Determined means: “I will reject what is worldly, those things which are artificial; I'll just look for sadhu sanga, association with the saints, and the association with those who raise me. ... I can chant Hare Krishna and feel superior happiness” and then decide to change my life.

Śrīla Atulananda Ācārya :
“The Path to Devotion I” -  “Pathways to Surrender”
Academia Vaisnava - Radha Dasyam Visnupriya Asram
Medellín, Colombia  -

Sunday, June 26, 2011


ABC / AP - This year’s observance of International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking is the 24th and coincides with the 50th anniversary of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs.  The theme is ‘Global Action for Healthy Communities without Drugs’.  The General Assembly passed resolution 42/112 on 7 December 1987, deciding to observe 26 June as International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.  The day is being observed to affirm that illicit drugs continue to pose a health danger to humanity.  Despite continued and increased efforts by the international community, the world drug problem continues to constitute a serious threat to public health, the safety and well-being of humanity, in particular young people, and the national security and sovereignty of States.

  The UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon, is urging all sectors of society to get involved in the fight.  “... Drug use, at its core, is a health issue. Drug dependence is a disease, not a crime. The real criminals are the drug traffickers.  But the supply side is only half of the equation. Unless we reduce demand for illicit drugs, we can never fully tackle cultivation, production or trafficking.  Governments have a responsibility to counteract both drug trafficking and drug abuse, but communities can also make a major contribution.  Families, schools, civil society and religious organisations can do their part to rid their communities of drugs.  Businesses can help provide legitimate livelihoods. The media can raise awareness about the dangers of narcotics,” Ban said in a statement.

The world community is observing the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.  The day is observed today across the globe to renew pledge of continuing war against manufacturing and use of narcotics.  Narco trade is increasingly being used by organised criminal syndicates to finance militancy and terrorism, and it undermines socio-economic and political stability and sustainable development of a country.  Apart from that, drugs condition the state of consciousness of the soul at the moment of leaving the physical body.
If there is intense attachment to someone or something, then the soul will depart with that person’s image in mind. Intense hatred means that the hated person’s image will remain in the mind as the predominant thought or image at the time of death.  A person who had been strongly addicted to liquor and drugs will leave the body with thoughts of liquor and drugs, or the desire for more intoxication. Sometimes they leave the body while under the influence of intoxicants, which has a most regressive affect on entering the next realm. On the other hand, a person who had lead a pious and virtuous life, with thoughts of God, will depart from the body with thoughts of God. The last thoughts determine the conditions and nature of the next birth.  It is for this reason that we are advised to sing the Divine Names of God or hymns at the time of death in order to focus the attention of the dying person on holy and noble thoughts.

Stephen Knapp (Śrīpad Nandanandana dasa) :
“Curing Depression with Spirituality”  -

Saturday, June 25, 2011


ANY FAVORS BY LETTING THEM DRINK - Young teens who are allowed to drink alcohol under adult supervision don’t learn about responsible drinking and actually drink more as they get older, a new study says.  Some parents believe that supervising their teens while they drink small amounts of alcohol will teach them to drink responsibly, according to the authors of the study published in the May issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.  Researchers followed more than 1,900 teens in Washington state (USA) and Victoria, Australia, as they progressed from seventh to ninth grade. The children were asked about their alcohol use, alcohol-related problems, and how often they drank alcohol with an adult present.  By eighth grade, about 67 % of the Australian teens and 35 % of the American teens had drunk alcohol with an adult present, a difference that reflects general cultural attitudes in the two countries.

By ninth grade, 36 % of Australian teens and 21 % of American teens had already experienced alcohol-related consequences such as not being able to stop drinking, having blackouts and getting into fights, the study found.  
Teens in both countries who were allowed to drink under adult supervision had higher levels of alcohol use and were more likely to have experienced alcohol-related consequences by ninth grade.  The findings suggest that parents should not permit young teens to drink any alcohol, even under adult supervision, the researchers said.

A new study shows that teens that drink under adult supervising are more likely to develop problems with alcohol than kids who aren’t allowed to touch the stuff till they hit age 21.  “Kids need parents to be parents and not drinking buddies,” lead researcher Barbara J. McMorris, of the University of Minnesota School of Nursing. “Adults need to be clear about what messages they are sending.”  The study makes it clear that unfortunately for social reasons, from a very young age people begin to consume alcohol, but at least you should not be drinking with your children.  

Intoxicants - tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, cocaine - rage through the minds and bodies of young people practically everywhere. ... Children are taking intoxicants at younger ages, and use is increasing. Modern society knows that intoxication brings crime, cruelty, illness, laziness, accidents, family breakups, and early death. But what can we do to stop it? Influenced by the mode of passion, kids use intoxicants for social acceptance. In fact, mild forms of intoxication are so much a part of the world today, regardless of the country or culture. ... We can keep or save our children from intoxicants first by giving them thorough knowledge of the purpose and plan of creation. From a young age, a child should know that he or she is a pure soul, capable of achieving unlimited spiritual happiness in love of Krishna, both in this life and beyond.

Śrīmati Urmila devi dasi :
“Drug Free”  -

Friday, June 24, 2011


SYNTHETIC DRUGS ON INCREASE - A UN annual drug report concluded on Thursday that while global markets for cocaine, heroin and cannabis declined or remained stable, the production and use of new synthetic drugs have increased.  “The gains we have witnessed in the traditional drugs markets are being offset by a fashion for synthetic ‘designer drugs’ mimicking illegal substances. The global drug threat has not diminished,” Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), told a press conference launching the report “World Drug Report 2011.”  The report said some 210 million people, or 4.8 per cent of the global population aged between 15 and 64, took illicit substances at least once in the previous year.  The rate of overall drug use, including problem drug use, he said, remained stable.

Speaking at the report’s official launch, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the report “paints a sobering picture of the threat posed by illegal drugs,” adding that “traffickers break more than the law. They break the human spirit. They fuel terrorism and insurgency. They rob societies of peace.”  The US cocaine market has witnessed a massive decline in recent years, but continues to be the world’s largest cocaine market, that the cannabis remains by far the most widely produced and consumed illicit substance globally, that over the past decade, cocaine consumption in Europe has doubled, and that market prices for cocaine have dropped appreciably since the mid-1990s.

Although the markets for cocaine, heroin and cannabis have declined or remained stable, increase in world production and abuse of amphetamine-type stimulants, opioids, synthetic drugs and the prescription. This trend is given by the resurgence of poppy cultivation and heroin trafficking. Coca cultivation and cocaine production decreased by eradication in Colombia and also because the main consumer country - United States - has reduced its demand and now prefers synthetic drugs.  People are discontent and look for new drugs to stimulate their existences.  
Human form of life is meant for real satisfaction, which comes through self-realization that comes from the purification of the heart. But people, today, consider that this is impractical, unrealistic. This is the most unfortunate condition, the cause of all problems. It is practical, to destroy the water, to destroy the air, to destroy the ground with pollution, nuclear waste - it’s very realistic, is it not? It is very realistic and practical to be so frustrated in material endeavors, to fill your bodies with drugs and alcohol, to fill your ears with music, which simply makes you like a mad man. ... The culmination of all this craziness is divorces, drug addiction, nations pointing nuclear weapons at one another ready to destroy the earth. What is the cause of all these problems? One thing. People are discontent. The more they have the more discontent they become.

Thursday, June 23, 2011


Tokyo (AP) - A rapid rise in radiation levels reportedly forced officials at Japan’s stricken Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant to halt efforts Saturday to clean contaminated water just hours after the operation started.  Fresh water has been being pumped into the plant to cool damaged reactors.  About 100,000 tons of highly radioactive water - enough to fill 40 Olympic-sized swimming pools - has built up during the process, the BBC reports.   Officials said the part of the system that absorbs the caesium needs to be replaced earlier than expected because it has reached its processing capacity.  The water in the plant must be decontaminated before it can be stored or recycled back through the reactors. Once the water is pumped out, workers should be able to repair the cooling systems.

A government official says a system to treat radioactive water pooling at a nuclear power plant is not performing as well as hoped but should be working fully next month.  The system is key to stabilize the crisis at the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant because the contaminated water poses health risks and impedes workers as they try to repair damage at the plant.  Goshi Hosono, director of the government’s nuclear crisis task force, said Thursday the contaminated water problem is “the biggest barrier” now.  The water is used to cool the reactors, but 110,000 tons of it have been accumulated. The contaminated water could overflow by early July if there is no progress on the treatment system.

The Fukushima nuclear plant was crippled when an earthquake and tsunami devastated much of Japan March 11.  The disaster knocked out the plant’s cooling systems, sparking meltdowns and radiation leaks.  There is risk of an overflowing of contaminated water within a few weeks if action is not taken soon.  Near the reactors, a rabbit was born without ears - a genetic mutation whose cause is unclear, but serves as a reminder and a searing symbol of the accident.  Atheists have claimed that there is nothing science cannot explain, however, science per se is simply unable to deal with the meaning behind the facts.

One of the primary causes of conflict and misunderstanding between science and religion is the fact that some scientists, being overwhelmed by a materialistic world view, have claimed too much for science. ... The seers of Vedic times as well as the Vedic literatures describe that there are two fundamental energies of God - (i) material and (ii) spiritual.  In science we work with material energy.  Spiritual energy has the property of consciousness.  Every living being is animated by fundamental spiritual entity possessing a quantum of consciousness.  On the other hand, material energies such as electrical, nuclear, and chemical energy, etc., do not possess consciousness. ... Religious scientists and spiritual leaders from all traditions should join together for the purpose of framing global moral and ethical codes for the welfare of all living beings on the planet.

T.D. Singh, Ph.D. - Śrīla Bhaktisvarupa Damodara Mahārāja :
“Science and Religion - Present and Future” - “Introduction”
Bhaktivedanta Institute -  -

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


IN CHIPKO, BHUMI PROJECT - The most recognizable environmentalists in India, those in the Chipko Movement are commonly referred to as "tree-huggers."  "Chipko" means literally “to embrace,” and these activists, a group made up mostly of village women, practice Gandhi’s method of non-violent resistance, satyagraha, by standing between trees and loggers, often literally embracing the trees.  Chipko began in northern India’s Uttar Pradesh region on March 26, 1974, as a spontaneous protest.  Members have since been integral in protecting forests against clear-cutting and in lobbying for a more conservative use of natural resources.  Chipko Movement traces its pious, tree-preserving roots to 1730, when 363 Bishnoi Samaj people in the Jodhpur district were killed by loggers attempting to protect a forest of Khejri trees.

Cases like these prompted scholar Pankaj Jain, Ph.D., to insist that environmentalism is an integral part of the Hindu belief system, and he handily summarizes several Hindu environmental teachings to prove this point.  Dr. Jain elaborates on the ideas of dharma, meaning duty, and karma, meaning action.  In this line of thought, it is the duty of all people to protect the earth and its life forms.  The “environment” is not an issue separate from everyday life and its tasks. Furthermore, one’s karma (action) has clear consequences, and harming the earth, which is poor karma, creates unsavory results. To create positivity in one's life, both dharma and karma must be guided by ahimsa or non-harming.

By treating the earth, its ecosystems, plants and animals with respect and compassion, a person is both doing her dharma and practicing good karma.  Besides, according to Hindu's idea of reincarnation stands that after death, one may be reborn depending on one’s karma.  It is possible for a human in this life to be reincarnated as a tree or a dolphin in the next life.  For this reason, a person must think of all creatures as having once been her own mother or father. Over several thousands of years and many rebirths, one has already had a personal relationship with virtually every living thing.  
Hinduism contains numerous references to the worship of the divine in nature in its Vedas, Upanishads, Puranas, Sutras and its other sacred texts.  Millions of Hindus recite Sanskrit mantras daily to revere their rivers, mountains, trees, animals and the earth.  Hinduism is a remarkably diverse religious and cultural phenomenon, with many local and regional manifestations. Within this universe of beliefs, several important themes emerge:  • The earth can be seen as a manifestation of the goddess, and must be treated with respect.  • The five elements - space, air, fire, water and earth - are the foundation of an interconnected web of life.  • Dharma - often translated as “duty” - can be reinterpreted to include our responsibility to care for the earth.  • Simple living is a model for the development of sustainable economies.  • Our treatment of nature directly affects our karma.

Pankaj Jain, Ph.D. :
‘Sustenance and Sustainability -
Dharma and Ecology of Hindu Communities’

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


SUCCESSFULLY STOP SMOKING - Nicotine is as addictive as heroin, so quitting smoking is probably the hardest thing you will ever have to do. To fill the craving, many people eat. Eating gives you something to put in your mouth instead of a cigarette, and it temporarily satisfies a desire. Due to this desire, many people who quit smoking gain weight and smokers often refuse to quit because they fear weight gain. However, eating certain foods can help you quit and stay thin.  When you quit smoking, food takes on a whole new importance in your life. The first reason for this is the hand-to-mouth craving that needs to be replaced. Instead of munching on candy or potato chips throughout the day, eat nuts, seeds, grapes or berries, or chopped carrots or celery, perhaps with hummus or salsa for a dip.

 Sugarless gum is also an excellent alternative. Secondly, because tobacco kills taste buds, food will taste so much better once you quit smoking.  Drink plenty of water throughout the day to flush out all of the toxins smoking has left in your body. This will also mean that you eat less. Drink a herbal tea or hot milk before bed to relax you. Alcohol and caffeine will only make you want to smoke, so avoid them until you are over your cravings. Duke University psychologist Joseph McClernon found that fruits, vegetables and dairy products, like milk, make cigarettes taste bad, but meat, coffee and alcohol make them taste good. Incorporate the first group into your diet to encourage your quitting efforts.

It is time to give up smoking. How? Quite simply, replacing.  Some foods should be avoided and others consumed. You will experience low blood sugar after quitting smoking, so you should regularly eat the type of snacks that slowly release sugar into your bloodstream, like brown bread slices, small portions of whole meal cereal, apricots, pears, whole wheat crackers and natural yogurts.  Such food will put you away from the harmful habit of smoking and fill your body with vital rejuvenating vitamins and minerals, too.   We should also remember that tobacco kills nearly 10,000 people worldwide every day. 

An average cigarette contains 401 poisons and 43 cancer-causing chemicals, there are around 1.1 billion smokers in the world (about one-third of the global population aged 15 and over) and we have quite a sobering picture of the world around us.  The statistics about other self-destructive behavioral patterns - alcoholism, substance abuse and suicide - are equally, if not more, alarming. And even among so-called normal people, practically everyone is victimized by some form of self-destructive behavioral pattern - unwarranted expression of anger that turn out to be disastrous, unintentional use of caustic words that break hearts and ruin lives and so on. ... Chanting (the Holy Names of God) enables one to experience within oneself continuous happiness, which is absolutely independent of the state of the body and the external world.

Śrīpad Caitanya Caran das (BE E&TC) :
“The Tragedy of Self-Destruction”
“The Spiritual Scientist” - Vol. 1 Issue 16.
Bhaktivedanta Academy for Culture and Education (BACE), Pune

Monday, June 20, 2011


HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE IN US, STUDY - About one in five young adults may have high blood pressure in US, a new study suggests, but many of them appear unaware of it.  Such are the results of the latest attempt to clarify just how many far-from-elderly Americans are putting their long-term health at risk via hypertension.  Researchers analyzed blood pressure data from the National Add Health, and focused specifically on the information about adults age 24 to 32.  They found that of those people, 19 percent had high blood pressure - that is, they had a blood pressure reading of 140/90 millimeters of mercury or higher.  “And we found the results across every demographic: age, race, ethnicity, gender and level of obesity,” Dr. Eric Whitsel, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill said. “So it didn’t seem like it was concentrated within a particular group of individuals.”

The emphasized message is clear: 'it is not safe to assume that certain adults are too young to have hypertension'.  
Dr. Whitsel offered four ways to keep high blood pressure from getting too high:  1. Eat a balanced and healthy diet high in fruits and vegetables.  2. Reduce intake of sodium, which has a prominent effect on blood pressure levels, to less than 2,300 milligrams per day.  3. Limit daily alcohol consumption to two drinks or less for men and one drink or less for women.  4. Make sure you exercise regularly. Adults should get at least 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity every week.

Almost one in five younger adults in the U.S. has high blood pressure, and the younger a person is when they develop high blood pressure, the earlier this damage can start, according to a new study.  High blood pressure is caused by a mix of social, behavioral and biological factors, and generally it reveals an unhealthy lifestyle.  It is important to do any discipline that allows the body to function in harmony, and the practice of Hatha yoga has many benefits. 

The blood circulatory system is composed of “lines” along which the most essential components to our health, both energized as we will have to be removed to complete the metabolic cycle. If excess toxins, the pipes are saturated, the blood is weak and the toxins are circulating through the body, affecting the functioning of organs. Within a series of yoga postures in motion, especially the more energetic, the inverted and those involving the legs, which are designed to unclog and recycle system. ... On the other hand, all yoga exercises promote the health of the spine which is connected to the whole body through the nervous system. This system is a big network throughout the body and receives the benefit of all tools used by yoga, such as mantras, breathing, postures and meditation, help relax and tone the nervous system, calming and strengthening it at once.

Yoga Inbound :
Hatha Yoga - Topics of Interest
“What happens to our body when we practice yoga?”
Radha Charan d.d. -

Saturday, June 18, 2011


(Reuters) - Food prices could double in the next 20 years and demand in 2050 will be 70 percent higher than now, UK charity Oxfam said on Tuesday, warning of worsening hunger as the global food economy stumbles close to breakdown.  “The food system is pretty well bust in the world,” Oxfam Chief Executive Barbara Stocking told reporters, announcing the launch of the Grow campaign as 925 million people go hungry every day.  “All the signs are that the number of people going hungry is going up,” Stocking said.  Hunger was increasing due to rising food price inflation and oil price hikes, scrambles for land and water, and creeping climate change.  Oxfam also opposed support for using food as a feedstock for biofuels.

Food prices are forecast to increase by something in the range of 70 to 90 percent by 2030 before taking into account the effects of climate change, which would roughly double price rises again.  “Now we have entered an age of growing crisis, of shock piled upon shock: vertiginous food price spikes and oil price hikes, devastating weather events, financial meltdowns and global contagion,” Oxfam said in a report.  It is believed one way to tame food price inflation is to limit speculation in agricultural commodity futures markets.  “Financial speculation must be regulated, and support dismantled for biofuels that displace food,” it said.  The failure of the food system flowed from failures of government to regulate and to invest, which meant that companies, interest groups and elites had been able to plunder resources.

The international confederation Oxfam warns in a report that prices of staple foods will double in 20 years, with the average cost of key crops increasing between 120% and 180%, unless world leaders take action to reform the global food system.  Food prices’ increase will be caused by climate change and we should remember.  The environment and the material creation are supplied with all the potencies to produce all the necessities for all the living beings. 

Human society should not consider itself as the only enjoyer of all of God’s creation, and that no other creatures have a claim to it. Humanity is actually a minority species when we consider the many types of creatures that are sustained by the environment. If we manage the ecosystem properly, it will continue to produce everything we need. However, if people who have no genuine spiritual understanding start exploiting the Earth to take whatever they want in any way they want, then the supply of resources starts decreasing and the Earth, being a living organism, stops producing or responding to the needs of society as abundantly as it used to do. Then there will be shortages, droughts, and forest fires; subsequently the prices on commodities will increase. Gradually more people will become poor, and poverty and starvation will spread in parts of the world.

Stephen Knapp (Śrīpad Nandanandana dasa) :
“Environmentalism According to the Vedic View”  -

Friday, June 17, 2011


AND NOW SCIENTISTS KNOW WHY - It’s an unfortunate fact that when smokers kick the habit, they often gain weight - a side effect that many smokers use as a reason for not quitting.  Now scientists think they’ve pinpointed the pathway in the brain through which nicotine helps suppress appetite, suggesting that it’s possible to get the same effect without the cigarettes.  Nicotine works on many different receptors in the brain, including those in reward regions that contribute to addiction. But working with mice, a team led by Yale University School of Medicine psychiatrist Marina Picciotto found that the drug also binds to receptors on appetite-regulating neurons, which aren’t involved in addiction. These neurons, located in the hypothalamus, send the “I’m full” message after a meal, helping to regulate how much you eat.

It helps explain why smokers aren’t as hungry when they smoke, and why they tend to stay thinner on the habit.  When they quit, however, many smokers tend to eat more, typically gaining on average about five pounds after quitting.  Picciotto believes that nicotine hijacks various neural circuits in the brain - those involved in reward, and now in appetite - and that understanding how the tobacco compound works on brain cells could lead to better cessation strategies.  Understanding the link between nicotine and satiety could lead to new drugs that target the nicotine receptors on appetite-controlling cells, giving smokers a way to quit without the weight gain.  There are plant-based quit-smoking drugs available in Eastern Europe that may work in this way, but further research needs to be done to determine their use.

Scientists have discovered why smokers tend to gain weight when they quit the habit. It turns out that nicotine can speed up the brain cells that normally suggest to people to stop eating when satisfied. Smoking causes cancer and heart attacks, so a little weight gain should not deter smokers kick the habit, but they say they lack the will to get away from this vice.  We should know what Krishna's volition is, and act accordingly to it.  If we get that Krishna draw us strongly towards Him, there is no vice or habit that can oppose to His will. 

We must learn to surrender. We must learn to be servants. That is the meaning of Radhasthami.  For Sri Radha is the queen of surrender.  She is the queen of going in the right direction, in the good direction.  Queen of those dedicated to serve the will of Krishna.  We pray to her to remove our doubts.  “Oh, Srimati Radharani, destroy my enemy ego , my traitor, uncooperative ego!  Destroy this suspicious, unhappy and challenging attitude!  Teach me to be always satisfied in the divine service.  In Your field there is no lamentation or complaint. There is only endless enthusiasm.  You do not measure profits.  Your only calculation comes from your side; You only measure just how much You are giving.”  Thus, following in Her footsteps, we enter into the daring group of servants, with our triumphant queen Srimati Radharani.

Śrīla Atulananda Ācārya :
“Sri Radhastami”