Thursday, April 26, 2012


DISORDERS AND POOR BODY IMAGE - Facebook may be promoting poor body image among its users, a new report says, with more than half of survey-takers admitting that they feel more conscious of their weight because of the social networking site, and only a quarter saying they are happy with their body. The report, which was based on an online survey of 600 Facebook users and was conducted by The Center for Eating Disorders at Sheppard Pratt in Baltimore, also found that 32 percent of users feel sad when comparing Facebook photos of themselves to those of their friends, that 37 percent feel they need to change specific parts of their body when comparing their photos to others’, and that 44 percent wish they had the same body or weight as a friend when looking at the photos.  Even doctors at the mental health institution were surprised by the intensity of the survey’s findings.

“We’ve known for a long time that people in our culture were dissatisfied with their body,” said Harry Brandt, director of The Center for Eating Disorders. “But the degree of dissatisfaction really surprises me.”  Dr. Brandt said that while body image problems are nothing new in our society, he and colleagues suspected that Faceook might be amplifying the obsession with thin. He said they were hearing Facebook-related concerns from many of their eating disorder patients, and decided to commission the research, which polled Facebook users ranging in age from 16 to 40, to find out whether these concerns also existed in the wider population. The results, he said, returned a clear “yes.” While the studies showed that females were more slightly likely than males to worry about and compare their bodies to their friends’, the differences were usually within 10 percentage points; Facebook, it seems, can make everyone insecure.

Facebook is being criticised for making users worry more about their body image and weight, which could ultimately lead to them suffering from eating disorders, according to a study.  “Facebook is making it easier for people to spend more time and energy criticizing their own bodies and wishing they looked like someone else,” Dr Harry Brandt said. Maintaining a good shape is a healthy thing, but comparing yourself with others and making yourself thinner and thinner is something dangerous.

In the history of humanity there is a long standing debate on theism vs. atheism. Better thinkers than you or I have pondered this issue reaching different conclusions. From this it seems that there is sufficient logic in support of the spiritual reality, at least as much as there is in support of atheism. Beyond logic lies the realm of spiritual experience. ... And we can proceed to experience ourselves. If you like the experiences you get from your practice, continue the practice, as there is no other proven method by which one can get such experience. Furthermore, the method prescribed by the saints for attaining spiritual experience involves becoming an ideal person, whose actions (karma) are integrated with knowledge (jnana), making one fit for a balanced emotional life (bhakti).

Śrīla Bhakti Vedanta Tripurari Mahārāja :
“Difficulties on the Path: In the Hands of God”
Śrī Caitanya Sanga - Vol. II, No. 38 - November 2, 2000  -

Saturday, April 21, 2012


SECRET SERVICE OUSTS AGENTS - The repercussions from the burgeoning Colombia prostitution scandal continued to mount Friday as the U.S. Secret Service forced out three more employees, while agency director Mark Sullivan gave his first briefing to President Barack Obama on the alleged misconduct of those in charge of protecting him. Sullivan met with Obama in the Oval Office, a week after revelations first surfaced of heavy drinking, visits to strip clubs and payments to prostitutes on April 11 by members of the president’s advance security team, who were preparing for his trip to an international summit. In his daily briefing at the White House, which occurred before Obama met with Sullivan, press secretary Jay Carney said the president is confident his security was “never compromised,” even though the Secret Service replaced at least 11 agents and officers just hours before Obama arrived in the city of Cartagena on April 13.

Obama has “faith in the Secret Service, and high regard for the agency and the job that they do protecting him, his family, protecting his predecessors,” Carney said. The three Secret Service personnel forced out Friday have chosen to resign, the agency said in a statement, bringing to six the total number who have lost their jobs in the wake of the incident. That total includes two supervisors, David Randall Chaney and Greg Stokes, who were pushed out Wednesday. In all, 22 men from the Secret Service and military are now suspected of having participated in the carousing. The military said Friday that 11 of its members have been implicated, one more than previously reported. Agency officials briefed lawmakers on Capitol Hill Friday as investigators in Cartagena continued attempting to contact all the women who came to the Hotel Caribe last week before President Obama’s arrival in Colombia.

The sex scandal rocking the U.S. Secret Service is spreading.  More agents have stepped down in the wake of alleged activities involving prostitutes in Cartagena, Colombia last weekend. The misconduct was exposed when one of the high-priced escorts complained that she was not paid enough, resulting in the local police getting involved. President Obama was briefed by Secret Service Director about the continuing investigation but the White House has been keeping its distance. Illicit sex always brings problems.

No illicit sex. Today so many anxieties, so many diseases, so many frustrations are born of just unrestricted passion and lust. AIDS, Hepatitis, so many of these incurable diseases that are killing tens and millions are born of intoxication and illicit sex. Some warning is there. We are supposed to try to control our mind and senses. ... But in this age we are living of Kaliyuga the most powerful and perfect means of cleaning the mirror of the heart is the all pure transcendent name of God. By chanting the name of the Lord it has the power to clean the mirror of the heart and allow our true eternal nature to shine, awaken our eternal love within, which is the source of real peace and real happiness.

Friday, April 20, 2012


30-YEAR-OLD NEW ZEALAND WOMAN? - Experts say a New Zealand woman’s 2-gallon-a-day Coca-Cola habit probably contributed to her death, a conclusion that led the soft-drink giant to note that even water can be deadly in excessive amounts. Natasha Harris, a 30-year-old, stay-at-home mother of eight from Invercargill, died of a heart attack in February 2010.  It is reported that a pathologist, Dr. Dan Mornin, testified at an inquest Thursday that she probably suffered from hypokalemia, or low potassium, which he thinks was caused by her excessive consumption of Coke and overall poor nutrition. Symptoms of hypokalemia can include abnormal heart rhythms, according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health. Mornin said that toxic levels of caffeine, a stimulant found in Coke, also may have contributed to her death.

Harris’ partner, Chris Hodgkinson, testified that Harris drank between 8 and 10 liters (2.1 and 2.6 gallons) of regular Coke every day. “The first thing she would do in the morning was to have a drink of Coke beside her bed and the last thing she would do at night was have a drink of Coke,” Hodgkinson said in a deposition. “She was addicted to Coke,” ate little and smoked about 30 cigarettes a day. Months before her death, he said, Harris experienced blood pressure problems and lacked energy. On the morning of her death, Harris helped get her children ready for school before slumping against a wall. He called emergency services and tried mouth-to-mouth resuscitation but couldn’t revive her. A pathologist, Dr. Martin Sage, said that “it is certainly well demonstrated that excessive long or short term cola ingestion can be dramatically symptomatic, and there are strong hypothetical grounds for this becoming fatal in individual cases.”

Experts say a New Zealand woman’s 10-litre-a-day Coca-Cola habit probably contributed to her death. A pathologist, Dr. Dan Mornin, testified that she probably suffered from hypokalemia, or low potassium, caused by her excessive consumption of Coke and overall poor nutrition. Symptoms of hypokalemia can include abnormal heart rhythms. Mornin said that toxic levels of caffeine, a stimulant found in Coke, also may have contributed to her death. It is certainly well demonstrated that Coke is not good.

Hari or Krishna is the same. Hari means the one who remove you all sorrows. ... We want to go with Krishna, this possibility has always existed, all you need is the desire in the heart, and it will depend on the understanding that we have. The global economy is base on that. The entire world economy is maintained due to the desires we have in our hearts. People like Coke because it is prosperous, but that’s ridiculous because Coke is poison. This is the level of this society, it is alarming; however there is a thought of comfort, and this is that everyone can have their world. Srila Prabhupada, our spiritual master, invites us all to participate in the Hare Krishna world. We invite you to join the Hare Krishna world, a philosophy with high thinking. Come to the highest ideal, this will make you a more spiritual person; the ideal will elevate you higher.

Thursday, April 19, 2012


AND WHY YOU SHOULD KNOW THEM - (by Saumya Arya Haas) When I tell people I’m Hindu, one of the first reactions is sympathy. Because I’m not just Hindu, I’m a Hindu woman. It’s assumed that this is a difficult thing to be. Yes, a lot of Hindu women are discriminated against and oppressed. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that that means we are subservient. Gargi (dates unknown): Philosopher, Public Speaker, Royal Advisor - While most priest-philosophers of ancient India were men, there were a number of extraordinary women among them. Gargi was one of the composers of the Upanishads.  Akka (12th century): Poet, Social Reformer, Feminist - Akka Mahadevi devotional songs express her rejection of societal expectations; she considered Lord Shiva her spiritual husband and resisted pressure to marry. Rani of Jhansi (19th century): Warrior Queen, Freedom Fighter, Folk Hero - She an equestrienne, queen and battle commander who fought the British during the 1857 War of Independence. 

Phoolan Devi (1963-2001): Bandit Queen, Minister of Indian Parliament, Folk Hero - She was revered by many as a champion for the rights of oppressed people and women.  Kiran Bedi: Cop, Reformer, UN Advisor - She was the first woman officer in the Indian Police Service.  She became the Inspector General of Prisons, and introduced yoga and meditation as part of an innovative rehabilitation program. Vandana Shiva: Scientist, Activist, Educator, Environmental Steward - In the dark ages of the 1990s, Dr. Shiva made connections between environmental issues, gender imbalance and social inequity.  Anuradha Koirala: Anti sex-trafficking Activist, Educator. - She has helped over 12,000 women escape slavery.  Anju Bhargava: Hindu-American leader - She is a social activist and innovator. Her organization is called Hindu American Seva Charities.  Lalita Arya: Activist, Educator, Mother - My mom taught me to respect her work as a homemaker. Pilgrim Women: Women bathing in the Ganges who advocate for Women’s Rights and Dignity.

The article's author, Saumya Arya Haas, said she first thought of her cultural ancestors: women whose lives shine through the avalanche of male-oriented history, those who overcame the challenge of being remembered centuries later. But she included Hindu women that she encounters through the news, her community and daily life, too. “My contemporaries: women who live and strive in the world in which I live and strive, but do it with assertiveness, verve and grace to which I can only aspire,” she said.

All ancient and even not so ancient societies, both religious and secular, have looked similarly upon women in ways that today’s society does not. The reason is largely because of the obvious fact that women are no less intelligent, no more lusty, etc., than men. Other religious traditions, such as Christianity, have for the most part moved on from the Bible’s traditional description of the role of women to embrace the times that are with us, in which women are involved in every aspect of society. ... Now they can vote, have a say as to what the world needs, and thus share the loving nature you attribute to them by investing it in determining world leaders. Nor is there any evidence that women are now less caring at home. The equality that women have gained has also caused many men to become more caring.

Śrīla Bhakti Vedanta Tripurari Mahārāja :
“Women And The Reality Of Our Times”
Sri Caitanya Sanga - January 31, 2001, Vol. III, No. 4

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


SUICIDE BOMBERS IN AFGHANISTAN - The Los Angeles Times released a set of photos on Wednesday that appear to show U.S. troops in Afghanistan posing with the remains of suicide bombers. An American soldier released the photos to the LA Times “on the condition of anonymity.” International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) commander in Afghanistan Gen. John Allen ‘strongly condemned’ the photos. In a statement, ISAF clarified that the incident took place in 2010 and “represents a serious error in judgment by several soldiers who have acted out of ignorance and unfamiliarity with U.S. Army values.” According to NBC News, the Pentagon press secretary said Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta ‘strongly rejects the conduct’ of the soldiers depicted in the photos. Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s spokesman declined to comment.

The anonymous soldier who released the photos to the LA Times reportedly told the paper that he released the photos to highlight security shortcomings at U.S. bases in Afghanistan. In one of the pictures a paratrooper posed next to an unofficial patch placed beside a body that read “Zombie Hunter”, while in another soldiers posed with Afghan police holding the severed legs of an insurgent bombers.  Two soldiers in another frame held a dead insurgent’s hand with the middle finger raised. The LA Times said the 82nd Airborne Division soldiers had been at a police station in Afghanistan’s Zabol province in February 2010, and revisited several months later. The pictures were taken on both occasions. The photos are likely to stir up more anti-Western sentiment in Afghanistan as NATO combat troops look to exit the country in 2014 and strengthen fragile security in the country.

US soldiers took pictures of themselves posing with the mangled remains of Afghan suicide bombers on more than one occasion in 2010, it was reported. The released images are the latest in a series of scandals involving U.S. forces in Afghanistan.  In January, a video of U.S. Marines urinating on dead bodies of Taliban members sparked outrage. The burning of Qurans at a NATO airbase in February spurred week-long riots that killed dozens. With so much burning hatred inside hearts is hard to find peace.

When we are free from exploitation and posted in the plane of service, dedication, then hate is eliminated and we embrace everything. Only the spirit of dedication can make it possible to embrace everything. Exploitation has no possibility, and hatred comes from exploitation. Dedication makes everything and everyone our friend. We don’t want anything in return, so everything will come to us. We don’t want to extort our selfish desires from anything, not even from the environment. ... When we are fully established in the plane of dedication, everything will help us and remind us, “Oh, go to Krsna.” In an all-friendly atmosphere, all can be acquired. It is full of devotional spirit, the spirit of dedication. Hatred can have no room there.

Śrīla Bhakti Raksaka Sridhara Mahārāja :
“Follow the Angels - The Path of Dedication”
Part One: “Enter the Land of Dedication”

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


(Reuters) - Mexico City’s volcanic Mount Popocatepetl spewed vapor, fire and ash into the air during the weekend, prompting a precautionary warning to local residents. Mexican authorities raised the alert level for the Popocatepetl volcano near to Mexico City on Monday after it started spewing red-hot fragments of rock. The lava dome of Popocatepetl, some 50 miles to the southeast of the capital, started to expand on Friday, Mexico’s National Center for Disaster Prevention said. This change in activity in the 5,450 meter (17,900 foot) volcano could provoke big explosions capable of sending incandescent fragments out over considerable distances, as well as ash showers, the center said in a statement. The center raised the alert level to yellow phase three from yellow phase two, indicating possible magma expulsion and explosions of increasing intensity. It is the third-highest warning on the center’s seven-step scale.

Emergency services should ready evacuation teams and shelters, limit access to the area around the volcano and alert air-traffic control systems, the center said in its statement. Experts have noted increased activity in Popocateptl in 2012. It has spewed smoke and ash sporadically over the last few years and a major eruption in 2000 forced the evacuation of nearly 50,000 residents in three states surrounding the peak. Although the release of glowing fragments into the air was a spectacular sight and a vapor cloud was sent a mile into the air Sunday morning, the seismic activity was within scenarios provided by Mexico’s Scientific Advisory Board.  The eruption follows several earthquakes were reported in southern and central Mexico. Several magnitude-6 earthquakes struck Wednesday, but without damage, and a March 20 earthquake damaged buildings in the states of Oaxaca and Guerrero, the Houston Chronicle said.

Mexico's Popocatepetl volcano has begun to show increased signs of awakening, and yesterday authorities raised the alert level. Popocatépetl's lava dome began to expand on Friday, and there is concern an explosion may be imminent. This volcano is routinely active and previously has experienced strong activity, enough to evacuate the area in both 1994 and 2000. One should always remember that this world is only temporary and that destruction may come at any moment.

Prabhupāda: ( ... ) when volcano is in smoke, that is dangerous. That is dangerous.  (...) Trust no future, that’s all. We must be always ready for destruction. Material world is like that. Nitya anityatam. Chanakya Pandit says, tyaja durjana-samsargam: “Avoid bad men’s company.” Bhaja sadhu-samagamam: “Always try to associate with learned, what is, sadhu, with devotees. Avoid this worldly men’s association and try to associate with devotees.” Tyaja durjana-samsargam bhaja sadhu-samagamam, and then smara nityam anityatam. “And always think that everything here in this material world is for few days.” That’s all. Tyaja durjana-samsargam bhaja sadhu-samagamam. (break) Anityatam. Let this be the motto of life. (break) We should not associate with the materialistic person, try to associate with devotee, and always think that this world is for few days. That’s all.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
“Complete Works of Srila Prabhupada”
“Morning Walk” - June 7, 1975, Honolulu
Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International - 750607mw.hon

Monday, April 16, 2012


PLEADS NOT GUILTY IN NORWAY TRIAL - The trial of Anders Behring Breivik, who killed 77 people last year, started on Monday in Oslo with his sanity the biggest bone of contention. An unrepentant Breivik played to the cameras on day one as he arrived in the court room. Looking smug, the mass killer grinned as a guard removed his handcuffs when he entered the court room. He then flashed a closed-fist “right wing” salute before telling the judge he did not recognise the court. Prosecutors then read out the names of those killed and injured and graphic details of how each one happened in the devastating shooting spree. Some of the methods were so horrific that Norwegian media bleeped the sound when they were read out. However, Breivik sat through it all stone faced just claiming that he was acting in self defence. “I acknowledge the acts but I do not plead guilty and I claim that I was doing it in self-defence,” Breivik, who carried out the rampage on July 22, 2011, said.

While Breivik betrayed no other emotions during the judge’s litany, his face became red and he wiped away tears when the court was shown the 12-minute anti-Muslim video he posted to YouTube on the day of the attacks. Since he has confessed to the attacks last year, the key issue would be his sanity. During his nine-month prison custody, two psychoanalysis reports on Breivik were made and submitted to the court, presenting two different results. One report has declared that he was mentally fit, but now the court would decide on it. If declared mentally sound, Breivik would give his reasons for the massacre. Breivik had first allegedly set off a car bomb outside government buildings in Oslo killing eight people and later he gunned down another 69 people, mostly teenagers in Utoya village. The trial is not intended to determine whether he carried out the attacks, however, but rather if he can be held responsible.

The man accused of killing 77 people in a bomb-and-shooting spree last July 22 said he admits “to the acts, but not criminal guilt.” Despite remaining stony-faced during the description of the attack and video of the explosion and its aftermath, Breivik’s eyes welled up as the court viewed an anti-Islam film summarising his manifesto posted online the day of the carnage. He shows no remorse for his actions but considers them justified in order to rid Norway and Europe of multiculturalism and Islamisation.

“The hunter then admitted that he was convinced of his sinful activity, and he said, ‘I have been taught this business from my very childhood. Now I am wondering how I can become freed from these unlimited volumes of sinful activity.’” This kind of admission is very beneficial as long as one does not again commit sin. Cheating and hypocrisy are not tolerated by higher authorities. If one understands what sin is, he should give it up with sincerity and regret and surrender unto the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead through His agent, the pure devotee. In this way, one can be freed from the reactions of sin and make progress in devotional service. However, if one continues committing sins after making some atonement, he will not be saved.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
Śrī Caitanya Caritāmrita Madhya 24.253
“Madhya-līlā” - Chapter 24
“The Sixty-One Explanations of the Ātmārāma Verse”
Verse 253 - Bhaktivedanta VedaBase

Sunday, April 15, 2012


HUNTING TRIP SPARKS IRE AT HOME - Spain’s 74-year-old king came under scathing criticism for going on an expensive elephant hunting trip in Botswana amid the nation’s deep financial woes. Making matters worse, an accident on the trip sent King Juan Carlos into surgery. Doctors said he was recovering well after a hip replacement but would not be able to resume full duties for more than a month.  His son, 44-year-old Prince Felipe, was nominated to fill in for his father, who Spain’s government relies on to patch up diplomatic disputes, boost international trade and serve as the country’s high-profile liaison. Tomas Gomez, Socialist leader, said the time had come for the head of state to choose between his public responsibilities “and an abdication that would allow him to enjoy a different lifestyle.” Spanish newspapers were filled with accounts of how hunting trips to Botswana, where Juan Carlos fell, cost more than most Spaniards earn in a year.

El Mundo said the king had not told Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s government of his trip abroad until after the accident. El Pais, Spain’s leading newspaper, said the cost to arrange a hunting trip in Botswana to kill an elephant usually comes in at €44,000 ($57,850), about twice the country’s average annual salary. Spain is currently perceived as the weakest link in the 17-nation eurozone, and many investors fear it could become the next country to seek an international bailout. Unemployment stands at nearly 23 % - nearly 50 % for young workers - and Spain is expected to slide into its second recession in three years soon.  The royal family has been under close media scrutiny due to a judicial probe into whether Princess Cristina’s husband, Inaki Urdangarin, used his position to secure lucrative deals for a non-profit foundation he ran, and then fraudulently diverted some of the money for personal benefit.

Spanish King Juan Carlos has had emergency surgery to replace his hip after he fractured it in a fall in Botswana (African country) where he had been hunting elephants for four days.  It is said that king had shown "a lack of ethics" by going to hunt big game as many young Spaniards faced unemployment. In 2006, a Russian governor launched an inquiry because Juan Carlos - due to his love of hunting - had shot and killed a bear while on holiday near Moscow. By the way, his future destiny will not be very nice.

“If in this life a man of the higher classes [brāhmana, kshatriya and vaiśya] is very fond of taking his pet dogs, mules or asses into the forest to hunt and kill animals unnecessarily, he is placed after death into the hell known as Prānarodha.  There the assistants of Yamarāja make him their targets and pierce him with arrows.”  (SB 5.26.24)  In the Western countries especially, aristocrats keep dogs and horses to hunt animals in the forest.  Whether in the West or the East, aristocratic men in the Kali-yuga adopt the fashion of going to the forest and unnecessarily killing animals. Men of the higher classes (the brāhmanas, kshatriyas and vaiśyas) should cultivate knowledge of Brahman, and they should also give the śūdras a chance to come to that platform. If instead they indulge in hunting, they are punished as described in this verse.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
Śrīmad Bhāgavatam - Canto 5: “The Creative Impetus”
Chapter 26: “A Description of the Hellish Planets”
Verse 24 - Bhaktivedanta VedaBase

Saturday, April 14, 2012


SALMONELLA OUTBREAK IN 20 STATES - A California fish processor has voluntarily recalled 58,828 pounds of a frozen raw yellowfin tuna product because of its association with a “multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Bareilly,” according to a Food and Drug Administration announcement.  “We have traced the illness back to certain lots of tuna scrape from Moon Marine,” said the FDA’s Curtis Allen.  Moon Marine USA Corporation, based in Cupertino, Calif., produces a product called “Nakaochi Scrape AA or AAA,” which comes from tuna backmeat that has been scraped from the bones, the FDA said. Many of the 116 people (from 19 states including Illinois) who were sickened with Salmonella Bareilly in the last few months reported eating sushi or sashimi before getting sick. Of those who were questioned, 81 % reported eating the raw fish dish within seven days of becoming ill, said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

It wasn’t until Friday evening, however, that the FDA identified the likely source as Nakaochi Scrape. Tuna scrape is often used in certain sushi, sashimi or ceviche preparations that call for a chopped or ground tuna product, most commonly spicy tuna rolls. The FDA is advising consumers to “take precautions in choosing to eat raw Nakaochi Scrape and be sure that it is not from the implicated lots.” ... Consumers should take precautions when choosing to eat raw seafood. “When in doubt, don’t eat it.” Earlier this week, Illinois reported its latest case of Salmonella Bareilly, which brought the number of cases in the state to 10, according to the state Department of Public Health. Consumers who think they might have become ill from eating possibly contaminated raw Nakaochi Scrape should consult their physicians, the FDA says.

A yellowfin tuna product used to make dishes like sushi and sashimi sold at restaurants and grocery stores has been linked with an outbreak of salmonella that has sickened more than 100 people in 20 states in the USA.  The most common symptoms of salmonella are diarrhea, abdominal cramps and fever. The illness can be life-threatening for infants, older people, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems. Instead of “when in doubt, don’t eat it”, why don’t try to become vegetarian?

Meat is often considered a relatively toxic substance for human consumption.  Health authorities worldwide agree that heart attacks, cancers, and many other diseases are more prevalent in the meat-eating population than in the vegetarian population.  Above all, the longevity of a person is inversely proportional to the amount of his meat intake; the more meat one eats, the fewer years one may live.  Vegetarian food provides potassium to the body, which is considered a beneficial element.  It also has a more alkaline base that is beneficial to good health in many ways.  Vegetarian food is considered a complete diet, especially if there are sufficient dairy products and nutrient foods like soya in the diet. ... The average combined vegetarian meal contains a sufficient amount of the protein and other constituents needed by the body.

Dr. Hiro Badlani :
“Hinduism - Path of the Ancient Wisdom”
Chapter 48: “Vegetarianism: The Compassionate Way of Living”

Friday, April 13, 2012


BY PARANORMAL POP CULTURE - Within popular culture, there exist guides with the express purpose of wreaking havoc and unleashing hell on humanity. While the Kindle, iPad and Nook might have a killer effect on the book industry, these are books that are very industrious at killing. For instance, in the supernatural comedy series “Todd and the Book of Pure Evil” a group of teens at the Satanist-controlled Crowley High battle the forces of a mysterious tome that grants wishes with sinister twists.  But “Book of Pure Evil” is far from the only that sits in the devil’s stacks. There is a list of the most harmful books of verisimilitude within pop culture that contain information not to be checked out. “Necronomicon” - A creation of horror writer H.P. Lovecraft, the “Necronomicon” is a book of spells that first appeared in the 1924 short story, “The Hound.” Purportedly written by the “Mad Arab” Abdul Alhazred, it appears in various forms in Lovecraft’s work, but is typically leather-bound with clasps. 

“The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” was introduced in author Douglas Adams’ sci-fi comedy series of the same name in 1978. “Naturan Demanto/ Book of the Dead” appears in the 1981 horror “The Evil Dead.” The “Book of the Dead” was a real Egyptian collection of funereal rites to facilitate a person’s journey into the afterlife and popped up as a magical text in other films, such as 1999’s “The Mummy”. There is also a Tibetan “Book of the Dead.” “To Serve Man” Kanamit cookbook - appears at the 1962 “The Twilight Zone” episode of the same name.  “The Grimoire” from the 1998-2006 supernatural soap “Charmed” on The WB. Within the comic book world, the “Book of Vishanti” and “Eternity Book” show magic: good and evil spells and the secrets of existence, too. “Grays Sports Almanac: Complete Sports Statistics 1950-2000” introduced in the 1989 film “Back to the Future Part II,” the softcover, red almanac contained 50 years’ worth of results from football, baseball, boxing, horse racing and more.

Many times kids and young people are fascinated by this “supernatural” entertainment because they don’t properly fit into this every day reality and this literature is an escape from their deep traumas or problems at home. If they feel depressed, reading evil and horrifying books about misery, terror and terrible powers allow them to go through their situations.  They should know that besides these horrendous realities, pure love also exists in the plane transcendental and that they can prepare to go there.

One of the biggest problems of superficial men is that they confuse occultism with transcendence, because occultism handles areas of life that are subtle - often invisible to our eyes - but the fact of being invisible has nothing to do with being transcendental and spiritual. ... The Vedic scriptures do not exclude any area or hide any existence that can be obtained, while the occultism hides the transcendental reality of love.  So, as the eyes of the materialist man are blinded by their greed and lust of gain material things, he can not perceive subtle things which are most important. ... Similarly those who are infatuated for their discoveries in the subtle world do not give importance to transcendent realities and don’t pay attention to the invitations sent very often by the Supreme Lord to this world through His holy devotees. Sometimes He Himself descends to this earthly plane in its various incarnations.

Thursday, April 12, 2012


12 HOURS AFTER BEING DECLARED DEAD - A mother in Argentina says she fell to her knees in shock after finding her baby alive in a coffin in the morgue nearly 12 hours after the girl had been declared dead. Analia Bouguet named her newborn Luz Milagros, or “Miracle Light.” The tiny girl, born three months premature, was in critical but improving condition Wednesday in the same hospital where the staff pronounced her stillborn on April 3. Bouguet told the TeleNoticias TV channel that doctors gave her the death certificate just 20 minutes after the baby was born, and that she still hasn’t received a birth certificate for her tiny girl. Now, five medical professionals involved have been suspended pending an official investigation. Bouguet said the baby was quickly put in a coffin and taken to the morgue’s refrigeration room. Twelve hours passed before she and her husband were able to open the coffin to say their last goodbyes.

“I moved the coverings aside and saw the tiny hand, with all five fingers, and I touched her hand and then uncovered her face,” she said. “That’s where I heard a tiny little cry. I told myself I was imagining it - it was my imagination. And then I stepped back and saw her waking up. It was as if she was saying ‘Mama, you came for me!’ That was when I fell to my knees. My husband didn’t know what to do. We were just crying and I laughed and cried, cries and laughter. We must have seemed crazy.” A morgue worker quickly picked up the girl and confirmed she was alive. Then, Bouguet’s brother grabbed the baby and ran to the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit, shouting for the doctors. The baby was so cold, Bouguet said, that “it was like carrying a bottle of ice.” A week later, the baby is improving. Bouguet said she still has many unanswered questions about what happened.

A newborn in Argentina was found very much alive in a morgue by her mother 12 hours after hospital staff had declared the baby dead.  The mother had to insist on going to the morgue’s refrigeration room to say their last goodbyes. Her husband struggled to open the lid. When she touched the tiny hand the baby trembled. She realized the little girl was alive, and dropped to her knees on the morgue floor in shock. “I’m a believer. All of this was a miracle from God,” she said.  It is said that “Rākhe krishna māre ke.”

It is stated, māre krishna rākhe ke, rākhe krishna māre ke: If Krishna protects someone, no one can kill him, and if Krishna wants to kill someone, no one can save him.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 11.1.4
Bhaktivedanta VedaBase

Lord Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is omnipotent, and if He wants to kill someone, no one can save that person. Similarly, if He wants to save someone, no one can kill him.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
“Krishna Book” - Chapter 72.
Bhaktivedanta VedaBase

“Whatever is done by the Lord is for good,” the prime minister told the King, “If Hari protects, nobody can kill him and if Hari wants to kill then nobody can protect him,” he added.

Śrīla Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Mahārāja :
 “Golden Saying” - “God is Gracing Us in All Circumstances”
Feb 10, 2003 - Sree Chaitanya Gaudiya Math


Wednesday, April 11, 2012


GÜNTER GRASS OVER POEM - Israel has declared Günter Grass persona non grata, deepening a spat with the Nobel-winning author over a poem that deeply criticises the Jewish state and suggests it is as much a danger as Iran. The dispute with Grass, who only late in life admitted to a Nazi past, has drawn new attention to strains in Germany's complicated relationship with the Jewish state - and also focused unwelcome light on Israel's own secretive nuclear program. In a poem called What Must Be Said, published last Wednesday, Grass, 84, criticised what he described as Western hypocrisy over Israel's nuclear program and labelled the country a threat to “already fragile world peace” over its belligerent stance on Iran. Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman accused Grass of anti-Semitism.

The poem has touched a raw nerve in Israel, where officials have rejected any moral equivalence with Iran and been quick to note that Grass admitted only in a 2006 autobiography that he was drafted into the Waffen-SS Nazi paramilitary organisation at age 17 in the final months of World War II. Grass's subsequent clarification that his criticism was directed at Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, not the country as a whole, has done little to calm the outcry. On Sunday, Israel's interior minister, Eli Yishai, announced that Grass would be barred from Israel, citing an Israeli law that allows him to prevent entry to ex-Nazis. But Yishai made clear the decision was related more to the recent poem than Grass's actions nearly 70 years ago.

Israel declared Günter Grass, one of Germany’s best-known authors, unwelcome in Israel, barring him from entering the country for a poem that accused Israel of being a threat to world peace. The poem is considered an effort to raise the flames of hatred against Israel and the Jewish people. The debate in Germany has reopened old wounds about the country’s past. Many times, it has been seen how tiny seeds of anti-Semitic hatred are transformed into a huge fire, harming all of humanity.

On an average every human is in the grip of miseries, ever since they entered in the realm of time and mind and lost the awareness of Self. Hence they are confused that why are they in grip of miseries. One yearns to get rid of misery and prolong pleasure. The greatest misery is death that hounds every living soul. Suffering is inevitable as long as one identifies with mind and body - as long as one is spiritually unconscious. ... Scriptures however say this is short-lived; Kaliyuga is the age of kalah or quarrel. The result is suffering. The cause is forgetfulness of our eternal relationship with Krishna and while remaining in such a state, indulging in various activities that lead to incremental suffering.

Śrīla B.S. Nishkinchan Mahārāja :
“How to Become Immortal”
Secretary - All India Sree Chaitanya Gaudiya Math

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


Sanaa, Yemen (AP) - Heavy clashes overnight between al-Qaida-linked militants and the Yemeni military in the country’s south have killed 63 people, bringing the two-day death toll in the fighting to 127. The latest fighting points to escalating hostilities between the government and militants linked to the terror network who have sought to take advantage of the turmoil roiling the country since a popular uprising began early last year against longtime authoritarian leader Ali Abdullah Saleh. The militants seized control of towns in the lawless south and staged attacks against government troops there and elsewhere in the impoverished Arab nation. The military officials said the fighting that broke out in the town of Lawder in Abyan province early Monday spilled over into Tuesday, with the army shelling militant hideouts in an effort to prevent them from sending reinforcements.

They said 56 militants, four soldiers and three tribal fighters were killed overnight and early Tuesday. Fighting also erupted Tuesday along the border of Shabwa and Marib provinces, where militants ambushed an army post. Eight soldiers and three militants were killed in that attack, the officials said on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media. Al-Qaida was once present in Lawder, but in July residents drove them out. A few months later al-Qaida was blamed for planting a roadside bomb that killed two civilians there, and, as Monday’s attack demonstrates, they continue to try to regain their foothold. For the militants, Lawder is a strategic city. It lies along a major highway that links Abyan’s provincial capital of Zinjibar, an al-Qaida stronghold, to the provinces of Hadramawt, Bayda and Shabwa where the group is active. The area is now a patchwork of government- and militant-controlled towns.

At least 127 people were killed in 48 hours of fighting between Yemeni troops and Al-Qaeda militants around the city of Loder in Abyan province in the country's restive south, military and tribal sources said. The fighting surged after Al-Qaeda militants attacked army barracks. Al-Qaeda's Yemeni branch has exploited the country's political turmoil to seize territory in the south of the impoverished Arab nation. There is no peace in the world: Men hate each other and new struggles and wars occur.

The material world is compared to davanala, a forest fire. As we have experienced, no one goes to the forest to set a fire, but still it takes place. ... So you may try your best to live very peacefully, but nature will not allow you. There must be war. And this warlike feeling is always going on, not only between nation and nation, but also between man and man, neighbor and neighbor - even between husband and wife and father and son. This warlike feeling is going on. This is called davanala, a forest fire. No one goes to the forest to set fire, but automatically, by the friction of dried bamboo, sparks arise, and the forest catches fire. Similarly, although we do not want unhappiness, by our dealings we create enemies, and there is fighting and war. This is called samsara-davanala.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
“The Journey of Self-Discovery”
“The Bona Fide Spiritual Master”
Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International