February 27, 1970
My Dear Jagadisa,
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated 21 February, 1970, and have noted the contents carefully.
I am glad to learn that after deliberation between Jayapataka and Raktaka, you have been asked to become the president of Toronto temple. The idea is that whoever is competent to manage affairs will accept the post of president by mutual consent. Our main business is to be fixed up in Krsna Consciousness by keeping steady in the prescribed duties of devotional service. So I have got all approval for your being elected president; that is nice.
I am also glad to learn that already you have got a temple and enthusiastic and eager devotees there. This is very encouraging. Please push our Sankirtana movement and improve the program of Deity worship as the centers of your activities, and see that all the devotees remain steady in their execution of daily chanting of sixteen rounds of beads and strict adherence to the four principles of spiritual life and all other regulative principles, this will keep them strong in Spiritual power. And you may note that when these regulative duties are performed, and the devotee becomes fully absorbed in Krsna activities, Krsna as Supersoul will dictate from within the answers to all questions and will give the needed intelligence to progress more and more in Krsna Consciousness.
Please see that the program for studying our literatures is also undertaken very seriously by all the devotees there. Everyone of us must become thoroughly acquainted with our philosophy, so that our preaching work may be carried out nicely.
There is no harm if the devotees chant in the temple during the time when the Deities are resting. You may have heard that here at L.A. Temple, they are holding Kirtana and chanting 24 hours in the temple, and the program is very encouraging to all the devotees. Of course, that is only possible in a very large center such as L.A.
Regarding what to do with the eyes while on Sankirtana, your suggestion to look into the faces of people and try to convince them of the sincerity of our movement is best. There is no need of artificial things like seeing the spirit soul. We talk, and we talk on Krsna topics—that is all. When we chant, we must concentrate our mind on the sound vibration and in that way everything will be revealed one after another; the form, qualities, pastimes, etc. of the Lord. And this is the way of cultivating spiritual realization.
Regarding your questions concerning the spirit souls falling into Maya's influence, it is not that those who have developed a passive relationship with Krsna are more likely to fall into nescient activities. Usually anyone who has developed his relationship with Krsna does not fall down in any circumstance, but because the independence is always there, the soul may fall down from any position or any relationship by misusing his independence. But his relationship with Krsna is never lost, simply it is forgotten by the influence of Maya, so it may be regained or revived by the process of hearing the Holy Name of Krsna and then the devotee engages himself in the service of the Lord which is his original or constitutional position. The relationship of the living entity with Krsna is eternal as both Krsna and the living entity are eternal; the process is one of revival only, nothing new.
Astanga Yoga is better than Karma Yoga and Jnana Yoga is on the level of Astanga Yoga. But the Bhakti Yoga is the ultimate goal of all Yogas. In other words, Karma Yoga, Jnana Yoga, and Astanga Yoga by proper execution culminate in Bhakti Yoga. So far yogis who meditate on the Paramatma form of the Lord within their hearts, if they see Him in that way actually they become pure devotees, but if they do not perfect the process they may remain on the lower level of incomplete realization or Paramatma realization.
I am happy to learn that your Sankirtana party is very successful. If you have some extra money, you can contribute to the book fund because I am contributing to purchase a large church here to the extent of 20,000 dollars; and try to send the maintenance charges to me regularly.
Please offer my blessings to your good wife, Laksmimoni, and to all the other boys and girls there in Toronto center. Hope this will meet you in good health.
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami