(Kadamba Kanana Swami, New Ekacakra, Slovakia, 2011)

The Astanga yoga process is particularly meant to control the senses and fix the mind, but then if one doesn’t fix the mind onto the Lotus Feet of the Lord, then such concentration is completely useless, because this is the aim of life:

Sa vai maha krsna-padaravindayor (SB 9.4.18)

To someohow or other fix the mind onto the Lotus Feet of the Lord,

Yena tena prakerena manah krsne nivesayet
(Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu 1.2.4)

Whatever the conditions maybe, to somehow or other fix the mind on the Lord. But the agitated living being is never satisfied and is always seeing some obstacles, and always finds a source for lamentation. Something is wrong….something is missing, and therefore it is not possible to chant Hare Krishna! Or maybe not so well. Therefore, we have already admitted defeat before we started the battle:

“I would have surrendered to Krishna but I have these special obstacles in my life. I have many reasons as to why I actually cannot be in Krishna Consciousness. It’s not my fault! It’s the unfortunate circumstances. It’s the fault of everything and everybody…..but not mine! It is the fault of, my parents, my teachers, society at large, Kali-yuga and all living beings….but it’s not my fault. I am the victim! I am simply the victim of all these difficulties!

I am completely sincere, but unfortunately I find myself in unfortunate circumstances. Therefore, in spite of my sincerity I cannot really be in Krishna Consciousness”.
And in this way we are justifying our maya!

“I am not well, so I need to take some extra rest. Therefore I cannot chant my rounds, since I am not well – it’s chronic”.

One day Haridasa Thakura was found lying on his back. Lord Caitnaya’s servant, Govinda would daily bring some remnants of foodstuff from Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to Haridasa. When Govinda saw that Haridasa was lying on his back, he asked:

“Haridasa what is wrong with you? Are you ill? What is your disease?”

“My disease is that I cannot chant my rounds”.

Haridasa was indeed not well, but throughout his life he put the Holy name before anything! We see similar mood in Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakur, who kept on asking his disciples to chant sixty four rounds! And everyone were saying:

“But there is no time!”

And some said:

“There is too much service!”

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakur said:

“If you simply give up prajalpa (discussing mundane subjects), then you’ll find the time to chant!”

“Really, we have too much service. We are busy all day doing service”.

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakur said:

“Along with that service, you chant Hare Krishna all of that time, then you’ll surely chant sixty four rounds! Maybe not on the beads but in terms of chanting one lakh of names”.

So we can see just how determined these acaryas were. To just take shelter of Krishna, no matter what the obstacle is and not to accept that obstacle as an excuse!