(Kadamba Kanana Swami, April 2008, Amsterdam, Netherlands, Lecture)
I would say that in our Hare Krsna Movement, one of the great causes of devotees becoming dry in their spiritual practices is because they do not get absorbed in reading. You see, chanting is something you do because we measure it – sixteen rounds; it is very clear. But we do not vow to do one hour of reading. We just do not make that vow so we do not give it the same urgency but it should have the same urgency. Reading of scripture is very important; very, very important. If we are not reading, I guarantee you that everything will become stale.
Reading has the capacity to just sort of change our whole vision back to transcendental. So it is very important and many devotees will say to you, “I use to read much more before I joined than after…” and many would agree to that. I understand that circumstances and the culture in which we live is not favourable that we have to struggle to do it but it is really is important. And if you have so much service that you never have time to read, then maybe it is time to speak to the senior vaisnavas about giving you some time. Of course, I know that when you get that little time then you fall asleep within two minutes. But I knew one devotee then who was really fired up. He used to be cleaning with one hand and with the other he was learning slokas! He did it and he became very learned!