(Kadamba Kanana Swami, 1 March 2020, Washington DC, United States of America, Sunday Feast Lecture)

The darkness of kali yuga is everywhere around us, but it is also within us. This is the main problem! It is said that when we are looking at a jewel, that ornament appears to look more beautiful when placed against a blackish background. So in this way, Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakur explained that at the time of the appearance of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, kali yuga had become darker. It is said that kali yuga showed its darker feature during this time, just to highlight the golden avatar. So now Krsna has appeared in a non-blackish form, He has become golden. This is because He has appeared in the mood of Srimati Radharani, who is also golden. So Caitanya Mahaprabhu was Krsna in the mood of a servant, a devotee who was fully absorbed in the loving service of the Lord, and which devotee could ever be greater than Srimati Radharani?

For many of us, this may be an obscure incarnation of the Lord or maybe an incarnation which we did not ever know about until we came to ISKCON. Krsna, everybody knows. Janmashtami, everybody celebrates. But what day of the year is considered even greater than Janmashtami? Gaura Purnima! But why is Gaura Purnima more important than Janmashtami? The reason is because Krsna says – sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja aham tvam sarva-papebhyo moksayisyami ma sucah – Abandon all varieties of religion and surrender unto Me. So we all know this verse very well, but who can actually live it? It is impossible! So what do we do now? (baby cries in the background) Oh yes, we cry! (laughter)

By good fortune, we may hear about transcendental knowledge. And even if by that good fortune we become attracted to that transcendental knowledge, it is still very difficult to surrender. So this is a significant predicament, of how can we follow this process when it may appear that we are just not in the mood. This is where we acknowledge, that we require some mercy. How can we chant the Hare Krsna mahamantra everyday? Well, we must pray to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, pray to Him that somehow or other we get some inspiration or strength to surrender. And we approach Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in this regard because He is the most merciful incarnation of the Lord.

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