Organizing picnics or get togethers on certain week-ends is a wonderful way of creating a family feeling among the members. It will also gradually make them associate more with one another for close inter personal relationships, rather than with their materialistic friends. It is also ideal for the children of the group to feel comfortable and happy in the association.
Organizing will not be a strain for any one individual if you let everyone take part and volunteer their services. At the end of the day, you will be happy you undertook it as you find all the members blissful and happy.
You can make the outings / get togethers Krsna conscious, by including Kirtan, Krsna conscious games or quiz and sharing personal realizations etc.
We will give you a list of suggestions for these outings as a separate sheet after this week’s lesson.
Satsanga: 15 minutes
Read out first, the following passage from:
Chant a mala of japa together loudly after chanting the Panca tattva mantra 3 times together. Enquire from the members after the japa, how they feel now after chanting 8 minimum rounds at home everyday. You could ask one or two members to share their realizations. The others you could ask in the subsequent weeks.
Spiritual Edification- 45 minutes
If there are new comers to the group, then you should give them a brief introduction on Krsna consciousness and a summary of what you have been doing so far. It is better to give them the first week’s edification to go through. If there is more than one member, you can facilitate a discussion between them separately. This should not be difficult as the other members are also going to be discussing in smaller groups as you will find out below:
You should divide the group into 2 or 3 groups and make them sit in circles. Make sure that the group is evenly distributed with regard to the number of senior, junior and new members in them.
Distribute the sheets containing the spiritual edification to the members. You could ask a senior member in each group to be the group spokesman/woman.
The leader of each group has to facilitate the participation of all the members, encouraging each one to answer the question addressed to them. Let the leader take down their points. This procedure is only for the Discovery and understanding sessions.
After this the whole group can sit in a circle. You can ask the leaders to read out the consolidated answers of their respective groups for each of the questions.
After this, you can ask each one of them to answer the application question one by one.
You can then sum up the spiritual edification lesson once again and add more points relevant to the topic. You can also include interesting pastimes of the Lord and his devotees, current topics etc, to substantiate the topic.
From “Bhagavad-gita As it is
BY DIVINE GRACE A.C. BHAKTIVEDANTA SWAMI PRABHUPADA
Bg. Ch-6 Text-24
sa niscayena yoktavyo
tyaktva sarvan asesatah
One should engage oneself in the practice of yoga with determination and faith and not be deviated from the path. One should abandon, without exception, all material desires born of mental speculation and thus control all the senses on all sides by the mind.
The yoga practitioner should be determined and should patiently prosecute the practice without deviation. One should be sure of success at the end and pursue this course with great perseverance, not becoming discouraged if there is any delay in the attainment of success. Success is sure for the rigid practitioner. Regarding bhakti-yoga, Rupa Gosvami says:
utsahan niscayad dhairyat
“One can execute the process of bhakti-yoga successfully with full-hearted enthusiasm, perseverance, and determination, by following the prescribed duties in the association of devotees and by engaging completely in activities of goodness.” (Upadesamrta 3)
As for determination, one should follow the example of the sparrow who lost her eggs in the waves of the ocean. A sparrow laid her eggs on the shore of the ocean, but the big ocean carried away the eggs on its waves. The sparrow became very upset and asked the ocean to return her eggs. The ocean did not even consider her appeal. So the sparrow decided to dry up the ocean. She began to pick out the water in her small beak, and everyone laughed at her for her impossible determination. The news of her activity spread, and at last Garuda, the gigantic bird carrier of Lord Visnu, heard it. He became compassionate toward his small sister bird, and so he came to see the sparrow. Garuda was very pleased by the determination of the small sparrow, and he promised to help. Thus Garuda at once asked the ocean to return her eggs lest he himself take up the work of the sparrow. The ocean was frightened at this, and returned the eggs. Thus the sparrow became happy by the grace of Garuda.
Similarly, the practice of yoga, especially bhakti-yoga in Krsna consciousness, may appear to be a very difficult job. But if anyone follows the principles with great determination, the Lord will surely help, for God helps those who help themselves.
1) What are the ingredients neccessary for succeeding in our spiritual life?
1) Explain how we should be determined to continue with our spiritual life in spite of all obstacles, with the example of the sparrow.
2) Why is it guaranteed that we will succeed in our spiritual path if we persist?
1) Share some of the obstacles you encountered in practicing Krsna consciousness, and how you overcame them. If you have not already overcome them, mention those too.
Preaching Session : 15 minutes
Read out the following passage:
With more devotees now on the Krsna sadhak level, you can start entrusting more preaching responsibilities to them.
Making phone calls to remind the new members of the Bhakti Vrksha programs, enquiring the well being of the newer members during the week and slowly encouraging them to start chanting, visiting new members in their homes to give them some association and encouragement etc. can all be distributed to the senior members of the group.
The juniors could try to get their colleagues at work, their neighbors, friends, relatives, etc to bring them to the program.
So after you share your preaching work done for the week, entrust all the members with their respective responsibilities for the week, and note it down. You should ask them for the report the subsequent week and give them further tasks to do.
Discuss any doubts or queries they may have about their preaching services.
You can also engage all of them in book distribution to their friends and acquaintances.
Prasadam: 20 minutes
Let the entire distribution of the prasadam, including the cleaning up be organized by the members themselves. They can take turns every week in doing the services. You can ensure that no one is burdened and at the same time every body gets a chance to share in the services. Do not force any one to do the services, but ask for volunteers.
If children volunteer to read out the prasadam mantra, they can be given turns to do so. Devotees repeat each line after them.
You can spend time giving your association to the members while everyone honors the prasadam.
Enquire from the members if they are cooking food for the Lord and offering it to Him before honoring the prasadam. Encourage them to cook and offer to the Lord.If someone is doing it regularly, express your appreciation. These are big milestones in their spiritual advancement. Teach them how to do the offering to the Deity pictures if you have not already done .Also tell them the rules to follow while cooking for the Lord and the consciousness in which it must be prepared.
Give them some vegetarian, non onion and garlic recipes to follow.
You can also ask each of them to share a recipe they know. You can ask one of the members who volunteer to compile the various recipes, type them out for distribution to all the members.
Please enter the details about your members attending this week:
Current Siksa status