Chanting the holy name and engaging in Bhakti-yoga (Krishna consciousness or devotional service) are the ultimate process of purification and healing in our tradition of Gaudiya Vaishnavism. The process of counseling should be seen as an adjunct to this process of Krishna consciousness, and is not in itself the panacea for all our problems. The […]
A Story of Awakening Love
A prince who wanted the greatest kingdom gets it, but finds satisfaction elsewhere. ONE OF THE most touching histories in the Shrimad-Bhagavatam comes in the Fourth Canto. It concerns the little prince Dhruva and his great adventure, and it contains many lessons about love. Reprinted from Back to Godhead Magazine Volume 33 Number 04,1999 © […]
The Thrill is Gone, Baby!
Recently, in Saranagati, an interesting class was given by Vishaka dasi on verse 18.76 of Bhagavad Gita. “O King, as I repeatedly recall this wondrous and holy dialogue between Krishna and Arjuna, I take pleasure, being thrilled at every moment.” From the purport, she read, “The understanding of Bhagavad-Gita is so transcendental that anyone who […]
The Power of a Family Prayer Group
During the December 2009 couple’s retreat in South Africa my wife and I gave couples different tools to help their marriages, and also different ways of thinking about themselves and their problems. One of my topics was family or couple’s prayer. The subject of prayers groups I feel “passionately” about—i.e, strongly, intensely–since I have first […]
Humble & Feeling Good
On the path of spiritual progress, is humility compatible with a healthy self-esteem? As a family therapist, I counsel people both within and outside the Hare Krishna movement. I recently received an e-mail from a young woman devotee who was unhappy in her relationship with her abusive husband but was conflicted about leaving him. “Maybe […]
Let Go & Let Krishna
Because the origin of all fear and anxiety is separation from Krishna, the cure is to take shelter of Him. I remember as a child climbing up the metal ladder of what seemed like a towering playground slide. With each step up, my legs quivered uncontrollably and my heart beat rapidly. When I reached the […]
Thanks for Being Such a Pain
“Later I’ll be able to understand that Sam is Krishna’s instrument to test my spiritual ideals, but now Sam is really upsetting me.” As I drive the forklift to pick up more freight to load onto the truck, my coworker Sam watches me with a disdain obvious from his body language—scowling, arms folded, rigid like […]
Why Do We Criticize Others?
A look at the causes and cures for faultfinding, a major obstacle to spiritual progress. CONDUCTING A SUMMER therapy group with middle-school boys is always a challenge. Donte calls Michael a retard, and Michael calls Donte’s mother a crackhead. I intervene, sitting the boys down to cool off. This age group (11-14) is notorious for […]
What is Love?
Our relationships in this world can leave us wondering whether true love really exists. I remember sitting with my boyfriend in his fraternity house, studying for a history exam, struggling to stay focused on pages of notes. “You know,” Tim nonchalantly said, “I really don’t know what love is.” Rather than applaud his astute query, […]
Lessons from Death
“My co-workers’ reaction to this incident pushed me to examine my own attitude toward suffering.” EARLY THIS YEAR (2002) law enforcement officers, acting on a tip, visited the Tri-State Crematory on sixteen acres in Noble, Georgia, owned by the Marsh family. When police found a skull and a torso floating in a lake on the […]