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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

His Divine Grace A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada- Founder Acharya of ISKCON - International Society of Krsna Consciousness

om ajnana-timirandhasya jnananjana-salakaya

caksur unmilitam yena tasmai sri-gurave namah

Word For Word

om--address; ajnana--(of) ignorance; timira--(by) the darkness; andhasya--of one who was blinded; jnana-anjana--(by) the ointment of spiritual knowledge; salakaya--by a medical instrument called a salaka, which is used to apply medical ointment to eyes afflicted with cataracts: caksuh--eyes; unmilitam--were opened; yena--by whom; tasmai--unto him; sri-gurave--unto my spiritual master; namah--obeisances.

Translation

I offer my respectful obeisances unto my spiritual master, who has opened my eyes, which were blinded by the darkness of ig- norance, with the torchlight of knowledge.

What is Religion? What does it mean to be really religious? Is there any one true religion applicable to ALL?

Religion means to surrender to God. It doesn't matter what religion you profess. It doesn't matter. But you must learn how to obey the Supreme Lord. That is religion. Religion does not mean that you stamp some stereotype religion, "I am Christian," "I am Hindu," "I am Muslim," "I am Buddhist," and then fight. That is not religion. That is fanaticism. Religion means how one has become devoted to God. That is religion.

You claim to be religious, or you claim to be Hindu or Christian or Buddhist. That's all right But do you know what is God? Oh, everyone is silent. He does not know what is God. And what is his religion? If you do not know what is God, a vague idea, that is not religion. You must know what is God. Just like to become an American citizen, it requires you to know something of the history of America. So ask an American citizen, "What are you?"

"Now, I'm American."

"Who is your president?'

"I do not know."

What is this nonsense American? Would you like to hear from him, "I do not know who is my president." Similarly, a human being professing some certain type of religion, but if you ask him, "What is God?"

Religion must be in relationship with God; any religion. But ask him, "What is God?" No answer. But religion means yato bhaktir adhoksaje — by practising it, one becomes a devotee of the Lord. That is religion, First-class religion. (Lecture on Srimad Bhagavatam. 9/01/74)

Srila Prabhupada: Religion means obedience to God. Religion does not mean anything else. You can manufacture so many formulas and theses. But the real meaning is obedience to God. That is religion. Simple definition. If a man is obedient to God, it doesn't matter to which religion he belongs. He may be Christian, he may be Hindu, he may be Mussalman. It doesn't matter. Religion means obedience to God.(Lecture on Srimad Bhagavatam. 12/12/73)

Here Srila Prabhupada again and again emphasised that religion means surrender to or obedience to God. Islam also means full surrender to the will of God. Many times the Holy Prophet Muhammad explained that everyone is a banda, or slave of Allah and must obey His order. We should understand our original, constitutional position as servants of God and by following His instructions we will develop our eternal loving relationship with the Supreme Lord.

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