VAISHNAVA ETIQUETTES EXPECTED FROM THE VAISHNAVAS!
(As said by H.H.Bhakti Charu Swami)
A few important parts of Vaishnava Etiquettes from the speeches of H.H.Bakthi Charu Swami:
“Now here are some basic principles and points that I’ve compiled from Hari Bhakti Vilas and the Nectar of Devotion about the proper activities of one who is a Vaishnava.
(Why next birth in Brahmana family, not vaishnava family if we fall down? READ HERE!)
A Vaishnava –
- Offers respect and obeisances to the guru, to the Lord and His devotees, and to other superiors. One must offer respect and obeisances to the superiors, like the guru, the Lord and His devotees. We must also respect superior relatives, like the parents.
- Get up before 4 a.m. and attend mangala-arati.
- After waking up, first brush your teeth and afterwards take a bath.
- Bathe after passing stool.
- Wash with water after passing urine. Also wash hands and feet.
- Wash hands, feet, and mouth before and after taking prasadam.
- Wash hands after drinking water. This is done because when your hold your cup while drinking, your hands actually become contaminated.
- Use the right hand for eating and drinking. Even if you are a lefty, try to use your right hand.
- Always wear clean clothes.
- Never steal anything.
- Never use unpleasant words.
- Never tell a lie, even if it is pleasant. That is don’t even tell a pleasant lie.
- Never speak ill of others.
- Do not become inimical to others.
- Do not develop friendship with people who are envious, fallen, insane, inimical, extravagant, deceptive, lying or illicitly related with women. Do not develop friendship with unchaste women.
- Do not travel alone.
- Do not sneeze or yawn without covering the mouth.
- Do not laugh loudly.
- Do not pass air loudly.
- Always avoid a crematorium, a garden, and unchaste women at night.
- Do not take shelter of a fallen person.
(WHO IS CALLED AS VAISHNAVA? WHAT ARE THE CLASSES OF VAISHNAVAS? READ HERE!)
- Neither sleeps too much nor stays awake too much.
- Do not outstretch your legs in front of your elders.
- Do not pass urine or stool on the road.
- Do not spit while eating.
- Do not insult women.
- Do not become envious of women.
- Never cause any harm to anyone; instead, always try to do good to others.
- Do not associate with unscrupulous people or read “scriptures” that are not bona fide. Scriptures are in quotes, which mean they are so-called scriptures.
- Do not mock people who are foolish, insane, distressed, ugly, cunning, lame, or fallen.
- Do not chastise anyone except sons and disciples to educate them.
(What if my company objects Vaishnava Symbols like Tilak, Sikha and Kanthi mala (Tualsi mala)? READ HERE!)
- Bathe after shaving, copulating, or going to a crematorium.
- Do not hit anyone on the head or pull anyone by the hair.
- Do not eat yogurt or chickpea flour at night. Actually Prabhupäda instructed us about yogurt but we are not so sure about the chickpeas. So you be careful about that now. Don’t eat chickpeas at night. In the morning they are good, but not at night.
- If someone insults you, leave the place silently.
- Never praise yourself.
- Never look at a naked woman or man.
- Do not place your foodstuffs on your lap to eat.
- Do not quarrel with your wife.
- Do not spit on water. Because people sometimes drink water from ponds or lakes or rivers, one should not spit on water.
- Do not sleep in the temple room.
(Dealing with a rude devotee without Vaishnava offense – Best Tips! READ HERE!)
- Sannyasis should bathe three times a day, grhasthas and brahmacaris at least twice a day.
- After one takes prasadam the area where the plate was kept must be cleared. One should not step over the area where prasadam was taken, because it is considered contaminated.
I have noticed in many temples that after we take prasada, which is usually on the floor, we just step all over. Then without even washing our feet we enter into the temple room. So one should be careful about that. The place where we take prasadam becomes contaminated. And if you step on that spot, then you must wash your feet. The place where the prasadam has been taken must be cleaned right after the prasadam has been taken. Because the temple must be very clean, we should be careful that we do not unnecessarily contaminate the temple.
- After touching the inside of the mouth or nose, one must wash his hands.
- After putting on tilaka, one must do acaman by saying “om kesavaya namah,” “om narayanaya namah,” and “om madhavaya namah.”
These Vaishnava Etiquettes will continue in another Post.
(64 REGULATIVE PRINCIPLES FOR VAISHNAVAS FROM HARI BHAKTA VILASA! READ HERE!)