Bhakti Tirtha SwamiBhakti Tirtha Swami was born John E. Favors in a pious, God fearing family. As a child evangelist he appeared regularly on television. As a young man he was a leader in Dr. Martin Luther King Jr's civil rights movement. At Princeton University he became president of the student council and also served as the chairman of the Third World Coalition. He also served as the director of the American Federation of Vaisnava Colleges and Schools. A specialist in international relations and conflict resolution, Bhakti Tirtha Swami constantly travelled around the world and had become a spiritual consultant to many high ranking members of the United Nations, to various celebrities and to Several chiefs, kings and high court justices. Bhakti Tirtha Swami left this world on June 27th, 2005. He was suffering from advanced melanoma cancer.
Quotes by His Holiness Bhakti Tirtha Swami

Becoming Visionary Leaders

If we want to be visionary leaders, we must, of course, learn to recognize them and support them. Visionary leaders have great qualities, which they develop through their interest in values, intuition and partnership with others. They can bring spiritual culture to our religious and political lives. Mahatma Gandhi once said, “I must first be the change I want to see in my world.” A visionary leader knows he must lead by example, and that his leadership will have a powerful impact on both present and future generations.

Reference: Leadership For an Age of Higher Consciousness, Volume 2 - Ten Characteristics of a Servant-Leader

Material Success is Not Sufficient

There is a Vedic axiom that we can judge a tree by the fruit it bears. If this is a valid measure, then three strong contemporary indicators reveal that our way of life is a failure: widespread suicide, drug use and mental illness. All these factors point to a similar conclusion: maybe material success is not sufficient on its own.

The Guru Must Be Careful

It is dangerous for a spiritual master to accept almost any aspirant. Although it is an aspect of mercy, it is dangerous. The danger also depends on the spiritual potency of the particular guru. Without sufficient potency, a few offensive or faithless disciples can lead to the guru’s fall.

Attitude

Our spiritual lives revolves around service and relationships, but attitude is even more important than just the external service we render.

Essence of All Scriptural Injunctions

What is the essence of all the vidhi-nisedha or rules and prohibitions mentioned in the scriptures? The essence of all positive injunctions is to always remember the Lord. This ability to always remember God will lead us to the goal of recognizing Him as our well-wisher, greatest provider, and protector who is very magnanimously inviting all living entities back to their original home in the spiritual kingdom.

Put God in the Center

Nowadays, people begin to think that they need convenience rather than love—just marry someone who will take care of you. However, if a person puts God in the center, he or she will look for a partner who will assist in their spiritual evolution. You want to find a partner who will help you advance spiritually. If that type of relationship does not manifest, you have to realize that you do not have the right connection.

Reference: Spiritual Warrior VI: Beyond Fanaticism, Terrorism, and War – Discover the Peace Solution, Chapter 9

The Victim Mentality

People who always position themselves as the victim will never grow. They always think that other people are hurting them in some way. Although it could be a reality, if they anticipate and look for it, they will just create that around them to an even greater extent. They will begin to chant the same mantra in their minds, “Somebody didn’t treat me right, someone didn’t look at me right, someone didn’t address me right, someone didn’t take care of me properly, someone used me improperly…” Consequently, a person who always sees him or herself as the victim becomes the perpetual victim because violence brings more violence.

Reference: Spiritual Warrior VI: Beyond Fanaticism, Terrorism, and War – Discover the Peace Solution, Closing Reflections

Attack the Violence by Waging Peace

Our duty as spiritual warriors is not to engage in conventional physical warfare, but to attack the violence by waging peace and compassion. Yes, we are called to war and each day we have to determine what we have done on the battlefield. Did we act as cowards by hiding and allowing others to fight the battle? Did we stand by and watch millions and even billions get wounded and meet total devastation? The spiritual warriors’ ranks are increasing, but not fast enough. Let us increase our influence on this planet.

Reference: Spiritual Warrior VI: Beyond Fanaticism, Terrorism, and War – Discover the Peace Solution, Closing Reflections

Seeing Krishna

Nobody can see Krishna, who is both omniscient and omnipotent, with mundane vision. Our eyes must first be opened with the torchlight of knowledge. Wherever bona fide knowledge is cultivated, the darkness of nescience is banished. It is not difficult for the Supreme Lord to arrange for someone who loves Him to see Him, and also to take His association.

Reference: Reflections on Sacred Teachings, Volume Four: Sri Isopanisad, Mantra 3



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