The following is an excerpt from Acyutānanda dāsa Brahmacārī’s interview with Śrīla Bhakti Rakṣaka Śrīdhara Mahārāja, published in Rays of The Harmonist, Kārttika 2007 (Originally published in Back to Godhead, Issue No. 33, 1970)

Sounds – catch hold of the sounds. Seize the sound waves travelling within the ether, and your happiness is assured in spiritual life. One ṛṣi has explained in his sūtra that massive epidemics are due to the ether being contaminated by impure sound. When the lawyers and pleaders in court begin to tell lies in the name of justice, these sound vibrations contaminate the ether and in turn contaminate the air and water which people breathe and drink, and an epidemic is the result.

The following is an excerpt from a lecture by Śrīla Bhaktivedānta Nārāyaṇa Mahārāja on August 2, 2002, published in Walking with a Saint – Morning Walks and Conversations 2009


“The water is polluted, the air is polluted, the ether is polluted, everything else is polluted; and all life-forms are dying by pollution. So many poisons are floating in the water, and so many poisons are floating in the air, and therefore there is so very much anxiety.
    “Intelligent persons are thinking about how to save the world from such pollution, but a day will come when the whole ocean will be polluted with poisons, all fish will thus be poisoned, and if anyone will eat fish or any food from the sea, he will die. In the name of saving agriculture, people spray poisons everywhere to kill insects, that poison comes in the grains, and thus all the grains are polluted. You eat those grains, you become mad, you are besieged by so many diseases, and then you die.
    “If you are abusing anyone, criticizing anyone, or quarrelling with anyone, those sounds will evaporate in the air and travel throughout the universe. If you are speaking any nonsense, it will not ‘go in vain.’ It will travel throughout the entire world via the air.
    “An example may be given of a big pond. If you take a stone and throw it into a pond, some waves will be created, and they will touch all ends of the pond. This universe is like that pond, and air is everywhere in the universe. When one chants “Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare, Hare Rāma Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma Hare Hare,” this will ‘evaporate’ and create so many waves of air, which will touch everywhere – up to the ends of the world – moving here and there and purifying the entire universe from all these pollutions.
    “Kṛṣṇa is so powerful. He can create the whole universe in a second, and He can destroy it, and again he can create so many worlds. He has invested all His mercy, power, and opulence in His names, and that is why they are so powerful. His holy names very quickly travel throughout the universe with the help of airwaves, and the pollution is gone at once.
    “You know that the trees, creepers, animals, and insects cannot speak. They cannot understand our language. Still, everyone – not only humans, but trees, creepers, and insects here and there in this universe – is touched by this powerful name, whether they know it or not. There is no question of whether or not they are aware; they will be touched. If knowingly or unknowingly you touch fire, it will burn you. Similarly, these names are very powerful. They will inject all and purify all, whether they are aware of what is happening or not.
    “Here the trees are very fortunate, the grass is fortunate, and the persons are fortunate – whether they are coming to our classes or not. The trees, creepers, grass and all other entities are somehow attending our classes by hearing the sound.
    “Similarly, although Muslims don’t utter the holy names Hari, Kṛṣṇa, or Rāma, the sound will somehow go and touch them, even if they are in Arabia or Iran. Even hogs, pigs, bears, and other creatures in jungles and forests, attacking persons and eating them, will also be liberated.
    “Kīrtana is so powerful that if you are meditating on anything and we are doing kīrtana, you cannot continue to meditate. If you are doing kīrtana and someone else is not doing kīrtana, he is bound to do kīrtana in the mind. If you cannot meditate, then chant “Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare Hare Rāma Hare Rāma Rāma Rāma Hare Hare.” This will engage all your senses. You will forget where you are and what you are doing. If you chant louder and louder, all your senses will be controlled; there will be nothing to criticize, and nothing to remember about your bad activities or anyone else’s. Otherwise, without this kīrtana, while meditating, all kinds of bogus things will come into your head. You are not able to check this by yourself, but by kīrtana it will be checked very easily.”

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