यत्करोषि यदश्नासि यज्जुहोषि ददासि यत् ।
यत्तपस्यसि कौन्तेय तत्कुरुष्व मदर्पणम् ॥ २७ ॥
yat karoṣi yad aśnāsi
yaj juhoṣi dadāsi yat
yat tapasyasi kaunteya
tat kuruṣva mad-arpaṇam
Whatever you do, whatever you eat, whatever you offer or give away, and whatever austerities you perform – do that, O son of Kuntī, as an offering to Me.
Thus, it is the duty of everyone to mold his life in such a way that he will not forget Kṛṣṇa in any circumstance. Everyone has to work for maintenance of his body and soul together, and Kṛṣṇa recommends herein that one should work for Him. Everyone has to eat something to live; therefore he should accept the remnants of foodstuffs offered to Kṛṣṇa. Any civilized man has to perform some religious ritualistic ceremonies; therefore Kṛṣṇa recommends, “Do it for Me,” and this is called arcana. Everyone has a tendency to give something in charity; Kṛṣṇa says, “Give it to Me,” and this means that all surplus money accumulated should be utilized in furthering the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.
Nowadays people are very much inclined to the meditational process, which is not practical in this age, but if anyone practices meditating on Kṛṣṇa twenty-four hours a day by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra round his beads, he is surely the greatest meditator and the greatest yogī, as substantiated by the Sixth Chapter of Bhagavad-gītā.
Since becoming disciples of Srila Giri Mahraja and taking His shelter and instructions, I have wanted to do as much as I possibly could to further His mission here in the Philippines. In other parts of the world, where Krishna Consciousness has become widespread, it’s easy to find like minded devotees to associate with. However, here in the Philippines, devotees are few and the ones that are here are scattered about the nation. Furthermore, there are no other disciples of Srila Giri Maharaja here…yet.
This is why my wife and I took it upon myself to open a preaching center under the instruction of His Divine grace, Srila Giri Maharaja, my spiritual master. Finding a place that we could afford which was close enough for us to get to easily took a bit of time to find. But we found it.
Last November 2019, we were able to secure and rent a house right on the street where we live. Now as you can see from the pictures above, it wasn’t in the best shape. In fact, by western standards it was unlivable. But it’s safe, its close by, and its for Krishna. Since then we have been doing what we can little by little. Every single room of the house needed attention. With me working two jobs and the kids in homeschooling, it’s been a challenge to make any progress, however, progress has been made!
Sri Gaura Vinoda Saraswata Seva Ashram Facilities
The ashram is located just south of Manila (20 minutes from the airport) in Westbay Homes Subdivision, Barungay Daang Bukid, Bacoor City, Cavite. It’s not an upscale subdivision, but it is a gated community and it’s safe. Visitors must check in with the guard before entering.
Below are the bedrooms upstairs
The ashram has a sala (or living room) which will be used for programs and kirtan, a kitchen for preparing prasadam, a small utility space in the back, a restroom, and two bedrooms upstairs. One large bedroom we are preparing for His Divine Grace when He visits, and a smaller room which my wife, Malini devi will use for sewing and crafts and both rooms can be used by visiting devotees.
It’s been astounding to see the transformation take place from what we started with to what it is today. However, there is still much, much more to do. Most of it we have been able to take care of ourselves without having to hire any outside contractors. There was also a plumbing issue we needed to bring someone in on, but that was minor. It’s mainly been cosmetic. A lot of painting and YouTube instructional videos.
Here is the kitchen “before”
During and after (still some minor “edging” to do)
Limited by time and budget, however, renovations are going at a snail’s pace. The bathroom itself needs a lot of work. Also, all of the outlets need to be replaced, the front gutters need replaced, as well as the outside painting. Not to mention the monthly maintenance (rent, utilities, subdivision fees, garbage pick up etc.). We received a nice donation from Sriman Gokulananda dasa, which helped with acquiring a small refrigerator and other materials needed. But as it stands, funds are getting low.
How You Can Help Our Mission
We are accepting donations to help with the renovations and monthly bills. If you wish to donate to our mission here in the Philippines as your service to Krishna, you may do so through Paypal at firstname.lastname@example.org. We appreciate any amount, large or small, and it will be a great help in continuing the work.
The Plan For Sri Gaura Vinoda Saraswata Seva Ashram
Besides being the Philippines headquarters and residence for His Divine Grace, the ashram will be holding a weekly program every Sunday from 10am until 12pm. The program will include kirtan, readings from the Bhagavad-gita, and distribution of prasadam. All sincere seekers are welcome to join!
The original plan was to be open by March 1st, 2021 for any sincere seekers with a grand opening celebration for the appearance day of His Divine Grace, Srila B.K. Giri Maharaja. However, COVID restriction at the time disallow us from holding any gatherings in our subdivision until further notice.
A minor setback perhaps, but this will not stop our mission. Please keep checking back soon for more pictures on the renovations that have been done! You’ll be surprised!
Nitai Gaur Haribol!
If you want to know more about Sri Gaura Vinoda Saraswata Seva Ashram or have questions about our mission, please feel free to contact us through this page or email me at email@example.com. Also, please visit the main webpage of His Divine Grace, Srila Giri Maharara here. And please don’t forget, we are accepting donations to help with the renovations and monthly bills. If you wish to donate to our mission here in the Philippines as your service to Krishna, you may do so through Paypal at firstname.lastname@example.org. Any amount, large or small will be greatly appreciated and extremely helpful.