Articles by Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa)

We found 42 results.


Why Is There Suffering?
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 29 Aug 2022

It is natural that at some point in our lives we ask, “Why is there suffering?” Or “Why am I not happy?” “Why can’t we simply go on with life and not undergo so many trials and tribulations? Why can’t God make a universe or world where there is no suffering?” Well, He already has, but we are simply in the wrong one.

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The Spiritual Import of the Cow in Vedic Culture
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 8 Aug 2022

The term “sacred cow” has come to mean any stubborn loyalty to a long-standing institution which impedes natural progress. The term originates in India, where the cow is said to be literally worshiped, while thousands of humans suffer from undernourishment. The common, popular view of India in the West has been of an underdeveloped nation steeped in superstition.

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God Is Both Personal (Bhagavan) and Impersonal (Brahman)
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 1 Aug 2022

When it comes to understanding God, many people do not quite understand Who/What He is. Often we find a pervasive view that He is impersonal, like an indescribable force, or that everything is God, we are all God, God is love, the Absolute Truth, and so on. However, we need to understand that these are simply small aspects of what is God.

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The Avataras of God
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 11 Jul 2022

The word avatara is being increasingly used but often in ways that have nothing to do with its real meaning. We also find that an increasing number of people are referring themselves as avataras of God. Let us really understand what the word means and how it is referred in relation to its real purpose, or how to discern who is really an avatara.

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Universal Brotherhood Includes Animals: Another Reason to Be Vegetarian
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 20 Jun 2022

If we expect to attain peace in the world, kindness must extend to all living beings. Otherwise, the violence we perform will manifest in other areas of our lives and in society. Includes quotes from various religious texts and Christian authorities.

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Hindus, Dharmists, Devotees and Politics
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 13 Jun 2022

Many Krishna Devotees, Dharmists and Hindus in general will say they are not interested in politics or getting involved with it or even in voting. It is a distraction from their normal activities or spiritual pursuits. Or they feel all politicians are crooked or corrupt anyway, so what makes the difference between one or the other.

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The Purpose of Life
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 25 Apr 2022

So now that we find ourselves in this human form, and in this material world, what are we really supposed to do with it? Everybody at some point in their life wonders why God created this world and how they got here, and what they are meant to do.

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Sanatana-Dharma: Its Real Meaning
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 21 Mar 2022

Dharma consists of both the force that sustains as well as what is sustained. It can also be said that there is the path of dharma as well as its conclusion, the object of dharma, or what we are seeking, the goal of life. So dharma is the means as well as the goal. Dharma is also said to be the force which maintains the universe.

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God’s Eternal Spiritual Abode–Our Ultimate Goal
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 28 Feb 2022

The Vedic texts describe that there are innumerable spiritual planets in the spiritual sky beyond this material creation, each having one of the unlimited forms of the Lord with countless devotees engaging in His service.

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How We Can See God
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 21 Feb 2022

If we expect to see God with our material senses, we must consider their limitations. We often need glasses to see clearly, and also enough light. We will never experience the spiritual with these dull material senses. When researching atoms, neutrons, protons, etc., scientists actually don’t see every molecule they ‘find.’ Sometimes they only see the evidence that such particles exist. It is in the realm of ‘consciousness.’ The Higgs boson is a case in point.

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Reincarnation: A Simple Explanation
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 31 Jan 2022

Reincarnation is called samsara in the classic Vedic texts of India. The word samsara is Sanskrit and means being bound to the cycle of repeated birth and death through numerous lifetimes. How this works…

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Maha Kumbha Mela 2001: The Greatest Spiritual Festival and Gathering of People in the History of the World
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 17 Jan 2022

Every six years, the Kumbha Mela festival is the largest gathering of people, mostly Hindus, in the history of the world; what to speak of it being a religious festival. Over the course of its 41 days, it is calculated that as many as 70 million people of all kinds attend the Kumbha Mela. However, 2001 saw an amazing increase.

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Finding Our Real Spiritual Identity
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 3 Jan 2022

The author presents some of the most important spiritual information in Vedic philosophy so that everyone can understand their real spiritual nature. Out of all the philosophical understanding that the Vedic texts provide, this is one of the most important of all.

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How to Spiritualize Your Busy Life–and Why
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 27 Dec 2021

How to spiritualize our lives is easier to explain than why, especially when we are so busy. Where are we going to get the time and how is that going to help? This is a common excuse that many people use to justify why they have no time for spiritual practice. However, there are points we need to consider.

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Finding Our Real Spiritual Identity
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 13 Dec 2021

Among all the philosophical understanding that the Vedic texts provide, this is one of the most important. An essential part of understanding spiritual knowledge is that we realize our spiritual identity. The suggestion that we detach from the world or from our bodies to see beyond the influence of the illusory energy, makes no sense until we realize that we are spiritual beings in a temporary material form.

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Frequencies That Can Kill, Heal, and Transcend
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 29 Nov 2021

The ancient Vedic texts of India explain, in summary, that this whole universe is the production or manifestation from particular vibrations from the spiritual energy which cause changes in the material energy. And all these frequencies effect us in many ways. For example, we may hear music that can be soothing and peaceful, or that is abrasive and irritating.

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Buddhism and Its Vedic Connections
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 8 Nov 2021

Many people may know about Buddhism, but few seem to understand its connections with Vedic culture and how many aspects of it have origins in the Vedic philosophy. To begin with, it was several hundred years before the time of Lord Buddha that his birth was predicted in the Srimad-Bhagavatam.

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One Reason That I Am Determined to Spread Spiritual Knowledge
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 25 Oct 2021

When you see the people of the world who are troubled or confused by the violence, the political upheavals, the poverty, or the lack of unity on this planet, it’s natural to want to do something about it.

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An Alien’s View of Life on Earth
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 11 Oct 2021

The author’s reasons for never having been too comfortable on this human level of existence. A different perspective on the peculiarities of what living on this planet and in a human body can be like, and why it may be better to move on.

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108: The Significance of the Number in the Vedic Culture
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 30 Aug 2021

Today, 30 Aug 2021, is the celebration (Janmastami) of Lord Krishna’s appearance on planet earth some 5,000 years ago–according to a lunar calendar. He was born in the Vedic Culture, prevalent in Bharata Varsa (India) at the time. The number 108 is also associated with Him and His stay among us.

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Vedic Literature Says Caste by Birth Is Unjust
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 2 Aug 2021

When it comes to the sensitive topic of Varnashrama, the caste system of India, we have seen both pro and con, back and forth, this way and that. The Vedic system of Varnashrama has been mentioned in the Purusha Sukta verses of the Rig-veda but there is no indication that birth is the essential quality for one’s varna. This article contains many quotes from Vedic shastra to clarify what the caste system is actually supposed to be.

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Choosing a Material or Spiritual Lifestyle–or a Balance of Both
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 5 Jul 2021

Quite often I get questions from young people who may be in college or starting out in their career, regarding the decision of whether they should take up a serious spiritual lifestyle, or remain engaged in material pursuits, such as education, career, family, etc. Often times they are worried that their family will not understand or will wonder what will become of them if they become overly spiritual. Or the family may even become overly upset if they show too much spiritual inclination.

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An Alien’s View of Life on Earth
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 14 Jun 2021

The author’s reasons for never having been too comfortable on this human level of existence, giving a different perspective on the peculiarities of what living on this planet and in a human body can be like, and why it may be better to move on.

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The Red Phone
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 19 Apr 2021

There was a simple and humble Brahmana, a Hindu priest, who lived in Mathura, India. Once he had the chance to go visit the Pope at the Vatican in Rome.

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Consciousness: The Symptom of the Soul
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 7 Dec 2020

How It Interacts with but Is Separated from the Body

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Were There Two Buddhas?
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 17 Aug 2020

We will look at the evidence that seems to indicate that there was first the Avatara Buddha, the incarnation of Lord Vishnu who appeared near 1800 BCE, and then there was another person who became known as Gautama called Buddha, born around 560 BCE.

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When Religions Create Divisions and How to Avoid It
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 29 Jun 2020

Each religion implies, or comes right out and says, that it is the best or the only way to God. All others are inferior and should be ignored, dominated, pushed away, or even destroyed by force. In this way, a most difficult thing to break down is the barrier between us erected by our religions. A first-class religion is not the one that claims it is the highest religion.

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Descriptions of the Spiritual Dimension According to the Vedas of India
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 1 Jun 2020

The spiritual universe is not a myth although it may certainly be a mystery. The Vedic texts have many descriptions of what it is like, more than you will find anywhere else. Some explain the Lord’s pastimes as well as the activities that He and His devotees display and enjoy in the spiritual dimension.

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Buddhism and Its Vedic Connections
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 4 May 2020

Many people may know about Buddhism, but few seem to understand its connections with the Vedic Culture and how many of its aspects originate in the Vedic philosophy. It was several hundred years before the time of Lord Buddha that his birth was predicted in the  Srimad-Bhagavatam.

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(Português) Verdade Absoluta: O Que É? ou Quem É?
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 20 Apr 2020

Os cientistas concordam que todo o tempo, toda a história e toda a criação começam a partir de um único ponto. E esse ponto teria de ser a Verdade última ou Absoluta. Então o que é exactamente a Verdade Absoluta? Como é que recuamos no tempo e no espaço para encontrar a fonte original de tudo? Mesmo que pesquisemos a Bíblia, o Corão, os escritos judeus, ou mesmo os textos sikh, zoroastrianos ou budistas, encontraremos informação limitada sobre o que é a Verdade Absoluta. E esqueçam a dependência da ciência moderna, eles ainda estão à procura e têm muitas teorias diferentes para oferecer.

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The Absolute Truth: What or Who Is It?
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 13 Apr 2020

Scientists agree that all time, all history, and all creation start from a single point. And that point would have to be the ultimate or Absolute Truth. So what exactly is the Absolute Truth? How do we go back through time and space to find the original source of everything? Even if we research the Bible, the Koran, the Jewish writings, or even the Sikh, Zoroastrian, or Buddhist texts, we will find limited information on what is the Absolute Truth. And forget about depending on modern science, they are still searching and have many varying theories to offer. 

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Nonviolence According to Dharma
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 30 Mar 2020

When understanding Vedic Dharma and the need for us to raise our consciousness, which includes perceiving the Divine in all beings, it should also be clear that we need to observe respect, kindness, non-injury, and nonviolence toward all.

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Consciousness: The Symptom of the Soul
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 16 Mar 2020

How It Interacts with but Is Separate from the Body – An excerpt from The Secret Teachings of the Vedas

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Your Thoughts Create Your Future
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 17 Feb 2020

This will show how your thinking creates your consciousness and how to help control it. It provides evidence so that you can see how your life unfolds according to what you draw to it, as dictated by your consciousness and thoughts. By taking the responsibility for yourself and your thinking process, you can make your life more positive and uplifting, reducing or negating the influence of any hurt or negative energies you encounter.

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Mahatma Gandhi on Conversion
Swami Aksharanandaji | Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 3 Feb 2020

“I disbelieve in the conversion of one person by another. My effort should never to be to undermine another’s faith. This implies belief in the truth of all religions and, therefore, respect for them. It implies true humility.” (Young India: April 23, 1931)

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World Peace Is a Possibility
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 6 Jan 2020

Being on this planet is similar to being on a plane going from one place to another. We are all transients sharing a flight, which is temporary. We may not have the best seats for the moment, but we will soon be landing somewhere else. So why should we engage in quarreling over temporary seats?

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Why All Religions Are Not the Same
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) - TRANSCEND Media Service, 23 Dec 2019

It is often said by some Hindu gurus and leaders that all religions are the same. But is this really the case? Naturally, anyone who studies religion can see many similarities between them. And if we are talking about getting closer to God and increasing our understanding and love for God, then what religion is not trying to do that? Who cannot go to a church, mosque, or temple and worship and bow to God in prayer? So, what is the difference? Are not all religions the same?

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Seeing Beyond the Illusion
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 9 Dec 2019

The first thing to understand is that it is better not to try to see what is beyond the illusion, but to know how to recognize the illusory nature itself. Then the Truth beyond the veil will reveal itself.

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Casteism: Is It the Scourge of Hinduism, or the Perversion of a Legitimate Vedic System?
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 11 Nov 2019

Casteism in India has gotten a lot of criticism, and rightly so. The way casteism is at present should not even exist. Casteism as we find it today is now nothing more than a misrepresentation and misinterpretation of a legitimate and progressive Vedic system known as varnashrama. However, we need to know the difference between the two, and then get rid of present-day casteism to again utilize the genuine and liberal form of social organization, known as varnashrama.

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Moksha/Liberation: What Is It?
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 28 Oct 2019

Moksha is also called mukti, which essentially means to attain freedom from any further forms of differentiated, temporal, and ordinary material existence in the mortal world. It also means, quite simply, becoming free from samsara or the continued rounds of birth and death in the material realm, which is caused by the accumulation and continuation of karma.

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Environmentalism According to the Vedic View
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 14 Oct 2019

As everything is created from the Supreme Creator, then we should certainly have a high regard for everything as the expansion of God’s energies. This not only includes all of our fellow humans, but all creatures, as well as all aspects of the planet. We should care for the environment as if it is not ours but God’s property, and in this way assure ourselves that it will continue to provide all of our necessities for many years to come, and into many future generations. This is the Vedic view.

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What is the Kumbha Mela?
Stephen Knapp (Sri Nandanandana dasa) – TRANSCEND Media Service, 30 Sep 2019

The Greatest Gathering of People in the History of the World

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