“There are certain prescribed methods for employing our senses and mind in such a way that our dormant consciousness for loving Krishna will be invoked, as much as the child, with a little practice, can begin to walk.” (The Nectar of Devotion, Ch 2)
“You probably get this question a lot. The basis is the love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the all-attractive one. Shri Krishna, who is the beloved of Shrimati Radharani, the goddess of fortune. Krishna is the jewel of the Vrindavana community, which is originally in the imperishable realm and has a replica version here in our world. Goloka for eternal residence, and Gokula for where the avatara of Krishna asked to be transferred immediately after appearing in the jail in Mathura to the birth-parents, Vasudeva and Devaki.
“I could go on and on about Krishna’s glories. This aligns with Vedic literature itself, which is ananta. There is no single work of highest significance since the descriptions continue to this day. We have the original works like the Puranas, Mahabharata, Ramayana and Vedas, but a humble and dedicated person could today author a poem so beautiful and noteworthy that others take it to be just as valuable in their daily devotional practices.
“How do we break through sectarian boundaries? I would like everyone to experience the sweetness and joy of the bhakti life. I am afraid so many will turn away because the culture is foreign to them. They will feel it is exclusive to India or that it is another of the many faiths to be placed in the basket of competition, within the “my God versus your God” paradigm. How do we make a compelling and convincing case?”
1. Association with devotees
His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada explains that there is nothing artificial about the process. Love of Godhead is already within is. Proof is in every aspect of living. The exhibition of love, offered towards pets, brothers, sisters, and members of the community, is a derivative of the original quality.
This is known as dharma. Something which cannot be separated from the associated object. Dharma is what defines something. For the individual soul, jiva, it is loving service. When perverted or directed the wrong way, it can even become inverted. This explains intense hatred for others. A person is simply using their loving propensity in the opposite way.
The love for Krishna simply has to be aroused. One way is to associate with devotees. Follow their way of life. Observe and analyze. Ask questions. Judge for yourself if there is a difference in overall quality of living. At least make the attempt to logically understand the all-attractive and personal aspect to the Divine.
2. Hearing from shastra
The devotees following in the authorized way get their guidance from shastra. These are the sacred texts mentioned above. Worship should be in a proper way. This is not necessarily to inhibit the natural and spontaneous outpouring of affection.
Rather, it is a preparatory regimen. Follow some strict rules and regulations in the beginning so that the consciousness will gradually become purified. The more progress that is made, the more natural everything seems. A person will be able to not only understand Krishna, but the reason for the very existence of so many supposedly competing systems of religion.
So fortunate in this life to earn,
But how others the same to learn?
Along religious lines distinctions when,
To be shut out from accepting then?
Idea that within us already,
Aroused through practice steady.
Devotees of Krishna closely observe,
And time for shastra reserve.