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Date: Sun Aug 30 1998 - 05:24:49 PDT
Dear Friends from the community: This is my first sojourn into Bhakta Samaj. I am now a regular reader of the letters from Bhaktas on different aspects of Srivaishnavism. I offer here some comments on Sankalpa. Sankalpa means intent. Before we begin any religious rite, such as Sandhya, Tharpana, Aradhana, we declare our intent thru sankalpa. We declare the geographical location, time etc, by staing the year (nama SamvatsarE,) ayanE, rutau, masE, pakshE, shubha thithow, vasara yuktayam.. This is followed by the statement Bhagavad Ajnaya, Sriman NArAyana Prithyartham. Then we say what we are going to do, eg. Pratah Sandhyam upasishye . All our religious rites are presribed in the scriptures which are given by the Lord. So we use the term Bhagavad ajnaya. Our intention is to please him and receive his blessings and so we say, Bhagavad prityartham or SrimanNArAyaNa prityartham. Vaishnavas also also do Sathvika Tyagam where we declare " svasmei, svaprithyei, swayameva karayati" meaning I do this myself, for my own pleasure. Thus you see that there are four elements in the sankalpa, the command of the Lord, His pleasure, individual's effort and individual's (doer's or kartha's) pleasure. Yours Narasimha Dasan.