Founder Acharya His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

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For a New President: Three Things to Consider
By Sarva Dasa   |  Jan 31, 2009

Thousands of years ago, a sage named Narada pointed out three things that are pleasing to God (in a discussion with a group known as the Prachetas, as recounted in India’s Bhagavata Purana).

The qualities Narada recommended are worthwhile for anyone, but especially would be valuable for a leader to emulate. Since a new political leader is about to assume office in America, let’s consider these three:

(1) Compassionate: Leaders often use their terms of office to push their own personal agendas, even if it hurts or neglects others. Or they push only their own country’s interest and seek to exploit other countries. They may invent a reason to go to war if it will make money for themselves or their corporate friends. If a leader is truly compassionate, however, he or she will try to act in the best interests of everyone, and will be especially compassionate to old people, minority groups, and people of different ethnic groups, countries, genders and age groups. Whatever campaign-promises have been made, now is a chance for the new leader to show that he cares for the people he swears to serve, and beyond that, that he cares for the people of the whole world, even the natural environment and other creatures who co-inhabit this planet. All of us usually think of ourselves first and foremost, so it is not an easy task to be caring and compassionate for others. It’s easier said than done. If you and I were in the positionship of leaders, we would find how difficult this is.

(2) Self-controlled: Narada spoke about controlling the senses, which includes the mind. Those who have learned to manage themselves, to control their own mind, senses and emotions, are more capable of managing the affairs of their city, county, state or nation. Indeed, if they are self-controlled, they can even bring a little more order and stablity to the world.

(3) Self-content or self-satisfied: Alexander the Great wasn’t satisfied until he conquered the whole world. When his army reached India, however, he met a sage who didn’t have to prove himself, who was content within. Alexander realized that the sage had a wealth or power that was greater than his own. Alexander had conquered pretty much the known world, but he wasn’t satisified with all the facilities that came with it. He tried to take this wise man back to the Greek world, but both the sage and Alexander died on the journey. The point is that if a leader is content he or she will not be over-ambitious, and they will be able to listen to others sometimes, and act more wisely.

It is not easy to develop such qualities, but its worthwhile to consider them.

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