Saturday, 22 October 2016

Friday, October 21st, 2016

Mumbai, India
A Monk Is a Preceptor
I’m being engaged—unfortunately, not so much by way of walking.  A helpful massage came to me at the end of the day, and stretches were executed that aided in circulation of the blood.  Activation was increased in body parts that are usually asleep.

The last three mornings, I cut out of the Bhagavatam listening in order to go for hour-long interview sessions.  For future broadcast on Desire Tree, I was questioned on topics to do with anything from “How did you become a monk?” to “What is the status of women, and  same-sex oriented people?”

The interviewers, Jagannath and Dudhamrit, milked me for all I had, but I enjoyed it.  Disseminating the Vedic perspective is a privilege for me as much as it is a mandate for the renounced order.  A monk is a teacher with words, and at the very least, with behaviour.  Some of our comrades are quiet by nature.  Introvert versus extrovert does exist, yet everyone in the saffron attire is expected to be some kind of preceptor.

When I’m back home, in Canada, I have a regular dental check-up.  My dentist doesn’t charge for the services.  I thank him for helping me and his remark is usually, “You are doing something for humanity, so let me reciprocate.”

I then reflect. “Oh yeah, I’m in a role that attempts to inspire others.  I’m not set out to reinforce the materialistic way of life.  I may not do such a good job at it.  When I sit or mingle with my god-brothers, I consider ‘Who am I compared to them?’”

May the Source be with you!

4 km

Friday, 21 October 2016

Thursday, October 20th, 2016

Mumbai, India

Today I was asked to read before our global leaders the following excerpt from the preface of the book “Bhagavatam.”  It was how we began the day’s meetings.

“We must know the present need of human society.  And what is that need?  Human society is no longer bounded by geographical limits to particular countries or communities.  Human society is broader than in the Middle Ages, and the world tendency is toward one state or one human society.  The ideals of spiritual communism, according to Srimad-Bhagavatam, are based more or less on the oneness of the entire human society, nay, of the entire energy of living beings.  The need is felt by great thinkers to make this a successful ideology.  Srimad-Bhagavatam will fill this need in human society.  It begins, therefore, with an aphorism of Vedanta philosophy, janmady asya yatah, to establish the ideal of a common cause.

Human society, at the present moment, is not in the darkness of oblivion.  It has made rapid progress in the fields of material comforts, education and economic development throughout the entire world.  But there is a pinprick somewhere in the social body at large, and therefore there are large-scale quarrels, even over less important issues.  There is need of a clue as to how humanity can become one in peace, friendship and prosperity with a common cause.  Srimad-Bhagavatam will fill this need, for it is a cultural presentation for the re-spiritualization of the entire human society.”

(There’s more!)

May the Source be with you!

4 km

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

Mumbai, India

What Counts!
At 7:10 p.m. when I had the chance to see the honourable deities of Sita Rama at the temple (ISKCON) it was difficult to get around.  Many people were doing what I was—trying to receive some mercy from above.  The place was packed.  There were local attendees, and I also saw a dozen or more inquisitive tourists, most likely from Russia.  They observed the elaborate display of the deities.  They also couldn’t help but notice the monks-in-training who were enthusiastically singing and dancing as a way of trying to please the deities.

I made my way to the front of the temple room, close to the deities.  I also participated in the dance and took some lead on the dance steps.  This created a small sensation since the monks are accustomed to more-or-less a robotic type of repetitious movement.  They saw a chance to break out of it.  There was some apprehension initially and then liberation kicked in.

In the course of that, I saw someone approaching for darshan (viewing of the deity) and he was moving rather slowly with the assistance of crutches.  It was my friend from Ahmedabad, Yasomatinandan, who has aged considerably since last I saw him.  He broke into a smile after I tapped him on the shoulder, at which time he recognized me.

This is the same Yasomatinandan whom I see every day in the corridor in the form of a photo, enlarged and framed, on the wall.  He is walking with his guru, Srila Prabhupada, in the photo.  He looks handsome, energetic and young.

That dynamic has changed in Yaso, but I see his consciousness is good and that is what counts.

May the Source be with you!

4 km