People in Canada, credit Queen Victoria for allowing Canada to be a free nation cutting loose from the British rule. Today was the day known as Victoria Day and although her honor means little to the average person who doesn't follow up much on history. The day has become a good excuse for a holiday. Fireworks were mostly used on this day, perhaps more than any other day of the year in Canada. But that has somewhat shifted since I was a kid. Fireworks have taken over the nightly skies on many other days not just to commemorate an event or a person. The loud noise and splendorous light displays have become a common place event that exists on its own strength.
In the afternoon, I was driven to quiet Kitchener, a city at the edge of Mennonite country. With Ukrainian friends and my young American protege, Gaura, we zipped over this place once called New Berlin to engage in chanting with a family from Kenya. Someone from Belgrade came, another from Hungary, and there was even an all Canadian chap from London Ontario.
What else did we do? Well, we took a serious look at Bhagavad-Gita verse 10.9. Krishna says: "The thoughts of My pure devotees dwell in Me, their lives are fully devoted to My service, and they derive great satisfaction and bliss from always enlightening one another and conversing about Me."
What blossomed out of this verse recitation was a lively discussion of individual revelations from amongst our quiet group. Yes, we were quiet but thoughtful. I was impressed with the explosions of realizations as expressed by the visitors and host family. There was something splendorous in hearing them. In fact, the popping of the fireworks I heard in the distance during the evening's wind down period back in Toronto, could not measure up to the volcanic spewings of truthfulness as voiced by these students of Bhagavad-Gita.
As I walked a few blocks in the night air, it was confirmed for me that fireworks are not a sensation for me. May they remain as an offering to Victoria.