I'm so glad Shyamasundar is back from Israel. He's one of the most steady walking partners ever. When he came to spend some months with us in Canada two years ago, he proved to be a stalwart. All around he's a great person as he is being an artist. He rendered these masterpieces in acrylic with Krishna's pastimes. They are originals in the sense of being his own compositions. They are vibrant in colour and are permanently on display on the walls of the Toronto temple. The artist went in directions, Orissan style. The pieces are stunning.
Thanks for brightening the temple wall, Shyam, and for brightening my mornings by being that regular companion.
At noontime, one of our pujari priests pulled a fast one on us. I meant to say, he really surprised us. Ramananda Roy, from Markham, comes each Saturday dutifully to perform a ritual called arati. He managed to lure all of our resident monks who rarely see the suburbs. I can think of three of them who hardly ever step into a vehicle and are park-bound only by way of walking. The allurement was pizza - that is, pizza which is offered to Krishna, making it prasadam pizza. After all, our life as monks is considered somewhat austere with our early rising at 3:30 AM. We could have a little fun.
Fun and inspiration also came to us when Vaisesika from California staged a great presentation on Bengali bhakti songs in the evening. This person is empowered and his wisdom and joy is contagious.