Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Friday, September 11th, 2015

Friday, September 11th, 2015
Houston, Texas

U R Greeted

You are greeted by locals and by guests with the use of typical Vaishnava jargon. “Hare Krishna!” is a commonly used salutation. “Haribol!” which literally means “Say the name, Hari (God)!” is also popular. “Krishne Matir Astu” is used by those more familiar with the contents of the Krishna conscious literature we read (“May Krishna be with you” is a good enough translation for that).

How about in English? Do Hare Krishnas ever use English words to say hello? Well, the word “Hello” or “Hi” is super rare in addressing each other.

Why not try, “How are you?” and you might get something in the form of an answer like, “Fine, now that I’m seeing you.” This is how I was greeted by Vaisesika, one of the honored guests at the event that will be held in Houston this weekend.

The site of the 50th anniversary of our guru, Srila Prabhupada, coming to the west is on 34th Street at Iskcon’s magnificent temple in Houston. People have come here mostly from the US’s Midwest from as far north as Chicago. Presentations have begun today commemorating the historical event of the presence of Hare Krishna on western soil 50 years ago. There will be kirtan, classes, fantastic food, a cultural program held at the the convention centre, and there will be a play – our play, the one I’m bringing to Houston – a play called ‘Gita: Concise’.

My crew is flying in from Florida, Montreal, and Toronto. Some younger generation volunteers will join in, young women from St. Louis and Chicago. As a celibate monk, we generally do not take the company of the opposite sex as habit but from a director’s point of view, the service must get done and everyone busies themselves in such a way that it becomes a team effort with a family feel. Parents have somehow placed trust in me. “For the stage”, I’ve come to resolve, "I can work with everyone".

We only had today to theatrically pull it all together. I asked the actors/dancers to review "Gita: Concise" from Facebook beforehand. This review offered some preparedness for tomorrow’s performance. Yes, we had only 24 hours to put together this epic piece of learning. It will take a miracle, at least some faith.

"Faith", our guru said, "is trust in something sublime".


May the Source be with you!

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