Wednesday 16 November 2022

Monday, November 14, 2022


Back to Argentina

When I boarded Delta Airline enroute to Atlanta, as a stopover for Buenos Aires, I had a little chat with the flight attendant. I remarked that customs were so long and so slow. “Unacceptable!” I said.

Her remark, “It’s always like that here (Toronto). I love the city, but the airport…” And as she said this her eyes were rolling. I thought to lodge a complaint next time I had the chance, regarding an improvement in service that could happen at the Toronto Airport. Afterall service is everything in the regular world as well as in the world of bhakti, the spiritual. A big price tag is put on the ways of convenience.

When on the plane I had the pleasure to read from Satsvarupa’s book, Prabhupada, about the first Chariot Festival in San Francisco:

The report came back. “It was great! It was wonderful! It was a beautiful day, they said. And Swamiji listened, moved by his disciples’ descriptions of the celebration. Many hippies had joined the large procession. Mukunda, Haridasa, Hayagriva, and some of the women had been on the cart, and the instruments, including Yamuna’s playing on the harmonium had been amplified. Everyone in the streets had liked it.”

It’s always good to hear good news even if from the past.

In Atlanta, I boarded Delta once again to find myself in a middle seat. On either side was already seated an uncle and a niece. “Would you like to sit together?” I asked. “No, it’s okay”, they replied and ended up talking through me anyway.

May the Source be with you!


Sunday, November 13, 2022

Hamilton / Oakville


This Sunday was exciting. Sundays usually are. One of the reasons is that I get very busy with people. Today, it was three locations, so that makes it three presentations. The theme for all these venues, in addition to chanting sessions and prasadam (blessed food), was the topic of “shelter.” The first gathering was actually in the Conference Room of ISKCON Toronto. There I presented a borrowed story about shelter and the nature of a cat or a dog. Perhaps you have heard it before?

A dog thinks, “Here is my master. He gives me shelter, feeds me, loves me and will do anything for me, and asks nothing in return. My master must be god.”

A cat thinks, “Here is my master who gives me shelter, feeds me, loves me and will do anything for me, and asks nothing in return. I must be god.”

The above story definitely received some resonating responses. The real essence of the topic was not so much to do with the difference between the two pets, but what it truly means to take shelter. We can think of a turtle whose shelter is actually its shell. There is this example in The Gita about the turtle who draws its limbs within its shell when there is danger.

We are all in danger of the attacks by maya, illusion, and so the ultimate protection is in humility, at the lotus feet of the Lord. Let’s face it, there are animal shelters, homeless shelters, women’s shelters, bomb shelters, etc. There should be. There are also maya shelters, offering protection from life’s illusions. Maya is hot, Krishna is cool. Let us go under His shade, His shelter.

May the Source be with you!


Saturday, November 12, 2022

Brampton, Ontario

The Kind and the Not So

Road rage is very much on the rise. On the previous night, while on the freeway, two drivers involved in a collision were almost at each other’s throats in a shouting match, blaming each other for the accident. They used unholy terms. Not surprising is that this overall “etiquette” on our roads is on the rise. Too many cars. Not enough roads. Levels of speed are up. More and more motorists cut each other off. Check out the words kama, krodha and lobha in the scriptures and where these traits lead us and a full-blown picture is created. I forgot to mention the frequency of honking. It’s bad!

This Saturday evening Vallabha Hari and I witnessed some nasty elements as we walked along Davenport, which was formerly The Ancient Trail, tread by our indigenous people. We had just participated in a beautiful night at Rita and Hatesh’s home. “Beautiful” because I got my asparagus. The chanting was lively amongst the ten or so families. We also enjoyed reading together from Hari Sauri’s Transcendental Diary about our guru, Prabhupada, and how he kept his cool as he arrived at the airport while customs officials carried on in a negative demeanor. I would give credit, however, to the customs people of today (the above-mentioned was in 1976, when he came through the Toronto Airport). While folks in the servant category these days are a little kinder, the people behind the wheel have become very rajasic (passionate).

May the Source be with you!