P.S. Gary is initiated yesterday and his name is Gajendra das—ACB
Training of Gajendra dasa (Letters, 1968 - 1971)
Occupy your time in deity worship in full cooperation with Gajendra das and there will be no disturbance.
Do not be worried that there is only yourself and Gajendra as full time members. You will get more doubtlessly. Don't be agitated. Go on working sincerely and Krishna will surely help you. Both Gajendra and yourself are very sincere souls, and I give you both all blessings. So please continue to try to develop nicely. If you have got a nice place and a Sankirtana Party, then success is assured.
I thank you very much for your letter of July 17, 1969, and I have noted the contents carefully. The sentiments you have expressed are very nice, and they are just suiting for spiritual advancement. The actual Vaisnava always feels himself lowly and unqualified, but this submissiveness and humbleness is his actual qualification for becoming perfect in Krishna Consciousness. In material life everyone is thinking that I am so wonderful, I am so expert, but actually the living entity is an insignificant spark of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Sri Krishna. So when we see we are becoming aware of our infinitesimal nature, then we begin to also understand something of how infinitely great Krishna is. One cannot be falsely puffed up and still expect to make progress in spiritual life. Rather one must learn to accept his constitutional position of Krishna's tiny servant. Then Krishna is pleased to reveal Himself to such devotee, and the devotee becomes more and more perfect in rendering transcendental service to the Lord.
Regarding your proposal for distributing BTG through the agency you have contacted, I do not think this is very good idea at this time. Tamala Krishna has arranged so that there will be six devotees there in Seattle very soon, so there will be no need for such distribution arrangement. This agency is offering you only 25 cents per issue sold, and by Kirtana Party you will receive 50 cents per copy. Another thing is that we have found that our sales are much better through our personal endeavors on Kirtana Party, so this agency will simply be holding so many copies for one month, and what they do not sell will again be given back to you to sell on Sankirtana Party. They have asked you to advance $50 for their "Paperwork", but in Los Angeles there was one distributer who was taking 400 copies monthly and he did not request such fee. So as you will be having several new men there to help you after the Rathayatra Festival, Sankirtana Party will be the better way of distributing BTG. Regarding your question about offering camphor in aratrik, I do not know why you should be having trouble with smoke and soot by this offering. If you use smaller pieces of camphor this may alleviate the problem, or perhaps you are not using the right kind of camphor. Here we are using camphor for aratrik twice daily and there is no such problem. Of course, if it is too inconvenient, there does not have to be a camphor offering, but I do not know why this should be so.
It is very nice to hear that Gajendra is now taking care in pushing on the Krishna Consciousness Movement.
Please accept my blessings, I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated January 24, 1970 and I am so glad to learn that at the present moment you are president of the center; it is a great satisfaction to me. When a Krishna Conscious person is elevated to a responsible position, he never becomes puffed up. Just like a tree when overladen with fruits becomes humble and lower down; similarly, a great soul in Krishna Consciousness becomes humbler than the grass and bowed down like the fruitful trees because a Krishna Conscious person acts as the agent of Krishna, therefore he discharges his duty with great responsibility.
You are very much welcome to write once in a month, and I shall be very glad to reply them point by point. I am glad to learn that everyone is busily engaged in Krishna's business and chanting 16 rounds and reading Srimad-Bhagavatam regularly. This is our life. Here also I have introduced in the L.A. Temple 24 hour engagement. When Krsnakanti (Carl) returns, you will learn from him everything how this Temple is doing nicely.
Extend your activities to the University campus because the younger generation is our future hope. Bamboo while it is green can be bent and carved, but while it is yellow and ripe if there is any attempt to bend it, it cracks. Krishna is evergreen youthful Original Person and He gathers around Him all young boys and girls as cowherd boys and gopis in His eternal Vrndavana Lila. So try seriously to impress upon the young hearts and you will be successful. Try to get that fraternity house as soon as possible.
Your first question: are disciplic successions from Brahma and from Arjuna different? No. Brahma's disciplic succession accepts Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead and Arjuna also accepted Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. So that is not a new disciplic succession. Krishna says in the fourth chapter that I am again reintroducing unto you—so anyone who accepts Lord Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead is to be understood as belonging to the same disciplic succession.
Balarama is holding a plow, that is His weapon. Jagannatha is holding the Cakra, that is His weapon. Krishna's name is Cakradhara (dhara = carries) or One Who Carries the Disc. Balarama's name is Haladhara, the Carrier of the Plow (hala).
Your third question: why does Srila Narada Muni condemn Srila Vyasadeva for compiling the Vedic Scriptures? Sri Narada Muni was the Spiritual Master of Srila Vyasadeva. A Spiritual Master has the right to chastise his disciple any way He likes. A sisya or a disciple means one who accepts the disciplinary action given by the Spiritual Master. Even although sometimes a Spiritual Master chastises his disciple as a fool or rascal in fatherly affection, it does not mean necessarily that the disciple is a fool or a rascal. You will find even in the statement of Lord Caitanya—He presents Himself as a fool designated by His Spiritual Master, but that does not mean that He was a fool. A sincere disciple feels it pleasurable when his Spiritual Master chastises him with calling him such names as fool and rascal. My Spiritual Master sometimes called me in that way and I remember that day always and feel transcendental pleasure.
By following His footsteps, you can approach Nityananda Prabhu. Nityananda Prabhu approached Jagai and Madhai at the risk of being personally injured and still He definitely delivered them. The world is full of Jagais and Madhais; namely drunkards, women-hunters, meat eaters and gamblers, and we will have to approach them at the risk of insult, injury and similar other rewards. To face such reverse conditions of life and to suffer thereby the results of actions is considered as the greatest penance and austerity in the matter of spiritual advancement of life.
To sit down in a corner without preaching risk and to make a show of chanting Hare Krishna Mantra is condemned by my Spiritual Master and He has written a very nice song in this connection, which I am recording. The substance is that to become very dear to Krishna or Balarama or in other words to Lord Caitanya and Nityananda is to take the task of preaching work very seriously at all risk. Please always remember this and you will be successful.
So I see in your letter that you are also being bold in Krishna's service in the matter of the preaching work.
You asked me to pray for the devotees, and that is the only business of my life.
Upendra is preparing for going to Australia.
Bahulasva Berkeley Rshi Kumara New York
Satsvarupa Boston Umapati Paris
Harer Nama Boulder Subaladas Philadelphia
Rupanuga Buffalo Sridama Providence
Jaya Gopala Columbus Vamanadeva St. Louis
Bhagavan dasa Detroit Madhudvisa San Francisco
Hamsaduta Hamburg Citsukhananda San Jose
Gaurasundara Hawaii Revatinandana Santa Barbara
Durlabh Laguna Beach Gajendra Seattle
Gurudasa London Bali Mardan Sydney
Sripati Montreal Sudama Tokyo
Hayagriva New Vrndavana Jagadisa Toronto
Cidananda Vancouver Damodara Washington
My Dear Damodara,
Please accept my blessings. I hope everything is going on well in your center.
As each and every ISKCON Center is my life and soul for preaching this movement, I hope you are doing your best to conduct the regular routine duties of the Temple—chanting regularly the beads, observing the restrictive regulations, taking Sankirtana Party to the streets, and selling our magazines and books.
Now at the present moment, I am concentrating my energy in this Los Angeles Center as ideal for all other centers in respect of Deity worship, Arati, Kirtana and other necessary paraphernalia. As I have curtailed my moving program, I wish that you may come here at your convenience and stay here for a few days and see personally how things are going on, and by meeting with me personally for necessary instruction, I hope simultaneously in all Centers that activities will be of the same standard.
I am so happy to learn that both yourself and Sriman Gajendra are now married to two of my beloved daughters. I am proposing that our Temples now be managed by the householder couples so this is very nice for you now.
Please offer my blessings to Gajendra and his good wife, Herapancami.
I beg to thank you very much for your kind feelings of appreciation of my humble service unto you. You are all helping me in pushing forward this mission of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, coming down by disciplic succession to my Guru Maharaja. So whatever you have spoken, it is simply due to them. I am simply the via media to receive them, on behalf of my Guru Maharaja, His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Goswami Maharaja Prabhupada.