When the florist was offered benedictions, he begged from the Lord that he might remain His eternal servant in devotional service and by such service do good to all living creatures

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"When the florist was offered benedictions, he begged from the Lord that he might remain His eternal servant in devotional service and by such service do good to all living creatures"

Other Books by Srila Prabhupada

Krsna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead

When the florist was offered benedictions, he begged from the Lord that he might remain His eternal servant in devotional service and by such service do good to all living creatures. By this, it is clear that a devotee of the Lord in Kṛṣṇa consciousness should not be satisfied simply by his own advancement in devotional service; he must be willing to work for the welfare of all others. This example was followed by the six Gosvāmīs of Vṛndāvana.

On hearing this, Lord Kṛṣṇa, the son of Devakī, became very angry at the washerman, and striking him with the upper portion of His hand, He separated the man’s head from his body. The washerman fell down dead on the ground. In this way Lord Kṛṣṇa confirmed the statement of the Brahma-saṁhitā that every limb of His body is capable of doing everything He likes. Without a sword, but simply with His hand, He cut off the head of the washerman. This is proof that the Supreme Lord is omnipotent. If He wants to do something, He can do it without extraneous help.

After this ghastly incident, the employees of the washerman immediately dispersed, leaving the clothing. Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma took possession of it and dressed according to Their choice; the rest of the clothes were offered to the cowherd boys, who also used them as they desired. What they did not use remained there. Kṛṣṇa, Balarāma and the boys then proceeded along the main road. In the meantime, a devotee-tailor took the opportunity of service and prepared some nice clothes from the cloth for Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma. Thus being very nicely attired, Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma looked like elephants dressed with colored clothing on the full-moon day or the dark-moon day. Kṛṣṇa was very much pleased with the tailor and gave him the benediction of sārūpya-mukti, which means that after leaving his body he would be liberated and would attain a four-handed body exactly like that of Nārāyaṇa in the Vaikuṇṭha planets. Kṛṣṇa also granted him that as long as he would live he would earn sufficient opulence to be able to enjoy sense gratification. By this incident Kṛṣṇa proved that those who are Kṛṣṇa conscious devotees will not be lacking material enjoyment of sense gratification. They will have sufficient opportunity for such things, but after leaving this body they will be allowed to enter the spiritual planets of Vaikuṇṭhaloka or Kṛṣṇaloka, Goloka Vṛndāvana.

After dressing nicely, Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma went to a florist of the name Sudāmā. As soon as They reached the precinct of his house, the florist immediately came out and with great devotion fell down on his face to offer his respectful obeisances. He offered a nice seat to Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma and asked his assistant to bring out flowers, betel nuts and pulp of candana. The florist’s welcome greatly satisfied the Lord.

The florist very humbly and submissively offered his prayers to the Lord, saying, “My dear Lord, because You have come to my place, I think all my forefathers and all my worshipable superiors are pleased and delivered. My dear Lord, You are the supreme cause of all causes of this cosmic manifestation, but for the benefit of the residents of this earthly planet, You have appeared with Your plenary portion to give protection to Your devotees and annihilate the demons. You are equally disposed as the friend of all living entities; You are the Supersoul, and You do not discriminate between friend and enemy. Yet You are pleased to give Your devotees the special result of their devotional activities. My Lord, I am praying that You please tell me whatever You wish me to do, because I am Your eternal servant. If You would order me to do something, it would be a great favor to me.” The florist, Sudāmā, was greatly pleased within his heart by seeing Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma in his place, and thus, as his choicest desire, he made two exquisite garlands of various flowers and presented them to the Lord. Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma were very much pleased with his sincere service, and Kṛṣṇa offered the florist His salutation and benedictions, which He is always prepared to bestow upon the surrendered souls. When the florist was offered benedictions, he begged from the Lord that he might remain His eternal servant in devotional service and by such service do good to all living creatures. By this, it is clear that a devotee of the Lord in Kṛṣṇa consciousness should not be satisfied simply by his own advancement in devotional service; he must be willing to work for the welfare of all others. This example was followed by the six Gosvāmīs of Vṛndāvana. It is therefore stated in a prayer about them, lokānāṁ hita-kāriṇau: Vaiṣṇavas, or devotees of the Lord, are not selfish. Whatever benefits they derive from the Supreme Personality of Godhead as benedictions they want to distribute to all other persons. That is the greatest of all humanitarian activities. Being satisfied with the florist, Lord Kṛṣṇa not only gave him whatever benedictions he wanted, but over and above that He offered him all material opulences, family prosperity, a long duration of life and whatever else his heart desired within the material world.