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ISKCON 50 Meditations: October 24, 2015

By: for ISKCON News on Oct. 24, 2015
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Hurta Lurch (a student at Ananda Ashram):  My direct encounter with him was in the kitchen.  He was very particular and very definite that he would eat only what he cooked himself.  He would come and say, “Get me a pot.”  So when I brought him a pot, he would say, “No, bigger.”  So I brought him a bigger pot and he would say, “No, smaller.”  Then he would say, “Get me potato.”  So I would bring him a potato.  He’d prepare food very, very quietly.  He never spoke much.  He prepared potatoes and then some vegetables and then capatis.  After cooking, he would eat outside.  He would usually cook enough to go around for Dr. Mishra and about five or six other people.  Every day he would cook that much when he was there.  I learned to make capatis from him.  He usually stayed only for the weekends and then went back to the City.  I think he felt that was where his main work was to be done. 

It was certainly true that Prabhupada’s real work was in the City, but what could he do there with no  money and no support?  He was thinking of staying only a few weeks and then going back to India.  In the meantime, he was working on his Srimad-Bhagavatam manuscripts, walking in Manhattan, and writing letters.  He was studying a new culture, calculating practically and imagining hopefully how to introduce Krishna consciousness to the Western world.  In later October, he expressed his thoughts to Sumati Morarji:

So far as I have studied, the American people are very much eager to learn about the Indian way of spiritual realization, and there are so many so-called yoga ashrams in America.  Unfortunately, they are not very much adored by the government, and it is learned that such yoga ashrams have exploited the innocent people, as has been the case in India also.  The only hope is that they are spiritually inclined, and immediate benefit can be done to them if the cult of Srimad-Bhagavatam is preached here ...

He told Mrs. Morarji “that just to see the mode of reception,” he had attended the performance of a Madrasi dancer and the American public appreciated the dance.  He explained that the Bhagavatam could also be preached through music and dance, but he had no means to introduce it.

He told Mrs. Morarji that the Christian missions, backed by huge resources, were preaching all over the world, so why couldn’t the devotees of Krishna combine to preach the Bhagavatam all over the world?  He also noted that the Christian missions had not been effective in checking the spread of Communism, whereas a Bhagavatam movement could be, because of its philosophical, scientific approach. 

He was deliberately planting a seed of inspiration in the mind of the devoted, wealthy Sumati Morarji. 

But Sumati Morarji did not respond.  Since her initial letter in which she had advised him to stay on in America until his mission was completed, she had not answered his correspondence.  Prabhupada knew that if she wanted she could do something big, so he continued to write her. 

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