Battlefield Bhajans Vol. 27
Dedicated to Srila Prabhupada, and Bhakta Antony and Andrew, true soldiers in Lord Caitanya's Army.
written by Partha Sarathi Dasa
Srila Prabhupada's Disappearance Day Book Marathon:
For Srila Prabhupada's disappearance day, I decided to do a two day book marathon. Day one, would be in Tacoma, WA, and day two would be in Seattle. After some arranging with the Seattle devotees, it was decided that about five devotees would join me on saturday for harinam and book distribution. Book distribution was dear to Srila Prabhupada. In a letter to HH Tamala Krishna Maharaja, Prabhupada wrote:
My Dear Tamala Krishna Goswami:
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated October 8, 1974 and have noted the contents. Your letter was forwarded from Bombay, but the letter from Ramesvara was not enclosed.
Regarding Sankirtana and book distribution, both should go on, but book distribution is more important. It is brihat kirtana. In Tokyo airport one boy had come up to me asking if he could speak with me. I said yes, and then he asked me "Swamiji, where do you get all that knowledge in your books?'' Of course it is Krishna's knowledge, not mine. But the effect is there. So for wider kirtana book distribution is better. Book distribution is also kirtana. Regarding making hundreds of traveling parties, yes do that please as far as possible.
I hope this meets you in good health. Your ever well wisher, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami ACBS/bs
On day one, things went slow, I started distributing books in downtown Tacoma, it was a little lonely but soon Krsna sent some favorable people. One women, said she lost her husband a few years ago and has been struggling with spiritual life ever since. I just listened to her as I saw she just wanted to reveal her thoughts. When she finished I showed her a Bhagavad-Gita and showed her the plate four picture of the family lamenting for their loss, it touched home for her. The verse for that painting is " Those who are wise lament neither for the living nor the dead."(excerpt from BG chapter a verse 11) Immediately she turned to the verse with was on page 80 of the Bhagavad-Gita and read the purport. She closed the book and without saying a word, reached in to her purse for a donation. I thanked her for her kindness and she grabbed my hand and thanked me for sharing this book with her. She said God answered her questions in that verse. The rest of the day, I met many nice people. Some took books, others dIdn't. But I tried to give all a favorable impression of devotees, by being polite. I left for the ashram feeling happy that I made an effort, not a good effort, but still something to go out and distribute books.
Saturday morning I was joined by Madhu Prabhu and we left for Seattle. We arrived and I sang Guru Puja for Srila Prabhupada and gave a brief class on why we should go out on books. The class was nice and an interesting discussion developed about how we can get the congregation involved in distributing books. We left for Pikes Market which is a tourist haven in Seattle. The plan was to have harinam and then stop and distribute books. The harinam party started and I lead the chanting. We headed through the indoor market place chanting the Holy Name as loud as we could. The reaction was amazing. So many people stopped, clapped their hands, took photos and smiles were seen everywhere. akis1iº kita-cetasa° su-manasam ucca1ana° ca°hasam…. "'The holy name of Lord Krsna is an attractive feature for many saintly, liberal people. It is the annihilator of all sinful reactions and is so powerful that, save for the dumb who cannot chant it, it is readily available to everyone, including the lowest type of man, the candala. The holy name of Krsna is the controller of the opulence of liberation, and it is identical with Krsna. When a person simply chants the holy name with his tongue, immediate effects are produced. Chanting the holy name does not depend on initiation, pious activities or the purascarya regulative principles generally observed before initiation. The holy name does not wait for any of these activities. It is self-sufficient.'"(Cc Adi 7.73) When we stopped at the first break, I met five young adults from Canada and showed each a book. As I explained, they were excited to see these books and each one took a book. Soon we started off again. The reaction from the people was so good we lost one devotee! He emerged from the market place three hours later with an empty book bag!!! We stopped the harinam at a major square and concentrated on books. I met many nice people. One man, I showed a small book to and he wasn't interested, then he saw the Bhagavad-Gita and grabbed it out of my hands and in a second handed me a $75 donation. One homeless kid gave Madhu Prabhu the last of his money for a book. The atmosphere was great. I didn't move from this one spot for three hours. I was in devotional attire and many came up to me asking who I was. One man and women came up to me and explained that they lived in the San Diego temple many years ago. They feel away from Krishna, but have been wondering if there are any devotees in Seattle anymore. Each took a Bhagavad-Gita and were happy to be given a second chance by Krsna to come back to devotional service. At the end of the day, the scores were big. HG Veda Narayana Prabhu did around 35 books, Madhu Prabhu did around 33 books, and I did 93 books. Such a nice day. That evening we asked HG Swarupa Damodara Prabhu to read the marathon scores to Srila Prabhupada as an offering. Many were inquiring when the next marathon was, so they can also come.
The word j´va-hi°sa (envy of other living entities) actually means stopping the preaching of Krsna consciousness. Preaching work is described as paropakara, welfare activity for others." (SP from the purport to Cc Madhya 1a.135)
Vancouver a4 Hour Kirtan
I decided at the last minute to go and participate in the Vancouver a4 hr Kirtan. It was a global event. Which is wonderful, there is not enough kirtan going on in the world? I drove up from the ashram and was stopped and searched at the boarder. The custom agent opened the truck to find a stack of books. He told me to follow him and took the books and me in an office. He asked what I planned on doing with the books. I said, Sir they are religious books. They are not for sale. He said, no they cannot come into Canada. I asked him what I should do? He said I don't care, they can't come in. So I as I sat in the customs building, I saw many people coming in and starting speaking with them about spiritual life. Amazingly all the books found their way to people and I was allowed to go in to Canada finally after being at the border for one hour. I arrived and the kirtan was about to start. There were many good kirtan leaders there. Two most notable were HG Damodara Prabhu, and Anirudha Prabhu. They lead amazing bhajans. I left the temple at midnight and returned at three am. Still devotees were in the temple, chanting and being fired up. Mangala Arati was very sweet and we were treated to a wonderful Damodarastakam by the Navadvip Family. This family is amazing. There two sons are my friends, and at such young ages are expert musicians. They have a daughter also and as a family they sang these prayers and it was so powerful. It really forced you to meditate on the Lord being binded to a grinding mortar. I gave class on the Holy Name and the glories of Gaura Kishore Das Babaji. During the day, I went out with HG Krpaniti and filled up the smart boxes. It is so nice, to see them all over North America. I gave Sunday Feast lecture that evening. After the class I lead a small kirtan and pass the microphone around so other devotees could lead the tune. That seemed to get everyone into it. The wonderful Navadvipa Family lead the final kirtan, which had me dancing for almost two hours. The Lord is so kind to give us devotee association and the Holy Name.
Sadhana: japa: We should make an effort to increase the quality of our chanting. One should never pray to finish his or her rounds, but to always be engaged in chanting the Maha Mantra.
Seva: The Lord is amazing, He arranges everything He needs to be comfortable. Salagram Sila and Govardhana Sila are the center of my preaching. I feel that I need to increase and develop a better service attitude. I should never think I am giving Krsna perfect worship. This week we offered two verses for His pleasure.
Reading: BG: We are starting form the beginning, every time I read the BG, I find some inspiring purport, verse that I never saw before. My goal is to systematically study all of Srila Prabhupada's books, and to fill a notebook of nectar. Reading Siksmrta Vol. 3. WOW WOW WOW. The nectar in these pages… this book also helps me when quoting Prabhupada, often we quote but forget about the circumstance behind the instruction Prabhupada gave. Sankritan: Monthly Book Scores for October:
maha big: 15
big hard: 18
soft: 7 med:
Total: 355 Books
At the moment we are in limbo with the Army. Our paperwork is with the Secretary of the Army awaiting approval. Having to wait is causing anxiety for us. But whatever descion comes, we will see it as Krishna's choice. These people think they are making the descion, but actually Krishna is in their hearts as the Supersoul. So everything is going by His energy, His mercy. Please pray for us, that we can go further along the path of devotional service and do some meaningful service for our Spiritual Master and Srila Prabhupada.