Expressions of Gratitude by Navina Nirada Dasa
Navina Nirada Dasa
IN TODAY'S MATERIALISTIC world, to interest people in Krsna consciousness is difficult. Devotees who perform the spiritual service of offering others books about Krsna often meet with rejection and indifference. When a guest once asked Srila Prabhupada how his disciples dealt with such negativity, he replied that they were not fickle; they could persevere because they understood the ultimate value of their work.
Fortunately, devotees often see the results of their work, such as when they receive letters of thanks or meet someone whose life has changed by receiving a book on Krsna consciousness. Here are some examples of grateful recipients of Srila Prabhupada's books.
Solace for Mother
I was distributing books in Portsmouth, England, when a woman came up to me and asked, "Do you remember me? I got a copy of the Bhagavad-gita from you in December."
She told me that two days after she had received the book, a doctor had diagnosed her mother with cancer. Two weeks later her mother died.
The woman told me, "It's amazing that before all that happened I got that book about reincarnation."
She thanked me for making it possible for her to speak to her mother about the soul and reincarnation just before her mother's death. The woman said that now her family is turning to a more spiritual outlook.
I told her that reading Bhagavad-gita purifies the mind.
She replied, "Yes, I can feel that! Reading Bhagavad-gita is like a meditation. After reading I see things more clearly."
After some discussion, we exchanged addresses, because she wants to stay in touch and learn more.
Avadhuta-priya Devi Dasi
The following letter arrived at the offices of the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust in Moscow:
I am not a member of the Society of Krishna consciousness, but I strive to understand the Reality, to arrive at spiritual perfection, to begin devotional service to God. That is why I bought a copy of Bhagavad-gita. Some mysterious force attracted me to this book, and I began to study it. Now for the last two years I have not touched any material literature, and for the last year I have been a vegetarian.
Later on I managed to buy two cantos of the Srimad-Bhagavatam (three books), and I was struck by the perfection and magnificence of this masterpiece. Until recently I lived in Tula, where I could buy all the latest volumes of Srimad-Bhagavatam, but since then my wife and I graduated from the teachers' training institute and went to the country, so I don't have an opportunity to buy the new volumes. Please send me all the newly published books. I know that the Lord will help me in my request.
St. Peterburg, Russia
Wearing Krsna's Lotus Feet
The book distribution office of the Auckland, New Zealand, temple received the following letter:
Yesterday during my lunch break I decided to go to Newmarket to buy some clothes. I often do this without a thought, only feeling satisfied when I've spent money. It's awful. I have to spend money on something, anything.
Anyway, I was fortunate enough to run into a really friendly person. I say "really friendly" not in the sense of someone invading my personal space, but that he was sincere. He seemed so happy and not condescending in his approach to explain the reason for our meeting. Now I know he should have been condescending, because the knowledge he holds over me is quite incredible.
At the time, I thought he was just "one of those hippies." The new type with the close haircuts. We spoke for only a short time, as I was in a hurry on a most insignificant mission. I wanted to buy shoes, of all things!
After reading the Krsna material, I guess that the meaning of the encounter is that the person I met wears the lotus feet of Krsna. I now regret leaving in such haste.
I just wish to thank him for such a valuable guide to happiness. We exchanged greetings, but I was not really listening. Unfortunately I have forgotten his name. But I'm sure he is aware of how grateful I am for our meeting.
Would it be possible for you to forward recommendations of follow-up readings? Unfortunately at the time I was not so pleased to have met the monk, and politely took only a small reading, On the Way to Krsna. But I would like to know more.
Navina Nirada Dasa, a disciple of Harikesa Swami, has been one of ISKCON's leading book distributors for many years. He heads ISKCON's book distribution ministry and is based at the ISKCON temple in Zurich.