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Srila Prabhupada’ transcendental voice – Part 2

When Kabandha instructs Rama and Lakshmana to go to Matanga rishi’s
ashram, he describes in detail, the beautiful trees and fragrant
flowers that bloom in the sage’s monastery. He then narrates the
secret of these ever-fresh flowers. The residents of the ashram would
daily go to the forest to fetch firewood and other ingredients for the
daily worship. They worked hard and served the guru sincerely. After
an intense and satisfying day of service, when the sages returned,
drops of perspiration from their bodies fell on the ground. As soon as
a drop of sweat touched mother earth, it instantly transformed into a
beautiful flower that never wilted away. It remained fresh and
fragrant forever. Kabandha explains that it’s the disciple’s loving
offering of service to his guru that caused this phenomenon.

In our lives also we see a similar miracle. Srila Prabhupada’s
dedicated years of service to his beloved guru’s mission brought about
dramatic changes in the lives of people. His labor of love and his
perspiration that came out in the form of his books and discourses
transformed into a fragrant offering of love. And they remain fresh
even five decades later.

Recently I heard Srila Prabhupada’s lecture and question answers on
Srimad Bhagavatam, given at Caracas, Venezuela, in February 1975.
Srila Prabhupada is eighty years old and has arrived after a long and
hectic journey across various continents. Far from suffering from jet
lag, he has tremendous freshness in spirit and alertness in his
logical answers.

One lady challenged Srila Prabhupada after the class that there is a
lot of Maya in the temple. Srila Prabhupada immediately and
nonchalantly laughs it off by saying, “you tell me one place where is
no Maya; I’d like to go there.” Devotees cheered and laughed at Srila
Prabhupada’s ready wit. Then another man challengingly asked how many
paths are there to God. Srila Prabhupada, again said there is only one
path. And to explain his point, he said Columbus wanted to go to India
but landed up in America because he didn’t take the one path towards
the east. The man pursued his challenge by saying if Columbus
persisted in going in the western direction, he’d have eventually
reached India. To this, Srila Prabhupada immediately agreed and said
Columbus would have then taken a much longer time. Then Srila
Prabhupada gave an endearing analogy of the lift and the stairs. To
climb to the top floor of a building, you could take the elevator or
choose an arduous climb through the flight of stairs. The latter is
long winding but the lift makes it so easy. Similarly, Srila
Prabhupada said Bhakti Yoga is a simple and straightforward path.

As I hear Srila Prabhupada’s classes, I can’t help but marvel at his
personality- he is a divine messenger of God who has been personally
chosen by Krishna to spread the Lord’s message in this degraded day
and age.

That’s why his message is fresh and transcendental even decades later.

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