Adventure of Shri Sita-Ram in Yugoslavia

Dear Vaishnavas,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev.

Dear devotees, something extraordinary happened in my home town, we have been blessed by Shri Shri Sitadevi and Lord Ramachandra presence here in the land of mlechas and yavanas where 90% of population are muslims, where we are very few devotees - without temple and deities. But before telling you what happened, I would like to share with all of you one nice verse, which our Gurudev HH Mahavishnu Goswami Maharaj taught us, the verse SB 9.10.53 of ideal King Rama and His care for the people in Ayodhya:

nādhi-vyādhi-jarā-glāni- duḥkha-śoka-bhaya-klamāḥ
mṛtyuś cānicchatāṁ nāsīd rāme rājany adhokṣaje

When Lord Ramacandra, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, was the King of this world, all bodily and mental suffering, disease, old age, bereavement, lamentation, distress, fear and fatigue were completely absent. There was even no death for those who did not want it.

Practically speaking Shri Ram made this planet a spiritual planet free of all distress. In the purport, Shri Prabhupada writes: "It is said, kali-kāle nāma-rupe Kṛṣṇa-avatāra: Krishna descends in this Kali-yuga in the form of His holy name - Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Rama. If we chant offenselessly, Rama and Kṛṣṇa are still present in this age. The kingdom of Rama was immensely popular and beneficial, and the spreading of this Hare Krishna movement can immediately introduce a similar situation, even in this Kali-yuga."

Now let me come back to what happened here. By the grace of our Supreme Father Shri Rama and Mother Sita Devi our office at United Nations (better to call it United Nonsense) has shifted to a different location which surprisingly is next to the Indian military camp serving at UN in my home country (peacekeeping mission - a conflict between Muslims and Christians). One day, as I was getting out of my office, I heard a kirtan on the other side of the wall. I was very surprised. For the first time in 6 years, I hear kirtan near the UN compound.

I couldn't believe my ears, so I continued listening closely, and immediately a great desire arose to go to the other side of the wall. Unfortunately, the wall was too high (4 m). Instead, Paramatma suggested something else more practical, I ran to the (IPS) Indian police officer who is working with me - Mr. Zahur (Indian Muslim but highly respectful of Vedic traditions) who at that time was on the phone. I impatiently asked him - "Please prabhu, come I have something to show you". I asked him -"prabhu what is this sound ?" "Bhajan Murli, Oh Kirtan, yes!!" he confirmed. I immediately asked him, "Please let us now go there" and I almost forced him to come. Because Mr. Zahur is high-rank officer in India everybody was greeting us, everything was auspicious but I had no knowledge of what was in store for me inside the military camp.

Inside the camp, there was a small house construction and at the door entrance Maha-Mantra sticker with Shri Shri Radha-Krishna photo (nice surprise) as we enter inside, many soldiers were singing Ramayana loudly and all of the sudden I saw beautiful Deities. Shri Shri Sita-Rama smiling at us, the deities were around 60 cm tall and the altar was full of pictures of different demigods and even Jesus Christ (apparently we have among soldiers Christians, Sikh etc) but in the center were Their Lordships Shri Shri Sita-Rama mercifully glancing at all of us.

Later on, the soldiers offered us nice halva prasadam and very nicely received us. After I left the camp and went back to my office, I couldn't stop thinking on how great a rascal am I, going to see the Lordships without any offerings and how nicely the Lord organized everything - from receiving us nicely, feeding us with nice prasadam and kirtan, I was really ashamed.

The second day, I decided to try and go alone, this time I brought a small and insignificant gift for the Lordships, but I was not so sure will I make it to enter inside the camp alone? As I approach the camp considering it a Vaikuntha place in this Muslim land, the security guards Jaya and Vijaya asked me -"Sir where do you think you are going" I simply told them,  "I came to visit the mandir, I came to see Lord Shri Rama". All the soldiers were completely surprised. Instead of asking me who the hell am I, (this is practically showing the beauty of Sanatana dharma and the level of tolerance this dharma has) they shook hands with me and welcomed me to enter inside without any problems. As the day was over, I again couldn't stop thinking of how great our Lord Rama is and how great demon am I. Then on, every morning I first visited the temple and paid my obeisances, asked for Lord's forgiveness and blessings.

The story did not end there. By the grace of Shri Rama many soldiers got interested to see me (Muslim boy) some even took photos etc., But one soldier especially caught my attention. He invited me to his room and asked many questions. One particular question was -"How did you become a devotee?" I told him, "Tomorrow I will bring you something, which made me a believer of Shri Krishna".

Next day, I brought the copy of 'Bhagavad-gita As It is" - a gift for the soldier, the same book which changed my entire life 14 years ago. As I passed-by today, I went again to visit the soldier and I was not ready for such a surprise - just after two days of reading Bhagavad Gita the soldier told me - "My family is worshiping Shri Ram and I am meat eater. But now, I have decided to register for vegetarian meals." "Jaya Shri Prabhupada !!!" I said to myself. Again, I could not stop thinking on how great is our Srila Prabhupada and how great rascal am I, for not reading and distributing His Divine Grace's books.

As I was regretting that the Indian soldiers will leave our country coming September, I came to know the background-origin of these deities, the soldiers told me that there is a specialized unit in the military which keeps these deities and sends them to different parts of the world wherever Indian soldiers go and that there is one soldier brahmana who only takes care of them and does nothing else.

As I previously mentioned in my writings to Granthraj, Shri Rama's name is everywhere in this Muslim country like "Ram petrol", (very beautiful gas station, where the name RAM is written in big letters), there are so many shops with Shri Rama's names, then words like "Ha-Ram", "Ram-ush", even in restaurants there is a dish "Ram-steak".

Thank you.
Jaya Shri Raja Ram !!!  
Your insignificant servant, 
Murlidhara das 
Kosov, Yugoslavia.