Mutual Respect Care And Concern - Part 2

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble obeisances! All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev!

This is in conclusion of the previous offering titled, "Mutual Respect Care and Concern" wherein we were seeing how Guru and Krishna are pleased when we serve the devotees, have mutual friendly dealings with all living entities. Now we shall see further.

When a devotee is going through physical and mental difficulties, many times out of our thoughtless nature and ignorance, we fail to show our concern, but instead chastise them as being in Maya, without caring for the real difficulty they are going through. What to talk of other devotees, sometimes we completely forget that our own family members are also servants of Krishna and even if we go out and help others in the world, many times we become so very neglectful of the near and dear, on account of too much familiarity and "taking for granted" attitude.

Srila Prabhupada was so caring to his devotees. On the first Gaura Purnima festival the only existing building was not yet finished. The first night that the devotees were there Srila Prabhupada got up in the middle of the night to look in each room to see if each devotee was properly taken care of, to see if everyone had a mosquito net. He would also ensure that there was prasadam for all of them and when they were getting sick he was very concerned about their health.

In Vrindavana, during his last months on the planet, Srila Prabhupada was so sick that he couldn’t even walk. When he had to go upstairs two British devotees would pick him up and would carry him in his chair. One of these devotees had a boil in his foot, and once, while he was carrying Srila Prabhupada, something hit the boil. The devotee said, "Oh!" and tried to hide it, but Srila Prabhupada understood. Srila Prabhupada could not eat for months and had lost so much weight. His body was only bones. In this state most people would think about themselves. What was a little boil for a big, strong, young devotee, in comparison with Srila Prabhupada's condition? Still, Srila Prabhupada asked, "What is your problem?" "No problem, Srila Prabhupada, no problem" said the disciple. But Srila Prabhupada insisted, "No, no, please, tell me", and then he saw the boil and told him exactly what medicine to put. He told him to take the leaf of a certain tree, put it in mustard oil, boil it, and apply this at least three times a day. The next day, when that devotee was carrying Srila Prabhupada upstairs, Srila Prabhupada asked, "How is your foot? Let me see." And for the next several days, until the boil was completely cured, Srila Prabhupada would inquire with attention and concern. The devotee felt, "Srila Prabhupada is so concerned with such an insignificant disciple like myself. I am not a big preacher or anything like that."

Our beloved Gurudev is a personification of genuine love and care for all. So from these great Vaishnavas we can learn that having mutual respect, care and concern for all living entities is important as everyone are part and parcel of Supreme Lord. That's why in Srimad Bhagavatam 1.19.16, repenting for his offending Shamika rshi Parikshit Maharaj prays,

punaś ca bhūyād bhagavaty anante
ratiḥ prasaṅgaś ca tad-āśrayeṣu
mahatsu yāṁ yām upayāmi sṛṣṭiṁ
maitry astu sarvatra namo dvijebhyaḥ

Again, offering obeisances unto all you brahmanas, I pray that if I should again take my birth in the material world I will have complete attachment to the unlimited Lord Krishna, association with His devotees and friendly relations with all living beings.

I very humbly seek my apologies for having missed all the opportunities for expressing my love for Krishna through serving the Vaishnavas who are in difficulty and may good sense prevail upon me.

Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev,
Vaijayantimala devi dasi
Abu Dhabi.