Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva.
Today is the auspicious occasion of disappearance day of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada, the day when His Divine Grace again re-enetered into Goloka Vrindavana after successfully fulfilling the mission of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu - spreading the Holy Name in every nook and corner of the world, in accordance to the instruction of his spiritual master His Divine Grace Sri Bhakti Siddhanta Swami Prabhupada.
In one of the Bhagavatam classes of Srila Prabhupada on verse 1.2.6, given in Bombay on 26th March 1972 Srila Prabhupada explains how bhakti is unconditional and cannot be hampered by any material conditions - place of birth, economical status, marital status, gender, occupation, etc. He then quotes verse 2.4.18 from Srimad Bhagavatam wherein Sukadeva Goswami glorifies the Supreme Lord as follows:
ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ
ye ’nye ca pāpā yad-apāśrayāśrayāḥ
śudhyanti tasmai prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ
Kirāta, Hūṇa, Āndhra, Pulinda, Pulkaśa, Ābhīra, Śumbha, Yavana, members of the Khasa races and even others addicted to sinful acts can be purified by taking shelter of the devotees of the Lord, due to His being the supreme power. I beg to offer my respectful obeisances unto Him.
The life of His Divine Grace is a personal example for the above verse. By his purity, he could bring a revolution in the minds of the world's misdirected civilization and change all hippies to happies throughout the world. He was never proud of this most amazing achievement and always said that this miracle was possible only because of the mercy of Guru and Krishna. In fact in this class His Divine Grace also very nicely mentions about this miracle - "You cannot understand how it has happened. How it has happened, this is the miracle. Just like when I went to America, I was thinking that "Who will hear me? As soon as I will say that 'You cannot eat meat, you cannot have illicit sex, you cannot have any intoxication up to smoking and you cannot indulge in gambling,' the next day they will say, 'Please go home.' "Yes. Because it was actually experienced by one of my Godbrother. He went to London, and Lord Zetland, Marquis of Zetland, he was talking with him, this gentleman, at my Godbrother, that "Can you make me brahmana?" He said, "Yes, I can make you brahmana." "How?" "Then give up these four things = don't drink, don't have illicit sex, don't indulge in gambling, and don't eat meat." He said, "Impossible." He said, "Impossible. This is our life." This was a fair talk. So I was thinking that "As soon as I will prescribe these things, these boys, or these people of America, they will say, 'Please go home.' "But it is Krishna's mercy."
Srila Prabhupada himself was extremely merciful and tolerant to the people who came and joined the movement. Most of them were unaware of Vedic culture, good behavior, etc and they could not even understand the philosophy. But they were simply attracted by the purity and serenity of Srila Prabhupada and tried to serve His Divine Grace to the best of their ability. And in due course of time, they not only started relishing devotional service, but engaged in doing services which they never ever imagined to do in their lives - like building temples, painting beautiful pictures of Krishna's pastimes, translating scriptures. Above all, they were able to get rid of their anarthas and sinful lives and lead a life of sanity. The legacy of His Divine Grace does not stop with the initial group of devotees who met him, but His Divine Grace continues to remain amidst us through his books. If we also take shelter of the instructions His Divine Grace has given in his books, then we can also purify our existence, by his mercy.
Jagat Guru Srila Prabhupada ki Jai! Srila Gurudeva ki Jai!
Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva,
Sudarshana devi dasi.
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