681114 - Letter to Satsvarupa written from Los Angeles
November 14, 1968
My Dear Satsvarupa,
Please accept my blessings. I thank you very much for your letter of Nov. 9, 1968, and I have noted the contents carefully. It is good to hear that the temple is going on nicely, and you are selling Back To Godheads also 400 per month. I understand you are trying to get more lectures at colleges, also in sociology and political classes and philosophy classes. You should not give political or social discussions, while speaking on Krishna Consciousness philosophy from Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam you can simply touch on some socio-political implications. Krishna Consciousness is so broad and all inclusive that naturally when speaking in Krishna Consciousness we get so many opportunities to deal in politics although that is not our subject matter. To do so requires expert handling. You can take part in such classes and present the subject matter in such a way that it may at first appear like socio-political-philosophical affairs, but actually introduce our Krishna Consciousness philosophy. That requires tactful handling. You can give it a political etc., headline, and then end it with our philosophy. This is Visokumbham Payomukhan. That means to give somebody a jar of poison with a label of nectarine or milk preparation on it. So we have to become politician in this way, just like in old politics there was presentation of Visokanya. This visokanya is a poison beautiful girl. The idea was that a baby girl was from the very beginning administered little doses of poison everyday, which she could tolerate. And gradually increasing the doses, culminating in large doses when she was youth. Such girls were engaged in killing enemies. The enemy will be received as a guest, and this girl will be engaged for looking after his comfort, and when they are friendly, as soon as the enemy will kiss the girl in the mouth, the poisonous effect will immediately affect, because with tongue the poison is very quickly effective. And the enemy would die. Similarly, we have to introduce Krishna Consciousness in such a way that through politics and sociology they will be injected and become Krishna Consciousness. But instead of being a victim, they will be immortalized. That is the difference.
The story of Ramanujacarya as stated by you is not disobedience. It was a great fervor for the disciple to advance the missionary cause of the Spiritual Master. Such rare instances are sometimes visible in many places. Just like there
lying on the floor. The story is like this: Caitanya Mahaprabhu after taking His lunch would rest for a while and Govinda was daily massaging His feet. So one day Caitanya Mahaprabhu fell asleep very soon and keeping His head on the threshold. So while He was sleeping, Govinda came crossing the body of Caitanya and massaged His Feet. But he was sitting there, so when Caitanya Mahaprabhu was awake He saw that Govinda was sitting there although it was too late. So He inquired, "Govinda, you have not taken your Prasadam, you are sitting here?" So he replied, "Yes, I shall go now to take Prasadam." Caitanya Mahaprabhu inquired, "Why so late?" He replied, "I could not go on the other side because You were lying on the threshold." Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, "How did you come in?" He flatly replied, "By crossing You." Then He inquired, "Why did you not go out by crossing Me?" Govinda said, "That I cannot do. I came crossing You inside the room for Your service, but I cannot go out crossing You for taking my lunch. That would be for my sense gratification." The idea is for service of the superior sometimes such violation appears to be in the scene. Ramanujacarya violated the order of the Spiritual Master to advance the cause of the Spiritual Master. The Spiritual Master's mission was to deliver fallen souls, therefore Ramanujacarya considered that if the mantra was so powerful to deliver the persons, why not deliver it to everyone as soon as possible. That was a little tactic to advance the cause of the Spiritual Master. So everything has to be judged by the motive, and as the motive of such apparent violation was very good, Ramanuja's Spiritual Master embraced him. This is not actually violating the order of the Spiritual Master. But such actions are very rarely to be done.
Yes, there is definitely a vast difference between initiated and non-initiated. One who is initiated is authorized, and one who is not initiated is not authorized. Just like, for example, Pradyumna is attending class in Sanskrit in a college, he is given chance to learn Sanskrit, but he is not equal with the regular students. One who becomes initiated is channelized to the authorities in the disciplic succession. One who isn't initiated may chant Hare Krishna (and should certainly be encouraged to do so) and serve in his own way, and gradually by doing so he may want to be initiated. But otherwise he may fall away from following the rules and regulations.
The clothing is already painted on the Jagannathas, even there is no cloth. And even Krishna is naked, that does not make any difference. But when we dress Him, our service is appreciated. From Krishna's side, naked or dressed, He is Krishna. And from our side, if we nicely dress Krishna and nicely feed Him, He is appreciating our service and we are certainly benefited. Krishna is the same; He does not require us to dress Him, or feed him, etc., but the more I serve by dressing, feeding and caring for Him, He appreciates the service, and I become more Krishna Conscious.
Yes, it is all right to continue painting Lord Caitanya and the Gopis as you have been, in flesh tone.
It is not mentioned how many hands the different Brahmas from the different universes have. Maybe four hands. Yes, they ride on swans.
I am sending herewith the tape, so you do the work on your dictaphone and send me regularly the typed copies. Don't stop sending them, it makes me stop also. Unless I get back the typed copies it doesn't encourage me. So you send me the typed copies regularly and I shall send you the tapes regularly. What about the 3rd Canto? I know that I have made up to the 3rd Canto 7th chapter and the present tape is continuation, but I am in darkness where are the papers. So give me an account where are the papers.
I am concerned about Jadurani's health condition—has she got any fever? If she has feverish condition, she should simply lie down and do no work.
Hope you are well, and please keep me informed of your temple affairs, as well as about Jadurani's health condition.
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
P.S. I have received the Indian letter __ ___ you.