690209 - Letter to Rayarama written from Los Angeles
February 09, 1969
My Dear Rayarama,
Please accept my blessings. I am very much anxious to know how is your present condition of health. Please let me know if you are improving or if there is some disturbance still. We should always remember that our body is not for sense gratification; it is for Krishna's service only. And to render very good sound service to Krishna we should not neglect the upkeep of the body. We learn from an instance of Sanatana Goswami. He was sometimes very much sick on account of eczema, and he was therefore sometimes bleeding. But whenever Lord Caitanya met Sanatana Goswami, He used to embrace him in spite of Sanatana's request for Him not to touch him. Because of this. Sanatana Goswami later on decided to commit suicide so Lord Caitanya would not embrace him in his bloody condition. This plan was understood by Lord Caitanya, and He called Sanatana Goswami and said to him, "you have decided to end this body, but don't you know that this body belongs to Krishna? You have already dedicated your body to Krishna so how can you decide to end it?" So you must not neglect the upkeep of your body. This is the lesson we get from Lord Caitanya and Sanatana Goswami. Try to take care of your health in the best possible way.
Regarding Back To Godhead, the advertisements which you are now getting, especially the hippie advertisements, are not very good. Therefore, I am thinking of avoiding these advertisements. But so far as I understand, if we stop the advertisements immediately, the publication would be stopped altogether. So I do not wish to take such drastic way. I will be glad to know if you will submit to me an account of what is the actual expenditures and income for our Back To Godhead publication. Then we shall try to find out the money by some other means and then stop the advertisements. Eventually we wish to publish only purely Krishna Consciousness articles up to 48 pages per month. So please inform me of the actual expenditures, income, and also exactly how many hands are engaged in putting together an issue. Please list the names of your helpers and what is their specific duty.
So far as I understand, the number of regular subscribers is not very satisfactory. Back To Godhead is being distributed by individual canvassing only. So if that is the position, then there is no need to publish something which is not pure Krishna Consciousness. Purely Krishna Consciousness means as you have published the article Isopanisad, and similarly we can publish all the Upanisads, the Vedanta Sutra, and many similar articles. The articles like Dr. Spock, the Beach Boys, or nonsense book reviews should be completely avoided. I know in India, the Kalyana Kalpatu paper and similar other papers do not take any advertisement, neither do they review any book unless it is published by them. So I think we should follow this policy. I shall be glad to hear from you in this connection at your earliest convenience. But for the time being, things may go on as it is regarding advertisements, so long as you avoid the hippy advertisements as far as possible.
I hope this will meet you in improving health and cheerful mood.
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami