711231 - Letter to Jadurani written from Bombay
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
31 December, 1971
My Dear Jadurani dasi,
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated December 15th, 1971.
In reply to your question whether TLC or the original cover of Srimad Bhagavatam gives the authoritative picture of the hand symbols, what is written in TLC is correct. On page 69 of TLC first there is a description of the symbols for Vasudeva, Samkarshan, Pradyumna, and Aniruddha. Then follows a description of the representations of Narayan. Although there should be twenty, only eighteen are given. The two who are missing are Sri Keshava who is represented holding from the lower right hand lotus, conch, disk, club; and Sri Vamana holding conch, disk, club, and lotus flower. So altogether this makes twenty-four. The twenty-two as they are written in TLC are correct.
Muralidhar's version of Krishna and the cowherd boys with the Gopis watching them shown in the lotus is nice. Krishna and the cowherd boys used to return in the evening, and the Gopis while looking on used to enjoy Krishna's smiling face. This is stated in Srimad Bhagwatam.
Regarding whether the Brahmajoti should be painted rainbow colored. It is our experience that in the material world when the sunshine is very bright there is not any color, just whiteness. Colours of sunshine only become manifest when there is a tinge of clouds. So in the Brahmajoti there is no possibility of material tinge. So how it can be rainbow colored? In the dazzling light there is no possibility of colors. Considering all these points, Muralidhar should paint maintaining the artistic sense as well.
The Mahat Tatwa may be shown underneath the lotus if it is required for design purposes.
In reply to Jayadvaita's questions, henceforward the policy for using diacritic markings is that I want them used everywhere, on large books, small books and also BTG. If there is any difficulty with the pronunciation, then after the correct diacritic spelling, in brackets the words "pronounced as _____", may be written. So even on covers the diacritic markings should be used. We should not have to reduce our standard on account of the ignorant masses. Diacritic spelling is accepted internationally, and no learned person will even care to read our books unless this system is maintained.
I hope this meets you and all the devotees in the best of health.