720412 - Letter to Giriraja written from Sydney
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
CAMP: ISKCON Sydney, reply Tokyo
April 12, 1972
My dear Giriraj,
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated April 5, 1972, and I have noted the contents with great pleasure. It appears to be very encouraging. Regarding the pandal, I do not know why they have not removed it yet, because we have ordered them to take it away, so if they have not done it, that is their business, we are not going to pay more that you have already paid. But if they are willing to sell the whole things at cost price, we are willing to purchase the whole thing. If possible, negotiate in this way.
Regarding construction of our own structure 40' x 40', that can be accepted.
This prasadam distribution item is very, very important, and it is so much pleasing to me that in the beginning so many children are coming for taking prasadam, and that supply of rice has come automatically. Please continue this program rigidly. By prasadam distribution you will do service to the Lord, and the public will be pleased upon you as well. Gradually increase the number of guests, and don't deny anyone. Continue in this way: Whatever is there, distribute equally—it may not be very sumptuous, but no one should be denied equal portion.
Regarding Building Fund money, Yes, you may draw on that, but Mr. Mehta's and all other bills should be checked and passed by our Indira devi.* We do not know about Mehta's estimate. When I asked him for estimate, he told me, don't worry about it, but another person gave us estimate without bricks at Rs. 1800/-. Of course, there is now much brickwork, so it must be more than that, but I don't think it is that much as you have said. But as we have made no contract, we shall pay him whatever he asks, but first show it to Indira devi and if she says it is all right, then pay it. I wanted to pay for the whole thing from the Souvenir Fund, but they say it is all finished, so I do not know what is the present position. Madhudvisa said the Souvenir Fund was Rs. 95,000/-; whether it is spent, then pay from Building Fund, what can be done? If they had done as I instructed from the beginning, instead of paying so much money for this temporary pandal, then things would have been better.
Now, we want to get books from America in any quantity, provided there is possibility of sale there, and the whole proceeds of sale will be employed in building our Bombay, Vrindaban, and Mayapur projects. So make plan in consultation with others, how to do it. If we have regular plan of selling books, then there will be no scarcity of money, and it will be easier to get books from Japan and sell them and utilize them than to receive money from America. So I do not think there is need for any transactions for five Krishna Books.
In Bombay there are many charitable institutions and Trusts, so if you approach them and they are convinced about our activities, enough money can be collected intelligently. I never suggested for a round building. Every inch of the available land should be utilized for a skyscraper. I do not know if Sourabha has made any designs. If so, let him send them to me, along with site plan, so I may make suggestions and give him direction how to do it.
If you make friendship with the education minister, then he can recommend to all the colleges and schools especially for purchasing our books, and besides that, if he allows our men to speak in colleges about our Krishna Consciousness Movement. But you will have to convince him that Krishna Consciousness is not a religious faith. Actually, study of the Bhagavad Gita is the only source of understanding what is the secular state. Krishna is the source of all human cultural contributions, and His book is the most widespread read all over the world. So if you can convince this education minister that this KC Movement is cultural. One big, big Professor Dimock has given in his introduction to my Bhagavad Gita As It Is that every college student should read this book. Shyamasundar can send you a copy of his statement if you require. So if in other colleges beyond India it is so recommended, why not in India. So the education minister must advise this books should be read. This will give us example for approaching central government. There are so many things to be done.
Ask Radha Raman Goswami and Ksirodaksayee and Ramananda that it is my desire to simply engage themselves in translation work. Why Ramananda is now in a slack for translation work? You can ask him on my behalf what it his intention. So for the time being all three should only translate so we can publish many literatures in local language. All Hindi and Bengali literatures should be composed in India and sent for printing by Dai Nippon in Japan. That will be nice progress. I am going to Japan to make further arrangements with Dai Nippon to get these things done very nicely.
As soon as possible we should open our own school and teach children KC through English medium, that is one of our programs. Our school will not be government recognized because we cannot follow the government syllabus. We want to teach only Krishna Consciousness. Also, in Mayapur and Vrindaban we must have schools, and if Srimate Moorarjee cooperates with this scheme then we can do something combinedly instead of separately. We are distributing our own prasadam free, why another business should be there? Anyone is open to take our prasadam free. Better Smt. Moorarjee may contribute rice, dahl, etc. for this prasadam distribution program. According to our Vedic system prasada distribution should not be on the line of hotel or canteen business. Whatever prasadam we can distribute, that should be done free of charges. So to summarize, you should distribute free prasadam, and try to introduce immediately KC instruction to the students through English medium. I know many parents are eager to educate their wards through English medium. If we can introduce this system, our girl disciples may be engaged for teaching them: a little English grammar, reading and writing, geography, arithmetic, history, sanskrit,, but all of them should be Krishna Conscious—that is Bhagawat program:
kaumaram acarer prajno
dharman bhagavatan iha
Madhudvisa has written one letter to Shyamasundar expressing his desire to come to this side. So if you think that you can manage without his help, then he is welcome to come this side. There is very good scope this side for Sankirtan Party. The Sydney and Melbourne people are doing especially nice.
Hoping this meets you and all the nice devotees in Bombay in good health and very jolly mood.
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
* Please let me know Indira's former address