760324 - Conversation - Calcutta

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His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada



760324R1-CALCUTTA - March 24, 1976 - 16.37 Minutes


(at Radha-Govinda Mandir)



Prabhupāda: (Bengali) This Rādhā-Govinda Deity is very old Deity of the Mullik family. I think not less than two hundred years ago this Deity was established by the mother of Kashinath Mullik. I think you might have heard, another Kashi..., original Kashinath Mullik. I think his father's name was Gaura Mohan Mullik. Am I right?

Indian man: Citra Dasi.

Prabhupāda: Citra Dasi. No. No, Kashinath Mullik's father? So gradually this whole quarters belonged to this Mullik family. Still in front of this temple there is Gangara(?) building. That is also the property of Rādhā-Govinda. And as I have shown in coming, our house was just behind the present Govinda Bhavan. And we had the opportunity of seeing this Rādhā-Govinda from very childhood. When I was three or four years old I used to visit this Rādhā-Govinda daily.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: Jaya Rādhā-Govinda! Jaya Prabhupāda.

Prabhupāda: And that is the inspiration of my devotional life. Then I asked my father that "Give me Rādhā-Govinda Deity; I shall worship." So my father was also Vaiṣṇava. He gave me small Rādhā-Govinda Deity. I was worshiping in my house. Whatever I was eating, I was offering, and I was following the ceremonies of this Rādhā-Govinda with my small Deity. That Deity is still existing. I have given to my sister. So then I introduced Ratha-yātrā. So I... My Ratha-yātrā was being performed very gloriously. My father used to spend money. In those days ten rupees, twenty rupees was sufficient. I hired one kīrtana party, and a small friends, they..., I think the brother of the present generation, and there was another De family here, so we performed this Ratha-yātrā ceremony. According to our children's imagination, it was very gorgeous. So I think our present Manmohan... His name is? Gabhur Bhavana? (Bengali) Gopishvara Mullik. That Gopishvara Mullik was my father's friend. So he was criticizing my father that "You are performing Ratha-yātrā ceremony and you are not inviting us." (laughter) So my father said, "That is children's play. What shall I invite you? You are very big man." So, "Oh, so you are avoiding. In the name of children you are avoiding us." On the whole, this Ratha-yātrā festival was very gorgeously... Then imitating me, the other, my brother like, Kangalu(?), he also introduced Ratha-yātrā. And... Kangalu. (Bengali) So all of them introduced Ratha-yātrā, and the destination was this Ṭhākurbari, from there. So practically what I am doing now, the same thing, Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa worship and introduction of Ratha-yātrā. I am not doing anything else. You know very well. We are now performing Ratha-yātrā ceremony practically in all big cities of the world: in San Francisco, in...

Hari-śauri: Philadelphia.

Prabhupāda: Philadelphia, London...

Hari-śauri: Melbourne.

Prabhupāda: Melbourne, Australia...

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: Paris.

Prabhupāda: Paris. So the same thing, the same Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa worship temples and same Ratha-yātrā, in a bigger scale. But the same thing was begun as play from this quarter, this Ṭhākurbari.

Indian man: Year 1917. (Bengali)

Prabhupāda: No, no, no. I began my... I think from 1904 or '5, from my very childhood.

Indian man: Oh, childhood.

Prabhupāda: Yes. At that time perhaps you were not born. (laughter) What is your age now? What is the birth of date?

Indian man: Fifty-five.

Prabhupāda: Fifty-five. That means in 1920 you were born?

Indian man: Yes.

Prabhupāda: So anyway, this Ṭhākurbari, Rādhā-Govindajī, is my life. That is the beginning of my this spiritual life. And after so many years, still Rādhā-Govindajī has dragged me. So it is His kindness. So the beginning was the same thing—worship of Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa Deity and introduction of Ratha-yātrā. That is I am doing in a bigger scale and a wider scale all over the world. So it is nothing new. So in the one sense, as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā, śucīnāṁ śrīmatāṁ gehe yoga-bhraṣṭo sanjāyate (BG 6.41). So although I was not belonging to this family... Or perhaps originally we belonged to this family, because they are also De, we are De, but practically I was born in this family, and śucīnāṁ śrīmatām. And my father was a very pure Vaiṣṇava. So these opportunities we got; now it is developed in a wider scale. It is all Kṛṣṇa's arrangement, maybe from my previous life. But you are cooperating, you American and European, so we are spreading the mission of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, this mission, Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa mission it is practically. Śrī kṛṣṇa caitanya, rādhā-kṛṣṇa nahe anya (Śrī Guru-paramparā, text 6). Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is combination of Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa.

Rādhā-kṛṣṇa-praṇaya-vikṛtir hlādinī-śaktir asmād (CC Adi 1.5). Kṛṣṇa and Rādhārāṇī, the same Absolute Truth. Rādhārāṇī is the pleasure potency of Kṛṣṇa, and when Kṛṣṇa wants to enjoy, He expands His pleasure potency in the form of Rādhārāṇī. And when He wants to spread the loving affairs of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa, He takes the form of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, and very kindly He gives the love of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore Rūpa Gosvāmī has offered Him obeisances, namo mahā-vadānyāya kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāya te (CC Madhya 19.53). To understand Kṛṣṇa, it takes long, long duration of life. Bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate (BG 7.19). And to understand the love of Kṛṣṇa and Rādhārāṇī, it is not so easy thing. But by the grace of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu we are understanding kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāya te. So it is now spreading all over the world. So this is... About this movement it may be this Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa, Rādhā-Govinda Deity is the..., what is called?

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: Inspiration?

Prabhupāda: Inspiration. So you are all fortunate that you have come here. So let us offer our obeisances.

Devotees: Jaya Prabhupāda! (break)

(in car)

Hari-śauri: Those Deities are very nicely looked after, Śrīla Prabhupāda.

Prabhupāda: Eh?

Hari-śauri: The Deities.

Prabhupāda: Oh.

Hari-śauri: They are very nicely cared for.

Prabhupāda: Oh, yes. This is my inspiration, this Deity.

Abhirāma: Should we have some program with these Mulliks sometimes? Visit?

Prabhupāda: No, no. Our house was here. I am coming almost daily, on every moment. I was playing here. They were all my playmates. The whole this, from that street to this street, that was our house, home. Here is the pharmacy, that Kailash Pharmacy. That was very old. Our limit was coming up to this road and up to that Chitpur Road.

Abhirāma: Your father would not let you go any farther than this?

Prabhupāda: In those days who cared for the father? We were coming and... It was not so congested. There was a riot, Hindu-Muslim riot. This quarter is Muslim quarter. Oh, in 1911 that was a dangerous day. Perhaps I would have been killed. Riot. Very big riot. This was my school here, this building. This was my school. And college was Scottish Churches. In this ground we used to play football. Yes.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: (laughs) Hare Kṛṣṇa. You used to take Jagannātha right through the streets?

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: How far would you carry Jagannātha?

Prabhupāda: From our house to this Ṭhākurbari, Rādhā-Govinda's, coming and going with procession of children and khola, karatāla and everything. Prasādam distribution, everything was there. My father used to encourage. And in those days if my father would spend twenty-five rupees, it was a great festival. Why not? In those days, fifty, sixty years ago, the money value was at least twenty times. So if my father was spending at that time twenty rupees, now it is at least four hundred rupees. So for a children's play four hundred rupees is not a small amount.

Abhirāma: At least fifty dollars in American.

Prabhupāda: Yes. So my father used to pay.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: You hired a saṅkīrtana party?

Prabhupāda: Yes. Only two rupees. That's all.

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: Our young children are very fortunate also.

Prabhupāda: Hmm?

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: Our young children.

Prabhupāda: Oh, yes. Yes. Very fortunate. That a small child, he'll take little grain of prasādam. He will not touch the big halavā. As soon as I'll give him a little grain, he'll take. Very nice. (break)

Abhirāma: (much traffic noise) ...travel on a coach like this, Śrīla Prabhupāda?

Prabhupāda: Hmm? Yes, in our childhood. Not so bad. At that time it was not so bad. In 1925 I purchased one Buick car. In our childhood days there was no electricity, and there was no motorcar. No. The tram car was drawn by horses in Calcutta. (break) ...quarter where our temple is situated. This is the best... (break) (end)