Comments Posted By Padmapani das
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Srila Prabhupada didn’t make distinctions as to who or who couldn’t accept Krishna consciousness:
“”In our Temples all Europeans, Indians, Mohammedans, Christians, everyone is welcome. And our presentation is so nice that everyone will be attracted to accept it because we are preaching love of God. Love of God is the prime function of all living entities, without any sectarian understanding.” (Srila Prabhupada letter, 29th January, 1970)
As in every country, religion or culture, there are some who are open-minded, and others who are not. A preacher is often looking for a needle in a haystack no matter where he or she presents Krishna Consciousness, but with sincerity and Krishna’s blessings, that needle (and those needles) will miraculously appear.
It’s my humble experience that if one displays genuine respect to others, including Muslims or otherwise, they will reciprocate with the same. But if one is arrogant or disrespectful, then one can expect the same as well. Therefore, mutual respect is the key.
Srila Prabhupada stated then even if one just accepts the existence of God, then he is to be considered a devotee. In the Muslim world, the masses drop everything and pray five times a day, even on the street or road. They are very God-fearing people. Irrespective of differences and approaches, the majority of Muslims are peaceful people. This is my humble experience in nine Muslim countries over a period of years. Yes, there are radical elements, but they can be found in any religion or culture. So in my humble view, there is no sense in focusing on the differences that only accentuate and inflame misunderstandings; but to embrace the similarities — worship of, and love for God. In this way, although unqualified, I have made countless friends in many Islamic countries who willingly chant the holy names of Krishna. Sensitivity to Prabhupada’s formula of “time, place, and circumstance” goes a long way indeed. Otherwise, there is only discord and endless wrangling which, ultimately, leads to destruction and war. Were not “all one,” but we’re all brothers and sisters — and in this case, that should be enough. Otherwise, what’s the alternative? Just read the daily news and find out.
Comment Posted By Padmapani das On 31.08.2006 @ 05:29