Comments Posted By Pavamana
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My deepest condolences to the friends and family of Rasa Priya dd. She spent many years in San Diego, and I was fortunate to have had her association during her time here.
Rasa Priya loved doing plays. She directed and produced many of them, and I was able to land a part in a few of them. Particularly, she rewrote HH Tamal Krishna Maharaja’s play, ‘The Drama of Lord Jagannatha”. I played the part of the Brahmin priest. We rehearsed for months . When it was finally ready for the opening, the temple room was overflowing with guests, and when it was over, the response was overwhelming. I don’t think there was a dry eye in the room.
This production was a result of the profound ecstasy she and her father felt by reading HH Tamal Krishna’s book. She wanted to produce the play, but felt it was too long. The original version lasted about 4 hours, and she condensed it to about an hour and a half. The production was performed three times in San Diego, and I think we did it again in Laguna Beach once. It was a smash success. Not only did she rewrite the play and produce and direct it, but she and her father made Jagannatha Deities specially for the play. I think she was in her teens at the time. She also did another play called “The Kidnapping of Rukmini”, and some other plays I don’t remember now.
Her intelligence seemed unlimited, and she was always enthusiastic in whatever she did. Just like Banasura had so many arms, Rasa Priya Mataji had so many talents she didn’t know what to do with them! She could have done anything she wanted.
I cherish those few years I had with this great soul. I hope someday to follow her to eternal life with our Lord Krishna.
Your servant, Pavamana dasa
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 26.12.2012 @ 19:21
This is a testament to the bravery and courage of all the devotees who made Juhu temple a reality. It was extremely difficult in those early days, with a very small brick temple building overlooking an open pavillion “temple room”. There was very little money, and the devotees lived very austerely. In those days, we collected laxmi by showing shopkeepers a leaflet of the proposed temple, guest hotel, amphitheatre and Gurukula. I’d get a few rupees, and the shopkeeper would say, “When you lay the foundation, I’ll give.” It was only to get me out of his shop. Giriraj Prabhu (at the time) would make a life member after many days of going out, and that allowed us to purchase a little bhoga for the Deities. Most of the food was rejected grains from the grain market that PanchaDravida prabhu (later Maharaj) would collect. All of the grains had worms in them, and the rice was chipped, almost no unbroken pieces. Most of the Western devotees were sick, and the smell of the sewage was unbearable because there was no septic system. A huge pit just behind the temple collected the waste water from the showers and kitchen. Rats, dogs and mosquitos tormented the devotees and ate bhoga from the kitchen each night. The ashrama was made from thatched bamboo, with a canvas tarp over the building to keep it dry during the monsoons. Before the rains came, it was unbearably hot in there. Most of the time, there was bickering and fighting amongst the devotees, and two camps emerged, each criticizing the other over the management of the temple. In spite of the difficulty, the devotees pushed on. Many, like myself, came and went. I’m sure the level of austerity the brave devotees underwent is more than equal to the austerity of great yogis and ascetics.
The fact that there is a world class temple now with twin tower guest houses, amphitheatre, Gurukula and thousands of life members is truly a miracle. I give most credit to all the devotees and especially Giriraj Maharaj and Sridhar Maharaj for staying and making it happen. Srila Prabhupada will indeed take you and anyone who helped,back to Godhead.
Your servant, Pavamana dasa
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 16.04.2011 @ 06:38
If the cited conversations with Srila Prabhupada, recollections of devotees who were present with His Divine Grace at the time, and the printed words of the Founder Acharya aren’t enough to convince one, then no amount of scrutinizing further is going to convince a skeptic on this matter. If you reprint everything that was said by Srila Prabhupada and his disciples in their entirety, in context or otherwise, you must admit that the relevant information is already given in this article. So, why do we need to go any further into what Srila Prabhupada said when we already know it? The arguments given by opponents of Patita Pavana’s article are clearly in opposition to the statements of His Divine Grace on the moon landing. Their conclusions are based upon research into the moon landing as given by the government sources, scientists, news media, astronauts, and other sources, which clearly conclude that the moon landing was indeed a fact. So how are we, as educated persons as well as disciples of Srila Prabhupada, to accept the words of our beloved Spiritual master in light of so much information to the contrary? If we deny the clear statements of Srila Prabhupada, we are accused of having little faith in Krishna Consciousness. If we blindly follow what Srila Prabhupada has said, we disregard years of education and deny what clearly appears to be scientific facts. Thus we are having this editorial discussion. All the arguments from both sides have already been given in the last Dandavats discussion about it, so in essence, nothing new is being presented here. At this point, it is pointless to continue arguing back and forth. I know where I stand, and after reading the article and editorial comments, anyone can make up their own mind on the matter. I say we bury the hatchet and move on.
Your servant, Pavamana dasa
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 22.12.2010 @ 13:34
With all due respect to the author, the basic premise cited here:
“Srila Prabhupada neatly defines the Vedic scientific method: ‚ÄúVedic literature, direct perception, history and hypothesis are the four kinds of evidential proofs. Everyone should stick to these principles for the realization of the Absolute Truth.‚ÄĚ SB 11.19.7 quoted in Cc Madhya 9.362″
cannot be used to infer that these are all equally valid. If we take Vedic literature as it is, we cannot refute it. The argument that cow dung is pure can be accepted, even though every other type of stool is not. The Vedic literature is taken to be above the empirical scientific arguments, logic and argument, and other sense based conclusions. If this is not the case, we can argue that Srila Prabhupada and his Srimad Bhagavatam purports can be proven wrong. What the author writes in this article basically saying the same thing- that the Founder Acharya Srila Prabhupada’s statements and opinions are to be taken less seriously than the empirical scientists. It is a question of whether we accept ascending knowledge or descending knowledge. We know which one Srila Prabhupada is using, and the scientific method isn’t it. Srila Prabhupada asked his devotee to refute the so-called scientists, not to try to find out how to refute him by using modern emprical methods! There are many narrations of supernatural activities performed by Lord Krishna that modern science says is impossible. Are we to conclude that these statements are only to be believed if modern science can corroborate them? Logic and argument, history, and other mundane evidences can be used in our preaching to try to convince someone to take up Krishna Consciousness, but it can never be used to contradict the Vedic conclusion.
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 03.11.2010 @ 07:37
These sound very nice. One thing, though. I don’t think Lord Jagannatha would like to be tumbled in a washing machine! Hand washing might be better. Just a thought…
Your servant, Pavamana dasa
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 07.09.2010 @ 10:31
Nice article. Currently, we are seeing a Marxist takeover attempt in the United States, with the “redistibution of wealth” advocated by the Democratic party. We must understand the consequences of this Marxist philosophy, because if it is implemented, devotees will find it more difficult to propagate Krishna Consciousness. We know that Srila Prabhupada warned us about the dangers of this atheistic philosophy. He gave us the example of the Comrade offering bread outside the church, where innocent people were convinced that the communist ideal was better than their church. From the beginning of Kali Yuga, with the fall of the Brahmin society, the inevitable downward spiral has begun. Now that modern society has done away with the Ksatrias and Brahmin societies, the Vaishya community has taken the reins, subverting the proper role of the Government, and giving rise to huge mega-businesses. Without the proper guidance of the Brahmins and control by the Ksatriyas, the government by the Vaishyas has gone awry. Rampant speculation on Wall Street, removal of banking restrictions by Congress, armies of lobbyists for big business, and other events have now played into the hands of the Communist elements. People are being led to believe that Government willl provide everything the people need, from cradle to grave. For the ignorant, poorly educated underclass, such promise of unending care is certainly a comforting idea. But, as you have pointed out, no government yet devised has every been able to provide such a utopia. Only a newly minted band of corrupt leaders will emerge to further frustrate the people. There is only way to stop the inevitable march of socialism (Marxism, Communism, whatever you may call it), and that is propagation of the Varnashrama system and Krishna Consciousness, Hari Nama and distribution of the Vedic literatures and Prasadam. Devotees need to understand the urgent need for vigorous preaching to defeat this onslaught of Communism.
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 11.08.2010 @ 05:43
Srila Prabhupada made many predictions for the future. The non-devotees are certainly going to be subjected to many tribulations due to the sinful nature of Kali Yuga. The devotees will be protected by Lord Krishna, but need to be aware of the changes which are coming so they can preach effectively. Preaching includes many different departments and venues, such as book and prasad distibution. The “modern” society present today cannot be sustained. It is failing as we speak. There will be a great need for feeding people, and the devotees should be the ones to do it. It will bring many people to Krishna Consciousness. Srila Prabhupada warned us about the coming threat to capitalism, which our present society (in the West) is based upon. He predicted that communism will eventually win out. As I write this, the United States is being diverted to communism by the current administration. Srila Prabhupada told us to try to save our country from this communist idea. As devotees, we are not going to get heavily involved in politics, but we need to be aware of the dangers of communist government. Communism is an offshoot of atheism. We went through many years of turmoil in the former Soviet Union, but even though they have disappeared as an empire, the communist idea hasn’t gone away. With the fall of the Soviet Union, preaching has blossomed there. The current administration is now moving in the direction of socialism, and we need to understand the dangers this will bring. They are using the monetary crisis to collapse the whole economy so that they can introduce a socialistic society. Already, temples are having trouble getting donations from people already strapped by losing their jobs. We need to look into the future and see what is likely to happen, and prepare for it.
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 13.07.2010 @ 10:49
This project is very important, and devotees should support this effort. In 1973, Srila Prabhupada wanted devotees to learn the art of mrdunga making, and a mistry was hired to teach on our land. Though many devotees (myself included) attempted to learn. Practically, no one was able to make a drum, except for Ishan, who invented the Balaram drum. Later, Ishan moved to Los Angeles, where he attempted to make some drums, using skin obtained from local slaughterhouses. Srila Prabhupada did not like this, but instructed Ishan to try to preach to them about the evil of cow killing. He was not successful in producing any leather drums, since the skins were too thin and not strong enough for drum making. I have been making fiberglass drums with leather heads for many years, but I was not able to verify where the skins come from. Though the plastic drum shells are not breakable, they lack the resonance of the traditional clay shells. There is nothing that compares to a real clay khol. Our mistry used to tell us that the khol is sacred, and in fact was reluctant to allow us to actually make a drum unless we were ready, lest we make offenses to it. He was very clean in his habits, and would arrive freshly bathed before working on the drums. I am very glad to see that the devotees are serious about keeping the purity of the drum making. I also learned from the mistry that drums should not be placed on end, but with a cushion and laid on its side. I’m a little mystified by the statement that if ISKCON devotees buy hundreds of drums, then hundreds of cows have to die. Maybe that can be clarified.
Your servant, Pavamana dasa
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 10.04.2010 @ 06:23
I have known Jayadvaita Swami for many years, and lived in Laguna Beach in the late ’70’s when he was working on the revision of the Srimad Bhagavatam. At the time, he was not a Sannyasi, but was a very serious and studious Brahmachari. And yes, he was very skinny! He was very austere in his diet.
I have to admit, when I read the latest revision of the Bhagavad Gita, I was very alarmed that the book had been edited again, especially since Srila Prabhupada didn’t want anything changed. My opinion of the matter changed when I had the good fortune to speak to Dravida Prabhu here in San Diego about the changes that were made. I was skeptical at first, but his explanation reassured me that the editing that has been done is closer to Srila Prabhupada’s intended meaning than previous editions.
I have to apologize for doubting the integrity of Jayadvaita Swami in his work, especially since he is a good friend of mine. I have never doubted the wonderful job he did on the Srimad Bhagavatam, so why was I worried about the new Gita changes?
Now that the new website is up, we can see clearly why the changes needed to be made.
Your servant, Pavamana dasa
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 09.09.2009 @ 13:21
I would reply that, even if one is a neophyte, one can refer to statements of liberated devotees. Simply making a social gathering without discussing the transcendental topics isn’t going to help much, but it’s at least going to help us remember Krishna by being with His devotees.
By repeating the message of the Acharya, we become a sort of guru, or messenger, a representative of the Guru. Srila Prabhupada used to say that he had no extraordinary qualification, but that he was simply repeating the message, untouched. If we are following strictly, our words will also have effect. Repeating the message doesn’t mean just parroting, but revealing our minds and giving our realizations to each other. We can encourage one another to continue to fight with Maya, to become more serious about following the spiritual path. To remain alone, shunning the contact of others who aren’t “pure devotees” because they are inferior is a mistake. If we find someone less advanced, we can give instruction to them. That is association. If someone is present who is more serious than we are, we can learn from them. That is association. Amongst ourselves, we can share friendship, prasad, philosophy, gifts, and our realizations. That is also association.
Srila Prabhupada built the temples to give everyone the opportunity to associate, whether they were first-timers, sadhana-bhaktas, or pure devotees. He said the temple is like the stock market- if you want to trade stocks and you’re far away, you won’t do much business. Similarly, if you want to “trade” in Krishna Consciousness, you need to go to a temple or make your home a temple where devotional activity takes place.
Comment Posted By Pavamana On 29.07.2009 @ 07:50