On the weekend of March 6-7th 2022, HG Sangita Devi Dasi (ACBSP) held a Vaishnavas CARE seminar called, “The Art of Caring for Vaishnavas” for the ISKCON Toronto Community. Sangita Devi Dasi is a hospice registered nurse and a certified grief counselor. She is an author of “The Final Journey”, a book in which Sangita Devi Dasi integrates the knowledge of hospice care for the dying with the spiritual wisdom given to us by Srila Prabhupada.
There were approximately 30 attendees who attended the seminar, including out-of-town devotees from the USA and England. The seminar received a tremendously positive response and one of the local attendees, Bhaktin Vatsala, shared her reflections and experiences from the seminar:
Being abandoned during old age or at the very last stage of life is not a very surprising feature of our current age of Kali Yuga. As per Srila Prabhupada’s translations and purports in the Srimad Bhagavatam, one of the symptoms of Kali Yuga the absence of a culture of nurturing families and rather the scary presence of simply trying to survive in nuclear families.
I was personally so delighted to see how Srila Prabhupada inspired HG Sangita Mataji, who has been taking care of the departing Vaishnavas in a bona fide, professional, authentic and Vedic way. Her seminar fanned the spark in me to help realize so many things that I otherwise would not have been able to understand in my day-to-day materialistic life. I feel that the service that Sangita Mataji is inspiring us to get involved in will shape our patience, compassion, empathy, tolerance and most importantly it will always remind us that this human form of life must not be wasted in collecting anything which is purely temporary.
As far as I am concerned, all the devotees who are serving departing Vaishnavas are angels in disguise. One of the very common fears amongst the devotees is, “What if I am unable to remember Krsna at the time of leaving this body?” The Vaishnavas CARE team is capably removing that fear, one devotee at a time, because it is through their actions and deeds that departing Vaishnavas are being reminding about Krsna and His abode.I also deeply appreciate that Sangita Mataji is also training devotees in very nuanced aspects of care like, for example, the body language that volunteers should adopt at the time of counselling, or the art of bringing out emotional thoughts and feelings when someone is in a state of shock or depression.
I am eternally grateful to have come in contact with the Vaishnavas CARE program and consider myself very fortunate to have attended Sangita Mataji’s seminar. It left me inspired to serve Vaishnavas during their times of need. Hare Krsna!
Vaishnavas Care International FB page: https://www.facebook.com/VaishnavasCARE