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Brahmatirtha: “…as mayor of Gainesville, there’s many challenges in this day of social media where the like button determines what is right and what is wrong. a little discretion. He has to deal with all of these contentions and he deals with it with grace, with dignity and patience that I do not understand. Just a dear person whose values are true and I say this in the core of my heart truly represent the very of the city of Gainesville. I’m very honored to have had him here when we had our science conference, two and a half years ago. The opening night at the Horn Museum, the consciousness and science conference, the intersection of science and spirituality. He was also we hope to many wonderful things for us and without further ado, I’ll give you Mayor Poe. Thank you.
Mayor Lauren Poe: Well, thank you, Bob. That was incredibly kind and generous. I’d like to you all honor and praise to my elders and my ancestors that came before me that allowed me to participate with you today. um and I’m just going to tell a couple quick anecdotes about um what the Krishna community has meant to me and what it’s meant to Gainesville. I think at large when I grew up in Gainesville. I moved here between my fifth and sixth-grade year and when I got to be a little bit older in high school, I attended Gainesville High School, one of our highlights so we could feel like a little bit older and a little bit wiser and more connected. We had days off at at at Gainesville High School. The thing that we always make sure we did was come down to the plaza, the Americas and have lunch with the Krishnas and that was that I thought it was such that we look forward to it. We celebrated it and we really felt like we were part of a much larger global community. I then ended up attending the University of Florida actually a couple times and I was down here being nourished both physically and spiritually. most days of the week. I can’t say I was here 5 days a week but I probably averaged two to 3 days a week um because we can’t nourish the soul and we can’t nourish the mind unless we first nourish the body and II always and all my friends and colleagues always enjoyed so much coming down here and sharing in the community. because it open this up to a much larger world and II. believe firmly with all my heart that if the Krishnas had not come to Gainesville and did not set up their outreach and their campaign about spiritual and physical nourishment right here. the Plaza would not have drawn the diversity of thought and of people from around the world and would not have exposed people like me to such broader concepts that I grew up with and little old Gainesville as we heard from one of your speakers earlier in the middle of nowhere. That you originally chose to come in and bring your grace um and so you have so much enriched our community this is the epicenter right here of where your love and your peace and your grace has radiated out into our larger community. it’s been 50 years. In fact, you started about 6 months after I was born and I and I look forward to the next 50 years and there’s going to be some poor fool that chose to run for mayor and going to be speaking on this spot. Another 50 years from now for the hundredth anniversary and that’s going to be a beautiful day Thank you very much.