Visits and visitors by Bhaktimarga Swami

The Vancouver Krishna community celebrated the birthday of Balarama with chanting, class and feasting. I took the opportunity to read my poem, "About Balarama", a synopsis of his pastimes and why we honour him so. He is just one of those many avatars that enrich the lives of bhakti practitioners. He is indeed colourful and precious. When we chant the Maha Mantra, the words Rama Rama refers to Balarama. Being the half-brother of Krishna, he is bound to demonstrate wisdom, love, and playfulness.

Speaking of playful, a raccoon comes to visit me each day. He comes to my doorstep most likely for food. It is unfavourable to fee it because it will constantly be dependant on human food. Better that it does its scrounging within the elements. You also don't want to get too close to these guys as a number of them have rabies. It's quite common. You need to know how close to get to them.

In general, we do need to maintain a respect for all wildlife and keep a bond with the social animals - humans. For the last few days in the Vancouver area, I have made home visits for more kirtan, and it's always suitable to open up the Gita within a group. It doesn't matter to which page one opens, there's always a message relevant to the person who browses. I went randomly to the opening page of Chapter 9 wherein Krishna speaks, "Because you are never envious of Me, I shall impart to you this most confidential knowledge and realizations." There is a qualification to absorbing this wisdom.


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