By Rajesh Hirani
Finally, when Srila Prabhupada said to you strongly:
“I will get better only when I die”
You broke down crying.
But he wished to bind you even closer:
“Is this what you have learnt from me?
The soul is always there – immortal!”
Although your heart ached with constant agony
you always lived with the understanding –
that Srila Prabhupada is constantly there…
Like a mother hiding behind a curtain
who wishes to teach her son to walk
by urging him to search for her: “Come, come…I am here.”
I hear you in my heart urging us now to move towards
you, Srila Prabhupada, and Krishna – and mature.
As you patiently repeat what Srila Prabhupada taught you:
“Never leave ISKCON
Coordinate and cooperate”
“Give this one life to Krishna
Take care of the devotees
The sign of advancement is not to have a high position,
but to be tolerant and unperturbed in all circumstances.
And to go on spreading this movement.”
Yes, you often called me your friend – cooked for me “Monk’s delight”
and greeted me in German: “Wie geht’s, Alter?”
How can I now not cry like a raincloud?
But deep inside I do feel solace – I know that you have arrived behind the curtain
in the loving embrace of Srila Prabhupada.
And that is what you ultimately wanted! So I am genuinely happy for you and so impressed.
In one lecture, you quoted two lines that describe your life and your own departure so well:
“Live in such a way that the whole world will want you.
Die in such a way that the entire world will cry for you.”
Please know that you are loved by us all in a way we might have loved only the dearest persons.
We will try to follow your vani and glorious example to the best of our ability.
And please don’t worry:
For certain, the ISKCON movement you love so much,
will in turn, lovingly rush
to conserve everything you created
and to serve everyone you shaped
in your wonderful service to Srila Prabhupada.
You may be gone in one form – but you are living on in our hearts!
1: One of your very close friends told me that Srila Prabhupada made you personally take these two vows in front of him
2: All these instructions are taken from your book “An Ocean of Mercy” – and additionally been told by you to me