August 2, 2019
Hare Krsna. I write this eulogy for Dravinaksa Prabhu in the form of a letter to him. After that are links to a few of his classes and kirtans.
August 2, 2019
Dear Dravinaksa Prabhu,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada. Hare Krsna.
About twelve hours ago I received a phone call from Naveen Krsna Prabhu, informing me that you had left this world. I arrived to your home about fifteen minutes later. In your temple room Purusartha Prabhu was leading a sweet, rich, melancholy kirtan on harmonium, with Madhava Prabhu on mrdanga.
After a few minutes Mother Nanda led a group of us into your room, where we circumambulated your body, lying there on the bed, decorated with tulasi, and a full, colorful and auspicious garland, as well as other signs indicating the passing away of a special Vaisnava.
Before entering and after departing your room I noted that, most prominently featured on your book shelves, under the smaller murti of Srila Prabhupada in the temple room, were three copies of Srila Prabhupada’s Bhagavad-gita As It Is, recently translated and published in Czech. You actively supported, including helping with the funding, this project.
For me this represents your visionary spirit and dedication to spreading Srila Prabhupada’s unadulterated teachings, far and wide. And it represents your heartfelt enthusiasm to support and encourage newcomers to Srila Prabhupada’s movement, such as those who produced Srila Prabhupada’s Czech Bhagavad-gita.
I felt much happiness these past years seeing your joy in seeing people come to Krsna consciousness. You were enlivened and energized by them, and they felt inspired and enthused by your words and example.
In some of the sorts of services I endeavor to render to Srila Prabhupada’s mission I’m sometimes, …often actually, hesitant, even apprehensive, to bring senior devotees, advanced as they may be, into the association, for fear that some newcomers and visitors may feel more discouraged than encouraged, to pursue the exploration of the philosophy and practices of Krsna consciousness. You were a very rare exception to this. Whoever was in attendance, I was always gladdened by your presence. Everyone felt naturally accepted and respected in your association, and inspired to inquire about the process and philosophy given to us by Srila Prabhupada. I have great appreciation for your natural empathy, for how you made it important that everyone feels received and honored, for who they are. This reveals not just some psychological or mental trait, but rather a profound and admirable Supersoul connection.
I consistently experienced you as a potent preacher, without “preaching”.
You have a keen bluff and deception detector. You always used it in gentlemanly and constructive ways, and sometimes communicated it with a comic edge. This was uncomfortable for me on occasion, as your acute perceptions were shining light on frailties within myself that I’d prefer would remain concealed. And your consistently astute discernments, your capacity to distinguish the essential from the superfluous, the genuine from the tawdry, in relation to Srila Prabhupada’s teachings and movement, has for decades provided me tremendously helpful insight that enhances my efforts to understand what’s really going on, societally, organizationally, globally. Hare Krsna.
A few hours ago I came across this eloquent appreciation of you from Acyutananda Prabhu- “A great pillar of our movement and custodian of Srila Prabhupada’s original words is no longer with us.” My belief is that very few members of Srila Prabhupada’s movement, if asked to list the great pillars of the movement, would include you on the list. There is no doubt, though, that Acyutananda got it right. You are a great pillar in Srila Prabhupada’s mission, and I’m already feeling pangs of loss from your absence, and sadness at what this loss will mean for Srila Prabhupada’s movement.
Four weeks ago today I visited you and for about 90 minutes we read and discussed together Srila Prabhupada’s Sri-Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya-lila, Chapter 6. Your deep absorption in Srila Prabhupada and his vani made an enduring impression on my heart and consciousness. Five days ago you and I spoke, for the last time, and for the final minutes of the conversation Abhi was present. You guided, directed and encouraged us in our contributions, present and future, to Srila Prabhupada’s mission. As Abhi left, you said, “Offer my obeisances to your sister”. Shortly thereafter Sita visited you and read Krsna Book to you. Hare Krsna.
I value very much how you were rigorous yet ever-fresh in the practice of your habits of Krsna consciousness. A devotee is vital and vibrant, never hackneyed or stereotyped. You embodied that. Thank you for your quiet strength, dear friendship, and top quality association.
Because of you my confidence and enthusiasm to inspire people to directly take shelter in Srila Prabhupada is substantially increased. I am forever grateful to you for that. If we’re looking for an example of a sincere, personal, unaffected absorption in Srila Prabhupada and his mission, that example is you, Dravinaksa Prabhu. Hare Krsna.
Your servant, Dhira Govinda dasa
Hare Krsna. Over the past 8-9 years Dravinaksa Prabhu participated in hundreds of our Bhakti Yoga Programs, and led many vibrant kirtans and inspiring, enlivening sastra classes and discussions. Below are links to 8 of the classes and two of the kirtans. Hare Krsna. Sincerely, Dhira Govinda dasa
Jaya Radha Madhava