THE PRABHUPADA CONNECTION
compiled by Padmapani dasa
.Srila Prabhupada and Saradiya devi dasi
(Srila Prabhupada in the Radha Damodara temple courtyard near Srila Rupa Goswami’s samadhi in October of 1972. Saradiya devi dasi is in the back in a light blue sari.)
Saradiya devi dasi joined Srila Prabhupada’s movement in 1967 at the age of 16. She was initiated two weeks later and therefore Saradiya was the youngest at the time. Srila Prabhupada states: “So youngest is taken more care. Sneha, affection, is compared with oil. Sneha means oil. So affection is just like oil. Why? Now, you put oil in the ground, it will glide down where there is slope. So generally, the affection goes down to the youngest child.” The following statements clearly demonstrate Srila Prabhupada’s fatherly affection towards his dear spiritual daughter, Saradiya.
Śāradīyā: Swamijī? When we go to Kṛṣṇaloka to be with Kṛṣṇa…
Prabhupāda: Just see this girl, little girl, is aiming for going back to Kṛṣṇaloka. Just see. (laughter) I am giving an example. They don’t care for this material senses. They are always thinking “When I shall go there, home, back to home, back to Godhead?” This is the psychology. Yes?
Śāradīyā: When we serve Kṛṣṇa, even though we don’t have a material body…?
Prabhupāda: No. Material body you have to finish here. You are finishing your material body so many times even during this bodily existence. So material body cannot go into spiritual world. You have your material body here. Similarly, as soon as you enter in the spiritual world you have spiritual body.
Śāradīyā: We have a spiritual body to serve Kṛṣṇa?
Prabhupāda: As good as Kṛṣṇa’s body. Kṛṣṇa has got spiritual body, similarly you will have spiritual body. Is that clear?
Śāradīyā: I want to know, when we serve Kṛṣṇa, we have spiritual senses, then that satisfies our spiritual senses when we serve Kṛṣṇa in Kṛṣṇaloka?
Prabhupāda: Yes. You dance with Kṛṣṇa, you eat with Kṛṣṇa, talk with Kṛṣṇa, you enjoy with Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa will kiss you also. (laughter) Kṛṣṇa is very kind to everyone, either you love Him as a lover, either you love Him as your son, either you love Him as your friend, or you love Him as your master. In whichever way you like you can love, and Kṛṣṇa will respond. Ye yathā māṁ prapadyante tāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy aham (BG 4.11). In the Bhagavad-gītā you will see Kṛṣṇa says, “Anyone who loves Me in different ways or different type,” so Kṛṣṇa also loves reciprocating that way. If somebody Kṛṣṇa…, loves Kṛṣṇa as enemy, Kṛṣṇa also gives him salvation in that way also. Kṛṣṇa is so kind. Yes.
(Srila Prabhupada Lecture, Montreal, June 16, 1968)
Prabhupāda: How you are feeling, Śāradīyā? Nice?
Śāradīyā: I’m fine.
Prabhupāda: You are going to Europe? No? You have got to attend your school? That’s nice.
Śāradīyā: Simply by Your Divine Grace, on Kṛṣṇa’s appearance day in San Francisco my mother came to the temple and she wore a sari and a tilaka.
Prabhupāda: Oh. (chuckles) You are converting your mother to this cult.
Yamunā: A very nice mother she has.
Prabhupāda: Unless mother is good, how the children are good?
(Srila Prabhupada Conversation, Montreal, October 27, 1968)
Prabhupāda: Yes. Śāradīyā, you are painting? No. All right, you finish your school. You are going to school?
Prabhupāda: That’s nice. You are painting? That’s nice. You? That’s nice. Practice painting nicely. We’ll require so many pictures. We shall publish so many pictures, book. You are not painting. You have no time to paint. You have got enough engagement. So you can… So long you are here, you just show how to Deity worship, how you are doing that, and they will learn. Yes. She is doing that very nice. So you can, all of you, all girls, you take, her. See doing, how she is doing.
(Srila Prabhupada Conversation, Boston, April 27, 1969)
“I am in due receipt of your recent letter and I have noted the contents with pleasure. Your kind thoughts which you expressed are very nice and encouraging to me.”
(Srila Prabhupada Letter to Saradiya, December 12, 1968)
Letter to Krsna das (Saradiya’s brother):
“By your gracious connection with your family, all the members of your family, namely, your sister, your two younger brothers, as well as your mother, are coming in contact with Krishna Consciousness. As you are the eldest son of your mother, it is your duty to guide them properly so that they can also become advanced in Krishna Consciousness. Certainly it is a fact that all of you are combined together in a family way by the Grace of Krishna. And by His Grace only you have come in contact with me. Personally I have no credit for myself, but I am trying to act as faithful servant of my predecessors and just presenting without any adulteration the message which I have received from my Spiritual Master. Similarly, if this message is presented by you all who have accepted me as the Spiritual Master, then all the people of the world may be benefited by receiving this transcendent message of Krishna Consciousness. Try to execute this mission wholeheartedly and faithfully, and all of you try to broadcast the message to your best capacity. I am so glad to learn that your two brothers are growing very nicely, and I hope in future they will be great help to this missionary activities, and so I think also of your nice sister, Saradia. Please try to guide them properly.”
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, June 1, 1968)