Letter to: Artists — Unknown Place, Unknown Date
Endeavor means energy which is employed. Anything you do, there must be some activity. That is endeavor. In our devotional service, if the endeavor is right, then it is successful. So the painting is not very clear. The doer means the man. The place must be favorable. The activities must be authorized. The doer must be expert, the instruments must be fit and the help from the Supersoul may be adequate. These are the five causes for success and opposite are the five factors for nonsuccess. So I can give you hints only, but you must put life into the painting. For instance, from the business point of view, one man is doing some business. If he goes to the marketplace, it will be done very nice, since there are so many customers. Similarly one looking for spiritual life goes to where devotees are and associates with them. So one must go to a particular type of place for a particular type of activity. And the person acting must be well versed, or expert. Just as an expert salesman, his method of business is bona fide. The senses must be used in order to see if one is cheating, hear offers, etc. And above all is the help from the Supersoul who dictates in this way and so everything becomes successful, spiritually or materially, by these five factors.
The picture of Yamaraja and Skanda is all right. But generally Yamaraja is portrayed in a fearful way and so is often pictured as black. That is all right. But actually he is a demigod and must be fair complexion. He is a mahajana and a Vaisnava as well and he is also very good looking. Skanda is Kartikeya. He is very beautiful and is situated on a peacock's back with bows and arrows and two hands. From the photograph, he appears to have many heads. But that is not correct. He only has one head. And he is considered the most beautiful personality next to Cupid. In India if a person is very beautiful, he is compared with Kartikeya.
Regarding the picture for B.G. 2/62, now that I am seeing it, the snake is all right. Another name for the snake is kal. So the snake is kala, or time. Time is also death. As soon as the snake bites, everything is finished.
Vasudeva means both two and four armed. At Kuruksetra both forms were shown to Arjuna. At Kuruksetra, Krsna is Vasudeva Krsna.
Gaurasundara's drawing is done under my dictation, so it is authoritative and is perfect also. You can make improvements on that basis, but don't add or subtract anything.
B.G. 7/15&16. The picture is all right. You can leave it if you wish, but Laksmi-Narayana would be better.
B.G. 16/5&21. Radha and Krsna may remain. Similarly with B.G. 15/1-2. Introduction, pp.34 is also all right.
So all your questions are good sign. You are always welcome to question me. It is my duty to guide you also, and I am always prepared. How else you will do your work? And this is also utilization of my valuable time, to give you suggestions. So far as Mahabharata is concerned, there is a Hindi translation, but I do not know of any English translation. But never mind. You can go on asking me as you have done in the past.
Please offer my full blessings to all the artists there working with you. I am so much pleased upon you all and very soon I shall be going to N.Y. and thank you all personally also.
Hoping this will meet you all in the best of health.
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami