Room Conversation , Bhubaneswar , 1977-01-22
Prabhupāda: They are appreciating in foreign countries also. Otherwise why these European, American boys would join? They are not fools and rascals. They understand that "Here is the genuine movement."
Indian man: Then, Prabhupāda, let us take leave, and I'd like to prostrate at your feet if you will permit me.
Prabhupāda: That's all right. Hare Kṛṣṇa.
Indian man: And you bless us to have the same consciousness.
Prabhupāda: Please come here, take care of the center.
Indian man: We belong to a hundred miles from this place.
Prabhupāda: Oh, hundred miles? [break]
Brahmānanda: ...here to Allahabad, I was coming from Bombay on the train. I was riding with some respectable people. They saw this button, and they said, "Oh, you are the disciple of Prabhupāda?" And I said, "Yes." And they were very appreciative of your work. And then I had one Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Eighth Canto, the story of Gajendra. And one man, he wanted to see the book. And he started reading it. And he kept the book throughout the whole journey, and he read the whole book, and he loved it. He said, "Your guru has written very nicely. Very simply, very directly, and everything is there." He wouldn't give me back the book until he finished it.
Prabhupāda: [laughs] So our book-selling appreciated all over the world.
Brahmānanda: Yes. And this is an Indian, he's a Hindu, so he knows Vedic culture, but still he liked your books very much. He said, "I've never read something like this."
Prabhupāda: Our presentation is simplified. That is the beauty.
Brahmānanda: Yes. That's what he appreciated.
Prabhupāda: Yes. We do not make the things cumbersome.
Rāmeśvara: So that no one understands.
Prabhupāda: [chuckles] Vyāghra mane śārdūla. One student asked teacher, "What is the meaning of vyāghra?" He said "Śārdūla." I... Vyāghra is already a difficult word, and he presented another difficult word.
Nanda-kumāra: They don't actually know anything, so they have to speak with so much...
Prabhupāda: All rascals. Therefore I call them as. My Guru Mahārāja used to say, bokāloka. Bokāloka. So I was thinking, "Why he's..." Even Rabindranath Tagore, he's a bokāloka. So I was thinking that "Everyone is bokāloka?" Now I can understand that everyone is a bokāloka, mūḍha. So enthusiastically do everything. You are the beginner of this movement, one of the pioneers. So you should be more vigorous. You should not lag behind anyone. You voluntarily joined. You first joined in the Tompkinson Square. So keep that spirit. What is the situation in Africa?
Brahmānanda: Which? What...?
Prabhupāda: About these Asian, African, like that.
Brahmānanda: Well, it's the same. I mean everything is going... The government creates more difficulties, but still, everything is going on. No one is... I mean some are leaving, but of course many are staying.
Prabhupāda: Is it necessary to leave?
Brahmānanda: Well, the small men are leaving, but the big men, they're not leaving. Things are still going on.
Nanda-kumāra: Last year the government said within five years every Asian would be out of Kenya.
Prabhupāda: This government says like that?
Brahmānanda: I don't know if the government has said it, but people talk like that just to create some atmosphere of uncertainty. These unstable governments, they like to create this kind of atmosphere.
Prabhupāda: There are many Indians. Practically India. [chuckles]
Brahmānanda: Yes, everything. Tamāla, when he came there, he said that Mombassa was like Bombay...
Brahmānanda: ...and Nairobi was like Delhi.
Prabhupāda: Yes. And they are living nicely. Why this government disturbing them?
Brahmānanda: Well, that is their policy.
Prabhupāda: They cannot manage nicely. The Africans are not so qualified. The Indians, they are managing business, everything.
Brahmānanda: Now Amin, in Uganda, he's now inviting so many Indians to come as teachers, doctors. He's getting them from India now.
Hari-śauri: He just kicked them all out.
Brahmānanda: Now he's getting them back again.
Prabhupāda: Such a rascal. They are thrown away from the established condition; so now he...
Brahmānanda: He wants them back.
Prabhupāda: In one sense it is right, that these rascals may not imitate him.
Brahmānanda: Yes. That's one thing. Like Kenya, they are more sensible. They see what happened in Uganda. Uganda's economy is very bad.
Brahmānanda: So they will not do the same thing.
Prabhupāda: They must be intelligent persons. Otherwise how he can... The Britishers, they took away these Indians to organize Africa. Otherwise, they conquered, but the Indians organized.
Brahmānanda: They were all the administrators.
Prabhupāda: Yes. After all, Kṛṣṇa is there. He'll look after. So, so far we are concerned, there is no disturbance.
Brahmānanda: Oh, no. No.
Prabhupāda: That's all right. Then develop. We are getting good place without any monetary difficulty.
Brahmānanda: Then Mombassa, the leader of the community there, he has pledged to collect all the money for buying this big house, and the house is very nicely situated right in the Asian area. And he's a big contractor. Also they will do all the alterations. So this is another good opportunity.
Prabhupāda: If I go, they will have objection?
Brahmānanda: No, I don't think so. You mean the immigration? I don't know.
Prabhupāda: No, no. Last time... Not last time. Before that.
Brahmānanda: Before that there was. Nava-yogendra Mahārāja, he has now gotten his... He got a work permit. He got for one year.
Prabhupāda: Oh. He's intelligent. Doing nice?
Prabhupāda: That's nice.
Brahmānanda: So the only difficulty there is that we cannot make devotees from the local population.
Prabhupāda: Either Indian or African.
Brahmānanda: Yes, either one. So unless we get men from overseas, then for us to expand is very difficult. Just like for this Mombassa. We get this big house. Unless we have men to maintain it, then why should we take it?
Prabhupāda: But overseas, we have got enough men.
Brahmānanda: Well, we only have twelve devotees there, and two temples. It's very less.
Prabhupāda: You cannot export from America?
Rāmeśvara: Yes, we have to. We have to.
Prabhupāda: It is your missionary activities, American.
Brahmānanda: So far for the Africans, we're giving them prasādam and kīrtana. But anything more than that, we cannot expect. If we give them that, they are satisfied.
Prabhupāda: They're hearing kīrtana?
Brahmānanda: Oh, yes.
Prabhupāda: Then it is all right. One day they'll come. That will cure them.
Nanda-kumāra: On the street, almost any African you say "Hare Kṛṣṇa," he'll say "Hare Kṛṣṇa."
Prabhupāda: That is nice.
Rāmeśvara: Hṛdayānanda Mahārāja is becoming interested also in Africa, because it's very close to Brazil. He will also be able to send men as a demonstration of his interest.
Prabhupāda: Then do it. Some way or other, manage. It is Kṛṣṇa's business.
Rāmeśvara: I think we'll discuss this at the Māyāpur meeting.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Yes. You are so many GBCs. You can discuss now.
Rāmeśvara: But the ones who are going to send the men aren't here.
Prabhupāda: How many GBCs you are, present now?
Hari-śauri: Gurukṛpa Mahārāja...
Rāmeśvara: Four. And Gargamuni. Five.
Prabhupāda: So what happened in Purī?
Rāmeśvara: [aside:] Where's Gargamuni? Is he next door?
Prabhupāda: You also went. You also went.
Rāmeśvara: Yes, but he did the talk... He and Tejas did most of the talking in the local language.
Rāmeśvara: But we...
Satsvarūpa: The owners are in Calcutta. It finally traced out.
Rāmeśvara: Well, we found out that the government has now taken an interest in buying this property, all the properties on the beach. The government is looking for different excuses---maybe someone violates his lease or he doesn't keep the property according to the lease. Somehow or other, the government wants to develop the land for hotel. So our idea is that there's two properties which are good for us. One of them, the government is already committed to buying, and the other one the government is interested in buying but has not yet purchased. So for the first one we can approach the government officials directly.
Prabhupāda: No, then this Kartanai[?] can help.
Rāmeśvara: Yes. And their main interest is foreign exchange from the tourists. So if we offer them U.S. dollars to purchase the property, they may think, "Why should we waste our time developing when they will give us lakhs in U.S. dollars, and let them develop?"
Rāmeśvara: So they may sell it to us on that basis.
Prabhupāda: Yes. We shall develop. [break]
Gargamuni: ...talking about in Purī, that there's a class of men who are preaching that because of Caitanya's movement, Islam was spreading because the king became somewhat weakened, they have said. So I met one such man there also at the Purī Hotel. He said, "What is this Hare Kṛṣṇa? By this Caitanya cult the Islam has spread," he was saying. So I told him what you said, that "We do not get any information historically. In fact it was the reverse, that this Hussain, the Nawab Hussain Shah, he became a great follower." He said, "No, that is not written anywhere." I said, "No, it is in Caitanya-caritāmṛta." He did not accept Caitanya-caritāmṛta as historic fact. He was a crazy man.
Gargamuni: He was crazy also.
Rāmeśvara: You also blasted him. What did you say?
Hari-śauri: Tell him about those men who came to support you.
Gargamuni: Oh, yes. Then he was saying, "Our Vivekananda, he never did this Hare Kṛṣṇa. He's never done this." I said, "Well, actually..."
Prabhupāda: "What benefit you have got from Vivekananda?" You did not ask? What bene...?
Gargamuni: No. I told him that "Actually Prabhupāda, he has done more work than Vivekananda in helping to spread India's dharma all over the world." I had to be very careful because there were many other people sitting around, including the manager, and I didn't want to start a fight. So I said, "Actually, Prabhupāda has done greater work." He said [in shocked tone], "What have you said? You have said that your guru is greater than Vivekananda?" I said, "He has done more work." And he started, "No. You cannot say that." Then two other men who were sitting there stood up and said, "No! He has done more work." He said, "I was at the Olympic games, and I heard the whole thing was chanting, in Montreal. Last year I was at the Olympic games, and I saw them all chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa. He has done more work." Two men, they came. So I just sat there and let those two men argue.
Prabhupāda: [chuckling] It is Kṛṣṇa's grace.
Gargamuni: Yes. He was very nice man. He was glorifying you. He said, "I have read their magazine."
Rāmeśvara: We were selling books and having kīrtana at the Montreal Olympics.
Rāmeśvara: So he was seeing that.
Gargamuni: So he saw that personally. He said it was a great thing.
Prabhupāda: At that time Haṁsadūta was there.
Rāmeśvara: No, this is just this last year.
Prabhupāda: Oh, last year.
Rāmeśvara: Just 1976, in the summer...
Gargamuni: Last summer.
Rāmeśvara: ...end of summer. From our temple in Toronto and in Montreal they combined to cover. Because there were hundreds of thousands of people, so it was a good opportunity to sell books.
Prabhupāda: Gurudāsa went there, eh? Gurudāsa?
Hari-śauri: No. He went to that Habitat Conference. That was different thing.
Gargamuni: So this man, he saw he was outnumbered, so he said, "All right, let us not talk."
Prabhupāda: [laughs] A bogus.
Gargamuni: He's Chatterjee. He's Calcutta demon. I think Chatterjee is brāhmaṇa name, but he is talking like demon.
Prabhupāda: The Rāvaṇa was also Chatterjee. He was the son of Kaśyapa, brāhmaṇa. Bankim Babu wrote one book. The name of the book was Chatterjee and Bannerjis. [pause] So they're being distributed prasādam? No. [crowd can be heard in background]
Nanda-kumāra: The prasādam is there. I'll see if...
Prabhupāda: No... Somebody talking?
Brahmānanda: There's so many... So much noise. They must be taking.
Gargamuni: There were many foreigners we saw in Purī. One busload came, busload of foreigners.
Prabhupāda: In Purī many foreigners come. It is tourist city.
Nanda-kumāra: Everyone is taking prasādam. [break]
Prabhupāda: They have got respect for prasādam. So you are distributing prasādam?
Brahmānanda: Yes, twice a day, at noon and at evening. We've built a special pavilion on the side of the temple. See, we were making the mistake all along of trying to mix the Africans and the Asians together.
Prabhupāda: That is not good.
Brahmānanda: That was a bad policy. Now we have separate = the Asians on one side and the Africans on the other side, and both are happy.
Prabhupāda: That's nice.
Brahmānanda: Before they were both unhappy. Now they're both happy.
Prabhupāda: No, the Indians, they do not like to sit down...
Gargamuni: No. Indians don't like to mix, and Africans also, they like to be with their own. And we have a... The instruments we use... They make their own instruments out of different materials. They have these pieces of metal and wooden blocks. [laughs] They love it. They can make much noise... Actually the Asians like it very much when they see the Africans doing that. So both are very happy.
Prabhupāda: That's nice. All right.
Rāmeśvara: Jaya Śrīla Prabhupāda. [break]
Prabhupāda: ...calling brāhmaṇa. We are feeding so many Vaiṣṇavas daily. All right, make that arrangement.
Rāmeśvara: Jaya Prabhupāda.
Prabhupāda: One day we shall stay, and if it is very nice, we can stay one or two days. But as Gargamuni described, it is very nice.
Gargamuni: Yes. The room is a little... It's smaller than this room.
Prabhupāda: That doesn't matter.
Gargamuni: Maybe the same size. I think it's the same size. And there's bathroom and porch.
Gargamuni: It's nice. It's peaceful and quiet.
Abhirāma: No trucks going. Prabhupāda was complaining a little bit.
Gargamuni: No. There's no... You're off the main road, very much so. Then you go at least two miles off the highway. Then you make another right turn, and you go through a village. And then you come to a big opening, and the temple is there with bathing ghāṭa. There is also tube well where you can get very good water. And the cottage is just on the other side of the mandir.
Prabhupāda: Very nice place.
Gargamuni: Yes. It's very nice. Very peaceful.
Prabhupāda: Caitanya Mahāprabhu stayed there, and Nityānanda Prabhu stayed. Mādhavendra Purī stayed. It is very important place.
Gargamuni: On our way down here we also stayed overnight. On my way down here.
Prabhupāda: Very good. So what did you pay?
Gargamuni: I gave them donation of twenty-one rupees for the night. I gave for the... [end]