740911 - Letter to Ashok Kumar from Swarupa
September 11, 1974
Dear Ashok Kumar,
Hare Krishna! I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter and I have noted the contents with pleasure. I am very glad to hear that as a result of your contact with the teachings of His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada your doubts about the position of the Supreme Personality of Godhead have become clarified and you are now convinced that the chanting of the Hare Krishna Mahamantra is the sublime means for attaining the ultimate goal of life, Krishna consciousness. Unfortunately, there are so many unqualified persons who are presenting their speculative and impersonal commentaries on Bhagavad-gita and therefore innocent people become misled in their understanding of the absolute truth. In the Bhagavad-gita, therefore, it is said that only less intelligent persons consider that God is originally impersonal but assumes a form when He incarnates. His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada is presenting Bhagavad-gita As It Is without creating nor concocting any additions and subtractions from the original message of the Lord as He spoke to His disciple Arjuna on the Battlefield of Kuruksetra 5,000 years ago. Krishna’s final instruction in the Eighteenth Chapter of Bhagavad-gita is ’sarva dharman parityaja, Mam ekam saranam vraja’, ’just surrender unto Me, giving up all other occupational duties (dharma), and I will protect you’. As the Lord’s most confidential devotee and bona fide representative in this world, His Divine Grace is following this instruction perfectly and he is teaching by example how to surrender to the Supreme Personality of Godhead and engage in pure transcendental loving devotional service.
So I am very glad that you are aspiring to become a member of our International Society for Krishna Consciousness and to become an initiated disciple of His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada. In this regard I am forwarding your request to our center in Vrndavana where our new Krishna Balarama Mandir is being constructed. Srila Prabhupada is currently there and there is much work going on in the service of the Lord. The devotees there can give you more specific direction for you to become more actively engaged in activities of bhakti-yoga, devotional service. The Hare Krishna mantra means “O Supreme Energy of Krishna and O Lord Krishna, please engage me in Your eternal service.” So we have to give up everything and become simply engaged in the service of the Lord. What Krishna orders us to do should be our only engagement in life and in this way we shall make spiritual advancement on the path back to home, back to Godhead.
After many births and deaths we have somehow or other come into the association of a pure devotee of the Lord. How fortunate we are. Living entities are roaming within the universes in different species of life and in different planetary systems. They are enjoying or suffering the reactions of pious or impious activities but they have no information how to get out of this entanglement of the repetition of birth and death. Due to the darkness of ignorance most living entities have no idea about the values of life. Therefore, one who understands the importance of Krishna consciousness must be a very fortunate soul. Please continue with great faith and determination your devotional activities of chanting Hare Krishna and reading Srila Prabhupada’s books. In this way your realization of the Supreme Perfection of life will grow continuously and your life will become ever joyful and sublime.
Thank you very much for your kind expression of appreciation and I hope this letter finds you in good health.
- Swarupa das Adhikari