Distributing Srila Prabhupada’s Books : Jul/Aug/Sep 2010
We visited OR Tambo airport again – there’s always crowds of people from all walks of life and backgrounds. We happened to meet Deryk, who is in charge of the Subway take-away outlet in the airport. We probably spoke to him for over an hour. He explained that he was more scientifically inclined and that he had travelled extensively and interacted with many different groups and cultures but was obviously still searching for the Absolute Truth.
We spoke on many topics ranging from reincarnation, exploitation of the earth’s resources, devotional service, to the big bang theory. The devotees definitely gave Deryk many points and facts to think about. He kindly served the devotees with some fresh juice and commended them for their efforts. The one outstanding observation from our chat was that Deryk was always calm, accommodating and almost submissive to hearing all that was being said to him. We’d like to thank him for giving us his time and for engaging us as well.
Study Bhagavad Gita As It Is…
Archi Mataji wondered why the person she was speaking to hastily made his way to CNA – only to see that he was running in to make change so he could make a donation and take a book. Mataji also spoke to some of the staff and one of them was particularly interested in the Bhagavad Gita As It Is. We talked for a few minutes and it was obvious that this gentleman was definitely searching for some answers and truth.
He explained that he understood that due to taking birth in a certain family and village his thinking, way of life and decisions were moulded accordingly but also said that there must be more to life. He was intrigued about how karma works, reincarnation, etc and happily took a Gita – I told him that he would definitely enjoy reading this book – he replied and said that he was going to STUDY this book, which was music to our ears.
A bit of effort…
Mataji met Pranesh – he said that he already had some of Srila Prabhupada’s books with him but wanted more of them. He said that he needed to go the ATM to get some Luxmi, so we held on to the books he wanted and continued along. About 20 mins or so had passed and he still wasn’t back – we figured that he probably wasn’t going to come back, so we distributed the books we kept for him as well. He found us just before we were leaving and handed us some Luxmi – but we had already distributed all the books and had nothing for him.
I remembered that I probably had a few books in the car and rushed there and back to get them, while he went to find his family. Lucky I saved his number on my phone and called to see where he was. I caught up with them and handed them a Chant and Be Happy and a Perfection of Yoga and a flyer and asked them to join us when they can. We were glad that they were taking more of Srila Prabhupada’s books into their home.
As if to remind us that this preaching of Krishna Consciousness is not all smooth sailing, just as we were on our way out, we were approached by one of the airport staff. He told us that we weren’t allowed to preach here, etc and that we should leave before he called security, saying that this was against airport regulations, etc. He didn’t speak very politely and pleasantly and was obviously disturbed that this preaching was going on here. We didn’t want to complicate the situation and calmly said that we were on our way out. Before leaving, I did tell him that the Lord knows what’s in your heart and what motivated you to act in this way.
Just as this was all taking place, Pam Mataji met one last family and seeing us have an altercation with the airport worker, quickly scribbled his contact details in our book before leaving.
We take this as some mercy from Lord Krsna – showing us that we need to stay focused in our efforts and service, despite obstacles and impediments. The demons and atheists were present when the Supreme Lord Himself advented and they are very much here amongst us today. By Srila Prabhupada’s mercy and protection, we will push on and try to perform our duties.
How eager are you…
We also went out for book distribution in our Primrose town area. Luvasan Prabhu was preaching to a lady and she ended up going to 5 different shops to make change to give a donation! I think Lord Krsna was testing her to see how eager she was to give a donation and take a book.
Right place, at the right time…
On our way back home, Pam Mataji stopped at one of the curtain shops in the town. We met Savitha, who works at this shop and said that Krsna must have fulfilled her desires. She explained how stressed and troubled she was and that she felt the need to do some prayers and meditation, so she was glad to see us. She took a book and we also gave her a chanting bag and beads and some Prasadam.
We were thankful to help her in that way and these type of situations further motivate us to go out and try to distribute the Holy Name and Srila Prabhupada’s books. Everyone is suffering and are calling out for help – we pray that we can be there when they are calling out for Krsna and assist in some way.
Always be prepared…
A muslim client walked into Luvasan Prabhu’s office some time ago and made some conversation about God, religion, etc. Prabhu preached to him a bit and this gentleman took one of Srila Prabhupada’s books home with him. This Krishna Consciousness has to be distributed to everyone, regardless of so called religious affiliation, ethnicity, etc. Everyone is in pursuit of Krsna, the Supreme Lord, although they may not know it at this time. Another point to note is that we need to have Srila Prabhupada’s books with us wherever we are – be it the workplace, in the car, at home, etc. You never know when a searching soul will cross your path and ask for some info on transcendental subject matter.
Setting the example…
Archi Mataji made a trip overseas, to Thailand, not too long ago. Although being on more of a leisure trip, Mataji managed to visit the small but growing ISKCON temple there and also bought some Srila Prabhupada books, which she happily distributed whilst out and about. Mataji also brought back some lovely ISKCON Phuket t-shirts for the team. It’s inspiring to see that Mataji spent some time to distribute Srila Prabhupada’s books while even on her travels and showed us that we can dovetail our activities in the Lord’s service.
Preaching is the essence…
Luvasan Prabhu invited Jackie, one of the Absa managers to the Randburg Ratha Yatra festival – she and her daughter both attended and experienced some of the festival and took home some Prasadam. At the workplace, Prabhu explained to her a little about Krishna Consciousness philosophy and about some of the services we have going, she took some of Srila Prabhupada’s books and kindly contributed some Luxmi to assist with these services.
A while back Prabhu gave a book to Tiaan, one of the Liberty Life staff and he recently circulated information on our ISKCON Food For Life service at the workplace and Tiaan kindly contributed some Luxmi toward this, for which we are most thankful. Tiaan mentioned that he was going for a hunting trip on one of the weekends and Prabhu spoke to him a bit about killing other living entities, compassion, etc. It just so happened, that when Tiaan got back to work the next week, he said that they didn’t get to hunt that weekend, so no animals were harmed or killed – Jai!
Together with these 2 contributions and some foodstuff donated by some family friends, we were able to fund our Namahatta’s Food For Life cooking and distribution for the month of November.
I can see that from initially desiring to distribute Srila Prabhupada’s books and the Holy Names, we were able to gather donations and contributions for other services within our organization. By book distribution, we not only bring people into contact with Srila Prabhupada and his books but also make people aware of our temples, namahattas, services, festivals, etc. So our canvassing, advertising, gathering of donations/sponsors, everything happens simultaneously and with no extra effort as such.
Such is the mercy and potency of our Founder Acarya Srila Prabhupada – everything he has done is perfect and flawless, all done with transcendental vision and awareness. All we have to do is follow the process given to us and execute this to the best of our ability and success is guaranteed, not only in helping us spiritually but in flooding this world with Krishna Consciousness and pushing on this ISKCON movement as desired by Srila Prabhupada.
The book sales are very encouraging, increasing, increasing. It is very good news. Thank you, I want this. Record selling is temporary… A book sold becomes a permanent matter for enjoyment. We read the scriptures again and again and it is still fresh; when there is time, I go on reading my own books. [Letter to Hamsaduta, 1 October 1974]
All Glories to Srila Prabhupada and his transcendental books!
Till next time, chant Hare Krsna and be happy!
Please feel free to join us with this service – the more the merrier. We can target any area, not only here on the East Rand but your respective towns and suburbs as well. Contact me for more info – Dhesan – 0835173934.
Your aspiring servant
Dhesan (ISKCON Springs/Benoni Namahatta)