Submitted by Vijaya dasa
(Iskcon Sankirtana Minister)
As I was distributing books in Nairobi, Krsna gave me a new line for distributing books.
After I stopped someone and exchanged a few words, I’d present the book to the person and, as Srila Prabhupada encouraged us to do, show the pictures to them.
Showing the changing bodies picture, I’d say the soul is going through the body from boyhood to old age to death and that it would continue after the death of the body. Then I would tell them the soul is so powerful that nothing can kill the soul not even the hydrogen bomb.
Then I would ask, “Do you know why the soul is so powerful?”
The person always said, “No, why?”
“Because it’s part of God, who is the most powerful. The more we connect with God, the more powerful we get, and the less connected we are to Him the weaker we become. This book will help you become spiritually powerful.”
Then I would ask for a donation, and ninety percent of the people would give one and take a book. It was pretty ecstatic.
This took place this last Saturday. All week long I was giving seminars on book distribution to the congregation and the temple devotees with the idea that we would all go out together on Saturday. During the week it’s difficult for the congregation to go out because they have jobs, so the plan was to try and inspire them to go on Saturday. It was a good turnout. Thirty-three devotees went out and distributed 1,124 books. We all had a great time giving our treasures of bhakti to the people.
A friend shared a tip with me from the medical perspective. She said as a medicine student they are taught how not to lose a patient. When a patient comes for treatment to a doctor for the very first time, if the doctor sends him to run some tests before treating him, more than often the patient will run away to sort some cheaper remedy, which might not be a good thing for the patient. So a responsible doctor tries and treats the patient from the obvious symptoms and carefully administers a broad spectrum medicine which will fully cure the patient and also secure his trust on the doctor.
As book distributors we are also faced with similar situations when a person stops to pick a book, asks a few questions regarding the book, then puts the book down and promises to come back, but that might be the last time we see the person.
Once again we lose the chance of passing Srila Prabhupada to a new person.
Applying the broad spectrum remedy we can also secure a potential buyer. If money is the issue, I usually ask the person what he can afford to give, if it’s reasonable I usually settle for it. If it’s too little then I convince the person to pick a smaller book which is cheaper.
If the person is not too sure about the book and how it might affect his faith, I usually pass on a small book to him, just to read, and if he feels it’s good he can come and pay me later or return it, if he feels it wasn’t worth it.
Till date no one has come back with the book, but I always get the money back.
The positive side of this is that it has made me regular on distribution, and also people build trust when they see you regularly distributing books.
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.
For those of you that sometimes have a sore throat when distributing, the best thing I’ve found to help is cloves, believe it or not. Just let them soak in your mouth a while, then slowly chew on them. I’ve found that nothing works better, and they’re very cheap.
If you want to go the long run on book distribution I recommend that you find some time to do yoga at least every other day. Even 10 or 15 minutes can do wonders. Continue reading →
* How to sell a full sets of Srimad-Bhagavatams or Caitanya Caritamritas.
* Sankirtana tips and secrets.
Srila Prabhupada: “Your report of book distribution is very encouraging. Please go onincreasing more and more. Yes, you should become the topmost temple for distributing my books. This is a very good proposal. That is the only way to please me. Distribute my books profusely. That is real preaching.”(SPL to Bala Krsna dasa, 23rd October, 1976)
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