Written by Nanda Priya Nivedita Devi Dasi
Guru Maharaj spent four days in Coimbatore. His schedule was packed like in every other place that he visits. How he touched everybody’s heart was so heart warming, just like in every place he visits, but what’s not to be forgotten is the ‘extraordinariness’ in these activities, given his delicate health condition and unique nature.
ISKCON Coimbatore had organised a wonderful ISKCON 50 program in which many well wishers and life members of ISKCON participated. International devotees from various nationalities engaged the audience in ecstatic Kirtan and when Guru Maharaj joined in, by raising his arms, standing with support of devotees , it took one’s experience to a whole new scale.
Dr. Bhaktavatsalam ,a Padmashree recipient and owner of the KJ groups of hospital spoke about the greatness of ISKCON and enthused every one to chant Hare Krishna. He spoke in detail about Srila Prabhupada and his achievements. His relationship with Guru Maharaj goes back many years and told the audience about Guru Dev as well.
It’s amazing to see how many devotees Guru Maharaj is enthusing. Guru Maharaj initiated many number of devotees. The initiation ceremony by itself was a treat to a part of. His personal care takers said that Guru Maharaj approximately spent 8 hours over two days to select the names for the intiation candidates. He inquired about almost all the candidates and chose a name according to their particular nature and convenience. For example, if the devotee whose name he was selecting was elderly,he ensured that their spiritual name sounded the same , because it would be difficult for them to adapt to a totally different name.
The ceremony was conducted in four different languages. There were translations going on in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malyalam. Devotees from different states participated. Although divided by languages they were sitting under one roof of ISKCON. It’s interesting to know that by Srila Prabhupada’s grace, Guru Maharaj through his disciples ,has been able to establish so many ISKCON Temples and centers in South India. His constant encouragement and support to his faithful disciples has now translated into flourishing hubs for Krishna Consciousness.
Guru Maharaj in his initiation lecture said, ” Most people here are Grihastas. The dharma of Grihastas, is to feed devotees , have regular class and regular arthiks. This is a very important aspect of Krishna Consciousness. Every Grihasta devotee should help in disseminating Krishna Consciousness.” Guru Maharaj also spoke about how someone in Spain attacked him
“They said I am a millimeter to die. But somehow I survived. In 2008 I had a stroke, and that’s when they discovered I had Hepatitis C,because of the transfusion at that time so that spoilt my liver”. Painful to hear it was, but how grateful should one be to have his divine association?!
Every place that Guru Maharaj visits has a festival, has thousands of people and many expectations. To be as merciful, blissful and energetic as he is not ordinary. These are not over rated adjectives but speak reality.
Nanda Priya Nivedita Devi Dasi