Nama Om Vishnu paadaaya..
Hari Haraya Naama Krishna …
Jaya Radha Madhava…
Bengali FM is 100.
So today we are starting a new chapter, the name of the chapter is Lord Gaura orders to bring the banana stem seller, Sridhar.
So today I was in the Mayapur Executive Board meeting, with the Mayapur executive council members. Tomorrow we are going to discuss the Mayapur Master Plan. Prabhupad wanted us to make a master plan for Mayapur, and right now the Chief Minister of Bengal, Mamata Banerjee, and her cabinet has extended to Iskcon 750 acres! Which normally the land ceiling is like 23 acres! That is like 30 times. I was thinking this morning, people come to see me, it is hard to get interviews, and if come inside you have to wear a cap, mask, so I cannot see who is there. I was thinking, that in Chennai we had a program that after the class, that some devotees who came were introduced and they turned around and had a group photo, and I could also talk with each one briefly. So I thought we could try to do that here. If you don’t mind, seeing it through the glass. We will give you a mike outside and you can speak through that. Now we will give a quick class because we don’t know if the rain will come. But we want to introduce this system of interviews. Even the old devotees I know, I don’t know what service they are doing nowadays. So this way, I can keep in contact. Also we can check if the details we have in the database are up to date. Then if your photo is on the database, we will take a photo. Mayapur devotees will be after the Gaura Purnima, but other devotees who come from distant places will have priority, before Gaura Purnima. So now read the Bengali. Aaghya, aaghya!
Caitanya Bhagavata Madhya Khanda:
So Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu ordered, go bring Sridhar! Let him come and see My Mahaprakash! See My opulences! Let him come! Quick! Quick! Haribol!
He thinks of Me constantly but he gets a big sadness, big unhappiness, let him come and see My glories! Go bring him quickly! AT ONCE! Thus spoke Gauranga Mahaprabhu!
Go to the edge of the town, go there, sit down and wait. The person who calls My name, bring him quickly!
So the vaishnavas hearing the order from the Lord, they quickly went. They took the order of the Lord, and went to the house of Sridhar, hurriedly. Kolavecha Sridhar, he was in the market selling bananas, banana stem, banana flowers and banana leaves. Lord Caitanya used to go and buy banana products from Sridhar. But He would ask Sridhar, how much you want? Then he would take a bunch of bananas. Sridhar would say, I charge the lowest of the market rate. How much is that? 12 conch shells, cowris. Oh, 12, I am a poor brahmana, you want to charge so much from Me! 80 conch shells is a penny. And you want to charge me 12, for this bunch of bananas? I will give you 6. I am charging the lowest price. He took back the bananas. I am a brahmana and you are taking back the bananas. You are going to steal? Here, take your 9. Every day, Lord Caitanya had these pastimes with Kolavecha Sridhar. Other people would say, why do you take it from him? I don’t know, whenever I see him My heart melts! Sridhar was always chanting the holy names. So now here we have some topics of Sridhar.
Now hear some topics about Sridhar. He would sell banana products as his livelihood. This is how he maintained himself.
He would buy one banana tree, bring it to the market. Cut it into small piece and sell those pieces. In Navadvip everybody has banana trees. Like they say, selling coal in Newcastle! It is a place of coal mines. So selling coal there is not a very lucrative business. So selling banana trees in Navadvip where everybody has banana trees, is not a very lucrative business.
Whatever he earned in one day, of that half that, he spent in the worship of Ganges, making offerings, worshipping, not only was he doing a business which was not making much profit, half he spent on the worship of Ganges. Every day!
Lost audio for sometime here
So if I especially favor someone, I gradually deprive him of his wealth. There is a Sanskrit verse. The English translation of the Sanskrit verse is:
“My dear Lord Brahma, because of material opulence a foolish person becomes dull witted and mad. Thus he has no respect for anyone within the three worlds and defies even My authority. To such a person I show special favor by first taking away all his possessions.”
So don’t be puffed up with your material possessions. If you do you may get special mercy! Ha! Krishna will take away everything! Then you will see you have no friends. They are all fair weather friends! You have money you have friends. No money, no friends. That is different for devotees.
Kolavecha Sridhar was as truthful as Yudhisthir maharaj. He never deviated from whatever price he fixed.
Sometimes those people who knew the glories of Kolavecha Sridhar, hearing his quotations, they would simply buy the things without bargaining.
In this way, he lived in Navadvip, this great personality. People thought that, oh, he is just a banana seller! No one could understand how great he was! He was a real transcendental devotee of Lord Caitanya! Haribol Gauuuuranga! Kolavecha Sridhar ki jai! Ulu dhwani. (Guru maharaj encouraged them to do more ulu dhwani!)
So there four prahars in the entire night, he would not sleep at all. He would loudly chant the holy names of Lord Krishna. In this way the whole night passed. Haribol! And he called out loudly, inviting the Lord. When Kolavecha Sridhar was chanting loudly the names of Krishna all night, he had disturbed the sleep of the villagers, the peaceful sleep! As a result of the pure devotees’ current preaching of the holy names, the godless people of the world, became so displeased hearing the holy names vibrated by the mouths of the pure devotees of Lord Caitanya, they would be unable to express their inconvenience and they engaged in various forms of harassment. So the materialistic people, they sometimes chant the holy name with musical equipment and they try to show themselves as pure devotees, but intelligent people can see the duplicity. And the real devotees, they chant the names of Krishna, to benefit themselves and to benefit all the conditioned souls, to bring up the godless society. So the cheating kirtan is to glorify their own senses. They give lectures, they sing sweetly, recite, but they just want name, fame and money. Once I was there when one sanyasi came to Pundarik Vidyanidhi’s birthplace and on his birth day they do a 48 hour nonstop kirtan. But this outside committee hires professional kirtan singer and the sanyasi was listening for 45 minutes to them chanting Hare Krishna, embracing each other, crying. Then he asked me, what are they singing? Ha! Ha! 45 minutes he could not understand. aaaaa….. I made one professional drummer as a disciple and he left that job and he follows the four regulative principles. He told me that when he was a professional mridanga player, they have a two-hour slot. He would tell that he would just think that when is my two hour going to finish, so I can smoke some bidis! So we save him from that! So there is hell and heaven difference between the chanting of the servants of the Supreme Lord and those of the lusty sense enjoyers! They chant long drawn out mantras, cannot understand what they are saying.
So the atheists said, because of Sridhar’s loud cries at night, we cannot sleep! It breaks our ears! Kaane phate! He breaks our ears!
He is a low caste fellow! He cannot fill his belly with rice! Therefore, being hungry, he stays up all night. Loudly calling out. All the atheists think that Kolavecha Sridhar is so poor, he cannot fill his belly.
(Audio ended abruptly. If I get the recording will post the end later. Hare Krishna!)
Transcribed by Jayaraseshwari devi dasi
25 February 2019