Vrindaban Aindra greeted me affectionately.

October 7th, 2000

Vrindaban

Aindra greeted me affectionately. We talked in his room. It must be a transcendental room. The ambiance of the mud walls, the shellacked Tamal branch in the middle of the room, the countless silas and deities, and certainly Aindra’s association had a definitively uplifting and peaceful influence?despite the messiness of the rest of the room, which seemed to have absolutely no ill effect.

I told Aindra that I was fully-shaved because I had just arrived this morning and that, when I enter the dhama, shaving and then bathing in the Yamuna is like ridding myself of the contamination of living in the West. He said that he just read a very similar thing in the Padma-Purana?that a pilgrim sheds his hair upon entering the dhama because the sins one accrues are stored within the hair. Whether it is psychological, inspirational, or factual, my ritual of entering of the dhama definitely felt liberating?a fresh start. Come to Vrindaban for a fresh start in spiritual life!

There is a pain to the sincere execution of Krishna consciousness. Krishna consciousness cleanses our heart, which purifies our attachments. Even the pain of death is ultimately the distress of giving up our attachments. Entering Vrindaban for serious devotional practices immediately invokes an understanding that if one is sincere in his vow one’s anarthas will be confronted and uprooted. Am I ready?

A widow came for advice: I warned against phalgu-vairagya?the renunciation of those things that could be used in Krishna?s service. She is very austere, but feeling insecure. Her guru had left, ISKCON is shaky, she is not secure in her present service, and she has no family. She was offered some protection from a family that appreciates her. They offered her some suitable part-time employment and promised to take care of her needs. She balked at the idea. ?A renunciate should not become dependent on the householders,? she told me. I replied, ?We need security to execute Krishna consciousness and certainly a woman needs to be protected. Don’t falsely renounce such protection since your mental peace is essential for your Krishna consciousness.? She felt relieved.

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