Dhanurdhara Swami August 5th, 2001
New Ekachakra Dham
Another interesting day planned on the retreat.
In the morning Mahatma Prabhu spoke on “dying in ecstasy,” the storyof the passing away of Mother Kirtida. I liked his point that Kirtida didn’t waist time trying to make others think she was advanced. She just put all her effort into becoming advanced. I also liked his point that at death you cannot fake Krishna consciousness. Your ability to transcend, or not transcend, by dint of your level of devotion, will be tested and apparent.
As part of the Art Show we drove by a caravan of cars, only five minutes away, where Madan Mohan gave us a tour of the unique, but functionally built, house he is designing for his home. It was interesting how his design seemed to connect an expression of his “self,??? the aesthetic of the environment and his Krishna consciousness all in one space.
We then proceeded to Innisfree Gardens. Instead of a lengthy Vrindaban Parikram, as we did there last time, we only took a short tour of the main garden where we eventually sat in a most idyllic shady place to hear a drama written by Bhakta Alex from the NYU theater department. I had originally asked Yajna Purusa with Alex’s assistance to organize a performance. Unfortunately there was not enough time to get together a presentation, but fortunately the script was ready. Yajna Purusa gave a short introduction to put the drama in context of its place in Gaura Lila and then Alex read his rendition of the chastisement of Mukunda. We were overwhelmed by the quality of the presentation written in perfect iambic pentameter, the standard for Shakespearean Drama:
Lord Caitanya: Dear Friends of fortune cast your eyes on me
Your humble, oh humble, your love held true
Your devoted servant through all of time
Through ages past and ages brought anew
My eyes run piercing tears of solid stream
At thoughts of those gathered with graceful soul
As my heart drifts through a deep ocean dream
For love of God, and all his devotees.
I cry HARI HARI, in chorus pure
With hope that all shall join my song of love
Dance true, let not your aching woes endure
For here is God, and God is here with you.
The drama was well written and dramatically read. The audience was captivated. A lively discussion followed as to why Mukunda was overjoyed when Lord Caitanya announced his final decree that Mukunda would be able to see him after ten million births. The devotees didn’t want to leave, but I had wind things up so the devotees could return for lunch and their journeys back home.
Krishna conscious drama is essential to developing Krishna consciousness.
After explaining and rejecting mixed devotional service, Sri Krishna explains to Uddhava the essence of pure devotional service by quoting from the Srimad Bhagavatam. I was surprised to see the standing of drama in Sri Krishna’s concluding verse highlighting the practice of pure devotional service.
“My dear Uddhava, narrations of My pastimes and qualities are all-auspicious and purify the entire universe. A faithful person who constantly hears, glorifies, and remembers such transcendental activities, who through dramatic performances relives My pastimes beginning with my appearance, and who takes full shelter of Me, dedicating his religious, sensual and occupational activities for My satisfaction, certainly obtains unflinching devotional service to Me, the Eternal Personality of Godhead.” (SB 11.11.23-24, emphasis added)