Sands of Raman Reti
2nd of January, 2005 - 18:47
1st of January, 2005 - 17:21
31st of December, 2004 - 18:32
"He will speak to you."
30th of December, 2004 - 16:46
Spiritual mayor of the town
29th of December, 2004 - 13:17
28th of December, 2004 - 17:53
Meeting with Baba
27th of December, 2004 - 17:02
Parikrama of Radha-kunda
27th of December, 2004 - 16:56
The new initiates - Evening
26th of December, 2004 - 18:13
The new initiates - Morning
26th of December, 2004 - 18:12
Posted: 31st of December, 2004 - 18:32
First of all, I'd like to apologize for the delay in posting entries to Vraja Journal. On the first of January, the transformer for our side of the village fried, resulting in a ten-day electricity blackout. On the 10th we got some kind of electricity back, and since then I've struggled to catch up with the backlog with my already tight schedule. From now on for the next week or so, I'll very likely be posting shorter entries for the most part, and several per day, to catch up with the journal.
So, to the new year's eve. In the daytime, we set out to meet Baba with our questions on yogapitha, continuing from the previous day. At the end of the previous darshan I had said that everything is more or less clear now, but alas, as I sat down for my smarana, heaps of more questions arose. Anyhow, as we met Baba, we learned that his knee-pain had again increased, so we did not wish to bother him with any lengthy questions. The cold season is always difficult, not the least due to all the humidity, for his knees. Thus we did pranam, inquired briefly about his health, and moved onwards.
Babaji Maharaja at the ashram.
Returning home, we cooked something for Giridhari, and after prasad set out for Nitai's place for the gathering. A dozen or so devotees had come over. Roman from Sweden, our gurubhai Yadunath from Switzerland who lives at Radha-kunda since years, Karunamayi whom you all know, our neighbor Madhavi-lata Dasi and Nitai's friend Chintamani Dasi were present among the Western audience. Swarup Das Baba from Jagannath Mandir had come to do some kirtan, and Asim Krishna Das the artist, Manipuri Shivadas and his wife and Radhanath were there, too.
Chatting for a moment with everyone, Swarup Das began the kirtan, accompanied by Radhanath who played the mridanga.
After the kirtan, Nitai served out some small prasad and we looked through a slide-show of pictures from Nitai's upcoming project — he's constructing an ashram on the side of the Vrindavan-road near Radha-kunda.
Swarup Das Babaji and Radhanath doing kirtan.
As the festivities were over, we returned home and chatted for a moment with Yugal. I'll not even try to log here the themes and contents of our conversations, as the bulk of these entries would grow enormously.
The morning had been rather busy and I had not yet done my yogapitha-seva, so I sat down for the meditation without much awareness of what time it was. Somewhere amidst the one-hour session the day changed, and the fireworks began. Lots of noise all over the place, causing the peacocks sing wildly in concert with the dogs. However, amidst seva as I was, of course I would not leave it for the fireworks, as how could I tell Radha-Krishna and their companions that the fireworks were of more interest to my eyes than their splendid forms shining like millions of moons? One sakhi having a complexion the color of lightning, the other of ketaki-flowers in the spring, the third of kunkum and the fourth of lotus-filaments. Alas, may such a festival of colors manifest in my barren heart!
I wouldn't have minded watching the fireworks too, but I took this as an auspicious coincidence at the dawn of the new year, establishing a resolve in pursuing the attainment of the supreme beauty, demostrating its predominance over the perishable sights of this world, mere fireworks in the dark canvas of samsara. May the vision of Radha-Krishna frequently appear in our hearts in the upcoming year, if only as a brief flash of light momentarily illuminating the heart!
svapne'pi kiM sumukhi te caraNAmbu-jAta-
zobhAM parAm atitarAm ahahottamAGgaM
bibhrad bhaviSyati kadA mama sArtha-nAmA ||
Hey beautiful-faced one, when will I — even if in a dream — hold the shining, fragrant pollen of your lotus feet on my head, thus splendidly decorating it? Alas! Then truly it will be known as uttama-anga, the topmost part of my body!
— Sri Raghunath Das Goswami, Vilapa Kusumanjali (11)