HH RADHANATH SWAMI MAHARAJ
Today is the conclusion of our Rath Yatra. Before I speak I would like to offer a very auspicious benediction upon all the devotees, the association of His Grace Devamrta Prabhu.
About Devamrta Prabhu:
As you all know Devamrta Prabhu is one of the senior most devotees of Shri Shri Radha Gopinath temple who was in a very high position as a manager of The Standard Chartered Bank, Kolkata getting a very high salary and promises of huge promotions, the only son of his family. But seeing the great need to spread the compassionate mission of Srila Prabhupada and Lord Chaitanya he renounced a life which would have been full of opulence and prestige to become a simple brahmachari at Radhagopinath temple. In those days the temple was infested with rats. We only had one little small room. He was a person who has taken to the renounced order in the spirit of service and sacrifice. After sometime he became the temple president of Radha Gopinath Mandir. He performed that service for several years and by his compassionate nature, his gentlemen like qualities, his erudite knowledge of Srila Prabhupada and our Gaudiya Vaishnav philosophy he really really won the trusts and the hearts of all of the devotees. He did historical college preaching and brought very very great personalities into our movement.
Projects undertaken by Devamrta Prabhu in Belgaum:
Devamrta Prabhu later on accepted the service of temple president of Belgaum. There were very serious problems taking place there, great crisis’s but he went and just revived the purity and sanctity of the mission and really won the faith and the trust of all the devotees to such an extent that its one of the most growing projects of India. He also established the Venu Madhuri project where he is adopting villages and teaching them Krishna conscious life, simple living and high thinking. Hundreds and hundreds and soon thousands and ten thousands may be chanting and becoming devotees in the rural villages of Maharashtra in this project. He is just starting an incredible community project in a farm area near Belgaum.
Devamrta Prabhu selflessly accepted the request of his superiors and became the co-president of Krishna Balaram temple in Vrindavan:
And just as everything is about to explode with prosperity in preaching, several of the senior most members of our society requested him to come to Vrindavan to help the project here. And he was not willing or ready because he was very much fixed up in the service he has been developing for years. But in his spirit of selfless service, he is a person who wants no prestige, no position; he just wants to serve his superiors with his heart and soul. So he accepted that position and now he is presently co-president of Krishna-Balaram temple in Vrindavan. He did not canvas for this position, he was dragged into this position. Selfless service, this is real renunciation. Simply servant of the servant of the vaishnavas whatever way you want me to serve I am happy to serve.
It was Prabhupada’s dream to bring devotees from all over the world to Vrindavan:
And we are very very hopeful and prayerful that Devamrta Prabhu can do wonderful wonderful things for Srila Prabhupada’s Krishna-Balaram temple in Vrindavan. When Prabhupada was living at Radha Damodar temple in those small rooms, very simple life, it was his dream to fulfill the desire of Lord Nityananda, Lord Chaitanya, Rupa Goswami and his Gurudev Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur by taking Lord Chaitanya’s teachings throughout the world. When he was on Jaladuta in the Arabian Sea he wrote in his dairy how still far away from Vrindavan I am, suffering deep separation from Govinda, Gopinath and Radha Damodar but I am happy because this is the will of my spiritual master. Prabhupada was living in New York City in a poverty state, risking his life at the age of seventy. But he was always dreaming of bringing his devotees to Vrindavan. In fact in 1972 he invited his disciples from all over the world to Radha Damodar where he spoke for one month on Nectar of Devotion. And he has written in his books how it was his great desire that devotees from all over the world of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness could come and be inspired by the atmosphere of Vrindavan and have the experience of pure, unadulterated devotional service.
Prabhupada established Krishna-Balaram temple so that devotees from all over the world can come and understand what Vrindavan is:
And Prabhupada said for this reason we have established the Krishna-Balaram temple. And Prabhupada really really had to work and fight to build this temple. And he built it for the devotees all over the world. It is the one place in Vrindavan that Prabhupada wanted the absolute purest presentation of Krishna consciousness, the purest behavior, the purest etiquette of vaishnavas where people from all over the world and all over India could come and really understand what Vrindavan is. That was Prabhupada’s dream. In one lecture Prabhupada said if I have ten devotees who live in the spirit of six Goswami’s at Krishna Balaram temple in Vrindavan that would be my glory. So this project is so very important to Prabhupada.
Maharaj expresses his gratitude towards Devamrta Prabhu:
And we are so grateful and proud that Devamrta Prabhu has accepted the service of taking a prominent role in helping to make Krishna-Balaram temple all the Srila Prabhupada dreams that it will be. So let us all in our hearts and in whatever way we can try to assist Devamrta Prabhu and the leaders of Krishna Balaram temple in this most magnificent of all projects. And this time I would like to ask Devamrta Prabhu to speak to us. Let us all offer our prayers for his successful endeavors by loudly chanting Haribol. Let us offer our gratitude for his life of sacrificial devotional service to the lotus feet of shri Guru and Gauranga by loudly chanting Haribol.