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Monday, February 27, 2006

Śiva Caturdaśī, prāṇa pratiṣṭha, respect and Sevā Kuñja

Due to difference of opinion most people did Śiva Pūjā and the vigil yesterday, so today it really peaceful at Gopeśvara Mahādeva Mandir. At the gate I buy a basket with a garland, roses, Bael-leaves, incense and some other items to offer. I am out within 5 minutes.

In a private darśan I ask Satya-nārāyan Dāsjī whether Kṛṣṇa will not be there in the deity because of corrupt management of its temple or organization, due to lack of prāṇa pratiṣṭha or lack of bhakti. He says prāṇa-pratiṣṭhā is just a show conducted for social acceptance of a temple. Kṛṣṇa is anyway everywhere, so why not in a non-installed deity? Kṛṣṇa is manifest in the deity according to the bhakti of the individual who comes for His darshan.

I ask him about the dilemma of having to respect older devotees who may be deeply flawed. He says it is hazardous to criticise elders in public (internet) for one will make many enemies, but in private one should certainly speak the truth about such a senior devotee, because it is one's duty to warn innocent would-be followers against him. About Upadeśāmṛta verse 6 he says that one should not dishonor a devotee because of faulty character but also not associate with him/her, just as one would die after drinking the Yamunā-water in its current polluted state, but must certainly respect her from a distance.

During the class he confirms that one cannot just get darśan of Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa by hiding oneself in Sevā-kunja. This is a myth, hearsay. All the neighbors can look in from the first floor and they don't go blind or mad. I tell him I was living in such a first-floor adjacent room and I never saw anything (and mad I was already before that anyway!)

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