Health, Harmony, Happiness

(excerpt from Transcendental Diary 1, Sridham Mayapur by HG Hari Sauri das)

There was a very amusing incident in mid-morning, when Prabhupada had a visit from a yogini, Yogashakti Ma. She came smiling into Prabhupada’s room, her long hair streaming over saffron clothing, accompanied by three male followers. She wanted to invite Prabhupada to a World Yoga and Peace Conference they plan to hold. The address they gave was an apartment in Calcutta.

She expressed her hope that leaders of various yoga and peace groups could get together and exchange their different experiences to everyone’s benefit, so that the world could be a better place to live, where everyone could become happy. Of course, she would be at the center of it, as the organizer.

To this end she had issued a leaflet. One of her men read it out. It proclaimed “Health, Harmony, Happiness” through jnana, dhyana, bhakti, karma, and so on. In other words, it was a hodgepodge of ideas with no real focus. She finished by saying that their goal was to serve God and humanity.
Hearing the bit about serving God, Prabhupada called her bluff. “Who is God?” he asked her.

But neither she nor any of her followers could answer. One of them mumbled, “Hari Om.” Another said something about the Creator and “love of us all.”

Prabhupada continued in his matter-of-fact, simple, and direct manner. “If there is a toilet,” he said, “and you go there and throw some scent, does that make it a nice place? Trying to make the toilet a nice place is less intelligent. Krsna says duhkhalayam asasvatam. This material world is temporary and full of suffering, so trying to be happy here is simply a waste of time.”

He was going to continue but couldn’t. His analogy visibly shocked them. Yogashakti Ma had conjured up an image of attaining bliss on earth, and Prabhupada frankly and abruptly shattered her sentimental vision.
They all took it like a slap in the face. One of the men became visibly disturbed. Speechless, he began to shake. Agitated and disturbed in mind, he wouldn’t stay a moment longer. He simply offered his respects, uttered “Hari Om,” and got up and left. Yogashakti Ma and the others followed.

Srila Prabhupada continued to sit at his desk, a smile gracing his face. He wasn’t concerned that his words had disturbed their idealistic notions. They were typical Mayavadis — in maya. He had spoken the truth as revealed by God Himself, Lord Sri Krsna. If they couldn’t take it, it was no fault of his. He laughed. “By their yoga-sakti,” he told me, “they have one flat in Calcutta. We have no such sakti, and we have a hundred centers like this [Mayapur]!”

Prabhupada is simply wonderful. Others may or may not appreciate, but he cannot compromise the truth for anyone. His only interest is in serving Krsna and Krsna’s mission — nothing else. By Krsna’s grace he is enjoying world-wide success. He has neither the need nor desire to have his name associated with anything that deviates from the strict principles of bhagavata-dharma.

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