Letters (92)

Letters written by Hridayananda das Goswami.

Dear Devotees,
Jaya Srila Prabhupada.

As you know, I have been struggling for many years with imperfect health. In the last few months, Krishna has revealed to me, through reliable medical exams, what my basic health problem actually is. I feel it is my duty to all those devotees associated with me to explain my condition, so you will understand how it affects and determines choices I must make in my devotional  service to Srila Prabhupada's mission.

I want to express my great sense of loss at the passing of our dear Godbrother Gopi-prana-dhana Prabhu. We worked together for several years to finish Srila Prabhupada's Bhagavatam. In this and other projects, he showed his brilliant, faithful understanding of Vaishnava literature, his exemplary conduct and his saintly character. 

Gopi-parana-dhana Prabhu revealed the real meaning of a Vaishnava brahmana and clarified by his life, why the Vaishnava brahmanas are so dear to Lord Krishna. Devotees around the world deeply appreciated him and mourn his passing, even as we all rejoice in our certain knowledge of his most excellent destination at Krishna's feet. I also want to express my sincere condolences to all of his family and friends.

Your servant,
Hridayananda das Goswami
September 16, 2011

nama om visnu-padaya krsna-presthaya bhutale
srimate bhaktivedanta swamin iti namine

namas te sarasvate deve gaura-vani-pracarine

Dear Srila Prabhupada,
I offer my sincere obeisances to you.

In Krishna-lila, we find that various pure devotees enjoy different relationships with Krishna. We observe this principle when Krishna descends as Govinda, and also when He comes as Nimai Pandita to manifest the sankirtan movement. There is variety not only of rasas but of 'moods.' Thus among the servants of Mahaprabhu, some are bold, others meek, some innovative, others traditional.

I wanted to share with you some philosophical thoughts that I wrote to a friend. They address the false bravado of materialists who claim that the world is beautiful and 'miraculous' and that the shortness of life does not detract from it, but in fact makes life more interesting, and thus they have no interest in an eternal soul or God.

When we lose something of positive value, and our loss does not bring in its wake, nor is replaced by, an even greater positive value, then such a loss must have a negative value precisely corresponding to the positive value of that which was lost.

A simple example: if I lose ten dollars, I lose precisely the positive value, namely ten dollars. If I invest ten dollars and make twenty, that is not a loss. Similarly, if I give ten dollars in charity, the rewards may easily outweigh the 'loss.' A selfish person may enjoy the renown of having given. A more virtuous person would enjoy the happiness of virtue itself. If we simply lose ten dollars (it falls out of our pocket) and we don't care, that means ten dollars are just not that important to us. 

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