Drops of Nectar Along the Path
"Krishna consciousness is simply wonderful. It is sweet no matter where you taste it."
Swamiji told me that when he first saw snow falling from his window in New York, he thought it was lime, and he wondered why people were throwing lime down the roof.
"If you are going to rob, rob the government reserve, and if you are going to hunt, hunt the rhinocerous, because if you fail, everyone will say, 'Oh, that was impossible anyway,' and if you succeed, they will say, 'That was a glorious feat!"
Child's View of a Great Man
"He's not so great, he's just my father."
Prabhupada was very adept at telling jokes, and some of his favorite jokes were about Gopal Bon, a fictional Bengali character who time and again demonstrated his absurdity while thinking he was very clever. For example, one day Gopal Bon was walking with a basket of grain on his head. A wind came along and blew the grains onto the ground all around him. Gopal Bon then said, "Well, I was going to distribute the grains anyway."
Prabhupada often told this story.
One time a scorpion wanted to cross the river. He came upon a camel who was about to cross the deep river. The scorpion said to the camel, "Please, Mr. Camel, take me across the river."
The camel replied, "Oh, no: your reputation proceeds you, and I am afraid you will sting me."
The scorpion said, "Why should I do that? For if I did sting you, both of us would drown!"
That made sense to the camel, who thus invited the scorpion onto his back. In the middle of the river the scorpion stung the camel on his hump. Prabhupada demonstarted this by imitating a scorpion's tail with a fast, downward thrust of his arms. Then Prabhupada imitated the camel, who looked up questioningly at the scorpion. "Why did you do that? Now we shall both drown," the camel asked, his voice quivering.
"It's my nature," the scorpion replied.
Walking across a soccer field in Gorakpur, India, I asked Srila Prabhupada, "Did you ever play sports in school?"
"Yes, he replied, "I was captain of the debating team."
Taming the Demon
One time a snarling dog charged at Srila Prabhupada. It looked like the Salva or Kesi demon charging Lord Krishna. Prabhupada raised his stick and said, "Come on!" The dog stopped short. Prabhupada gestured ever so slightly with his cane, and the dog sat down, still growling softly. Then Prabhupada threatened again, and the dog lay down and whimpered.
When we rounded the block for the second time, the whole performance was repeated; but by the third time we rounded the block, the dog had changed into Prabhupada's friend. The dog then tagged along with our group for awhile -- the canine had now become a tamed servant. I thought of the dog as one of my godbrothers, taking training from Srila Prabhupada just as I did.
"A devotee doesn't praise or reject a dog or a pandit.
All are in a diseased condition; all are part and parcel of Krishna.
We must engage them in the service of the Lord.
--A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami