Almost a month back, I had to take my dad to see a leading heart doctor in India. If there is any place on earth where you would like to see people suffer from birth, death, disease and old age, it has to be a hospital. And if its in India, the number would be in thousands. Close to 24 hrs a day, I saw this come and go. The hospital after the temple I think is a great place to contemplate on life, God, health etc.
Before I go ahead, I would like to make a special mention that its vital for everyone of us to have an annual health check-up. As per the doctor, a good majority of the emergency cases in the hospital comes from life style based diseases. Wrong diet, work and family related stress can lead to high pressure, cholesterol, diabetes & heart attack. He said that in the past people had to worry about war then famine and now life style. The hospital was giving out a guide to good health to all the patients there and I noticed that they had recommended “Bhakti yoga” as one of the exercises for people to be involved in. After I came back to Melbourne, I have ensured that I am doubly careful about my diet…no more extra ghee by the side. And seen to it that I have plenty of physical exercises such as walking, jogging and rowing. I am also going to join a club that focuses on small cross country marathons every Saturday in my neighbourhood. A fit body is required for us to be successful in our spiritual endeavours.
Anyways, back to the hospital. The waiting period was a looooong one. During this time, I utilized my iPod. It has some 100 Hare Krishna songs and l listened to it with much seriousness this time. I was now listening to Srila Prabhupada’s chant of the Hare Krishna Maha Mantra and decided to take a stroll and found myself at the Cardio Thoracic area. This is where all the heart gets operated on. And one could see the sign of concern on many families assembled there as they waited for some kind of news on the condition of their loved ones inside. I also wondered how many of these people knew the meaning of life, relationship with Sri Krishna, attachment to family & society etc etc.
I take a seat nearby and looked at the name board on the wall of many surgeons. They had long names with even longer educational qualifications attached to it. “They know all about the hearts but do they know about the soul”, I wondered. Just then I chanced to look into a corridor between one of the operating rooms and the chief surgeon’s office and I saw the below picture on the wall !
Krishna sure gives quick answers!!!
I was happy to see the picture of Sri Radha Krishna in the hospital. But as you know in India, one finds these pictures everywhere from airports to restaurants to retail stores. So, I figured that this was more of a show that any exercise to remind people of their relationship to Sri Krishna. Finally the chant on the iPod came to an end and I removed the earphones from my ear to take in the noise of the outside world which was so well kept away. And would you believe it – the hospital stereo system was playing the Hare Krishna Maha Mantra !!
I could not believe it. Never in any public place that I have been to, besides the ISKCON temples, have I heard the Maha Mantra being played on the stereo. I felt like running around the corridor telling patients that I knew this mantra and they should all chant to it. This was their only hope for everything. I was thrilled that the hospital had taken the spiritual side of things into account and that I wasn’t dealing with doctors who believed in the power of their own hands only.