No…we are not yet done with this series on “Weekend away with HG Bhurijan prabhu”. Infact, I might have another 3-4 more posts on this. The last few days leading upto the weekend that went by, was too busy for me. I was tired and just couldn’t pen down anything. Excuses? Yup. Plenty of them. Anyways, here I am and let’s start with where we left off…
Part 6 : The children
In my last post, I mentioned about the beautiful kirtan, led by HG Bhurijan prabhu in which everyone participated so well. I was lost in it for a while. When I opened my eyes at some stage, I could see that many others were in a similar mood. When you see people with eyes closed, swaying about slowly, or have their hands folded in prayer or even tears, just about to drop, you know that the music is just wonderful. Another sign, is when kids are mesmerized that they forget to carry out their regulative principles of distracting parents and making noise ! It was so wonderful to see such young vaishnavas take Krishna Consiousness, so seriously and with so much happiness. What luck !
“Children’s nature is to imitate, because they have to learn. So nature has given them the propensity to imitate. So the first imitation begins from the parents. So if the parent is nice Krsna devotee, naturally the children become devotees. That is the opportunity of taking birth in a Vaisnava family. So you are all Vaisnavas. If your children do not become Vaisnava in the future, then it is a great, I meant to say, fault on your part. So you should be very cautious, careful, that children are not going astray, they are becoming actually Krsna conscious. That means you have to imitate, er, you have to be devotee, and they will imitate. By imitation, imitation, imitation, they will come to Krsna consciousness. Then they will never give it up.”
– Srila Prabhupada
“Regarding the child problem: I may inform you that all children born of the Krishna conscious parents are welcome and I want hundreds of children like that. Because in future we expect to change the face of the whole world, because the child is the father of man.”
-Letter to Krishna devi dasi, August 21, 1968
I am very glad to learn that the children at Gurukula school are making good progress in their Krishna Consciousness education, that is very good news. Yes, if we simply train them properly they will come out just to the highest standard of Vaisnava devotee. And what is that training? Simply they should be engaged in such a way that they are somehow or other remembering Krishna at every moment, that’s all. It is not something mechanical process, if we force in such a way they will come out like this, no. We are persons, and Krishna is a Person, and our relationship with Krishna He leaves open as a voluntary agreement always, and that voluntary attitude–Yes, Krishna, I shall gladly co-operate whatever you say–that ready willingness to obey is only possible if there is love. Forcing will not make me agree. But if there is love, oh, I shall gladly do it. That is bhakti, that is Krishna Consciousness. So similarly, if we train children by developing and encouraging their propensity to love Krishna, then we shall be successful in educating them to the topmost standard. Then they shall always very happily agree to do whatever you ask them. So I have heard that there as been some beating with sticks on the children. Of course I do not know, but that should not be. You may show the stick, threaten, but better art is to somehow or other, even by tricking them, avoid this matter of force and induce them to obey out of loving spirit. That is success of disciplinary method. Hoping this meets you in good health. Your ever well-wisher, A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami.
Srila Prabhupada Letter to: Rupa Vilasa Hyderabad 18 November, 1972
“It is very good news that Vishnu-arati is advancing nicely in Krishna consciousness and I know that you and your husband will always do your best to bring her up on the right path of Krishna consciousness. To raise one soul to Krishna consciousness is counted by Krishna as a very great service, so you do this duty very carefully and Krishna will certainly bestow His blessings upon you.”
ibid., November 2, 1969
“Child-worship is more important than deity-worship. If you cannot spend time with him, then stop the duties of pujari. At least you must take good care of your son until he is four years old, and if after that time you are unable any more to take care of him then I shall take care. These children are given to us by Krishna, they are Vaishnavas and we must be very careful to protect them. These are not ordinary children, they are Vaikuntha children, and we are very fortunate we can give them chance to advance further in Krishna Consciousness. That is very great responsibility, do not neglect it or be confused.”
Letter to Arundhati dasa, July 30, 1972
“We require so many householders to set the example for others, how in Krishna consciousness we can live peacefully, even in married life. Also we require so many Krishna conscious children to show how nicely and beautifully a child can develop when he is following the principles of God consciousness.”
Letter to Upendra dasa, December 8, 1968