I was extremely delighted upon opening our book boxes from BBT, like a young boy on Christmas, to come across our new printed books. BBT has reprinted some of the most classic texts with some very nice bright covers and bright vivid illustrations pieces inside as well. (my suspicions are that some of the younger devotees are involved in this)
Although the KRSNA book looks blue in the photo it is actually a very attractive purple. This great book has 6 sets of photo pages of about 8 color pages each. All this was really exciting for Indranuja Prabhu and his wonderful wife Gita Govinda-san (-san=-ji in Japanese) had invited me to come out on books with them at the Warped Tour coming up this week. A total of 12 devotees engaged in sankirtan at this event. From Dallas Bhaktine Angela and myself were accompanied by Indranuja Prabhu and Gitasan. And visiting we had many wonderful devotees. My godbrother, Omkara Prabhu from LA, the long time Warp tour sankirtaneer Anandavidya Prabhu, the top book distributor North America Parameshvara Prabhu, one who is not to far behind Murti Prabhu, Dvarkesh Prabhu, and from Eastern Europe Avaita Prabhu. Traveling along with Murti Prabhu was the long time book distributor Bhakta Phil and his newly wedded wife Ahaituki.
So everyone showed up on Thursday and we all went out on an ecstatic day of sankirtan starting at 8am. Srila Prabhupada books were eagerly accepted by the youthful masses, adorned in what seemed to be a flashback from the 80's, and no not punk rock eighties, but neon amd other fashions that you would never think would ever show their ugly face again. It was quite funny but anyways as usual the crowds were very friendly and remarked about the books that they had received in the previous years. One person mentioned to one of the devotees that last year she bought an a amazing book that she had read cover to cover, she tried to pronounce it, "Bahhh gah vaa dd geda." She said, "I read it cover to cover and it was simply amazing." At the end of the day all the devotees distributed about $5000 worth of Srila Prabhupada's books, and many have received the thousands of flyers for the temple here in Dallas that were distributed. Youth from all around Texas and even other states travel far to attend this event.
Before returning to the temple we invited some local ladies who were working at a pollution free energy booth to visit the temple. Upon returning to the temple at 9pm, we all partook in the delicious prasadam from Kalachandji's restaurant. And the we decided to have a bhajan, well some exhausted from the 12+ hour day took rest, but rest of us and as well as visiting guests had hour long bhajan in the temple room. Here is a 30 sec video of the bhajan. (the visiting ladies had already left when I took this video)
The next morning there was little lake of saffron in the morning class which was nice. As they say, "Saffron is a spice in Alachua," we too here also have just a few in saffron. By the devotional shakti of these Vaishavas I believe came the inspiration of Bhakta Ruben. Who is Bhakta Ruben? He is the new haircut. That day Bhakta Ruben, who has been to the temple twice on Sunday came and asked if he could wear a shikha if he follows the four regs and chants. I told him that he sure could. And with a little joking from the shaved brahmacaris (they asked him, "Are you sure you wanna do this, you know it will never grow back again.") we were off to shave his head. Here is the before photo
And the after well I forgot the before photo but here is the half way one. Bhakta Richie kindly gave him a dhoti and He was then taught by Omkara Prabhu how to put on a kaupin, and dhoti and then I showed him how to put on tilak and tie his shikha. After spending some time with devotees, meeting the temple president and also HH Keshava Bharati Maharaja, Bhakta Ruben had to go to work. He was insistent however on staying dressed in Dhoti and kurta for he works a phone job. Since that day I see him almost every day at the temple, it seems that the only thing he ever wears now is dhoti and kurta.
The day ended with the Independence day fireworks, which could be seen very easily from the park that was south one block from the temple, followed by a spontaneous kirtan lead by youth while the Dallas onlookers watched and listen with with wonder. Hare Krishna
Your humble servant,
Nityananda Chandra Das