Mother Gopi Gita and Gopi Krishna got to few weeks ago brainstorming about doing a drama. They wanted to do something that incorporated all the different elements of our temple. This the Gurukula youth, Gurukula alumni, temple staff, and congregation. Spring break was coming up so they thought lets give it a shot. Gopi Krishna suggested Ramayana because it had not been done at the Dallas temple before.
However this was done without some serious challenges. Krishna likes His devotees working hard in spiritual endeavors. They had two weeks, just two weeks to get everything together, despite having so many other priorities to manage. They had to write the script, pick all the sound and music, they had to direct and at the same time act in the play! An inspiration of the play was Bhaktimarga Swami. One of the ideas was to develop all the characters individually.
The production turned out wonderful, and sparked a passion in many to continue to share Krishna & Rama with the public in this fashion. Plans are now being made to bring our plays to other venues reaching a wider audience.
here great excerpt from Gopi Gita letter to all the actors:
I'm sooo buzzed/jaaazzzed/pumped... It was such an excellent endeavor!!
From this little play, we accomplished soo much. Four things come to mind.
1. the MOST IMPORTANT: camaraderie and devotee friendships and vaishnava relationships.
- How to work together, even in high stress environments and continue on towards one goal, serving alongside each other, even if communication styles and personalities clash. The more we work together with people we may generally not be able to do so, the more we are able to serve all together under Srila Prabhupada's roof.
- Finding lasting and deep friendships, based on serving Krishna, not based on temporary things as who gives you more attention, or who praises you the most, but based on our service and common goal.
- these friendships are what bring us to the temple again and again and what will inspire us to continue to serve.
2. The Gurukuli Youth working together with the Temple Devotees with the gurukula children and with the Plano kids. Somehow there are so many devotees in their groups working separately, and this drama service was able to combine all of those different types of devotees, which gives a major sense of Group Identity and helps in morale and sense of belonging. The more we feel we belong to the temple and the devotees, the less our desire to belong to those who may not be good for our spiritual lives.
3. Preaching! We were able to glorify the Supreme Lord Shri Rama and share His wonderful activities with all of those who watched!! And even for ourselves, those of us who were continuously at the play practices for the past two weeks have been living, breathing, I'm sure even dreaming the pastimes of Lord Rama and in doing so purifying our hearts in unimaginable ways. The Supreme Lord's pastimes are so POWERFUL!! We have to have the faith, that just by enveloping ourselves in them, we can get soo much spiritual advancement! and give it to others!! Someone might have a hard time going to a Bhagavatam class, but a drama... for sure they'll sit there and watch gladly, for upto two hours.
4. Of course, hopefully by this drama, aalll of us, individually, pleased Srila Prabhupada and HH Tamal Krishna Maharaj. We pray that they are smiling down on us and giving us all their blessings.
Your humble servant,
Nityananda Chandra Das