Yadubara on Srila #Prabhupada
Srila Prabhupada had a way of speaking so gravely that
even when he said something simple, his words had
significance beyond their immediate, apparent meaning.
I experienced this several times that I can remember.
For example, the second time I met him in Surat,
India, I was following the devotees on a photographic
assignment from Asia Magazine, so I entered his room
to take more pictures. As I sat by his side,
Prabhupada suddenly turned to me and said, “So, are
you going to become a devotee?” At that time, I still
had a mustache and wore long hair. Although I was very
attracted to him and Krsna consciousness, I said, “I
don’t think so.”
Prabhupada said, “Then you have to leave.”
I had gone to much trouble and expense to go to India
from New York City, so I was completely flabbergasted
by Prabhupada’s comment that I had to leave. I didn’t
leave, and he never said anything else about my having
to leave. Therefore, I came to the conclusion that
Prabhupada was making comments that transcend time and
were not necessarily meant for that particular moment.
I took his comment to mean that if one is not a
devotee, then he cannot stay in the association of
devotees in the long run.
Another time a similar incident happened with
Prabhupada and myself, where he said something that
seemed to be connected with the present, but also the
future. It was at the installation of the Radha-Krsna
Deities in Paris in 1973. I was photographing the
occasion, and a big kirtana was going on. Just after
the actual installation, I put down my camera and went
to join the kirtana. I was dancing for a few minutes
and when I turned to dance in front of Prabhupada, he
motioned that I should come and speak to him. This was
unusual because it was right in the midst of a loud
kirtana with many people. I went beside Prabhupada and
put my head very close. I heard him say, “You should
never put down your camera.” I immediately went to get
my camera and start taking pictures. Naturally, I took
his words as immediate instructions for the present,
but as I thought about it, I realized that he meant it
also for the future, that I shouldn’t give up this
work. I should never put down my camera.
— Yadubara dasa Adhikari
Yadubara dasa, interview.
– From the Prabhupada Nectar by HH Satsvarupa dasa