Thank you for producing such an attractive magazine. The January/February issue in particular was deeply impressive, up-to-date, filled with spiritual purity, and offering a good combination of articles. It was like a festival.
Seeing Every Man as Son
I was glad to see Mother Vegavati's letter [in response to an article by Urmila Dasi] about the importance of a woman's seeing every man except her husband as son.
On several other occasions Srila Prabhupada mentioned that women should see other men as sons, especially brahmacaris and sannyasis. For example, in Vrndavana in 1974 he said, "If I see woman as mother, she must see me as son. That's all. That is the system. The brahmacari, the sannyasi go to beg alms from door to door. 'Mother, give me some bhiksa, alms.' And it is the duty of the grhastha to treat brahmacari andsannyasi as their son."
In 1975, he wrote to his women disciples in Dallas, "Canakya Pandit said that every man should see all other women as mother, and similarly a woman should see all men as son."
Only in the last couple of years has this instruction of Prabhupada's for women been brought to my attention, and I feel it is a great help. I have heard of one respected wife of a GBC who normally addresses men devotees as "son," and I believe it would be a beneficial practice to teach in our gurukulas. Even when I'm working in a mundane office, it helps my Krsna consciousness when I regard men co-workers as sons. That way I can see that they are potential devotees.
Hare Krsna Dasi
URMILA COMMENTS: Athough Srila Prabhupada often quoted Canakya Pandita's advice that a man should view women other than his wife as mothers, he rarely spoke of how a woman should view other men. But in a lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam (January 7, 1974) Srila Prabhupada said, "This is Kali-yuga…. Nobody sees other's wife as his mother, nobody. And neither the woman sees other's husband as father." So, clearly, a woman may see men other than her husband either as "son" or as "father."
Simhacalam Blessed or Bogus?
I've just finished reading Hari Sauri's Transcendental Diary, Volume 2, and was very surprised to find, on page 135, a statement by Srila Prabhupada that the tirthas [holy places] in Simhacalam, South India, are not authorized. In the March/April issue of BTG the anniversary issue the cover story presented Simhacalam as "an enclave of learning and culture" visited by, among other great personalities, Srila Prabhupada. My question is: What in this situation does "not authorized" mean? Am I missing something somewhere? Please kindly clarify it for me, if possible.
Efland, North Carolina
We've checked with Hari Sauri. According to some accounts, Simhacalam in South India is where Lord Krsna in His incarnation as Lord Nrsimhadeva slew the demon Hiranyakasipu. But the Srimad-Bhagavatam tells us that this pastime occurred at the palace of Lord Indra in the heavenly planets. So Srila Prabhupada, Hari Sauri says, expressed doubt that the pastime could have taken place on earth. But Srila Prabhupada obviously considered Simhacalam worth visiting, as did Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Though some stories about the place may be "not authorized," it is certainly an accepted holy place and an enclave of learning and culture.
Krsna Conscious Memory
I am writing in loving memory of my daughter Natasha Krsna, who died March 12, 1993, at the age of 6 months.
After calling BTG headquarters I was put in touch with an angel named Hare Krsna Dasi. Ms. Dasi took the day off from work to attend the funeral and say some poignant words about Krsna consciousness. She did this even though we had never met. God bless BTG and Ms. Dasi. HARE KRSNA!
We'd like to hear from you. Please send correspondence to: The Editors, Back to Godhead, P.O. Box 430, Alachua, Florida 32615, USA.
Update: The "Project Profile" in our March/April issue covered Sign On to Krishna (The Hare Krishna Group for Deaf People). This is where to get in touch with them by phone:
Dinesh Sejpal +44 (081) 427-3423
Vishanti Ram +44 (081) 803-5331