My Duty is not to Flatter or Ditto a Devotee’s Misconception (05/13/09)
I think a lack of communication, and possibly some miscommunication is at the bottom of my misunderstanding. I was not so clear on the points that you have now made crystal clear.
Regarding V_____ Dāsa, your recollection is absolutely perfect and I meant every word that I said to him. Since there really hasn’t been much communication between us, I became unclear of his ultimate intentions. If there was a misunderstanding here it is equally my fault.
Yes, the staying for six months at Rādhā-Dāmodara Temple to help B____ was the plan, but I would have also been very happy to have heard that you and V______ wanted to come and do some service in Govindajī Gardens, etc.
My suggestion that you travel was only meant as a possible solution (relief) if your social relation with B____ became more difficult…to the point of “its a problem”.
Getting along with B___ isn’t always that easy. He is a great soul and very determined to serve to please the Vaiṣṇavas – he just goes about it sometimes in a way of his own that is sometimes hard for others to grasp.
So, try to make the best of the situation and complete your stay in Vṛndāvana as planned. But if the unpleasantness continues to be in the air then you should reconsider coming down to Govindajī Gardens for some time (train is cheap).
Myself and a couple of the devotees are going to Leh/Ladakh from July 6th to 13th. Your photos of Ladakh that you showed me last year are what has inspired me to go there.
I think that in future yours and V_______ Dāsa’s plans to stay in India should include Kārttika and the winter months and also to include Govindajī Gardens, then you will find that much more conducive and availing much more association with our devotees. That associate with our other devotees is very important for V_______ Dāsa if he is an aspiring disciple.
I hope you are clear that I have much affection for both you and V_______ Dāsa, but I do not think that staying long periods in Vṛndāvana-dhāma on your next visit will be a good idea. I also do not think that wearing gold and dressing opulently while in the dhāma is proper Vaiṣṇava sadācāra (behavior). If you are going to be in the dhāma then be there in a spirit of renunciation. If that’s not possible then better not to be there at all. You are living with Śrīla Prabhupāda, Jīva and Rūpa Gosvāmī…to be their servant you must be renounced.
My duty is not to flatter or ditto a devotee’s misconception. If V_______ Dāsa aspires to be under my shelter then he should aspire to learn what standards I expect and you as his wife and as a disciple of Śrīla Prabhupāda should be there to help him. A good first step would be to take off your gold, dress simply and just do what humble service B____ requests from the both of you. After all it was his request that brought you there in the first place.
What I really dislike the most is quarreling between devotees – it ruins everything! So please find a solution to the current problem with B___.
More communication in future would be appreciated and you know that I have always encouraged you to do that.