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Thursday, March 27th, 2003

Sri Anu Giriraj Mandir
Constructing and instructing

During the morning darshan, Srila Govinda Maharaj opens a copy of Bhagavat Darshan—Revelation not Speculation, and begins reading:

"Jnane prayasam udapasya namanta eva..."

"Maharaj," I interject, "When you describe this verse, you say, 'Throw away the bucket of knowledge that you are holding in your head...'"

"Yes, we have acquired so much knowledge, and we are carrying that with us, like a bucket on our head, but that type of knowledge must be thrown out."

"So that when the bucket is empty, it can be filled with the pure Krishna conception that Guru is giving?"

"Yes.... Srutasrava Prabhu has made a very nice book: small, but nice!"

At nine-o-clock, after breakfast, Srila Gurudeva inspects the construction progress of the Sri Anu Giriraj Mandir, quizzing and instructing the builder on the quality and texture of the granite exterior, the shape and size of the marble chips currently being used on the front tower and dome, and the shape and smoothness of some of the architraves. His eye misses nothing.

We climb up the stairs to the third floor of the mandir; we have to stop to rest twice because Srila Gurudeva is out of breath. At the top, he describes the shape of the second tower and dome above Sri Giriraj, and how it will tower another twenty-five feet above the existing fifteen and twelve foot sections. He asks Ranajit Prabhu to ring the one hundred kilogram Russian-made bell so that we can hear what it sounds like. Awesome!

Later, I inform Srila Gurudeva of the (non) status of my Russian visa. He laughs and says, "Giriraj wants you to stay here."

I laugh in agreement. I am happy to stay here in Govardhan, at his side. Our relationship is developing nicely...
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