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Tuesday, May 20th, 2003

Kolkata, West Bengal, India.

Feeling The Heat

Out of the fire...

I feel better this morning; not quite as lethargic as I have been feeling the last few days. I get up at four o'clock and attend mangala arati.

I have not seen Srila Gurudeva for two days, so after mangala arati I go up to see him, but he has not come out of his room. I am informed that there will be no darshan this morning.

Later in the day I go up and offer my dandavats. He enquires about my health, and I say that I am feeling much better and that I think I was just suffering a little from the heat.

He offers me the use of the spare room next to Goswami Maharaj's room. Since these rooms open into the air conditioned darshan area, they are much cooler.

I say, "Yes, Maharaj," because I don't want to refuse his generous offer, but at the same time I really don't want to live in such close proximity to my gurudeva. I will just end up causing all kinds of offenses.

I am conscious of Goswami Maharaj's admonition at the door to Srila Govinda Maharaj's quarters: "We are privileged to participate in the pastimes of a Paramahamsa Vaishnava. We should not make the mistake of thinking that we see what he sees."

After lunch, just before he retires, Srila Gurudeva says, "So, Maharaj, you will come stay in this room?"

I put my hands together and say: "Maharaj, I think it will be better for me if I stay where I am now. In here, the fire of living so close to gurudeva will be much more intense than the heat in my room."

He smiles, nods his head, and says, "As you wish, Maharaj."

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