India Surf Festival, 2013

Posted on January 31, 2013 by admin-vasanti

Devotional life can be amazing. Attempting to surrender to the will and plan of the Lord brings newer and newer ventures. Being under the umbrella of Srila Gurudeva brings adventures and activities that are always surprising. Who knew when I came to Puri, that there was a surf festival nearby that we would attend. Jai Caitanya prabhu (who is like Narada Muni and appears everywhere) arrived at the temple and said the next day there was a surf festival and would be good if some people came and distributed books and did kirtan.

So, the eclectic crew gathered consisting of: Sita dasi (Florida), Caitanya-sakti dasi (California), myself (California/India), Madhumati dasi (Canada), Haladhara prabhu and his brother Herkov (Estonia), Arun Krsna prabhu (Guyana), Dinanath prabhu (UK), Kapila prabhu (Hawaii), Visvarupa dasa (Russia), and Jai Caitanya prabhu (somewhere from America).

We all piled into the back of a pickup truck that Jai Caitanya and Dinanath prabhus flagged down and made a good deal with to drive us the hour away to Konark, where the festival was taking place.

We arrived at 10am and when we got there not much was happening. We decided to sit and chant and see how it went and could go back to the temple at any time. The newspaper reporters were the first to approach us, taking our pictures, recording our kirtan and interviewing a couple of us about who we were and where we were from.

The reporter was a very spiritual man and I gifted him a few Oriyan books to which he was grateful for and he gave me his email for the hari-katha mailing list.

As time went by more and more people were arriving and by noon there was a big crowd around us where we chanting.
There were paddle races, windsurfers and surf lessons. Intoxicants and sense gratification were prominent and we could feel our presence was meaningful and appreciated. We could feel that the kirtan was transforming the entire atmosphere and everyone was attracted to it. They would come talk to us and look at the books. Some devotees spoke with people who approached us and others walked around the area with books.







It was an international affair – people from all over India and the West so having both Oriyan and English books was good. I met one guy Teja from Bombay and when he saw Journey of the Soul, he said, “That’s a great title,” and picked it up. He said it was a beautiful book and then showed me the book he was currently reading by Osho called something like – The Lost Language of Love. He said he probably couldn’t afford the book and I told him he could give any donation for the book (thanks to the GVP Sponsorship Program that we can do this) and he gave what he could – which was just about 20 rupees short of the printing price of the book.

One of the organizers who is from Argentina asked us if we wanted to come back the next day and chant on the stage from 5-6 to which we replied we would love that opportunity. So the following day, the eclectic crew minus a couple members and an addition of a new member (Jaya prabhu) again piled into a pickup truck (smaller than the previous days truck) and headed back out to Konark.










Their schedule was a bit different than they explained to us, but it all worked out nicely. We chanted on stage for about 15 minutes and then they had their award ceremony. As I was watching the award ceremony and seeing the little surfboard awards they were giving, a strong feeling came inside of me that I felt descending straight form Srila Gurudeva that we can’t leave this place without everyone getting a book for without a book, there participation in this festival is useless.

After their award ceremony, our devotees chanted beautifully for another 20 minutes while a couple of us went around and distributed books and talked with people. I approached the leader of the festival who was an American lady. I told her that I saw her working so hard all weekend and she deserves an award and gave her a Venu-gita. She was so surprised and thrilled, and said, “I’ve been looking for this book. It’s one of the Gita’s part of the bigger one, right?” To which I replied that it was and it was about the beautiful sound of Krsna’s flute and how He attracts all through His flute-sound.” She was so grateful and we spoke a bit longer and exchanged emails to stay in touch.

Over the course of the two day even we distributed almost 150 Oriyan books and about 30 English books.

Srila Gurudeva ki jaya!
Transcendental Book Distribution ki jaya!

Submitted by Vasanti dasi


  1. Anjali dasi
    5 years ago

    Jaya Jagannath!!!

  2. Chandrika dasi
    5 years ago

    Jaya Gurudeva!!!

    thanks for sharing this experience Vasanti didi!

  3. Sanjay
    5 years ago

    I felt blessed with kirtan on that broken bridge and enchanting melody on stage.
    See you next year.