Siva Ratri in Haridwar 2014

Posted on April 27, 2014 by navalatika

Submitted by Anita dasi

This was our fifth year distributing books for Siva Ratri in Haridwar. It just gets better with every year. This year we were a group of 10 ladies. Every day amazing things happened to each of us. But I will just mention a few of the highlights.

 

Vasanti dasi traveled separately than the rest of the group. When her bus took a break, one boy said she looked really interested in what she was reading and could he have a look. They got to talking and exchanged numbers. A few days later he met us when we were out on book distribution. He is sincere, but comes from a Mayavadi background.

 

 

We discussed with him some and he took home some nice books including Brhad-bhagavatamrta.

Over the years we have made several local contacts who we always try to follow up with. This year a sweet lady named Vandana insisted we come to her home.

A few of us went, sang bhajans with her family and neighbors and gave them books. She regularly stays in touch by phone now.

One boy named Tarun we met our first year in Haridwar and have stayed in touch and met over the years. When we called this time he said he had been in a bad accident in January (broke 9 bones, spent over a month in the hospital and was still bed ridden) so he couldn’t meet with us.

Vasanti and I made two trips to his home. Having nearly died he was taking life more seriously and stuck in bed he is hungry to read these sorts of books. We gifted him several books including the Jaiva-dharma. We emphasized that that book in particular would answer so many of his questions.We also encouraged him to chant harinama since he had time now. He indicated his japa nearby, but said he felt he could not because his condition doesn’t let him bathe properly. We told him with mahamantra there are no such restrictions. That he can chant as much as possible.

Most of us would go out into the crowd with books, but we always had a book table (actually a mat on the ground) with bigger books and kirtan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Personally I feel the Harmonist magazines are real treasures because they give access to the writings of so many of our acaryas, but they aren’t always a best seller. I was at the book table one day and a man from a nearby hotel came up and took all the Harmonist we had on the table. He said he took one last year to keep for his guests to look at and he was waiting for us to come back to get more.

Another wonderful moment for me at the book table was when one Rajastani man stopped by and said he loves Srimati Radharani so much that he sings Sri Radha-krpa-kataksa-stava-raja every morning and evening.

We had such a sweet exchange about Sri Sri Radha and Krsna and then he said he wanted one of every Hindi book we had at the table and also the coloring books. When I told him the total cost he paid twice as much.

The last day, just at the normal time we start distributing books a huge rain storm hit. The girls tried shop to shop, and to distribute books to the people taking shelter from the rain, but it was difficult. Taruni dasi was feeling a bit morose that the last day was like this when she ran into a foreigner girl.

 

They started up a conversation and she said she had come to India with her boyfriend, but he was into rushing from site to site. She wanted a deeper experience in India and was hoping to find a quiet ashram to spend some time in. Taruni dasi told her about Vrndavan, invited her to visit, and exchanged phone numbers. She was sharing this nice story in the evening when we remembered we had an extra ticket for the train the next day. She called up this woman and she liked the idea and was on the train to Vrndavan the next day.

One Comment

  1. Sri
    4 years ago

    Jaya Srila Gurudeva!! Please accept my Dandavat Pranaama’s Didi’s. To read about the devotee who took all the Harmonists after keeping them in mind for a whole year waiting for you to return, was amazing, as was the fruitful meeting that Taruni Didi had. Really inspiring! Haribol Haribol!