After visiting the Czech Republic and an overnight stay in Radhadesh, Kadamba Kanana Swami travelled to Cape Town, South Africa for a ten day visit that started on 25 June 2012. The resident devotees of the temple were out on a preaching tour at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, about 800 km away, so we anticipated a relatively quiet time there. However, Maharaj was pleasantly surprised by the arrival of disciples who journeyed from all over the country to be with him. So what started out as just a scheduled visit there actually turned into a sweet ‘disciple retreat’.
The Cape is often referred to as the ‘Cape of Storms’ and this winter it definitely lived up to its reputation as there were intermittent bursts of rain during the week. However, the inclement weather did little to hamper the spirit of the visiting devotees as they followed him around. And due to the nature of the audience i.e. disciples and close associates, each program became very personal and intimate. Two themes that dominated Maharaj’s talks were ‘positivity & conviction in Krsna consciousness’ and ‘humility & servitorship’.
During the week, he gave a series of morning lectures from the Srimad Bhagavatam (Canto 8, chapter 1, verses 1-10), with the exception of Sunday where he spoke from the Caitanya Caritamrta (Adi 12.30). In this particular CC lecture, Maharaj displays his extraordinary in-depth knowledge and understanding of the pastimes of Lord Caitanya, and clearly separates authorised literature from those that are not. At the evening programs, some of which were held at the temple and others at the houses of devotees, Maharaj spoke from the Bhagavad Gita. As usual, each program started-off with the long bhajan sessions; sometimes it was melodious and other times energetic but always ecstatic. The final evening program that Maharaj did was dedicated to Srila Sanatana Goswami as it was the occasion of His disappearance day (Tuesday, 3 July).
Apart from all the formal gatherings, there were 2 events for disciples only. On Tuesday (26 June), Maharaj went on a spontaneous japa walk along the promenade at Seapoint beach accompanied by some of the disciples. Two enthusiastic aspiring disciples decided to turn the occasion into a harinama, which just delighted passers-by! On Saturday (30 June), a cosy indoor picnic was hosted by the local disciples. It was a day of good bhajan, prasadam and association.
From a cold and wet Cape Town, Maharaj returned to Europe today to continue his summer preaching tour here.
If you cannot view the slide show, please visit flickr!