(Kadamba Kanana Swami, Melbourne, Australia, October 2011)
I was once at a program with all these western people, and Bhakti Charu Maharaja was leading the program in Amsterdam. At one point he said to all these western people:
“And now fold your hands and now we are going to pray!”
In Europe, usually you would not say that to people………you have to be careful, by not saying the word ‘pray’ or the word ’God’….you don’t say that too much since they do not like hearing it in the lecture. A little bit is okay but, not saying the word ‘God’ twenty times in a lecture. So Bhakti Charu Maharaja was sayng:
“Now everyone fold your hands”.
Because he was an Indian Guru they did it! If I would have said it, then they would never have done it, but because he was Indian they just did it! And suddenly you see all these atheistic people praying! They have never prayed in their lives! So they are allergic to these things,
If you say the word ‘God’ a lot of the times, then they say:
“You are trying to convert me!”
So one has to be more careful, and we cannot be so direct by saying ‘God’ and ‘pray’ and all these words – that’s why they like words like ‘yoga’ and ‘meditation’. So instead of ‘praying’ you can say ‘meditation’, and instead of ‘religion’ you can say’ yoga’.
If they are religious, then be a little alert, since the church has been very heavy on the people for a hundreds of years:
“You are going to hell if you don’t do that! Pay your donations or you’ll burn and burn!”
People have turned away from the churches and they are allergic from religion. It is not just that they are outright atheistic – it’s the church that has made them into atheists with their heavy preaching. So they are allergic from religious words!