(HH Kadamba Kanana Swami, Radhadesh, Belgium, April 2012) Lecture: Lecture: SB 5.12.8

The truth must be spoken in a palatable way where people can ultimately take it. We see that Prabhupada was able to say things and still people respected him for it. There was a story about a professor in Hinduism who was introduced by Ravindra Swarupa to Srila Prahbupada. So Prabhupada asked him straightaway:

‘What is the definition of Hinduism?’

The professor replied:

‘That is hard to say.’

So Prabhupada turns to his disciple Savrupa Damodara and he says:

‘My disciple Savrupa Damodara also has a PhD. Savrupa Damodara, we asked for the definition of Hinduism and the professor said that it is hard to say. So what do we call that?’

‘Cheating Srila Prabhupada. That’s cheating!’

Prabhupada said:

‘That’s right!’

And then seriously within minutes it came to a huge argument between the professor and Prabhupada. It was a major argument, where they were screaming at each other! At one point Brahmananda came and said:

‘You better get out of here before you make more offences.’

He was looking at the size of Brahmananda with a serious face, and so the professor retreated. I mean, what a way to treat a professor. What a nightmare! You can tell that story in the next communications meeting. That was inconceivable, but the most interesting part of the story was that twenty years later, Ravindra Swarupa bumped into this professor. So the professor said to Ravindra Swarupa:

‘Oh, remember the time when I met Bhaktivedanta Swami’.

He was cringing and thought:

‘Oh no, now it’s coming!’

So the professor said:

‘You know, he was right!’


  1. I was at that original meeting of Srila Prabhupada and this professor. The professor was being argumentative and Srila Prabhupada said “prani patena…prani patena!” He was telling the professor to be humble and take the position of a student. But I guess this must have been hard for him, considering he was a professor and there were several of his own students with him. As the argument reached somewhat of a feverish pitch, Brahmananda prabhu was called from downstairs. Seeing the size of Brahmananda prabhu towering in the doorway and the force of his request, the professor and all of his students left. Ravindra Swarupa prabhu was mortified and begged forgiveness from Srila Prabhupada, who was still shaking with anger. Now free of any unwanted distractions, Srila Prabhupada then went on to give a very nice intimate talk to his disciples and guests. I believe this was 1974 but possibly 1975 and Prabhupada had come for Rathayatra. In the morning, Srila Prabhupada had given the famous morning lecture entitled ” Don’t jump over guru to get to Krsna.” Gaura Premananda Hari Hari Bol!

  2. what a pastime….actually, i guess, even then, back, he knew SP was right….