(Kadamba Kanana Swami, 25 September 2013, Cape Town, South Africa)
Transcribed by Rukmini devi dasi
Bhakti Charu Maharaja tells a nice story. In Srila Prabhupada’s final days, Maharaja was part of a team that looked after Srila Prabhupada. Prabhupada’s health was not good at the time and he was quite strict about what he was eating and when he was eating.
Once, it was in the night or evening, but quite late, and suddenly Prabhupada rang his bell. Bhakti Charu Maharaja went there and Prabhupada said that he wanted some orange juice. Maharaja was in the process of making some orange juice but also doing some other things. He was making the orange juice which may take fifteen minutes.
After about seven minutes, the bell was ringing again and this time it was ringing quite intensely. Prabhupada was shaking the bell; that was quite clear. Prabhupada immediately said, “Why didn’t you bring the orange juice?”
“It was not ready yet.”
“Why is it not ready?” He completely chastised him.
“I’ll bring it right away.”
“No, I don’t want your orange juice. I don’t want your orange juice.” Prabhuapada said very strongly.
Bhakti Charu Maharaja left, went to the kitchen, made the orange juice and brought it to Prabhupada. And Prabhupada was like, “Take it away! I don’t want it. I don’t want it.”
Bhakti Charu Maharaja just stayed there and said, “Please, please, I know that I should have brought it sooner, but please take it because it’s good for health.”
“Alright,” said Prabhupada and then he took it.
This story is really nice because it shows that Prabhupada conquered Bhakti Charu Maharaja to a point where he was his surrendered servant and nothing could change that, not even chastisement. Then we see that the disciple can also conquer the guru, because Prabhupada didn’t want the juice but still he took it.
So that is another very deep and interesting point because it is not just the guru who conquers the disciple with his transcendental potency and by instilling deep faith in the heart. No, it is personal. The disciple can also conquer the guru and it must be so. It must be a two way relationship – not one way. A disciple must think about conquering the spiritual master. How? How can I conquer my spiritual master?