Report by Ter Kadamba Das
This year, again we had the great honour of extensive association of His Holiness Kadamba Kanana Swami in Mayapur (14-27 February). As the process of transforming the management structure of Mayapur, from a temple to an actual city progresses, Maharaja consolidates his position as a central figure in that transformation. This means that Maharaja will spend roughly three months a year in Mayapur, and he will be very busy while here.
A seemingly endless array of meetings take up the majority of his time but fortunately for us, he is very committed to also making time for evening kirtans, home programmes, parikramas and such, because as he says, “This is what keeps me sane!” All the devotees in Mayapur are very appreciative of Maharaja’s presence. Just keeping devotees up-to-date with what Maharaja was doing and arranging darsanas became a daily routine for me, one of which I was honoured to do, of course.
Maharaja has also served as a teacher for the Mayapur Institute Bhakti Sastri course, teaching Nectar of Devotion. Several of the students, independently of each other, told me confidentially, that he is their favourite teacher. Also this year, Maharaja was one of the most prominent kirtaniyas of the annual Mayapur Kirtan Mela. His trademark fired up kirtans took over the crowds of devotees as we have become accustomed to. One evening, he kept going until 10.30 pm and only ended because the organizers were getting tired. “I could have easily kept going for another hour,” Maharaja said afterward and this was after a whole day of meetings with GBC and Mayapur management. One group of devotees, who were staying in Nabadvip, contacted me to find out Maharaja’s schedule for Kirtan Mela. They were completely disinterested in any of the other kirtaniyas on the programme. Once they got information of when Kadamba Kanana Swami was leading kirtan, then they knew when to come to Mayapur.
Having the opportunity to be close to Maharaja for longer periods of time, makes me appreciate what he does so much more. The level of commitment to Srila Prabhupada’s mission is amazing, and his personal renunciation and regulation is incredible. But what really wins me over every time is that, just like Sri Mayapur Dhama, Kadamba Kanana Swami always has some extra added mercy. I think that is one of the reasons why Sri Sri Panca Tattva, Sri Sri Radha Madhava and Sri Nrsimhadeva keep him around so much!
Courtesy of Varun Sharma
Videos of Kadamba Kanana Swami’s participation in the Kirtan Mela may be found by clicking here.