A Happy Father's Day

Tridandisvami Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
Darsana After The Morning Walk
San Francisco, California: June 17, 2007

FathersdaySrila Gurudeva: Is Father's Day for daughters only, or also for males?

Devotees: For males also.

Srila Gurudeva: Then why are the males not giving me any gifts? I have more affection for my daughters. None of the men told me it was Father's Day.

Sripad Damodara Maharaja: Srila Gurudeva, you said on the morning walk that even though the father has so much affection for his son, he may not show it directly. He may not take the son on his lap. We know you love your sons best; therefore you are not showing it.

Srila Gurudeva: I have more affection for my daughters.

Srila Gurudeva: My blessings for all of you today is that pure bhakti will come in your hearts – the greed for service in raganuga-bhakti will come. May you attain your highest goal.

What is your highest goal?

Caru-candrika dasi: Manjari-bhava.

Devotees: Radha-dasyam.

Srila Gurudeva: Radha-dasyam (the personal service of Srimati Radhika).

In the West, after the sons' marriage, the fathers and sons separate from each other. The sons no longer render service to their fathers. In India, even when their mothers and fathers are very old, the children continue to serve. Nowadays, however, except in the villages, where old persons are still taken care of by their grown children, a 'wind' has come to India from Western countries. Old persons are suffering as a result, as they are not allowed to even live with their families. I want you all to follow varna-asrama-dharma, an example of which is serving one's parents.

Gokula dasa: If we are in family life, we should take care of our mother and father?

Srila Gurudeva: Yes; and have good relations with your brothers. Lord Rama wanted to give His kingdom to Bharata, and Bharata wanted to give the kingdom to Rama. They were quarreling about this point. Nowadays it is the opposite; we quarrel for our own ownership. We should be like Rama and Bharata.

Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has told us to be like trees. A tree gives its leaves, fruits, branches, flowers, juice, fruits, shade, and wood to others. We should try to not live for ourselves, but for others.

Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja left everything in his old age and traveled the entire world to benefit others. I also travel only to bring the highest benefit to all – to follow our guru-parampara.

Mahaprabhu dasa: My thirteen year-old daughter, Tulasi dasi, is here to see you.

Srila Gurudeva: She came with you from Australia? To hear hari-katha?

Mahaprabhu dasa: Yes. She took initiation from you a few years ago, and now she wants second initiation.

Srila Gurudeva: (To Tulasi dasi) How many rounds do you chant daily?

Tulsi dasi: I am building up.

Srila Gurudeva: How many rounds are you chanting now?

Tulsi dasi: Two rounds a day.

Srila Gurudeva: Very good, very good. But no diksa now.

You will automatically increase your chanting when you will realize the glories of the holy name – that the holy name can save you from the pain of endless birth and death. Money and worldly things cannot make you happy; but these holy names will give you everything up to krsna-prema, and you will be able to serve Radha and Krsna forever. When you realize this, then you will chant more. When I come to Australia, you can receive the diksa-mantras.

Syamarani dasi: You said we should follow varnasrama-dharma. You said we should serve our mother and father and brothers.

Srila Gurudeva: Not only on Father's Day, but every day.

Syamarani dasi: What if our mother, father, and brother are non-devotees?

Srila Gurudeva: Grhasthas (householders) should do so, and those who are renounced, who have given up the world, should serve their holy master.

Syamarani dasi: A householder should serve his non-devotee, material mother and father?

Srila Gurudeva: Yes, they should serve their mother, father, and brothers – whether or not their family members are devotees – otherwise they will have to go to hell. Everyone who is not a pure devotee has debts to others in this world. When my father used to come to Mathura, I would take his foot-dust on my head.

Sripad Madhava Maharaja: His father was a devotee.

Srila Gurudeva: Even though I am a sannyasi and he was a grhastha, I did so. He was my first guru. He taught me Mahabharata, Ramayana, and other scriptures.

Sripad Madhava Maharaja: They serve their parents in order to inspire them to become devotees. The parents receive good impressions by remembering how their devotee children always give respect to them, and bring them prasadam and the good news about what is best for their eternal welfare.

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