I gave an evening program about Srila Prabhupada being our Founder Acarya - a topic which cannot be emphasized enough. Our gratitude and internal dependance on Srila Prabhupada has to become the very foundation of our spiritual practice and preaching. And this gratitude and dependance has to be nourished and cultivated. It does not develop automatically - simply by time passing. Any deeper relationship requires consistent endeavor and mindfulness.
Another evening one couple celebrated one of the Samskaras for the benefit of the child in the womb, so I took the opportunity to speak about Samskaras and raising children in Krsna consciousness - a topic which is very relevant in this community, since there are several young families with small children.
The Sunday Feast lecture I dedicated to the topic of tolerance - a most important quality to develop within spiritual practice.
We managed to find good shoes for her, and the clothes she wanted. So our mission was successful, and I was happy that I could serve her in this way and do her a little favor, which she indeed appreciated. After the shopping was completed I took her for a nice walk along the river Neckar, with a nice view onto the old part of the town. It was nice and sunny wheather, and the trees were getting gradually yellow, announcing the autumn season.....
There is an interesting quote from Bhaktivinoda Thakur's Caitanya Siksamrita:"There are three types of service to elders: protection of parents,protection of teachers, and protection of other elders. One must follow the instructions of parents and serve them as much as is possible. A person should serve those who have protected him as a helpless child; he
should also service those who have given knowledge, especially those who have given spiritual knowledge and mantra. Those are considered superior who are bigger in body, greater in age or more experienced in knowledge. One must respect and serve them all. One cannot follow incorrect orders of a superior but one should not show hostility towards him, using disrespectful or harsh words. One should put a stop to their improper behavior or instructions by using sweet words, humility, and gentle reasoning at the proper time. Disrespect to elders has three objects: parents, teachers, and other superiors. Even if the superior makes a mistake, he should not be disrespected. A person should be careful to please superiors with polite and gracious conduct. To disobey the orders of superiors is also disrespect."
Both of us have done some internal work in regards to our relationship, and thus it has become so much more harmonious and sweet. We have learnt to respect each other's differences without dwelling on them. I can see my association with her as an opportunity for me to cultivate more tolerance and humility. She has been a most amazing mother to me in my childhood, so she certainly deserves a bit of my attention, care and service....!
On the 30th of September I moved on to Harinama Desh/Wiesbaden......
Your servant, Devaki dd