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Addressing Others

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Caracas, Venezuela
24 September 2009

 

Question: What should be the relation, or behaviour, of a woman with a devotee who is married?

All ladies are godsisters, all are Didi. Even in the example of Gurudev's mother, somebody called her Thakur Ma, somebody called her grandmother, somebody called her mother, but Gurudev did not like it. Everybody is Didi, all are godsisters. Sometimes we saw also that when Gurudev was going out, his mother would pay dandavat to him, and Gurudev would say, "Didi, how are you?" I saw and heard it myself. Gurudev never said, "Mother."

 

Question: How should a lady behave towards a sannyasi?

Whether it is a sannyasi or a brahmachari, the behaviour towards them is the same: always see them as a devotee, always pay dandavat. You can see what everybody does and do the same. Also, it depends upon the lady...

 

Question: Sometimes devotees address others as Mother (Mataji) and not Didi. Why is it so?

Actually, all this "Father, mother, mummy, pappy," creates too much attachment. Why will a brahmachari call somebody, "O mummy! (Mataji)"? Brahmacharis and sannyasis have no relation with this mundane world. All are godsisters, all are godbrothers. This is where we are coming from.

Even when a six-seven-year-old boy came to Prabhupad Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur and paid dandavat to him, Prabhupad would say, "Daso' smi. I am your servant." He would always say it. But he is Nayana Manjari, a special associate of Lord Jagannath and an intimate friend of Radharani—he has so much power. To teach us he can say this, and only Prabhupad can behave like this, we cannot (we are trying but cannot)...

Sometimes, on the Ratha-yatra day, all chariots move down the road, but Lord Jagannath stops and stands for some time at Prabhupad's birthplace. Everybody thinks, "Oh, something has happened," but nothing actually happens—it is just that Jagannath wants to meet with His friend.

When Prabhupad was six months old, the chariot of Lord Jagannath stood in front of his birthplace for three days. When his father, Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur, brought him out and put the dust of the chariot on Prabhupad's head, Jagannath's garland fell down for him. Then, the chariot started to move again.

Prabhupad is not an ordinary person...

 

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