Krsna on the Boardwalk at Agni Dhama

Srila Jiva Goswami dasa

Brave little Agni Dhama! That diminutive house was divided into four apartments. There were two downstairs with a shared bath between them, and two upstairs with a similar arrangement. Three families lived there, and I had a single front room with a desk as my only furniture.

Dear Reader, I’ve never told anyone what I am about to share with you now. Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare. What I will relate here I have never before told because although this incident is magnificent to recall, somehow the eternal implication is transparent. At worst then, please simply enjoy this vignette.

After the Morning Program, I’d come home, all aglow, and lay down on the clear hard wood floor there between my desk and the window, and take rest for about forty-five minutes before reporting down to Bahulabhana for the beginning of the Town Run Service.

On one such rosy summer morning, when the leafy green trees were filled with singing birds and the wind pushed fluff heavy clouds across a Disney like sky, I came in, dropped to the floor and went right to sleep.

The sound of the birds seemed to lift me into a state of rest so deep I could see myself dreaming. I was aware of the fact that I was sound asleep. The window was open. Fresh air poured in like mountain water. The sound of the trees moving back and forth in the rushing air currents was like the ocean.

There was a board walk from the front door to the road. I heard footsteps and in my sleep state still, I half rose and looked out. There on the walk, going away, in my sleep to be sure, I dreamt I saw Krsna.

He was really blue. His Hair was very black and curly. He wore a Brahman Thread. His Chest was bare. He wore a Yellow Dhoti. His Complexion was extraordinary. He was more than effulgent. He had that deep blue color, I’ve seen only on the Dhomodhara Murti which we had down in the chanting room at Bahulabhana. His Beauty and Grace were literally breath taking.

I knew I was asleep and dreaming, but my reaction was the same as it would have been had I been wide awake: I called to Him. “Krsna!” I said.

I noticed that although I’d heard footsteps, His Feet were not touching the boardwalk. In the dream, there was just no doubt that He is who He is. It wasn’t like I needed some indicator or proof. As long as I had sight of Him, I did not even notice that I wasn’t breathing.

“Krsna!” I called, and He stopped, at the mailbox out there, and turned back. I had called. He seemed to be waiting. There was nothing I could say. There was nothing I could do. He is God. But He did turn and pause, and then, with a gesture you might see when someone takes up a flower, He very gracefully reached out and opened and then closed the mailbox. Just: Open, look in mildly, just like He already knew what was there, and then close. It was such a simple act, so fraught with Total Knowledge. I knew then that He could see everything as clearly and easily as He could look in that mailbox. It was even as we might smell a rose, already knowing what the scent will be. He was just … doing Something.

To say that there was no feeling of violation or transgression imparted by His Graceful Movement is to state the obvious. What a gesture, that willowy reach at the otherwise generally mundane mailbox lid.

Looking back on that moment, I realize now that no birds were singing then. No traffic rushed by on the road, as it otherwise did at every moment. I did not notice, but remembering now, the wind had stopped too. Everything was Him, and in His Divine Serenity, everything for those moments, even in my sight, was perfect and still.

I’ve heard that Pure Devotees see Krsna at every moment. I don’t know for sure how that works: Do Pure Devotees see Krsna’s Energy at every moment? I’ve asked and been told that Pure Devotees actually see Krsna, as He is, all the time, just as you might see me if we were in the same room.

My experience was not like that. I was dreaming, for one thing, and I do not see Krsna at every moment, or even, other than His Deity Manifestations, directly at all.

But back then, in a dream on the boardwalk at Agni Dhama, for some reason I got a blast of that Vision: He had been there, apparently He was going, and for a moment, in that dream of lifetimes, I saw Him.

I was down and sleeping again before I knew it. Looking back, it seems to me that He is actually everywhere, so the apparent leaving was the dream of a message, or pastime. But although I was dreaming, those few seconds some 30 years ago, are today burned indelibly in my memory and thoughts to the point where nothing is more clear to me than that dream, that wonderful powerful incredible dream of Krsna on the Boardwalk at Agni Dhama.

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