Remembering New Vrindaban

by Lakshmi Kary

First I like to offer my humble obeisances to all the devotees who lovingly offered their devotional service at New Vrindavan. We lived in New Vrindavan for about a year. There were so many incredible things there. Every devotee, no matter who they were could find some nice service to do in one of a hundred places.

The Deities were captivating with a full time crew of devotees cooking/serving Their Lordships. I often WISH there was a cookbook of all the dishes served to them available to buy! I’ve never tasted such heavenly prasadam since then, and that was about 20 or so years ago.

Buses of visitors, tourists would come to see the Palace of Gold. Festival days the Palace was decorated in grand style, many sankirtan devotees gave years of their lives to create and support New Vrindavan and The Palace of Gold. One such devotee was Kunti devi. When I think of New Vrindavan I think of the many Srila Prabhupada disciples who made great sacrifices to create it.

The service I did and that others have done since then doesn’t compare to the devotional service performed in the early days when Srila Prabhupada was on the planet. At New Vrindavan I looked forward to seeing the beautiful Deities every morning during mangala arotika, and watching the Devotees sing and dance in kirtan. The sound of Srila Prabhupada singing was piped outside around the temple … it was a sort of heaven on earth. It’s unfortunate that some very bad things happened there simultaneously, but I hope the unique place that is New Vrindavan is appreciated for its good points.

If all of the children had been properly loved and cared for in the gurukula, and the cows cared for always, it really would’ve been a truly spiritual place on earth. I’ll never forget Tulasi prayers or so many other blissful moments, I pray for the pain some of the children and devotees ended up experiencing.

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