New Vrindabana Gift in Time

By Srila Jiva Goswami dasa

Up at the Palace, I once asked for a chance to do something physical there. It was during The Construction. My Service was more in Madhava Ghosh’s (All Transcendental) Logistics Department. It was said that I was not “properly situated in Construction.” Like so many other things at New Vrindabana then, it was true. I admired the Construction Department very much and tried upon occasion to eadle my way in.

I’d had a few purloined, truncated moments on the Shiny Real Pay Loader, (my perception) for instance.

But I was more for twirling the hand truck and bringing Devotees exactly what they’d put on Ghosh’s List. We brought in steel, from Sebalski’s in St. Clairsville, pipe, board, fabric, ice-cream and more. I was one who brought out big sumptuous Garlands and Prasadama, and came back with goods.

On Dodge Rama dasa there were regular deliveries to Megamla’s Store, to the Front Office, for the Mother’s Sewing Room, the Mold Shop, The Barn, any of several Studios, all up and down our thriving little pike with the Palace on Top.

I was Delivery, Prasadama Distribution, Public Relations, Supply, Taxi, Purchasing and more, but not Construction.

There were places and ways to bring Dodge Rama dasa right up close to the Palace when I was making a delivery. On the afternoon I’m talking about here, I found myself up among the Construction Crew, at the right front corner of the Palace, looking out.

“Let me do something,” I asked.

“What?” One of the Brahmins in saffron eyed me matter-of-factly.

I knew the beautiful stained glass Peacock Windows were being installed. “Let me help put in a window,” I proffered.

Eyebrows went up. We all loved each other. Glances were exchanged. Someone had only to say, “He’s not in Construction,” and that would have been my cheerful it.

Instead, for me then, there was Compassion. It was, “He wants to put in a window,” followed by “Let him put in a window.”

“I want to be able to say I actually participated,” I declared. It was only temporary. I was carefully guided through the process. The right front side peacock window is the one I got to install.

In my heart, I was seeing myself, there in Prabhupada’s Palace upon Limestone Ridge, Prabhupada’s Palace of Gold, among the solid exemplary characters who were The Assembled Devotees there. That moment seemed unique in the entire Universe to me. It wasn’t a vision per se, but the understanding, even if only intellectual, that at that moment, guided by God-brothers, I was engaged in a practice statistically rare and usually not partaken: Direct Devotional Service.

Of course, I don’t have to say that one exception to the “usually not partaken” observation was the cent per cent occupation of our Transcendental (All Empowered) Construction Crew. Direct Devotional Service? The Construction Crew lived like that. I used to want to tell them, like Madge would say in the Palmolive Commercial, “You’re soaking in it.”

I served the Servers, but just there in Space and Time, up at the Palace Window, I asked for and was given that so special moment and position: Direct Devotional Service.

Now then forever, I’m always yet driving by, even as blind people drive and Pujaris regularly levitate, and I’m looking up even forever, at that right front corner of Prabhupada’s Palace.

This Gift I was causelessly given there at New Vrindabana. Where I’ve been once that I truly belong, now I am always.

Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare!

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