Massaging Srila Prabhupada

Being in the personal association of Srila Prabhupada is very
enlivening. Hearing about him now also gives us pleasure and
advancement in spiritual life. Srila Prabhupada had a daily routine
that his young disciples could barely keep up with! He would translate
his books most of the night, then sleep just a few hours and do his
whole morning program, chanting japa, taking a morning walk,
greeting the Deities and giving classes most everyday.

Upendra Prabhu would massage Srila Prabhupada in Vrindavan along
with the assistance of another devotee after the morning program.
One morning the assistant was sick and couldn't help with the
massage because we didnt want Srila Prabhupada to get sick, so I got
to help massage him. I wanted to do that service, but I was a little
reluctant as Srila Prabhupada had said earlier in a class in Vrindavan
that the two most dangerous positions in spiritual life were being a
pujari and being his personal servant, because familiarity breeds
contempt. We should never consider the spiritual master an ordinary
man, or the Deities simply pretty statues. Krsna reciprocates with the
devotees in His Deity forms according to our love and devotion. He
knows our hearts and has even walked off the alters before and
appears to devotees in dreams since time immemorial.

I entered Srila Prabhupada's room to help with the massage and he
was lying on a mat on the floor with a towel over his face. Upendra
instructed me to start massaging some mustard seed oil on Srila
Prabhupada's legs. As soon as I touched the transcendentalized body
of His Divine Grace he raised the towel and looked to see who I was,
then laid the towel back down and relaxed, as did I. I felt so honored
to be allowed to touch him even though I was unqualified. Another
example of his 'causeless mercy.' Although Srila Prabhupada was 81
years old/young his legs were golden and smooth with no wrinkles as
might be expected. His legs were like a youngsters. It reminded me of
how Krishna is ever youthful. Similarly, Srila Prabhupada was also
pretty youthful. Even though he was older, we younger disciples could
barely keep up with him on his morning walks. I experienced that on
a few walks with him in Hawaii at Magic Island. He was also mentally
very youthful and surprised us all with his charming Vaisnava wit and
enthusiastic preaching spirit. Sometimes innocently simple, other
times he'd say things totally unexpected and beyond our
comprehension. He often told jokes that were over our heads, but we
were happy to see him tell the jokes. One time he said that Vaisnava
means at least two together. He said he is an old man but if he has to
go to the bathroom four men and an elephant would come to take
him, and we all laughed. Point is if we have Vaisnava association we
will be at our best and protected.

Srila Prabhupada gave us everything we need to live a happy healthy
life and ultimately go back home, back to Godhead. He saw everything
in relation to Krishna and engaged/engages unlimited fortunate souls
in Krsna's devotional service. He ate only healthy Bhagavata
Prasadam. He gave us remedies for so many problems spiritual and
physical in his teachings, in his books, classes and letters to the
devotees. He even gave remedies for headaches and backaches and
practical advice especially in his letters.

Srila Prabhupada said three things helped him
In his advanced age, his morning walk, his massage and Ayurvedic
medicines. He told that to long time personal servant Srutakirti
Prabhu who has an ocean of nectarean pastimes he tells.
That day was very fortunate for me to be able to touch the lotus body
of the pure devotee. A few other times I got the opportunity to massage
Srila Prabhupada's head with Brahmi oil at night. That was a nectar
service. Srila Prabhupada is the serene swanlike pure devotee. The oil
is made with herbs such as Brahmi (Gotu Kola) which is said to relax
the brain and increase the memory and decrease the time needed to
sleep. Most of the Sikh taxi drivers drink tea made from these herbs
so they can stay awake safely at night.

Srila Prabhupada slept very little and spent most of his time at night
and in the afternoons writing his books for our benefit and the benefit
of future generations in the Golden Age of Lord Chaitanya. When he
saw me reading Srimad Bhagavatam in my spare time he gave a
million dollar smile.

All glories to our Founder/Acharya Srila Prabhupada, who practiced
what he preached and shows us how to perfect our lives living the
Krsna Conscious lifestyle. There's no other better way to get back
home than following in his lotus footsteps. He's waiting for us. What
are we waiting for? Only to try to help other lost souls become
fortunate souls by getting on the precious path back home. Krsna
says there is no one more dear to Him than one who preaches his
glories, so Srila Prabhupada is most dear to Him. By the mercy of
Krsna we got Srila Prabhupada and by the mercy of Srila Prabhupada
we have and know Krsna more and more.
It's a win-win!

Hoping this meets you well and Happy in Krsna Consciousness
Your eternal friend and servant
Gauridasa Pandita Dasa
\o/ HariboL \o/
Chant and be Happy!