Prayer Composed on a Bare Wooden Floor

2001 Jalakara dasa

Your temples are empty and going to seed
Your leaders are not shy of showing their greed
You're importing some Russian devotees from far
And devotees of Narayan Maharaja are all barred.

Your women are living the poverty creed
Your children are raped and abused and deceived
Your leaders expertly their faults camouflage
And place all the blame on Narayan Maharaja.

Apparently that man, he has greatly sinned
What exactly the sin is, they omit to mention
Did he poison his guru or beat little boys?
Or use girl disciples as personal toys?

Did he pervert the Vedas to cover his tracks?
Did he hire hooligans to make his attacks?
Did he build a palace in which to lodge?
What exactly is the sin of Narayan Maharaja?

Did he abandon his wife and not give support?
Did he sue temples for millions in court?
The ritvik heresy he never propounds
Does he dress his disciples as Santa and clowns?

But the so-called gurus he refused to anoint
The thieves and abusers he refused to appoint
They remain bitter, and they hold a grudge
Determined to drag his name all through the mud.

Your temples are empty and now no one comes
You've moved into townhouses, out of the slums
Small congregations in temples so large
To hell with devotees of Narayan Maharaja.

Now come all devotees and listen to me
You must always safeguard your integrity
Think only for yourself or else all is lost
If another thinks for you, you can't pay the cost.

Innuendo and half-truths are the weapons of a tyrant
Intimidation and coercion are used by the errant
Discrimination and pressure are all very well
If you are a demon or dwelling in hell.

Don't give in to prejudice or threats of a fight
Live out your life by the Bhagavatam's light
If a saintly person should come near to you
You go and you hear him, that's what you must do.

If others threaten, say they will cast you out
Is that what their love of God is all about?
Simply for hearing, is it such a crime?
You are shunned and looked down on, for all of the time.

What if Sukadeva Goswami was to come here?
Would you go to him quickly, and give him your ear?
What if he's naked and he does not say
Exactly as Prabhupada, and in the same way?

Would you shun him and forbid others to see?
Saying, "This is an order from the GBC.
We're holding the power over you and your wife
If you don't obey us, we'll ruin your life."

"Devotional service is our right to give
We give you some money and a place to live
If you don't believe exactly like we say
We'll come down on you heavy and take it away."

"The gurus are all keeping checking accounts
But it doesn't matter; it's all small amounts
Sannyasis all need some small savings, you see
For when the time comes to start their family."

"Don't think of the fall downs, don't think of the strife
Just think of the status of you and your wife
If you don't rock the boat, and say just what we see
Your career will advance up in the hierarchy."

"If you've got some misgivings, keep them to your self
We don't care what you think; we don't care what you've felt
Sex is OK, keep it private at night
So long as your wife will keep her mouth shut tight."

"Drinking and drugging, well, we all need relief
From the stresses of fighting for spiritual peace
Pocket some money; it's a standard dodge
Just don't go to hear Narayan Maharaja."

"He's caused all our troubles, it's plainly to see
He hasn't accepted the pure GBC.
He keeps his own counsel and speaks his own mind
It's not the way we think he should spend his time."

"You have to avoid him, in spite of the cost
Regardless of temples and men we have lost
Save whatever is left from contamination
And all the philosophical ramification."

"No books on bhakti you should read
Unless rewritten by the GBC
We know Prabhupada better than you
We will tell you what he wants you to do."

"We do not need to attempt reform
With a special purpose we have been born
We will save you from the mirage
In the devious form of Narayan Maharaja."

Now hear me my brothers and sisters so dear
I've not come to convince you by using some fear
If a pure devotee you should ever meet
You won't care what he's saying; his voice is so sweet.

You won't be faultfinding or looking to doubt
The source of the power of his spiritual clout
When his love of Godhead you happen to see
You'll fall like a rod, and shelter immediately.

Krishna comes to you in so many ways
And Prabhupada also, any time, any day
Your pre-conceived notions will vanish to dust
Your fear and your hatred will turn into trust.

You're thinking that Prabhupada is so very small
He needs you to protect him; you're so very tall
But things are really the other way round
Your thoughts are defective; it's his that are sound.

He is the father and you are the son
It's reversing that thinking that spoils the fun
You're thinking that you've become guru like him
But the chances of that are so so very slim.

Next time you don't know what to do
And a saintly person comes to you
You think wherefrom this man has come
A gift from the father for the son?

Don't turn him away; don't call him names
Don't bully his listeners and blacken his fame
Don't make offense and some apaharad
Don't think you know so much of God.

For all that you don't know and all you can't see
It all works out to humble thee
Don't be so sure that all you think
Won't be changed in a clap or a blink.

Brothers and sisters, sisters and brothers
Fathers and mothers and children and lovers
Don't you feel that from your life
Something's missing but you don't know why?

Your problem is not material
Nor is it so ethereal
It won't be solved by learning a verse
Or falling down into something worse.

The key, you see, is in your heart
If you unlock it, that's the start
Don't be afraid of going there
But be very afraid of tarrying here.

Your attachments you must break
Not strive to keep the ones you make
Nor make excuses for your failing
You can't chant; your body's ailing.

Don't be afraid of the devotional man
When others say he should be banned
Don't let the others think for you
If you do that, you're finished too.

[March 10, 2001 at 9:07pm in Alachua]

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