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Posted by on Jul 1, 2018 in Recent Articles | 0 comments

Srila Prabhupada’s face

Although seventy-six, Prabhupada seems as ageless as ever. His head is freshly shaved, and the aroma of mustard-seed oil tells me that he has just received a massage. His complexion is radiant, his eyes clear, his face full and healthy. This is the face that attracted me that day when I was walking down New York’s Houston Street and first met him, the face that brought so many young seekers to that little storefront temple on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday nights. For us, his face embodies all the attractive qualities of devotion, for it’s a pure, truthful, and compassionate face. It is both happy and grave. It is magnanimous, gentle, and forgiving. It is also determined and self-controlled, and, above all, most learned and intelligent. It’s a face not afraid to love and give all in love for Krishna.

Indeed, Prabhupada’s face conjures all those virtues that lead to love of Krishna. It’s not an ordinary man’s face. It transports an entire spiritual fact, the Vedic culture, an atmosphere of bhakti. I first began realizing his potency just by looking at his face. Whenever I’m Krishna conscious, it makes me joyful. Whenever I’m not, I’m afraid to look at it; it accuses me, makes me ashamed without uttering a word. What power there is in the spiritual master’s face! What magnetism! What volumes of wisdom!

From “Vrindaban Days: Memories of a Holy Indian Town,” by Hayagriva Dasa. Chapter Five, p. 44

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