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Chapter 36: Monkey & the Bananas

Śrīla Prabhupāda Uvāca 36
Monkey & the Bananas

October 1972, Rādhā-Dāmodara Temple,
Vrindaban, India

During this visit Śrīla Prabhupāda regularly spoke in his sitting room. Local residents offered fruits and flowers by placing them at his lotus feet.

One evening in the middle of Śrīla Prabhupāda's lecture, a monkey darted into the room and lunged for the bananas. Visaka dāsī quickly threw her chaddar over the monkey and tugged at the bananas as he ran past her. She managed to get most of the bananas, but within a few seconds the monkey was gone with a prize banana in his hand.

"Just see how intelligent this monkey is," Śrīla Prabhupāda said. "This shows that in their own respect all living entities are intelligent. How long do you think it would have taken you to do that, run in and out of here and get the bananas? This monkey is so intelligent in regards to his eating. He can do it in a few seconds. Practically no one even saw him. He just took the bananas and ran out. This is what it is like in the material world. Everyone is very expert in their own sphere. So, we have to become expert devotees, not expert like the monkeys."

The entire incident lasted about four seconds. Even though Śrīla Prabhupāda had been lecturing, he was aware of everything going on around him. Śrīla Prabhupāda was always aware of activities around him. He was expert at doing more than one thing at a time.