Chapter 113: Naming My Son; Prabhupāda's Gifts

Śrīla Prabhupāda Uvāca 113
Naming My Son; Prabhupāda's Gifts

October 8, 1974, ISKCON Māyāpur,
Candrodaya Mandir,
Māyāpur, India

On the afternoon of October 8, I received an exciting telegram. My wife had delivered a baby boy on October 6, 1974, at 4:15 a.m. I considered it to be especially auspicious because mangal arotika started at 4:15 a.m. in Māyāpur. I immediately ran to Śrīla Prabhupāda's room and offered my obeisances.

"Śrīla Prabhupāda," I said smiling, "My wife just gave birth to a son!"

"Very nice," he said, returning my smile. "So, you can call him Māyāpuracandra. Maypuracandra! You will not find that name anywhere in the sastra. I have invented it. You will find Navadvipacandra and Nadir Nimai. But, you will not find this name anywhere. So, I will give you some money. You can get one of the local boys to go to Navadvipa to purchase a set of silver ankle and wrist bracelets for him."

Still overcome, I did not consider refusing his generous offer.

Four months later on February 9, 1975, Śrīla Prabhupāda stopped in New Dwaraka for two days on his way to Mexico City. After his afternoon nap he rang his bell. I hurried to his room and offered my obeisances.

"Go find Nanda Kumar," he instructed.

Fortunately, he was across the street. I told him Śrīla Prabhupāda wanted to see him. Nanda asked me why and I responded, "I have no idea. He just told me to get you."We both raced back to Śrīla Prabhupāda's quarters and offered our obeisances. When I looked up, Śrīla Prabhupāda handed me the keys to his metal cabinet in the bedroom and said, "Bring me my white bag." I gave him the bag and we both sat before him having no clue what was to happen next.

He took two, fifty-dollar bills out of his bag and gave one to me.

"Here, you can get something for your son," he said.

Whenever Śrīla Prabhupāda showered his love upon me by giving me something, I became overwhelmed with affection for him. I could not refuse such a beautiful display of love. Overjoyed I took the bill and heartily exclaimed, "Thank you very much, Śrīla Prabhupāda!"

He then turned to Nanda Kumar, who had been his personal servant before I, and tried to give him the other fifty-dollar bill. Nanda Kumar refused it.

"I cannot take that from you, Śrīla Prabhupāda," he said.

"It is not for you," Śrīla Prabhupāda told him. "It is for your son."

Nanda then accepted the bill from his loving spiritual master. After giving us gifts for our sons, Śrīla Prabhupāda nodded kindly and said, "Okay, now you may go." We offered our obeisances and left his quarters, discussing how fortunate we were to have such an amazingly generous spiritual master.

Śrīla Prabhupāda, many times you gave me articles of clothing, taking care of me in every way. I never thought you owed me anything for the service I did. After all, you gave all of us the greatest gift. You gave us the opportunity to develop our love of God. The personal attention you showered upon us, however, was another one of your priceless gifts. You set such an amazing example. Although you are our spiritual master, and as such should be treated as the Lord Himself, still you served us by providing all our necessities. When will the day come when I will see my godbrothers and godsisters as "Prabhu" and offer them my respect instead of fighting over the proper way to honor and serve you.