The Heaven on Earth is a colossal structure recently erected on ISKCON’s property in Juhu, Mumbai, to meet this spiritual society’s growing needs. On the first floor of this building, two long, lonely corridors run perpendicular to each other, and at their intersection stands a security guard, dutifully. This guard is no ordinary person! Perhaps a year ago, when I was at Heaven on Earth, I realized how special he was.
On my way to a dear friend’s room on the first floor, I had come across this sentinel. Hardly noticing his presence, I had turned left at the intersection he stood guard, to enter the second corridor from the first. Just one step tread, and I saw someone familiar emerge from the corridor’s other end. It was Radhanath Swami.
Those who have had Radhanath Swami’s holy association know how it feels like in his presence! I call upon them to imagine: on this lonely corridor—I on this end and Radhanath Swami on the other—and the two of us walking towards each other! I was paralyzed in self-awareness. I forgot how to walk, nay how to breathe. In shyness as I tottered, my eyes gazed the floor, and my mind squirmed in a daze. I knew not what to expect when we met midway. Finally, after an apparently long trek, came the climax. As we crossed, I pushed my glance up towards Radhanath Swami, and he beamed back a beautiful smile. Then tilting his head forward, he folded his palms in front of his face, thus expressing his respects to me. I was elated and felt so special. “Indeed,” I thought, “he knows me since 1998, and he also knows I am a graduate from a premier institute, the Indian Institute of Technology IIT.”
When I reached the other end of the corridor, I turned back for no reason in particular, and saw: Radhanath Swami was at the intersection, and he tilted his head and folded his palms in front of the security guard, exactly as he had done with me! And I could vouch that he was meeting that security guard for the first time in his life, and the security guard was an illiterate!
Deeply humbled, I took to heart a sacred lesson: the Supreme Lord’s representatives know every individual living entity—as part and parcel of the Supreme Lord. And so everyone is special in their eyes, regardless of externals.Therefore, from a spiritual perspective, that security guard was very special—as special as I felt myself to be in Radhanath Swami’s holy presence.