What truly are our requirements? Demarcating this elusive boundary between necessities and luxuries is a challenge that confronts environmentalists and spiritualists alike. Radhanath Swami’s method of demarcation is simple: we truly require only those things that we use in the service of God and society; accordingly, maintaining a healthy and fit body — for better service—is also a part of simple living.
Even during my initial interactions with Radhanath Swami, in 1987, I saw him live by this understanding. A monk at Radha Gopinath community had once requested me to get a pair of ‘simple’ slippers: inexpensive, yet protective. It wasn’t hard for me to find them; the road-side hawker across the street had plenty. But then, it was hard on me when I saw Radhanath Swami wearing them the next day. If only I knew the slippers were for him, I would have got another pair with better looks. But he looked least bothered over their looks, and used them for the next six months — as long as they assisted him in his service.
— Mr. Ashok Parikh.