Austerity of Monkhood

During a discourse, Radhanath Swami was relating the story of a saint who gave benedictions to a prince, a butcher and a monk. I sat in the front row of the audience, listening.

The prince indulged in sinful ways of enjoyment, maddened by wealth. If he were to die, only the karma of suffering awaited him. So the saint blessed the prince, “May you live forever.”

The butcher lived a miserable life of killing innocent animals, and even after death miserable karma awaited him. So the saint blessed the butcher, “May you neither live nor die.”

And what about the monk?

At this juncture, Radhanath Swami glanced at me. “Monk’s life is full of austerity. Take him for an example.” He was referring to me!

“He is a graduate from IIT, which is considered at par with Ivy League schools. And yet, here in this ashram he sleeps on the floor and has a little closet to keep his belongings.”

He went on for another few minutes—which seemed a few hours to me—describing what I did and what an exemplary monk I was J. An audience of 2000 sat in rapt attention.

“Monk’s life is a pious life, so his next life will be glorious.  His present life, nonetheless, is filled with austerity,” he concluded.

Now getting back to the benediction story, he said, “So the saint blessed that the monk die.” No sooner did he speak that, he turned to me again with an apologetic expression. “I don’t want you to die. I am just continuing with the story.”

It had all happened spontaneously. He had showered his appreciation and affection, but the ending was a bit sour. He thought my feelings were hurt, though that wasn’t the case.

In my years of association with Radhanath Swami, time and again I have observed how sensitive and careful he is in making sure he doesn’t hurt anybody’s feelings.

The next evening, I met Radhanath Swami in the ashram corridors. He called me closer and embraced me affectionately, an affection I will never forget. “May you live a long life as a monk,” he blessed me.

With an affectionate spiritual father like him, the austerity of monkhood seems insignificant. So, who wants to die?

S Bhat

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61 replies on “Austerity of Monkhood”

Very touching story with Radhanath Swami Maharaj. He can give shelter to the whole world.

Amazing story. Radhanath swami is really a very very sensitive person and he just knows how to shower love

It is worth coming to this material world if we are blessed with the most loving association of Radhanath swami.Thank you for sharing this amazing story which shows his sensitive feelings for everyone.

Thank you for sharing your experiences. Radhanath Swami is supremely humble, compassionate and never hurts others. A true spiritual master loved by millions all over the world.

These qualities of the saint make the saints so special in this world of selfishness and exploitation. All glories to Radhanath swami for touching hearts with such wonderful qualities like sensitivity in this case.

Thank you for sharing so touching story. Really Radhanath Swami teaches by his example how we should deal in everyday’s life.

A saint is always compassionate to all. HH Radhanatha Svami Maharaja is an exemplary. All glories to HH Radhanatha Svami Maharaja.

Thank you for sharing this amazing incident,it is very touching and it shows the sensitive heart of our affectionate spiritual father.

The way Radhanath Swami practically takes care of everyone is inspirational, especially the way he gives attention to the details. Thank you very much for sharing.

Hare Krishna!!!
With so many people take care Radhanth Maharaj still remembered about the example giving in the lecture. High degree of sensetivity.

Wow !!! What wonderful experience. You have a special blessings of Radhanath Swami.

Wow amazing experience:) H.H.Radhanath swami is very caring ,loving and genuinely humble person I ever saw in my life. Yes we can die in his mission to serve the Srila Prabhupada.

Superb experience. When we get such love and embrace from a spiritual master like HH Radhanath Swami, we can live millions of years of austerity which seems joyful and blissful and does not desire to live any where and die but just live in his arms.

Thank you for sharing this experience. Radhanath Swami is a truly loving father who can empathise with the feelings of everybody,

a perfect experience of Spiritual Master and His disciple, extremely caring and loving. All Glories to Guru Maharaj!!

Radhanath Swami has the art of conveying even great instructions with simple and even humorous examples.

Thanks for sharing this story, i did listen this discourse number of time and it was great enlivening –now i understand Maharaj was referring to you..Indeed time & again, have heard about maharaj compassionate nature his love for all living beings which has really changes the life of 10 & thousands of people, and sometimes feel proud that he is my beloved Guru, and sincerly pray that i live with this instruction and follow in his footstep…

Radhanath Swami always has got this touch of sensitivity towards people……he is above all the modes !!!

Hope I can also have his quality in me:”sensitive and careful he is in making sure he doesn’t hurt anybody’s feelings.”

Radhanath Swami is always very sensitive to other’s feelings! That’s the hallmark of a true spiritual master!

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