With Radhanath Swami, On a Destiny Drive

“Where do we go next?” asked the chauffeur, as he slowed down the vehicle. I gazed out through the window, and an eerie sensation seized me. Nothing looked familiar. Maybe, we were lost! I had recently arrived in Kolkata after being appointed as Vice President of ISKCON there, and knew only few sections of the city.

On this drive, Radhanath Swami and his secretary were my co-passengers. I was escorting Radhanath Swami from the ISKCON Temple, where he stayed during his Kolkata visit, to ISKCON House, Gurusoday Road, where he was scheduled to discourse. Though the distance was only two Kilometers, we drove on a chauffeur-driven car. It was a well-wisher’s, who had persisted that we use it. Radhanath Swami occupied the front seat, while Vikram and I occupied the rear. At the beginning of the ride, I had announced, “Gurusoday Road,” to which the chauffeur nodded. But once we had entered the crawling traffic, I got absorbed in a conversation with Vikram, and thus was oblivious to the new route taken.

Now, this neighborhood we had stumbled into, the chauffeur claimed, was Gurusoday road.  But where is ISKCON House? My heart pounded. We were getting late for the discourse. Radhanath Swami turned around, “Better we take a taxi from here. Taxi drivers know all routes.” Straining a confident smile, I called up a person at ISKCON House instead, for directions. My one hand pressed the phone to my ear, my other hand fingered directions, and the car limped ahead. Meanwhile, time raced ahead, the finish point remained invisible. Radhanath Swami turned around, again to meet my strained smile. This time, however, my smile evaporated under his annoyed glower, leaving behind a strain on my face. Saying nothing to me, he stopped the car, stepped out into the pedestrian traffic, and waved for a taxi—all in a jiffy. I too jumped out, and so did Vikram. Finding a taxi, the three of us clambered aboard, and were in ISKCON House in minutes. The discourse began half hour late, at 9:30 A.M.

After the discourse, Radhanath Swami told me in private, “We were disrespectful in making so many people wait.”

“I had assumed that the driver knew the way,” I retorted. He shook his head, indicating the excuse wasn’t good enough. My heart sank. I had displeased someone whom I yearned to please. But yes! I have another chance tomorrow. Radhanath Swami was scheduled to again discourse in the same place the next day.

Back in my room, I pulled my socks up for the next day’s performance. First, I studied every route from ISKCON Temple to ISKCON House, and then, the traffic flow on each. I zeroed in on the best route. What about the driver? Radha Sharan was the best choice. A Kolkata man who commuted the chosen route routinely, Radha Sharan couldn’t miss directions there—perhaps even when blindfolded. But if misfortune personified were to reappear, Radha Sharan was no exception. Therefore, for added safety, I called up a few more acquaintances, and requested them to be in their vehicles at strategic points along the chosen route—next morning at 9:00 A.M.

That night, I dreamt driving though that route a dozen times, rehearsing.

Next morning at 9:00 A.M., as Radhanath Swami got into the front seat of Radha Sharan’s car, he declared, “Listen Acharya Ratna. This time if you lose the way, you won’t see the light of another day.” Then he turned to Radha Sharan who sat behind the wheels, “Understand, Acharya Ratna’s life is in your hands!” The car lunged ahead, to determine my destiny.

Everything worked well, and we reached ISKCON House well before time. Before getting out of the car, Radhanath Swami spelled his verdict to Radha Sharan, “You have saved Acharya Ratna’s life.” His naughty smile charming my heart, he rubbed my head and spoke a blessing, “May you see the light of millions of days…” I thought, “Through the entire drama, I now feel drawn to you, a million times closer.”

After the discourse, as we sat together, Radhanath Swami shared pearls of management wisdom. “Acarya Ratna, in management, never ever assume anything. That is the first principle of management. If you at all want to assume anything, assume that everything is going to go wrong, unless properly planned, organized, supervised and guided.”

– Acharya Ratna Das

(Vice President ISKCON Kolkatta)

Related Posts:

154 replies on “With Radhanath Swami, On a Destiny Drive”

Radhanath Swami cares so much about others. He didn;t want to be late even by few minutes. He considered it being disrespectful.

Wonderful experiance, thank you very much for sharing. You are so fortunate to blessed by Radhanth Swami.

Such an expert piece of advice from Radhanath Swami. That is why Radha Gopinath temple is being managed so expertly.

Radhanath Swami is everybody’s ever well-wisher.
1) He felt sad to have made so many people wait
2) He wanted Acharya Ratna to learn management principles to serve better.
3) He blessed Acharya Ratna for a long life.
Wonderful experience ! Thank you Acharya Ratna for sharing !

Maharaj’s compassion is all-encompassing. He is able to think of the best course of action under all circumstances.

Radhanath Swami displays that how a great leader takes care of everyone who are around him.

Radhanath swami is so charming in his ways that at the end of the episode the person was left with more admiration for Maharaj

What a great lesson on Management from Maharajah
“If you at all want to assume anything, assume that everything is going to go wrong, unless properly planned, organized, supervised and guided.”
It helped me in a big way.

In management, never ever assume anything. If you at all want to assume anything, assume that everything is going to go wrong, unless properly planned, organized, supervised and guided…… that shown the expertise HH Radhanath swami has in all the fields

Thank you Acaryaratna pr for sharing this amazing experience! I’am so thrilled just to read it and how much more intense experience it must have been for you to actually experience it! Through every such encounter Radhanath Swami increases our love and affection for him a million times!

Maharaj is very expert in guiding everyone. This incident teaches us all the basics of management too.. JAI !!!

I wish you all good day, this site is really nice I would always follow this site. Help me a lot of timedata would be btained from this site, or hope to. But I want you to know that this site is really good Thanks a lot for the kind of perfect topic about this topic. It’s good to buy an essay about this good topic. Nice article, very helpful

maharaj can train eager students in management for all time to come very effectively due to his profound wisdom and experience without even studying management courses!!!

Radhanath Swami Maharaj not only is a spiritual teacher but along with that he can be very easily seen as a very practical person caring for others and also an expert manager.

What a wonderful partime of Radhanath Swami, which shows how particular he is for the preaching mission of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. May I also become a humble servant of Radhanath Swami.

Hey man, was just browsing through the internet looking for some information and came across your blog. I am impressed by the information that you have on this blog. It shows how well you understand this subject. Bookmarked this page, will come back for more. You, my friend, ROCK!!!

I was present in that morning class when HH Radhanath Swami came little late that too in taxi!
We were all dancing in kirtan to welcome him..
Thank you prabhuji for sharing this wonderful incident

All Glories To H.H Radhanath Swami Maharaj

What an experience Prabhuji. Maharaj is so much concerned about the Devotees, that he would not let any one loose.

Hare Krishna

Its so nice that His Holiness Radhanath Swami Maharaj is always concerned in serving the devotees of the Lord as well as frightening them for the ultimate cause but finally ends up in blessing. Jai.

Amazing balance of loving care and management- That is what is so special about Radhanath Swami.

Maharaj;s actions are all exemplary.. He achieves many things from one act.. He taught very valuable lesson..NEVER ASSUME ANYTHING

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *