(continuing from the post of October 6…)
When the editing of the book was nearing the end, Radhanath Swami told me to do a final proofreading of the 300-page manuscript. (During our editing, the draft had grown by over 50 pages) He said, “After you finish, tomorrow we will send the manuscript.” My mind started spinning at the thought of how I could complete the whole manuscript in one night. Fortunately, he got busy with some guests and so didn’t ask for the manuscript till the next evening. When he called me, I had carefully gone through around 240 pages and hastily glanced through the remaining. I gave him the manuscript, wondering what I should do about the remaining 60 pages. Again, fortune favored me, for he, due to his other engagements, didn’t finalize the draft till the next noon. By that time, I had carefully gone through the remaining pages. When I told him that some proofreading changes needed to be incorporated in the draft that I had given yesterday, he silently assented. When I pointed out that the spelling of “Bhaktisiddhanta” had been written as “Bhaktisddhanta” (the second “i” was missing), he suddenly exclaimed, “You passed the test!” Seeing the bewildered look on my face, he explained, “I had kept the spelling like that to see whether you would find it or not. Now that you have found it, you have passed the test.” I didn’t know what to say or even what to think. Laughing to see my confusion, he added, “Don’t worry; I was just joking.”
To this day, I don’t know whether Radhanath Swami made that mistake intentionally or unintentionally, but I do know that there was a divine intention in that whole incident. When we do a service, we should aspire to do it the very best that we possibly can, and not be satisfied merely because nobody can find any visible fault with it.
–Chaitanya Charan Das