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Srila Prabhupada boarded the cargo ship Jaladuta from Khidderpore dock in Kolkata. The ship was prophetically known as ‘Jaladuta’– the messenger who comes by the sea. The ship carried the messenger who would spread bhakti all over the world at a scale never witnessed in history. The International Society of Krsna Consciousness is celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of this historical event in the year 2015.
The way in which Krishna orchestrated Srila Prabhupada voyage to America is remarkable. Just as gold shines brighter in fire, the tests that Srila Prabhupada faced revealed the purity of his purpose — to help suffering souls in the material world. He was already seventy when he secured the ticket on the cargo ship to go to America. At an age when many people become invalid or spend time relaxing wrapping up their lives, Srila Prabhupada ventured on an unprecedented mission to spread Krishna’s name in every town and village in the world. He faced formidable obstacle of two heart attacks on the ship but persevered to deliver the compassionate message of the vedic scriptures. He depended completely on Krishna for he had no money and knew hardly anyone in America. Yet, he had full faith that people all over the world are souls– servants of God and their Krsna consciousness can be revived by chanting the names of God.
Srila Prabhupada popularized chanting of Krishna’s names. Kirtan is now famous all over the world. The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Established by Srila Prabhupada is the largest distributer of spiritual literatures in the world. The International Society of Krsna Consciousness is effectively giving spiritual education and services to people, and has centers all over the world.
Srila Prabhuada was the true embodiment of the illustrious history of great saints in India, the emissary of India’s greatest wealth– spirituality. Srila Prabhupada was one man who, by the dint of his love for God, disseminated that love throughout the world. He proved to us that the principles of sanatan-dharma are universal and resonate with the very core of us- the life or the soul. In 1965 he had no one to help, because no one believed that Vaisnavism is based on profound universal spirituality. In 2015, having known the transformations he brought about and the validity of the teachings he relayed from the revered scriptures like Gita, it behooves us that we become an instrument for the compassionate change that he wanted to bring about and donate generously for this cause.