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My Faith in Prabhupada and Krsna is Set in Stone

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I believe Srila Prabhupada really knew what he was talking about and had a close personal relationship with Krishna. I choose the bliss he has offered to anyone willing to serve and worship Lord Krishna and His devotees’ lotus feet.

I feel very low and unfit to approach Krishna on my own strength so I will make the attempt through service to His devotees. “The servant of the servant of the servant of the Lord.”

My faith in Prabhupada and Krishna is set in stone and all the devotees I have had the gift of association with since I found out about ISKCON in 1999 has given me a very good foundation to stand on. Krishna has truly blessed me with His mercy in this life. He came into my life at a time when I was searching for truth and a time I needed to find answers to my questions. He has given me a sense of family through the ISKCON devotees association; through letters and in person to person contact.

I will serve to the best of my ability with the time left to me in this body and hope to continue in the next. Jaya Prabhupada!

I have been helping some inmates here to learn about Krishna. I believe one has written to you, Mr. Van Peterson. He’s a recovering heroin addict and is only eighteen or nineteen years old. He is in my cell. I share books with him and taught him how to chant on a Catholic rosary I got from the chaplain. I have made arrangements with the chaplain for inmates here to be allowed to have japa malas for chanting rounds.

My social worker here, Elizabeth, is very interested in Krishna Consciousness and I have given her some BTGs. I plan to leave the books you sent to me with her to use in her AODA groups. She feels it will relieve the high level of stress her inmates deal with. Elizabeth asked me to give a group presentation on Krishna Consciousness and the Hare Krishna mantra before I leave here. I told her I would do it. Say a prayer for me that Prabhupada will not be disappointed with my attempt and that Krishna will give me His mercy and guidance. I feel very unfit to do this but it will be a way to spread the teachings of Krishna in the prison setting.

My goal is this: I will talk a little then explain the Hare Krishna mantra; how to say it (call and response). Then I will get the inmates from my cell to join me in a demonstration of sankirtan. Then I will make a request that everyone present rise and join in chanting and dancing the Hare Krishna mantra together.

This will be done during our community meeting part of programming. We have about twenty-five inmates in this program so it will interesting to see if I can get them all to stand and raise their hands and voices in praise to Krishna!

Wouldn’t that be something! Maybe the first actual kirtan performed in a Wisconsin prison by a large group of inmates. Wow.

I plan to be back to sending books to the Prison Ministry inmates as soon as I can. That service is important to me and I will put it ahead of other things I do once I’m out.
Hare Krishna!
Your humble servant,
Bhakta Kevin C.
Milwaukee, WI

POEM

Eternally Grateful
In the darkness of ignorance, so blind,
Longing for light, darkness no longer to bind.
Since time immemorial, wandering aimlessly along the way –
Silently searching for Krsna’s pure devotees, to hear what they have to say.
Desperate and downtrodden, crying for their company
Humbly begging for mercy, dear devotee, kindly help me to see
Submissively I pray, please impart the truth, as you have realized it within.
May you mahatmas free me from material life…
From within the heart compassionately teach me how to eradicate the sin.
Indeed I admit to being a rascal, no more than a poor fool –
Unworthy and unqualified though this fallen soul be, still here I am
Humbly begging of you…please rescue me from this material pool.
My heart is open and I have a little faith, but not much more
Hear me knocking, Haribol! Haribol! Haribol! Please open the door.
There is hope for me to gradually surrender, hearing you speak about Krsna’s fame
Yes, attentively listening to lectures, hearing the pure chanting of Krsna’s holy name.
The glorious gif of Krsna Consciousness, ever sweet and sublime, eternally grateful that you gave
For us conditioned souls to see the light, for Krsna’s pleasure we truly live.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
To all of the very dear pure devotees of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Sri Krsna!
Jai! Jai!
Your Humble Servant,
Bhakta Jason M. –Columbia, SC

This article is just a small part of the bi-monthly IPM NEWS, an electronic newsletter. If you wish to receive it in your inbox, simply email me at iskconprisonministry@gmail.com with "SUBSCRIBE" in the subject line. Thank you!

To read more excerpts of inmate letters and to see some of their artwork, please visit our website at www.iskconprisonministry.org

To support this prison program, please contact Mukunda Dasa or Bhakti-lata Dasi at:

ISKCON Prison Ministry
3759 McCreary's Ridge Road
NBU #46
Moundsville, WV 26041

IskconPrisonMinistry@gmail.com
www.iskconprisonministry.org