needs your help. This project is maintained by donations, which have been reduced during the pandemic. Kindly consider supporting this very important service project. Click here to contribute.

Kindred Spirit Tales (1): Krishna, the Real Proprietor

This year the store is not doing all that well---at least compared to last year at Christmas. So that requires some adjustment for the owners. Kindred Spirits is a service to the local community which includes seekers, yet it is also a business through which devotees earn a living and give to the BBT book fund. Success in business requires a sort of sixth sense to know what people want, a pleasant personality, and of course the karmic tendency to run a business and attract "laxmi" or money.

Personally, I also want the business to do well, since I know that the money generated is used for such good purposes. They are my friends as well, so I feel some of their pain. At the same time, as a salaried employee I am not affected in the same way. Since I am not the proprietor of the business I don't have the responsibility, and am more easily detached from the results. From the KC perspective we are all meant to think ourselves an employee of Krishna in our work life [in other words we are working for him, the real boss].

In the Gita's 5th chapter, 29th verse we learn that not only are none of us the proprietor of any business or even our own body, but neither are we the enjoyer of the results of our work, or a real friend of anyone. If we can truly realize this then we can be peaceful in any situation, and will not become entangled by the results of our work. If we know we are not the doer, then we have no results to suffer or enjoy [Gita 2.47, 5.14]. We dedicate our work and its' results for the satisfaction of Krishna. Seeing Krishna as the true proprietor of our business, profit and loss are his responsibility [Gita 18.57]. Our identity is "Krishna dasanudas", or the servant of the servant of Krishna.

combined comments from old site

Hare Krishna, Dear Karnamrita prabhu,
This is such a relevant topic to so many people I think. So many of us have jobs and run a business.
It's really hard not to see ourselves as the "owners" and "controllers", especially when we do in fact "own" the business in the material sense.
Since everything I do (or don't do) is going to affect the outcome (again, in the material sense), the results, how successful things are and how much money we make..... it's really hard to realize I'm not actually in control at all....
Especially since it's so important that we do 'take action' and do everything we can to make things successful.
Wow! I guess that requires a lot of Krishna consciousness to keep in mind always that we're not really in charge.
(on another topic, I thought devotees were a friend to everyone... you're saying we're not really anyone's friend... could you please explain what you mean there? )
Thank you,
Really nice post once again :) :) :)


Thu, 12/20/2007 - 22:42 — Karnamrita.das

Certainly a real devotee is a friend to everyone in principle because he is a servant of Krishna, and shares knowledge that Krishna is THE friend of everyone simultaneously. How many people can we reach out and help? Even superlative devotees can only interact with so many people and not all living beings---and what to speak of us?. Krishna is the sustainer of all that lives and the whole universe. He is our power and ability.

Krishna is the ULTIMATE friend, well wisher, owner and enjoyer. At best we can be a reflection of that when we are representing Krishna's purpose.

Your friend in Krishna,



Fri, 12/21/2007 - 02:40 — Navasi
Navasi's picture
Oh Yes!

Oh, I do see exactly what you mean now, Karnamrita Prabhu!!
Thank you so much for explaining this!
I love this part of what you said: "Krishna is our power and abilty" and "Krishna is the Ultimate friend" oh, yes, how true!!! :)


Thu, 12/20/2007 - 09:22 — Radhikesh
Radhikesh's picture
Real friend of everyone

Yes, when I read that, it struck me odd too. But then I re-read it and concluded that Krishna is the true well-wishing friend of all in a much greater way because He is the Supreme controller. And I think Karnamrta Prabhu is taking a humble position and talking about people in general, and not specifically about devotees. Of course, I am not trying to guess his mind or speaking on his behalf, but just writing what I thought when I read that part.

Radhikesh das