Aug 20th 2010 was a hot and sunny day in Detroit. HH Romapada Swami Maharaja, very mercifully, visited us to give his transcendental association and inspire us to take to devotional service at a deeper level. He flew from NY, but just prior to that he had completed a long and strenuous international journey. Maharaja was still experiencing some jet lag from the international travel and seemed very tired. Later I came to know that Maharaja had not rested for 20 hours straight; and the program was scheduled at 6:30 PM (only an hour after he arrived). In spite of that, Maharaja was in a totally ecstatic mood to speak Krishna-katha.
The next day (Saturday) three programs were scheduled. It was so wonderful to hear from Maharaja; particularly the question and answer sessions touched our hearts. The whole day was packed with wonderful instructions. Maharaja spoke from Srimad Bhagavatam (SB) 3rd Canto Chapter 5 - Vidura speaking to Maitreya Muni. It was really wonderful to hear the glories of SB from a pure devotee of the Lord, as part of Vidura's questions to Maitreya. Maharaja was emphasizing the point that simply by hearing attentively about the transcendental activities of the Lord, all the miseries of material existence can be immediately vanquished and one immediately attains the highest goal of life, developing a loving relationship with Lord Krishna.
In preparation for the upcoming Lord Balarama appearance day, Maharaja spoke about Lord Balarama on Saturday evening. This program included a nice presentation about the killing of the demon Dhenukasura, with so many beautiful paintings. Maharaja was emphasizing the point that Dhenukasura represents the ass-like mentality in living entities. The ass works so much for his master for a little straw at the end of the day. He does not understand that he could find the same straw freely and abundantly outside. This point touched me in a deep way. Really, Krishna provides the living entity everything that he needs and will need in the future. Still, not realizing this, one works very hard for the same thing that Krishna is giving him anyway.
On Sunday evening at ISKCON Detroit, Maharaja showed us a wonderful presentation about the birth and transcendental activities of Lord Balarama. Maharaja was preparing our mood to receive the mercy of Lord Balarama on Tuesday. Next day, Maharaja showed us a presentation about the killing of demon Pralambhasura. Maharaja mentioned that Pralambhasura represents the lusty inclinations that one carries. Maharaja explained how to overcome such inclinations by being in the spiritual conception of life. It was really amazing how Maharaja involved all the kids in the discussion asking them questions and explaining things in a way that they can understand. Maharaja was preparing the kids also for Lord Balarama's appearance day, even without them knowing. The highlight of the whole visit was that Maharaja was present with us on the most auspicious day of appearance of Lord Balarama. Lord Balaram is the original spiritual master and to serve His representative on Lord Balarama’s appearance day is great fortune. Maharaja gave us his transcendental association and the wonderful opportunity to serve him on the appearance day of Lord Balarama. Maharaja spoke about Lord Balarama’s transcendental activities that evening at the temple. Every one of us in Detroit is very grateful to Maharaja for this blessing. Many devotees were expressing how heartfelt it was and how fortunate they were to hear from Maharaja on the day of Balarama Jayanti.
During most of his stay in Detroit, Maharaja was sick with persistent cold and cough. Neither sickness nor the jet lag stopped Maharaja from conducting each and every program in the most ecstatic and nectarean way! We are already eagerly looking forward to Maharaja’s next visit and his transcendental association soon!