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It Started at a Rock ‘n Roll Dance in London

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Two letters to the London Hare Krishna temple

London

Oct. 15, 1968

Dear Swamiji,

Please accept my humble obeisances. I am writing to you because within one week I have been influenced by Krishna Consciousness.

It started when I went to a rock ‘n roll dance in London. I knew that the advertised “Radha Krishna Temple” was 6 devotees from the Temple in San Francisco, as I had read previously about it in the “New Yorker” magazine. Because of certain feelings, I did not join in—at first. However, I saw the devotees chanting, and those magic words, HARE KRISHNA HARE KRISHNA KRISHNA KRISHNA HARE HARE HARE RAMA HARE RAMA RAMA RAMA HARE HARE!! So I finally gave in, and joined them, repeating over and over again. It certainly felt good afterwards.

Two days later, I went to Kirtan, at the devotees’ private house. This time it hit me! I was lost in bliss, divine bliss! Soon, I learned all the devotees’ names, Mukunda, Janaki, Shyamsundar, Malati, Gurudas and Yamuna. They invited me back again and after only 4 days since I first experienced chanting, they invited me to perform with them. I was overwhelmed!

Now, Krishna Consciousness really had a hold on me, and I can’t believe it’s all happened so Fast! Tomorrow I am going to move in with them, as Mukunda told me, for someone just entering into Krishna Consciousness, association with devotees is very important. I have shaved my head, so I am complete with a sika, and I hope you can understand how happy I am feeling at this moment. Although I know very little about Krishna or His life, I am so eager to learn. Already names like Lord Chaitanya, or Bhagavad Gita are starting to mean something to me. I am determined to devote my whole being to Krishna, and although we have not met, I long for the day we do—because if it were not for your Divine Grace, I would not be writing this letter and I would not be so happy at this moment.

I chant every day, naturally, and I am concentrating hard on chanting 16 times round the beads in 2 hours. I have also given up stimulants (which played a considerable part in my previous life), swearing, pre-marital sex, in any way. I gave up meat eating, over 6 months ago, because, after I had thought very hard about it, I decided that eating meat was really eating a warmed up corpse! And I like to see animals free and alive and I don’t want them to die for me, it is as simple as that.

I can honestly say that Krishna Consciousness is the light in my darkness…

I remain, influenced,

Mr. Andy Anderson

Stratford, England

My beloved God-brothers, Mukunda dasa, Shyamasundar dasa, and Gurudasa, and the Brahmachari (who was with us in the pick-up while going from Herne Hill to Drury Lane), and God-sisters.

I am grateful to you for giving me an opportunity to meet you on last Tuesday afternoon. I am impressed by your enthusiasm to spread Krishna’s knowledge in this world, for which it will be indebted to you and in future you will be remembered as great pioneer-saints.

Success is yours; because Krishna dwells in your hearts and therefore His Shakti (power) is behind you. I look forward to the day when we shall have our own Krishna Temple in this city where we can chant His Holy Names, perform Puja (worship) and exchange our spiritual experiences.

Please do not think of me as a stranger. Ours is the only true relation—that of Krishna Consciousness. All others (worldly) are Mithya (imaginary). I should consider it a favour if you could kindly keep me informed of your activities. But when Swamiji’s arrival date is fixed, please do let me know.

You are the real charmers; with Krishna’s Names on your tongues you are performing the Wonder of Wonders—turning beastly humans into Godly saints, for which you deserve Krishna’s special grace. As you are Jnanis (those who know), it is not for me to remind you that no service goes unrewarded by Krishna.

So, my beloved God-brothers and God-sisters, Godspeed to you,

Lakshmidasa

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