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By Sukhvinder (The Harmonist, 2000)

Om Vishnupad 108 Tridandi Swami Sri Srimat Bhakti Sravan Tirtha Goswami Maharaj ki Jai !!

 

It was a golden winter evening, the departing sun casting a loving backward glance before sliding down the horizon.

Inside the Jodhpur Park Ashram, the sun never sets when Baba is seated on the sofa in regal splendour seeming to emit rays that could put a thousand blazing suns to shame.

We sat around Him soaking in the effulence of His presence and the brilliance of His countenance, listening to His honeyed words. We were like a charmed group of devotees living in another time and space.

At that time a woman devotee walked in, holding in her hand beautiful large dahlias for Baba. As she bowed to Him and offered Him the flowers, He laughed and asked, "From whose garden do these flowers come? Did they come from the garden of which I am the gardener?"

We all looked at him in surprise. Which garden was He talking about? "My job is that of a gardener who takes care that each of the tender saplings he sows eventually grows into large beautiful trees. You are those saplings. Living in the material world and distracted with desires and wants, your path is frought with difficulties. It is my work to see that each one of the saplings has unrestricted growth. I remove the weeds, see that wild animals do not trample it or cattle do not devour it. Where necessary, I fortify it with support and build a barricade around it. As the tree grows, flowers bloom on it and then the fruits come. Eventually, as the tree continues to grow, it pierces the sky and reaches Vaikuntha."

We sat there slowly soaking in the significance of His divine words. May we ever be deserving of His Grace!

Jai Guru