Saturday, July 01, 2006

Gathering Clouds of Urine

When you were a kid, did you ever look up at the clouds and see things there? Sometimes faces? If you aren’t too urbanized, sophisticated, and/or jaded, it is still possible. Imagine looking out on the horizon and seeing distant storm clouds. Now, looking at those impending clouds, try to make out a face. I hope you see mine.

For those who remember when the term gurukuli was first self coined back in the early 1990s, and some gurukulis bought a Mac and started publishing a periodical, you know the recent Kulimela and current events transpiring in the life of an ISKCON guru and his friends are not a beginning but milestones in a long journey. Now, think about cows, and remember the name of the cow whose milk you consumed today. If you can’t, look again at those dark clouds of urine gathering in the distance and imagine the sun of your current days’ consciousness setting behind them.

“It's a hard rain's a-gonna fall”

Yesterday I went for my checkup, and the doctor raised my level of Prograft, my anti-rejection drug. I commented that was a bad sign, assuming that the problem being the immune system trying to reject the liver it perceives as foreign, if I needed more Prograft it was because the liver was losing the battle and needed more help. The doctor assured me that, no, on the contrary, it was a good sign. The liver metabolizes Prograft, and the stronger the liver becomes, the more it can metabolize, so in order to maintain the proper level of the drug in the bloodstream, it is necessary to raise the level of Prograft ingested.

I made a mistake in understanding my situation by not knowing the actual reality of the biochemistry of what was happening. Don’t make a similar mistake and think that by chanting some auspicious Vedic mantras before you consume milk products that you are involved in cow protection. Don’t ignore reality by rationalizing some academic conception of what “Reality” is. The reality is that milk is cheap in the market because the cows that give the milk are slaughtered. Cow protection in ISKCON today is about where gurukulis were in the 1970s and 80s.

"Our cows are happy, therefore they give plenty of milk. Vedic civilization gives protection to all the living creatures, especially the cows, because they render such valuable service to the human society in the shape of milk, without which no one can become healthy and strong. In your country the dog is protected, and the cow is killed. The dog is passing stool and urine in the street, he is considered the best friend of man, and the cow is all pure, stool, urine, and milk, but they are taken to the slaughter house and killed for food. What kind of civilization is this. Therefore we have to preach against all this nonsense."

Letter to: Rupanuga -- Vrindaban 7 December 1975


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