_Captain’s Log, StarDate 2007.07.29-??.??_
On Thursday night after the movie, I had met someone staying in the same hotel, a person of Indian origin who has been working in the US for over 6 years now. Over breakfast today morning, just out of curiousity, I asked him about the book he was holding in his hands. When I took it from him, I saw that the title was “A Second Chance: The Story of a Near-Death Experience”. He told me that the book was about the NDE of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.
There were five of us at the table, and the talk went from NDEs to Kalyuga to Apocalypse. One of the people who serves us breakfast at the Hearth Room saw the book and shared his experiences. When he mentioned that for the last 5 years he has been reading a single shloka of the “Bhagavad Gita – As It Is” everyday, the gentleman gifted his book to him. One by one, everyone else left the table and he invited me to his room to continue our talks.
From 11 AM to 2.30 PM, this extraordinary gentleman patiently and clearly answered one question after another of mine in unimaginable detail, with excellent examples, while quoting from a vast array of sources and at times even reciting Sanskrit sholkas and giving their meanings. I asked him a lot of questions, and with each answer that he gave, he answered some more unasked questions. Unfalteringly, without even once contradicting himself, he told me more than I have learnt in years together. He also gifted me a copy of the “Bhagavad Gita – As It Is”. I am fascinated by the fact that all this happened in a hotel room in Canada, while millions of people in India, the so-called Spiritual Captial of the World, are spending their entire lives seeking answers and not getting any.
When I came back to my room, I had a terrible headache and my mind was spinning. I had something to eat and went to sleep. I woke up some time later to find that time had stopped, literally, there was no power and my bedside radio clock was quite dead. I drifted back to sleep and woke up around sundown, after which I called up my mother and narrated to her everything that I could remember. Maybe all this was meant for her.