This book's title comes from Srila Prabhupada, who repeatedly said, "Bombay is my office." Prabhupada, as a spiritual ambassador, made his Bombay office a spiritual embassy for his mission of establishing Krsna consciousness in India, Russia, and all over the world.
The sixteen chapters of Bombay Is My Office provide opportunities to develop our relationship with Srila Prabhupada, through glorious reflections and contemplations on him. He is the book's hero. His American sadhus-white people, some with blue eyes, wearing saris, dhotis, and tilaka-arrived in Bombay in October 1970. Thereafter an unstoppable journey with Srila Prabhupada began, dotted with challenges and achievements. Lokanath Swami records these, along with the severities experienced on Hare Krishna Land. He does so through the lenses of the many devotees who gave their unstinting loyalty and lives to Srila Prabhupada. Bombay Is My Office exhibits a compilation of images of Srila Prabhupada and his disciples in Bombay. Page after page showcases their experiences during the first seven years in Bombay's history. The photographs express their daily lives and the disciples' emotions for their dear spiritual master. The archival pictures are authentic, and the commentary supporting them is extraordinary in its recollection of events.
This book was created to revivify the era in ISKCON when Krsna consciousness was spectacularly introduced in Bombay. It is a creative, inspiring, and motivating book about Srila Prabhupada's enduring attempts to establish a temple in Bombay on four acres of land three minutes from Juhu Beach. It is a testimony of hope, despair, and then triumph. When the temple complex opened, in January, 1978, twenty thousand visitors attended, along with media from four continents and a host of dignitaries.
Born in 1949 in Aravade, a village in Maharashtra, Lokanath Swami attended college in Bombay in the early 1970s. He met the Hare Krsna devotees at the ISKCON pandal program in Cross Maidan, Bombay, in 1971. The message that most appealed to him was Srila Prabhupada's saying, "If you serve Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, you simultaneously serve your family, community, country, humanity, and everything else." A year later, he joined Srila Prabhupada's Bombay office staff, a crew of committed American disciples, and became one of Prabhupada's first Indian disciples. His introduction to Krsna consciousness was swift. He familiarized himself with the Bombay temple by cleaning it, enrolling life members, and serving as the temple commander, the head pujari, and the co-president. In 1975, he received sannyasa from Srila Prabhupada. Srila Prabhupada instructed sannyasis to travel and preach, and Lokanath Swami oversaw the Bhaktivedanta Bullock Cart Scodzirtana Party and the Bombay BBT's Narada Muni traveling book distribution party. His reports on these initiatives brought joy to Srila Prabhupada, who wrote an appreciative letter to him, in which Lokanath Swami's preaching in Maharashtra was compared to the work of the famous Sant Tukarama.
Lokanath Swami travels worldwide preaching the mission of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Starting in the late 1980s, he helped develop ISKCON's annual Vraja-mandala parikramCt and Navadvipa-mandala parikrarna. As the Minister of the Srila Prabhupada Centennial, he coordinated a global, four-year campaign for the centennial celebrations in 1996. As ISKCON's Padayatra Minister, he organized padayatras in one hundred countries during these celebrations. He is the author of ten books, and Bombay Is My Office is the one book he has always wanted to write.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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