Below is my offering to Dvarkadhish Prabhu, read at his memorial program tonight in New Dvaraka, Los Angeles, by HH Bhakti Charu Swami Maharaja.
My dear Dvarkadhish Prabhu,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and his dedicated followers.
I still can hardly believe you are gone. Your smiling face and enthusiastic service were an integral part of our devotional life in Southern California. So many fond memories of our association flood my mind—of our preaching and working together, sometimes until late into the night. And our relationship was further sweetened by the fact that you were made a life member in Bombay, by my dear godbrother Sridhar Swami—though, like many other expatriate Indians, you took fully to Krishna consciousness only in America.
Srila Prabhupada said that when a Vaishnava departs we feel both happy and sad: We feel happy that the Vaishnava has gone to serve Krishna, but we feel sad because we will miss the Vaishnava’s association.
You were fortunate to depart on Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura’s appearance day, and his words about Srila Haridasa Thakura can also apply to you:
He reasons ill who tells that Vaishnavas die
When thou art living still in sound!
The Vaishnavas die to live, and living try
To spread the holy name around.
Some years ago, you wrote me that you had dreamed about Srila Prabhupada but felt sorry that you had never met him in person: “I also had a dream some time back about Srila Prabhupada. I was offering him one thousand ghee lamps, and his face looked like molten gold, like Lord Chaitanya.
“Maharaja, you are so fortunate to have had personal association with Srila Prabhupada. I still regret that I was unable to meet him, but through devotees like you we are fortunate to hear and know about his pastimes.”
Now your desire to meet Srila Prabhupada will be fulfilled, and under his everlasting guidance, you will serve his eternal lords and masters. And one day, if I am so blessed, I will meet you there.
Dvarkadhish Prabhu, I love you and miss you. But I will try to serve and please you in separation, and in doing so, I expect to feel your presence.
Your eternal servant,