Hare Krishna Maharaj,
Please accept my humble obeisances, All glories to Srila Prabhupada! All glories to your divine lotus feet, here and in Goloka!
HpS - We only have lettuce feet. Trying to improve. You are probably more advanced devotee than we are. We are just trying to do a job for Srila Prabhupada, mostly inspired by him rather than our own sincerity!!
I know I just posted my offering to you in the spirit of your auspicious appearance day, and I do not wish to flood your blog! However, I was hoping to ask you for some advice regarding a potential preaching endeavor coming up soon here in Boise, ID…
You may remember a couple American yogis here in Boise who own their own yoga studio, Satyavani Gayatri and Michael Bittner?
HpS - Yes, we have some recollection of them.
Satyavani used to come at least every week if not multiple times a week in the morning for Srimad Bhagavatam class with Ananta Rupa Prabhu, myself and/or others. She is getting pretty busy with her yoga studio entitled ZenSpot Institute: Vedic & Taoist Studies and hasn’t had time lately for Bhagavatam in the morning. But her business is expanding and she has asked me to teach a “Nectar of Instructions” course at her institute this April of 2020. Because last winter, by Ananta Rupa Prabhu’s request, I had led a NOI class at the temple and some of Satyavani’s students attended them regularly, I felt confident and told her that I was interested, so we planned the dates. She shared with me how she would charge students $299 for a 6-week course. She needs me to create a personal profile so people know who I am and also I will be given 40% of the proceeds from the students.
Maharaj, I feel torn a bit for two reasons. Firstly, I don’t feel completely qualified to create a profile and teach professionally. Secondly, I would be getting paid for teaching Krishna Consciousness.
The first issue: Materially speaking my qualifications are skim. I only have an Associates Degree of General Science from BSU and I am just a housewife working for the Hare Krishna Temple. I have only finished two of the four Bhakti Sastri books (of which 1 of them is the Nectar of Instructions). I haven’t taken a teacher’s training qualifying me to teach the course, "professionally/institutionally". What impressive profile do I have? Am I really qualified?
HpS - Just explain what you have said and then include your daily austerities and for how long you have been doing them and the formal degrees you have taken in ISKCON, what they mean.
The second issue: Maharaj, the proposal is that out of the $300 per student, 60% would go to ZenSpot Institute, and 40% would be given to me. Now if there were even just 5 attendees that is $1,200 of which $600 would go to me, and $900 to ZenSpot. My question is, as an initiated devotee housewife, how should I handle the $600 given to me? Should I give 50%, $300, to the Temple, like Rupa Goswami has recommended?
I feel like giving 50% would be the correct thing to do. And at the same time, I may be in an interesting position because most of the money my husband, Nitisara das, and I make goes towards paying bills, keeping a roof under [over?] our heads, and buying bhoga we offer to Krsna. We buy a lot of bhoga to make nice offerings for Krsna. When Rupa Goswami says 50%, does that mean 50% of gross or, of net profit, after one has paid the bills?
HpS - Here is a citation from NOI! https://vedabase.io/en/library/noi/4/#bb5913. Here Srila Prabhupada seems to equate "income" with "accumulated earnings". what you keep after operating expenses.
I am teaching Krishna Consciousness, so shouldn’t this be a free service? But what about book distributors who make a living off distributing books? What is your opinion and instructions about such a life?
HpS - As we understand, Srila Prabhupada said that devotees in the Temple who get Prasada, roof, dhotis, etc, but are Ghrasthas can keep 15% of their collection to pay for their Ashrama expenses. So it is okay, service.
A yogini making a life teaching yoga/bhakti sastri material?
Thank you for your precious time, Maharaj. Any feedback to steer the boat will be of use.
Your aspiring servant,
Anadi Radha dasi.
HpS - $300 for 6-weeks. How many hours/week? $180 for six weeks. Maybe talk with Ananta rupa Das. If there are more students they maybe your fees could be less, because the basic costs could be divided between students. Maybe suggest that the Center charge for its costs, then you ask for donations to cover your basic costs and time and whatever else they students want to give to use for your preaching programs, like the Bhakti Yoga Center etc/