Hare Krsna Gurumaharaja
Please accept my humble obeisances
All glories to Srila Prabhupada
First of all I want to thank you for your association during the month you were in Lima. By your example and mercy, we begin to understand the fine subtleties of devotional service according to our very limited capacity. We love you very much, Gurudeva. On the other hand, your presence renews the essential enthusiasm we need to continue on our way. I apologize for distracting you with my concernings, but nobody better than you to help me absolve them so I ask for your patience on behalf of what i am going to tell you: I have always been (since I can remember) linked to the world of art. My father and mother devoted their efforts and life to artistic activities and since I was little I had contact with books, select music, painting, unusual objects and creative and unorthodox people who contributed in the development of a critical attitude towards life. I always wanted to devote myself to the artistic and the Lord granted me the desire to do so allowing me a life in close relationship with this unconventional world (in a material perspective, of course). I love art, and what awakens in people, I am fascinated by the ideas around it and I have partially resigned the practice to dedicate myself to teaching and researching due to my great attraction to ideas and books. However, not everything is perfect in this environment. I have never been able to fit completely into my surroundings, I am not skilled at relating to others. I prefer solitude or personal contact with my students, for whom I am a guide but from whom I learn many things. Art is my Maya, its fascination dazzles me and sometimes I find myself biased to dedicate more time than to my spiritual practice.
I am 51 years old. I am not a young man and I feel, little by little, the signs of time in body and mind, in a subtle but real way. Indira Sakti and I want to deepen our spiritual life, we certainly want to be devotees (is the only thing we really have, besides your words). We do not have children, so attachment to a place is deceptive and unnecessary. However, sometimes we do not know what the next step is. For now, we are considering the possibility of returning to Chosica to serve you and train us in deity worship. It is a service that we like a lot and we execute it quite well as a team. We would like to stay for two years receiving training and then travel to a yatra where we can be employed in service to continue learning Arcana for another time (hopefully one day we can execute Arcana in deed). If Lord Jagannatha wishes, we can then travel to India to concentrate all of our time and effort in devotional service. What do you think of this possibility?
On the other hand, I do not have a degree because I never finished the thesis. In the last two years I have been tempted to do it and get my degree (I've even advanced in it), then I could do a master's degree in education or art history. But the thesis takes time, effort and money. Do you consider it necessary? Can this decision contribute to our spiritual development in some way? In short, I am hesitant to continue my professional career in an area in which I have achieved modest success at the level of prestige, money and social status (although it has enriched me greatly as a person) or, devote my time to perfecting our devotional service as pujari. In what way do we serve you best, Gurumaharaja? Not having found a way to serve you effectively has caused us great sadness, Gurudeva, so I beg you to instruct us and help us to channel our beings to the benefit of your sankirtana. I apologize for the length of the message.
Your little servant
ASA - Hare Krsna! AGTSP paoho We are spending the weekend in Franklin in Tandavika Das and families Ashrama. This is a rather specific question and we don't have sufficient detailed knowledge of the situation to give detailed advice.
Canakhya Pandita says that victory comes from good advice and good advice comes from many counselors. Of course, Mataji is a good source of perspective. She knows how much pressure some of the school work may be on you while also paying the bills. Your family, friends, associates, teachers, KRSNA. Talk with all of them and then you can get a good estimate of the value and the cost of the Diploma.
Laksmana Das is going through it, no?
Also you can even do both maybe. You can even integrate getting a Master's Degree with becoming a Master as the Art of Deity worship.
See if you can do it in useful units. Commit yourself for two Semesters with a certificate in line and then reevaluate.
Main thing is what helps my Sadhana, Sankirtan. What is your Sankirtan in ISKCON. I don't think it is being a Pujari.
I think you would do well as a Director. Organize an event. Make a movie for a clearly defined audience using ISKCON as actors, action.