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Under the graceful glance of Sri Gaura Radha-Madhava, one is always sure of surprises as they magically influence everything. The first weekend in April was no exception as Swami Tripurari’s arrival coincided with a weekend full of guests and was full of spectacular transformations.

The visiting group consisted of thirty Hindus, parents and children, known as the Vedantists. Atypical for ethnic Hindus in America, they were much more interested in philosophy than ritual. As such, they were very captivated by Swami’s penetrating insight into Gaudiya siddhanta.

The first evening was idyllically spent around the campfire on Saragrahi land. As the sun was setting on the scene and the forest changed pace, Swami addressed our eternal youthfulness as units of consciousness and our potential that awaits to be availed. As he ostensibly addressed the children, everyone felt touched as he arosed our deeper sense of identity and prospect through bhakti. Swami continued his cultivation throughout the next three classes as he spoke from Bhagavad-gita with many charming points most pertinent for our audience.

The group also engaged in different activities on the land including cow seva, covering a wall with cow dung, nature tours, and painting bird houses. It was inspiring to see the innate piety of these guests and how they were resolute to retain their culture and values. Their natural inquiring spirit coupled with a respectful disposition provided a unique weekend which ran smoothly due to the expertise and tireless endeavor of Bhaktirasa. Bhaktirasa ki jay!

The following weekend saw the convergence of devotees in the homes of Hillsboro. Swami Tripurari powerfully spoke on the topic of faith and its cultivation through nistha and beyond. The crowds were increasing everyday as was Swami’s fiery enthusiasm, sharing his relish and realizations with us all. Each host family provided wonderful prasadam and arrangements for all guests, both expected and unexpected.

A morning walk around the botanical asiatic gardens of Duke University excited Swami’s imagination for Saragrahi, which overflowed onto the accompanying devotees. The vision Swami has for this project is truly huge and will be an incredible example for Gaudiya Vaisnavism in North America. As he tours the property each day and inspires the land preparation, one can feel a big future unfolding. Seeing his enthusiasm and conviction provides us with such momentum in our practice and fills us with the dedication that will secure all success.

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