When Srila Prabhupada offered his respects to the Deities, he bent down and he looked at Their feet. We were holding our breaths. Prabhupada said, “Krishna has no ankle bells? Krishna should always wear ankle bells.” Very often around the society I’ve seen that pujaris don’t put ankle bells on Krishna. But at the Bhaktivedanta Manor They always wear ankle bells because here the pujaris know the story.
One of the devotees was leading the kirtan and was playing the drum with fancy beats and sort of showing off. [chuckles]. Srila Prabhupada said, “Stop the kirtan!” He said, “You do not know how to sing hari haraye namah krishna?” He said, “There should never be a kirtan without hari haraye namah krishna.” I thought it was Prabhupada’s way to show that the devotee who was leading at that time did not impress him.
What I have learned from Srila Prabhupada is the importance of chanting God’s Names via the maha-mantra and the philosophy of the Vedas, without which I would have completely lost it. It has helped me through the deepest and darkest times of my life. I remember Prabhupada saying, “I am never separated from my spiritual master.” I don’t have those realizations since I’m not that advanced, but if I take shelter of the teachings and the philosophy and the memories that we have of Srila Prabhupada, then I know he will always be with me.