(Click to enlarge photo of Srila Prabhupada preaching in Tompkins Square Park, NYC, 1966)
"In the Bhagavad-gītā, the verse vyavasāyātmikā-buddhir ekeha kuru-nandana (BG 2.41). In connection with that verse, Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura gives his commentary that we should take up the words from the spiritual master as our life and soul. We should try to carry out the instruction, the specific instruction of the spiritual master, very rigidly, without caring for our personal benefit or loss.
So I tried a little bit in that spirit. So he has given me all facilities to serve him. Things have come to this stage, that in this old age I have come to your country, and you are also taking this movement seriously, trying to understand it. We have got some books now. So there is little foothold of this movement. Now on this occasion of my spiritual master's departure, as I am trying to execute his will, similarly, I shall also request you to execute the same order through my will. I am an old man. I can also pass away at any moment. That is nature's law. Nobody can check it. So that is not very astonishing. But my appeal to you on this auspicious day of the departure of my Guru Mahārāja, that at least to some extent you have understood the essence of Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. You should try to push it on. People are suffering for want of this consciousness. As we daily pray about devotees,
kṛpā-sindhubhya eva ca
vaiṣṇavebhyo namo namaḥ
A Vaiṣṇava, or devotee of Lord, his life is dedicated for the benefit of the people. You know—most of you belong to Christian community— how Lord Jesus Christ, he said that for your sinful activities he has sacrificed himself. That is the determination of devotee of the Lord. They don't care for personal comforts.
Because they love Kṛṣṇa, or God, therefore they love all living entities, because all living entities are in relationship with Kṛṣṇa. So similarly, you should learn. This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement means to become Vaiṣṇava and feel for the suffering humanity."
(Srila Prabhupada Lecture on Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati's Disappearance Day, Los Angeles, December 9, 1968)