By Hari Narayana Das
Meeting Srila Prabhupada after 40 years at Rawamangun, Jakarta: A Seminar on Vedanta and Science at STAH Dharma Nusantara University, Jakarta, Indonesia
By Ramanuja das
On March 1, 1973, His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada delivered a lecture on Krsna Consciousness at Aditya Jaya Rawamangun Temple in the heart of Jakarta city, Indonesia (Following Prabhupada, DVD 4). After forty years the devotees and the local inhabitants of Jakarta most joyfully reunited with His Divine Grace while attending the Seminar on Vedanta Science delivered by His Holiness Subhag Swami on Sturday,June 29, 2013 at STAH, (University of Hindu Religion) located within the premises of the same Rawamangun Temple. The seminar was organized by STAH (University of Hindu Religion) Dharma Nusantara in coordination with Yayasan Institut Bhaktivedanta, Indonesia and Parishada Hindu Dharma, Indonesia (PHDI). Srila Prabhupada expressed, "...it is nice that you are infiltrating into the schools and colleges. These are the best customers for our philosophy. Give them nice philosophy..." (letter: SPL to Danavir, 12 December,1971). In another letter Prabhupada mentions, "Actually, this roving sankirtana and college program is the most appropriate plan for spreading Krishna Consciousness and Preaching." (SPL to Bhagavan das, December 10, 19071).
The rector of the University, Prof. Dr. Ir. I. Made Kartika D, along with the students formally welcomed H. H. Subhag Swami into auditorium which was almost full packed with around 200 delegates, mostly students and lectures of the University. After an inauguration with local cultural presentations, the rector delivered his opening address stating that 'aham brahmasmi', a code from the Vedanta gives the clue to perfect peace and harmony among all. The program commenced with a recitation of the Brahma Samhita by Smt. Bisakha Devi Dasi of India and a short video clip of Srila Prabhupada arriving at Jakarta and delivering lecture at the Rawamangun Aditya Jaya Temple. It gave a flash back to the situation 40 years ago. The students were amazed and appreciated to see that Srila Prabhupada had visited the place where they were studying now.
Maharaj began his seminar by giving descriptions about the general idea of science and Vedanta, citing quotes from prominent scientists on how through science can one appreciate the Absolute Truth, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Sri Krishna. Many raised questions during the question and answer session expressing their eagerness to learn from Maharaj. Maharaj smashed all their mundane ideologies through scholarly reasoning and captivated their hearts by beautiful analogies.
Maharaj also launched two new books, 'Srila Prabhupada's selected Verses' from BBT, Indonesia and 'God, Intelligent Design and Fine Tuning' from Yayasan Institut Bhaktivedanta, Indonesia, both in Indonesian. Around 500 prasadam boxes and 77 books were distributed during the event. Maharaj personally gave special signature for those who purchased the books during the program. The staffs and students of the University including the rector were so much impressed that they feelingly approached Maharaj and submitted their request to him to kindly visit their University whenever he comes to Jakarta.