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Away of Ojasvi Prabhu
By Sri Thakur das
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
My father, Ojasvi Prabhu, left his body at 7:47 a.m. here in San Diego, on the most auspicious Appearance Day of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He passed away due to complications from leukemia.
Ojasvi dasa, age 50, was an initiated disciple of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. He joined the Denver ISKCON Temple in 1972. Subsequently he served in Denver, Los Angeles, Vancouver, Seattle, the Bridesville farm in Canada, and San Diego.
Ojasvi was a skilled artist and sculptor, and while in Los Angeles he worked on a project very dear to Srila Prabhupada, the First American Theistic Exhibition, popularly known as the FATE museum. He helped make dioramas that are now on display at the Detroit temple. In Denver he assisted with the installation of Sri Sri Radha-Govinda. He also did book distribution and college preaching programs there. Those who remember him from the Bridesville farm may remember when he built a house on stilts, an architectural wonder, but was forced to take it down by a building inspector who called it "a madman's masterpiece." One Janmastami there, Ojasvi made 108 preparations for Lord Krishna using various milk products. My father was the first traveling sankirtan assistant of His Holiness Hridayananda das Goswami, my spiritual master. More recently, he made a beautiful brass chakra that was installed by Jayapataka Maharaja and graced the top of the San Diego temple.
Once in Los Angeles, when Srila Prabhupada was there, my father went into the temple room and saw that he was alone with Srila Prabhupada, who was sitting on the Vyasasana chanting japa. My father sat before Srila Prabhupada for several minutes. He said he felt that Prabhupada could see right into his heart, and my father felt very fallen — but also newly determined to be more Krishna conscious.
After Srila Prabhupada's meals there in Los Angeles, devotees would rush to get the mercy of his remnants. Once my father leapt past several devotees to obtain a cupcake that Srila Prabhupada had taken one bite out of.
Dravida Prabhu kindly assisted our family in preparing for my father's passing. Ojasvi was wearing Tulasi japa beads, a maha flower garland, and a Nrisingha Pavitram around his neck. We sprinkled him with Yamuna water and Radha-kunda water. He was wearing tilaka on his body, which was covered with a Harinam chaddar. Ojasvi left his body to the loud chanting of the Holy Names, while intensely looking at a picture of Srila Prabhupada and Sri Sri Radha-Nilamadhava, the Houston Deities. It appeared that he left his body through his mouth, an auspicious indication. I assured him that Krishna and Prabhupada were coming for him and that he shouldn't be afraid.
My father was responsible for bringing me back to Krishna consciousness after many years away. While I lived in the San Diego temple, he would always encourage me to remain strong in Krishna consciousness. "It takes a little effort to stay in Krishna consciousness, but it takes a lot more effort to get back into Krishna consciousness after leaving," he would say. He also told me "When you are fifty you will look back on your life and say one of two things: 'I'm glad I remained Krishna conscious,' or 'I wish I'd remained Krishna conscious.' We have no choice but to remain Krishna conscious."
Those who knew my father remember him as a rather unpretentious devotee. He never tried to be the center of attention and was humble in his ways. Krishna kindly blessed him with a most wonderful departure. He will be greatly missed by his family and friends.
I humbly request devotees to pray to Krishna to engage Ojasvi dasa in His eternal service as well as for his quick return back to Godhead.
Memorial services will be held at the San Diego ISKCON temple on Sunday, March 31, at 12:00 noon. For further information please call me at (760) 635-0765 or write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sri Thakur das
© CHAKRA 30 March 2002
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