<< 6 The Most Critical Situation >>

The next morning after Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam class I returned to the dharmasālā where we were living. Vraja Līlā would usually sleep until 7:00 a.m. because of her poor health. When I entered our room I saw that she was in intense pain. She told me she had received an electric shock from a bare wire in the room and was experiencing heart pain. I immediately took her to Sarat Hospital, but the doctors there said I should take her to Mathurā. At Mathurā Hospital they kept her for observation for several days. While attending to her chest pains, the doctors became more concerned when they discovered she was about to go into a leukemia crisis. I took her back to our dharmasālā in Vndāvana to rest. A few days later I again consulted the doctors in Mathurā regarding her leukemia crisis. They wanted to begin chemotherapy, but told me in confidence that it would increase her life by only a few months.

I talked to some senior women in the temple, and they all suggested she should not go through with the treatment. Then I spoke to Vraja, saying that I personally felt she should go back to the hospital and take the treatment because her condition was critical. She replied, “The most critical situation is to be without the association of the Lord’s devotees. I see no danger for myself if I would die in Vrndāvana, being trained by the senior devotees to be fixed on the Lord at the moment of death. I need this training course. It will be much more helpful than any chemotherapy, which I have no confidence in anyway.”

I was sympathetic to her opinion, but nonetheless, because I was responsible to Śrīla Gurudeva for her, I asked our godsister Mānasī Gaṇgā to fax Guru Mahārāja for his instruction. The next day he faxed back that he had discussed with Vraja Līlā the option of having chemotherapy when she was in Russia the year before. They had decided not to go ahead with it at that time. He had encouraged her to try all possible natural cures, but if everything else failed he instructed her that she should leave her body in Śrī Vrndāvana-dhāma. Upon hearing Śrīla Gurudeva’s reply Vraja Līlā started intensely preparing herself for the moment of death.

“I am drowning in the painful, fathomless whirlpool of repeated birth and death. O Lord, O friend of the shelterless, O effulgent moon of mercy, please, this one time, quickly extend Your hand to save me.”

[Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī's Padyāvalī]

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