Ananda Sambada

Departed God Brothers and Sisters

Remembering Srimati Yamuna devi dasi, by Sri Puskaraksa das prabhu

My first wife and Godsister Yamuna Devi dasi left with the Name of Krishna on her lips, at each breath, till her last breath, with her parents and your servant chanting along with her, around her bed… 

When she was diagnosed with cancer, her sisters were trying to boost her moral by telling her, don’t worry, you will get cured!

But my approach was different… I told her: there are two options; either you will get cured and be granted more time to serve in this body, or you may have to leave this body, and continue to serve Guru and Krishna differently, but in both cases you can be successful, for if you remember Krishna at the time of death, you will be promoted to His eternal kingdom…

So, this is what she did. She remembered Krishna and chanted His Holy Name while leaving her body and came out successfully… It was her success. It was our success too, for she had made it.

After she left, I cried out both out of pain due to the separation from a pure devotee, and out of joy, for we had made it, we made it as a team…!

Her spiritual master, our spiritual master confirmed: she went straight back to Krishna!

Two days prior to her departure, she had me ask over the phone, what was her relationship with Krishna… Srila Gour Govinda Swami solemnly declared: She is a gopi manjari, eternal servant of Srimati Radharani…

Before she left, at some point, she moved her two little fingers gracefully and said: I have two desires, cooking and dancing for Krishna… 

In the beginning of her disease, he had come to visit her and she had asked whether this disease had come as a result of her past karma…

He had answered: No, no, there is no question of karma. You must have full faith in my words, otherwise you will be lost: Krishna has personally given you this disease and if you accept it as His mercy, you will be able to attain His lotus feet.

So, this is what she did… She accepted it as Krishna’s mercy and fully surrendered to the point of becoming a pure devotee as I could witness the transformation in her, while I was serving her…

Plus she received many blessings…

For instance, Srila Prabhupada came to visit her and comfort her, reassuring her that he had also suffered before leaving his body, but that everything would be alright… 

Actually, each time she would listen to Srila Prabhupada’s prayer being played on the tape recorder,  Kṛṣṇa taba puṇya habe bhāi e-puṇya koribe jabe Rādhārāṇī sukhī habe dhruva ati boli tomā tāi, she would cry…

Krishna also appeared to her on two occasions.

The first time, I was not there and she told me He came to her in the form of a playful little boy and touched her with His stick…

The second time, I was there and when He left, she started sobbing and crying like anything: He was here, why did He leave, why did He leave…???!!!

Some devotees would occasionally come to visit her with the intention to give her some strength and some encouragement with prayers, such as the Nrisingha kavaca, but they would invariably leave being comforted themselves!

She would actually encourage them to take shelter in the Holy Name.

She said: even at night, when I sleep, I hear the maha-mantra in my mind…

When I told Srila Gour Govinda Mahārāja about that, he said: you see, this is samadhi… 

One evening, I was reading to her the part in Chaitanya caritamrita where Srimatî Radharani is described to take three baths a day: in the morning, in the water of youth, at noon, in the water of luster and in the evening, in the water of mercy…

I had made some arrangements for Yamuna to have a medical bed and some oxygen assistance at home as well, when she was not in the hospital, so when she heard that, she pulled out her little oxygen mask and said:

I had a dream last night… I was with Srimati Radharani and I was bathing in a a very beautiful pond along with some Gopis, and while I was bathing, I was thinking ‘how merciful is this water, how merciful is this water…’

But, I didn’t know that it existed, the water of mercy…

And then, some tears came out of her eyes like syringe, as it is described in the Sastras…

When I narrated this to Srila Gour Govinda Mahārāja, he told me:

You see, she already had a vision of where she was going… 

Poem offered by Yamuna Devi dasi before joining Sri-Sri Rādhā-Krishna lilas on Papamocani Ekadasi 1992.

When the first buds

Of the month of May are about to bloom,

When you see the first dew

Of the morning on a leaf,

Don't cry over me!...

When you feel the first rays

Of the sun that will warm you and

When your heart is filled

With warmth and happiness,

Don't cry for me!...

When it's time for the full moon

And you can admire the stars

That twinkle in the firmament

And when they pass..., they pass,

Please don't cry over me!...

When the first drops of rain

Fall and flood the parched earth

And when it is first ploughed

And the first seeds are sown,

Do not weep for me!...

My life is not over,

Like yours, it goes on

Today is my departure,

Will tomorrow be yours?

Don't cry over me!

We're just passing through

In this infinite journey

Life, death... tirelessly

Turns like the wheel of time

Do not weep for me!...

I was loved and I loved

I loved you, you loved me,

Even without showing it.

Even without whispering it to you

Don't cry over me!

This is only a good-bye

Not really a farewell

I'll come back among you,

Perhaps in you, or near you?

Do not weep for me!

God gave me more than enough

Dry your tears to the winds

Pray that they be tears

Of peace, happiness and love

Don't cry over me!...

Today I'm leaving

But tomorrow I'll be here

Wherever you are, wherever I am

Maybe tomorrow we'll meet again

Don't cry over me!

I'm happy to leave

Do me a favor

Love each other, smile at life

Sing, dance and be happy,

And above all, don't cry over me!

And above all LAUGH WITH ME!...

The poem was originally written in the French language...

Quand les premiers bourgeons

Du mois de Mai vont éclore,

Quand vous voyez la première rosée

Du matin sur une feuille,

Ne pleurez pas sur moi !…

Quand vous sentirez les premiers rayons

Du soleil qui vous réchaufferont et

Quand votre cœur sera rempli

De chaleur et de bonheur,

Ne pleurez pas sur moi !…

Quand ce sera le moment de la pleine lune

Et que vous pourrez admirer les étoiles

Qui scintillent au firmament

Et lorsqu’elles filent…, elles filent,

Surtout ne pleurez pas sur moi !…

Quand les premières gouttes de pluie

Tomberont et inonderont la terre asséchée

Et lorsqu’elle sera à ses premiers labours

Et que les premières graines y seront semées,

Ne pleurez pas sur moi !…

Ma vie, elle n’est pas finie,

Tout comme la vôtre, elle continue

Aujourd’hui, c’est mon départ,

Demain, sera-t-il le vôtre ?

Ne pleurez pas sur moi !…

On est que de passage

Dans cet infini voyage

La vie, la mort… inlassablement

Tourne comme la roue du temps

Ne pleurez pas sur moi !…

J’étais aimée et j’ai aimé

Je vous ai aimé, vous m’aviez aimée,

Même sans vous le montrer.

Même sans vous le murmurer

Ne pleurez pas sur moi !…

Ce n’est qu’un au revoir

Pas vraiment un adieu

Je reviendrai parmi vous,

Peut-être en vous, ou près de vous ?

Ne pleurez pas sur moi

Dieu m’a donné plus qu’il n’en fallait

Séchez vos larmes aux vents

Priez pour qu’elles soient des larmes

De paix, de bonheur et d’amour

Ne pleurez pas sur moi !…

Aujourd’hui, je m’en vais

Mais, demain je serai là

Où que vous soyez, où que je serai

Demain, peut-être, on se reverra

Ne pleurez pas sur moi !…

Heureuse de partir, je le suis

Rendez-moi un service

Aimez-vous, souriez à la vie

Chantez, dansez et soyez heureux,

Et surtout, ne pleurez pas sur moi !

Et surtout RIEZ AVEC MOI !…