It had taken her several years of internal work to reach the point of accepting the fact, that it would be helpful if not to say necessary for her to enter married life. Such step was certainly not maya's work on her, but rather the opposite: it was Radha Madana Mohan's mercy, revealing to her and all of us, how important it is for most ladies - and also for her - to be properly situated within family life in order to be emotionally balanced and fulfilled. Only when the subtle body receives such care and is strong and healthy, can we whole-heartedly give ourselves in service to the Lord and His devotees. No matter how serious and sincere we may be - unless we are stably situated in our ashram, we don't have the required strength to apply ourselves in the process of devotional service. Since, as a rule, we ladies are given a more emotional nature, we are meant to be situated at least for some time of our life within marriage. It is Krishna's divine plan. If we try to go against it, we may receive undesired reactions.
I had been accompanying Damodara-priya Mataji on her internal journey towards entering marriage, and now, at the age of 45, she was embarking on this new phase in her life. This memorable event deserved to be celebrated with great joy! And I certainly did not want to miss it.....
Everything was so well organised and tastefully arranged - with sweet little details! After a sumptuous feast and a little rest, we congregated once again in the garden in kirtan, funny little games for the newly wedded couple and speeches of senior devotees. It was a beautiful day in all auspiciousness and harmony! Even her elderly mother and brother with family had come from Switzerland to attend the occasion, which added further sweetness and a spirit of preaching.
I couldn't help but remembering when I entered married life - twenty-nine years ago in Sydney/Australia. One day, my temple president had called me in his office and said: "Devaki, you will turn thirty this year! And a woman should be married before she turns thirty! So who do you want to marry?" And surely enough - a few months later, just before I turned thirty, I found myself sitting in the fire yajna together with another couple, getting married to Guruttama Das - the man of my choice, who had been a brahmacari for seven years.....!
All the friends and family members should come from far and wide, witnessing the occasion, offering blessings and gifts. And the newly wedded couple should extend their hospitality, feed everyone sumptuously with prasadam and give in charity to the seniors, expressing their gratitude for their attendance. It should be celebrated in such beautiful and grandiose style, that we cannot so easily pretend that it never happened! We cannot cancel it so easily. The seniors attending are also offering to give their further guidance in the future, and thus the newly wedded couple feels secure and protected on their future journey through married life - confident that any challenge can be overcome by the help and guidance of their senior well-wishers and friends.
Traditionally, a wedding even lasts three to five days, with the whole village participating....!
Damodara-priya Mataji's wedding with Gopal Sundara Prabhu was indeed a beautiful and sweet festival - I was happy that I didn't miss it.....!
Your servant, Devaki dd