Times of India Features Goura Prema Dasi
Posted October 2, 2006
Last year, Goura Prema dasi was seriously injured by a hit-and-run car in Delhi, saving her sister's life but suffering a crushed ankle, foot and leg. As a lifelong dancer, it was a tragedy for her. It happened the day after her successful audition with the prestigious Sri Ram Bharatiya Kala Kendra in Delhi and one day before her first Katthak classes. She endured two operations. For two months, she had to remain in bed taking pain-killers. For seven months thereafter, she went back to her school for daily physiotherapy, scaling three flights of stairs to her room in the school dormitory, dragging her cast and crutches.
Many of you sent your prayers, well wishes, and Laksmi to help with the expenses. We are so grateful for all your love and support. Due to your blessings, her recovery has been going well.
This year, she was determined to give it her all. Although her foot is still somewhat tender, she is doing yoga and going to therapy. Two months ago, she auditioned for the part of the golden deer in her school's annual Ramayana production; she won the hearts of everyone. The school administration had never before cast a woman for the role, but Goura insisted that she be given a chance, and her faith in Krsna became an incredible victory: "Wherever there is Krsna ... victory, opulence, extraordinary power and morality."
This Ramlila -- a major three-hour Broadway-style production with many colorful costume changes, amazing props, amazing Indian classical music and churning, turning dancers -- is famous in India. This Ramayana has been performed for the last 50 years at the Kendra. Goura Prema is in six other exciting dances, but the part of the golden deer is what caught the eyes of the press.
She appeared in the enclosed article of September 26 from the front page of the Times of India,. The director and administration at the school said that never in 50 years of the school's existence has their Ramlila received front page attention.
Goura Prema dasi also appeared on live interviews with NDTV, Darshan TV, and several other national TV stations, as well as in other newspapers. One devotee called us from Bhubanesvara, Orissa -- on the other side of India --saying that he had just seen Goura Prema dancing on TV and that her interview mentioning Srila Prabhupada, ISKCON and dancing for Krsna was "ecstatic."
The press is intrigued that a foreigner is involved with an otherwise all-Indian cast of Ramayana. They are surprised that she knows the pastimes of Lord Rama, but Goura gives all credit to Srila Prabhupada "who brought Ramayana to the West for all of us." Each article has Hare Krsna in it, as she immediately identifies herself as a Hare Krsna devotee from ISKCON -- so all of Delhi and India are chanting Hare Krsna when they read about her performance. Today we just received a call from India Today, the national magazine of India, and they want to do a feature on Goura Prema dasi. The article will include her life as a Hare Krsna devotee, her accident, how she likes living in Delhi, and her dancing for Krsna.
We in Vrndavana ISKCON are so proud of her. We pray for your continued blessings, as the blessings of the devotees are mystical, magical and simply wonderful. Please send your congratulations to Goura at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We pray this finds you healthy and enlivened in your seva. May we all aspire to have each word a song of praise for our Srila Prabhupada in some way and each step a dance for our Nitai-Gaura, Krsna-Balarama, Radhe-Syama, Srimati Tulasidevi, Yamunamayi, Sri Giridhari and the Vrajaraja, and may we always want to serve Krsna's devotees.
Editor's note: Mahadevi prabhu is Goura Prema prabhu's mother. We at Chakra join in wishing her well.