HH Candramauli Swami Visits the Largest Slovenian Prison for the Third Consecutive Year

By : 
Vikalotkarsini Dasi

     On 24 May, 2012 we visited the largest men’s prison in Slovenia for the third year in a row. The officials replied to my offer about visiting with the words: “We’re looking forward to you visit.”

     At the printer, I ordered posters, which we normally use for other programs with HH Candramauli Swami's picture. I sent ten posters to the prison and they put them on their bulletin boards. Guru Maharaja laughed when he saw the poster with his picture: and said “the topmost prisoner.” We bought bananas and oranges the day before when we visited the prison in Celje. Our friend the fruit merchant always gives his best efforts so we can get the best fruit from Italy  at the lowest possible price.

     When we arrived at the prison, I collected the ID's from the other devotees and went to the administration building. And then a problem arose. I always wrote Maharaja spiritual name on the list of people visiting the prison, but the name in his passport is different. This had never been a problem before, but the guard insisted that the speaker wasn’t the same person on the list, and wouldn’t let us in. Just then the lady that arranges our visit came. The guard asked her, “Do you know this man?” She replied, “Of course, he’s here for the third time!”Krsna saved the situation! Then it began to rain and we had little time to set the stage because inmates were having lunch, so they then decided to let us drive our car inside the enclosed prison area. Mrs. Bojana, our host, told us the inmates often asked when we would continue the seminar. Let me mention  that we had carried out a series of lectures with the title "Wisdom of the East" during the first year of our visit. Every Thursday for the entire year, Tapta Kancanadi Prabhu talked on: Knowledge, Who I am, Nature, Karma, Reincarnation, Time, Consciousness, How to perceive God, Yoga, Bhakti yoga. “They miss you,” she said and expressed the hope that we would continue the program this year.

     Slovenia’s largest men’s prison is here at Dob. There are about 500 prisoners in two departments—the closed one and the semi-open one—and about 250 guards. We had already met some of the 40 people that attended the program. Because they had already heard the basics of our philosophy, Maharaja talked on other topics that kept their interest. He invited everyone to recite Maha Mantra together. Several people approached Maharaja after the lecture for a personal discussion. Ananda Vardana Prabhu also answered questions and distributed Srila Prabhupada's books. We brought seven different books and distributed most of them. The inmates were particularly happy to receive Srila Prabhupada’s book along with the fruit prasadam.

     Everyone seemed satisfied, we then said goodbye with the following words: “See you next year.”

More Information About Programs 

We also have a few devotees who are enthusiastically arranging for prison programs in the Balkans.

Mother Vikalotkarsini for three consecutive years has singlehandly arranged many programs in which I spoke at in Slovenia prisons.

Mahasimha Prabhu has arranged programs,attended programs and sent full sets of Srila Prabhupada's books to prison libraries in Croatia.

Mother Malati Mala has arranged and is doing a monthly prison program in Pula Jail in Croatia.