Published on February 10th, 2023 | by


Difference Between India and USA

In America they would have said, ‘Hey, what are you doing. Get out of my car.’ Possibly beat you. In India, still there is some culture. In India they see a sadhu and they have some respect. But in your country they kick you out.

December 1972, Camp: ISKCON Bombay

Before Srila Prabhupada’s quarters were available in Juhu he stayed at one life member’s flat. His name was Kartikeya Mahadevia. The facilities there were nice and Srila Prabhupada seemed comfortable. Every morning Srila Prabhupada, Shyamasundara dasa and I would take Kartikeya’s car, an Ambassador, and head towards a waterfront area for walking. The pavement was very wide and uncrowded. One day while walking we passed a man laying down at the edge of the sidewalk.

This was a somewhat common sight on the streets of Bombay.

On the way back we passed him for the second time. Srila Prabhupada turned to us and said, “See that man lying there? He is dead.” Srila Prabhupada continued walking without further comment.

Once, when we got back to the car, Shyamasundara could not get the key to work in the ignition. He tried for several minutes. He said, “Srila Prabhupada, something is wrong. This is not going to work. I’ll go get a cab.” He ran off leaving Srila Prabhupada and I sitting in the back seat of the car.

After a few minutes two well dressed Indian men opened the car doors and sat down in the front seat of the car. I became frightened. Srila Prabhupada started talking to them in Hindi and appeared very calm. There was even a smile on his face as he conversed with them. Suddenly, they put their key in the ignition and the car started right up. They began to drive away.

I finally realized that we had been sitting in the wrong car. This is not so hard to imagine. Twenty five years later the Ambassadors still look alike. The gentlemen insisted on taking Srila Prabhupada back to his flat. Srila Prabhupada spoke to them the entire ride. He said, “We are sorry.” They said, “No problem. We’ll take you back to where you are staying.” They drove us back into town. When we arrived Srila Prabhupada said, “You can come up and take prasadam.” They replied, “No, we have to go to work. We have business meetings. Thank you very much, Swamiji.”

After getting out of the car Srila Prabhupada said to me, “This is the difference between India and America. In America they would have said, ‘Hey, what are you doing. Get out of my car.’ Possibly beat you. In India, still there is some culture. In India they see a sadhu and they have some respect. But in your country they kick you out. They say, ‘Get out of my car.'”

It is interesting to note that even in this situation Srila Prabhupada tried to get them to take prasadam. This is something I saw on countless occasions. Srila Prabhupada wanted to see that everyone he came in contact with received prasadam.

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada!

– From the Srila Prabhupada Uvaca by HG Srutakirti Dasa

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6 Responses to Difference Between India and USA

  1. Indian In India says:

    Actually in India they would’ve beat you. Then and now. Western devotees have a fantasy idea of India. Especially the ones who don’t live here full time, or live there in a sheltered way. Its rough. Not saying everything is bad, that’s are some great things about india (and great things in every country), but if you weren’t born here, consider yourself lucky.

    • Hare Krishna

      India is no longer India. That is why India is now totally hellish. One of the worst places on the earth unfortunately.

      It is because the Indians have given up Krishna consciousness. They do not care about Krishna or the Vedic culture at all. Of course there are undoubtedly a few exceptions, but generally speaking now India and Indians are 100% materialistic.

      Indians are possibly the most materialistic and because of this least spiritual people in the world today.

      And it has been like this for a long time. It goes back to the time of British rule in India. The British taught the Indians that everything in the Vedic tradition was primitive and everything about the Western way of life was advanced and they taught the Indians to reject their own spiritual culture and encouraged them to try and imitate the Western culture of sense gratification.

      But India is not meant for that, that is meant for the Western countries, so it is not possible actually for India to succeed in materialism by rejecting Krishna consciousness. So what has been possible in the west, but is now also collapsing in the west, will never be possible in India.

      India will always be unable to imitate the western materialistic culture. It will always fail in India.

      Srila Prabhupada very much lamented this rejection of the Vedic culture by the Indians, it is actually the cause of all the problems of the world. Instead of India providing the spiritual leadership the world desperately needs, instead the Indians have rejected their spiritual culture and are madly trying to imitate the Americans. Nowadays all the Indians are trying to become whiter than the Americans. They are trying to be more sinful than the Americans. That is the goal of India, to imitate America. And America is collapsing because of all the sinful activities. India never developed and never will develop, unless the Indians take to Krishna consciousness.

      But, unfortunately, Srila Prabhuapda said that the Indians will be the last to take to Krishna consciousness. Only when the whole world outside India becomes Krishna conscious will the Indians be forced to again surrender to Krishna and chant Hare Krishna and be happy….

  2. Namesake says:

    All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
    Hare Krishna

    These are dualities of material world , in western countries feminism is on the rise whereas in India the perverted version of the real system is.In Indian women are treated very badly (i live here and have female members in my family too,especially in past 10 years it has grown a LOT) as most of the population have absolutely no idea what the aim of life is …all they see is sense gratification.The main aim is same:sense gratification but it has different reactions in both the places (feminism and perversion of correct system ) well the only solution is dividing society into 4 classes and … everything is there in the gold mine left behind by Srila Prabhupada (the transcendental literature I mean) but who cares right? Unless one surrenders to Krishna there is no permanent solution to anything…this or that does not matter.

    Your lowly servant

    • Yes. You are correct of course. The time is very bad and the general mood is demonic, atheistic, materialistic.

      Still it does not matter. Everything can be very easily changed by Lord Caitanya’s sankirtan movement. Sankirtan is very powerful. We need to revive the congregational chanting of the Hare Krishna mantra:

      Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
      Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

      and the distribution of Srila Prabhupada’s books and we need to distribute sumptuous Krishna prasadam everywhere. This is the solution to all the problems of Kali-yuga. But we do not want to do it. That is the problem.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  3. divyat says:

    hare krishna . the thing in india is that condition is miserable as we all know about corruption and law and order. but the best advantage is that in india parents have some sanskars and they dont allow their children to drink wine and go to parties and discos at night which is a rare sight in america but honestly speaking conditions are becoming worse and worse in india as now days that the so called indian culture is disappearing at such a fast rate that 90 percent of the people are loving western culture. also other fact is that in india there is just no system of law and order. you can see in news of daily crimes happening in big cities of india and also there is no value for a good man in india . recently the killing of and ips officer who was trying stop the truck of drugs shows that those officers are good who accept bribes. a man who revolts and tries to do his duty in this country is always killed. other point of terrorism is that our government is just not working to its standards . all extremely qualified doctors and engineers and scientists dont want to reside here as government doesnt give them their right.

    well if you ask me then i would rather live in america as there is some order in their laws and government and if you compare usa and india on the lines of good manners and sanskars then one should better have a visit in india and see the manners and sanskars of people here.

  4. harika says:

    In India,if a road accident happens,people enjoy the scene by being bystanders and saying who will get involved in this.But In america,people would dial 911 and the ambulance and police arrive ”immediately”.In India its unimaginable for a woman to get in a crowded city bus without getting groped and people don’t even help america,try groping a lady in a bus,you will spend the night in jail.In India,people rarely follow traffic rules and cause several accidents.In america Traffic rules are extremely strict.In India a simple case to resolve in court takes for atleast 10 years.In America,justice system is swift and efficent.

    There are problems alike in america,india or any other countrY.Don’t BS that Indians in India are more cultured than people in america.Respect is commanded not demanded.Do something worthwhile people will respect you.Wearing a religious costume and preaching about pseudo-religion is not something that Americans respect.Been in India for 3 years after my grandmother passed away and have seen the miseries as well as beauty of that place.An american by birth,have lived here and also know that not all people are only good or only bad in america.

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