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WESTMINSTER ABBEY.

WESTMINSTER ABBEY.

Another symptom is düre väry-ayanam tirtham lävanyam kesa-dhäranam: “Just going to some faraway river will be considered a proper pilgrimage, and a man will think he is beautiful if he has long hair.” [Srimad-Bhägavatam 12.2.6] Just see how perfectly Srimad-Bhägavatam predicts the future! “In Kali-yuga a man will think he has become very beautiful by keeping long hair.” You have very good experience of this in your country. Who could have known that people would be interested in keeping long hair? Yet that is stated in the Bhägavatam: kesa-dhäranam. Kesa means “long hair” and dhäranam means “keeping.” Another symptom is düre väry-ayanam tirtham: People will think that a place of pilgrimage must be far away. For example, the Ganges flows through Calcutta, but no one cares to take a bath in the Calcutta Ganges; they’d rather go to Hardwar. It is the same Ganges. The Ganges is coming from Hardwar down to the Bay of Bengal. But people would rather suffer so much hardship to go to Hardwar and take a bath there, because that has become a tirtha, a place of pilgrimage. Every religion has a tirtha. The Muslims have Mecca and Medina, and the Christians have Golgotha. Similarly, the Hindus also think they must travel very far to find a tirtha. But actually, tirthi-kurvanti tirthäni: a tirtha is a place where there are saintly persons. That is a tirtha. Not that one goes ten thousand miles and simply takes a dip in the water and then comes back.

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