Click here to load whole tree
NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Book Distribution > Book Distribution Glories > The Qualities of a Sankirtana > Only Devotees Can

Only Devotees Can Sell These Books 

No materialist can distribute Shrila Prabhupada's books. A true story from Argentina illustrates this point. In 1976, a military coup overthrew Mrs. Peron's government and took control of Argentina. They tried to destroy the Krsna consciousness movement because the Catholic Church was actually running the whole thing from behind the scenes, saying, "Get rid of these Hare Krsnas; they're too powerful." Paramilitary forces fired machine gun bullets through the front of the temple as the devotees were paying obeisances before taking prasddam. They confiscated everything—books, pictures, and every­one's japa beads. The devotees had to flee with the Deities to Brazil. It was a terrible situation. I was always trying to think of a way to get back the books the military government had stolen. For many years the books sat in a military warehouse. Then, in 1984, when the military government was deposed and a civilian government was elected into power, they opened the military warehouses and auctioned off the confiscated goods, and one professional bidder bought all our books with the intention of reselling them for a profit. The devotees were not aware of this and  were convinced that our books had been burned  long ago.Every time I asked them, they said, "There's no way they'd keep books for ten years; the books must be already long gone." Two years later, the bidder happened to run into one of our book distributors on the street. When the man saw the Bhagavad-gltd, he said, "Oh, I also have many books with this funny writing. Would you be interested in them?" The devo­tee, being new and unaware of the situation, wondered what this man was talking about, so he went back to the temple and told Bhaktibhusana Swami about it. As we know, Bhakti­bhusana Swami is really smart, so he went to the man and nonchalantly said, "Oh, I've heard you have something we might be interested in. Let's see what you have." The man snowed him Snmad-Bhdgavatam, and Bhaktibhusana Swami said, "Nobody cares about these books, and certainly nobody will buy them."

The man said, "Yeah, I know. I've been trying for two years to sell these books and nobody wants them. I haven't sold a single book in two years."

"Yes, nobody wants these books. What do you want me to do?"

"Can you use these books?"

"Oh, maybe, I don't know."

"Please, take them."


For an insanely low price, Bhaktibhusana Swami took back the books, and the devotees sold them in less than two weeks. The funny thing was, because the devotees' money had also been confiscated by the military, they never had to pay the bill for the printing. After ten years, they got the books back for almost nothing because this man couldn't sell one book. From this example we can understand that our books don't want to be sold by materialists. The books stay in their hands and say, "No, we won't go anywhere. There's no love and devotion here." The distribution of Shrila Prabhupada's books is a com­pletely spiritual activity that can only be done by devotees.