Sriman Navadwipa dasa Adhikari, one of my respected senior Godbrothers, who is responsible for the actual printing (press and pre-press work) of many of Srila Prabhupada’s and Srila Sridhara Maharaja’s books, has been expressing his hope for some time that we would revamp our website to bring it more up to date and current with newer designs and technology.
Concurrent with this request I have been urged by Sriman Gokulananda dasa Adhikari, the creator and maintainer of our SCSMG website since its inception, to do the same.
I am prone to blame others for my inadequacies and I take this opportunity to blame Prabhu Gokulananda for preventing me from accepting his long standing offer to convert our website to its current “blog” configuration. What was his fault? He developed the previous site with such outstanding organization and functionality that I became too attached to it. I could not bear to see it go.
More recently I’ve been listening repeatedly to a recording we’ve titled; Srila Govinda Maharaja “Presenting Vaishnava Transmission (3/19/94)” (available on our website or our iTunes store, along with 274 other titles) and another recording named; Srila Govinda Maharaja “NY Periodicals & Guru Maharaja’s Birthplace (10/19/95)”
Both reminded me how pleased Srila Govinda Maharaja and the devotees were with the “Vaishnava Transmission” published by Sriman Gokulananda. Later on he decided to publish a digital version but saw the website as fulfilling that purpose. Still he produced a couple more issues that, due to my shortage of time to proofread them, never found their way onto our website. Seeing these issues again I was amazed by the beauty of the presentation and wonderful content and encouraged him to post them.
Here are a few thumbnails as a preview of what I hope we will see in the not too distant future:
All these things served as impetus to let go my prejudices for “ye old website” and trust that what Sriman Gokulananda would do with our new website format would equal or exceed what he had done with “Vaishnava Transmission”. I began to see the move in terms of “No Risk, All Gain.” Where’s the downside to that equation?
Now Prabhu Gokulananda has rolled out our newly formatted website, and I could not be happier with it. The previous functionality has been maintained, warmth and beauty have been added and this new, modern version gives much more ease of access for our patrons who choose to access the site with all those new fangled gadgets like smart phones and tablets.
And where is Prabhu Gokulananda during the rollout? Can you see him here?
No. You don’t see him. You see Srila Gurudeva, but Sriman Gokulananda is right next to him driving him to a public program in New York city during one of his visits here.
You don’t see Gokulananda now either, although this website is his baby. You don’t see him because he is always working in the background, largely doing the work no one else will do, always lending his support when it is most needed and always pushing me out front, where I tend to get the credit.
Well, not this time. Not if I have anything to say about it.
This time, the credit goes to him.
Sriman Gokulananda Prabhu, ki jai!
From: BK Giri
Subject: Website updating, remodeling and modernization.
Date: December 7, 2013 7:08:26 AM EST
To: Sriman Gokulananda
Dear Sriman Gokulananda Prabhu,
Please accept my humble obeisances.
Re: The added photos and added touches to the website. — “Wonderful.”
Prabhu you are really doing such a nice job with the updating, remodeling and modernization of our website. I liked the website as it was before. It was functional, easy to use and comfortable. I thought of it like a library; carpeted, but with furnishings of a utilitarian persuasion.
You have kept the functionality, while adding more warmth and color, even some artwork now decorates the walls, and some comfortable overstuffed chairs replace their wooden counterparts. It’s difficult to think of an appropriate analogy. The best I can do is to imagine the difference between a public library and the one that was part of President Jefferson’s home. I know where I would feel more comfortable.
One might also consider BSG’s blog in contrast to the website you are redecorating. I see his blog as cold and stark. My eyes look for the fluorescent tube lighting that’s casting a blue hue over everything, removing any warm tones that might otherwise linger there. His librarian might ask you “Please find what you need and then ‘Make yourself to get out.'”, quoting an oft used expression of Srila Govinda Maharaja.
By way of contrast, our librarian would offer a greeting to each patron in this manner; “Please make yourself comfortable. Take as much time as you need going through the great works of our Sri Guru Varga. Drink fully of the nectar they have left here with us to preserve and make available to every soul seeking to know his relationship with the Sweet Absolute. Drink this nectar. Taste its sweetness. Let your soul be renewed by its rejuvenating properties. And, when you feel your thirst has been quenched, tell a friend that his “rasa jigyasa” (search for nectar) will also be satisfied here. We are here to serve your friends, just as we are here to serve you.”
I pray this finds you well in all respects.
Swami B.K. Giri