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Why build new temples? Why not renovate and use old temples?

Krishnanama Dasa: One guy, I think Ramesh Gupta, just came from Kanpur with his wife and was sitting with Prabhupada. He asked Prabhupada in Hindi, "Why are you doing this? You are such a nice person, spread God consciousness everywhere, but you are making new temples; why not take the old temples, renovate it and utilize it?" 

Prabhupada didn't say anything, he knew how to smash the guy. He said, "OK, what is your name?" The guy said, "Ramesh." Prabhupada then asked, "What are you doing?" Mr Ramesh said, "I have a woolen mill in Kanpur." Prabhupada enquired, "Who is with you?" He said, "She is my wife."

Prabhupada said, "Good. Very nice." Then Prabhupada asked Ramesh why he had married her. For which Ramesh replied that it was only for kids. Prabhupada asked him, "On the footpath there are so many orphaned kids, why don't you take them and raise them as your own?" He further added, "You want new kids. If I give my torn kurta to you, will you wear it? No, you want everything new. So God is adyam purana-purusham, always new. We offer everything new to Him." 

Prabhupada continued saying, “Our temples are not only temples, they are spiritual schools setting example. People go there not only for darshana, they can learn and become devotees." He explained so wonderfully.

Next Episode: Krishna Balaram Mandir Construction

Reference: SPF Interviews