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May 24 , 1972 : Los Angeles

Srutakirti: Srila Prabhupada was sitting in his garden with the parents of a young brahmacari. Kirtanananda Maharaja and I were also present. "A devotee is very proud to be Krishna's servant," Srila Prabhupada said. "A devotee has that pride. We are not ashamed that we are Krishna's servants." Then speaking directly to the parents, Srila Prabhupada said, "Your son is a very nice boy and a good devotee."

They were very pleased by the sweet words of His Divine Grace, but stated, "The devotees don't seem very ambitious."

"That is right," Srila Prabhupada said. "A devotee has no ambition. He simply wants to do some humble service for Krishna. He is not trying to do anything big. A devotee is not ambitious. We have no ambition."

Seeing the parent's discomfort, Kirtanananda Maharaja quickly added, "What Prabhupada means to say is that the devotees have no material ambition."

"No!" Srila Prabhupada replied. "We have no ambition. The devotee is not at all ambitious. We just want to serve Krishna."

Srila Prabhupada always knew the exact point he was making, even if others did not. Sometimes disciples would try to interpret Srila Prabhupada's statements, thinking that cultural differences prevented his guests from understanding Srila Prabhupada. His Divine Grace knew who he was dealing with, what they meant to say, and exactly what he wanted them to understand. Srila Prabhupada never compromised the philosophy to please anyone. He always spoke the absolute truth!

Reference: What is the Difficulty? - Srutakirti Dasa