While laboring as a social welfare worker in New York City’s Lower East Side, Steve (soon to be initiated as Satsvarupa dasa) met his teacher, A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami (later known as Srila Prabhupada), a modern day saint from India. Srila Prabhupada was giving classes in a humble storefront on 2nd Avenue that he passed by every day on his way home from work. Entering that storefront changed his life forever.
Srila Prabhupada taught essential truths from the Vedas—ancient books of knowledge. He captured the attention and hearts of his audience through recitation of the scripture, mystical histories of saints and sages, colorful stories, sweet chanting and musical expertise, and loving devotion to God. He brought from India a few sets of books translated into English and immediately engaged his new friends in producing more.
Satsvarupa dasa became Srila Prabhupada’s typist and began churning out manuscripts for publication of new translations with Bhaktivedanta commentaries.
Satsvarupa dasa became a storyteller in his own right. He used his notes and access to unpublished manuscripts to write essays for the other students, friends, and newcomers. He was among the first young Americans to assist Srila Prabhupada with his mission in the West and, as Srila Prabhupada’s intimate disciple, he served as personal secretary.While traveling, lecturing on Krishna consciousness, and instructing disciples worldwide, he has published many books including poems, memoirs, essays, novels, and studies based on the Vaisnava scriptures.
In recent years, his devotional life has evolved to include the creation of numerous paintings, drawings, and sculptures (see About SDG’s Art ) that lovingly capture and express the artist’s absorption in the culture of Krishna consciousness.