The mayor adorned with a garland from Lord Narasimhadeva greeted the conference with Hare Krishna and said that he feels part of the community and is friends with them because they are in the same area. He is happy to participate in the conference. His father is an agriculturalist and this type of activity is close to his heart. He appreciated the wide European participation. If there was any way he can be of assistance he offered his help. The mayor also remembered that when he was ten years old that the farm used a bullock cart to transport some invited guests to a venue. The Mayor stayed for an hour sitting through one of the presentation sessions and then departed.
On September 21st, Detroit ISKCON celebrated its 2nd Annual Pushpa Abhishek Flower Festival. The ecstatic bliss devotees and new guests enjoyed in the shower of seemingly unlimited flower petals was truly a unique experience. One first time visitor to the Temple who was a lifelong Jehovahâ€™s Witness said it was the most amazing experience of his life. Their Lordships Sri Sri Radha Kunjabihari were showered with 25 large baskets of flower petals for over one hour continuously, creating a cascading avalanche of flowers from Their Lotus Feetâ€™s onto the alter and spilling over into the Temple room. And what happened next?
Our focus right now is the development of buildings that will shelter devotees as the cold winter months quickly approach, while providing emergency funding to devotees not being able to buy the basic necessities of food and warmth. We have started construction on a 10 room building with a communal kitchen (see pictures below). This will house families most in need of shelter immediately on its completion. The papers for an adjacent property are also being gathered in the intent to purchase it for housing more of the displaced devotees.
Sep 25 2014 World Holy Name Week 2014 @ Iskcon Chowpatty
Like other places all over the world, World Holy Name Week was also celebrated very enthusiastically by devotees of Sri Sri Radha Gopinath Mandir ,ISKCON Chowpatty. Following events were conducted in Temple premises, at Congregation homes and in our Govardhan Eco Village (GEV) Farm
During the time, when inter-religious and intra-religious war is intimidating mankind across the globe and with several nations joining hands for civil and nuclear wars to curb religious violence; at realistic level, a humanistic approach through inter-faith dialogue appears to be a ray of hope to minimise any religiously motivated violence. In this regard, for nearly two decades, the dedicated international Inter-faith organization, United Religions Initiative (URI) has been engaging people from varied background to bridge religious and cultural differences and thus work together for the good of their communities and the world.
Sep 25 2014 World Holy Name Week 2014 - Celebrated Globally
This year ISKCON celebrated Holy Names globally for World Holy Name Week, which took place from the 5th to15th of September. This year we have seen fairly increased participation, many more Holy Name events and much more enthusiasm and excitement in devotees all over the world for WHNW. So far we have received reports from more than 50 ISKCON centers, covering every single continent of the world. We are receiving reports every day. We are very sure that many more centers have participated but didn't report yet.
Sep 20 2014 New Gokula Farm Celebrates Local Community Work
One of the UK's best known sustainable and ethical farms has celebrated bringing together local people from different walks of life to care for its cows and bulls, including organic farmers, veterinary students, and even ex-offenders taking part in community payback projects. New Gokula Farm at Bhaktivedanta Manor Hare Krishna Temple has a mixed herd of almost 60 animals, some of whom give milk, some who are working oxen, and some who are retired or in their childhood.
The cream of mostly British kirtan leaders including Amala Harinama Das, Nadiya Mani Devi Dasi, Nama Rasa Das and Tulasi Sutaria, Radha Londonisvara Dasa, Kavi, Nimai Gadhvi and many others lead participants in chanting Hare Krishna at Leicesterâ€™s newly acquired property. The highlight of the weekend was a maha street harinama on the Saturday night, where the devotees practically danced out of the temple and around the City Centre. A local Police Sergeant even joined in the dancing and commented that he wished they could be on harinama all night.
A TOUCH of the exotic brought a rainbow of colours to a country house during a vibrant Hare Krishna festival. Croome was overflowing with vivid colours at the weekend (Saturday, September 13 and Sunday, September 14) as the Hare Krishnas celebrated their time at the National Trust mansion house and parkland as these photographs by Tracey Blackwell show.
More than the previous year, this year we have the target of chanting 1.18billion Holy names in 10days!! This time we will be collecting the cards through counselors and counselors scoring maximum in Japathon will receive a TROPHYâ€¦. Individual highest scorers also will receive prizes from the lotus hands of HH Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaj and HH Loknath Swami Maharaj.
Sep 10 2014 World Holy Name Week in Full Swing!
Iâ€™m glad to inform you that World Holy Name Week (WHNW), September 5 â€“ 15, is in full swing!! This year we are seeing increased awareness, participation and excitement for WHNW. We are getting reports from all over the world â€“ New Zealand, Russia, Singapore, USA, Brazil, Canada, UK, Japan, Indonesia, South Africa, Mauritius, Middle East and of course from India. Attached are few of the reports we have received so far.
As World Holy Name Week 2014 progresses from day 4 to day 5, I contemplate the supreme sacrifice made by Srila Prabhupada to take sannyasa. Sannyasa means to give up all activities not favorable to Krishna consciousness. One of the inner truths of World Holy Name Week is to put aside all activities not related to Krishna consciousness. This is an opportunity to increase our chanting and hearing. Cultivate those items favorable for the outreach effort of Krishna consciousness. And also cultivate those items favourable for the inreach effort of Krishna consciouses.
Sep 8 2014 World Holy Name Week - Starts with a Splash
This year, World Holy Name Week, which began in 1996 as a one day celebration as part of ISKCONâ€™s Centennial Celebration of Srila Prabhupadaâ€™s birth, is bigger and better then ever before. Social media and internet have allowed us to access a large portion of the world of ISKCON. Never before has there been this capacity to spread a message to the world in such a short amount of time.
Sep 7 2014 King of Puri Visits ISKCON Bhubaneswar
On August 27th, for the occasion of Srila Gour Govinda Swamiâ€™s 2014 Vyasa Puja celebrations, the King of Puri, Gajapati Maharaja, King Dibyasingha Deb, attended the two day festival at ISKCON Bhubaneswar. The king took darsan of the deities Sri Sri Gaura Nitai, Sri Sri Krsna Balarama, and Jagannatha, Baladeva and Subhadra, and then spoke for 40 minutes in the Srila Gour Govinda Swami Memorial glorifying the contributions of both Srila Gour Govinda Swami and Srila Prabhupada.
Sep 3 2014 Detroit 3 Day Harinama at Jazz Fest 2014
After trying our luck a few times in different spots within the limits of the 35th annual Detroit Jazz festival, we were finally forced by security (read 'lead by the benevolent will of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu) to sit just outside the festival, at the corner of Woodward and Jefferson Ave. (Read 'The busiest intersection in the whole city.') The sun was beating down on the spot so direct the word 'hot' might have been applicable. The cold hardy Detroit devotees were a little apprehensive, but once they were reminded that in 2 months we'd all be begging Sri Sri Radha Kunjabihari to send even a few moments of such sun.... we all settled down and began the yajna.
On the auspicious day of Radhastami, His Holiness Jayapataka Swami, co-minister of the Congregational Development in ISKCON, congratulated the Namahatta devotees from Sridhama Mayapur for having reached out to a record number of 15 million people in their last 35 years of preaching Krishna Consciousness. This is the result of continuous preaching initiatives aimed at encouraging congregations in their spiritual advancement. From innumerable home programs to large pandals, these preachers have successfully been able to attract this large number of souls to the process of Bhakti by following the instructions of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu: â€śtalk about Krishna, worship Krishna and teach others about Krishna.â€ť
"Hare Krishna Hare Rama little nice souls, welcome to the camp for little vaishnavas." With this traditional camp anthem began already the 13th year of the Hare Krishna Children Camp at the German Simhachalam farm. This year record-breaking 80 Czech, Slovak, German and Irish children and their parents have attended.
I believe that me and my family, who are being represented here by my daughter Pratibha, are very fortunate to have the darshan of Swami Prabhupada and offer our respect on to his feet on this day of Janmastami. We also offer our respects on to the feet of all the devotees present here. I consider myself fortunate and believe that Krishna's message would reach every house in the world and by Krishna's message I mean Bhagavad Gita's message.
Aug 25 2014 Bali’s Ratha-yatra
The festival lasted two days. The first day was dedicated to ISKCONâ€™s founder-acharya, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. His Holiness Kavicandra Swami and His Holiness Subhag Swami publicly glorified their spiritual master and encouraged the Indonesian devotees to follow his instructions. â€śWe need to encourage a united celebration for Srila Prabhupadaâ€ť, His Holiness Kavicandra Swami, GBC for Indonesia, comments. On the second day, Sunday the 24th of August 2014, the park was filled with people who were fed by the Hare Krishna Food For Life team. Over 1,500 plates of hot porridge were freely distributed.
Visitors had a glimpse of the enthralling spiritual world this Janmashtami at ISKCON Convention Centre, Bangalore. Walking in through the main gates of the temple, one had a wonderful sight of an awesome towering deity of Krishna. Close by was an equally tall deity of Vishnu resplendent with Anantasesha. The waters of the fountain at His lotus feet reminded everyone of the causal ocean, though it was a miniature version with gently flowing waters.
The State Polytechnic Institute (Politeknik Negeri Bali) and Hindu University (Institut Hindu Dharma Negeri) of Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia, in collaboration with the Indonesia Bhaktivedanta Institute, hosted two international seminars on Bhagavad-gita As It Is separately on their respective campuses on the 16th and 20th of August 2014 respectively. â€śI think we shall get help from the Government and many foundations, if they understand that we are actually training people for building up character and health along with imparting education." (SPL to HayagrĂ©va, 7th October, 1968).
Srila Prabhupada has a special place in every devoteeâ€™s heart. Since Kolkata is his birthplace so the city of joy is very dear to all Iskcon members worldwide. And in Kolkata, devotees always try to celebrate Srila Prabhupadaâ€™s Vyasa Puja in a grand way. This year too an elaborate arrangement was made to commemorate Srila Prabhupadaâ€™s appearance day and his unparalleled contribution to the world.
Doing service together in co-operation with other devotees and friends towards a common goal is truly the key to surcharging both the atmosphere and our own souls with spiritual bliss. That was the scene on the days before Janmastami 2014. As people worked together, the air was surcharged with inspiration and creativity for the Lord.
Every student from Year 1 to Year 12 wrote a Vyasa puja offering and selected children read their heartfelt homages to Srila Prabhupada, some of these were in the form of poems and songs. There were bhajans, songs and a dance by different students as well as rememberances of Srila Prabhupada by his disciples. This was followed by an abhisek organised by the ashram boys and a large feast which the students helped prepare.
On Sunday, August 17, 2014, ISKCON Baroda organized a grand observance of the annual festival of Sri Krishna Janmastami. On this day Lord Krishna advented himself five thousand years ago at Mathura, in North India. Estimates of the huge numbers of local residents who came to have "darshan" -- to see - the Deities of Sri Sri Radhashyamsundar, Sri Sri Sri Jagannath, Baladev and Subhadradevi, and Sri Sri Gaur Nitai in the temple here range from one hundred thousand (one lakh) to two hundred thousand (two lakhs).
Bhaktivedanta Manor's serene and peaceful grounds were transformed into a magnificent festival, brought to life with the sound of music, dancing, stage shows, face paintings, stalls selling books, fresh organic produce, jewellery, musical instruments, and CDs. One of the major highlights of the festival held yesterday at Watford, northwest of central London, was the recreation of the beautiful forests of Vrindavan in India where Lord Krishna played when he was growing up.
Devotees along with Lord Jagannath, Baladeva and Subhadra arrived from Hare Krishna Centre, Medan, a day ahead of the festival at Binjai to make the necessary arrangements. The festival was arranged at the Mariaman (Mother Durga) Temple, one of the oldest Hindu temples at the heart of Binjai City. The stage had been prepared; the chariot was going through final adjustments; the devotees, around fifteen to twenty, were eagerly making arrangements for prasadam, bhoga offerings and decorations. So many fruits were placed on the chariot for decoration as well as for distribution.
Indore, the economic capitol and largest city in Madhya Pradesh, is going to become the home of a major ISKCON Sri Sri Radha Govinda temple. On the auspicious day of Baladev Purnima, the full moon day in the Hindu month of Shraavan, observed by Gaudiya Vaishnavas as the appearance day of Lord Balaram, the elder brother of Lord Krishna, a "bhumi puja" - "worship of the earth" ceremony was performed to initiate the construction activity there.
Aug 13 2014 Czech Padayatra 2014
Then, a historical moment occurred - after 10 years, our Czech Padayatra was visited by His Holiness Lokanath Swami, the minister for Padayatra! His holy presence was so transcendental and sweet, that we were immediately transferred directly to the spiritual world! He also participated in two evening programs for public, where he addressed people with a talk and he lead lively kirtan. Altogether, we held 121st Czech Padayatra completed! Again it was such a blissful and unforgettable event!
Highlights: Scores and recent stories of book distribution from around India. Video on "How to distribute a full set of Srila Prabhupada's Books" Srila Prabhupada on distributing sets of Srimad Bhagavatam and Caitanya Caritamirta FAQ's on Book Distribution
Thousands of festival-goers from all over the country pulled a massive 90ft chariot carrying the Deities of Lord Jagannatha (Krishna), his sister Subhadra, and Lord Balarama from the City Centre to Cossington Park, accompanied with music, singing, and dancing. The annual festival organised by ISKCON is the second largest festival of this type in country and has been running for 17 years. For the first time in its history the festival began at the newly acquired Hare Krishna Centre on Granby Street. To start off the procession Sir Peter Soulsby and community leaders smashed coconuts.
Jewels in our Backyard by Urmila Devi Dasi, How the Jesuits Expanded Their Mission through Education and Higher Values by Yadunandana Swami, Teaching Sastra so as to be Relevant to Individual Studentsâ€™ Lives by Krishna Kshetra Dasa, Creating New Learning Environments by Using Innovative Methods of Teaching by Raghupati Dasa, Making E-Learning Work: Case Study Based on Bhaktivedanta College by Dinadayal Dasa and more
Since Lord Jagannatha was very merciful toward all living entities, accompanied by His elder brother Balarama and His Beautiful sister Subhadra Devi, TheyÂ overflooded Bantulâ€™s citizens with the waves of transcendental blissÂ on the cityâ€™s 183rdÂ anniversary on a cultures parade. Lord Jagannatha on ratha (chariot) went around Bantul city started from Trirenggo field to Bantul government building square on the 20th July 2014.
Jul 26 2014 ISKCON Boston Hosts Interfaith “Field Trip”
Dr. Catherine Cornille, Chair of the Department of Theology and Professor of Comparative Theology in Boston College, and author of numerous books on inter-religious dialogue, phoned ISKCON Boston with a request: Could she bring a large group of theologians to the temple on a site visit to experience a non-Western religious tradition? The answer was a strong "Yes!" The devotees were also thrilled to know that Prof. Diana L. Eck, a long-time friend of ISKCON and co-director of the conference, would be among the visiting scholars. Dr. Eck is a leading scholar specializing in religious diversity and inter-faith relations, serves as Professor of Comparative Religions at Harvard University, and is author of several texts exploring India and its bhakti traditions.
Jul 23 2014 Thirteenth Padyatra Winds through Slovenia
We just successfuly completed this year's padayatra. It was our thirteenth. It lasted eighteen blissful days: chanting, dancing, feasting, and serving all the time. Full samadhi! We distributed the holy names, prasada cookies, and books. About thirty participated full time, and the highest peak of devotees was fifty-seven. People in general appreciated the padayatra very much.
Nearly 6500 students from 115 schools participated in the 1st round in their respective schools. Students from each school were divided into 2 groups, class 7th to 9th, and class 10th to 12th. In each group the three best students were selected. These students along with their parents were invited to stay in Mayapur and receive the golden opportunity to have darshan of their Lordships Sri Sri RadhaMadhava, Lord Sri Narasimhadeva, Sri Pancha-tattva, and Srila Prabhupada.
As the world commemorated Mandela Day by honouring the former statesman on Friday, 18 July 2014, the devotees and maintenance staff at the Sri Sri Radha Radhanatha Temple in Durban, South Africa offered their contribution in the form of prayer, a conservation program and food distribution.
Jul 20 2014 Detroit Ratha Yatra 2014
On Saturday, the roads near Novi's civic center and public library became a 2Â˝-mile parade route for the divinities Lord Jagannath (Krishna), his brother Lord Balabhadra and his sister Devi Subhadra. The celebration in Novi is a scaled-down version of what took place in India at the end of June. Three chariots, each four times as high as the one in Novi, are pulled through the streets with close to a million attendees watching. Each deity gets its own chariot.
Jul 18 2014 Krishna Consciousness in Iceland
I live in hot and humid Houston, Texas, a world away from Iceland, the unique North Atlantic island nation born entirely from thousands of volcanic eruptions. Despite attempts by devotees to preach there over the years, Iceland is one of the last Krishna conscious frontiers in the Western world, with no established temple or preaching center. Earlier this year, however, I discovered that Iceland has not at all been forgotten by Srila Prabhupada and Lord Caitanya.
Jul 15 2014 Ojai Ratha 2014 Hanuman Flag Broughaha
Thank you to all of the wonderful devotees who helped make the Ojai Rathayatra a wonderful event! Despite the searing heat of 96 degrees we had a great turnout and a wonderful response from the community for the free feast at Sarazottie Park at the end.