Before entering the the sacred drama of Sri Vrindavan, one must take permission from one of five divine personalities; Gopiswara Mahadeva, Yamuna devi, Vrinda devi, Govardhan Hill or Vraja-renu, the dust of Vrindavan. The other day we set out early for the Yamuna river, with the beautiful song by Jahnavi devi, "Like a River" flowing through our hearts and minds. Video by Ananta Vrindavan, music by Jahnavi Harrison.
The devotees of the Sri Mayapur Candrodaya Mandir had decided to install a Deity of Lord Nrisimhadeva after being attacked by a group of 35 dacoits in March of 1984. Lord Nrisimhadeva is the protector of His devotees, so what better way could there be of protecting the Sri Mayapur Candrodaya Mandir than by inviting Him to reside there?
ISKCON leaders probably didn’t expect some of their biggest preachers to be playing earsplitting hardcore punk music, doing high kicks and hurling themselves offstage into a crowd of wild teenagers. But in the 1990s, Shelter inspired countless young people to take on a sattvic lifestyle and even join the Hare Krishna Movement.
Trinidad’s first ever Rathayatra was celebrated in Chaguanas in 1991 with a flatbed truck used as the chariot. In 1994, devotees put on the first Rathayatra in Port of Spain, building a float onto a truck chassis. But it wasn’t until 2006 that organizer Baladeva Das built the first proper Rathayatra cart with the help of a friend.
An ISKCON center full of new, young American devotees, completely self-sustained through book distribution, in 2018? To some, this may sound like a pipe dream. But Philadelphia’s Mantra Lounge is proving that Srila Prabhupada’s model for ISKCON’s family business still works today – and it works very, very well.