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Opinion

  • Does God Laugh at Our Plans?

    “If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.” – Woody Allen. 

  • The Abnormal Normal

    Mental health problems have become mainstream.

  • Know Your Enemy

    We live in a world of bitter competition wherein our rivals sometimes become enemies bent on destroying us. Amidst such external hostility, it is easy to forget that worse than the worst outer enemies is the inner enemy of our own unguarded thoughts.

  • Causal Causes Causalty

    The message runs through loud and clear – a casual approach will inevitably cause casualties. We’ve witnessed it in catastrophes of the past, we’re witnessing it now and if we look closely, we’ll witness this principle constantly playing out in our own life.

  • The Tragic Irony of the Miserly

    When an instructional point is conveyed in a straightforward way, people frequently dismiss it as, “Same old moralizing.” But when that point is made using humor or sarcasm, it registers far more strongly, deeply and possibly transformationally.

  • “Vrindavan Is One of the Most Putrid, Filthy Places I have Ever Been”

    An eight-point action plan to clean up the holy place.

  • Why Religion Seems Dispensable

    Nowadays, the question of ultimate meaning doesn’t occupy the minds of most people. And when religion is divorced from such questions, it degenerates into a set of rituals that are followed out of deference to culture or tradition.

  • The Myth of Old Age

    Not long ago, someone in our community passed along to me a magazine pitch she’d received in the mail. On the front of the oversize envelope, a headline announced—blue type on a bright green background—”Old Age Isn’t Natural.”

  • Destructive Enlightenment

    There is a whole realm of spiritual development, which is about shedding, cutting, letting go and downsizing.

  • As Sure As Death

    Death, need not be seen as an inconvenient truth, but rather the ultimate meditation to reinstate clarity and perspective into every aspect of our life.

  • Printing Matters

    Recently, the BBT trustees became aware that Jitarati Das, through his company Pristine International, printed sets of Srila Prabhupada’s Srimad-Bhagavatam in New Delhi without consulting with or being authorized or licensed by the BBT. This is a serious legal matter, and his printing also has ramifications for the worldwide distribution of Srila Prabhupada’s books.

  • GBC Opposes Brooklyn Temple Sale

    On Monday May 15th ISKCON’s Governing Body Commission hosted a Town Hall Meeting to explain why it is opposing the pending sale of Brooklyn’s Radha Govinda Mandir, and what it plans to do about it.

  • Reflections on the Festival of Chariots at Clearwater Beach, Florida

    Ratha Yatras are always amazing and wonderful events, but I was trying to pinpoint why this venue felt more auspicious than usual to me. I did not realize the answer until the next day when Shranti devi informed me that Their Lordships Radha Damodar had presided at the exact same venue, Pier 60, when Vishnujana Swami and the traveling party brought Then there over forty years ago!

  • Flavors of Devotion: A 12-year-old’s Reflection's on the Baltimore Temple Opening

    I wasn’t ready for all the excitement that hit me as I walked into the temple. The mridangas, the kartals, and the joyful Kirtan. I bowed down to Srila Prabhupada. The energy from the previous day stilled flowed through the air. I found myself falling down a deep well of anticipation.

  • Constructive Response to Destructive Criticism

    When we try to do anything worthwhile, some people will criticize us. Critics can help us recognize where our contribution needs improvement. But to be helpful, their criticism needs to be constructive, not destructive.

  • Living With Chaos

    Learning to live with chaos is more realistic, progressive and pragmatic. Like running water effortlessly flows around the obstructing rocks, moving steadily to its destination, so in the face of inevitable challenges and unexpected reversals, we must march on.

  • Psychological Atheism

    Atheists come in a variety of shapes and sizes: default, philosophical, atheist and covered atheists. Over 30% of UK residents are self-proclaimed atheists. I would hazard a guess, that a good few of the 70% of ‘believers’ are also atheist -- physchological atheists, those who profess belief in God, but repeatedly demonstrate their inability to practically live in His presence.

  • Women in ISKCON in Prabhupada’s Times - Part Three

    Often pushed by his male disciples to minimize ISKCON women’s spiritual position, Srila Prabhupada reacted, for example, in the following way: Srila Prabhupada: ‘”You dance, she dances. You sing, she sings, you cook, she cooks, there is no difference. You are the same in Krishna’s eyes.”

  • A Woman Empowered by Krishna - Poetry

    The Ramayana and the Mahabharata prove the above statement true, as Draupadi and Mother Sita had the whole dynasties destroyed, when men of those dynasties dared to dishonor temple like bodies of these women.

  • Women in ISKCON in Prabhupada’s Times - Part Two

    After the first six years of the movement, at the beginning of the 1970’s, a first change took place, which of course was not contested by anyone. As those new decisions were adopted, and instead of the simple separation between men and women that Prabhupada wanted, a real segregation was taking place.

  • Jagannath Temple Entry Forbidden: A Few Thoughts

    When we hear about people being barred from entry into the temple of Jagannath, the all-loving Lord of the Universe, we naturally feel sad and hurt. However, I have found over the years here in Odisha that perhaps this policy is not as offensive and objectionable as one may think.

  • No, No, They Can't Take That Away from Me

    The drama was all over within 48 hours. Police visits; learning that they’d broken into five other houses the same night; clearing up the mess and discovering much they’d left behind, and a few things lost. I thought about what treasures can never be lost – though the externals of a situation may be shocking or distressing.

  • Women in ISKCON in Prabhupada’s Times - Part One

    When Prabhupada decided to accept women in the movement, he did so according to the reasoning he himself quotes in a purport: “To broadcast the cult of Krishna Consciousness, one has to learn the possibility of renunciation in terms of country, time and candidate… What is possible in one country may not be possible in another."

  • God Who Respects Human Intelligence and Individuality

    In the Gita, Krishna is not sitting on a high moral cloud passing judgment on humanity, but is accepting the role of an assistant of humanity. He is persuading humanity to choose a prudent moral course by outlining logically and philosophically the choices available to us, and their inbuilt and inevitable consequences.

  • Dharma

    We live in a noisy world, and, in the midst of it, struggle to hear the heart. Ironically, tuning into our inner calling is where the real journey begins, otherwise we may well be careering down a no-through road. Happy and fulfilled people utilize wisdom and guidance to accurately understand what makes them tick. Its a simple but neglected principle of life.