By Rita Gupta for ISKCON News Weekly on 27 Dec 2008
In 2001, two long-time friends and Godsisters, Sangita Devi Dasi and Jusaniya Devi Dasi, co-founded Vaisnavas C.A.R.E., Inc. (Counseling, Assistance, Resource, and Education for the Terminally-ill and Their Families). Their vision was that in every town or village, when devotees are in the process of dying, there will be trained volunteers to assist with their end-of-life needs.
At 7am on December 20, ISKCON guru and GBC Jayapataka Swami was discharged from Mumbai’s Hinduja Hospital, 60 days after his admittance due to a brain hemorrhage.
The first sign of major improvement came on November 21, when His Holiness was taken off ventilator support. He continued to improve steadily, eating more solid foods and learning exercises to strengthen his muscles with a physiotherapist. A speech therapist also taught him exercises to improve his speech and swallowing.
This December, devotees in Klang, Malaysia, celebrated their Ratha Yatra festival, one of twenty across the country.
Preparation for the traditional cart festival honoring Jagannath, Baladeva and Subhadra begins months in advance, with Klang’s small congregation saturating the town with promotional pamphlets. The resulting support from townspeople, especially the shops in Little India, funds the event almost entirely.
Prominent animal rights website Abolitionist Online recently interviewed ISKCON scholar Steven J. Rosen about his 2004 book Holy Cow: The Hare Krishna Contribution to Vegetarianism and Animal Rights. Rosen, who is known as Satyaraja Dasa in the Hare Krishna movement, is the author of twenty books on Vaishnavism and related subjects. Holy Cow is his second on vegetarianism, which he has strong views on and last wrote about in Diet for Transcendence: Vegetarianism and the World Religions.
On the 9th of December, Moscow Hare Krishna followers celebrated the festival of Gita Jayanti, or the birthday of the Bhagavad Gita.
The Gita Jayanti is celebrated all over India and other parts of the world on Ekadasi, the eleventh day of the lunar month of Margaseersha (December-January). It was on this day over 5000 years ago that Vedic King Dhritarastra heard the Bhagavad Gita as narrated by his secretary Sanjaya.
Is Darwin’s theory of evolution unquestionable fact? Or should the possibility that an intelligent designer created our world be discussed as an alternative? Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, a recent film presented by actor and political speech writer Ben Stein, suggests that it should.
When we send our children to school obviously we hope that they will be taught the truth. Well, at least some of the time. It seems that painful truths may have to wait, such as the non-existence of Santa Claus. A teacher who recently made the grave error of informing children in her class that Father Christmas was not real found herself out of a job. Parents were furious. “My Joshua came home in tears,” said one distraught mother. “I didn’t know what to say.”
The conch and the Sudarshana Chakra are unmistakable. Although the figures do not match popular images of Kirshna sporting a peacock feather, archaeologists are convinced that the coins are of Krishna.
In these troubled times of terror, when disturbed minds seek counselors for peace, Dushyant Sridhar brings relief through his weekly evening sessions for his audience comprising of people from all walks of life. The listeners, mainly residents of Century Rayon, Mumbai, are enthralled by his wise commentary delivered in flawless Sanskrit and English.
HOWRAH STATION in Calcutta was packed with travelers as I arrived to catch the 3:30 p.m. train to Jangipur. Passengers and porters charged in all directions, some carrying their suitcases or cloth bundles in their hands, some with their baggage on their heads. One man with a chair; another with a stepladder. At my feet, someone was charging his cellphone on the station’s electricity supply.
Activist parents and anti-food additive lobbyists are claiming a small victory in the battle against potentially harmful artificial food colourings.
After declaring war on six food colourings banned or being voluntarily phased out in various European countries and the US over the past two years, the Kids First Campaign and the NSW Greens have pressured Nestle Australia to change the ingredients in one of the manufacturer's most enduring staples.
ISKCON devotee Kripamoya Dasa made history this December 12 when he spoke at the British Houses of Parliament wearing Vaishnava robes and sacred tilak markings.
His speech at the House of Commons launched Caring for Hindu Patients, a guide to assist health care professionals in caring for the religious and cultural needs of their patients. The book was conceived and compiled by ISKCON member Dr. Divyesh Thakrar, and contains editorial contributions from ISKCON priest Rasamandala Das and other devotees.