ISKCON Temple Founder
In the 1960s, a remarkable spiritual leader named Srila Prabhupada embarked on an extraordinary mission to spread the teachings of Lord Krishna across Western Countries. His determination and devotion would led to the establishment of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), a global movement that has touched the lives of countless individuals.
In 1965, Srila Prabhupada left behind that tranquil town of Vrindawan, India and ventured to the West to share the message of Lord Krishna. He initially faced numerous challenges but soon began to attract followers who were captivated by his chanting and lectures. He made New York City his home in 1996 and began imparting the wisdom of the sacred Bhagavad Gita.
Birth of ISKCON
Srila Prabhupada’s unwavering dedication bore fruit in 1966 when he successfully established ISKCON in New York City. This marked the beginning of a spiritual revolution that would transcend borders and cultures.
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Expansion of ISKCON
Over the next few years (1966-1968), more followers joined his mission, leading to the inauguration of temples in cities such as Los Angeles, Seattle, San Francisco, Santa Fe, Montreal and New Mexico. Notably, the Rath-Yatra festival, one of India’s oldest and grandest celebrations, found its first foothold in San Francisco through Srila Prabhupada’s efforts.
Between 1969 and 1973, ISKCON continued to expand its presence, with the establishment of temples in Canada, Europe, Mexico, Africa, South America and India. In 1970, a supervisory body was formed to oversee the society’s overall growth, ensuring its sustainable development.
Mission and Purposes of ISKCON
ISKCON has seven main purposes, each contributing to its mission of spreading spiritual knowledge and Krishna Consciousness:
- ISKCON aims to impart spiritual wisdom and techniques for a balanced and meaningful life, fostering unity and peace worldwide.
- The society seeks to deepen awareness of Lord Krishna as described in the Bhagavad Geeta and Srimad Bhagavatam.
- ISKCON endeavors to connect its members with Lord Krishna, fostering the understanding that each soul is part of the divine quality of Godhead.
- ISKCON follows the congregational chanting of the holy name of God, as advocated by Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.
- ISKCON aims to create places dedicated to Lord Krishna’s transcendental pastimes, offering spiritual solace to its members and society at large.
- ISKCON encourages members to embrace a simple and natural way of life in harmony with spiritual principles.
- To achieve its purposes, ISKCON actively publishes and distributes books, magazines and periodicals sharing the teachings of Krishna Consciousness with the world.