Baladeva Vidyabhusana Project Update and Sanatana Gosvami’s Gopala-puja Dr. Demian Martins

I am glad to announce the discovery of an unpublished and unknown manuscript entitled “Gopala-puja.” According to the colophon, this text was composed by Srila Sanatana Gosvami. As the name suggests, it is a concise description of the method of worship of Gopala’s deity, with the mantras, mudras and so on. The manuscript was found in the middle of a single collection of Gaudiya manuscripts that include several well-known texts as well as rare and unpublished ones. At the end of the bundle, there is a note stating that these texts were transcribed between 1919 and 1920 from the original manuscripts in possession of Brindavana Chandra Panigrahi, Parlakamedi, Odisha. Several decades later, this transcribed collection ended up in the Government Oriental Manuscript Library in Chennai, amidst more than 70,000 manuscripts. For the benefit of those interested in reading it, I have uploaded a digital copy of the complete manuscript of Gopala-puja:

www.vidyabhusanaproject.blogspot.in/2018/03/vidyabhusana-project-update-and.html

Recently, I’ve gone through the first research expedition in Bangladesh, which proved to be very rewarding. Although in the last century fanatic Muslims burnt large numbers of Sanskrit manuscripts in East Bengal, there are still many thousands of them left, albeit in a precarious condition. On the contrary of what one may think at first, I was cordially received in the libraries I visited and promptly given access to the manuscripts. At Dhaka University I was even offered a proposal to work in the manuscript section, which hosts a vast collection of Gaudiya texts and has thousands of unsorted manuscripts. Many of them could be the very same copies dispatched from Vrindavan by Srila Jiva Gosvami more than four centuries ago.  Besides copies of several of Srila Baladeva Vidyabhusana’s works, I also brought copies of some rare texts. read more

Dear Friends of the Vedas!

Dear Ojai devotees & guests – Wednesday evening

Hare Krishna. It is already Gaura Purnima morning in West Bengal and throughout the Indian subcontinent. Thousands of devotees are chanting & dancing as I write this. Live kirtans and classes from Mayapur, and other primary temples can be seen in real-time at http://mayapur.tv/

We may not have thousands visit us here, but we will visit Mayapur throughout the day via their webcast – combined with bhajans and a library of recorded nectar. read more

Srirangam Sravana Kirtana Camp 2018 The Editors

Srirangam, the largest functional temple in the world at 156 acres is the seat of the Sri Vaisnava sampradaya and the first and most important of the Sri Vaisnava 108 Divya desams. The Deity of Ranganatha Swami and the Vimaana on the temple are Svayambhu (self-manifested) having come directly from the milk ocean where Ksirodakshayi Visnu reclines on Ananta Sesa. Sri Ramanujacarya the acarya of the Si Vaisnava sampradaya resided here for many years and his actual transcendental form is still kept embalmed in a Samadhi in the southeastern part of the temple complex.

This is also the place where Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu spent the most time after Navadvipa and Jagannatha Puri. Sri Gopal Bhatta Goswami of the Six Goswamis of Vrindavana came from Srirangam; it was in his house that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu resided in during the four months of caturmasya that He stayed here. Gopal Bhatta Goswami’s descendants are still present there. read more

Brooklyn: Ramabhadra Dasa sues in Court to have temple sale approved.

Attorney General’s Office asks Court to reject the deal. A Brooklyn courtroom was filled with Krishna devotees this past Wednesday for a hearing on a petition asking the Court to allow the Brooklyn Hare Krishna temple to be sold. The petition was filed by Ramabhadra Dasa, the former president of ISKCON Brooklyn. New York Assistant Attorney General Abigail Young appeared in court to oppose the petition, as did attorneys for the ISKCON GBC, for a renewed, GBC-supported temple board, and for members of the congregation.

For the sale of a place of worship, the State of New York requires Court approval. Typically, the seller first seeks approval from the State’s Office of the Attorney General (OAG). If the OAG approves, the Court it likely to approve as well. But on September 26 the OAG notified Ramabhadra that after nearly two years of back and forth, it had declined, once and for all, his request for OAG approval. If you want to pursue the sale, the OAG told him, you will have to take your request to the Court. That is what Ramabhadra chose to do. In late October he filed his petition with the Court, asking approval for the proposed sale.

On Wednesday the attorneys for the GBC and for members of the congregation filed with the Court their responses, outlining their many reasons why permission for the sale should be denied. Some fifty or more New York devotees packed into the courtroom to show support for keeping the temple in its present location. Advocating the sale, only four now-removed members of the temple board showed up: Ramabhadra Dasa, Adi Deva Dasa, and their wives. (They were accompanied by two lawyers.) read more

Monks Seek Navadvip Slaughterhouse Scrap

Hindu monks of several organisations have appealed to the Union home minister, Rajnath Singh, to scrap an abattoir project coming up on the banks of the Ganga in Nabadwip town as it, they say, will disturb the sanctity of the birthplace of Vaishnava saint Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and pollute the river.

Subhasish Chaudhuri, “Monks seek abattoir scrap”, 6 Aug. 2017, The Telegraph, 14 Aug. 2017 <https://epaper.telegraphindia.com/details/272450-124838100.html>.

Read more.

Good News: ISKCON told to include eggs in menu

Some good news:

Amaravati: Taking serious note of non-implementation of prescribed menu of mid-day meal scheme in several schools, the government has decided to make it a mandatory on providing three eggs per week for each student studying in government-run schools  across the state as part of providing nutritious food for the children.

Considering the report of National Institute of Nutrition(NIN) the government has directed the DEOs to strictly implement the prescribed menu in the mid-day meal and has also decided not to exempt  any agency or institution like Akshaya Patra foundation, ISKCON etc on  providing eggs to the students in the guise of religious traditions. read more

Identity of buyer discovered in pending sale of Brooklyn Radha-Govinda temple

rg-turqoise2009-08-05_51Members of the ISKCON Radha-Govinda temple congregation in Brooklyn have uncovered the identity of the prospective buyer with whom the temple officials signed a deal last year to sell the temple. The deal has still not gone through, because it cannot be completed without judicial consent.

There is no need for the buyer’s identity to be kept secret, and so I am disclosing it here.

Usually when an offer to purchase a religious building is under serious consideration, the officers in charge of the church, mosque, or temple inform the congregation and tell them the essential details, such as the price, the terms of the contract, and the identity of the buyer. read more

FEMALE DIKSHA GURU PROPOSAL

Whereas, the body of ISKCON India leaders aka IIAC has taken cognizance of the continuing discussion by the GBC on the issue of female diksha gurus, specifically the recent discussions that took place at Tirupati as reported to us by our GBCs for India, as well as by Anuttama Prabhu’s letter that appeared on Dandavats.com.

Whereas, this body, earlier the IRGB, had expressed it’s serious concern to the GBC regarding their resolutions of 2005 and 2009 calling for female diksha gurus and called for further discussion and dialogue on the issue,

Whereas, this body would like to convey to the GBC body that instituting female diksha gurus would be contrary to Srila Prabhupada’s oft expressed desire to institute varnashram dharma, read more