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Death and Dying in the Vedic Tradition

In a talk to hospice workers, Giriraja Swami highlights the goal of fixing one's consciousness on God at the time of death.

It is a great pleasure for me to address you all here, especially because this hospice is recognized as one of the best and largest in the world and as the global leader in hospice education.

In the Bhagavad-gita, which is considered the essence of the Vedas, Lord Krishna informs us:

"Do You Still Believe in God?"

A former classmate wonders why God didn't protect a devotee friend from a painful injury.

I recently came across a Gallup poll, conducted in 2011, in which Americans were asked, "Do you still believe in God?" Ninety percent answered yes.

The poll reminded me of an exchanged I had with a college friend that same year.

“Do you still believe in God when He didn’t – or couldn’t – protect you in His own temple?”

Srila Prabhupada’s Transcendental “Otherness”

In language reflective of the era, a hip Lower East Side newspaper's 1966 cover story introduced the children of the counterculture to the Swami in their midst.

I recently spoke to Peter Leggieri. The name might not mean much to most readers of Back to Godhead, but, in fact, Peter was engaged by Krishna to help establish the Krishna consciousness movement in the West.

Prayag Raj: A Place for Vaishnavas

Despite the prominent influence of Islamic culture, this Kumbha Mela city has much to offer the Vaishnava pilgrim, including followers of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

Once You Visit You Never Leave: A Pilgrimage to Vrindavan and Mayapur

The stay begins in the holy town of Govardhan, at the ISKCON temple, a place with "a real feeling of quiet devotion."

I started planning my pilgrimage to Vrindavan and Mayapur early last summer at my home in Taiwan. As my dates were becoming fixed, Sankirtana Dasa, my friend and mentor from the Taipei temple, told me he would also be visiting Vrindavan around the same time, and we synchronized our outbound flights so we could travel together. The weeks flew by, and suddenly it was October 4 and time to meet up for a flight to Shanghai, and from there to New Delhi, arriving at 1:10 A.M. (local time) the next day.

The Prayers of Queen Kunti and Prabhupada’s Triumph Over Adversity

When Srila Prabhupada faced challenges in his life of service to Krishna, he often took refuge in the words of Lord Krishna's aunt and pure devotee.

Queen Kunti, who walked this earth some five thousand years ago, was the sister of Vasudeva, Krishna’s father. Her story is briefly told in the Bhagavata Purana, also known as the Srimad-Bhagavatam, where we find her heart-rending prayers embodying the pinnacle of Krishna conscious philosophy.

Surfing or Suffering?

The apparent pleasure of surfing provides a fitting illustration of a universal principle of material existence.

In her book Prabhupada Stories, Govinda Dasi recalls her spiritual master’s reaction when he first witnessed American boys sporting in the ocean in 1967:

Toward Krishna Conscious Governance

Do devotees of Lord Krishna have any responsibility in the face of the present calamities created by bad leadership all over the world?

Little Ahmed stretches his small hands to beg. By his side, his littler brother cries in pain and his mother hides her face in shame. Bombed out buildings give an eerie backdrop to what was previously a respectable locality. I turn the pages of the newspaper. On another page, a woman cries over the dead body of her husband.

Why Is the Bhagavad-gita So Pessimistic?

Even if we find Lord Krishna's view to be realistic, we still have ample reason for optimism.

After teaching a university seminar, I was asked questions I had myself raised when I first encountered the philosophy of Krishna consciousness: “Why is the Vedic philosophy so pessimistic? When the world offers both pleasures and pains, why does the Bhagavad-gita call the world a place of misery?”

Over my decade and a half of practicing and sharing Krishna consciousness, I have been preparing and refining the answer to these questions. Here's my short four-point answer:

Writing for Krishna: The Price and the Prize

A BTG associate editor and steady contributor of articles offers advice and encouragement on writing for this magazine.

I received an email from a budding, but discouraged, devotee writer. He had submitted articles to this magazine but had repeatedly received negative reviews from the editors.

“How is it possible to get an article published in BTG?” he asked.

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