WE ARE HALFWAY through the Centennial year, and much has happened to increase consciousness of Srila Prabhupada and bring him and his teachings to the notice of the world. Still, there is much more to happen this year, including Prabhupada's Maha Vyasa-puja (Appearance Day celebration), Feed the World Day, World Enlightenment Day, and a series of events in India around the month of Kartika (October-November).
Centennial celebrations are thriving in many parts of the world. While reading a report sent to me by Srutakirti Dasa, the temple president of ISKCON Durban, I felt that the Centennial team's four years of planning and hard work had been worth the effort. In his report, written in April, Srutakirti told of upcoming Centennial events in Durban and South Africa:
• Nrsimhadeva Festival, in May.
Will focus on Srila Prabhupada's introduction of the worship of Lord Nrsimhadeva. Ten thousand people expected.
• World Holy Name Day, June 6.
A series of harinamas [chanting festivals] around the country, starting in the provincial capital of Pietermaritzburg, then on to other cities, culminating in Africa's biggest harinama ever, in Durban.
• Srila Prabhupada's Appearance Day celebrations. Expected attendance: 100,000.
• Feed the World Day, in November. Dubbed by the mayor as "Feed Durban for One Day."
• Rathayatra, in December. Goal: half a million plates of prasadam.
Srutakirti also reported that more than 250 devotees in South Africa had pledged to distribute one Krsna conscious book a day this year.
The Bimonthly Newsletter Of the Prabhupada Centennial
Subscribe now! The publication will continue until April 1997. Subscriptions: 4 issues, US$10. Bulk Orders: 50 copies, US$56 (postage not included). Send payment by international check, payable to ISKCON, to Bhaktin Arati, 62 Sant Nagar, New Delhi 110065, India.
ISKCON's International Newsletter for Uniting Prabhupada's Family
To receive a copy, send your name and address to Ramiya Dasa, P. O. Box 1987, Alachua, FL 32616, USA.
Sahasra Tirtha Jala video, poster, and presentation folder, Centennial T-shirts, pens, badges, posters, bags, photo frames, key chains, etc.
Centennial Master Plan
Harinama Manual (by Indradyumna Swami)
Food For Life Manual
For more information on publications and promotional items, contact your national Centennial office or the Centennial Global Ministry: Centennial House, 62 Sant Nagar, New Delhi 110065, India. Phone: +91 (11) 6469633 or 6481977. Fax: +91 (11) 6225277 or 6872378. E-mail: email@example.com
ISKCON Incorporation Day: August 7
Prabhupada's Maha Vyasa-puja: September 6
Feed the World Day: November 23
World Enlightenment Day: December 14
Maha Vyasa-puja: September 6
World Congress for the Synthesis of Science and Religion: January 6-12, 1997
VIHE Courses: October
Vraja Mandala Parikrama: October 6-November 6
Grand Opening of Prabhupada's Samadhi: November 14
Opening of Temple: November 12
Opening of Temple: November 16
Opening of Temple: November 20
Awards Ceremony & Inauguration of The Centennial Memorial: March 22, 1997
Contact your local ISKCON center for details.
News and Events
On June 2-8, more than one hundred ISKCON centers worldwide took part in Padayatra Week. As with previous Padayatras ("walking festivals"), Padayatra Week generated much media coverage. Thousands of temple devotees and congregation members walked under the banner "Walk for a Change," promoting a change of consciousness from material to spiritual.
Padayatra Week also introduced Padayatra to new countries, thus helping to realize a special achievement for the pleasure of Srila Prabhupada Padayatra in one hundred countries by the end of 1996.
More centers will hold Padayatra Week later in the year.
World Holy Name Day
On June 9, the sound of Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare vibrated around the planet as never before, when thousands of devotees chanted and glorified the holy name and Hare Krsna radio stations broadcast the maha-mantra continuously for twenty-four hours. In South Africa, Bhakti Bhrnga Govinda Swami led fifteen thousand people chanting through the streets of Durban. Meanwhile, in some cities around the world devotees sponsored interfaith gatherings focused on the universality of chanting the holy names of God.
New York Festival
On June 5-17, five hundred devotees assembled in New York City, birth city of ISKCON, for a pilgrimage commemorating thirty years of Krsna consciousness in the Western world. Devotees chanted in Tompkins Square Park, where Srila Prabhupada initiated the public chanting of Hare Krsna in the West. Devotees gathered at 26 Second Avenue, Prabhupada's first temple, to hear stories of ISKCON's beginnings. Daily chanting parties and visits to the places where Srila Prabhupada stayed brought everyone to a high level of Prabhupada consciousness. The New York pilgrimage culminated in a Rathayatra on June 15.
ISKCON Social Development Conferences
Conferences on social development in ISKCON were held in Mayapur, West Bengal, in March, and in Alachua, Florida, in May. Throughout the year devotees will hold similar conferences in other parts of the world as part of the Centennial efforts for uniting and strengthening ISKCON.
Sahasra Tirtha Jala
Water from 1,008 holy places will be used to bathe deities of Srila Prabhupada on his appearance day. By Lord Krsna's grace, the challenge was met: ten thousand kalasas (waterpots) and fifteen thousand liters of sacred water were dispatched. Some sailed over the seas; others flew by air cargo. Most of the Centennial kalasas and the sacred water have reached ports Philadelphia, Durban, Saint Petersburg, Vladivostok, London, Odessa, Antwerp, Sydney.
Come And Celebrate
Srila Prabhupada's Maha Vyasa-puja (Appearance Day)
At your local ISKCON Center September 6*
Every ISKCON center will celebrate Srila Prabhupada's Maha Vyasa-puja. For information on local programs and how you can take part, or to sponsor a kalasa of sacred water to offer during the ceremony, please contact your local temple president or Centennial coordinator.
Or in Calcutta September 6-8
The Calcutta Maha Vyasa-puja committee has scheduled a three-day program to honor Srila Prabhupada in his birth city on the occasion of his one-hundredth birth anniversary. The celebrations include:
• Welcoming the Sahasra Tirtha Jala
• 1,008-water procession in the city
• 50,000 guests at Netaji Subhash Chandra indoor stadium
• 1,000 devotees from India and abroad
• Bathing Srila Prabhupada with sacred water from 1,008 holy places
• Celebrities from India and abroad honoring Srila Prabhupada
• A feast of 1,008 dishes offered to Srila Prabhupada
• Premiere of the movie "A Lifetime in Preparation"
• The "New World of Hare Krsna" documentary
• Krsna Vision
• International devotees sing Srila Prabhupada's glories
• Drama: "Srila Prabhupada"
To book your accommodations, contact Sattvik Dasa c/o ISKCON Calcutta.
*Check with your nearest temple for the date in your country