Audio: My View of the Hare Krishna Movement in the West

An audio recording was made of my presentation at the ISKCON Studies Conference at Villa Vrindavana outside Florence in the summer of 2010. Click on the third lecture on this list (on the title or the icon to the left to download, or on the icon to the right to listen in a player). The sound quality is poor, not least that of the short introduction by Rembert Lutjeharms (Gopinathacharya Dasa), but it becomes at least a little better when I begin to speak (in another microphone).

The title of the paper was ‘Conversion, Preaching, and Western Cultural Identity’. It remains my most important statement of my view of this branch of the “Vedic” tradition in the West, dealing as it does, at least to some extent, with what I think are the most important aspects of the vast topic, and being based on more than three decades of experience of and reflection on them.

The audio recording includes the discussion, after the conference presentation, with, among others, Kenneth Valpey (Krishna Kshetra Swami) and Shaunaka Rishi Das. The paper was subsequently published in slightly revised form in the ISKCON Studies Journal with the title ‘The Hare Krishna Movement and Western Cultural Identity: Education, Preaching, Conversion’.

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All original writing © Jan Olof Bengtsson
"A Self-realized being cannot help benefiting the world. His very existence is the highest good."
Ramana Maharshi