New Vrindaban’s Transcendental Throwback Thursday – 11/27/2014


New Vrindaban Throwback Thursday

This week’s challenge: There are nine people in this photo. Can you name them all and identify what are they doing?

Extra credit: What year was this photo taken?

What to do: Post your guesses on the “who, what, when, where & why” in the comment section at the New Vrindaban Facebook page.

An Evening with Srila Prabhupada at His Palace in New Vrindaban


New Vrindaban Prabhupada Palace

Srila Prabhupada seated on his Vyasasana in his Palace at New Vrindaban.

New Vrindaban Fall Board Meetings 2014:

An Evening with Srila Prabhupada at his Palace

By Madhava Smullen

At 6:00pm on November 1st, New Vrindaban board and community members ended their first packed day of meetings with a true treat – spending the evening with Srila Prabhupada at his Palace of Gold. The event was one in a series of monthly sangams arranged by Kripamaya Das.

As devotees arrived, Palace Restoration Manager Gopisa Das showed them the latest work done, pointing out the renovated lookout tower, the black granite being laid on the steps, and the new drainage system to prevent future water damage.

As they stepped from the brisk cold outside into Srila Prabhupada’s warm temple room, with the ISKCON Founder-Acharya looking out from his vyasasana over the stunning gilded ornamentation, marble flooring and ceiling paintings of Krishna’s pastimes, they felt as if they were entering the spiritual world.

New Vrindaban Prabhupada Palace Chaitanya Mangala 2014

Chaitanya Mangala speaks to the group.

Joint board member Chaitanya Mangala Das set the tone for the evening by reading a 1974 editors’ letter from the 12th issue of Brijabasi Spirit magazine describing a “hectic” week of “all-out service” as New Vrindaban devotees prepared for Prabhupada’s visit, but saying that even more important was developing the proper consciousness to receive such a great personality.

Chaitanya Mangala pointed that this was still applicable today —  as we are outwardly engaged in service, our internal reflection should be to develop qualities of surrender, humility, appreciation and love in order to truly receive Srila Prabhupada.

He then read several stories about the visit itself, including Srila Prabhupada’s arrival at Bahulaban, the Saturday festival with him attended by 400 devotees from around the country, and his tour of his still under-construction Palace.

Chaitanya Mangala also read about Prabhupada’s visit to Daivata Das’ house in Madhuban and pointed out Daivata amongst the devotees gathered. Seeing a devotee featured in a story about Prabhupada sitting right there and smiling at the memory was a wonderful experience for a young devotee like this writer.

His Holiness Varsana Maharaj speaks.

His Holiness Varsana Maharaj speaks.

Varshana Swami spoke next, reminding everyone that this Palace was the first Samadhi built for Srila Prabhupada. He told the story of how when Prabhupada visited this very same temple room while it was under construction, his disciple Bali Mardana asked: “Will this room be lit up by jewels like in the Krishna book?” In reply, Prabhupada, gestured to the devotees building the Palace. “These devotees are my jewels,” he said.

Varshana Swami also recalled the night when news came that Prabhupada passed away, and how the shellshocked devotees all gathered in the only place that made sense: his Palace. Although it was the darkest night of their lives, and they felt like they couldn’t go on, as they cried and chanted together in a mood of separation, they began to feel closer to Prabhupada than they ever had.

“Prabhupada’s ultimate gift is that the highest part of Vaishnava siddhanta is service in separation — which we’re all doing right now,” Varshana Swami concluded.

New Vrindaban Prabhupada Palace Tamohara 2014

Tamohara prabhu shares his insights.

Finally Tamohara Das spoke about Srila Prabhupada’s management style, comparing it to parenting rather than corporate management and citing three specific qualities.

Firstly, like a good parent, he said, Prabhupada was a great communicator. Secondly, he brought the best out of his “children” by expecting the best from them. “Whatever Prabhupada asked us to do, we felt we could do,” Tamohara said.

Lastly, Prabhupada was warm and nurturing, like every good parent. “If we want to have Prabhupada in our lives and hearts, he’s there,” said Tamohara. “He continues to offer that protection years after  his physical departure.”

An endearingly “old school” kirtan lead by Daivata Das in Srila Prabhupada’s classic Hare Krishna tune followed, creating a mood very evocative of the memories that had just been shared. Finally, feeling blissfully closer to Srila Prabhupada and more encouraged in their quest to realize his mission, the devotees sat down together to a delicious prasadam meal.

An attentive crowd inside Prabhupada's Palace.

An attentive crowd inside Prabhupada’s Palace.

 

 

Spend New Year’s Eve in New Vrindaban Dhama-Bhakti Retreat


Bhakti Retreat: New Year’s in New Vrindaban Dham

January 1st  – 4th 2015

Spend this New Year’s Eve in the scenic, rolling hills of West Virginia, getting spiritually re-charged.  Listen to enlivening Krsna Katha and Prabhupada Katha.   Attend enlightening devotional workshops/seminars, soothing bhajans, ecstatic kirtans, and enjoy sumptuous, healthy prasad.  Does life get any better than this?

snow temple.cropped

Special guest speakers include:

-Malati Prabhu

– Havi Prabhu

– Gopal Hari prabhu

-Yugal Kisore prabhu

- Many of the older Brijabasis                                     

tree.GN

Festival registration is free, but donations to help cover costs are, of course, welcome during the retreat.

We have limited rooms available- please book your room today!  To book your room, please either call or email the Palace Lodge directly at palacelodge108@gmail.com or 304-843-1600 ext.111

We look forward to seeing and serving you. Hare Krishna.

cabin1

Prabhupada Encourages the Start of a Nursery School in New Vrindaban – February 1972


New Vrindaban Bahulaban Temple Prabhupada 1976

Srila Prabhupada giving a cookie to Vishnu & Sankirtan in the Bahulaban Temple, New Vrindaban, June 1976

“Your idea to start a nursery school in New Vrindaban is very good proposal and you may immediately try for it by cooperatively consulting amongst yourselves how to do it.” – Srila Prabhupada, February 1972.

Click here to read the rest of the letter at the Brijabasi Spirit website.

New Vrindaban’s Transcendental Throwback Thursday – 11/20/2014


New Vrindaban Bahulaban Barn Cows 1970

 

This week’s challenge: Many people will be enlivened to know the building in this photo is currently undergoing a major renaissance. Can you identify it, what purposes it’s served over the years, and possibly the era this photo was taken?

Extra credit: Can you ID any of the Matajis in the foreground?

What to do: Post your guesses on the “who, what, when, where & why” in the comment section at the Brijabasi Spirit website.

 

New Vrindaban Bahulaban Barn Renovation 2014

 

ECO-Vrindaban Board Meeting Minutes 11/02/2014


ECO-Vrindaban Logo

ECO-Vrindaban On-Site Board Meeting Minutes 11/2/2014

Mission Statement: ECO-Vrindaban promotes a simple, sustainable lifestyle centered on the care and protection of cows, local food production and the loving service of Lord Krishna, as envisioned by Srila Prabhupada, the Founder-Acharya of ISKCON New Vrindaban.

Participating Members of the ECO-V Board of Directors: Anuttama, Chaitanya Mangala, Krpamaya, Navin Shyam and Ranaka.

1. Radha-Krsna Devi dasi as Advisor

WHEREAS:  The ECO-V Board wishes to cultivate potential future directors in advance of vacancies on our Board.

RESOLVED: The Board appoints Radha-Krsna Devi Dasi as an advisor, with an initial term of one year.

2. ISKCON New Vrindaban (INV) Bahulaban Utility Building Roof & Window Repair

WHEREAS:  The ECO-V Board wishes to increase the allocation for repair of the Bahulaban utility building to be able to install a new roof and gutters.

RESOLVED: The Board votes to increase the allocation to $30K.

3. General Manager Candidates

The ECO-V Board decided to move ahead with hiring Mukunda prabhu. Ranaka and Chaitanya Mangala are delegated to work out details of the contract.

4. Construction of INV Apartment Building

WHEREAS:  The ECO-V Board wishes to invest a significant portion of the proceeds from the Utica Shale gas lease to fund an endowment for the future care of the cows, and simultaneously support the growth of the INV community.

RESOLVED: The Board approves a $550K loan to INV for the construction of a new apartment building and proceeds from the loan will be used to start a cow protection endowment.

Gopal’s Garden for Little Vaishnavas – New Vrindaban Preschool Reopens


New Vrindaban Preschool Reopens

by Lilasuka dasi

The preschool takes shape.

The preschool takes shape.

The academic school in New Vrindaban has gone through many changes throughout the years.   From “Nandagram School” back in the 80’s, to the “New Vrindavan School” in the 90’s, to the current “Gopal’s Garden Home School Co-op”, all ages of kids and teachers have come and gone. Many of the graduates have expressed fond memories of their time spent in those Nandagram classrooms.

These days, a new wave of enthusiasm is hitting New Vrindaban in the form of a preschool! It is a welcome phenomenon that truly happened by surprise. Recently, one of the newest mothers in New Vrindaban was searching for a babysitter for a few days a week. The search didn’t exactly bear fruit, but something even better took place. In talking to several other mothers with young children, the possibility of a preschool came up. The idea was an immediate hit.

Older student Brinda plays with preschoolers.

Older student Brinda plays with preschoolers.

That same weekend, on Nov. 9, 2014, Mother Ruci held a meeting with the four interested mothers. Mother Ruci said, “I was totally surprised at the enthusiasm, energy and commitment coming from these mothers for a preschool. It must be that the time is right for this to happen. I think it’s a great idea and I’m enlivened. We’re ready for the New Vrindaban Home School Co-op to expand.”

The very next morning, all four mothers were down at the school building, working together to clean out the preschool classroom and bring in the paraphernalia provided by Mother Ruci. Lalita Gopi dasi, who cares for another mother’s toddler, Nadia, and who was instrumential in getting the project off the ground, was found enthusiastically sweeping the new classroom and arranging the tables. Sundari dasi said, “I’m very excited about this class for my two year old daughter, Bhumi. Just having this class here will attract more families with young children to New Vrindaban, I’m sure of it.”

The happy face of Nadia

The happy face of Nadia

Bhumi snacking.

Bhumi snacking.

Almost ready.

Almost ready.

Vilasini dasi won’t be able to personally assist in the classroom, as she is going to school for nursing and also working, but she and her husband are very excited for their three year old, Malini, to attend. She confirms, “If they need us to shop for the class, I’d love to do that!”

One young mother, Priti dasi, was born in New Vrindaban back in the early ‘80’s and is a graduate of the school herself. She now has two little children of her own, one of whom will be attending the preschool. Priti said, “When I heard about the possibility of this preschool, I was very excited. My three year old, Rama, is ready for this. I’m really enthusiastic about helping to provide him a situation where he can learn to socialize with other kids his age in a Krsna conscious setting.”

Prabhupada Envisions “Every Home, Every Cottage” in New Vrindaban as a Temple


 

New Vrindaban Prabhupada Vrindaban Nath 1976

Srila Prabhupada visits Sri Sri Radha Vrindaban Natha at the original New Vrindaban farmhouse, June 1976.

“In Vrindavan there are so many temples, they say 5,000, or in Vrindavan every home, every cottage is a temple. As far as possible, try to develop New Vrindaban on this standard.” – Srila Prabhupada, August 1970.

Click here to read the rest of the letter at the Brijabasi Spirit website.

New Vrindaban’s Transcendental Throwback Thursday – 11/13/2014


New Vrindaban Cooks Throwback Thursday

 

This week’s challenge: There are five devotees visible in the photo. One is clearly identifiable. Who are they, what are they doing and where & when was this photo taken?

What to do: Post your guesses on the “who, what, when, where & why” in the comment section at the Brijabasi Spirit website.

 

ISKCON New Vrindaban Logo

ECO-Vrindaban Board Meeting Minutes 10/26/2014


ECO-Vrindaban Logo

ECO-Vrindaban Board Meeting Minutes 10/26/2014

Mission Statement: ECO-Vrindaban promotes a simple, sustainable lifestyle centered on the care and protection of cows, local food production and the loving service of Lord Krishna, as envisioned by Srila Prabhupada, the Founder-Acharya of ISKCON New Vrindaban.

Participating Members of the ECO-V Board of Directors: Chaitanya Mangala, Navin Shyam, Kripamaya (partial), Madhava Gosh (partial), and Ranaka.

Advisors present: Jaya Krsna

Recording secretary: Navin Shyam

1. ECO-V logo revision

WHEREAS: The ECOV Board wishes to adopt a new logo that better reflects our mission statement.

RESOLVED: The Board adopts the logo attached to this meeting’s minutes.

2. Bahulaban Barn Renovations

Ranaka reported that the manure pit has been re-landscaped, and cow movement has been charted out. He indicated that providing housing in the upstairs should be discussed. The project is still set for December completion.

3. ISKCON New Vrindaban Bahulaban Utility Building Repair

Jaya Krsna met with Vyasasana, who has agreed to block one side of the building. Vyasasana also made another proposal regarding roof repair, which Jaya Krsna is discussing further with him before sharing with the joint boards.

4. Gopal’s Garden School Grant 2014-2015

The next newsletter should be forthcoming at the end of October. Ranaka will fill out a grant application for the 2014-2015 year, requesting $15K.

5. Onsite meeting

Will be held on November 1 and 2.

 

Celebrating 40 years of New Vrindaban’s Brijabasi Spirit!


New Vrindaban Brijabasi Spirit 1974

Brijabasi Spirit; Vol 1, Issue 9, 06-23-1974.

We have some great news!
In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Brijabasi Spirit, 34 issues from 1974 have been digitized and are now available online (with additional years soon to follow).
The Brijabasi Spirit was first published in 1974 and for a number of years it was a weekly newsletter sharing great details about daily life in New Vrindaban.
We can now mentally (and spiritually) transport ourselves back to a time when Srila Prabhupada first visited his Palace at Guruban, ride with the ox and horse teams, track the Bahulaban barn as it was constructed, tour the active farms at Old Vrindaban, Bahulaban, Madhuban, and more.
Much thanks to Hrishikesh prabhu (Henry Doktorski) and the Bill Muster Foundation for all their efforts in gathering such a comprehensive collection and making that archive available to everyone.
Thanks also goes to ISKCON New Vrindaban and ECO-Vrindaban for covering the costs of the digitization process.
Click Here, or go to the link below:

In Srila Prabhupada’s Vision for New Vrindaban, “Simple Living” & “Self-Sufficiency” are Synonymous – January 1973


New Vrindaban Prabhupada 1969

Srila Prabhupada reading outside the original New Vrindaban farmhouse, Spring 1969.

Prabhupada: “You are actually learning in New Vrindaban the self-sufficient mode of living, simple living, high thinking, that is our policy, and as long as Krsna remains in the center of all these activities, then you are actually in Vrindaban.”

Click here to read the rest of the letter at the Vanipedia website.

Welcome Ishaan & Balarama to the Herd


New Vrindaban Cows Mother Sita Son Ishaan 2014

Mother Sita & her son, Ishaan

 

On August 5, 2014, Mother Sita (daughter of Malati) gave birth to her first calf, a bull who was given the name Ishaan. Shortly after his birth Ishaan was blessed with the association of H.H. Radhanatha Swami. What an auspicious start to life! Ishaan was born with an under bite which is a perfect match for his rather goofy personality.

New Vrindaban Cows ECO-Vrindaban 2014

Ishaan’s super cute under bite to match his spunky personality

Ishaan is a rambunctious little fellow who is always ready to play. He could care less about the mood or size of his playmate, he will challenge anyone for a run around the pasture. He’s not playing around when it comes to drinking milk — so much so that he will try to extract milk from any object he can get his mouth on, be it animate or inanimate.

New Vrindaban Cows ECO-Vrindaban 2014

Ishaan blissfully absorbed in his favorite pastime

A favorite pastime of Ishaan is to suck on the collar of his Mother, in hopes of getting a different flavor of milk. So far his attempts have been unsuccessful in finding new sources of milk.

New Vrindaban Cows ECO-Vrindaban 2014

Ishaan(right), Balarama (left)

 

ISKCON New Vrindaban Cows ECO-Vrindaban 2014

Balarama in samadhi

On September 9, 2014, Mother Manjari gave birth to a white bull calf who was given the name Balaram. Balaram is a rather shy & peaceful guy. He spends his days peacefully resisting Ishan’s attempts to engage in frivolous activities. He’s too much of a sage to pass his days like that. Nonetheless, when it comes to milking time, he’s not shy to find his mom.

ISKCON New Vrindaban Cows ECO-Vrindaban 2014 Manjari, daughter of Tulasi, mom of Balarama

Manjari, daughter of Tulasi, mom of Balarama

Manjari is very much attached to Balaram & will call out for him throughout the day & night checking in on his welfare. While in pasture with Balaram, Manjari would call out for the rest of the herd to see what they were up to. Either with her son, or with the rest of the ladies, she always wants to be in the loop with what’s happening in both places.

Both Ishaan & Balaram are sons of Dharma, the resident bull in New Vrindaban. Everyone is invited & encouraged to come meet the latest additions to the herd during milking times at 7am or 6:30pm daily.

New Vrindaban’s Transcendental Throwback Thursday – 11/06/2014


 

New Vrindaban Throwback Thursday

This week’s challenge: What is this contraption and what did it do?

What to do: Post your guesses on the “who, what, when, where & why” in the comment section at the Brijabasi Spirit website.

New Vrindaban Looking for Garland Makers


Krsna Priya New Vrindaban flower garlands Radha Vrindaban Chandra

Krsna Priya was born in New Vrindaban and here she is, years later, making flower garlands for Their Lordships.

A special opportunity is now available at New Vrindaban.
We are looking for volunteers to live in the Holy Dhama for any length of time between now (Nov. 2014) and April 2015 for a specific mission.
The service is simple – to make beautiful flower garlands for some of the deities of New Vrindaban. This will take about 2 to 3 hours a day.
We will provide nice accommodations and Prasad, as well as training.
Please call Lilasuka at 304 843 1600 xt 106 or email lilasooka@msn.com. Thank you.
New Vrindaban Flower Garlands Radha Vrindaban Chandra

An enthusiastic guest couple from VA. makes garlands for the Lord.

New Vrindaban Mangalacarana dasi flower garland Radha Vrindaban Chandra

Mangalacarana dasi makes beautiful flower garlands for the Lord.

Prabhupada Defines Two “Prominent Principles” for New Vrindaban – April 16, 1969


New Vrindaban Prabhupada 1969

Prabhupada sits with his disciples outside the original New Vrindaban farmhouse, Spring 1969.

Prabhupada: “For New Vrindaban, the principle of raising cows and raising foodstuffs must be very prominent.”

Click here to read the rest of this letter at the Brijabasi Spirit website.

 

2cowsbylake.jpg

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Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
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Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare

"May cows stay in front of me; may cows stay behind me; may cows stay on both sides of me. May I always reside in the midst of cows."
Hari Bhakti-vilas 16.252