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What does Hare Krsna mean to you?

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posted on Jul, 10 2006 @ 05:21 PM
Hare Krsna!

being someone who practices this faith somewhat seriosuly (I chant, have an altar, try to follow the regulative principles as much as possible, have great association with devotees in the farm communities in PA and WV), I just wanted to ask what people think of the movement that has come over from India and has established itself in nearly every town and village...

do you think its just a cult? do you practice this faith as well? do you have no idea?

Frankly, I'm very aware of the typical terrible and unholy things that have occurred in the last 20 or 30 years in the name of Krsna, and I am certainly always questioning certain aspects of the movement's current state (espiecally in the still-ancient and not-so-quaint attitudes towards women and peoples of alternative sexuality), but as I chant and read and hear and remember, I feel an effect, a deeper awareness that grows slowly, but which nas nevertheless sprouted out of the dirt, so to speak...

posted on Jul, 10 2006 @ 05:52 PM
I'm a Hindu by birth and I mean no offence when I say, I find the Hare Krishna movement to be cultish. I find it commendable that so many people can alter their lifestyles and live a religion in the way the Hare Krishnas do. They're charitable work and open arms to their sect is also commenable. But as a hindu and someone who has read thru the Mahabarat, Bhagvad Geeta and Ramayan, I find that the true Hindu message is being ignored for a more structured and organized system than what Hinduism is really meant to be. The rigid structure, rituals and practices that the Hare Krishnas practice IMO is unneccessary to achieve moksha and nirvana and good karma. Chanting mantras and practicing yoga are the benefits and positives of the Hare Krishna movements, but you Don't need to be a follower of the movement to do so.

My problem really isn't with the Hare Krishna movement itself, but with all "organized" religous efforts by pandits. I have a huge mistrust and contempt for most Hindu pandits, since they prefer to "lead" people instead of actually teaching them. Modern hinduism has bred a culture of corrupt and greedy pandits and imo all pandits are bandits as my gran says. Then of course there is the whole women's issue which I could go on and on about. In a religion that worships the "goddess" figure it is highly hypocritical how women are treated in society and imo the Hare Krishnas help promote that backwards thinking instead of embracing the true message of the Gitas.

[edit on 7-10-2006 by worldwatcher]

posted on Jul, 10 2006 @ 06:31 PM
From the internal perspective of my own experiences within the Hare Krsna movement, I can say the very structured and exclusive set-up is a source of inspiration to keeping my faith more solid, but is also quite intimidating to anyone like myself who is not quite ready to become a full-time devotee.

As for the chanting itself being exclusive only to the movement's members, I will simply repeat the example told to me numerous times by my friend Psukta-das, who introduced me to Krsna consciouness, of Christian monks chanting the Hare Krsna mantra, and of the whole point of the movement of being to expose as many people as possible to the potencies of the Hare Krsna mantra. You don't have to be a devotee to chant Hare Krsna, and chanting Hare Krsna won't automatically make you a devotee, but I recommend it to anyone looking to explore and increase their own spirtuality. I find it personally to be a potent form of mediation that anything else I have tried (which is just basically the old sit-and-breathe method).

I have also been deeply touched by some of the advanced gurus I have encountered within the movement, and although just because a person holds the title of guru does not still mean they are still a person, with all the flaws inherent, the energy of selfless compassion these gurus emit, even after they have passed, is certainly something that I feel draws me forward in a very positive sense on my spiritual path. And as to the issue of women within the movement, this is truly one of my biggest concerns and criticisms, and in my own personal practice, it is as important to me to worship the feminine aspects of Krsna as it is the masculine aspect, and I also feel more of a direct and productive connection to the feminine aspects in my worship as well.

I certainly agree some aspects of the Hare Krsna movement reflect what is backwards of the meeting between God and our post-modern world, but I simply say that, at least to me, reflects what is best and most meaningful in being spiritual in the circumstances of our world right now.

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