The ISKCON stands for the International Society for Krishna Consciousness which is also known as the Krishna Movement. The ISKCON is a worldwide organization for devotees of the Krishna. To be able to know what ISKCON is, one should know who Krishna is. Krishna is a supreme being or God who is known in this world by many names. Krishna is regarded as the Supreme Personality of God. Krishna comes from the Sanskrit term, ‘the all attractive one’.
The main objective of the organization is to promote the teachings of Krishna and the well-being of society. The organization works by spreading Krishna consciousness based on the Indian Vedic scriptures. During the 1960’s, Los Angeles became the center of ISKCON as the organization eventually spread in India through the years. Today, ISKCON maintains its main temple found just outside of Bombay. Although the Hare Krishna Movement’s first members were from the European American middle class, the organization has acquired many Indian members in recent years and continues to attract more believers.
More ISKCON temples were built in the past decades in honor of the Lord Krishna. The devotees of Hare-Krishna and Hare-Rama built the many temples that can be found around Delhi. These ISKCON temples contain many works of art made by Russian artists. In India, visitors and Krishna devotees can visit these temples:
Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh ISKCON Temple
This ISKCON temple is located inside the Krishna-Baldev Temple in Vrindivan, India. It contains many beautiful paintings showing the religious life of Lord Krishna. The paintings are placed along the galleries that lead to the main chamber. Visitors of this temple can see many devotees managing the library collection and participating in chants and rituals on a daily basis.
Delhi ISKCON Temple
This ISKCON temple in Delhi is open for visitors who want to find peace and serenity in the middle of the city. Chants and rituals of Lord Krishna can also be seen and heard here.
Chandradoya, West Bengal ISKCON Temple
This particular temple is also known as the international headquarters of the organization. The temple is surrounded by the main deities and the Vedic city. The monuments of deities that guard the temple are all quite massive in size. The altars of the temple also contain sculptures of the deities.
The rituals and practices of ISKCON members compose of chanting the name of Hare Krishna. The chanting is usually accompanied by drums and cymbals as this practice is said to invoke the spirit of the Rama and Krishna. Members also gather at the ISKCON temples to worship the supreme being.
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Hare Krishna devotees are differentiated from other members of society through their appearance and diet. The male members of the organization wear robes and shave their heads. They also do not eat any type of meat or take alcohol drinks.
ISKCON temples are generally known for their works of art which includes the sculptures and monuments of Krishna and Rama Deities. To learn more about the culture and religions of India, visiting temples is a way to start. Visitors will be exposed to Islamic art in all its forms including architecture and Muslim ornaments. With India’s numerous temples, ISKCON temples indeed offer visitors a different experience when it comes to culture and the arts