The author was born in Britain in 1957 and joined ISKCON in London in 1975. Later that year he was formally accepted as a disciple of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the founderacarya of ISKCON, and named Ilapati dasa.
From 1977 to 1979 Ilapati dasa was based in India, mostly travelling in West Bengal distributing Srila Prabhupada's books. He spent the following ten years helping to pioneer ISKCON'S preaching in Bangladesh, Malaysia, Myanmar, and Thailand.
In 1989 he was granted the order of sannyilsa, receiving the name Bhakti Vikasa Swami, and again made his base in India. Since then he has preached Krsna consciousness throughout the subcontinent, lecturing in English, Hindi, and Bengali. He also spends a few months each year preaching in the West. His television lectures in Hindi have reached millions worldwide.
Bhakti Vikasa Swami has written fourteen books, which have been translated into over twenty languages, with more than seven hundred thousand in print.
It may pertinently be asked, "How is it that a foreigner has the audacity to comment about India and Indians? This Bhakti Vikasa Swami even strongly criticizes and presumes to instruct us!"
In reply, I submit that I have been following traditional Indian culture for most of my life. I have travelled throughout most of India, with all kinds of people at all levels of society, and learned two Indian languages. Having visited many other countries also, and observed the people of different lands, I am convinced that the original Indian culture is the best the World has even known. Furthermore, in today's troubled world India's spiritual message is vitally needed. It is thus regrettable that in this hour of need, when Indians should be distributing their ancient wisdom, they are instead giving it up.
If my words seem harsh, it is not out of antagonism, but from a hope that India will revive her lost glory and stand as a leader among nations. As a sannyasi, it is my duty to instruct. Moreover, the topics in this book are either based on or are direct quotations from the teachings of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Sami Prabhupada, the founder-acarya of ISCON. Admittedly, I am a very insignificant soul, but my spiritual master, Srila Prabhupada, is a great world acarya. Whatever he says should taken seriously.
I thus request the readers not to be disturbed by the strong statements contained herein, but try to perceive the truth in them. I am confident that, if received properly, this book can do much good for India. I pray to Lord Sri Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, that He blesses me, as well as the readers of this book, the land of India, and all people in the universe. If he so desire, this book can help contribute to the ongoing reawakening of the world's oldest and greatest civilization.
This work is in two parts. The fist, A Message to the Youth of Indiaman essay by Bhakti Vikasa Swami, brings together most of the points that His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada taught about India from Srila Prabhupada's extensive writings, conversations, and lectures.
In the early 1970s, having established Krsna consciousness in the West, Srila Prabhupada started concentrating his attention on India. He told his disciples, "My spiritual master wanted me to preach Western countries. Now that I have done that, I want to preach in India." Yet in the 70s many Indians, suspecting that the Westerners' bhakti was merely a passing fashion, did not take ISKCON very seriously.
Now, a generation later, the foreign devotees have remained, and acceptance of ISKCON has grown. Many Indians are now initiated disciples of Western-born devotees Educated Indians, many of whom were apathetic to sanatana-dharma, are again taking pride in their own culture. Like it or not, religion has come to the forefront of national life.
One reason for this the inspiration generated by outsiders' continued interest in Indian spirituality. The foreign members of ISKCON have particularly impressed Indians with their implicit faith in sastra (especially Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam), their having renounced meat-eating, gambling, the taking of intoxicants, and illicit sex, their austerity and dedication- for instance, members of ISKCON rise daily¬¬¬ by 4:00 a.m.- and their adoption of Vedic practices (Indian-style dress, food, and so on). Such committed adherence to genuine Vedic traditions establishes ISKCON'S authenticity in contrast to cheap, imitation versions of dharma marketed by pseudo swamis.
Srila Prabhupada often expressed Lord Caitanya's desire that Indians seriously practice Krsna consciousness. He had great hope that ISKCON would help India to reverse her lamentable fall into materialism and realize her identity as the spiritual leader of the world.
Not only young people but all class of Indians will benefit from reading this book. Yet, because the students of today are the leaders of tomorrow, it especially behoves the educated youth of India to deeply ponder this message and apply it practically in their life.
|About Srila Prabhupada||vii|
|Books by Srila Prabhupada||x|
|About Bhakti Vikasa Swami||xiii|
|Books by Bhakti Vikasa Swami||xiv|
|A Messages to the Youth of India||1|
|Srila Prabhupada on India||25|
|Caitanya Mahaprabhu's Mission||27|
|The Glories of Bharata-varsa||31|
|India is the Best Country||31|
|India is the Best Place for Spiritual Life||31|
|Birth in India is Special||32|
|Even the demigods Desire Birth in India||33|
|Every Indian is Krsna Conscious||34|
|India Once Ruled the World||35|
|Outsiders Are Accepting Krsna Consciousness||35|
|The Land of Religion||35|
|India's Present Condition||38|
|Causes of India's Downfall||45|
|The Influence of Kali-yuga||45|
|Imitating the West||45|
|Don't Blame the Government||53|
|Krsna Consciousness Should Have Been Made the State Religion||53|
|Spiritual Culture Rejected||53|
|Malinterpretation of Scripture||54|
|Not Accepting Krsna's Supremacy and Authority||56|
|Indians Are Becoming Insane||57|
|The British Influence||59|
|India Should Have Distributed Spiritual Knowledge||63|
|The Duty of Indians||67|
|Why Are You Neglecting Krsna Consciousness?||67|
|Indians Should Preach Krsna Consciousness||67|
|Westerners Look to India for Enlightenment||69|
|Unite All Under One Flag||70|
|The Best Welfare Activity||70|
|Learn from the Krsna Consciousness Movement||73|
|Indians Should Join This Movement||73|
|Indian Should Become Gurus and Save te World||73|
|Looking to the Future||76|
|Indian Culture Can Be Revived||76|
|The Krsna Consciousness Movement is the only Hope||77|
|Overcoming the Demoniac Culture||80|
|The Peace Formula||81|
|India Will Be Glorified||82|
|India Can Save, Uplift, and Lead the World||83|
|Krsna Conscious Government||85|
|Youth of India||86|
|Youth As Victims||86|
|Young People Should Join This Movement||87|
|East and West Should Cooperate||88|
|The Lame Man and the Blind Man||89|
|The West Must Look to India||92|
|Unite and Change the World||93|
|Make the Whole World Hindustan||94|
|Hindus and Muslims||97|
|How the Muslim Population Increased||97|
|Hindus and Muslims Live Peacefully||98|
|"Religious" Fighting is Foolishness||100|
|Ten Points for Indira Gandhi||102|
Item Code: NAN193 Author: Bhakti Vikasa Swami Cover: Paperback Edition: 2011 Publisher: Bhakti Vikas Trust ISBN: 9788190829236 Language: English Size: 7.0 inch X 4.5 inch Pages: 132 (22 Color Illustrations) Other Details: Weight of the Book: 110 gms