An Interview with Radhanatha Swami: A Hare Krishna (part 2)
So Lord Chaitanya taught that the essence of the Vedas is that in this particular age that we're living, which is an age where people have very little propensity for real spiritual life, the most practical and easy method of reviving our God-consciousness is by chanting the names of God. So he practically demonstrated his whole life this process of chanting, and dancing, and serving God with whatever propensity or inclination one has, whether one is a student, or, doctor, or lawyer, or businessman, or farmer or a priest, if we just dedicate that inclination to serving the Supreme Lord we can develop our love of God. And by chanting the names of God it makes this realization take place. So then Lord Chaitanya gave this same eternal message that Krishna spoke to his disciple until in 1965 His Divine Grace A c Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada just brought this very very great teaching to the Western world. And when he came to America, he was 70 years old. He didn't come to bring anything new, he didn't come to give his own opinion, but he came as an ambassador to the world's oldest religion, to a philosophy which literally has thousands of books written on it and he purely spoke this great message. And from him the Hare Krishna movement spread all over the world. Especially in the western area. There was a prophecy that said the movement would start in America and spread throughout the world. In India, there are millions and millions of us. in America, only about 10,000 initiated devoteesin the western world, and probably many millions who more or less follow our principles and believe in our teachings. When we take initiation we take a formal vow that we will not have illicit sex, which means any type of sexual contact outside of marriage. We don't have any kind of taking of intoxications, which includes alcohol, coffee, tea, and any kind of drug for the purpose of becoming intoxicated.we don't eat meat, fish or eggs, and we don't smoke. We also take a vow to chant the holy names of God a prescribed amount every day. generally, people don't get initiated until they are twelve years old. The children chant less than the full initiates.