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Viewing entries posted in 2009

Vedic System of Self-Development

9 February 2009 | 0 Comments | Tags: , ,

I recently gave a talk at the Krishna Fest at Gaura Yoga on the "Vedic System of Self-Development". Thanks to Sivarama Swami for the inspiration for this talk.

You can view the talk synchronized with slides here.

or download the source AAC file vedic system of self-development.m4a

or download the source MP3 file vedic system of self-development.mp3

Reinventing the Sunday Feast

6 February 2009 | 2 Comments | Tags: , ,

I was listening to the following podcast:

Darrel Rhea: Marking During an Economic Meltdown

The title is deceptive. It is more about analyzing a market or activity holistically and reinventing it to taking into account the complete picture. With a complete view of all the factors, motivations, desires, side-effects and intentions, one can transform into a truly customer focused organization.

Darrel Rhea gives example how he helped do this for Apple Retail Stores, Electrolux Kitchen Appliances, the Australian Tax System and Hospital Stroke Treatment.

How about we think about the classic Sunday Feast in this way? In New Zealand the Sunday Feast has already been adapted and reinvented to a certain extent to make it more accessible to newcomers, but without changing any of the core values of Krishna Consciousness. But more can always be done to improve it even further.

(Learn more about the "Krishna Fest" as it is in Wellington, New Zealand: Gaura Yoga - Festivals)

Think of the usual kind of person that might attend a Krishna Conscious center: curious, wary, ignorant of any kind of philosophy, averse to ritual, averse to religion, proud, attached to the opposite sex, not able to sit on the floor for long periods of time, short attention span, self-conscious (unless intoxicated), concerned about spending too much money and concerned about the environment (although not actually doing much about it).

So, using that picture of the typical guest, how would you reinvent the Sunday Feast with a fresh outlook, unencumbered by past traditions? Things that might be changed: name, time, music, types of events, sequence of events, physical layout of the room(s), decoration of the room(s), devotee numbers, devotee dress & accessories and devotee language & attitude.

Please leave your thoughts and opinions in the comments below.

End of Year Retreat 2008

7 January 2009 | 1 Comments | Tags: ,

I just got back from a 10-day Christmas retreat. Most of the Hare Krishna devotees in New Zealand attended this festival of inspiration, rejuvenation and association. Over 100 devotees were there, in total.

The retreat was held in the Otaki region of New Zealand (1 hour North of Wellington). We rented out two retreat centers: Riverslea and Waihoanga; and also used our own retreat center Gaura Haven for accommodation.

The 10-day passed quickly. There were so many brilliant talks, inspiring presentations, delicious spiritual food (prasadam), and nice people to talk to. A slight downer was that everyone (and I do mean everyone) got sick. A nasty flu virus managed to infect everyone's bodies. It lasted about four days in most people. Nevertheless, it was a brilliant time.

I took about 900 photos over the course of the retreat. A selection of images is available in my picture gallery.