Dear Maharajas and Prabhus,
ISKCON GBC members,
Members of ISKCON India Governing Bureau,
ISKCON India leaders
International and Indian CPO officers,
ISKCON Minister of Education,
MEB and Co-Directors of ISKCON Mayapur,
respected ISKCON leaders, and
ISKCON community at large,
We hope you are all well.
Please accept our humble and respectful obeisances.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
We are the parents of boys and teenagers – international students who study and thrive in the Bhaktivedanta Academy Mayapur Gurukula for boys at the present time.
As fathers and mothers of the current generation of ISKCON Mayapur gurukula students, we desire to share our feelings of fortune and pride to have such a special place for our children. Those of you who are somewhat unfamiliar or out of touch with Mayapur Gurukula, will get a glimpse of valuable and sincere service that Gurukula offers to our society,and hopefully, would feel the same genuine appreciation.
All of you know well that the traditional system of gurukula education is very dear to Srila Prabhupada. It allows children to receive gaudiya-vaisnava training and tangible realization of Vedic knowledge from a very early age.
Mayapur Gurukula offers a unique educational experience for children, combining traditional academics with spiritual and moral values.
Our children attend gurukula with great willingness and enthusiasm, because its’ natural and calm environment has a very positive effect on their minds.
We witness it every day because as parents we take an active role in their education and training. Our children spend 12 hours a day at home, and gurukula schedules are conveniently adjusted according to different age groups.
In the current set up, we parents, enjoy deep and trustful relationships with teachers of the gurukula. We all work together to create a supportive and nurturing environment that promotes learning and personal growth.
Our gurukula teachers are qualified academically (out of ten – 2 are PhDs, 2 – Masters and 3 – BAs), spiritually and morally. They are parents themselves (3 of them have their boys in Gurukula) and have lovely families. They inspire our boys to develop Vaishnava qualities simply by being around them. Our children often mention that they want to be just like their teachers.
Gurukula’s mission is helping the boys to develop positive character traits and become free from inauspicious ones. Instilling virtues such as kindness, selflessness, and devotion to Lord Krishna through encouragement and cultivation of the mode of goodness, this process proves to be successful. It is one of the main reasons why we chose this kind of education. We are confident that the current gurukula system, with its’ emphasis on spiritual values and character development, provides a solid foundation for our childrens’ lives.
Teachers are committed to bring our children closer to the Holy Name. It is not just chanting together, but chanting in such a way that the boys can gradually develop the taste for it.
Speaking about the taste, we can also affirm that our children are acquiring a sincere taste for learning. They have a sound academic level compared to other regular teaching systems inside and outside of Mayapur Dham. The same goes for their artistic abilities. The boys play instruments like mridanga, kartalas, harmonium, and sitars and also putup plays together.
Mayapur Gurukula is the only place on earth where ISKCON children receive genuine Vedic upanayanam initiation before they turn 16, just like Lord Caitanya and Lord Krishna did. It comes naturally to them because they are trained in brahminical culture and lifestyle from the age of 5.
Our children learn practical skills like the use of medicinal herbs, various tools, and principles of Vastu.
They perform important services during Mayapur Temple festivals and preaching functions and even organize some of them entirely by themselves.
Their lives are spiritually and aesthetically enriched with parikramas to sacred and pristine places inside and outside of Navadwipa Dhama.
Our boys receive delicious prasadam for breakfast, lunch and snacks, as a part of a healthy diet which gives them stamina and strength. Gurukula is the only place in Mayapur that daily offers organic vegetables grown on its own fields. It also performs a valuable service of protecting mother Earth (Bhumi) and Dharma (bulls) on its premises.
Gurukula provides our children with all the required educational materials, books and complete sets of clothes.
Personal approach prevailing in Gurukula enables each student to develop qualities according to his nature, to recognize his own identity, and to contribute to society in a unique way.
Older boys serve each other and take care of the younger boys thus developing tolerance and sensitivity. This will serve them well in the roles of a father, a husband, a member of a community and a preacher.
Gurukula students come from different countries and cultures. Gurukula is an environment where they learn to cooperate and interact with each other – essential social skills not just for a preacher, but every wholesome human being.
As parents we are very happy to see our children being imbued with important qualities of responsibility, leadership and cooperation. They are the light and great hopes of our families.
With that we feel that gurukula is our extended family too and we are grateful for the opportunity to be a part of it.
With joined palms we prostrate ourselves before you and beg to bless this wonderful project which gives great pleasure to Srila Prabhupada.
We are well aware of the sufferings that gurukula students of previous generations went through, our most sincere prayers go out to them, so that their deep wounds can heal. However, we want you to continue with us in the present which is very favorable and into the future that is very promising.
Naturally, we are eager to see gurukula to get even better. Gurukula authorities and teachers are always open to our suggestions. The voices of parents are patiently heard and all of the concerns are addressed in a timely manner.
Hopefully, with this letter we managed to share our strong conviction with the entire world-wide ISKCON community, that the Gurukula for boys in Sridham Mayapur is the most needed educational facility in our society.
It is a fresh, renewed and vibrant place where our children are growing up happy, strong, responsible, kind andeducated.
We offer our heartfelt gratitude to all devotees involved in its’ success.
We are infinitely grateful to Srila Prabhupada for this great blessing.
With all our sincerity:
Parents of Gurukula students at Bhaktivedanta Academy Mayapur Gurukula for Boys:
- Sitaram dasa, Pradhan Gopika dd (India) – parents of 4 students
- Ekavirya dasa, Vishakha Priya dd (Israel)
- Bhakta dasa, Bhaktin Ludmila (Israel)
- Mukunda Datta dasa, Ladali Kisori dd (Belgium, Netherlands)
- Krishna Kirtan dasa, Shyama Kirtan dd (South Africa)
- Ananta Ram dasa, Yugala Kumari dd (Ukraine)
- Satyaraj dasa, Meenakshi dd (India)
- Atma Tattva dasa, Atma Shakti dd (Lithuania)
- Sankara dasa, Ramya dd (Russian Federation)
- Muralidhara Hari dāsa, Karpagavalli Mataji (India)
- Atiprada Gaura dasa, Kamala dd (Israel)
- Tota Gopinath dasa, Yashoda Nandini dd (United Kingdom)
- Indradyumna dasa, Annada dd (Russian Federation)
- Bhakta Devindren Yalamalai, Lokapavani Lalitha dd (Malaisia) – parents of 2 students
- Syam Gopal dasa, Amrita Vilasini dd (Russian Federation)
- Kashyap Kapila dasa, Bhaktin Brijal (India)
- Bhakta Mikhail and Bhaktin Tatyana Partonen (Russian Federation)
- Sravananda dasa, Alakananda Radhika dd (Australia)
- Bhakta Suresh and Bhaktin Elmira Kethanaboina (Dubai, Belarus)
- Radhikatma dasa, Radha Rasa Sudhanidhi dd (Israel)
- Sri Vallabha dasa, Bhava Tarini dd (Belarus) – parents of 2 students
- Dvaipāyana dāsa, Candra-kāntā dd (Hungary) – parents of 2 students
- Sujaya Gaurachandra dasa, Rupeshwari Vishnupriya dd (Dubai)
- Sridhar Swamipada dasa, Padmini Rukmini dd (India)
- Bhakta Shashikant and Bhaktin Priyanka Singh (India)
- Manamohan dasa, Nikunja Nivasini dd (USA)
- Kamala Carana dd (Russian Federation)
- Yashoda Vatsala dasa, Nila Vasana dd (Latvia)
- Singhabhatta dasa, Nagari dd (Latvia) parents of 2 students
- Teja Krishna dasa Yamunangi dd (Russian Federation)
- Pancatattva Dayasindhu dasa, Giteshwari dd (India)
- Prema Nitai dasa, Rasa Sundari dd (India, China)
- Ramayan dasa, Murari Mohini dd (USA, Bolivia)
- Bhakta Sathiyamoorthi, Gaurangi Sakhi dd (India)
- Purushottam dasa, Sarad Purnima dd (India)
- Guru Vrata dasa, Rupeshvari dd (Russian Federation)
- Parameshvar Thakur dasa, Sudevi Sevika dd (India)
- Narottam Priya dasa (India)
- Gopiswara dasa, Vrajalalana dd (Russian Federation, Ukraine)
- Krishna Kanhaya das, Srimati dd (Russian Federation)
- Yogesvara dasa, Krishnapriya Radha dd (Russian Federation)